After a stay in Krabi, I'm looking to go to Koh Phi Phi for a few days, possibly go to a Full Moon Party, and then to Koh Samui to Kamalaya for a health and wellness retreat after all that! Can anyone provide more info on accommodations on either island or been to the resort at Kamalaya? Is taking a ferry the only way? Is it easier to go to Koh phi phi or Koh phangan from Krabi? Any other tips as far as restaurants, places to stay, things to do, valuable tours?
I love Thailand and I am so envious of your trip! Sounds like it's going to be an amazing one :)
So it looks like you're starting in Krabi. Since Koh Phi Phi is on that south-west side of Thailand, definitely easier for you to get there from Krabi than the other islands. I believe you take the ferry from Ao Nang (double check that!). Ferries tend to leave early in the day and don't run very often, maybe 2-4 times a day, so look up the schedule.
After you spend a few days on Koh Phi Phi, make your way back to Krabi, and from there, make your way to Surat Thani, which is where the ferry will be to get to Koh Samui and Koh Phangan. I would take a bus from Krabi to Surat Thani, which is about 2 hours. Flying would be 4 hours because there are no direct flights; you'd have to have a layover in Bangkok, which would just be a waste of time and money.
From Surat Thani, you would hit Koh Samui first. You can choose to spend some time there first, or you could transfer over to a ferry to Koh Phangan where the Full Moon Party actually happens at Haad Rin. Just a warning: it's like college spring break there. I wish I had a hotel recommendation to give you, but if you don't mind staying in dank quarters with reptilian roommates with a traditional, um, Thai bathroom, I did stay at Dew Shore Bungalows. The room itself was horrible, but it redeemed itself by practically having the most beautiful white sand HUGE private beach to myself. It also had an awesome little food stand right next to it, which I would recommend you check out even if you don't end up staying there. It wouldn't be my first choice, but I wouldn't be opposed to staying there again.
To get around the island of Koh Phangan, you just go to the main road and flag down a pick up truck that has a cage built around the back and benches. They're pretty much the taxis of the island and last I was there, it's 150 baht no matter where you go. You could either ask the people who arrange those rides, or the people at whatever "resort" you stay at for suggestions on where to get massages, food, etc. It's a very touristy island with a lot of young visitors and expats, so chances are, you'll probably run into them at restaurants, on the beach, on those "taxi" rides, etc, and you can just make friendly with them and ask for recommendations, too. Random little new things are always popping up, so that's a good way to stay up to date.
Hope you have a blast and let me know if you have any other questions!
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Yes ferry is the best way to get from Krabi to Koh Phi Phi or Koh Phangan. In Krabi stay in Ao Nang there are plenty of things to do there. Try stay by the beach. Take a long boat out to Railay Beach, its amazing there but only accessible by boat.
In phi phi the town is really filthy best to stay on a resort I can recommend Outrigger Phi Phi Island Resort & Spa its outstanding!
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Taking the ferries is really easy. Just check the schedule because they usually only run 1-2 times a day.
Ferry is definitely the only way to get around, all of the ferry prices are negotiable so please keep that in mind.
If you plan on going to a Full Moon party be sure to book at least 3 weeks in advance since accommodations are limited in the area.