Elephants, Treks and Temples

About the Experience

On a river, alongside a mountain, and within a temple, Thailand wraps its marvels around you in an embrace of magic. The way its spices taste, the smell of its lush jungles, the way the water flows over the cracked skin of an elephant as she bathes…

Your feet will take you from mountain trail to a temple hidden amid the jungle, reminding you of the untapped wonder that still exists in this world.

Each day you will experience Thailand anew. By boat, trek, kayak, bamboo raft and bike, your senses will tingle at the quiet beauty of this landscape’s every angle. Flowing along the rapids of the Taeng River, luxuriating in a traditional Thai massage, purchasing fresh lemongrass from a bustling local market, and gently cycling past rolling hills of rice paddies and fruit orchards will delight your senses.

These moments are deepened by the Wild Women family at your side and the string of faces that dot your Thailand days. Not only will the elephants swell your heart with love for this earth, so too will the Hillside Villagers that welcome you into their homes and share their culture, making you feel as though you are old friends finding each other again.

You will meet new friends, the Asian elephants, in the jungle and in a rescue sanctuary, inviting you to learn more about the life of these majestic animals and to appreciate their gentle, wise ways. Your heart will be warmed knowing that you are helping to protect these threatened animals and as you feed and bathe them, you know that your time in Thailand is giving back to this wonderful country that has touched your heart.

Click here to see the full itinerary!
Elephants, Treks and Temples

About the Experience

On a river, alongside a mountain, and within a temple, Thailand wraps its marvels around you in an embrace of magic. The way its spices taste, the smell of its lush jungles, the way the water flows over the cracked skin of an elephant as she bathes…

Your feet will take you from mountain trail to a temple hidden amid the jungle, reminding you of the untapped wonder that still exists in this world.

Each day you will experience Thailand anew. By boat, trek, kayak, bamboo raft and bike, your senses will tingle at the quiet beauty of this landscape’s every angle. Flowing along the rapids of the Taeng River, luxuriating in a traditional Thai massage, purchasing fresh lemongrass from a bustling local market, and gently cycling past rolling hills of rice paddies and fruit orchards will delight your senses.

These moments are deepened by the Wild Women family at your side and the string of faces that dot your Thailand days. Not only will the elephants swell your heart with love for this earth, so too will the Hillside Villagers that welcome you into their homes and share their culture, making you feel as though you are old friends finding each other again.

You will meet new friends, the Asian elephants, in the jungle and in a rescue sanctuary, inviting you to learn more about the life of these majestic animals and to appreciate their gentle, wise ways. Your heart will be warmed knowing that you are helping to protect these threatened animals and as you feed and bathe them, you know that your time in Thailand is giving back to this wonderful country that has touched your heart.

DAY ONE: CHIANG MAI ARRIVAL

Welcome to Chiang Mai! Upon arrival at Chiang Mai international airport, you’ll meet with our guide and driver who will assist you on your transfer to the hotel where you have some time to relax before our welcome dinner tonight in one of the top restaurants in Chiang Mai!

 

DAY TWO: SPICE OF LIFE

Get a true taste of Thai life. Spend a day far removed from the tourist areas of Chiang Mai and be immersed in the local culture with Mr. Prapat and his family. The hosts will provide a warm welcome into their home. After meet and greets, explore the property of Mr. Prapat to encounter local architectural styles and uniquely traditional ways of life. Watch basket weaving, a handmade process that has remained unchanged for centuries.

Next up is a visit to Mr. Prapat’s organic gardens to browse his vibrant array of vegetation. Select some fresh ingredients, grab an apron and head inside to begin the interactive cooking experience! The family will share their recipes and demonstrate the traditional techniques needed to prepare delicious northern Thai dishes. Share stories of food and family while cooking today’s lunch. Afterward, sit down with the family and dine on the tasty meal.

After a delicious lunch, it is time for relaxing where we will go for a refreshing afternoon of traditional spa treatments. We will start with a Fah Lanna healing treatment including an Aromatic Herbal Steam treatment, Oil Massage, and Thai Massage.

DAY THREE: MAE NGAT LAKE RESERVOIR 

Set off for the one-hour drive from Chiang Mai to Sri Lanna National Park. First, we start the journey for a visit to Bua Tong limestone waterfall in Sri Lanna National Park where we will have a picnic while spending time climbing up these remarkable falls. After this, we start cycling to Mae Ngat Dam. For those who wish not to cycle they can take the transfer to the lake.

Upon reaching the park entrance, hop on a bike for a 20-kilometer (van assisted) ride, mostly downhill and moderate inclines. Pedal along quiet rural roads, passing through an ever-changing landscape of beautiful scenery. See rolling rice paddies and fruit orchards growing exotic tropical treats. Cycle past dazzling bamboo and fern groves, with vibrant shades of green. Stop often for photos or to simply soak up the incredible surroundings.

At Mae Ngat Lake Reservoir the biking trail ends and another adventure begins. Climb into the long tail boat and ride out onto the lake’s placid waters. Cross the reservoir, enjoying the backdrop of distant unspoiled landscapes. Arrive at a floating bamboo raft house where a delicious lunch of traditional dishes awaits. Spend the remainder of the afternoon at this tranquil location, swim in the cool waters or climb in the kayaks to go and discover more remote corners of the reservoir, or simply relax on the shoreline. Feeling rejuvenated from a day in the great outdoors, pack up the bikes and wrap up the day trip to Sri Lanna National Park.

 

DAY FOUR: MOVING THROUGH MOUNTAINS

After breakfast, we leave our resort and go up the mountain of Doi Ang Kang, the second highest mountain in Thailand where we will have stunning views of Thailand and neighboring Myanmar. Learn about the wars which were fought ages ago before going to one of Thailand’s most famous botanical gardens in this royal project where we will have a delicious lunch in a very characteristic restaurant. After lunch, we will take a gentle one hour hike along a jungle trail before moving on through the mountains to our end destination of today, the Phumanee hotel, a mixture of hotel and homestay with a very interesting story to it.

 

DAY FIVE: LISU HILLTRIBES

This morning, learn about the history of Phumanee hotel and the people who run it before embarking by 4X4 to the starting point of a four-hour trek to the top of the mountain. During this trek where the view is changing all the time, you will get excited to see the hill tribe village you heard so much about.

Once we’ve reached the village, charge up with a delicious lunch. Get a hands-on experience in picking tea leaves and learn about the complete process of making tea and coffee on top of this beautiful village before being transferred to the hotel where the van waits to bring us to Thaton for the night. People who wish to not do the trekking can go up the mountain by 4×4 to reach the village. After this interesting day learning about the Lisu Hilltribes, we will have a final transfer to a luxury eco-lodge Phu chai sai, a little piece of heaven on earth in the mountains of Chiang Rai.

 

DAY SIX: PHU CHAI SAI

Today is a day of leisure at the Phu Chai Sai, choosing one of the offered activities or simply relaxing at the pool. There are two scheduled hikes today and two scheduled Yoga classes which you can join.

 

DAY SEVEN: WHITE TEMPLE

Today there is a long ride ahead but we will break this up with learning the history and passing the highlights of the area. Leaving our beautiful resort this morning while we’re having stops at the Baan dam, a black artist museum and of course a stop at the “White Temple” one of the most famous temples in Thailand. We stop for lunch on-route today and a coffee break.  Our final rest stop will be in the mountains of Mae Rim at the rustic Hmong Hilltribe Lodge. Unwind from a long day while enjoying the gardens and maybe a campfire in the evening.

 

DAY EIGHT: ELEPHANT BATHING

This morning after delicious breakfast at the hotel we’ll get transferred by truck. We’ll take a short stop by Mae Malai local market to purchase some food and vegetables needed for the trek. The next stop is Mok Fah waterfall for swimming and relaxation, and then we’ll get transferred again to Karen village. Here, you will have lunch and the guide will show their cooking skills by preparing lunch for you!  We’ll take a little break before we start trekking approx 4 hours, hiking up and down high incline jungle roads, to another Karen Village Hilltribe at Baan Pa Kao Lam. We’ll walk around the village to see their local lifestyle. We’ll get to feed the elephants and bathe them in the river! Dinner and overnight at the Karen Village.

 

DAY NINE: RAFTING ALONG THE RIVER

After breakfast at the village, we’ll set out for bamboo rafting along the Taeng River through many rapids for about 2.5 hours to Shan Village and Baan Sob Kai. On the way, we’ll stop at the Lahu Hilltribe village at Baan Pong Ngan. Late lunch will be at Shan village before getting transferred back to Chiang Mai. Tonight you will experience a famous Chiang Mai Night Market, Chiang Mai Night Bazaar and have dinner at local restaurant.

 

DAY TEN: HIKE & HIGHLIGHTS

Early breakfast today as it’s your last full day in Thailand! Get ready for spending a day with the elephants, learning about these beautiful pachyderms while feeding, bathing and walking with them. We’ll have a delicious lunch at an Elephant Sanctuary before leaving back to the city and on to our final hike of the trip.

We will be hiking the monks trail up to Doi Suthep Mountain. This trail was in the old ages only used by the monks walking to up the mountain on their way to Wat Phra That Temple on the top of the mountain. We start hiking at the foot of the mountain and set off through nature with a slight ascend up the hill. After a 40-minute walk we will find Wat Pha Lat, maybe one of Chiang Mai’s least visited temples.

This temple is hidden away from the tourists, in the forest. We take a break to walk around this breathtaking and mysterious temple so beautifully hidden and so serene. Relax and take a deep breath, reliving the memories of the past 10 days.  

We’ll head back late in the afternoon to get ready for our final celebratory dinner!

 

DAY ELEVEN: JOURNEY’S END

Our trip has come to an end and it is time to say goodbye to each other before getting a transfer back to the airport.

 

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