Ao Nang is the center of tourism in Krabi close to all attractions. The town itself is dominated by restaurants, bars, and shops and is consider touristy by some. But whether you’re planning on spending a vacation here or not, there are some pretty good reasons to visit Ao Nang.
1. This rooftop bar view
My wife enjoying a drink with the stunning town backdrop.
Standing on the rooftop bar at Aonang Cliff Beach Resort with a drink in your hand while enjoying the sunset is the ideal start to a fun night in town. Even though this resort is located on a hill just above the hustle and bustle, it feels like you are miles away.
2. The beautiful karst scenery
West Railay Beach.
Ao Nang is full of karst formations with Railay Peninsula as the number one must-see place. This slice of paradise attracts rock climbers from all over the world, and if you’ve never climbed before, Phra Nang Beach is one of the best places to try it out. The half-day courses cost just 1,000 baht (around $30).
3. Restaurants like Lae Lay Grill
Brilliant food at Lae Lay Grill.
Why walk the main street where restaurant employees call out to passersby to eat in their restaurant? Instead, go to Lae Lay Grill with a beautiful hilltop view, serving the best seafood in town. Come here just before the sunset.
4. Easy access to nearby islands
The post-card perfect Poda Island.
Island hopping is popular when staying in Ao Nang, and Poda Island is one of the most postcard-perfect islands. Here you can walk on soft white sand, picnic in the shade of the trees, snorkel in the clear water and snapping pictures of tropical fishes. Come early, and don’t stay where the boats are mooring — take a walk and find a quiet spot.
5. Having the best massage experience
A Thai massage sala in Ao Nang.
Massage Corner is a real gem, hidden at the end of a side street on Klong Haeng Road 300 meters from Lae Lay Grill. Surrounded by tropical trees and plants, you will experience the best massage in Ao Nang and perhaps all of Thailand!
6. Klong Haeng Walking Street Market
An authentic market in Ao Nang.
Klong Haeng Walking Street Market (16:00 – 20:00 on Wednesdays) outside the hustle and bustle of the town is a lovely place to sample some of the fantastic street food in Ao Nang. Unlike the famous market in Krabi Town, you will not see many tourists at Klong Haeng Walking Street; you know the food here is prepared for Thais who want the real thing.
7. Monkey Trail and Pai Plong Beach
Two Swedish girls soaking up the sun at Pai Plong Beach.
There is a 15-minute trail called Monkey Trail from Ao Nang Beach south end over the mountain to Pai Plong Beach. This gorgeous beach is hidden in a bay, and if you have money to spend, why not stay at the fantastic Centara Grand Resort and Villas.
8. Nopparat Thara Beach
Low tide at Nopparat Thara Beach.
Nopparat Thara Beach is not the ideal sandy beach, but it’s a lovely quiet place, and Thais love to come here to picnic and barbeque in the shade of the casuarina trees. During low tide, you can walk on the seashell covered sand all the way out to the small islands. You’ll also find some excellent sidewalk restaurants and Nopparat Thara Plaza with small boutiques and diners — especially nice at night.
9. Ao Nang Beach
Longtail boats moored at Ao Nang Beach.
Just like Nopparat Thara Beach, Ao Nang Beach is not the most ideal beach, but you can’t deny it’s gorgeous! And you can from here quickly jump on a longtail boat to Railay or a nearby island. The southern part of the beach has a walking street with hotels and bars lined up.
10. The Phi Phi Islands
Phi Phi Don’s Loh Dalum Bay
The world-famous islands of Phi Phi are part of Ao Nang (sub-district). The largest island of the group — Phi Phi Don — is well known for its nightlife, so this place may not suit everyone but is still worth a visit because of its stunningly beautiful environment.