Suggested trip for 2-3 days from Chiang Mai

Discussion in 'Touring Northern Thailand - Trip Reports Forum' started by Wild Bill, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. Hi all

    My friend and his girlfriend are coming to Chiang Mai (where I work as a teacher) for a week and my friend is keen to get some 'big bikes' and head off on an adventure for a few days. He is pretty inexperienced on two-wheels but has in the past tried out several small engined motorbikes as well as mopeds and scooters. I have rode a moped around Chiang Mai for years and borrowed a few proper bikes before for road-trips around Chiang Mai province but nothing more than about 200cc.

    Can anyone suggest a decent trip for some relative novices to enjoy along with a suitable bike to ride. I am thinking a Honda CBR250 but he wants something bigger. His girlfriend is coming too, so I guess he needs something comfortable enough for two people.

    I have already done the Mae Hong Son loop, so I was thinking of either heading down towards Mae Sot or up north to the Golden Triangle. We would be looking at spending two nights away, so any ideas of some interesting places to stop where I am not playing gooseberry!


  2. Would not suggest MHS loop for a novice, especially on a bigger bike. The switchbacks around Pai are quite technical and coupled with idiotic minivan drivers, might be pushing it a bit too far.

    I would instead suggest going further north to Chiang Saen / Chiang Khong, then coming down towards Phu Chi Fa and back to CM via Phayao. Riding along the Mekong has some stunning scenery.

    Alternatively, south towards Hot, take a right towards Mae Sariang and then a left towards Mae Sot. The 108 is an incredible road, parts are race circuit quality and then turn the corner and it's potholed and unpaved in some areas (thanks once again to Frank for the recommendation to do this route).
  3. Yes will probably choose one of the two routes suggested. Thanks! Any idea which towns would make a good stop-over?

    Also is the Honda CBR250 up to these roads or would I be better off with a trail bike? Which are cheaper to run and more comfortable?
  4. Hi Bill,

    Here is the route Rob and I took to Chiang Khong..
    Some highways but also lovely back roads and a lovely bit of road along the Mekong.

    Or you have this option.. We did this with John Gooding.. You could easily make this a couple of days / nights as well as expand upon the route

    Also is the Honda CBR250 up to these roads or would I be better off with a trail bike? Which are cheaper to run and more comfortable?

    What you feel comfortable on.. Versys is pretty easy to ride.. Big at first.. but wont take long to get use to the bike.

  5. I did my recent trip on a Versys - what a blast. Not so sure if it's the right bike for novice riders though, and especially if female? For one thing, it's a tall bike (you should ideally have 30' inseam or more to feel secure on the bike) and it packs quite a lot of power. Same for KLX - tall bike. I would imagine that a CBR250 would have sufficient power and as 99% of the roads are paved, not too much of an issue.

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