Highlights Of Thailand


  • Highlights Of Thailand

Highlights Of Thailand

 Thailand

11 days from £1999 pp  return flights from LHR

Join this memorable ten-day tour and see some of Thailand´s most beautiful attractions.
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Join this memorable ten-day tour and see some of Thailand´s most beautiful attractions. Start your adventure in Chiang Mai, the beautiful former capital of the Lanna kingdom, mingle with the locals in the night market, and be amazed by the beauty of the ancient Buddhist temples before continuing to Sukhothai and Ayutthaya, two UNESCO World Heritage Sites that both served as capitals of Siam. Your odyssey ends in bustling Bangkok, the capital known as the ‘City of Angels’.

The Experience

Day 1 : DEPART LONDON HEATHROW

Today you will board on an overnight plane to Bangkok (1 stopover; 1-5 hours’ layover).

Overnight stay in the plane.

Day 2 : ARRIVAL CHIANG RAI

Arrive at Chiang Rai Airport, where our representative will meet and greet you. Then, enjoy a comfortable transfer to your centrally located hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure exploring the beautiful place. Maybe explore the heart of the old town, which dates from the reign of King Mangrai in the 13th century, or wander around the night bazaar to get a flavour of Chiang Rai.

Overnight in Chiang Rai.

Day 3 : CHIANG RAI – GOLDEN TRIANGLE (270 kms – 6hrs)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before heading to the centre to admire the iconic monument of King Mangrai en route to the Hilltribe Museum and Education Centre. Learn all about the dozens of hill tribes that, for centuries, have lived in the highlands around the city and understand how they have survived the spread of globalisation. Continue to the Mae Chan district to explore the remote hill tribe villages of Yao and Akha peoples, and experience their way of life first-hand. Take to the road for Mae Sai, a small border town with a busy market, before heading into the heart of the infamous Golden Triangle, where Thailand, Laos and Myanmar meet. This natural wilderness gained an unwanted notoriety in the Sixties because of the abundant opium cultivation in the area. After lunch, continue to Chiang Saen to visit the hilltop Wat Phra That Chom Kitti, which is reached via a 350-step staircase. Return to Chiang Rai with rest of the day free at leisure.

Overnight in Chiang Rai.

Day 4 : CHIANG RAI – CHIANG MAI (260 kms – 4hrs)

Begin your adventure after breakfast at the hotel, heading towards Chiang Mai. On the southern outskirts of Chiang Rai, stop at the magnificent Wat Rong Khun, a dazzling temple built in the 1990s. Its ornate all-white exterior, with embedded pieces of mirror, makes it one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand. Continue to Chiang Mai and, on arrival, visit Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, one of the most revered temples in the country. This sacred location is at the top of a mountain from where you can appreciate stunning panoramic views of the city. To reach the temple you have to climb up a 309-step naga staircase. Alternatively, you can use the cable car. Head to the riverbank and board a boat for a cruise along the scenic River Ping. Stop at a farm to savour a delicious khao soi noodle curry as you enjoy interesting dance performances. After a walk through the local flower and fresh produce market, return to the hotel. The cable car is included

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Day 5 : CHIANG MAI CITY AND SURROUNDINGS (40 kms – 1hrs)

Take a walk on the wild side after breakfast, with a visit to an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai province. The place is located in a lush rainforest and offers a perfect natural habitat for appreciating these gentle giants. Learn about Asian elephants – their nature, their individual traits, their lifestyles, their talents and their charms, and get a glimpse into the unique and very real relationships between elephants and their mahouts. After lunch in a local restaurant, continue to Chiang Mai for an afternoon exploring this ancient city. Chiang Mai’s old town is still surrounded by remnants of the old defensive walls and a moat. Visit the historic Wat Suan Dok and admire its 48- metre-high Sri Lankan-style chedi, which overlooks the Royal Cemetery. Continue to Wat Phra Sing in the old town and appreciate the beauty of this large complex of more than 60 buildings before visiting 14th century Wat Chedi Luang in the very heart of the old city. In the evening, you can enjoy an optional khantoke dinner (not included).

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Day 6 : CHIANG MAI – LAMPHUN – LAMPANG – SUKHOTHAI (380 kms – 4.5hrs)

Charge your batteries with breakfast and then depart for Lamphun to visit Wat Phra That Hariphunchai, a golden temple complex whose origins have been traced to the Mon Kingdom in the eighth century. Then, go to the picturesque town of Lampang to visit the historic temple of Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. After a delicious lunch, relax with a scenic drive to Sukhothai Historical Park, arriving in the late afternoon. Explore the park, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site covering the ruins of ancient Sukhothai, which was the first capital of the kingdom of the same name.

Overnight in Sukhothai.

Day 7 : SUKHOTHAI – UTHAI THANI – AYUTTHAYA (430 kms – 5hrs)

Begin your day in a spiritual manner, as you join locals in offering food to Buddhist monks during their morning alms round. Drive south and stop for a delicious lunch in Chai Nat. Today’s route from Sukhothai via Uthai Thani to Ayutthaya mirrors the southward expansion of Siam, following the kingdom’s historical development. Arrive in Ayutthaya, a former capital of Siam, and go to the Ayutthaya Historical Park to visit the temple of Wat Phra Si Sanphet and the adjacent Viharn Phra Mongkol Bophit. Contemplate the golden Buddha and continue to the eerily enchanting ruins of Wat Phra Mahathat, with its famous statue of Buddha devoured by tree roots. Such a heavenly heritage ensemble has earned this historical park the status of UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Overnight in Ayutthaya.

Day 8 : AYUTTHAYA – KANCHANABURI (190 kms – 2hrs)

Have breakfast and then drive through pastoral landscapes virtually untouched by the passage of time before arriving at Kanchanaburi, a quiet town at the confluence of the rivers Kwai Noi and Kwai Yai. It is renowned for the beauty of its natural surroundings and the abundant wildlife, but it also holds an unwanted place in history as the location of the notorious World War II ‘Death Railway Bridge’, immortalised in the Hollywood classic, ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’. Visit the war cemetery, the final resting place of thousands of soldiers, and the Thailand-Burma Railway Centre to learn about the appalling conditions in which Allied POWs and Thai slave labourers worked to build a military supply railway. After lunch, enjoy the rest of day at leisure.

Overnight in Kanchanaburi.

Day 9 : KANCHANABURI – BANGKOK (150 kms – 2hrs)

Depart Kanchanaburi after breakfast at the hotel, enjoying a scenic drive towards Nakhon Pathom to visit the temple with the magnificent 127-metre-high Phra Pathommachedi stupa, the tallest of its kind in the world. Continue to Damnoen Saduak, which is famed for its vibrant and colourful floating markets. Breathe in the fragrances of the Orient as dozens of boats glide along, selling fresh fruit and vegetables as well as tasty local delicacies. The buzz of the noise and the bustle of activity are quintessential Thai experiences. Continue to Bangkok for drop off at your hotel in the city.

Overnight in Bangkok.

Day 10 : BANGKOK

Enjoy a full day at leisure, discovering Bangkok on your own. For those who have never been to Bangkok, we suggest a half-day tour of the most popular Buddhist temples. The Royal Grand Palace, a great architectural masterpiece of several buildings was used as a royal residence from the 18th century to the mid-20th century. It is without any doubt a national reference and possibly the most visited royal monument in Thailand. The building houses the “Wat Phra Kaew”, Bangkok’s most sacred temple, in which is located the famous Emerald Buddha. In the evening we suggest you enjoy an optional Thai and International Buffet Dinner whilst cruising along the Chao Phraya River or River of the Kings. Pass by famous sites such as Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn) and the Grand Palace. Entertainment is also provided on board, giving you the chance to listen to live music and see an interesting show. The Dinner Cruise is not included.

Overnight in Bangkok.

Day 11 : DEPART BANGKOK

Wake up to one last breakfast at the hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure until transferring to Bangkok Airport, from where you’ll continue with your individual travel plans.
Breakfast Included.

Tour Ends

Join this memorable ten-day tour and see some of Thailand´s most beautiful attractions. Start your adventure in Chiang Mai, the beautiful former capital of the Lanna kingdom, mingle with the locals in the night market, and be amazed by the beauty of the ancient Buddhist temples before continuing to Sukhothai and Ayutthaya, two UNESCO World Heritage Sites that both served as capitals of Siam. Your odyssey ends in bustling Bangkok, the capital known as the ‘City of Angels’.

The Experience

Day 1 : DEPART LONDON HEATHROW

Today you will board on an overnight plane to Bangkok (1 stopover; 1-5 hours’ layover).

Overnight stay in the plane.

Day 2 : ARRIVAL CHIANG RAI

Arrive at Chiang Rai Airport, where our representative will meet and greet you. Then, enjoy a comfortable transfer to your centrally located hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure exploring the beautiful place. Maybe explore the heart of the old town, which dates from the reign of King Mangrai in the 13th century, or wander around the night bazaar to get a flavour of Chiang Rai.

Overnight in Chiang Rai.

Day 3 : CHIANG RAI – GOLDEN TRIANGLE (270 kms – 6hrs)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before heading to the centre to admire the iconic monument of King Mangrai en route to the Hilltribe Museum and Education Centre. Learn all about the dozens of hill tribes that, for centuries, have lived in the highlands around the city and understand how they have survived the spread of globalisation. Continue to the Mae Chan district to explore the remote hill tribe villages of Yao and Akha peoples, and experience their way of life first-hand. Take to the road for Mae Sai, a small border town with a busy market, before heading into the heart of the infamous Golden Triangle, where Thailand, Laos and Myanmar meet. This natural wilderness gained an unwanted notoriety in the Sixties because of the abundant opium cultivation in the area. After lunch, continue to Chiang Saen to visit the hilltop Wat Phra That Chom Kitti, which is reached via a 350-step staircase. Return to Chiang Rai with rest of the day free at leisure.

Overnight in Chiang Rai.

Day 4 : CHIANG RAI – CHIANG MAI (260 kms – 4hrs)

Begin your adventure after breakfast at the hotel, heading towards Chiang Mai. On the southern outskirts of Chiang Rai, stop at the magnificent Wat Rong Khun, a dazzling temple built in the 1990s. Its ornate all-white exterior, with embedded pieces of mirror, makes it one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand. Continue to Chiang Mai and, on arrival, visit Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, one of the most revered temples in the country. This sacred location is at the top of a mountain from where you can appreciate stunning panoramic views of the city. To reach the temple you have to climb up a 309-step naga staircase. Alternatively, you can use the cable car. Head to the riverbank and board a boat for a cruise along the scenic River Ping. Stop at a farm to savour a delicious khao soi noodle curry as you enjoy interesting dance performances. After a walk through the local flower and fresh produce market, return to the hotel. The cable car is included

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Day 5 : CHIANG MAI CITY AND SURROUNDINGS (40 kms – 1hrs)

Take a walk on the wild side after breakfast, with a visit to an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai province. The place is located in a lush rainforest and offers a perfect natural habitat for appreciating these gentle giants. Learn about Asian elephants – their nature, their individual traits, their lifestyles, their talents and their charms, and get a glimpse into the unique and very real relationships between elephants and their mahouts. After lunch in a local restaurant, continue to Chiang Mai for an afternoon exploring this ancient city. Chiang Mai’s old town is still surrounded by remnants of the old defensive walls and a moat. Visit the historic Wat Suan Dok and admire its 48- metre-high Sri Lankan-style chedi, which overlooks the Royal Cemetery. Continue to Wat Phra Sing in the old town and appreciate the beauty of this large complex of more than 60 buildings before visiting 14th century Wat Chedi Luang in the very heart of the old city. In the evening, you can enjoy an optional khantoke dinner (not included).

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Day 6 : CHIANG MAI – LAMPHUN – LAMPANG – SUKHOTHAI (380 kms – 4.5hrs)

Charge your batteries with breakfast and then depart for Lamphun to visit Wat Phra That Hariphunchai, a golden temple complex whose origins have been traced to the Mon Kingdom in the eighth century. Then, go to the picturesque town of Lampang to visit the historic temple of Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. After a delicious lunch, relax with a scenic drive to Sukhothai Historical Park, arriving in the late afternoon. Explore the park, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site covering the ruins of ancient Sukhothai, which was the first capital of the kingdom of the same name.

Overnight in Sukhothai.

Day 7 : SUKHOTHAI – UTHAI THANI – AYUTTHAYA (430 kms – 5hrs)

Begin your day in a spiritual manner, as you join locals in offering food to Buddhist monks during their morning alms round. Drive south and stop for a delicious lunch in Chai Nat. Today’s route from Sukhothai via Uthai Thani to Ayutthaya mirrors the southward expansion of Siam, following the kingdom’s historical development. Arrive in Ayutthaya, a former capital of Siam, and go to the Ayutthaya Historical Park to visit the temple of Wat Phra Si Sanphet and the adjacent Viharn Phra Mongkol Bophit. Contemplate the golden Buddha and continue to the eerily enchanting ruins of Wat Phra Mahathat, with its famous statue of Buddha devoured by tree roots. Such a heavenly heritage ensemble has earned this historical park the status of UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Overnight in Ayutthaya.

Day 8 : AYUTTHAYA – KANCHANABURI (190 kms – 2hrs)

Have breakfast and then drive through pastoral landscapes virtually untouched by the passage of time before arriving at Kanchanaburi, a quiet town at the confluence of the rivers Kwai Noi and Kwai Yai. It is renowned for the beauty of its natural surroundings and the abundant wildlife, but it also holds an unwanted place in history as the location of the notorious World War II ‘Death Railway Bridge’, immortalised in the Hollywood classic, ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’. Visit the war cemetery, the final resting place of thousands of soldiers, and the Thailand-Burma Railway Centre to learn about the appalling conditions in which Allied POWs and Thai slave labourers worked to build a military supply railway. After lunch, enjoy the rest of day at leisure.

Overnight in Kanchanaburi.

Day 9 : KANCHANABURI – BANGKOK (150 kms – 2hrs)

Depart Kanchanaburi after breakfast at the hotel, enjoying a scenic drive towards Nakhon Pathom to visit the temple with the magnificent 127-metre-high Phra Pathommachedi stupa, the tallest of its kind in the world. Continue to Damnoen Saduak, which is famed for its vibrant and colourful floating markets. Breathe in the fragrances of the Orient as dozens of boats glide along, selling fresh fruit and vegetables as well as tasty local delicacies. The buzz of the noise and the bustle of activity are quintessential Thai experiences. Continue to Bangkok for drop off at your hotel in the city.

Overnight in Bangkok.

Day 10 : BANGKOK

Enjoy a full day at leisure, discovering Bangkok on your own. For those who have never been to Bangkok, we suggest a half-day tour of the most popular Buddhist temples. The Royal Grand Palace, a great architectural masterpiece of several buildings was used as a royal residence from the 18th century to the mid-20th century. It is without any doubt a national reference and possibly the most visited royal monument in Thailand. The building houses the “Wat Phra Kaew”, Bangkok’s most sacred temple, in which is located the famous Emerald Buddha. In the evening we suggest you enjoy an optional Thai and International Buffet Dinner whilst cruising along the Chao Phraya River or River of the Kings. Pass by famous sites such as Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn) and the Grand Palace. Entertainment is also provided on board, giving you the chance to listen to live music and see an interesting show. The Dinner Cruise is not included.

Overnight in Bangkok.

Day 11 : DEPART BANGKOK

Wake up to one last breakfast at the hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure until transferring to Bangkok Airport, from where you’ll continue with your individual travel plans.
Breakfast Included.

Tour Ends

What's included

  • Return economy flights from London Heathrow
  • TOUR GUIDE: Operated with English, Italian, German, French and Spanish-speaking guide on shared basis***
  • ACCOMMODATION: 9 nights' accomodation
  • MEALS: 9 Breakfasts; 6 lunches.
  • TRANSPORT: Air-conditioned transportation, transfers as stated in the programme
  • ENTRANCE FEES AND ACTIVITIES: All entrance fees and activities mentioned in the itinerary: All entrance fees as indicated: Hilltribe Museum and Education Centre, Wat Phra That Chom Kitti and Wat Rong Khun in Chiang Rai; Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, River Ping cruise, farmhouse lunch, elephant camp, Wat Suan Dok, Wat Phra Sing and Wat Chedi Luang in Chiang Mai, Wat Phra That Hariphunchai and Wat Phra That Lampang Luang in Lampang; Sukhothai Historical Park and food offering in Sukhothai; Ayutthaya Historical Park; Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Allied War Cemetery in Kanchanaburi; and Phra Pathommachedi in Nakhon Pathom

What's not included

  • Expenditures of a personal nature, drinks and meals if not stated explicitly in the programme
  • Gratuity for driver and guide
  • Optional tours
  • Domestic flight tickets and airport taxes or visa fees.

Accommodation

ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS

Chiang Rai = Laluna or similar 4*
Chiang Mai = Empress Chiang Mai or similar 4*
Sukhothai = Sukhothai Treasure or similar 4*
Ayutthaya = Krungsri River or similar 4*
Kanchanaburi = Pung-Waan Resort or similar 3*
Bangkok = Royal @Chinatown or similar 4*

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

Chiang Rai: Home of the unconventional and famous white temple, Chiang Rai is also a great place for street food and learning about the hill tribes.
Chiang Mai: The fragrant ‘Rose of the North’ was capital of the Lanna Kingdom founded by Mangrai the Great in the 13th century.
Sukhothai: Explore the well-preserved ruins of the former capital of the Sukhothai Kingdom.
Ayutthaya: Discover the impressive ruins of what was one of the world’s biggest cities during the early modern period.
Kanchanaburi: Visit the notorious ‘Death Railway Bridge’ that inspired the World War II novel and film, The Bridge on the River Kwai.
Damnoen Saduak: Immerse yourself in the scents and sounds of Thailand in the colourful floating market – one of the most enchanting images of the country.

Please note

  • Day 2: On arrival at Chiang Rai Airport please collect your luggage and proceed to the exit of the Customs Hall. You will be met by a representative who will be holding a sign with your name on it. For clients wanting a pick up from an outer Bangkok hotel an extra surcharge will be applied.
  • Day 11: Drop off at Bangkok International airport
    **Different languages can be combined in our vehicles for Seat – in – coach Itineraries. There will be a separate guide for each language
  • Please note that local conditions prevalent at the time of travel may result in modifications to the tour contents.

What do I need to bring?

Comfortable and light clothing is the most suitable for travelling in Thailand. Visitors should not wear sleeveless shirts, shorts, short skirts or skimpy clothing when visiting temples, religious or official buildings. Shoes should be removed before entering a temple or private house. Sun protection, sunglasses, a hat and mosquito repellent can be very useful during your stay.

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Travel Info

    • Flight time 11 1/2 hours (Bangkok)
    • Timezone GMT+7 hours
    • Recommended airlines Emirates, Etihad, EVA, Jet, Qatar, British  & Thai Airways
    • Best season Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, Nov & Dec

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