Where to stay in Krabi for first time: 8 Safest areas

Krabi is one of my favorite tourist destinations in Thailand. In today’s article, I will help you to find the safest places to stay in Krabi for first-time visitors.

I will share with you what I believe are the best and safest areas to stay in Krabi for first-timers and tourists, along with a helpful map and areas to avoid. I’ll also share where I stayed in Krabi and recommend some of the best hotels for various budgets.

Krabi is a province in southern Thailand known for its stunning natural beauty, including limestone cliffs, clear waters, and lush jungles. Popular tourist areas in the region are Railay Beach, Ao Nang, Krabi Town, and Ko Phi Phi island.

Ao Nang is a bustling resort town and is a hub for tourists with its vibrant nightlife, restaurants, and shops. Ao Nang also serves as a starting point for exploring the nearby islands and beaches.

Krabi is an excellent base for exploring nearby islands, such as Hong Islands, Bamboo Island, and James Bond Island. There are also popular boat tours to explore four beautiful islands: Phra Nang Cave Beach, Chicken Island, Tup Island, and Poda Island.

In addition to beaches and islands, you can visit the Thung Teao Forest Natural Park, where you can find the famous Emerald Pool (Sa Morakot) and Hot Springs. It is a great place to enjoy nature, relax in warm springs, and swim in the emerald-green pool.

Another popular attraction is the Tiger Cave Temple (Wat Tham Sua), a Buddhist temple located in the jungle. It is known for its strenuous stairway leading to a panoramic viewpoint and a cave with tiger paw prints.

Is Krabi safe to visit?

Yes, Krabi, like most tourist cities in Thailand, is generally safe to visit. But, like any travel destination, exercising standard precautions is recommended, such as taking care of belongings, being aware of surroundings, and avoiding poorly lit or isolated areas, especially at night.

While Krabi has a reputation for its friendly locals and vibrant culture, it’s essential to stay informed about the weather and adhere to local guidelines. 

Where to stay in Krabi for the first time?

The best and safest areas to stay in Krabi for first-timers and tourists are Ao Nang, Krabi Town, Railay Beach, Klong Muang, Ao Nam Mao, Tab Kaek, Phi Phi Islands, and Ko Jum. It’s always essential to exercise the same caution and awareness you would in any unfamiliar place.

Ao Nang is the most popular base for first visits as it serves as a convenient base for exploring nearby attractions and islands. It is a bustling tourist hub with a wide range of accommodations, restaurants, and shops. The beach is lively, and there are many activities and nightlife options.

Krabi Town is a great area for budget travelers and for those seeking a more local and authentic experience. It has a variety of dining and shopping options. It’s also less crowded than Ao Nang.

Railay Beach is a popular destination for rock climbing and a laid-back vibe. The beach is accessible only by boat due to the surrounding cliffs.  

Klong Muang and Tab Kaek offer a quieter alternative to Ao Nang with a beautiful beach. Tab Kaek is known for its luxury resorts, making it a great choice for those looking for an upscale experience.

Phi Phi Islands is a popular destination for day trips but you can find plenty of accommodation options if you want to stay a night here. Ko Phi Phi Don and Ko Phi Phi Leh are the most famous and attract visitors with their stunning beaches and snorkeling opportunities.

During my trip to Krabi, I stayed for one week at the Panan Krabi Resort. This was a great mid-range hotel in Ao Nang, an easy distance from the beach and the nightlife area. There was Starbucks, a 7-11, and McDonald’s right across the street from the hotel. My breakfast was lovely with lots of choices.

Below is a map of the popular areas in Krabi for first-time travelers. You can scroll down to view the live map.

Map of the safe areas to stay in Krabi first time
Map of the safe areas to stay in Krabi first time

Let’s get into the details of the recommended areas to stay in Krabi, especially for first-time visitors. I’ll provide you with some suggestions for the best places to stay in each area, catering to every budget. 

All hotels in Krabi have been carefully selected by me, with guest review scores of at least 8.0 or higher at the time I chose them. If you don’t like my suggestions (perhaps they don’t suit your budget or preferences), you can click the “MORE HOTEL DEALS” button where you can choose your own hotel.

8 Safest areas to stay in Krabi for first-timers and tourists

1. Ao Nang Beach

Ao Nang Beach is one of the most popular destinations in Krabi. It is an excellent base for first-timers and tourists who want a central location with easy access to various activities, dining options, and nightlife.

Ao Nang serves as a convenient base for exploring the surrounding areas, including Railay Beach, the Phi Phi Islands, and other nearby attractions. It’s well-connected by boat and road.

This area offers a diverse range of accommodation options, from budget guesthouses to luxury resorts. You can find something that suits your preferences and budget.

It is also  known for its vibrant dining scene, offering a variety of restaurants serving both local and international cuisine. The nightlife in Ao Nang is lively, with bars and entertainment options.

There are plenty of activities to enjoy in and around Ao Nang, including island-hopping tours, snorkeling, kayaking, rock climbing, and more. The beach itself is suitable for swimming and relaxing.

There are numerous shops and markets where you can purchase souvenirs, clothing, and other items.

Krabi International Airport is 30-45 minutes away by car, making it relatively easy to reach Ao Nang. You can use hotel shuttle services, Grab App, or take a taxi to travel between Ao Nang and the airport.

Best places to stay in Krabi in Ao Nang for first-time visitors:

  • Luxury ($$$): Anana Ecological Resort Krabi, this is a great 5-star hotel, located in a peaceful area with beautiful sunset views over the mountains. It is only 10 mins drive by  car/ scooter to the beach and town center. It also offers free hourly shuttle buses to the beach, which is a bonus for those who don’t drive.
  • Mid-range ($$): Centara Ao Nang Beach Resort & Spa Krabi, popular 4-star beachfront hotel, located within easy walking distance to Ao Nang Beach and Pai Plong Beach. It has an outdoor swimming pool, 24-hour front desk, comfortable family rooms, and a kids’ club.
  • Budget ($): COSI Krabi Ao Nang Beach, great 3-star accommodation in central Ao Nang, easy access to the beach and restaurants. It has an outdoor pool and free private parking.

2. Krabi Town

Krabi Town is a great area for those who want a more local and affordable experience, are interested in exploring cultural aspects, and plan to use it as a base for day trips to nearby attractions.

 Krabi Town is the provincial capital of Krabi Province. The town has a variety of dining options, ranging from street food stalls to restaurants serving Thai and international cuisine. This is a great place to try local dishes.

Accommodation and dining in Krabi Town tend to be more budget-friendly compared to some of the more touristy beach areas, making it a good option for travelers on a tighter budget.

Krabi Town’s night market is a must-visit, offering a wide array of street food, snacks, and local products. It’s a vibrant and lively atmosphere in the evenings.

Krabi Town is a transportation hub with bus services to other parts of Thailand. It’s also a departure point for boats heading to nearby islands and beaches.

While not directly on the coast, Krabi Town is a convenient base for exploring nearby attractions, including Ao Nang, Railay Beach, and the islands.

Krabi Town itself doesn’t have a beach. If direct beach access is a priority for your stay, you may prefer one of the coastal areas like Ao Nang or Railay.

Best places to stay in Krabi Town for first-timers:

  • Budget ($): Play Poshtel & Cafe, 4-star hotel in a quiet location, short a songthaew/ Grab ride to Krabi. The hotel provides free bicycles you can use to get around. 
  • Budget ($): Sita Krabi Hotel, great 3-star accommodation, 15 mins walk from Krabi Town where you can find several food markets. The hotel can help you to book tours, taxi, scooter rental, laundry services. Great base to take a tour to Phi Phi island, Railay Bay, and Tiger cave temple.
  • Budget ($): Krabi River Hotel, great accommodation located in the heart of Krabi Town, within a short distance from Thara Park and Wat Kaew Korawaram. It is also close to the River, restaurants, and food markets. The pier is nearby, where longboats depart.

3. Railay Beach/ Tonsai Beach

Railay Beach and Tonsai Beach are adjacent coastal destinations, known for their stunning limestone cliffs, clear waters, and outdoor activities. They are easily accessible from Ao Nang by a short boat ride.

Railay Beach is renowned for its breathtaking scenery, featuring towering limestone cliffs, white sandy beaches, and crystal-clear waters. The landscape is a paradise for rock climbers and nature lovers.

Beyond rock climbing, Railay offers a variety of activities such as kayaking, snorkeling, and island-hopping tours. The Phra Nang Cave Beach, with its iconic cave and Princess Cave, is also a popular attraction.

While Railay can get busy, especially during the day when day-trippers arrive, it generally maintains a more relaxed atmosphere compared to some busier areas like Ao Nang.

Tonsai has a more laid-back and bohemian atmosphere compared to Railay. It’s known for its alternative and backpacker-friendly ambiance.

Best places to stay in Krabi in Railay Beach for tourists:

  • Luxury ($$$): Rayavadee, 5-star beachfront accommodations located along Andaman Coast, next to Krabi Marine National Park. It is a 30 mins speedboat ride to Bamboo Island and Phi Phi Island. It has free airport shuttles and comfortable family rooms.
  • Mid-range ($$): Railay Bay Resort & Spa, 4-star resort, located  across the white sands of Railay Beach, in a quiet area, away from the bars and restaurants. You can enjoy a relaxing massage at the hotel or try outdoor activities such as  paddle canoeing and rock climbing. 
  • Budget ($): Tinidee Hideaway Tonsai Beach Krabi, 3-star good value for money seafront hotel in Tonsai Beach, featuring an outdoor swimming pool and very good breakfast. It is set in a little remote location, and it is best to reach the hotel during high tide. You need to walk through a rocky beach during low tide.

4. Klong Muang Beach

Klong Muang Beach is an ideal base for couples who prefer a quieter setting away from the crowds. It is a beautiful and relatively quiet beach located in the Krabi Province, 20 kms north of Ao Nang and around 40 kms from Krabi Town.

The beach is known for its breathtaking sunset views. Many visitors and locals alike gather to watch the sun dip below the horizon, creating a romantic atmosphere.

Best places to stay in Krabi in Klong Muang for travelers:

  • Luxury ($$$): Dusit Thani Krabi Beach Resort, great 5-star beachfront hotel with a private beach area located on the white sands of peaceful Klong Muang Beach. It is a short distance from Klong Muang Plaza, Ao Nang, Chaofa Ferry Station, and Krabi International Airport. 
  • Mid-range ($$): Loy Chalet, 4-star hotel in a remote location 10 mins walk from Klong Muang Beach, featuring an outdoor pool, free private parking, and organizing tours. The room is spacious with a full separate kitchen. You can use the Grab App to get a taxi from the airport.
  • Budget ($): Krabi Klong Muang Bay Resort, 2-star accommodation located close to Klong Muang Beach and Tub Kaek Beach. It is a 20-minute ride from Ao Nang Beach. It has 2 swimming pools, Family rooms, and a paid airport shuttle.

5. Ao Nam Mao

Ao Nam Mao is a lesser-known coastal area west of Railay Beach. If you prefer a quieter setting and a more authentic experience, this could be an appealing choice.

Ao Nam Mao is conveniently located near popular attractions such as Railay Beach and Phra Nang Cave Beach. You can easily access these destinations by long-tail boat.

Best places to stay in Ao Nam Mao:

  • Mid-range ($$): Venice Krabi Villa Resort, great 4-star hotel located 15 mins walk from Ao Nam Mao Beach, offering free private parking, a terrace, indoor pool and a hot tub. They have a shuttle to Ao Nang and Railay Beach. It is around  130 baht one way taxi to Ao Nang.
  • Budget ($): Blue Orchid Beach Krabi, 3-star accommodation with a private beach, good location for ferry to Railay beach. Good place for a relaxing holiday. Close to several shops like 7 Eleven and Big C Mini.  
  • Budget ($): The Tama Hotel, 2-star accommodation close to the beach and local restaurants.

6. Tubkaek Beach

Tubkaek Beach is a beautiful beach area located just north of Klong Muang Beach. It is the best location for couples and travelers seeking a peaceful and luxurious beach getaway. 

Tubkaek Beach is known for its beautiful sunsets. The peaceful setting and unobstructed views make it a great place to relax and enjoy the evening.

Best places to stay in Krabi in Tab Kaek Beach:

  • Luxury ($$$): The Tubkaak Krabi Boutique Resort, 5-star beachfront hotel on Tubkaak Beach, 20 mins drive from Ao Nang Beach. You can take a stroll along the beach when the tide is out, as well as sit and watch the fishermen at work.
  • Luxury ($$$): Banyan Tree Krabi, 5-star accommodation on Tubkaek beach, featuring a restaurant serving Mediterranean, Pizza and Seafood dishes. It is set in a beautiful location next to a rainforest with a great hike and a lovely view.
  • Luxury ($$$): Phulay Bay, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve, 5-star good value for money hotel along  the shores of Andaman Sea in Krabi. It has an infinity pool and an outdoor pool. You can enjoy great sunset views from hotels.
  • Mid-range ($$): Tup Kaek Sunset Beach Resort, 4-star great mid-range hotel in Tab Kaek Beach.

7. Phi Phi Islands

The Phi Phi Islands, located in the Andaman Sea off the coast of Krabi Province, are a renowned tropical paradise known for their crystal-clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and stunning limestone cliffs. 

The Phi Phi Islands boast breathtaking landscapes with towering limestone cliffs, turquoise waters, and pristine beaches. Popular spots include Maya Bay, Viking Cave, and Bamboo Island.

The islands offer excellent opportunities for snorkeling and diving. The underwater world is rich in marine life, and you can explore vibrant coral reefs teeming with fish.

Phi Phi Don, the main inhabited island, is known for its lively nightlife scene. There are beach parties, bars, and fire shows that cater to those looking for entertainment after the sun sets.

Maya Bay, made famous by the movie The Beach, has now reopened to tourists. It was closed for rehabilitation to allow the coral and marine life to recover from environmental impact. 

You can consider planning your visit during less crowded times or exploring quieter parts of the islands to enhance your experience.

Best places to stay in Phi Phi Islands for visitors:

  • Luxury ($$$): SAii Phi Phi Island Village, popular 5-star hotel in Phi Phi island, set among 70 acres of coconut palm plantations, in Loh Ba Gao Bay. You can stay in spacious bungalows and enjoy an amazing pool overlooking the ocean.
  • Mid-range ($$): Phi Phi CoCo Beach Resort, 4-star hotel located in Phi Phi Don, a short distance from TonSai Pier and Ao Poh Bay. 
  • Budget ($): Phi Phi The Beach Resort, 3-star hillside resort located on the Long Beach, offering breathtaking views of Phi Phi Leh and Shark Point. It is in a quiet area, around 100 bath taxi boat rides to TonSai Pier from Long Beach.

8. Ko Jum

Ko Jum, also known as Koh Jum or Ko Pu, is a relatively quiet and less touristy island located in the Andaman Sea, near Krabi and Ao Nang. It is a great base for a more relaxed and authentic experience.

The island has beautiful beaches with soft sand and clear waters. The beaches are often less crowded compared to more popular tourist destinations.

The island is inhabited by a mix of Muslims and Buddhists, and you can experience a more authentic and less commercialized environment.

It also has limited development, and there are no major resorts or large crowds. Accommodations include guesthouses and smaller boutique resorts, contributing to the island’s low-key charm.

Best places to stay in Krabi in Ko Jum for visitors:


In conclusion, Ao Nang, Krabi Town, Railay Beach, Klong Muang, Ao Nam Mao, Tab Kaek, Phi Phi Islands, Ko Jum are the best places to stay in Krabi. These are generally safe areas to book hotels, but it’s essential to take common sense and follow local laws/customs wherever you go.

You can continue reading about other tourist destinations in Thailand in these articles:

There you have it, my recommendations for the most popular and safest neighborhoods that you can stay during your first trip to Krabi. I hope you enjoyed my article and find it both informative and helpful.

If you have any questions or would like to share your thoughts, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. Your feedback is invaluable and helps me continue to create more quality content.

About Author: Ocean Cameron

I'm Ocean, founder and main editor of travelhotelexpert.com. I’m a passionate traveler who specializes in uncovering the best hotels and locations in every city, especially for first-timers, all without the need for a car.

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