All About this Tour
Ride on local roads that have little traffic through the spectacular limestone mountains of Chiang Dao and to the scenic village of Mae Salak, straddling the Mae Kok River.
We ride on small local roads with little traffic and some short off-road sections. The terrain is undulating with no major climbs, but just in case, our support vehicle is always close by. This tour is suitable for anyone with biking experience. The trip is fully supported and your guide’s expert knowledge of the area and terrain means that you always know what is coming up in terms of distance and difficulty. This makes a tremendous difference, as does the constant supply of cold drinks and fresh fruit.
Suitability: This tour is suitable for riders with biking experience. You can expect a fairly gentle ride each day with none of the distances being overly long. There are a few small hills, but these can be tackled by anyone with even a moderate amount of fitness. The emphasis on this tour is Thailand’s scenery off the beaten track.
Biking Conditions: This trip is a mixture of wide, hard-packed dirt trails, single tracks and smooth tarmac. An air-conditioned bus travels behind the group to support us, and participants can cycle as much or as little as they like and still enjoy the same views as the rest of the group.
After the pickup from hotel in the morning, we transfer to start off at Buathong waterfall. A walk up the waterfalls will get your legs warmed up and ready to ride. We start by cycling through a teak tree farm with the various ages of the trees listed. From there we ride along country roads, along a canal and through rice paddies. We'll stop for a break at Mae Ngad reservoir and enjoy the lake side view from the dam. The hotel has a great pool and a swim is a fine way to finish off a great riding day.
We take a transfer from our resort to the Chiang Dao Caves and the start of our ride. After a visit to the cave we'll ride through rice fields set among soaring limestone cliffs. We may meet some local tribe peoples - Akha, Lisu, and Palaung – from the area. The colourful Palaungs are recent migrants and you will see their women adorned with heavy brass waist-bands working the fields.
After breakfast we begin cycling from the hotel, riding through small villages and rice paddies. The ride to Mae Salak follows the Mae Kok river and is one of the most scenic on the trip. The lush green hills in the distant is Thailand's natural border with neighbouring Myanmar. We cycle into the village of Fang, where we'll stop for a tasty Thai lunch, then transfer to our hotel on the banks of the Maekok River.
This morning we take a quick transfer to a Lahu village where we then hitch a ride on a long-tail boat (with our bikes) on the Mae Kok River. Once back on solid ground we cycle along some natural hot springs and then back track a short bit to head to Chiang Rai. We visit one of the most important temples of Chiang Rai, Wat Phrakaew, which once housed the Emerald Buddha before its present day location at the Grand Palace in Bangkok. After our break we ride on to Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple. Here we'll end our tour and transfer you to your Chiang Rai city hotel or to the airport.
Bike hire is included in the tour. The bikes are well-known makes of hybrid or mountain bikes (depending on the tour) with lightweight alloy frames, 24- to 27-speed gearing, v-brakes and Shimano components and front suspension.
Basic spares and tools are carried by the guide and on the support vehicle, though we cannot guarantee having spares for every conceivable problem. Carrying a basic tool kit, a spare tube and a pump while riding is recommended.
Wearing a helmet is required on all our biking adventures and is non negotiable. If you do not wear a helmet you will not be allowed to cycle. Your tour leader is trained in first aid and emergency rescue, but to a large degree you must be responsible for your own safety while riding. It is therefore compulsory that you take out travel insurance that will cover you for a mountain biking tour.
You will be led by a local English-speaking guide and if the group is 9 people or more we will add another guide to the tour. All our guides are well informed in the history, culture and religions of the area where you are biking and are skilled at passing that knowledge on to you. Your guide is also medically trained and an experienced cyclist, able to handle most minor repairs en route.
We recommend that you visit a travel medical doctor and ask about the following vaccinations: typhoid, polio, tetanus and hepatitis A. A certificate for Yellow Fever is required when arriving from an infected area within six days.
Thailand generally has a tropical climate with fairly high humidity. The North and Central region have a tropical climate with fairly high humidity. Northeast Thailand has a humid hot and dry weather alternatively with medium rain while the coastal areas of the east is humid and hot with intermittent rain. The South of Thailand has a tropical climate with fairly high humidity.
There are three seasons: from March to June it is hot and dry, with temperatures between 27˚C/80 F and 40˚C/104 F, with night temperatures in the 20s. The rainy season is from July to October, but temperatures are slightly lower, because of the effect of the rain. During this time it will not rain continuously, but in sharp bursts, and the sun can come out quickly. The cooler season is from October to February, with average temperatures between 20˚C/68 F and 30˚C/86 F.
Meals are included as per the itinerary where B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner. Most meals are local and feature noodles, rice, curries, and soups. Any special dietary requirements can also be catered for as well. Please let us know at the time of booking.
Keeping you completely hydrated is a job we take very seriously. Cold water, some energy-restoring local fruit, and soft drinks are included in the tour price while riding. Soft drinks and other beverages during meals are not included. Beer is freely available everywhere but is NOT included in the price.
SpiceRoads does not require you to pay a surcharge for traveling alone. We will arrange for you to share accommodation with another traveler of the same gender and if we cannot match you up we will provide a single room at no extra charge. If you prefer not to share a single supplement is payable to guarantee your own room. The cost of the single supplement is listed above.
We recommend that you tuck away a few extra dollars, perhaps US$20 per day, for incidentals.
The Thai currency is the baht. ATMs, which are abundant, are the easiest ways to get Thai baht. Have a supply of US dollars in cash on hand, just in case your card doesn’t work. Banks or the rarer private moneychangers offer the best foreign-exchange rates. Credit cards are accepted in big cities and resort hotels but you’ll need baht for family-run guesthouses or restaurants.
If this is the tour for you here's what you need to do to confirm your place: Read our Booking Conditions
From the tour page click the 'Book Now' link. All departures for this tour will appear, just select the date you'd like to travel. There is a minimum number of participants (usually 2) required to enable the trip to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to Depart'. Once a trip is guaranteed to depart you are free to book your flights and make other travel arrangements. If you are unsure about the trip status, please email us or call our office. For the next steps you'll need to know the names of the people traveling and have either a Visa or a MasterCard. If you wish you can also provide extra details such as passport numbers, height, or you can add that later by logging into Manage My Trip (we'll set up an account for you automatically if you don't already have one). However, if you wish to get a children's discount, please do fill out the date of birth of the riders. If you are having any problems, please send us an email, or give us a call (+66 2 381 7490) and one of our travel specialists will assist you with your booking.
For Long Tours (7 days or more) to guarantee your place we require a 30% or 500 USD deposit, whichever is the greater. For Short Tours (6 days or less) we require full payment to guarantee your place. We also require that you take out travel insurance when you book your holiday. Besides covering you during your holiday it will also enable you to claim for any money that you have paid to us, including your deposit, should you have to cancel your trip.
Full payment must be paid 45 days before the departure date with fees for any bicycle rental(s), single supplement(s) and extra hotel nights. Our confirmation will include personal details you provided us (including your flight information), visa application advice, a packing suggestion list and a detailed tour itinerary. It will also include a checklist to ensure you get everything ready for your holiday.
On the rare occasions when we, SpiceRoads, must cancel a trip, all payments received to date will be 100% refunded, which constitutes full settlement. There will be absolutely no deductions. If you, the client, must cancel your reservation, your cancellation fee will be determined according to when you cancel. For full details, please read our cancellation policy.
For those who have been on several long tours with us we reward customer loyalty by offering repeat customers a special discount off the tour price (excludes single supplement and bike rental). If this is your fourth scheduled tour or more you will receive a 5% discount. If this is your eighth scheduled tour or more we will extend a 10% discount. The discount will be reflected in your online booking, but please contact us if any questions. Loyalty discounts can not be used in conjunction with any other offer. Note: Only tours of 7 days or more will be applicable for loyalty discount.
International flights, to and from the start and finish points are not included in the tour price. Once your tour is Guaranteed to Depart you can book your flight. Please contact us for advice before arranging flights for the best arrival and departure times. We would only cancel a trip for an extreme circumstance, but in that case, where we cancel your trip, we cannot be liable for losses incurred relating to any flight booking you have made. Please claim any losses from your travel insurance that you acquired when you booked your holiday.
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The information in this document is given in good faith, and covers the average range of conditions likely to be found on this trip. Please note that the itinerary is subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances, however, we will always do our best to adhere to this original itinerary