Sure, Ao Nang is touristy — it is a resort town — and there are things I don’t like here. But this part of Krabi boasts some incredible features that you simply can’t miss when traveling in southern Thailand — and you don’t necessarily need to stay in the middle of the hustle and bustle. Here are ten reasons for you to visit Ao Nang.
1. This rooftop bar view
My wife enjoying a drink with the stunning town backdrop.
Pai Plong Beach is a small beach hidden in a bay between Ao Nang Beach and Ton Sai Beach (Railay) which can be reached only by boat or via a 10-minute trail over the mountain from Ao Nang Beach’s south end. The trail is called “Monkey Trail” because of the macaque’s monkeys living around the trail.
The beach is beautiful with lovely greenish water surrounded by limestone mountains and lush greenery. The five-star Centara Grand Beach Resort is located directly on the beach with security guards asking you to sign your name in a book before entering the beach zone and signing out when leaving.
Aonang Cliff Beach Resort is built on the hillside in the heart of Ao Nang and boasts an infinity pool with stunning ocean view. This pool with views was the reason we chose to stay here when visiting Ao Nang two nights in late February. Yep, I’m a sucker when it comes to views. I imagined a fairly standard hotel, but the resort was huge, and I got a good feeling right after we arrived and the friendly staff welcomed us. I just knew it would be a good stay.
Last week I wrote about Ao Nang Beach, and if you were not impressed by that area, there’s one more place just around the corner that for sure will make you go WOW! I’m talking about Railay; a small peninsula with two bays, known as West Railay and East Railay.
Surrounded by incredible limestone cliffs, Railay (or Rai Leh) can only be reached by boat, giving it an island feel. The high cliffs attract rock climbers from all over the world, and the beautiful beaches can be packed with longtail boats and trippers from Ao Nang. Although it is a paradise, Railay is good for a day trip or a few nights — unless you are a rock climber, then you might want to stay longer.
Ao Nang Beach is not the typical white sandy beach with crystal clear water, and during high tide, the sand practically disappears. But the scenery with its limestone cliffs, palm trees and longtail boats moored along the shore is pretty stunning. Ao Nang Beach acts more like a jumping-off point for island hopping between the beautiful islands in Krabi archipelago.
Krabi is a province with a spectacular coastline formed by a mix of natural features including limestone cliffs, mangrove forests, beautiful beaches, and outstanding islands like Koh Lanta and Koh Phi Phi. It has become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Thailand and now has an airport which serves international as well as domestic flights. The following is a list of the best places to stay in Krabi Province.
1. Ao Nang
Well, this is actually a tip for everybody since it’s a good restaurant, serving both Thai and international dishes. Blue Mango is a Swedish owned restaurant with some Swedish specialties in the menu like meatballs, plank steak and baked potato with skagenröra. Located on the main beach road in Ao Nang, just opposite the popular Krabi Resort, the restaurant has around 35 seats outdoors and 70 inside.
Blue Mango Restaurant & Bar in Ao Nang, Krabi.
Lae Lay Grill is situated on the hillside with a stunning view overlooking Nopparat Thara Beach in Ao Nang. The restaurant has a shuttle service from and to your hotel, as it’s quite a distance to walk up to the hill. But since my wife has a car in Thailand, we didn’t have to use that service.
We didn’t know anything about Lae Lay Grill, but It looked amazing from down the road which we were passing every day during our stay at Maleedee Bay Resort. So we decided to try it out, and it was a pleasant surprise!
My wife, hungry and ready to walk up the stairs. The staff was very welcoming and helpful.