Krabi is a coastal province in the southwest of Thailand, around 800kms by road from the capital, Bangkok. It is bounded by Phang Nga to the north, Nakhon Si Thammarat and Surat Thani to the east, and Trang to the south. The popular tourist destination of Phuket lies only three hours away across the water, or two hours by road.
The geography of Krabi is quite unique, featuring distinctive rocky outcrops (limestone karsts), pristine tropical rainforest (being only a few degrees above the equator), mangroves and a geological curiosity in the form of a 40 million year old fossilised ‘shell cemetery’.
Ultimately, Krabi is a popular holiday destination with 132 islands, several of which – Phi Phi Don and Ko Lanta – are inhabited. Most of the other tropical islands belong to the Marine National Park and are protected areas.
The recent discovery of the remains of one of our humanoid ancestors in a rock shelter in Neua Klong district makes Krabi the place with the longest known history of continuous human settlement in Thailand. Bits of broken pottery, beads, and coins from as far afield as the Middle East and China have been found on archaeological digs here, suggesting that the area was once a thriving port of call on the ancient trade routes across Asia.
The town of Krabi itself was founded in the 13th century, as a dependency of the powerful city of Nakhon Si Thammarat. Some 200 years ago, the Prince of the city founded an elephant camp in Krabi – they roamed wild in those days and were rounded up and taken to work in Nakhon.
Approx. 460,000 – around 60 per cent Buddhist and 40 per cent Muslim.
4,709 square kilometers.
Agriculture (rubber, palm oil, pineapples, prawns); fishing; tourism.
Split into eight districts (called Ampur in Thai): Ao Luk; Plai Praya; Muang (the city); Neua Klong; Klong Thom; Khao Phanom; Klong Pon; and Ko Lanta.
Today, Krabi Town is a bustling fishing port on the mouth of the Krabi River. It does not have a beach itself and most tourists pass through en-route to the coast or islands as a result. The beaches of Ao Nang, Railay and Klong Muang are quite close to the town, while the stunning islands of Phi Phi and Lanta can be reached in a few hours by boat.
The temperature in Krabi is usually in the range of 27°C/80°F to 35°C/95°F during the day, and falls a few degrees at night. The hottest months are between February and April (also the driest time). During heavy rain storms in the monsoon months (May to September), the temperature may drop temporarily to as low as 18°C, while humidity is fairly high all year round; between 75 and 100 per cent.