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CHIANG MAI – SUKHOTHAI – BANGKOK

3 C’s of SE Asia – Thailand

With V’Explore Tours

March 5 – 15, 2022: Chiang Mai – Sukhothai – Bangkok

  • Estimated budget

    Starting at $3,290 per person

  • Trip Type

    Small group, max 16 travelers

  • Duration

    11 Days, 10 Nights

  • Starting Location

    Chiang Mai

  • Final Destination

    Bangkok

Our Route

Immerse yourself in the cuisine, culture, and crafts of Thailand on this once in a lifetime journey. Traveling with a small group of like-minded adventurers through Chiang Mai, Sukhothai and Bangkok, you’ll go far beyond the bounds of observation as you participate in meditation, cooking classes, and the creation of beautiful crafts. Experience local markets, learn about Asian elephants, and gain insight into the spiritual life of Buddhist monks. A magical farewell day at Baan Dvara Prathep, exclusively reserved for our guests will be an experience you will never forget.

On this once in a lifetime journey, we also offer the opportunity to extend your tour to the beautiful island of Phuket and on to Khao Sok Elephant Hills & Rainforest Camp.

Day 1: Arrive Chiang Mai

Arrive in Chiang Mai , you have a warm welcome from your guide, private transfer to hotel.

Tonight, enjoy welcome dinner at an authentic local restaurant.

Nile Sunset

Day 2: Chiang Mai Experience – Merit Making – Baan Thong Luang – Wat Ton Kwen

In the early morning participate in a truly memorable spiritual experience by offering food to the monks and receiving their blessing. This is a daily Thai ritual. See hundreds of monks and novices walk down the path with their alms bowls to receive food. After breakfast at the hotel, drive to the countryside of Chiang Mai to the beautiful valley, Baan Thong Luang. This village of Karen hill tribes is from Myanmar. We will explore the culture and lifestyle of the long neck Padaung. Visit Wat Ton Kwen, a temple dating back about 150 years and still preserved in the traditional Lanna Style. You will enjoy the peaceful surroundings. After lunch at local restaurant, continue to visit the Lanna Traditional House Museum and gain insight into the architecture and how people lived in the former times. Back to city center visit the oldest local market to see northern people sell and buy different varieties of local food.

The evening is free on your own activities or scrolls down to the Sunday walking street market.

Day 3: Doi Suthep & Experience the Beauty of Tea

Today we visit the most famous temple in Chiang Mai, located at the top of Doi Suthep Mountain. Once you have reached the temple, you can enjoy the best views of Chiang Mai city from 3,000ft above the ground. Learn about the history of this temple and how it came to be constructed so high up the mountain. Then continue transfer to Araksa Tea Garden. Araksa Tea Garden is a heavenly little tea plantation that specializes in producing high quality organic tea. Araksa is the first tea garden in Thailand to be certified both USDA and EU Organic for Farm & Factory. Upon arrival, you will be greeted by the host who will explain the different processes and methods used to cultivate young tea plants. You will be invited to join resident tea pluckers, watch, and learn how tea leaves are processed according to age-old traditions. At the roasting station, you will see a demonstration of the art of processing tea by hand, from kneading to roasting. When the roasting is done, enjoy a cup of tea with a delicious Thai snack. You have free time to buy some tea related items or you can walk through lush tea garden. Homemade Thai food for lunch will be served. Transfer back to hotel in the afternoon.

The rest of evening is free on your own activities.

Day 4: Full Day Thai Textile Workshop

Today join a Thai textile workshop which includes instruction on some shibouri techniques and natural dye methods. 8:30 AM pick up from hotel to workshop. You will start with a quick introduction to natural dyes.The dyes provided: Indigo (Blue), Annatto (orange), Ebony (grey), Jackfruit wood (yellow). These colors can also be over-dyed to produce green, olive, tan, brown and black. The studio will provide two pieces of cotton fabric the size of a scarf for decorating with shibouri and then dyeing. If you wish to bring your own fabric it must be pure cotton, hemp or silk, un-dyed, clean, new and pre-washed. The maximum is 2 scarf size pieces each. Silk and cotton yarn is also available for purchase at the studio for dyeing. You will also be provided with gloves, aprons, dye vats, gas stoves etc. A snack with tea and coffee will be provided at the mid-morning and mid-afternoon break. Lunch is served at the local restaurant. Return to the hotel.

The rest of evening is free at leisure.

Day 5: Chiang Mai – Elephant Conservation Center – Sukhothai

In the morning, we will take one hour drive through a scenic road for The Thai Elephant Conservation Center, the only government-owned elephant that is also known for its pioneering work in conservation and science. Here you have can watch the elephant taking a bath and see how to train these intelligent creatures. In addition, visit the onsite elephant hospital, a mobile clinic and rescue unit that treats elephants in distress free of charge wherever they may be in the kingdom. There is also a special area (the Pang La sanctuary) dedicated to looking after those elephants that are simply too old or have been badly injured and their former owners can no longer afford to keep them. Then visit one of the oldest temples in Thailand Wat Phrathat Lampang Luang – a monument of fine and authentic Lanna art and architecture, the temple stands on a small hill, surrounded by a brick wall and remains on the original site for more than 1, 000 years ago. After lunch at a local restaurant, continue to drive about 2.5 – 3 hrs to the hotel in Sukhothai. Check in to the hotel and relax the rest of the evening.

Day 6: Full Day Discover Sukhothai Historical Park

Today, we will spend the day discovering Thailand’s first capital,Sukhothai to get an insight into the history of this area. We will start out the day’s adventure at The Ramkhamhaeng National Museum. The museum exhibits artifacts and antiques found during a series of excavations in Sukhothai Historical Park and Sri Satchanalai Historical Park in the 1960s. If so desired, a bicycle can be provided to discover the ruins of Royal Palaces, Buddhist temples, canals, ponds, and the water dyke control system which was the spiritual center of the Kingdom. Highlights of the museum are the Sukhothai-style Buddha images. These images are known as the most beautiful Buddhist style images in Thai history.

Note: Motorbikes and cars are no longer allowed inside the park, bicycle and electric buggy are provided.

Day 7: Explore Sri Satchanalai – Bangkok

After breakfast, we drive the north of Sukhothai passing rice paddies and villages to The Historical Park of Sri Satchanalai. The twin city of Sukhothai, which was considered the second most important town and a great rival of Sukhothai Kingdom. Explore many hidden ruins and see the true jewels of Wat Chedi Jedtheaw, Wat Chang Lom, Wat Phra Sri Mahathat, and Wat Nang Phaya. Then wander down to the riverside to explore an archeological site showing the excavation of over 1,000 pottery kilns. Transfer to hotel. Late afternoon transfer to Sukhothai Airport for your flight to Bangkok. Arrive in Bangkok, transfer to hotel check in and free time at leisure.

Day 8: Full Day Tour – Bangkok Highlight – Tuk Tuk Night Tour & Street Food

Today, visit Wat Traimit, with its Golden Buddha Image. The Golden Buddha Temple is located right in the heart of Bangkok’s Chinatown and it features a 5.5 ton solid gold Buddha image. Continue on to see Wat Po, Bangkok’s oldest and largest temple which was built nearly 200 years ago and houses the enormous Reclining Buddha. Have lunch at a local restaurant with a view of the Chao Phraya River. Then take a long-tail boat to enjoy scenes of life on the water. You will see a more traditional and serene way of living. A stop will be made at the “Temple of Dawn”, officially named Wat Arun. Next, your guide will take you to the glittering and iconic Grand Palace. The Grand Palace is situated close to the Chao Phraya, Bangkok’s River of Kings. The palace occupies nearly one square mile. Built in 1782 by King Rama I, it was the center of power for more than 150 years. Take a walk around the vast grounds and visit the Emerald Buddha Image, the most revered Buddhist image in Thailand. Learn about its mysterious origins. Photography is permitted in the Royal Palace Grounds and in the compounds of the
Emerald Buddha Temple, but not inside the buildings. Explore the beauty of Bangkok at night by the iconic tuk-tuk and enjoy a fun evening activity when the temperatures are cooler, traffic is lighter, and there are few crowds. Stop and walk around a selection of local sights including temples (Wat Pho) and the Pak Khlong Talat flower market. Sample local food as your guide stops for snacks, a main course and dessert. Dinner is served at a Michelin guide restaurant, Elvis Suki that has been making the same recipe of sukyaki beef for 30 years. The suki can be ordered with or without soup, but the dry perfectly cooked sukiyaki beef with Elvis’ secret eggy sauce and smoky aroma from the coal stove is the best. (or other Michelin guide restaurant). End the tour by having a sip of cocktails mixed with Thai herbs at a rooftop bar or another famous hidden bar in Chinatown famous among the young hip crowd. Cocktail drinks at your own expense.

Day 9: Full Day Thai Culture @ Baan Dvara Prateep

In the morning, transfer to the pier at Nonthaburi to board a boat for 20 minutes cruise up the Chao Phraya River to Baan Dvara-Prateep. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed with true Thai hospitality. Then get together with a host family as they prepare and cook authentic Thai dishes. This program is not only to learn about Thai culinary traditions but also to create awareness of the application of natural herbs. In the health-conscious world of today, the herbs used in most Thai dishes play an important role in curing diseases and providing required ingredients for the body. After lunch, enjoy the taste of Thai sweets as you watch their preparation. Then we learn how to make Loy Krathong. Floating banana leaves decorated with flowers and lit candles are called krathongs. Floating on the rivers, the krathongs reveal the Thai belief of paying gratitude to the living river. On ordinary days krathongs floating on the river signify giving merit and happiness to living spirits along the river. Before farewell to the host family, gain merit by floating a Krathong into the river. This is a special opportunity to enjoy a holy and enchanting tradition. Return by boat to the pier Nonthaburi and transfer back to your hotel.

Day 10: A Heavenly Experience of Bangkok By Night

In the morning you have free time for shopping, enjoy spa massage or leisure.
See Bangkok, the City of Angels skyline at sunset, lit up by the nightlights of Mahanakorn Skywalk, Thailand’s highest 360-degree observation deck and bar. Don’t miss experiencing the thrilling clear glass walkway which allows you to view and take birds eye’s photos of the street and buildings below your feet. Then, enjoy a 9-course set menu at the Michelin-starred restaurant featuring Thai-inspired cuisine with a modern twist at Saawaan (meaning heaven in Thai). Dishes are full of creativity and well executed, providing a truly special journey through Thai flavours, culture and art. The seasonal ingredients are locally sourced, such as organic rice paddy crab from Sing Buri, or squid from a small fishermen’s village in Krabi.

Karnak
Day 11: Bangkok Departure

Private transfer to airport for flight departure.

Includes

    • Private transportation as specified in the program
    • Private local English speaking guide in each city
    • Accommodations based on Double/Twin share
    • Meals (excluding drinks) as specified in the itinerary
    • Boat fees & admission fees as specified in the itinerary
    • Government tax and service charges

Excludes

    • Travel insurance
    • Gratuities (tour guide & driver)
    • Visa