After 28 grueling hours since I left my home in Wales, I finally made it to Krabi – and it was well worth the wait.
As with any new adventure, it didn’t all go to plan, but the mishap actually became a positive.
When leaving Phuket airport, I enquired at the tourist information centre about how I get to Krabi. She recommended I take a taxi to the bus terminal, then a bus on to Krabi. She kindly wrote instructions for the taxi driver in Thai on paper for me.
So, out I go, to the place where you order the taxis and it’s chaos. There are so many people with their luggage, also clueless about the process or where they need to be, but I order a taxi at the desk and the lady tells me that it will drop me off at the metro and I just need to cross the road to the bus terminal.
I get piled into this minibus and off we go, travelling for over half an hour before we stop outside a travel agent. This is not a metro I think to myself.
We are instructed to inform a lady inside of our hotel location, but when I say I need the bus terminal to get a bus to Krabi, she gives me this look of concern and glances at her watch. I’ve been going in the wrong way!
She advises me to go to the main road to find a taxi. So I strap on my grossly overweight backpack (why did I pack so much??) along with my front-pack and head towards the Tesco.
Thankfully there’s a taxi sign outside, with an older gentleman laying on the bench next to it. Seems legit. He gives me a big toothy grin and asks “taxi?”, “yes!” I reply.
He speaks next to no English at all, so we communicate in hand gestures. “BIG bus. Krabi ” I say as I raise my hands above my head. I then realise I still have the Thai taxi instructions given to me at the airport, so show him and he seems to understand.
In the taxi, I’m wondering if he really does understand, but I have faith in the guy. After a while, he points to a bus which had just left a stop and was in front of us and says “number one. Krabi” – I just missed it!!
What does this legend of a driver do? He speeds up, overtakes the bus and pulls over. Quickly getting out, we flapped our arms at the bus and it pulls to the side of the road to let me on. Hallelujah!!
Even better, this bus is a no-frills bus used by locals. It cost me £3 to travel 2 and a half hours.
Speaking to what could have easily been the only person on the bus that spoke English, I find out that it would have taken me longer had I gone to the bus terminal as I had originally planned as it’s so far away. My mishap was actually a shortcut!
Where the bus drops you off in Krabi, you will be approached by people offering you a taxi. Kindly decline and walk further down the road, there should be a common songthaew nearby which you can jump on the back of (or wait for the next one, they are frequent). The cost was around 160 baht to get to Ao Nang Beach.
Top Tips for Travelling Around Phuket and Krabi:
1. The big pink buses are crazy cheap! The only downside is there is no toilet on-board
2. You can hail a bus anywhere. They will stop for you.
3. Don’t panic if you’re somewhere you didn’t plan to be, it could be a blessing in disguise!