Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Full Day Krabi Tour with Aonang Safari - Hot Spring Waterfall, Emerald Pool and Tiger Cave Temple @ Krabi [Thailand] #daytourinkrabi

My first visit to Krabi was solely on island hopping and for this second visit, i was adamant to sign up for the full day land tour to explore mainland Krabi

We approached the friendly looking Ms Neeny from Krabi Artemis Travel on Day Two and managed to negotiate for a good deal to check out Hot Spring Waterfall, Emerald Pool and Tiger Cave Temple with Aonang Safari, at just 800 baht per person. Note: always confirm if the price you pay includes entrance and / or national park fees.  

Boarding the shuttle van at 8.32 am on Day Three. Before its arrival, we were hoping that it wouldn't be the lorry that picked us up for our 4-island tour the day before. 

Strangely, we had to change van about 10 minutes later. Anyway, we had to fill up our names and details for insurance purpose, in case the unfortunate happens.

On the road and stopped by a petrol kiosk to top up petrol. I took this opportunity to purchase some snacks from the convenience store; our common buy is Pocky Strawberry from Glico! 

After almost two hours on the road, we finally reached our first stop; Hot Spring Waterfall. See the difference in car plate number. 

While Hot Spring Waterfall had its charm, it was a bit too cramped for us and, honestly, wasn't much of a waterfall at just five meters high. Visually, it looked even shorter as you can attest from above. Alex and i eventually chose to spend out time at the purpose built pool with pumped in hot spring water. 

Touching the leaves of Mimosa, also known as shameplant, was an irresistible activity when we were kids. Turned out Alex has yet to reach maturity as he was extremely excited to see the leaves folding up! 

11.40 am -  i thought this would be about the right time for lunch at Ruen Morakot restaurant even though my breakfast was just about four hours ago. 

As my mother would say, don't swim on a full stomach. Guess it could be the same in Thailand as the guide was sharing the map with directions to our next stop, Emerald Pool, and the sister Blue Pool. Her instruction was to come back to the restaurant before 1.30 pm for our lunch. 

Two ways to get Emerald Pool and the shorter one, at 800-meter, didn't have much to see; we confirmed as we took that route on our way back. Therefore, we proceeded with the 1,400-meter scenic track instead.

Here's Emerald Pool and boy did we have a blast swimming in the mineral-rich water. With so many trees, i would have expected the pool to be filled with dead leaves but it wasn't the case. For more photos, visit the detailed post here. p.s. we didn't attempt blue pool due to insufficient time.

Back to Ruen Morakot restaurant for lunch! 

Balanced and decent Thai cuisine meal with chicken tom yum, fried chicken with cashew nuts, stir fried mixed vegetables, omelette, fruits, rice and mineral water. 

If you are required to get lunch on your own, you may consider Ruen Morakot restaurant as their set lunches are pretty reasonably priced at between 150 baht to 200 baht per person; i believe you would need to have a minimum number of diners to purchase the set. Ours appeared to be the 150 baht set. 

The restaurant was located super near the main entrance of Emerald Pool and the stream next to it actually came from the Emerald Pool itself.

Our last destination would be almost an hour drive away! 

Tiger Cave Temple (Wat Tham Suea) - our last stop for the day. An interesting temple that was named due to a cave found to be the humble abode of a tiger. A sad end for the tiger though as humans decided to convert it into a temple back in 1975. 

I was more intrigued with the climb of 1,237 steps to reach the top of the 278-meter high hill within the temple. It was said to be torturing and i agree after failing to reach the summit! :( You may read about my near-death ordeal here.

Good that i gave up the climb as it started drizzling shortly after i came down.

Should i still be up on the hill, i guarantee you both Alex and I would be drenched as we don't have the habit of bringing our umbrellas! I think i do have one raincoat there kept in my bag at all times though. 

I thought Tiger Cave Temple would be our last stop but we had a somewhat little bonus at the end. A few of our travel mates had signed up for elephant trekking and we had to wait there for a separate ride back to our hotel. 

Using elephants to earn tourist dollars is quite the norm in Thailand and even though i don't agree with the way the world's largest land animal is treated, it's a cultural norm for which i have no say in. What i can do as a tourist in a foreign country is not to partake in the activity and contribute to their popularity. 

Transferred to yet another vehicle; an open air one! I didn't complain as i just wanted to get back to BlueSotel Krabi AoNang Beach and have a nice shower! It helped that the weather wasn't too hot with the rain earlier and the distance back to our hotel was just about 15-20 minutes away.

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Tours Offered by Aonang Safari
Please refer to the brochure as above. Our tour was S3 and listed price was 1,700 baht per adult; we bargained and managed to secure it at 800 baht. 

Click here for the itinerary 

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