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    Khao Sok National Park
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    Phuket Island

Tour Pace 1

Contrasts of Southern Thailand

Thailand

from £2,429 per person 12 2
Including optional travel insurance or a price reduction of £71 if not required
  • Small Group < 20 Small Group 20 or less
  • VIP travel service VIP door to door
  • Breakfasts and more All breakfasts and more

Make a difference on this holiday to Thailand’s Andaman coast

On this outstanding new holiday with a difference, travel to Thailand’s Andaman coast with its tropical islands and beautiful scenery. Visit beautiful Phuket – home to the 45-metre high ‘Big Buddha’, sail to Phi Phi island and see stunning Maya Bay, and visit Khao Lak with its Sino Portuguese buildings and temples. You’ll also meet a local community in Khao Sok National Park who are working hard to preserve their way of life and environment, and an ethical and community-based Elephant experience where you’ll be able to get close up to a rescue elephant. A large part of the proceeds of your visits to these two important projects will go to the projects themselves, helping to further their good work. 

Including...

11 nights in hotels and 1 in flight

20 meals: 11 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 3 dinners

Excursions and visits

  • Half-day tour of Phuket
  • Boat trip from Phuket to Krabi via Koh Phi Phi
  • Visit the artisan village of Baan Natin
  • Wat Keau Buddhist Temple
  • Cheow Lan Lake
  • Khao Sok Ethical Elephant Experience
  • Visit the charming old town of Takuapa

View Full Itinerary

Day 1 - 2 UK to Phuket

A plane wing at sunrise

Fly overnight to Thailand via Singapore. Upon arrival in Phuket, transfer to the locally rated 4-star Novotel Phuket Kamala Beach Resort for the next three nights. The hotel overlooks a sandy beach and the Andaman Sea, with a backdrop of trees. Facilities here include a main restaurant serving national and international cuisine, a bar, a rooftop bar where drinks and light snacks can be enjoyed, a swim-up bar and a bar situated a few metres from the beach. There is also an outdoor pool, fitness centre and lounge area, beauty salon (charges apply), Jacuzzi and spa (charges apply). Each of the 166 air-conditioned rooms has a balcony, telephone, television, minibar (charges apply), safe, iron, hairdryer and free Wi-Fi.

Kamala Phuket Thailand Asia

Day 3 Phuket

Wat Chalong temple

Explore the island of Phuket, its shores washed by the emerald Andaman sea. Known as the ‘Pearl of the South’ this island is made up of untamed jungle, rubber plantations and sweeping bays bordered by cliffs.  See the 45-metre high ‘Big Buddha’ who looks out across the island from the top of Khao Nakkerd Hill. Constructed from concrete and clad in 'jade marble', it is an important landmark and religious symbol on the island. Next, visit the largest and most ornate temple on the island – Wat Chalong – where you can view a splinter of the Buddha's bone. During the 19th century Phuket was an important trading port and you’ll see the Sino-Portuguese houses in the old town, where you’ll visit the Thai Hua Museum to learn about the history of the area and enjoy a drink at one of the old coffee houses. B

Phuket Town Phuket Thailand Asia

Day 4 Phuket

Kamala in Phuket

With today at leisure you can choose to relax at your hotel with its inviting beach – Thailand’s most popular beach resort, or perhaps join an exciting optional full-day excursion when you’ll join a local host in their home and learn how to cook Thai style! B

Kamala Phuket Thailand Asia


Optional excursions

Travel by speedboat to Koh Yao Noi which lies in the centre of Phang Nga Bay. From here you’ll transfer to your cooking class where you’ll spend the next two-and-a-half hours learning to cook in the company of a local host in her traditional Thai house. Learn to make classic Thai dishes, before relaxing as you tuck into the results and enjoy your host’s garden. Afterwards, enjoy some time on Yao Noi beach with its beautiful views.

Traditional Thai food
Phuket Thailand Asia

Day 5 Krabi

Maya Bay

Sail to Phi Phi Island by private charter ship, taking in some of Thailand’s stunningly beautiful scenery. See Maya Bay with its backdrop of wooded cliffs, tiny Bamboo Island – an idyllic tropical getaway – and Viking Cave. Enjoy lunch on the boat before continuing to Chicken Island where you’ll relax with a sunset cocktail and snack. Continue to the locally rated 4-star Beyond Resort in Krabi, where you’ll stay for three nights. The Beyond Resort enjoys a tropical setting overlooking a private beachfront. Facilities include a restaurant serving national and international cuisine, and bar lounge. There is an outdoor pool, fitness centre and spa (charges apply) and free Wi-Fi. Each of the 170 air-conditioned rooms has a balcony, television, safe and hairdryer.

Krabi Thailand Asia

Day 6 Krabi

Wat Kaew temple

The artisan village of Baan Natin is known for its batik and coconut products and is part of Thailand’s OTOP – ‘One Tambon One Product’, encouraging entrepreneurship for locally-made and sold items. Meet the local people and enjoy a brief tour before trying some batik art yourself. You’ll also see a demonstration of how coconuts are transformed into souvenirs and food by the village elders, before exploring the spice garden and learning about some of the area’s herbs and spices. Next stop is a jungle restaurant for lunch when you can sample some of the local food. Afterwards, continue to the white Wat Kaew Buddhist Temple complex, filled with colourful painting and reached by a staircase lined with golden dragons. Finally you’ll see Krabi’s ‘history wall’, 28 panels illustrating the region’s history, fixed along Krabi City Hall’s western boundary. B, L

Krabi Thailand Asia

Day 7 Krabi

Relax in Krabi

Relax today or alternatively join a full-day optional excursion to Koh Klang island, a traditional, largely fishing-based community whose residents are anxious to preserve their culture. B

Krabi Thailand Asia


Optional excursions

Escape the crowds and the traffic in Koh Klang or ‘Middle Island’. Reach it by a 10-minute boat ride from Krabi town. This car-free island – only motorbikes with sidecars – some of which are taxis – and bicycles are allowed here, prides itself on retaining a traditional, sustainable way of life. The population of around 5000 people live in four villages, many in stilt houses, and earn their living by growing rice or fishing. You’ll learn about the gentle pace of working life in a place where time seems to stand still, witness the skills of creating batik or wooden handicrafts, and enjoy the beautiful seascapes.

Stilt houses  on Koh Kland island
Krabi Thailand Asia

Day 8 Khao Sok

Khao Sok National Park

Today you’ll travel to Khao Sok National Park where you will stay for three nights at the locally rated 4-star Anurak Community Lodge on a half-board basis. The Park covers over 730 square kilometres, is composed of rainforest and known for its abundant birds, flowers and wildlife. Look forward to meeting the local community in the National Park, who are working hard to preserve their environment. Faced with the threat of losing their way of life, the local villagers’ community action group welcomes visitors themselves, sharing and sustaining their unique way of life, rather than embracing mass tourism. On your visit you’ll tour the orchards and then lunch with the local community, with much of the proceeds of your visit going directly to the village to support this vital project. The Anurak Community Lodge is an eco-friendly lodge set in a palm plantation and is ideally located for enjoying both nature and the local community. It offers a peaceful retreat and enjoys a secluded setting close to the national parks of Khao Sok and Khlong Phanom. The lodge has a restaurant serving local and international food, and where Wi-Fi is available. There is also a bar. Each of the 18 rooms are set within six bungalows which lie within the Lodge grounds. Each air-conditioned room has a mosquito net and a ceiling fan. B, L, D

Khao Sok National Park Thailand Asia

Day 9 Khao Sok

Cheow Lan Lake

Khao Sok National Park is a stunning natural paradise, its forest rich in wildlife and plants. At its heart lies the breathtakingly beautiful Cheow Lan Lake, with its ethereal limestone cliffs and islands. Enjoy a day to remember as you tour the lake area, hike in the jungle, explore a cave, swim, and soak up the extraordinary atmosphere in a floating bungalow surrounded by idyllic scenery. B, L, D

Khao Sok National Park Thailand Asia

Day 10 Khao Sok

Meet the elephants

Elephants were traditionally used for logging in Thailand, but after its ban in 1989, these magnificent creatures sometimes faced terrible futures. Fortunately, the Khao Sok Elephant Experience – ethical and community-based – is working to stop the exploitation of these wonderful creatures and the proceeds of your visit today will go towards furthering the project. You’ll spend the morning meeting and caring for a rescued elephant. Learn about his history, prepare his food and bathe him as well as planting sugar cane as future elephant food. You’ll also meet the mahout taking care of him. To get the best from this experience you’ll split into two smaller groups, with one group visiting in the morning and the other in the afternoon. In between, you’ll all enjoy lunch together. B, L, D

Khao Sok National Park Thailand Asia

Day 11 Khao Lak

Khao Lak

Travel to Khao Lak in Phang Nga Province, stopping en route at Takuapa to view the Sino Portuguese buildings, and temples. Khaolak consists of a string of beaches that run along a 25-kilometre stretch of the Andaman Sea. The warm clear waters are home to colourful marine life including the endangered leatherback turtle which lays its eggs on beaches in the area. In the centre of Khaolak are bars, shops and restaurants. Stay two nights at the locally rated 4-star X10 Khaolak Resort, with breakfasts included. This contemporary hotel sits within its own tropical gardens and overlooks a golden sandy beach,. It’s situated midway between Khaolak and Bang Niang Market, both accessible by shuttle bus (extra charge). Facilities include a main and beachside seafood restaurant, three bars, five outdoor pools, gym, spa (charges apply) and complimentary Wi-Fi.

Each of the 284 air-conditioned rooms have a balcony, television, telephone, safe and tea and coffee-making facilities. B, L

Khao Lak Thailand Asia

Day 12 Khao Lak

Relax in Khao Lak

There’s another opportunity to just take it easy today. Alternatively, join an optional sunset dolphin cruise. B

Khao Lak Thailand Asia


Optional excursions

Board your boat in Tablamu late this afternoon and relax on the sundeck as you cruise along the scenic coast of Khao Lak. The boat will drop anchor by Nag Thong National Marine Park, an archipelago of 42 islands. Here you can swim or snorkel then watch the sun setting as you enjoy a sundowner cocktail. After dinner is served on board, you’ll cruise back to Tablamu and return by coach to your hotel.

Snorkellers in Khao Lak
Khao Lak Thailand Asia

Day 13 Khao Lak to UK

Plane home

After breakfast, travel to the airport for your flight back to the UK. B


Elephant Experience

Contribute to an ethical, community-based project to save Elephants while enjoying the company of these majestic animals and their mahouts in one of Thailand’s finest National Parks. When logging was banned in 1989 the elephants and their handlers employed in the industry were forced to beg in the streets to survive. However, projects like the Khao Sok Elephant Experience were set up to return elephants to their natural environment in the virgin rainforests of Khao Sok National Park and provide an income for those involved in their well-being. During your visit you accompany these peaceful creatures through their natural habitat, feeding them sugar cane snacks, then help bathe them in a river. By taking part in this experience you are supporting this and future projects to help the endangered elephants of Thailand.


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Contrasts of Southern Thailand

Thailand

from £2,429 per person 12 2
Including optional travel insurance or a price reduction of £71 if not required