SHORTLIST

Premium Northern Thailand

Discover a land of mouth-watering food, stunning landscapes, fascinating history and incredibly hospitable locals on a 12-day Premium journey through Northern Thailand. Get to know the innermost essence of Thai culture as you travel from city streets to mountain tops. Explore the ancient temples of Ayutthaya, spend time with Lisu hill tribes, meet the experts at an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai and uncover the country’s past in Kanchanaburi. With a local leader by your side, you’ll soon see there’s more to Thailand than what meets the eye.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information. Please note that some room configurations have two single beds, although a double bed will always be requested.
3. Due to limited luggage space in our vehicles, please ensure that you are packing light and compact. Large, bulky suitcases are unsuitable for this trip. Please refer to the Packing section of the Essential Trip Information for details.
4. On the TTPT231111 and TTPT231114 departures, the Feature Stay will be Sibsan Resort and Spa, rather than Lisu Lodge, in Mae Taeng.

Tour details
Tour Provider Intrepid Travel
Price From
$4,436
Number of Days
12
Start Location
Bangkok, Thailand
End Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Age Range
Avg. 30+
Group Size
1 to 12
Tour Style
Comfort
Tour Themes
Adventure
Physical Rating
Easy to Moderate
Itinerary Open all
Day 1: Bangkok
Welcome to Thailand! Your journey begins in Bangkok, where you’ll be collected at the airport and transferred to your hotel. After settling into your room, an important welcome meeting will take place at 6pm. Please check for the Intrepid Premium noticeboard in the reception area of the hotel. If you arrive early, take some time to enjoy Bangkok’s irresistible energy. By day you’ll encounter a city steeped with history and tradition, but by night Bangkok is taken over by a flood of music and neon lights. Watch torrents of tuk tuks zip by while traditional khlong boats slowly wind down the Chao Phraya River. After your meeting, join your small group for a welcome dinner at an excellent local restaurant where your leader will introduce you to a food scene that’s bursting with local flavour.
Day 2: Bangkok
Rise early for an optional exclusive experience away from Bangkok’s well-trodden tourist track. Join the locals for to a visit to a temple along the Chao Phraya River, where you’ll ‘make merit’ by bringing an offering to the temple’s monks – a truly unforgettable moment. Today your leader will take you for a day of sightseeing and activities in lively Bangkok. Tour Wat Po, a larger-than-life temple complex in the city - home of the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. Also visit the majestic Grand Palace and learn about the site which has been the official residence of the kings since the 1700s, and enjoy a boat tour of the city's canals as your leader shows you how Bangkok’s locals live today. The afternoon is free to do as you wish, perhaps check out the art collection at the Jim Thompson house or relax with a Thai massage.
Day 3: Kanchanaburi
Unleash your creativity and learn about the history of Benjarong, a traditional style of painted Thai porcelain, with a visit to a ceramics community. The name literally means ‘five colours’ (although it’s not unusual to see up to eight) and artists use enamel to create intricate floral and geometric designs. This morning you’ll get to paint your own mug or teacup which will be fired and sent to you to take home as a unique and very special souvenir. There will be time to buy lunch if you wish, before you continue to Kanchanaburi to visit to the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery. This prisoner of war cemetery was one of the first museums to attempt to educate the public and keep the memory of the Asian and POW workers who died constructing the infamous Death Railway alive.
Day 4: Kanchanaburi
Start your day with a visit to Erawan National Park where you can explore the park’s famous seven-level waterfall or simply swim and relax. The falls are regarded as some of the most beautiful in the country, with glacial blue waters rushing through the forest into bamboo-shaded pools perfect for a refreshing dip. Many Allied prisoners of war and conscripted Asian labourers were engaged here to help build a rail route to Myanmar (Burma), including the passage infamously known as Hellfire Pass. Visit the memorial museum of the pass where your leader will provide more information about this chapter in history. Take a historical train journey across a portion of this 'death railway' along the Kwai Noi River and travel over the original wooden viaduct, known as the Krasae Bridge, constructed by the allied POWs. Pass through peaceful and naturally beautiful scenery as you learn of those who lost their lives building this rail route. The evening is yours to explore the town.
Day 5: Ayutthaya
This morning head to Ayutthaya, one of the ancient capitals of Siam and a World Heritage site. On the way, visit Baan Nong Khao CBT Village, an agricultural village that is famous for its Pha Khao Mah hand-weaving. Visit the community’s museum, a palm sugar field and a local house to see how desserts featuring this famous Thai ingredient are made. Of course, you’ll get to sample these delicious, sweet treats. Then watch the weavers at work as they use more than 100 colours of yarn to create traditional Thai clothing. Upon arrival in Ayutthaya, explore the photogenic 13th-century ruins of Wat Phra Mahathat and discover rows of Buddhas beheaded by the Burmese. Look out for the displaced Buddha head suspended in the roots of a Banyan tree - one of the country’s most photographed images. Tonight, the past will come to life as you board a traditional rice barge and tuck into a delicious Thai dinner.
Day 6: Ayutthaya to Sukhothai
Today you will leave Ayutthaya and travel to the town of Phitsanulok by train. Sit back, relax and watch the scenery roll by. After arriving in Phitsanulok, change to a private vehicle and continue on this comfortable journey which will see you arriving in Sukhothai at approximately 5pm. The rest of the day is free for your own discoveries. You may like to relax by the pool or unwind with a Thai massage, and for dinner this evening be sure to ask your leader where you can get a bowl of Sukhothai’s famously tasty noodles.
Day 7: Sukhothai
Sukhothai, established in the 13th century, was one of the first ancient capitals of Siam. Start your day with an optional alms offering before visiting its famed World Heritage listed historical park, which captures the Golden Age of Thai civilisation. Visit the historical park, which spans the ruins of the town, where you will rent a bicycle and take part in a cycle tour. As you ride around, your leader will let you know more about the history of this former metropolis and its fascinating structures. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the beautiful grounds of Sukhothai Park. The rest of the afternoon is free to explore the town, or you might want to simply read a book by the pool back at your accommodation. This evening, regroup and head to the home of one of our local friends where you’ll enjoy a wonderful homecooked dinner and a unique insight into life in this part of the country.
Day 8: Mae Taeng
Travel from Sukhothai to the Mae Taeng region. Draped between tranquil rice fields and fruit orchards, you’ll find the enchanting Lisu Lodge, your Feature Stay accommodation. The lodge is a community-based project that trains and employs Lisu villagers from the nearby hill tribe and aims to preserve their cultural heritage. The Lisu people are a Tibeto-Burman ethnic group and one of the six main hill tribes of Northern Thailand. Meet the colourfully dressed villagers and learn more about the Lisu way of life - a truly special experience that is sure to be one of your enduring memories of Thailand. The lodge offers gorgeous guestrooms decorated in the traditional Lisu style with modern comforts. Savour unforgettable views of the surrounding hillside and valley, and enjoy a tantalising dinner of Thai food mixed with traditional Lisu dishes. You don’t have to look for a cultural experience here - it’s all around you.
Day 9: Mae Taeng
After breakfast at Lisu Lodge, it’s a quick trip to Muang Kued Village where you will meet with a local villager and enjoy a private guided tour. Learn about village life, the reforestation of the surrounding area and how produce is grown in the village orchards. Explore the organic farm and choose the ingredients for a cooking class where you’ll learn how to cook traditional Thai food. After a delicious lunch, join the villagers for a chance to learn how to weave palm leaves to create ornaments and accessories. You’ll also enjoy a tasty barbeque dinner at the nearby Mae Tamaan Base Camp.
Day 10: Chiang Mai
Travel to the Elephant Nature Park - a unique project that provides sanctuary for elephants and other animals. Be greeted by an expert local guide and learn the stories of the rescued elephants and the issues they face in South-East Asia. Feed the elephants from a viewing platform, walk with the expert staff to watch elephants bathe and play, and enjoy a vegetarian buffet lunch. On arrival back in Chiang Mai in the late afternoon, the evening is yours to enjoy your way. You may like to visit the vibrant Night Bazaar or take a stroll around the old town which is bounded by moats. Your guide can give you recommendations on where to go for dinner.
Day 11: Chiang Mai
Start your day with a caffeine hit and a visit to a sustainable social enterprise with a focus on all things coffee. From here, you will drive to the famous temple complex of Doi Suthep. Take in stunning views along the scenic and winding mountain road which brings you to an impressive 300-step Naga-guarded stairway. The rewards justify the ascent to the top, with one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand on display, not to mention the fantastic panoramic views of the city. Return to Chiang Mai where you will have time to relax before an exclusive farewell dinner cooked by a local chef. Dine on delicious traditional northern Thai food like kao soy, yellow wheat noodles in a curry broth, traditionally served with chicken or beef, as you reminisce about the wonderful adventures you’ve had in Northern Thailand.
Day 12: Chiang Mai
With no activities planned for today, your adventure comes to an end after breakfast. If you would like to extend your stay in Chiang Mai we can help arrange extra accommodation (subject to availability).
Inclusions
  • Meals: 11 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 6 dinners.
  • Transport: Train, Private mini van, Longtail boat, Songtheaw, Bicycle.
  • Accommodation: Hotel (4 nights), Resort (5 nights), Lodge (2 nights).
  • Complimentary Arrival Transfer.
  • Bangkok - Welcome Dinner.
  • Bangkok - Grand Palace.
  • Bangkok - Wat Pho.
  • Bangkok - Khlong boat canal tour.
  • Bangkok - Temple Merit Making.
  • Benjarong - Ceramics Workshop.
  • Kanchanaburi - Kanchanaburi War Cemetery.
  • Kanchanaburi - Bridge over the River Kwai.
  • Kanchanaburi - Erawan National Park Visit.
  • Kanchanaburi - Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum.
  • Baan Nong Khao - Weaving Community Visit.
  • Ayutthaya - Temple Visit.
  • Ayutthaya - Traditional Rice Barge Dinner Cruise.
  • Ayutthaya - Train to Phitsanuloke.
  • Sukhothai - Morning Alms Offering.
  • Sukhothai - Historical Park Visit and Bike Ride.
  • Sukhothai - Dinner in a local home.
  • Muang Kued - Village Visit, Cooking Class, and Handicraft Workshop.
  • Mae Taeng - Mae Tamaan Base Camp BBQ Dinner.
  • Chiang Mai - Elephant Nature Park Half Day Trip.
  • Chiang Mai - Akha Ama Coffee Social Enterprise Visit.
  • Chiang Mai - Doi Suthep Temple Visit.
  • Chiang Mai - Farewell Dinner.
Departure dates
Start End Availability Price NZD
13 Aug 2024 24 Aug 2024 8 $4,436
17 Sep 2024 28 Sep 2024 6 $5,545
01 Oct 2024 12 Oct 2024 10 $5,600
15 Oct 2024 26 Oct 2024 2 $5,815
29 Oct 2024 09 Nov 2024 1 $6,190
12 Nov 2024 23 Nov 2024 2 $6,215
19 Nov 2024 30 Nov 2024 4 $5,825
25 Nov 2024 06 Dec 2024 8 $5,770
03 Dec 2024 14 Dec 2024 8 $5,825
10 Dec 2024 21 Dec 2024 6 $5,825
13 Dec 2024 24 Dec 2024 9 $5,770
17 Dec 2024 28 Dec 2024 8 $5,990
23 Dec 2024 03 Jan 2025 6 $6,350
30 Dec 2024 10 Jan 2025 8 $6,230
02 Jan 2025 13 Jan 2025 12 $6,335
07 Jan 2025 18 Jan 2025 10 $6,335
09 Jan 2025 20 Jan 2025 6 $6,165
14 Jan 2025 25 Jan 2025 7 $6,165
21 Jan 2025 01 Feb 2025 8 $6,110
23 Jan 2025 03 Feb 2025 12 $6,110
28 Jan 2025 08 Feb 2025 10 $6,110
04 Feb 2025 15 Feb 2025 7 $5,935
06 Feb 2025 17 Feb 2025 4 $5,880
11 Feb 2025 22 Feb 2025 12 $5,880
18 Feb 2025 01 Mar 2025 10 $5,880
20 Feb 2025 03 Mar 2025 10 $5,880
25 Feb 2025 08 Mar 2025 10 $5,880
27 Feb 2025 10 Mar 2025 8 $5,880
04 Mar 2025 15 Mar 2025 10 $5,880
11 Mar 2025 22 Mar 2025 10 $5,880
18 Mar 2025 29 Mar 2025 12 $5,880
25 Mar 2025 05 Apr 2025 12 $5,880
08 Apr 2025 19 Apr 2025 12 $5,655
22 Apr 2025 03 May 2025 12 $5,655
06 May 2025 17 May 2025 12 $5,655
20 May 2025 31 May 2025 12 $5,655
03 Jun 2025 14 Jun 2025 12 $5,655
17 Jun 2025 28 Jun 2025 12 $5,655
01 Jul 2025 12 Jul 2025 12 $5,655
29 Jul 2025 09 Aug 2025 12 $5,655
19 Aug 2025 30 Aug 2025 12 $5,655
09 Sep 2025 20 Sep 2025 12 $5,655
30 Sep 2025 11 Oct 2025 12 $5,655
07 Oct 2025 18 Oct 2025 12 $5,655
14 Oct 2025 25 Oct 2025 12 $5,655
23 Oct 2025 03 Nov 2025 12 $5,655
28 Oct 2025 08 Nov 2025 12 $5,655
30 Oct 2025 10 Nov 2025 12 $5,655
04 Nov 2025 15 Nov 2025 12 $5,655
11 Nov 2025 22 Nov 2025 12 $5,880
18 Nov 2025 29 Nov 2025 12 $5,880
20 Nov 2025 01 Dec 2025 12 $5,880
25 Nov 2025 06 Dec 2025 12 $5,880
27 Nov 2025 08 Dec 2025 12 $6,110
02 Dec 2025 13 Dec 2025 12 $6,110
09 Dec 2025 20 Dec 2025 12 $6,110
16 Dec 2025 27 Dec 2025 12 $6,110
18 Dec 2025 29 Dec 2025 12 $6,110
23 Dec 2025 03 Jan 2026 12 $6,415
30 Dec 2025 10 Jan 2026 12 $6,415
01 Jan 2026 12 Jan 2026 12 $6,115
06 Jan 2026 17 Jan 2026 12 $6,115
08 Jan 2026 19 Jan 2026 12 $5,895
13 Jan 2026 24 Jan 2026 12 $5,895
20 Jan 2026 31 Jan 2026 12 $5,895
22 Jan 2026 02 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
27 Jan 2026 07 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
03 Feb 2026 14 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
05 Feb 2026 16 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
10 Feb 2026 21 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
17 Feb 2026 28 Feb 2026 12 $5,895
19 Feb 2026 02 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
24 Feb 2026 07 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
26 Feb 2026 09 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
03 Mar 2026 14 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
10 Mar 2026 21 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
17 Mar 2026 28 Mar 2026 12 $5,895
24 Mar 2026 04 Apr 2026 12 $5,895
07 Apr 2026 18 Apr 2026 12 $5,895
21 Apr 2026 02 May 2026 12 $5,895
05 May 2026 16 May 2026 12 $5,895
19 May 2026 30 May 2026 12 $5,895
02 Jun 2026 13 Jun 2026 12 $5,895
16 Jun 2026 27 Jun 2026 12 $5,895
30 Jun 2026 11 Jul 2026 12 $5,895
28 Jul 2026 08 Aug 2026 12 $5,895
18 Aug 2026 29 Aug 2026 12 $5,895
08 Sep 2026 19 Sep 2026 12 $5,895
29 Sep 2026 10 Oct 2026 12 $5,895
06 Oct 2026 17 Oct 2026 12 $5,895
13 Oct 2026 24 Oct 2026 12 $5,895
22 Oct 2026 02 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
27 Oct 2026 07 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
29 Oct 2026 09 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
03 Nov 2026 14 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
10 Nov 2026 21 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
17 Nov 2026 28 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
19 Nov 2026 30 Nov 2026 12 $5,895
24 Nov 2026 05 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
26 Nov 2026 07 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
01 Dec 2026 12 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
08 Dec 2026 19 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
15 Dec 2026 26 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
17 Dec 2026 28 Dec 2026 12 $5,895
22 Dec 2026 02 Jan 2027 12 $5,895
29 Dec 2026 09 Jan 2027 12 $6,195