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L THAILAND 24 HOTELS UPGRADED GET INVOLVED


• Take one of the popular ‘five island’ excursions for beach flops and snorkelling in secluded areas


• Explore the hidden hollow centre of Hong Island by kayak


• Tackle world-class rock-climbing on the karsts just off Railay


• See a shrine of painted wooden phalluses – fertility offerings to a sea princess – in a cave at Phra Nang beach


• Climb over a thousand steps to take in the view atop quirky Tiger Cave Temple


• Soak in woodland hot springs and an emerald-coloured pool on a combination excursion with Wat Tham Seua


Layana Resort & Spa Krabi’s Koh Lanta resort has added ‘La Maison’, a two-bedroom pool villa with butler service and helicopter transfers plus floor-to- ceiling windows, a wrap-around balcony and an impressive ten- metre pool. The resort has also renovated its public areas and spa (pictured top). layanaresort.com


Holiday Inn Krabi at Aonang


This hotel has a playful sense of tropical fun, from waterslides to free-form pools and swim-up bar, and there’s a new family wing. ihg.com/holidayinnresorts


Tubkaak resort


Without a doubt this hotel enjoys some of the most stunning sunsets from this particular beach resort. Contact Wattana about the property’s new guest rooms. wattana@tubkaakresort.com


HOTELS BOUTIQUE PICK


Phulay Bay, a Ritz- Carlton Reserve A beautiful boutique option in the region is Phulay Bay, a Ritz- Carlton Reserve. It has fantastic views of the limestone scenery, luxurious rooms and villas, ESPA spa, various dining options. Numerous packages are available. phulay-bay.com


ATTRACTIONS OPENED


Centara Anda Dhevi Resort & Spa Krabi In a new class, the resort’s chefs teach guests to coo authentic regional recipes, then treat them to a three-course Thai lunch. The menu includes dishes such as chicken coconut soup with lemongrass, spicy seafood soup, wok-fried beef or pork with garlic and chilli and green curry. The class costs from 1,200 baht (about £25.50).


centaraandadhevi.com


DID YOU KNOW ‘Hat’ means beach in Thai, ‘ao’ is bay, ‘koh’ or ‘ko’ means island, ‘tham’ means cave, and ‘wat’ is temple


ess brash but with plenty to do, see and eat, Krabi also faces the same bay as Phuket, offering similar island- hopping excursions and beautiful karst scenery. Ao Nang is the main beach, backed by restaurants, bars and hotels and with a row of colourful longtail boats ready to whisk you away on an adventure. For better beaches however, head to outlying areas like tree-lined Noppharat Thara, or take a longtail to nearby Railay (or Rai Le) – a top place to watch the sunset – or to any number of sandbar islands. Excursion potential continues inland with the evocatively named Tiger Cave Temple (where you’re more likely to encounter monkeys) and the big-headed-ghost cave, site of prehistoric paintings, which is among favourite stops on mangrove kayaking tours. You can sit down with a bargain feast at the evening food market in sleepy riverside Krabi Town or take boat trips to its gateway-shaped cliffs which contain caves, or to Ko Klang fishing village.


Twin-centre favourite Koh Lanta is most easily accessed from Krabi. The island includes five-star honeymoon favourites like Pimalai and Layana and can be used as a dive base. Pioneering tourists who thrive on the next big thing should check out lesser-known Trang, just down the coast. It has Chinese dim sum restaurants and coffee shops and its own island-hopping excursion scene.


combines well with... Krabi


Koh Lanta, Trang, Phuket or Khao Lak


KRABI IS A SCENIC WONDER WITH GREAT ACCESS TO THAILAND’S WESTERN ISLANDS


KRABI


HoT SPoT: KRABI


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