Luxury Cultural Thailand
Travel 24 Apr 2019 - 30 Nov 2019
Book by 31 May 2019
Saving £230 per person
- 3 nts Royal Orchid Sheraton, Bangkok - Deluxe river view - Breakfast
- 2 nts x2 River Kwai , River Kwai - Luxe Cabin - Breakfast
- 3 nts The Riverie by Kata Thani , Northern Thailand - Deluxe room - Breakfast
- Flights to Bangkok with EVA Air and onwards to Chiang Mai with Bangkok Airways from Heathrow, accommodation throughout, return private transfers and prepayable taxes.
- This holiday is ATOL protected 2713
Deluxe river view - Breakfast
Royal Orchid Sheraton resides majestically beside the Chao Phraya River with each of the beautifully appointed rooms offering superb views of this busy waterway.
Luxe Cabin - Breakfast
Located at a beautiful stretch of river and with a spectacular mountain backdrop, each room offers uninterrupted panoramic views of the river and surrounding countryside.
Deluxe room - Breakfast
This newly refurbished hotel sits within landscaped gardens on its own island in the Mae Kok River, yet is also just 15 minutes walk from central Chiang Rai.
Why not extend your stay from only £665pp. Includes return flights from Bangkok to Koh Samui with Bangkok Airways, return private transfers and 5 nights at Poppies Samui in a Deluxe Cottage including breakfast.
Upgrade to premium economy from only £299pp per way
Flights to Bangkok with EVA Air and onwards to Chiang Mai with Bangkok Airways from Heathrow, accommodation throughout, return private transfers and prepayable taxes.
Regional Departures: Regional supplements are available from Manchester from £195, Belfast from £235, Newcastle from £195, Edinburgh from £195, Glasgow from £195. Other regional airports may be available, please ask for details.
Prices are per person based on 2 adults sharing (unless stated otherwise). Subject to availabilty, terms and conditions apply.
Deluxe river view - Breakfast
Experience a few days in Bangkok to explore this vibrant, sometimes chaotic, metropolis. Wherever you look in this diverse city, you'll see the old and cultured mingling with the bright and the new. Whether it's the stunning opulence of the palaces, the chaos of the streetlife or the extremes of the nightlife, Bangkok offers an experience not to be missed at amazing value for money.
Bangkok is most people's first introduction to this fascinating country and there is really nowhere else quite like it. Love it or hate it, you really must see it! There are fabulous hotels, which offer real value for money. Whether you choose one located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River or one located in the Sukhumvit/city, you will never be far from the shops and culture.
Bangkok's chaotic streets are notoriously crowded with traffic so travelling by road can be painfully slow, but taxis are plentiful and cheap while a journey by tuk tuk is a hair-raising experience not to forget. Alternatively, the clean, cheap and very efficient skytrain (BTS) and underground (MRT) rail systems connect the main shopping, entertainment and business areas of the city making it easy to navigate your way around.
The city's most famous landmark is the spectacularly elaborate Grand Palace complex, which was the former residence of the Thai royal family but is now used for ceremonial purposes. Incredibly well preserved the complex is home to several impressive buildings including the highly revered Wat Phra Kaew (the Temple of the Emerald Buddha). Other notable temples within the city include the exquisitely decorated Wat Arun (the Temple of Dawn) and Wat Pho which houses the 150 foot long Reclining Buddha.
The Chao Phraya River, with its backdrop of temples and hotels, is a constant hive of activity with longtailed speedboats and water taxis whizzing to different points along the river, or heavily laden barges chugging sedately upstream. Join a tour of the river and explore the ramshackle world of criss-crossing canals (klongs) which are lined with precariously perched wooden houses.
Boasting over 50,000 places to eat Bangkok has just about everything on the menu, so whether you choose to sample appetising delights from roadside food sellers or dine out in style you're sure to find something to tantalise your taste buds. Another notable feature of the city is the nightlife, which in recent years has evolved to offer everything from sophisticated rooftop cocktail bars and jazz lounges to chic clubs, microbreweries and so much more.
Luxe Cabin - Breakfast
Escape the fast pace of city life for the province of Kanchanaburi, 150 miles west of Bangkok, where you can enjoy stunning natural scenery, unique history and soft adventure.
Kanchanaburi is renowned worldwide for its famous World War II landmarks - Bridge over the River Kwai and the Death Railway which runs to the Burmese border. Although partly destroyed from bombing during the war, the black iron bridge was rebuilt and serves as a poignant reminder of WW2 atrocities. The Death Railway, today, is one of the most scenic rail routes in the world with tracks enclosed by verdant forests which open out onto a sheer cliff before running alongside the broad and impressive River Kwai affording stunning vistas.
The Thailand-Burma Railway Centre highlights the plight of POWs, whilst the beautifully maintained cemetery, the final resting place of over 10,000 prisoners of war, provides a quiet sanctuary for reflection.
A walk down into Hellfire Pass, where the infamous Konyu Cutting was built by prisoners working 18 hour days over a period of just 6 weeks, takes you through some of the spectacular, lush countryside, whilst the Memorial Museum also offers an illuminating insight into the railway's past.
History aside, the province boasts a magnificent natural landscape of dense tropical jungles, rivers and cascading waterfalls. Bamboo rafting, trekking and cycling are all popular activities and those who stay overnight on the river will be entranced by its peace and beauty.
Deluxe room - Breakfast
Delve deeper into Thai culture by heading north and it will feel like you're in a different country: the landscape, the language, the architecture, the food and the people of this region are quite distinct. The "Rose of the North" and Thailand's second largest city, Chiang Mai is the gateway to the region and the most culturally significant; Chiang Rai is gateway to the infamous Golden Triangle, where Thailand, Laos and Myanmar (Burma) come together; and the sleepy market town of Mae Hong Son nestles high up in a picturesque valley surrounded by mist-shrouded hills.
Famous for its beautiful women, historic temples, distinctive festivals and handicrafts, Chiang Mai is also a great location for those seeking soft adventure such as elephant encounters, mountain biking and rafting. Its moat-encircled Old City dates back to the 13th century and it's within these narrow streets that you'll find many remarkable temples including Wat Phra Sing, which houses the highly revered Phra Singh Buddha. Not too far away is one of the most holy Buddhist sites in Thailand, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, which overlooks the city from its spectacular setting atop Mount Suthep. Dating back to the 14th century this awe-inspiring temple is crowned by a gold-plated Chedi (monument) and on a clear day has towering views over the city and valley. Adding to the prestige of Doi Suthep is Phu Phing Palace, the winter residence of the Thai royal family, whose landscaped gardens are open to the public.
Surrounded by majestic mountain scenery Chiang Rai has more than its share of natural attractions and antiquities. Thailand's most northern city, it's a peaceful and laid-back place, which is easy to explore on foot, whether you explore by the Kok River where there's even a 'beach', or head out to the nearby hills and forest parks. Alternatively bicycles are readily available to hire and the river itself is great for rafting or longtail boat rides.
Mae Hong Son is home to a number of attractive temples, the most striking being Phra That Doi Kong Mu, set high up on a hill overlooking the city. Visit at dawn to see Mae Hong Son bathed in the mist or later in the afternoon for panoramic views of the surrounding area. Other notable temples include Wat Jong Klang and Wat Jong Kham which sit beside the serene waters of Jong Kham Lake in the heart of the town. Many hilltribes can be found in the area – Shans, Lanna, Thais and Karens, each with their own unique style, language, customs, traditions and cuisine. The most popular villages to visit are those inhabited by the long neck (Padong) Karen tribeswomen, who originated from Myanmar and are so called because of the layers of brass rings worn around their necks.
Trekking is a major attraction in Mae Hong Son and can be done as part of a day tour for a few hours or even longer to fully appreciate the stunning mountain scenery. Alternatively a more leisurely option is to combine an elephant trek through the jungle with a gentle raft trip along the picturesque Pai River. As you glide along, you'll hopefully catch glimpses of the local women washing clothes in the river while children splash and play about nearby.
Chiang Mai is an area rich with cottage industries and it's possible to visit workshops to watch the artisans at work and learn about the production of umbrellas, silk, silverware, lacquerware, furniture and ceramics. At the bustling Night Market, which sprawls along the main thoroughfare, there are countless pavement stalls selling the handicrafts as well as local wares, clothing, authentic Thai cuisine and much more. It's a great place to practice your bartering skills and pick up some bargains. Chiang Rai has its own Night Bazaar, which while a fraction of the size of that in Chiang Mai, you'll still find stalls brimming with hilltribe handicrafts, clothing and souvenirs.