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Old 14th April 2014, 18:16   #1
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Default Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

This is a short travelogue of our trip to Koh Lanta, Thailand.


Reason for choosing this island:
- Not yet commercialized like Phuket, Koh Samui, Koh Phi Phi etc.
- Best for a relaxing holiday
- There are no water activities like Jet Skis, Banana Boats, Para-Sailing, etc
- Just beaches and clear water
- Not a party destination; ideal place to relax


Other Details:
Travel Period: 5th March 2014 to 9th March 2014
Flight: Tiger Air from Singapore - Krabi - Singapore
Car Rental: AVIS Thailand - 3,885 Baht for 4 days.



After our trip in October 2013, which I felt was a bit hectic for traveling with better half, I decided to have a relaxing holiday and Koh Lanta was chosen as the destination.


NOTE TO SELF: The best time to visit Thailand is during the rainy season, unless one's home country is covered in snow 365 days a year! Never again during the summers.



Since our flight was landing in Krabi around 3:00 PM local time and we would require another one hour to get Visa on Arrival, immigration, car collection, etc, we decided to stay in Krabi on the first day and then travel to Koh Lanta on the next day.



Our companion for the trip: Toyota Corolla Altis 1.8 AT. I had booked a Toyota Yaris and got upgraded to the Altis! Sweet!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140305_160453.jpg


We picked up a DTAC Prepaid SIM, (50 Baht more than BKK Price) for data and navigation purpose.


First stop - Lunch at Tesco Lotus food court on the way to Krabi. We had a nice time communicating in Thai(!) with the locals.


The food court
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Random selection from the menu and the outcome!
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The best Thai Iced Tea ever!
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A glimpse of the roads you get to drive-on in Krabi.
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Day 1 being a stop over for our main destination, we directly headed to our hotel - Thip Residence Boutique Hotel. Nice clean and spacious rooms and away from the crowd (actually 6KMs from Ao Nang). Usually everyone avoids to stay away from Ao Nang beach but it is not a concern when you make your own travel arrangements and are not dependent on taxis or public transport!


The spacious and clean room:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0220.jpg

The pool:
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Unique traffic signal - Cavemen:
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We roamed around Krabi town and Ao Nang area in the evening, had dinner at a restaurant near the Ao Nang beach and retired for the day!

Last edited by pulsar56 : 15th April 2014 at 15:13.
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Old 14th April 2014, 19:03   #2
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Our hotel was located near Ao Nam Mao Pier, the pick up point for some of the super luxury resorts located at Railey Beach which is accessible only through the sea. We did not go to Railey but decided to check out the local attractions near the hotel.


Fossil Beach:

Quote:

Source: Wiki

(Thai Su-san Hoi, literally "Seashell Graveyard"). Some 7 km west of Ao Nang, this mildly tourist trap-like attraction has slates of compressed, 40 million year old shellfish, which bear a small resemblance to concrete. There's also a small grubby museum and a huge slew of gift shops. Entry is a steep 200 baht for foreigners, but only 20 baht for Thais. This tourist trap is simply not worth the 200 baht you have to pay as tourists unless maybe you are a geology student. As the official Krabi tourism website (rather honestly) states "most are either engrossed in this or totally indifferent".
Susaan Hoi, or Fossil Shell Beach (literally Seashell Graveyard), is located at Ban Laem Pho in Krabi, in the vicinity of Hat Noppharat Thara - Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park.

It is an unremarkable site, with nothing much to do or see. Tourists are charged 200 Baht per person for entry and get to go down 20 more steps than the non-paying tourists.
Since we were there early in the morning and the place was not yet open, we just took few photographs and left.

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0265.jpg

Long exposure with a 10 Stop ND Filter.
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We had thai style breakfast (rice, chicken and soup) at a local shop which seemed to be popular with the locals and the drove over to Ao Nang Beach to check the area in daylight.


The most popular mode of local transport in Thailand...
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It was low tide and we were not at all impressed!
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Two Wheeler Taxis:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0322.jpg


A short video: This is what Krabi (Ao Nang) looks like from inside a car!


We checked out from the hotel and drove towards the ferry to cross over to Koh Lanta. (approximately 2 hours drive)

The ferry starts at the place named "Songserm Tran Service Company Limited" on Google Maps.
GPS Coordinates for ferry to Koh Lanta: 741'36.6"N 9905'56.5"E

The road ends here:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0358.jpg

There are multiple ways to reach Koh Lanta - Passenger Ferry which departs twice a day from Ao Nang, Speed Boats from Ao Nang and Vehicle Ferry which is operational throughout the year from around 7:00 AM to 10:00 PM.
The passenger ferry and speed boats stop operation during the monsoon season due to rough seas.


On the ferry.
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The ramps are of different heights to operate in both high and low tide levels.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0391.jpg

There are two ferries to be taken to reach the main Koh Lanta Island(marked in the screen-shot below). The total time to reach the island takes around 1 to 2 hours after you reach the first ferry point. (depending on the length of queue)
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-snip20140418_1.png

The queue to board the second ferry!
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The Sun was playing its part by trying to roast whatever was outside at this time!

This is how close you park on the ferry. No space to even open the door.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0419.jpg

Last edited by pulsar56 : 18th April 2014 at 14:09.
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Old 18th April 2014, 14:43   #3
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Default Koh Lanta

We did not have any hotel booking at Koh Lanta and the plan was to explore the island and look for a nice accommodation. We had our lunch and roamed around a bit checking out the resorts.

Bamboo Bay Beach (This is the last beach with accommodation on the island). There are 3 resorts/hotels here and the best one was full. The other two were not impressive though the view and the beach at this part of the island was mind-blowing!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140306_164639.jpg

The plan was to stay close to the sea at least for a day and we got a nice room in one of the resorts towards the southern end of the island.

The room:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0431edit.jpg


View from inside:

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0433.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0434.jpg


It was a nice experience staying so close to the sea!

Sunset with a 10 Stop ND Filter
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0437.jpg

The same sunset captured with the Galaxy Note 3:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140306_181852.jpg

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The room from outside:
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140306_182436.jpg

Night market for dinner. (This is at Saladan). The street food in Thailand is just amazing.

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0462.jpg

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This is how crowded the beaches in Koh Lanta can get! LOL.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0476.jpg


And the water is crystal clear!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0482.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0484.jpg

Breakfast table at the resort.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140307_082155.jpg


We were having lunch at a restaurant near Saladan Pier and this ferry arrived on the island. I guess this is the passenger ferry from Ao Nang in Krabi.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0491.jpg

Last edited by pulsar56 : 21st April 2014 at 08:09.
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Old 18th April 2014, 15:07   #4
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Default Tung Yee Peng Mangrove Forests

Tung Yee Peng is a small fishing village on the east coast of the island and this side of the island is covered with Mangrove forests.

Long tail boats and kayaking options are available here for checking out the mangroves.


Some pictures from the long-tail boat trip exploring the Mangrove forests at Tung Yee Peng Village.

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140307_150619.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0492.jpg

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Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140307_155032.jpg

A short video of the tour around the mangroves:


The island of magical sunsets!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0696.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0697.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0705.jpg

Last edited by pulsar56 : 20th April 2014 at 08:21.
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Old 18th April 2014, 15:30   #5
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Default No Coal Lanta

Apparently, Thailand government is proposing to set up a coal power plant at Krabi and build a coal dock at Koh Lanta island. Everyone on the island gathered at the Lanta Old Town for protesting against the same on Friday evening.

Quote:
The Island of Koh Lanta and the Krabi province are battling to save their beloved islands, their National Marine parks and their untouched coral reefs.

A 800 MW Coal Plant is to be built in Krabi and the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) plans to transport coal from Indonesia up into the Andaman sea into Koh Lanta, where there will be a coal dock.

A shipping lane, with 90 tankers a day, will be built and go right through the National Marine Parks of Koh Lanta and Koh Phi Phi Islands, up into the mangroves of Krabi and as a result totally ruining one of the most unique coral reefs and eco- systems in the whole world - The Phi Phi Island and Koh Ha Islands, as it is acknowledged that coal “accidently drops” from the barges into the sea.

When the whole world is focusing on addressing alternative green energies, it is unacceptable that Thailand opts for coal as safe and clean energy as it is notoriously known that coal fly ash pollutes the air with highly toxic carcinogen agents such as arsenic, nickel, benzene, mercury and contaminates the surrounding rivers and sea.
Source:
https://www.facebook.com/SayNoToKrabiCoalPowerPlant
https://www.facebook.com/NoCoalLanta


We reached the old town in the evening expecting huge crowds and traffic jams only to be greeted with a local fair called the Laanta Lanta festival. The Thai Protests(?) are nothing like what we see in India! :-)

We then start roaming around sampling the amazing street food!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0728.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0729.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0732.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0733.jpg

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Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0755.jpg

Last edited by pulsar56 : 20th April 2014 at 10:12.
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Old 20th April 2014, 08:51   #6
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Default Koh Rok Islands

The next day, we went on a snorkeling trip to Koh Rok.

Quote:
Koh Rok - some of Thailand’s finest snorkeling spots are located off Lanta’s coast. Koh Rok, 47 km south of Lanta, is considered by most to be the pick of the bunch, though other people say they rate Koh Haa’s snorkelling even more highly. Koh Rok actually consists of two islands, Koh Rok Nai and Koh Rok Nok, both graced with powdery white sand beaches and with an extensive bed of coral in between.
This sheltered and shallow channel is an ideal habitat for reef fish, and the place swarms with innumerable shoals of them. Visibility is very good, and many interesting species of reef fish can be found in these waters. Many snorkellers are most amazed by the sheer numbers of fish here, which swirl and swarm around the swimmers.
Source: wiki

The islands are too far from Phuket, Krabi or Phi Phi and only the tourists from Koh Lanta visit here for the day trips. Koh Rok is not like those commercialized islands around Phuket or Krabi where there are 1000s of tourists jostling for space at the same time.

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-snip20140420_2.png


Let the pictures speak for themselves:

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0773.jpg

Can there be a better place for push-ups?
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0775.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0782.jpg

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4 speed boats only.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0866.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-dsc_0876.jpg

The crowded beach!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140308_1137542.jpg

Video of speed boat to Koh Rok and the island.


Later in the evening, we again landed up at the Saladan market for street-food dinner. Also witnessed the corrupt practices of the police who were collecting 'hafta' and enjoying free food from the stalls. It felt just like our home country!!

Last edited by pulsar56 : 21st April 2014 at 07:50.
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Old 20th April 2014, 09:09   #7
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Default Final Day

Few more food pics!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140310-11.26.07-1.jpg

Finally found a cafe serving good Latte!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140308_170546.jpg

Another day, another place, another breakfast table!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_085744.jpg

Waiting to board the ferry to go back to Krabi.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_120356.jpg

The car and a/c is always on to beat the heat!
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_121159.jpg

The tug-boat which helps the ferry to turn & align with the pier.
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_121301.jpg

Dakar Competitor?
Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_133120.jpg

Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta-20140309_133151.jpg


!~THE END~!
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Old 22nd April 2014, 07:53   #8
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Note from Mod : Thread moved from Assembly Line to Travelogue Section. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 22nd April 2014, 08:34   #9
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Wow!! Just what I was waiting for, Koh Lanta is on my "To visit" lists, it almost materialised last year but Bali trip took over, thanks for sharing such wonderful pics and a good writeup. Will contact you for more details. Thanks once again.
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Old 22nd April 2014, 08:37   #10
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Fantastic pictures with crisp write up Nazim.
I have been to Thailand at least ten times and how did I miss this lovely place? .
Was so involving and motivating that I have decided this to be my next holiday destination.

Could you catch some fish while you were there?

Cheers,
Dr.Kumar.

Last edited by ecosport rules : 22nd April 2014 at 08:38.
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Old 22nd April 2014, 09:07   #11
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Pics are brilliant and the locations seems to be picture perfect.

Need some info from you. I am going to Krabi in May. This will be just a weekend trip. Can you please help in plan the trip and things to do and not to do as this is just 2 days trip.

From the info collected from the net, I would prefer to stay Koh Lanta as it has beautiful beaches. But I will be landing in Krabi Town on Friday night. Will there be any transfers available at that time? And what Island trip would you recommend to do?
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Old 22nd April 2014, 09:19   #12
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Quote:
Originally Posted by arun_kun View Post
Pics are brilliant and the locations seems to be picture perfect.

Need some info from you. I am going to Krabi in May. This will be just a weekend trip. Can you please help in plan the trip and things to do and not to do as this is just 2 days trip.

From the info collected from the net, I would prefer to stay Koh Lanta as it has beautiful beaches. But I will be landing in Krabi Town on Friday night. Will there be any transfers available at that time? And what Island trip would you recommend to do?
Hi Arun,

If it's just a weekend trip, traveling to Koh Lanta and back will not be a great idea. It takes around 1.5 hours to reach the first ferry point from Krabi town and then depending on the number of vehicles already in the queue, the ferry crossing till you reach Koh Lanta can take another 1 to 2 hours.
The last ferry departs at 10:00 PM as per the information available.

Most of the organized day trips for the islands and such start early in the morning around 8:30 AM and you will not have enough time.

Why not stay at Railay beach?

Map Link


As for the tours, it will be your personal preference and comfort.

List of available tours can be found here. Please note that this site is a travel agent site and I just used it to plan or read about Krabi. I have no experience booking with them.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:22   #13
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Default Re: Thailand: Krabi & Koh Lanta

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukeskywalker View Post
Will contact you for more details. Thanks once again.
Thank you for the appreciation Lukeskywalker. Please PM me anytime in case you require any inputs from me!


Quote:
Originally Posted by ecosport rules View Post
I have been to Thailand at least ten times and how did I miss this lovely place?
Thank you Dr. Kumar. I never knew that you have visited Thailand 10 times. You should also share some tips with us so that it can be useful for future trip planning. Maybe you can update on this thread?
Thailand 101: Advice, Tips, Planning etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ecosport rules View Post
Could you catch some fish while you were there?
No. We did not try our hands in fishing at all. It was insanely hot during the day time for us to think about anything else other than to spend time inside an air conditioned room!
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