Beautiful Railay Beach in Thailand
Railay Beach, located on the stunning Krabi Peninsula in Thailand, is often hailed as one of the most beautiful beach destinations in the world. What sets Railay apart is its unique geographical location – it's only accessible by boat. This isolation has helped preserve its natural beauty and tranquility, making it a must-visit for travelers seeking an idyllic tropical paradise. In this travel guide, we'll explore how to get to Railay Beach and some of the highlights that make it a top destination for beach lovers.
The Fora Difference
Book with Kelly to access exclusive perks and experiences on your trip.
Free upgrades, spa credits and more—we got you
Customized travel planning for your style
Expert advice from people who’ve actually been there
Where to stay in Thailand
Railay Bay Resort & Spa, Krabi
Nestled amidst the breathtaking natural beauty of Krabi, Railay Bay Resort & Spa offers a true tropical paradise experience. Relax in luxurious accommodations, unwind at the spa, and soak up the stunning views of pristine beaches and towering limestone cliffs. Discover a perfect blend of serenity, adventure, and indulgence at this exquisite resort.
Set along Krabi's Andaman Coast, this luxury beachfront resort is surrounded by lush gardens, making for an idyllic nature escape.
$100 hotel / resort credit.
Upgrade to next room category, based upon availability at check-in.
Guaranteed 2pm late check-out.
Railay Village Resort
Luxurious beachfront property overlooking the Andaman Sea with upscale rooms and villas.
Unlock perks by contacting Kelly to book your trip.
Things to do in Thailand
Railay Beach Highlights:
Railay Beach is renowned for its pristine, white-sand beaches, framed by dramatic limestone formations. Some of the must-visit beaches include:
Railay West: Perfect for sunset views, swimming, and beachfront dining.
Phra Nang Beach: Home to the famous Phra Nang Cave Beach with its turquoise waters, and cave filled with offerings to the spirit of the drowned princess.
Tonsai Beach: A relaxed and scenic spot popular with rock climbers.
The limestone cliffs that encase Railay are a climber's paradise. Novices and experts alike can enjoy rock climbing in this stunning setting. You can find climbing schools and equipment rental shops on Tonsai Beach.
Kayaking and Island Hopping:
Rent a kayak to explore the hidden lagoons and caves of Phang Nga Bay or embark on an island-hopping adventure to nearby islands like Poda Island and Chicken Island for snorkeling and more beach exploration.
For a break from the beach, explore the lush interior of Railay. There are various nature trails that lead to viewpoints, caves and hidden pools. The Railay Viewpoint hike offers breathtaking panoramas of the entire peninsula.
While Railay is predominantly known for its natural beauty, it does have a vibrant nightlife scene. Enjoy beachfront bars, fire shows and reggae music in the evening.
Sample delicious Thai cuisine in the numerous beachfront restaurants and eateries. Don't miss out on fresh seafood, tropical fruits and traditional dishes.
Accommodation options range from budget-friendly hostels to luxurious resorts. Many places offer sea-view bungalows or rooms nestled among the cliffs.
Places to eat & drink in Thailand
The Last Bar is famous for its laid-back atmosphere and beachside location. It's a great spot to enjoy both breakfast and evening drinks. Try their seafood dishes and don't miss the stunning sunset views.
This restaurant offers a diverse menu with fresh seafood and authentic Thai flavors. The ambiance is cozy and relaxed. For breakfast, try their traditional Thai breakfast options for a unique start to your day.
A popular choice for both locals and tourists, Railay Family Restaurant is known for its friendly staff and affordable prices. The seafood dishes are highly recommended. For breakfast, try their fresh fruit smoothies and omelets.
Located near the mangrove forest, this restaurant provides a serene atmosphere. It's an excellent place to enjoy a quiet breakfast. Try their traditional Thai soups and curries and consider dining in the evening when the mangroves are beautifully lit.
Local Thai Food Stall (near Railay East)
For a more local experience, explore the small food stalls near Railay East. These stalls often serve delicious and affordable Thai dishes. Grab a quick breakfast here and interact with the friendly locals.
Situated near the entrance to Phra Nang Cave Beach, Diamond Cave Restaurant is known for its seafood dishes and friendly service. It's a great place to relax after exploring the nearby Diamond Cave. Try their grilled fish and enjoy the rustic ambiance.
Dusk Restaurant offers a diverse menu with a mix of Thai and international flavors. The restaurant's location provides a fantastic view of the sunset, making it an ideal spot for a romantic dinner. Don't miss their signature cocktails and innovative fusion dishes.
Located on Railay West Beach, Bamboo Bar & Restaurant is a popular hangout spot. It's known for its lively atmosphere, live music, and beachfront setting. Try their seafood BBQ, and if you're there in the evening, enjoy the fire shows that often take place on the beach nearby.
Need to Know
Getting to Railay Beach - remember, only accessable by boat!
1. Arriving in Krabi: To reach Railay Beach, you'll first need to get to the town of Krabi, which serves as a gateway to the region. Krabi can be reached by: Flying into Krabi International Airport from major cities in Thailand and neighboring countries. Taking a bus from Bangkok or other nearby cities.
2. Boat Transfer to Railay: From Krabi, you can't just drive to Railay Beach because it's surrounded by limestone cliffs and the Andaman Sea. You'll need to take a boat. There are two main options: A Long-tail boat; these traditional Thai wooden boats depart from Ao Nang and Noppharat Thara Beach. The journey takes about 15-20 minutes, providing fantastic views of the limestone karsts along the way. Or you can travel on Ferries: Ferries are a more stable and comfortable option, departing from Ao Nang and Krabi Town. The ride is slightly longer, but you can enjoy a more relaxed journey.
3. Awe-inspiring Arrival: As you approach Railay Beach, the towering limestone cliffs that encircle the peninsula come into view. The feeling of arriving at this secluded paradise by boat is truly unique and awe-inspiring. While the journey to Railay Beach requires a boat ride, it's an adventure that sets the stage for an unforgettable vacation in one of the world's most beautiful beach destinations. Whether you're here for the beaches, adventure, or relaxation, Railay Beach has something to offer every traveler. Immerse yourself in the natural beauty, outdoor activities, and vibrant culture that make this place a tropical paradise like no other.
For more travel tips, check out Fora Advisor Dolapo Owolabi's guide, Guide to a Beach Vacation on the Thai Islands
Get in touch with Kelly
Did you like this guide? Reach out to customize and book your own experience. Or, just to chat about travel in general.
You can normally expect a response from Kelly within a business day or so. You'll also be subscribed to our travel newsletter (you can unsubscribe at any time).
This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Thailand.