The Mae Kok River Trip

A great way to head north

No pic at the moment -- Sorry!

What we say: 4 stars

The Mae Kok runs wide and handsome through the centre of Chiang Rai on its way to the Mekong. Many feel it is much under used and there have been local rumblings about a river festival -- Travelfish will be the first to let everyone know if that comes abo

At the moment the river trips are to Tha Ton, to the northwest, and in the opposite direction to the Mekong. The boats leave from the pier close to the Mae Fah Leuang Bridge at 10:30 each morning. The journey takes about three hours and costs 350 baht each way. This is one of the best ways to see the local scenery, and get a feel for just how vast the mountain regions are in this part of the world. The longtails are noisy so don't expect to see any wildlife hanging around to take a look at you.

The boat from Tha Ton to Chiang Rai leaves at 12:30 daily. Travel agents offer a half-day river trip on the Mae Kok, which goes to two hill tribe villages, an elephant camp, hot springs and a Buddha Cave. Obviously this is not as relaxing as simply gliding down the river on your way to somewhere, but a good alternative for those in a hurry.

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