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Ao Nang

Ao Nang Krabi & caves at Ao Luk

Railay Beach
Krabi  Province
Phi Phi Islands
There is no direct access from Ao Nang (where you arrive) to Railay Beach as the limestone cliffs are in between.
Just hire a longtail boat at the waterfront where the road end, it's about 400 baht for a round-trip. The boatman will show you Railay west and east if you want to stop at one the sandy beaches just tell, it's a real beautiful tropical environment with lush green scenery and warm emerald colored waters, along with reasonable accommodation and cottages.

This is a rather small seaside village along the Ao Nang Beach the main street is the divider at one side are shops, restaurants, hotels and resorts plus bars where you can get everything what you need in your Krabi vacation.

The place is also ok for a weekend tour from Singapore  and Kuala Lumpur.  Since there are direct aircraft connections so no need to waste travel time. Check Air Asia or Tiger Air there might be some more they continuously change.

Ao Nang and things to do in Krabi 

Most traveler into the Krabi province come either from Phuket and the north plus the aircraft when from overseas.  In recent years also a growing number move in from the south which are mainly Malaysian and Singaporean holidaymaker often with their cars and the bus. Between Malaysia and the tourist places of Thailand is a busy traffic. Since both ASEAN countries are very similar also in the travel price structure Malaysians rather feel almost at home.

They have plenty of beaches beyond the southern border but Thailand has more spectacular sights which for sure are an interesting attraction. Roads are good, mostly 4 lanes, so everything is inviting a tour either to the north or south. Beside of the few spectacular places in Krabi and Trang, the whole is quite similar.

The seafront and beaches are quite popular and there is a reason for. Some waterfronts are still pristine, there are no crowded places, everything is quiet and peaceful for a perfect getaway holiday with the whole family.

This part of Thailand together with Phang Nga Bay has probably the top waterfront nature scenery in the country. A spectacular coastline and about 130 islands in front of it in the emerald waters of the Andaman Sea including the Trang Archipelago. Road travel is excellent changes and it changes betwee 4 lane and 2 lane highways.  Most islands and beaches hotels, including the big luxury resorts are located around 

Ao Luk caves in the mangrove jungle

A small village on the highway in the south.

The scene at Ao Luk is dominated by limestone hills popping out from the earth with a thick layer of the jungle on it. What are the highlights there? Probably only one and that's definitely worth a stop also to watch tropical flowers.

In the mangrove forest are some caves with prehistoric wall paintings, they look somehow similar to Lascaux in France but on a much smaller scale and lesser quality although it's interesting and it clearly shows that something was going on here a long time ago.

Unfortunately, when the people around got hold on guns after WW2 they killed all animals bigger than rats and today nothing is left.

At the starting point to the limestone caves at Ao Luk is a pretty restaurant just above the waterfront of the mangrove forest and from here kayaking into the caves begins.

Ao Luk description
Ao Luk description

For the nature lover the real interesting part of this trip is either take a kayak for rent and paddle around in the mangrove forest or hire a longtail boat. In any case, you need a guide since in this water-forest you get lost very quickly.

About the caves

Fishing in the mangroves
Fishing in the mangroves

Probably the most interesting views around are the surrealistic formed limestone outcrops often with caves hidden deep inside. Southern Thailand is one of the best places for caving. The limestone caves are some of the real Thailand attractions.

Phang Nga Bay off Ao Luk
Phang Nga Bay off Ao Luk
The climate and weather is excellent this could be done every day, only in the rainy season it needs to be careful since flash floods have killed peoples in the last years. In general its a tropical environment with scattered rain and thunderstorms during the monsoon season.

The scenery has still its natural beauty since there are not many peoples, when exploring the wall paintings a lamp wont be bad, if you take one of the long tail boats the boat man has one with him, he will show the paintings on the ceilings.

The caves are 10 – 30 meters wide and have several chambers on each side. A couple of slippery descents are to be mastered but there is no need for experience in climbing just reach out for the cracks in the limestone when you get a uncontrollable move.

Smooth curtains of cream and white colored flow-stone are coating the walls, fat pale needles of stalactites dripping from the roof. Long stalactites hung among wavy curtains of calcite and round knobs of stalagmites, hobbling the chamber floor.
Market at Ao Luk
Market at Ao Luk

In the area are some orchid nurseries

it could be a good idea to have a look since this tropical flower have real marvelous shapes and colors.

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  1. prehistoric cave paintings at Ao Luk in Krabi
  2. Into the limestone cave at Ao Luk Krabi
  3. tropical flowers in Krabi
  4. exploring the cave with the kayak
  5. a golden Buddha statue in Krabi
  6. cave sign in Ao Luk
  7. Road travel to Ao Luk
  8. Thai orchids at a housefront in Ao Nang.jpg
Railay Beach at Ao Nang