Great road trip - a good way of escaping the crowds and getting out into the mountains.
The loop runs for 600km through forested mountains and paddy field valleys, passing Karen villages and some nice towns along the way. Two of us squeezed onto a 125cc scooter, which was fine for the main roads, but if I did it again I'd rent a larger 200-250cc bike so that I could explore more of the rougher/steeper side roads.
Take it slowly. The roads are such good quality (smooth fresh blacktop snaking through the mountains) that I got carried away perfecting my cornering and arrived back in Chiang Mai 3 days earlier than I planned!
If you stay in Mae Hong Son (which you should) stay in Baan Mai Guesthouse on the north side of the Jong Kham Lake - easily the best guesthouse in town. It's cheap (200-300 baht a room) and you'll find yourself being mothered by the owner. There's free hot chocolate/tea/coffee and breakfast - we woke up to mago and sticky rice waiting for us in tiffin tins outside our door...
If you want to save the best till last, travel the route clockwise i.e. leave Mae Hong Son and Pai to the end of the trip. We did it the other way round and regretted not spending more time in there. And wear a visor or sunglasses - I got hit in the face a few times by beetles the size of my fist!
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.