The sharper edge to traveling in Asia

Trekking, rafting, and ATV adventures near Chiang Mai, Thailand

Written By: herbrunbridge - Jun• 03•10

All terrain vehicle adventure near Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai, Thailand, has loads of interesting things to experience, above and beyond merely enjoying th city. Here are a few exciting options:

We’ve always thought those nifty ATVs (all-terrain vehicles) looked like heaps of fun, and finally had it confirmed one day in the Mojave Desert’s Dumont Dunes area.  In Thailand, you can experience these fun vehicles as well, and travel through off-road areas in the Mae Rim area at: 

Imac ATV
37 Moo 9, Km 10, Mae Rim-Samoeng Road
Thanon Mae Rim, Chiang Mai
Tel: (053) 939-113 

Ever thought about flying in a Microlight?  In Chiang Mai, you can take 15 and 30 minute flights, seeing the city and environs for less than 3,000 baht ($75 USD).   To find out more, visit: 

Chiang Mai Sky Adventure
143 Moo 6, Chiang Doi
Saket, Chiang Mai 50220
Tel: (053) 868-460
Free pick up and return to your hotel can be arranged. 

How about off-roading, or strenuous climbing?  If you’ve got a serious yen to go banging around, visit: 

Peak Four by Four Off-Road Center Co.,Ltd
302/4 Chiangmai-Lumpoon Rd. Thanon. Watgate A. Muang, Chiangmai
Tel:  (01) 951-6529; (053) 820-777 

Rafting and trekking experiences in the Chiang Mai region 

Many visitors travel to Chiang Mai specifically to do rafting and trekking trips.  There are dozens of companies offering experiences from the easy to the arduous.  Veteran trekkers meet their guide first to discuss itinerary and expectations.  Also, it’s a good idea to tour with a maximum of 5 or 6 people, as larger tours take away from the personal experience of a trek to villages.  Finally, discuss how you’ll be treated in the village.  If you’re hounded constantly to buy trinkets, you will not love the experience.  On the other hand, if you’re officered the opportunity of buying crafts from individual families, your trek will be enhanced. 

If you’re interested in elephant trekking or rafting/kayaking, do ask the operator how long you’ll be in the bus, the quality of food, and sleeping provisions.  

Here are just a few of the many companies offering treks and adventure experiences: 

Chiang Dao Nest, 144/4 m.5, Chiang Dao 50170, Thailand, tel: (06) 017-1985.    Chiang Dao Nest is a mini-resort located in a town 60 km north of Chiang Mai, and offers two and three days treks to Akha, Lisu, Lahu, and Karen hillside villages near the Chiang Dao area.  They also will coordinate elephant treks, birding tours, and rafting trips.  Tours depart from both Chiang Dao and Chiang Mai. offers internet-only booked elephant and village treks.  Visit:  

Contact Travel,  73/7 Charoen Prathet Road, Chiang Mai 50100  tel: (053) 277-178, located next to the Diamond Riverside Hotel, one block from the Night Bazaar, offers 3 day, 2 night rafting trips on the Ping River.  Tours leave every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from Chiang Mai during the rafting season, which runs from June through January.  Kayaking trips are also available, as are bicycle tours. 

Eagle House, 16 Chang Moi Gao Road,  Soi (Lane) 3, Chiang Mai 50300. tel: (053) 874-126.  Located a few blocks northeast of the moat, Eagle House specializes in small-sized trips to villages that are less-frequented by tourists, and its meal are said to be exceptional. 

3rd Eye Travel, 220 Moo Chang Khian Soi 9, Chiang Puak 50300.  tel: (053) 892-405.  Located near Wat Umong, 4 km west of the old city, 3rd Eye offers outdoor tours oriented toward spirituality, Buddhism, and social issues. 

Wayfarers Travel, 20 Ta Phae Road., Soi 4, Chiang Mai 50100.  tel. (053)208-271.  Located near the Tha Phae gate, Wayfarers offers everything from village and elephant treks, to rafting and kayaking.

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