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Thailand Exploration with Koh Samui

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TH06: 15 Days Private Bangkok - Ayutthaya - Uthai Thani - Sukhothai - Chiang Mai - Chiang Rai - Koh Samui - Bangkok

Tour Type: Private tailor-made tour, experienced guide and driver
Accommodation: 4-star well selected hotels, also be open to your own choice
Highlights:

  • Bangkok essence: iconic Grand Palace and Chao Phraya River cruise.
  • A Tale of Two Cities: Ayutthaya & Sukhothai.
  • Northern adventure to Golden Triangle on Thai-Myanmar-Laos border.
  • Leisurely vacation on Koh Samui, the world’s top deep-diving site!

Itinerary Details
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Day 1: Arrival in Bangkok, Thailand
Arrival Note: Welcome to Thailand! Collect your luggage after your plane lands, and our guide will greet you warmly in the arrival hall. Please look out for the sign with your name on it. Our chauffeur will escort you and the guide to the hotel in downtown Bangkok in a comfortable private vehicle.

Activities & Dinner Suggestion:
In order to allow you to rest and recover from your long flight, sightseeing is not scheduled for the rest of the day. You can stay in the hotel and prepare for the following exciting long journey of Thailand. If you arrive early, you can also walk around the neighborhood. The hotel has a shuttle to the Terminal 21, a large themed mall with a variety of gourmet restaurants and boutiques where you can spend an afternoon. Alternatively, you can take a taxi to the Khaosan Road Night Market or Silom Night Market for the authentic local delicacies.

Accommodation: Movenpick Bangkok Sukhumvit 15 (4 stars)
Day 2: Bangkok highlights and downtown walking tour
Sightseeing Activities: After breakfast, our guide will greet you at the hotel lobby and we’ll begin exploring the capital’s charms. Our first stop today is the Wat Pho, home of the world’s largest reclining Buddha. There you may have the opportunity to witness the monks chanting prayers in the morning. After the visit, the guide will take you to the nearby Grand Palace, a must-see in Bangkok and a symbol of Thailand. This extraordinary complex was designed as a royal residence. Over the years, many attached temple buildings have been added gradually, and the guide will show you the Wat Phra Kaew, the most famous of which houses the precious emerald Buddha statue.

At noon, get out of the Grand Palace and walk a few minutes west to the Chao Phraya River, where we’ll board a ferry boat. The Supatra River House, a river-view restaurant on the opposite bank, is specially arranged for you to enjoy a sumptuous Thai lunch. After lunch, we will drive to the Bangkok Chinatown Square. From here, our guide, who is very familiar with the local streets, will take you on a diverting walking tour through the old town of Bangkok. Walk along the Yaowarat Road and check out some interesting shops, and then the guide will invite you to an old tea shop for a taste of Chinese tea before heading to Talad Kao for an authentic local market. The last stop is a Taoist temple named Wat Mangkon Kamalawat (Wat Leng Noei Yi).

Afterwards, follow the guide to the Ratchawong Pier, where we will take a boat ride along the Chao Phraya River to the Khlong Bangkok Noi, where you can enjoy the Thai houses along the banks and the local people’s life on the water. Seeing the Wat Arun, aka the Temple of Dawn, on the west bank, you will be impressed by its magnificent architecture. The guide will take you ashore and up the towering stupa. A breathtaking panorama of the Chao Phraya River at sunset will round off the day.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Movenpick Bangkok Sukhumvit 15 (4 stars)
  • Wat Phra Kaew
    Wat Phra Kaew in Grand Palace, Bangkok
Day 3: Bangkok – Ayutthaya – Uthai Thani (245 km; 3 hours)
Sightseeing Activities: After breakfast, our guide will pick you up and we’ll drive to Ayutthaya, a World Heritage site. We will visit the Ayutthaya Historical Park featuring a selection of historical temples and ruins. Here the guide will invite you to sample the candy floss roti, a local specialty. Next, the guide will show you around a local house and appreciate the production process of some exquisite handicrafts. Then we’ll visit a local market where you can see the real life of ordinary Thais and buy fresh and cheap fruit.

After enjoying lunch at a local restaurant, a long-tail boat ride is specially arranged for you to transfer to the elegant Bang Pa-In Palace. Dating back to the 17th century, the palace was the summer residence of Thai Kings and was also used for state occasions. Located on the bank of the Chao Phraya River, the palace is a blend of Thai, Chinese and European architectural styles. Next, the guide will lead you to the Wat Niwet Thammaprawat on an island in the middle of the river. It is one of Ayutthaya’s most distinctive Buddhist temples, with its iconic Gothic architecture and bright stained-glass windows. Later in the afternoon, we will drive 2 hours to Uthai Thani and check in at a local hotel.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Uthai River Lake (3 stars)
Day 4: Uthai Thani sightseeing; transfer to Sukhothai (280 km; 4 hours)
Sightseeing Activities: After a rich breakfast at the hotel, our guide will take you up the hill to visit the Wat Sangkat Rattana Khiri and enjoy the amazing panoramic views of the city. Next, we’ll head to the Wat Chantaram (Wat Tha Sung), an absolutely gorgeous Buddhist temple featuring a glittering hall decorated with crystals and mirrored tiles, and shiny golden Buddha statues, which together make a perfect setting to soothe your soul.

At noon, the guide will lead you to board a characteristic local rice barge to cruise along the Sakae Krang River. Lunch will be served onboard. In the afternoon, we will drive about 2.5 hours to Phitsanulok to visit the magnificent Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat. Finally, you’ll be escorted to Sukhothai and check in at a local hotel.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Sukhothai Heritage (4 stars)
  • Wat Tha Sung
    Wat Chantaram (Wat Tha Sung)
  • Ayutthaya
    Ayutthaya Relics
Day 5: Ramkhamhaeng National Museum & Sukhothai Historical Park
Sightseeing Activities: Our guide will greet you at the hotel in the morning and we’ll proceed to the Ramkhamhaeng National Museum, where you could learn about the history of the area through the artifacts from the centuries-old Sukhothai Period. Next, we’ll visit the Sukhothai Historical Park, a must-see attraction in the area. Every Year on the full moon night in November, the local people celebrate the Loi Krathong Festival there. In the park, the guide will show you the ruins of the 13th to 14th century’s royal capital Sukhothai, including a palace and many temples and stupas. The park is large and tranquil, and we will spend the whole day there. Lunch is arranged by yourself, while the guide will recommend restaurants and food according to your preferences. We’re still staying at Sukhothai tonight.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Sukhothai Heritage (4 stars)
Day 6: Travel from Sukhothai to Chiang Mai (310 km; 5 hours)
Sightseeing Activities: Start the day with a wholesome breakfast before venturing out by private car for 1 hour ride to the Si Satchanalai Historical Park on the bank of the Yom River. As a little sibling of the Sukhothai Historical Park, Si Sarchanalai offers no less of a cultural experience. This park is less visited and has plenty of historic ruins and temples to explore. It has a bicycle rental service, and you can rent a bike for a ride if you wish. After lunch at a local restaurant, you will be led to the weaving village in Ban Hat Siao. The local aborigines are Thai Puan, who migrated from Laos more than 100 years ago. The local weaving technology is very advanced, and you can buy a variety of handmade textiles here. Later, we will continue on the country road for 3.5 hours to Chiang Mai, where we will stay for three nights.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: The Rim (4 stars)
Day 7: Chiang Mai in-depth exploration
Sightseeing Activities: In the morning, we will head for a farmhouse in Mae Rim on the outskirts of Chiang Mai, where you can take a leisurely walk and enjoy the view. The guide will then arrange a short cruise on a long-tail boat along the Mae Ping River for you to see the traditional wooden houses and modern buildings along the banks. After disembarking from the boat, we will walk about 10 minutes to the Waroros Market, a traditional market selling a variety of local food, vegetables and groceries, where you can see the most authentic and alive way of life in northern Thailand. Next, we will take a trishaw ride passing by the City Wall and reach the Wat Phra Singh, the largest temple in Chiang Mai, for a visit. At noon, a special lunch with the local specialty Khao Soy will be prepared for you at a popular local restaurant.

In the afternoon, we will continue to explore the ancient city of Chiang Mai. Our guide will lead you to visit the Wat Suan Dok and the historic Wat Jed Yot, and then accompany you to take a Songtaew car up the hill to the Chang Khien Coffee Research Project, where you can leisurely enjoy a cup of local Arabica coffee. Later, the guide will take you to the White Hmong Village of Chang Khien, where you will find the residents keeping their traditional culture alive and wearing the typical mountain tribal clothes dating back about 500 years! Our final stop today is the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, the most significant temple in Chiang Mai. The temple is on the top of the hill, and you need to climb up 300 steps, which are lined with dragon railings. When you reach the top, a stunning aerial view of the city will unfold in front of you, making it an unforgettable experience during your trip to Thailand.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: The Rim (4 stars)
  • Wat Phra Singh
    Wat Phra Singh, Chiang Mai
Day 8: Chiang Mai Elephant Nature Park (Join-in)
Special Program for Elephant Caring: We will arrange a special experience for you today. After breakfast, our guide will pick you up and we’ll drive to the Elephant Nature Park in the Mae Taeng Valley. There you will meet animal protectors from all over the world and experience a day of elephant care program, led by a park volunteer. The volunteer will tell you about their work saving and healing the elephants, and then take you inside the Elephant Camp to meet these gentle and spiritual animals. You will have the opportunity to feed the elephants, pet them, help them shower and have a mud spa with them in the river. The park volunteer or tour guide will take pictures of you interacting with these lovely elephants and leave you with beautiful memories. Later in the afternoon, you will be transferred back to the hotel in Chiang Mai.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: The Rim (4 stars)
  • Elephant Nature Park
    Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai
Day 9: Road Trip from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai (230 km; 4 hours)
Sightseeing Activities: In the morning, we will leave Chiang Mai and drive east for the Mae Kampong Village. En route, we will stop at a local market and the guide will help you select your favorite ingredients, which will later be made into today’s lunch. After more than one hour’s drive, we will arrive at the Mae Kampong Village, which is about 1,300 meters (4,265 feet) above sea level and enjoys a cool climate all year round. The guide will lead you to explore the surrounding woods and natural waterfalls. Getting back to the village, we will meet some simple villagers and you can communicate with them with the help of the guide’s interpretation. At noon, go to the homestay we arranged for lunch. You can cook with the host the fresh ingredients you’ve bought in the morning, which can be a very interesting experience. Take a rest and then in the afternoon we will continue the 2.5-hour drive through the mountain road to Chiang Rai, another highlight of your holiday in Thailand.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: The Legend Chiang Rai (4 stars)
Day 10: Chiang Rai – Mae Sai – Chiang Saen
Sightseeing Activities: Today’s trip will satisfy your curiosity about the Golden Triangle. Heading to Mae Sai, the northernmost town of Thailand, you’ll find unrivalled views of pristine mountain forests along the way. Upon arrival, follow our guide to the bustling Myanmar border market, and view the huge Buddha image on the bank of the Ruak River. Next, we’ll continue to Sop Ruak and explore the Golden Triangle where Thailand, Myanmar and Laos meet. The guide will take you to visit the Opium Museum, which shows the cultivation and usage of opium throughout history as well as the influence of the opium trade in the Golden Triangle region. Later, we’ll transfer to Chiang Saen, in the heart of the Golden Triangle, for a walk to see the temples and ruins, and a boat trip along the legendary Mekong River. Late afternoon, we’ll drive back to the hotel.

► Note: The Opium Museum is closed on Monday. If it’s Monday, we’ll skip the museum and the guide will lead you to visit a nearby market.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: The Legend Chiang Rai (4 stars)
Day 11: Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai Airport - Koh Samui
Flight Transfer: Today we will escort you to the Chiang Mai Airport for your flight to Koh Samui. The flight time is 1 hour and 45 minutes. Upon arrival, you will be warmly greeted by our Koh Samui local driver, who will transfer you to the hotel in a 5-minute smooth and comfortable drive. The rest of the day is free for you.

Koh Samui in Brief: Koh Samui is one of the most popular tourist islands in Thailand, with incredible blue water, pristine white beaches, and lush coconut forests. You can spend a quiet vacation on the beach, visit the coconut groves and fishing villages, or head out to the surrounding islands and experience a wealth of water activities. There are many ways to enjoy Koh Samui, so we will set aside the next three full days of free time for you, giving you the maximum freedom to explore the island according to your own ideas and preferences.

Tip: The hotel we have selected for you is very well located, just on the seaside and 20 minutes’ walk from the most famous Chaweng Beach. The area around the hotel is very busy and convenient, with all things you need like restaurants, night markets, stores, and spas. You will stay here for four nights.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Nora Beach Resort & Spa (4 stars)
  • Thailand
    A Fisherman Casting Net into the Sea
Day 12: Free Day in Koh Samui
A full day is free for you to enjoy yourself in Koh Samui. You can relax quietly on the beach, or take a boat out to sea.

Activity Suggestions: Take a speedboat to explore the Ang Thong National Marine Park, a collection of 42 small islands to the west of Koh Samui, featuring limestone cliffs, white-sand beaches, lush jungles and wild gibbons. There you can relax on Ko Wua Ta Lap’s fine white sand, explore natural caves by kayaking, and snorkel to admire the coral reefs under the sea.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Nora Beach Resort & Spa (4 stars)
Day 13: Free Day in Koh Samui
It is another free day for you to explore Koh Samui.

Activity Suggestions: It is highly recommended that you pick one of the three days for a day trip by speedboat to the Ko Tao and Nang Yuan Island. Ko Tao, a turtle-shaped island in the waters north of Koh Samui, has been named one of the world’s top 10 places for deep diving. The water is very clear, with high visibility, and the bottom of the sea is rich in marine life, like a fairytale world. You can snorkel or scuba dive near Ao Muang and enjoy the lovely clownfish and the laid-back sea turtles. You can also sail 10 minutes to the Nang Yuan Island to the northwest of Ko Tao, climb up to the Koh Nang Yuan Viewpoint to overlook the Y-shaped beach.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Nora Beach Resort & Spa (4 stars)
Day 14: Free Day in Koh Samui
This is your last day in Koh Samui, and you can still schedule activities according to your interests.

Activity Suggestions: If you like exciting entertainment, you can try the Samui Zipline, which is fun to fly through the island’s dense jungle. If you want a mild way, rent a motorcycle and ride down to the beach to visit the temples. The Wat Plai Laem is quite secluded, with an impressive 18-armed statue of the goddess Guanyin. Not far away is the Big Buddha, a temple jutting out into the sea with a huge golden Buddha statue. Late in the afternoon, you can enjoy the beautiful sunset clouds on the beach.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Nora Beach Resort & Spa (4 stars)
Day 15: Koh Samui – Bangkok

Departure Note: After breakfast, please pack your belongings and prepare to check out the hotel. Our driver will escort you to the airport for the 1 hour and 15 minute flight to Bangkok. Wish you a happy return trip!


Meals Included: Breakfast


► Please note that the flight from Koh Samui to Bangkok will land at the Suvarnabhumi International Airport, one of Bangkok’s two airports. If your flight home or to your next destination does not depart from this airport, but from the Don Muang International Airport, you need to leave enough time for the connection. A one-way trip between the two airports takes about 50 minutes. You’d better book an evening flight out of Bangkok in case you’re late. If you are interested in other parts of Thailand, or would like to visit other countries in Southeast Asia, such as Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, you can contact our travel consultants to recommend or customize an itinerary for you.

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Tour Prices

Christmas & 2023 special: Enjoy 12% off if you book before Dec. 25, 2022

Month2-3 travelers4-5 travelers
Jan-Apr, Nov-Dec$3399 $2991$2649 $2331
May-Oct$3289 $2894$2539 $2234
  • Prices are per person in US Dollars based on double occupancy.
  • The prices in red reflect 12% discount.
  • Any part of the itinerary e.g. tour length, activities & hotels can be tailored to your individual interests.
What's Included
  • Economy class airfares of Chiang Mai - Koh Samui - Bangkok.
  • Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels.
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Service of English speaking guides per itinerary.
  • Services of a private driver and air-conditioned vehicles.
  • Entrance fees for all mentioned sights visited.
What's Excluded
  • International flight into and out of Bangkok.
  • Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.).
  • Tips for guides and drivers.
  • Personal travel insurance.
  • Thailand visa fee.
International Flight Information
► From major cities of the UK to Bangkok
From London to Bangkok, the direct flight is available. You can choose Thai Airways TG911 12:30/06:00 with a duration of 11 hours and 30 minutes. From Birmingham, you can take Turkish Airlines TK1970 17:10/23:10 (4h) first, have a stop in Istanbul for 2 hours and 35 minutes, and then take TK068 01:45/15:25 (9h40m) to Bangkok. The duration is 16 hours and 15 minutes.

► Your return trip to the UK 
Return to London, you can take direct flight of Thai Airways TG916 12:50/19:10 with a duration of 12 hours and 20 minutes. Return to Birmingham, you can take Air France AF165 11:05/18:35 (12h30m) to Paris first, stay there for 2 hours and 30 minutes, and then take AF1564 21:05/21:35 (1h30m) back home. It is 16 hours and 30 minutes in total.
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Bangkok
Chiang Rai
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