Luck was on our side for this Thailand motorcycle tour, the rain stopped, great timing to do a loop around the Thailand border – The Golden Triangle.
The Phutong Palace Hotel, Phayao, the views from the hotel over the lake and mountains are great
There’s a great new restaurant in Phayao right on the lake called “So Good”. Good food, ambiance & live music, obviously get the fish.
The place was packed
Being just over an hour west of Chiang Muan, we decided to skip breakfast in Phayao and head for the famous “Qwad Diew Pet” (duck soup) restaurant in Chiang Muan.
NOTE R 1251 east of Phayao is currently being resurfaced, not good for sports bikes at all, find another way east to Nan.
The “Qwad Diew Pet” (duck soup) restaurant is at co-ords in Chiang Muan:
Ask for no fat on the duck, this place does some of the best duck soup in Thailand
A beautiful day in Nan, we went over and took a look around the famous 320 year old, Wat Pumin in the center of Nan
It turned out to be a lucky day to visit as they were welcoming a new “Chief Monk” to the temple that day.
The colors of the monk’s robes with the ancient murals on the walls were an interesting blend
If you haven’t visited Wat Pumin in Nan it’s pretty special
Into the devils quarter in Wat Pumin where the Thai’s try show what will happen to you if you’re bad. This first one must be for gossips
Then other kinds of wrong-doing
After Wat Pumin, it was off up R 1148 north west to Chiang Khong. We were trying to stay & eat in different places to what we normally would, David Bailey, a Chiang Khong resident suggested that the River House GH would be a good place to try, so we did.
Beautiful rooms on the Mekong River in Chiang Khong, 1,000 bht. Co-ords:
-Turn down to the river at the main immigration office in town.
Dinner in Chiang Khong, the NamKhong Riverside is tough to beat, try the shrimp fried rice in the hollowed out pineapple, a meal in itself
Great views up and down the Mekong from this restaurant/ resort too.
The next day, the plan was to hit the Golden Triangle (where the borders of Thailand, Laos & Myanmar meet). We passed the Chiang Saen port/ harbour and took a peek in, co-ords:
Was pretty quiet and empty
There were plenty of tourists around at the Golden Triangle, looking north up the Mekong River
In the distance the rumored to be shut, Myanmar casino that was built to cater to Chinese gamblers
The Laos free zone at the Golden Triangle with it’s casino’s
Next stop was the new Opium Museum just north of the Golden Triangle, “Hall of Opium”. 150 bht entrance to residents good value, co-ords:
Entrance tunnel goes on for about 400 meters its very strange
Looks like they spent a fortune setting this up, beautiful landscaping
& even some fake, plastic opium poppy’s
This is how it’s processed
In the Hall Of Opium building is also the new Doi Tung Lodge & Greater Mekong Lodge, we couldn’t get prices, I would guess 1,500 – 2,000 bht
Contact details are below:
Next stop was lunch on the outskirts of Mae Sai at Kun Nam’s Lab-Lung-Air Restaurant. To our horror he’s moved!! Luckily we were able to track down his new set-up which is called “Boon Nam”, about 1km away at co-ords (on R 1149):
Superb food as usual, you cant go wrong with the shrimp or pork fillets in pepper sauce
Quick stop at the Royal Villa on Doi Tung, which was the King of Thailand’s, mother’s, holiday home.
Looks like she wanted to get up there fast
& once up there some special views
Looks like we can make Doi Mae Salong before dark, we check in at the Doi Mae Salong Flower Hills Resort. Ridden past it hundreds of times, never stayed there before. Co-ords:
Bottom floor, the place was full
I highly recommend eating in their restaurant early before it gets dark
The views are breath taking. Sitting there with a nice glass of red as the sun sets was great, highly recommended.
Beat that? Even tea plantations to the left
They do excellent food, don’t miss the pork leg
Infinity style pool — bloody freezing up there though
Lots of rooms (& they were full)
Traditional house out the back of the DMS Flower Hills Resort
& tea terraces
Another place that really worth trying in Doi Mae Salong is the Khumnaiphol Resort & Restaurant, co-ords:
Decent restaurant in the front of the resort, so you don’t have to go out in the dark & not expensive. They will do the Chinese pork leg thing.
It turned out to be one of those really bright, dry season days, so a good day to take some snaps of the “white wat” / Wat Rong Khun (Wat Rong Khun – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia), which is south of Chiang Rai on R 1, co-ords:
Deep blue skies
Lastly a local playing the ancient qwee, he looked at peace with the world.
So that’s about it, 4 nights away from Chiang Mai & that’s what you can do!
If a motorcycle tour in Thailand like this interests you, then click on the below link to get the details of how to join a tour: