- Four steps to discover Asia together: from paddy fields to the beaches, from Buddhas to tuk-tuks
- Swimming pools all along the way and four days by the sea in the Gulf of Siam
- Bike in Luang Prabang, elephants, adventures on the Nam Ou, Bangkok in private, all part of the trip.
- Smartphone app, on-site Concierge and our usual additional services
Contact one of our Laos specialists + 44 (0) 20 3958 6120
In Laos and Thailand, you'll
All together in Laos and ThailandSeeing the world through the eyes of a child is no bad thing, so why not all go together to Laos and Thailand on a family holiday? This will give a fresh perspectives on both countries and excited stories to swap in the evenings, back from a day's exploring.
The tripfeatures two hotels in Laos and two in Thailand. The first location is a little more basic, but everywhere is comfortable, clean, and family-friendly, and attentive to your needs. There is vastly differing terrain from the Nam Ou River to the beaches of Koh Samui. At each stop, the accommodation has the appropriate feel: traditional Lao in Luang Prabang, a rural and waterway ambiance in Nong Khiaw, urban and electric in Bangkok, Thai seaside in Koh Samui. The family can soak up each place's unique vibe and each one has a swimming pool to dive into. The most appropriate method of transport is used for getting around. By plane, but also by air-conditioned cars, various boats, bicycles and the inevitable tuk-tuk. To save valuable travel time, we have booked a number of private tours and activities: biking, organic rice paddies, caves and elephants in Luang Prabang; villages in the Karst terrain along the Nam Ou; Bangkok highlights. This itinerary sets a good pace, covers the essentials and blends exploration with relaxation. There is something to be enjoyed for young and old alike. And if, along the way, there is a sudden urge, or an unforeseen event, you have the contact details for our on-site local Concierges, reachable throughout the journey. It's a priceless service, and even more so when travelling as a family.
Some of the activities on this trip require children to be at least ten years of age.
Flight to Luang Prabang (Laos, via Bangkok)
Transfer and four-night stay in the historic centre. The pure Laotian style of the amenities is in harmony with the hotel's old buildings. In the rooms, the waxed wood and curtains combine beautifully. The garden delivers all the colours and textures you'd expect from the tropics and is home to a fun pool. In the restaurant, there are hip and fresh Laotian, pan-Asian or European ingredients, plus coffee from the province.
The itinerary includes - Luang Prabang by bike. Ride around accompanied by a Laotian expert guide, visit the major monuments, such as the Royal Palace (early 20th century - national museum), the Vat Visoun temple (15th century), Vat Aham (19th century). Wat Xieng Thong, a wonder of the 16th century, houses a royal funeral carriage adorned with impressive negas, snakes ensuring good relations between our world and the afterlife. In the late afternoon, 'climb' Mt. Phou Si, which stands high above the old town. From the vantage point of the Vat Chom Si, the view extends far over the Mekong and Nam Khan Rivers.
Visit the Living Land community farm and Kuang Si Caves. A full day trip - set off for the fields. Living Land is an organic farm which grows the essential Asian crop - rice. To begin with, pay a visit to the rice fields and, with their feet in the mud, the children can go along behind a behind a buffalo ploughing before the seedlings are planted. This all culminates with cooked rice in a woven basket, and then tasting. On the way back, stop at the famous Kuang Si Falls, south of Luang Prabang: in a landscape of light and shade, multiple waterfalls cascade down to form natural pools for bathing all year round. An outing with an expert guide.
Visit - the elephant Sanctuary. This is situated about nine miles from Luang Prabang on the Nam Khan River. Spend a few hours with the elephants, but don't ride them; for the most part, they have spent a lifetime hauling logs and are now enjoying a well-deserved retirement. Also, a two-hour walk in the forest alongside them, perhaps gives an even better appreciation of just how lightly and carefully they can tread. Pachyderms share the pleasure of bathing with humans. And boy, do elephants like to make a splash. The guide speaks English, but the children will likely speak elephant and like to play around with the younger ones. It's a bit of a wrench when you leave.
Luang Prabang - Nong Khiaw
Transfer by car, then by boat to Nong Khiaw. Three-night stay on the banks of the Nam Ou. Barely clear of the forest, the ten contemporary Laotian-style bungalows appear simple and well-appointed. The emerald water in the pool contrasts with the caramel-coloured river. The special terraces are the perfect spot for enjoying the fresh breeze stirred up by the river. The dining room, like everywhere, is shaded by palms; Laotian, Thai and international dishes are served. To ensure travellers remain in harmony with nature, there is a yoga studio on hand. Bikes are a great way of exploring the area.
Trip - along the Nam Or. The karst hills, swathed in dense vegetation, form a distinctive landscape. The hills can be shrouded in mists and iridescent hues form along the banks of the river . Once aboard, the journey gives a sense of the flow of the river and how it winds through narrow mineral passages; the journey upriver towards Muang Ngoi, for example, is a delight. Back on land, hike, visit a village, admire a waterfall or one of the caves with countless statues of Buddha. Back in the village, parents can indulge in the benefits of the herbal sauna, with steam bestowing the benefits of lemongrass, tamarind, senna, turmeric, etc.
Nong Khiaw - Luang Prabang - Bangkok (Thailand)
Transfer to Luang Prabang Airport and flight to Bangkok. Reception on arrival and assistance with formalities. Transfer and two-night stay in the centre, on the banks of the Chao Phraya. Modern building, contemporary Thai decor. Lighting gives warmth to the reddish-brown hues, and grey tones. In the rooms, classic comfort, beautiful cotton bedding. In the restaurant, the chefs work magic with Italian or Thai cuisine. The deck and pool by the river are the perfect place for lounging and doing nothing.
Your itinerary includes - a tour of Bangkok's essentials. Two major cultural centres, in the company of an expert guide: the Royal Palace, with the Wat Phra Kaeo (Temple of the Emerald Buddha), and the Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha). In the royal chapel, the Emerald Buddha, carved in 15th century green jade, symbolises the ruling Chakri dynasty. You will also visit the throne room, the coronation room and the state reception room. The Wat Pho, arguably the oldest temple in Bangkok (late 18th century), houses a monumental statue of a reclining Buddha (passing into Nirvana) covered in gold leaf: 150ft long and 50ft high. Siddharta Gautama has soles of his feet inlaid with mother-of-pearl: 108 symbols of Buddha. Then board a motorboat and head to the west bank of the Chao Phraya for a stroll through the klongs - or canals - of the historic district of Thonburi. Old temples, wooden houses on stilts, vegetable gardens, orchards: a rare glimpse of ancient Bangkok.
Bangkok - Koh Samui
Transfer to the airport and flight to Koh Samui. Transfer and four-night stay on Bophut beach. The spacious, airy villa, is decorated with a light touch, and opens onto the outside. The bedroom and living room exude comfort. It features an indoor/outdoor bathroom and private terrace. The swimming pool is a fresh blue and behind the palm curtain lies the beach: in the private section of the hotel. Which on its own would be more than enough to keep young and old happy. The facilities also include a gym, yoga studio and spa for a perfect Thai style of wellbeing.
Koh Samui is about swimming pools, beaches and water activities. Offshore, go kayaking or snorkelling to see fusiliers, angel fish, squirrelfish, parrotfish, groupers and whale sharks passing right in front of your face above a wide variety of corals. Obviously the sea is a big draw, but make sure to walk along the road, visit the morning markets and live life at Thai pace. Among the island's curiosities there's the mummified monk of Wat Khunaram Temple; the waterfalls of Na Muang and Hin Lad - the place to cool down; the Butterfly Garden with its lovely, elusive and colourful creatures; and fun nightlife. Yet Koh Samui has retained a lot of character; and its mountainous centre still remains impenetrable and mysterious. As well as topping up tans on the beach, there is also something for those wanting to venture into a wilder environment.
Koh Samui - Bangkok - return flight
Transfer to the airport and fly back to Bangkok.
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