Greet Thailand with a few beers, get to know Thailand during a hill tribe trek, and fall in love with Thailand over a romantic, preferably deep-fried meal (which will taste even better after the trek). You won’t want to leave, and that’s OK.
You're officially on holidays. We think that deserves a toast. Our pick for cocktails is Bed Supper Club or Vertigo. Ask your guide for directions or grab your new mates and attempt to navigate the Skytrain.
Arrive in Bangkok and get to grips with this awesome city. There is a Welcome Meeting on our first day at approximately 6 pm.
Temples, markets and food. That's Chiang Mai in a nutshell. You could take a cooking class if you want, or go temple-hopping, get a massage or watch the sunset from Doi Suthep. You could probably do all of the above, as long as you save time for the night bazaar (which happens at night).
Join your leader on a walk through the old city
Undertake one of many optional activities available
Hire a bicycle, climb to Doi Suthep temple, sign up for a Thai cooking class or loosen those muscles with some traditional Thai massage
Meals included: 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners
Time for the trek. Hike among rice paddies and along shady tracks to isolated villages. Sleep in bush huts and mingle with remote hilltribe people. Their way of life will not fail to enlighten you, like a flashlight on your soul, or something more poetic.
Attend a briefing before setting off on our three day trek
Meet local people in various villages, each with their own unique language, customs and dress
Walk for approximately four hours or less each day so there's no great rush
Please take into account that the ground is muddy and slippery during the rainy season (around July - October)
The exact itinerary of the trek changes from time to time, taking into account the weather and local conditions.
Carry your personal belongings in a daypack and leave your main luggage at the hotel.
All meals while on the trek are provided, but you need to carry and purchase your own water along the way (please allow US$8 for the entire trek).
Accommodation is multishare, sleeping on fold-out mattresses on the floors of the wooden/bamboo huts typical of the villages.
There are shared squat toilets and basic washing facilities in most villages (ie. hose or water pipe) or we may be able to wash in a nearby stream.
Warmer clothing and sleeping bags are recommended from November to January
Most trekking gear (sleeping bags, mats, small packs, etc) can be rented in Chiang Mai
Return to Chiang Mai on the afternoon of Day 6.
Time to revisit the whole "Shopping, massaging and eating" schedule in Chiang Mai. You deserve it after your trek. The overnight sleeper train to Bangkok is an experience. We'll leave it at that.
Arrive back in Bangkok and do all the things you didn't get to do at the beginning of the week. You'll regret it if you don't.
The trip finishes on arrival at Bangkok train station at about 7am
If you are leaving Thailand today, don't book a flight departing before midday as train delays can and do occur
• Gecko’s expert English-speaking local tour guide throughout the tour, and professional local site guides at some sites.
• Hill tribe trek.
• Free time to explore Bangkok, Chiang Mai.
• Overnight sleeper train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and Chiang Mai to Bangkok.
International flights, arrival and departure transfers, departure and airport taxes, visas, all other meals, all optional tours or activities during free time, transfers outside of the tour program, travel insurance, tips and items of a personal nature.
We have chosen a selection of some great optional activities to enhance your travel experience. You will need to cover any additional costs yourself. The below list is not exhaustive and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination.
Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed below have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
Please note that this trip is run by our sister company, Intrepid.
Local Tour Guides
By employing and training local site guides to lead our group holidays, there is a two-fold benefit. Firstly, we provide employment opportunities for the local community. Just as importantly is the benefit to you, the traveller. Your tour guide’s friendship, humour, passion and intimate knowledge of the region will be key factors in making your holiday a success.
BANGKOK PROTESTS - Ongoing since November 2013
There has been ongoing protest's in Bangkok since November 2013. During this time when protest gatherings have been quite large Bangkok taxi drivers may not want to drive from the airport to your downtown hotel. If the public taxis will not take you please go back inside the airport and you can arrange a private vehicle transfer with the Airports of Thailand transfer services. These cost about 1200THB per car to the downtown hotels. Please refer to our safety updates page on the Gecko's website for more up to date information regarding these protests.
Local Emergency Contacts
In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, the Gecko's Thailand office can be reached on Tel: +66 898 103 722
The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please ensure that you have the most up-to-date information for your trip. We recommend that you check the trip notes for your tour around one month before departure. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!
5 September 2014