DAYS 41 – 52: THAILAND
A full day’s drive and border crossing sees your overland tour arrive into Bangkok, the vast and steamy capital of Thailand, known as the ‘Land of a Thousand Smiles’. Bangkok has plenty to keep you occupied, from glitzy shopping malls full of western brands to ancient palaces and monuments to the revered royal family.
Entry is included into the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew, also known as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. You will have three nights here so there is time explore the many canals on a Khlong Tour, visit one of the weekend Floating Markets, or take a stroll down the world famous Khao San Road, the start and end point to many travellers’ journeys through South East Asia.
After leaving Bangkok you drive west to the small town of Kanchanaburi, which is known for the Bridge on the River Kwai. Built by Allied prisoners of war during the Second World War the bridge was immortalised in the film of the same name. It is possible to view and cross the bridge, and the nearby Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and the war cemeteries are also well worth visiting.
After two nights in Kanchanaburi you will board an overnight bus to head down the peninsula to Surit Thani, from where you begin your “beach week” on one of Thailand’s famous tropical islands!
From Surit Thani you will board one of the many ferries to take the short trip across to either Koh Phan-gan or Koh Samui. These islands are famous, or perhaps infamous, for their Full Moon Parties and lively backpacker scene, but they are also home to some world-class scuba diving, quiet and idyllic white beaches with warm, inviting turquoise waters and it is easy to escape the crowds for some serious downtime!
The Thailand beach week is not included in the trip price, and you are free to make your own arrangements for your accommodation for this time, choosing where you’d like to stay and what you want to do! Return boats to and from the islands are included.