Breaking up journey from Chiang Mai to Phi Phi. Where to visit on the way?
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Dec 15, 2012 2:47 PM Last Post By: LungPaul
Dec 14, 2012 12:53 PM
Breaking up journey from Chiang Mai to Phi Phi. Where to visit on the way?Hi,
I land in Bangkok the 8th Jan & am planning to go up to Chiang Mai the next day for a few nights, the next stop after that is Phi Phi.
I am unsure where is good to visit on the way down south to break up my journey?
Maybe Kanchanaburi or Phitsanulok (they're easily accessible on the train)?
Or some friends are hopping over the border to Laos for a few nights, would you recommend going with them (although it'll only be a few nights and involves several buses from Chiang Mai and the expense of another visa) or visiting somewhere else on the way down?
Would appreciate any advice & am very open minded for plans, although I do have time constraints.
Dec 14, 2012 1:32 PM
1To get to Kanchanaburi by train, you'd need to go to Bangkok and then take the local train out there. Wouldnt be difficult as you could get the afternoon train out of Bangkok.
Then if you want to take the train south again, you can pick it up as it goes through Nakhon Pathom, the junction of the track going south with that heading west.
Dec 14, 2012 3:34 PM
Dec 14, 2012 3:43 PM
3Going to Bangkok and taking the local train would take very long, especially because there are only 2 trains to Kan in the morning and they don't leave from the same station.
The best options would be to take the train all the way to Bangkok, then hop over to Sai Tai bus station and take a bus. It's a lot faster than the train.
As for going back down south, much better to go to Ban Pong in Ratchaburi to connect with a train down south. There are shared song taews or local buses that go there from Kan bus station.
In regards to Kan, it really depends on your preference. I would recommend it 1000 times over compared to the train wreck that is Koh Phi Phi. Some of the organized tourism like the Tiger Temple is best avoided in Kan. There is no good elephant conservation there (better to do it in Chiang Mai). But, there's some great nature and the history of the area is very interesting.
Dec 14, 2012 4:49 PM
4Kanchanaburi is great for a few days. We were there for five days but you could see the highlights in less than that. The train is a fun journey - we really enjoyed it. It's 3rd class but not too uncomfortable. You get a good view of the countryside that I don't think you get on the bus ride. It does go from Thonburi station on the other side of the river (during the week) so bear that in mind. We took the train there and the bus back and I preferred the train although the bus was more comfortable. The bus took almost four hours because of traffic so didn't save time.
I didn't enjoy the elephant camp I went to in Kanchanaburi. It was a bit of a sad affair and I've been to much better elephant experiences in Thailand. The history is fascinating and the Erawan falls were lovely. It's easy to jump on minibus tours to all of the activities. We were travelling with a small child so hired a 4WD and driver.
Dec 14, 2012 8:35 PM
5Spend a few days in Bangkok since you are in and out so fast. Like with Chiang Mai, local travel agencies can set you up with tours. Bridge on River Kwai is a popular tour that can be done on a day tour from Bangkok.
If your time is short you may consider flying to Phuket. Bus to Phuket is 12 hours. Phuket area is more expensive than Bangkok and Pattaya.
Up to you.
Dec 14, 2012 8:50 PM
6I would recommend you stop off in Bangkok on the way down South. Who knows ... you might see Yul Brynner.
Dec 15, 2012 6:39 AM
Dec 15, 2012 8:47 AM
8Thanks for all the advice guys! Staying in Bangkok a few days before our return flight home so will get to see that end. Think Kanchanaburi looks the best option!
Dec 15, 2012 2:47 PM
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