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  • On this website some experienced Chiang Mai hikers post open invitations to join their hikes in the area.
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  • Hike descriptions may be posted at short notice. So it may be worth checking the website frequently.
  • Hikes may be cancelled or varied at short notice due to weather conditions or other factors. So it is advisable to check the website beforehand on the day of the hike.
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17/11/26_Mae Taeng Circular (or Beautiful Lady replacement hike)

Each hiker is responsible for his or her own safety and well-being. This is a fairly long hike and exposed to the sun in places, so sun-protection (hats, sunblock, water) particularly important. Experienced hikers only please.

Once upon a time in a faraway land called Mae Taeng lay a fabled paradise in which mystical (or should that be mythical?) beautiful maidens dispensed nectar to weary travellers who could frolic by babbling brooks and bathe under sylvan waterfalls. Alas, no more! This Eden is now cut off from the outside world by impenetrable jungle. Our mission was to identify a replacement hike worthy of this popular area.

No beautiful maidens or babbling brooks encountered during the recon, just forested slopes and ridges, interspersed with hilltribe villages and large expanses of cleared agricultural area. Continuing the imaginary theme, one can imagine beautiful views, but since the reconnaissance was conducted in low-cloud conditions during the rainy season, the only things we could just make out were our hands in front of our faces.

At 16 km long and with about 1,000 meters of elevation gain, this will be a fairly strenuous hike. However, there are no unduly steep slopes and the route follows dirt roads or good forest trails throughout. We anticipate a total hike time of between 5 and 6 hours, including a snack break.

The hike starts and ends at a small car park near the “rafting” area and benefits from changing facilities (at a small fee) and several restaurants along the river bank. After the hike we will cross the road to one of these establishments and eat gai yang while watching the “rafters” (actually floaters) shoot past.

Hike Leaders: Richard and Peter.

Please read the general information on this site, as well as this particular post. If you still think this hike is for you, then just turn up at the meeting place on the day and time. Seats in cars are usually available, but can not be guaranteed.

Meeting Point and Directions:

We will meet at the parking lot in front of the 700-year Sports Stadium on Canal Road (Highway 121) for a 07.30 departure and car share to the hike start point.


The intention is to travel in convoy all the way from the meeting point to the hike start point. However, in case of mishap en route or for anyone preferring to go direct to the start point, the route we will follow is:

Left along Canal Road to the Junction with Highway 107 and turn left towards Mae Rim.

Continue along H 107 through Mae Rim, Mae Malai market and past the turn-off for the Mae Ngat reservoir. Shortly after the Mae Ngat turn-off, turn left on a road sign-posted to the Mae Taman elephant camp (H 3052 on my map). Continue past the elephant camp and dog sanctuary. The starting point is from a car park with toilet block to the right of the road, with a number of small restaurants opposite.


Please bring:

  • At least 2 litres of water/ rehydration drink.
  • Sunhat, sunscreen, insect repellent, long sleeves/pants. Rainwear if you are a pessimist.
  • Strong footwear with good grip and ankle support.
  • A snack.
  • A change of clothes and fuel contribution of 100 Baht if sharing a car.
  • Plenty of energy, enthusiasm, team spirit and good humour.




2 Responses

  1. Richard/Peter, will you be following the “old” route (plenty of stream crossings, ascent to hilltribe village, descent to big waterfalls/swimming holes, and walk out through the watershed? Or is this that long, dusty road to see the one woman Mr. M thinks is beautiful (last time I got dragged along to see her she wasn’t even there)? Now, end of rainy season, would be a great time for frolicking in “those” waterfalls, some of the most beautiful falls I’ve been to in Thailand.

    • Kurt,

      The old route is unfortunately no longer passable, the reason for the verbose drivel in the post. This is a completely new route from the same starting point which goes straight on where the old route turns left into the valley and continues up to a different hill-tribe village. From here we climb up through their fields to a forested ridge until eventually coming back down to Anders’ initial beautiful lady village and hence down the dirt road back to the starting point. Too far to cross over to the second village and the river route. Ours should be a nice hike, but dry.



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