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Mae Ping River Cruise

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Laos’s Nam Ou, Cambodia’s Sangkar, or even Chiang Rai’s Kok River this is not, so don’t expect dramatic scenery and an untamed river, but a cruise on the Ping River is a very pleasant way to while away a few hours.

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Mae Ping River Cruise seem to have pretty much cornered the market but deservedly so. Their boats depart from Wat Chai Mongkol (or Mongkon), just off Charoen Prathet Road, and their cruise takes you by downtown Chiang Mai then out through the northern suburbs to what they claim is a “farmer’s house”. It may once have been a farmer’s house but it’s now a combination museum, restaurant and fruit and vegetable garden, where you are given a juice and huge fruit platter and have the option to buy coffees or other drinks as well as souvenirs. A restaurant on site means you can have a lunch of say khao soi or fried rice if you wish.

Urban river scenes. Photo taken in or around Mae Ping River Cruise, Chiang Mai, Thailand by Mark Ord.

Urban river scenes. Photo: Mark Ord

The leisurely trip takes around 45 minutes each way plus break time at the farm. The first part takes you past central Chiang Mai, under the various bridges, past the numerous riverside cafes and Worarot market on the left before heading into the town’s ritzy northern suburbs, where the lawns of the huge and flashy villas and mansions sweep down to the river and then ... well that’s about it really, you go back.

You may get a running commentary from the boatman, which in our case was so bad it was good but since he clearly realised that, we tipped him anyway. Majestic trees grow along the banks and if you’re lucky you may spot some bird life.

You may spy a resort or two... Photo taken in or around Mae Ping River Cruise, Chiang Mai, Thailand by Mark Ord.

You may spy a resort or two... Photo: Mark Ord

The return trip costs 550 baht per person. Boat departures are scheduled hourly but we’re not sure how strict their schedule is and there’s going to be flexibility depending upon the number of passengers. There are small, longtail-style boats—what they call rice-barge style—and large craft for ... Travelfish members only (Around 400 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.

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Mae Ping River Cruise
Mo–Su: 08:30–17:00
T: (053) 274 822, (081) 884 4621

Location map for Mae Ping River Cruise

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