Thailand & Laos Private Tour

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Why You Should Go

Considered to be the most popular destination in Southeast Asia, Thailand is truly a land of contrasts with its distinctive options for the restless traveler. We believe the allure of Thailand can be traced to the country’s varied and unique environments, from the sandy beaches of Phuket to the rolling hill countries of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and even the sprawling cosmopolitan city of Bangkok. Paired with this bustling country, a visit to Laos provides its own contrast through the ancient royal city of Luang Prabang– a place where time seems to stand still. A UNESCO World Heritage Site enrobed in Buddhist culture, this small, friendly city charmed us with a fusion of monasteries, traditional Laotian dwellings, and French colonial architecture. Bev, Zen, and I find Luang Prabang’s contrast to the energetic Thailand to be most refreshing!

Best Travel Time: Spring Fall Winter

Wat Xieng Thong Temple in Luang Prabang, Laos
Wat Xieng Thong Temple, Luang Prabang

Sample Itinerary

14 Days

Each private luxury tour is custom to the wishes of each client. This itinerary is a sample. Partnering with our long-established relationship with United Airlines, our sister company, TRAVNET, may provide competitive Polaris/Business Class international airfare, along with mileage points conversion.

1

Day 1

Fly to Bangkok 
Through our sister company, premium air provider TRAVNET, we may assist with your international airfare, as well as with mileage points conversion.

Meals:
Accommodations: 

Wat Arun Temple
Wat Arun Temple, Bangkok
2

Day 2

Arrive Bangkok
Upon arrival in Bangkok, you will have the chance to check-in and freshen up at the Mandarin Oriental before embarking on a half-day private tour of Bangkok via a klong. The klongs (canals) water excursion highlights the Thai way of life that at one time gave Bangkok the title of “Venice of the East.”  Although pollution-challenged, the Chao Phraya River is still a compelling part of life here. You will pass Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn), as well as many unique riverside neighborhoods. Many of the cultural highlights are in the city’s historical core, Rattanakosin (or old Bangkok), which sits on a bend on the east side of the Chao Praya River. Here you will find the grounds of the Grand Palace, the complex of buildings and gardens built when the capital was founded in 1782.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

grand-palace
Grand Palace
3

Day 3

Bangkok Private Touring
You will embark on a 2-hour drive to the Ratchaburi Province, where you will board a private longboat to travel along the Damnoen Saduak River, meandering through a series of canals, before ending at the Floating Market. Since many of the dishes are cooked directly in the small boats, you will have an immense variety of local food to taste with satay and noodle soup. Following a late lunch, at a local restaurant (if you are still hungry!), you will visit a unique county market, located along a stretch of railway tracks. Every time a train passes, all the vendors pull away their tables/workshops from the tracks, only to replace them the second the train is gone – this is quite a funny sight.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

Floating Market in Damnoen Saduak, Thailand
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
4

Day 4

Bangkok Private Touring
Your Bangkok touring begins with a trip to see the Emerald Buddha, sat atop an elevated altar, and housed within the former royal palace which features an intriguing blend of Italian Renaissance architecture and classical Thai roofing. You will continue to Wat Pho, built by King Rama I nearly 200 years ago and housing the gigantic Reclining Buddha or Phra Buddhasaiyas, 150 feet long and almost 50 feet high, covered entirely in gold leaf.  Your touring ends with a visit Jim Thompson’s House, once home to the American silk entrepreneur, this remarkable accommodates Thompson’s vast collection of antiques and artworks from all over the Southeast Asian region. In the evening, you may wish to visit the Patpong Night Market, among the most diverse and interesting of Bangkok’s many markets.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

Reclining Buddha gold statue. Wat Pho, Bangkok, Thailand
Reclining Buddha at Wat Pho
5

Day 5

Fly Bangkok/Chiang Mai
Upon arrival in Chiang Mai, you will be privately transferred to the Four Seasons, with the remainder of your day free to spend at your leisure.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Four Seasons Chiang Mai

chi_1510_original
Four Seasons Chiang Mai
6

Day 6

Chiang Mai Private Touring
Your day begins with a visit to the Warrior’s Market before taking a touristy (yet fun!) rickshaw ride to Wat Phra Singh, Chiang Mai’s leading monastery and home to one of Thailand’s most iconic images – that of the Pra Singh Buddha. You will continue to the Wat Suthep Temple, the temple is reached by climbing a Naga (snake/serpent deities) balustrade staircase of 306 steps. We recommend taking the stairs as a nice, yet arduous fitness/spiritual introduction to northern Thailand; however, there is a tram available for those less ambitious. In the evening, you may wish to stop at the Chiang Mai Women’s Prison Massage Center, which offers full body massages by inmates at the women’s prison as a part of their rehabilitation training program and as an opportunity for them to earn money prior to their release in six months.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Four Seasons Chiang Mai

Wat Phra Singh Woramahaviharn. Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Wat Phra Singh
7

Day 7

Chiang Mai Private Touring
In light of continuous evidence of animal abuse and neglect, we are currently researching elephant camps in Thailand that provide safe and natural conditions for their elephants, which are only treated humanely. Please note that we do not arrange or support visits to any elephant camps that offer elephant rides or have elephants performing unnatural acts such as painting or balancing on one foot.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Four Seasons Chiang Mai

asian-elephants
Thailand Elephants
8

Day 8

Chiang Mai Private Touring + Drive to Chiang Rai
In the morning you will be taken to Chiang Dao, a lush jungle environment, ideal for biking and visiting the various hill tribes, such as the Akha. You will continue to the Palong hill tribe village, a people notable for their distinctive teeth decorated in gold. Following, you will be transferred to the Four Seasons Tented Camp in Chiang Rai.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Accommodations: Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai

four-seasons-chiang-rai-2
Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai
9

Day 9

Chiang Rai Private Touring
You will first visit the ancient Lanna hill tribe town of Chiang Saen, captured by the Burmese in the 16th century, sacked by King Rama I in 1803, and left largely abandoned until 1900 when it slowly started to become repopulated. You will then visit Chiang Rai’s Hall of Opium Museum, where interactive displays and multi-media presentations offer a grim overview of the Golden Triangle’s centuries-old drug trade, dating back 5,000 years. Close to the very fields where millions of opium poppies once bloomed, the museum presents a full picture of the opium trade, its history and the blighted lives of addicts.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations: Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai

opium-museum
Chiang Rai's Hall of Opium Museum
10

Day 10

Chiang Rai Free Day
Today is free for you to enjoy the amenities of the Four Seasons Tented Camp and interact with the elephants.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations: Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai

four-seasons-chiang-rai-3
Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai
11

Day 11

Fly Chiang Rai/Luang Prabang
Upon arrival in Laos, you will be privately transferred to Amantaka in Luang Prabang, with the remainder of your evening free to spend at your leisure.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Amantaka

Amantaka, Laos – Dining, Exterior, Poolside Dinner
Amantaka, Luang Prabang
12

Day 12

Luang Prabang Private Tour
The ancient royal city of Luang Prabang is a place where time seems to stand still. It was mentioned by the New York Times as being one of the 43 most interesting places to visit! My family and I have always felt that Luang Prabang is one of the best hidden treasures in Southeast Asia. Your private tour today will include participation in Buddhist monk offerings, the National Museum, and a Buddhist Baci ceremony.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations: Amantaka

‘Tak Bat’ procession on the street of Luang Prabang, Laos.
Laotian Monks and Almsgivers in Luang Prabang
13

Day 13

Discretionary Free-Day at Amantaka
Today you are free to enjoy the amenities and activities of Amantaka. Enjoy holistic spa treatments, the open-air pool and terrace, and Laotian culinary staples!

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Accommodations: Amantaka

amantaka_experiences-overview_4
View of the Mekong River at Amantaka
14

Day 14

Fly Luang Prabang/Home

Following breakfast, you will be privately transferred to Luang Prabang Airport for your flight home.

Meals: Breakfast

Drone aerial view of Luang Prabang, Laos
Luang Prabang, Laos

Hotels

Founded in 1876, the 393-room Oriental really sets the standard for subtle, understated luxury – the service here is legendary. The State Rooms (River Wing), Author’s Suite, and 2-Bedroom Family Suite are among our favorites – decorated in traditional Thai style with dark teakwood and bright Thai silk. Another plus is their amazing spa (accessible via ferryboat directly across the Chao Phraya River from the hotel). Other features include two pools, tennis and squash courts, and a renowned Thai Cooking School. Though we are not so keen on 200+ room size hotels, we will happily make an exception for this iconic Bangkok property (!)

Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

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Founded in 1876, the 393-room Oriental really sets the standard for subtle, understated luxury – the service here is legendary. The State Rooms (River Wing), Author’s Suite, and 2-Bedroom Family Suite are among our favorites – decorated in traditional Thai style with dark teakwood and bright Thai silk. Another plus is their amazing spa (accessible via ferryboat directly across the Chao Phraya River from the hotel). Other features include two pools, tennis and squash courts, and a renowned Thai Cooking School. Though we are not so keen on 200+ room size hotels, we will happily make an exception for this iconic Bangkok property (!)

We cannot imagine a luxury resort in Chiang Mai with better service or a more beautiful setting. The 98-pavilion Four Seasons Chiang Mai features landscaped gardens, water lily ponds, water buffalo (Zen loves the morning rides!), set in terraced rice paddies, creating a peaceful oasis. Though incredibly beautiful, there is pretention here: the service is subtle, heartfelt, natural, almost wabi-sabiesque in its delivery. Facilities include two swimming pools, a fitness center, and a very nice spa, as well as cooking classes at the noteworthy Oriental Culinary Academy.

Four Seasons Chiang Mai

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We cannot imagine a luxury resort in Chiang Mai with better service or a more beautiful setting. The 98-pavilion Four Seasons Chiang Mai features landscaped gardens, water lily ponds, water buffalo (Zen loves the morning rides!), set in terraced rice paddies, creating a peaceful oasis. Though incredibly beautiful, there is pretention here: the service is subtle, heartfelt, natural, almost wabi-sabiesque in its delivery. Facilities include two swimming pools, a fitness center, and a very nice spa, as well as cooking classes at the noteworthy Oriental Culinary Academy.

Although smaller (only 15 luxury “tents” in scale), the Four Seasons Tented Camp/Chiang Rai, Golden Triangle offers every bit of luxury service as its sister property in Chiang Mai.  Set in a lush hillside overlooking Burma and Laos, the tented accommodations offer every custom amenity imaginable including amazing views of the Ruak River, Burma and the mountains of Laos, and green jungle and Golden Triangle.  However, the main focal point here is the rescued elephants, which you can interact with in their natural habitat. We prefer this elephant experience to that offered by Anantara, another 5-star resort in the area that allows the riding of their elephants, a practice that has proven to be often harmful towards the animals.

Four Seasons Tented Camp Chiang Rai

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Although smaller (only 15 luxury “tents” in scale), the Four Seasons Tented Camp/Chiang Rai, Golden Triangle offers every bit of luxury service as its sister property in Chiang Mai.  Set in a lush hillside overlooking Burma and Laos, the tented accommodations offer every custom amenity imaginable including amazing views of the Ruak River, Burma and the mountains of Laos, and green jungle and Golden Triangle.  However, the main focal point here is the rescued elephants, which you can interact with in their natural habitat. We prefer this elephant experience to that offered by Anantara, another 5-star resort in the area that allows the riding of their elephants, a practice that has proven to be often harmful towards the animals.

Located in the Mekong Valley on the grounds of a former French hospital in Luang Prabang, the 24-suite Amantaka is the perfect place from which to experience Lao’s spiritual capital. Simultaneously embracing the past through architecture and experiences alongside modern amenities such as private pools and state of the art spas is what Aman does best, perfectly embodied at the Amantaka. Amenities include three dining venues, swimming pool, Aman spa, and cultural activities such as walking tours of Luang Prabang and the Mekong River cruises.

AMANTAKA

View More Info >>

Located in the Mekong Valley on the grounds of a former French hospital in Luang Prabang, the 24-suite Amantaka is the perfect place from which to experience Lao’s spiritual capital. Simultaneously embracing the past through architecture and experiences alongside modern amenities such as private pools and state of the art spas is what Aman does best, perfectly embodied at the Amantaka. Amenities include three dining venues, swimming pool, Aman spa, and cultural activities such as walking tours of Luang Prabang and the Mekong River cruises.

Request Custom Itinerary

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Thank you for your interest in Kipling & Clark. We look forward to serving you!
Please note we specialize in global private luxury travel, including private guides and drivers throughout,

high quality accommodations, inclusive of safari lodges and ryokans, in-country rail/air, and all taxes/service fees.

Dependent on destination and seasonality, our comprehensive private tour costs are upward of USD3K-5K per couple per day.



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Location

Overview

Thailand
Temperature
Highs: High 80’s
Lows: High 70’s
Area
 318,843 SQ KM
198,120 SQ MILES
Capital
Bangkok
Population
68.8 Million
Language
Isan, Kam Mueang, Pak Thai
Currency
Baht
Laos
Temperature
Highs: Mid 90’s
Lows: High 70’s
Area
236,800 SQ KM
91,400 SQ MILES
Capital
Vientiane
Population
7.2 million
Language
Lao
Currency
Lao Kip

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