Visiting Erawan Falls without a tour, Thailand

Thursday, June 14, 2018
On our recent trip in Thailand, we visited Erawan Falls National Park located a few hours outside of Bangkok. We opted to do this on our own vs. going on a tour as the group tours can cost you upwards of $150 USD per person (which I am very happy we didn't spend). We paid $18 per person and explored Erawan Falls at our own leisure - here is how......

Our hotel offered a pick up and drop off for 2500 Baht ($77 USD). We were amazingly lucky as our taxi driver from the day before handed us a business card and said he would take us to Erawan Falls for 1200 baht ($37 USD). The entrance to Erawan Falls is 300 Baht per person ($9 USD). We each paid $18.25 for transportation and park entrance. Much better than $150!
Erawan Falls was founded in 1975 as Thailand's 12th National Park. It consist of 7 major tiers of waterfalls, accessible by trails and footbridges until the 5th tier. After tier 5, you basically scurry up rocks and hope you don't fall (I slipped 1001 times).
Erawan Falls Level 2
Each of the falls have jaw dropping emerald green waters with fish swimming in them. These are larger versions of the spa fishes, and they will "nibble" on you. I have paid for fish spa's twice in Mexico and will never ever do it again as I have PTSD from Erawan Falls. I did NOT like those fish.
Erawan Falls Level 1
Once we started making the treck, we decided to walk straight up to 7 and visit the falls on the way down to avoid crowds. This was a huge mistake, as it wasn't busy when we got there. By the time we made it back down to level 1, there were so many people that we couldn't enjoy the lower falls. My advice, get there early and start at level 1.
Level 7
The treck up to level 7 was NOT easy. To be honest, as beautiful as it was - I don't know if I would do it again. Erawan Falls was named after the three-headed white elephant of Hindu mythology. The top tier of the falls is said to resemble the elephant's head but I didn't see it.
Erawan Falls Overlook
I found level 2 so amazingly beautiful, and would have been happy staying put there, not putting myself in danger lol. Level 2 has a few food shops and souvenirs. If you want to bring a bottle of water up the trek (strongly recommend it), you have to put down a 20 baht deposit. This helps with the littering. After you pass level 2, you find yourself at a beautiful overlook. Once you get to level 3, the real trek begins.....
Level 5, getting bit by fish
Level 4 is deep and has a smooth rock that you can slide down. It was empty when we walked up, and couldn't figure out how to climb up the rock. On our way down, the rock was very busy - and I had no interest in it after slipping 1001 times. Gabe was the only one of our group to slide down the rock - check out the video below!

We saw a family of monkey's during our trek up. It was a large family, about 10+ of them, including babies. I was in heaven! One of the babies played peek-a-boo with Gabe. Below was one of the larger monkeys.
I will say, if you are not physically fit, trekking up the 7 layers of Erawan falls is not a good idea. All four of us agreed, we would have been OK with not going all the way up. It wasn't easy. We wore close toed shoes with good tread on them and I still found myself slipping all over the place. I left Erawan Falls with an extremely bruised palm, skinned knees and bruises all over my legs. Just in time to head to the Thailand beaches!!!
Eating at Erawan Falls
As I mentioned, there are food stalls at level 2. Aside from that, you can buy food from the outside vendors and bring it in (no food past level 2). There is one sit down restaurant, but it is covered, not inside. The outside carts had instant coffee, so if you want fresh ground coffee there is one that is indoors and it has AC and free wifi.

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