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Welcome to Thailand. On arrival transfer to your hotel and this evening enjoy dinner with your Travel Director and fellow guests.
Your city tour begins with a visit to Wat Pho, Bangkok's oldest temple which features the largest reclining Buddha in Thailand. Continue to the Grand Palace which was the seat not only of the king and his court, but contained within its walls the entire government administration. The architecture is vibrantly Thai and the overall effect is dazzling with all the brightly coloured intricate detail. After lunch in a local restaurant depart on a private boat to explore Bangkok's maze of canals, known locally as khlongs. Catch a glimpse of the serene and simple lifestyle of riverbank dwellers. Pass by the Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun) and its impressive ceramic covered pagoda before returning to your hotel.
Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore this vibrant city or join an Optional Experience.
Have a late start this morning and transfer to Bangkok Airport for your flight to Chiang Rai. On arrival check in to your hotel and later experience the local colour of Chiang Rai with a brief City Tour. Visit Wat Phra Kaew, a significant temple best known for originally housing the Emerald Buddha in the 13th century which can now be seen at Bangkok's Grand Palace. Pass by Chiang Rai's iconic golden clock tower which was designed by a local Thai artist and unveiled in 2008 in honour of His Majesty the King. Continue to a local restaurant for dinner before returning to your hotel.
This morning visit the Hall of Opium, situated in the heart of the Golden Triangle, providing an excellent insight into the opium trade so prevalent in this area in the past century. The state-of-the-art exhibition journeys through more than 5,000-years of history on the use and abuse of opium related drugs. Learn about the origins of the opium poppy, the medical and ritual use of opium in ancient civilizations and the Opium Wars and their impact on China. After lunch in a local restaurant board a boat on the Mekong River towards the Golden Triangle, where the borders of Thailand, Myanmar and Laos converge. Make a stop in Laos and visit the Don Sao Island Markets, which have an abundance of local handicrafts. Later return to your hotel in Chiang Rai.
Depart this morning and make a brief stop at the unique white temple of Wat Rong Khun. Unlike many other Thai temples that have a history going back centuries, this extraordinary place of worship was only built around 20 years ago. Make a stop along the way at Mae Kajaen Hot Springs and dip your feet into the warm mineral waters, a popular spot with local Thais. After a lunch in a local restaurant visit the Sankamphaeng area on the outskirts of Chiang Mai where all the traditional handicrafts such as the famous umbrella and fan making can be found. On arrival at your hotel check-in and later this evening join your Travel Director for a visit to the famous Night Market.
Enjoy a late start this morning and later explore the centre of Chiang Mai by rickshaw, known locally as samlor. Visit one of Chiang Mai's most impressive temples; Wat Phra Singh which was built in 1345 by King Pha Yu to house the remains of his father King Kam Fu. See the elegantly decorated Lai Kam assembly hall and its restored murals depicting the lives of locals hundreds of years ago. Afterwards for lunch enjoy a typical dish of Chiang Mai khao soi (rice noodle soup) followed by some free time in the centre to explore further, do some shopping or perhaps treat yourself to a relaxing foot massage. Later make a visit to Wat Doi Suthep, tucked away in the mountains at an elevation of 1,056 metres. In its centre stands a huge Chedi (spired pagoda), which contains partial relics of Lord Buddha. Stay when the crowds depart to observe the monks chanting at sunset before returning to your hotel.
Today is free for you to explore this fascinating city or choose to take part in an Optional Experience.
Transfer to Chiang Mai International Airport for your onward flight.
Thank you for your interest in this tour. If no dates are displaying, please call our reservations line at 1-877-622-9109 for more information
Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.
Jim Thompson House is one of the best examples of traditional Thai residential architecture and houses a breath-taking collection of Southeast Asian art. Jim Thompson, born in Delaware in 1906, fell in love with Thailand while posted as an intelligence agent in Bangkok during WWII. He later made it his permanent home and started a business supplying fine Thai silk to overseas fashion houses, single-handedly saving what had been a dying cottage industry. His silk company continues to flourish today. With the proceeds of his success, Thompson collected an impressive range of artworks, and sections of teak houses, assembling them into a museum complex set in a lush garden alongside central Bangkok’s Saen Saep Canal. The main house is full of tastefully displayed Asian art and curios including Buddha images, paintings, ceramics and antique furniture. The living areas have been preserved as they were when Thompson lived there before his mysterious disappearance. There is also a Thai restaurant and bar plus, a sizeable boutique selling quality silk items, books and prints. The price shown is in Thai Bhat.
Adult Price: ฿1350
Head to the north of Chiang Mai to visit Baan Tong Luang Village, an ecological Paduang village situated in a beautiful valley and the home to Long Neck Karen hill tribe from Myanmar. The women wear heavy copper neck rings as a ritual starting from when they are 5 or 6 years of age. Other hill tribes such as Lahu, Hmong and White Karen can also be seen in the village in their traditional costumes. The price shown is in Thai Bhat.
Adult Price: ฿2015
Unlock the secrets of traditional-style Thai cooking at the Pantawan Cooking School which is located in the south of the city. The class takes place in a classic teak wooden house set in a beautiful garden with an organic farm. See the various kinds of herbs growing and use some of these in your cooking lesson. After a demonstration by one of the instructors, using the freshest ingredients, prepare and cook your own Thai food under the helpful supervision of the instructors. Each participant has their own individual cooking station and will prepare four dishes which vary on a daily basis from Northern Thai cuisine to All-Time Thai Favorites. The best bit is that after the class you get to eat your creations. Soft drinks are included with the meal and beer and wines are available at an additional cost. Also included is a trip to a local market to sample some local delicacies. The price shown is in Thai Bhat.
Adult Price: ฿2600
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