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Getting around Chiang Mai is Hell

Travel Forums Asia Getting around Chiang Mai is Hell

1. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 8y

Its a beautiful city, otherwise I wont be here for almost three weeks.

Its charming, seemingly provincial compared to Mega Manila. But definitely more charming by a margin of 1 million points.

The trouble is the public transport. Can they just put numbers or name plates to indicate where those very few JEEPNEYS are heading. I mean the routes.

The tuktuks are more expensive than taking a flight with air asia. You would suddenly miss those Vietnamese motorbike drivers, when you are desperate for a ride back to your hotel.

The guide books should advice to have a BUDGET for renting motorbikes or bikes, because commuting here is hell. Unless you have a desperate goal to loose weight.

i just had a bad day trying to get to a bus station. Apparently the Maps that they give for free are not up to date. The bus station was transferred to another galaxy and I had to walk to find it. I hope to find it tomorrow. Wish me luck on my million dollar tuktuk ride.

2. Posted by Daawgon (Travel Guru 1993 posts) 8y

How big is Chiang Mai - I was under the impression that it was a compact city???

3. Posted by rmb (Budding Member 20 posts) 8y

it is. I was there not long ago and had absolutely no problems getting around. The main section of the city is definitely walkable. Most hostel offer free bikes, and there is public transport everywhere.

4. Posted by loubylou (Travel Guru 664 posts) 8y

We spent 3 weeks or so in Chiang Mai last year and it is easy to get around. It's a very compact city to walk around unless your hotel is way out on the outskirts of the city! We found it a nice place to while away some time. If in doubt about where the sangthaew's go, just ask your hostel or hotel...they will gladly help you out.

We walked everywhere (most of the time we do!), didn't find getting around a problem at all. We prefer to walk as we tend to see more than just rushing past on a bike or sangthaew.

5. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 1656 posts) 8y

Quoting Swept Away

Its a beautiful city, otherwise I wont be here for almost three weeks.

Its charming, seemingly provincial compared to Mega Manila. But definitely more charming by a margin of 1 million points.

The trouble is the public transport. Can they just put numbers or name plates to indicate where those very few JEEPNEYS are heading. I mean the routes.

The tuktuks are more expensive than taking a flight with air asia. You would suddenly miss those Vietnamese motorbike drivers, when you are desperate for a ride back to your hotel.

The guide books should advice to have a BUDGET for renting motorbikes or bikes, because commuting here is hell. Unless you have a desperate goal to loose weight.

i just had a bad day trying to get to a bus station. Apparently the Maps that they give for free are not up to date. The bus station was transferred to another galaxy and I had to walk to find it. I hope to find it tomorrow. Wish me luck on my million dollar tuktuk ride.

I always stay at the MONTRI Hotel at 2-6 Ratchadamnoen Road, right across the street from the Thapae Gate. Easy walk to many places. Various priced rooms, all with air, private toilet, security box and TV.
http://www.hotelthailand.com/chiangmai/montri/
Free van ride back to airport when you depart.

Here is some info on baht bus rides (Jeepneys are in the Philippines.)
http://wikitravel.org/en/Chiang_Mai#Get_around
Usually you have to know which direction you want to go in and get a songthaew heading in that direction. Push bell-buzzer to get off and pay for ride. If you direct the driver to a particular place then you pay a custom price!

I walk a lot and the Montri has been located okay for me.

Have fun.

6. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 8y

Quoting Daawgon

How big is Chiang Mai - I was under the impression that it was a compact city???

Yes it does look so compact. Its THAILAND'S SECOND LARGEST CITY, but it looks seem too tiny. Until I saw the view from DOI SUTHEP. STILL I DIDNT SEE ANY MALLS... I mean shopping malls with CINEMAS galore, food courts, parking spaces... it does seem provincial, which makes it CHARMING.

BACK TO THE PUBLIC TRANSPORT: I mean you dont find buses with NUMBERS on it. I mean if you need to go to SILOM or KHAOSAN, you just need to know the number of a bus. The red jeepneys of CHIANG MAI have no numbers and you dont know their routes, unless you ask them in ENGLISH, Then it will take them 2 minutes to decide how much they can charge you. The tuktuks are so huge, so if you are travelling solo you are paying for more than one person. I WALK most OF the time. BUT there days when walking is not fun due to the rains, so you need a ride and they dont exist within the MOAT.

For some reason, I cant find the bicycle rental shops when you need them. THE RATES OF THE BIKE, I pay 30 pesos for rent in SOUTHERN CHINA, In THAILAND, I pay more than 150 pesos for a bike rental.