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The Best Luxury Tour of Thailand - 9 Days


Day 1: Arrive in Bangkok, Thailand. Your arrival and departure transfers can be reserved with your guest relations manager, who is assigned to you after you book your tour. We strongly recommend that our guests consider arriving a day earlier, as this allows you to recuperate from jetlag, and serves as insurance against international flight delays and cancellations. An additional night’s lodging at your luxury boutique Hotel can be added as part of the process as you reserve your tour.

Bangkok Sunset

Bangkok Sunset

If you are arriving a day earlier, your airport to hotel transfer will be provided a day earlier. Our services begin with your luxury VIP greeting as you disembark at Bangkok airport.

You are greeted as soon as you exit your plane and you will now be escorted through the complete arrival process, including immigration, baggage claim, and customs, and then you will be met by an Easy Tours Travel Facilitator or your Accompanying Thailand Tour Director. You are then driven to your riverfront hotel where you will check-in if it is after 3 PM. If your arrival is before 3 PM, you can drop your bags off and use the facilities to freshen up, unless you have requested an additional day’s stay.

Your lodging in Bangkok is one of Asia’s premier boutique hotels, and you have an upgraded suite with a partial river view. The service and amenities are unmatched and your designer lodging has a large priceless collection of far eastern antique sculptures and art, superior to many museums. The location is in the quiet historical zone of the city, about a 20-minute drive from the hotel zone that has hundreds of riverfront and other hotels, but it is the same distance, as those other hotels, to Bangkok’s main attractions, such as the Grand Palace and Wat Pho. The giant metropolis of Bangkok is a fascinating blend of modern skyscrapers, congested traffic, beautiful and ornate Wats (temples), incredible street food, and a lot more. The colorful Thai culture and the easygoing local lifestyle make this unique city even more interesting.

Day 2: Bangkok (B). Your first stop this morning will be the Grand Palace complex, which has been the state residence of Thai royalty since 1782 and is still used for official events. Your Tour Director will show you some of the more interesting highlights of the complex. The collection of buildings serves as a nice introduction to Thai architecture and provides many great photo opportunities.

Just one of the several stops you will make within the complex is Wat Phra Kaew, also known as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. This is the most sacred Buddhist temple (wat) in all of Thailand. Except for the Thai King, no other person is allowed to touch this statue. The King changes the statue’s cloak three times each year to correspond to the summer, winter, and rainy seasons.

Next, you will visit Wat Pho, known also as The Temple of the Reclining Buddha, adjacent to the Grand Palace. This large statue is 50 feet (15 meters) high and 140 feet (43 meters) long and is covered in gold leaf. The bottoms of the feet are inlaid with mother of pearl, divided into 108 panels depicting the 108 auspicious symbols used by the Buddha.

A colorful interlude during this morning’s exploration will be a walk-through Bangkok’s wholesale flower market, where millions of colorful displays are spread throughout. Flowers are an integral part of Thai society, and the plethora of fragrant colors amidst the extremely busy shops and stalls are a delight to experience.

After lunch you will enjoy an urban excursion by a private long-tailed boat to discover the canals of Thonburi. The people of Thailand, including the residents of Bangkok, have always lived a lifestyle that is primarily dependent on their rivers. You will explore the intricate network of canals, or Khlongs, as you cruise past colorful homes and other structures. Unlike the tourist areas that you visit with most tours, this adventure will offer great insights into how the locals live. You will see women washing clothes and utensils in the water, children swimming, locals throwing food to teeming schools of fish (considered a religious offering), and a lot more.

Stop at Baan Silapin (Artists House), the beautifully decorated centuries-old structure on a residential canal, for a brief visit. This succession of buildings is a whimsical art gallery showcasing local creative talents. Your last stop in the canals will be a quick visit to the hidden Museum of Royal Barges, which houses a few of the ornately carved and painted barges used by Thai Royalty.

Wat Arun

Wat Arun

As you pull out of the canals into the river for your cruise back, you will enjoy great photo opportunities of beautiful Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn), Bangkok’s iconic riverside monument.

Your hotel offers private Thai cuisine classes conducted by its master chefs and we can schedule one for you upon request.

Day 3: Bangkok (B). If this is a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, your day will start in the mid-morning and end in the late evening, after a visit to the picturesque Amphawa Floating Market. If it is another day of the week, your day will start early and end in the mid to late afternoon, and the floating market you visit will be your first stop this morning. The description for the day is written based on visiting Amphawa Floating Market.

Continue your exploration of Thailand with an excursion to a fascinating area located a little over an hour away to the southwest of Bangkok. After a scenic drive through pastoral countryside (after exiting Bangkok) you will arrive at a restaurant where you will break for lunch. After lunch you will experience the famous Maeklong Railway Market, also known as the Umbrella Pulldown Market. This name is derived from the fact that the vendors spread their wares and awnings to cover the railroad tracks, and then everything is pulled back upon a trains approach – your time here will be during one such train arrival.

The market is one of the largest fresh seafood markets in Thailand and also sells a host of other local food specialties, as well as other goods, including clothing and souvenirs. Next you will enjoy a very unique experience as you cruise through the dense mangrove forests of Samut Songkhram. You will visit one of the unique oyster farms of the region, and will encounter the local monkeys that are expert swimmers, providing visitors with great photo opportunities. All this while you will be experiencing rural Thailand, cruising past remote villages and fishermen going about their work.

The picturesque Amphawa Floating Market has an incredible variety of Thai food available, from fresh seafood to cut fruits of all sorts, a lot of fried street food, and the stalls at the bank of the river are peddling the unavoidable local souvenirs.

Amphawa Floating Market

Amphawa Floating Market

The food boats are usually manned by colorfully attired Thai women, and the culinary options are charmingly well presented.

After the floating market you will enjoy the scenic drive back to Bangkok.

Day 4: Bangkok – Chiang Rai & Anantara Luxury Elephant Camp. (B,L,D) You are assisted with check-out in the slightly early morning and driven to the airport to board your flight to Chiang Rai. Arrive in Chiang Rai and you are greeted at the airport and driven to a monument that is nothing like anything you have ever seen before, Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple. This recent striking creation of a famous local architect is extremely ornate and beautiful in its design and houses an impressive array of intricate sculptures.

This is the attraction that gets the most visitors in the Chiang Rai region and for good reason – it is completely different from any other monument in Southeast Asia. Chiang Rai, Thailand’s northernmost city, was the first capital of the Lanna Kingdom and today is the commercial center of the Golden Triangle region. The mountainous region of the north has been significantly influenced by Burmese and Chinese culture due to its proximity to those nations. The culture, language, and food, even the physical appearance of the local Lanna descendants, all stand in subtle contrast to the rest of Thailand.

Next you are driven to your home for the next two nights – The Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort, where you are assisted with your check-in after you have lunch at the all-inclusive resort. From now until we pick you up in the late morning two days later, all services are provided by the resort staff. Included in your stay at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort is your choice of one complimentary activity per day, for a total of two during your stay.

You will need to make this selection with us soon after reserving your tour, or you can do so at the camp, subject to availability. We recommend that you consider scheduling both activities on the same day, the day after your arrival at the resort.

Tusker

Tusker

Complimentary Daily Activity Options:

. Elephant Camp Experience
. Golden Triangle Discovery
. Spice Spoons Cooking Class
. 90 Minute Spa Treatment

Other inclusions at Anantara Camp include:

. Daily breakfast in the hotel’s main restaurant
. Lunch and Dinner at the hotel’s restaurant of your choice
. Beverages (select range of non-alcoholic drinks, house wines, beer, and spirits)
. In room Minibar

Day 5: Anantara Luxury Elephant Camp. (B,L,D) You are at leisure to enjoy your selected experiences at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort – all services are provided by the camp staff. For guests who truly enjoy nature, including the spectacular three country views from your room and much of the resort, additional days can be added at your camp at the time of tour reservation. Each additional day will include any one of the activities listed above.

Day 6: Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai (B) Check-out of your resort by noon and join your Tour Director for the drive to a group of rural villages in the hills near Chiang Rai. You can enjoy lunch at your resort on self-pay basis before you depart, or have a late lunch break along the way.

Hill Tribes and today’s reality - many travel companies continue to paint a picture of the unique traditional clothing, jewelry, and lifestyles of Southeast Asia’s hill tribes as if these have remained unchanged over the last few decades. The truth is quite the opposite. The hill tribes were an integral part of poppy farming for a long time and supported themselves and their unique lifestyles through its cultivation. About six decades ago the revered late King of Thailand decided to end the drug trade in this region issuing a series of Royal Proclamations and Royal Projects to uplift and empower the tribal people. His goal was to provide them with alternative livelihoods and education for their children so that they could assimilate into the rest of Thailand’s population. Although some still live in their villages and farm, their lifestyles have changed; they dress like other Thai people do, practice modern cultivation methods, live in brick and mortar houses, speak the Thai dialect that is local to their region, ride motorbikes and drive pickup trucks as part of their daily routine.

There are a handful of locales where the tribal communities have been partially preserved in their original form with support from government funded agencies. The goal is to provide the few who do not want to change a place to live, while also making them self-sufficient. our guests visit one of such small group of villages, located near Chiang Rai.

Long Neck Women in Chiang Rai

Long Neck Tribals

During this excursion, you will pay a visit to the Kiran (longneck), Akka, Lahu, and Yao tribes. Your Tour Director will introduce you to some of the villagers and explain the origins and customs of these unique tribal peoples.

These villagers still honor their heritage by dressing in the vibrant and colorful garments unique to their people. The entry fees to this set of villages supports the hill tribe residents of the village, and the tribal residents also offer hand crafted items for sale, although they are not the least bit aggressive in pushing their wares. A few people condemn such village tours as being degrading to the tribal people. They ignore the reality that this is still a good way for these few tribals to earn a living in the present, without completely changing their lifestyles. They also are educating visitors about their culture and customs.

In the mid-afternoon you will proceed on the scenic drive through the hills in the Chiang Rai region as you head to Chiang Mai. Arrive at Chiang Mai and you are assisted with your check-in at your boutique resort, which happens to be the best luxury lodging within Chiang Mai. Your small resort is a 20-minute walk (or 5-minute tuk-tuk ride, easily available) will take you to downtown Chiang Mai where there are scores of cafés, restaurants, and bars.

The Lanna Kingdom flourished in northern Thailand between the 12th - 15th centuries, and Chiang Mai was the longtime capital of the kingdom after it was moved from Chiang Rai. The city is the second largest city in Thailand, and the cultural capital of the north.

Possessing great natural beauty and a host of outdoor activities and parks on its outskirts, the city itself is a fascinating combination of unique architecture, ancient history with its associated rituals, and a modern metropolis. Chiang Mai is one of Asia’s best cities to explore on foot, with a bustling street food scene. Your hotel offers private Thai cuisine classes conducted by its master chefs and we can schedule one for you upon request.

Day 7: Chiang Mai. (B) You will explore the historic walled city of Chiang Mai. This tour demonstrates the architectural diversity and blending of styles that the Lanna were known for. It is also a great way to get familiar with the city, should you decide to go out during the evenings and explore.

Wat Phra Singh in Chiang Mai

Wat Phra Singh in Chiang Mai

Included are visits to some of the iconic old temples of ancient Chiang Mai, including Wat Phra Singh, Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Chiang Man.

After lunch, proceed on the short drive up to Doi Suthep, the hill on the edge of the city that dominates the Chiang Mai skyline. Once at the top, you will find the 309 stairs up to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, which are flanked on each side by beautiful Nagas running the entire length of the stairs. You also have the option of taking a large elevator (which does usually have a short waiting line) up to the Wat. Once at the top, enjoy the spiritual ambience of one of Thailand’s most holy places, as well as some superb sunset views of the city. You will see devout Thai’s circling the main stupa in a ritualistic manner, and many others on their knees in deep prayer.

Chiang Mai has a great street market every night, with the largest market occurring on Sunday nights. Join your Tour Director this evening for an excursion to Chiang Mai’s most exciting and extensive night market. There is a fascinating street food scene and the crowds and activity are another one of Southeast Asia’s amazing photo opportunities.

Day 8: Chiang Mai (B,L). Enjoy an excursion to spectacular Doi Inthanon mountain and national park, which includes a visit to the most photographed attraction in Northern Thailand, Phra Mahathat Naphamethanidon and Naphaphonphumisiri, which are the massive and gorgeous Chedis that are the subject of the most popular photos that travel journals and websites use for the Chiang Mai region, and are not situated in Chiang Mai, but close to the peak of Doi Inthanon. You will also visit other major attractions inside Doi Inthanon National Park, which is a protected area that is home to the highest mountain in Thailand, Doi Inthanon.

Doi Inthanon is a superb national park full of majestic waterfalls, lush green valleys, terraced paddy fields, fruit, flower and vegetables crops, and ethnic communities living happily and comfortably in their natural environment.

Once at the peak you will admire the views and then enjoy an easy trek through the mist laden virgin forest and be fascinated with the unique flora that is found here. After this adventure you will be driven downhill and lunch will be at the Royal Project Kitchen (with fresh ingredients from project farmers), while admiring the beautiful surroundings and views. After lunch there will be two more not-to-be-missed experiences on your way back to Chiang Mai.

First you will stop at the two massive colorful Chedis, which are dedicated to the Beloved Late King and the Revered Queen and are located in a magical spot with lush undulating hills and spectacular views.

Royal Chedis at Doi Inthanon

Royal Chedis at Doi Inthanon

The immaculate terraced gardens with a plethora of colorful exotic flowerbeds that surround the Chedis (which face each other) make for a breathtaking locale.

The second fascinating stop as you head down the mountain is the Royal Projects Highway Market run by the Hill Tribes of the Doi Inthanon region. You will stop and walk around the outdoor stalls selling fruits, produce, nuts and other items organically grown by the simple and now well-to-do tribal locals, some of whom will be dressed in their unique clothing. This market, its wares, and the tribal people that grow and sell here are a growing testament of the success of the Late King’s vision and efforts.

As in Chiang Rai, up until the 1960s, poppy fields were widespread in this region, and hill tribe villagers were working as laborers for opium producers and smugglers. King Bhumibol (Rama IX) initiated drastic reforms in the region to put an end to it, and this region was the beginning of the Royal Projects. These projects were highly beneficial to the whole region and to the ethnic communities who earlier had almost been slaves of the drug barons, and many of them were addicted to opium. Besides the Thai Army moving against the drug lords, the Royal Projects granted the Hill Tribes their own land to cultivate, free seeds, tools, and all other resources needed to make them succeed in becoming successful natural farmers. Now, over half a century later, the results of the Late King’s vision have brought happiness to everyone involved.

Day 9: Chiang Mai - International Departure. (B) You are assisted with your check-out at your choice of time before noon (depending on the departure timing of your international flight) and driven to the Chiang Mai airport and assisted in boarding your flight. Please note that international flights have check-in requirements that require you to be at their check-in counter approximately 2.5 to 3 hours (for coach), and 2 hours for premier classes, before that flight departs so Easy Tours will allow for unexpected delays on the flight from Chiang Mai to your departure city.

THE FOLLOWING DEPARTURE OPTIONS ARE OFFERED FOR GUESTS NEEDING GUIDANCE ON THIS SUBJECT. Please note that almost all international flights depart from Thailand’s airports either very late at night or early in the morning.

Option 1 for International Flights from Bangkok option: Those departing from Bangkok fly there from Chiang Mai with their Tour Director and, upon arrival, before bidding you farewell, your Tour Director will either assist you in connecting with your VIP Airport Concierge, or, if your flight is much later, assist you in checking in at the only upscale hotel connected with the airport. Since many flights depart Bangkok very late at night or in the early morning, this option can be added to your tour once you have confirmed your international flights. You have the option of a hotel shuttle, or a 5 to 10-minute walk on a covered walkway. When you return to the airport for your international flight, you will meet your VIP Airport Concierge at a prearranged location and then be escorted through all departure processes. Our services will end when your Tour Director bids you farewell.

Option 2: International Flights from Chiang Mai option: A couple of quality airlines, Korean Air and Cathay Pacific (the latter through its regional subsidiary), offer international departures from Chiang Mai, which will result in your not needing a flight to Bangkok, and a nominal reduction in your Easy Tours Journey flight costs. In this option, if your departure from Chiang Mai is going to be later in the day, you can either ask for an additional night’s stay, or to explore the city with your Tour Director until it is time for your airport transfer for your international flight. When you are driven to the airport for your international flight, you will be introduced to your VIP Airport Concierge and then be escorted through all departure processes.

Another Option for Day 9: Chiang Mai – Choices between Thailand’s Best Oceanfront Resorts in Phuket, Krabi OR Koh Samui. (B) Pricing for this option is quoted upon request based on the number of days you would like at your selected resort, and will include flights and transfers to the resorts, and, if needed, a flight back to Bangkok for your departure international flight. VIP Airport Concierge services are included upon your arrival at the beach destinations, and can be added for a return flight to Bangkok, upon request. Recommended resorts, room types, and international departure options are listed after all lodging, inclusion, and pricing details for the main tour. Upgrades and downgrades in room/suite/villa type are available at our preferred resorts upon request.

There are nonstop flights available from Chiang Mai to Phuket, Krabi and Samui airports. Your departure timing from your Chiang Mai resort will be in the morning and will depend on which of the three destinations you select.

You are assisted with your check-out in the morning and driven to the Chiang Mai airport where you are assisted in boarding your flight to Phuket, Krabi or Koh Samui – your Tour Director will bid farewell after escorting you through check-in and security, and then board their own flight back to Bangkok.

Explore Island and Ocean Resort Options

 

Lodging

Bangkok
The Siam Hotel – Riverview Suite
Chiang Rai
Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp – Three Country View Suite
Chiang Mai
137 Pillars House – Rajah Brooke Suite

Inclusions

VIP Airport Concierge on all International Arrivals and Departures (2 Services)
Accompanying Tour Director for Airport Assistance on all in-country flights
Breakfast daily
Discovery Package including all meals at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant camp
Other meals as specified
Ground transportation via upscale private vehicles
Representative for assistance on departure / arrival transfers per the itinerary
Services of the best English-speaking Accompanying Tour Directors
Applicable monument entrance fees as per the itinerary
Bottled water during sightseeing
Hotel accommodation as listed above
All Boat Fees/Fares per the itinerary

Not Included

International travel except countries on your Easy Tours Journey
Any expenses of a personal nature, such as tips, laundry, phone calls, drinks etc.
Meals other than those specified on itinerary
Travel insurance, visas, etc.

Dates & Prices

Dates Price For
Per Person, based on Double Occupancy
Per Person
On-Tour Flights
Total For
2 Guests
Availability
1st Oct, 2021
to
19th Dec, 2021
$5661 $234 $11790
Reserve Now
11th Jan, 2022
to
19th Dec, 2022
$5661 $234 $11790
Reserve Now
Prices include all Current Taxes & Surcharges

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