Getty Images


Krabi’s fairytale limestone formations come to a dramatic climax at Railay (also spelt Rai Leh), the ultimate Andaman gym for rock-climbing fanatics. Monkeys frolic alongside climbers on the gorgeous crags, while down below some of the prettiest beaches in all Thailand are backed by proper jungle.

Accessible only by boat, but just a 15-minute ride from Ao Nang, the busiest parts of Railay are sandwiched between the scrappy, not good for swimming, beach of Hat Railay East and the high-end resorts and beautiful white sand of Hat Railay West and Hat Tham Phra Nang.

Railay is more crowded than it once was and sees many day trippers. Thankfully, though, it remains much less-developed than Ko Phi-Phi and if you head away from Hat Railay West and Hat Railay East the resorts disappear and the atmosphere is one of delightfully laid-back Thai-Rasta bliss.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Railay.