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A Guide to Railay Beach

Railay Beach is more than just a spot on the map; it’s a haven where limestone cliffs stand tall, meeting the gentle lapping of turquoise waves.  In this guide, we’re your virtual compass, navigating through the sun-soaked landscapes and the very heart of Railay’s essence. 

Feel the rush as we take you through the adrenaline-pumping world of rock climbing against a backdrop that seems straight out of a postcard. But it’s not just about the thrill; we’ve also got the lowdown on serene caves, shimmering beaches, and more!

Grab your flip flops and let’s dive into the turquoise waters, explore the vibrant markets, and soak up the sun together!

Time Zone

Indochina Time (GMT+7)

Best Time to Go 

The optimal time for a visit to Railay Beach in Krabi is during the dry season, from November to April. This period promises sunny days, calm seas, and perfect conditions for outdoor pursuits like rock climbing, beach exploration, and water sports. 

However, be prepared for larger crowds as this marks the peak tourist season.

For those seeking a more tranquil experience, the shoulder seasons of May to June or September to October offer a quieter ambiance. While occasional rainfall may occur, it’s a trade-off for thinner crowds and a chance to enjoy activities with more serenity.

Things to Know 

Language: Thai

Currency: Thai Baht (THB)

Transportation: Railay Beach is accessible only by boat due to the surrounding limestone cliffs. Long-tail boats are available from Ao Nang, Krabi Town, and other nearby islands.

Cash: While some places accept credit cards, it’s advisable to carry some cash, especially for small shops and local services.

Tides and Seas: Be aware of the tide timings, as they can affect access to certain parts of Railay. During low tide, the sea may recede, revealing vast expanses of sand and opening up new areas to explore.

Mosquitoes: In the evenings, particularly during the wet season, mosquitoes can be active. Bring insect repellent to protect yourself from bites.

Rock Climbing Equipment: If you’re into rock climbing, consider bringing your equipment. However, rental options and guided climbing tours are widely available.

Sun Protection: Given the tropical climate, bring sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun, especially if you plan to spend long hours outdoors.

Water Activities: Check the weather conditions before engaging in water activities. Some may be restricted or cancelled during unfavourable weather.

How to Get to Railay Beach

Getting to Railay Beach involves a combination of land and sea transportation due to its unique location surrounded by towering limestone cliffs. Here are the main transportation options:

From Krabi Airport:

  • Airport Shuttle: Many hotels and resorts offer airport shuttle services. Check with your accommodation for availability and reservations.
  • Taxi or Private Transfer: Taxis and private transfer services are available at the airport. Negotiate the fare in advance or use metered taxis.

From Krabi Town:

  • By Taxi: Taxis are available in Krabi Town, and you can negotiate a fare directly with the driver. Ensure the taxi can take you to Ao Nang or Ao Nam Mao Pier for boat transfers to Railay.
  • By Shared Minivan: Shared minivans operate between Krabi Town and Ao Nang. Once in Ao Nang, proceed to the pier for boat services.

From Ao Nang:

  • Long-Tail Boat: Long-tail boats depart from Ao Nang Beach to Railay Beach West. The journey takes around 15-20 minutes, offering scenic views of the coastline.
  • Speedboat Services: Faster speed boat services are available, reducing travel time to approximately 10 minutes.

From Ao Nam Mao Pier:

  • Long-Tail Boat: If you’re coming from Krabi Town or other locations, you can take a long-tail boat from Ao Nam Mao Pier to Railay Beach.

From Ao Thalane:

  • Long-Tail Boat or Kayak: If you’re adventurous, you can take a long-tail boat or kayak from Ao Thalane to Railay, enjoying the scenic mangrove landscapes along the way.

From Phuket or Islands in the Andaman Sea:

  • Ferry Services: Ferries operate from Phuket and nearby islands to Ao Nang. From Ao Nang, transfer to Railay by long-tail boat.

Private Charter Services:

  • Private Boats: For a more personalised experience, consider hiring a private boat or chartering a speedboat to take you directly to Railay.

NOTE:

Always check the boat schedules, especially during the low season, and consider weather conditions, as sea travel may be affected by rough seas. 

Additionally, some accommodations on Railay Beach offer private boat transfers, so inquire with your hotel for convenient transportation options.

Where to Stay 

Railay Village Resort

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Address: 544 Moo 2 Ao Nang ,, Muang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Contact number: +6675819412

Pricing: ฿฿

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For a tranquil retreat in the heart of Railay, consider Railay Village Resort. Nestled amidst lush tropical gardens, this resort offers a variety of accommodations, including comfortable rooms and pool villas. 

The serene atmosphere, coupled with a swimming pool, spa services, and a restaurant serving Thai and international cuisine, provides a perfect blend of relaxation and convenience. 

Situated near the bustling walking street, Railay Village Resort also offers easy access to shops, restaurants, and the vibrant atmosphere of Railay.

Railay Bay Resort and Spa

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Address: 145 M.2 Ao-nang , Muang District Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Contact number: +6675819401

Pricing: ฿฿฿

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If you dream of waking up to stunning views of the Andaman Sea, Railay Bay Resort and Spa is your beachfront haven. Offering a range of rooms and bungalows, this resort provides a choice of accommodations to suit different preferences. 

With an outdoor pool, spa facilities, and a beachfront restaurant, guests can indulge in both relaxation and seaside delights. 

Conveniently located near the East Railay Pier, the resort offers accessibility from both Railay West and East, making it a convenient choice for beach lovers.

Avatar Railay Resort

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Address: 629 Moo 2 Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Contact number: +6675818333

Pricing: ฿฿

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Picture this – a stay right in the middle of those breathtaking limestone cliffs. That’s exactly what Avatar Railay Resort is all about – a unique and picturesque setting that’s basically a dream.

They’ve got comfy rooms with all the modern bells and whistles, plus private balconies for that extra cosy vibe. Plus, their infinity pool has greta views that will make your jaw drop – talk about a serene spot to chill!

Best of all, it’s conveniently close to Raila Beach, making it a breeze to explore all the cool stuff around.

Bhu Nga Thani Resort Railay

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Address: 479 Moo.2 Railay East Ao Nang, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Contact number: +6675819451

Pricing: ฿฿

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If you’re in the mood for some serious luxury and traditional Thai vibes, Bhu Nga Thani Resort Railay has got your back. They’re rolling out spacious rooms that scream “comfort,” and some of them even come with private pools – talk about swanky! 

Now, for the food, they’re dishing out Thai specialties. Plus, they’ve got a spa in the mix for all your relaxation needs – sounds like a dream, right?

And the best part is it’s right around the corner from Diamond Cave. So, if you’re all about that luxurious escape with a side of cave vibes, Bhu Nga Thani Resort is where it’s at.

Sand Sea Resort

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Address: 39, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Contact number: +6675819464

Pricing: ฿

Book Now

For direct access to East Railay Bay Beach life, Sand Sea Resort is your ultimate beachfront paradise.

They’ve got it all – from standard rooms to beachfront villas, so you can pick the vibe that suits you best. And get this – they’ve got a beachfront restaurant! Imagine dining with your toes in the sand – pretty dreamy, right?

Also, there’s an outdoor pool and lush gardens to up the comfort and picturesque vibes. And the best part is you’re just a stroll away from popular viewpoints and that lively Railay atmosphere. 

Where to Eat 

Summer Fresh @ Railay Beach

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Address: 354/25 Moo 2 Railay Walking Street, AO Nang, Mueang, Krabi 81110, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 8 AM to 6 PM

Pricing: ฿

Website

If you’re in the mood for a dining experience that’s as refreshing as a sea breeze, make your way to Summer Fresh @ Railay Beach. This place is all about fresh and vibrant dishes – think salads, smoothie bowls, and wraps that’ll make your taste buds do a happy dance. 

The breakfast options are not only delicious but also wallet-friendly. And the coffee? Amazing, with a ton of milk alternatives. 

Plus, fresh food galore! They’ve got a solid variety for vegans and gluten-free folks.

Railay Family Restaurant

Address: Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 9:30 AM to 10 PM

Pricing: ฿

This Thai restaurant has a warm and friendly vibes that will hit you, wrapped up in this chic wooden design — more like a cosy Thai haven. The best part is they’ve got almost all the local favourites on the menu, from main dishes to dessert!

And here’s the kicker – everything on the menu won’t break the bank. Affordable prices for a feast of Thai goodness. 

So, you’re not just getting a delicious meal; you’re getting a budget-friendly taste of Thailand in a cosy, chic setting. It’s the kind of place that makes you want to come back for more. 

Welcome Back Restaurant

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Address: 2R6R+MRW Welcome Back Restaurant, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 9 AM to 10 PM

Pricing: ฿฿

For some authentic Thai goodness, you’ve gotta check out Welcome Back Restaurant – a hidden gem nestled in Railay East.

This place is the real deal, dishing out traditional Thai cuisine that’s prepared with genuine care and expertise. From classic pad thai to aromatic green curry and lip-smacking seafood, their menu is a flavorful journey through Thai delights.

And let’s talk about the vibe – the ambiance is just right for a laid-back meal that’s perfect  if you’re after that genuine, straight-from-Thailand dining experience. 

The Heart Restaurant

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Address: Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81180, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 10 AM to 10:30 PM

Pricing: ฿

If you’re on the lookout for a spot that’s the heart of Railay Beach (pun intended), you’ve got to swing by The Heart Restaurant.

It has this romantic and intimate setting that’s perfect for a cosy dinner for two. But hey, it’s not just for lovey-dovey vibes – it’s also a great place to chill with your pals.

And the menu is a culinary journey that blends the best of Thai and international flavours. 

Café LÉ Inguz – BEST Coffee 

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Address: 625/55 Ao Nang, Muang Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 8 AM to 9 PM

Pricing: ฿

Website

For the absolute best coffee on Railay Beach, look no further than Café LÉ Inguz. This place is a haven for coffee lovers, proudly boasting the title of the go-to spot for that perfect brew. 

They take their coffee seriously, using high-quality beans and whipping up expertly crafted beverages. Whether you’re all about that classic espresso life or you’re up for a specialty coffee adventure, Café LÉ Inguz is on a mission to deliver a top-notch coffee experience. 

And get this – it all happens in a cosy setting, making it the perfect spot to kick back, relax, and savour every sip of your favourite coffee blend. 

What to Do

Visit Phra Nang Beach

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Address: 2R4Q+C5V, Stadt, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 24 hours

Kick off your Railay adventure by heading to the mesmerising Phra Nang Beach. With its crystal-clear waters and stunning limestone formations, this beach is a true tropical paradise. 

Here, you can unwind, soak up the sun, and explore the Princess Cave for a unique cultural experience.

Do rock climbing at Railay Beach

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Address: Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

Rock climbing operators: GetYourGuide Viator, Klook, Rock Climbing Krabi 

Calling all thrill-seekers! Railay Beach is renowned for its rock climbing opportunities. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned climber, the limestone cliffs offer a challenging and rewarding experience. 

So, gear up and conquer the heights for an adrenaline-pumping day.

Local tip:

For an authentic rock climbing experience at Railay Beach, consider hiring a local climbing guide. These experts know the terrain like the back of their hand and can take you to lesser-known, picturesque climbing spots. 

They not only enhance your safety but also provide valuable insights into the local climbing culture, making your adventure more enriching.

Explore Princess Lagoon

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Address: 2r3r+Vxp Princess Lagoon AO Nang, Amphoe Mueang Krabi, Chang Wat Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 24 hours

For a magical encounter with nature, make your way to the enchanting Princess Lagoon. Nestled amidst towering cliffs, this hidden gem provides a serene swimming spot surrounded by breathtaking scenery. 

However, reaching this isn’t a walk in the park. There are spots along the way that are almost vertical – we’re talking rock climbing vibes.

You’ll need some muscle to navigate those ups and downs, gripping onto rocks or using ropes like a seasoned adventurer. If you’ve got a bit of rock climbing experience, consider it your secret weapon.

Local tip:

Let’s not sugarcoat it – tackling this ain’t a walk in the park. Throw on the right shoes —, no sandals or flip flops. 

The terrain is steep and a tad slippery. You definitely don’t want to be doing the cha-cha with gravity. 

Take a boat trip to Chicken Island

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Address: XR34+HPW, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Tour operators: GetYourGuide, thereshegoesagain.org

Embark on a boat trip to Chicken Island, a unique destination with a distinctive rock formation resembling a chicken’s head and neck. 

It’s a snorkeler’s paradise. The underwater world here is like a living painting, teeming with marine creatures and a rainbow of colourful fishes — the variety of marine life is mind-blowing!

Enjoy the stunning view from East Railay Viewpoint

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Address: 2R4R+W6 East Raylay Viewpoint Trailhead, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

For panoramic views that will leave you in awe, hike up to the East Railay Viewpoint. The trek is worth it, offering a breathtaking vista of Railway and its surroundings. 

Don’t forget to bring your camera – you won’t want to miss capturing this picturesque landscape.

Local tip:

This walk takes you on a journey past a mountain. But here’s the twist – along the way, you’ll stumble upon some small cave where you can actually walk through them on your way to the beach.

Plus, the path winds through this vibrant greenery, making the walk not just a trek but a refreshing experience. It’s like nature’s therapy session.

Relax at Railay West Beach

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Address: 2R7P+7RP, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Take it easy at Railay West Beach, where soft sand and tranquil waters create the ideal setting for relaxation. Whether you’re unwinding with a book or enjoying a beachfront meal, this spot is perfect for laid-back moments.

It’s surrounded by towering limestone cliffs and lush greenery, creating an intimate and secluded vibe that feels like your own little slice of paradise. Plus, whether you’re into swimming, kayaking, or just lazing on the beach with a good book, this place has you covered. 

And if you’re an adventure seeker, hold on tight – there’s rock climbing, snorkelling, and diving on the menu.

Local tip:

On your way, you might cross paths with a monkey family. Cute? Absolutely. Aggressive? You bet. 

Keep your snacks and flashy jewellery under wraps. These cheeky monkeys won’t hesitate to swoop down, grab your treats, or even try to stage a jewellery heist. 

Kayak in the Andaman Sea

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Explore the Andaman Sea at your own pace by renting a kayak. Paddle through the crystal-clear waters, marvel at the limestone cliffs, and discover hidden coves. 

Local tip:

When embarking on a kayaking adventure in the Andaman Sea, consider setting out early in the morning. Not only will you avoid the peak heat of the day, but you’ll also experience calmer waters, enhancing the overall tranquillity of your journey. 

Keep an eye out for hidden coves and limestone formations, and if possible, chat with local kayaking operators for insights into the best routes and hidden gems along the coastline.

Visit Diamond Cave

Address: 2R7R+FV2, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 8 AM to 5:30 PM

Fee: 

  • Foreigners – 200 THB
  • Thai locals – 40 THB

Delve into the mysterious depths of Diamond Cave, a fascinating limestone cave with intricate formations.  This limestone cave is a true gem, boasting the finest stalagmite and stalactite rock formations that will leave you in awe. 

It’s definitely a must-stop on your Railay Beach adventure, no doubt. As you venture deeper into the cave, look up, and you’ll discover a winged surprise – lots of bats hanging out on the ceiling!

Local tip:

When exploring Diamond Cave, bring a reliable flashlight or headlamp. While the cave is enchanting, some areas may be dimly lit. 

Having your light source will not only add to the adventure but also allow you to appreciate the intricate formations within the cave. Additionally, wear comfortable shoes with good traction as the cave floor can be uneven.

Get a beachfront massage at the beach

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For an ultimate relaxation, take a beachfront massage. Let the soothing sound of the waves complement the skilled hands of the masseuse, creating a blissful experience that rejuvenates both body and soul.

As you wander, you’ll likely come across friendly locals offering massages on the spot. It’s like an open invitation to unwind right there on the beach.

Go to Princess Cave 

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Address: 2R3R+R4R, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi 81000, Thailand

The Princess Cave isn’t just a geological marvel; it’s a place steeped in local legends and beliefs. Dedicated to the spirit of the drowned Princess Goddess, Phra Nang, this cave holds deep significance for fishermen seeking protection and prosperity at sea.

Before setting sail, fishermen follow a tradition of making offerings at the cave. As you step into this mystical cavern, you’re greeted by a captivating array of offerings – vibrant sarongs, fragrant flowers, aromatic incense, and intricate statuettes. 

The cave walls themselves are adorned with numerous phallic symbols, symbolising fertility and prosperity. Local lore holds that these offerings and symbols serve as conduits for good fortune and blessings from the Princess Goddess.

Local tip:

When venturing to Princess Cave (Tham Phra Nang Nok), it’s customary to bring an offering. Locals believe in honouring the spirit of the drowned princess, and leaving a small token, like a flower or incense, is considered a gesture of respect. 

Where to Shop

Railay Walking Street

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Address: Railay West Beach, Ao Nang, Mueang Krabi District, Krabi, Thailand

Take a leisurely walk down Railay Walking Street, the lively heart of local shopping. This bustling pedestrian lane is a treasure trove of goods, with shops lining up to showcase a diverse array of items. 

Whether you’re into handmade crafts, beach apparel, local artwork, or souvenirs, Railay Walking Street has got it all, giving you a taste of the island’s vibrant culture. And here’s the secret sauce – don’t be shy to haggle a bit. 

It’s all part of the experience, and you might just snag yourself some fantastic deals while immersing yourself in the lively atmosphere of this shopping haven. 

Railay Fashion House

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Address: Railay Beach, 354/15 Walking Street, Tambon Ao Nang, Amphoe Mueang Krabi, Krabi 81000, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 10 AM to 9:45 PM

If you’re on the lookout for suits and stylish accessories that scream “chic,” Railay Fashion House is the place to be.

This boutique is like a treasure trove of tailored suits and curated accessories that will have you turning heads. Whether you’re suiting up for a special occasion or just want to add a dash of style to your everyday look, Railay Fashion House has got the goods.

Highsiam Railay Weed Shop

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Address: Railay East, 420, Railay, Krabi 81100, Thailand

Opening hours: Daily 10 AM to 10 PM

Highsiam Railay Weed Shop – it’s this cool spot in Railay Beach, Thailand. They’re all about CBD and hemp products, giving you a bunch of options to level up your wellness game.

You can dive into the chill vibes of Railay and explore their range of products. The staff knows their stuff, so if you’ve got questions, they’ve got answers.

What to Expect from Krabi’s Weather

What to Expect from Krabi’s Weather

Krabi’s weather is characterised by distinct seasons, each offering a unique experience for visitors. Understanding the climate can help you plan your trip accordingly:

Dry Season (November to April): Expect sunny and dry weather with clear skies during this period. It’s the peak tourist season, making it ideal for outdoor activities. 

Daytime temperatures range from 25°C to 32°C (77°F to 90°F), providing a pleasant climate for exploring the beaches and engaging in water sports. This is also the busiest time with a higher number of tourists. Popular attractions and activities may be more crowded.

Shoulder Seasons (May to June, September to October): These months mark the transition between the dry and rainy seasons. While there might be occasional rainfall, the weather is generally still favourable for travel.

During this season, daytime temperatures remain warm, but there may be some humidity. The atmosphere is quieter as the crowds thin out, providing a more relaxed experience.

Many outdoor activities are still accessible, and accommodations may offer lower rates during these shoulder seasons.

Rainy Season (July to October): This period experiences heavier rainfall, and occasional storms are common. However, rain showers are often short-lived, and you can still enjoy periods of sunshine.

The temperatures remain warm, ranging from 24°C to 30°C (75°F to 86°F) while the landscape becomes lush and green due to the rain.  This is also the least crowded time, offering a more intimate and budget-friendly experience for travellers.

Considerations: Some activities, such as island hopping and certain water sports, may be restricted during rough seas. However, it’s an excellent time to enjoy the natural beauty of Krabi without the crowds.

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