This 10-day family tour of Thailand starts in Bangkok, where you'll visit vibrant Chinatown for delicious street food and see the city's famous floating markets. Then, it's off to the mountains of Chiang Mai for tours of an elephant sanctuary and mud baths with the elephants! Swim in the crystalline waters of Phuket, feed endangered gibbons at a jungle sanctuary, and tour the glorious white-sand beaches of the Phi Phi Islands.


  • Try delicious street foods and desserts in Bangkok's Chinatown district
  • Interact with friendly elephants at Chiang Mai's Elephant Sanctuary
  • Swim and snorkel in the crystal clear waters of Phuket
  • Visit and feed endangered gibbon monkeys at the Gibbon Rehabilitation Center

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Bangkok Bangkok
Day 2 Floating Markets, Sugar House & Fishing Village Bangkok
Day 3 Day Trip to Ayutthaya Bangkok
Day 4 Transfer to Chiang Mai, Mae Ping River Boat Tour Chiang Mai
Day 5 Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Chiang Mai
Day 6 Transfer to Phuket, Beach Day in Phuket Phuket
Day 7 Cruise Phang Nga Bay Phuket
Day 8 Gibbon Rehabilitation Center Phuket
Day 9 Swimming & Snorkeling at the Phi Phi Islands Phuket
Day 10 Depart Phuket  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Bangkok

Get your first look at bustling Bangkok 

Welcome to Bangkok! Upon your arrival at the airport, your driver will take you to your hotel, where you can relax and get settled before exploring the city. Known for its street food, shopping, and friendly residents, Bangkok is considered the epicenter of Thailand's culture and commerce, blending an abundance of history within a cosmopolitan city. It's also a great family destination, with plenty of things to see and do.

You can start at Sealife Bangkok Ocean World, the largest aquarium complex in Southeast Asia. Take the kids along the shark walk and coral reef, and visit curious penguins at the penguin playground. Then head to Muang Boram Museum, which showcases miniature copies of the most remarkable ancient landmarks of Thailand. Your children will feel like they're visiting a fairy tale, and you will learn more about the most famous places in Thailand. End the afternoon with a stroll through Lumpini Park, where you're likely to see locals practicing tai chi and families at play. 

This evening, explore local food culture and taste some of Bangkok's best street food on a guided family foodie tour of Bangkok's own Chinatown. You'll have the opportunity to try foods like kai-satay (barbecued chicken) or ba-mee-mhoo-daeng (dried noodles with red pork), and the kids will definitely want to try some Chinese doughnuts, which are fried and then grilled, and often served with sweetened condensed milk. End the tour with a taste of a traditional Chinese herbal drink for good health.

Day 2: Floating Markets, Sugar House & Fishing Village

Soak up the sights and sounds of Thailand's floating markets

Learn more about local life with a visit to the Ratchaburi province and Thailand's famous floating markets. Your guide will collect you in the morning, making a stop at a coconut sugar house along the way. Tour the facility and learn about how the farmers make sugar from coconut, and the kids can taste some fresh coconut juice. Then it's off to the floating market, where you'll board a long-tail boat for a 30-minute cruise, which takes you by remote plantations and Thai villages along the river.

Arrive at the market and take in the lively scene of vendors selling fresh fruits and handicrafts from their boats, and be sure to have your haggling skills ready to go for any purchases you make! Afterward, hop back on your boat and continue to a fishing village, making the peaceful cruise through mangrove forests. The kids are likely to see some friendly monkeys who aren't shy about asking for treats or other handouts. At the village, you'll tour an oyster farm and learn about the harvesting process. Enjoy a seafood lunch at a local restaurant before heading back to Bangkok. 

Day 3: Day Trip to Ayutthaya

Walking through the ruins of Ayutthaya

Tour Thailand's old capital, Ayutthaya, located approximately one hour from Bangkok. This historic city was an important trading hub from the 14th to 18th centuries when the Burmese invasion destroyed it. The ruins now form the site of Ayutthaya Historical Park, where you can visit the palaces, temples, and monasteries of this bygone era.

Your guide will start with a tour of Wat Phra Si Sanphet in the Grand Palace compound, which now functions as a residential area. Continue to Wat Maha That, or the Monastery of the Great Relic, an impressive temple that features the famous Buddha's stone head entwined within the roots of a tree. Later, you'll board a traditional wooden boat and cruise along Ayutthaya's Chao Phraya River, where the kids can wave hello to the many local residents who live in stilt houses along the shore. Return just in time to enjoy your last evening in Bangkok. 

Day 4: Transfer to Chiang Mai, Mae Ping River Boat Tour

Cruise the river on a traditional long-tail boat

Your next destination is the mountain city of Chiang Mai. You'll take a private transfer to the airport and catch your flight, and a driver will be waiting to transport you to your hotel upon arrival. Founded in 1296, this is northern Thailand's largest city and the country's fourth-largest, with a distinct culture and history that thrives alongside a modern, urban vibe. 

After check-in at your accommodations, you'll be picked up by your guide for a boat tour of the Mae Ping River. Drive 30 minutes north of Chiang Mai to a long-tail boat dock, which has a pretty herbal garden that the kids can play in before departure. After you board your boat, you'll take a leisurely cruise down the river, passing both traditional wooden houses and modern buildings along the riverbank. You'll dock and walk to Waroros Fresh Food Market, where you can try some local food and get a glimpse into the culture of northern Thailand. Afterward, you'll be transferred back to your hotel to relax. 
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Day 5: Elephant Jungle Sanctuary

Spend the day visiting elephants at the sanctuary

Embrace the opportunity to meet elephants in a sustainable way and see how they live in natural conditions. You'll depart your hotel early in the morning and drive 1.5 hours south, heading through rolling hills and forested areas. Arrive at the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary, where you'll change into traditional clothing and start your interactive tour. Learn how to make the elephant's food and medicines, their behaviors, and the history of the sanctuary. 

After learning about the elephants, you'll get to visit with them personally. The kids will love feeding and interacting with these massive creatures, and at the end of the tour, you'll change into swimming gear and walk to the river, where you can join the elephant pack at their daily mud spa! Wrap up the day with a traditional Thai lunch before saying goodbye to the elephants and heading back to Chiang Mai. 

Day 6: Transfer to Phuket, Beach Day in Phuket

Enjoy a family beach day on the white sands of Phuket

It's off to the beach town of Phuket as you say goodbye to Chiang Mai and catch your flight out. Known for its stunning white sands and blue waters, Phuket is a top destination for visitors to Thailand, and upon arrival, you'll understand why. Get checked in at your hotel, then spend the rest of the day exploring the town's beautiful shores. 

There are several great family beach options here, such as Mai Khao, where you can find privacy and tranquility, or Kamala, a nearly 6-mile (9.5 km) stretch of sand with shallow water for the little ones and easy access to nearby restaurants. If you're looking for something livelier, visit Patong, a bustling tourist spot with equipment rentals, parasailing, and lots of bars and restaurants. And Kata is the perfect spot for swimming and snorkeling, not to mention some of the area's most dramatic sunsets. 

Day 7: Cruise Phang Nga Bay

Take a family-friendly tour of Phang Nga Bay

Take a day cruise on Phang Nga Bay Islands, a gorgeous spot with turquoise waters, limestone cliffs, sandy beaches, and lush jungle. Your tour begins at Ao Por Pier, where you and the kids can fuel up with complimentary breakfast and beverages, then you'll board your boat and head out on the water. 

Stop to canoe at some of the bay's sea caves, such as Bat Cave, where the kids can see real bats hanging from the walls, and Mangrove Cave, with its lush foliage. Afterward, head to Hong Island, where you'll paddle through mangrove ecosystems and stalactite-filled caves to explore the tranquility of the hongs, Thai for "rooms," which are actually sinkholes within the cliffs and are only accessible through the sea caves. 

Head back to your boat for a delicious buffet lunch, then continue to James Bond Island, locally known as Tapu Island, the site for the famous Bond film, "The Man with the Golden Gun." The kids can swim and snorkel to their heart's content, and you will all appreciate the fabulous sunset views on your way back to Ao Po Pier. 

Day 8: Gibbon Rehabilitation Center

Family Day At The Gibbon Rehabilitation Project
Animal lovers will get a thrill out of today's excursion to the Gibbon Rehabilitation Project

Take a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the Gibbon Rehabilitation Center, where you and your family can learn about these animals and their environment. The center is dedicated to the protection of gibbons, which were poached to the brink of extinction 40 years ago. Their program has worked to rescue and reintroduce gibbons to the wild, focusing on the last remaining rainforest in Phuket, Khao Pra Theaw Non-Hunting Area

Learn how to make gibbon nutrition balls wrapped in banana leaves, and let the kids feed these healthy snacks to the gibbons. Walk through the surrounding jungles as your guide explains more about the gibbon habitat and the meaning behind their different sounds and calls. If you're lucky, you might also see some of the other wildlife that resides in the forest. Finish with a leisurely family walk to a nearby waterfall. 

Day 9: Swimming & Snorkeling at the Phi Phi Islands

A family swim and snorkel day at the Phi Phi Islands

It's your last full day in Phuket, and that means more beach time! Take a private transfer to the pier, then hop a long-tail boat to the Phi Phi Islands. Start with a stop at Phi Phi Ley, or Maya Beach, for spectacular views of the islands. Then, head to Pileh Lagoon and Viking Cave, a stunning hidden beach surrounded by cliff formations. Visit Monkey Beach, where the kids can give the resident monkeys a treat of fruit and do some snorkeling and swimming at nearby Phi Phi Don, followed by a delicious lunch. On the way back, make one more stop at Bamboo Island, a small reef-edged island with peaceful, clear waters. 

Day 10: Depart Phuket

Goodbye Thailand 

Your Thailand adventure comes to a close today. Your driver will collect you from your hotel and transport you to Phuket airport for your flight home. Safe travels! 

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Map of Family Discovery of Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai & Phuket - 10 Days
Map of Family Discovery of Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai & Phuket - 10 Days
Written by Hien Do, updated Mar 29, 2023