See the best that Thailand has to offer its visitors with this exciting tour! Start with discovering the charming Bangkok, from the Golden Buddha, the Reclining Buddha to Grand Palace and Thai houses, each speaks a different story about the Thai’s life and belief. Visit Ayutthaya, where lies the impressive Ayutthaya Historical Park with hundreds of Buddha statues. Explore ancient grand temples in Chiang Mai, together with a special trip to Elephant Nature Park and a cooking-class experience. Travel to Phuket for gorgeous beaches, striking landscape and the historic Old Town with remarkable buildings, this tropical island is a full package for any travelers, not to mention its stunning neighbor islands!
- Day 1: Bangkok Arrival
- Day 2: Bangkok tour of Grand Palace and Wat Pho
- Day 3: Bangkok – Ayutthaya Day tour
- Day 4: Bangkok – Flight to Chiang Mai
- Day 5: Chiang Mai – Day trip to Elephant Nature Park
- Day 6: Chiang Mai Half-day Cooking Class
- Day 7: Chiang Mai – Flight to Phuket
- Day 8: Day trip to Phang Nga Bay by Sea Canoe
- Day 9: Phuket full day city tour
- Day 10: Phuket free day
- Day 11: Phuket free day
- Day 12: Phuket - Flight to Bangkok – Departure
- This itinerary is a privately guided tour, designed just to show you what is possible.
- We can tailor this trip, it's inclusions and the accommodations, to meet your requirements, budget, and interests.
Bangkok ArrivalDay 1
Arrive in Bangkok, be welcomed by your private guide and driver, and then transferred to your hotel. Check in and enjoy your time of leisure. All meals will be on your own arrangement.
Overnight in Bangkok
Bangkok tour of Grand Palace and Wat PhoDay 2
After breakfast at the hotel, you will start to discover Bangkok with your private tour guide and driver.
A ride through interesting parts of Bangkok will take you to your first stop at the Golden Buddha. The statue, which can be disassembled into nine pieces, was housed in a wat in Ayutthaya until the mid 19th century, and its provenance from Ayutthaya excludes the possibility of it having been made after about 1750.
Your next visit will be to the Reclining Buddha.
The chapel and the reclining Buddha (Phra Buddhasaiyas,} were built by Rama III in 1832. The image of the reclining Buddha represents the entry of Buddha into Nirvana and the end of all reincarnations. The posture of the image is referred to as sihasaiyas, the posture of a sleeping or reclining lion.
After lunch, you will visit the Grand Palace. Probably the most visited and remembered landmark of Thailand, the Grand Palace in Bangkok is where every visitor must pay a visit at least once in their lifetime. The Grand Palace served as a significant royal residence until 1925 and is now used for ceremonial purposes only.
Explore the Coronation Hall, Funeral Hall and the famous Emerald Buddha.
Your trip will continue with a long-tail boat ride along the canal to see Thai houses and typical rural life as well as a visit to the Temple of Dawn before ending your day.
Overnight in Bangkok.
Bangkok – Ayutthaya Day tourDay 3
After breakfast at the hotel, you’ll drive north to Ayutthaya.
Your first visit will be to Wat Phu Khao Thong, originally built in 1387 by the second king of the Ayothaya kingdom, an impressive monument in North-western part of Ayutthaya. When the Burmese took over Ayutthaya in 1569, the Burmese king built a Mon-style chedi (or pyramid) on top of the former temple to celebrate his victory over Ayutthaya and the Siamese.
Continue to the Ayutthaya Historical Park and visit the ancient palace ground. Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, once a royal temple lying beside the Grand Palace, was once the most significant temple during Ayutthaya period. Adjacent to Wat Phra Sri Sanphet is Viharn Phra Mongkolbopit, an impressive building that houses a large seated bronze Buddha image. Its rebuilt pristine hall was believed to be a replica of the old Assembly Hall of Ayutthaya.
After a delicious Thai lunch, you’ll move on to Wat Lokaya Sutha to see the largest reclining Buddha of Ayutthaya at 8 meters high and 42 meters long. The Buddha image was made of brick and covered with plaster.
You will continue to Wat Mahathat, a classic temple ruin of Ayutthaya and famous for the picturesque Buddha head engulfed by the Bodhi tree roots. The foundation size, remaining prangs, and towers attest the significance during its time.
Late in the afternoon, you’ll take your ride back to Bangkok and check in the hotel for the night.
Overnight in Bangkok
Bangkok – Flight to Chiang MaiDay 4
After breakfast and check-out of the hotel, you will take a short flight to Chiang Mai. Get welcomed in Chiang Mai Airport then transferred to your hotel.
Take a Chiangmai City tour. The tour includes Wat Pra Singh, which is one of over 200 ancient Buddhist temples located around the city, one of the most well-regarded examples of Lanna architecture; and Wat Chedi Luang – The temple is the within site of an enormous pagoda, originally 280 feet high, and which was partially destroyed by an earthquake in 1545. At one time, Wat Chedi Luang housed the revered Emerald Buddha image now enshrined in Bangkok’s Wat Phra Kaeo.
Back to the hotel in the late afternoon and check in. You may want to discover the Chiang Mai Night Market after dinner time.
Overnight in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai – Day trip to Elephant Nature ParkDay 5
Today you will enjoy a full day visit to Elephant Nature Park; a natural home and sanctuary for elephants, buffalos, dogs, cats, birds and many other rescued animals.
Your visit will start with a picturesque drive through the rural countryside to Elephant Nature Park. You will hear the personal stories of rescued and orphaned elephants. See how they became a proud herd and free from abuse for the first time in their lives.
Many will find their visit to Elephant Nature Park rewarding and very relaxing. Observe free roaming elephants (no riding), and other rescued animals enjoying the natural surroundings of our sanctuary.
Your visit helps support our regional projects and offers an invaluable opportunity of helping elephant conservation.
Overnight in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai Half-day Cooking ClassDay 6
Today you will learn to cook some of the most famous Thai dishes at Asia Scenic – one of the best cooking schools in Chiang Mai.
After you select the menus you want to cook, you’ll get started with a local market tour to select the freshest and best ingredients for your menu.
Enjoy the guidance of the chef and prepare your own meal, then evaluate yourself by having what you have cooked for lunch!
The afternoon will be free for your own leisure.
Overnight in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai – Flight to PhuketDay 7
Today you’ll take your flight back to Bangkok, then another connecting flight to Phuket.
Arrive in Phuket, be welcomed by your guide and transferred to your hotel. Check in and enjoy this cheerful beach city!
Overnight at Phuket
Day trip to Phang Nga Bay by Sea CanoeDay 8
Phang Nga Bay is famous for its limestone “Sea Mountains”. On your trip today, you will discover the flora of this amazing landscape at Koh Panak and Koh Hong while learning more about the bay. You’ll pass along Koh Hong on the way to Koh Tapu and pay a visit to Pinggan Island.
You will explore Tapu Island, also known as “James Bond Island” the movie “The Man with the Golden Gun” was partially filmed. Lunch will be served on board.
Enjoy the sea and weather. Transfer back to your hotel in the late afternoon.
Overnight in Phuket
Phuket full day city tourDay 9
You’ll start your day with a drive along beach roads through Patong, Karon, Kata, and Rawai. Visit the Three Beaches viewpoint where you can take in a great vista of the beautiful bays of Kata Noi, Kata, Karon and Kho Pu Island, at one of the best scenic spots on the island.
Explore Old Phuket Town; the historical district is a must-see in the city. Check out the yesteryear of Phuket’s old Sino-Portuguese buildings, built more than 100 years ago, these buildings portray Thai characteristics and heritage although architecturally a blend of Chinese and European styles.
Enjoy scenic views from Khao Rang Hill. A great view of Phuket Town, the southern part of the island, and some of the offshore islands can be obtained by going to the top of Kao Rang Hill, on the city’s northwest side.
After lunch, you’ll start the afternoon tour by visiting Wat Chalong, Phuket’s most beautiful and renowned monastery.
Savor a quick break to visit a cashew factory to taste a famous local product of Phuket. As a result of Phuket’s favourable climate, the cashew nuts here are of better quality than those grown elsewhere in the world. Various kinds of cashew products are on sale.
After that, you will see the Phuket Butterfly Garden & Insectarium which is the most authentic butterfly garden in Thailand. The butterfly enclosure encompasses about 1 acre with more than 10,000 free-flying butterflies per month. In the breeding room, you will be surprised how a small caterpillar can transform into a pupa and finally a butterfly.
If time permits, you may tour another destination such as the Phuket Aquarium, Phuket Seashell Museum, Phuket Zoo, or Snake Show
At around 18:00 PM, you will have the opportunity to witness the brilliance of Phuket’s sunset from a hilltop overlooking the famous Phromthep Cape, which is situated adjacent to Nai Han Beach and Rawai Beach, at the southernmost point of Phuket.
Back to the hotel to rest for the night.
Overnight in Phuket
Phuket free dayDay 10
Today will be at your own leisure to enjoy the beach.
Overnight in Phuket
Phuket free dayDay 11
Another free day to enjoy the beach.
Overnight in Phuket
Inquire this trip
We are a member of:
We are a fully licensed company:
License No: 01-327/2014/TCDL-GPLHQT
This tour is built upon our firsthand knowledge & experience, offering you the best choices available. The price of this trip varies depending on the number of people in your party, dates of departure, and availability of ground services. Please click on REQUEST A FREE QUOTE (above) and supply the required information, enabling us to send you your personalized quote within 24 hours!
Note: Amendments CAN be made to this tour to suite your requirements.
- Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels
- Private Vehicles and Drivers
- Private English Speaking Guides (Other languages if available, upon request)
- Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
- Entrance fees for all mentioned sights visited
- Service Charge & Government Taxes
What’s Not Included?
- Your International Flights to and from Thailand
- Thailand entry Visa Fees (contact us for further information)
- Personal Expenses (such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.)
- Any bank fees or charges at your end
- Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary
- Personal Travel Insurance
- Tips for guides and drivers
How to Plan a successful Trip to Thailand, Step-by-Step
Why to Visit Thailand
Where to Go
When to Go
Obtain a Thailand Visa
How to book a tour
Packing and Luggage Allowance
Why to Visit Thailand
Thailand, the wondrous kingdom, the most popular tourist destination in Southeast Asia, and the only Southeast Asian nation that has never been colonized by a European power. With endless attractions for visitors of all budgets and interests, Thailand is the paramount beacon beckoning travelers from all over the world to Southeast Asia.
For those wanting to learn more about Thai culture, take a stroll through the impressive Buddhist temples, and join a cooking class to learn Thai culinary arts. More of a nature person? Explore the spectacular islands and bask on world-class beaches, see some exotic wildlife, and tour the country’s landscapes. Pattaya, Phuket and Koh Samui offer life in paradise with their miles of pristine sand and crystal water. Looking for a more modern experience? Shopaholics will find Bangkok a heaven with its millions of product types, brand names and prices at every corner, either at an affordable market or a luxury mall. The nightlife is also guaranteed to please the party crowd. Most importantly, everywhere you go, you will be warmly greeted by the Thai locals, whose dazzling smiles established Thailand as the ‘land of smiles’.
From five-star pampering, adrenaline-fueled activities, shopping in stylish boutiques, sun tanning on some of the best beaches in the world, to taste the fantastic cuisine, Thailand has something for everyone.
Where to Go
Most popular sites of Thailand
• Bangkok – visit temples by day and bar hop by night
• Phuket, Pattaya and Koh Samui – relax on beaches with white sands and crystal-clear waters
• Hill tribes in the north – trek with the locals
When to Go
The climate varies throughout this country, makes it possible to visit all year round. The best time to visit Thailand is between November and February when the weather is at its best. Much of the country experiences a typically tropical climate consisting of two seasons: dry and wet.
In northern Thailand, the dry season with cooler temperatures falls between November and May, with heavy rainfall between June and October.
In the south, the climate differs between the east and west coasts. The weather on the east coast is good for most of the year, with the lowest rainfall in January and February, and the highest in November. The west coast is more favorable during the winter months when diving and snorkeling will be at its best.
Obtain a Thailand Visa
Passengers arriving via an international airport will be given a 30-day visa exemption stamp, however, those with back-to-back visa exempt entries might be questioned. As of December 31st, 2016, the number of visa exemption entries at a land border has been limited to two per the calendar year, for a maximum of 30 days each time. For those who would prefer to get a visa, a valid tourist visa offers a maximum of a 60-day stay.
The Thai visa photo criteria are 6 cm high x 4 cm wide with a bright background color.
The citizens of the following countries do not need a visa to enter Thailand for a certain amount of time:
- Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, South Korea (maximum stay of up to 90 days)
- Laos, Macau, Mongolia, Russia, Vietnam (maximum stay of up to 30 days)
- Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Brunei, Belgium, Canada, Czech, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malaysia(unlimited), Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Oman, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Slovak, Slovenia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, UAE, United Kingdom and USA
(maximum stay of up to 30 days when entering Thailand at an airport, plus 2 extra 30-day exemptions at a land border in a calendar year)
Visa on Arrival (VOA)
The citizens of countries that are eligible for a VOA to enter Thailand can NOT enter Thailand at any Thai / Cambodian border: Andorra, Bhutan, Bulgaria, China, Cyprus, Ethiopia, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan.
All other foreign citizens must obtain a Thai visa from their nearest Thai embassy/consulate.
Note: It is recommended to keep a copy or record with your camera, your passport, visa, most recent entry stamp, and your embarkation card.
How to book a tour
Booking your holiday with Indochina Pioneer cannot be easier! Follow our 3 simple steps:
Step 1: Browse our website www.indochinapioneer.com for tours, cruises and other destination information.
Should you find something that matches your interest, fill in the REQUEST A FREE QUOTE forms. Can’t find something that fits your needs? Then fill the BUILD YOUR OWN TRIP or CONTACT US form and click SUBMIT.
Then sit back! One of our travel experts will get back to you shortly with our customized package and most favorable offer!
In a hurry? Don’t like filling forms? Then call +84 982 116 630 (Mr. Lam) or +84 983 145 799 (Mr. Quyen). We’re available 24/7 and would be more than happy to talk! Certainly, your request will be carefully noted and a nicely crafted package with a pleasant price will follow!
Step 2: Reviewing/ Customizing our offer!
It’s your holiday so everything should be exactly what you want! We encourage your careful review of what we offer, letting us know what changes you would like to make. We’ll be more than happy to fine-tune the tour to fit best your interests, budget and time! This step may require several emails/call exchanges until perfect!
Step 3: Confirming/Paying/ Packing for the trip!
Once you’re satisfied with the customized tour, please let us know and Indochina Pioneer will need a few working hours to place reservations for all of the tour services. As soon as the availability and reservations of the services are confirmed, we will request a deposit. Please refer our Payment Guide for more details.
Once your deposit is received by Indochina Pioneer, we will send you the service voucher which confirms all the services of the tour and provides ground contact details and a guide for the final payment schedule.
And then you start counting down the day for your most fabulous trip!
Booking Amendment & Cancellations:
Booking Amendment: Flexibility is our strongest point. You can amend your booking even after it is made. Just contact your salesperson or contact us at email@example.com with your booking number. Our reservations team is glad to amend your booking with your preferable alternatives. Please kindly note that you will be responsible for any change of the final price caused by your amendment requests.
Travel smart with Indochina Pioneer!
Packing and Luggage Allowance
Packing Checklist – Be sure to check them all 😉
- Travel documents (passport, visas, travel insurance certificate, air tickets, tour voucher)
- Money (cash, credit card, debit card, traveler’s cheques and money pouch)
- Day pack for your personal needs during the day
- Camera and extra memory cards and batteries
- Cell phone and cell phone charger
- Laptop charger (if you are bringing your laptop)
- Travel plug/international adapter
- Medication (including a doctor’s letter if you are carrying a large amount of medication)
- Prescription glasses / contacts and if necessary, contact lens solution
Best to bring along
- First aid kit
- Insect repellent
- Refillable water bottle with filter
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Comfortable clothing, either light or heavy options, depending on the season you are travelling
- Clothes suitable for visiting temples (long pants / skirts, long sleeved tops)
- Waterproof jacket / raincoat / umbrella
- Hat & sunglasses
- Bathing suit
- Ear plugs & eye mask
- Sleep sheet for home stays / trains
- Lightweight travel towel
- Local language phrasebook
We are committed to giving our customers unforgettable experiences in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and beyond, not just something staged for tourists. Read reviews written by our customers about their experiences in Indochina after they have returned home. These include the ratings and comments on attractions, guides, activities, hotels and food.
"22 day tour of Vietnam and Siem Reap"
My husband, adult children and I have just returned from one of the best trips of our lifetimes. After numerous requests from me to change, add or tweak the day-to-day tours suggested to me, Hang (Lizzie) from Indochina Pioneer found the perfect combination for us. She is a knowledgeable, patient and gifted organizer. I couldn’t be happier with her professionalism and attention to detail. As we toured the country, we were inspired and educated by our guides Nam, Dat, Larry and Pascuale. We hiked through jungles, ate marvelous food, spent time on the waters of Halong Bay and Phu Quoc Island, we rode bikes through villages and explored the busy streets of Hanoi, Hoi an and Ho Chi Min City, we visited temples and war monuments. Every detail was carefully outlined by Hang and if we wanted to make last-minute changes to the day, our guides were happy to accommodate. I would highly recommend Indochina Pioneer. If I have the good fortune to return, I would use them again. Gold stars all around! Well done Hang & team!
We are so grateful to Ryan Mac and the Indochina Pioneer team for organizing the perfect family vacation for us in northern and central Vietnam. We saw places and had experiences we never would have without them. They made the trip easy and fun. We will be using them again!
"Vietnam and Cambodia"
We booked our trip to Cambodia and Vietnam with Indochina Pioneer, and I highly recommend their local expertise and professionalism. This was the first time we have worked with an in-country travel agency for a customized trip, and the partnership helped us create an amazing vacation.
I contacted Indochina Pioneer and was assigned a Travel Specialist, Elly, who worked through our initial trip thoughts and gave us some additional suggestions. She was very responsive, listened to the type of trip that we wanted, and always followed through. Her professionalism built our confidence in a successful trip.
We had the agency set up drivers, tour guides and hotels based on our personal qualifications. Each stop we had a new, local guide who understood the history of the area and helped us navigate to the local sights. Because of the guides, we were able to experience not only the popular tourist areas, but also go to more obscure sights that gave us a local experience.
We really loved the local food tours in Vietnam because our guides took us around the cities to a non-tourist restaurant. We also had three bike trips, so instead of driving and seeing the countryside pass us by, we rode our bikes.
I highly recommend working in Indochina Pioneer for your next trip to Asia!
"Great tour company"
We toured Siem Reap and Hanoi. Our tour guide and driver in Siem Reap were perfect. We were very happy with the hotel choice as well. In Vietnam, we went to Halong Bay on a junk boat cruise. Absolutely perfect!
KimThetford, United Kingdom
"Best Cambodia trip ever!"
Sally created the most enjoyable trip to Cambodia for our family. Everything was wonderful from the tours, food, hotels, guides and entertainment! We didn’t have to worry about a thing. Everything was planned so well and traveling between Phnom Phen and Siem Reap was so convenient. The boutique hotels were beautiful and relaxing. We’d definitely use Indochina again and can’t wait to plan our next trip.
"10 Day Vietnam Tour"
Booked with Indochina Pioneer for our trip to Vietnam. Amazing service from booking to arrival and all tour guides and drivers are exceptionally good – professional, knowledgeable and friendly. All tour guides have a good knowledge of English. – drivers not necessarily. Loving our trip!!!
"Indochina Pioneer tour of Vietnam and Cambodia"
We used Indochina Pioneer to visit several cities spanning north, central, and southern Vietnam as well as Siem Reap, Cambodia. The tour company made all of our transfers and visits seamless. It was very helpful with small children to have a driver and a guide to each location. It really took the stress out of the trip and I would highly recommend this company.
"Personalized tour of Vietnam and Cambodia"
Sally was so helpful setting this all up and taking care of us along the way. The tour guides were fantastic in both countries. Everything was taken care of for us and the accommodations were in great parts of town – especially Hanoi. I have already and will continue to recommend to friends.
ScottCrows Nest, Australia
"Thank you Tran Minh Tuan Mr Quoc"
Mr. Tran Minh Tuan & Mr. Quoc guide and driver in Hue and HoiAn have been fabulous, informative friendly, helpful and great companies. The whole trip booked via Indochina pioneer and so far fantastic
"Best Tour Guide Service ever!"
My partner and I felt so safe and comfortable on our tour. The tour guide and driver were so accommodating. I had so much fun and I actually miss it so much. Will be using the same tour company on my next trip!