Highlights of Thailand

13 Days / 12 Nights

  Bangkok - Chiang Mai - Phuket

13 Days / 12 Nights

Highlights of Thailand

  Bangkok - Chiang Mai - Phuket

From bustling cities, to laid-back countryside and tropical island vibes, discover the many different sides of Thailand on this 13-day whirlwind of three of the county’s most fascinating destinations. Visit Bangkok’s most impressive landmarks, get in touch with nature in the mountains of Chiang Mai and embark on a spectacular sea adventure on Phuket Island. Enjoy a variety of active adventures, including cycling, trekking, ziplining and canoeing, and delve deep into the culture of the ‘Land of Smiles’.

JOURNEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Get a taste of Bangkok on a tuk tuk street food tour
  • Visit Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and discover the surrounding, rural countryside by bicycle
  • Experience an adventurous jungle day, riding an ATV and speeding along a zipline course
  • Head out into the remote hills of northern Thailand and spend an unforgettable night at Lisu Lodge  
  • Explore the spectacular limestone karts of Phang Nga Bay by canoe

TOUR INCLUSIONS

  • Tours as mentioned and air-conditioned transfer
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • Entrance fees and activities mentioned in itinerary
  • Meals as specified
  • 2nd class air-con train ticket from Bangkok - Chiang Mai
  • 1-night stay at Lisu Lodge

ITINERARY

DAY 1

Bangkok

DAY 1 - Bangkok

Welcome to the Land of Smiles! Touch down in Thailand’s capital and transfer to the hotel to check in. Spend the rest of the day acclimatising and dipping a toe into this pulsating city where shiny skyscrapers stand next to ramshackle food stalls.

DAY 2

DAY 2 - Bangkok

After breakfast at the hotel, start the day with a scenic morning tour discovering some of the city’s highlights. Admire several of Bangkok’s iconic Buddhist structures, including the enormous Golden Buddha statue at Wat Traimit. Explore the large and stunning grounds of the Grand Palace before leaving the bustling streets of the city’s Old Town and hopping aboard a traditional long-tailed boat. Cruise along Bangkok’s sprawling klongs (canals) until reaching the tucked-away Khlong Bang Luan Artist Village. Built on stilted wooden structures, this tranquil getaway is one of the last remaining treasures along Bangkok’s network of canals. Soak up the peaceful and creative environment and admire the various art works on display before continuing the ride down the Chao Phraya River. Make a last stop at the magnificent Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, before returning to the hotel for an afternoon’s rest.

Feeling refreshed, head out again and embark on an exciting tuk tuk foodie tour through Bangkok’s vibrant streets in the evening. Leave from National Stadium BTS Station and first explore the colourful array of street food stalls along Phetchaburi Soi 5. As day turns into night, this area becomes a veritable foodie haven, selling everything from smoky Thai style grilled meat to sweet coconut pudding. After sampling some of the delicious snacks, continue by tuk tuk and whiz through the capital’s busy streets. Catch a glimpse of the beautifully lit Marble Temple and Anantasamakom Throne Hall on the way and arrive at Phra Arthit Road. Get a taste of Thai-Indian cuisine and indulge in some freshly-baked roti and flavourful curries before enjoying a plate of the famous Pad Thai. Next, stroll through Thailand’s largest flower market, Pak Klong Talat, which is most busy at night when the flower deliveries arrive, and visit the famous Wat Pho, the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. Kick back at a riverside rooftop bar with a refreshing cocktail whilst taking in the splendid views of the Chao Phraya river. End the night on a sweet note and dig into a seasonal dessert before returning to the hotel by tuk tuk and falling into bed after such a culture and culinary rich day.

DAY 3

DAY 3 - Bangkok

Leave the urban environment of central Bangkok and travel to the famous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, located on the outskirts of the city. Upon arrival, take to the water and explore the winding canals by longtail boat. Whiz past the numerous stalls lining the waterways and take in the market’s vibrant sounds, intriguing smells and colourful sights. Next, discover a much calmer side to this area and journey along quiet country trails on a bicycle. Admire the serene landscape and immerse in the spiritual history of the region. Visit the 500-year-old Wat Bang Kung Temple and be awed by the mysterious sight of Bot Prok Po Chapel; almost completely hidden under the roots of a banyan tree. Continue the ride and cross a network of wooden bridges spanning over the canals of Mae Klong River. Wander through Amphawa Floating Market and pick up some snacks and souvenirs before strolling through the tranquil grounds of King Rama II Memorial Park. After this charming excursion to Bangkok’s more rural area, head back to the energetic Thai capital.

DAY 4

DAY 4 - Bangkok - Chiang Mai

Spend the day at leisure, exploring Bangkok’s large shopping malls, indulging in some more street food or just relaxing at the hotel. In the evening, head to Hua Lamphong Train Station and get cosy on the night train to Chiang Mai.

DAY 5

DAY 5 - Chiang Mai

Wake up in Chiang Mai and upon arrival at the train station transfer to the hotel to freshen up.

In the afternoon, embark on an eco-friendly and responsible journey through this charming city. On board a traditional rickshaw, which has been used in Thailand for over 60 years, travel from Tha Pae Gate through the city’s colourful narrow streets.  Visit the unique Wat Puak Tam artisan village and peruse the traditional arts and crafts, including beautiful brass and colourful bamboo parasols. Continue the journey and stop at the Chiang Mai Women Correctional Institution for some local Thai snacks. The institution comprises a restaurant and massage parlour, giving inmates the opportunity to learn meaningful skills during their time in prison. After this unique experience, head to Wat Chiang Man, the oldest temple in Chiang Mai and home to several important Buddha images, before exploring the bustling Warorot Market. Pick up some of the local fruit and get a taste of sweet and tart tasting mangosteen or try rambutan, a lychee-like fruit covered in red, hairy peel.

DAY 6

DAY 6 - Chiang Mai

Wake up early and head into the countryside for a day full of adventure. Start with an exhilarating ATV ride and race along a flat road leading through a local village. Next, it’s time to go off road and head into the depths of the jungle, trying not to lose balance on the bumpy paths. After this exciting adventure, refuel with a delicious Thai buffet lunch and get ready for another thrilling experience. This time, climb up high into the lush canopy of the jungle and navigate from treetop to treetop along a zipline course. With a total of 20 platforms and different obstacles to overcome, feel the adrenaline rush whilst enjoying the spectacular view from above.

DAY 7

DAY 7 - Chiang Mai

Enjoy a relaxed morning in Chiang Mai before swapping city life for an authentic hill tribe experience at Lisu Lodge. Nestled deep in the rolling hills of northern Thailand, the village homestay is part of a wider community-based project with the objective to preserve the natural heritage of the hill tribes in Chiang Mai; the Lisu is one such tribe that migrated from southern China around 100 years ago.
 
Upon arrival, meet some of the villagers and move into one of the stunning lodges. Built in the traditional Lisu style, the cottages are complete with modern comforts, including running water, electricity and comfortable sleeping quarters.
 
Get to know the locals and spend the afternoon exploring the surroundings of the village. Walk from the main camp to the impressive Ton Lung Temple and take a look at the herbal garden before stopping by a local family’s home to enjoy a cup of the freshly brewed tea, using leaves cultivated in the nearby plantations. Back in the village, dig into a delicious Thai dinner, prepared with locally sourced, organic ingredients, and enjoy some traditional dancing with the villagers before retreating to the lodges.

DAY 8

DAY 8 - Chiang Mai

Wake up to the peaceful atmosphere of the remote countryside and start the day with a tasty breakfast in the village. Full and content, pick between several different activities; enjoy a scenic bike ride discovering the surrounding countryside or cycle to one of the tea plantations and see where the leaves for the hot beverage come from. Alternatively, for the less active travellers, indulge in a steam bath or enjoy a traditional Thai massage by one of the villagers.

After returning from the morning’s activity, tuck into a freshly-prepared lunch at the lodge before saying goodbye to the villagers and heading back to Chiang Mai.

DAY 9

DAY 9 - Chiang Mai - Phuket

Depending on the time of the flight, transfer to Chiang Mai Airport and take to the skies bound for Phuket. Upon arrival, head to the hotel and enjoy the rest of the day in this tropical island paradise.

DAY 10

DAY 10 - Phuket

Wake up early and get ready for a day full of sea, sun and sand, exploring the picturesque Phang Nga Bay. Famous for its spectacular limestone mountains soaring out of the emerald-green water, this area boasts breathtaking natural scenery and is dotted with coral reefs and small islands. Spend the day island hopping and explore the local life on Pan Yee island; pose like a secret agent on the famous James Bond Island; and explore Hong Island by canoe. Interspersed with snorkelling adventures and relaxing time on the beach, return to Phuket after an extraordinary day at sea. 

DAY 11

DAY 11 - Phuket

Enjoy a day without plans; relax on the beach, bask in the sun (don’t forget sunscreen!) and kick back with a refreshing cocktail or two.

DAY 12

DAY 12 - Phuket

Spend the last day in this tropical paradise at leisure and enjoy everything Phuket has to offer, from picture-perfect beaches, to verdant jungle and freshly caught seafood. 

DAY 13

DAY 13 - Phuket

After breakfast at the hotel, head to Phuket Airport and board a plane home or to a new destination.

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