highlights of Thailand tour

Classic Thailand Tour

Country: Thailand

14 Days | $4,490

Thailand is truly one of the world’s best destinations, not only because of its friendly people and reasonable prices, but because there is so much to see and do in a single country. In this 14-day tour you’ll see the diversity and beauty of Thailand by visiting the vibrant capital, Bangkok; the peaceful and beautiful cultural capital, Chiang Mai; and the paradise island of Phuket.


Day 1   Bangkok: Arrival

Arrive on your flight in Bangkok where you will be met by your guide and transferred to your hotel.

Meals Included: None

Overnight at Ariyasom Villa Hotel – Deluxe Room

Day 2   Bangkok: Public Transport Tour with Klong Tour with Massage

You will be met by your guide at your hotel at 9:00am before transferring to the exciting Skytrain. Enjoy an elevated view of central Bangkok before joining a river express boat along the river to the flower market. Enjoy the sights and smells before taking a lively tuk-tuk ride to Wat Pho to see the famous Reclining Buddha. Enjoy a 30 minute massage at the temple’s traditional Thai massage school followed by lunch at a local restaurant. After your delicious meal, head to the pride of Thailand – the Grand Palace, also visiting Wat Phra Kaew, which houses the famous Emerald Buddha. Take a stroll down the street to a local Buddhist amulet market before heading off along the klongs (canals), finally boarding a river express boat back to the Skytrain station and returning to your hotel.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Ariyasom Villa Hotel – Deluxe Room

Day 3   Bangkok: Floating Market Bike Ride

Seventy kilometers Southwest of Bangkok, the Mae Klong River spreads into a sprawling delta before reaching the Gulf of Thailand. This low-lying land is extremely fertile and over hundreds of years the Thai people have constructed an extensive network of canals to aid irrigation and navigation. The local way of life has remained traditionally agricultural, and revolves around the colorful floating markets where the fruits of the surrounding orchards are traded. Starting in Bangkok, drive south to start your bicycle exploration of the Mae Klong Delta area, beginning at Damnoen Nam Saduak Floating Market, the biggest and most colorful in Thailand, and a must-see for any visitor. You can purchase just about anything from the vast array of “shops” on the river. After discovering the sights and sounds of the floating market, you will embark on a longtail boat and cruise through a maze of canals cutting through local villages and various plantations. This eye-opening boat ride offers a glimpse of the Thailand of old, where local people go about their daily life with the canal as the focal point. You will start your ride from the Mae Klong River and explore the surrounding temples and Wats, passing through coconut plantations and fruit orchards along the quiet back roads. After lunch at a riverside restaurant, continue cycling along picturesque trails towards the floating market. After some refreshments, start your journey back to Bangkok to beat the rush hour. This 32km trip is suitable for all levels of riders and is an excellent trip for families.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Ariyasom Villa Hotel – Deluxe Room

Day 4   Bangkok: Culinary Delights

Meet your guide in the hotel lobby around 8am to join the hustle and bustle of Bangkok’s morning streets. You will travel by public transport to a local market where you can see numerous food stalls set up selling fresh produce and the Thai’s answer to ‘fast food’. Make sure you sample the local tea and some of the more renowned dishes as you wander around the maze of the market. You will then travel by local transport to the famous Aor Tor Kor Market. This high standard market created by the Marketing Organization for Farmers has become very popular due to its fresh produce and seafood at reasonable prices. Many locals make the journey just to eat at the food court, known for selling famous dishes from all around the country. After enjoying a filling lunch at the market, head back to your hotel for a free afternoon.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Ariyasom Villa Hotel – Deluxe Room

Day 5   Chiang Mai: Doi Suthep Temple and Home Industries

Your driver will meet you at your hotel for your private transfer to the airport, where you will arrive in time for your onward flight – Bangkok Airways PG215 departing Bangkok at 08:00 & arriving in Chiang Mai at 09:15.  You will be met by your guide at Chiang Mai Airport and transferred to your hotel.

Drive up to visit Doi Suthep, the most important Wat in Chiang Mai. Perched high above the city, it offers wonderful views of the city and countryside below.  Enjoy lunch with your guide at a local restaurant.

This afternoon, you will get the chance to explore the fascinating industrial world that feeds the ever-growing city of Chiang Mai. Witness the different processes in person, learning the techniques behind the creation of lacquer-ware, silk and traditional Thai umbrellas. You will also get the opportunity to explore some of the stores which are home to these beautifully finished products.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Yaang Come Village – Superior Room

Day 6   Chiang Mai: Elephant Owner for a Day at Patara Elephant Farm

You will be met in the lobby of your hotel at 7:30am and transferred to the Patara Elephant Farm, located not far from Chiang Mai. At the farm you will be given your training outfit and a brief talk on working with elephants before heading into the bush to find them. You will learn about the management of the elephant farm and the how the breeding program has been developed and maintained. You will of course be introduced to the stars of the show, and slowly will learn how to work with them on the ground. After you’ve made friends, you can then lead them down to the river for their morning bath, followed by a short ride to a local temple where you can learn about elephants in Buddhism and the Thai’s ancient relationship with these traditional beasts of burden. Around midday you will set off on a ride through the jungle to visit some lovely waterfalls where you can enjoy a picnic lunch as well as a swim in the falls with your elephant. Return to the camp in the afternoon and say goodbye to your new friends before being transferred back to your hotel.

Please note: Today you will get wet when you help with the elephants’ bath. Please bring appropriate clothing for this, as well as a towel and change of clothes.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Yaang Come Village – Superior Room

Day 7   Chiang Mai: Pantawan Cooking Class

Your guide will take you to the local market close to the Pantawan Cooking School to introduce you the ingredients that you will be working with today. After you are done grocery shopping like a local, your next destination will be the Pantawan Cooking School, where you will be welcomed with a cold towel and a delicious welcome drink. The teak building is designed in the style of old-luxury Thailand, with a large comfortable space for cooking. The school also has their own small organic farm, and is able to sell the fresh vegetables produced at the market that you visited. The chef will demonstrate how to prepare each of the four dishes for you, before you will try your hand at making them yourself. Once you have completed each of the dishes, retreat to the balcony where you can enjoy your delicious meal, and take in the peaceful view of the garden.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Yaang Come Village – Superior Room

Day 8   Chiang Mai: Villages and Bamboo Forest Trek with Caves

Your guide will meet you at your hotel at 07:30.  This early start allows you to get on the trail before it gets too hot. Drive two hours to Chiang Dao where you will start your walk. We highly recommend a stop at a roadside coffee shop…an iced coffee or Chai Yen helps get you moving! Once in Ban Pang Tong you’ll be dropped at the end of a dirt road. Hike up the road as your guide tells you about different flowers and birds you see along the way. At the end of the road is a lovely village belonging Lao Ho people. Here Animism is still practiced and the local people are more wary of visitors and can be shy. Your guide will show you the different style of homes and you might get some shy waves from the kids. Leaving the village you’ll climb a steep hill for some amazing views of the rice fields and the village from above…don’t worry, this is the steepest hill of the day. Walk for a while in the sun seeing the fields and how the hill tribes survive through agriculture. You’ll stop for a break in a farmer’s hut overlooking the valley before continuing on until you enter the bamboo forest. Listen to the peaceful sounds of the bamboo rustling and groaning and the bird calls echoing through this calm area.  Feel free to ask the guide questions or just soak up the beauty of your surroundings. Along the way, you may see villages collecting wood, cutting down bamboo or hunting. After a couple of hours you’ll emerge into a valley with huge limestone cliffs towering around you and fields of rice and corn on either side of the trail. Follow the path into a Karen village and meet some of the locals to see their home.  In this village there are often hill tribe women selling souvenirs, but they aren’t the Karen, who are a more shy and reserved group, but rather the Akha from a nearby village, who much more are outgoing and interested in the tourist market. Afterwards you will meet your driver who will take you to lunch at Kru Chang Dao, one of the most famous restaurants in the area, known for their famous stewed pork and rice, as well as many other traditional Thai dishes.  After lunch, if you are adventitious and willing to do some light spelunking, head off to nearby sacred caves for some exploration with a local guide by lamplight.  Explore the nearby temple and garden before meeting back with your van for you 2 hour drive back to Chang Mai.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Yaang Come Village – Superior Room

Day 9   Chiang Mai: Morning Alms Giving with Monk Chat

Buddhism is a huge part of life in Thailand and this morning you’ll see how local lives can revolve around Buddhism and its rituals. Wake up early and meet your guide at 6.30am to head to Wat Sri Sodha to see monks collecting alms and returning to their monastery for their morning meal. Your guide will explain why and how to give alms before so that you may respectfully take part in this daily ritual. Then visit Kruba Sri Vichi Monument where many locals come to leave candles, incense and flowers, and learn about the significance of each item as an offering. Afterwards, you will follow your guide to Chiang Mai morning market where you will sit down for a typical local breakfast of noodle soup and delicious Chai Tea. Then you will head on to Wat Chedi Luang by 8am to listen to the monks morning chanting and learn about this importance practice in a monk’s daily life. Take a walk around this 15th century temple and its beautiful grounds before heading on to Wat Suan Dok around 10am. At Wat Suan Dok you will have the opportunity to sit and chat with a monk about Buddhism, meditation and his everyday life. Once you are done with your questions, the monk will discuss with you the importance of meditation and then lead you in a brief mediation practice. Late morning you will be transferred back to your hotel.

You will be met by your guide at your hotel and transfer you to the Chiang Mai airport for your departure flight. (Chiang Mai to Phuket flight included.) You will be met at Phuket Airport and transferred to your hotel. Once you have checked in relax and enjoy the resort. There are restaurants in the hotel and in the surrounding area, pools to enjoy and of course the beach!

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Boathouse Resort on the Beach – Superior Sea View Room

Day 10 – 11   Phuket: Days at Leisure

You have two days free to explore on your own.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Boathouse Resort on the Beach – Superior Sea View Room

Day 12   Phuket: Hongs by Starlight

Late morning you will be met at your hotel and driven with the rest of the group to the Ao Po Pier to board your boat. Cruise towards the National Park while you enjoy a light Thai lunch and listen to a briefing on the wildlife and your schedule. In the afternoon you will be taken by kayak into various hongs and caves, enjoying some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. In the evening enjoy a Thai Seafood dinner and then make your own krathong to float for luck that evening. Enjoy the sunset on board before returning in the dusk to a hong where you will launch your kratong, experiencing a magical moment! At around 8pm you will start your return to the island. Relax on the Starlight Deck and enjoy the amazing boat ride back your way lit by the stars. You will return to your hotel around 10pm.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight at Boathouse Resort on the Beach – Superior Sea View Room

Day 13   Phuket: Day at Leisure

You have the day free to explore on your own.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Boathouse Resort on the Beach – Superior Sea View Room

Day 14   Phuket: Departure

You will be transferred to the airport in time to catch your flight – Bangkok Airways PG276 departing Phuket at 12:20 & arriving in Bangkok at 13:45.  Catch your connecting departure flight.

Meals included: Breakfast

 

Tour Rate: $ 4,490.00 per person based on 2 people traveling (double occupancy) with a $ 3,285.00 single supplement

Price includes:

  • Air tickets Bangkok – Chiang Mai – Phuket – Bangkok
  • Boat tickets as specified above
  • Accommodation as specified above
  • Air-conditioned car/van with driver
  • Licensed English speaking guides
  • Tours and admission fees as mentioned above
  • Meals as specified in itinerary, including water

Price excludes:

  • Personal expenses
  • Visa fees
  • Airport tax
  • Drinks (except water) and meals not mentioned in itinerary
  • Tips
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