Gears, Grapes and Vineyards
Active to Extreme
Min. 2 – Max. 8
≈ 7 hours
This trip encapsulates my two favorite pastimes… Mountain biking and wine!
What a great combination! At the start of the ride we visit Wat Huay Mongkhol. This monument west of Hua Hin is not a statue of The Lord Buddha, but instead a statue of a monk. Luang Phor Tuad was the legendary Southern Thai monk, immensely popular with the Southern Thais and increasingly so elsewhere in the Kingdom for the miracles associated with him. Thailand’s Queen Sirikit commissioned the temple site that houses the largest statue of Luang Phor Tuad ‘in the world’. Not only is Wat Huay Mongkhol regarded as a holy place but it has also become a recreational area for visitors in an attractive setting that many people seek out on weekends and holidays.
We begin our cycling along a small country road through a beautiful valley peppered with pineapple fields and numerous other plantations enjoying the peace and quiet with scenic views. This short country road ride will get you warmed up both in your legs and in your heart for the journey ahead. After only 5 km we will head up the drive of a new temple that has recently been completed and overlooks the valley surrounding it.
Continuing on down the country road we will see many different types of vegetation including: pineapple plants, banana trees, mango trees, tamarind trees, dragon fruit plants, coconut trees, sunflowers, corn crops, sugar cane, aloe vera, Jack fruit trees, tomatoes, papaya trees, olive trees, and eventually grape vines. Of course, there will be the occasional cows and chickens to really give it the countryside charm and feel.
We will take another break in front of one of the packaging plants here in Thailand for the world’s largest fruit and vegetable packaging company, Dole. Not only does this company provide the world with delicious fruits and vegetables, but they are providing thousands of jobs for the local Thai people. It is likely that you will see many people wearing their Dole uniform that will be happy to smile and say “Hello” to us as we pass by.
After we replenish with some cold electrolyte drinks, water, and some local fruits we will head down the road to where we will turn onto a lovely network of dirt roads that will lead us to some small single-track paths through thick brush and more fruit farms. Technical riders will enjoy the slightly challenging route while others may go a little slower and enjoy the incredible scenery. There will be a few moderate hills to ascend and descend with the possibility of a creek crossing depending on the recent weather. The more challenging part of the ride will empty us back out onto another small road where we will once again stop for refreshments at a local shop before completing the final 6km up to the vineyard.
We arrive at the vineyard around 12 noon. The vineyard is located on a former elephant corral, a sublime place where wild Asian elephants were domesticated. The terrain, comprising mostly of loamy-sand and slate, is beneficial to the cultivation of grapes and the setting is truly beautiful.
Lunch is taken overlooking the vineyard from their magnificent sala pavilion, designed by Ms Sylvia Soh, a former Norman Foster architect. The sala is unusual, and in itself is worth the trip!
We will have the opportunity to sample some of the local wines and even purchase some to take home if you like. For those that don’t care for wine, there is also grape juice available that is absolutely delicious. The pavilion has a little wine shop with accessories, gifts, and souvenirs.
After lunch the riders will be given the option to take the support vehicles back or to push on for another 18km down a small dirt and gravel roads back to Wat Huay Mongkhol. This will make for an all around great workout in addition to a fantastic tour. It is likely that the riders who want to do the extra 18km will get to Wat Huay Mongkhol around the same time as the support vehicles that have to take the main roads.
Check out our photo gallery of previous Gears, Grapes and Vineyards tours!
Phone: +66 (0) 81-173-4469 (English language only)
Pick Up and Delivery
Collection is between 7:30 and 8:00am at your hotel reception so we can get a prompt start in the cooler morning air. We will be returning around 3:00pm.
The majority of the cycling is on small ‘traffic free’ roads. It will be slightly challenging and a little bumpy in places. There are a few shallow hills to climb but we have many breaks in the ride to replenish and take in the scenery.
During most of the trip we are tracked by our air-conditioned support vehicle, with fresh fruit, water and first aid support. The vehicle is never more than a few minutes away. On the sections of the ride that the support vehicle cannot follow, the ride leader will have a first aid kit and bicycle tools just in case.
- TOUR GUIDE – English speaking guide (on bike)
- SUPPORT VEHICLE – Follows for safety, comfort & peace of mind
- LUNCH – Assortment of premium Thai delicacies
- WATER/SOFT DRINKS – During the ride
- FRESH FRUIT – Chilled local fruits at rest-stops
- FEES – Parks, boat rides & other entrance fees
- TRANSFERS – From your hotel to unique cycling destinations (& back)
- BIKES – Using modern Marin hybrid bicycles
- HELMETS – Must be worn for your safety
Although we start early in the morning, it can get very hot and we suggest you wear sun lotion and bring extra with you. Supportive shoes are important as we usually have options for doing some treks off the bikes. An extra t-shirt is recommended for the van ride home. If you are concerned about the weather please consult us. DO NOT believe the weather forecasts.
Don’t forget to bring a camera or video camera!
The following information is needed when booking
- Contact person and mobile number (if possible)
- The full name of each rider (for insurance) and their height (for bike sizing)
- Your location (hotel, etc.) for pickup scheduling
- Any special dietary requirements (allergies, religious etc)
We ask for a 50% deposit to confirm the booking (we usually send an online invoice) and the remaining 50% can be paid in cash during the tour.
Please contact us now to make your reservation
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Please include as much information as possible)
Phone: +66 (0) 81-173-4469 (English language only)
**If calling, please call directly as we need to talk to the actual customers**
As featured in Lonely Planet