Northern Thailand Rural Bike Tour – Bangkok to Chiang Rai

  • Your tryst with rural Thailand. The trip ensures that you get a peek inside local life of hinterland Thailand, ride by the paddy fields and get to see the ancient Wats of the country.
  • The Buddhist temples are serene, yet exquisite in their aesthetics. The intricate paintings and carvings are enough to engulf you in a world of historic events.
  • A Thai culinary adventure, with an array of dishes that you can try.

On this trip, journey through the well-watered central plains, and northern mountain landscapes of Thailand. Initial half is flat as we wind our way through the plains followed by some spectacular undulating mountain trails in second half of trip.

Our trip is aimed at travellers who want to pace out their journey to really let the region sink in well. Enjoy Thailand’s lush paddy gently swaying in the breeze, world heritage sites, river valleys, and hill-tribe culture, with karst mountains looming in the backdrop all throughout. Your tryst with rural Thailand.

Quick Facts

  • Duration

    14 days / 13 nights

  • Start / End

    Bangkok / Chiang Rai

  • Hotels

    Casual Inns

  • Riding Style

    Active Rider

Group Departures

PRIVATE TRAVEL

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GROUP TRAVEL

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ITINERARY

Brief Itinerary

* with shuttle
DayPlaceCasual InnsDuration~ Cycling Distance
1BangkokX2 Vibe Bangkok Sukhumvit Hotel1
2AyutthayaKrungsri River Hotel130km / 18mi
3Nakhon SawanBonito Chinos Resort 170km / 42mi
4Kamphang PhetChakungrao Riverview Hotel180km / 48mi
5 – 6SukothaiRueanthai Hotel270km / 42mi
30km / 18mi
7UttaraditSeeharaj Hotel160km / 36mi
8LampangWianglakor Hotel170km / 42mi
9 – 10Chiang MaiKampaeng Ngam Hotel270km / 42mi
11Chiang DaoMarisa Resort & Spa160km / 36mi
12ThatonHuai Khum Resort180km / 48mi
13Chiang RaiLaluna Hotel and Resort150km / 30mi
14Departure

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Bangkok – Arrival

Arrive in Bangkok and settle into your hotel. Today you can plan your own day visiting some of the classic highlights of Bangkok. Our guide meets you at 17.00pm at your hotel lobby for tour briefing. We convene tonight to celebrate the start of our awesome journey on a bike.

Meals: Dinner

Day 2: Ayutthaya

Our guide meets you at your hotel lobby at 7:30am and we start with a shuttle transfer from Bangkok to Bang Pa-In. Visit the former summer palace of King Chulalongkornand here and then ride along the Chao Phraya River. Explore the stunning Ayutthaya Historical Park by bike and get to visit various Wats.

At night, we can choose to eat at the in-house restaurant, or head to get a taste of local fare. If your palate is new to Thai food, start with the more popular green curry and rice. Be well rested for the next morning, as we start our Thai adventure with a slightly longer day of cycling.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 30km / 18mi

Day 3: Nakhon Sawan

We take a long shuttle transfer in the morning and then go more into the hinterlands of Northern Thailand. The landscape offers amazing insights into hinterlands. As we ride through the bucolic villages, enjoy the sights of chickens, geese, and monitor lizards with paddy fields and plantations in the backdrop.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 70km / 42mi

Day 4: Kamphang Phet

Today expect to see the hinterland whitewashed with bright green hues of paddy and fruit plantations.

It is not uncommon to see water buffaloes ambling in a row making their way to the rice fields.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 80km / 48mi

Day 5: Sukhothai

The paddy fields cling onto the side of the village road for almost the entire way. The ride is largely on flat roads. We also come across several bucolic villages on the way – perfect to get great photographs of the interiors of Thailand. The locals are quite friendly and don’t be surprised if you are invited in a home for a cup of tea (or red Fanta).

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 70km / 42mi*

Day 6: Sukhothai

Today enjoy some of the classic highlights of the original capital of Thailand by bike.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Distance cycled: ~ 30km / 18mi*

Day 7: Uttaradit

Our ride is through areas replete with vegetation – rice fields, papaya and garlic being the most prominent.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 60km / 36mi

Day 8: Lampang

Brace for an undulating ride today through a rich green valley, unfolding one dramatic scenery after another. Hilltop farming to teak plantations, bamboo huts by the river and elephants lazily relaxing in the river- this is Thailand at its most authentic best! After being submerged in nature, we take the cycles and ride along the river.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 70km / 42mi

Day 9: Chiang Mai

The ride is extremely refreshing as the crisp morning air and clear skies welcome you on the road. We reach Chiang Mai by afternoon.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 70km / 42mi

Day 10: Chiang Mai

Today you can plan your own day visiting some of the classic highlights of Chiang Mai by walk: Wats (temples) like Wat Chedi Luang (entrance fee 40 Baht per person) and Wat Phra That Doi Suthep (entrance fee 50 Baht per person including monorail), Elephant Rescue Park where you can bathe, feed and ride bareback elephants and gentle giants (7.45 – 14.00, entrance fee 2,200 Baht per person), and need to book in advance.

Meals: Breakfast


Day 11: Chiang Dao – forest trail

Head out for a ride to the Chiang Dao, lies on the northern part of the Chiang Mai district. Amidst lush jungles and limestone mountains, Chiang Dao is a heavenly escape from the heat of plains and a popular stop for birders and trekkers. The base of the mountain is a highly venerated wát marking the entrance to one of Thailand’s deepest limestone caverns.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 60km / 36mi

Day 12: Thaton – tropical trail

The day begins with a visit to Tub Tao Caves and temple retreat. Later ride to Fang through hinterland trails dotted with farmlands. The ride from Fang to Thaton traverses across paddy fields. The fields cling onto the side of the village road for almost the entire way. The ride is mostly on flat roads, with occasional dips and climbs, which add to the interest for a cyclist. We also come across several villages on the way – perfect to get great photographs of the interiors of Thailand.

We pace out our journey to Thaton and arrive at this beautiful town at the edge of a River. Thaton is one of the last towns bordering Myanmar in this area. The great part of this is that one gets to see the blend of Burmese, Thai and Chinese influences in language and culture.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 80km / 48mi*

Day 13: Chiang Rai – agriculture trail

We trade our bike with long-tail boat today to arrive at a scenic riverside area. This brings us to our starting point for cycling. Ride past fruit orchards, paddy fields, banana plantations and arrive at Chiang Rai. The region is home to distinct array of food, music, art and lush landscapes.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance cycled: ~ 50km / 30mi

Day 14: Departure

Travel as per your onward travel plans.

Meals: Breakfast

REVIEWS

from our friends

The trip was wonderful. Everything worked out very well. The bikes were great, the hotels were fine, the pools were appreciated, and the food was tremendous. The roads, to my welcome surprise, were smooth and well maintained.

My strongest words go to the guide, Noom, and the driver. Nit. They gave us warm attention and shared their knowledge and love of Thailand with great spirit and warmth. Noom’s hand signals made sure that we made every turn safely and avoided any road debris. Given that we were not used to riding on the left, his constant attention was well needed.

We particularly enjoyed the last week of the trip as we left the flat roads of the center plains and moved into the hills of the North. Noom seemed to know many secret quiet country roads that allowed us to see the lush country side without fear of other vehicles.

Robert S.

We biked from Bangkok to Chiang Rai in April/May 2019 with Art of Bicycle. The guide (Noom AlphaGo) and the support vehicle driver Prasertsak Duanchai (Sunni) were awesome. They anticipated needs and ensured that the trip ran very smoothly. The trip was guaranteed with only two participants (and there were only two of us) so it was like a private tour. Equipment was excellent and they carried an extra bike “just in case” which we appreciated. The one (slightly) negative observation – the hotels selected seemed to be away from the city centres so it was difficult to walk around the city centres at night or early AM. The operator seemed to want to offer hotels with swimming pools – which meant hotels with enough land on which to build swimming pools which meant hotels away from downtown. Some would say after a long day of biking that swimming pools are great but I prefer to be closer to the historical centre of a town. Restaurant and hotels at 3-4 star level mostly, but (they say) the best in the smaller towns we biked through. Can’t say enough good things about the two guides and their attention to detail!! I will definitely book more trips with Art of the Bicycle!!

Mary B.