Bangkok, Phuket, Koh Phi Phi
Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.
From crystal waters to golden towers and curious fish to floating markets, this custom tailored tour through Thailand will bring you the fast-paced brilliance of Bangkok and the fabulous qualities of the southern Islands. You will vacation where the modern jungle meets wondrous history to witness the unparalleled beauty of jungle mountains surrounded by perfect beaches. Bask in the royal luxuries and priceless treasures, while you enjoy the delicious cuisine and stellar culture. Immerse yourself...
Bangkok – Arrive and Untie
As your plane descends into the Bangkok Airport you will see the incredible sprawl of the city wrapped around the ancient Chao Phraya River. You will be met by a private transfer and guided to your luxurious accommodation ready to take on the beauty of Southern Thailand. The city is a diamond still hidden within bits of coal, where the best of Bangkok is not measured by the look of the jewel itself, but by how it reflects light. And Bangkok is nothing but illuminating. The city is filled with vibrancy, a fast-moving bustle that, at first, feels rushed and out of focus, but quickly becomes an understanding movement. You can follow the flow of people and cars, the sounds of boats and taxis. What once felt like haste becomes a composed city, making the speed at which people move that much more impressive.
Beneath the gentle brush of banyan trees, hidden behind the rising skyline, are quiet streets and local flair, where Thai culture continues to thrive. Even if hidden, you can easily find the secluded charm of cobblestone streets and welcomed shade. The gentle scrape of a wok against a burner emanates from the streets echoing after the local vendors, while the scent of fresh mint and crushed peanuts fills the air. The soft smiles of the locals will give you a hardy welcome as the city slows its pace and you find yourself in the heart of Thailand ready to see more.
Bangkok – Smiling Palaces and Reclining Buddha
The morning casts a natural glow over the city where the skyline retracts its glistening lights from the night before. After a luscious breakfast, you will venture out into the city on a guided tour to see the famed Grand Palace and surrounding temples that have graced the city for centuries. The golden spires of the palace reflect on the calm Chao Phraya River, once the most important highway in the city. The spires coil upward into impressive concentric points. In the evening the gold almost looks like starlight against the backdrop of the night sky. However, in the daylight, the gleaming color of the palace is just as inspiring, if not more so. The Royal Reception Halls stretch across the palace complex with ornate architecture, including sloped roofs with gilded edges and towering spires. Checkered tiles grace the floor, leading to the antique throne. The ceiling contains sunken panels, decorated with glass mosaic stars that bring an eternal gentle evening to the room.
You will journey deeper into the palace grounds to the Temple of Wat Pra Kaew, which houses the sensational Emerald Buddha, a large and intricate image of Buddha carved out of one solid stone. The temple itself is raised on a pedestal within the palace complex and dates back to the late 18th century. This large chedi is covered in gold leaf, a traditional Thai style, complete with murals depicting the epic of Ramayana. The interior is awash with fragrant incense, which creates a lovely haze that surrounds the sacred image. You will see an ornate robe wrapped around the Buddha’s shoulders as each season the King changes Buddha’s robes to bring luck and prosperity to all of Thailand.
Bangkok – Unique Marketing
Another morning in Bangkok brings with it the subtle aromas of fresh fruits, from pineapples to jackfruit, where the sweet taste of the pineapple and the creamy texture of the jackfruit ready you for the day. Step outside your hotel and journey away from the hurried pace of the city, past the salt farms and vibrant countryside, to a completely different type of hustle at Damnoen Saduak for the famous Floating Market. Imagine rush hour traffic and apply it to the river, where the old culture of the area comes to life. You will see longboats that overflow with produce, from freshly opened coconuts to freshly picked chilies. A rich perfume of fried banana comes from one of the boats, as a woman dips a batch into the sizzling wok, a large helping per order. People paddle their boats, haggle for the best prices, and drift along the waterway in the early hours of the day. Although the market is open until mid-afternoon, many of the vendors will leave by late morning. People’s voices are excited, their produce is colorful, and your experience will be unlike any other.
In the afternoon you will arrive at the Rose Garden, a mixture of botanical garden and cultural center that gives you the incredible history of Thailand during a delicious lunch and fabulous show. Wander through the gorgeous pathway where the manicured grass is soft beneath your feet and the rose archway makes you feel as though you have wandered into the secret garden. The center shows you the elegant Fingernail Dance, where the dancers don long nails that highlight the motion of their hands and tell a storied history that they will soon be revealed to you. As the day settles into dusk, you will arrive back in Bangkok with the evening at your leisure.
Day 4 - 5
Phuket – En Route to Sapphire Islands
The beach portion of your vacation begins with a sunrise and your departure from the grand metropolis of Bangkok. You will have a private transfer to the airport where you will board your flight and arrive shortly on the stunning island of Phuket. The waters have a turquoise clarity beneath the sprawling jungle trees that enrapture the landscape. Settle into your hotel where the hot sands and sparkling water are at your leisure. Whether traversing the island on a motor scooter to view the panorama near the summit of Big Buddha or scouring the charm of Old Phuket Town, where the history of the island comes alive with every step you take down the main road, the richness of the island stems from many places.
Spend the next two days relaxing at Freedom Beach, the jewel of Phuket. The beach’s exclusivity derives from its less than easy accessibility. However, it will be an easy and fast ride on a long-tail boat, where you can navigate beyond the far reaches of the trees and find yourself comfortably on the hot sand of the bay in no time. The powder-white sand will be like a welcome mat, as it brings you into the luxury of seclusion, while the water is a perfect temperature that cools your toes. It is a tranquil spot where, if you are hungry, the one restaurant can fill you with the delectable goods from the fresh sea.
Koh Phi Phi – The Island Connection
Remarkable islands mark the waters off of Thailand’s main peninsula and are a short distance away from the lovely shores of Phuket. After a decadent breakfast that brings you the flavors of the island, including refreshing star fruit and juicy mango, a quick transfer will have you at the ferry and on your way to the unique island of Koh Phi Phi. This remarkable island will bring its natural wonder to the forefront, and to you. The water looks like crystal, translucent and opulent, while the sands are powdery and soft. The air is brushed with delicious fair, from pad thai to grilled octopus, each with its own luscious flavor.
After you have settled into your plush and comfortable accommodation you can venture out to the jewels of the island. There is never a lack of beauty whether hiking through the trees or relaxing on the perfect shores. Before the sun begins to set you can follow the signs and make your way to the top of the mountain that overlooks the western bay. The stairs are steep but the limestone rocks near the top of the summit will give you a clear opening to watch the blazing orange disappear behind the horizon. The colors will stretch and blend into the entire sky in slow motion. It is a treasured moment that will make you feel as though the sun has set, if only this once, just for you.
Day 7 - 8
Koh Phi Phi – Beyond “The Beach”
There is a gentle sun that rises over the islands, shining over the pristine shores and immaculate waters. The next two days will be at your leisure to explore or relax on the island as you see fit. Cruise to the famous Maya Beach, known to be the bay where Leonardo DiCaprio’s “The Beach,” was filmed. You could also venture out to the lesser-visited islands that speckle the ocean where you will witness the untouched grandeur of the coral reefs.
Snorkeling along Bamboo Island, over two-miles from Koh Phi Phi’s most northern point, is like diving into a dream. You can watch the coral sway with the wake of the boat, the purples and oranges glittering beneath the water’s surface. Fish dart in all directions, from schools to individuals, tiny to large. Watch as the Technicolor clown fishes peak their heads from anemones. The water turns into a sapphire pool, swirling up onto the island’s sandy shores. Rest along the quiet beach before you dive back beneath the subtle waves, surrounded by fish, coral, and fantasy. When the sun begins to drop behind the horizon you will see the colors of the sky mirrored on the waters below as you return to the main island of Koh Phi Phi.
Koh Phi Phi – Away We Go
The sand has a solid look in the morning, nothing like the soft powder that you have embraced for days. Enjoy your breakfast while you watch the morning sun settle over the gentle waves. There is an effortless majesty to the island that you do not want to leave and will never forget. Make your way to the ferry. The short ride back to Phuket will have the wind in your hair and the sweet scent of the sea surrounding you, before you are met by a private transfer and taken to the airport. Thailand has brought you to the fantastic sights of temples, the cultural markets, and fabulous beaches. There will always be more Thailand to discover and more treasures to uncover and your memories of it all will last forever.
If you want to spend more than nine days in Thailand, consider adding on to your customized trip. Browse the Thailand travel agent reviews for ideas and real traveler reviews.
- Discover the beauty of Thailand's islands beginning on the stunning shores of Phuket
- Luxuriate on the immaculate shores of Koh Phi Phi Island
- Witness the sensational Grand Palace, the traditional home to the Thai Royal Family
- See the exceptional Emerald Buddha, carved from one single treasured stone
- Experience the traditional Floating Market where the wonder of the boats and the freshness of the produce are inspiring
- Delight in a snorkeling excursion to view the vibrant purples and oranges glittering beneath the water’s surface surrounded by darting marine life
- Bask in the lively culture of life in Bangkok on a tour along the edges of the celebrated Chao Phraya River
Step into the fast-paced cities and fabulous beach scenery of Thailand on this 9-day tour meant to bring you to the splendor of Bangkok and the magnificence of the Southern Islands. Here you will experience temples that rise and markets that float, where the ocean is crystal and the coral glows. You can see the emerald statue of Buddha beneath the vibrant halls of the Royal Palace complex and dig your feet into the secluded sands of a seducing beach. From the fast pace life of Bangkok to the relaxed waves of Koh Phi Phi Island, you will have it all during your custom Thailand vacation.
You will begin this spectacular tour in Bangkok, the largest city in Thailand. The capital city reaches high and wide, with skyscrapers that reach as far back as the horizon. The beauty of the quiet streets and serene parks are treasures that will help ease the rush of the city, within the charming green of the Golden Mountain or the reflective waters of Lumphini Park. After you settle into the city you will traverse the waters of Chao Phraya River and disembark at the Grand Palace. The royal complex is filled with temples and halls, decorated with gilded spires and arched windows. Where the antique throne opulently sits you can also see a gentle glow of mosaic glass. Within the grace of the Emerald Buddha is intense color and fabulous detail. Outside of the city will bring you to the storied Floating Market of Damnoen Saduak. The energy of the market helps bring the culture to life, where the traditions of the riverbanks are on display within colorful produce and delicious aromas.
Your vacation will continue on the wonderful island of Phuket. Whether set along the secluded shore of Freedom Beach or strolling through the colorful homes of Old Town, the day will be at your leisure, giving you the best of the island and its wonderful panoramas. A short ferry ride will have you on the island of Koh Phi Phi, a place that most would call paradise. The days on Koh Phi Phi are yours to explore, from watching the sunset or visiting Maya Bay, known for its landscape in the movie, “The Beach.” You will snorkel around a national reserve, dine with your feet resting in the calm sea, and let yourself be absorbed by the splendor of southern Thailand. Start with the fast and ease into the relaxed, but know that it will all be fabulous.
$1,975 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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