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Thailand, Cambodia & Laos - World Heritage Sites (13 days)

The World Heritage Sites in three Southeast Asian nations are included on this remarkable adventure.  Experience the majesty of past dynasties including Ayutthaya, Angkor Wat & Luang Prabang.


2017 - 2018 Departure Dates & Costs

Departures daily with minimum of 2 persons
Tour cost: $ 2,760 USD from Bangkok (includes 2 inter-Asia flights)

Customized departures to suit any budget and length of travel can be organized for daily departures. Contact us for details.


Itinerary: Thailand, Cambodia & Laos | World Heritage Sites

THAILAND

DAY 1: BANGKOK - AYUTTHAYA - LOPBURI - PHITSANULOK (B,L)
Early morning pick up, drive to Bang Pa In for a scenic boat trip to Ayutthaya. Visit Wat Yai Chaya Mongkol and the ancient ruins of Wat Chai Wattanaram. Continue to Lopburi, where we will travel around the city in a pedaled rickshaw. After lunch continue to Phitsanulok. Overnight at Topland Hotel (or similar, throughout).

DAY 2: PHITSANULOK - SUKHOTHAI - LAMPANG (B,L)
Visit Wat Maha That and its highly revered Buddha statue, Phra Buddha Jinaraj. Drive to Sukhothai and visit the ancient ruins at the historical park and Wat Sri Chum with its gigantic Buddha statue. Continue to Sri Satchanalai for lunch. Upon arrival in Lampang we will take a tour of the old city on horse carriages. Also visit Baan Sao Nak, a 100-year old teakwood mansion, and Wat Chedi Sao, whose name is derived from 20 stupas erected on the temple grounds. Monks at this temple prepare medicines from herbs and plants, which promise to cure a number of remedies. Overnight Lampang River Lodge.

DAY 3: LAMPANG - PHAYAO - CHIANG RAI (B,L)
After a visit to the morning market, drive to Phayao with the biggest natural lake in Thailand. Proceed to Chiang Rai. After lunch, visit the hill tribe community project at Ban Lorcha. Drive via Mae Sai, the northernmost Thai town to the Golden Triangle, where the borders of Thailand, Myanmar and Laos converge. A boat trip on the Mekong River and return to Chiang Rai. Overnight at Rimkok Resort.

DAY 4: CHIANG RAI (B)
Pick up from your hotel for the Golden Triangle and Hill Tribe Villages tour with car and driver. If you decide to take a boat cruise on the Mekong as part of the day or enter and sites that have an entrance fee these are additional (nominal) and can be paid locally. Lunch on own - your guide will advise on some area restaurants. Return to your hotel. Accommodation at Rimkok Resort.

DAY 5: CHIANG RAI - CHIANG MAI (B,L,D)
Early morning depart for Chiang Mai and visit the local handicraft centers around Chiang Mai. Lunch. In the afternoon visit Wat Doi Suthep, a famous landmark of the city, tucked away in the mountains at an elevation of 1,056 meters. The temple is reached by climbing 290 steps. In the evening you may wish to add a Kantoke dinner with a presentation of traditional dances from Northern Thailand. If you decide to include this, the local guide will collect 500.00 Baht (USD 17.00 net per person) locally. Transfers to the dinner are included. You may also wish to visit the night market. Overnight at the Empress Hotel.

DAY 6: CHIANG MAI - SIEM REAP (CAMBODIA) (B)
Morning at leisure. Afternoon transfer from hotel to Chiang Mai airport for the flight to Siem Reap (some days are direct and other days there is a stop in Bangkok). Arrive Bangkok Airport, connecting flight to Siem Reap. On arrival in Siem Reap you will be met and transferred to the Angkor Century Hotel for 4 nights.

CAMBODIA

DAY 7: SIEM REAP (B,D)
Visit the Roluos Group. The monuments of Roluos, which served as the capital of Indravarman I (reigned 877-89), are among the earliest large, permanent temples built by the Khmers and mark the beginning of Khmer classical art. Preah Ko was erected by Indravarman I in the late 9th century and dedicated by the King to his ancestors in 880. Bakong is the largest and most interesting of the Roluos group temples, with its active Buddhist monastery just to the north of the east entrance. Lolei was built on an islet in the center of a large reservoir (now rice fields) by Yasovarman I, the founder to the first city at Angkor. Afternoon at leisure. Dinner.

DAY 8: SIEM REAP (B,D)
In the morning, visit the most famous of all the temples on the plain of Angkor: Angkor Wat. 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. Angkor Wat's five towers symbolize Meru - five peaks - the enclosed wall represents the mountains at the edge of the world and the surrounding moat, the ocean beyond.

In the afternoon, visit the South Gate (with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk), the ancient capital of Angkor Thom (12th century), Bayon Temple, unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara, the Royal Enclosure, Phimeanakas, the Elephants Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King. Sunset at Angkor Wat. Dinner.

DAY 9: SIEM REAP (B,D)

After breakfast, transfer to Banteay Srei temple (10th C), regarded as the jewel in the crown of Classical Khmer Art. Continue to Ta Prohm, one of the area's most beautiful temples. Ta Prohm has been relatively untouched since it was discovered and retains much of its mystery. In the afternoon, you continue your temple visits to Preah Khan. Built by the King Jayavarman VII, Preah Khan is, like Ta Prohm, a place of towered enclosures and shoulder hugging corridors. Unlike Ta Prohm, however, the temple of Prea Khan is in a reasonable state of preservation and ongoing restoration efforts should maintain and even improve this situation. See Neak Pean where a fountain is built in the middle of a pool (representing the paradisiacal Himalayan mountain-lake), Ta Som and Banteay Samre, built in the third quarter of the 12th century. This complex consists of a central temple with four wings preceded by a hall and accompanied by two libraries, the southern example being remarkably well preserved. Two concentric walls enclose the ensemble. Dinner.

LAOS

DAY 10: SIEM REAP - LUANG PRABANG (B,D)
Breakfast at hotel. Morning at leisure. Afternoon transfer to Siem Reap International Airport and departure to Luang Prabang. Meet upon arrival at Luang Prabang airport, transfer and check-in at the hotel. The crown jewel of Laos and former Lanexang, Luang Prabang, is perhaps the best-preserved traditional city in South East Asia. Magical and charming, it has preserved its long-standing reputation as a stronghold of Lao culture with its splendid natural scenery and sense of timelessness. In 1995 UNESCO voted Luang Prabang as a World Heritage City. Dinner at hotel. Accommodation at the Ramayana Hotel for 3 nights.

DAY 11: LUANG PRABANG (B,D)
Day of sightseeing in and around Luang Prabang. We include a visit to Vat Xieng Thong, considered as the most beautiful temple. The sim of the Vat represents the classic Luang Prabang temple architecture with roofs that sweep low to the ground. In the compound stand several small chapels housing bronze Buddha images, which were displayed in Paris in 1911. Near the East gate stands the Royal Funeral Chapel. Inside are an impressive 12-meter high funeral chariot and various funeral urns of each Royal Family's member. The gilt panel on the exterior of the chapel depicts a semi-erotic episode from Ramayana. Continue to visit Vat Visoun, the site of an impressive stupa, That Makmo, stylistically more Srilankalese than Lao. Then walk to the nearby Vat Aham, which is one of the city's major tutelary shrines, dedicated to Deveta Luang (spirit) Pu Gneu Ya Gneu (ancestors). Climb to Vat Phousi hill for an outstanding view over the city and sunset there. Dinner at the Indochina Restaurant.

DAY 12: LUANG PRABANG - BAN XONGJA (B,D)
Excursion by car to north through beautiful landscape. One the way visits Hatkho, a weaving village and Ban Taidam (Black Tai) where local people still breed silk worms. Continue on to Ban Chongja, a Hmoung Village stuated in a highland area on the way to Oudomxai province Hmoung minority people are amoung the three main ethnic groups in Laos who have kept their traditional way of living. Return to Pak moung for lunch by own arrangement. Admire the beautiful scenery along Num Ou River. Explore the daily life stile local people. Return to Lung Prabang. Farewell dinner at the Elephant Restaurant.

DAY 13: LUANG PRABANG - BANGKOK (B)
Bangkok Airways 946 3:20 pm/5:05 pm
Visit the National Museum (former King's Palace) displaying a collection of personal artifacts of the Royal Family: photos, musical equipment and gifts received from foreign countries. Next, visit the Central Market where ethnic minorities come daily. Transfer to the airport for departure flight to Bangkok.

Pre and post tour nights can be added on an individual basis.

For a different adventure, it is possible to do a 2-day river journey along the Mekong to reach Luang Prabang.  Hotel accommodation may be subject to change.


Additional information

VISA/ENTRY REQUIREMENTS
Please note that there have been changes to entry requirements for Thailand. Canadian and U.S. passengers arriving overland into Thailand are permitted to stay for up to 15 days without a Visa. Passengers arriving by air are permitted to stay for 30 days. For stays longer than this, passengers will be required to obtain a VISA in advance.

Please call us for further information.