Photo: Almost Maldivian at Ao Noi, Ko Kut.

Thailand forum

2nd opinion for the 1st part of my travel itinerary please!!

Posted by Lakey on 31/7/2009 at 19:15

Hello everyone

Can I just say what a great site. As a first time solo backpacker reading this site has given me some excellent advice and also put some of the old nervous to rest!

In terms of my travel I am not restricted by time at all and want to see as much as I can for the reasonable budget I have. I plan on seeing Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia & Malasyia but as this is the first time I have planned anything like this I would appreciate your advice on the first part.

Plan is to start in Bangkok then head to:

Chang Mai
Mae Hong Son
Mae Sariang
back to Chang Mai unless can get direct to Chang Rai?
Chang Kong & then into Laos

As I mentioned time is not a concern for me I just want to experience everything the regions have to offer. As I won't know where I'll be at what time I will be leaving the booking of accomodation to the last minute. Will this cause me huge problems as it will be high season?

If anyone can suggest maybe places I have missed out or have any other destinations then I am all ears.

Thanks for your help on this

#1 Lakey has been a member since 29/7/2009. Posts: 8

Posted by BruceMoon on 31/7/2009 at 19:31


I really envy you: no time constraints, and heading in the 'right' direction.

Might I suggest that once you are 'on the beaten track', you'll get so much feedback from those also travelling that you'll be burdened by trying to see/do it all.

But, then, when you're 'off the beaten track', you'll most likely meet ppl who will refer you to out of the way places that aren't part of the banana pancake trail (on this see this post). It'll probably be these ppl who will influence you most.

You've identified a great list of places in NW Thailand. John (MADMAC) will wonder why you're not visiting Isaan - Isaan is a great area, and quite different to the NW of Thailand. But, you may choose to return through Isaan at a later time.

The issue, I suggest, is that you have to start somewhere, you have to have an itinerary sort of mapped out (even if you depart it), not necessarily because you have to follow it, but because you have to start somewhere (sounds circular, but it isn't).

From Bangkok, you have to go SW (sort of) to go to Kanchanaburi. Then, unless you want to trek across to Um Phang (look on Travelfish for details), you will have to return to Bangkok to head to Ayuthaya and then northwards.

By making the points on a map, you are doing the right thing.

There isn't anything I'd suggest you ought see / not see. Rather, just be open and go with the flow. Your current agenda will change, and you'll be the better for it.

Gee, I envy you.


#2 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

Agoda coupon: Get an extra 7% off selected properties with the coupon code

Posted by Jon_Mak_Mak on 7/8/2009 at 16:06

Hi Lakey,

Your list of places looks OK but you are visiting places that are all pretty similar (Central/North). Thailand is a very diverse country and the south is quite different from the North and the North East is different again. (different scenery, food, language, people etc..)

It's hard to get all of Thailand squashed into one trip but as you state that you have no time limit you could fit some other places in. Although it don't seem like a backpacker/traveller thing to do, taking a domestic flight with a cheap airline like Air Asia is a great way to get to somewhere in the south, say Hat Yai. You could then bus from there all the way up to Bangkok stopping at various towns on the way. (I've done something similar heading south) Then continue north from BKK.

Personally I would want to see all sides of Thailand but if your happy with what you have planned I can't see a reason why it shouldn't work.

Have fun!

#3 Jon_Mak_Mak has been a member since 21/2/2007. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 464

Posted by somtam2000 on 7/8/2009 at 21:02 admin

For this bit:
Chang Mai
Mae Hong Son
Mae Sariang
back to Chang Mai unless can get direct to Chang Rai?
Chang Kong & then into Laos

If you reverse it, then you can easily skip Cm.
Chiang Mai - Mae Sariang - Mae Hong Son - Pai - Chiang Dao - Tha Ton - river trip to Chiang Rai - Chiang Khong -> Laos.

Would also suggest fitting in Soppong (between MHS and Pai) and there's quiet a few other places along that loop worth checking out...

have fun

#4 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,943
 Send somtam2000 a private message   Where has somtam2000 been?   Website   Twitter   Facebook    Flickr    Instagram   Pinterest 

Please login to add a reply

You need to be a Travelfish member to be able to add a reply to this post. Please use the button below to log in. After logging in you'll be returned to this page automatically to add your post. Not a member? Join up here.