From iconic landmarks, authentic cooking classes to ethical elephant sanctuary, this curated journey promises an exceptional cultural escape.
A bespoke adventure, beginning in the vibrant metropolis of Bangkok. The journey unfolds with a full-day exploration of Bangkok's cultural gems, from the iconic Grand Palace to the serene Wat Prayun, culminating in a thrilling glass-floored observation deck at Mahanakorn Tower. Continue your odyssey to Chiang Mai, dive into Chiang Mai's cultural tapestry, explore temples, and vibrant markets, and indulge in a half-day Thai cooking masterclass with a local chef.
The adventure takes a socially sustainable with a visit to an Artists' and Artisans' Community, offering hands-on experiences and supporting local endeavours. Fly to Phuket for the final leg of your journey, residing in The Slate's Pearl Bed Suite. Immerse yourself in the ethical Elephant Sanctuary and explore the wonders of Phang Nga Bay on a full-day cruise. The grand finale is a day of leisure in Phuket, allowing you to savour the beauty of the Andaman Sea. Leave with cherished memories of an extraordinary expedition through Thailand's cultural and natural wonders.
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Day 1: Holiday time!
Head to your planned international airport for your overnight flight to Bangkok.
Day 2: Welcome to Bangkok!
Welcome to Bangkok! Enjoy a private airport transfer from Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) to Chatrium Hotel Riverside where you will stay for three nights.
Day 3: Bangkok discovery
Enjoy breakfast and get ready for a day of discovery in Bangkok. Begin with the iconic Grand Palace, home to Thai kings for over two centuries. Admire intricate architecture and murals, delving into its rich history. Continue to Wat Pho, a vast temple featuring the renowned reclining Buddha and captivating murals. Explore the serene Wat Prayun on the Chao Phraya River for a unique temple experience. Pause for a delightful Thai lunch before embarking on a scenic longtail boat ride through Bangkok's canals, immersing yourself in local life. Conclude the day at Mahanakorn Tower, one of the city's tallest skyscrapers. Opt for a thrilling glass-floored observation deck on the 74th floor for panoramic sunset views.
Day 4: Bangkok Bites - A street food tour
Your day will begin in the morning as you are greeted for your exciting adventure by your expert guide at your hotel lobby. Embark on a flavourful journey in Bangkok with your expert guide. Begin your day at Samyan Market, a vibrant blend of wet market and food court near Wat Hua Lamphong. Explore stalls teeming with fresh produce and engage with locals while savouring delectable snacks from food carts. Continue to Nang Loeng Market, over 120 years old, with a rich history of Royal patronage. Wander through wooden shop houses, savouring traditional delights with cherished family recipes. After this culinary exploration, enjoy a delightful lunch at a popular local restaurant, immersing yourself in the friendly community. Indulge your sweet tooth with a traditional Thai dessert.
Day 5: Head for Chiang Mai - Evening street eats
After a delightful breakfast, your journey continues with a smooth transfer to Don Muang International Airport. Upon arriving in Chiang Mai, enjoy a seamless private transfer to Rachamankha Hotel for a luxurious 4-night stay. As the evening unfolds, embark on an Electric Tuk Tuk gastronomic journey. Immerse yourself in the vibrant night markets, savouring an array of street food delights. Indulge in the flavours of Thai Suki, pork meatballs, northern Thai spicy sausage, Kanom Jeen, and Khao Soi.
Day 6: Temples of Chiang Mai
After breakfast, embark on a Chiang Mai adventure, explore the city in iconic red songthaews, and visit Doi Suthep's temple for panoramic views. Expertly guided, witness daily prayers and the golden stupa. Return via Songthaews, exploring old city temples like Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Pan Tao's teakwood hall with the Phan Tao Buddha. Conclude at Warorot market, a city lifeline offering local delights, and stop for lunch. Immerse in the vibrant Southeast Asian market atmosphere, especially the flower market.
Day 7: Food culture - Thai cooking master class
Embark on a culinary adventure in Chiang Mai's serene countryside. The host chef guides you from farm to table in a tranquil forested area. In a personalized consultation, craft a bespoke menu featuring coconut-based curries, papaya salads, or Thai laab. Handpick organically grown ingredients from the garden, gaining insights into the chef's farming process. Transition to the kitchen, where the chef, a patient teacher, guides you through meal preparation. The culinary journey concludes with a feast of locally sourced, fresh organic ingredients, showcasing the vibrant flavours of Thai cuisine.
Day 8: Sustainable Thailand - Artisans community visit.
Embark on a socially sustainable day tour from Chiang Mai to a picturesque Northern Thai village. Departing around 8:30, our local guide introduces you to a community of artists and artisans in a scenic mountainous setting. Visit Pa Tung to pay homage at a shrine and explore an onsite antique crockery museum. Engage in a hands-on DIY Batik dyeing activity and explore a mulberry orchard offering refreshing drinks and delicious mulberry-infused som tam. Head to an organic farm, learn about organic farming, and harvest fresh ingredients for lunch. Visit the Chiang Mai Art Museum which showcases Thai artists. Our local guide provides insights into countryside life. Return to the city enriched, having supported the village's sustainability efforts.
Day 9: Fly to Phuket
After breakfast transfer to Chiang Mai International Airport for your flight to Phuket! Enjoy a private airport transfer to your hotel, The Slate where you will stay for four nights.
Day 10: Elephant Sanctuary Visit
Experience a full-day program at Phuket's ethical elephant sanctuary, deepening your understanding of these keystone species. The day includes round-trip transfers, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Begin with a warm welcome, an insightful video on Asian elephants, and the privilege of feeding them breakfast. Guided by sanctuary experts, explore the 30-acre sanctuary and witness elephants roaming freely. The morning ends with a vegetarian Thai lunch. In the afternoon, learn about elephants' natural habitat, observe them in the jungle, and see their rehabilitation in a hydrotherapy pool. Participate in preparing elephant food, understand their dietary needs, and feed them dinner. Enjoy a vegetarian dinner in the evening.
Day 11: Phang Nga Bay Cruise
After breakfast, start your Phang Nga Bay adventure. A local long-tail boat awaits at the jetty, revealing mesmerizing limestone karsts across the 400-square-kilometer expanse between Phuket and the Thai mainland. Cruise past the famous James Bond Island before escaping the crowds to explore lesser-known islands and secluded beaches for swimming and lounging. A stop at Koh Panyi for lunch awaits in the early afternoon. The cruise continues until we return to the jetty around 16:30 for a hotel transfer. Experience the essence of Phang Nga Bay in a day of exploration and relaxation.
Day 12: Phuket free day
Enjoy a day in paradise.
Day 13: Time to fly!
After breakfast, you will be met in the hotel lobby for your return transfer to Phuket International Airport. Safe journey home!
Duration: 12 nights
Location: Thailand holidays, Southeast Asia
From £4,121pp based on two people sharing, excluding international flights.
The trip includes all accommodations and activities specified above. Rooms and meals are as below:
- 3 nights at Bangkok Chatrium Hotel Riverside Grand Deluxe River View breakfast and lunch included where mentioned.
- 4 nights at Chiang Mai Rachamankha Superior Room - Breakfast, lunch, and dinner included where mentioned.
- 4 nights at The Slate, Pearl Bed Suite - breakfast and lunch included.
- Internal flights and all transfers.
- Activities mentioned
- Private guides where mentioned
This trip excludes:
- Single Supplements.
- International flights to/from UK.
- Any activities, meals or drinks not mentioned as included.
- Anything else e.g. park fees not mentioned as included.
When to go to Thailand
A month-by-month guide of when to visit Thailand
January is one of the most delightful months to visit Thailand. The weather is characterized by cool temperatures and dry conditions. Daytime temperatures typically range from 25°C to 32°C (77°F to 89°F), making it perfect for outdoor exploration.
The month kicks off with vibrant New Year's Eve celebrations in major cities, such as Bangkok and Chiang Mai. Spectacular fireworks displays light up the night sky, and many establishments host special parties and events. Towards the end of January, the Chiang Mai Flower Festival takes place, featuring colourful parades, floral exhibitions, and garden competitions, adding a touch of natural beauty to your visit.
February is a continuation of the pleasant weather experienced in January. The cool, dry conditions persist, creating a comfortable atmosphere for travellers.
Chinese New Year, celebrated in various Thai-Chinese communities, adds a dash of cultural festivities to the month. In Chiang Mai, the Lantern Festival coincides with this period, where you can release lanterns into the night sky for good luck.
March is still a great time to visit Thailand. While temperatures start to rise as the month progresses, it remains relatively comfortable with low humidity and minimal rainfall.
The highlight of March in Thailand is the Songkran Festival, marking the Thai New Year. This event is celebrated with water fights, parades, and traditional ceremonies. It's a unique cultural experience that's both fun and refreshing.
April marks the beginning of the hot season in Thailand. Temperatures can soar, reaching up to 40°C (104°F). It's generally dry but increasingly scorching.
The Songkran Festival celebrations often continue into the first half of April, making it a vibrant and festive time to visit. Be prepared to get drenched in friendly water fights as part of the festivities.
May is still part of the hot and dry season. However, temperatures might be slightly more bearable compared to April.
While May doesn't feature any major festivals, it's an excellent time to explore Thailand's beautiful beaches and islands without the peak-season crowds. The clear skies and warm waters make it ideal for beach vacations and water activities.
June is the start of the rainy season in most parts of Thailand. Humidity increases, and sporadic rainfall becomes more common.
While there are no major festivals in June, this quieter period allows you to explore popular tourist destinations with fewer crowds. Consider indoor and cultural activities during occasional downpours
July is firmly within the rainy season in most of Thailand. Frequent downpours are expected, especially on the west coast and in northern regions.
July doesn't feature significant events, but it's a time to experience Thailand's lush green landscapes. You can visit national parks and enjoy the vibrant flora that thrives during the rainy season.
Rainfall continues in August, but the east coast islands like Koh Samui and Koh Phangan tend to have better weather during this period.
On August 12th, Thailand celebrates the Queen's Birthday, a national holiday. It's a time when Thais show their love and respect for the monarchy.
September marks the transition as the rainy season starts to wane. The weather gradually improves, particularly towards the latter part of the month.
Mahidol Day on September 24th is another national holiday, commemorating the life and contributions of Prince Mahidol, the father of modern medicine and public health in Thailand.
October is a great time to visit as the rainy season recedes, and the weather becomes more comfortable. You'll notice a decrease in rainfall, and conditions become ideal for travel.
Chulalongkorn Day on October 23rd is celebrated as a public holiday to honor King Rama V. It's a day of paying respects and remembering his significant contributions to the country.
November offers pleasant weather with less humidity. It's an excellent time for outdoor exploration and activities.
Loy Krathong, the Festival of Lights, is a major event in November. During this celebration, people release lanterns and float decorative krathongs (small rafts) on rivers and lakes, creating a magical, illuminated spectacle.
December is the peak tourist season in Thailand. The weather is cool and dry, providing ideal conditions for various outdoor activities.
Christmas and New Year's Eve are widely celebrated in major cities and tourist areas. You'll find festive decorations, special dinners, and lively parties to ring in the new year.
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