General Information of Krabi

Located approximately 814 kilometers from Bangkok is Krabi Province,one of most attractive destinations in southern Thailand. Encompassingan area of 4,708 square kilometers, the western border of Krabi is theAndaman Sea, the northern borders are Surat Thani and Phang-ngaProvinces, the southern borders are Trang Province and the Andaman Seaand the eastern borders are Nakhon Si Thammarat and Trang Provinces.Krabi is an ideal getaway destination teeming with natural attractionsincluding white sandy beaches, fascinating coral reefs, numerous largeand small islands and verdant forests with caves and waterfalls.

Krabis topography is mostly mountains and highlands separated byplains in some parts. Flowing through Krabi City to the Andaman Sea atPak Nam Sub-district is Maenam Krabi which is 5 kilometers in length.In addition, there are several canals originating from the provinceshighest mountain range, Khao Phanom Bencha including Khlong Pakasai,Khlong Krabi Yai and Khlong Krabi Noi. Lush mangrove forests line thecanals and the banks of Maenam Krabi particularly before it emptiesinto the Andaman Sea. The provinces sandy soil conditions are suitablefor growing various agricultural products, particularly rubber trees,palms, coconuts, cashew nuts and coffee.

Due to the influence of the tropical monsoon, there are only twoseasons in Krabi; the hot season from January to April and the rainyseason from May to December. Temperatures range between 17 C and 37 C.

Krabi is administratively divided into 8 Amphoes (Districts): AmphoeMueang, Khao Phanom, Khlong Thom, Plai Phraya, Ko Lanta, Ao Luek, LamThap, and Nuea Khlong. The provinces jurisdiction covers not onlyin-land districts and sub-districts, but also extends to more than 130large and small islands including the world famous Phi Phi Islands.

In addition, Krabi is the location of two world class beaches AoNang and Hat Rai Le which offer numerous diving trips, restaurants,shops etc. Additional attractions in the province are stunninglimestone cliffs and rock formations which make it a heaven for rockclimbers and a National Park located approximately 40 kilometersoutside of town with lakes, caves and spectacular natural scenery.

History of Krabi

Some archeologists claim that Krabi City is one of the oldersettlements in the country as there is archaeological evidenceindicating that this area had been home to homosapiens during theprehistoric times or between 25,000 - 35,000 B. C. The assumption hasbeen strongly supported by the discovery of stone tools, ancientcolored pictures, beads, pottery and skeletal remains in the provincescliffs and caves.

In 1200 A.D., the area was known as Ban Thai Samo, one of 12 royalcities that had a monkey as the town symbol. During this period oftime, Krabi was under the rule of the Kingdom of Ligor, a city betterknown today as Nakhon Si Thammarat.

During the reign of King Rama V (1868-1910), the community was knownas Pakasai Sub-county and remained under the direct jurisdiction ofNakhon Si Thammarat province.

Around 1872, King Rama V elevated Pakasai Sub-county to KrabiProvince with the provincial administration office situated atKrabi-yai Sub-county (currently, the office is located near the estuaryat Pak Nam Sub-district) and in 1875, ordered the separation of KrabiProvince from Nakhon Si Thammarat Province.

During the present reign, the corps of civil servants, merchants,and the people of Krabi and nearby provinces have collectivelyorganized the construction of a royal residence at Laem Hang Nak Capewhich is thirty kilometers west of Krabi Town on the Andaman coast tobe presented to His Majesty the King.

Origin of name Krabi

There are two legends concerning the origin of the name "Krabi". Thefirst is that villagers presented a large ancient sword (or krabi) thatwas discovered by chance to the governor. Later when a smaller, ondiscovering a smaller one, it was also presented to the governor.Regarded as sacred and auspicious, the governor decided to keep them inthe province. As the process for the establishment of the province wasstill in progress, the swords were placed crossing each other in KhaoKhanap Nam cave. Since then, the crossed swords have remained a part ofthe provincial seal.

The second legend is that "Krabi" was derived from the name of alocal tree known as "Lumphi". The Malay and Chinese merchantsmispronunciation of the name to "Ka-lu-bi" or "Kho-lo-bi" finallyresulted in "Krabi" (or sword).

How To Go to Krabi

By Car
1. From Bangkok, proceed on Highway No.4, passing Phetchaburi,Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon, Ranong and Phang-nga Provinces for atotal distance of 946 kilometers.

2. From Bangkok, proceed on Highway No. 4, on reaching ChumphonProvinces take Highway No. 41 passing Amphoe Lang Suan in Surat ThaniProvince to Amphoe Wiang Sa, and then take Highway No. 4035 to AmphoeAo Luek and continue on Highway No. 4 to Krabi. This route is 814kilometers from Bangkok.

3. From Phuket, proceed on Highway No. 402 and No.4. The distance from Phuket is 185 kilometers or 4 hours.

By bus:

From Bangkok: There are air-conditioned bus services to Krabileaving the Southern Bus Terminal at Borommaratcha Chonnani Road dailyfrom 6.30 a.m. to 8.00 p.m. The buses provided include ordinary busbuses, 2nd class bus air-conditioned buses, 1st class air-conditionedbuses and 24-seat VIP buses. The journey takes about 12 hours. For moredetails, contact tel. 0 2434 5557-8 (non air-conditioned buses) or tel.0 2435 1199 or 0 2435 1200 (air-conditioned buses) or visit www.transport.co.th.

By rail:
From Bangkok: There is no direct train service to Krabi. But it ispossible to take a train from Bangkoks Hua Lamphong Station to Trangor Nakhon Si Thammarat and take a bus or taxi to Krabi. For moreinformation on trains, contact the State Railways of Thailand at tel.1690, 223 7010, 223 7020 or visit www.railway.co.th.For Trang, an express train leaves Bangkok daily at 5.05 p.m. andreaches Trang at 9.40 a.m. and a rapid train leaves daily at 6.20 p.m.and arrives at 12.20 p.m.

For Nakhon Si Thammarat, a rapid train leaves Bangkok daily at 5.35p.m. and arrives at 10.45 a.m. and an express train leaves daily at7.15 p.m. and arrives at 12.00 p.m. For more details, call 1690 or 02223 7010 or 0 2621 8701.

By air:
Thai Airways International operates daily flights from Bangkok toKrabi. The trip takes 1.20 hours. For more information call 02 6282000.Website : www.thaiair.com

Phuket Air offers a daily flight to and from Krabi. The flight time is 1.20 hours. Call 02 6798999 to make reservation or visit www.phuketairlines.com to check the flight schedule.

One–Two-Go Airlines: Bangkok Tel. 1126 Others Provinces Tel.1141 ext. 1126 www.fly12go.com

Silk Air flies to Singapore 4 times a week. Tickets can be brought from any travel agencies in town.

From Phuket to Krabi

By bus:
From Phuket Bus Terminal, there are non air-conditioned andair-conditioned bus services to Krabi many times daily. The trip takes3-4 hours. For details, contact 0 7621 1480.

By car:
Take Route 402 and 4 which passes Takua Thung and Thap Pud Districts inPhang-nga and enter Krabi at Au Luek District. Total distance is 185kilometers.

Getting around Krabi
Getting to Nearby Provinces

By Bus
From Krabi Bus Terminal there are services, both air-conditioned andnon air-conditioned to nearby provinces, i.e. Phuket, Phang-nga, Trang,Hat Yai and Surat Thani (Samui). In addition, many local travelagencies in town provide air-conditioned buses or vans to theseprovinces.

The bus terminal, which is located 4 kilometers north of town atTalat Kao, provides bus services between Krabi and the followingdestinations:

Hat Yai (96 baht/ordinary bus bus, 130 baht /2nd class bus bus, 173 baht /1st class bus), Nakhon Si Thammarat (67 baht / ordinary bus), Phuket (65 baht /ordinary bus, 91 baht /2nd class bus, 117 baht /1st class bus), Phang-nga (46 baht /ordinary bus, 64 baht /2nd class bus, 82 baht /1st class bus), Ranong (106 bahts /ordinary bus), Su-nagi Kolok (335 bahts /1st class bus), Surat Thani (61 baht /ordinary bus, 126 baht /2nd class bus), Trang (50 baht /ordinary bus, 70 baht /2nd class bus, 90 baht /1st class bus).

For schedule and more information, contact Krabi Bus Terminal, tel. 0 7561 1804

By bus/boat combination
To Ko Samui:

Travel agencies in town offer bus/boat tickets to Ko Samui (300-370baht, four times a day), and also to Ko Pha-Ngan (450 baht, four timesa day).

Getting around the city and nearby Districts
From Krabi Bus Terminal, located in Talat Kao, there are both localred buses and government buses depart regularly from 6.00 a.m. to 5.00p.m. to other counties including major tourist spots. It costs 10 bahtto get to a destination in town. To travel further, i.e. to Ao Nang andhat Noppharat Thara, take the local white bus from Maharat Road for afare of 20 baht

Songthaew and tuk tuk to the government bus terminal costs 8 bahtswhile a motorcycle taxi costs 30 bahts. Tuk tuks can be chartered fortrips around the town for flat rates i.e. to the bus station (50 baht),What Tham Seua (100 baht) and the airport (200 baht).

Most of Songthaews leave in front of the 7-11 on Maharat Road.Destinations include Ao Leuk (20 baht), Ao Nam Mao (40 baht), Ao Nang(20 baht), Hat Noppharat Thara (20 baht) and Su San Hoi (40 baht).

There is also a service to Ban Hua Hin (Ferry pier to Ko Lanta). Thebay is situated at the intersection of Phattana and Preuksa UthitRoads. Costing around 40 baht/person, the service runs frequently andtakes 40 minutes.

Alternatively, it is possible to rent a car to travel around townand to nearby provinces. Several agencies and guesthouses providemotorcycle rental for 150 baht/day while Jeep rental fees may rangefrom 800 to 1,200 baht/day.

For more convenience, it is possible to hire a taxi, rent amotorcycle or a van at travel agencies and hotels. The local minibusesdepart from Vogue Department Store on Maharat Road to the followingdestinations:

Best time to visit Krabi
The climate of Krabi Province is tropical and therefore warm throughoutthe year. On the other hand, Krabi is also affected by the monsoonwinds that bring about seasonal changes.

There are two very hot periods of weather on Krabi, the first isbetween April and May when the average temperatures ranges from 27 to36 degrees Celsius with occasional tropical thunderstorm bringingrelief from the heat.

It is also very hot between September and October, but the frequent rainfall has a wonderful cooling effect.

In May, at the peak of the southwest monsoon, it rains on an averageof 25 days during the month, making it to one of the most humid monthsof the year. Rainy days are interspersed with sunny days during thisperiod and the rain generally comes in tropical downpours of an hour orso throughout the day mixed with periods of sunshine.

November to March is the most popular time for tourists to visitKrabi. It is when the northeast monsoon brings beautiful blue skies andpredominantly sunny weather with an average temperature of 24 to 32degrees Celsius. Visitors are advised to make early reservations (maybea year in advance) for accommodations during this period of timebecause of the popularity of the Krabi and its attractions.

Boat:
Long-tailed boats depart from Saphan Jao Fah Pier to East Rai Le for 70baht/person while the ferry to Ko Lanta (and also Ko Jam), whichoperates only from October to April costs 200 baht/person with twotrips daily at 10.30 a.m. and 1.30 p.m. The ferry to Phi Phi Islandoperates all year round at 200 baht/person with two trips daily, at10.00a.m. and 2.30p.m.

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