35 Days China-Laos-Thailand Cycling Tour from Kunming to Bangkok

This 22 day cycling tour takes you from Kunming in China to Bangkok of Thailand where you’ll discover a world of dramatic rock formations melding into tropical forests, traditional farming villages and ethnic minority communities, on both sides of the border. Travelers will tackle some outstanding mountain trails cut by local hill tribes. Most days feature afternoons out of the saddle to rest and explore on ground level with a variety of Buddhist temples and local markets adding to opportunities to check out the regional cuisine and compare how one town or village compares to the next. Roads are mainly well paved with some mountainous terrain inviting long climbs although luggage transfers, support cars and knowledgeable guides ensure that every effort has been made to increase enjoyment levels on this fair to moderate cycling tour. This tour will offer the fantastic view and give different experience.

Highlights:

  • Cycle from China to Thailand, with charming scenery along the way.
  • Have grand view of Yunnan and learn more about culture of Laos and Thailand, especially Buddhist culture.
  • View some famous spots and Buddhist Temples.

Brief Itinerary:

  • Day 1 Arrive in Kunming
  • Day 2 Kunming-Yuxi
  • Day 3 Yuxi-Huanian
  • Day 4 Huanian-Ganzhuang
  • Day 5 Ganzhuang-Mojiang
  • Day 6 Mojiang-Tongguan
  • Day 7 Tongguan-Ninger
  • Day 8 Ninger-Puer
  • Day 9 Puer-Dadugang
  • Day 10 Dadugang-Jinghong
  • Day 11 Jinghong-Menglun
  • Day 12 Menglun-Mengla
  • Day 13 Mengla-Mohan-Boten-Na Teuy
  • Day 14 Na Teuy – Oudomxay
  • Day 15 Udom Xai – Pak Beng
  • Day 16 Pak Beng – Huai Xai
  • Day 17 Huay Xai – Chiang Khong (Biking)
  • Day 18 Chiang Khong – Chiang Rai (Biking)
  • Day 19 Chiang Rai – Mae Salak (Biking)
  • Day 20 Mae Salak – Chai Prakan (Biking)
  • Day 21 Chai Prakan – Chiang Dao (Biking)
  • Day 22 Chiang Dao – Chiang Mai (Biking)
  • Day 23 Chiang Mai Day Tour
  • Day 24 Chiang Mai–Lampang
  • Day 25 Lampang–Phrae
  • Day 26 Phrae–Uttaradit
  • Day 27 Uttaradit–Sukhothai
  • Day 28 Rest day in Sukhothai
  • Day 29 Sukhothai – Kamphaeng Phet
  • Day 30 Kamphaeng Phet–Nakhon Sawan
  • Day 31 Nakhon Sawan–Sing Buri
  • Day 32 Sing Buri–Ayutthaya
  • Day 33 Ayutthaya – Bangkok
  • Day 34 Bangkok
  • Day 35 Departure from Bangkok

Google Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Kunming

Sightseeing and Activities: Arrive in Kunming
Accommodation: Kunming
Meals: Lunch

Arrive in Kunming

Day 2 Kunming-Yuxi

Sightseeing and Activities: Kunming-Yuxi
Accommodation: Yuxi
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Kunming-Yuxi

Day 3 Yuxi-Huanian

Sightseeing and Activities:Yuxi-Huanian
Accommodation: Eshan, Yuxi
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Yuxi-Huanian

Day 4 Huanian-Ganzhuang

Sightseeing and Activities:Huanian-Ganzhuang
Accommodation: Yuanjiang
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Huanian-Ganzhuang

Day 5 Ganzhuang-Mojiang

Sightseeing and Activities:Ganzhuang-Mojiang
Accommodation: Puer
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Ganzhuang-Mojiang

Day 6 Mojiang-Tongguan

Sightseeing and Activities:Mojiang-Tongguan
Accommodation: Puer
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Mojiang-Tongguan

Day 7 Tongguan-Ninger

Sightseeing and Activities:Tongguan-Ninger
Accommodation: Puer
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Tongguan-Ninger

Day 8 Ninger-Puer

Sightseeing and Activities:Ninger-Puer
Accommodation: Puer
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Ninger-Puer

Day 9 Puer-Dadugang

Sightseeing and Activities:Puer-Dadugang
Accommodation: Xishuangbanna
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Puer-Dadugang

Day 10 Dadugang-Jinghong

Sightseeing and Activities:Dadugang-Jinghong
Accommodation: Jinghong, Xishuangbanna
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Dadugang-Jinghong

Day 11 Jinghong-Menglun

Sightseeing and Activities:Jinghong-Menglun
Accommodation: Xishuangbanna
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Jinghong-Menglun

Day 12 Menglun-Mengla

Sightseeing and Activities:Menglun-Mengla
Accommodation: Xishuangbanna
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Menglun-Mengla

Day 13 Mengla-Mohan-Boten-Na Teuy

Sightseeing and Activities:Mengla-Mohan-Boten-Na Teuy
Accommodation: Na Teuy
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Mengla-Mohan-Boten-Na Teuy

Day 14 Na Teuy – Oudomxay

Sightseeing and Activities:Na Teuy – Oudomxay
Accommodation: Oudomxay
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After a wonderful breakfast of Lao-style rice noodles, we set off for Oudomxay, the biggest city in northern Laos. The road which was great all the way from Jinghong, turned to dust only a few kilometers after Na Thuai. The road is being rebuilt by the Chinese all the way to Oudomxay, but there are some nice sections still that they hadn’t torn up. At the 28km mark for the day we had lunch in the small town of Meng Namo.

After lunch we continued on and the road begins to rise. Altogether it rises about 500m over a 25km stretch. It is a slow climb with frequent resting points, brief downhills and tons of marvelous little villages were everyone shouts “Sabaidee!!” The children were especially happy to see us, as we handed out candy along the way.

During our climb we could begin to hear music coming from the top of the mountain. Needless to say at the very top there was a small village throwing a party. We stopped and joined the festivities briefly, but continued on as to not impose too much. From here there is a nice and long descent into Oudomxay. Unfortunately, the descent is filled with patches of gravel, or just dust, so we had to take it really slow.

Day 15 Udom Xai – Pak Beng

Sightseeing and Activities:Udom Xai – Pak Beng
Accommodation: Pak Beng
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

With tonight’s hotel awaiting us 144 km / 89 mi away, today is set to be an epic day of riding! If some people aren’t up for the whole ride, we will make transfers as necessary to cover the distance. We set off on our bikes from Udom Xai along broken road and dirt tracks, coming into contact with locals along the way. The population here is made up of an astonishing 23 ethnic groups. Sharing the trail with colourful vehicles and livestock, we’ll get a glimpse of real rural life in Asia. We’ll have a picnic lunch before heading south to Pakbeng along the Beng River

Day 16 Pak Beng – Huai Xai

Sightseeing and Activities: Pak Beng – Huai Xai
Accommodation: Huai Xai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we get a chance to relax and recover from our long ride the day before. We will board another slow boat and cruise upstream along the Mekong River from Pakbeng to Huai Xai, stopping to visit riverside villages along the way. The Mekong is the biggest river in Laos and there is a great deal of life that occurs along the river. If we’re lucky we’ll see elephants bathing along the riverbank, as well as fishermen casting lines wrapped around water bottles. Women and children can be seen washing clothes and playing in the water. Late afternoon we’ll arrive in Huai Xai and check in to our hotel for our last night in Laos.

Day 17 Huay Xai – Chiang Khong (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities: Huay Xai – Chiang Khong (Biking)
Accommodation: Chiang Khong
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast we’ll cross the border into Thailand via a bridge. We’ll say goodbye to our Laotian guide and hello to our Thai guide and driver. We’ll get equipped with a new set of bicycles and set off riding along the Mekong River and through the tropical Thai countryside. We finish with a long climb to our lodge in the middle of a Hmong village with spectacular views of the pristine valley. After we get settled, we’ll have tea with the shaman and learn some Hmong customs. There is free time in the evening to relax or wander through the village experiencing the local daily life of villagers in this community; children playing soccer and their parents physically working off of the land. Our first Thai dinner will be served on the deck of our lodge. Cycling 53 km / 33 mi 

Day 18 Chiang Khong – Chiang Rai (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities: Chiang Khong – Chiang Rai (Biking)
Accommodation: Chiang Rai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We start today with a short transfer by vehicle to Chiang Saen, located in the south of the Golden Triangle. We’ll stop at one of the ancient temples here for a quick look before getting back on our bikes for the day. The terrain today is a mixture of dirt and paved undulating roads with some flat sections. We’ll cycle past plantations of rubber, terraced rice paddies where water buffalo plow through the fields with sowing seeds into the earth. We’ll get to our hotel in Chiang Rai mid afternoon and highly suggested this evening is taking a tuktuk to the Night Market and pampering yourself with a wonderful Thai massage. Overnight in Chiang Rai. Cycling 70 km / 40 mi

Day 19 Chiang Rai – Mae Salak (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities: Chiang Rai – Mae Salak (Biking)
Accommodation: Mae Salak
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We start with a big breakfast this morning, refueling for today’s ride. We leave the provincial capital of Chiang Rai and follow the Mae Kok River through remote countryside. After stopping at a hot spring, we ride off-road jeep tracks along the river through small villages and a wide variety of crops. We’ll make a stop at Wat Run Khun, Thailand’s white temple, which is likely the most unique temple in the country. We continue by bike and end at Mae Salak, a small town with a traditional resort by a river. The rooms have a splendid view of the river and the lodge is situated next to a Lahu village. Here the local children will perform traditional music and dance. Cycling 70 km / 40 mi 

Day 20 Mae Salak – Chai Prakan (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities:Mae Salak – Chai Prakan (Biking)
Accommodation: Chai Prakan
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s ride is flat compared to the previous day and we will complete the distance fairly quickly. After an early breakfast we ride on back roads through small villages before arriving in Fang to stop for lunch. In the afternoon we continue riding, catching sights of farmers working their fields and orchards. We overnight in a comfortable Thai-style inn. 91 km / 57 mi

Day 21 Chai Prakan – Chiang Dao (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities:Chai Prakan – Chiang Dao (Biking)
Accommodation: Chiang Dao
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s ride is a real treat for mountain bikers as we tackle some outstanding mountain trails cut by local hill tribes. From the trailhead, we ride dirt roads through rice fields and soaring limestone cliffs. Along the way we will meet Akha, Lisu, Lau, and Palaung people. The colourful Palaung are recent migrants and we will see their women adorned with heavy brass waistbands working the fields. After lunch at a Forestry Camp we continue our ride to the Chiang Dao caves and temple retreat. Cycling 75 km / 47 mi

Day 22 Chiang Dao – Chiang Mai (Biking)

Sightseeing and Activities: Chiang Dao – Chiang Mai (Biking)
Accommodation: Chiang Mai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we cycle away from our resort on an elephant trail through the forest. We will then travel along nice country roads to our scenic lunch spot at a refreshing waterfall. Next we enjoy some great singletrack riding through a scenic teak forest. When we come out of the reservoir again, we’ll hop on a boat for an afternoon cruise. From here, it’s a short transfer to Chiang Mai where we have earned a well deserved rest. Cycling 40 km / 25 mi

Day 23 Chiang Mai Day Tour

Sightseeing and Activities: Chiang Mai Day Tour
Accommodation: Chiang Mai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

In the morning we take a trip in our minibus to the justly famous temple Doi Suthep, which perches at 1050 m (3500 ft.) above sea level. 290 steps up the dragon staircase take you to the main entrance and to its centre, where the holy pagoda contains Buddhist relics.
In the afternoon we can choose to visit various arts & craft workshops that will give you an insight into the manufacture of silk, paper umbrellas and varnish.
Later in the evening the bikes will be set up and adjusted. You may use the rest of the evening to visit the nightmarket or simply enjoy the idyllic old town’s charm and exotic ambience.

Day 24 Chiang Mai–Lampang, 124 km (77 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities: Chiang Mai–Lampang, 124 km (77 miles)
Accommodation: Lampang
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After a short ride through the town, we bid farewell to Chiang Mai (300 m / 1000 ft. above sea level). We ride along the enchanting Mae Ping River before passing the city of Lamphun. After several easy ascents, we reach Lampang, our day’s goal. On the way, we will visit an elephant training camp and watch the friendly animals at work.

Lampang is well known for its colourfully decorated horse-drawn carriages, and for its white clay pottery. Our hotel is conveniently located in the city center.

Day 25 Lampang–Phrae, 103 km (64 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Lampang–Phrae, 103 km (64 miles)
Accommodation: Phrae
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

This stage takes us through a jungle-clad mountain landscape. This stretch features plenty of minor climbs and rewards us with magnificent vistas of temples and stunning views of smaller villages. 

Phrae is one of the oldest cities in Thailand. It was founded in the 11th century as part of the Hariphunchai Kingdom of the Mon. In our hotel, we will spoil you with Thai massages and swimming pool.

Day 26 Phrae–Uttaradit, 75 km (47 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Phrae–Uttaradit, 75 km (47 miles)
Accommodation: Uttaradit
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We leave the provincial capital Phrae with its numerous old buildings, which were built in the typical teak construction Burmese. The temples recall the once mighty Lan Na Kingdom.

Nearby is Sirikit dam, rising to a height of 169 m (550 ft.) and spanning a width of 800 m (2640 ft.). The Sirikit dams the River Nan, creating a beautiful reservoir and picturesque scenery just upstream. Once we’ve arrived at our hotel, we may treat ourselves to another Thai massage and a dip in the pool.

Day 27 Uttaradit–Sukhothai, 115 km (70 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities: Uttaradit–Sukhothai, 115 km (70 miles)
Accommodation: Sukhothai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

The remainder of our stages through to Ayutthaya will be pretty much completely flat. We’ll ride on peaceful low-traffic back roads, passing vast rice paddies, temples and quant villages to arrive at Sukhothai, a former capital of Ancient Thailand.

Here, we can look forward to a well-deserved massage and the amenities of our modern hotel.

Day 28 Rest day in Sukhothai

Sightseeing and Activities: Rest day in Sukhothai
Accommodation: Sukhothai
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

On our rest day, we have a visit to the Historical Park Sukhothai on the agenda. In 1987, it was reopened after ten years of restoration work and is considered one of the most important Buddhist landmarks in Asia, as well as being a UNESCO World Heritage site.

It is a sprawling complex with 16 Buddhist temples, 4 Hindu shrines, ornamental ponds, ramparts and trenches over a 70 square kilometre area. We spend the rest of the day with relaxing by the refreshing hotel pool.

Day 29 Sukhothai – Kamphaeng Phet, 87 km (54 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Sukhothai – Kamphaeng Phet, 87 km (54 miles)
Accommodation: Kamphaeng Phet
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today, we pedal our bikes on historical soil across Kamphaeng Phet province. Its glory period was from the late Sukothai to early Ayutthaya era. The archeological sites in the city’s historical park, both inside and outside the city’s walls, are definitely worth a visit.

Before setting out on the sightseeing expedition, riders may spend a moment relaxing in our hotel’s spa facilities. After sunset, a lively night market will draw our attention.

Day 30 Kamphaeng Phet–Nakhon Sawan, 129 km (80 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Kamphaeng Phet–Nakhon Sawan, 129 km (80 miles)
Accommodation: Nakhon Sawan
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s ride takes us through a very picturesque landscape. Plantations producing a variety of regional fruits border our route to Nakhon Sawan, considered as the gateway to Northern Thailand. Four major rivers flow through this province: Rivers Ping, Yom, Nan and the famous Chao Phraya, the latter of which flows through Bangkok and into the Gulf of Siam, marking Thailand’s traditional centre.
The award-winning Utthayan Sawayan Park rests in the city’s core and is surrounded by a large lake, making it a popular meeting place.

Day 31 Nakhon Sawan–Sing Buri, 130 km (80 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Nakhon Sawan–Sing Buri, 130 km (80 miles)
Accommodation: Sing Buri
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

From our bikes we can observe farmers dressed in their typical round hats at their work in the fields, cultivating rice. We roll past traditional villages and countless rice fields. We stay in a clean modest hotel on the outskirts of Sing Buri, a typical Thai town.

Wat Phikun Tong is Sing Buri’s most famous temple with the biggest sitting Buddha in Thailand. It is surrounded by a peaceful garden inviting visitors to meditate. 

Day 32 Sing Buri–Ayutthaya, 80 km (50 miles)

Sightseeing and Activities:Sing Buri–Ayutthaya, 80 km (50 miles)
Accommodation: Ayutthaya
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Rice paddies, shrimp farms and fruit orchards line our way to Thailand’s former capital Ayutthaya, which ruled historical Siam for four hundred years. UNESCO has designated it a World Heritage Site. Magnificent historical temples and ruins invite us for a visit. 
From our hotel, we have a wonderful view over the River Pasak. We can look forward to spending another night in a delightful hotel and enjoying a group dinner where we can toast to a great tour and reflect over and savour our experiences and accomplishments.   

Day 33 Ayutthaya – Bangkok

Sightseeing and Activities: Ayutthaya – Bangkok
Accommodation: Bangkok
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Ayutthaya – Bangkok

Day 34 Bangkok

Sightseeing and Activities:Bangkok
Accommodation: Bangkok
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Bangkok

Day 35 Departure from Bangkok

Sightseeing and Activities: Departure from Bangkok
Accommodation:
Meals: Breakfast

Departure from Bangkok

Recommended Hotels

Destination 5 Star 4 Star 3 Star Hostels
Kunming

Sofitel Hotel

Kunming Jinjiang Hotel

Kunming Longteng Hotel

Local Hostel
Yuxi / / / Local Hostel
Puer    / / / Local Hostel
Jinghong(Xishuangbanna) InterContinental Hotel Jinghong Dai Garden Hotel Jinglan Business Hotel Local Hostel

Service Included:

  • Accommodation with daily breakfast as indicated in the hotel list;
  • Chinese lunches as listed in the itinerary;
  • All land transfers & transportation with private air-conditioned car;
  • All transfers and sightseeing with skilled English-speaking tour guide;
  • All entrance fees as mentioned in the itinerary;
  • All government taxes;
  • Luggage transfers between hotels;
  • Travel Agency’s Responsibility Insurance coverage

Service Excluded:

  • Any arrival and departure international airfares or train tickets;
  • Any meals which are not specified in the tour itinerary.
  • Chinese visa fees;
  • Excess baggage charged by Airlines;
  • Single room supplement;
  • Tips to guides and drivers;
  • Personal expenses and gratuities to service staff.
  • Personal travel accident insurance.
  • All optional programs;

Travel Tips:

  • Visitors are advised to always carry changes of clothing due to the large variations in temperature between day and night.
  • The climate is relatively dry, so drink more water every day.
  • Protecting oneself from strong UV radiation at high altitude.
  • Protecting oneself from altitude sickness. Lessen the effects of altitude sickness, avoid strenuous exercise and have plenty of rest. 
  • Respect local customs , habits, and religious beliefs.