If you’re planning a trip to Southern Thailand, make sure Poda Island is near the top of your list of places to see. This gorgeous island is one of several islands off the coast of Krabi. Some of the others include Chicken Island, Tup Island, and Ko Khom. While it can only be accessed by a longboat, it is a short and enjoyable journey. Before you book your tour with us, here are all the things you need to know about Poda.
How Do I Get to Poda Island?
The island of Poda is only one kilometer in diameter and is covered in white sand and lush palm trees. To get to Poda, you can take a long-tail boat from Ao Nang Beach, Railay Beach or Nopparat Thara. The boat ride takes around 30 minutes and gives you a panoramic tour of the mainland behind you. Shared longtail boats that carry up to 8 passengers can be boarded from the beach in Ao Nang, Railay and Nopparat Thara, but they depart only once they are full. Alternatively, you can rent a private boat for the day, with prices in accordance with the number of passengers and the duration of the tour.
What is a Long Tail Boat?
Longtail boats are famous in southern Thailand and are commonly used to transport tourists to different islands. They have a long body with a long pole attached to the stern of the boat which acts as a propeller. If you’ve traveled to Southeast Asia before, you’ve likely taken a long tail boat at one time or another. They are a staple in the region and quite effective at quickly transporting visitors.
Where to Stay close to Poda Island
Poda is stunning and you might wish to stay for the night, however the island belongs to the National Park, therefore no hotel or accommodation of any kind are allowed.
To be close to Poda you can stay in any hotels on the mainland, particularly in Ao Nang, Railay, Nopparat Thara and Klong Muang beach. If you choose to stay in Ao Nang, Railay and Nopparat Thara you can walk to the boarding points on the beach and along the coast, while from Klong Muang the boat ride to Poda is a little longer but the scenery along the way is worth the cruise. To make the journey shorter, you can always take a car or tuk tuk to Ao Nang or Nopparat Thara, both a 15 minute drive away.
Ao Nang, Railay and Nopparat Thara are popular destinations in Krabi Province and thus have plenty of accommodation options for every budget and travel style. Klong Muang is the quieter sister, but equally beautiful. Stay at an upscale luxury resort, in a 4 star boutique hotel or in a secluded bungalow, the options are almost endless . Here are our proposals and recommendations. Given that the area has to offer a variety of dining options, entertainment, nightlife, spas, and more you won’t run out of things to do.
Things to Do in Poda Island
The biggest selling point of visiting Koh Poda is the beach. The island is lined with non-stop white sand beaches that lead into crystal clear waters. You can find excellent swimming and sun tanning spots all over the island, but especially at Secret Beach. About 20 meters offshore is a coral reef that is beautiful to snorkel and scuba dive around. If you reach Poda by long tail boat, you may consider bringing your own snorkelling equipment, while if you book one of our tours the snorkelling equipment is provided.
When you get hungry, stop by the beach kiosk for a snack and beverage. Since this is the only dining option, and a basic one, if you’re coming on a day trip, consider packing your own lunch. On the other hand, all our tours include a simple but delicious Thai buffet lunch on the beach, with vegetarian options available on request.
The island boasts magnificent limestone cliffs that pierce the sky. Seeing them from the water will make it even more magical, so in between lunch, walks on the beach and rest try to find the time for a swim.
The best part of visiting Poda? Poda is home to dozens of monkeys who mostly stay in the forest but venture out when tourists arrive. If you do see these furry creatures running around the beach, ensure your valuables are stored in your bag and keep in mind that they are wild animals who can become aggressive when over-excited. Don’t approach them, try to keep a safety distance, keep the children away fro them and, if you’re eating a snack, be prepared to share it if one of them takes a fancy to your banana.
Things to Do Near Poda Island
Koh Poda is often included in one day trip from the mainland. In addition to Poda, you will get to see Chicken Island and Koh Phi Phi. Poda is part of the Poda Group Islands which also includes Koh Kai, Koh Mo, and Koh Thap. These are beautiful islands that are worth spending a day touring around, and by joining one of our long-tail and speedboat tours you will take the most out of your day exploring all the islands.
Specifically, Chicken Island is worth visiting due to its seclusion and stunning beach. At low tide, you can walk from the beach here all the way to Tup Island. There’s a small snack shack on the island and very little infrastructure. But, this makes for a quiet and stunning beach oasis. Why is it called Chicken Island? Well, because of the southern tip of the island which has a jutting cliff shaped like a chicken’s head!
Speaking of beaches, when you’re done exploring Poda, go back to your hotel in Ao Nang Beach or stop here for the evening. This popular tourist spot is vibrant and lively with lots of nearby bars and restaurants. The beach is long, clean, and covered in white sand. You want to avoid the long-tail boat docking areas where it can get quite busy, but this beach has plenty of room to spread out. Nearby Ao Nang there are also world-renowned dive sites perfect for all levels. If you’ve never gone diving before, we can recommend a school that provide lessons and guided excursions to practice. If you have more experience, you can sign up for more advanced dives that go into more challenging areas. All the islands in this area offer some level of diving, but Ao Nang is definitely the best area to start with.
Like the rest of Krabi, Railay has amazing beaches and crystal clear water. You won’t be disappointed by the clean, soft sand. But, Railay has something that other areas don’t: epic rock climbing. The cliffs surrounding Railay are massive and makeup one of the top spots for climbing in all of Thailand. Whether you’ve never climbed before or you’re a pro, there’s a route here sure to entice you. Consider signing up for climbing lessons with a local guide or going on a guided excursion. Advanced climbers likely know about Railay’s reputation for deep-water soloing. In this type of climbing, sections of the cliff jutting out so the climber is hanging above open water. If you accidentally let go and opted not to wear the harness, you’re going swimming!
Outdoor enthusiasts will especially appreciate Railay’s extensive hiking network and variety of trails. One of the most popular is the hike up to Railay Beach Viewpoint. While the trail is only one kilometer long, it’s surprisingly steep and not for the faint of heart. Some compare it to rock climbing which tells you just how vertical it gets. Make sure you’re wearing adequate shoes and pack a water bottle. Once you get to enjoy the view on top, you’ll know the trek was worth it. At 200 meters above the rest of Railay, take in the spectacular views.
If you’re feeling even more adventurous, continue this treacherous hike to the Hidden Lagoon. Following the signs at the viewpoint, you’ll hike downwards for 20 minutes or so into the jungle. After dangerously steep and muddy terrain, you’ll be greeted by the lagoon surrounded by cliffs all around. There are often monkeys swinging on vines and, when the tide is high, the perfect secluded spot for swimming.
Koh Phi Phi
Off the coast of Krabi are a group of islands referred to as the Koh Phi Phi Islands. Unlike the other islands nearby, you can’t reach them by longtail boat from Ao Nang and the mainland, but they are included in many half-day and full-day tours. They have become one of the biggest tourist attractions in Thailand since the film The Beach was filmed here. They have exquisite beaches, breathtaking cliffs that jut into the sky, lush rain forests, and plenty of adventure excursions to choose from. Sign up for a speedboat tour with us and you’ll be taken to several of the most popular sightseeing locations of Phi Phi Island archipelago, including Bamboo Island, Monkey Beach, the Pileh Lagoon and Maya Bay.
The province of Krabi has much more to offer than stunning island beaches like Koh Poda. For a change of scenery, head to the main strip in downtown Krabi Town. You’ll find bustling nightlife, markets, shopping, restaurants and temples. There are plenty of accommodation options in downtown Krabi with ranges of amenities.
One of the must-see destinations in Krabi Town is the Krabi Night Market. Every weekend from 6-9 pm the walking street turns into a night market full of local cuisine vendors, artisans, goods, and entertainment. Take a walk among the vendors and enjoy live music, live dance performances, and more authentic Thai street food samples than you can handle. The street food is legendary in Krabi, so sampling it at the night market is a great idea.
Koh Poda F.A.Q.
How long should I stay in Koh Poda?
Most visitors will take a boat tour from Ao Nang to visit all the neighbouring islands, including Koh Poda. While an afternoon is enough to see this island, some opt for a full day tour ora multi-island tour.
When should I visit Poda?
It’s best to go in the early morning or mid afternoon when most tourists are on the mainland. Ideally, if renting a private boat, you will arrive before 10 am so you can claim a slice of the beach all to yourself. Our preferred choice to visit Poda is the Four Island Sunset Tour by speedboat which leave Ao Nang around noon and has a different schedule than most of the other day tours: you won’t see the sunset in Poda, since the National Park closes at 5 pm, but this unique itinerary is your best chance to enjoy some tranquil beaches after all the others have left.
What should I bring?
If you are just taking a boat to Poda and no other islands, you don’t need to bring much. Pack your typical beach essentials – towel, water bottle, sunscreen, swimsuit, cash, a camera to take beautiful pictures – and if your tour doesn’t provide snorkel gear, you may want to bring yours. If you will be visiting different islands on a day tour, you may also want to bring hiking shoes and a change of clothing.
What kind of tour should I sign up for?
There are a variety of tours available to suit your schedule, budget, and interests. You could go on a beach-hopping tour that shows you all the best sun tanning and snorkelling spots. There are also tours that let you admire the sunset from the mainland after visiting Poda, Chicken and the other local islands. And if you are up for an underwater adventure you could book a diving trip which takes you around the local islands, including the waters off Poda, for a half or full day.
What kind of wildlife lives in Poda?
Poda is a small island with a similar ecosystem to the other islands of Krabi province. You may find monkeys, lizards, and several species of birds. It’s not unusual to see beautiful sea eagles flying in circles in the blue sky, looking for preys. Underwater, if you are lucky you could spot manta rays, nudibranchs, and even leopard sharks. And if you are very lucky, even a whale shark.
Ready to Book Your Trip to Poda?
Poda is one of the most beautiful paradises in Krabi. It has stunning beaches, lush forests, wildlife, marine life, and all the peace and tranquility you could ask for. It’s generally recommended to sign up for a one day tour to take you to Poda from the mainland, which also allows you to see other islands nearby. If you’re planning an unforgettable trip to Krabi, get in touch with us, we will make sure Poda is at the top of your list!