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Thailand has rightfully earned a reputation as the top destination in South East Asia, with friendly smiling locals, a seemingly endless list of stunning physical wonders, some of the best cuisine in the world and a nightlife scene that rivals the best of the best.
The Capital city of Thailand, Bangkok is one of the largest cities in the region and the main gateway for many travelers arriving in SE Asia. Known for it’s ancient temples, vibrant street life, fantastic food and abundance of shopping opportunities, Bangkok is a big city with a lot to offer the adventurous type. The sky train, subway and river ferries connect you to all areas of the city making navigation around town a breeze. We begin or end (sometimes both) all of our Thailand trips in Bangkok, giving all of our Thailand travelers the opportunity to soak up the sights and sounds of this truly Far Out city.
Tour the ancient shrines and temples, shop the floating markets, street stalls and world class malls, cruise the river on a long boat hopping on and off at the various sites of Bangkok, or spend the night cutting loose in the backpacker’s party mecca of Khao San Rd. Bangkok is a big time city full of big time fun.
Located 140kms west of Bangkok, Kanchanaburi is a sleepy city most famous for being the site of the Bridge over the River Kwai, the starting point of the Burmese Death Railway built during WWII. Not only is Kanchanaburi a place loaded with history both recent and ancient, it also happens to be a stunningly beautiful place that a lot of travelers leave off their Thailand itinerary.
The famous river Kwai flows through the town of Kanchanaburi and mountains covered in lush green rain forest, passing along it’s course the Erawan National Park, home to some of the most jaw dropping layered waterfalls in the world. Not only is the mountainous and forested terrain perfect for waterfall hunters, it also provides ample opportunity for world class trekking and wildlife spotting.
Kanchanaburi is also one of the few places in Thailand where you have the opportunity to interact with Asian elephants in an ethical setting. Take a hike through the jungle, cool off under a waterfall or in a simmering turquoise pool, take a float or a splash in the river Kwai, make friends with a friendly pachyderm, or learn a little bit about the local history. A beautiful place rich in history, nature and adventure, our groups always mention Kanchanaburi as a favorite.
Most people travel to Thailand to visit the pristine islands and beaches that dot the country’s south, or the bustling streets of Bangkok. Rivers and lakes are not often the first things that come to, but Khao Sok challenges the status quo by offering up one of the country’s most jaw dropping and unique destinations. Nestled between the Gulf of Thailand and The Andaman Sea on the mainland peninsula is the largest area of virgin rain forest in Thailand, an area which is older and even more bio diverse than the Amazon.
Spot the monkeys playing while you float down a lazy river through lush green rain forest, explore the stunning karst cliffs and emerald waters of Cheow Lan Lake, trek through the jungle spotting rare species, then cool off under a stunning waterfall or in a crystal clear pool. During a cool evening in the rain forest you can even enjoy a warm soak and a stunning view from a mountain hot spring. Khao Sok has a lot to offer the nature lover and the adventure seeker alike. It is not uncommon for people to tell us Khao Sok was the favorite part of their adventure with us.
If you’ve heard of Koh Phangan, it’s likely you’ve heard of it’s status as SE Asia’s premier beach party destination. Koh Phangan is the original home of the often imitated but never duplicated Full Moon Party. What started as a small gathering of friends on Haad Rin beach in the mid ‘80’s has grown into a roughly monthly all-night gong show that can attract anywhere from 5,000-30,000 people depending on the season.
Koh Phangan has a lot more to offer however than just raucous beach, jungle and pool parties. Visit stunning deserted beaches, enjoy excellent snorkeling and diving, trek through lush forested mountains to waterfalls, see a Muay Thai fight, or enjoy a world class sunset at one of the many amazing viewpoints. Koh Phangan is an easy place to get swept away with and many travelers do, deciding to extend a short stay for weeks, months, or even permanently.
Chances are if you’ve ever had a friend or family member who has visited Thailand, you’ve seen pictures of Koh Phi Phi on their social media accounts. This is not only because Koh Phi Phi is one of the most visited destinations in all of SE Asia, but also because it is one of the most beautiful and picturesque islands in the entire world. Koh Phi Phi has enjoyed a boom in popularity since the early 2000’s and has become a bucket list spot on many a Thailand travelers’ itinerary. This is due in no small part to the popularity of the 2000 Leonardo DiCaprio film “The Beach”.
Koh Phi Phi is actually made up of two main islands. The smaller island of Phi Phi Lei is home to the stunningly gorgeous Maya Bay, star of “The Beach”, which many argue to be the most beautiful beach in the world. The larger island of Phi Phi Don is the only inhabited island of the two, playing host to all the island’s visitors. Here you will find palm lined white sand beaches and beautiful clear blue water surrounded by stunning green cliffs, as well as one of the most vibrant, lively and crazy night life scenes in SE Asia. Not only is Phi Phi a great place to take the selfie of a lifetime, it’s also an awesome place to cut loose and meet other travelers from all over the world.
Railay Beach is a seriously beautiful and totally laid back place. Located in Thailand’s famous Krabi province, Railay is not actually an island but a peninsula. The jagged limestone mountains that cover the peninsula have made establishing road access to the mainland a challenge, so Railay has no roads or cars, and can only be accessed by boat. Footpaths wander through the cliffs, connecting the 3 main beaches and a 4th a short hike away. In their relative isolation, Railay has developed a unique laid back culture of their own. The stunning limestone cliffs that isolate Railay from the mainland have helped them develop a reputation as one of the best rock climbing destinations in Asia and also the world, with climbing suitable for all levels of experience. This has become a very big part of the local culture here in Railay, as have the reggae bars that dot the beachfront in Railay East.
Spend the day learning to climb, kayak around the peninsula, hike to one of the gorgeous viewpoints or the famous “hidden lagoon”, or just spend the day relaxing on one of Railay’s stunning cliff lined beaches. Come sundown catch the mind blowing sunset on Railay West before heading over to Railay East to spend the evening (or all night) chilling and taking in some live music, a fire show or even a traditional Muay Thai fight.