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Northern Thailand & Beaches

Experience
Tour
Destination
Thailand
Duration
21 days
Ages
18+
Operated by
TruTravels
Book now, pay later. Cancel anytime.

Trip overview

An incredible 21-day experience covering all the best bits of an amazing country. From rivers, waterfalls and ancient temples in central Thailand, to the jungles and mountains in the North, and the amazing lakes, islands and beaches of the South. This trip has something for everyone and is almost certainly the best full country group tour of Thailand around. We start in Bangkok and finish on the island paradise of Koh Phangan, stopping at so many varied and beautiful destinations you will not believe they are all in the same country. You will do more adventure activities that you can shake a stick at, and have the best time of your entire life as you’re whisked around paradise with a new group of friends.

Inclusions

What's Included

  • Visit Taling Chan floating market
  • River Cruise along the river Kwai
  • Erawan Waterfalls day trip
  • Bike ride around Ayyuthaya temple ruins (UNESCO world heritage site)
  • Jungle trek with an overnight stay in hill tribe village
  • Zip lining
  • Elephant Sanctuary
  • Lod Cave in Pai
  • White Buddha Temple
  • Pai Hot Springs, Pai Canyon, Cooking course, Chiang Mai Canyon River Cruise & Temple day trip in Bangkok
  • Thai Massage
  • Overnight Train
  • Khao Sok National Park (Floating Bungalows)
  • Beachside bungalows on Bottle Beach
  • Muay Thai Class
  • Island Boat Trip
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Meals

2 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 5 dinners

Accommodation

20 Nights accommodation in hotels, floating bungalows and beach bungalows.

Transportation

Transport includes two overnight trains, private vans and ferry to Koh Phangan. 

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Global Academy

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Gain access to an ever-growing range of skills & languages to learn before & whilst you travel.

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Meet your very first travel buddy, gWorld

Trip itinerary

Day 1

After we have picked you up from the airport the first day is kept free to get settled in, meet your new travel buddies & either chill out or explore the area. In the evening we’ll take you to one of our favorite restaurants and then for a few drinks on Khao San road so we can all get to know each other over a beer or a bucket (or three). Then get ready for the Northern Thailand Adventure of a lifetime.

Day 2

We leave Bangkok in a private minivan in the morning & stop off at some floating markets on the way out of town. When we arrive in Kanchanaburi an hour or two later, we jump on a boat & cruise down the river Kwai exploring your new surroundings. We head to the famous ‘Bridge Over the River Kwai’ for sunset.

Day 3

Prepare to be amazed at the jaw-dropping beauty of this amazing 7-tier waterfall just an hour away from Kanchanaburi town. Bring a towel and your swimmers because you will undoubtedly want to take a dip in the crystal clear water on some, if not all of the levels, as we trek from one to the next. We’ll provide some lunch and soft drinks to keep you energised and hydrated for the walk, then when you’re done swimming & enjoying this natural wonder we can jump back in the minivan to Kanchanaburi where we will have a few hours to chill by the pool or explore the town before meeting for dinner and drinks at a couple of well-known backpacker bars in town.

Day 4

After a bit of a lie-in and a free morning, we hit the road again to the ancient capital city of Ayutthaya; a place that’s absolutely dripping in history and culture. We’ll take a leisurely bike ride around the world heritage site of the ancient city’s ruins & learn a little about the fascinating history of this place and indeed the Kingdom of Siam (Thailand). After exploring we’ll grab a bite to eat before hopping on the night train to our next destination, Chiang Mai. The train is comfortable and each person gets their own full-size bed with covers and pillows etc, so it shouldn’t be too hard to get a decent night’s sleep & wake up ready to go in the famous and beautiful city of Chiang Mai.

Day 5

After we check into our guest house, which is ideally situated between the old & new areas of Chiang Mai, you’ll have a bit of time to relax by the pool, explore the town or check out the oldest temple in Chiang Mai which is literally opposite our new digs. After lunch we’ll get a cab up to the most famous and possibly beautiful temple in Chiang Mai – Wat Pra Maha Doi Suthep (or just Doi Suthep for short) – This is situated way up high on the side of a mountain so the views from the top are incredible, here you get a panoramic view of the whole of Chiang Mai & the surrounding area. More free time in the afternoon to chill or explore Chiang Mai before we meet in the evening for dinner.

Day 6

Today we head off to the jungle to do one of the most popular activities in the north of Thailand – a trek through the jungle. We spend one night in a hill tribe village homestay, so you can experience what life is like for the many traditional hill tribes of northern Thailand; whose way of life has not changed a huge amount for generations.

Day 7

Continue the trek where you’ll see all kinds of trees, plants & wildlife; we’ll do some bamboo rafting down a river, and maybe even stop by another waterfall or two to freshen up.

Day 8

Chiang Mai is known to some as the adventure capital of Thailand and for good reason. Our absolute favourite of these and probably the most popular with tourists is ziplining through the jungle. This is an amazing experience which is bound to get the heart racing and adrenaline pumping. Practically flying from platform to platform through the canopy of the jungle up to 50m above the ground, throw in some rope bridges and a few abseils and you’ll experience the jungle in an entirely different way to walking through it at ground level.

Day 9

Today we get up close & personal with some of the planets most amazing and majestic creatures. All of the elephants are free to roam at the sanctuary and are not forced to do anything unnatural for the sake of entertaining tourists. When we arrive in the morning we will be given a quick briefing & learn about some of the elephants there, then we’ll be able to feed them some sugarcane and banana (which they love) & get to know them a bit before we wander down to the river for a swim and a bath. This is another once in a lifetime experience and something that you will not forget for a long time. In the afternoon we’ll jump on a minibus to the awesome little hippie town of Pai. It’s about 3 hours outside of Chiang Mai & is now a very popular backpacker destination for good reason. Loads of cool stuff to see, really relaxed vibe, lovely people, good bars & excellent food.

Day 10

Today we’ll take a day trip to see some of the highlights of Pai & the surrounding areas. Starting at the biggest cave in Thailand (Lod Cave), we’ll hike through one or both of the main chambers & take a bamboo raft along the river which runs through the cave (depending on season and accessibility). After the cave, we head to the hot springs, a completely natural pool in the jungle which is heated by geothermal activity. Take a refreshing dip in the crystal clear water, give yourself a beauty treatment with the clay, & float around in the perfect temperature pool before heading to a nearby waterfall with a natural slide & an amazing view. We finish the day high up at Pai Canyon which has an even more amazing view of the surrounding mountains & jungle. You can walk along the ridge and take some amazing pics of the view as we watch the sun go down before heading back into Pai town. After a long day of sightseeing, we’ll go to a nice restaurant and possibly a few local bars to relax & mingle with the many other travellers who are here for pretty much the same reasons as us!

Day 11

A well-deserved chill out day today. After a bit of a lie-in, we head to Fluid Swimming Pool Bar where many of the backpackers in town head to relax, cool down & socialise. When we are done here we’ll head to the local Chinese Village for some tea tasting.

Day 12

In the morning we’ll jump back in our minivan for the return journey to Chiang Mai. In the afternoon we get picked up by our pals from one of the nearby cooking schools, where you will learn a bit about Thailand’s culinary delights and even try your hand at making a few of them yourself. Some of the most delicious food in Thailand comes from the north, so what better way to improve your own culinary skills and understanding of Thai dishes than learning from the masters themselves? The first stop is the local market where our guides & teachers will show us how to select the freshest & tastiest ingredients, to take back and turn into mouth-watering dishes of delight. You can choose between many well-known dishes & will be shown step by step how to prepare each one. The best bit for many is that we will, of course, get to eat it all after, so don’t fill up too much at lunch. This really is a great experience, even for those who don’t usually take to the kitchen too often.

Day 13

Chiang Mai’s very own grand canyon. This is an awesome place to spend the day as it’s basically an old excavation site where they would dig out sand for building etc. It is now a man-made lagoon/canyon which has been turned into an adult playground. There are floating chairs to chill in the water, paddleboards, tubes & for the more adventurous/brave of you, can do cliff- jumping, have a go at deep water soloing or climbing on their new climbing wall. There’s a restaurant on-site so we can grab lunch, snacks, and refreshments whilst there. In the evening we head out into Chiang Mai town once again for dinner and to party!

Day 14

After checking out, you’ll have plenty of time to relax, hit the markets, or explore Chiang Mai a little more; before jumping onto the overnight train back to Bangkok.

Day 15

See Thailand’s capital city by tuk tuk, visiting two prestigious temples – Wat Arun and Wat Pho, to see the very impressive giant & gold reclining Buddha statue. We’ll also see the city from the water as we travel by longtail boat along the Chao Phraya River. Enjoy the afternoon at your own pace. Explore, eat, or even try some bartering at one of the many street vendors that can be found throughout the city. You can sometimes get as much as 50% off the original price if you’re willing to haggle! Meet with the rest of the group in the evening for dinner and no doubt, drinks on Khao San Rd. Buckets anyone?

Day 16

Enjoy a Thai massage in the morning, before boarding a sleeper train for the night, a truly authentic Thai experience. You’ll get your very own berth on the train, and it’s a great place to get to know the rest of your group a little better. We travel south, out of Bangkok, towards Khao Sok National Park – situated in the Surat Thani province of Thailand. Watching the scenery change from a sprawling cityscape to countryside dotted throughout by limestone mountains is definitely something you won’t forget in a hurry

Day 17

Head via longtail boat, into Khao Sok National Park to our floating bungalows, stopping for a quick dip along the way at a couple of Instagram-worthy locations. Try your hand at some kayaking or chill with a cold beer in a tube in front of the absolutely stunning backdrop of the surrounding limestone mountain range. You’ll soon see why this place is, and always will be, a TruTravels favourite destination.

Day 18

Wake up in your floating bungalow and why not take a quick dip in the freshwater lake before breakfast. After a relaxed morning, we make our way over to Koh Phangan; an island to the east. Once we get there, we go straight to a place called Bottle Beach, another one of our favourite locations! It’s beautiful, quiet, accessible only by boat, and to make it even better, we get the whole place pretty much to ourselves, staying in beach bungalows pretty much right on the water. Relax here for the rest of the day on the beach or in the bar. After dinner, we’ll all enjoy a bonfire on the beach, complete with a fire show.

Day 19

A nice chilled wake up to the sound of waves rolling in on the beach. You will have a free morning to make the most of your surroundings. You can go kayaking, play volleyball, top up the tan, trek to viewpoints or enjoy a lay in. We are picked up early afternoon and taken to a local gym, where you can try your hand at a bit of Muay Thai boxing, Thailand’s national sport. After, we head to our awesome accommodation where we will spend the final nights of the trip. It’s got a great bar, and atmosphere; an ideal location to spend the evening.

Day 20

Today we set sail on a cruise around the island. Stop at some of the best snorkelling spots the island has to offer, visit waterfalls (seasonal) and take in the amazing tropical island scenery. Does it get any better? Yes, it does! We’ll also throw in free food and a free bucket (+ paid bar on board) for the day. After a fun-filled day in the sun, we head back to our accommodation for a dip in the pool, before heading out in the evening for a night out to enjoy the island’s lively nightlife.

Day 21

Check out is at 11am & our awesome staff are on hand to help you plan your next steps, whether it is continuing your adventure or heading back to Bangkok to catch a flight home, we will make sure you get to where you need to be.

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Frequently asked questions

Why go with Global Work & Travel?

As the world’s leading gap-year and "work & travel" company, we provide a premium service for Global Travellers. Choose from a variety of awesome experiences worldwide. We assist with visas, pre-departure, flights, insurance, and tours. Our cool tech features support you throughout the journey. As a Global Traveller, access gWorld, our personalized app. Keep important documents and trip details handy. Enjoy exclusive Marketplace deals, a social network, language learning, side trips, meet-ups, and more. It's like all your favorite apps merged into one, but better! Our support doesn't stop there. With a 24/7 emergency team, 90+ staff, and ongoing assistance, we ensure you feel like a local. Join the 80,000+ Global Travellers who have turned their travel dreams into reality with us. We proudly boast the most & best reviews in the biz!

Are flights & insurance included?

While we would love to include flights and insurance in our trip packages, it is not feasible to have a fixed price due to the diverse destinations, trip durations, and individual coverage needs of our travellers from around the globe. However, once you register for the trip, we will assign you a dedicated Travel Concierge. They will work closely with you to arrange the ideal flights and insurance tailored to your specific adventure. Rest assured, our team is here to ensure you have a smooth and hassle-free travel experience from start to finish!

Why should I book now?

Covid-19 threw us a curve ball and pretty much halted all travel. This means that we have a backlog of travellers, just like you, who are desperate to get out and explore the world! Global Work & Travel works on a first-in-best-dressed basis. Booking earlier ensures that you don’t miss out on the best intake, season, placements and more! We recommend our travellers take 6-12 months to plan their trip for a reason - to make sure you’ve got everything organised perfectly, stress-free. As a Global Traveller you’ll get exclusive access to gWorld, our personalised app where you can keep all of your important documents and trip details in one spot and gain insider access to everything Global. This is where you will find exclusive Marketplace Deals, a unique social network to connect you with other like-minded Global Travellers, access to our Academy with an ever-growing range of skills & languages, and so much more. Think all of your favourite apps merged into one, but like, better? Why not give yourself something to look forward to by booking that trip!

Can I travel with a friend?

Yes you can! Simply tell your Trip Coordinator after booking that your friend is also going and they can link your profiles. For most of our trips we should be able to have you and your friends placed together or nearby. Meaning that you can live, work, play & travel together! But wait there's more! Not only can you travel the world with your besties at your side, you can also earn some extra cash towards your own trip just by referring your friends to Global Work & Travel. You can learn more about the great referral rewards program inside your gWorld account once you join. And for those who decide to go-it-solo, we’ve made it easier to meet other Global Travellers in the same region as you. Just like any other social platform, you’ll be able to interact, share, chat and meet with some really cool people who are doing trips just like you!

Can I bring my pet along?

At Global Work & Travel, we share a deep love for animals and fully understand the special bond you have with your pet. We recognise the challenges of embarking on a trip without them. Due to travel restrictions, requirements, and limited pet-friendly accommodations among our host organisations, we regretfully cannot facilitate their inclusion in the journey. However, many of our customers choose to entrust their pets to a family member or friend, embark on their adventure, and return home to wagging tails and furry cuddles.

What happens if I want to cancel my trip?

We know that life can get in the way of travel, so all our trips come with a great deal of flexibility. In most cases, if you cannot travel on your selected date, you can place your trip on hold to deal with whatever is holding you back, and continue in the future without incurring any penalty. You may also have the option of transferring to an entirely different trip and destination as well, or even transferring your trip to a friend or family member. In the event that you need to outright cancel your trip, if you give us 84* days notice you can do so with only a 50% cancellation fee. Your refund of the balance will come in the form of a Store Credit which you can put toward any other trip that we offer, including tours through third-party providers, as well as holidays through DealsAway.com, and is valid for 2 years from date of issue. As international travel can be complex, your options are based on the progress of your trip organisation and our support team can assist you in finding the best solution for your needs.

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