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Cycle Southern Thailand

Thailand, Asia

Cycle Southern Thailand

Biking
·
Start: Bangkok
·
End: Ao Nang

Take two wheels across Thailand’s south, a place of ancient jungle, imposing mountains

Activity
Biking
LocationThailand, Asia
Duration9 days
Start / EndBangkok / Ao Nang
Tour operatorIntrepid Travel

Thailand, Asia

Cycle Southern Thailand

Biking·
9 days·Intrepid Travel
Start: Bangkok
·
End: Ao Nang

Description

The road is laid out before you on this cycling adventure through Southern Thailand. Beginning in Bangkok with an overnight train, the route sweeps south to the deeply green prehistoric scenery that lies across the map – stunning ancient forests and limestone peaks that were formed hundreds of millions of years ago. Pass emerald waters where tiny islands of exquisite pale rock break the surface...

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Itinerary

Day 1Bangkok
Sa-wat dee! Welcome to Thailand. Thailand's bustling capital is famous for its tuk tuks, khlong boats and street vendors serving up delicious Thai food. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place, and have your insurance details and next of kin information ready for collection. Bangkok has so much to offer those with time to explore, so perhaps arrive a day or so early and take a riverboat to Chinatown, uncover the magnificent Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, wander down the tourist mecca of Khao San Road, or indulge in some Thai massage. Take a longtail boat down the Chao Phraya River and explore the famous 'khlongs' (canals) – life along these canals seems a world away from the chaotic streets of the capital. After the meeting tonight, perhaps gather your fellow travellers and tuck into some world-famous street food. Riding distance: none
Day 2Bangkok/Surat Thani
Take to the streets of Bangkok by bike and explore the backstreets, alleyways and canals on a guided tour. Get away from the tourist areas and into the heart and soul of this lively city. The quietness of these areas often contrasts with the chaos this metropolis is known for. You're sure to see numerous wats along the way, and travelling around by bike allows you to move through the city quite easily and at a relaxed pace. Today’s total distance cycled is around 20 kilometres. After your ride there will be ample time to get cleaned up and shop for any last-minute supplies or souvenirs before boarding an overnight train southbound for Surat Thani (approximately 13 hours). Notes: Sleeper trains are clean and air-conditioned, and beds are multi-share compartments. Sheets, a pillow and blanket are provided (although some people prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet). Please note that you may be sharing compartments with locals of the same or opposite gender. Your baggage will travel in the carriage with you. There's also a food and drink service available on board. Riding distance: approx. 20 kms
Day 3Khao Sok National Park
Arrive in Surat Thani this morning. Avoid the busy traffic by driving 35 kilometres through small villages and palm-tree-lined roads before climbing onto your bike. The real scenic highlight of this area will then come into view – stunning limestone karsts. Formed over 260 million years ago, these karsts were once part of a prehistoric underwater reef that stretched all the way up to Vietnam and will be your constant companion for the next few days. With an average height of 400 metres and rising all the way up to almost a kilometre, they are impossible to ignore. Heading west, cycle through a sea of greenery towards the Ratchaprapha Dam (approximately 30 kilometres). Reminiscent of Guilin in China, and like the freshwater version of Phang Nga’s famous limestone peaks, this is a reservoir where hundreds of tiny islands of exquisite pale rock jut out of emerald water. After lunch on the shores of the dam, we travel by vehicle to Khao Sok National Park, and fall asleep to a chorus of crickets and cicadas as a lullaby. Riding distance: approx. 30 kms
Day 4Khao Sok National Park
Established as Thailand’s 22nd national park in 1980, Khao Sok is home to the oldest evergreen rainforest in the world, deep valleys, the beautiful Cheow Larn Lake, numerous caves, and a significant wild animal population. This nature lover's paradise includes elephants, exotic Hornbills, water-loving Langur Monkeys and even the occasional tiger deep inside the park. The flora is also top-notch, with the rare Rafflesia Kerri, one of the world’s largest flowers, only found here. Here you’ll have free time to walk along the dirt trails that snake through the quiet park, looking out for wildlife as you head for rivers and waterfalls where you might enjoy a cooling dip. Spend the night amid the ancient gnarled rainforest trees in a riverside bungalow. Riding distance: none
Day 5Khao Lak
Begin the day in the support vehicle, leaving the verdant forests and hills behind with a drive west from Khao Sok to the nearby town of Takua Pa (approximately 40 kilometres). Then jump back on the bike again to begin the day of cycling, travelling across relatively flat terrain through the interior. Pass numerous flowing rivers, palm-fringed roads and smiling local children, then make your way down to the Andaman Coast. Here you’ll run parallel to the sublime Andaman Sea before arriving at your home for the next two nights – the laid-back beach town of Khao Lak (approximately 45 kilometres). Famous for the likes of Memories Beach, Bang Niang Beach and the aptly-named White Sand Beach, Khao Lak is one Thailand’s quieter beach destinations and a great place to unwind after a long but enjoyable day in the saddle. Riding distance: approx. 45 kms
Day 6Khao Lak
Today is a free day to enjoy the beautiful surrounds of the Andaman Coast. For a sobering insight into the area’s recent history, perhaps visit the International Tsunami Museum, a reminder of the 2004 tragedy. Here there is a memorial to the 3000 people who died in the area. There are numerous beaches to chill out on, waterfalls (like Ton Chong Fa) to swim in, fishing trips to take, and if you're feeling active, bike routes to cycle or underwater worlds to explore by scuba or snorkel. For something different, perhaps hone your culinary skills with a Thai cooking class. There is as much, or as little, to do here as you like. Riding distance: none
Day 7Phang-Nga
Leave the coast and head inland today, cycling eastwards through rolling hills past forests orchards, and rubber plantations to Phang Nga. This town sits at the end of the tributaries that empty into the bay of the same name (approximately 55 kilometres). Known for its relaxed atmosphere, cheap and authentic food, and some spectacular sights, Phang Nga is the perfect place to taste Southern Thailand. As reflected in the local food, Phang Nga has a diverse culture, with Buddhist temples, mosques, and Taoist Chinese shrines all found within walking distance of one another. After a relaxing lunch you’ll take a boat tour of the Phang-Nga Bay, where limestone rocks famously erupt out of the water, creating what is, for many, the iconic image of Thailand. You’ll stop by the famous James Bond Island, immortalised in the movie 'The Man With the Golden Gun', and Koh Panyee, an extraordinary Muslim fishing village built over water on stilts, with its own mosque and even a floating football pitch. Riding distance: approx. 55 kms
Day 8Krabi/Ao Nang
The final day on the bike begins with a 45-kilometre transfer in the support vehicle. Then it’s on to your two-wheeled friend for a 40-kilometre ride through beautiful inland landscapes and down the coast to the classic Thai beachside town of Ao Nang. After so much time spent moving at a slow pace, Ao Nang comes as a welcome change, with its lively atmosphere, shops that light up the sidewalk, and an enormous selection of food and drink on every corner. While the front beach here is good, the spectacular nearby shores of Tonsai, Railay, Ko Hong, Ko Poda and Ko Gai are true highlights and easily reachable as a day trip. Further afield there’s easy boat access to the islands of Ko Phi Phi and Phuket. If you’ve had enough of the beach, perhaps go rock climbing. Whether you're a novice or a pro, looking down on the jungle and ocean from a limestone cliff face is unforgettable. Meet up again in the evening to say goodbye to your biking crew, then perhaps enjoy a final night dinner with the group. Riding distance: approx. 40 kms
Day 9Krabi/Ao Nang
Your cycling adventure comes to an end today. There are no activities planned and you are free to leave at any time. Riding distance: none

More info

Trip title

Cycle Southern Thailand

Trip code

TTXB

Validity

Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019

Introduction

The road is laid out before you on this cycling adventure through Southern Thailand. Beginning in Bangkok with an overnight train, the route sweeps south to the deeply green prehistoric scenery that lies across the map – stunning ancient forests and limestone peaks that were formed hundreds of millions of years ago. Pass emerald waters where tiny islands of exquisite pale rock break the surface, c... Read more

Style

Original

Themes

Active Adventures,Cycling

Transport

Bicycle,Support vehicle,Train,Boat

Physical Rating

3

Physical preparation

This is an active trip, requiring a reasonable level of physical fitness. While there is flexibility in the distance you can elect to cycle each day, the cycling on this trip can be challenging at times, with the heat and terrain adding to the physical effort. It is also important that you are both confident and competent in riding a bicycle. As a general rule, the more preparation you can do fo... Read more

Joining point

Nouvo City Hotel

Joining point description

The Nouvo City Hotel is within walking distance of many of the area's main attractions, such as the Grand Palace, National Museum and Wat Po. We use the Canal Wing and rooms are equipped with a private en-suite. Breakfast is not included but a buffet breakfast can be purchased in the hotel's restaurant. Please also note that no alcohol is served in this hotel, but there are lots of great bars acro... Read more

Joining point instructions

GROUP TRIPS Private arrival transfers are available at the time of booking. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure. After exiting customs go outside and look for exit door 4 and our representative holding a sign with your name on it. If you have any problems and cannot locate our representative please go to the ATTA Counter (Association of Thai Travel ... Read more

Finish point

J Mansion Guesthouse

Finish point description

J Mansion is located a short walk away from Ao Nang beach and nearby to shops, cafes and restaurants. There is free wifi, a restaurant and a rooftop terrace onsite with panoramic views of the Andaman Sea.

Finish point instructions

We are happy to arrange a departure transfer for you to Krabi Airport at an additional charge. Please ask your booking agent if you would like to add this service and provide your flight details. Alternatively, your tour leader or the hotel can assist with arranging a taxi to Krabi Airport. You can expect to pay approximately THB900 and the journey to take around 30 minutes. There is also the ... Read more

Important information

1. A Single Supplement is available on this trip, please ask your booking agent for more information. 2. Bicycle hire is included in your trip price. Please advice your height at time of booking so as we can organise a suitable sized bike. 3. Bike helmets are compulsory on this trip. We are unable to hire bike helmets locally so please ensure you bring your own bike helmet from home.

Group leader

All Intrepid cycling group trips are accompanied by one of our cycling leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other g... Read more

Safety

We take safety seriously on all our trips, but cycling tours deserve a few special considerations. HELMETS: Helmets are compulsory and we do not allow anyone to ride without one (including our own staff!). You can bring your own, or purchase one that meets international safety standards on the ground. Your leader can assist with this. FOOTWEAR For safety reasons we strongly recommend that you w... Read more

Visas

As a general rule most countries expect that your passport has a minimum of 6 months validity remaining. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Your consultant will contact you when this is required. Take a copy of the main passport pages and other important documents with you, and l... Read more

Why we love it

Escape the chaotic Bangkok traffic with a cycling tour that gets you behind the tourist mask and into the heart and soul of Thailand's south

Is this trip right for you

To complete this trip it is important that you are both confident and competent in riding a bicycle. While the cycling distances are relatively short and the terrain relatively flat, the climate is usually warm, so you'll need to be reasonably fit. Keep in mind the support vehicle will always be on hand if you need a break. The riding is mostly done on sealed roads, with the occasional gravel cy... Read more

Health

All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/o... Read more

Money matters

SPENDING MONEY: When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so ... Read more

What to take

Packing for a cycling tour isn’t that different from any other adventure. But if you want to be comfortable and warm, here are a few bike-specific tips. • Helmet – these are compulsory, but if you don’t have your own you can sometimes purchase an approved and well-fitted one at the start of the trip (our leaders can assist you with this). There are some destinations where you are unable to pur... Read more

Climate and seasonal

KHAO SOK: There are two seasons in Khao Sok National Park, the 'dry' season and the 'rainy' season. The dry season is from November until April, and the rainy season from May to October when most of the rain falls. Be aware that all the walking trails will be muddy and slippery during the rainy season and harmless leeches are abundant, however the scenery is beautifully lush and green. Each of the... Read more

A couple of rules

Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol... Read more

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

Emergency contact

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential nega... Read more

Responsible travel

As part of our commitment to responsible travel a portion of your trip cost will be donated to Bicycles for Humanity – a not-for-profit, volunteer run, grass roots charity organisation focused on the alleviation of poverty through sustainable transport – in the form of a bicycle. In the developing world a bicycle is life changing, allowing access to health care, education, economic opportunity an... Read more

The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed mo... Read more

Accommodation notes

OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances. TWIN SHARE / MULTI SHARE BASIS Accommodation on this trip is on a twin/multisha... Read more

Transport notes

While there are occasions we use local public transport such as trains, buses or taxis to cover long distances or attend non-cycling activities we predominantly use the bicycle as our main form of transport. On most of our trips we also have a support vehicle as secondary transport for travelling longer distances, avoiding hazardous areas to cycle, as a backup should we have any incidents and of c... Read more

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and th... Read more

Your fellow travellers

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit... Read more

Itinerary disclaimer

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weat... Read more

Accommodation

Hotel (4 nights),guesthouse (3 nights),overnight train (1 night)
9days
€970per person
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Jul 13
Bangkok
Jul 21
Ao Nang
€1,035
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Aug 24
Bangkok
Sep 1
Ao Nang
€970
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Oct 5
Bangkok
Oct 13
Ao Nang
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Nov 2
Bangkok
Nov 10
Ao Nang
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