Difference between revisions of "Krabi (province)"
Revision as of 10:03, 24 January 2006
Krabi Province is on the west coast of Southern Thailand, and shares borders with Nakhon Si Thammarat Province, Phang Nga Province, Satun Province and Surat Thani Province, as well as the Andaman Sea.
Krabi (กระบี่) is the provincial capital of Krabi Province.
The distinguishing feature of both Krabi and neighboring Phang Nga is the massive limestone cliffs, rising vertiginously out of the flat rice paddies on land and as islands from the sea. Add in some gorgeous beaches and excellent scuba diving, and it's little wonder why tourism in the area has been booming.
Krabi Province is slightly better known to the domestic markets than to international tourists still somewhat dazzled by nearby Phuket. However it cannot be described as undiscovered: it receives two million visitors a year, and most of the major tourist areas now cater extensively or exclusively to foreigners.
Krabi Province was badly hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004. A year later, signs of the damage are now hard to find in many places, but in the worst hit areas (especially Ko Phi Phi and Khao Lak) reconstruction is still ongoing.
Krabi is hot and humid around the year. The hottest time of year is around April, while the rainy season arrives in the fall and drizzles until November or so. The most popular time to visit is consequently in the winter, when it's a little cooler, and the peak tourist season is over Christmas and New Year.
You can get around on English alone in the more touristic areas, although a few words of Thai will come in handy off the beaten track and will be much appreciated anywhere.
The best way to enter this province is through its capital Krabi.
There are regular buses leaving from Bangkok's Southern Bus Terminal in Bangkok to Krabi (~ 500 baht), but probably the best option is to take a VIP bus, which for 250 baht more makes the 10 hour ride much more comfortable.
Krabi is mostly coast and islands, so you'll be spending quite some time on boats when getting around.
The most common boat type for shorter hops is the long-tail boat (reua hang yao), which true to the name has the propeller at the end of a long 'tail' stretching from the boat. This makes them supremely manoeuvrable even in shallow waters, but they're a little underpowered for longer trips and you'll get wet if it's even a little choppy.
Krabi Province and the Andaman Sea have a number of excellent dive sites. You can find dive resorts at almost every coastal destination in the region and on the islands that tourists visit. Dive resorts on Phuket will visit some of these sites too. Most will offer a selection of dives at the following sites:
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