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The ultimate neat guide to climbing Mount Kilimanjaro (or any mountain as a matter of fact).

Friday, March 25, 2016 Hiking and Walking by admin

When my husband told me he would love to climb Mount Kilimanjaro I was skeptical at first.

Don’t get me wrong:

I am an ultimate activity fan and I don’t shy away from tents, camping or absence of shower.

Read more

Climbing in Chiang Mai: Crazy Horse Mountain and many more

Friday, January 22, 2016 Uncategorised by admin

People visit Thailand for numerous different reasons: the food, the culture, the beaches, the mountains, the diversity. Others visit Thailand for the rocks. Rock climbing in Thailand has been a growing tourist appeal over the past few decades. Most climbers head south to Krabi or Railay Beach for massive limestone cliffs overhanging white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. Then there are the other climbers who head north to Chiang Mai for a quieter, cooler climbing experience.

Hidden amongst the bamboo forests and rice paddies lies a collection of cliffs waiting to be scaled. Climbing in Chiang Mai has only been a recent discovery, thanks to a small group of dedicated climbers. The Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures Co. (CMRCA) was founded in October 2002 and has since been devoted to building the climbing community in Chiang Mai.

The Chiang Mai rock climbing movement started with The Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures Co. (CMRCA). The firm is devoted to building the climbing community in Chiang Mai. With the help of the climbing community, the cliffs in Chiang Mai became protected. Moreover, the climbers often help the locals and introduce foreigners to the Thai traditions and culture. They collaborate with local companies such as the truck drivers and small restaurants. Instead of having climbers figure out their own means of transportation to Crazy Horse Buttress aka Crazy Horse Mountain, they offer a lift system which helps provide an income for locals.

People who live and work in the Chiang Mai mountains, want to preserve them for as long as they can. When the community started noticing all of the plastic water bottles left around Crazy Horse Mountain from climbers The Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures Co. decided it was time for a change. They have installed free refill water stations around the climbing walls, hence in some places you can get a free refill when you climb.

Climbing Spots and Rocks in Chiang Mai

All in all, there are several locations where you can do outdoor climbing in Chiang Mai, Crazy Horse Mountain is the most popular one, while Chiang Dao is the most remote and authentic one. Each of them has its own benefits and challenges.

Crazy Horse Buttress

A scenic drive twenty-five miles north of Chiang Mai will take you to Mae On Valley, home of the rock climbing in Chiang Mai. Crazy Horse Mountain, originally called Crazy Hot, is a collection of rocks with one of the largest boulders resembling a horse, hence the name.

Karisak Boonthip laid the first routes on Crazy Horse Mountain back in 1998. Shortly after, Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures took over the development and upkeep turning the handful of routes into over two hundred different climbs.

The area surrounding the mountain has also grown, now providing shady bamboo huts and restaurants as well as a drinkable water system. Installed by The Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures Co. the mountain has a free water refill system, which helps you find the nearest refill location using a phone app. The app’s name is REFILL and it is free to download. Your phone pinpoints your location by using the GPS system and the app then shows you all of the refill water stations in your area.

The difficulty of the climbs range from beginner to advanced with each route providing a different experience.Crazy Horse Buttress is comprised of 15 or so cliffs with heights ranging from fifteen to ninety meters tall. The cliffs offer a little bit of everything for climbers such from technical slabs to jamming cracks and multi-pitch roof adventures.

There is a restaurant at the base of the mountain that is open for daily lunches at a low price.

Aircon Wall

A short walk from the Crazy Horse Buttress will lead you to Aircon Wall. This has become a popular spot to climb during the peak hours of sunlight as it is close to the mouth of a cave which provides shade and a nice breeze.

Most of the climbs here are short and steep with some sharp rocks in places. Most of the times you can do Aircon Wall together with Crazy Horse Buttress.

Archway North and South

As the name suggest, there is an archway to the far right of Crazy Horse Buttress. A short four-meter climb into the archway leads to routes on both the right and left side. The right-hand side is the Archway South and the left-hand side is the Archway North. The archway provides protection from the elements allowing guests a chance to climb in the rain or sun. It is also a nice place for lunch or an afternoon nap.

The Furnace

The furnace provides quite the mountain climbing adventure. A short walk from the parking lot, the furnace faces south and thus the sunshine bombards the wall all day long. Despite the heat, the climb is consistent and fun as well as a challenge for climbers.

The Ant Hill

The Ant Hill is a collection of six routes on a thirty-meter overhanging limestone cliff. The routes actually fall in a monk’s backyard giving the space an even more quiet and peaceful atmosphere. There are caves surrounding the base of the routes providing a cool breeze. There are ants in the area so if climbing with food it is best to keep it hidden and packed away. Bees are also present along the wall so it’s smartest to stay out of their way.

Anxiety State Crisis Cave

The Anxiety State Crisis Cave is a very different type of climb. Also known as Tham Wiung Fah, the massive cavern excites the adventurous types looking to try something new. Those brave enough to try this crazy rock climbing adventure must have a bit of experience and the proper equipment.

Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure originally explored the cave back in January 2009. They returned in April of the same year on a thirty-three-hour trip to reach the deepest part of the cave at more than two-hundred and fifty meters.

In April 2015, they began their first guided tours of the cave. One can access the cave from an entrance near the Air Con wall. The route is just inside the cave and offers insane exposure. You can also climb up and enter from the top descending 70 meters into the cave. Entering from the mouth of the cave is a steep descent along the left-hand side. There are several different chambers and passages in the cave that carry you over slick boulders. At some places, rock climbers must scramble on hands and knees through the dark crevices of the cave. You will need helmets and lights for this adventure.

Chiang Dao

Heading even further north of Chiang Mai sits the Chiang Dao National Park. Inside the national park is Doi Chiang Dao, one of the highest peaks of Daen Lao Range on the Thai side. The Chiang Dao National park is popular for its secluded and beautiful summit and for bird watching. It is one of the most visited spots in Thailand for bird watching with over three hundred different species of birds. There are also caves and hot springs nearby.

Chiang Mai mountain tour

Doi Chiang Dao is a stunning limestone mountain that was discovered by Mountain Design in July 2007. The Chiang Dao area has a total of 25 routes. They provide climbs for beginners starting out as well as intermediate and advanced climbers.

Climbing Training Centers and Tour Organizers

Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure Co.

Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure Co. has capitalised on the growing rock climbing sport in northern Thailand. One of the originators, Josh Morris, was living in Chiang Mai in 2001 as a local climber. He travelled to the United States with his partner Kat to climb, explore and train. It was shortly after their trip that they decided to open a climbing company in Chiang Mai.

They built up Crazy Horse and are delighted to see it grow from a few simple routes to over one hundred. The staff at Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure was feeling a little down when they weren’t able to climb as often due to booming business. They decided to build a bouldering wall at their office to solve that problem. The Chiang Mai Climbing Club was created in April 2004.

The bouldering wall is twenty-four meters fun and ever changing routes for beginners to learn on and for advanced climbers to practice their skills on. The gym is a safe and comfortable place for the staff and visitors to have fun and explore the world of climbing.

They offer one-day passes or month long memberships for those staying around a little longer. Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure Co. are the only climbing company in Chiang Mai that offers guided climbs and gear for purchase or for rent. The other unique thing that they offer at the climbing club is the chance to find a climbing partner. There is a bulletin board with postings from people passing through the area searching for someone to climb with.

Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure is dedicated not only to providing a safe and fun time for guests but also to help their team to grow and develop. The staff at Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure is comprised of twenty or so rock climbing advocates who live and breathe climbing. Most of them are Thai natives who first came to Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure with little to no knowledge of rock climbing.

John Morris has strived to provide the locals with a chance to better themselves by encouraging them to further their education in the climbing world. Certifications such as Wilderness Advanced First Aid from the Wilderness Medical Associates place John’s staff a notch above the rest. They are knowledgeable and excited to share what they know with visitors of Chiang Mai.

One very special person in their family has been around since the very beginning. He is fondly called Uncle and has been a presence at Crazy Horse Buttress through it all. Loong Nan is a sixty-something-year-old Thai man who looks after Crazy Horse as if it was his baby. He is found working to repair bamboo huts near the base of the mountain or clearing the paths of debris. There is never a day that goes by that he is not there looking after things.

They also host a yearly Crag Clean Up Day in which the staff and volunteers spend the day in the mountains helping to maintain the trails, pick up trash and build belaying stands. After lunch, they spend the afternoon climbing together and enjoying each other’s company. Overall, CMRCA is dedicated to providing a safe, clean and enjoyable climbing experience.

No Gravity Co.

No Gravity Co. is an indoor rock climbing gym located in Chiang Mai. While they do not offer an outdoor route or tour, they do provide an alternative climbing atmosphere. Opened in April 2013, No Gravity allows people a chance to explore climbing and see if it’s right for them.

The gym has routes as high as twelve meters and over 370 square meters of climbing space. The routes vary in difficulty with some going straight up and down. While others have obstacles throw in for an added challenge. They teach you the basics of how to belay and secure your ropes. If you are visiting for a day they provide one-day tickets. However, if you live in the area they offer one, three or six-month long memberships.

There are also different courses provided for top rope and lead climbing. No Gravity is a good place for beginners to learn about safety rules and proper use of equipment. After you are done with the basic skills you can head out to the walls in Chiang Mai.

Koh Samui Waterfalls

Friday, January 22, 2016 Uncategorised by admin

Thailand is one of the most popular tourist destinations around the world. The country is known for its beautiful scenery. The diverse landscape will give you everything from mountains to rainforests to beaches, many of which are available to enjoy on your trip. Many visitors come to Thailand to experience this natural beauty. One of the biggest attractions of Thailand is its waterfalls.

Thailand waterfalls are very unique. There are a lot of waterfalls located around Thailand and offer different experiences when you visit. Some waterfalls are great for viewing purposes only while other waterfalls give you the opportunity to swim in them. You can discover both kinds and much more in Thailand. A destination with the some of the best Thailand waterfalls is Koh Samui.

Koh Samui

Koh Samui is an island located in the Gulf of Thailand. This island is the second largest island in Thailand and has a lot of features that tourists enjoy. The island is a major tourist destination for Thailand, so many of the offerings and activities on Koh Samui are perfect for tourism. The island has many resorts, shopping, and entertainment. Koh Samui’s shores are amazing beaches with views looking out into the gulf with clear waters and white sand. Many people come to Koh Samui for the relaxing beach life. The middle of Koh Samui is a large jungle. This jungle is a great place to explore on Koh Samui to discover the unique nature of the island. The wildlife and plant life is very diverse here. One of the coolest features hidden in the jungles are the Koh Samui waterfalls.

Koh Samui Jungle

The Koh Samui jungle covers a significant portion of the island making it a great place to explore. The jungle is very mountainous, so visitors navigate their way throughout via several methods. Several tours are held for exploring the jungle, and these are often conducted with Jeeps or 4×4 that will wind throughout the jungle and mountains. Another recreational activity includes mountain biking. Hiking is also an option for getting around. Hiking is Koh Samui is one of the best options for getting an up-close experience with everything the jungle has to offer.

where is Koh Samui Jungle

The jungle is home to many attractions of Koh Samui. Hiking the mountainous areas of the jungle will give you some of the best locations for amazing views overlooking Koh Samui. There are several known plateaus throughout the jungle for 360 viewpoints of the island and the Gulf of Thailand. The jungle also holds several religious functions. The Buddhist temple and garden are often visited during many Koh Samui hiking journeys.

The Koh Samui waterfalls are what attracts a lot of people to the jungle. The island has several popular waterfalls, and a lot of visitors enjoy the fact that you can swim in them. Some of the top waterfalls include the Namuang Waterfalls and the Secret Falls.

Namuang Waterfalls

The Namuang Waterfalls consists of two waterfalls, Namuang Waterfall 1 and Namuang Waterfall 2. The Namuang Waterfalls are close by the Nathon Bay of Koh Samui and a short walk inland from this beach. The trails used to reach these falls were developed by the locals before other paved roads were established throughout the jungle.

The Namuang Waterfalls translates in the “Purple Waterfalls.” The rocks that the waterfalls flow down give off a purple tint with the reflection of the water. This is how the falls got their name. The waterfall is considered to be two waterfalls since it has two individual streams that flow into their own respective natural pools. You will reach Namuang Waterfall 1 when you first approach the falls, and as you climb higher, you will run into Namuang Waterfall 2. These waterfalls are great photo opportunities to capture the most well-known waterfalls on Koh Samui.

what is Koh Samui Jungle

The Namuang Waterfalls are often explored while taking a beach break because of its proximity. The water fun is continued at the falls, however. You will come across many travellers, families, and locals enjoying the warm water of the falls. Keep in mind the best times to visit the waterfalls here for the best experience. The wet season is ideal for visiting Namuang Waterfalls because the streams and natural pools will be more full.

There is a variety of things to see and do even while just at the waterfalls. There are several vendors located around the area. You will find many food vendors and can also buy souvenirs of the Namuang Waterfalls. There are also many guided tours for navigating around the waterfalls as well as a nearby Elephant walking tour. The Namuang Safari Park is located in between the two waterfalls which have plenty of family fun entertainment.

Hin Lad Waterfall

The Hin Lad Waterfall is another exciting waterfall that you must see while in Koh Samui. At the beginning of the trail leading up to the waterfall, you will come across the Hin Lad Waterfall Temple. This is an active Buddhist Temple that is open to the public to stop by before the hike up. This is usually crowded during the weekends by locals.

Koh Samui Jungle tour

Part of the pleasure of the Hin Lad Waterfall is reaching it. The waterfall is located in the elevated jungle, so you will be required to hike a short distance. The benefit to the hike is the numerous viewpoints along the way. You will have views over Koh Samui as you walk up. There are also several stalls of food vendors and souvenirs that you will encounter on the way to the falls.

The Hin Lad Waterfall is the second largest waterfall of Koh Samui. This waterfall also flows into small freshwater pools. You’ll surely want to take a swim in these pools after the climb to the falls. The falls are seen best during the wet season when it will be more water flow from the waterfall and into the pools.

Secret Falls

The Koh Samui Secret Falls lives up to its name. The official name of the Secret Falls is the Tang Rua Waterfall, but this is not a familiar name, even to the locals. The Secret Falls got its name because of its location. Reaching these falls takes a bit more navigation and can often be confusing to newcomers to the waterfall. The Secret Falls are located deep in the jungle and within the mountains of Koh Samui. Many routes leading to the waterfall often require both foot and vehicle exploration. This waterfall will surely be worth the trip.

The Secret Falls is the 3rd largest waterfall in Koh Samui. The stream flows into a natural pool, so it’s a great location for swimming. There are several reasons that make the Secret Falls a good choice for a relaxing swim. The falls are a bit more challenging to reach as compared to the other Koh Samui waterfalls, so many tourists opt out of visiting the Secret Falls. This means fewer visitors that are likely to be at the falls, so you have more space to enjoy. The second reason is the surrounding environment of this waterfall. The Secret Falls are within the mountains, so it’s surrounded by cliffs and tall trees which form a canopy overhead, even shielding you from the sun.

Tartain Waterfall

Tartain Waterfall is a waterfall that might have some difficulty with accessibility too but definitely worth the journey once you arrive. This waterfall is located deep in the mountains so it may require some vehicle and hiking skills to navigate the route here. It’s one of the top waterfalls on the island, so there will be plenty of signs directing your way.

The Tartain Waterfall is named after the landowner who discovered the waterfall. The owner proceeded to establish a small park around the waterfall. Much of the area is developed with pavilions, swings, bed, etc. There are also food vendors available here. The park is good for relaxation and taking the time to enjoy the waterfall. The Tartain Waterfall is a large waterfall that flows into a natural pool. This waterfall is also created by a stream, so it’s seen best during the wet season. Many tourists and locals enjoy swimming in the heated water here.

Tar Nim Waterfall

Not all the famous waterfalls on Koh Samui are naturally developed. Tar Nim’s Magic Garden is a common stop for many Koh Samui tours. The magic garden was built as a Buddhist garden and retreat into nature for relaxation. At the entrance to this garden, you will see the Tar Nim Waterfall. This waterfall is man made and now flows into the jungle. Even so, it is recognised as one of the Koh Samui waterfalls. It is small in comparison to the other natural waterfalls found around the island. This waterfall is appreciated more for photos and its contribution to the serene garden atmosphere than for swimming like many others.

Lat Wanorn Waterfall

The Lat Wanorn waterfall is a good waterfall option if you’re looking for a truly unique waterfall to Koh Samui. The waterfall used to be a big attraction on a dedicated eco-tour around Koh Samui. Once the tour route eventually closed and familiarity with this waterfall declined as well. It’s perfect for anyone looking for a private waterfall experience. You have a better chance when you visit Lat Wanorn.

Lat Wanorn differs from the other Koh Samui waterfalls because of how the water flows. It has the same stream characteristics as the other falls, but the water here flows down a flat rock which creates the waterfall effect. There is also a natural pool here for swimming, so it’s the perfect opportunity to take a dip. This waterfall is nearby to a few other waterfalls and even observation decks as you continue along the trail that led here.

Other Koh Samui Waterfalls

Koh Samui has many other waterfalls that each have a different experience to them. This can include the hike to reach the waterfall, the size, or just the surrounding area. The combination of the jungle and mountains of the Koh Samui landscape make it ideal for waterfalls, so there is a range of options all around the island. Some other notable waterfalls include Khun Si, Yhow Yai, Siva Tara, and Wang Sao Thong. Many Koh Samui tours provide the best way to get a look at multiple waterfalls in one trip.

Koh Samui Waterfall Tours

The Koh Samui waterfalls are a must-see for anyone visiting the island, but not all of them are easy to reach. This is especially the case for newcomers to the island. Koh Samui provides many tours that can take you to any waterfall that you wish. You can find many half day tours and whole day tours for the excursion. They typically vary in transportation method, time spent at the waterfall, and how many waterfalls you have time to see.

Many roads have been developed running through the Koh Samui jungle. You can find several tours that will take you on a Jeep or other off-road vehicle through the jungle to reach the falls. These are guided tours that let you sit back to enjoy the ride while enjoying the trip through the brush. The mountains are also great for mountain biking, so these are used during tours as well.

Many tourists take part in elephant trekking tours to the waterfalls organised by elephant shelters throughout the jungle. But we don’t recommend taking one, as elephants are not treated well in these shelters. Moreover, this is a very hard physical exercise for such a big animal, to get up a waterfall through the jungle. If you would like to learn more about the unethical treatment of animals in Thailand and why you should encourage any of them, please read our blog post – https://activityfan.com/thai-elephant-trekking-not-3/.

Explore Koh Samui

Beaches aren’t the only attraction to Koh Samui. There is plenty more to explore about the island if you have time. The Koh Samui jungle is full of opportunities for an exciting experience while on Koh Samui. The Koh Samui waterfalls are one of the perks on the jungle. There are so many waterfalls here that you will surely find an ideal one to enjoy for your taste. Whether that’s large waterfalls, man-made waterfalls, and even secret falls. The Thailand waterfalls at Koh Samui are a gem to the country overall.

Tiger Cave Temple

Friday, January 22, 2016 Uncategorised by admin

Caves offer an amazing sense of adventure for those brave enough to explore them. Caves have served countless purposes throughout their development in history and around the world. Thailand is a country that has an abundance of caves. The great thing about Thailand is that many of these caves are located within national parks and are open for exploration. Thailand caves are no different for the variety of purposes that they’ve held. Many of the caves that you find in Thailand have held religious significance, used for shelter, or homes for animals.what is the Tiger Cave TempleThailand is a great destination for visiting caves because of the flexibility the country offers around them. Thailand caves are natural structures that allow visitors to visit freely. These visits can either be done on your own or with tour guides. Most major caves in Thailand have tour guide services that can provide more context while exploring them.

Caves can be found all around Thailand and have different methods for exploring the best parts of them. Some caves, such as those used for religious purposes, are easily accessible by developed paths leading into the caves. You may also come across sea caves, which are caves that are only accessible by boats.

Wat Tham Sua, or Tiger Cave Temple in Krabi

One region of Thailand that you can find many caves is in Krabi. Krabi is a great place to visit if you want to see the range of caves such as those dedicated to religious purposes or sea caves. One of the most popular caves in Krabi is the Tiger Cave Temple or Wat Tham Sua.

The Tiger Cave Temple is located in a region called Kiriwong Valley. This valley is essentially covered in rainforest and contains many other caves in the region. The Tiger Cave Temple is the main tourist attraction as it is one of the only caves here that is open to the public.

where is the Tiger Cave Temple

Tiger Cave Temple History

Buddhism is the major religion in Thailand, and many caves were established for religious practices. There are many myths and legends surrounding the origin of the Tiger Cave Temple, but it was primarily a Buddhist meditation centre, as it remains today.

Caves were popular for Buddhist practices such as meditation because of their isolation from the outside world. Caves provided a quiet environment for meditation. Temples evolved from strictly meditation use because the caves were perfect for housing and protecting statues and other religious artefacts. Sometimes caves such as these became the residence for one of more monks.

history of Tiger Cave Temple

This is how the Tiger Cave Temple was established. It was discovered by a monk and used for meditation and holding various Buddha statues. During his time in the cave, tigers were discovered inside and roamed freely throughout it. Evidence of this can be seen in the cave today. There are several tiger paw marks on the cave walls and viewing of the cave on the outside, it resembles a tiger’s paw. The name has stuck with the cave ever since. It is now recognised for both its religious significance and former tiger habitat.

Visiting the Tiger Cave Temple

Today, the Tiger Cave Temple is a very popular tourist destination in Krabi. The cave temple is surrounded by jungle which makes it an enjoyable journey to even reach the temple grounds. Many places around Krabi provide tours to this area and allow for time to explore everything that the Tiger Cave Temple has to offer.

The first part of the Tiger Cave Temple is located on the ground level. The temple is situated within a plaza that has several other temples. One notable characteristic of this plaza is the number of wild monkeys. There are many wild monkeys roaming free, and there are several food stalls providing food for either yourself or to feed the monkeys.

The outside of the cave is decorated with large tiger statues, and the temple is designed in traditional Thai architecture. The interior of the cave is also open for sightseeing. The cave is named after the tiger that this cave originally belonged to. You will still be able to see tiger paw prints on both the walls and cave ground.

The actual Tiger Cave Temple is still home to monks who utilise it even today as a meditation centre. The cave is filled with many Buddha statues, artwork, and other symbolic objects to the Buddhist faith.

Tiger Cave Temple Stairs

The view at the top of the Tiger Cave Temple is a must see on your visit here but reaching to the top is actually part of the reason why it’s so enjoyable. There are a couple stairway options that lead to the Tiger Cave Temple but both have similar characteristics. The stairs are very steep and wind around with every flight since you are essentially climbing up a mountain. Most people do however make it up the stairs but for the average tourist, this can take anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour. Make sure you plan your time accordingly and take into account the resting platforms along the way.

If you’re daring enough, there is actually a world record competition for climbing to the top of the temple in the fastest time.

Tiger Cave Temple Peak

The second portion of the Tiger Cave Temple is its view point. This is one of the biggest attractions for tourists because of the breath-taking view. To reach this summit, you will first have to climb up over 1,200 stairs that will lead you to the top. There are two sets of staircases that both take you to the same point but both are as steep as the other. Luckily, there are many resting platforms along the way and stair markers to keep your place. You will also get amazing views from the resting platforms. Wild monkeys can be found the entire trip going up to the top.

Reaching the peak is an accomplishment in itself but that is only half of the enjoyment of the summit. At the top this mountain you will find a large, iconic Buddha statue. There are also several smaller statues and prayer points along the platform. One of the best parts about reaching the peak is the view that you will see. You will be able to see a panoramic view of Krabi and the surrounding landscapes. This view reveals everything from the rainforest that hosts this temple all the way to the sea.

Tiger Cave Temple Significance

The Tiger Cave Temple has been an important symbol of Buddhism in the Krabi province for Thailand. The temple was established on the basis of Buddhist practices such as meditation and maintenance of the temple grounds. You have the opportunity to experience a bit of the culture when you visit the Tiger Cave Temple.

The Tiger Cave Temple is an active temple for monks so you may witness some of the activities that occur within the temple. Meditation is a very prominent activity, and many monks meditate here throughout the day. The monks of the Tiger Cave Temple also teach lessons amongst each other.

The temple grounds are very sacred for religious reasons, and certain rules must be obeyed to get the full experience of the Tiger Cave Temple. One of the biggest rules is the dress code. It’s important to make a note of proper attire to enter the ground level cave temple or even to climb the stairs to the peak. The main thing to avoid is clothing that’s too revealing for both men and women. There are a few stands located nearby that let you rent various clothing and wraps in case you come unprepared.

Many tourists like to take part in some of the Buddhist rituals with the monks. They are very welcoming and pray for tourists who want their blessing. Donations are typically given in these situations.

Buddha Statues

The Tiger Cave Temple is filled with a variety of Buddha statues. The statues vary in materials, ranging from stone to jade to gold. These statues have been brought into the temple over the years to help create an ideal place of peace and worship for the monks who reside here.

The largest Buddha statue is the one found at the top of the peak, overlooking Krabi.

Kuan Yin Statue

The Buddha statues inside the Tiger Cave Temple and atop the peak are not the only notable statues seen here. There are many other buildings located at this plaza as well as other temples in the surrounding area. Each has their own independent significance to Thai culture.

Nearby the actual tiger temple is a large pagoda-style building which holds a very famous statue called Kuan Yin Statue. This statue is of a popular deity in Southeast Asia recognised as the Goddess of Compassion. This is one of the tallest standing Kuan Yin statues in all of Thailand. It is also one of the most decorated statues that you will find of the Goddess. She is a golden sculpture situated on top of a dragon and accompanied by two smaller children statues. Each piece of this display has religious purposes and attracts both followers and tourists to view it.

Tiger Cave Temple Plaza

The Tiger Cave Temple is a great representation of Buddhist influence on Thai architecture. All of the surrounding buildings follow a similar format and use just as other Buddhist temples in Thailand. The entire plaza is seen as a “campus” for the monks who live and worship at the Tiger Cave Temple.

You can see all notable features of a large temple while at Tiger Cave Temple. These buildings include the main temples, pagodas, chedis, etc. Each holds their own individual purposes. This area is continuously being developed, and one of the newest additions is the Chedi building.

A Chedi is a bell-shaped building often seen surrounding temples. This Chedi was recently completed and now available for visitors to explore. The Chedi has various statues outside as well as holding many Buddhist relics inside.

Tiger Cave Temple Tourism

The Tiger Cave Temple is a major meditation centre for monks in Krabi, but tourists are always welcome to explore the grounds at any time. The Tiger Cave Temple is always open and free to enter. The high peak overlooking the Krabi landscape makes it an amazing place to witness a sunrise or a sunset.

Photography and videography are welcome around the Tiger Cave Temple including inside the actual temples. This is typically rare for very religious sites so you should take advantage while here.

You will also find a couple of food vendors around the temple, mainly selling fruits and other stands that sell bananas to give to the wild monkeys.

Another shop can also be found within the main Tiger Cave Temple that’s catered to visitors. Inside you will find a small souvenir shop with various bracelets, amulets, and other Buddhist paraphernalia to remind you of your visit.

Tiger Cave Temple Tours

The Tiger Cave Temple’s location makes it perfect for discovering amazing tours to see it. The temple is located within a jungle so the trip to the temple could be just as exciting as the actual temple. There are several tour service providers around the Krabi province that will make the entire trip worthwhile. Many hotels around Krabi will provide shuttle services directly to the Tiger Cave Temple. Other providers make it a bit more interesting. You can even find ATV tours that allow you to ride through the jungle on an ATV with a guide en route to the temple.

Either way, you choose to explore the Tiger Cave Temple, it’s definitely a must-see destination in Krabi. It has a lot to offer when it comes to seeing a very popular Thailand cave that serves as a prominent Buddhist temple even today. The cave itself will reveal a lot of history in its walls and the Tiger legend behind it. The viewpoint from the mountain is also what brings a continuous flow of tourism to the temple. The Tiger Cave Temple will give you an overall experience like none other.

Nai Harn – the Most Beautiful Beach in Southern Phuket

Friday, January 22, 2016 Uncategorised by admin

Nai Harn beach is located on the southernmost tip of Phuket, to the west of Promthep Cape facing the Andaman Sea. This is one of the best and most beautiful beaches on the southern coast.

Nai Harn is an open front beach but surrounded by hillside on both sides.

The surface of the beach under the shallow waters is pure soft sand and feels luscious to walk on. From around 11 am – 5 pm, the water can become very warm due to the sun shining on it.

Nai Harn is extremely popular with the locals, but not so much commercialised with tourists. The sea is absolutely fantastic to swim in between November and April. In the low season, Nai Harn beach can still be nice, but the sea is much more unpredictable. It is known for its very strong rip currents under the surface that can drag people out without letting them get back in. Here’s what you need to know in order to escape a rip current:

Nai Harn has some great surf, and lovely clear waters to swim in. There are no rocks on the bay, it’s pure sand that so it makes it perfect for a beautiful swim. The rip currents can get very strong at times depending on the time of day and sea behaviour. Because of this, Nai Harn always has life guards.

There are flags put up around the beach to ensure the safety of the swimmers. Red flags are where the undercurrent is far too strong, so no swimmers should swim here. The yellow flags with a stripe is a safe zone for swimmers. On occasion the tourists ignore flags, and so the lifeguards will get on the surfboard and swim out to the swimmer who can’t get back to the beach. Please take caution on all beaches you swim at.

Activities at Nai Harn Beach

If you are looking to relax on the beach, there are a few spots that offer massage under the sheltered palm trees. This is quite popular on most of the beaches you will find in Phuket. The massages on the beach usually last for around an hour for an all body Thai massage and would cost you around 300 baht ($10). Deck chairs can be rented on Nai Harn beach usually costing 150 baht ($5) for the day, and you can also have an umbrella to protect you from the sun if need be.

Nai Harn activities

There is never short for vendors on the beach, supplying you with drinks, ice cream, local Thai home-made crafts, and coconuts.

Nai Harn has a lovely atmosphere, great for families, children, and in general people who appreciate a beautiful beach. Another part of the beach to the eastern side is a very shallow pool set about 50 metres from the actual sea. There is a stream of water that runs from this small pool to the sea. The pool is only knee deep, and perfect for small children to swim in and play. It has no current as it is not the actual sea itself, but joins on to it.

In either high season or low season, the beach never seems overcrowded. The reason probably is because there are not so many resorts and hotels around this area. It’s quite away from the mainstream of Patong, Kata, Karon and other busier beach tourist places.

Standing on Nai Harn Beach facing the sea, if you look to the left, you will see Promthep Cape. To the right-hand side of the hills, you will see some very luxurious sea view apartments.

Nai Harn Temple

Nai Harn’s surrounding is beautiful. Just behind the sea, is a row of restaurants, shops and street stalls. If you go further back, you will come to Nai Harn Temple. The temple is in a beautiful setting and set back about 500 metres from the beach itself. The temple features a prayer hall, which of an evening you will usually see monks praying. You can hear them from outside, and many locals do head over to pay respect to the Buddha.

There is a giant statue of Buddha inside, and paintings along the walls depicting Buddha’s life. Like all temples in Thailand, it is a very holy place, and respect must be shown here. No revealing garments to be worn, and no loud noise. The temple is very well preserved and kept immaculately clean throughout.

Nai Harn itself is generally a quiet place, and of an evening, if you are there, it is a great place to visit. The Nai Harn Temple really does have the authentic spiritual Thailand Buddhist aroma about it.

Nai Harn Lake

Nai Harn lake is right next to the temple. A pool of water that is very common for runners to run around all times of the day. The circuit is 2.2km around the entire lake, and it is flat, so makes for a very good place to run. You will also notice a small island on the lake that you can reach from an entrance near the beach.

The small island has nothing on it, but is a nice place to head out to and just take in the view of the lake. Nai Harn Lake is known to the surrounding community as a jogging place. Because of the amount of Muay Thai camps close by, many joggers/runners come here to do the circuit around the lake.

Towards the southern end of the lake, near the beach, there are a few street stalls in the day. Here you can buy corn on the cob, chicken on a stick, fruit shakes and coconuts. It’s nice to have this after a good run around the lake. To the east of the lake, again at the southern end near the beach, is a workout area. It consists of a number of body resistance machines. So, in theory, you can do a full body workout at Nai Harn. Literally, go for a run, then use the machines – chest press, leg press, and more. And then head over to the beach for a swim, and finish with a massage on the beach. It’s pretty much perfect!

Nai Han lake is also famous for the event that happens in Thailand – Loi Kra Thong. This event is where you would come and put a floating candlelit flower on the lake. It is very traditional for Thailand couples and families to do this event once a year, around November time. The lake is a very beautiful site on this occasion especially. The masses of floating candle-lit flowers make the lake look magical at night.

Travelling to Nai Harn

From the North

Getting to Nai Harn can be quite a scenic ride. If you are heading from the North, the road is very hilly. You will pass up forest’s on both sides of the hill, and the corners are very dangerous. Even more dangerous in the wet! But the scenic view is beautiful and gives a tropical forest type jungle feel about the journey.

On the hills heading towards or from Kata, you will notice a few activity places. Mainly things like ATV adventure, and motor cross biking in the forest. These are great to take part in, but can be quite pricey. Beware, if you take the ATV tour with one of the local Thai drivers, make sure you are strapped in properly. They do tend to drive to show off, and it can be very scary! It’s better if you actually drive than let them drive.

If you are coming from the other side, Phuket Town, it’s quite a simple route. You can either head straight down from Phuket town, through Chalong circle and down past Rawai.

From the South

Rawai is a small fishing village and is in the southern part of Phuket. There are two routes from Rawai, the front and back route.

The back route is just back roads, signposted that are pretty easily navigated. This route to Nai Harn is nice if you want to drive past the local village and see what’s around. The front route takes you alongside Rawai beach, and up to Promthep Cape. From Promthep Cape, you can actually get out and look to the west (right-hand side) and see Nai Harn. It’s probably about a 1-2km ride downhill to get to Nai Harn this way. You will pass a beautiful little hidden away beach called Ya Nui.

Not many tourists know about this beach, it is kept quiet. It is for sure one of the best snorkelling waters around. On calm water days, you can swim (with a kayaker by your side) to the island directly in front. The swim is around 1km there and 1km back, but it’s only wise if you head out with someone who is on the kayak. The reason being, you can never tell when the water or weather changes and the sea here can be dangerous. Sometimes packed with jellyfish. It’s a good idea to have an escape route be it to jump on board the kayak if this happens.

Things to do in Nai Harn

When you visit Nai Harn, you have all the beach to do what you please. You have the lake behind, with the exercise machines if that’s your thing. There are food places just behind the beach, and a row of shops near the car park. The food is either local Thai cuisine, seafood, or some western style food like burger and chips. There are places that supply some very nice fresh seafood too.

The shops offer the same things as a local convenience store would. Beach equipment can also be bought at one of the shops. If you need snorkelling gear, rubber bands, or body board, you can buy them all from here. In the long run, if you are planning to stay near Nai Harn, it is much better to buy these than rent them every time. It works out a lot cheaper, and especially the snorkelling gear.

Some places charge 300 baht to rent out for a day when you can buy your own for this price or cheaper. The best place to buy beach equipment like this is in Rawai town, where things are a lot cheaper. A decent set or snorkelling equipment would set you back 150 baht in the village compared to the double price at the beach.

Surfboards are easily available on the beach, mainly in high season. You would be looking to spend around 300 baht ($6) per hour. The beach itself doesn’t have any close by boats, which is a good thing, keeps the water clean and fresh.

Accommodation in Nai Harn

If you are planning to stay in Nai Harn, the choice to be fair is quite limited. There are no beach huts, or beach bungalows compared to other similar beaches. This is probably because Nai Harn Beach Phuket is not commercialised on a grand scale like the rest of the touristy beaches in Phuket.

If you are looking for more budget to medium style accommodation, then head to the neighbouring towns or Rawai or Kata Beach. Nai Harn offers some exquisite luxury accommodation, but they are highly priced.

The one stand-out place in Nai Harn is called the Nai Harn, which is a sea view front resort on the right-hand side of Nai Harn Beach. Rooms here can start from around 7500 baht per night ($210). The Nai Harn offers a range of rooms, Ocean View suite, Royal Ocean View suite, Mountain View, Grand Ocean View and Deluxe rooms. All are very pricey but extremely luxurious. The rooms have some of the best views you can imagine waking up to in the morning. It is undeniably a beautiful site. In high season it is best to book in advance the ocean view rooms, as they are very popular.

Another fantastic place to stay in Nad Harn is The Royal Phuket Yacht Club. This Resort offers amazing ocean view rooms and highly rated 5-star restaurants. There are actually 3 restaurants all with their own unique theme. The food selection is exquisite, and the wines are top notch here. This all reflects on the price of the stay at this particular place. You would be looking again to spend around the same 7500 baht ($210) or more per room for one night, depending on the room type.

Nai Harn Round-Up

Beautiful, non-commercialised, paradise and fairly peaceful year round. The places surrounding Nai Harn like Promthep Cape, for example, are pinnacle points in Phuket. This is the southernmost tip of what is known as the Pearl of the Andaman Sea. The beach is simply stunning. If you are in Phuket, you must find this place to experience it. There is not much more to say about Nai Harn Beach, and you just have to go there to see what it is like.