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Thailand and Laos (and Myanmar if I can manage it)

Hello, Sawatdee kaa and Sabai dee,

My next trip will be Thailand and Laos, and this is all about the before, the trip and the after - similar to my Malaysia/Cambodia blog. I am putting together from start to finish - tickets, do's and don'ts, tours, where to stay, places to see, things to do, as well as useful extras like transport, good places to eat, what to wear, climate, tourist traps, tricks and tips and whatever else I can think of that will be useful.

If you have any tips or advice, please, feel free to leave a comment and add your bit - whatever you think may be helpful or interesting.

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

17. Itinerary - 2

My Itinerary So Far:
The places I will be staying have been worked out, it is now just a matter of fine tuning - what to do, when to do it and in what order.
Day 1:
Arrival at Bangkok International Airport. Bus to Bangkok bus station. Catch bus to Kanchanaburi. Check into accommodation, probably the Jolly Frog. Check out tours for tomorrow.

Day 2:
Ride on the Death Railway, see Hellfire Pass. Museum and World War II Cemetery. Boat or raft cruise if time permits and finances allow.

Day 3:
Afternoon train to Bangkok. Bangkok Railway Station for overnight train from Bangkok-Chiang Mai, air-conditioned compartment - lower sleeping berth.

Day 4:
Arrive at Chiang Mai Railway Station. Bus to town, check into accommodation.
Tour Wat Phathat Doi Suthep one of the most important temples of Chiang Mai. The tour includes a climb up some 290 steps to the temple on the summit of the mountain (Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep). San Kamphaeng to visit some artisans' workshops to observe the creation of Chiang Mai's most famous products - celadon, pottery, umbrellas, silver and wood carvings, paper-making and silk and cotton weaving.

Day 5:

Day 6:
A short distance outside of Chiang Mai City, watch elephants perform their work hauling and stacking the teakwood logs. You can observe them taking their daily baths along with their babies-and can even take a ride around the compound on one of the them. Orchid Farm for lunch?

Day 7:
Early morning leave for Chiang Rai overland (183 kms. away) across mountain, valleys and picturesque landscapes. Check into accommodation. Bus to Mae Sai, cross border to Tachilek into Myanmar for some shopping of the local handicrafts. Bus back to Chiang Rai.
? Lunch at a restaurant by the Mae Khong river in the golden Triangle area. Visit the opium musuem and some old monuments in this old capital of Lanna Kingdom called Chiangsaen.?

Day 8:
Visit to “Doi Tung”? Hmong hilltribe village and local market? Bus to Baan Nai Sra, dinner and overnight at House In The Pond.

Day 9:
Leave Baan Nai Sra for Chiang Khong pier and after immigration formality, cross the Mekong River to the Laotian side for the same. Board the Nagi of Mekong - boat leaves from Houi Xai main pier at 09.00, tea & coffee and fruits served, after two hours of the relaxing cruise, a stop is made at a ethnic Lao village along the river where you may observe primitive way of life of the people. Hot lunch is served on board, afternoon arrival at Pak Bang and check in at Petch Chokxai hotel or similar. Total distance traveled to day is approximately 150 kilometers, about 80 nautical miles, in seven hours including a stop for sightseeing at village along the river.

Day 10:
A walk to the nearby local market is a "must" return to hotel for breakfast and check out, boat leaves the dock at 08.00, another stop is made at a village by the river prior to hot lunch on board. A stop is also made at the famous Pak Ou cave just before arrival at Luang Prabang main pier around 4 PM. Total distance traveled to day is approximately 180 kilometers or about 97 nautical miles in eight hours including stops for sightseeing at village along the river and Pak Ou cave.

Price in twin sharing is THB.4,600 per person.

Single occupancy surcharge is THB. 600 per person.

Included in the cruise prices are:

Special chartered boat with soft cushion seats, modern toilet and safety equipments on board.

Room and breakfasts at Petsokxai hotel or similar in Pak Bang.

English speaking staff & admission fee at Pak Ou cave.

Hot lunch on both days of journey, tea & coffee, fruits in season.

Day 11:
Rise early to witness the age old tradition of morning alms giving to the monks. Visit the local market.
Trip to the Kuang Si Falls?

Day 12:
Morning half day city tour which will include the highlights of this old Capital of Laos such as Wat Xiangthong, Wat Vi Soun, The Royal Palace of the former King of Laos, Baan Pha Nom, the weaving village and the local market. Afternoon at leisure for own exploration of the city or optional tours.

Day 13:
On the road today taking a spectacular mountain drive through breathtaking scenery to the riverside town of Vang Vieng. Surrounded by limestone karsts scenery. Check into accommodation.
?Visit the local caves and take a local boat ride up the Nam Song River?
Watch the sunset and have a drink.

Day 14:
Bus to Vientiane, the capital of Laos. Check into accommodation.

Day 15:
City tour - temples, Patuxai, based on the ‘Arc De Triomphe’ in Paris.

Day 16:

Day 17:
Songthaew to Nong Khai for overnight train to Bangkok. Airconditioned compartment - lower berth.

Day 18:
Arrive Bangkok 6.30am. Taxi to accommodation.
Temple tour and/or grand palace tour?
Home of the Kings of Siam of the Chakri Dynasty. Originally built by King Rama I, it served as the royal residence until 1946. Today the palace is still used on certain occasions for visiting royalty or special guests of the Kingdom. Adjoining the Grand Palace you will find the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Keo), this is probably the best known of the royal temples. It is regarded as the most important temple in all Thailand and it is the venue of many of the numerous religious ceremonies in which the King participates, especially at the beginning of each of the three seasons when His Majesty personally changes the elaborate robes of the Buddha image, carved out of a single piece of emerald-green jasper.

Day 19:
Day trip - train to Pattaya?

Day 20:

Day 21:
Day trip to Ayutthaya - you can go by train and do it yourself. For tours, there's a bus tour or cruise there. Bus is cheaper.

Day 22:

Day 23:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Will be doing same trip with my family in April. Only I think to fly to Chang Rai. Only about 1700 baht one way.

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