Krabi Spa & Massage
Krabi's lush greenery and tropical climate make this
the ideal location to indulge in a spa treatment. Most spas in Krabi
take full advantage of Krabi's natural assets and are situated outdoors
in fragrant gardens with old-style Thai wooden pavilions and inspiring
Pampering is the order of the day in Krabi spas; you will not find
the strict dietary and exercise regimes or 'health farms' of Koh
Samui or Koh Phangan here. Massage, body scrubs, wraps and facials
are the most common treatments available and most spas offer herbal
steam and jacuzzi facilities as well.
Hotel spas offer pampering in luxury surroundings Most of the spas
in Krabi are upmarket affairs, usually attached to a hotel - although
outside guests are welcome. Two-hour packages start at around 2,500
Baht and go up to several thousand more for a full-day's pampering.
Here, you are mainly paying for the ambience and service: beautiful
gardens, private pavilions and undivided attention from discreet,
professional hostesses and therapists. There will many 'extras'
- herbal teas, floral foot baths, silk robes, cold towels - that
will make the experience memorable.
If all this is not important to you, there are also a number of
cheaper places where you can receive similar treatments in more
prosaic surroundings. Facials, manicures, waxing and massages will
be less than a third of the spa price in most beauty salons in the
beach areas of Ao Nang and Koh Phi Phi, but you're likely to be
indoors, in or near a busy room, with a TV on in the corner!
Herbal Spa, Ao Nang
One of the first spas in Ao Nang, this is a well-run, reasonably
priced establishment. Treatments take place in outdoor pavilions
set in a mature tropical garden, or in your own private suite with
jacuzzi. There is also a large pool and herbal steam area for relaxing.
Evening visits are recommended: the place is beautifully lit at
Spa, Krabi Town
Located in a peaceful corner of the vast Maritime Park Resort complex,
this is one of Krabi's 'best-kept secrets'. You can spend an entire
day here: start in the outdoor four-poster jacuzzi tub that 'floats'
in the middle of a lake; try a whole host of body scrubs and massage
in an air-conditioned suite; and finish in their beauty salon. Tel:
Spa, Ao Nang
Run by the prestigious Spa Clinique group from Phuket, this is one
of the few indoor spas in Krabi. On the top floor of Pavilion Queen's
Bay hotel, it enjoys dramatic views of Nopparat Thara Beach from
the teak-wood panelled rooms. There's an excellent range of treatments
on offer, concentrating on East-meets-West style massage techniques
that combine traditional Thai massage with Swedish massage and aromatherapy.
There is also a beauty salon and herbal steam room available for
guests. Tel: 075-637950
Spa, Koh Lanta
Pimalai is another top-of-the-range spa, set in the lush grounds
of the Pimalai Resort in Kantiang Bay. The scenery alone will transport
you to another world; while the treatments, including detox massages
and body wraps, will leave you feeling like a new person. Tel: 075-607999
Spa, Koh Lanta & Krabi Town
For something to suit the smaller budget, Kantawan is a great little
spa concept with two branches, one in Krabi Town (Maharat Rd) and
the other in Koh Lanta (Long Beach). Both are set in northern-style
teak houses and offer good quality, traditional Thai treatments
such as herbal steam, massage with hot compress, and tamarind body
Tel: (Lanta) 075-684500; (Krabi Town) 075-623659
Thai massage is an ancient art which is still widely practiced
across Thailand and offered at all tourist centres. In Krabi massage
shops are found in all the main tourist areas as well as being offered
in spas and hotels at more ‘professional’ rates. These
masseuses are skilled at ironing out the pains and stiffness in
your muscles from a day of travelling, sight-seeing, rock climbing
or diving. They are all quite professional at offering traditional
Thai, oil and foot massage in Krabi and there is none of the sleaze
associated with the ‘massage parlours’ of Bangkok.
Thai massage is a relaxing way to pass an afternoon Thai massage
is an art that has been refined over hundreds of years - passed
down through generations. It is still taught by Buddhist monks at
the main school of Wat Po in Bangkok. This form of massage in Krabi
is similar to that offered in other centres, focusing on re-aligning
the energy lines in your body through ten main points, known as
'sen' (although there are over 70,000 recorded in all). In Thai
massage, muscles are kneaded, pushed, pulled and stretched into
place through pressure from the body as well as the hands. It includes
aspects of yoga, derived from Ayurvedic practices.
The most active tool in a masseuses arsenal is the thumb, A correctly
trained Thai massage practitioner will avoid sensitive areas such
as the knees. If you have ailments or chronic problems sensitive
to body pressure, advise the masseuse before commencing.
There are three popular choices of massage in Krabi.
massage: is a vigorous treatment of more than 100 areas of
the body, using hand pressure, as well as the masseuse’s own
body to apply forces, working pressure points and re-aligning energy
lines in the body. Ideally, this process takes at least two hours
and can be a little uncomfortable at times, but leaves you feeling
very relaxed. Typically a full course will last two hours and cost
about 400 – 500 baht upwards and may be a little uncomfortable
during the ‘kneading’ but it leaves you feeling very
rejuvenated. You can also opt for an hour or 90 minutes and request
harder or softer massaging.
Massage: is gentler than Thai massage, instead of pressuring
the muscles with the hands, therapeutic oils are used for deep muscle
tissue treatment. It won’t solve backaches and is better as
an ‘after treatment’. It leaves you a little oily afterwards,
but can be a very sensual experience. Generally they are more expensive
(205 baht an hour), but an hour is enough.
massage: is a form of reflexology that works the internal
organs by manipulating pressure points on the soles of your feet.
This is another skill that has been passed down through the ages
and can be quite effective in producing a mild detox effect on the
body. Often foot massage is offered on the street side at night
markets and events.
Many places also offer massages specialising in specific parts
of the body, such as the hands and head.
massage shops in Krabi
numerous spas in Krabi offer good massage In Krabi, you can find
plenty of massage shops scattered in Ao Nang and Krabi town, while
a few places are found on Phi Phi and Lanta island. There will generally
always be one nearby if you are in a busy area, just look out for
the ‘reflexology diagrams’ displayed outside. Your hotel
might be able to arrange room calls at a price. Freelancing massage
ladies also ply their trade along the beach. There’s no guarantee
that they will do a first-class job but there is something very
satisfying about having a massage while lying on a tropical beach
under the shade. The quality of these places ranges from mattresses
carelessly laid out in a back room with unclean sheets, to spa-like
places that have individual booths and soft music. It’s best
to stick your head in and see for yourself. Generally the older
the masseuse the more likely she is to be experienced and good.
Hotels and spas offer a more luxurious environment, with nicely
decorated private cubicles, scented clothing and soft music, as
well as more of a guarantee that the masseuse is a good one. However,
they are typically two or three times more expensive and not necessarily
any better. Typically a Thai massage in Krabi will cost 200 baht
an hour, while a foot or oil massage is 250 baht an hour in the