Chiang Rai is relatively easy to get around. It's so small that you can easily walk to most sights from the town center. Note that there are no licensed taxis. Here are your options for getting around:
The airport is extremely close to town, and it's generally no more than a 15 minute drive to most city hotels from the airport. Many, if not all, hotels offer a free pick up service, but check the charges before you order hotel transportation.
Getting Around Town
- These three wheeled carts, properly called a samlor, are generally the quickest way to get somewhere. Chiang Rai is small enough that the tuk-tuk is appropriate for getting around town. Note that despite their noise samlors don't have a lot of power so you won't find them climing the hills outside of town. Be sure to negotiate the fare before starting your trip.
- These three wheeled bicyles are more common than tuk-tuks once you get away from the city center. They can cost as much as a tuk-tuk so it's really a matter of what comes along first.
- You can rent morotcylces from several places around town, and they make a great way to get around town, if you're able to ride. Note that helmets are required.
- There are a number of car rental agencies around town, including some of the international chains such as Budget, Avis and National. Driving in Chiang Rai is not as difficult as Bangkok, but you'd still be well advised to rent a car with driver. If you plan to head north towards the border, you will encounter police check points, so a local may be needed to help you negotiate these.