UPCOMING PHOTO TOURS: PHOTOGRAPHING SOUTHEAST ASIA - 2017

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Wyatt Photography Tour SEA – 14 days/13 nights 

Thailand, Laos,Cambodia, Vietnam 

October 15-28, 2017 

Group size 10 USD $3570 per person twin share 

Travel to Southeast Asia 

Vietnam's color, chaos and natural beauty bring a new adventure every day. Vietnam's food, people, sights and history keep even the most seasoned traveler coming back for more. The sensational ruins of Angkor may be the main attraction, but Cambodia’s exquisite temples, secluded beaches, charming villages and magical markets deserve lots of attention too. With genuine locals always ready to share a sincere smile, Cambodia will steal your heart and enrich your spirit 

 

 

ITINERARY 

Sa-wat dee! Welcome to Thailand. Thailand's bustling capital, Bangkok is famous for its tuk tuks, khlong boats and street vendors serving up delicious Thai food. On arrival at the airport, you will be met by airport representative and transferred to your hotel.  

This evening you will get into everything you’ve been waiting for – bring on the food! With your local guide, you’ll head to a market specializing in Chinese religious products and fresh food. At night, this area is filled with street stalls and becomes one giant and extremely tasty food bazaar.  

With a belly full of Bangkok treats, you’ll continue on this food tour. You’ll stop off at Talat Pak Khlong, the largest wholesale flower and vegetable market in Bangkok, an area rich in color and vitality, and the perfect spot to take some bright Bangkok photos.  

This Chinatown Food Discovery tour is not only an opportunity to sample all the yummy delights that Chinatown has to offer, although we must admit that is a serious pro! It’s all that food, plus history, culture, and local life. 

Transfer: Arrival Transfer included on individual basis 

Included Activities 

Dinner at Bangkok Chinatown 

Talat Pak Khlong, the largest wholesale flower and vegetable market 

Accommodation  

Nouvo City hotel - Grand Deluxe room or similar 

http://www.nouvocityhotel.com/ 

 

You’ll begin this Bangkok tour by hopping on a local public bus and heading over to the Grand Palace. Your local guide will tell you all about the history behind the Palace and the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand, Wat Phra Kaew, considered to be the spiritual center of the nation. 

You’ll move on to Wat Po, another temple that is integral to the Buddhist religion in Thailand. It’s home to the infamous golden reclining Buddha and is the birthplace of traditional Thai massage. This is one of the most popular things to do in Bangkok, and with our local guide, you’ll hear secret stories and learn local knowledge. 

You’ll continue by walking down to the Chao Phraya River, or River of Kings, where you’ll board a longtail boat. The name of the river perfectly reflects this part of the tour; you’ll feel like royalty on your relaxing journey down the River of Kings! This is the reason why Bangkok is known as the ‘Venice of the East’, and you’ll explore this nickname further on this Bangkok boat tour as you glide through the network of ‘khlongs’, or canals. Many of the khlongs have been filled in over the years and converted into roads. These roads have turned into little Thai communities, and as you swoop through the waters you’ll discover insights into these little communities.  

Dress standard: Dress requirements to enter the Grand Palace are very strict. Please ensure you wear dark colored pants or skirts that are ankle length and a dark colored t-shirt, shirt or blouse and covered shoes are suitable. A respectable black or white collared shirt is what the Thais wear. If you are unable to wear black, you can pin a black bow tie on your arm which we can offer. Please note the authorities will likely deny the entire group entry if anyone is not dressed appropriately.  

Late afternoon transfers to Bangkok airport for your flight to Chiang Mai say goodbye to Bangkok and your local guide. On arrival at Chiang Mai airport, you will be met by Chiang Mai local guide and transferred to your hotel. Check in and free at leisure. 

Included Activities 

Grand Palace 

Wat Po 

Klong tour 

Accommodation  

Nouvo City hotel - Grand Deluxe room – Day room 

Bodhi Serene - Deluxe room or similar https://boutique-hotel-chiangmai.com 

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You will be picked up from your place of accommodation in the morning, and travel around 1.5 hours from Chiang Mai to the Karen village and Sanctuary. Breathe clear mountain air as you drive through the beautiful agricultural countryside of Northern Thailand, and get a glimpse of local life outside of the city. 

When you arrive at the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary, an English-speaking guide will walk with you through the adjacent Karen village, and teach you a little about elephants and the local way of life. Get changed into traditional Karen clothing, listen as your guide tells you more about the Sanctuary, grab some bananas and sugar cane for feeding, and you will be ready to meet the elephants! In small groups, you will meet and interact with each of our friendly elephants personally. Learn about elephant behavior, and discover the unique and interesting history of each elephant as you touch, play, feed, and photograph them. Once you have met and spent time with each of the elephants, you can retire to a relaxing platform overlooking a picturesque river and jungle. There, you will enjoy a delicious lunch of traditional Thai food and fresh fruit, before being re-united with your elephant friends. 

At this point during the day, you will walk alongside the elephants to a nearby river and join them for a bath in the refreshing water. Here, you will have the opportunity to bathe and brush the elephants while they enjoy wading through the water. Next, it will be time for a therapeutic mud spa. Feel free to get muddy as you cover the elephants in a protective layer of mud. Have fun playing with them and watch as they joyfully frolic in the mud spa.  

When it’s time to say goodbye to the elephants, you can take some final photos with them to preserve this precious memory, then head upstream and wash off your remaining mud, or relax with a swim in the fresh, clean water. Finally, you will change clothes and take a scenic walk back through the Karen village. You will then part ways with your local guide, and return to Chiang Mai, experiencing the drive through picturesque rural scenery in the pleasant glow of the afternoon sun. 

Rons note:(Because this is a photo tour we are working on making changes on this day) 

What to Bring: Hat, Sunscreen, Sandals/Flip Flops, change of clothing as you may get muddy or wet, Towel, Shoes for walking, Camera, Bug Repellent. 

Included Activities 

A full-day Elephant Jungle Sanctuary package – Join activities 

Accommodation  

Bodhi Serene - Deluxe room or similar https://boutique-hotel-chiangmai.com 

 

 

Transfer to Chiang Mai airport for flight to Luang Prabang. Once the heart and soul of the ancient Lao Kingdom (Lan Xang) and designated a World Heritage site in 1995, Luang Prabang is endowed with a legacy of historic red-roofed temples and French-Indochinese architecture, not to mention some of the country's most refined cuisine, a multi-ethnic population and rich culture. It’s a wonderful place to wander the side streets and dusty lanes and seemingly step back into another era. In the late afternoon, you’ll visit the National Museum at the former Royal Palace, a building that combines French colonial and traditional Lao architecture. The collection of treasures and artifacts reflects the richness of Lao culture, dating from the days of the early kings right through to the last sovereign, who was deposed in 1975. A large hill called Mt Phu Si dominates Luang Prabang's skyline, topped by a glittering golden stupa. You’ll climb the 328 zig-zag steps up to the sacred gilled stupa and big drum of the Phu Si Temple for a panoramic view of Luang Prabang and its surrounds at sunset. 

Notes: Please note that the flight time today is subject to change, depending on availability. Your local guide will advise you of the pick-up time from your hotel. On arrival in Luang Prabang you’ll be met and transferred to your hotel. 

Transfer: Arrival transfer included on group basis 

Included Activities 

Luang Prabang - Royal Palace Museum 

Luang Prabang - Mt Phu Si 

Accommodation 

Luang Prabang Legend – Deluxe room http://www.luangprabanglegend.com/ 

 

Travel with your local guide approximately 25 kilometers along the Mekong River to the Pak Ou Caves. On the way, you’ll have the opportunity to stop at the small village of Ban Xang Hai, which means Jar-Maker Village, so named because this used to be the local cottage industry here. Nowadays, the jars come from elsewhere and the village residents fill them with fiery lao lao (the local rice wine). The Pak Ou Caves consist of two sacred limestone caverns filled with Buddha images of all styles and sizes, brought by devoted villagers over the centuries. The lower cave, known as Tham Ting, is entered from the river by a series of steps and can easily be seen in daylight. The higher cave, Tham Phum, is deeper and requires a flashlight for viewing. You will enjoy a picnic lunch before returning to Luang Prabang, stopping at the silk-weaving village of Ban Phanom on the way. Back in Luang Prabang, maybe sip an evening drink on the veranda of the wonderful colonial-style Villa Santi Hotel.  

Included Activities 

Village Visits- Ban Xang Hai and Ban Phanom 

Pak Ou Caves 

Accommodation 

Luang Prabang Legend – Deluxe room http://www.luangprabanglegend.com/ 

 

Say goodbye to Laos as you make your way to Cambodia. Transfer to Luang Prabang airport for your departure flight.  

Transfer: Departure Transfer included on group basis 

Welcome to Cambodia! 

Upon arrival at the Siem Reap international airport you will be met by your English speaking tour leader who will be waiting with a welcome sign with your names at the airport arrival station. After greeting one another, you will travel by private vehicle to the hotel. 

Transfer: Arrival Transfer included on group basis 

Optional Activities: 

Siem Reap street food by night with Khmer snacks and dinner, bottle of water or fruit shake or beer 56USD/person. See description below: 

Consider this epic local food adventure.Your authentic Siem Reap evening starts off with a ride on a moto-remork, an articulated moto-rickshaw that’s commonly seen on Siem Reap’s streets.  

Your food-loving local guide will uncover hidden local street food treasures and beloved recommendations of local snacks, such as yellow bean cake or Khmer rice cake. You’ll also see the spices and other ingredients featured in local food, and hear about the traditional remedies and medicine. 

Next, we’ll hit up a local picnic spot where stalls are set up in the early evening selling a multitude of interesting snacks. Hopefully you still have room for even more amazing Cambodian food, because our next stop is a local restaurant to sample some tasty local delicacies. 

After dinner, you’ll have the option to return to your hotel or end our Siem Reap food tour at Pub Street – a convenient spot - it’s perfect for exploring local bar and café life. Alternatively, our local guide will be happy to provide other recommendations for a great night out. 

Accommodation:  

Navutu Dream Resort and Spa hotel or similar 

 

This morning pickup at 05:00am from the hotel and start your Angkor adventure by watching predawn sunrise over the Angkor Wat temple. This is a great photo opportunity to witness the natural beauty of this acient temple and easily the most famous and best-preserved of all temples within the Angkor Wat. We then move on to Angkor Thom visiting Bayon, with its 54 towers decorated with more than 200 enigmatic smiling faces. Examples include Phimeanakas, Baphoun, Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King. We finish the morning with a stop at the South Gate of Angkor Thom City where the gods and demons line the road leading to the gate struggling in a cosmic tug-of-war.  

Return to town for lunch at the NGO restaurant, Marum resturant. After enjoying lunch, head back to see Ta Prohm (Tomb Raider) temple, which was made famous by the movie Tomb Raider. Feel like one of the early explorers as you visit this temple which has been left to be reclaimed by the jungle. 

Included Activities: 

Siem Reap - 3days Angkor Pass 

Siem Reap – Angkor Wat temple for sunrise, Angkor Thom city temples, Ta Prohm temple 

Accommodation:  

Navutu Dream Resort and Spa hotel or similar 

 

 

Take an early morning trip through the countryside to the small village of Kbal Spean. On the way to Kbal Spean, try sugar palm candy and see how the fruit is harvested. 

Upon arrival at Kbal Spean, visit the Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity, which is home to animals that have been saved from trafficking. Creatures housed here include gibbons, monkeys, anteaters, storks, snakes, giant ibis, turtles, and the bright eyed and cuddly slow loris (the ACCB is closed Sundays and public holidays). 

There will be an option to take a relatively easy uphill jungle trek (about 40 minutes) to the River of a Thousand Lingas. Here you can encounter Hindu sculptures which were carved into the river's granite banks and bed more than a thousand years ago. It is a 1.5km uphill walk to the carvings, but well worth the climb for the view of the valley below. Ensure you have suitable footwear and carry water if you intend to do the walk. 

Enjoy lunch at the Bong Thom home stay, known for growing organic vegetables. Return to the temple of Banteay Srei, a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva. Considered by many to be the jewel in the crown of Angkor art, this temple boasts some of the finest and best-preserved stone carvings in the site. 

On the way back to the town you can capture the beautiful sunset by climbing one of the oldest buildings in the Angkor complex, the brick pyramid-shaped temple of Pre Rup. 

Included Activities: 

Siem Reap - Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity 

Siem Reap – Visit Banteay Srei temple, Kbal Spean 

Siem Reap – Sugar palm candy production visit; Pre Rup temple  

Accommodation:  

Navutu Dream Resort and Spa hotel or similar 

 

 

Depart Cambodia and transfer to the Siem Reap international airport with your English speaking tour leader.  

Transfer: Departure Transfer included on group basis  

Xin chao! Welcome to Vietnam. 

You will be met on arrival in Hanoi airport and transferred to your hotel. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting. 

Transfer: Arrival Transfer included on group basis 

The capital of Vietnam is a charming city with a population of over six million. Hanoi is famous for its beautiful lakes, shaded boulevards, verdant public parks and its thriving Old Quarter, which is an architectural museum piece with blocks of ochre buildings retaining the air of a 1930s provincial French town. As Vietnam develops to compete with other South-East Asian countries, the beautiful Hoan Kiem Lake reflects the contrasts of modern office buildings, old Buddhist temples and the tangle of ancient streets in its still surface. You are free to explore and take photos for the rest of the day. 

Accommodation 

May De Ville City Centre - Han Thuyen or similar  

 

Day 10- Hanoi – Halong Date: 17 Oct 2017 Meals (B/L/D) 

Travel by private minibus to the spectacular World Heritage site of Halong Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin (approximately four hours). The bay is dotted with sandy coves, grottos and 1,600 limestone islands, which have been formed over millennia by wind and water erosion. Board a private boat and cruise the bay, exploring island caves and even enjoying a swim in the South China Sea. To end the day, spend a peaceful night aboard the boat beneath the night sky. 

The sailing junk has twin share cabins with air-conditioning and private facilities. There's also a dining room and bar to enjoy lunch, dinner and breakfast. 

Included Activities 

Halong Bay - Overnight boat cruise 

Accommodation – Bien Ngoc boat  

Overnight boat  

Day 11- Halong – Hanoi –Sapa Date: 18 Oct 2017 Meals (B)  

This morning, take a bus back to Hanoi, and use free time in the afternoon to shop, explore the sights or just relax. This evening, you are transferred to the train station where you board a sleeper train bound for Sapa via the town of Lao Cai (approx. 8 hrs.).  

Conditions aboard the train are basic and cleanliness might not be as we would expect back home, however overnight trains are a truly experience and the best way to travel long distances with the locals. Sleeper trains typically have four berth compartments (occasionally six berth depending on seasonal variations) of which two are bench seats that convert into sleeping bunks. A sheet, pillow and blanket are provided, although some travelers prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet. You will be sharing with local travelers. Most trains have a dining carriage serving simple food, but some travelers take the opportunity to stock up on fresh bread, cheese and fruit prior to departure. 

Accommodation 

Overnight sleeper train  

Day use room at May De Ville City Centre - Han Thuyen – 6 person per room  

Day 12 - Sapa – Tram Ton pass – Silver waterfall Date: 19 Oct 2017 Meals (B/L) 

After a short drive we will leave Sapa Town and follow the road as it climbs to Tram Ton Pass; it’s the highest pass in Vietnam, at 2047 m. On the way there you will have many perfect opportunities to enjoy the view of the Hoang Lien Mountain Range. Coming back down from the pass we will stop and leave our car behind to explore the area of the Golden Stream and Love Waterfall. We will walk for about 2 km through the jungle to reach this waterfall. While walking, you will be able to see the local cardamom plants, which are used for medicine and cooking.  

After the Love Waterfall we will stop at the Silver Waterfall. Here you will have some time to climb the steps next to the waterfall, to experience the best view of the waterfall and the area around it. Then we will drive back to Sapa Town to have lunch. Your guide will take you further up the mountains to Sau Chua and Hang Da. On your way, you can take in the breathtaking view of the mountains, rice fields and valleys around you.  

Included Activities 

Tram Ton Pass  

Silver Waterfall  

Sau Chua  

Hang Da  

Accommodation 

Sapa Legend hotel & Spa – Superior room or similar  

Day 13 - Lao Chai – Ta Van - Hanoi Date: 20 Oct 2017 Meals (B/L) 

After breakfast, we will visit Lao Chai village, a vibrant Hmong community where we will have lunch at the homestay.  

After lunch we will trek from Lao Chai to Ta Van on small roads through the paddy fields. After a relaxing drive through Ta Van, we will return to Sapa, where we will arrive around 4 pm. 

Our car tours are very flexible. You can ask your guide to stop any time you want to take a photos or take a closer look at the mountain scenery or the village life. In this way, you will be able to see many different aspects of life in Sapa. 

Included Activities 

Lao Chai village  

Ta Van Village  

Accommodation 

Overnight sleeper train  

Day 14 - Hanoi – Departure Date: 21 Oct 2017 Meals (B)  

You arrive in Hanoi in the early morning. You are transferred to the hotel in Hanoi where you will have access to a day use (only) room at May De Ville City Centre - Han Thuyen – 6 person per room. The adventure ends today and you are free to depart for onward travel.