This itinerary includes 2 nights and 1 full day in Bangkok. Our accommodation and included activities are in the “Old City”. We do not visit the “newer city” with this itinerary. The newer city is the main business district with a variety of parks, restaurants, and shopping malls. It can be accessed via taxi and other modes of public transportation. Transportation times vary depending on the time of day.
Generally speaking, there is limited time to explore all that Bangkok has to offer. We recommend arriving into Bangkok before the trip’s start date if you are interested in exploring more of Thailand’s capital.
Fitting the floating markets into the itinerary is rather difficult. The two main floating markets, Damnoen Saduak and Amphawa are about 60 miles from Bangkok. The drive is up to 2 hours, that’s if there is minimal traffic (not common). The best time to visit is in the early morning, so if you want to visit you would have to forego the included activities on Day 2.
We recommend that you arrive into Bangkok a day or 2 days before the trip’s start date if you would like to include this activity into your Thailand experience. You would also need to organize your own transportation and tour.
Fitting the railway this into the itinerary is rather difficult. This destination is about 50 miles from Bangkok. The drive is roughly 1.5 hours with minimal traffic.
If you are interested in visiting the Maeklong Railway Market you would have to forego the included activities on Day 2. We also suggest that if you choose to visit then you combine this market tour with a trip to the Amphawa Floating Market. As a reminder, you would need to organize this tour on your own as it is not included in the itinerary.
Travelers who opt to not ride a bicycle can choose to either walk to each temple or rent a tuk-tuk for the afternoon for a cost of about 200-300 thb ($7-10 USD).
A tuk-tuk is an motorized rickshaw that seats 3-5 people depending on the size.
Yes, however please be respectful and not overly aggressive. Bargaining for lower prices with the shop vendors can be exhilarating and lots of fun, plus a whole new style of shopping for many of us.
The group travels on the second class, air-conditioned sleeper train. Each car has 40 individual beds with a curtain that can be closed for privacy. The beds consist of either a lower or upper berth, bunk bed style. Luggage is stored on racks in the isle next to one’s bed. The travel time is approximately 12 hours.
No. Train tickets are pre-booked by our team and the beds are assigned upon ticket purchase. Bedding selection is random and is based on availability of tickets. If you are assigned an upper berth and have concerns, it is best to ask another traveler in the group to switch beds.
Yes. Ice is produced in the same factories where the water is filtered. Ice is then shipped to restaurants, shops and local vendors. A common rule is to only drink ice that has a hole in the center.
Yes. We have made arrangements with a guesthouse in Ayutthaya where we can rest and shower. The guesthouse provides a towel and liquid body soap. The bathrooms are part of a common showering area but are individual stalls to allow for privacy. The guesthouse also has an open veranda with hammocks, chairs and cushions for relaxation.
Each accommodation has allocated luggage storage areas that are monitored by their staff. After preparing a day bag with your gear, you can store your luggage in these areas until rooms are ready to check in.
20 kg (44 lbs) for checked luggage and 7 kg (15 lbs) for your carry-on bag. You can then carry one personal item onto the plane as well. Most domestic airlines will not allow passengers to purchase additional weight at the check in counters and if they do it will be for an extremely high price. So be smart and pack light!
When Thai families eat dinner they do not order individual dishes for each person. Instead they order several dishes to share and then a big bowl of rice to be portioned out.
A common practice is to order a curry, a soup, a vegetable and then Thai salad. For most of our group meals we follow a similar style as a way to give everyone an opportunity to taste the different varieties of dishes.
Yes, there will be options for travelers to select cuisine other than Asian food. Chiang Mai will provide the best options for multiple cuisines. We also eat at restaurants along the way that have basic western dishes like spaghetti, pizza and hamburgers on the menu.
From April through October, this trip visits Railay Beach in Krabi province. Railay Beach is one of Thailand's most traveled to destinations. During this time of year there are less crowds as it’s considered the off-season. It is well known for its limestone karsts jutting out of the water and various recreational activities: rock climbing, viewpoint hikes, kayaking and paddleboarding. Rock climbing is an included activity on this itinerary. Railay beach has a lively atmosphere with lots of restaurants and nightlife options. We choose not to visit Railay Beach during the peak season as it can be overcrowded.
From November through March, this trip visits Khlong Muang beach in Krabi province. Khlong Muang is a quieter, remote area home to a majority Muslim population. The beachfront is less crowded and the surrounding community offers travelers a glimpse into the local life of southern Thailand. Recreational activities such as kayaking and paddleboarding are available on the beachfront and at Ao Thalane. Rock climbing is not included in this itinerary but a hike to Ngorn Nak-Hang Nak (Dragon Crest) mountain is included where you can see a panoramic view of Phang Nga bay and limestone karsts from the summit.
We generally recommend $300-350 USD. Below is a basic breakdown:
-7 dinners and 3 lunches are included.
-A basic Thai dish for lunch can be anywhere from $2-4 and dinners range from $6-10. Alcohol excluded.
-Optional activities range from $10 for yoga to $60 for private paddle boarding tours.
-Clothing at markets range from $3-10 depending on your style.
-Iced coffees and teas typically cost $2.
-We suggest tipping vendors for certain activities an average of $3 per activity (elephant sanctuary guide, island hopping guide, cooking class instructor and masseuses).
Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Railay are all home to lively nightlife!
Krabi also has relaxed bars where you can grab a drink casually.
There will be no shortage of nightlife on this trip.
Everyday purchases in Thailand are cash transactions. Credit cards are not accepted at most restaurants unless the bill is more than $10-15 USD. Additionally it is common for a 3% surcharge to be added for credit card transactions.
A majority of commerce takes place in open markets and small street vendors where cash rules the world.
Thailand's distinct regions have varying climates making all year round a good time to visit. However, the best time to travel is during the cool and dry season from late October through February. The hottest months of the year are March and April.
Travelers are often wary of the wet season which is at its peak during July and August. However, rain showers do not last long, usually occurring during early afternoon and then the sun comes out and dries everything off. What’s great about the wet season is all the landscapes turn green and all those delicious fruits are in season!
The lighter the better! If you only have a rolling suitcase that will work, but if you can get your hands on a more mobile bag, like a large backpack, that would be better. We take all forms of transportation and the pavement on the roads can be covered with potholes.
You'll also want a daypack for your personal gear, food, and drinks for the day.
The hike is a high physical level. It requires 2-3 hours of uphill hiking on trail and dirt road terrain. Groups typically spend 5-6 hours on this day to complete the hike to the summit and head back down to the trail-head. We require a minimum of 2 liters of water to be carried on this hike. Though it is challenging, when you reach the summit you are rewarded with a panoramic 360-degree view; one of the best views in all of Thailand.
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