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  1. #1
    Member engrin's Avatar
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    Northern Thailand Must Sees/Dos Uknowns, Hotels etc

    Planning on spending a week or longer visiting Northen Thailand. I plan to travel via public transportation. Just wondering if anyone would like to suggest a route/hotels etc? I have lived in Thailand for 6 years but have never been up there!! Budget is low end, prefer to spend around 500/night for hotels..

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    Member SpicyMartin's Avatar
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    Public transportation? Personally I'd say if you're using that then just use it to get to places you can use as a base (Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai) then hire a scooter or small trials bike to go have a look at the scenery and places of interest slightly off the beaten track. For instance if you stay at a guest house in Chiang Rai and hire a scoot you could have a wondelful time just sightseeing up to Mae Chan then west doing the Doi Mae Salong loop and back. Or the Golden Triangle. Or be adventurous and do the Chiang Mai - Mae Sariang - Mae Hong Son - Pai - Chiang Mai loop?

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    Thailand Expat terry57's Avatar
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    If you can stretch your budget to hire a car for a week the above route is stunning with many cheap good hotels on route.

    Try and go in season, November, December and January are bloody stunning up there.

    If you cant get the car you could hire a bike and last resort is do the loop bit by bit on the public bus.

    Just get up there, but in February they start burning and then its shit, go before then.
    I do not give Patsycat " The Horn " thank Fuk.

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    Member fiddler's Avatar
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    Northern Thailand is vast.
    I would suggest the mountains in the west as probably the best.
    Check out Pai or Mai Hung San area for a start. (west of Chiang Mai)

    I wouldn't plan too much, that way you can go with the flow and talk to people that are like minded about where they've been once you're there.

    If Issan is more your style, maybe start up around Nung Kai and head south to Udon, Chumpae area. There are a bunch of National parks just west and a little north of there: Nam Now, Phukading, etc.

    Public buses running everywhere. That's how Thai people get around.
    Most towns have hotels that are around 400 baht per night.
    Food is cheap up there too (especially Issan)

    Have fun.

    (If I was to rent a motorbike to do this, I would probably want to travel down the Mekong river. )

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat misskit's Avatar
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    There are many guest houses in Chaing Mai for under 500 baht. Gap's House on Rachadamneon Road is a good one. It is very well known so any minibus or tuktuk driver can get you there. No reservations; it's strictly first come, first serve. If you don't have any luck there, just walk up the street to Soi 5 where there are several guesthouses in your price range.

    This is right in the middle of the town and tourist area, so you will have no problem getting around. Red minibus is 20b anywhere in town (as long as you are going in their direction) Arcade bus station gets you to Chiang Rai. Chiang Puak station gets you to Pai and Mae Hong Son, but that 8 hour ride is a bit hellish.

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    Member engrin's Avatar
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    thanks for the tips. The trip will be next week or the one after. Will be a travelling hobo at that time with all my belongings. Would love to rent a 250 cc but can't carry everything. Think i will start in mhs as recommended.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by misskit
    Gap's House on Rachadamneon Road is a good one
    Paraphrase that, "used to be a good one." Smokers and loud noise from shops in front have ruined the location IMO. Great Vegetarian evening buffet meal still a deal however.

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    Just found a helpful web site called ontheroadthailand.com. I think this will be helpful to many travelers especially bike affectionados. All areas locations of Thailand are mapped and explored, discussed and with pictures as well.

    Give it a try.

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    Thailand Expat 9999's Avatar
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    Check out the links in my signature.

    They're all driving road trips but show the kind of places to stay you are after. This time of year is cheap as. Stayed in Nong Khai in real nice wooden air-con proper comfortable chalet for 490bt.

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    Member isanmick's Avatar
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    From Nong Khai if you follow the Maekong river north to Chiang Khan is very nice and on to Loei which I think has some of the nicest scenery in Thailand.

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    Thailand Expat 9999's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by isanmick
    From Nong Khai if you follow the Maekong river north to Chiang Khan is very nice and on to Loei which I think has some of the nicest scenery in Thailand.
    Yep I did that trip just a few weeks ago. Been meaning to do a thread on it but haven't been arsed yet. We followed the Meekong and cut down to Loei, then travelled back up along the Laos border - dodgy roads but great scenery, around where Laos, Petchabum and Phrae come together.

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    Member SpicyMartin's Avatar
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    Last December did a road bike trip from Chiang Mai to Udon via Lampang, Uttaradit, Nakhon Thai, Dan Sai, Phu Ruea, Loei, Chiang Khan and Nong Khai...... terrific ride.

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    Uttaradit countryside is some of the finest Thailand has to offer. Mountains, high mountain rice paddies, teak groves forever. I am amazed that this area remains relatively untouched by the local ex-pat travelers and tourists. The further you go up the better it gets.

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    Newbie Behind The Smile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by engrin View Post
    Planning on spending a week or longer visiting Northen Thailand. I plan to travel via public transportation. Just wondering if anyone would like to suggest a route/hotels etc? I have lived in Thailand for 6 years but have never been up there!! Budget is low end, prefer to spend around 500/night for hotels..
    The train up from Bangkok will take you to Phitsanulok - that's good for a few days.
    Take the bus to Sukhotai for Sri Satchenalai [spelling?].
    Then it goes to Phichai - not a lot to see, but nice for a day. It used to be the capital of Uttaradit. Then on to Uttaradit, also good for a couple of days.

    Either get back on the train for a a ride through the mountains to Chang Mai, or take the bus through the mountains to Phrae and Nan.

    The northerners are particularly friendly people.

    Look them all up on Wikipedia.

    I live near Phichai.

    Owen

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