Heading out on Route 108 from Hot, the valley and road turn to the west and become narrower, with the road getting more winding and the scenery getting prettier as it heads into the hills past Ob Luang, with the Chaem river on one side and limestone cliffs on the other.
Past Ob Luang, the road begins to climb until you hit the undulating conifer tree-line, where you could be forgiven for wondering if you’re in the right country. Herds of cows grazing grassy alpine meadows break up vistas of pine forests while gaps between the trees allow truly awesome views across truly awesome mountain scenery on both sides of the road. You almost expect Julie Andrews, in nun’s garb, to come prancing over a hilltop bursting into song -- though the occasional side tracks lead to remote Karen villages rather than Austrian nunneries.
Note that there are very few villages of any consequence on this 100+ kilometre stretch to Mae Sariang and so very few opportunities to buy petrol. Note also if bad weather hits, or it’s just winter, it can get decidedly chilly. The road surface is fine though.
After covering some three quarters of the distance the route abruptly descends into Mae Sariang town at a fairly steep gradient.
Based in Chiang Mai, Mark Ord has been travelling Southeast Asia for over two decades and first crossed paths with Travelfish on Ko Lipe in the early 1990s.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.
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