EXPERIENCE THIS 12 DAYS / 11 NIGHTS CLASSIC TRIP.
Discover the classics of Thailand with a perfect combination between cities, nature and culture. Thailand, a country not to be missed, which provides an unforgettable experience! From Bangkok to the northern border, all the stages of the history and the diversity of nature in the Kingdom of Siam. First discover Bangkok, the bubbling cultural and economic capital.
Discover then the central plains of the country: the canals by long-tail boat at Damnoen Saduak, the most colorful floating market, by railway in Kanchanaburi where you board the “train of death” and discover the river Kwai and its famous bridge.
Trace the history and richness of the past and visit the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Siam: Ayutthaya with its ruins scattered throughout the city and Sukhothai, with its smiling Buddha’s and ponds covered with water lilies. Explore Northern Thailand: Chiang Rai, the famous Golden Triangle and the Mekong River, Chiang Mai Rose of the North, with its temple on the Doi Suthep mountain and her walks in the jungle on elephant back.
An unforgettable journey: a real discovery of the Thai culture, which you can complete with an extension at the beach!
DAY BY DAY DESCRIPTION OF THIS EXCEPTIONAL ADVENTURE THEME PROGRAM
On arrival at the airport you are met by your guide who will take you to your hotel. Your afternoon is free at leisure for you to rest from your trip.
In the early morning you visit the jewel of the city, the fabulous Royal Palace in Bangkok. It was built at the beginning of Bangkok, between 1782 and 1784 by the first king of the Chakri dynasty, with his personal residence, his courtrooms and the royal temples. The Grand Palace Royal Chapel (Wat Phra Si Ratana Satsadaram) houses the Emerald Buddha, a jadeite statue venerated in Bangkok, the religious and symbolic emblem of the Chakri Dynasty, the symbol of the country’s security. Then you visit the Wat Po, known for its large reclining Buddha. After lunch in a restaurant along the Chao Phraya, the “River of Kings”, you enjoy a trip in a longtail boat on the canals (klong) of Bangkok. You will discover different aspects of the daily life of the Thai people and the contrasts of Bangkok. Along the way, you stop at the majestic Wat Arun or Temple of Dawn, with his prang (Khmer style spire) inlaid with colourful pieces of china, followed with a colorful visit, walking through the Pak Klong Thalad, the biggest flower- and vegetable market in the capital and your transfer back to your hotel.
Early morning, you visit the floating market of Damnoen Saduak in Ratchaburi province, about a hundred kilometers southwest of Bangkok. This small village has several floating markets, narrow networks of khlongs (channels), scattered in different areas. Trade is done by boat. Many of the market people wear the traditional costume: a straw hat and a fitted shirt, symbol of the peasant community. They sell their products to clients on the banks or on board. Overloaded sampans offer delicious fresh vegetables, fruits, spices and decorative handicrafts. After this shimmering visit, you continue to Nakhon Pathom to discover the Phra Pathom Chedi, the tallest stupa in the world: 127 meters high. Before reaching your hotel in Kanchanburi, you will visit the famous bridge over the river Kwai.
Today you visit the military cemetery commemorating the 6,000 Allied POWs who perished during the construction of the Death Railway and were grouped here after the war. You also visit the war museum (JEATH Museum) illustrating the dramatic conditions of this construction. Afterwards you take the train that takes you along an interesting part of the legendary Death Railway going over the long wooden viaduct overlooking the River Kwai. Before returning to your hotel, you visit the infamous Hell Fire Pass which was built with forced labor during the Second World War, in part by Allied prisoners of war. The pass carved into the rock extends over 500 meters and has a height of 26 meters. It is noted for the harsh conditions and heavy loss of life suffered by its laborers during construction. Hellfire Pass is so called because the sight of emaciated prisoners laboring at night by torchlight was said to resemble a scene from Hell. An estimated 100,000 forced laborers and 16,000 prisoners of war lost their lives to the realization of this work.
This morning you take the road towards Ayutthaya. Ayutthaya was the capital of the kingdom which took the place of Sukhothai and ruled for over 400 years. Its configuration, its splendor made it called the Venice of the East, a historic city full of monuments and magnificent remains in a historic park listed as a World Heritage by UNESCO. First you will visit the ruins of a temple of the old capital of Siam, the Wat Chaiwattanaram, located on the banks of the river. It is one of the most impressive temples of Ayutthaya combining Khmer and Thai art.
Then you will enjoy a nice boat ride around the island of Ayutthaya, getting a better sense of the life of the local people along the river banks and enjoying the sights of several beautiful temples and ruins along the way of the Pasak, Lopburi and Chao Praya rivers. After your lunch you will discover the Wat Yai Chaimongkol, known for its huge reclining chedi and the Wat Mahathat (Temple of the Great Relic) in the center of Ayutthaya, known for the head of Buddha nestled in a tree trunk. You then go to your hotel.
This morning you depart to join Lopburi, which just as Ayutthaya and Sukhothai represents a mythical city in the history of Thailand. It left its name to an architectural style called “Lopburi” for the temples of Khmer origin (the Lopburi style is actually an intermediate style between the Khmer and Thai architectures). You will visit the Wat Pra Prang Sam Yod which houses numerous wild monkeys, who are not shy at all. Above all, do not walk around with something to eat in your hands; they will not hesitate to climb on you. Unusual photos guaranteed anyway! Above all, do not forget to admire the temple itself. You then continue your journey towards your hotel in Phitsanulok.
If you are willing to get up early, you can go down to the streets to see the monks who leave the temples and walk through the town to receive their daily food. Many people give them food, drinks and a bit of money because it is considered a very good deed which promotes a better reincarnation. You can participate if you feel like it. After breakfast, you visit Wat Sri Rattana Mahattat where Thais flock to honor the beautiful and highly revered Buddha image “Phra Phutta Chinarrat”. Then you continue your journey to Sukhothai to explore the famous site of the UNESCO World Heritage, the Sukhothai Historical Park, by bicycle. The ancient city of Sukhothai (which means “Dawn of Happiness”) was the capital of what is considered the first true Thai kingdom and had its brief heyday in the 13th century before giving way to Ayutthaya. This discovery will enable you to enjoy the beautiful archaeological park, offering superb giant Buddha’s and beautiful ponds covered with lotus flowers. After your lunch you take the road to Chiang Rai and drive through beautiful landscapes with magnificent plains and green mountains.
After lunch, you drive to the Golden Triangle with a stop in the small town of Mae Sai, at the border with Burma. You can photograph the northernmost point of Thailand. This city is essentially a huge and picturesque outdoor market where Thai, Burmese and hill tribe cross and trade. The Golden Triangle, at the Mekong, …the meeting point of Thailand, Burma and Laos (this name once defined a large area in the three countries, known for their opium cultivation). After visiting the Opium museum, you go to Wat Phra Pukhao temple to enjoy exceptional views of the Mekong River. You will also visit a mountain tribe and then you reach your hotel in Mae Chan. Built in the middle of rice fields at the foot of lovely hills this charming hotel is a haven of peace. The rustic beauty of Thailand with the comfort of a modern hotel.
This morning you take the road to Chiang Mai. You visit the Doi Mae Salong (doi in Northern language means mountain). Formerly Mae Salong was a centre of the opium trade, led by Chinese refugees from 93rd regiment of the Kuomintang. To break this drug feud image, Mae Salong, which has kept its typical Chinese character, was officially renamed Santikiri “hill of peace.” Poppy crop substitution have been introduced by the Thai government. These efforts are bearing fruit, judging by the extent of plantations of tea and maize crops and the quantities of products sold in markets. Along the way you make a stop in Thaton, a small village on the Mae Kok River dominated by a hill topped by a temple (Wat Thaton) from where you can see the whole valley.
After breakfast you go to the beautiful mountainous region of Chiang Dao where you visit an elephant training camp. This Elephant Conservation Centre combines the cultural interest with environmental concern. Elephants have played a key role as a tool of work, during the heyday of the teak industry. That era is now over and a number of elephants have found refuge at the Centre. Visitors can admire the skill of these forest mammals and their surprising mastery in the field of painting. Not to forget the spectacle of their swim in the river. You also experience an extraordinary safari on elephant back through the jungle. Your adventure and your discovery of nature is complemented by a bamboo raft ride through the jungle. Then you have lunch at a local restaurant. You continue your day with a visit to a famous orchid nursery in Mae Rim, with over 300 identified varieties. A great show of brilliant colours where you will have plenty of time to admire their beauty.
After breakfast, you visit the temple of Doi Suthep, one of the largest Buddhist temples in the north. This is an important place of pilgrimage dating from the late 14th century. Located at an altitude of 1,054 meters, at the summit of the mountain you can enjoy a spectacular panoramic view of the city. You will learn the legend of the white elephant, carrying the relics of Buddha, which is the origin of this site. Back in Chiang Mai, you visit the different centres of local crafts that are the hallmark of the region, like silk weaving, manufacturing of umbrellas and fans and the art of jewellery. A good opportunity to appreciate the artistic talents of the craftsmen from Chiang Mai and to do your souvenir shopping!
At the appropriate time, you will be transferred to the airport of Chiang Mai for your flight to Bangkok and your connecting flight back home.
Ramada Plaza Menam
Ruen Phae Royal Park
You can complete this great journey with an extension of any type
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