Guide To Visiting Emerald Pool in Krabi + Blue Pool & Crystal Pool

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If you’re looking at exploring the most unique natural wonders in the Krabi province, then you need look no further than the enchanting Emerald Pool in Krabi, also known as Sa Morakot in Thai.

Nestled within the lush greenery of the Khao Pra Bang Khram Wildlife Sanctuary, the Emerald Pool offers a refreshing retreat from the bustling beaches and crowds of Krabi’s resort areas, and offers a serene setting to cool off in.

Although Emerald Pool is the most famous pool in the park, since it’s the only water source you can swim in, there are three pools in total within the park; Emerald Pool, Blue Pool and Crystal Pool.

In this guide, we’ll share with you everything you need to know about visiting Emerald Pool Krabi, as well as its neighboring Crystal Pool and Blue Pool, such as how to get there, what there is to do there, and some tips for visiting.

What Is The Emerald Pool Krabi?

Emerald Pool Krabi

But first, you might be wondering what exactly is the Emerald Pool in Krabi and why is it called this?

Well, the pool is unique in that it is a naturally thermal pool. The pool was formed by a fresh water source which connected to a thermal stream which runs through the plains of Southern Thailand, creating a water temperature that is naturally heated to between 30°C and 50°C degrees.

Emerald Pool was named after its natural turquoise-green color, which was created by a natural stream which flows over limestone rocks, leaving mineral deposits in the pool and turning the water green.

It’s approximately 20 meters in circumference, and between 1.2 meters and 1.8 meters deep. Although the water is naturally heated, the main swimming area of the pool is quite cool, and more thermal waters can be felt towards the rock at the back where small waterfalls trickle down into the pool.

Hiking to Emerald Pool in Krabi

Hike to Emerald Pool
Scenic hike to Emerald Pool
Easy Hike to Emerald Pool
Easy Hike to Emerald Pool

To reach Emerald Pool, you first need to take a short hike through the forest. The hike from the car park to the pool is roughly 1km, and takes about 20 minutes.

There are two paths to Emerald Pool. There is a long, paved road that takes you directly to Emerald Pool, or there is a scenic path, which is roughly the same distance that passes through the forest and past Crystal Pool.

This scenic path is well maintained, but it is natural terrain and not paved, so you do need to step over a few tree routes and rocks along the way.

Our Experience Swimming in Emerald Pool in Krabi

swimming in Emerald Pool

Swimming in the Emerald Pool is a relaxing experience – you can feel the stresses of daily life wash off you from the moment your toes hit the water.

Although Emerald Pool is a thermal pool, the water is not as hot as I thought it would be. The temperature is no warmer than the sea or a swimming pool. In fact, later in the day, it can be quite cold when the sun has gone behind the trees.

Well, that is if you visit before 10.00am or on a weekday, as after 10.00am on a weekend it’s full of local families with kids and can get very crowded, very quickly.

The floor of the pool is a mixture of sand and soft limestone rock, which means you can swim without the need for swimming shoes. However, there are some sharp rocky boulders that you need to scramble over to get into the pool, so do be careful where you put your feet.

Emerald Pool Krabi

On the northern side of the pool there is a rocky ledge, which is quite slippery to walk along, before it cliffs off into the deeper pool that you can swim in. This is a nice place to sit and paddle if you have children, but do be careful as the rock surface is slippery.

Families may prefer the South side of the pool which is flanked by a wooden walkway. Here you can find a wooden platform and steps down into the pool, which makes access easier.

There are lots of shaded areas around the pool where you can retreat to when you’ve had enough of swimming. The pool itself is open to the sun and has little shade, but the forest around it is dense and provides plenty of shelter.

The only downside is there isn’t anywhere to put your belongings. There are a few pavilions with benches, but these are often full of people sitting and we don’t recommend you leave your things there for safety.

Most people hang their clothes and bags on tree branches and keep a watch on them when swimming. Since there were two of us when we visited, we took it in turns to watch each others things while the other took a swim.

The biggest challenge about swimming in Emerald Pool is getting out. Though there are steps, they are often slippery and covered in moss, so do be careful when leaving the pool.

Read more: PERFECT 7-Day Phuket And Krabi Itinerary For 2024!

Blue Pool

Shrine of the Hermit
Shrine of the Hermit

As well as Emerald Pool, there is also the Blue Pool, which is located 600 meters from Emerald Pool and takes about 10 minutes to walk to.

The path passes through a tall brush trail, before turning back into the forest. It also passes by a small shrine, called Shrine of the Hermit, which is dedicated to a hermit who lived here many years ago.

The path turns into a wooden boardwalk, which ends at a viewing platform in front of the Blue Pool. You’ll know you’ve reach the pool not because the trail has ended, but because the vibrant hues of blue that shine through the forest and drawing your eyes to the floor.

Blue Pool Krabi

The Blue Pool gets its name because, well, it’s blue – very blue. The Blue Pool is said to sit on a thermal water source, and it’s this mixture of hot mineral water that gives off the striking blue color.

Although it’s around 4-5 meters deep, it doesn’t look that way, as you can clearly see the bottom of the pool from the water’s edge. You cannot swim in this pool, as the waters are said to be between 40°C-50°C, making it too hot to swim in, but it’s still worth seeing for its natural beauty.

Read more: Is Krabi Worth Visiting? The Pros & Cons

Crystal Pool

Crystal Pool in Krabi
Crystal Pool in Krabi

Many people are unaware that the Crystal Pool exists, since it’s also a pool you cannot swim in.

The Crystal Pool is located before the Emerald Pool, and looks more like a swamp than a lagoon. This is because of the tree life and fauna that grows in the water surrounding it.

Crystal Pool is the largest pool in the park, and is estimated to measure 35 meters x 45 meters long, and reaches a depth of 1-3 meters.

It is fed from the water of the Emerald Pool, making it cooler in temperature, but due to the overgrown nature of the foliage it’s not possible to swim in it.

How To Get To Emerald Pool in Krabi

The journey to the Emerald Pool is not too difficult, but it does require you to either hire a car or scooter, or take a tour. There is no public bus to Emerald Pool, so this is the only way to get there.

The distance to Emerald Pool is approximately 47 miles (75 kilometers) southeast of Krabi town, or about 50 kilometers from Ao Nang beach.

We recommend you hire a scooter and drive, as this will be your most cost-effective way. Do be careful whilst driving the scooter, as you need to drive along a highway to get to Emerald Pool.

To reach Emerald Pool, drive along Highway Route 4, either from Krabi Town or Ao Nang, until you reach Route 4038. Follow this road for a short time, before taking the second exit onto the 4021.

Drive along the 4021 for about 20 minutes before taking a right turn down a back road. You will see a sign here saying “Emerald Pool” and so you won’t get lost. This road will lead you directly to the car park.

It will take around 2 hours to scooter to Emerald Pool from Ao Nang and 1.5 hours from Krabi Town.

Top tip: Don’t trust the timings on Google Maps, you will always need more driving time in Krabi as there is a lot of traffic on Highway Route 4 and you need to drive slow.

Emerald Pool Facilities

Map of Emerald Pool Krabi
Map of Emerald Pool Krabi

As a popular tourist attraction in Krabi, Emerald Pool is well kitted out with facilities to ensure you can spend an entire day here.

Behind the Emerald Pool there is a large, grassy area with tables, though security do not allow you to bring food inside the park so if you bring a picnic, you will need to eat this before entering the park.

Behind this grassy area are showers, changing rooms and toilets.

Before you enter the park, there are several cafes and restaurants, as well as food stands selling street food, cold coconuts, fruit and snacks.

There is a large car park where you can park a car or scooter, though you will need to pay a small fee to park here. The cost is 30 baht for a car, 20 baht for a motorbike, and 10 baht for a scooter.

Opening Hours & Entrance Fees

entrance to emerald pool in krabi

The Emerald Pool is a paid attraction and costs 400 baht per person for adults and 200 baht for children. This is the tourist price, for Thai locals it’s just 30 baht (yes, this is common in Thailand). Note that the tickets are paid for using cash only, so bring plenty of baht with you.

The entrance fee allows you entrance to the entire facility, including Emerald Pool, Blue Pool and Crystal Pool.

If you buy the National Park ticket, you can also enter the Hot Springs

The Emerald Pool is open all year round from 8.30am until 4.30pm daily. The Blue Pool opens from 10.00am until 4.30pm from November until April, but closes during the rainy season.

Tips for Visiting Emerald Pool

To maximize your visit, be sure to follow the following tips…

  • Visit early in the day. As mentioned earlier, by 10.00am the park is teaming with families and they tend to stay all day. Try to visit as early in the day as possible.
  • It can get cold after 3.00pm. By 3.00pm, the sun has sunk below the tree canopies and the pool is shaded. At this time, it can get quite cold, even though the waters are somewhat thermal.
  • Eat before you go. There are restaurants and cafes at the car park before you enter, but the options are limited and the prices are high. We preferred eating before we went.
  • Bring lots of water. Once in the park, there are no refreshment facilities, so bring lots of water to keep yourself hydrated.
  • Keep an eye on your belongings. As mentioned, there’s no locker storage, so be careful where you put your belongings.
  • Wear trainers. The park’s terrain is mostly natural terrain and requires walking over tree roots. Wear trainers rather than flip flops or sandals.
  • Apply sun screen. The forest provides a welcome retreat from the sun, but when you’re in the pool you are exposed to the sun’s rays which can be fierce.
  • Avoid the rainy season. The rainy reason in Thailand is from May until October, and this is not the best time to visit the park as it’s often closed due to flooding, not to mention the sites will be less beautiful when surrounded by mud.
Emerald Pool Krabi
Emerald Pool

FAQs About Visiting Emerald Pool Krabi

Can you swim in Blue Pool in Krabi?

No, you cannot swim in Blue Pool in Krabi. You can only swim in the Emerald Pool, as both Blue Pool and Crystal Pool are fenced off.

Is it worth going to Emerald Pool Krabi?

Yes, it’s definitely worth going to Emerald Pool in Krabi since its quite a unique natural phenomenon. It can get boring sitting on a beach all day, and this offers something a little different to do.

What do you wear to the Emerald Pool in Krabi?

Wear loose fitting clothing or active wear, as you will be hiking through the jungle for 1km. Pack your swimwear, or wear it underneath, and change in the changing rooms before going swimming. Be sure to bring a towel with you!

Final Thoughts

A visit to the Emerald Pool in Krabi is definitely worth it. Not only do you get to witness a unique natural wonder, but you can also bathe in its warm waters, feel the tranquility of the forest setting, and enjoy the natural beauty.

We hope this guide helped you plan your trip to Emerald Pool and gave you the insight you need to plan your visit.

Have you visited Emerald Pool? Let us know in the comments.

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