South-Thailand with scooter
Replies: 6 - Last Post: Apr 30, 2013 8:35 AM Last Post By: itdontmeanathing
Apr 29, 2013 7:25 AM
South-Thailand with scooterHey
There are a lot of threads about North-Thailand (Chiang Mai), but not so many about the southern part .I am posting this hoping you can help me with my itinerary in the south.
I want to ride through South-Thailand with some kind of bigger scooter or enduro bike. My first plan was to start from Bangkok and then drive all the way down to Hat Yai on East-coast and back up on West-coast (or vice versa). This is not going to be some kind of speeding event, calculations show that I have to ride about 50 km per day.
However, there seems to be few problems with that plan:
1) everybody in the North-Thailand threads suggest to fly to Chiang Mai and start motorbike tour from there, skipping traffic in Bangkok. I suppose, this suggestions applies to me too;
2) I am going in September which means I need to be very flexible with my time if I want to visit islands. Unfortunately I have only 6 weeks for the trip, so it seems to be a good idea to shorten the route.
Now I have come to an idea that I will start my trip from Chumphon which is about in the middle of the highway circle in South-Thailand and on the map a really good starting point.
Can you comment this idea? Specially I could use info about the availability of scooter/enduro bikes rent available in Chumphon in September? Can I also buy there a little bit of proper gear (especially helmet)? Or would it be more wiseble to start my ride from some other, more touristic point?
Thank you in advance
Apr 29, 2013 11:59 AM
1Not sure where you are going....but a few observations....I ride 150 to 200k a day on an Airblade scooter (two up sometimes) with good helmets no problem...anything more, I wish I was on my Fireblade! Prachuap KK, Chumphon, Ranong,Ao Nang fine...Phuket NO! too many ROSSIS in their minds, who seam intent on binning it. Make sure you have cover...travel insurance covers upto 125cc as a rule..even with full m/bike license...are you ok with left hand side driving?...But of course with folk coming towards you on the wrong side of a dual carriage way..thats just for starts. TAKE CARE.
Apr 29, 2013 3:19 PM
2Not all insurance policies stipulate a size of motor bike covered, in which case you need to make sure they are included.
A NZer was refused an insurance payout after an accident in spite of paying a higher premium because those two words "motor bike" werent on the policy. And he was only on one of the smaller Hondas driven everywhere. Never assume anything.
Apr 30, 2013 3:01 AM
3Thanks for the replies. I will try to be more precise. I want to do a circle (Chumphon, Trang, Phuket, Satun, Songkhla, Surat Thani, Chumphon) and visit some islands on my way. Basically just cruise around and see what the life brings on. My biggest question is, how to choose the starting/ending point. Chumphon seems to be a good place logistically (close enough to Bangkok), but maybe it is more advisible to start somewhere else? From Bangkok or Phuket, for example (more renting options in September, etc)?
Edited by: markot
Edited by: markot
Apr 30, 2013 4:50 AM
4Google map (possible loop)
Although you can probably rent bikes in Chumphon the selection might not be very good. Could be better to rent somewhere more central to your loop such as Phuket or Krabi where there are a lot more tourists hence more rentals on offer. They might not like you taking their bike so far away but up to you if you want to tell them. Try to negotiate a monthly rate anyway. Should include a helmet but they are usually crap so go buy a decent one at a local shop. Some of the best riding down south is between Phuket and Krabi via Phang Nga province. Also between Chumphon and Surat Thani there are coastal roads that connect small fishing villages so you can avoid the highway. Similar to your plan I rode a small scooter from the bottom of Thailand up to Chiang Mai a few years ago, doing around 50-100km most days with side-trips to a few islands, took about 6 weeks and covered around 4000km. And that was with the wife and two backpacks ;-) Great way to see the country, just hope you have good luck with weather in Sep.
Apr 30, 2013 6:42 AM
5Bangkok to Chumphon is around 400k... a 6 hour thrash. Yep, I have no problem with Chumphon..some nice beaches and small roads all the way to Hua Hin...going south to Lang Suan and around that area. SURAT.. no thank you! I've had more hassle there than the rest of SE Asia put together. Over to Ranong and down to Takua Pa is fine....Phuket, er not for me. Have a good ride...top tip ...regard other folk on the road as possible axe murders...and you have a better chance of survival! Take care.
Apr 30, 2013 8:35 AM
6Thailand motorcyclist forum I've found useful http://www.gt-rider.com/thailand-motorcycle-forum/forum.php
Index brand helmets have models that fit foreigner heads. Doesn't mean they're available where you're shopping. How much protection they provide is another matter. Bring a good one from your own country. There are foreign brands available here at eye-popping prices. No idea if they're fakes or not. I have an Index helmet so I'll bring back a good one from my next EU trip.
Check out all our reviewed and recommended accommodation and book online.