After the quiet city of Trang, we headed to Krabi which is much more popular amongst Western tourists. So we noticed with disappointment that most of the people we met there were less helpful and smiling…
But first, after leaving Trang, we made a little detour to Pak Meng beach which was a long spit of sand, wild and empty.
After lunch in Pak Meng, we followed the road to Krabi and spent a first night a few kilometers before Krabi to stay in a good spot to visit the Emerald Pools the day after. Emerald Pools are beautiful pools that we visited 5 years back. We remembered having fun there so we wanted to go again. So on Saturday morning we went to visit the pools. There was much more facilities than 5 years ago, however we were still quite early in the morning so we could enjoy the pools and relax.
We then went to the Hot Springs not far away and that we also enjoyed 5 years back. But when we arrived, we realized the place had really changed, it was crowded with mini vans and buses of tourists in a brand new parking. Knowing that the springs are quite small and wondering how all these tourists would fit in, we gave up our visit and headed directly to Krabi to spend the rest of the day walking in the city. At night, we went to a Night Market in the middle of town. There were plenty of great food stalls!
The day after was our highlight of Krabi. 5 years ago we had been to the Tiger Cave Temple (Wat Tham Suea), which is a temple at the top of a hill that can be reached by climbing 1238 steps. This was a memorable moment from 5 years ago, but at that time we had promised not to do it again because it was so difficult to climb all these stairs. Anyway we were in Krabi to do it again because we wanted to be again at the top of the hill and see the amazing view and feel the fresh breathe. We were just afraid that 5 years after, the place would be full of tourists as were the Emerald Pool and the Hot Springs. But climbing 1238 steps must be quite unfriendly for many people!
We started climbing the stairs and it was sooo hard, it was also very hot under the sun. We climbed for half an hour, wishing we had never come there. But at the top, the views, the spiritual atmosphere, the little bells ringing in the wind (and fortunately only the few people who made it) made us feel so good to have succeeded in this big effort.
Truly, this big buddha on the top of the hill is in my top of favorite places in Thailand.
In the afternoon, we headed to Ao Nang, just next to Krabi and well known for its beaches. On Tuesday we went to Railay Beach which is known to be a beautiful beach in the region and is only accessible by boat (even if it is on the coast). The surroundings were beautiful but we were a bit disappointed by the number of long tail boats coming and leaving, making a lot of noise on the beach. We decided to leave the city the day after to continue our way to the North. But before that we had our last dinner at Potawan, where we enjoyed delicious green curry with chicken, tom kah gai (chicken coconut soup), coconut shake and mango sticky rice, a very good address to eat yummy Thai food!
We headed to Khao Lak, but we stopped being lucky with the weather and just saw in Khao Lak a beach with raging sea, yes monsoon had taken over us…
Nearly stuck by the rain in Khao Lak, we finally manage to leave the day after to the North. The rain did not stop though. But hopefully it was not raining when we were riding, only when we were settling down at the hotel. And taking the advantage of riding a motorbike, we stopped in a beach where the search on Google returns 0 result : Prahat Beach! We found a nice and empty motel just next to it and spent the following morning relaxing on the totally empty beach before carrying on to the North.
Our strategy to stop when we love a place was not very effective as we had ended up moving every day. A bit tired of all the kilometers we decided to stop in our next step, whatever is was. That’s how we ended up in Ranong!