Ready for a bold statement?
I just might think that Krabi with kids is the best family destination in Thailand. Yes, you read that right.
I think it easily beats out Phi Phi, Phuket and quite possibly even comes out on top of out famed Ko Lanta (which is often famed as the best place for family holiday in Thailand.)
I have an extremely in- depth Krabi Guide which includes a 3 Day Krabi Itinerary. There is a ton of extra info over there that is essential for any travelers to Krabi (kids or not). Make sure you read that in addition to this post to get the most out of your Krabi planning!
And if you’ll be traveling with younger kids, you can’t miss our Everything To Know About Traveling To Thailand With Babies and Kids post.
In this article, you’ll find out what to do in Krabi with kids, where to stay in Krabi for a family, how to get around with your kids in tow, what beaches to hang out at, and more. While it looks similar to my other Krabi post, this one is specific just for us traveling families!
Krabi: Perfect For Thailand Family Holidays
A hot debate is often “Where is the best place in Thailand for families?” Many people will argue Ko Lanta, but I think that Krabi actually has a lot of the same attributes (and is a lot easier to get to!) and is skipped by too many families. Here are my top reasons why Krabi is # 1 in my list for places to visit in Thailand with a family.
Krabi With Kids
^ Save It To Your “Places To Visit in Thailand with Family” Board For Later! ^
SO Easy To Get To
Krabi is incredibly easy (and relatively quick) to get to in comparison to the islands. For example, Koh Toa is my favorite island, but in order to do so, you have to take a 8-12 hour bus ride or fly on a ridiculously questionably small prop plane, PLUS sit on a ferry. Granted, Phuket has an airport, so you can avoid a lot of that, but is it still the best island for families? Probably not.
Even to get to Ko Lanta from Bangkok was a haul for us. We had to take the short flight to Krabi anyway and then either take a 2 hour ferry or 2 hour shuttle to Ko Lanta.
Getting to Krabi from Bangkok is only about 1.5 hours and only cost about $30 per person.
When traveling with kids (especially traveling with babies and toddlers in Thailand) any extra minutes in transit could be the difference between meltdown city and “Wow, your kids are such great travelers!”
Feels Like An Island
There are a plethora of reasons to go to each Thai island (Koh Tao for diving, Phuket for partying, Koh Samui for great Thailand family resorts…) but they all have one thing in common: Stunningly Gorgeous Beaches!!!
And guess what? Despite Krabi not being an island, it does NOT lack in fantastic beaches (in fact, I’ll also argue that my favorite beach actually IS in Krabi- more on that below).
It also has just those easy-going vibes that everyone loves about island life. You can sit at a beach bar (with your kiddos!) and just hang out watching the sunset for as long as your little munchkins let you.
An Extremely Child Friendly Location (The locals love kids!)
Thais LOVE kids! It has been one of my favorite countries to travel with kids so far. Locals truly do cherish and appreciate little ones. So much so, that there are actually some things to know beforehand. (If you haven’t yet read out “Traveling to Thailand with Kids and Babies,” you should pop on over there for sure so that you are prepared!)
We found Krabi to be extremely baby and kid-friendly. At almost all restaurants, they had a high chair that we could use. Even more, it wasn’t uncommon to find restaurants that had toys to play on or even things like puzzles to play with at the table. These things seriously make a huge difference when eating out with squirmy toddlers!!
Like all over Thailand, the locals were also very helpful when it came to the kiddos. For example, we had to wade out to waist-high water to get onto our longboat to Railay. The boat driver scooped up our 3 year old with a huge smile on his face and helped carry him while I somehow managed to make it to the boat with the baby!
At our hotel, there was not only a small playground that the kids absolutely had a blast on, but there were also toys and floaties to use at the pool.
One night, while eating, a few of the Thai ladies even spent a few minutes playing a puzzle with our son!
It’s small things like these that actually make a big difference when traveling with a family and choosing where to go.
Things To Do In Krabi With Kids
If you read my Krabi Itinerary post, then you’ve already started putting together a really great list of things to do in Krabi with kids.
The reality is that almost all the activities mentioned in there can be done with kids, just with a few adjustments or things to know ahead of time(as with any time you are traveling with kids!)
Lil B (3.5) loved the longtail boats and Mr. J (1) had mixed feelings about the monkeys at Railay. Lil B suckered us into getting him some rolled ice cream at the night market and for days couldn’t stop talking about Oreo ice cream! (The things kids enjoy about travel!) If you are wanting some easy island hopping days, just simply book a tour for any of the day trips to nearby places like Phi Phi.
Railay Bay With Kids
As we talked about in the other article, Railay Bay is, hands down, my favorite beach that I’ve been to in Thailand. The views, the calm waters, everything about it screams paradise (ok, maybe minus the growing amount of people).
Kids under 4 were free on the longtail boat (the only way to access Railay). The biggest thing to note about the longtails is that the motor can be quite loud. If your kids are sensitive to loud sounds, it might be worth bringing some earplugs or just being ready to cover their ears for the 10 minute ride to Railay.
Another thing that we found was that on Railay West (where you’ll most likely come in at), there was a very aggressive breed of monkeys. No smart traveling family goes anywhere without a stash of food and snacks for the day. This one particular monkey knew JUST which one of our bags had the goods and he was willing to put up a fight for it. My mom legit almost lost her day bag to the darn monkey!
Granted, at the end of the day, losing a bag with food is still WAY better than getting rabis! Therefore, secure your food and snacks and make sure your kiddos know to steer clear of the primates.
There is a fantastic sectioned part of Railay that had perfectly calm waters to wade into with the boys. And did I mention the temperature of the water was pure bliss!?
Phra Nang Beach
We LOVE Phra Nang Beach. Just note that it does take about 45 minutes-1 hour to walk from Railay to Phra Nang. Alternatively, you can pay about 250THB ($5-10) to have a longtail whip you around the corner of the bay between Railay and Phra Nang.
Personally, I think it’s worth going over to Phra Nang with kids. The waves are a bit bigger here, but Lil B was still able to happily float alongside us with his floaties on, but I wasn’t comfortable taking the baby.
The sand here is also fantastic for sandcastle creations!
Just beware of the penises….Yes. Penis Shrine. Funny enough, this was the ONLY open spot that was shaded while we were there, so we had prime views of the “Princess Cave.”
Phra Nang Caves
Right next to the Phra Nang Caves (and along the path if you chose to walk from Railay to Phra Nang) are some really cool natural caves. They aren’t deep and are literally right along the path. Lil B loved tucking in and out of the little nooks!
Ao Nang Landmark Night Market
We went to one of the huge night markets in Bangkok with the boys and overwhelmed can’t even describe how we felt (and that’s coming from someone who has been to my fair share of Thai night markets!!) I guess throwing kids into the mix totally changes things.
However, the Ao Nang Night Market was just our speed!!! There was plenty of deliciously amazing food to choose from, it wasn’t overly crowded, there were nice souvenir stands beside the typical mass-produced stalls, and great nightly entertainment to listen to.
Lil B’s highlight of the night market was clearly young boy creating the rolled ice cream! I can’t blame him, it was pretty fun to watch!
Other Krabi Beaches
While I clearly think Railay needs to be on your list of Krabi beaches, there are still plenty that are right along Ao Nang.
The main Ao Nang beach isn’t the best for swimming, but just keep heading down along the main drag, and you’ll find plenty of other beaches where families are out splashing in the calm waters.
One popular Krabi beach is Hat Noppharat Thara. We stopped here for an afternoon which was the perfect people-watching spot. A young Thai brought his portable Kareoke machine to serenade our stretch of the beach, a young toddler tentatively waded out into the shallow water with dad, an entire local family brought their dinner just in time for the sunset, and a group of ex pats had some Chang beers while lounging in some hammocks!
Everything listed above is actually in Ao Nang Krabi, which is only about a 20 minute drive from Krabi town. In my other Krabi Guide, I give multiple suggestions for things to do in the actual Krabi town, but as a family, I would recommend staying in and around Ao Nang.
If you have older kids (teens) then things like the Tiger Temple may be of interest to you. However, climbing 1,000 stairs babywearing my baby and toddler didn’t sound like an ideal morning trek (especially when our villa had our own private pool to play in at 8am!)
Other Things To Do With Kids In Krabi
While we didn’t have the time, here are some other popular things to do for a Krabi family holiday that kids would really enjoy.
Emerald Pool, Blue Lagoon and Hotsprings
All of these things are at the same location and with parental guidance, are all safe with kids. It takes about 1 hour to get there and you’ll probably be content with just a few hours there, so it could make a great half day trip.
If you are heading to the Emerald Pool with kids, there are a few things that you need to be aware of/know:
- In the emerald pool, the edges can be quite slippery with moss. Make sure everyone has good water shoes for traction and help any little one around so nobody slips
- It gets to around 2 meters deep
- Remind little ones that the water is not safe to drink/put in their mouth!
- The hot springs can get upwards of 100+ degrees (F) so it is not ideal for young children. Older kids, use your best judgment.
If you’ve got a need for speed and are looking to do something off the beach, but still under the beautiful karsts of Krabi, there is the Krabi Kart Speedway.
You can go solo or get a double seated kart for kids. There are also ATV, paintball, archery and BB gun activities at the same location, giving a fun alternative to the beaches!
Sunset Cruises and Island Tours
Depending on the ages of your kids and their comfort levels of swimming and snorkeling, a krabi sunset cruise could be a great way to hit up several islands nearby Krabi as well as have a memorable day out! Some even have night time bioluminescent tours to swim with the glowing phytoplankton (truly a magical experience!!!)
Many people want to do things like the “4 Islands” tour anyway. A lot of times, many of these sunset cruises can incorporate all of that into your day of island hopping anyway.
Expert Tip: Just know that not all sunset cruises are kid friendly. Double check before booking, or choose an island hopping trip that is for sure ok for kids. Otherwise, you might be stuck with a bunch of rowdy, young backpackers just there to party.
Getting Around Krabi With A Family
Again, I cover this all in our other Krabi guide. But really, the only mode of transportation that might be hard with kiddos is the motorbike option. Otherwise, the Tuk Tuks are a blast for kids, Songthaews are easy to use, and the hotel shuttles are super handy for large families.
I’ll also say that if you DO have kids, you may find yourself doing things in Thailand that you NEVER would have dreamt about doing in the US (or wherever you are from), including letting your kids ride on the motorbikes! Lil B LOVED taking short rides up the street to help collect laundry or go to 7-11 for water runs. I only freaked about my 3.5 year old on the moped the first 10 times. (I mean, when in Thailand right…..have you seen the BABIES riding on mopeds in Thailand- it’s a common occurrence!!?)
Where To Stay For The Best Family Hotels in Krabi
With Krabi quickly climbing the list for the best place for a family holiday in Thailand, it’s no surprise that Krabi is getting plenty of family friendly hotels and resorts.
Lux Family Villas: This is where we personally stayed and it was great for our family! We opted for the private pool villa, which was AMAZING to have all to ourselves! However, you can choose other villas that still have access to the beautiful, big pool that has tons of kids’ toys, floaties, and restaurant on site. Both boys really enjoyed the small playground just outside of our room and we all greatly appreciated the free shuttle that got us just about anywhere we wanted to go in Ao Nang. Click Here To See The Lux Family Villas
Holiday Inn Resort Krabi: The Holiday Inn Krabi is consistently rated as the best Krabi Family Resort time and time again. It’s right on the beach and next to all the main Ao Nang Attractions. Kids stay free and kids under 12 even get to eat for free at the on-sight restaurant! There is also a nanny and babysitting services available as well as a kids club that they can play at, and not to mention all the awesome pools and slides!! Click Here To See This Krabi Family Resort Holiday
Inn Resort Krabi: The Holiday Inn Krabi is consistently rated as the best Krabi Family Resort time and time again. It’s right on the beach and next to all the main Ao Nang Attractions. Kids stay free and kids under 12 even get to eat for free at the on-sight restaurant! There is also a nanny and babysitting services available as well as a kids club that they can play at, and not to mention all the awesome pools and slides!! Click Here To See This Krabi Family Resort
Rayaveeda Resort: If you are looking for the best resort in Krabi for family, check out Rayaveeda (on Railay). There are family rooms and suites available as well as a private Villa that should be able to accommodate your whole crew. Click Here To See Current Prices and Availability.
Phuket or Krabi For Family Trips?
I’ll be honest here and tell you that my trip to Phuket was just as a couple. At the time, we visited the island because we were told it was one of the best islands. It’s not that we didn’t like Phuket, but I would say we have enjoyed other Thai islands more.
With that all being said, here are a few things to consider between Phuket or Krabi with kids.
- Cost and Budget: If you are looking for a cheaper destination, Krabi will win out. You have fewer transport costs, but it’s just also slightly cheaper as a whole (accommodations, food, etc)
- Getting There: There are many direct flights into both Phuket and Krabi.
- Family Friendly: Both locations are family-friendly, just know that certain parts of Phuket are KNOWN to be party central. We chose to stay along Chalong Bay at the Serenity Resort so that we could purposefully be away from the backpackers and partiers of Phuket’s Pa Tong beach.
- Things To Do: I think that if you are just there for a few days, Krabi is a great choice. However, if you are looking at hunkering down at just one or two for your whole trip and want the best Thailand Family Resorts, Phuket is worth considering because as a whole, there are a lot more things to do on Phuket for kids than Krabi if you are spending more time (like 1-2 weeks in the one location). For example, there’s an aquarium, putt putt, go carting, fun houses, and more that kids would enjoy.
Ko Lanta Or Krabi
- Cost and Budget: Both are pretty similar as far as prices go. We did find some really amazing and cheap places to eat in Ko Lanta though. (Our favorite was the “Friend House” we went back multiple times it was so cheap and SO good!)
- Getting There: Krabi is a clear winner for this one. You’ll most likely fly into Krabi anyway before it taking an additional 2 hours to get to Ko Lanta.
- Family Friendly: Both Krabi and Ko Lanta were EXTREMELY family-friendly. I honestly didn’t think that one was more so than the other.
- Things To Do: Ko Lanta is island life at it’s finest. There isn’t a TON to do rather than explore great beaches and hang out at the pool. There are some hikes and waterfalls to explore on Ko Lanta, but that same could be said just outside of Krabi.
Are you heading to Krabi with Kids? What questions do you have? Leave them in the comments below.
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