For tasty curries, fried fish, spicy salads, sushi, noodles and Thai desserts, including delicious waffles, sweets and donuts, be sure to check out Trang’s popular weekend night market near the station, considered the best one on the Andaman Coast.
August's annual Trang Cake Festival, sure to be a winner with sweet-tooths. It’s usually held near the railway station, with coffee, orange, tropical fruit and ‘three taste’ cakes up for grabs.
Anantara Si Kao is a great place for active types, as it offers a slew of things to do for all ages. Its secluded seaside location in Si Kao, 90 minutes’ drive from Krabi, makes for a blissful beach getaway – although be aware that the quiet pace of life here may not appeal to those looking for buzzy bars. School-age children will especially love the watersports and elephant treks.
Situated 50 kilometres from Si Kao, and spanning 230 square kilometres, Had Chao Mai National Park is home to mangroves and rugged limestone karsts, with walking trails and picnic spots. Dugongs are often spotted lolling in the sea grass, just offshore. The smalls will love swimming in the calm, shallow sea. At low tide, you can walk through the bay to Ao Por Beach.
For more coastal chilling, board the speedboat bound for the hotel's private beach club at Koh Kradan, a coral-fringed island covered in lush monsoon forest. Snorkel and kayak in the glass-clear Andaman Sea, before nabbing a sunlounger. Junior palates will enjoy the burgers and sandwiches served at the Koh Kradan beach club.
Green-seekers can tee off at Sri Trang Golf Course (+66 (0)75 203 319), a 35-minute drive from the hotel at 15 Lam Phu Road, Huay Yod, Trang, where 18 holes are fringed with palm trees and rubber plants. Teens may fancy accompanying you for a round, but perhaps book a babysitter back at the resort to take care of younger family members while you play.
Looking for inspiration for family-friendly dining within reach of the hotel? A relaxed restaurant on Pak Meng Beach in Si Kao, Yokyor (+66 (0)75 274 014) specialises in fresh seafood, with light and bright dishes such as barbecued squid, steamed crabs and tom yum soup. Staff can pick you up from the resort, then drop you back after you’ve finished your meal. Kids will enjoy the laid-back beachside setting, and can let off steam on the sand between courses. You’ll love the views of karst peaks and ocean.
For a dim sum fix, make the 45-minute trip to Trang, a multi-cultural town with Chinese, Malay and Indian heritage. Top pick for dumplings and Chinese buns is Ton Noon Dim Sum, at 202 Pad Sathani Road. If you’re touring Trang by car, bike or foot, it makes a handy pit-stop for peckish children and the pick-and-mix selection of small bites should appeal to junior appetites.
Trang is famous for its kopi shops, such as Ko Teng (+66 (0)75 218 148) café at 77–79 Prahram 6 Road, where strong filtered coffee is served sweetened with condensed milk. Be sure to use the Hokkien word kopi, rather than the Thai term kaffae, otherwise you’ll end up with Nescafé. Teens will like the youthful scene at this relaxed spot, which is out the front of a backpacker hotel. Light meals of chicken curry, noodles, rice and egg on toast will get younger kids’ votes.
Caffeine fiends should also seek out fan-cooled Sin-O-Cha Bakery (+66 (0)75 211 191), near the Trang train station on the same road, for a cup of kopi, cake and Western-style breakfasts. If you’re arriving in or departing from Krabi by train, this is a handy spot to refuel with the family.
For heartier, inexpensive fare in Trang, German-owned bar/restaurant Wunderbar (+66 (0)876 248 728) dishes up Thai and European food, so you can take your pick of papaya salads, steaks and pizza. The cosy, informal space will make Junior Smiths feel at home, and the style of cuisine is family-friendly. Find it at 24 Sathani Road, Tambon Tab Tiang.