Trip Reports: Island Hopping In Thailand - December 2014

Claudia and I are mountain lovers through and through; but after two treks in the Himalaya, the thought of relaxing on some Thai beaches sounded pretty appealing. With two travel weeks to spare in December, and just a 3-hour flight from Kathmandu, we quickly planned a getaway to Thailand!

Needless to say, once we were laying in the sand under the warm sun, we felt like that was a pretty damn good decision. We started in Railay and Ao Nang, near the city of Krabi; then worked our way south towards the Trang province, including stays on the islands of Ko Lanta, Ko Kradan, and Ko Muk.

Railay, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Railay Sunset

An amazing sunset over the limestone karsts of Railay beach.

Railay, Thailand, lightning, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Railay Thunder

Lightning over the Andaman Sea as a tropical thunderstorm passes over Railay Beach.

Railay, Thailand, Andaman Sea, boat, beach, photo

Railay Long-tail Boats

Long-tail boats at west Railay beach.

Railay, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, photo

Kayaking amongst limestone karst formations near Phra Nang beach.

Railay, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, photo

Kayaking through a sea tunnel near Railay.

Railay, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Railay Clouds

Railay beach on a cloudy morning.

Railay, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Railay Shade

Railay beach.

Ko Phi-Phi, Thailand, Andaman Sea, boat, beach, photo

Phi Phi Boat

Ko Phi-Phi is a popular island featuring a thin [and shockingly overdeveloped] isthmus of land with attractive turquoise bays on both sides.

Ko Phi-Phi Leh, Thailand, Andaman Sea, boat, beach, photo

Maya Bay Long-tail Boat

A long-tail boat in Maya Bay.

Ko Phi-Phi Leh, Maya Bay, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, panorama, photo

Maya Bay Moonlight Panorama

A panorama of the incredible cove of Maya Bay, where, incidentally, The Beach movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio was filmed.

Ko Phi-Phi,Thailand,monkey, photo

A monkey at Monkey Beach near Phi Phi.

Ko Phi-Phi, Thailand, monkey, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

A monkey hoping for bananas from tourists at Monkey Beach.

Thailand, Tup Island, Andaman Sea, beach, Ao Nang, panorama, photo

Sunset at the unique sandbar beach of Tup Island, in the Andaman Sea near Ao Nang and Railay.  This is a full 360º panorama looking up one direction of the sandbar and down the opposite way.

Thailand, Tup Island, Andaman Sea, beach, Ao Nang, photo

Andaman Sunset

Sunset at Tup Island.

Ko Hong, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, panorama, photo

Ko Hong Panorama

Panorama view of the enclosed beach at Ko Hong island.

Ko Hong, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, photo

Relaxing on the kayak in the amazing enclosed lagoon in Ko Hong island.

Ko Lanta, Thailand, Andaman Sea, photo

Sunset light obscured by rain clouds off the coast of Ko Lanta.

Ko Lanta, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Ko Lanta Evening

Evening at a beach on Ko Lanta.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, hiking, photo

Hiking along the beach to our bungalow on Ko Kradan island.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, boat, beach, photo

Long-Tail Boat Taxi

A long-tail taxi boat at Ko Kradan island.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Clear Water

Crystal waters of Ko Kradan.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Tropical Rainbow

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Enjoying a beach swing on Ko Kradan.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, cloud, photo

Cottonball Cloud

A big cottonball cloud over Ko Muk, as seen from Ko Kradan.

Ko Kradan, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Ko Kradan Sunrise

Ko Muk, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, Tham Morakat, Emerald Cave, photo

Kayaking through the pitch black 80-meter-long tunnel cave of Tham Morakat (Emerald Cave) to the hidden beach and enclosed lagoon beyond. Ko Muk.

Ko Muk, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, beach, Tham Morakat, Emerald Cave, photo

The hidden beach and enclosed lagoon surrounded by vertical cliffs, accessed by swimming or kayaking through an 80 meter long cave tunnel from the Andaman Sea.

Ko Muk, Thailand, kayak, Andaman Sea, beach, Tham Morakat, Emerald Cave, photo

The hidden beach and enclosed lagoon surrounded by vertical cliffs, accessed by swimming or kayaking through an 80 meter long cave tunnel from the Andaman Sea.

Ko Muk, Thailand, Andaman Sea, beach, photo

Ko Muk Sunset

Sunset at Charlie Beach on Ko Muk.

Ao Nang,Thailand, beach, photo

This guy walks up and down the beach at Ao Nang serving fresh corn cobs roasted over his portable coconut-charcoal grill.  He is deaf and can't speak well, but still manages to make a point of how much better his corn is than all the other restaurants near the beach.  He's right.  It's delicious!

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