Krabi eco-trips - adventure for the whole family

Lots of Krabi’s nature spots remain preserved

Lots of Krabi’s nature spots remain preserved

On your trip to Krabi province in southern Thailand, if the usual holiday excursions or activities don’t float your boat then you might want to consider getting off the beaten track and away from the popular tourist traps while still basking in the region’s greatest asset, its natural beauty.

Krabi is blessed with stunning scenery and a rich eco-system that supports a wide range of flora and fauna. There is no better way to experience and appreciate these characteristics than by taking an exciting eco-trip with a knowledgeable local tour operator. Trips can be as short as a half-day or as long as several days with all tours guaranteeing you the opportunity of witnessing sights unavailable to tourists on regular excursions.

The Khao Nor Chu Chi National Park is a common destination to visit on eco-tours in Krabi and is one of the province’s most picturesque and visually interesting nature spots. Trip-goers to the park are promised encounters with hot springs, freshwater pools, caves and waterfalls as well as a wide variety of indigenous animal species.

Especially interesting are the large number of tropical birds which inhabit the park, among which are species such as the Asian paradise-flycatcher, fulvous-chested flycatcher, blue-eared kingfisher, chestnut-bellied malkoha, scarlet-rumped trogon and black-yellow broadbill.

Similarly scenic and a regular listing on eco-tour itineraries is the Khao Sok National Park. Here visitors can climb aloft an elephant and enjoy trekking through the jungle undergrowth, taking in all manner of fascinating wildlife sights along the way. The park’s collection of bird specimens is similarly diverse, as is its creepy crawly population, which is best appreciated from the safety of an elephant’s back. Later in the day, there are usually opportunities to try your hand at canoeing along the Khao Sok river, an experience offering both thrills and visual treats.

Khao Sok can be enjoyed on a daytrip or over a couple of days with an overnight stop. The latter option offers you a far greater opportunity to see the park’s wildlife as well as the fun of sleeping under canvas. The experience is safe, with only the worry of the odd irritating mosquito bite to contend with. Bring plenty of bug spray and you’ll be fine.

There is a great jungle-feel to Krabi

There is a great jungle-feel to Krabi

If you are prepared to travel a little further, then you can enjoy an eco-trip that takes in the delights of neighbouring Phang Nga province, another highly scenic destination. Despite considerable commercial development, Phang Nga has plenty of untouched areas where the presiding influences are natural ones.

Trip-goers can enjoy guided treks through rich green forest areas where water buffaloes bathe in natural pools, birds sing in the trees and lizards and insects scurry about their business. There are chances to enjoy elephant riding and unspoilt river sights from the perfect vantage points afforded by a bamboo raft.

There are some other natural beauty spots that haven’t yet been trampled under tourist foot. Tha Pom is a mangrove with freshwater spring stream, preserved from human destruction by a handy boardwalk which allows us all to see and experience this symbiotic eco-system without destroying it. Following the signs from the main Krabi to Pha Nga road, you wind your way through some aewsome karst topography, but pay attention to roadsigns, this one is tricky to get to. More familiar but my no means quiet is the stunning glades and cascading aqua coloured pools of Than Bokkharani National Park just off the main highway to Pha Nga, about 50kms from Krabi. It might be a bit crowded with frolicking locals but that doesn’t detract from its beauty.

While eco-tours are generally suitable for all members of the family, some physically demanding activities may be involved. If you plan to bring young ones or those who are physically challenged on the trip, it’s wise to enquire what your intended tour entails. Be sure to pack appropriate clothing, plenty of mosquito repellant and a keen sense of adventure and your trip is sure to be a blast.

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