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tansmets Oct 3rd, 2011 09:41 PM

How to split time between Chiang Mai, Bangkok and Chiang Rai
We are trying to decide where to go in late January for a week, and I think Thailand would be a good place - flying in and out of Bangkok, with a flight to Chaing Mai then a return to BKK from Chiang Rai. I think we will spend 2 days in Bangkok - and then have 6 days remaining - how would you split between Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai? We want to relax, enjoy nature, etc. Not too many temples - I got "templed out" in Luang Prabang. Also we were considering the Le Meridiens in both cities (starwood points), but would appreciate opinions. I'm open to the Anantara Golden Triangle as well since it looks like a fun experience.

Also - what is the best way to get from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai? How much should I expect to pay for a driver?

gailmo Oct 3rd, 2011 10:36 PM

I did a similar trip last year...trip report is called: Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai: A 10 day trip report. Search on this forum and you should find it.

It is easy to take the Green Bus from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai. It was fast, clean and cheap!

Lovely area...enjoy!

rhkkmk Oct 4th, 2011 06:21 PM

for a 1 wk trip i think a max of two stops is the limit...

irecommend Oct 4th, 2011 06:29 PM

much less time in Chiang Rai than in Chiang Mai..

i would call Chiang Rai kind of like a hick town but has a few redeeming qualities. If you wish to cut down to just two places leave it out. Do a day trip from Bangkok to Ayutthaya.

tansmets Oct 5th, 2011 01:27 AM

Thanks for the help. We have booked our flights into and out of BKK and we think we have enough time for all three - right now I'm thinking:
arrive BKK friday night late
Sat - BKK
Sun - BKK
Monday AM fly to Chiang Rai (anantara)
Tues Chiang Rai
Wed last VIP bus to Chiang Mai
Thurs - Chiang Mai (Le Meridien)
Fri - Chiang Mai
Saturday leave Chiang Mai and fly back to BKK
Sunday morning very early flight back to HKG.

It might seem like a lot, but we have been to Thailand before and are Hong Kong based so if we want to go back for a weekend it's pretty easy...
Still toying with the Koh Samui idea as well, but I prefer to be busy to the beach. Thanks for the help!

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