Guided Motorcycle Tours and Motorbike Adventure Touring in Northern Thailand

Trip Itineraries: Motorcycling in Northern Thailand 2015

Where do we go

 

2015 Trips:

16 October - 31 October 2015 (Includes Labour weekend)

Our trips take us through the northern part of Thailand well away from the hustle and bustle of Bangkok. In fact we only spend two nights there at the start- just enough to get a feel of the bustle and also have some tailor made clothes made to measure if you like. Our motorcycling trip starts and ends in Chiang Mai, a relaxed city 650kms north of the capital, Bangkok. We do a 1600 km circuit which roughly follows western Thailand close to the border of Myanmar (formerly Burma) and we cross into Burma for a brief eye-opening insight into this very backward and private Communist state. The main places we visit are:

  • Pai- the centre for trekking in Northern Thailand up in the hills
  • Doi Inthanon- The highest mountain in Thailand. We ride from sea level to the summit at 2500 metres
  • Phrao- a typical rural Thai town, and we stay at a German resort in the middle of rice paddies
  • Mae Hong Son- this trekking town is close to the Burmese border set in a beautiful mountain valley
  • Burma- we cross into Burma (by foot) for an intriguing comparison with Thailand
  • Golden Triangle- this is the historical drug running capital of the world. There is even an Opium museum here!
  • MekongRiver- we go down a little way by boat (to go into Laos) and then ride along the banks on our way to Chiang Rai

In 2015 we will be running a trip in October. These dates are designed to optimise the mild Thai weather and avoid excessive heat and the rainy season.

Customised trips at other times are also available.


Read the typical itinerary below or call us for a chat on (+64) 021 248 9452 >



Typical Daily Itinerary Summary

Day 1

Fly to Bangkok arriving in the evening

Day 2

Morning Sightseeing in Bangkok then fly to Chiang Mai in the afternoon

Day 3

Chiang Mai orientation, bike selection, relaxation, night markets and great food

Day 4

Ride to Phrao & stay in a rice paddie resort via Elephant camp and Monkey school

Day 5

Ride to Thaton on the Mae Kok River, the home of 7 magnificent temples

Day 6

Ride the Mae Salong Loop through tea plantations to Mae Sai and cross into Myanmar (Burma)

Day 7

Ride to Golden Triangle then to Chiang Rai via Mekong River

Day 8

Ride to Sri Lanna National Park & stay on Houseboats

Day 9

Ride the uphill twisty route to Pai, the beautiful trekking town

Day 10

Relaxing day in Pai

Day 11

Ride the 1864 curve Loop to Mae Hong Son

Day 12

Ride further around the loop to Mae Sariang

Day 13

Ride to Chiang Mai via Doi Inthanon, Thailand’s highest mountain

Day 14

Relax in Chiang Mai

Day 15

Fly to Bangkok, then an overnight flight towards Home

Day 16

Arrive Home early afternoon



Day by Day Activities

Meals included are shown in brackets (B=breakfast , L= lunch, D=Dinner). All breakfasts are included with our hotel accommodation and are usually extensive buffet selections with fruit and cereals, fresh omelettes or other eggs, as well as Asian varieties of morning food including rice soups and congee. Other meals are good quality healthy fresh restaurant meals catering for all tastes. At lunchtimes on the road we are sometimes limited in choice. Our evening meals are often in the night markets (Chiang Mai & Chiang Rai), or otherwise at good quality hotels or restaurants. Meals include fresh bottled water, but other drinks are at individuals’ expense.

Day 1 (D) Big Bird Flight- We all meet in Bangkok in the evening usually after a long hour flight. For those travelling with us, we are transferred by mini buses to our hotel in the downtown area of Bangkok.

Day 2 (B,D) Little Bird Flight- In the morning we often take a trip up the Baiyoke Tower to see Bangkok from the 84th floor. We head off to the airport around 12.30, and catch a one hour 3pm flight to Chiang Mai. Here we are picked up and taken to our hotel in the centre of town, just a short walk from Chiang Mai’s famous night market.

Day 3 (B,D) Catchup- You are likely to find the travel catches up with you and so today is a day for Chiang Mai orientation, and relaxation. For those wanting to have quality made to measure clothes at ridiculously low prices, today is the day to organise it. We also go to the Bike helmet shop and also check out our bikes, choosing our particular bikes for the road trip. In the evening we go to the riverside for great food and those keen will usually have a massage- feet, neck, shoulders, back, oil or whatever!

Day 4 (B,L,D) Settling in- Today is our first day on the road. Time is spent getting out of town, familiarising ourselves with bike and traffic as we head towards the small rural city of Phrao. On the way we can stop at the Elephant Camp and Monkey school where we see the intelligence and training of some of our close cousins. The final 32kms from the main road is one of the loveliest as we pass through a stunning valley and forest. Unlike any other hotel, we stay in a rice paddie resort called Doi Farang (foreigner’s place) owned by a very correct German who is a good mate of Michael Schumacher.

Day 5 (B,L,D) A Taste of Twisties- If all works out, this morning we go and visit Frank who is an 80 year old Canadian living out his retirement years with Somjit, his Thai wife. Talking to them is fascinating and we get a good feel for the tranquillity and challenges of foreigners living in Thailand. He will sometimes ride with us on his motorbike for a while, leading us through lovely unspoilt rural Thailand, on route to Thaton close to the Myanmar border. On a recent trip there was an elephant football game in the evening which most of the locals attended.

Day 6 (B,L,D) The Road to Burma- After our gorgeous stay by the riverside, we have a lovely ride along the sweepy Mae Salong loop and stop at the town famed for varied tea and tea pots. A 10 minute stop often lasts an hour! Another 2 hours ride and we arrive in Mae Sai for a quick lunch and a crossing into Myanmar (Burma). It is hard to describe the experience, but suffice to say, Thailand will welcome you back after a couple of hours.

Day 7 (B,L,D) Opium & the Golden Triangle-Our morning ride takes us to the Golden Triangle where Thailand, Laos and Burma meet on the Mekong River. We cross briefly into Laos then head down the banks of the Mekong to the city of Chiang Rai. This is the next largest city after Chiang Mai. Dinner once again is at the night market, within easy distance of our hotel.

Day 8 (B,L,D) Temples & Houseboats- It’s an interesting morning as we head to the Khun Wat an ice-white temple which is a local rich man’s folly. Then it’s back on the bikes following a different remote route through the mountains back to Phrao. Then its a quick blast down to the Sri Lanna National Park where we stay on a Houseboat on a huge man-made lake which serves as one of the hydro sources for Chiang Mai. Whilst the cabins are quaint, the setting is stunning and the tepid water is gorgeous for swimming, kayaking or fishing.

Day 9 (B,L,D) Climp Every Mountain- Once we leave our houseboat and get back on dry land, we get back on the motorbikes and head into the hills towards the hillside trekking town of Pai. It is good to have a little time to relax and our hotel has a lovely pool. Pai is great for sitting at the open air restaurants and watching the locals in Burkas riding their bicycles and scooters 3 up as they go about their daily business.

Day 10 (B,L,D) Relax at Pai- We spend another day at Pai where we can catch up with laundry and emails, go to town, rafting, trekking, cooking school, caving, or do a short ride to a lovely waterfall near our resort. As an alternative we can take an optional twisty hillside ride or just relax by the pool. Later we head into town for dinner, hopefully having a Thai equivalent of a barbecue which we cook ourselves.

Day 11 (B,L,D) Start the Loop- Today’s ride is the first part of the Mae Hong Son Loop- the road of 1864 twisty curves: (yes, you can buy the T shirt!) This area is described in many travel journals as “the Switzerland of Asia”. It really is pretty scenery. We stop at some caves and hot springs, then on to the town of Mae Hong Son, where we go up into the hills for a bird’s eye view of the area, and check out the local temples. Our resort is a little out of town in a rural village with a stunning pool and bar!

Day 12 (B,L,D) 1864 Curves- We are on the road early in order to go down the river by boat to the long-neck Karen tribe village. Here the women are fitted from an early age with brass neck rings which stretch their necks to a great length. Then we continue the 150km twisty hill ride to Mae Sariang stopping at a World War II museum along the way, arriving mid afternoon.

Day 13 (B,L,D) The Full Monty- More twisty roads as we ride south the East towards Doi Inthanon (Thailand’s highest mountain). Once in the national park, it is a lovely 50km ride from sea level to 7500 feet. Lunch on the way down sets us up for some lovely roads as we make our final leg back to the bustle of Chiang Mai where we hopefully return our bikes in one piece to their owner.

Day 14 (B,D) Winding Down- By now you will have deserved a rest and we have a day to relax in Chiang Mai, do last minute shopping, do a cooking school, visit the X Centre outdoors pursuits centre, visit the Gem factory, collect our clothes from the tailor and catch up with laundry and email. At our farewell dinner, we will say goodbye to our support crew, our guide and our new friends.

Day 15 (B) Say Farewell- Our last day in Thailand is up to you to enjoy as you will. Our hotel is near bazaars, the river and a variety of activities. Then in the afternoon it is off to the airport to check in for our short flight to Bangkok and then take evening flight home. We arrive at home next afternoon (day 16), and say farewell as we head back to reality after a wonderful holiday in Thailand.

Please Note: the above itinerary is based on prior years’ activities, and may vary due to availability of hotels or resources, new opportunities, or other circumstances beyond our control.


Do you want more details? Call Martin now (+64) 021 248 9452 or email >