The Monk’s Trail

10 Day Off-Road Motorcycle Tour of Thailand

We’ll kick off this epic 10 day off-road motorcycle tour of Northern Thailand in Chiang Mai, the capital of the ancient Kingdom of…

Tour Highlights

Ride right past elephants on the trail (...while sightings are likely, they are not guaranteed!)
Ride across suspended bridges.
Incredible trail riding from start to finish.
Receive a good luck blessing from a local monk.
River crossings. LOTS of river crossings!
Meet the friendly Thai locals.
Stunning hilltop views.
A variety of accommodation - some luxury, some not so luxury!
Exhilarating rides along multiple riverbeds.
Singletrack. Who doesn't love singletrack?!

We’ll kick off this epic 10 day off-road motorcycle tour of Northern Thailand in Chiang Mai, the capital of the ancient Kingdom of Lanna. This vibrant walled city is the perfect setting for an evening of unique local dining and luxurious 5* accommodation.

Following a night of R&R we’ll roll out of the city toward Ob Khan national park and onto some monumental tracks. Expert knowledge from our partner and local motocross legend Chud, will see us take on heaps of single track, technical rocky climbs, countless river crossings and flowing double track. The best Thailand has to offer.

When the gnarly tracks get the better of us and we’re forced to return to civilization for sustenance and refreshment, stunning, twisty sections of the world famous Mae Hong Son loop await. Switch back after switch back of beautifully smooth tarmac draped over the mountains. The riding on this route will no doubt be just as impressive as the scenery across the hills.

We’ll stop in hill tribe villages, pass through national parks still home to wild elephants, visit waterfalls and spend most of our evenings sipping cool beer at resorts with refreshingly welcome swimming pools!

You’ll be met at Chiang Mai international airport and transferred to your 5* hotel in the heart of the walled city. We’ll all get together in the afternoon for a briefing ahead of the trip.

In the evening, we’ll head out for a unique dining experience to sample some of Thailand’s best kept culinary secrets. Most of it is absolutely delicious!

  • Accommodation: 5* hotel
  • Included Meals: Dinner

Hitting the black top, we roll away from the city before getting stuck into the trails! Just before we do, we’ll stop to get a good luck blessing from one of the local monks. The idea is that this will keep us safe, but in our experience, some blessings are more successful than others!

We won’t ease into the riding on this trip. We splash through countless rivers during the morning and ride steep tracks high into the hills in the afternoon. It’s a beast of a first day’s ride that’ll see us riding all kinds of tracks, trails and twisting roads through mountain forests.

Finishing up in Chiang Dao, overlooked by the mountain Doi Chiang Dao and a UNESCO biosphere reserve, a refreshing pool and cold beers await. The perfect way to end the first day of our North Thailand adventure!

  • Accommodation: Resort with a swimming pool.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

We start the day by climbing high into the mountains on small narrow concrete roads that deteriorate into dirt tracks. We ascend into the pine forests where the trails are nothing short of sensational! The riding here is just so good and you can really get a nice flow going through the trees. Today will see us pass through remote hill tribe villages, so we’ll stop off to tick the cultural immersion box and meet the locals.

The views up here are just incredible too, so we’ll stop to take it all in before descending to the valley floor where we’ll lunch at a local restaurant overlooking a river and rice fields. What a morning!

Back on the bikes, we’re quickly back on the dirt tracks that snake through the hills. We have some fairly steep inclines and declines, but nothing too technical. It’s just a lovely lovely ride that will lead us into the lively town of Pai where our resort awaits.

There’s a lot going on in town, with plenty of shops, bars and restaurants. As such, we don’t include dinner in the tour package, so you can take your pick from the many local or western menus.

  • Accommodation: Resort with a swimming pool.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch.

It’s a short ride on some smooth twisties to start the morning, followed by more fast flowing double tracks on the dirt and winding concrete roads that take us up into the mountains and away from Pai.

It’s another absolute corker of a day on the trails! We ride high up into the pine forested hills, stopping for a picnic lunch with an almighty view across the treetops. We pass through remote villages, cross rivers, ride alongside herds of buffalo and stop for refreshments in quirky little village ‘shops’.

The afternoon will finish back on paved roads, but this region is famed for its ‘Mae Hong Son loop’ – a sublime road with 1864 turns (if you were to ride the full loop). So it certainly isn’t a dull end to the day!

  • Accommodation: Resort with a pool.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Swiftly onto the dirt this morning, where gravel tracks lead us to within 10km the Myanmar border. We’ll dip in and out of valleys, splash through streams and climb narrow concrete paths, all the while being treated to stunning tropical vistas.

We pop out onto the main road to meet our support vehicle, fuel up the bikes and have lunch at a local restaurant.

Back on the dirt, it’s an action packed afternoon with a mix of forested and open trails, river beds and remote villages. Ride Expeditions owner, Toby, has duly named one of the sections as ‘The Rollercoaster Trail’! It’s a narrow track that flows through the forest, up, down, left, right, all the way down to the valley floor where an exhilarating ride along a riverbed awaits. It’s one of those trails that will literally have you laughing out loud in your helmet and you’ll have a grin from ear to ear by the time you reach the end.

We finish the day with a 35km section of the main twisty paved road that leads us into Mae Sariang, where we stay for two nights and a well earned rest.

  • Accommodation: Riverside lodge (with a swimming pool 100m down the road).
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

A day to recharge the batteries by the pool, wander the streets of this sleepy town, relax in a riverside bar or take the bikes out to explore.

  • Accommodation: Riverside lodge.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast.

A day of epic riding and spectacular scenery as we pass through tribal villages forgotten by time. Traditional Thai stilt houses line dirt roads that lead us up, up, up into the mountains and along ridgelines. Steep and challenging jungle tracks will take us through conservation areas still home to wild asian elephants. Its a good day, and the views are just exceptional! Riding along the mountain ridgelines, the views extend as far as the eye can see all around us.

This evening you’ll dine on a delectable spread of home cooked Thai food and catch up on your ZZZ’s in a tranquil riverside lodge.

  • Accommodation: Rustic riverside lodge - they're fairly basic huts, but the setting is well worth it!
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

We start the day on a mix of narrow concrete roads and dirt tracks that flow easily through the hills. It’s a relaxed start to the day, so we can enjoy some easy cruising and take in the beautiful rice-paddy filled views before stopping for lunch in a local restaurant.

After lunch, we’ve got a cracking afternoon of trails. Fast flowing double track and some technical rutted singletrack lead us into the hills. We stop at beautiful hilltop viewpoint before descending into a small town to fuel the bikes and grab an ice cream.

We down the day with an easy cruise on twisting paved roads that lead us into the sleepy town of Mae Chaem.

  • Accommodation: Guesthouse with a swimming pool
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

This final morning on the bikes we ride dirt tracks through Doi Inthanon National Park – the highest mountain range in Thailand. So, naturally, we’ll be blessed with breathtaking views that stretch far across the hills.

Trail wise, we certainly finish the trip with a bang! We have a huge mix of trails, from fast flowing two-track, to twisting singletrack that weaves through the trees. We have sand, ruts, rocky climbs and, the pièce de résistance, the ‘river run’! The River Run is a fantastic blast along a sandy riverbed that cuts through the valley.

These are sensational trails, ending the ride on a high as we hop out onto the paved roads for an easy cruise back into Chiang Mai city.

We finish at an exquisite private villa where we’ll celebrate with cold beers in the pool, as our private chefs prepare an almighty feast of a barbecue. It’s the perfect way to end such an epic adventure.

  • Accommodation: Private villa with a swimming pool
  • Included Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Spend the morning relaxing at the beautiful villa. When you’re ready, we’ll arrange airport transfers and say our goodbyes.

  • Accommodation: Not included.
  • Included Meals: Breakfast.

Our Northern Thailand motorcycle tours are accompanied by a 4×4 support vehicle and trailer.

The backup vehicle & trailer will carry all of your luggage, spare parts & motorcycle, tools, extensive medical kit (in addition to the kit carried by the tour medic), defibrillator (AED), stretcher, cold drinks and lunch.

Our support truck will meet with us at some lunch times and the driver will prepare a picnic with fresh baguettes, imported cheeses & meats, fruit etc.

The truck will then meet us again at the accommodation where the driver will hand out cold beers from the coolbox and have your bags sent to your rooms.

Twin-share accommodation is included as standard. Please see the daily itinerary info for details on that nights accommodation.

On this tour we use 4-5* hotels in the bigger cities and the best available in smaller towns & villages.

Please see the ‘Optional Extras’ section for single room supplement pricing.

You’ll be collected from Chiang Mai international (CNX) airport. You’ll want to arrive no later than midday on Day 1 of the trip.

Airport drop-off at the end of the trip is not included, although we’d be happy to arrange this for you.

All entrance, boat or river crossing fees that are part of the itinerary.

Ride Expeditions Ltd is committed to customer satisfaction and consumer financial protection. At no extra cost to you, and in accordance with ‘The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018’, all passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form.

All fuel for your motorcycle is provided by us.

This motorcycle tour is accompanied by a GPS tracker that displays our live location and track history on an online map. We will provide you with the link and login details which you can then share with your family at home so they can track your progress throughout the trip.

Your Northern Thailand motorcycle tour will be guided by an experienced local who knows the trails like the back of his hand!

Breakfast, lunch and dinner is provided on most days.

Please see the daily itinerary to see what meals are included on each day.

The tour will be accompanied by at least one mechanic, riding at the back of the group, providing assistance when needed. For groups of 10+ riders, an additional mechanic will also join.

Your tour leader is a trained Wilderness First Response medic and will be carrying medical kit with them on the bike.

A more extensive medical kit, including a defibrillator (AED) & stretcher, is carried in the support vehicle.

We also have consulting doctors on call, 24/7, who are always ready to assist teleponhically in the case of an emergency. Our doctors are fully briefed on all riders medical info prior to the tour, they know what we do, where we are riding, exactly what we have in our medical kit and what training our medics have.

Tours are accompanied by GPS trackers and a satellite messenger device so our doctor and office can see exactly where we are and can maintain communication.

A Honda CRF300L fully setup for off-road use, with upgraded suspension, bash plate, handguards and enduro tyres.

If you have you your own suitable & reliable motorcycle at the start point, you are quite welcome to use that for this trip. If not, we will provide a rental motorcycle for you.

Since the day Ride Expeditions started running tours in Cambodia back in 2012, we have been dedicated to supporting the local community.

Part profits from every motorcycle tour are donated to M’Lop Tapang – a local Cambodian charity dedicated to bettering the lives of young children & their families.

Your tour will be led and managed by a highly experienced member of the Ride Expeditions team (trained as a wilderness first response medic).

A welcome pack, including a Ride Expeditions t-shirt, personalised riding jersey, water bottle, keyring, map and tote bag.

You’ll need to book a flight to Chiang Mai International (CNX) airport to arrive on or before the morning of Day 1 of this trip. You will then fly out of Chiang Mai (CNX) on or after the final day of the trip.

It is important you either:

  • Book a flexible flight ticket that allows you to make amendments or cancel without penalty;
  • Have travel insurance that you will reimburse you for out of pocket expenses incurred by a cancelled trip;
  • Do not book your flights until we have notified you that this departure is guaranteed.
  • Motorcycle Damages;
  • Alcohol;
  • Laundry;
  • Souvenirs;
  • Any meals that are not mentioned in the itinerary;
  • Emergency transportation;
  • Any other item, optional excursion, activity or entrance fee that is not specifically mentioned as being included.

It is a condition of booking that you obtain appropriate travel insurance that covers you for riding the same capacity motorcycle that you’ll be riding on this motorcycle tour.

The insurance must cover emergency evacuation, medical bills, repatriation etc.

Enduro / motocross style kit will be the way to go on this motorcycle tour, rather than adventure / road riding kit. Thailand can get very hot and humid so light weight body armour and a hydration pack are a must. We recommend you bring an extra layer just in case it gets a bit chilly and waterproofs to keep out the wet stuff.

You'll also want a decent helmet (full face or modular is best for this tour) strong boots and strong breathable gloves, do bear in mind that there will be times we ride on the road... 'dress for the slide, not the ride!'

This will remove your liability for any damages to the motorcycle, with the exception of damage caused by water or reckless riding.
Single room accommodation is available for every night of the trip with the exception of the night we spend in a homestay.Please see the 'Dates & Pricing' section for the price.

Yes, there are ATMs in the larger towns, but not the villages.

Absolutley! Despite what you might expect, the internet and mobile phone coverage across Thailand is excellent! When you arrive at Chiang Mai international airport, look out for the network provider concessions just outside of arrivals. Expect to pay somewhere between $5 and $20 for a sim card on a local network, dependeing on the package you opt for.

While the Thailand locals love their meat, it’s no problem for the restaurants / hotels to prepare vegetarian meals. Fresh vegetables & fish are plentiful in Thailand.

As for food allergies, we will make every effort to communicate your requirements to the kitchen. If you have concerns, please do get in touch so we can discuss these with you.

Yes, unless… you are a citizen of a visa exempt country. Citizens of the U.K, U.S.A and Australia are all subject to a 30 day visa exemption that can be extended to 60 days at Thai immigration. A full list of countries with a visa exemption can be found at the link below.

Follow this link for Thailand entry requirements. This is a link to the London/ Thai embassy website – if you are not a UK resident, please search for the equivalent info from your home country’s foreign office.

Visa costs, if applicable, are not included in the tour price.

To secure your place we simply need a 20% non-refundable deposit. The remainder does not need to be paid until 60 days prior to the tour start date.

As this is a largely inclusive tour, you won’t need much. You will only need money for the items not listed as inclusions, which is mainly just alcohol, souvenirs, laundry, a couple of meals and any other personal spending. Unless you go mad in the gift shops and bars, around £100 should be adequate. Shopping in Thailand tends to be very reasonable so you can get quite a lot for not much!

Yes. Here at Ride Expeditions, we take the necessary precautions to ensure that we protect both ourselves and you as the customer, with insurances covering financial failure, public liability, professional indemnity and employers liability (you will need your own travel insurance).

To obtain this insurance we must meet strict safety standards and local regulations. We must also carry out thorough risk assessments about all aspects of a tour before tyres can hit tarmac (…or dirt!).

Yes. All passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form.

For the most accurate and up to date info, we advise you visit the ‘Travel Health Pro’ website. Follow this link to visit the site.

Please also consult with your own doctor at home at least 8 weeks before your trip.

To ride legally in Thailand you must carry your driving licence (which must cover the capacity of motorcycle you will be riding) and an international driving permit (IDP) issued by the respective authority in your home country. This will also be a stipulation of any travel insurance policy.

Average group sizes are 8-9 riders and we limit the groups to 12 riders.

If you cancel your booking before departure, cancellation charges will be applied as follows:

  • 61 days or more before tour start date – retention of deposit
  • 42-60 days before tour start date – retention of 50% of tour price
  • 28-41 days before tour start date – retention of 70% of tour price
  • 0-27 days before tour start date – retention of 100% tour price

Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for further info regarding cancellations, changes and transferring your trip to a friend.

The local currency of Thailand is ‘Baht’. We recommend you set up a multi-currency account, such as Wise (this is what we use!). You can then withdraw cash upon arrival at the airport and receive excellent exchange rates. However, you can easily exchange currency at the airport upon arrival. If you are exchanging cash on arrival, please make sure you bring bank notes that are in good condition. Damaged or old notes will often be rejected.

For the most accurate and up to date travel advice for Thailand, we advise you to visit the U.K foreign office website.

Follow this link for Thailand advice from the UK foreign office. As we are a UK company, this is the official government advice we follow. If you are not a UK resident, we advise you to search for the equivalent info from your own country’s foreign office, as travel advice may differ.

You need to be confident riding a wide variety of terrain, including sand, steep rocky hills, rutted trails and gravel roads. A good level of fitness is also important. This tour is NOT suitable for inexperienced off-road riders.

As a very rough guideline, we’d recommend a minimum of 2 years of active (frequent) off-road riding. If you are unsure of your experience, please let us know so we can have a discussion. We may also recommend you take an off-road training course prior to signing up to the trip – not only to get more experience, but so a professional instructor can assess your riding ability.

Thailand is a pretty hot country all year round. The dry season runs from November – May. The first 3-4 months of this season are less humid and generally cooler at night. April & May are very hot and humid months. February and March in Thailand is known as ‘Burning season.’ This is when farmers burn old crops in order to make way for new crops. This can result in high air pollution levels, but don’t worry we always plan our tours to take advantage of the best weather.

The wet season runs from June – October. Don’t be put off though – some of the best riding is in the wet season… There is no dust, some muddy conditions are incredibly fun and the landscapes are filled with lush greenery and full rice paddies. That said, September and October are statistically the wettest months of the year – to ride out here during these months you must have a great sense of adventure as plans can change quickly! You must also be prepared to get very very wet and possibly go swimming with the bike.

The minimum required number for this trip to run is 6 riders. We reserve the right to cancel the tour if this number is not met and we will provide you with a minimum of 56 days notice. Please know that this is an absolute last resort for us and we will always do everything in our power to avoid this happening.

We accept GBP payments by Visa, Mastercard & American Express and direct bank transfers. Please get in touch if you would rather pay in another currency – we’ll do our best to accommodate!

For Thailand there are three associated plug types, A, C and D. Plug type A is the plug which has two flat parallel pins, plug type C is the plug which has two round pins and plug type D is the plug with three round pins, in a triangular pattern.

Dates & Pricing

Tour Price

  • Rider (Incl. Honda CRF 300L): £2375

The Motorcycles

  • Honda CRF 300L Included [6 Available]

Optional Extras

  • Damage Waiver + £190
  • Single Room Supplement + £350
  • Start Date: January 24, 2025
  • End Date: February 2, 2025
  • Only 6 places remaining.

Expedition Leader:

Rob

Tour Price

  • Rider (Incl. Honda CRF 300L): £2495

The Motorcycles

  • Honda CRF 300L Included [6 Available]

Optional Extras

  • Damage Waiver + £200
  • Single Room Supplement + £370
  • Start Date: December 5, 2025
  • End Date: December 14, 2025
  • Only 6 places remaining.

Expedition Leader:

Rob