Thailand Programs

Bangkok is one of the most popular tourist destinations, “The City of Angels” as locals call it, is not only a bustling modern metropolis, but is also home to numerous heritage sites, friendly people and unique experiences. Discover the mixture of cultures in the North of Thailand while enjoying the beautiful scenery of the hills and the charm of Chiang Mai. Finally, the tropical islands of Phuket or Koh Samui, surrounded by turquoise waters boast some of the most idylic beach locations idea for watersports and beachcombing enthusiasts alike.

The country offers so many unique experiences to the visitor, we have designed a few suggested programs to start you off on the planning of your dream holiday!

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Thailand Family Adventure

Day One

Today you are met at the airport on arrival by our airport representative and escorted to your transfer vehicle.  On arrival you check into the hotel with the remainder of the evening being free to enjoy at leisure.Aetas Lumpini

Day Two 

This morning we begin our exploration of the city with a visit to the Grand Palace, the spiritual and royal heart of the country.  Its then a short exhilarating ride in a tuk tuk to Wat Pho, home to a gigantic golden reclining Buddha and also the most important school for Thai Massage.

We then journey across the Chao Praya River for a sumptuous Thai Lunch in a restaurant set in a traditional Thai house.  Its then to our private longtail boats toKlong Tour explore the many klongs (canals) that make up the city.  We pass small temples, banana trees, old men fishing and monitor lizards basking.

In the evening you transfer to the Siam Niramit Show by private vehicle to enjoy dinner and a show before returning back to your hotel where the remainder of the evening is free at leisure.

Siam NiramitDay Three

Following an early breakfast we check out and set off for Kanchanaburi, home of the famous Bridge on the River Kwai.  We take time to walk over the bridge and pay our respects in the Allied War Cemetery dedicated to the many POWs who perished before boarding the train for a ride on the ‘Death Railway to Namtok’.

We drive on to Hellfire Pass, a massive cutting that the POWs literally dug out with their hands, hundreds perishing in the process.  The museum here sheds light on this tragic part of history and we have time to walk down into the cutting itself to see first-hand the achievement that was made.Floathouse

Long tail boats take us to our floating hotel, where your room sits on a raft on the edge of the River Kwai.

Day Four 

This morning it’s an early start for our transfer to Bangkok’s second airport for our short flight to Chiang Mai, the capital of the north.  On arrival you are met by your guide and you head to your hotel to check in and freshen up.

In the afternoon you drive out to the village of Baan Tong Luang which gives a fascinating insight into the lives of some of the most well-known hilltribe communities.  We return to Chiang Mai in time for a visit to the local regional market to explore the produce on offer that is grown locally.  This is not a market for tourists, although of course visitors are more than welcome.  It is a place where people from all the surrounding areas come to stock up on supplies and sell their locally produced goods.Karen

In the evening, your guide will take you to Chiang Mai’s famous night market, full of souvenirs, nik naks and delicious street foods to sample!

Day Five 

This morning you set off on a 5 hour ‘Colours of Chiang Mai’ cycling program where you get to explore the countryside and visit a local school (if open).Cycling Chiang Mai

In the afternoon you drive up to Doi Suthep Temple, standing like a sentinel over the city below, with commanding views over the surrounding countryside.

We then return to the hotel where the rest of the evening is free at leisure.

Day Six 

This morning we set off into the countryside to an elephant reserve where you have the chance to learn more about these majestic animals and the part that they play in Thailand.  The Mahout Program that you will participate in is well renowned, and gives you a fascinating insight into how these animals work alongside humans.Mahout Training

In the early evening you return to the hotel where the rest of the evening is free at leisure.

Day Seven 

This morning you set off to the nearby Jungle for an adventure on a zipline through the jungle canopy.  You walk over bridges, fly through the trees on ziplines, abseil and generally clamber around like a monkey! Eagle Track 1.

We then drive to Chiang Mai Airport for our flight to Phuket.  On arrival we are met by our transfer driver for the short journey to the hotel.  On arrival check in and the rest of the time is free to relax and enjoy at leisure.

Day Eight

Today is kept free for you to enjoy at leisure.

Day Nine  

Today is kept free for you to enjoy at leisure.

Day Ten 

This morning your program ends after at Phuket Airport where you will be transferred in time to catch your ongoing flight.

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Southern Thailand Explorer – 8 Night 9 Day

Day 1: Phuket

On arrival at Phuket airport you will be met by your driver for the 20 minute journey to the gorgeous Naiyang Beach. You will have the rest of the day to enjoy the beach and the facilities at the hotel. Depending on your arrival time you may want to head into Patong, the main tourist area, for some shopping or to enjoy the nightlife.

Overnight: Imperial Adamas Beach Resort (Luxury Room)  Sarojin

Day 2: Khao Lak

Today your driver will meet you for your 1 ½ journey to Khao Lak Beach where you will spend the next 2 nights at the exceptional Sarojin.

Relaxation, freedom, inspiration. The Sarojin imparts unique, revitalizing experiences that last…so much so, that a sojourn with us is reminiscent of “staying at a friend’s private estate”.

Designed in a contemporary Asian style, lines blur and merge simultaneously with the natural local elements and landscape. The spiritual heart of the resort is an age old giant Ficus tree at the centre of the 10-acre grounds. A magnificent soul-soothing reflective lotus pond brings a sense of grandeur and peace to your environment.

Private access leads directly to an expansive white beach and the crystalline waters of the Andaman Sea that provide year-round swimming and water sports. Abundant space and privacy blend harmoniously with nature, offering a rare oasis for relaxation.

The grounds, walkways, sumptuous onyx infinity pool, lotus ponds, pure white beaches and serving scrumptious delicacies – they’re all yours for a truly romantic stay. Your room features its own secluded swimming pool, outdoor sala, couples bathtub and all day breakfast with sparkling wine.

Overnight: Sarojin (Pool Residence)

Meals included: B

Day 3: Khao Lak

If you feel like taking a tour today, we recommend the sea cave kayaking tours to nearby Phang Nga Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The tour takes you to limestone islands that, over time, have collapsed into themselves leaving the interior intact and untouched over many years. Sea caves lead into these lagoons and when tide conditions are right, the result is like a visit to a parallel world where time has stood still.

You may just like spending the day enjoying the beach or your private pool. For the ultimate in romance you have the choice of a couple’s bath with wine, a sunset dinner for two on the beach, a sunset speed boat tour or a total pampering at the first class spa.

Overnight: Sarojin (Pool Residence)

Meals included: B

DSC00174Day 4: Railay

Today you head to beautiful Railay Beach, your driver will collect you from the hotel. You’ll continue on to Ao Nam Mao where a long tail boat will meet you and transfer you to your hotel on the beach. Isolated from the mainland, the peninsula of Railay is surrounded by the warm Andaman Sea, lush jungle, and twisted rock. It contains enough activities for the most adventurous while allowing those who just want to chill out in paradise the opportunity to do just that.

Overnight: Railay Bay Resort (Deluxe Cottage)

Meals included: B

Day 5: Railay

Today you join a tour to Tone Pariwat Sanctuary Station that includes white water rafting, elephant riding and a Thai lunch. You will be transferred by private speed boat to Nam Mao Pier where you will meet the tour for the 30 minute drive to the park. The journey takes you through the tropical rainforest and beautiful countryside. You will have the chance to explore the tropical rain forest as you take an elephant trek through the jungle.

In the evening there is a great selection of beach side restaurants with fresh seafood BBQs to choose from.

Overnight: Railay Bay Resort (Deluxe Cottage)

Meal s included: B

Day 6: Phuket

Today you will take the long tail boat back to Ao Nang where your driver will meet you for the 2 hour journey back to Phuket to Kamala Beach. Located just fifteen minutes by taxi from Patong Beach the atmosphere here is very relaxed when compared to its more frenetic neighbor.  Kamala Bay provides good swimming in crystal clear water at its northern end where you can explore the coral reefs just a few meters offshore.  The middle part of Kamala Bay is dominated by a village with small resorts dotted along the beach. The fishing village atmosphere remains with fishermen casting their nets and the occasional water buffalo roaming the beach. Some small bars and seafood restaurants line the beach here offering plenty of dining opportunities.

The hotel is located on the headland and is a modern, chic hotel with excellent facilities and ocean views from everywhere you go.

Overnight: Cape Sienna Hotel & Villa (Studio Sea View Room)

Meals included: B

Day 7: Phuket

Koh Phi Phi day tour  

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Today you’ll join a speed boat tour of the infamous Phi Phi Island. The trip includes Ao Ling (Monkey Bay),snorkelling at the famous Hin Klang and relaxing or swimming in Koh Mai Pai (Bamboo Island) before arriving at Koh Phi Phi Don for a great lunch.

Spend the rest of day at Phi Phi Leh, visiting Maya Bay – the location for the Hollywood film ‘The Beach’.  In the evening there is the chance to head in to Patong to enjoy a Muay Thai fight at one of the arenas in the town.

Overnight: Cape Sienna Hotel & Villa (Studio Sea View Room)

Meals included: B/L

Day 8: Phuket

Today you’ll enjoy the magical star light tour. The morning is free to relax by the pool or on the beach before you are picked up from the hotel at mid-day. The tour gives you the opportunity for sea cave/Hong exploration by kayak and a superb Thai seafood sunset dinner. In the late afternoon, you experience the tranquillity of the natural surroundings before the real magic begins in the evening. After dark, things get mystical – beyond description and imagination with a light fantastic show courtesy of the bioluminescent plankton.

For your last night in Thailand, you can choose from one of the many first class restaurants on Phuket and maybe take the opportunity to enjoy the famous Simon Cabaret show.
Overnight Cape Sienna Hotel & Villa (Studio Sea View Room)

Meals included: B/D

Day 9: Tour Ends

Today your program ends after breakfast at your hotel and includes a final airport transfer to Phuket for your onward travel arrangements.

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Thailand Culture and Beaches – 13 Days 12 Nights Package

 

Day 1: Arrival Bangkok

Upon arrival at Bangkok Airport, your Sweetway Asia Guide will meet you for the transfer to your city centre riverside hotel, located approximately 40 minute drive from the airport. After check-in free time at leisure during which we also suggest to have a stroll and explore the local area.

Day 2: Bangkok

After breakfast, your guide will pick you up at the hotel for to exploration tour of Bangkok. The first stop of the tour is Wat Trimit (Golden Buddha Temple), which houses 3 meter high and 5.5 ton heavy golden Buddha.  Afterwards walk to the colourful China Town to visit an Old Chinese market. Proceed to Pak Klong Talad flower market by Tuk Tuk where you will have an opportunity to taste some of the local fruits. We continue our tour of Bangkok with a visit to Wat Pho with it’s Thai-Tuktukastounding 46-meter long Reclining Buddha and onwards to the Grand Palace, where the Emerald Buddha Temple is situated in the same compound. Afterwards, take a short walk to Maharaja Pier to board a ferry across the river for lunch at Sumatra River House Restaurant. After lunch, board a long tail speed boat and cruise the Chao Praya River and Klongs (Canals) of Bangkok, which used to be main arteries of the city in the ancient times. Return to mainland and transfer back to the hotel.

Day 3: Bangkok

Today, depart the hotel early to drive outside Bangkok to the well-known floating market. On the way, stop at the unique railway market, where both visitors and shopkeepers alike have to dodge an occasionally passing train – an experience you will probably not be able to find anywhere else in the world. Continue to visit local Thai house and see people making sugar from Coconut flower Sap. Then, board a long tail boat and pass by orchard farms to Floating Market. Take your time shopping for local souvenirs and don’t forget to bargain for a better deal! Afterwards, drive towards the Sampran Riverside or Rose Garden for lunch at the lake side restaurant. After lunch join in Thai Village Show and Elephant Show. Return to hotel and free time at leisure.

Day 4: Bangkok – Chiang Mai

Spend time free at leisure in the morning till your pick up time for the transfer to Bangkok Airport for your flight to Chiang Mai. Upon your arrival at Chiang Mai Airport you will be met by your Sweetway Asia Representative to escort you to the Imperial Mae Ping Hotel.  After check-in free at leisure during which we recommend to have a stroll in the area around the hotel.

In the evening, join in the Northern Thai Style dinner with Thai Classical performances and displays of hill tribe cultures at Old Chiang Mai Cultural Centre. After dinner, you can walk to the Night Bazaar, which is situated next to your hotel.

Day 5: Chiang Mai

Today, you will explore Chiang Mai Old City, which was built in 1269. Sam Lor or Rickshaw will be your transportation for half of the day to visit the popular food & flower Warorot Market, cycling along the road to Wat Chedi Luang, where you will discover the large pagoda built in 1550 and another beautiful temple of Wat Pra Singh, built in the XIV century. Afterwards, take a cruise on the Mae Ping River to visit a local farmer’s house and enjoy Thai a la cart lunch. Return to the hotel and time free at leisure.

Day 6: Chiang Mai

4950905908_492aff8507_zIn the early morning start your journey to the North of Chiang Mai, first visiting Chiang Dao Elephant Training Centre to see how elephants have traditionally been used for work in the forest. You will have a chance to take a picture with a baby elephant, then ride an elephant ride to a Lisu Village. Lunch will be served at the camp, followed by Bamboo rafting on Teang River. Finally, visit a beautiful Orchid farm to contemplate numerous colourful species of orchids – one of the symbols of Thailand. Afterwards, transfer back to your hotel to spend time free at leisure.

Day 7: Chiang Mai to Phuket

Early in the morning, transfer to Chiang Mai Airport to check in for your flight bound for Phuket. Upon arrival at Phuket Airport you will be met by your Sweetway Asia Representative to escort you to your beach resort.  Check-in at your beach resort and time to relax.

Day 8: Phuket

Morning, join in Phuket highlight on Phuket Island tour to see an Old Phuket Town with traditional Sino-Portuguese architecture, impressive temple of Wat Chalong, the southernmost picturesque cape of Phrom Thep and enjoy the 3 Bays View. Afterward, drive through Karon and Kata beaches back to hotel.

Day 9: PhuketSunset-yoga

Today, join one of the Phi Phi day tour the Andaman Sea. Cruise through the turquoise waters of the Andaman while you enjoy the stunning local scenery of crystal clear water and limestone caves. Once at the Phi Phi Island, lunch will be served in the beach restaurant. You will also have opportunities to snorkel and observe the colourful world under the water. This trip is definitely the one to remember as you visit the island famous for its beauty around the world.

Day 10-12: Phuket 

Free day at leisure

Day 13: Departure

In the morning spend time free at leisure till your check out time at 12.00 hrs at noon time. Leave your baggage at the store room and relax till your pick up time to Phuket Airport.

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Thailand in Depth – 14 Days 13 Nights

Day 1-2: Bangkok city tour

Day 1: Bangkok
You can arrive at the joining hotel any time today as no activities are planned until your 6.00pm tour briefing. Please remember that hotel check-in times are after midday – unless the hotel has some rooms already available. If you do arrive early, you can leave your luggage at reception and we would encourage you to get out and explore Bangkok – but please take a hotel business card so that you will be able to find your way back. Before leaving the hotel, please look in the reception area for a notice advising your tour leader’s name, mobile phone number and other helpful local information. It’s important you attend the tour briefing and afterwards, for those interested, your leader will be happy to escort you to a local restaurant to sample the delights of Thai cuisine and toast the start of what will be an IMG_0679unforgettable journey.

Day 2: Bangkok
Named by globally renowned “Travel & Leisure” magazine, as “Worlds Best City” in 2008, 2010 & 2011, Bangkok is gaining recognition for its art, culture, food,
shopping, hospitality and affordability. The city combines some of Asia’s oldest and most elaborately adorned temples with modern shopping malls and skyscrapers – a city that packs in so many sights and attractions you won’t know where to begin. However, your friendly and knowledgeable local leader will give you a helping hand and introduce you to some of Bangkok’s most famous sights – including the impressive Grand Palace (former residence of the Thai monarchy), Wat Phra Kaew (home of the Emerald Buddha) and Wat Po (housing Thailand’s largest reclining Buddha at 46m long and 15m high). Today, we will travel like a local using a number of varied transport options to include klong (or canal) boat, public bus, the Chao Phraya River public ferry and the elevated BTS or Skytrain. Meals included: 1 breakfast

Day 3: River Kwai war history and Hellfire Pass

bridgekwaiThis morning, we drive to Kanchanaburi where we visit the famous Bridge on the River Kwai, Kanchanaburi War Cemetery and JEATH War Museum. We then drive to Hellfire Pass and walk down the cutting dug by Allied POW’s during World War II. Australian, Dutch, British and other allied POW’s, worked 18 hours a day in order to complete the cutting. It took 6 weeks to construct. It was the most difficult cutting to dig as it was the largest rock cutting along the entire railway. There is an excellent museum to explore as part of our stop where you will learn more about the POW’s experience as well as viewing a section of the infamous Burma Death Railway. Meals included: 1 breakfast

Day 4: Ayutthaya rice barge cruise with lunch

Today, we drive through rich farming lands to Ayutthaya, the former capital of old Siam. Now a UNESCO listed World Heritage Site, Ayutthaya was once the thriving capital city of the Kingdom of Siam. In 1765, the Burmese invaded Siam and laid siege to the city for 2 years before eventual victory. Following the victory, the Siamese established a new capital in 1769 in Thonburi on the banks of the Chao Praya River. A few years later, the capital was shifted to the other side of the river where a small village called Bangkok was situated and Thonburi is now a suburb of Bangkok. We board our private rice barge for a two-hour lunch cruise around this ancient city and its major temples. After our cruise, we head to Ban Jorakae, where we spend a night in a traditional Thai teak house. The accommodation is basic; however, it enables you to experience a slice of the life-style of our gracious Thai hosts. Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner

Day 5: Cycling at Sukhothai Historical Park

After an early morning wake-up call to offer alms to the monks, we drive through the central plains of Thailand – the major rice producing region of the country (approximately 5-6 hours) to Sukhothai. Being Thailand’s first capital, Sukhothai is historically known as ‘The Dawn of Happiness’ and up until the early 13th century it was an outpost on the edge of a Khmer empire that stretched across much of the region. The Khmers were ousted in 1238 and the ensuing period of the Sukhothai kingdom is often referred to as the Golden Age. This was the era where Thai culture, identity and institutions were first developed, particularly under the rule of King Ramkhamhaeng who is credited with, amongst his many achievements, developing the current-day Thai written script which he based on the ancient Khmer and Mon scripts. It was also during this period that the Thais adopted the Ceylonese school of Therevada Buddhism, still the main religion in Thailand today. Some of the finest Thai antiques, Buddha images and ceramic pieces date from this period. After the decline of Sukhothai, the historical site remained deserted for centuries before major restoration began in 1979. This afternoon, we will visit the Sukhothai Historical Park at the Ramkhamhaeng National Museum to see its impressive collection of artifacts; we then hop on our bicycles for a ride around the temples and other archaeological relics. We’ll also visit Wat Si Chum to see the much photographed 15m brick and stucco seated Buddha. Meals included: 1 breakfast

Day 6: Lampang Elephant Conservation Centren1m2iQx

This morning, we travel approximately 4 hours to Lampang, the former centre of the Thai teak wood trade. We visit Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. Built in Lanna style, it is arguably one of the most beautiful temples in northern Thailand. We then transfer to the Lampang Elephant Conservation Centre, where we take a guided tour of the complex as well as enjoy some free time to relax in the peaceful surroundings. Originally used as beasts of burden in the timber trade, the Thai Elephant’s vocation was brought to an end when the government outlawed logging in 1989. Since then, owners of elephants have been challenged to find ways of earning money to feed the huge beasts and their families. Unfortunately, some have found their way into the illegal logging trade in the Thai-Burma border region where they face many dangers, including landmines. The Elephant Conservation Centre in Lampang was created in 1991 with many functions in mind, but the main goal being maintaining the wellbeing of these magnificent beasts. The Centre cares for ill or injured animals, but it also has programs aimed at re-introducing elephants to the wild. Their latest initiative to raise money for the centre is ‘dung paper’ – that’s right, paper which is made from elephant dung! We stay the night in bungalows at the centre. Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 dinner

Day 7: Chiang Mai city tour

We have an early start as we head into the forest and watch the elephants being gathered from their overnight grazing grounds. After watching them take their morning baths, we see a demonstration of the skills that had made elephants such an integral part of the Thai logging trade. It is a great chance to get close to these magnificent animals. After lunch, it’s an hour’s drive to Chiang Mai (or ‘New City’, as its name translates to in Thai). From here you have free time in Chiang Mai until we meet again on Day 11 for your airport transfer.  Meals included: 1 breakfast

Day 11-14: 3 nights on the beaches of PhuketDSC00101

This morning, we fly to Phuket and transfer to the beach resort area called Kata.  We then spend the next 3 nights at the hotel. This idealistic location is perfect for either relaxing on the beach or by the pool in this tropical paradise. It is also a launching pad to explore the outer islands. We recommend day trip to explore Phangna Bay, famous for its ‘James Bond Island’ and fantastic karst scenery.

Your journey finishes after breakfast on Day 13. Meals included: 4 breakfasts, 1 lunch