The big golden Buddha at the hilltop

Complete Guide To The Tiger Cave Temple (Wat Tham Suea), Krabi

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The Buddhist temple known as the Tiger Cave temple or Wat Tham Suea is located in the Krabi province of Southern Thailand. Surrounded by forests, mountains, and caves that used to play host to the majestic tigers, the temple’s name can also be attested to the paw prints resembling a tiger found on the walls of these caves. Now, a meditation center, a Buddhist temple, and a monastery, the Wat Tham Suea is a sight to behold. This blog contains a detailed overview of everything you need to know before visiting this place.

Tiger Cave Temple, Wat Tham Suea

How To Reach?

Bus to reach the tiger cave temple, Krabi

From the town of Krabi, get onto the red bus that will take you to the Tiger Cave temple. This ride would cost a person around 80 baht. Unfortunately, Google Maps proves to be of little help directing you to the bus. You can ask the locals to help you in guiding the way. The most convenient option is to use Grab services, which also cost the same as the buses. You can also catch the bus to the Krabi bus station if you happen to be staying at Ao Nang. You can find several buses traveling to the Tiger Cave from there. 

Timings

The time for climbing up the hill is between 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Tiger Cave Temple at the base closes at 4 p.m.

Entry Fee

Entry is free for everyone – both locals and foreigners. Register your name and the country you’re from. You can donate in the donation boxes kept at different places across the temple.

Best Time To Visit

Entrance to the tiger cave temple, Wat Them Suea

The Tiger Cave Temple can be visited throughout the year. The best time to visit would be during the morning or evening hours when the weather is pleasant to hike. The humidity or hotness might take a toll on you.

Dress Codes

One is expected to dress conservatively as the Tiger Cave Temple is a holy place of worship. Women must cover their knees and shoulders, or entry to the temple is denied. You can borrow clothes at the entrance and return them before 5 p.m. Or, you can purchase shawls from the shops near the entrance. On the other hand, men are allowed to wear shorts. 

Photography

DSLRs are allowed inside the temple. However, flash photography and a tripod stand are not allowed. Drones are restricted as well. Violators who fly drones without permission will be fined 1000 Baht.

Wildlife

Be warned that there are several monkeys found inside the temple premises. There have also been reports about monkey bites. The visitors are requested to refrain from feeding the monkeys. A few cats and dogs are also found.

Network Availability

Network availability is seen throughout the hike. However, we noticed the internet speed isn’t fast (using a True SIM card while hiking up the Tiger Cave temple).

Restroom Availability

There are no restrooms at the top of Tiger Cave Temple. Restrooms are found only at the base.

Where To Eat?

Restaurants and shops at the tiger cave temple

You can find a few shops at the temple’s base offering snacks, fresh smoothies, water, ice creams, and candies, to name a few items. You can only find drinking water at the top of the hill; no shops or stalls are around. Therefore, be sufficiently fed before starting the hike. 

Where To Stay?

 

Krabi offers several accommodations. People usually prefer staying in Krabi or Ao Nang. Krabi town is closer to the Tiger Cave Temple. We stayed at J.P Hometel. The rooms were good and spacious. These are our recommendations.

Hiking Details

The Tiger Cave temple is located at the base of the bill, and the golden Buddha statue with footprints is at the top. You can also find Hindu idols of the elephant God Lord Ganesha and his brother Lord Murugan here. 

Tiger cave temple hike starting point

This strenuous 1260-step climb will lead you right to the top. Each step counts for two, meaning the height of the steps is more than your usual ones. Climbing them is no joke. It is taxing, but the route is gorgeous, with trees protecting you for most of the hike. It takes about an hour or more to ascend and forty minutes for the descent. If you add the time you are bound to spend on the hilltop, the journey would warrant about half a day, considering the time spent exploring the base and the hilltop.

Hiking path or steps to the tiger cave hilltop temple

All who wander are not lost, and the probability of you getting lost here is zero. The path is straightforward, and steps are laid up to the temple at the hilltop. You can finish the hike alone, the need for a guide is neither mandatory nor necessary, unless you would like to learn about the history of this place.

The view from the hilltop or summit

The view you come across when standing at the hilltop at an altitude of 310 m is worth your trip. Featuring a 360° view of the vegetation, the Krabi airport, the Andaman Sea, the surrounding mountains, and the city of Krabi, get ready for some core memories. 

The golden pagoda at the hilltop

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