There are 4 operators that run from Chiang Rai to Bangkok. If you decide to take a bus, you can take the Economy, Express, VIP 32 Seats, and VIP 24 Seats options.
There are 6 operators that run from Chiang Rai to Bangkok, with 1 departure per day. If you decide to take a flight, you can take the Economy option.
There is 1 operator that run from Chiang Rai to Bangkok. If you decide to take a car, you can take the Standard option.
There is 1 operator that run from Chiang Rai to Bangkok. If you decide to take a minivan, you can take the VIP option.
There's plenty to enjoy about the laid-back lifestyle of Chiang Rai. It's a border town known as the gateway to Myanmar and Laos across the Mekong River. But once you've explored and maybe discovered a hill tribe village or two, it's time to get your big city fix in Bangkok.
And here's how...
The Chiang Rai to Bangkok distance is approximately 681 kilometers (423 miles). But when you hear the streets of the Thai capital calling, there's only one thing to do, and that's hit the road.
Taking the bus is very straightforward. It's a comfortable option, and there are numerous types of backpacker buses heading down south throughout the day and night.
Tackling the distance by bus takes approximately 10 hours. The buses that travel through the night offer a good opportunity to get some shut-eye before hitting the big city. It also saves you money on overnight accommodation since you can sleep on the bus – hopefully!
If you need to get to the Thai capital in a hurry, your only option is to fly. The Chiang Rai to Bangkok flight lasts no more than a couple of hours, although you’ll also have to get to the airport an hour or so before you're due to take off.
Six airlines are flying this route 15 times a day. Ticket prices start at US$59 if you're flying with Thai Viet Jet. Planes are contemporary and quite comfortable.
There isn't a direct train from Chiang Rai to Bangkok. You can ride the rails, but you'll need to make several other connections, often with a lengthy wait in between. Perhaps consider a train trip if you've got plenty of time to spare and you want to stop off along the way south.
When you're on the Chiang Rai to Bangkok bus, there's plenty to see during daylight hours.
As you leave Chiang Rai's suburbs, watch out the window as rural villages appear by the side of the road. This will be one of the most scenic parts of the trip, with plenty of hills and countryside interspersed with pockets of agricultural farmland and small roadside communities.
The approach to Bangkok is well worth staying awake for. The Thai capital's suburbs stretch way beyond the city limits and really open your eyes to what life is like for communities living on the urban outskirts.
There won't be much to see if you're taking the Chiang Rai to Bangkok flight. Take-off and landing are usually the most exciting moments, but other than that, it’ll be blue skies and clouds for days.
Taking a bus from Chiang Rai to Bangkok
For slow travelers, the best mode of transport is the 10-hour journey on the Chiang Rai to Bangkok bus. The bus station is in the center of Chiang Rai, and there are several departure times throughout the day.
Bus travel can be as simple as turning up at the bus station and purchasing a ticket. Although, it really does pay to find out what it should cost first before you blindly hand over your hard-earned Thai Baht.
Express bus tickets organized by the Transport Company Ltd usually start from US$23. This type of air-conditioned bus is relatively comfortable and features reclining seats as well as washrooms. It will also stop at a couple of service stations so passengers can stretch their legs.
The VIP 32 Seats bus organized by Bangkok Buslines doesn't cost much more than the Express version. Seat prices usually start from US$28. For the extra US$5, you'll have a few more mod-cons, including a television, Wifi access and a USB charge point on your seat. However, there's not that much difference in comfort levels.
Sleeper buses are a great way to get to know fellow travelers and also an opportunity to see lots of rural areas you'd miss if you were traveling by air.
Buses are clean and safe.
Flying from Chiang Rai to Bangkok
The Chiang Rai to Bangkok flight is over and done with before you know it. One-way tickets start from US$59, and you'll reach the Thai capital after just an hour and 30 minutes.
It's a popular route for holiday makers and business people alike, so there are usually 15 daily flight departures. Get comfy, read a book and get some rest. The hustle and bustle of Bangkok awaits – enjoy the air-conditioned peace while it lasts.
Although there currently isn't a direct Chiang Rai to Bangkok train, keep your eyes out because there might be one chugging through in the future – you never know with Thailand!
Bookaway's customers prefer VIP 24 Seats bus by Bangkok Buslines
Economy flight by Nok Airwhich usually takes 1h
141 Km (Air)
Express bus by Sombat Tour starting at US$24