Popular Krabi in southern Thailand is not only about beautiful beaches and crowded promenades by the sea. It also boasts magnificent peaks with hardly any people, such as Dragon Crest Mountain (also known as Khao Ngon Nak) – the highest peak in Krabi. The mountain stands at a height of 565 meters above sea level, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes, including Phang Nga Bay and islands in the Andaman Sea.
We decided to embark on this trek with a larger group, including children. Let’s see how to plan such an adventure.
O tym przeczytasz
Where does the name of the peak Dragon Crest come from?
The peak is locally known as Khao Ngon Nak. “Khao” means mountain, “Ngon” means pointed, and “Nak” means dragon or serpent-like creature, often seen near Buddhist temples in Thailand. So the name Dragon Crest Mountain perfectly captures the spirit of this mountain, doesn’t it?
Is the trail to Dragon Crest Mountain difficult?
The trail to the summit of Dragon Crest Mountain is well-marked, and the path is well-maintained. The route is moderately challenging. I believe children aged 6 and above can tackle it without major difficulties. For younger children like our Basia (4 years old), it’s advisable to bring a carrier just in case.
The estimated time needed for the hike with children is about 2-3 hours one way, covering a distance of 3.7 km.
If you’re hiking without children and maintain a good pace (and don’t take too many photos along the way :), you should be able to complete it within 2 hours.
What does the trail to Dragon Crest look like? Where can you park your car?
The trail starts at Than Bok Khorani National Park, about a 30-40 minute drive from the center of Krabi. It takes approximately 25 minutes from Ao Nang Beach. You can park your car at the parking lot near the entrance and ticket counters. To get there, it’s best to enter “Checkpoint Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park” into Google Maps.
The entrance fee for the park is 200 baht.
Note: The trail entrance closes at 2:00 PM. Therefore, it’s best to start your hike early in the morning.
Moreover, starting early in the morning allows you to descend from the trail before the peak heat exposure. The sun is strongest around 1:00 PM/2:00 PM, making it more challenging.
The first 1.5 kilometers involve a gentle ascent along a stream and through the rainforest. Then, the trail becomes slightly more demanding, leading through steeper inclines and rocky paths. There are also quite steep wooden steps that can be slippery, so caution is advised. In several places, ropes are installed to assist with the climb (perfect playground for children!).
At the halfway point, there is a viewpoint where you can admire the magnificent scenery.
The trail then continues through narrow, winding paths amidst rocks and vegetation. The final stretch involves climbing over rocks to reach the summit, where a viewpoint awaits. And the views… see for yourself!
What should you bring on the trail to Dragon Crest Mountain?
Okay, when you hit the trail, make sure you’ve got plenty of water, snacks, and comfy walking shoes. Oh, and don’t forget to wear a hat or a sun hat to shield yourself from the blazing sun. Slather on some sunscreen with a high SPF too (we always go for SPF 50).
So, to sum it all up, trekking on Dragon Crest Mountain is an awesome adventure that’s totally worth it. Our older kids, Mania (9 years old) and Janek (7 years old), conquered the trail without a hitch. Our little Basia (4 years old) managed some parts on her own two feet and took a snooze in the carrier when needed. As for us, well, we felt just as tired as after hiking one of those trails in the Bieszczady Mountains. So, you can imagine, it was the perfect level of exhaustion! 😄
Emergency numbers in Thailand
Before I wrap this up, here’s a photo we snapped on the trail—a sign with emergency numbers in Thailand. It’s handy to have them saved, just in case!