Chiang Mai in January

Discussion in 'Asia Pacific' started by Cro59, Nov 27, 2018.

?

Best bike for northern Thailand

Poll closed Dec 11, 2018.
  1. 250cc Dirt Bike

    100.0%
  2. 500-650cc Street Bike

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Large Scooter

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    Planning to rent a bike in Chiang Mai in January 2019 for two to three weeks. So a few questions are in order...

    What are your favorite roads and must see places?

    Best place to rent a bike?

    CRL250 or small street bike (CB500 or Versys650)?

    Should I plan to camp, yes or no?

    Okay, ready...go!
    #1
  2. dzl

    dzl adventurer wannabe

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    Go and see Ian.."The Bigfella" here on advrider....he has recently taken over Riders Corner in Chiang Mai and has toured extensively in the area himself

    https://www.riderscorner.net/#reservations

    https://advrider.com/f/members/the-bigfella.162696/
    #2
  3. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    #3
  4. rosmoe

    rosmoe Been here awhile

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    Pops has a large selection of bikes at a fair price. I like the CB 500 X for the mountain roads. Has the top & side cases. The price drops the more days you have the bike. received_751257228564927.jpeg
    #4
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  5. Cuttlefish

    Cuttlefish Riding to disappear.

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    Samoeng loop for a fun 90 km spin into the hills just outside Chiang Mai.
    Riding up to Dog Suthep you can keep going past the Hmong villages and through the hills towards Pai. This used to be all dirt but i moved back to the West quite a while ago.
    Chiang Mai - Mae Hong son loop. 360 odd kms and thousands of corners up and down mountain ranges. Stop over at Cave Lodge 9 kms from the town of Soppong. Visit Lod cave in the evening when the swallows fly in to nest and the bats fly out. Ride over to the Karen hill tribe village from there and ride elephants from their village as opposed to a typical tourist ride. Also many caves to visit in the area. My mate John, who built the lodge should be around then and can take you on some great caving trips if you're into that. He discovered the bulk of them over the last 40 yrs living there.
    Stay overnight and continue on towards Mae Hong son. If you want you can head into the hills to visit Lisu hill tribe villages take the turn to Nong tong which is a few kms outside Soppong and keep going West. You can also take roads up to the Burmese border on the way to Mae Hong son. From Mae hong son continue to Mae Sariang. Then on the way back from Mae Sariang to Chiang Mai can visit Dog Inthanon (Thailand's highest peak). Or from Mae Sariang can head Sth along the border to Tak then loop back around to Chiang Mai.
    Worth going for a ride over to Nan province. Lots of nice curves mountain roads to and from.
    Can be cold on the bike in the mornings and evenings that time of year. 0-5C early but mid 20's plus depending upon in the hills or down in the valleys (high 20's plus).
    if in no hurry use a 250L or rally if you want to explore the dirt roads. The dirt roads can take you to tracks used by the hill tribes to get to their fields which will make you think twice about riding them since they can get really gnarly and steep.
    For the Nan ride you could use a road bike but again there are plenty of dirt roads to explore so a CB500x or AT/GS if you prefer larger adv bikes.
    Camping, nah...more fun rolling up to hill tribe villages and asking to stay and a meal for a nominal fee...you'll enjoy the experience of a vastly different culture and foods.
    #5
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  6. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    Thanks. Pops looks like the best selection. Leaning towards the CB500X since I'll be solo and a dirt bike will just get me in trouble. I can always go back for a trail riding trip later.
    #6
  7. tootall424

    tootall424 Motion Is Lotion

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    We are currently in Mae Sariang on a CB500X from Popcarrent. Did camping last night at Doi Inthanon and that was tough. Happy to answer any questions...

    Attached Files:

    #7
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  8. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    How long will you be in Thailand? Any regrets on the CB? I was thinking about something with a bit more dirt capability, but also expect there is enough to see on tarmac that I wouldn't be bored with a street bike.
    #8
  9. tootall424

    tootall424 Motion Is Lotion

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    We have been in Thailand for about a week and got to Chiangmai three days ago. We leave Bangkok on the 30th. Headed to Mae Hong Son today.

    The bike is a bit cramped for the both of us. I’m 6’6” and she is 5’8”. Wish there was more room for us and luggage. Power seems fine for everything except some of the uphills in Doi Inthanon. It’s nothing like the 1090AdvR I have at home. It was 1100 baht per day plus 1200 baht to rent two jackets and two “nice” helmets.
    #9
  10. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    At 6'6", I think the CB would be cramped with just you onboard. :imaposer
    If you decide to do a ride report then post a link.
    #10
  11. rosmoe

    rosmoe Been here awhile

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    We just got back from a visa run to Mae Sai. This is how we get around Chiang Mai & the north. CBR 300 R. A little small, but works for us. A true adventure is two up on a little scooter with full backpacks. Have seen a few on the road to Pai. No need to camp anywhere, too many great little places to stay. If you find yourself on route 118, do take a 10 minute break at Charin Garden Resort & have a slice of one of their great pies. Also a nice place to stay in Chiang Rai is Pan Kled Villa Eco Hill Resort, formally Buffalo Hill, near the old airport. We usually have breakfast at Bier Stube's across from Pops in CM. Drop me a note here if you want to meet up at Stube's before you take off on your ride. Do get a International Drivers Permit, or plan giving the cops 500 Baht. Chiang Mai seems to be the only place to want to see this, all the other police road checks will just wave you on through. received_1260515054033602.jpeg
    #11
  12. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    Thanks, @rosmoe , I'll PM you when I get there. Would love to hook up to get your recommendations. As far as the IDP, I have one, but it expired in November, and I won't get be back in the US to get a new one before the trip, so I may need to get creative and find a way to turn a 7 into an 8.
    #12
  13. tootall424

    tootall424 Motion Is Lotion

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    #13
  14. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    #14
  15. franki

    franki NB Rider

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    I'll be in Chiangmai and northern Thailand Jan. 8-19 on a CB500X. Stop for a chat or wave if you see me and wife on the back. :clap
    #15
  16. Cro59

    Cro59 Been here awhile

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    I’ll be at Riders Corner a couple more nights and the doing some multi day rides. Sure we can hook up somewhere
    #16
  17. franki

    franki NB Rider

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    I am staying in Chiangmai Jan. 8-11 and leave for a bike trip around northern Thailand Jan. 12, returning to Chiangmai Jan. 19.
    #17