Laos – Vietnam – Cambodia & Thailand Discovery 21 days

Luang Prabang - Vientiane - Hanoi - Halong Bay - Hoi An - Hue - Ho Chi Minh City - Phnom Penh - Siem Reap - Bangkok - Phitsanuloke - Lampang - Chiang Mai

Overview

Discover the heart and soul of Indochina on this tour of four very diverse countries. Encounter history, both ancient and modern, and witness the unbelievable splendour of Angkor Wat. Push through hectic city lanes and tap into the pulsing nightlife. And with other travellers your own age, you can be sure to get down with adventurers that’ll keep up.

21 days / 20 nights
Small group, Private tour
Departure: Daily from Luang Prabang or Chiang Mai
Theme: Interaction with local, Nature/Soft Adventure, Relaxation
Suitable:

Highlights

  • Experience local culture and heritage to gain a better understanding of Laos through culturally – focused activities and in-depth tours of ancient pagodas and colonial era sites
  • Discover hidden charms of the capital with looking beyond the modern buildings and busy street of Vientiane to discover the charms of this spiritual and historic city.
  • Explore Cambodia’s highlights, be immersed in Cambodian culture. Taste the exquisite flavours of Cambodian cuisine and explore colourful local villages to get in touch with Khmer culture.
  • Learn about Vietnam’s rich history, visit the historic sites of Hue, wander Hoi An’s charming old town and drive along spectacular coastline.discover the breath of life along the Mekong Delta and savor every moment
  • Discover Northern Thailand with glittering temples, ancient ruins, exotic markets and sumptuous foods

Itinerary

Day 1: Luang Prabang Arrival

On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to check in the hotel.

After a soft rest, your city tour begins with a visit to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong, a superb piece of Lao temple architecture, which presents a sweeping two-tiered roof and ornate mosaics including a beautiful ‘tree of life ‘glass montage on the rear temple wall.

If time permits, we will take a short walk around the small streets of city center, watching the life of local people, and visiting the traditional house of Heuan Chan, the Chantal wooden house dating back to 100 years old.

After that, you will visit Royal Palace Museum, which was built in 1904 during the French colonial era for King Sisavang Vong and his family.

Late afternoon, we climb up to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa as well as a panoramic sunset view of the city and the Mekong River.

The welcome dinner will be served at the local restaurant with the traditional dance and folk song, the best chance to experience the local culture. The tour ends after a visit to the famous Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Meals: Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel in Luang Prabang
Day 2: Luang Prabang - Pak Ou Caves

Wake up as the sun rises, we will prepare to join the most sacred tradition of Laos, the daily morning alms giving, which dates to the 14th century. More than 200 Buddhist monks depart from various temple to gather their daily meal from the faithful residents sitting quietly on the streets. From there, we will visit the temporary morning market near the former Royal Palace. Just set on the ground, the local people come here to barter their day’s catch from rice, to vegetable, to fish, or chicken. This is the best chance to experience the local flavors.

Breakfast at the hotel, we will first visit the city’s oldest temple of Wat Sene. After that, we embark on the leisurely cruise upstream on the Mekong River, which also gives us a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside, before reaching the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, a 16th century cave monastery filled with thousands of Buddha images, which locates 25 Kilometers North of Luang Prabang in the limestone cliffs

overlooking the Mekong river.  En route, you will stop at Ban Muang Keo, a well-known village for its traditional Lao rice whisky distilling. You will arrive back in Luang Prabang.

On arrival back in the city, we visit Wat Mai, which is one of the most beautiful temple of Luang Prabang. We then continue to Wat Visoun, dating back to 1513 during the reign of King Wisunarat (Visoun), this is Luang Prabang’s oldest temple and was once home to the Prabang Buddhas. Our last stop today is the Traditional Art and Ethnology Center (closed on Monday) to learn about Laos’ many ethnic cultures. Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Luang Prabang
Day 3: Luang Prabang - Kuangsi Waterfall - Vientiane

After breakfast, we transfer directly to the beautiful Kuang Si waterfalls which is the biggest in the Luang Prabang area with three tiers leading to a 50-metre drop into spectacular azure pools before flowing downstream. The pools also make great swimming holes and are very popular with both tourists and locals

We will also take a short visit to the Bear Rescue Center, which houses a couple of dozen animals rescued from the hands of poachers and traffickers. Before returning to Luang Prabang, we stop to visit the Kuang Si Falls Butterfly Park (closed from 15 APR – 30 JUN; 01-14 SEP, 01 JAN every year), whose mission is to create a research centre studying and publishing about Laos butterflies, host plants and preservation.

Laos is also known for its traditional crafts, we will take a short visit to the Ock Pop Tock Living Craft Center, set serenely close to the Mekong, this beautiful, traditionally styled workshop, where weavers, spinners and batik makers produce top-quality fabrics, offers free tours every half-hour. We then transfer out to the airport to take the flight to Vientiane, the capital city of Laos. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Vientiane.

QV104 LPQ VTE 18:45 19:30

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Vientiane
Day 4: Vientiane - Buddha Park

In the morning, we will first visit Wat Si Muang, which is very famous for its supernatural power. We then transfer out to see Buddha Park, an enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures on the Mekong Riverside meadow, close to the Friendship Bridge. There are approximately 200 religious images dating back over 500 years, which were created by a mysterious monk spreading his philosophy on life

and revealing his ideas about the universe.

In the afternoon, we see the major sights of the capital; including the oldest Wat Sisaket, the temple with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. On the way to Lao’s national icon, the famous and sacred structure of That Luang Stupa, we stop enroute to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. A spectacular view over the Mekong River at sunset is a perfect way to finish the day. Overnight in Vientiane.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Vientiane
Day 5: Vientiane - Hanoi

You are free to stroll around the town for your own exploration before taking the departure flight to Hanoi. Meet your tour guide on arrival at Hanoi international airport and join your fellow travellers in a coach transfer to the city centre for hotel check-in.

Located in the centre of the Northern Delta with a population of 6.2 million people and an area of 3,398 square km Hanoi is an ancient city which had been established and developed for over 1,000 years since 1010. Even though some relics have not survived through wars and time, the city still has many interesting cultural and historic monuments for visitors and residents alike. Historians liken the life-giving Red River with its banks crowded with green rice paddies and farms to the Tigris and Euphrates rivers; a cradle of civilization. Hotel rooms may not be ready until 14:00 hrs but an early check-in would be guaranteed with a surcharge. The rest of the day is at leisure. Subject to your arrival time, you may want to venture out to explore the city on your own or join one of our wonderful optional excursions in and around Hanoi, such as a walking tour through Hanoi’s Old Quarter for you first impression of Vietnam’s capital city.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi
Day 6: Hanoi - Halong Bay

Be ready for pick-up at your hotel lobby at 08:00 hours.

Arriving at the cruise’ check in lounge in Halong City around noon, embark on the boat and start a relaxing and wonderful cruise through Halong Bay known in Vietnamese as “Dragon descending to the sea“. The picturesque Halong Bay has more than 3,000 limestone islets rising from the clear emerald water, many of them containing beautiful grottoes.

A lavish buffet lunch will be served on-board. Afterward have a short free and easy time before taking a guided excursion to Sung Sot Grotto (Surprise Grotto) and a floating village. Other activities in the afternoon include kayaking (optional and surcharge applies) or swimming (weather permitting) and a Vietnamese fresh spring roll demonstration on the sun deck Happy hour with complimentary canapés will be available at the sun deck bar. Then a scrumptious international buffet dinner will be served at the restaurant. After dinner, there is an evening Movie show on the sun deck.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Overnight on board
Day 7: Halong Bay - Hanoi

Wake up the next morning at sunrise, you are invited to practice Tai Chi on the sun deck. Enjoy the feel of the early morning salt water scent and bask in the early sun rising from behind the mountains. After an energizing western breakfast, check out your cabin at around 09:00 hrs and savour a memorable trip to Halong Bay on-board. Arriving at the pier at around 10:00 hrs, you will be picked up for transfer back to Hanoi with lunch served at a restaurant en route.

Back in Hanoi, enjoy an orientation tour with a visit to Vietnam’s first university: the Temple of Literature. Founded in 1076, Quoc Tu Giam was established within a temple to educate Vietnam’s royalty, mandarins and members of the elite. Continue with a visit to the iconic One Pillar Pagoda, one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples. Nearby is the mausoleum of the historic father figure of modern Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh, and his modest house on stilts. (Sites are viewed from outside; closed Mon and Fri and from Oct-Nov) Wrap up the morning with a visit to the picturesque West Lake and its sixth century Tran Quoc Buddhist Pagoda. From here transfer (or stroll along the lakeside) 700 meters to the nearby Taoist temple of Quan Thanh dedicated to Tran Vu, one of the principal deities in Taoism. Afterward check in your hotel and enjoy time at leisure.

Meals: Breakfast, Brunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi
Day 8: Hanoi - Da Nang - Hoi An

Your journey continues southbound today with a flight to Danang, a young and dynamic hub of the central region. From the Danang airport you will drive the short distance south past the famous Non Nuoc Beach onto the enchanting town of Hoi An listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage and was once a well-known trading centre in Southeast Asia from the 16th to 18th centuries. Its sizeable community of foreign merchants resulted in a unique architectural style with Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese influences.

Check in the hotel for some leisure time and your guide will take you on a stroll through the ancient town. Its friendly inhabitants, narrow streets, old houses, temples and wooden bridge still remain its ancient character.

Sample local food for dinner at a charming restaurant nestled in a narrow alley typical to Hoi An. Time after dinner is yours. You may choose to take transfer back to the hotel or to enjoy exploring Hoi An night life for more experience on your own.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An
Day 9: Hoi An - Hue

Hoi An has been known for the exceptionally well preserved ancient town with the complex of old wooden frame buildings including the historical monuments and the fusion of indigenous and foreign cultures. Besides that, projects for preservation and promotion of local handicrafts have also been implemented. Hoi An Silk Village is one of those. Located just one kilometre away from the centre of Hoi An ancient town, the combination of eco-tourism and traditional handicraft product development has helped to preserve the cultural life of people in Quang Nam. In feature are the traditional house of Quang Nam, a mulberry garden, silk worm breeding and feeding techniques, including processing of silk worm cocoons in traditional way, the handicraft textile by Cham ethnic people and the show room. The morning is at leisure before departing for Hue. Afterwards drive to Hue, the former Imperial City of the last dynasty of Vietnam with a photo stop at the Marble Mountains, a scenic spot with caves, temples, shrines, pagodas and a great view of the surrounding area.

The journey to Hue will take you over the famous Hai Van Pass with a green view of the stretch of Truong Son mountain range on one side and a spectacular view of the East Sea on the other. Arrival in Hue will be in late afternoon. After hotel check-in, have leisure time.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Hue
Day 10: Hue - Ho Chi Minh City

Located in Central Vietnam, Hue is the only place in the country where many historic, cultural, architectural as well as artistic values have been recognized internationally and listed by UNESCO as World Cultural Heritages. Hue is also the site where the northern and southern ecosystems meet, the area of river-hills, greenery and beautiful landscapes.

In the morning, a scenic boat trip on the Perfume River will take you to Thien Mu Pagoda or Heavenly Lady pagoda, one of the oldest ancient architectural structures for religious worship in Hue. Situated 4 km upstream on the banks of the Perfume River, it is an active Buddhist monastery with its origins dating back to 1601. Continue by car to visit the Imperial Citadel. Situated on the Northern bank of the Perfume River, the citadel covers an area of 500 ha and has a system of three circles of ramparts: Kinh Thanh Hue (Hue Capital Citadel), Hoang Thanh (Royal Citadel) and Tu Cam Thanh (Forbidden Citadel). The Hue royal complex has been officially recognized by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Your next stop will be at Dong Ba market which has been functioning as the main resource of food for the palaces, hospitals, army camps, dormitories of the national universities and local inhabitants. Even though the market has undergone several renovation since the beginning of the 20th century, it still embraces many old features.

In the late afternoon, you will take another domestic flight from Hue to Ho Chi Minh City. Formerly known as Saigon, todays Ho Chi Minh City is the bustling and vibrating economic centre of the South. Over the past few centuries, Saigon was called the “Pearl of the Far East” and was an important trading centre for Chinese, Japanese and Western merchants who travelled along the Saigon River. Check in your hotel and have free time in the evening to explore the city.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Ho Chi Minh
Day 11: Cu Chi Tunnels and City tour

Today morning you will drive 55 km out of Ho Chi Minh City to Cu Chi District famous for the amazing complex of underground tunnels. There are more than 200 km of tunnels, comprising a main axis system with many branches connecting to underground hideouts, shelters and other tunnels. You have the chance to crawl through this amazing system of tunnels before returning to Ho Chi Minh City for lunch.

In the afternoon, gain an insight into the city’s development through a walking tour to the most significant landmarks including the Opera House, the Town Hall, the Notre Dame Cathedral and the old Post Office (all magnificent sights from the French colonial period. Your next stop will be the famous Ben Thanh Market, where you can purchase souvenirs for your beloved ones.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Ho Chi Minh
Day 12: Ho Chi Minh City - Phnom Penh

Breakfast at hotel and time at leisure. You are welcome to join our interesting optional excursions in and around Ho Chi Minh City, such as our Good Morning Saigon Tour (at surcharge). Transfer to Ho Chi Minh City / Tan Son Nhat International Airport for your departure flight to Phnom Penh. (Check-out time: 12:00 hrs – late check-out is not included.) (the airfare is not included in the tour prices, quote separately)

Meet upon arrival at Phnom Penh International Airport and transfer to the hotel (rooms may not be ready until

the afternoon).

Dinner at local restaurant.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel in Phnom Penh
Day 13: Phnom Penh - Siem Reap

07:45 Transfer (without guide) to Mekong Bus station for departure to Siem Reap (6 hour drive).

Your guide will be not with you on bus but he/she will meet you in Siem Reap. The bus will stop at Arunras Restaurant for restroom and where you can find your own meals or snack before continue to final destination. Upon arrival Siem Reap, meet your guide at Borei Seang Nam station and transfer to check in at hotel for refreshment.

This afternoon, take a fun by Rermork “Tuk Tuk” ride to visit the Angkor National Museum, learn about “the Legend Revealed” and see how the Khmer Empire has been established during the golden period. Continue to Preah Ang Check Preah Ang Chom, the secret place where local

people go praying for good luck or safe journey. Tonight enjoy buffet dinner with Khmer Traditional Dance Show at Amazon or Kulen II restaurant.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel in Siem Reap
Day 14: Siem Reap - Ta Prohm - Angkor Thom - Angkor Wat

Morning, visit to jungle Ta Prohm Temple, embraced by the roots of enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers. The temple of Ta Prohm was once used as a location to film the famous Hollywood film Tomb Raider. Begin tour to the antique capital of Angkor Thom, start from the

South Gate with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk, the Bayon Temple, unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara, the Phimeanakas, the Royal Enclosure, the Elephants Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper

King.

Afternoon, explore Angkor Wat the most famous of all the temples on the plain of Angkor. The temple complex covers 81 hectares and is comparable in size to the Imperial Palace in Beijing. Its distinctive five towers are emblazoned on the Cambodian flag and the 12th century

masterpiece is considered by art historians to be the prime example of classical Khmer art and architecture. Last but not least, view a wonderful sunset from Angkor Wat or somewhere possible.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Siem Reap
Day 15: Siem Reap - Kampong Phluk - Fly to Bangkok

After breakfast at hotel, we drive to visit Kampong Phluk Floating Village, located at 16 km at north-south of Siem Reap. The villages are primarily Khmer and have about 3000 inhabitants between them. Flooded mangrove forest surrounds the area and is home to a variety of

wildlife including crab-eating macaques. During the dry season when the lake is low (March – July), the buildings in the villages seem to soar atop their 6-meter stilts exposed by the lack of water. At this time of year many of the villagers move out onto the lake and build temporary

houses. In the wet season when water level rises (Aug – February), the villagers move back to their permanent houses on the floodplain, the stilts now hidden under the water. Kampong Phluk’s economy is as one might expect, based in fishing, primary in shrimp harvesting.

Free until transfer to Siem Reap airport for flight to Bangkok. On arrival, pick up by guide and driver then transfer to hotel.

Spend an evening at a typical Thai restaurant and try the delicious Thai food, specially prepared in a traditional style served by charming Thai ladies. At the same time, view a set of charming Thai Classical dances that have been preserved through many generations. The last village Thai tradition old style in Silom Road. Within the compound are 15 teak houses and 3 buildings, these houses were constructed in the reign of King Chulalongkorn (Rama V) in 1908 and converted to restaurant and Thai handicraft shops in 1981. The ‘Ruen Thep’ hall offers a range of succulent dishes. With a well-established name, the staff of at Silom Village have always strived to offer to our guests a perfect evening through a unique combination of delicious authentic Thai cuisine amid a warm atmosphere of traditional Thai style house hospitality. There are also various performances of Thai classical dancing nightly, its dancers and musicians are especially trained by the Fine Arts Department, ensuring that the performances are of the highest standard and authenticity.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel in Bangkok
Day 16: Full Day Highlights of Bangkok

08:00 Guide and driver pick up at hotel.

A visit to the Royal Grand Palace, the nation’s landmark and most praised royal monument in Thailand, with the enclosed and dazzling Wat Phra Keo with its revered Emerald Buddha, the Golden Chedi, the Pantheon of the Chakri Kings and the Eight Coloured Towers, is a must. In Thailand by many, it is considered to be a living example of classical Siamese Court, being the former residence of the kings of Thailand.

Wat Pho is also regarded as the first centre of public education and is sometimes called ‘Thailand’s first university’. Mural paintings, inscriptions, and statues found in the temple-educated people on varied subjects such as literature, warfare, archaeology, astronomy, geology, meditation and to be considered, home of the Thai traditional massage. Here, you will enjoy a 30-minutes’ Thai massage as an excellent break after a morning sightseeing. Experience an afternoon trip along the bustling Chao Phya River and the quiet Klongs (canals) in a long tail boat enjoy scenes of life by water. We bring you to a more traditional way of living, more serene and traditional, away from all the high-rise and modern buildings of Bangkok City Centre, as we gently pass Thonburi residential areas. A stop will be made at the “Temple of Dawn” (officially named Wat Arun).

Finally, a visit to the Flower and vegetable market will round off this day. Located close to the Chao Phraya River, this part of Bangkok brings you to a rural piece of Bangkok where they have a vast selection of all kinds of flowers, especially orchids and tropical flowers and see how the merchants create very special flower garlands. The end of this Bangkok day ends at the Golden Mountain.

Photography is permitted in the Royal Palace Grounds and in the compounds of the Emerald Buddha Temple, but not inside the buildings.

Note:

– Please dress respectfully by not wearing sleeveless, shorts or sandals, when visiting the Grand Palace and temple complex.

– The inner courts of Grand Palace are frequently closed on Sundays

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Bangkok
Day 17: Bangkok - Phitsanuloke

Pick-up from hotel and commence your journey northbound, where our first stop will be made at Bang Pa-In, the former home of the kings of Ayutthaya. It was built in the reign of King Ramah V. The palace consists of many Royal Buildings built in contrasting architectural styles: Thai, Chinese, Italian and Victorian styles predominate.

This step back in time continues to Ayutthaya, the capital of Siam from 1350 to 1767 and home to important historic temples. Today, Ayutthaya is a World Heritage Site and has some of Thailand’s most important historical landmarks. Here you will see the colossal bronze statues of Buddha at Wat Mongkol Bophit (Wat means temple) and the impressive the ruins of Wat Phra Srisanpetch. The next stop is Lopburi and a visit to Phra Prang Sam Yod, a temple with three towers and impressive ornaments as well as a shrine of the Hindu God Vishnu Kali at the Sarn Prakarn Temple.

A delicious lunch will be served at the Wasana Coffee Shop at the Lopburi Inn. It is one of the best places for a traditional Thai lunch addresses where one can experience a great mixture between the various kitchen styles in the region.

In the afternoon, we drive further northbound in the direction of Phitsanuloke. Here you catch a glimpse of the rural part of Thailand. A mixture between traditional farming techniques, villages depending on rice farming and the always-present sense of faith in Buddhism is noticeable. Arrival in Phitsanuloke where we can see – when time permits – the Wat Phra Buddha Chinnarat. Many Thai people consider the Phra Buddha Chinnarat to be the most beautiful Buddha portrait in Thailand. It depicts Buddha in the posture of overcoming Mara, also called Mara submission. All this makes Wat Yai (its nickname) is famous throughout Thailand. Several faithful copies of the Phra Buddha Chinnarat are displayed in other temples, including Wat Benchamaborpit in Bangkok.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Phitsanuloke
Day 18: Phitsanuloke - Lampang

The day begins with breakfast at the hotel and the trip continues on to Sukhothai, the first capital of the Thai Kingdom, dating back to the 13th-century. Ruins of the Royal Palaces, Buddhist Temples, the city gates, walls, moats, dams, ditches and so on, the ancient town of Sukhothai with its world-famous Historical Park, home of one of the biggest collections of sites (21 in total). This was the magical centre of the Kingdom, now preserved and has been restored by the Fine Arts Department with the cooperation of UNESCO. Because of its importance for the history of Thailand, Sukhothai Historical Park has been now a World Heritage Site with an abundance of sights to be visited. The day continues to Sri Satchanalai, the former sister town of Sukhothai to visit to some of the city’s most interesting temples and ancient ruins. The ancient town, formerly called “Muang Chaliang”, was named “S Satchanalai” during the Phra Ruang Dynasty when a new administrative centre was established to replace Chaliang.

Enjoy lunch at a family-owned restaurant, proving excellent Thai meals.

After lunch, the day continues with a drive north to Lampang. Lampang boasts a long history of human settlements on the Wang River basin, some of which dating back more than 1,000 years. It is rich in archaeological evidence reflecting ancient civilizations of Hariphunchai, Lanna and Burma. Lampang is the only province in Thailand still retaining horse-drawn carriages as a means of transport within city limit. Visitors can hire such vehicles to tour places such as markets, traditional houses along the riverbank and the numerous temples in town. Before reaching our overnight address, we include a short break to admire the beauty of the Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. Some 20 kilometres to the southwest of town in Ko Kha district is Wat Phra That Lampang Luang, a paradigm of temple building of Lanna. The temple itself is prominently sited on a hillock surrounded by wall. The entrance arches, called Pratu Khong, is adorned with fine plaster designs. The wall-less main Vihan houses a bronze Buddha statue called the Phra Chao Lan Thong. To the back is a golden Chedi in Lanna architectural style containing a Holy Relic. Also in the back is another Vihan with beautiful murals on wooden walls, said to be the oldest in the North. The temple also has a large collection of ancient wooden utensils.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Lampang
Day 19: Lampang - Chiang Mai

Onward we go! We start the day of this exciting visiting and admiring some of Lampang’s most famous temples including Wat Phra Keo Don Tao before going on to Lamphun. The temple of Wat Phra Keo Don, and in fact the city of Lampang itself, is said to have been founded by

the son of Lamphun’s founder, Queen Chama Devi, in the seventh century. The 50 meter (165 foot) chedi is the only structure that survives of the original temple. In front of the chedi is a Burmese styled open prayer hall built in 1909 by Burmese immigrants at the request of a Thai prince. It is considered the most important temple in the city of Lampang. The temple was home for 32 years in the fifteenth century to Thailand’s national symbol, the Emerald Buddha, now housed in its own temple inside Bangkok’s Grand Palace.

Nearby the town of Lampang lies the town of Lamphun, where the Burmese-style temple complex of Wat Haripoonchai is located. Of one of the most revered temple complexes in Thailand, the Wat Haripoonchai is home of the world’s largest bronze gong, this Wat (means Temple) was built on the site of Queen Chama Thewi’s palace in 1044. Not only Buddhist influences, but as well post-Dvaravati (Indian) architecture can be found in this in 1930’s renovated Temple. The original was built during the reign of King Arthitayarat, some 800 years ago. The 46- meter high Chedi with a nine-tier umbrella, made out of 6,5-kilo pure gold, the result of the restoration work in 1443 by a king of Chiang Mai surrounds the main characteristics of the temple. Nowadays, is also gains name and fame for its large Buddhist school where monks are educated according to the teachings of the Lord Buddha.

Just before lunch time, we reach Chiangmai, the 2nd largest city of Thailand.

Have lunch at a local restaurant.

After lunch, we drive up to another landmark in the history of Chiangmai – the holy mountain temple of Wat Prathat Doi Suthep. Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep is to Chiang Mai what St. Peter’s Cathedral is to Rome. It’s a must see. The most popular excursion from Chiang Mai, where fresh air and local culture can be enjoyed on a half-day outing. The architecture is quite modest by Thai standards, but perched on a hilltop at 1,053 meters and nicely situated in a national park, the temple commands a panoramic view of the entire valley and offers a welcome escape from the congestion of Chiang Mai. More importantly to Thai pilgrims, Wat Prathat Doi Suthep is considered among the nation’s most sacred places by virtue of its possession of a sacred Buddha relic.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Chiangmai
Day 20: Chiang Mai - Mae Sa Elephant Camp

A 30 – kilometres drive (approximately 40 minutes) to the Mae Sa Elephant Camp – located just north of Chiang Mai – is where we finally are able to meet one of Thailand’s signature animals. Here we can see with our own eyes, elephant at work, performing a formidable range of demonstrations on how these trained elephants are used to help the local community in logging. If lucky, you can even see them takinga bath in the cool, nearby stream. There will be a change to make an optional ride on the back of these gentle grey animals Strength and strategic teamwork will amaze you and will remain you for a long time. The elephant: Thailand’s working pride and one of this country’s national symbols. Current estimates of wild elephants left in Thailand were between 3000-4000 animals. Although logging is being banned in this Kingdom, they remain a very important mode of jungle transport as it beats any other animal or machine for its ability to move through a forest with minimum damage This tour also includes a peaceful visit to a large orchid nursery and a butterfly farm.

Enjoy lunch at local restaurant in the orchid and butterfly farm

After lunch, we return back to Chiangmai to another tradition, well-known to the world; the handicraft industry.An opportunity to see the famous home industries of San Khampaeng, where a variety of souvenirs and handicraft are being made. Chiang Mai is the main center for high quality handicrafts. In the area of San Khampaeng, handicrafts are produced and visitors are always welcome to watch the production, and of course to purchase some of the goods. You can watch the full steps of the production of the famous Thai Silk as well as of the colorful paper umbrellas. Skilled hands form the well-known Celadon Ceramics; other craftsmen transform teakwood with the help of simple tools into elegant furniture with delicate carvings. Also fascinating to watch is the production of lacquer ware, even eggshells are used to achieve unusual designs. Silverware is on offer in such a great variety that even the most modest visitor will be tempted to buy some. There are numerous other thriving industries with the community including cotton and traditional local products, antiques from Myanmar and more.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Chiangmai
Day 21: Chiang Mai Departure

The city has always been a favourite destination for tourists from other parts of Thailand, especially from Bangkok, who enjoy the cooler climate and the mountain scenery and in recent years it is becoming increasingly popular for tourists from other countries as well. Should you wish to stay any longer, we can assist you with this! Normal check out procedures at 12:00. Transfer from hotel to airport for flight. Located less than 10 minutes drive from the city center, Chiang Mai International Airport has both international and domestic terminals, conveniently close to each other.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: NA

Important Notes:

  • PROGRAMS & SCHEDULES SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE
  • In case of unpredictable bad conditions of weather in Halong Bay, please kindly understand that the cancellation will be made ONLY by the Management Board of Halong Bay and normally the announcement will be informed in short notice.

Price & Inclusion

Hotel (19 nights), Overnight on board (1 night) - Economy (2*)
Price for 2 Adults
US $6598
Discount
US $0

Total
US $6598
Hotel (19 nights), Overnight on board (1 night) - Superior (3*)
Price for 2 Adults
US $7046
Discount
US $0

Total
US $7046
Hotel (19 nights), Overnight on board (1 night) - First Class (4*)
Price for 2 Adults
US $7858
Discount
US $0

Total
US $7858

Meals

20 Breakfast, 11 Lunch, 1 Brunch, 4 Dinner

Transportation

Car

Price Includes

  • Overnight in shared Twin/ Double room with Air-condition (AC) at hotel.
  • Overnight on local train at a shared compartment with 4 soft berths (if any)
  • Overnight at local homestay in a shared room, private blanket and mosquito net (if any)
  • All transport during tour on air – conditioned vehicle as per itinerary (including airport pick up & see off)
  • All in-tour stationed local English speaking guide.
  • Meals as indicated in the program
  • Entrance fees as per itinerary
  • 5 domestic flights Vientiane – Hanoi; Hanoi – Danang; Hue – Ho Chi Minh; Ho Chi Minh – Phnom Penh – Siem Reap – Bangkok (20kg luggage inclusion)

Cancellation by Customer

  • 30% of total package price should be deposited once the booking is confirmed
  • More than 15 days prior to check-in: 10% of total rates
  • From 14 to 3 days prior to check-in: 50% of total rates
  • Less than 72 hours prior to check-in: 100% of total rates
  • No-Show: Charge 100% of total rates

Children Policy

  • For infant (<04 years old): FOC except domestic ticket cost
  • 04 – 11 years old without bed: 50% adult rate
  • 04 – 11 years old with extra bed: 75% adult rate
  • 04 – 11 years old in twin share: 90% adult rate