advice and companions wanted: north thailand > MHS > maybe laos and cambodia

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - General Discussion Forum' started by xbai87, May 22, 2013.

  1. xbai87

    xbai87 New Member

    hi guys, i'll be riding up from singapore, solo, some time this june. planning my trip up to south thailand is easy enough, but shit gets real crazy up in the north.

    first things first, please note that i'll be riding a GSXR600 which is pretty much set up for the track. i do not have access to another bike and am not very keen on renting (there's a certain attachment to this bike and i want to see this trip through with her).

    (1) from chiang mai, the first thing i want to do is the ride the 1800 curves to MHS. thereafter, i'm not sure whether to finish the clockwise loop or to simply ride back. i've read some very useful GTR reports and it seems to me there are lotsa areas where roadbikes will have it tough (or rather, from pai back to chiang mai). personally, i hope to at least touch the border of Myanmar (Burma) but i have no intentions of riding through. thoughts?

    (2) after completing (1), i hope to ride to laos, and again, i want to touch the border to china and visit boten. thereafter i want to go down to Luang Praban. i'm totally unsure about how to go about (2) because it seems to me that GTRs that have done this all did so on dirtbikes and through trail routes. not sure if i'm going to be able to do this on my GSXR600.

    (3) assuming i get to do (2), i intend to re-enter thailand and catch a train down to cambodia and visit ang kor wat. i am open to simply riding down but to be honest, i don't quite fancy the idea of riding all the way down alone because at that point i would have spent some 20 days by myself (unless of course i can find someone to go with me).

    i know my questions seem to be one big mess of ??? but each GTR report i read only raises more questions than answers. hope to gain some clarity. thanks in advance!!
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  3. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Ol'Timer

    Hi Xbai87,

    Welcome to GT-Rider.

    You will find a lot of information here and a lot of people willing to share and assist.
    Do drop in to Euro Diner and X Centre when in Chiang Mai... Biker run and biker friendly and supporters of GT-Rider.

    Question 2.

    Here is a great report from Rob in Malaysia. You may want to study this and look at the road conditions and sites.
    This trip was completed on road bikes and touches on most of the areas you want to visit and some others you should consider.

    Question 3.

    It is pretty easy to put your bike on the train in either Nong Khai or Chiang Mai to Bangkok.
    Suggest you book yourself a first class (air con) sleeper..
    I have put my ninja on the train and KLX numerous times.. All good..
    There are some posts on the forum about the train and what is involved.

    The road to Siem Reap is completed now.. No reason with an early start in Bangkok you couldn't be in Seam Reap in the afternoon.
    Poipet is a yuck border crossing. scams, busy etc.. Use your common sense and you will be fine..
    There are posts under the Cambodia section that will help.

    Question 1.
    I will leave to the fellas in Chiang Mai to respond as they know the area way better than me

    Sure others will have lots of input on your questions too,

    Cheers and hope to see some pics and a report from your journey.

  4. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Gday & welcome to GTR.

    To get the best out of North Thailand, try this GT Rider trip planner - outline
    plus take a look here

    Road bikes on the MHS Loop are fun. You can go off-road on a dirt bke but there is lots to see on the asphalt too.
    Check out this report on GTR

    For the Laos check out the GT Rider Trip Planner
    by Jurgen.
    Only the road Pak Mong - Oudom Sai will get you cranky. Potholes joined by broken asphalt.
    You can do it - slowly, but you will curse, & get hot 'n bothered.

    Anything else, just ask.
  5. phuketrichard

    phuketrichard Ol'Timer

    the roads from Chiang Kong /Baan Huay Sai) border crossing up to Luang Namtha/Muang Sing and than up to the china border and back down to Luang Prabang, Vientiane are all easily doable on a road bike as i have driven them in my car. Potholed. cracked asphalt and some hard dirt but ok, I averaged less than 40 kms/hour the whole route.
    heading back up first of July

    Bangkok ( or Pattaya) - sr in a day is easy to do (7-9 hours )
    rather than backtracking once ur in Laos, head out of Laos at Vientiane to Nong khai an head south along the Maekong, ( via Nakon Phanom, Mukdahan, Ubon) to Surin an cross in to Cambodia at Osmach and than it's a 2 hour ride to SR. all sealed roads
  6. xbai87

    xbai87 New Member

    wow thanks everyone! clearly my due diligence hasn't been as thorough as it should be. the resources that all of you have so kindly dug out will surely enable me to plan for the remainder of my trip. that said, can anyone shed light on the issue of petrol? i don't have the privilege of going 200km on a tank of gas. in fact, i'm known amongst friends as being particularly vicious on the throttle. while i will be riding with moderation and will probably get way better mileage than on Singapore's city streets, for the purposes of planning, i am simply going to assume a maximum of 160km before i need to refuel. will there be petrol stations? as mentioned, i'll be riding a gsxr600 .. and i will be traveling light (meaning 1 tail bag - that's it). i will not be able to carry extra gas around. am i alright to go?

    ps: with regards my traveling light, that's a non-issue for me. having been in a combat unit for my national service, i'm quite familiar with packing efficiently, personal maintenance and living off very little.

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