Day 1: Arrive in Bangkok.
Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met by our tour representative, and transferred to the hotel.
After check in, you are free at leisure to relax on your own. Overnight in Bangkok.
Day 2: City and Temple Tour – The Royal Grand Palace and the Emerald Buddha.
After breakfast at the hotel you begin your sightseeing tour. Your tour begins at Wat Traimit, the temple of the Golden Buddha; the 900-year-old, five-and-a-half-ton solid gold image. After this, you continue on to visit Wat Arun, better known as the Temple of the Dawn, which is one of the best known landmarks and most published landmarks of Bangkok. Next, you will visit Wat Po, the largest and oldest temple in Bangkok, and also the temple holding the largest single Buddha image; the Reclining Buddha (Phra Buddhasaiyas). This temple is also known as the birthplace of Thai traditional massage. We then go for lunch at a local restaurant, after which, we continue on to visit some of the most famous tourist spots in Bangkok; the Royal Grand Palace and the Emerald Buddha. The Grand Palace adjoins Wat Phra Kaew in a common compound, and is where you will end up after exiting Wat Phra Kaew. Despite the proximity of the two, there is a distinct contrast in style between the very Thai Wat Phra Kaew and the more European inspired designs of the Grand Palace (the roof being the exception. After this we return to the hotel and you are free at leisure. Overnight in Bangkok.
Day 3: Bangkok – Ayutthaya.
We check out of the hotel in Bangkok, after which we head to Ayutthaya to visit the Bang Pa-In Summer
Palace; beautifully decorated in both the traditional Chinese and European styles. From here, a long-tail boat journey takes you up the Chao Phraya river to inner Ayutthaya to explore the temple ruins within and surrounding the Ayutthaya Historical Park. Among the “must-see” attractions in Thailand are the palaces, temple ruins and historical sites of Ayutthaya. This former capital of Thailand is situated 90 km north of Bangkok. The principal sights include the gigantic bronze statues of Wat Mongkol Borpith, Wat Phra Srisanpetch and Wat Yai Chai Mongkol. A traditional Thai long-tail boat will transport guests between sites, and
this tour also includes a boat trip to Bang Pa-In, a former Royal Summer Residence, which represents a fine example of Thai architecture. Lunch will also be served during this tour. Afterwards, we transfer to the hotel and you are free at leisure. Overnight in Ayutthaya.
Day 5: Ayutthaya – Lopburi – Sukhothai. (By land)
Check out of the hotel in Ayutthaya and drive to Lopburi. This city was used as a second capital during the reign of King Narai the Great. Today we will bring you to Monkey House (the shrine of the city), and then proceed to Prang Sam Yot (the three Khmer Prang) that are the symbols of Lopburi city. Lunch will be at a local restaurant before we continue our drive to visit Wat Phra Sri Rattana Mahathat, the most sacred temple in Pitsanulok which houses the shrine of King Naresuan the Great, most well-known in Thailand for his victories over the invasions of the Burmese . In the temple area you will see the most beautiful Buddha image in Thailand called “Phra Buddha Shinnarach”, in the beautiful and graceful design of Sukhothai art. Walking around the temple area you will see more Buddha images and have the time to enjoy taking photos, after which we continue to your hotel in Sukhothai. After check-in, you are free to relax on your own. In the evening you can drive to the town for your dinner if you wish. Overnight in Sukhothai.
Day 6: Sukhothai – Sri Satchanalai – Lampang.
After breakfast, we will visit the Sukhothai Historical Park or the first capital of Thailand. Founded in the 13th century, Sukhothai (which literally means Dawn of Happiness) was the first truly independent Thai kingdom, which enjoyed a golden age under King Ramkhamhaeng, who was also credited with creating the Thai
alphabet. The superb temples and monuments of this great city have been lovingly restored in the Sukhothai Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a must-see for all travelers. Lunch at a local restaurant before continuing on to Sri Satchanalai Historical Park, located on the banks of the Yom River at Tambon Muang Kao, Si Satchanalai county, only 55 km from the town of Sukhothai. The ancient town, formerly called “Muang Chaliang”, was named “Sri Satchanalai” during the Phra Ruang Dynasty when a new administrative center was established to replace Chaliang. This ancient town occupied more than 320 hectares (800 acres) of land. Of this, the 91-hectare (288 acres) area within the old laterite ramparts and the city moat is the sightseeing focus in the historical park. After this, we proceed to Lampang for your overnight stay. Overnight in Lampang.
Day 7: Lampang – Payao – Chiang Rai.
Check out of the hotel and then drive to visit Phrathat Lampang Luang Temple; the finest northern temple and best presentation of the Lanna style architecture. After this, we will explore the town using the town’s unique and colorful horse carriages. We will also visit Baan Sao Nuk; a 150-year-old teak house in the northern Thai style, and Wat Phra Kaew Don Tao, where the famous Emerald Buddha was enshrined for 32 years (from A.D. 1436 to 1468). Later on, we proceed to Chiang Rai. En-route we will stop at Kwan Payao, the largest permanent freshwater lake (1,980 ha), fringed to the south and west by approximately 3,000 ha of rice paddies to the south and west, and with a marshy area and some old oxbows (c.300 ha) at the northern end where the Nam Mae Ing empties into the lake. There is also some inflow from the Mae Tam which empties into the lake from the south. The eastern shore of the lake is largely built up, and the town of Phayao lies near the southeast
corner. The lake empties to the east, via the Nam Mae lag, into the Mekong. The water level is controlled by a sluice gate and a spillway; the mean depth is 1.7m, and the pH varies from 6.0-9.1. Kwan Phayao is one of
the largest semi-natural wetlands in northern Thailand. Lunch at a local restaurant before proceeding to Chiang Rai. Free at leisure after check in. Overnight in Chiang Rai.
Day 8 : Chiang Rai – Full-day City and Temple Tour
After breakfast you will meet your guide and transfer onwards for your visit to Wat Phra Kaew, where the Emerald Buddha image was once enshrined. The temple now houses a jade Buddha image which was made to commemorate the 90th birthday of the late Princess Mother. We will also visit Wat Phra Singha where the famous Buddha image housed here is believed to have been built in 157 A.D. in Sri Lanka or Ceylon, and brought to Thailand in the Sukhothai period (1238-1438). We then continue on to visit the Hill-tribe Museum and Education Center, built with the intention of teaching people about the hill tribes and strengthening their
position in Thai society. The center exhibits local crafts, all of which are for sale, and also provides information through slideshows. Continue on to the extremely beautiful Rong Khun Temple (the White Temple), designed by a famous national artist. The main temple building is a striking white which shines in the sun, and is decorated with fragments of reflective glass which can be seen from afar. After this, we transfer back to hotel where you are free at leisure. Overnight in Chiang Rai.
Day 9: Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai
After check-out you will meet your guide and begin the drive to the Mae Sai border. This is not only the largest border in Thailand, but is also used as an important gateway to Tha Khi Lek, a border city of Myanmar, the mystic country (Tourists pay an immigration fee of 500 THB per person; please take care of this fee yourselves). We continue on to the Golden Triangle where the three borders of Laos – Myanmar – Thailand meet. Later on, visit the Hall of Opium, where you can study how the opium was delivered commercially in the old days. Then we transfer to Chiang Mai in the evening. You are free at leisure after check-in. Overnight in Chiang Mai.
Day 10: Chiang Mai Full-day Temple and City Tour
Early this morning, at 6:15 am, you will be picked up from your hotel to experience the traditional offering of food to the Buddhist monks. This is a daily ritual and can be a very beautiful experience. Join the locals during the daily alms-offering ceremony. This is a serene Buddhist procession where hundreds of monks walk barefoot through the street collecting food. Next, you will drive to the Doi Suthep Temple which is on top of a mountain. In the morning is the best time to visit this temple while the beams of sunrise brighten the Golden Pagoda. Then transfer back to the hotel.
This afternoon, you will drive around the Old City to see city’s moat and old city wall ruins. We start the afternoon temple tour with Wat Chiang Man, the oldest temple, which probably dates back to 1296. The temple was the residence of King Mengrai, who founded Chiang Mai, and it is noteworthy for its chedi supported by rows of elephantine buttresses. Next, we visit Chedi Luang Temple, where the great chedi which was built at the end of 14th century is located. Even though it was destroyed in an earthquake in 1545, it was to remain the tallest structure in Chiang Mai till today. Then, we visit Wat Phra Singh, which was built in the year 1345. This temple contains marvelous examples of Lanna art, including a Lanna style viharn and the finest scripture repository of its type in the north. After this, continue with a visit Wat Suan Dok, which means ‘field of flowers’. This temple is one of the first temples with a large viharn, or prayer hall. This chapel is unusual not only for its size, but also for the fact that it is open on the sides rather than being totally enclosed. We then continue to Warorote Market, the biggest local market in Chiang Mai, which sells everything from clothes and textiles to fruits, herbs, flowers, vegetables, insects and even fireworks. Afterwards, we transfer back to the hotel. Overnight in Chiang Mai.
Day 11: Full Day at the Elephant Camp
After having breakfast at the hotel, we embark on our trip to the Elephant Camp where you will see the elephants at work in the jungle areas, see how the elephants are trained for working with
humans, and enjoy the elephant shows. Then, you will have the chance to enjoy an exciting ride on elephant-back along the trails (Elephant Ride is optional), followed by an ox-cart ride back to the camp. Lunch will be served at the elephant camp. In the afternoon, enjoy the local hand-crafted bamboo rafting along the Mae Taeng river. Return to Chiang Mai and have a stop at the beautiful Orchid Nursery. Transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Chiang Mai.
Day 12: Chiang Mai departure
After check out, you will meet your guide and transfer to the airport for your onward flights and departure back home.