Site logo

--- Advertisement ---

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

Taking the Overnight Train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai

Bangkok CM train

The summer’s still not over! And for those looking for an easy and interesting travel experience with the kids, consider rail travel in Thailand. Operated by the State Railway of Thailand, this mode of transportation is pretty dated (and hence rickety and slow), but it’s a great way to see the countryside, interact with local people, and enjoy a sense of nostalgia. Also, tickets are inexpensive, with several levels of comfort: third class, second class and first class. If traveling with kids, go for either second or first class, which have air conditioning and sleeper options for overnight trips.

The Bangkok — Chiang Mai route is pretty popular, as there are new(ish) trains that run overnight so you board in the evening at Hua Lumphong Station in Bangkok and arrive in Chiang Mai by morning. The first class sleepers offer a private cabin for two passengers, with wide, bench-style seating that coverts into a bunk bed. The cabin is fitted with a tiny sink, an outlet, bedside reading lights, a fold-away table and some overhead shelving. Doors lock from the inside. If you’re traveling in a group of three or four, some cabins have adjoining doors so they can open up into two rooms. First class cars also come with toilets and showers that are shared only with other first class passengers.

The second class sleeper features a similar sleeping configuration but in an open cabin with other people. The upper and lower bunk beds, however, are curtained off for privacy. The lower bunks are slightly more expensive, but they are a little wider, with more headroom and a window. Select trains will also provide cars for women and children only.

Once the journey is underway and night falls, a train attendant comes around to convert the seats into sleeper bunks and makes the bed up with fresh sheets, blankets and pillows. Upper bunks are pulled down from the overhead storage position and can be accessed by a small metal ladder. Another attendant will take drink, snack and breakfast orders, which incur an additional fee. There is also a restaurant car at the front of the train.

Throughout the night, the train makes stops along the way. At certain stations, the air conditioning, which is normally icy cold, goes out and fluorescent lighting permeates the cabin. Needless to say, it was hard to get a comfortable night’s rest. Bring ear plugs or noise cancelling headphones if you’re sensitive to noise, as well as a small towel, toiletries, sweatshirts, snacks and drinks to make the journey more comfortable.


The highlight for us was getting up to the sunrise in Lampang province and watching the rice paddies, small town squares, cliffs and forests fly by. Also, once you’re close to Chiang Mai in neighboring Lamphun province, the train enters Khun Tan Tunnel, the longest of Thailand’s railway tunnels, where you’ll be moving in completeness darkness for a good two minutes.


First class sleepers should be booked well in advance as they sell out quickly. One-way or return tickets can be purchased online directly from the State Railway of Thailand’s website, through third party travel booking sites like 12GoAsia or in person at the ticketing office at Hua Lumphong Station. Enjoy the trip!

Register your email address here and we’ll notify you when new articles get uploaded.

Pssst... like what you're reading?

Join our community and never miss an event, post or update!

Just enter your email address below:

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

Follow Us!

Upcoming Events

Little Footsteps – Ready for School

Little Footsteps 8 Srinagarindra 62 Alley, Nong Bon, Prawet, Bangkok, Thailand

  “Little Footsteps” is excited to announce that we are adding one more day to our "Ready for School" playgroup. It is now every Thursday and Friday !!! We loved […]

Please Contact

Playmondo – Celebrate Friendship Day

Playmondo 2nd Floor, 999/9 Rama I Rd, Pathum Wan,, Bangkok, Bangkok, Thailand

Celebrate Friendship Day with a special workshop at Playmondo! Kids can reminisce about the good times with friends or invite their friends to join in the fun workshops. These activities […]

Please Contact

Playsquare Laser Tag – Private Laser Tag

CentralWorld 999/9 Rama I Rd, Pathum Wan,, Bangkok, Thailand

Unleash the Fun with Our Private Package at CentralWorld! ⁣⁣Invite your friends and join the fun! Enjoy an exclusive private Laser Tag experience just for you and your friends.⁣⁣Monday - Thursday:⁣⁣- […]

฿16000 – ฿20000

Top Flight Bangkok – LA & Vegas Hoops Experience 2024

TopFlightBangkok 84/6 Sai Noi-Ton Chueak Road Khlong Kwang Subdistrict, Sai Noi District Nonthaburi, Nonthaburi, Thailand

LA & Vegas Hoops Experience 2024! Different to other years of our trip this year our players will also be able to witness the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. […]

Please Contact

The JUMP Foundation : KRABI – Khao Sok

Location Revelation! Unveiling the wonders of Southern Thailand - Krabi & Khao Sok! Dive into the Wild Roots: Coastal Adventures & Jungle Journeys Embark on a 10-day odyssey, blending rock […]

Please Contact
Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter

Get the latest kid and family-friendly activities and events in your inbox every Thursday! No spam, guaranteed.

More information

You May Also Like...

Summer camp cover of children running

Summer Camps for Kids in Bangkok

By popular demand our full list of summer camps is back! All kids love a holiday camp, they spend most of the year going from home to school to extracurricular

2 girls showing a first day of year 4 sign

Eco Warriors at St. Andrews Dusit

We at St. Andrews International School Dusit, believe our guiding statement is to be, ‘the happiest community empowering every individual to achieve outstanding growth’ and this permeates the Dusit culture.


The Best Kids Cafes In Bangkok

Thailand loves food and loves kids so when you put both together in a kids themed cafe it makes for a perfect partnership. Many of us have been in a