DIY Itinerary and Travel Guide: 9D8N Phuket – Krabi Itinerary

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Southern Thailand, usually called by travelers as the islands, is on Kra Isthmus, the narrowest section of the Malay Peninsula. This part of Thailand is in between the Andaman Sea on the west and Gulf of Thailand on the other side. Southern Thailand has tons of island destinations but prominent ones are Phuket and Krabi.

phuket krabi itinerary
Longtail boats parked on the shores of Koh Phi Phi Island.

Luxury hotels and nature adventures await tourists planning to plunge on this part of Southeast Asia’s tourist haven. Tourism activities are endless but island hopping shouldn’t be missed. Most of my 9 days were spent basking on the beach or snorkeling in the sea. To give you an overview of activities and try to do for your visit, here’s a Phuket and Krabi itinerary.

Things to Remember

Visa/Immigration

Filipinos are allowed to enter and stay in Thailand for a maximum of 30 days if entering via international airports and 15 days via land borders. Foreign nationals are only allowed two (2) Tourist Visa Exempt entries via land borders per calendar year. For the immigration requirement; passport with at least six (6) months validity, confirmed travel itinerary; and proof of accommodation and funds of at least THB10,000 per person or THB20,000 per family. On my few entries to Thailand, no immigration officer asked for proof of accommodation and funds. But I heard some travelers on forums that were asked randomly for that entry requirement.

Weather

Since Southern Thailand is relatively lower than Bangkok in terms of geography, the weather is quite different on this part of the country. Phuket and Krabi, located on the west coast, is facing the Andaman Sea. Three seasons are observed on this region; cool weather runs from November to March, summer from March to May, and rainy season on the June to October with the highest rainfall in September and October.

Currency

Thailand Baht (THB).

How to Get Out of Phuket International Airport

There are several ways to get out of Phuket International Airport to your hotel either in key spots like Phuket Town, Patong Beach, Kata, and Karon.

Airport Limousine. Near the baggage claim area on the arrival hall are several counters offering transfer services from the airport to your hotel. They might be pushy sometimes and rates can range from THB400 to 600. You can skip the airport to your hotel in no time in a nice car.

Taxi Meter. Outside the arrival hall are 24-hour taxi cabs that can bring you to your destination. Just be sure to ask for the driver to turn on his meter. I’ve heard from other travelers that an airport surcharge of THB100 is added on the metered fare.

Mini Bus Join-in. The cheapest way and perfect for backpackers who are on a tight budget. Though the service is not available 24-hours, a late arrival in Phuket Airport will force you to wait for the earliest departure, around 8 in the morning. You can avail the services via the counters on the arrival hall or at the booths outside the airport gates. I paid THB180 for the trip from the airport to Patong area. The bus will stop at a travel agency office along the way for travelers to avail tour packages (which are way too expensive). None from our group availed a tour from the agency. I just simply availed discounted and hassle-free Phuket and Krabi tours on Klook.

phuket krabi itinerary airport transfer
Vans in Phuket International Airport taking tourists to Patong, Karon, and Kata Beach.


Klook.com

How to Get Out of Krabi Airport

To get to Ao Nang or Krabi Town from Krabi Airport, one can either avail transfers from the following services:

Krabi Airport Bus. Servicing the airport to Ao Nang and Krabi Town, 10-12 times on a day. The bus starts its operation from 8 AM to 8 PM with fares of THB100 (Krabi Town) and THB150 (Ao Nang).

Airport Taxis. Unlike Phuket airport, which forces metered-taxi services, most taxi on Krabi airport work on a fixed price basis.

* For a more detailed Krabi Airport travel guide, check out Your Krabi.

9D8N Phuket – Krabi Itinerary

DAY 1 – Arrival

Rain didn’t stop after our midnight arrival in Phuket Airport until morning when I boarded the first van to Patong Beach. Some roads were covered with ankle-deep brown water and not a good sign for my Phuket itinerary. I was dropped in front of my hostel and immediately rushed to the lobby, drenched.

The entire morning was gloomy but thanks to the staff of Lub D Patong Beach for allowing me to check-in early. I had few hours of sleep before my stomach rumbled and signaled for me to look for food. The rain subsided a little but you can still see people walking with their umbrellas. I decided to go back to my accommodation and sleep.

phuket krabi itinerary
Infamous Bangla Walking Street in Patong.

Enjoy the evening at Bangla Walking Street but be prepared not to be shocked by the activities offered to you on the streets. There are tons of bars bombarding their amplifiers that make the entire street a dance floor. If you feel hungry, restaurants and alleys filled with local eateries are everywhere.

DAY 2 – 3 Khai Islands

You can start your island hopping experience in Phuket slowly but surely by availing a half-day trip to the 3 Khai Islands. Three major islands, Khai Nai, Khai Nui, and Khai Nok comprise the island hopping tour.

phuket krabi itinerary khai islands
Snorkeling near Khai Nui Island.
phuket krabi itinerary khai nok
Khai Nok Island.

Everyone gets onboard a speedboat that will doze you to the islands. What’s great about Phuket island hopping activities is that unlimited refreshments are available onboard. Two of the small islands, Khai Nai, have sandbars perfect for some sunbathing and clear waters best for swimming. Khai Nui, usually the second stop of the tour, is a reef island making it a great stop for an snorkeling activity.


Klook.com



Klook.com

DAY 3 – James Bond Island and Phang Nga Bay

Want to see the famous island where a James Bond movie filmed some of its scenes? The James Bond island tour will first bring you to Hong Island to kayak inside a lagoon and go under its water caves. After that, drop by Khao Ping Khan island or famously called the James Bond Island.

phuket krabi itinerary james bond island phang nga bay
James Bond Island in Phang Nga Bay.

Included lunch will be served in Panyee Island, a fishing village inhabited by Muslim people. After the sumptuous lunch, check out the island’s floating football field. Last stop of the day is Naka Noi island to relax on the beach before heading back to Phuket.

phuket krabi itinerary phuket indy night market
End the day with a visit to Phuket Indy Market for food options and souvenir shopping.

DAY 4 – Phuket Old Town/Koh Phi Phi

Phuket Old Town is a different world compared to the chaotic Patong Beach. The tiny town is very charming that walking its alleys is a great morning activity. Interesting places to drop by during your walk are

phuket krabi itinerary bus to phuket old town
Local bus from Patong Beach to Phuket Old Town.
phuket krabi itinerary the memory at on on hotel the beach
The Memory at On On Hotel, in Phuket Old Town, featured on the movie The Beach.

Around noon, make your way to – port to take a ferry bound to Koh Phi Phi Island. After settling in your hostel, marvel at the karst mountains that surround the island and the clear waters crashing on Koh Phi Phi’s powdered beaches. In the afternoon, take a walk to Koh Phi Phi viewpoint and join a massive crowd for sunset viewing.

phuket krabi itinerary phuket to koh phi phi ferry
Ferries bound to Koh Phi Phi Island from Phuket.
phuket krabi itinerary koh phi phi viewpoint sunset
Koh Phi Phi Viewpoint during sunset.

In the evening, join the pack of travelers loitering around Koh Phi Phi’s drinking alley. Buckets with an assortment of alcohol drinks are displayed on shop-stalls up for grab. At the famous Reggae Bar, a professional Thai boxing game happens around 8 or 9 PM.

phuket krabi itinerary reggae bar koh phi phi
The infamous Reggae Bar in Koh Phi Phi Island.

DAY 5 – Maya Bay and Koh Phi Phi Tour

Most famous spot in Koh Phi Phi is Maya Bay, the location of Leonardo de Caprio’s The Beach. Travelers from Phuket and Krabi even do a day tour to visit the beach. With its popularity, the strip of beach facing Maya Bay is always filled with tourists. If you have the courage to brave the way going to the beach and joining a massive crowd, then it’s a good thing for you. UPDATE: Maya Bay is closed for tourists from June 1 to September 30 to allow the natural attraction to take a break.

phuket krabi itinerary koh phi phi beach
Strip of beach in Koh Phi Phi Island.

In addition to Maya Bay are other destinations included on the island hopping activity like the monkey beach, some snorkeling activity, sunset viewing by the bay, and plankton watching around 7 in the evening.

phuket krabi itinerary maya bay sunset
Sunset in Maya Bay.

DAY 6 – Phi Phi Island to Krabi/Thalene Bay Kayaking

To save you time and money, book a ferry bound to Krabi instead of going back to Phuket. Travel time is about an hour and a half with fare at THB300 that includes a drop-off to your hostel anywhere in Krabi. Take the entire time to rest and enjoy the slow-moving town. If by chance you stayed in Ao Nang area, Lion and Shark is a great place for healthy breakfast meals and also a nice spot to just plug-in to your music.

phuket krabi itinerary lions and sharks
Lions and sharks’ yogurt with fruits.

In the afternoon, sign-up for a Sunset Kayaking Tour in Thalene Bay. Thalene Bay has one of the most impeccable mangrove forests in Thailand. Tourists are led to the bay, on kayaks, and then directed to enter canyons, sea caves, and along mangrove forests. Pop-in Hostel’s tour ends with a can of cold Chang beer while enjoying a remarkable sunset. Some tour agencies do the activity early in the morning.


Klook.com



Klook.com

DAY 7 – Krabi 4 Islands

Have you heard about the chicken island in Krabi? Not that there are tons of chickens on the island but because of the limestone formations in the island that look like, yes, chicken. If you’re interested in the tour, avail a Krabi 4 Islands island hopping activity.

phuket krabi itinerary koh poda
Great view in Koh Poda.

Islands included in the tour are Koh Poda, for its turquoise waters and a tall rock from a distant. Part of the tour is two small islands, Koh Mor and Koh Tub, connected by a sandbar during low tide. Before going back to Krabi, the boat will take a cruise near Koh Gai, or the Chicken Island, for everyone to marvel at the iconic island in Krabi.

phuket krabi itinerary chicken island
Chicken Island in Krabi.

DAY 8 – Koh Hong/Tiger Temple

If Phuket is more of speedboat tours because of the distances of the islands, island hopping in Krabi is more exciting on long tail boat tours. Avail another island hopping activity for Koh Hong, a four-island archipelago and part of the National Marine Park. The tour includes a snorkeling activity, visit several islands and coves, and ending at the long stretch of powdery beaches of Koh Hong.

phuket krabi itinerary koh hong
Nice sandy beach in Koh Hong.

My arrival back at my hostel was in time for an afternoon visit to Tiger Temple, the highest temple in Krabi that could be accessed via 1260 steps. Challenge yourself and reach the temple’s summit.

phuket krabi itinerary tiger temple
Massive Buddha in Tiger Temple.

DAY 9 – Departure

Nine days is enough to explore Phuket and Krabi. But take note that Southern Thailand still has tons of island destinations to offer that will surely encourage you to book another flight back to the destination even on your departure. You can take an airport transfer to catch your flight or book a bus to Bangkok to explore more of Thailand’s history, culture, and food.

DIY Itinerary and Travel Guide: 4D3N Bangkok for First Timers

WHERE TO STAY

Similar to Bangkok and any part of Thailand, backpacker hostels are readily available to accommodate budget travelers and backpackers. On my stay on Phuket, I’ve tried staying for few nights at Lub D Patong Beach and Fulfill Hostel. On the other hand, I stayed in Pop-in Hostel in Ao Nang, and in its sister-hostel Pak-up Hostel in Krabi Town.

phuket krabi itinerary where to stay in phuket
Cool Lub D Hostel in Patong.
phuket krabi itinerary where to stay in krabi
Pak-up Hostel in Krabi Town.

If you have spare money and want to enjoy luxuries on hotels and villas, use the following accommodation search box to find the best hotels in Phuket and Krabi for you.

SAMPLE EXPENSES

DAY 1
Phuket Airport to Patong    180
Lunch			    80
Dinner			    80
Lubd Patong 3 Nights	    960
DAY 2
3 Khai Island Tour	    750
Lunch			    80
Chai Iced Tea		    20
Dinner			    100
DAY 3
James Bond Island Tour	    1450
*Lunch included on the tour
Dinner		            120
Day 4
Lunch			    80
Ferry to Koh Phi Phi	    300
Koh Phi Phi Envi Fee	    20
Viewpoint entrance	    30
Dinner			    75
Chao Koh Dorm 2 Nights	    450
Day 5
Maya Bay Island Tour	    500
Lunch		            70
Dinner			    90
Day 6
Ferry Koh Phi Phi to Krabi  300
Lunch			    80
Lions and Sharks Yoghurt    100
Sunset Kayaking		    450
Dinner			    60
Pop-in Hostel 3 Nights	    675
DAY 7
Krabi 4 Islands Tour	    460
*Lunch included on the tour
National Park Fees	    400
Dinner			    88	
DAY 8
Koh Hong Island Tour	    580
*Lunch included on the tour
National Park Fees	    400
Tiger Temple Tour	    150
Dinner			    75
DAY 9
Bus Krabi to Bangkok	    650
GRAND TOTAL        THB9903 (~USD310)

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