Before you start complimenting me on this most creative blogpost title, I have to tell you something. In this article there will be two things I’ve stolen: the title (and some other tourist info) I got from the official Ao Nang website and the last picture before the awesome looking map I had to google. You have to forgive me for not owning a helicopter to make a shot like this. Once you start paying me, I’ll think about buying one, I promise.
So you now know what this article is gonna be about: Ao Nang. I do realize I wrote a story on Thailand earlier, but I’ve got a special reason to single out Ao Nang as a tourist destination. Thing is, my dearest friends, since I’ve started this website people have been trying to get personal travel advice because they think I know everything about every destination. If I’ve given you this impression, I’m truly sorry, because I’m just a girl in this world, that’s all that you’ll let me be. Whoops, how did this No Doubt lyrics get in here? I’m not a girl, you know that. I’m a man.
Anyway, back to the story. So I get a lot of questions about certain destinations and one destination that seems to be very popular in your dirty little minds is Thailand. So, my first response to these questions is this: “I like your style, man! Not the most original destination, but a winner nonetheless. I must admit it’s one of my favorite countries in the world.” Notice how polite I am in real life. What happens next is this: they ask me where to go in Thailand, because it’s so big, Mr. the.ego.tripper. Now, if you are ego.tripping, you’ll do all of Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai, the borders with Myanmar and Laos, the south, the islands, the river Kwai, the east of the country, … But I realize not all of you can spend a few weeks or months to go on holiday. That’s why I started thinking about the perfect area for a Thai introduction. The perfect Thai getaway which will make you come begging for more. The perfect spot from which you can explore Thailand’s assets.
So I came up with Ao Nang, a small town in the Krabi province, close to Krabi town. Due to its central location in the Andaman Sea and to its fabulous topography and sporting opportunities, Ao Nang is, at the moment, arguably Thailand’s best all-round beach destination (sentence copied from aonang.com, as you can clearly tell). Ao Nang is, along with Chiang Mai, one of Thailand’s two most exciting soft and extreme adventure sports destinations. The home of two of the best beaches on the planet, Railay, is fifteen minutes away by boat. The town’s location on the eastern coast of Phang Nga bay puts it within easy reach of all the fishing, diving and kayaking sites in the bay. A day-trip to Koh Phi Phi is a better way to visit the place than staying there (again, sorry to steal this info, but I couldn’t have said it better myself. Actually, I could have, but I’m lazy).
The Ao Nang website is right, it is one of the best all-round beach destinations in Thailand, and therefore the perfect introduction to the country. With its pristine beaches (please visit Railay) and the many sightseeing opportunities, I would recommend this place to Thailand first-timers. Thing is: Ao Nang is quite touristy, but so is the rest of southern Thailand. Hop on a boat and go to Koh Phi Phi when you’ve seen it all in Ao Nang. Mind you, Koh Phi Phi is much more touristy. Or hop on an elephant in one of the national parks nearby (I regret doing this actually, since an elephant ride is not really like driving a Rolls Royce. My ass still hurts thinking back). Please take a dip in the emerald pool in the jungle near Ao Nang. And don’t forget the natural hot springs in the same area! And please please please climb the Tiger Cave Temple, one of the most sacred buddhist temples in the Krabi province. It does have over 1.200 steps, but the view from the top will make you forget the effort you had to undertake in the incredible heat.
All of these possibilities – snorkeling, diving, rock climbing, relaxing on the beach, elephant riding, swimming in hot springs, visiting amazing temples – make Ao Nang worth your time and money. And if you don’t like it, you can always hop on a boat that’ll bring you to Phuket*. Oh, and for the practical side of things: you can fly into Bangkok or Phuket. From Bangkok there are daily flights (less than an hour) to Krabi airport. From Phuket you will have to go to the port and take a ferry across. Have fun!
*not recommended by the.ego.tripper