Phuket and Krabi are two of the top tourist destinations in Southern Thailand. On the one hand, Phuket is a lively destination with plenty of tourist development. It still offers fabulous beaches and many other attractions. On the other hand, Krabi offers a more relaxed pace of life that gives visitors an authentic look at Thailand. Phuket and Krabi’s contrasting atmospheres make both destinations so popular with tourists. Traveling from one to the other is an easy journey and an incredibly scenic one. Read on to find out how to travel from Phuket to Krabi.

Options for Travel from Phuket to Krabi?
Phuket is an island but it is connected to the Thai mainland via a bridge.

Options for Travel from Phuket to Krabi?

Traveling from Phuket to Krabi is quick and easy. The distance from the Phuket bus terminal to the Krabi bus terminal is only 165 kilometers (103 miles). Depending on how you’re traveling and what the traffic is like, you will be looking at a journey time of between 2 and 3 hours. By road, you have several options: bus, minibus, and taxi. You can also travel from Phuket to Krabi by boat, so we’ll start by giving you information on the ferries and speedboats.

Ferry from Phuket to Krabi

Ferry Phuket to Krabi
Ferry between Phuket and Krabi via Phi Phi Island © Yulia Melnikova /

Taking the ferry from Phuket to Krabi is scenic and comfortable. On the ferry, you can walk around and stretch your legs far more than when traveling by bus. The drawback of the ferry from Phuket to Krabi is the time it takes. This is definitely a slow boat to Krabi, with journey times of around 8.5 hours. If you’re not pushed for time, it’s a great experience, cruising past beautiful islands and catching the sun. There is a good reason why the ferry takes 8.5 hours – in fact, you won’t be on the ferry for that entire time as it includes a 5-hour stopover on the island of Phi Phi!

The ferry departs from Phuket at 8.30 am, arrives at Phi Phi around 10.30 am, and departs from Phi Phi at 3.30 pm. You’ll likely pay more for the ferry ride than you would by bus from Phuket to Krabi. If you were dreaming about visiting Phi Phi anyway then the ferry is a good option.

Speedboat is usually the quickest option

Speedboat Phuket to Krabi
Speedboats in Krabi © Phuong D. Nguyen /

Speedboats are another option if you enjoy traveling on the water. Compared to buses, taxis, minibusses, and ferries, speedboats are the fastest way to get from Phuket to Krabi. However, they do not arrive in Krabi Town itself. Speedboats take a route that terminates in the resort town of Ao Nang, about 19 kilometers (12 miles) from Krabi Town. Therefore be aware of the end destination before choosing this option. While fast (it takes around 2 hours from Bang Rong Pier) speedboats are also the most expensive form of transportation from Phuket to Krabi. Koh Yao Sun Smile offers 2 departures per day from Bang Rong Pier, Phuket to Nopparat Thara Pier, Ao Nang. Koh Yao Sun Smile speedboats also stop at Railey Pier.

If you don’t like the cost of speedboats, or the extended time it takes for ferries, don’t worry, there are still plenty of transport options between these two destinations.

Catch a bus the cheap option to Krabi

Phuket Bus Terminal 2
Phuket to Bangkok buses depart from Phuket Bus Terminal 2 © Pataporn Kuanui /

Buses are the most commonly used transport option to Phuket for several reasons. With frequent departures, you will never have to wait long and they are cheap. Journey times are usually around 3 hours and it’s a nice way to meet some locals and spend time looking at the passing scenery. The drawback with the buses is that they are from point A to point B – so you’ll have to make your own way to and from the bus terminal in each town. In Phuket, it’s best to pick up from Phuket Bus Terminal 2 as there are more frequent departures from here.

Go by Minibus from Phuket to Krabi

Travel by Road from Phuket to Krabi
Toyota commuter most commonly used as minibus/minivan in Thailand © nitinut380 /

Minibusses are an option that offers a little more convenience. If you book a minibus from Phuket to Krabi you can usually get them to pick you up right at your hotel. This saves you the journey time and cost of getting to the bus terminal. A minibus costs a little more than the regular buses do, but it’s worth the money for that door-to-door convenience. The downsides to minibusses are that you’ll have a little less legroom than on a regular bus, and, it can be tedious having to stop at lots of hotels before getting on the way. However, once all the pickups have been completed, the drive will be fast (and potentially hair-raising!). All in all, you should be looking at about a 3-hour journey time.

Travel with a comfortable Taxi to Krabi

Andaman Taxis Van
Andaman Taxis offers both Vans and normal cars.

The final option is to travel by taxi from Phuket to Krabi. You could argue that going by taxi will be more comfortable than by bus or minibus. Taxis also offer greater flexibility with services door-to-door. If you like, you can even get the driver to stop at some places of interest along the way. Taxis are far more expensive than buses or minibusses with prices comparable to what you’d pay on a speedboat. However, the taxi rate can be split between several passengers, making it more affordable. Depending upon where in Phuket you’re traveling from, the drive should take around 2 – 2.5 hours.

How do you get from Phuket to Krabi?

Even though Phuket is an island, it’s connected to the mainland by a bridge. You can therefore travel from Phuket to Krabi both by road or by ferry. Book private taxis for convenient door-to-door service. Go by a regular bus for good value, or a minibus for a combination of comfort and value. The fastest option direct ferries and speedboats take as little as 120 minutes.

How do I get from Phuket Airport to Krabi?

There are two ways to get from Phuket Airport to Krabi: by van and ferry, or by bus. There aren’t any direct buses, so going this way is not ideal. Taking a van and a ferry is best as you can buy a joint ticket that covers the entire journey from travel agent, 12Go. All connections are guaranteed when you book through their website.

How long is a boat ride from Phuket to Krabi?

Traveling directly from Phuket to Krabi by boat, your only option is a speedboat which is about an 80-minute journey. Speedboats won’t take you into Krabi Town, instead stopping at beach resorts Railay or Ao Nang. Regular ferries are much cheaper but not direct, with most going via Phi Phi Island where you’ll wait for several hours.

How long does it take from Phuket to Krabi?

By road, it’s around 160 km (100 mi) to travel by bus, van, or taxi. Journey times vary with pickup and drop-off points and the provider. Taxis are the fastest, taking around 2.5 hours. A minibus takes around 3.5 hours, while vans are roughly 3 to 4 hours. Speedboats are the fastest from 120 minutes, all these options are available through 12Go.

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