All you need to know about Green Trails Trekkings
Table of Contents
Green Trails Trekkings – introduction
On this page, we present all you need to know about Green Trails Trekkings. I hope to answer all the questions you might have about our tours and trekkings. These are things like a code of conduct, what things to bring, the sleeping conditions, the food we serve, and much more. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact us.
Transportation is a very important component of our tours. Here is an overview of the Green Trails transportation. We have been using the same group of drivers for many years. They have strict instructions regarding driving standards, maximum speed, and safety. We have a perfect safety record. Our vehicles are regularly checked. We have indicated under each tour which transportation is being used. The title pictures show the traditional public transportation in Chiang Mai.
This is the songtaew. These trucks are converted pickup trucks. They have two benches on the side of the truck so people sit opposite each other in the length direction of the vehicle. We use similar trucks for some of our trekkings, not the ones that used for public transportation. Our drivers have strict instructions regarding maximum speed and passenger safety and convenience. In the included section we specify the type of vehicle we use on tours.
Minibus or minivan
We use minibusses or minivans for most of our tours. They are air-conditioned and have seat belts. There are various sizes of minivans but most of them can accommodate nine persons and a guide. They are more comfortable than trekking trucks but have less “charm”. If your program indicates that the transportation is a trekking truck and you want to upgrade to a minibus, please let us know. There are some extra costs involved, depending on the program.
Trekking truck or “songtaew”
We use trekking trucks for our join-in trekkings and some private programs. It has been the typical transportation for trekkings. They have two benches on the side of the passenger compartment of the truck. These vehicles are open vehicles but in a tropical climate, this is very convenient and pleasant. They have no air-conditioning except in the driver’s compartment. A trekking truck is part of the experience but for some people, it might not be comfortable enough. A trekking truck can accommodate a maximum of ten persons and a guide. They are often used for group tours. We use songtaews for our Huai Nam Dang trekkings such as Trek the mountains of Huai Nam Dang.
Four-wheel drive vehicles
We can arrange practically every type of vehicle on request. We also use four-wheel-drive vehicles of various types during our customized tours. These are very comfortable, air-conditioned, and have safety belts. Normally these vehicles can accommodate two persons and one guide. There are types that can accommodate four persons and one guide as well. The Toyota Fortuner is such a car. We also use other four-wheel-drive vehicles such as the Toyota Fortuner and the Honda CRV. Transportation on any of our private tours can be upgraded to these luxury vehicles.
These are the vehicles Green Trails transportation is using.
Our Code of Conduct of trekking
We are very much aware of our responsibility when it comes to our impact on local communities. We are doing our best to do things the right way. That is why we have our own trekking code of conduct, which hopefully gives some guidance on what to do and what not.
Visiting local communities
Our guides know the people in the villages where we stay overnight. They know about certain sensitivities. Please follow their instructions and ask them anything you want to know. They are great sources of local knowledge and can interpret when you want to talk to the local people.
1. Please be mindful of local customs. Follow the advice of your guide regarding appropriate behavior in the village and in the house where we are staying. If you are uncertain of anything, please ask your guide.
2. Please wear conservative clothes in the village. Better wear a bit too much than too little. If you go swimming in a river, keep in mind that wearing a bikini or bathing suit may offend villagers. Shorts and a t-shirt are more appropriate. Shorts should reach the knee. A
3. Always take off your shoes before entering a house. This is a local custom.
4. If you want to take photographs of people, please respect privacy by asking permission and use restraint. Your guide can help with this.
5. Each ethnic group has its own traditions that have been passed down through many generations. These are sometimes quite different from those of Thai people. Respect their rules, values, and beliefs. If you have any doubts, please ask your guide.
6. Please express interest in local customs, beliefs, languages, traditional clothing, etc. to foster cultural pride. Please buy local goods and handicrafts to supplement the community’s income.
7. Take your garbage with you. Hill tribe communities have limited capacity to get rid of garbage. Your guide will collect trash and bring it back to Chiang Mai so we can dispose of it.
8. Tribal society is conservative. Please don’t indulge in public displays of affection. Do not display affection to members of the opposite or the same sex like hugging, kissing, or holding hands.
9. We discourage consuming alcoholic drinks during our treks. In the villages, you can usually buy beer but please be modest and don’t get drunk.
During the trek
1. If you encounter trash along the way during your trek please pick it up and give it to your guide.
2. The use of plastic water bottles can unfortunately not be avoided in many of the places we visit. Please give any plastic water bottles after the trip to your guide so we can recycle them.
3. Don’t pick flowers or damage trees during your trek.
4. Please wait for your guide.
5. Your guide is knowledgeable. If you have any questions , please ask him.
For trekking information, please go to this page.
What to bring on the trek or on the tour
Below each tour, we have listed the things we recommend you to bring on the trek or on the tour. This of course depends on the duration of the tour. On a day trip, you need to bring less stuff than on two-day or three-day tours.
This is a list of things you would typically want to bring along on a multiple-day trek:
- Good hiking shoes. A good pair of running shoes is fine in the dry season. In the rainy season, running shoes with a good profile are necessary.
- Flip flops for in the evening and during the rafting (if this is included in the tour)
- 2 T-shirts
- 2 pairs of socks
- a pair of shorts
- a pair of swimming shorts or bathing suit
- personal toiletries (toothpaste, toothbrush, soap)
- mosquito repellent
- cap or hat
- a roll of toilet paper
- personal prescription drugs
- camera or mobile phone
- 1500-2500 THB in small notes for drinks, souvenirs, and tips.
Staying overnight in the village
In the evening it can be chilly and even cold (November-March) in the village. It is recommended to bring long pants and a shirt with long sleeves. In the months November until March we provide a warm sleeping bag. The rest of the year we will supply a clean sheet bag or a light sleeping bag. In the village there are mosquito nets, pillows and mattrasses.
These pictures show how the typical overnight arrangements in a hill tribe village look like. Some people have compared it to camping. Spending the night in villages is an extraordinary experience, which will pull you out of your comfort zone. For most people who have traveled with us, it has been one of the highlights of their holiday or trip. We have dedicated a full page to the food we provide during the trekkings.
Trekking shoes and boots on Green Trails trekkings
Here is some practical trekking info about shoes. To wear the right trekking shoes is very important. If you are not wearing the proper footwear, an easy trek can become a nightmare. Don’t wear mountaineering boots. They are too heavy, cumbersome, and uncomfortable in a tropical climate. We advise comfortable, light waterproof hiking shoes or boots with soles with good grip such as these.
Wearing good shoes makes all the difference.
Wearing comfortable trekking shoes with a good grip is very important. With uncomfortable shoes, an easy trek really can become an ordeal.
Your choice of shoes depends on quite a few factors:
– your hiking style
– the weather conditions
– the difficulty of the trails
– the number of days you are trekking
– the amount of luggage you are carrying.
We don’t recommend Teva sandals such as these:
They don’t protect you against insects and thorns.
If you are doing an overnight trek, we recommend taking flip-flops for use in the village or the homestay.
More trekking info about food on our treks here.
Under every tour, we list the things you have to bring along on the tour.
If you any questions related to Green Trails trekkings, please let us know.