Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)
Fly overnight to Bangkok.
On arrival at Bangkok Airport you will be met by our tour leader and transferred by road to our hotel. In the afternoon, we have a half day city and temple sightseeing tour taking in three of the most stunning temples Bangkok has to offer including Wat Traimit, Wat Chetuporn and Wat Benchamaborpit. We'll also visit Wat Pho, regarded as the first centre of public education and is sometimes called ‘Thailand’s first university’. Mural paintings, inscriptions, and statues found in the temple were used to educate people on various subjects such as literature, warfare, archaeology, astronomy, geology and. Wat Pho is also considered to be the home of Thai traditional massage. The tour ends with a visit to Wat Benchamaborpit: a representation of an outstanding successful marriage between Italian Carrara marble and classical Thai architecture.
After breakfast we have a busy day in Bangkok. We will visit Wat Phra Kaew and the nearby attractions before moving on to the Grand Palace. Wat Phra Kaew, or the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is located right next to the Grand Palace, which is the former royal residence of the Chakri Kings - a perfect example of an ancient Siamese court. Built in 1782 by King Rama I, it was the centre of power for more than 150 years. Today, the palace is Bangkok's major landmark and most popular tourist attraction. The Grand Palace consists of over 100 brightly coloured buildings, golden spires and glittering mosaics. We also have a Klong (Canal) Tour and visit Wat Arun. Nineteenth-century Bangkok was laced with canals,giving the capital the title ‘Venice of the East’. Surviving canals as well as the Chao Phraya River itself (meaning the River of Kings) provide memorable vignettes of a traditional waterborne way-of-life that has changed little over the centuries. Our day ends at Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn), the famous Chao Phraya riverbank landmark,
best known for its porcelain encrusted 79-metre central sparkling pagoda.
After breakfast at the hotel we have a full day cycling tour and canal boat ride. Cycling gives us the opportunity to visit unseen parts of Bangkok and discover the daily life of local people. You will start by cycling through a local fresh market where you can see a wide range of goods from smoked pig heads to beautiful local flowers. A little further on you will stop at the remains of the defence walls built during the Colonial Era and then make a
short stop at a small factory where the meatballs you see in many kinds of Thai soups are produced. We then continue over concrete pathways, through a scenic park and orchid farms, before arriving at the pier where longtail boats are waiting. The canal trip will bring you to the most southern district of Bangkok, where it is difficult to believe that you are actually in Bangkok Metropolis! You will finish off with a visit to a small incense stick
factory and a stop at a typical Thai/Chinese flower-farm. During the excursion you will stop every hour to rest and hydrate and lunch is also provided.
Today we visit an organic farm and learn how to cook Thai style! The Sampran Riverside is a family-run property close to Bangkok, where you'll experience the authentic Thai way of life and learn about local wisdom. It is highly regarded locally due to its dedication in preserving Thailand’s natural and cultural heritage by engaging with the local community. It all began in 1962, when one family cultivated roses to supply them to Bangkok
flower markets and their garden of blossoming roses attracted visitors who then referred to the place as ‘Suan Sampran’ or ‘the Rose Garden’. Since then, with the family’s unique vision and under the care of three generations, Sampran Riverside has grown gradually to a 70-acre riverside property that is more like a community rather than a ‘typical’ resort. We have an early morning departure from the hotel where we begin by taking a short boat ride across the river to an organic farm. In the tranquil grounds of the farm, learn about the vegetables and herbs commonly used in Thai cooking and pick these ingredients for your cooking class. Afterwards, sample homemade herbal teas and seasonal fresh fruits before returning by boat. We then continue
to an antique Thai house set amidst a certified organic herbal garden for our Thai cooking class. Learn the techniques from a local experienced chef and prepare 4 popular Thai dishes for your lunch. After lunch we'll see some art and craft demonstrations including silk production, umbrella painting, Thai music & dance, traditional weaving, clay pottery, Thai kitchen, rice farming, bamboo dancing, herbal pavilion, Thai martial arts, garland making and vegetable carving. We return to our hotel late afternoon where you can rest before dinner.
After breakfast we transfer to Bangkok Airport for our flight to Chiang Mai. On arrival we transfer by road to our hotel and then your afternoon is at leisure until dinner that evening.
Today we take a tour of Doi Suthep Temple. Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep is the most sacred temple in Chiang Maiand contains a holy relic of the Lord Buddha. Tucked away in the mountains at an elevation of 1,056 metres, the temple can be reached by the carved mythical Naga Serpent staircase. The temple offers an exhilarating view of Chiang Mai city and its surrounding countryside. We'll also visit 14th century Wat Suan Dok, where the Thai monarchy often took leisurely walks in the gardens. Now it houses several white Chedis, all containing the ashes of Chiang Mai’s former Royal family, and features one of the most famous Monk Schools in Chiang Mai. We will also visit Wat Jedyod, also known as The Temple of Seven Spires. In the afternoon we explore Sankampaeng,
where a variety of local souvenirs and handicraft are made. You'll observe production of Thai Silk as well as the colourful paper umbrellas, celadon ceramics and the production of lacquer ware, when even eggshells are used to achieve unusual designs. Finally, not to be missed is the variety of silverware produced in this area. There are numerous other thriving industries such as cotton and traditional local products’ industries, antiques from
Myanmar and more: a perfect place for shopping and souvenirs.
Adventure is the order of day today! Glide from tree to tree, admiring the pristine forest of Chiang Mai by travelling through the forest on zip lines. You'll also have an authentic Northern Thai lunch and soak up the scenery as well as visiting a waterfall. Mae Kompong is located just outside Chiang Mai and is a home to a 1500 year old rainforest. It consists of 18 platforms, sky bridges and lowering stations which are connected to 2km of zip-lines that will take you through different layers of the rainforest canopy. You move easily from tree to tree on a spectacular and gradual downhill course. Take time to linger in your favourite places. Soak up the fragrance, clean air, and animal life. A safety team will accompany you and teach you how to move through the trees with the speed and grace of a young gibbon! We'll spend about three hours in the forest canopy before lunch. Later
we take a short walk along Mae Kompong waterfall.
A wonderful day at an Elephant Nature Park; a natural home and sanctuary for elephants, buffalo, dogs, cats,birds and many other rescued animals. Your visit starts with a picturesque drive through rural countryside to Elephant Nature Park. You will hear the personal stories of rescued and orphaned lephants. After unloading and distributing fruit treats you will have a chance to feed the elephants from the viewing platform. Walk with the staff and the elephants to the river that skirts the park and help bathe these gentle giants. You'll enjoy lunch here and time to explore before returning to Chiang Mai late afternoon.
After breakfast transfer by road to Thaton. En route stops will be include the Chiang Dao Cave that includes a Buddhist shrine and an elaborate cave network where a local guide will take you into the cool inner caves. We'll also visit a Hmong hill tribe village at Baan Huay Luak before arriving in Thaton. On arrival you'll visit the hilltop temple of Wat Thaton for panoramic view of local villages, the Mae Kok River and the abundant forests on the
mountain range. Continue to the hotel and free time to rest before dinner.
Breakfast at the hotel before transferring by road to Chiang Rai with an en route excursion by long tailed boat ride on the Mae Kok River to Baan Mai to visit a Shan village. We'll also stop at the local hill tribe school at Akha village and Padong (long-neck hill tribe) villages before arriving in Chiang Rai and our hotel.
Full day sightseeing in Chiang Rai. A visit to the Akha and Yao tribes will allow you to experience the authentic lives of hill tribe people (the Akha originated from Tibet and are among the poorest of Thailand’s ethnic minorities, while the Yao are from China and are still influenced by Chinese traditions). We continues to Chiang Sean, a small crossroads town on the bank of the Mae Kong river. While here we can explore ruins and enjoy the panoramic views of the Golden Triangle. The final stop is Mae Sai, the northernmost town of Thailand situated on the border of Myanmar from where we will visit explore the Golden Triangle Area, where Thailand, Burma and Laos meet. Before returning to the hotel, we'll explore Chiang Sean, the oldest city of Chiang Rai.
After breakfast, transfer to Chiang Rai Airport for the flight to Bangkok and transfer to hotel. Free time for personal exploration.
Breakfast at the hotel and transfer to Bangkok Airport for departure flight to the UK.