Best Areas to Stay in Krabi (Best Towns and Beaches in 2024)

BEST AREAS TO STAY IN KRABI BEST TOWNS AND BEACHES

In this post, you will find everything you need to know to choose the best place to stay in Krabi.

I will list all the possible places like towns or beaches you could stay, while taking into account your personal travel style and budget!

Krabi is one of the most beautiful provinces in Thailand and is packed to the brim with stunning beaches, jungles, temples and vibrant towns. 

It is home to some of the most famous resorts, beaches and islands like Railay Beach, Hoh Phi Phi, Koh Lanta and Ao Nag.

But if you are travelling to Krabi for the first time, it might also feel confusing and overwhelming to decide where to stay in Krabi.

Where is the cheapest? Where is the best beach? Is there anything to do? Can I see the rest of the region from there? Where is the best area or town in Krabi for me?

I will answer all those questions!

I like to explore all the possibilities and I often travel to both the touristy and off-the-beaten parts of any region. But I get it that this is not always possible, especially if you are tight on time.

There is no such thing as a perfect place and what is great for some may be bad for others. That’s why I’m going to help you find the perfect place for you, your budget and your travelling style.

But let’s start with some basics:

BEST AREAS TO STAY IN KRABI BEST TOWNS AN

Many travellers think that Krabi is an island, but Krabi is a large region (province) in Thailand and is known for its stunning beaches, limestone cliffs, clear waters and numerous dreamy islands.

Even though Krabi itself is not an island, it is home to some of the most beautiful islands in the country.

Krabi is also a paradise for adventure seekers looking to enjoy rock climbing, jungle trekking, ziplining and snorkelling.

Quick Overview of all the Best Places to Stay in Krabi

Here I will list all the possible places to Stay in Krabi to give you a a bit of a bigger picture. Below each, I will mention a few pros and cons just so you can choose your non-negotiables more easily. 🙂

I will also drop a few accommodation recommendations in case you don’t feel like doing any research!

Ao Nag

Although super touristy to the point of being annoying at times, I have to admit that Ao Nang is probably one of the best places to stay in Krabi for first-timers. It has an excellent tourist infrastructure with many options for longtail boat trips to all the islands and beaches like Railay, which are cheaper and easier than anywhere else in Krabi.

There are plenty of excellent hotels and hostels to suit all tastes and budgets as well as an abundance of restaurants, bars and of course a beach.

BEST AREAS TO STAY IN KRABI BEST TOWNS AN

It’s not the cheapest, but Krabi is hardly that anyway. But even if you’re on a budget, you’ll find great hostels, food markets and plenty to do. Ao Nang is not my favourite town in Thailand, but it’s one that I recommend it to first-time visitors to Krabi.

Ao Nang is also a great place to stay for backpackers in Krabi and is often referred to as a backpackers’ party town. There are plenty of hostels here offering cheap beds, social vibes and plenty of day tours.

Ao Nang Pros:

  • Great choice of accommodation
  • Plenty of restaurants and bars, great nightlife
  • Easy access to nearby beaches and island
  • Can be as cheap or as expensive as you want it to be 
  • Good place to stay for a few days with quite a few things to do in town
  • There is a beach however quite average
BEST AREAS TO STAY IN KRABI BEST TOWNS AN

Ao Nang Cons:

  • Quite touristy and busy
  • You will be bothered on the street by food sellers 
  • Not the best night markets
  • Not the most authentic

Where to Stay in Ao Nang: 

Best hostels: I stayed in the K-Bunk hostel and I was happy enough to extend my stay. If you are looking for a party hostel the Base Ao Nang has excellent reviews and for a more chilled hostel stay check out Sea Beach Hostel or @Aonang.

Budget: If you are looking for a budget room then Krabi Nemo House or Baan Thara Guesthouse could be a great choice!

Midrange: There are plenty of midrange stays available in Ao Nag and among some of the best ones are De Loft Hotel, Vipa Tropical Resort or Aonang Hill Krabi.

Luxury: If what you need is a great luxury resort then you will not go wrong with Poonsiri Varich Pool Villa, Venice Krabi Villa Resort or The Scene Cliff View Villas.

Krabi Town

Krabi Town is the capital of the province and as such is the largest town in Krabi. Yet it is very much off the beaten path and much more authentic than the majority of the destinations in Krabi.

If you want to get away from tourist spots and get a glimpse of authentic life, Krabi Town is a place to stay. It has awesome night markets, local prices a lovely river to walk along and some awesome jungle walks which are easily accessible without taking a tour.

Krabi Town has no beach and is not exactly a perfect holiday destination. If you are looking for a beach getaway this is not a town for you. But if you are looking for an authentic, slightly rough around the around the edges town, Krabi will fulfil your wish.

BEST AREAS TO STAY IN KRABI BEST TOWNS AN

But do I think Krabi Town is a great place to make a base for exploring the rest of Krabi? Only if you are planning to drive, rent a bike and. But even then I am not sure if I would recommend it.

For me, Krabi Town is a great town to visit to get a glimpse of real Thai life, but it is more of a destination in itself. For a couple of days.

It is a bit too far from all the great beaches and lacks the tourist infrastructure that other areas in Krabi have. Yes, it can definitely appeal to those who want to get away from tourist traps, and I very much enjoyed my stay there. But I was also glad that I stayed in Ao Nang where I could easily visit Railay and other great places in Krabi. 

Where to TO STAY IN KRABI

Krabi Town Pros:

  • Much more authentic and less crowded
  • Great and much cheaper night markets
  • Generally cheaper accommodation
  • Great place to travel onwards to Malaysia

Krabi Town Cons:

  • No beach, and a bit thicker to get to Krabi beaches unless you are prepared to take organised day trips
  • Not much of a nightlife
  • No Resort Amenities. There is no beach so no beach pools and beach bars. 

Where to stay in Krabi Town:

Hostels: I highly recommend Leisure Hostel. This hostel exceeded my expectations, especially given the price. Pak-Up Hostel is also fantastic and I heard loads of great opinions from other travellers. 

Budget: If you are looking for a great yet affordable private room then consider K.L. Boutique Hotel, Krabi River Hotel or this super cool Muji Hotel KrabI.

Midrange: Ror a comfortable stay, Family Tree Hotel offers an awesome location, cool decor and very friendly staff!

Railay

Railay is amazing!

This small peninsula located between the city of Krabi and Ao Nang is super touristy and quite expensive, but undeniably, stunning! Having said that, many travellers visit Railay on a day trip, so staying overnight could be a great idea as you could enjoy this stunning beach after all the day trippers are gone.

Railey Beach is one of the most popular areas to stay in Krabi mostly due to its incredible location. Boasting not one but 2 incredible beaches, towering limestone cliffs and turquoise waters – this place is a paradise.

Where to TO STAY IN KRABI

Considering it’s a small area, it’s pretty well developed and very much geared towards travellers. You will find some great beach resorts here as well as plenty of activities and fun things to do during the day and night.

But catering to tourists comes with a territory. Railay is also a little more expensive. You will not find cheap night markets here. Mostly restaurants, where the prices are a bit inflated. But some things gotta give.

But the charm and beauty of Krabi is undeniable. It is also quite a convenient area in Krabi for day trips.

You can easily take a longtail boat to Ao Nang, go on a jungle hike to Tonsai Beach or have fun and snorkel during the famous 5 Islands Tour.

Railay is a great place to stay in Krabi if you are looking for a resort experience or just a chilled beach vacation.

Railay Beach is also a climber’s paradise. The limestone cliffs offer first-class climbing opportunities for all levels, from beginners to advanced climbers.

Where to TO STAY IN KRABI best areas and beaches

Railay Beach Pros:

  • Incredible beaches and surrounding nature
  • Many available water activities 
  • Great place for rock climbers and adventure seekers
  • Excellent resorts, restaurants and beach bars
  • Not a bad nightlife considering how small the area is

Railey Beach Cons:

  • Catered mostly for tourists
  • Quite pricy for Thai standards
  • No roads – you can only get there by boat.
  • Crowded during peak season
  • Not many amenities like shops or supermarkets

Where to stay at Railay Beach:

Hostels: There are not many hostels I could recommend in Railay but two of the most popular are Blanco Hideout and Social Quarters if you are looking for a party hostel.

Midrange: Avatar is an excellent hotel offering a pool and a great location. Railay Phutawan Resort is one of the most popular resorts on Railay and for all the good reasons. Sitting at a stunning location and offering incredible views as well as a very comfortable stay.

Luxury: Luxury stay doesn’t get any better than Rayavadee- SHA Extra Plus. If you can afford it, don’t think twice!

Tonsai

Please Note – I am talking here about Tonsai Beach located between Railay Beach and Ao Nang, not the one on Phi Phi island.

Conveniently located between Railay and Ao Nang, Tonsai Beach is a hidden gem that can only be reached by boat. Almost.

This secluded beach is known for its laid-back atmosphere and world-class rock climbing opportunities. So if that’s what you are looking for, Tonsai is the best place to stay in Krabi.

But it’s also equally popular with backpackers seeking a more authentic and chilled vibe. If you are not into rock climbing don’t worry, you can enjoy paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkelling or jungle trekking.

Or you can just spend days lazing on the beach and evenings sipping beer in one of the cool beach bars.

Where to TO STAY IN KRABI best areas and beaches

Another cool feature of this area is the iconic Tonsai Wall, which was originally intended to be part of a construction project. When construction came to a halt, the wall became a canvas for vibrant graffiti and somehow a symbol of Tonsai’s laid-back, bohemian charm.

You can get to Tonsai by longtail boat from Ao Nang Beach in about 20-30 minutes. You can actually walk to Tonsai from Railay. At low tide, you can take a shorter route along the coast, but be careful as this can get a little more dangerous when the tide changes. Alternatively, you can trek through the jungle, which takes about 45 minutes. 

Tonsai Pros:

  • Stunning nature and beach
  • Off the beaten path / away from crowds
  • Cool Vibe
  • Great for rock climbers

Tonsai Pros:

  • Only reachable by boat
  • Not many facilities
  • Very few hotels

Where to stay at Tonsai Beach:

Chill Out Bar and Bungalows offers both dorm rooms and bungalows and is the most popular accommodation amongst backpackers. 

Tinidee Hideaway Tonsai Beach is the most popular resort at Tonsai Beach offering stunning rooms and and views!

Tonsai Bay Resort is a perfect midrange stay located almost at the beach and offering a simple but clean and friendly stay. It’s very much a climbers’ hotel though.

Koh Phi Phi

Phi Phi Island is probably the most famous island in Krabi and one of the best places to stay in Krabi if you are looking for a combination of stunning beaches and great nightlife.

It became super famous after the film “The Beach”, which was mostly shot around iconic Maya Bay.

Since then, it has suffered from extreme overtourism and as a result, was closed to the public in June 2018. The marine ecosystem was so badly damaged that the bay could not be reopened until 2022.

If it was up to me, I would ban day trips to places like this. Longer stays are healthier for the environment and could prevent masses of people from visiting a place in a short period of time.

But that’s not up to me, so please travel responsibly and respect the beauty of this place.

Where to TO STAY IN KRABI best areas and beaches

But Koh Phi Phi is so much more than just Maya Bay and although it’s popular as a day trip, it’s a great area to stay in Krabi for a little bit longer.

The archipelago consists of Koh Phi Phi Leh and Koh Phi Phi Don. The second is the inhabited island, which serves as the tourist hub, offering a turquoise blue sea, excellent snorkelling and pristine white sandy beaches.

If you are looking for vibrant nightlife and legendary full moon parties, Koh Phi Phi is the ultimate destination for you in Krabi.

The main strip is packed with party hostels and the beach clubs and bars on Loh Dalum Beach host regular parties.

If you’re looking for a quiet night’s sleep, I recommend staying away from the main strip or away from Loh Dalum and Ton Sai Village altogether. Instead, opt for Laem Thong or Long Beach, where you’ll find a more relaxed atmosphere and great hotels.

Given its popularity, Koh Phi Phi is not the cheapest island, so keep that in mind: prices can be significantly higher than in Krabi Town or even Ao Nang.

best areas TO STAY IN KRABI

Koh Phi Phi Pros:

  • Incredible beaches and nature
  • Fantastic snorkelling and diving spots
  • Great nightlife
  • Many tourist facilities
  • Great choice of hotels, results and hostels
  • Plenty of restaurants, cafes and bars

Koh Phi Phi Cons:

  • Very touristy and rowdy in parts
  • Lost a lot of its authenticity
  • Popular day trip destination 
  • Expensive

Where to stay on Koh Phi Phi:

Hostels: There are tons of great hostels on the island but they are definitely not the cheapest. The most popular hostels include The View Hostel, Blue Flow Hostel and Dee Dee Sea Front located on the party beach. If you want to stay in Tonsai then consider @The Pier 519 Hostel.

Midrange: Both Ivory Hotel and Blue View House offer comfortable budget private rooms near Tonsai, but the latter is slightly away from the beaches. Paradise Pearl Bungalows located on Long Beach offer a much more peaceful stay away from the crowds. If that’s what you are looking for P. P. Blue Sky Resort will also be a great choice.

Luxury: SAii Phi Phi Island Village is a dream-like tropical resort on a private beach! It is the best high-end accommodation on the island. Phi Phi Phu Chalet Resort is a stunning resort located on the secluded beach collecting stellar reviews! Finally, Zeavola Resort is truly one of the best luxury resorts. 

If you want to stay on Long Beach, Viking Nature Resort is a stunning hotel offering a rustic yet luxurious stay.

Ko Lanta

Ko Lanta is an archipelago of over 50 islands and islets, most of which are uninhabited and some of which have no official name.

Ko Lanta is still a hidden gem in the Krabi region and despite being touted as Thailand’s next big destination, Koh Lanta has managed to retain its charm by not being overdeveloped.

Ko Lanta is the perfect place to stay in Krabi if you’re looking for a tropical paradise away from the crowds and busy party strips. It offers stunning beaches, epic day trips and beach bars and definitely has a more romantic vibe, making Ko Lanta one of the best areas to stay in Krabi for couples.

Although there are more hotels and restaurants now than there were ten years ago, the island has retained its laid-back vibe as there are no huge mega-hotels. In areas such as Sala Dan and the Old Town, you’ll find traditional teak houses sitting on stilts over the water, giving Ko Lanta its unique charm and character.

best areas TO STAY IN KRABI

With its 30 kilometres of coastline, Ko Lanta boasts countless quiet and picturesque beaches, all known for its stunning sunsets and vibrant hippie bars.

While the northern beaches tend to be more crowded, the southern beaches offer serene and picturesque settings.

In recent years, Ko Lanta has also become very popular with digital nomads. The island’s tranquil setting is in stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of Ao Nang and Railay.

But although the island is more laid back, it also offers a vibrant local life. However, it doesn’t compare to the crazy scene of Phi Phi. So if you are seeking vibrant nightlife, Ko Lanta might not be for you. Nevertheless, the island offers a relaxed nightlife with plenty of bars for casual drinks.

The northern part of the island is busier, where you’ll find plenty of accommodation, restaurants and shops, while the southern part quieter yet more stunning, boasts some of Thailand’s finest beaches.

Ko Lanta Pros:

  • More laid-back atmosphere than in other popular Krabi destinations
  • Stunning beaches and nature
  • Chilled vibe
  • Plenty of hotels, resorts and hostels for different budgets

Ko Lanta Cons:

  • May be too quiet for some
  • Not as many facilities as in town on mainland Krabi

Where to stay on Koh Lanta:

Hostels: You will find some excellent and super cheap hostels on Koh Lanta! Some of the best include DOX Ko Lanta, De Bra Hostel and Happiness Hostel. Finally, hostels don’t get cheaper and better than Leaf House Bungalows!

Budget: You can find a private room or bungalow on Koh Lanta for as little as $10! Sweet Life is located in the Old Town

Lanta Grand House is just incredible value for money and Little Beach Garden is a true paradise on a budget! Sweet Life offers stunning privates in the Lanta Old Town for as little as $13!

Midrange: Arthaya Villas offers some of the most stunning locations on the island and Mangrove House offers rooms sitting on stilts which is an amazing experience. Fill – Feel @ Long Beach Resort is truly one of the best midrange stays on the island!

Luxury: Walden Koh Lanta – Tiny Homes by the Sea is just dreamy. Little private bungalows right on the beach contain everything you might need – a little paradise on earth.

Both Pimalai Resort and Spa and Layana Resort & Spa – Adult Only are the best rated luxurious resorts on Koh Lanta!

Tubkaek Beach To Klong Muang Beach

West of Ao Nang you will find an area in Krabi that is very much overlooked and as such can be a great getaway from the crowds and party strips.

Although Tubkaek Beach and Klong Muang Beach are two separate areas, I wanted to group them together in this post as they run along the west coast of Krabi province.

Tubkaek Beach is a quiet stretch of beach that is a true paradise for couples or families and is the quieter of the two beaches. It is located near the Dragon Crest Trail and is an ideal place to explore the nearby nature.

You will find some of the most luxurious resorts around Tubkaek Beach, so it’s not for those on a tight budget.

best areas TO STAY IN KRABI

Klong Muang Beach to the south is a little busier but still offers a tranquil atmosphere and a long peaceful stretch of beach. This beach is a great area in Krabi for couples as well.

You can enjoy sunset walks along the beach and you will find a good selection of restaurants along the main road as well as on the beach. Perfect for sunsets.

Both beaches are also just a short drive from Ao Nang, so it could be your perfect luxury beach hideaway that’s still close enough to civilization.

Where to stay along Tubkaek Beach and Klong Muang Beach:

Tubkaek Beach is known for being home to some great luxury resorts like Amari Vogue Krabi or The Tubkaak Krabi Boutique Resort. Banyan Tree Krabi is the most luxurious of them all.

But if you want to stay around Tubkaek Beach without paying an arm and leg, then you could consider Baan Tubkaek Hotel or Tup Kaek Sunset Beach Resort.

Klong Muang Beach has more accommodation options for a bit tighter budget like Baan Klong Muang Beach, Sand Beach Bungalow or Da-Kanda Boutique.

Both Krabi Sands Resort and Smile Home Krabi Klong Moung Beach are great midrange options around this area.

For a luxury stay look no further than Khao Phanom Bencha or the incredible Dusit Thani Krabi Beach Resort.

Are you looking for more of the off-the-beaten-path Thailand?

Then you should definitely visit the incredibly authentic town of Phitsanuklok!

And while there be sure to visit Sukhothai Historical Park on a day trip!

Where to Stay in Krabi Based on your Travel Style

If you still didn’t decided where to stay in Krabi, here is a short summary of all the best areas, towns and beaches around Krabi based on your travel style!

Best Places To Stay In Krabi For Day Trips

If you are looking to take many day trips and are on a budget then I recommend staying in Ao Nang from where you can take a local bus or longtail boat to many beaches on a budget.

But if you are happy to tag along on many great organised excursions and island-hopping boat trips a great place to stay would also be Railay Beach, Koh Phi Phi or Koh Lanta.

Best Area In Krabi For Solo Travellers And Backpackers

Heading to Bangkok next?

Read my comprehensive guide to visiting Bangkok for the first time! And if you are not sure where to stay, this is my complete guide to the best areas to stay in Bangkok, especially if you are a solo traveller visiting for the first time.

And if you are feeling overwhelmed by the thought of using public transport in Bangkok, I got you covered too!

Where To Stay In Krabi On A Budget

If you are travelling to Krabi on a tight budget the best area to stay will be Ao Nang or Krabi Town. In both towns, you will find some of the cheapest hostels and many night markers, food stalls and supermarkets which will help you stay on a budget and have fun at the same time.

Tonsai could potentially be a good place to stay in Krabi if you are on a budget, as there are many great backpacker hostels. But with fewer amenities like supermarkets and the only way of getting there being by boat, Tonsai might not be the best choice if you are on a very strict budget.

Where to Stay in Krabi For Nightlife

If you are seeking a great nightlife scene in Krabi then Koh Phi Phi is a great choice closely followed by Ao Nang. 

Koh Phi Phi would be the best if all you want to do in enjoy some of the most stunning beaches during the day and party at night! Ao Nang is a little more of an all-rounder and for the best beaches, you will have to opt for day trips.

Where to Stay in Krabi For the Best Beaches

For the best beaches in Krabi, you should definitely stay on Koh Lanta. with more than 30 kilometres of incredible coastline, you will find a beach for yourself and some more!

Koh Lanta ids definitely one of the more laid-back and chilled places in Krabi so if that’s a bit too quiet, then you could choose Koh Phi Phi for the best beaches and nightlife combined.

Best Areas to Stay in Krabi For Couples

If you are looking for a romantic getaway I highly recommend Koh Lanta, Railey or Klong Muang Beach. More laid back, boasting incredible beaches and some of the best sunsets all three places are the best for couples seeking a more relaxed stay.

Best Areas to Stay in Krabi For Families

For those travelling with family one of the best areas in Krabi is Ao Nang which is the best all-around holiday town.

Ao Nang offers great hotels and holiday resorts, plenty of things to do, awesome day trips as well as an incredible amount of restaurants and even a long stretch of beach! 

But if you and your family want to stay away from tourist crowds and the hustle and bustle of the busy tone, then the next best option is Koh Lanta. It is probably the best island in Krabi for families with children.

That’s it, my friends! I hope this post was helpful and that finding a place to stay in Krabi isn’t as overwhelming!

If you stayed at any of those places or recommended hotels, let me know! Share your thoughts!

And as always if you have any questions, be sure to ask in the comments section. I always reply!

Until then, enjoy Thailand and happy travels!

Pati x

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Pati's Journey Within

Hi, I’m Pati. A traveller, photographer (aspiring), dreamer and hopeless believer in magic. I caught the travel bug in my forties – and not planning to look back any time soon. I travel solo and on a budget and I try to spend as much time and effort as possible to truly immerse myself in the country I am visiting.

Whether you are like me and decided to change your life around a new dream or just wandering (because not all who wander are lost) – I am here to tell you that everything is possible. 

 

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