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Overview

Take the family on a cultural and educational experience of Thailand. Beginning at Bangkok, explore the city on local transportation, visit unique and bustling markets before travelling overland to historical sites of Kanchanaburi. Complete the experience in the north, Chiang Mai by visiting Wat Phra That Doi Suthep and spending a day with a friendly local in the comforts of his home.

Trip Highlights

Cultural Thailand for Families

Unique markets of Bangkok

Take a short regional train ride and visit an amazing countryside market along the railway tracks before visiting the iconic Damnoen Saduak Floating Market.

Discover historical Kanchanburi

Take the family on an educational visit to significant WWII sites in Kanchanaburi and learn about the Death Railway, War Cemetery and Bridge over River Kwai.

Meet and interact with locals in Chiang Mai

Join Mr Prapat and spend a day with his family at a traditional Thai house and rice barn. See traditional crafts and learn how to cook authentic northern Thai cuisine.

Itinerary

1

Bangkok Arrival

Bangkok Suvarvanabhumi Airport- Bangkok Hotel (36.3 km): approx. 50 min

Upon arrival at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport, be met and greeted by the guide for transfer to the hotel.

This late afternoon go on a half day trip to discover one of the least-known-by-foreigners street areas of Bangkok around Bangrak district. Once in the area, be introduced to some good restaurants, mainly local ones, while enjoying sampling some street snacks. Travel by local modes of transportation like the tuk tuk or local buses after the guide explains how they work.

Cool down with a local Thai iced coffee, kafe boran, or a fresh, cold fruit shake. After that, hop on a tuk tuk to River City Shopping Complex pier and take a ferry crossing to Khlongsan district and explore the local market in the area.

End the walking tour at the Jam Factory, a small industrial design complex with a modern book café and a unique furniture shop by a famous Thai artist. Located in the complex is The Never Ending Summer Restaurant, a cool industrial style Thai restaurant with authentic Thai taste and enjoy a nice dinner in a cozy atmosphere (at own expenses). After dinner, transfer back to the hotel.  

Overnight in Bangkok.

2

Bangkok

After breakfast at the hotel, drive just an hour south of Bangkok to Samut Songkhram, the province that offers visitors a glimpse into Thai countryside life. We will start the day with a stop at a local train station to experience a short regional train ride bounding for an amazing country market that has sprouted along the railway tracks. Here, witness the dexterity and speed of the vendors as they quickly pack their stalls right before 08:30 when the train approaches, hence bringing shopping to a brief halt. It is a standard practice and stall holders have learnt the art of assembling and reassembling their wares at a moment’s notice!

Then, visit Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and take a long-tail boat ride through the canals and see how Thai people live alongside the labyrinth of canals in this area. Arrive at the famous Damnoen Saduak market and stroll around the colourful floating marketplace bustling with boats and vendors selling tropical fruits and other delights.

Return to Bangkok and free afternoon at leisure.

Overnight in Bangkok.

3

Bangkok

Breakfast at the hotel and spend the day free at leisure.

PM OPTIONAL ACTIVITY: Bangkok Architectural Odyssey

Today’s tour will begin at either 08:00 or 12:00. Travel through the city streets to the banks of the Chao Phraya River for the start of this insightful architectural tour. Board a private wooden barge, richly decorated with cushions and flowers. Slowly cruise along the river towards Chee Chin Khor temple. Although not very old, this pagoda is Bangkok’s best example of traditional Chinese pagoda design. Admire its eight-story high structure and the eclectic images of Buddha and learn how Chinese and Thai Buddhism have converged in modern day Bangkok.

Continue by boat to Wat Prayun Wongsawat for a study of classic Thai architecture. See the typical structures of a Thai pagoda including an ordination hall, assembly hall, meditation hall and library. Notice the 80-metre-high chedi at the centre, surrounded by 18 smaller towers, creating a remarkable visual effect.

Next up is Turtle Mountain, also known as Wat Prayoon. This site highlights Thailand’s deep-rooted spiritual beliefs. Examine the spirit houses, small shrines that the locals believe house spirits of the deceased. Then continue to Wat Arun, an iconic riverside monument. Admire Wat Arun from afar, and see how it represents Mount Meru, the spiritual centre of Buddhist cosmology. After years of hiding behind scaffolding, the incredible ceramic inlays on the chedis are now visible for everyone to see again.

Travel onto Bangkok Noi canal, a residential section of the waterways, filled with shop houses and local temples. Learn how this area was once a major trading route lined with impressive homes of aristocrats. On the way back to town make one last stop at Wat Cha Lo, a hidden temple that features a mythical swan sculpture, usually only found on royal barges.

Time:                    08:00,1200 / 13:00,17:00

Note:

  • Children between 2 and 11 years at the time of travel will receive a 15% discount

Overnight in Bangkok.

4

Bangkok – Nakorn Pathom – River Kwai

Bangkok – Nakhon Pathom (56.4 km): 1.08 hrNakhon Pathom – Kanchanaburi (68.7 km): 1.20 hr

Early in the morning, meet with the guide and driver and head south from Bangkok towards Kanchanaburi with an en-route stop at Nakhon Pathom, for a visit to Woodland Muangmai Fantasy Museum. Here, enjoy the legendary “Tales of the Wood” through unique and beautiful wooden art pieces from various places. Following this, proceed to Kanchanaburi.

Upon arrival in Kanchanaburi, lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, embark on a longtail boat and cruise around the River Kwai. Disembark at the pier in Kanchanaburi, next to the ‘Bridge over the River Kwai’. Stop for a photo opportunity of the bridge from the ground-level. Then continue for a visit to Death Railway Museum & Research Centre and War Cemetery.

 

Dinner at the hotel, and overnight in Kanchanaburi.

5

Kanchanaburi

After breakfast, depart for Erawan Waterfall - a beautiful seven-tiered waterfall located in Erawan National Park. The best time to visit is during rainy season from May until September. It’s possible to walk up to each tier of these picturesque falls, so be sure to bring good walking shoes. Also remember to bring a swimming suit to cool off in the falls’ natural pools. Then continue by car through the national park area to Phra That Cave - a large mountain cave filled with stunning stalactites and stalagmites.

After lunch, take a short train ride along the infamous ‘Death Railway’ through Kwai Noi Gorge.

After the ride, transfer to the resort.

Dinner at the resort.

Overnight in Kanchanaburi.

6

Kanchanaburi

After breakfast at the hotel, start a day trip to Elephant World, located just half an hour from the famous River Kwai Bridge. Elephant World is a sanctuary for elephants with nowhere else to go. Here they can enjoy the natural jungle landscape in peace and harmony.

Following a warm welcome and introduction from the volunteers at Elephant World, it’s off to meet the elephants themselves. Be introduced to each elephant and have the opportunity to work for them under guidance from the ‘mahout’ – the local elephant handler. This includes enjoyable activities like cutting sugar cane or banana plants to feed the elephants.

After a Thai lunch at the camp, have the incredible opportunity to take a bath with the elephants in the Kwai Yai River! Help give them a good scrub, before walking the elephants back into the camp, and then on into the forest where they will spend the night.

Return to the hotel.

Dinner and overnight in Kanchanaburi.

7

Kanchanaburi - Bangkok – Chiang Mai

Kanchanaburi – Bangkok (123 km): 2.11 hr

Breakfast at the hotel. Check out and transfer from Kanchanaburi to Bangkok Airport for flight to Chiang Mai.

Upon arrival in Chiang Mai, explore the old and modern city, including its old crumbling city walls, gates, moat, eclectic markets, residential areas, majestic foreign consulates, government buildings and Tapae Road, one of Chiang Mai’s main streets. Continue with a drive up to Doi Suthep Mountain for a visit to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Built in 1384 AD, this is the most sacred temple in Northern Thailand. Inside the temple, see one of the most sacred stupas in all of Thailand. A fantastic panoramic view over the city can be seen from here.

In the early evening, be met with the guide at the hotel and transfer by van Chiang Mai city to explore evening street food markets on foot. Taste some northern Thai delicacies and learn how to order food in Thai. The tour ends at around 21:00.

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

8

Chiang Mai

Breakfast at the hotel.

Today, experience a typical day in the life of a Thai person- no tourists, no sightseeing, just real life home cooking in a truly Thai neighbourhood.

Join Mr.Prapat in his family car and be transferred for 20 minutes to Hang Dong to spend the day with a typical Thai family. In true Thai style, slip into a pair of local ‘fisherman’s pants’ and discover the architecture of a traditional Thai house and rice barn. The Thai family will also demonstrate their basket weaving skills, a tradition that has been in Thailand for centuries. Stroll around the small, family orchid and select fresh ingredients to add to the day’s cooking extravaganza. Learn to cook traditional home cooked recipes with authentic northern Thai flavours that are different from standard dishes offered in commercial cooking classes. Best of all, have the opportunity to get to know a real Thai family and be their house’s guest for the day. Enjoy a delicious home cooked lunch with the family (cooked together). In the afternoon, go for a stroll around the neighborhood to see some cottage industry goods being made before returning to Chiang Mai.

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

9

Chiang Mai

Breakfast at the hotel. Free day at leisure or enjoy an optional activity.

Half Day – Private Culinary Lesson in A Thai Teakwood house

Today’s tour begins at either 09:00 or 15:30. Uncover the secrets behind Thailand’s famous dishes at the Pantawan Cooking School. Travel south of the city centre to a traditional teakwood house to meet with a local chef. After a short introduction on the day’s activities, head out to a nearby fresh market.

Browse the stalls of this colourful and lively market. See exotic herbs and spices and learn about their uses. During the visit, the chef will introduce local vendors and explain about Thailand’s food culture.

Armed with a basic knowledge of Thai cuisine and its ingredients, return to Pantawan and start cooking! Chop vegetables, stir spicy sauces and fry up sizzling dishes. Throughout the course the chef will share his personal story and offer tips and hints for preparing these dishes at home.

When everything is ready, sit down and enjoy the delicious fresh dishes. Savour the delicate flavours of home-cooked Thai cuisine, enjoying the results of the day’s activities. Return to the hotel with a full belly and a better understanding of Chiang Mai’s food culture. (L or D)

Time:                   09:00-14:00 / 15:30-20:30

Departure:         Daily (Blackout period during Songkran 12-15 Apr)

Note:

  • VIP private transfers between the hotel and Pantawan Cooking School, and private cooking activity
  • Cooking instruction in English (French- speaking instructor will be available upon request)
  • 12 cooking stations in total. (Recommend 1 pax per station; however shared stations are possible as each station has two burners)
  • Min. 2 pax up
  • Children are charged as adults

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

10

Chiang Mai Departure

Chiang Mai Hotel – Chiang Mai Airport (10.8 km): 15 min

Breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer to Chiang Mai Airport for the onward flight.

Important Information

OUR SERVICES INCLUDE:

  • 10 nights accommodation at X2 River Kwai Resort
  • Meals as mentioned (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
  • Luxury service of English-speaking guide
  • Tours and transfers by a private, air-conditioned luxury vehicle
  • Fast track service on arrival and departure at Chiang Mai Airport
  • Entrance fees for mentioned visits

OUR SERVICES DO NOT INCLUDE:

  • Other meals than mentioned
  • Other services than mentioned
  • International and domestic flights
  • Laundry, telephone calls and expenditures of personal nature
  • Tips
  • Travel insurance

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