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Things to do in Central Thailand

Our most recommended things to do in Central Thailand

Bangkok: Damnoen Saduak Market and Maeklong Railway Market

1. Bangkok: Damnoen Saduak Market and Maeklong Railway Market

Choose from either a shared group or private guided experience to see 2 iconic markets on a day trip from Bangkok. See a market located on the railway tracks, the Maeklong Railway Market, and a market that floats on the canals at the Damnoen Saduak Market. After pickup, arrive at the Maeklong Railway Market, also known as Talad Rom Hup (“Umbrella Pulldown Market”). Maeklong is one of the largest fresh seafood markets in Thailand and hugs the track of the Maeklong Railway. Gain fascinating insights into how the market is run and what products are sold here from your local guide. Marvel at how market stalls and awnings are pulled back from the tracks every time a train approaches to let the train pass through. Next, head to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, one of the most famous floating markets in Thailand. To reach the market, take a short ride in a paddleboat. Enjoy plenty of time to meander around the colorful market, where friendly vendors sell directly from their boats. Take in the sights and sounds, and try local specialties like mango sticky rice. Your guide will give you advice on what not to miss. Return to Bangkok in time for the early afternoon.

Chiang Mai: Waterfall, Elephant Sanctuary and Bamboo Rafting

2. Chiang Mai: Waterfall, Elephant Sanctuary and Bamboo Rafting

Embark on a one-of-a-kind experience and visit an ethical rescued elephant sanctuary in the jungle outside Chiang Mai. Cool off in a waterfall, savor a traditional Thai lunch, and become a caretaker for the day as you interact, feed, and observe the gentle giants in their natural environment.  Begin with a pickup from your hotel or accommodation in downtown Chiang Mai. Take a scenic drive southwest of Chiang Mai and see local farms, hill tribe villages, and rice fields along the way.  Journey to the Mae Wang Waterfalls, where you'll relax and take a dip in the water. Arrive at the Secret Elephant Sanctuary located deep in the jungle. You'll be welcomed to the sanctuary by a guide who will lead you through the experience. Get dressed into Karen hill tribe clothing like the ones elephant caretakers wear. Next, get a briefing on Asian elephants and the background of the sanctuary. Come and meet the friendly rescued elephants and feed them bananas. Walk up the hill with elephants through the forest and watch the elephants forage for food in the wilderness. Observe elephants interacting between families in their natural environment. Head down to the river and enjoy bathing with the elephants. Walk with the elephants back to the sanatorium and embrace the memories and have time to say goodbye to these marvelous creatures. Finish off with a scenic bamboo rafting trip along the Mae Wang River before you get dropped off at your hotel in Chiang Mai.

Koh Samui: Coral and Pig Island Long Tail Boat Tour

3. Koh Samui: Coral and Pig Island Long Tail Boat Tour

Start your trip nice and early with pickup from your accommodation before heading to Thong Krut Pier. From there, board a boat and make your way to Koh Madsum, also known as Pig Island, for a stroll and selfie with the wild island pigs. From Koh Matsum, travel to Koh Tean. In Koh Tean, spend your time swimming, relaxing, snorkeling, kayaking, or exploring the area before enjoying lunch. Afterward, take some free time to enjoy the pristine beach, kayak in the crystal clear waters ,and savour the inhabited landscape. After a full afternoon, make your way back to Thong Krut Pier and be transferred from there back to your accommodation.

From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Temples Small Group Tour with Lunch

4. From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Temples Small Group Tour with Lunch

Enjoy a small-group tour of the magnificent temple ruins of Ayutthaya, the capital during the golden age of Siam. All entrance fees, an expert guide, and lunch at a local restaurant are included. Travel from Bangkok in a comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle or choose to join the tour at your first stop in Ayutthaya, Wat Lokayasutha. This temple is known for its giant reclining Buddha image, one of the few structures remaining intact here. Your next stop is Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, being part of the royal palace complex this is where royalty performed rituals. It is considered the most important temple of Ayutthaya. Then, visit Wat Mahathat Ayutthaya. One of the oldest and most significant temples in the history of Ayutthaya, it once housed the Buddha's holy relic. Admire the famous Buddha head entwined within the roots of a Bodhi tree. After, tuck into a hearty lunch at a local Thai restaurant, where your guide will be available to advise on local culinary specialties. Last but not least, finish your trip at the grand, riverside Wat Chaiwattanaram. Marvel at its compelling architectural style, influenced by the Angkor Wat complex in Cambodia, as you wander around the monumental grounds.

Trat Airport: Shared Transfers to/from Koh Chang with Ferry

5. Trat Airport: Shared Transfers to/from Koh Chang with Ferry

Start your holiday stress-free and arrive in Trat without worrying about how to get to your hotel. Land at the airport without a care in the world knowing your professional driver is waiting to transport you to Koh Chang. Depart on a shared van transfer and take a ferry directly to your hotel in Koh Chang. Sit back and relax in a comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle, whether you're traveling to or from the airport. Enhance your whole transportation journey by upgrading to a roundtrip transfer to guarantee your seats in advance. The transfer also includes your ticket for the ferry to Koh Chang, during which you can wander around the upper deck and admire the ocean views before getting back in the vehicle for the final leg of the journey.

Bangkok: City Highlights Temple and Market Walking Tour

6. Bangkok: City Highlights Temple and Market Walking Tour

Meet the group at River City Bangkok by 9:00 AM and head to the Emerald Buddha Temple by local transport. Along the way, pass by the amulet market, one of the most famous, historical community markets of Rattanakosin Island. Discover the first stop of Wat Phra Kaew which is commonly known in English as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha and officially as Wat Phra Si Rattana Satsadaram. It is regarded as the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand.  Explore the Grand Palace which was the official residence of the Kings of Thailand. Nowadays, the Grand Palace is still used for official events. Several royal ceremonies and state functions are held within the walls of the palace every year.  After the Grand Palace, continue to visit Wat Pho, if you've selected this option. On the way, pass Tha Thien Market, a cultural food market that sells dried, salted seafood and wholesale products. Visit the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, Wat Pho. It is on the list of six temples in Thailand classed as the highest grade of first-class royal temples. Learn about King Rama I who rebuilt the temple complex on an earlier temple site and how it became his main temple where some of his ashes are enshrined. The temple is considered the earliest center for medical public education surrounded by the marble illustrations and inscriptions placed in the temple for public instructions. It has been recognized by UNESCO in its Memory of the World Programme. Most importantly, it is the birthplace of traditional Thai massage which is still taught and practiced at the temple today. Complete the list of must-visit temples in Bangkok by continuing your journey to Wat Arun (the Temple of Dawn), one of Bangkok’s most famous landmarks. The temple is known for its giant 70-meter tower next to the Chao Phraya River and is decorated with tiny pieces of colored glass surrounded by Chinese porcelain.

Chiang Mai: Elephant Sanctuary & Waterfall Small Group Tour

7. Chiang Mai: Elephant Sanctuary & Waterfall Small Group Tour

Take a visit to the Elephant Sanctuary in Chiang Mai. Start with a convenient pick-up from your hotel in the city center of Chiang Mai and take a drive to the elephant sanctuary. Learn how to make healthy snacks for elephants and see the rescued animals. Go for a swim at Mae Wang Waterfall. Relax as you are picked up from your city center accommodation in Chiang Mai. Sit back as you are driven southwest of the city on a scenic 1.5-hour drive. Encounter local farms, hill tribe villages, and rice fields. Receive a warm welcome when you arrive at the Pupha Elephant Sanctuary. Put on your traditional Karen Hill tribe clothes to look like an elephant caretaker. Listen to a briefing on Asian elephants and the background of the sanctuary. Gain new knowledge as you are taught how to make healthy snacks for the elephants. Feed the rescued elephants as you walk up a hill in the deep jungle. Watch the elephants foraging for food and see elephant families interacting with one another. Bathe in the river with the elephants and walk them back to the sanctuary, where you will be taught how to make elephant medicine balls. Take a shower and pack up your belongings. Eat a traditional Thai lunch and fresh fruits. Leave the elephant sanctuary and stop at Mae Wang waterfall for a quick swim before transferring back to your hotel in Chiang Mai city center. Finally, return to your starting point after the tour.

Suvarnabhumi Airport: 3-Hour Miracle Lounge Access

8. Suvarnabhumi Airport: 3-Hour Miracle Lounge Access

Enjoy VIP access at Miracle Lounge Suvarnabhumi for a relaxing wait in between flights. Be pampered with unlimited food and hot or chilled beverages, including delicious Thai food from The Miracle Group Hotel chef. Each lounge has comfortable couches, free WiFi, work stations and international TV channels, magazines, and newspapers. The lounge also offers a shower room, a prayer room, and open-air space (Concourse D). At the breakfast counter, you will find fresh cookies, pies, sandwich, and cakes. This is the best place enjoy a break before your next flight.

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport: VIP Meet & Greet Service

9. Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport: VIP Meet & Greet Service

Meet your personal hostess at Suvarnabhumi Airport (Bangkok International Airport) after a long flight, and enjoy a VIP experience on arrival. Benefit from a premium service that offers fast-track assistance all the way. Following a meet-and-greet at the skywalk, navigate all the airport formalities with your personal assistant. Your host will assist you through the application for a visa upon arrival service and then take your through customs via the "Premium Immigration Lane.' As you head downstairs, a dedicated baggage porter will be arranging the collection of your checked bags as your concierge fast tracks you through Customs and escorts you and your guests to your onward transportation or to your host for transportation to the hotel. On your departure, there is no need to wait in line, your concierge will pre-arrange the check-in and printing of your boarding passes and luggage tags. Meet them outside with a dedicated porter to collect your bags.Be escorted to the front of the document check-in and security lines before you go to Immigration and Customs. Due to security restrictions, concierge service is limited through Customs and Immigration Pre-Clearance. You must clear Immigration and Customs on your own. Once you have cleared, your personal concierge will escort you up to the VIP airport departure gate. Please note, this service does not include transportation to your city hotel. Book a transfer to your desired destination in addition to this VIP service for the best stress-free start to your time in Bangkok!

Koh Chang: Full-Day Reefs or Wreck Sites Snorkeling Trip

10. Koh Chang: Full-Day Reefs or Wreck Sites Snorkeling Trip

Discover the fascinating underwater world around Koh Chang or Koh Rang National Park on this full-day snorkeling tour. After a comfortable hotel pickup, you will be driven to the Bang Bao Pier where you will receive your snorkel equipment, mask and fins. Hop aboard the boat, put on your life jacket and get ready for a marine adventure. Your boat will depart at 9 AM. Visit the beautiful coral sites around Koh Chang on some days, and head to Koh Rang National Park on other days, depending on weather and sea conditions. Both areas are stunning and offer prime snorkeling spots. The Koh Chang sites include a shipwreck, while the National Park sites include a beach stop. Enjoy a total of 3 diverse snorkeling stops. Feel comfortable in the presence of your expert guide, or explore the reefs by yourself if you're an experienced snorkeler. Indulge in a tasty lunch buffet with delicious non-spicy food, and refresh with fresh fruit in the afternoon. Your boat will return between 4 and 5 PM, after which you will be transferred back to your hotel to enjoy the rest of your evening.

Frequently asked questions about Central Thailand

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What people are saying about Central Thailand

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 29,040 reviews

What an incredible experience! We started off by washing watermelon and bananas for the elephants, loading them into the Ute and hand feeding the elephants. We then went and chopped down some grass/banana trees for the elephants to feed on, helped give them a mud bath and finished in the water with them giving them a scrub down. Lastly, we helped mush up and hand feed an old 79 year old elephant who was unable to eat as she had no teeth. We finished the morning off with a buffet lunch. The care and dedication the staff show to these animals is evident, and all staff were extremely knowledgeable and funny. I would highly recommend this place if you're looking for a conservationist way to interact and support the elephants.

Good trip to see the Peak and then with a short walk near there. Was great to see the temples on the pagoda as well and then the lunch in the small village was nice. The final hike through the forest was my highlight as it is a beautiful walk!

A really fun day trip. It's definitely worth experiencing both the markets and enjoying some local street food at the Saduak Market.

Great tour with Julie who told us all about life on the canals, and in Bangkok. We even got to see a few water monitor lizards!

Awesome guide (Mr. Chan) Plenty breaks Great views Slow pace