With so many islands in Thailand, it’s no wonder there are also several island tours to choose from. Our first stop in Thailand was Krabi Town, which isn’t even an island, so we started looking through some of the popular day trips available from there. We decided on the 4 Islands Tour mostly because the islands looked pretty in the pictures and the tour left from Ao Nang, so it wouldn’t involve sitting in a van for half the day. It was a rough start when they couldn’t find our crazy guesthouse, but once they found us, it was an enjoyable day.
I tried looking up the names of all of these islands to make sure I was spelling them correctly, but in the translation from Thai to English, everyone seems to use different spelling. So if you sign up for this tour, the names might not match exactly, but you’re on the same tour. Also, the order of your visit may vary.
The tour started with Phranang Cave Beach in Railay, which we saw the day before on our own visit to Railay. It was nice to see it again early in the day when there weren’t quite as many people, but I couldn’t really get any good pictures of the cave since there were so many shadows on that section. We also got to see a bunch of tiny islands and rock spikes along the way and across from Railay. It was a gorgeous start to the day!
Next we went to Koh Poda, where we had more beach time. The island itself was ok but again it had great views of some pretty impressive rocky islands jutting out of the sea. There were also lots of pretty striped fish swimming around, and since the water was really shallow, we were able to stand among them. A couple from our boat brought bread to feed the fish, which meant at least 100 of them swarmed around our legs.
After eating lunch on Poda Island, the longtail boat took us over to Chicken Island. It has a Thai name, but everyone just referred to it as Chicken Island. It got its name from a section of the island that looks like a chicken’s head and neck. We didn’t actually go onto the island, but this was supposedly the best place for snorkeling so most of us hopped out with snorkel gear. It wasn’t anything amazing, but it was kind of nice to swim around with the fish for a little while.
Tup Island and Mawr Island
Our last stop was actually two islands together, Koh Tup and Koh Mawr. They are so close together that at low tide, a sandbar sticks out of the water connecting them. When we arrived the tide was getting lower but the water was still a few inches above the sandbar. As we were walking back to the boat to leave, the water was no longer flowing over the sandbar and the islands were completely connected.
Taking the 4 Islands Tour
We booked our 4 Islands Tour after arriving in Krabi and went on the tour the day after arriving. Most guesthouses are able to book tours for you, and don’t forget prices are negotiable. We got a great deal and ended up paying 400 baht (about 8.90€ or US$12.25) per person, but it sounded like a lot of people paid more. You can book online ahead of time if you would prefer to avoid the haggling or you would rather have a specific date nailed down.
As long as you’re staying in the Krabi Town or Ao Nang areas, the tour company will pick you up at your hotel or guesthouse. Pick-up times will vary depending on where you’re staying, but most likely sometime between 7:30 and 8:30 in the morning. They will also bring you back at the end of the tour. The schedules online say 3pm or 3:30 is when the tour ends, but that seemed to be about when they started heading back to Ao Nang. Don’t be surprised if you don’t make it back to your hotel until 5pm depending on where you’re staying.
Lunch was included in the price, and even though it wasn’t anything exciting, it was decent enough and there was a vegetarian option. They also provided bottled water with lunch as well as pineapple and watermelon slices towards the end of the tour.
There is a speedboat option as well, but it’s a lot more expensive and we liked the idea of the longtail boats better. We saw at least two or three companies running the tour on longtail boats, and they all seemed similar enough that I wouldn’t worry about which particular company you end up with. Remember to wear flip flops or some other kind of sandals, wear your bathing suit, bring a towel, sunglasses and lots of sunscreen, and enjoy the pretty views on the Krabi 4 Islands Tour!