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Day 01: BANGKOK – NAKHON RATCHASIMA
Free lunch and dinner - night in Nakhon Ratchasima - your international flight should arrive in Bangkok before 8am - 3,5h drive, 263km
You will be welcomed in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport by our local team and your English speaking guide and drive to Nakhon Ratchasima via the Khorat Plains which covers much of the provinces of Northeast Thailand. Short stop to admire the panoramic view over the great Lamtaklong Lake. Lunch in Korat. Then, drive to discover the Khmer temples. 20km north of Khorat, first stop at Prasat Hin Phamonwan, Hindu temple (late 9th century). About 25km north-east, reach Ban Prasat, the oldest archaeological site in the region. This site shows an old agricultural society of about 3000 years with remnants of pottery and ceramics. By late afternoon, bike ride city-tour. Free dinner. Discovery of Thanon Manat Night Bazaar. Overnight in Nakhon Ratchasima.
Day 02: NAKHON RATCHASIMA – PHANOM RUNG – MUANG TAM – BURIRAM
Free lunch and dinner - night in Buriram - 6,5h drive, 329km
Breakfast at hotel. Visit Maha Wirawong National Museum located in the grounds of Wat Sutthachinda, the museum contains collections of carved wood objects, ceramics and sandstone statues dating from the Khmer and Ayutthaya periods. Visit the potter’s village of Dan Kwian, and the silk weaving village of Pak Thong Chai. Then, Phanom Rung, the famous Angkor-style temple built in the early 10th to the end of the 12th century. This temple dominates the surrounding plains and gives the impression to reach heaven. Transfer to Muang Tam, on the way visit Tam Meuang Prasat built in the 11th century. This temple surrounded by water is called "the City from below", compared to Prasat Phanom Rung perched on two hills. Free lunch. After this break, travel to the east, along the border with Cambodia and through small villages and crops. We will stop at Prasat Ta Muen Thom. These three small buildings are located in the jungle on the border between Thailand and Cambodia. The access stairs of the last cottage Ta Muen Thom is already in Cambodia. These buildings from late 12th - early 13th on the main roads of the Kingdom were built every 15 to 20 km. Drive to Buriram, free dinner and overnight in Buriram
Day 03 : BURIRAM – PRASAT SI KHORAPHUM – VILLAGE DE THA TUM – SURIN
Free lunch and dinner - night in Surin - 4h drive, 203km
Breakfast at hotel. Drive to Wat Ra Ngaeng, a small temple in Si Khoraphum. It was built in the 12th century by King Suryavarman II Hindu worship. Free lunch. Then you will discover the elephants village in Tha Tum, member of the "Save Elephant Foundation", the "Elephant Study Center" is located in an ancient Kui village, Baan Tha Klang. In 2005, a provincial agency has launched an initiative to gather the mahouts who often had to beg to feed their elephants with their families. The mahout must be free at least 3 hours per day and cannot work with walking tourists. Then visit the National Museum of Surin to discover the history of the Province and the way of life of its various ethnic groups. City walk and free dinner. Overnight in Surin.
Day 04: SURIN – KANTHARALAK - UBON RATCHATHANI
Free lunch and dinner - night in Ubon Ratchathani - 5h drive, 283km
Breakfast at hotel, then transfer to Kantharalak. Free lunch. Visit Khao Preah Vihear, a "Jewel of Khmer Art". Built on a cliff overlooking surrounding plains. The cliff on which stands the temple is sacred for centuries. The sanctuary is originally dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, dates back to the period known as Koh Ker, from 928 to 944. After this remarkable visit transfer to Ubon Ratchathani, free dinner and overnight in Ubon Ratchathani.
Day 05: UBON RATCHATHANI – KHONG CHIAM – PHA TAEM – CHONG MEK (EMERALD TRIANGLE)
Free lunch and dinner - night in Chong Mek - 4,5h drive, 234km
Breakfast at hotel, then visit of Supattanaram Temple and Wat Thung Sri Muang, building with stunning architecture mixing Thai, Laotian and Burmese styles. Visit of the National Museum, this beautiful place houses three of the oldest stones engraved in the country. Drive to Kaeng Tana National Park, where you can visit a dense forest, rapid and beautiful waterfalls. Lunch during the visit. Then to the Pha Taem National Park to discover some of its 300 rock paintings, with views overlooking Laos. Cruise to Khong Chiam, very friendly small town situated at the confluence of the Mun River and the Mekong. Then continuation to Chong Mek, a small town on the border with Laos. Dinner and overnight in Chong Mek.
Day 06: KHONG CHIAM – MUKDAHAN – ROI ET
Free lunch and dinner - night in Roi Et - 6h drive, 373km
Breakfast at hotel and drive to Mukdahan through beautiful mountains. Lunch at a local restaurant offering a beautiful view over the Friendship Bridge linking Thailand to Laos. Then, visit a traditional 'Lao-Isan' village located on the Korat Plain offering stunning landscapes such as waterfalls, forests and beautiful beaches like Kaeng Kabao.
The mythical Mekong River is from Tibet and ends its journey in the Vietnamese delta. All along the river, you can visit various places with cave paintings proving the "prehistoric" presence of human beings. Continuation to Roi Et, its vast plains of Thung Kula Rong Hai is now transformed into productive and fertile agricultural land where farmers produce high quality rice. The capital of the province experienced a relatively recent development; its main attraction remains its largest artificial lake "Bueng Phalan Chai" in the middle of which there is an island containing a recreation center.
Off the beaten tracks, Roi Et gives the opportunity to experience the life and culture of the northeast of Thailand. The King's aquarium is located near Bueng Phalan Chai, this aquarium contains a large variety of aquatic animals of the Isan region. Visit Wat Buraphaphiram. The temple is distinguished by its Buddha statue of Luang Pho Yai. This 59,20 m high statue is the largest image of the Buddha Thailand. Free dinner. Overnight in Roi Et.
Day 07 : ROI ET – MAHA SARAKHAM – PHIMAI
Free lunch and dinner - night in Phimai - 4h drive, 227km
Breakfast at hotel, then drive to Maha Sarakham. Located in the middle of the northeastern region, it is an educational center famous for the site of the ancient Dvaravati city of Nakhon Champa Si. Visit of the Institute of Cultural Research and Artistic of Isan located in Maha Sarakham University, the institute displays exhibitions of arts and culture of the Isan region, including exhibitions explaining the origin of weaving and development of local fabrics, basketry, pottery, household objects, musical instruments and ancient inscriptions and contemporary works of art by students. Continue to Phimai. Lunch during the visit. The temples of Isan, including Phimai, Phanom Rung and Muang Khaek have donated some of their most beautiful objects to the National Museum of Phimai.
The main exhibition is dedicated to Phimai from its construction to its renovation. The modern building houses Baan Prasat ceramics, sculptures, jewelry and tools, good introduction to the fineness of Khmer art. The upper floor is devoted to Khmer and Isan companies, including their rituals, animistic as Buddhist Mahayana. Visit the Historic Site and the Museum Phimai Prasat Phimai, Buddhist temple, considered as one of the finest examples of the spread of Khmer art in the Isan plain.
It is part of a series of sanctuaries scattered along the main road which connect Angkor Wat to the northeastern Thailand. It was built under the impulse of large Rouge leaders, including Suryavarman I and Jayavarman VII, between the 11th and 12th centuries. The sanctuary has been restored twice by the Department of Fine Arts in 1962 with support from the French government. The temple has patterns and prints with fine details. Free dinner. Overnight in Phimai.
Day 08 : PHIMAI – KHORAT – SARABURI - LOPBURI
Free lunch and dinner - night in Lopburi - 4,5h drive, 256km
Breakfast at hotel and drive to Saraburi, the area marks the northern border of the fertile central plain and fully covered with rice fields. It gives access to Khorat Plains in Isan. Discovery of Wat Phra Phutthabat Ratchaworamahawihan, one of the most famous temples in Thailand because it contains a significant footprint of Buddha. The beautiful mondop, glowing in the sunlight, and built on a marble platform, is a masterpiece of Thai architecture. The exterior walls are decorated with gold and colored glass depict mythological gods and lotus flowers. The two temples Saraburi and Phra Phutthabat has ancient murals.
Visit Wat Samuha PraditTharam in Tha Chang and Wat Chanthaburi in Ban Yang. Lunch during the visit. Drive to Lopburi. This is an interesting city, one of the most ancient Khmer capital, dominating the early 10th century to the middle region of the 13th century. Many Khmer-style monuments were constructed in Lopburi such as the Hindu shrine, the tomb of Phra Kan. Holiday residence of the King of Siam, including Phra Narai, Lopburi received embassies of Louis XIV. At that time, many French came in this the area (Jesuit adventurers and ambassadors).
Discovery of Phra Prang Sam Yot (a tomb built in laterite and sandstone decorated with stucco) and Wat Phra Sri Rattanamahathat a very important monument. It was probably founded in the 12th century, when the Khmer governed Lopburi, the monkey city. Free dinner. Overnight in Lopburi.
Day 09 : LOPBURI – BANG PA IN - AYUTTHAYA
Free lunch and dinner - night in Ayutthaya - 2h drive, 113km
Breakfast at hotel and drive to Bang Pa In which originally was a river island. King Prasat Thong (1630-1655) built a palace on a lake in the middle of the island to serve as a royal refuge. This place was once used by each ruler of Ayutthaya. However, when the capital moved to Bangkok, the palace remained unused for 80 years. King Rama IV (1851-1868) revived the area by building a house. His son, Rama V (1868-1910) deeply loved this place, staying there every year. He built the magnificent set which can be visited today. Transfer to Ayutthaya. Free lunch. Located on the Chao Phraya River, the main river of the country, this city is very important because of its role as Siamese capital for four centuries.
The city of Ayutthaya, located 76 km north of Bangkok, has many ruins and superb monuments, remains of the ancient capital. The historic city of Ayutthaya, before called Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya was the Thai capital for 417 years and today remains one of the main attractions of the country. Many monuments and vestiges of the era can be visited in this city founded in 1350 by King Uthong. You can visit the following temples in the historical park: Wat Mahathat, Wat Ratchaburana, Wat Choeng Phanan, Wat Phra Sri Sanphet Viharn Phra Mongkol Bopit. Dinner and overnight in Ayutthaya.
Day 10 : AYUTTHAYA – KANCHANABURI – BAN NAM TOK – THAM KRASAE - KANCHANABURI
free lunch and dinner - night in Kanchanaburi - 3h drive, 163km
Breakfast at hotel and drive to Kanchanaburi. Lunch during the visit. Continue to Ban Nam Tok. Excursions by train, travel on one of the historic routes of Southeast Asia, the remaining part of the "Railway of Death”. From Namtok Station, this winding road crosses the famous bridge and realizes how difficult it was to build the original path. One of the most exciting parts is parallel to the curved Kwai Noi River then crosses a steep cliff pierced by caves. Boat Tour from Kanchanaburi to Tham Krasae, this trip is an unforgettable experience.
The bridge on the Kwai River is known worldwide thanks to several films and books, the black steel bridge was brought from the island of Java by the Japanese Army and reassembled under the control by the Japanese prisoners of war allies in the Death Railway linking Thailand with Burma. Still used today, the bridge was the target of frequent bombing in 1945 and was rebuilt after the war. Bridge support the arches are original parts.
Visit of JEATH museum (means Japan, England, America, Australia, Thailand and Holland) with donations of several prisoners. Dinner and overnight in Kanchanaburi.
Day 11 : KANCHANABURI – RATCHABURI – DAMNOEN SADUAK - HUA HIN
Free lunch and dinner - night in Hua Hin - 4h drive, 233km
Breakfast at hotel and drive to Ratchaburi. You can visit the floating market of Damnoen Saduak, famous to have kept its authenticity and remains today one of the most famous floating markets of Thailand.
This village, which has become essential in the kingdom, with its narrow khlongs network, has several floating markets scattered in different neighborhoods, but most visitors go directly to the largest, Ton Kem floating market. The ballet begins in canoes from 6am, you will discover this festival of colors and smells. Drive to Hua Hin, free lunch and dinner, overnight in Hua Hin.
Day 12 : HUA HIN
Free lunch and dinner - night in Hua Hin
Breakfast at hotel, a day of leisure and free time to enjoy the sun, sea and dazzling white sand. Lunch and dinner. Overnight in Hua Hin.
Day 13 : HUA HIN - SAMUT SONGKHRAM – BANGKOK
Free lunch and dinner - night in Bangkok - 2h drive, 80km
Breakfast at hotel. Transfer to Samut Songkhram. Visit of Amphawa Floating Market.
Once there, you will discover the market and there rent a canoe to explore nearby sites, including the old chapel of a temple, which over time has been fully embraced by the roots of a Ficus. Lunch during the visit. Visit Wat Traimit (The Temple of the Golden Buddha) located at the end of Yaowarat Road in Chinatown (Chinatown), this temple houses an extraordinary representation of Buddha in gold, built 700 years ago. The statue, composed of five and a half tons of gold represents the Buddha in sitting position. Previously covered with plaster, the real treasure was discovered when the coating broke, revealing a statue made entirely of gold. You will explore the fascinating Chinatown Historic District with a guide.
The tour begins on the Ratchawong dock on the Chao Praya. You go back in time by visiting the old markets of Yaowarat, located in the heart of the vibrant Chinatown. The original inhabitants were Chinese traders who lived in the village of Bangkok before it became the capital of the Kingdom of Siam. From the pier, you will follow the walk Song Wat Road lined with old buildings and warehouses. Visit the plastic and leather quarter and stop in a 100 years old café to appreciate the atmosphere. You will take the road to discover Issarnuparb a busy market specializing in Chinese religious items and fresh goods.
Walk to the Saphan Put market, with a wide range of clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, secondhand objects and antiques. The last stop will be at Pakklong Talad, the biggest market of flower and vegetable in Bangkok. Memorable dinner on a luxurious boat restaurant. Overnight in Bangkok
Day 14 : BANGKOK
Transfert to airport - departure
Breakfast at hotel, then transfer to Bangkok Suvarnabhumi international airport
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