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Suggested Volunteer Programme to Thailand



Depart: JNB (OR Tambo International Airport)

Day 1: Bangkok Arrival                  

Day 2: Bangkok 

Day 3: Bangkok – Chiang Mai by overnight train

Day 4: Chiang Mai Arrival                                               

Day 5: Chiang Mai 

Day 6: Chiang Mai – Mae Kampong

Day 7: Mae Kampong - Chiang Mai

Day 8: Chiang Mai – Phuket by flight

Day 9: Phuket – Koh Yao Noi

Day 10: Koh Yao Noi 

Day 11: Koh Yao Noi - Phuket Departure

Arrive:  JNB (OR Tambo International Airport) 

Day 1: Bangkok Arrival                                            (-/-/-)

Upon arrival at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport, you will be met and greeted by your travel guide for the transfer to your hostel.

After a short interval at the hostel, your orientation evening begins with a drive through Bangkok’s old quarters that delivers sights of an illuminated Grand Palace, the Royal Ground, temples and the lit-up Ratchadamnoen Avenue.  Continue to the Flower Market where you will stroll along the market to see the myriad varieties of exotic orchids and sweet smelling flowers. The buzz in this market is best experienced at night during which busy vendors load their wares and travel up and down their mopeds. A potential shopping opportunity awaits you at an adjacent local night market along the Memorial Bridge that overlooks the Chao Phraya River; here you can rummage for handicrafts or souvenirs to bring back home for your family and friends.

Return to the hostel.

Overnight in Bangkok.

Distance and journey time:

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport – Bangkok Hotel (approx. 40-45 km): approx. 50 km – 1 hr

Day 2: Bangkok                                                       (B/-/-)                    

An early morning start will get you to Wat Pho in time to experience the monks early morning chanting ritual (chanting starts at 09.00 Hrs). After this uplifting and often private experience, visit the temple grounds and the famous 45-metre reclining Buddha. Continue to The Grand Palace, Thailand’s most important landmark, where you will be awed by the grandeur and majesty of the building and its throne halls. Then, of course, marvel at the mysterious Emerald Buddha, the most revered Buddha image in Thailand.

In the afternoon, board on boat for the trip along Bangkok Noi Klongs (Thonburi Klong Tour) sampling Thai houses and Thai life along the way with stop for a visit to Wat Arun. Following this, continue driving to Chinatown square where you start a walk through one of the oldest parts of Bangkok. Walk along Yaowarat Road where you will visit interesting shop selling bird’s nests and shark fins, continue to a very old tea shop to enjoy a cup of Chinese tea with the locals before heading down Talad Kao for an interesting local market with variety of fresh foods, fresh & dry fruits, Chinese herbs, groceries.

Return to the hostel.

Overnight in Bangkok.


Day 3: Bangkok – Chiang Mai by Overnight Train      (B/-/-)              

Breakfast at the hostel.

Free day at leisure to explore Bangkok and its shopping and local cuisine.

In the evening, late check-out and transfer out to Hualumphong Train Station for an overnight train to Chiang Mai.

Overnight onboard.

Distance and journey time:

Bangkok Hotel – Bangkok Train Station (3.6 km) 11 min

Bangkok – Chiang Mai (709 km): 8.42 hr (Departure 18.10pm  // Arrival 07.15am)


Day 4: Chiang Mai  Arrival         (-/-/-)             

Upon arrival at Chiang Mai Train Station, you will be met and greeted by your travel guide for your transfer to your hostel (early check-in).

(Note: You might experience a slight delay arriving in Chiang Mai – this is a normal situation in Thailand when travelling by train.)

In the afternoon, explore ancient and modern Chiang Mai, including the city’s most serene and beautiful temples. Following a short transfer from your hostel by vehicle, we commence the tour at Tapae Gate, the main entrance to the old walled city. From here, we travel the traditional way by ‘trishaw’ making a brief stop at Three Kings Monument to Wat Phra Singh, home to a very old sacred Buddha. From here, we take a short 10-minute stroll to Wat Chedi Luang, where the famous Emerald Buddha was once enshrined. We then drive to Wualai Road in the old silver making district to observe silversmiths at work on impressive silver murals unique to Northern Thailand. We then continue to Wat Sri Suphan, a unique temple made from ornate silver.

Return to the hostel.

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Distance and journey time:

Chiang Mai Train Station – Chiang Mai hotel (13.3 km): 20 min

Day 5: Chiang Mai                     (B/L/-)                            

Depart your hostel at 06.00 am (Note: Take away breakfast from the hostel)

Arrive at the foot Hill of Doi Suthep Mountain; in time to buy an offering and join the locals during the daily alms giving ceremony. This is a serene Buddhist procession where dozens of monks walk barefoot through the street collecting food and everyday items. Continue up the mountain to Wat Doi Suthep and climb the 309 steps of the Golden Naga staircase to reach its golden pagodas. After a visit to Doi Suthep, continue to discover one of the best-kept secret temples of Chiang Mai, Wat Palad, known as the Temple below the Temple. This temple is a significant element of the Chiang Mai area’s history with its temple grounds aged beyond 650 years old. 

Next your group will proceed to Wat Umong, built in the 14th century, a heavily forested temple covered by moss and small plants offering a unique yet charming sense of natural decay. After a walk through its mysterious tunnels you will reach the Viharn of the temple to experience your own private blessing ceremony.

After that, enjoy this lovely day with a delicious bowl of Khao Soy. This famous Northern Thai dish is a combination of coconut cream, crispy noodles and plenty of spice that is sure to delight!

In the afternoon, discover why Chiang Mai is known as “The Creative City of Thailand”. Depart your hostel and transfer to the hip student area of Nimmanhemin to The University of Chiang Mai’s (CMU) Contemporary Art Gallery. This multi-level gallery, located on the campus grounds, showcases contemporary art displays by talented local artists. Meander its halls and learn about life from a Thai artist’s perspective. From here, we stop for coffee at either the award winning Ristr8to Latte Art Café or the quaint Din Din mud brick cafe.

We later transfer to the Elephant Parade House, to try our hand at our own piece of fun art. Elephant Parade auctions occur every year all over the world, auctioning off 150 cm elephants designed and painted by artists and celebrities. 100% of the proceeds from the auctions go to “The Asian Elephant Foundation”. Elephant Parade International is the major supporter of “The Asian Elephant Foundation”.

Optional Activity:
Painting your own elephant, the more creative and innovative the design the better!

Return to the hostel.

Overnight in Chiang Mai. 

Day 6: Chiang Mai – Mae Kampong            (B/L/D)   

After breakfast at the hostel, depart for Mae Kampong Village (1.30 hr), driving through the picturesque countryside of Chiang Mai. The village is nestled 1,300m above sea level and has a cool climate all year long. En route the group will stop at a local market to select ingredients for tonight’s dinner.

Continue to Mae Kampong where you will be met by the villagers upon arrival. Then take a stroll through the community forest, passing tea and coffee fields to a refreshing waterfall. Return to the village for a simple lunch prepared by your village hosts and as the evening approaches, join your host family to prepare dinner.

Overnight in Mae Kampong Village (Host Family)

Distance and journey time:

Chiang Mai – Mae Kampong (50.3 km): 1.30 hr 

Day 7: Mae Kampong – Chiang Mai     (B/-/-)                        

A hot breakfast will be served with your hosts, while the morning mist is being swept away from the valley by the cool mountain wind. Take a walk around the village to see the processing of fermented tea leaves and some products which are handmade in the village. After a last cup of local coffee, head back towards Chiang Mai, stopping on the way at San Kamphaeng hotsprings, a popular recreation area for the local Thai people. The water has a temperature in excess of 100ºC and attempts have even been made to harness this energy.

Return to Chiang Mai.

Free afternoon at leisure.

Overnight in Chiang Mai.

Distance and journey time:

Mae Kampong – Chiang Mai (50.3 km): 1.04 hr 

Day 8: Chiang Mai – Phuket by Flight         (B/-/-)                

Breakfast at the hotel, check out and transfer out to Chiang Mai Airport for your flight to Phuket.

Upon arrival in Phuket, you will be met and greeted by your travel guide for your transfer to your hostel.

Free day at leisure to enjoy the beaches of Phuket

Overnight in Phuket.

Distance and journey time:

Chiang Mai – Chiang Mai Airport (29 km): 14.6 km
Phuket Airport – Phuket Hotel (47 km): 1.27 hr

Day 9: Phuket – Koh Yao Noi Community Village   (B/L/D)   

After breakfast, transfer to the pier to board a boat to Koh Yao Noi. Upon arrival on the island, transfer to Koh Yao Noi Community Based Tourism (CBT) Club by a local car. Welcome and briefing on the background of Koh Yao Noi CBT Group by a group representative.

Lunch at CBT club.

Check in at the homestay. Free time for personal rest or participation in family activities with the homestay host.

Sightseeing around the island, explore rubber plantations and rice fields. Stop by to taste fresh coconut from the garden.

Learn to cook dinner with your host.

Overnight at the village.

Distance and journey time:

Phuket Airport – Bang Rong Pier (17 km): 23 min


Day 10: Koh Yao Noi Community  Village        (B/L/D)          

Breakfast at the home stay.

Take a boat to visit lobster and fish farms in the sea. See how the local fishermen work, how they place and pull fishing nets. Volunteer with the host family, to help fishermen fishing.

Lunch at Koh Nok Island.

Time to relax at your leisure on the beach.

Return to Koh Yao Noi. Free time for personal rest or participation in family activities with the home stay host.

Dinner with your host.

Overnight at the village.


Day 11: Koh Yao Noi Community  Village – Phuket Departure       (B/-/-)

After breakfast, take a ferry and transfer back to the mainland of Phuket, where you will be transferred out to Phuket Airport for your onward flight.

Distance and journey time:

Bang Rong Pier - Phuket Airport (17 km): 25 min

***End of Services***

Should you require additional information or would like us to give you a quotation based on the above itinerary, please do not hesitate to contact us.  

We look forward to working with you and your school/company in the very near future.

Kind Regards, Leona Meadows (Ms)
Select Incentive Group Travel
Tel: + 27 (21) 788-2245 Cell: + 27 (84) 397 0876



P.O. Box 2157
Parklands, 2121
South Africa
Travel Partners
Jenny: 082 852 0899
Leona: 084 397 0876

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