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biking
Adventures in Thailand > Biking

Biking

   
 

About Bicycle Tours

Going on a tour by bicycle is probably one of the best ways to visit some of Thailand's important sites whether in the capital, Bangkok, or neighbouring provinces close to the capital such as Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phetchaburi, Kanchanaburi, Chon Buri and Rayong. Depending on your preference, the BEST bicycle experience is probably right here in Bangkok where easy-going bicycle trips through areas surrounding the Grand Palace are available.

               

About Mountain Biking

Mountain biking is a more rigorous type of cycling on off-track terrains and is a relatively new sport in Thailand, found mostly in the steeper terrain of the north, Thailand's mountain biking routes are mainly located in national parks however, more and more new routes have been opened-up by specialists, some of which haw nor been officially mapped out, making for formidable challenges.

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How to Sign-up for Bicycle Tours?

Thailand's traffic is heavy and driving styles are rather erratic. It is not advisable to conduct a bicycle trip on your own, Guidance and accompaniment by trained specialists are best to ensure safety and that you arrive at your destination through the safest and most scenic routes.

When planning any bicycle tour, please consult the travel company you are using very carefully and state the physical exertion your group will be able to endure. With the hot and humid Thai weather even the fittest cyclist will find this trying, Sunstroke and dehydration are very common for those unfamiliar with the tropics. In light of this, travel companies almost always intersperse cycling with a pleasant boat ride, some sea kayaking, elephant back riding or some other form of relaxing activity for cyclists to cool down.

   

How to get started with Mountain Biking?

To start off your mountain biking expedition, research the various routes that are available in national parks. It's always good to join an expedition with the like-minded however, if you prefer an exclusive experience with good friends, private expeditions are of course available, Look for a tour operator that is able to offer a great variety of mountain biking routes as this is tell-tale of experience. Also be sure to check that insurance is included in your expedition package. To be doubly sure of safety, do be sure that you also check the insurance details and make sure that emergency evacuation is available. And lastly, and probably most importantly, ask for emergency procedures. You need this information to be assured that proper measures are taken should an emergency occur. Being a rather strenuous and risky sport, it is always best to locate a specialist that is able to provide you mountain biking gear that are properly serviced, as well as, spare bikes. An experienced guide is also necessary as some routes takes you into far reaching areas that are unmarked making the return rather tricky.

 

Cycle Destinations

Bicycle Tours: Bangkok

For starters, within the capital itself, the Bangkok Tourist Bureau's organises cycling tours to the city's main sights. You can choose among a number of tours which covers the Grand Palace area and its surroundings (Rattanakosin Tour) as well as bicycle tours to other lesser known areas. These tours are a unique way to see Bangkok as they usually start in the evenings. The added advantage of this tour is obviously the fact that you don't have the sun beating down on you. Starting from the scenic Phra Athit Read which is located next to the Chao Phraya River, stops are at made at the city's landmarks such as Wat Suthat, the Giant Swing and the Metal Temple, Cyclists are also taken through Khao San Road; Bangkok's most well known stop-over for the young and restless. Formerly a back-packers' hang out, today Khao San Road is one of the hippest areas in town with great and interesting nightspots catering to those looking for a good time. Along here also lies a number of great cuisines from the world over. Within Khao San Road, street-side shopping is available as well as hair styling, manicures, foot massages and lots more. More importantly, Khao san is where great travel finds such as cheap air tickets to all destinations within and outside of Thailand are sold.

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Another interesting cycling trip also organised by the Bangkok Tourist Bureau is a ride through Bangkok's lesser known suburban areas. Believe it or not, traditional riverside life can still be found within the capital. Cyclists are taken through these low-key suburbia that can be a fascinating ride. All cycling trips conducted by the bureau do not require much stamina or physical exertion as stops are made throughout the route where cyclists are given guided tours at each stop. These bicycle tours are safe and guides are included within the trips, These trips are also a great way to get to know Bangkok's brief history rather quickly and are good value for money. One can sign-up for these trips and join other cyclists or, request the Bangkok Tourist Bureau to quote for exclusive bicycle tours for your group of friends. Included in the package are water and snacks. These bicycle trips are a great experience for all and a definite must for any visitor to Bangkok. Call the Bangkok Tourist Bureau at Tel: (66) 2225-7612-4 to require on details.

Bicycle Tours: Central Thailand

A number of companies also offer bicycle trips that start from Bangkok that lead to nearby destinations such as the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and back. Other bicycle trips lead you all the way to Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand's former capital. This fascinating trip takes you through the ancient capital's ruins which in its heyday was a city that challenged London in size and population. Bicycle trips can also start from the ancient capital of Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya to Sukhothai, the country's former capital some 700 years ago.

However, for those die-hard, hard-core cyclists that enjoy more rigorous cycling, bicycle trips through Khao Yai National Park (only a 2-hour drive from Bangkok) are also possible.

Mountain Biking: Central & Northeast Thailand

Khao Yai National Park, Thailand's largest national park crosses over into 3 different provinces and offers one of the best mountain biking routes. There are a total of 13 mountain biking routes mapped in the Khao Yai National Park which is a mere 2 hours drive from the capital in central Thailand. Bicycle Tours: Western Thailand For the more physically fit, there are trips that will take you all the way to Kanchanaburi which is located west of Bangkok. Within Kanchanaburi you will find the famous "Bridge Over River Kwai" or the "Death Railway" where World War II prisoners of war were used as forced labour. Visits usually also include a visit to the JEATH (Japanese, English, Australian & Thai) Museum which describes the living conditions faced by the prisoners of war as well as artifacts and artwork recording the human spirit of its residents.

Bicycle Tours: Eastern Thailand

Some bicycle trips are also combined with boat trips or kayaking, For instance, the bicycle trip to eastern Thailand can combine cycling with sea kayaking in the Gulf of Siam. These trips usually take you through the sleepy beach towns of Bang Saen and Chon Buri and even to Pattaya. If you fear that you might not be able to take the physical exertion, it will warm your heart to know that the more prepared and professional travel companies that specialise in such tours usually accompanies the cycling group with a minivan. These vans carry spare bikes and tools; and will take on board those who can't quite cycle the whole trip.

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Bicycle Tours: South Thailand

Great cycling trips are also available on the isle of Phuket where bicycle trips can be made to visit the mangroves and national parks. These trips are great fun because Phuket is a highly scenic destination where investigating the whole island on a bicycle within a day is possible. Trips to Khao Lak which is a 1-hour drive from Phuket is also highly recommended and these usually include great river rafting and elephant rides. A definite must if you're visiting the south.

Bicycle Tours: Northern Thailand

Hard-core cyclists will enjoy the more rigourous cycling routes in the north a challenge. However, such trips involve mountain biking and not the easy-going bicycle trips mentioned.

Mountain Biking: Northern Thailand

The more challenging routes are located in the mountainous north of Thailand where the terrain is steeper and runs through interesting sights and sounds such as hill tribe villages and elephant training grounds and orphanages.

Mae Hong Son in northern Thailand is perhaps the centre for mountain biking in the country where a large number of specialist travel companies and bike shops can be found in great numbers. Although a popular starting point, the trails are still relatively wild and can sometimes be as narrow as a single person's stride.

For a more scenic experience, try the route in Chiang Mai which starts at Doi Inthanon to Ob Luang Gorge via Mae Chaem. The first leg of this route is strenuous and best enjoyed by more experienced mountain bikers; this route is 50 km. long. However for those less experienced, a shorter 30 km. route can be taken. Through the years more and more routes have opened in the north by experienced bikers and guides which are sometimes not mapped out. For this reason, it is best to consult a specialist travel operator to discover the more interesting off-the-beaten-path.

Best time to go Biking

Bicycle Tours

Conducting any physical sport in Thailand is best during the cool season during November to January. The period that needs to be avoided is the rainy season during June to early October where heavy rains are expected. The Thai Summer during March to July, in particular April, is the country's hottest period making cyclists not used to the local weather susceptible to sun stroke and dehydration. However, the Bangkok Bicycle Tours can be conducted all year round as they run during the evenings, Some trips are conducted during the day time, however these trips are pretty easy-going and are designed to be enjoyed in a more leisurely manner than the cross country expeditions.

Mountain Biking

As usual, the cool season during November to January is the best time to do mountain biking as the climate is relatively cooler. But considering that national parks are almost always cooler than city/town temperatures averaging 30 celsius or lower, you can do mountain biking all year round to get the real fee of the tropics. The worst time and most unadvisable time to conduct mountain biking is during July - October as this is the country's wettest time of the year. Some locations in Thailand are susceptible during this period.

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References / Service Provider

Bicycle Tours: Check out the Bangkok Bicycle Tours conducted by the Bangkok Tourist Bureau at www.bangkoktourist.com for a list of bicycle expeditions within the capital and its surrounding areas. The best guide to bicycle expeditions in Thailand is probably www.cyclingthailand.com where the operator bas received numerous awards and accolades for their unique expeditions. Other worthy websites are www.spiceroads.com, www.biketoursthailand.com and www.realasia.net. The Thailand Ecotourism & Adventure Travel Association (TEATA) at www.teata.or.th is also a good reference website for bicycle tours.

As usual, the Tourism Authority of Thailand website at www.tourismthailand.org and the Thailand Ecotourism & Adventure Travel Association (TEATA) at www.teata.or.th are good starting points for research to get a generic idea on the options available.

The best guide to biking expeditions in Thailand is probably www.cyclingthailand.com where the operator has received numerous awards and accolades for their unique expeditions. Other worthy websites are www.activethailand.com, www.spiceroads.com, www.biketoursthailand.com and www.realasia.net

 

 

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Source : www.tourismthailand.org

 
Thailand private tours, Bangkok private tours, Chiang Mai private tours, Ayutthaya..., ..., Thai private tour guide,
car rental with free private English speaking tour guide driver, for the details and prices click Terms and Conditions