ISLAND HOPPING IN KRABI

by Pierre Yves Loriers on Sep 5, 2010

One of the most popular day excursions from the Krabi mainland is the so-called “four island tour”. Three of the four islands visited on this route make up the group directly in front of Ao Nang Beach: Koh Poda, with its beautiful white sand beach; Koh Gai (also known as Chicken Island) and Koh Tub, which are connected by a stunning sandbank visible at low tide; and Koh Yawasam, a sheer rock with great coral reefs for snorkelling. The fourth stop is not really an island, but it is only accessible by boat: Phra Nang Bay on the Railay headland. This beach is considered to be one of the most beautiful on the whole Thai mainland. The original 4-island trip was started in Ao Nang some 15 years ago, with a single longtail boat. The price is now 350 baht per person and includes lunch, water and snorkeling equipment for a 7 hour excursion. There can be up to 100 people booked on this trip a day, so expect it to be crowded. Many tour companies are now offering this program, mainly by longtail boat, but also with a cruise boat, which offers more room to relax on board. Some companies even offer the 4-island tour by speedboat, which they claim will get you to the islands before the longtail boats arrive and allow you more time in each place. These trips are slightly more expensive, so it is up to you to decide if it is worth it! But of course, you don’t have to go on an organised tour at all. You can do exactly the same trip in exactly the same longtail boats used on the tours (pack your own lunch and bring your own snorkels) by chartering your own boat from Ao Nang Beach. There is a fixed price per boat of 1700 baht for a half day - adequate for the main islands - or 2200 baht for a leisurely full day including Railay. Coupons can be bought at the ticket booths at either corner of the beach road. This can prove a more economical option if there are a few of you to share the cost. You may feel it is worth it anyway as it means you can follow your own itinerary instead of the tour’s – great if you prefer snorkeling to beaches, or vice versa.

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Pierre Yves Loriers is the author of this article on Koh Lanta Hotels. Find more information about Lanta Hotels here.

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