Thailand Beyond Beaches: Discover Bangkok & Chiang Mai

8 Days / 7 Nights

  Bangkok - Chiang Mai

8 Days / 7 Nights

Thailand Beyond Beaches: Discover Bangkok & Chiang Mai

  Bangkok - Chiang Mai

Temples, food, markets and nature – discover the ‘Land of Smiles’ beyond its tropical beaches and delve into Thailand’s culture on this eight-day journey. Visit the country’s two most iconic cities and experience the different environment of ultramodern Bangkok and laid-back Chiang Mai. Explore the capital’s grand monuments and tasty street fare and admire the traditional culture and natural beauty of the country’s scenic north; all whilst enjoying some free time for independent activities.

JOURNEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Discover the splendour of Bangkok’s historic temples
  • Experience two unique markets in outer areas of the city
  • Explore the diversity of Thai cuisine with a tuk-tuk street food tour and a hands-on cooking class
  • Enjoy a cultural dance performance whilst sampling a variety of local dishes at a traditional ‘Khantoke’ dinner
  • Get ready for an adrenaline-boosting, white-water rafting adventure in Northern Thailand

TOUR INCLUSIONS

  • 6-nights accommodation
  • Train ticket Bangkok – Chiang Mai (2nd class air-con. sleeper)
  • English-speaking guide
  • Transfer service as mentioned in program
  • Entrance fees and activities as mentioned in itinerary
  • Meals as specified
  • Join-in excursion as mentioned in program

ITINERARY

DAY 1

Bangkok

DAY 1 - Bangkok

Touch down in Thailand’s massive capital and transfer to the hotel to check in and refresh. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, acclimatising to the humid climate, relaxing after a long flight or getting a first taste of the delectable cuisine Thailand is famous for. 

DAY 2

DAY 2 - Bangkok

Start the first full day in the ‘Land of Smiles’ exploring Bangkok’s splendid temples. Choose between a morning or afternoon tour and get ready to delve into the city’s glorious past. Stand in awe at the glimmering Golden Buddha, the world’s largest solid golden statue, at Wat Traimit, and see the giant reclining Buddha statue. The temple is not only one of the oldest in the country, but it’s also considered the first public university in Thailand as well as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage. Finally, finish this exploration of the city’s historic landmarks at Wat Benchamabophit, also known as the Marble Temple. It is one of Bangkok’s most remarkable structures and features white-marbled walls and magnificent gold carvings on its roof and windows.

Head back to the hotel and spend the rest of the day independently.

DAY 3

DAY 3 - Bangkok

Leave the city behind and travel to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market in Ratchaburi province. Reminiscent of a time when waterways were used as the main mode of transport, the floating market brims over with a colourful mix of fresh produce, souvenirs and clothing.  Stroll along the canals, perusing the endless market stalls and vendor boats on the water.  

Continue the tour to another unique market – the Mae Klong Railway Market, or Talad Rom Hoop. What’s so special about this particular market is its location; vendors, selling a large range of fruit, vegetables, meat and seafood, converge every day along a railway track. Eight times a day, the vendors have to quickly pack up their goods and shoppers have to get off the tracks as a train comes chugging through. Once passed, business resumes as if nothing happened. After this exhilarating experience, and maybe a few souvenirs in the bag, travel back to the ‘Big Mango’.

In the evening, eat like a local on a tuk-tuk tour through Bangkok. Aboard the iconic vehicle, whizz through town and explore the city’s street food scene at a local market, sampling a variety of tasty treats. Pass by the wonderfully illuminated Marble Temple and Anantasamakom Throne Hall on the way to Phra Arthit Road. Continue the culinary excursion, tucking into crispy rotis, juicy curries and a plate of famous Pad Thai before wandering through the fragrant Pak Klong Talat, Bangkok’s flower market. Take an enchanting walk through the tranquil temple grounds of Wat Pho and take in the beautifully illuminated structure at night, before kicking back at a rooftop bar on the banks of the Chao Phraya. Enjoy a refreshing drink and end the night with a seasonal dessert before returning to the hotel.

DAY 4

DAY 4 - Bangkok – Chiang Mai

Spend the last day in this urban metropolis at leisure before packing up and heading to Bangkok’s Hua Lampong Railway Station to catch an overnight train north to Chiang Mai. Whilst being one of Thailand’s largest cities, Chiang Mai feels like a world away from the frenzy of the nation’s capital. Surrounded by lush rainforest, mountains and waterfalls, get ready to immerse in the laid-back culture of Northern Thailand in this beautiful town.

DAY 5

DAY 5 - Chiang Mai

Upon arrival in Chiang Mai, also known as the ‘Rose of the North’, transfer to the hotel to check in, relax and freshen up.

After spending the day independently, the evening promises the chance to experience Northern Thailand’s distinctive culinary and cultural heritage. Experience a traditional ‘Khantoke’ dinner; sample a selection of local dishes, ranging from spicy chilli dip with vegetables to spicy sausage and crispy pork skin, served on a large pedestal tray whilst enjoying a dance and music performance by an ethnic hill tribe group. Comprising members of Karen, Hmong, Lahu, Akha Mien and Lisu, the performers put on a captivating show and invite the audience to join in the final act.   

DAY 6

DAY 6 - Chiang Mai

Travel north of Chiang Mai and spend an adventurous day in nature in the district of Mae Taeng. On the way, visit an orchid farm to smell the beautiful flowers, and enjoy a delicious local lunch in a quaint village.

Continue the journey to a rafting base camp on the banks of the Mae Taeng River and get ready for a thrilling adventure. The fast-flowing Mae Taeng River promises some of the most adrenaline-boosting rides in the region, with rapids reaching up to class five. After a full safety briefing, put on the gear and hop into one of the rafts, embarking on an exhilarating ride down the river’s rippling white waters.

After an exciting journey, disembark the raft and spend some time relaxing and refreshing along the scenic riverbanks before the heading back to Chiang Mai.

DAY 7

DAY 7 - Chiang Mai

Having experienced mouth-watering dishes on this trip, it’s time to learn how to cook some of Northern Thailand’s culinary classics. Head to Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School, located at Doi Saket just out of town, and uncover the secrets of authentic Thai cuisine at this renowned cooking school. Follow the lead of a talented culinary team and whip up some of Thailand’s best-known food favourites from a range of fresh ingredients. Cook up a pot of tangy sour and spicy soup and a selection of other dishes, including stir-fried pork and basil, fried rice, spicy salad and a bowl of fragrant green curry. End the class with sampling each of the creations and receive a recipe book with notes on how to replicate the dishes back home!

Spend the rest of the afternoon and evening independently; wander around town, stop by one of the many temples or pick up some last-minute souvenirs.

DAY 8

DAY 8 - Chiang Mai

Conclude this wonderful trip to Thailand with breakfast at the hotel before heading to Chiang Mai Airport.

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