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Best of Thailand
Best of Thailand

Highlights: Bangkok - Chiang Rai - Chiang Mai - Phuket

Other Departures: Manchester - £3285, Birmingham - £3305, Glasgow - £3325, Edinburgh - £3309, George Best Belfast City - £3425, Bristol - £3535, Norwich - £3529, Exeter - £3445, Southampton - £3479, Newcastle - £3305

Bangkok - Riva Surya Bangkok 4*
Chiang Rai - The Legend Chiang Rai Boutique River Resort & Spa 4*
Chiang Mai - Tamarind Village Hotel Chiang Mai 4*
Phuket - Katathani Phuket Beach Resort 5*


Day 1: Bangkok arrival
- Meals: None

Overnight at Riva Surya Bangkok, Deluxe Riva

Day 2: Bangkok
- Meals: Breakfast

Best of Bangkok by Boat
Meet your guide after breakfast at 08.00 hrs and head to Wat Po, one of Bangkok’s oldest and largest temples – famous for the 43 metre long reclining Buddha. Visit Lak Muang, Bangkok’s city pillar, before heading to the famous Grand Palace. See the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Pra Kaew), the most revered shrine in the Kingdom.

Enjoy lunch at a riverside restaurant before boarding a longtail boat to explore the klongs, Bangkok’s maze of canals and waterways - see parts of Thai traditional life that have disappeared from most of Bangkok. End the day with a visit to Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, before returning to your hotel.

Overnight at Riva Surya Bangkok, Deluxe Riva

Day 3: Bangkok
- Meals: Brreakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Explore Damnoen Saduak Floating Market:
Early this morning at 06.30 hrs meet your private guide for an excursion to Damnoen Saduak. Located 50 miles southwest of the city, it is the largest floating market in the Kingdom. An early start this morning you will embark on a longtail boat to reach the market. The colorful vendors at this lively market paddle along in their canoes overflowing with fresh fruit, vegetables and souvenirs to sell to shoppers on the banks.

There is lots of chatter and activity – bargaining is common – that’s all part of the fun -- but don’t expect to get the price down more than a few baht. Try a bowl of noodle soup from one of the boats. Along the way we see rice paddies and shrimp farms and stop to visit the largest pagoda in Thailand, Nakorn Pathom before driving back to Bangkok.

A Taste of Chinatown:
Enjoy a mouth-watering exploration of Bangkok's 200-year-old China Town district by visiting various tasty eateries, from sit-on-the-pavement-vendors to characterful restaurants. Meet guide and transfer to Chinatown at 17.45 hrs and then be guided through some of China Town's most characterful alleys, and then enjoy the magnificent views of the River from a local rooftop bar. Here you'll be given a short briefing by your guide and enjoy a drink (beer or soft drink) whilst watching the setting sun. Then jump on board a tuk tuk to head deep into Chinatown to start our fascinating tour.

You'll be able to sample all kinds of dishes (and a few local drinks too!) from the likes of dim sum, dumplings, fresh seafood, local deserts and more! Throughout the evening your knowledgeable guide will explain the background to all the different food and drink you'll taste, as well as giving their own insight into the local area. At around 20.30 hrs it’s high time to stop before your stomach explodes and your evening will finish with a drink (beer or soft drink) in a lovely open air bar from where you can sit in comfort and watch the hustle and bustle of China Town.

Overnight at Riva Surya Bangkok, Deluxe Riva

Day 4: Bangkok – Chiang Rai
- Meals: Breakfast

- Today, meet guide and transfer to the airport for your flight to Chiang Rai.
- Fly from Bangkok to Chiang Rai.
- Upon arrival, meet guide and transfer to the hotel for check-in.

Tuk Tuk by Night
At 19.00 hrs be ready for our unique Tuktuk tour! During a relaxing ride of about two hours you will see the authentic side of Chiang Rai. You will pass the King Mengrai Monument, commemorating the king who founded Chiang Rai in 1262. Next is the golden clock tower. Built in 2008 to honor His Majesty King Bhumibhol Adulyadej, the clock tower bears the signature style of Chalermchai Kositpipat, the artist who conceived and built the White Temple. Every evening at 20:00 and 21:00, the clock tower comes to life in a light-and-sound display.

Next is the fresh market and afterwards we bring you to the famous night market of Chiang Rai. Here you can find restaurants and there is also a performance of classical dance. Our dedicated guide will make sure to explain you the cultural and historical particularities of Chiang Rai, the Gateway to the mythical Golden Triangle. Return to your hotel mid-evening.

Overnight at The Legend Chiang Rai, Deluxe Studio

Day 5: Chiang Rai
- Meals: Breakfast

The Golden Triangle and Doi Tung Royal Project
Your guide and driver will pick you up from the hotel. Drive to Doi Tung Mountain. Visit the Mae Fah Luang botanic gardens and learn about the Royal Project on Doi Tung. Continue to Mae Sai, the bustling border town between Myanmar and Thailand.

You can cross into Myanmar on a day pass and explore Tachilek town. Continue to the Golden Triangle where the borders of Laos, Thailand and Myanmar meet. After a delicious Thai meal take a relaxing boat trip to Don Sao, a small island belonging to Laos. Visit the Hall of Opium, an excellent museum focusing on the history of the Golden Triangle and the opium trade before returning to your hotel.

Overnight at The Legend Chiang Rai, Deluxe Studio

Day 6: Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai
- Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Half Day Chiang Rai City and Temple Tour
Today you will depart from the hotel at 08.00 hrs to visit the Wat Phra Kaew, said to have been the original place where the Emerald Buddha was found, now venerated into Bangkok's Wat Phra Kaew Chapel. Proceed to Wat Phra Singha, a fine example of Lanna Thai religious architecture. Continue to the Ob Khum Museum Lanna Heritage Conservation Center, which is known to embrace a collection of objects from the areas affiliated with the Lanna kingdom including ritual objects and objects used at the royal courts

If time permits, you will also tour the Wat Rong Khun. Unlike the many temples with centuries of history behind them, Wat Rong Khun (also known as the White temple) was only built recently. Construction began in 1998 and is expected to take seven generations to fulfill the design and vision of noted local artist Chalermchai Kositpipat who is overseeing the project. Enjoy lunch before continue transfer to Chiang Mai.

Overnight at Tamarind Village, Lanna room

Day 7: Chiang Mai
- Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Half Day Doi Suthep and Temples Tour
Pick up at 08.00 hrs. On this tour you will visit the most sacred temple in northern Thailand: the Wat Pra That Doi Suthep. It's the most sacred temple in Chiang Mai and contains a holy relic of the Lord Buddha. Tucked away in the mountains at an elevation of 3,520 feet. The temple compound – accessible via a 300-step staircase – offers an exhilarating view of Chiang Mai and the surrounding countryside.

Drive back down to the city center to visit some of the other impressive temples of Wat Suan Dok is one of them. This temple also houses one of the most famous monk schools in all of Chiang Mai and the Wat Jedyod, also known as the Temple of Seven Spires. Please dress respectfully by not wearing sleeveless T–shirts, shorts or strapless sandals when visiting the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Return to the hotel.

Fun Cooking Experience with a local family
Around 16.00 hrs, you will be transferred A 15 minute drive out of Chiang Mai leads you to a traditional Lanna family, continuing the traditions of many generations in building their homes of teak wood and maintaining the natural surroundings in a way now rarely seen in Chiang Mai.

Use traditional home recipes with authentic Northern Thai flavors that are different from standard dishes offered in commercial cooking classes. Select fresh ingredients from the garden to add to today’s cooking extravaganza. Take full advantage of the opportunity to get to know a real Thai family, be their houseguest for the day and enjoy a delicious home cooked lunch with them.

Overnight at Tamarind Village, Lanna room

Day 8: Chiang Mai
- Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Mahout Owner for a day at Pattara Elephant Farm (Join in tour and transfer)
This morning you'll be picked up at 07:30 hrs for a full day group program. At the camp you will be briefed on the history of the domestic elephant in Thailand.

Next, you'll begin your training session by hiking into the jungle to find the elephants in the bush. You start with feeding and taking care of your elephant. You’ll then unchain and walk your elephant to the river to bathe her. You'll be taught different techniques for getting on the elephant along with basic riding skills and spoken commands for elephants.

In the early afternoon you'll ride to a waterfall for a picnic lunch and have a chance to cool off in the falls with your elephant. In the late afternoon, you’ll ride back to the camp for the elephants’ evening feeding, and then you'll be transferred back to your hotel.

Overnight at Tamarind Village, Lanna room

Day 9: Chiang Mai – Phuket
- Meals: Breakfast

- Today, meet guide and transfer to the airport for your flight to Phuket.
- Fly from Chiang Rai to Phuket
- Upon arrival, meet guide and transfer to the hotel for check-in. The rest of the day is free at leisure.

Overnight at Katathani Phuket Beach Resort, Junior Suite

Day 10: Phuket
- Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Sea Canoe in Phang Nga Bay (Join-in tour & transfer)
At 11:00 hrs, we transfer to the pier and motor to Phang Nga Bay. With a light lunch on board, we spend the afternoon exploring several sea caves, hongs, by canoe and discover the unique wildlife within them. The tour depends on the tides, but we usually visit at least four different caves on top of swimming time.

We enjoy dinner on board as we savor the spectacular sunset.
Once darkness falls, our very special “Hong by Starlight” tour begins. We launch our Krathong,—the traditional lotus-shaped floating vessel made of banana leaves—and watch as the phosphorescence from millions of plankton swirls in the water. We return to land at 21.00 hrs and transfer to the hotel.

Overnight at Katathani Phuket Beach Resort, Junior Suite

Day 11: Phuket – Bangkok departure
- Meals: Breakfast

- Today you'll be met and transferred back to the airport in time for your international flights home via Bangkok.
- Fly from Phuket to Bangkok.

Offer Includes

  • Flights from London with Finnair
  • Airport taxes
  • 11 nights accommodation as per itinerary
  • All transfers and transport as per program
  • Service of English speaking station guides
  • All entrance fees on tour
  • Tours and excursions as per itinerary

Meal Plans

  • As per Itinerary