Days
8
Price from
$697AUD

Bangkok = cocktails, markets, cheap fish pedicures. Sukhothai = bicycles, temples. Chiang Mai = more temples, massages, Asian elephants. Doi Mae Salong = relaxation, tea drinking, hilltribe market. Golden Triangle = long-tail boat rides, hilltribe markets, even more temples. Northern Thailand = awesome.

It’s only a quickie, but in that time we’ll get you on a bike, a sleeper train, a songthaew, a taxi, a tuk-tuk and a bus with the locals (if you’re nice they’ll even share their snacks).


Start
Bangkok, Thailand
Finish
Bangkok, Thailand
Country
Thailand
Code
GTEN
Physical rating
Traveller’s rating
38 reviews
Ages
Min 18 , Max 29
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why we love this trip

  • Dumbo isn't the only elephant that needs saving. Travel by private mini van (not in the trunk) to the Friends of the Asian Elephant Hospital and witness the awesome work these guys do on a daily basis.

  • Bike? Check. Shades? Check. Wind in your hair? Check. Sukhothai's Historical Park is the kind of dreamscape you don't have to wake up from. Unless the park closes that is.

  • Swing 'til your winning and zip through the canopies at Flight of the Gabbon, an optional activity that will get your heart racing. This is just another brilliant excuse to act like a cheeky little monkey.

  • Feel like one of the locals on an overnight train from Chiang Mai to Bangkok. Grab some snacks from the on-board vendors, utilise your phrase book and embrace this unique journey.

Is this trip right for you?

  • We visit a number of temples on this trip, which requires a certain level of modesty. Please bring clothes that cover the arms and pants/skirts that go past the knees. A light scarf is also a good idea for covering shoulders and arms when it’s hot.

  • This trip involves some long journeys on the road, lots of public transport (songthaews, public buses) and an overnight train, which can be tiresome. Although conditions are basic, overnight trains are a true Geckos experience and the best way to travel long distances, meet locals and maximise time at your destinations. Occasionally passengers of different genders will be required to share a compartment and/or you'll be sharing with locals or travellers from other groups. For your own security, take a lock for your luggage.

  • As this is a Geckos trip, the majority of activities are optional and you'll have lots of free time. This means you're able to do your own thing at your own pace.

  • Accommodation can be basic but it's always comfortable.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2017 to 31 December 2017. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2016 - 31 December 2016

Welcome to Bangkok, Thailand. There’s a welcome meeting at around 6 pm tonight. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader. If you arrive early perhaps take a riverboat to Chinatown and explore the crowded streets, or head to the magnificent Grand Palace. As one of the world’s largest marketplaces, Chatuchak Market is also a great place to visit. In the evening, maybe indulge yourself with a Thai massage.

Notes: If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Bangkok - Thai Massage - THB250
  • Bangkok - Grand Palace - THB500
  • Bangkok - Temple & River of Kings Urban Adventure - THB2465
  • Bangkok - Tuk Tuk Experience Urban Adventure - THB1790
  • Bangkok - Bangkok by Bike Urban Adventure - THB1904
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
In the morning, take a six-hour local bus to the small city of Sukhothai (which translates to 'Rising of Happiness'). Arrive in the afternoon and head out on a guided cycle tour of Sukhothai’s Historical Park and World Heritage-listed ancient city. Roll your bike around the temples and other archaeological relics within the area. The rest of the day is free for you to do as you please.

Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Sukhothai - Historical Park Bike Tour & Picnic Lunch
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Start the day early with a five-hour drive in a private minivan to Chiang Mai. On the way, stop off at the Friends of the Asian Elephant Hospital in Lampang. This is a non-government organisation that aims to protect and conserve the welfare of elephants both domesticated and wild. Arrive in Chiang Mai late in the afternoon. You'll have the evening free to explore. Perhaps check out the night market for souvenirs and some spicy street food. 

Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Lampang - Friends of the Asian Elephant
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today is a free day to explore. Discover the northern city of Chiang Mai, which features over 120 temples in the centre alone. Take an optional excursion to the temple at the top of Doi Suthep, which offers fantastic views over the city. Perhaps spoil yourself with a traditional Thai massage or try your hand at a local cooking class. You might like to take part in one of our Urban Adventures, such as the 'Mind and Soul' or 'Mae Ping River Experience' day tours. To really get the blood pumping, head to the Flight of the Gibbon and negotiate the zipline and canopy course within the treetops.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Chiang Mai - Flight of the Gibbon zipline - THB3999
  • Chiang Mai - Bicycle tour - THB950
  • Chaing Mai - Baan Thai Cookery School Half Day Course - THB800
  • Chiang Mai - Doi Suthep temple - THB50
  • Chiang Mai - Thai massage - THB200
  • Chiang Mai - Urban Adventures - Mind & Soul - THB2300
  • Chiang Mai - Urban Adventures - Mae Ping River Experience - THB2460
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today travel by public bus and mini van to Doi Mae Salong via Mae Chan (approximately five hours in total). The atmosphere in the charming town of Doi Mae Salong is reminiscent of a small southern Chinese village. It's the perfect place to relax and kick back for the day. The region is famous for its Chinese tea traders, so make sure  you enjoy a cup of tea in a traditional Chinese teahouse overlooking the mountains. Check out the interesting market, which is full of produce and crafts made by hill tribe people. For something a little more adventurous, why not climb up the 719 steps to see the town’s Buddhist temple?
Accommodation
  • Guesthouse (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
In the morning take a three-hour ride in a minivan to the Golden Triangle, which is where the borders of Thailand, Burma and Laos meet. Pay a visit to the House of Opium Museum for a deeper insight into this area's problematic past. Continue your travels for around two hours to Chiang Rai, where you’ll stay the night. Perhaps head to Chiang Rai's night market, which is a great place to pick up some hill tribe handicrafts. 
Accommodation
  • Guesthouse (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Chaing Rai - Opium Museum - THB50
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
This morning visit the impressive Wat Rong Khun (commonly known as the White Temple). Although it can be crowded with tourists, this temple is a modern wonder. Art is continually being added to it. In the afternoon, take a three-and-a-half-hour public bus back to Chiang Mai and board an overnight train for Bangkok (approximately 13 hours). Soft sleeper class trains are used for the overnight journey. The compartments are multi-share with air-conditioning and bunk beds that come with sheets and a pillow. Baggage travels in the carriage with you, and there's a food and drink service available on-board.
Accommodation
  • Overnight sleeper train (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Chiang Rai - Wat Rong Kun (White Temple)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Your train is scheduled to arrive into Bangkok early this morning. Transfer back to the hotel where the trip started. As there are no more activities planned for today, you’re free to depart at any time. If you’re booking flights or any other form of transport out of Bangkok today, please keep in mind that train delays are frequent. We suggest not booking a flight earlier than 2 pm. No accommodation is included in Bangkok at the end of our tour, but there are shared day rooms available for use until midday.

Notes: If you require any additional accommodation (subject to availability), please let us know at least 15 days before the trip.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.

Meals

2 breakfasts

Transport

Aircon bus, Bicycle, Local fan bus, Private mini van, Sleeper train, Songthaew, Tuk-tuk

Accommodation

Guesthouse (3 nights), Hotel (3 nights), Overnight sleeper train (1 night)

Included Activities

  • Sukhothai - Historical Park Bike Tour & Picnic Lunch
  • Lampang - Friends of the Asian Elephant
  • Chiang Rai - Wat Rong Kun (White Temple)

Reviews

Our Northern Thailand At A Glance trips score an average of 4.92 out of 5 based on 38 reviews in the last year.

Northern Thailand at a Glance, November 2016

Jess Sabbatini

Northern Thailand at a Glance, November 2016

Eric Russo

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on this trip, please contact your sales agent if you would like to purchase a single supplement. Please note that on the following nights the supplement is not available: Day 7 Overnight train

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.