5-Day Northern Thailand Self-drive Tuk Tuk: Group Adventure

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Tour type

Tour Level: Moderate

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: 5 Days

tour highlights

Tour highlight:

  • An amazing guided adventure tour through Northern Thailand driving your very own Tuk Tuk!
  • 2 x experienced guides accompanying the group
  • Support vehicle for bags, spare parts etc.
  • Trekking in Doi Inthanon
  • Time spent at an Elephant home leading the way in elephant / human interaction
  • 3-4* accommodation throughout (except on nights 3 and 4 for the Doi Inthanon trekking)
  • A unique and exciting opportunity for everyone with an adventurous spirit
  • a trip for people who still love 'travel'

tour details

Explore northern Thailand by driving your very own tuk tuk! These iconic three-wheeled rickshaws offer a classic Thai experience but with a unique twist – instead of being driven around, you’re going to do the driving. Fully insured and meeting Diethelm’s high standards for quality and safety this is the ultimate Northern Thailand adventure! Don’t forget to bring your driving license from home and spend five fun-filled days exploring the outskirts of Chiang Mai, bathing with local elephants, trekking Thailand’s highest peak, getting to know the locals in rural villages, and driving around some more as you discover northern Thailand in a completely new and unique way.

Starting with a 10:00hrs pickup from Chiang Mai Gate Hotel in Chiang Mai city, the experience begins by transferring to the tuk tuk training base in Mae Wang. Upon arrival, check into the night's accommodation, meet the rest of the group and enjoy lunch together before beginning driver training. After everyone is comfortable with the basics, head out on your first real drive to a local temple to receive a special blessing for the journey ahead. In the evening, spend more time practising driving your tuk tuk before tucking into a delicious buffet dinner of Northern Thai cuisine.

Overnight at Khum Khun Wang Resort

Meals included: Lunch
After a filling breakfast, run through some additional driver training, expanding on the skills learned yesterday, and go over the plan for the trip. Drive in a convoy along quiet country roads for about 20 kilometres to a charming elephant home. Learn more about the significance of these incredible creatures in Thai culture and the work the home is doing to support ethical elephant treatment (no elephant rides here!) before getting to interact with them one on one. Help the mahouts (elephant trainers) with feeding time then walk the elephants to the local river for a lively bath. After saying goodbye to your new animal friends, get in some more driving practice as you head back to base camp. Savour a satisfying dinner then rest up for tomorrow!

Overnight at Khum Khun Wang Resort

Meals included: Breakfast
Rise early and after a quick breakfast hit the road! In a convoy of tuk tuks with a lead guide vehicle in front and support vehicle in back, drive along rural roads toward Thailand's highest mountain, Doi Inthanon. While the first 20-30 kilometres of the route has gentle curves, as we get closer to Doi Inthanon National Park we'll come across some incredible naturally scenery, hairpin turns and remote Karen hilltribe villages. With frequent stops along the way to take in stunning views, explore different villages and taste-test some of Thailand's finest coffee, you'll soon realise not only how strong your trusty tuk tuk can be but also how novel it is for locals to see tuk tuks this high up - and with tourists driving!

After a simple northern Thai lunch at a local roadside snack hut, try driving to the top of Doi Inthanon - the tuk tuk can make it! - and then head to our homestay accommodation.

Overnight at Doi Inthanon 'Homestay'

Meals included: Breakfast
Stretch your legs today by exploring Doi Inthanon National Park on foot. With the help of an expert guide, trek 8-9 kilometres through the forest on an exclusive trail to some of the park's greatest vistas and waterfalls. Enjoy lunch along the way and feel free to ask the guide any questions - they hold a wealth of knowledge on the area's nature, history, wildlife and people! After arriving back at the homestay in the afternoon, take some time to rest and relax before indulging in a Thai feast for dinner.

NOTE: This gentle trek is suitable for anyone who can walk 8-10 kilometres. It does include some inclines and declines.
Meals included: Breakfast

The time has come to say good-bye. After breakfast at the homestay on Doi Inthanon, say farewell to your tuk tuk and start the ride back to Chiang Mai city via private minivan to arrive at the Chiang Mai Gate Hotel in the early afternoon.

Meals included: Breakfast


Services included:

  • Support vehicle
  • Minimum of 2 x guide staff accompanying the tour throughout
  • Tuk Tuk fuel included
  • Transfer from Chiang Mai Gate Hotel to Mae Wang (10:00am). Tuk Tuk training, Temple visit and blessing
  • Tuk Tuk training, visit to Mae Wang Elephant Home
  • Tuk Tuk convoy to Doi Inthanon (peak) and then to the 'homestay'.
  • National Park Entry fees
  • Day trek with trekking guide
  • Transfer from Doi Inthanon accommodation to Chiang Mai Gate Hotel arriving +/
  • 12:00
  • Accommodation with breakfast as specified
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary
  • Service charges, Government taxes and 7% VAT


Services excluded:

  • International airfare to / from Thailand
  • Domestic airfare (quoted separately, if you require)
  • Travel to and from Chiang Mai Gate Hotel at the start and end of the trip
  • Optional tours
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal expenditure, such as meals, drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Snacks / alcohol
  • Activities not listed in the itinerary
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the progra


  • This is a fully insured & legal experience

  • The Tuk Tuks themselves are registered as private vehicles (not taxi's) and have 'car' insurance.

  • All travellers who wish to drive a tuk tuk must have a driving license from their own country (manual gear) and ideally an International Driving Permit as well
    (particularly for those whose driving license is not in English).

  • Tuk Tuks are relatively simple to drive, however training and experience is also provided during the driver training session.

  • Training takes place on private land and not a public road

  • No traveller is allowed to drive a Tuk Tuk on a public road until the team are satisfied that they have the requisite skills to be able to do so safely and there is a check list that must be completed for each and every driver.

  • The tuk tuk driving is on quiet roads in the hills surrounding Chiang Mai and the excursion includes transport to/from Chiang Mai. There is no tuk tuk driving in Chiang Mai.
    All trips are limited to never exceeding 50kmh.

  • Driving is done in convoy. This is managed by the lead Tuk Tuk always being driven by a staff member who therefore sets the speed of all, and the rear of the convoy is followed by a support vehicle meaning that all participants are, in effect, cocooned from other road users.

  • The maximum group size for each trip is 18 people total
Tour code: CNXTCANT5

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