Cycling Thailand

Typical Thai BicycleThailand is a very popular cycling destination and for many good reasons.

The food and lodging are plentiful and cheap. The roads are in excellent condition and it’s easy to find good quality maps of the country, even after you arrive.

We found some very decent maps in 7-11 convenience shops, near gasoline stations. The price is around €3. -Laetitia and Sebastien

There aren’t many hills and if Buddhism is your thing there’s a temple to visit around every corner.

The capital Bangkok is connected to the world by frequent and high quality transport links and it’s generally no problem to throw your bike on a bus or train to cover some stretches.

It’s not entirely a cycling paradise, however. The heat and humidity can be tough for some people to handle. Do as the Thais do and nap in the shade during the hot midday hours. It can also be difficult to escape the backpacker ghettos and get off the beaten track. Options for camping are similarly hard to find and not always cheaper than getting a hotel room so if you crave cycling through wilderness than much of Thailand won’t be for you.

Keep reading for general information on Thailand or jump ahead to notes on specific routes…


  • Bangkok: The City of Angels. And yes, you can cycle here.
  • Chiang Mai: Temples and relaxation.
  • Mae Sot: A bustling border town.
  • Satun: Stop in on your way to Malaysia.

Cycle This…


  1. Khon Kaen
    9th December 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    I don’t ride far and wide but I do ride my bike every day for some early morning exercise. Love to watch the sunrise over Beung Nong Khot in Khon Kaen, Thailand.

  2. justin,Nuch Trang Thailand, cofee stop
    20th April 2011 at 2:42 pm #

    Hello was thiking of you guys the other day,how is it all going…

  3. Them
    4th October 2011 at 8:19 am #

    Where to shop the ORTHLIEB bike panniers in southen Thailand?

  4. Rik
    21st October 2011 at 4:13 pm #

    @Them – we found Ortlieb panniers at a store next to Bike Zone in Bangkok – address is for Bike Zone is 2nd Floor, Outdoor Unlimited Zone, Amarin Plaza
    496-502 Ploenchit Road, Lumpini, Pathumwan
    Bangkok 10330
    Chidlom BTS Station (E1)
    There was also another store selling Vaude panniers

  5. Grace Johnson
    3rd October 2018 at 2:01 pm #

    You guys (Friedel and Andrew) rode Thailand before smartphones. They make a huge difference in being able to put together a good cycling route!

    Yes, it’s handy to have a large scale map for overall route planning. But smartphones are a great help in finding all of those back roads and dirt paths that aren’t even shown on the most detailed maps.

    Along the Southern coast and in the mountains of Northern Thailand there aren’t that many alternatives to the main roads.

    But most of Northern Thailand (at least the flat section) is full of small back roads and paths. We ended up riding next to canals and even through monasteries.

    With the smartphone, it’s even easier to escape the backpacker ghettos of Bangkok and Chiang Mai. While riding, we rarely came across other touring cyclists. But almost every town has some elderly retired Westerners who live there during the winter months.

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    19th November 2021 at 8:12 am #

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