One of my friends mentioned how in her time in Bangkok, she enjoyed bike rides in the countryside. As I mentioned in an earlier post, she also recommended visiting the unique railroad market by the Mae Klong rail station, about 1.5 hrs. outside of Bangkok. My friend and fellow traveler Phil and I agreed that it sounded like a great idea so I contacted the individual that had taken her to both places and arranged for the bike tour as well. We did not have a full day to spare so, unfortunately, the bike ride would only be about 2 hours. Nevertheless, it would allow us to see something much different than the city so we felt it was still going to be worth it.
It had been a couple of years since my last bike ride (a bike tour in Buenos Aires that went flawlessly) so it took me some pedaling to re-learn balance and I had a couple of mishaps early on due to that (one of those more painful than the other…). I found my biking groove and, combined with fairly easy terrain, went forward with the bike tour for the next 1.5 hrs or so with no further issue.
Riding by farms and plantations
Bang Kung Camp
We made a stop at the Bang Kung camp which is a former navy camp from wars past (with Burma, I believe) dating from the late 1700s. The camp has statues depicting the fight training the soldiers went through. The camp also had a temple that was overcome with vegetation as the camp was abandoned for a couple of hundred of years (but is now open for the faithful – and bike-tourists!).
Along the way, a church
We pedaled mainly either on well-paved roads or minor side roads along coconut farms and banana plantations. It was all very serene and it was a very enjoyable, pleasant bike ride. Along the way we passed a Catholic church, not quite labeled that way, it was called Our Lady of Help Christion (sic) Church. It looked closed so we did not go in. I have to say it felt out of place but it was also cool to see!
The ride ended with a late lunch in a small restaurant perched on the river bank of the Mae Klong River, upstream from where we had started. And just as we got there, it started to pour! It was perfect timing, great food, and a cool setting to rest from the busy morning while enjoying more of the delicious Thai food (see my post on food in Bangkok!)
The bike tour was a phenomenal idea and a good change of tempo, especially as it got us out of the hustling, bustling city to see a beautiful countryside and breathe some fresh air – I need to be sure I always look for options like this in future travels!
What to Know
- We hired Grasshopper Adventures for the bike tour (fully paid by us, no freebies given for me to mention them).
- Wear your helmet. You are in the developing world and, should an accident happen (like it happened to me!), it is better to be safe than sorry when you may or may not get access to the medical care you are used to.
- While it is hot and humid, it was very pleasant while on the bike.
- You can do a short bike ride like we did or a day-long one.