If your ideal day involves waking up on the beach, grabbing a coffee, and then climbing on perfect limestone cliffs right above that same beach, then Tonsai and Railay are the places for you. These twin climbing destinations, separated by a short walk through the mountains, have some of the best climbing you will find in Thailand, hands down — world-class single-pitch, multi-pitch, and bouldering matched only by the beauty of the beaches and lush jungles surrounding them. This is why these spots sit together at the top of my Thailand list. My favorite is the multi-pitch, which I would recommend to intermediate and advanced climbers. There are also loads of amazing single-pitch overhangs and boulders, suited to anyone who finds their way to this climbing paradise.
Located in the Southwestern Krabi Province, Tonsai and Railay offer beginner to expert climbers from around the world a wide range of grades to choose from. The area is Thailand’s most popular and one of my favorites for good reason, and while crowds can get fairly large, the year-round climbing season, friendly community, and abundance of housing options make it one of the world’s best climbing destinations. If you are looking for a true dirtbag experience, I recommend camping and climbing in Tonsai. For those more suited to hotel resorts and bungalows, climbing in Railay is your best bet. Gear shops, bars, and restaurants can also be found throughout both areas.