exploring the most iconic sites
A two-week journey from south to north, this perfect first-timer tour of Thailand encompasses all the top sights as well as venturing into less-explored areas to explore pristine nature and local culture with a stay at a beautiful eco-lodge.
13 Days from £2,790pp
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• Discover the former splendour of this ancient capital
• Come face to face with the local hill tribes
• Explore the striking Buddhist White Temple in Thailand’s northenmost city
• Cruise the mighty Mekong River where Thailand, Laos and Burma meet
• All international airfares
• Stay in 4* accommodation
• All meals
• Entrance fees, guides and daily tours
• All domestic transportation, departure taxes and current fuel surcharges
Fly overnight to the vibrant city of Bangkok. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Bangkok is an exotic assault on the senses, a whirlwind of chaos, refinement and rewarding sights. A city of many faces, go from tranquil golden temples to forests of gleaming skyscrapers before experiencing authentic Asia on bustling streets. Today’s sightseeing includes Wat Pho and the dazzling Grand Palace. Next, stroll through Chinatown. Later, take to the Chao Phraya River on a longboat to get an alternative view of the city as you travel to the Pak Khlong Talaat Flower Market.
Enjoy the sights and sounds of the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and the bizarre Railway Track Market before heading out of Bangkok to Kanchanaburi. Stop at the famous bridge before time to visit the Allied Cemetery and War Museum.
Drive to Hellfire Pass and visit the fascinating museum before a short walk through the pass. Hop on board an old locomotive to travel along a section of the notorious Death Railway passing through the Kwai Gorge. Return to Bangkok in the afternoon. This evening enjoy a dinner accompanied by Thai classical dances.
A scared city and former royal capital, Ayutthaya today is a crumbled kingdom that has retained its bygone splendour. Explore this impressive archaeological site, touring the principal sights including Bang Pa-In, the former royal summer residence. Return to Bangkok and fly to Chiang Rai, a city in Thailand’s northern highlands.
Transfer to the area known as the Golden Triangle – the point where the borders of Thailand, Laos and Burma meet and notorious for the cultivation of opium that used to take place here. Take a boat ride on the Mekong over the border into Laos and visit Don Sao Island where you can take a leisurely stroll through the local market. Return to Chiang Rai. Explore the night market this evening.
Travel to Mae Salong Mountain, an area well known for its tea plantations – you can sample some of the local brew whilst you are here. Enjoy a ‘Yunnanese’ lunch before meeting the Yao Tribe, taking a walk through an Akha village.
Explore the striking Buddhist White Temple before departing Chiang Rai. Heading in the direction of Chiang Mai, you’ll travel along a beautiful mountain road with breathtaking views. Entering Chiang Mai province, spend tonight at Lisu Lodge, an eco-lodge operated by Lisu hill tribe villagers. Rooms are built in the traditional Lisu style and overlook lush fields and hills. Dinner is followed by a Lisu folklore performance.
Depart Lisu Lodge for Chiang Mai. Visit the ancient city of Wiang Kum Kam on arrival. Following lunch at a local restaurant, spend the afternoon visiting Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Phra Singh.
Spend the day at the Thai Elephant Care Centre where you can meet, feed and bathe the resident pachyderms. Enjoy a relaxed rafting trip in Mae Daeng before returning to Chiang Mai.
Discover the secrets of traditional Thai cooking with a morning cookery class. Ascend to Wat Doi Suthep, a temple perched on top of Doi Suthep Mountain. This evening, sit down to a Thai Kantoke dinner, and be entertained by a selection of cultural performances.
Fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day.