Thailand isn’t just about the beaches and the parties. There are a few islands around Krabi, in the south of Thailand, that are renowned for its adventurous sports. It’s a good way to try something different and see something from another perspective.
The next day we headed to Railay beach from Ao Nang where we were staying. We met a fellow friend on the way, Andreas from Germany and off we went to the other side of the island, where you can rock climb to the top to see a stunning viewpoint over both bays.
Next thing you know all three of us just stood there gaping at a steep cliff, jagged rocks and a few ropes tied around the trunks of some tree. We are looking at each other then back at the rocks then at the sign. This is some crazy rock climbing, there isn’t a guide to help you and this isn’t a tour. You’re on your own from the start to finish.
The warning sign told us not to basejump at the top and not to climb the cliff after it had been raining. I’m 99% sure it wasn’t safe even in normal conditions.
Anyways, off we went…. holding on for our life onto slippery rope.
‘Oh my buddha!’ as the Thai’s would say. I’m glad I was wearing my trainers to get some firm footing and Andrew for having rock climbed in the past and helping us with where to put our feet. The first part isn’t so bad as you just have to climb up. It’s steep and scary but there’s no going back once you’ve started.
After pushing past a few personal barriers you eventually make it to the top. The view is amazing – you can see west Railay beach and east Railay beach. It looks like a picture out of a brochure – the crystal clear waters separated by the lush coconut trees and clear sand.
The sweat and pain was definitely worth it!
After the viewpoint there is a lagoon you can trek to. Again no one tells you how hazardous it is until you get there and the sign says ’10 meters’ but it’s steer drop. So next thing I know is I’m abseiling down this cliff. You can smell the sweat on the rope as you are dangling down from mid air (one of the disadvantages of being short). Then there is another 2 drops before you reach the lagoon and go for a swim to cool off.
I’ve never sweat so much in my life and at one point my legs were shaking and turning into jelly. It’s totally worth it though! Some adventure we had that day.
If you are planning on going I would recommend:
- bringing plenty of water and some rehydration sachets. It’s going to be hot and sweaty guaranteed – if it’s not from the heat it’s from the adrenaline.
- bring some food. It might take a while to climb to the top and then after some time chilling and resting you will have to climb back down. There are no facilities at the top.
- bring a first aid kit. Saline, cotton pads, tape, guaze and plasters just in case anything happens to you or to someone else.
- wear sensible shoes! I saw someone who came down in their bare feet. You don’t have eyes on the back of your head when you abseil down and there are sharp rocks everywhere so wear something sensible with good grip.
- don’t wear white clothing!! It will just get ruined or maybe we wanted an excuse to do some shopping?
Once in a lifetime adventure! Go out there and join a tour or do it yourself and just follow the path. Beginners, novice and the experienced all come to the islands to climb the beautiful limestone cliffs in the picturesque scenery.