Spend two weeks discovering the shared history and culture of two of Southeast Asia's most fascinating countries. In Cambodia, you'll step back in time to the days of the Khmer Empire on tours of the temple ruins at Angkor. Then hit the highlights of Thailand as you visit the floating markets of Bangkok, experience the culture and beauty of Chiang Mai, and enjoy some downtime on the beaches of Phuket.


  • Visit the ancient temple ruins at Angkor
  • Enjoy city tours and dinner cruises in Bangkok
  • Meet monks in Chiang Mai and visit an elephant sanctuary
  • Laze on the beaches of Phuket and go island hopping in the Andaman Sea

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Siem Reap (Cambodia), Optional Activities Siem Reap
Day 2 Explore Angkor Thom & Angkor Wat Siem Reap
Day 3 Explore Angkor Temples Siem Reap
Day 4 Visit Koulen Mountain & Beng Mealea Siem Reap
Day 5 Fly to Bangkok (Thailand), Dinner Cruise Bangkok
Day 6 Bangkok City Tour Bangkok
Day 7 Visit Mae Klong Railway Market & Floating Market Bangkok
Day 8 Fly to Chiang Mai, Cultural Dinner Show Chiang Mai
Day 9 Chiang Mai City Tour & Monk Chat Chiang Mai
Day 10 Day Trip to Elephant Sanctuary Chiang Mai
Day 11 Fly to Phuket, Guided Tour Phuket
Day 12 Phi Phi Islands Speed Boat Tour Phuket
Day 13 Free Day in Phuket Phuket
Day 14 Depart Phuket  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Siem Reap (Cambodia), Optional Activities

Welcome to Siem Reap
Welcome to Siem Reap, the gateway to Angkor Wat
Welcome to Cambodia! This itinerary kicks off in Siem Reap, a resort town in the northwest of the country. It lies near Lake Tonlé Sap, the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. Siem Reap is also the central hub for excursions to the 12th-century ruins of Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world.
Upon arrival at the airport, a driver will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. You can then spend the rest of the day recovering from jet lag, or stretch your legs on a stroll around the local markets.

Day 2: Explore Angkor Thom & Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat
Tour Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world
You're in for a treat today, as you'll leave early on a full-day guided tour of Angkor. This famous archaeological site covers 154 square miles (400 sq km) and comprises ruins of a kingdom in the Khmer Empire that flourished during the ninth through the 15th centuries. The most famous landmark here is Angkor Wat, a temple complex spanning 200 acres (81 ha). That makes it the largest religious monument in the world.
First up is a visit to Angkor Thom (literally "Great City"), which comprises the ruins of the most impressive royal city of Cambodia's Angkor period. One of the must-see sites is Bayon Temple. Comprised of 54 Gothic towers, it was commissioned by Jayavarman VII in the 12th century, whose smiling face and glaring eyes are represented in its 216 stone sculptures. Other structures you'll visit here include Baphuon Temple, the Terrace of the Elephants (featuring sculptures and bas-reliefs of elephants), and the Terrace of the Leper King, known for its carvings of demons and mythological figures.

After Angkor Thom, you'll tour the star of the show: Angkor Wat. This 12th-century complex is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and features the longest bas-relief in the world, which narrates stories from Hindu mythology. During the visit, you and your guide will stroll through the site's galleries, libraries, pavilions, and courtyards. (Fun fact: Angkor Wat's five main towers are so iconic that they're emblazoned on the Cambodian flag.) After enjoying the sunset from Bakheng Hill, you'll return to Siem Reap and can continue the tour with a visit to the town's famous night market. 

Day 3: Explore Angkor Temples

Explore Angkor Temples: Banteay Srei, Ta Prohm Temple and Prasat Kravan
Explore lesser-visited temples on the Angor site, like Banteay Srei
Meet your guide bright and early and head back to Angkor to watch the sunrise over the temples. After a break for breakfast, you'll continue on another full-day tour of the site. Begin at Banteay Srei, a 10th-century temple devoted to Shiva, one of the principal deities in Hinduism. Constructed out of red sandstone, Banteay Srei is famous for its intricate, feminine carvings that adorn nearly every surface, earning it the nickname the "jewel of Khmer art."
Next up is Banteay Samre, a 12th-century Hindu temple designed in the style of Angkor Wat. This is a great spot to take photos of Khmer structures free of the tourist crowds, as most of them are flocking to the more famous temple about 18 miles (30 km) away. Later in the afternoon, visit the famous jungle-covered temple of Ta Prohm. Here enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers have woven themselves into the stone foundations of the structure, giving the impression that Mother Nature is reclaiming the temple.
After the tour, you'll return to Siem Reap. If you like, you can take a sunset stroll down the Siem Reap River. Follow that up with a walk over to the Royal Residence, a stately villa that is the official residence of the King of Cambodia when he is in town.

Day 4: Visit Koulen Mountain & Beng Mealea

Beng Mealea
Stroll along the wooden boardwalks at Beng Mealea
Cambodia's Khmer history isn't limited merely to the Angkor site. In the morning, you'll leave on a day tour to experience the breadth of this heritage. First, you'll meet your guide/driver at the hotel then travel one hour north of the city to the Phnom Kulen mountain range. This sacred highland area is the birthplace of the ancient Khmer Empire, as it was here that King Jayavarma II proclaimed independence from Java in 804 CE. When you arrive, you'll stop at the famous "Valley of the Lingas," an archaeological site featuring 1000 carved lingas that are a tribute to the Hindu god Shiva.

Next, you'll stop at Beng Mealea. This Hindu temple, rediscovered in the late 19th century by French explorers, is one of the most mysterious structures at Angkor. Its exact origins are unknown, though scholars estimate it was built in the 12th century. Surrounded by a moat, the encroaching nature here is such that the only way to get around the site is on wooden boardwalks. After exploring Beng Mealea, you'll return to Siem Riep and end the day with a visit to the Made in Cambodia Market. Here you can browse handicrafts and other items made exclusively by local artisans and artists. 

Day 5: Fly to Bangkok (Thailand), Dinner Cruise

Welcome to Bangkok!
See Bangkok's most iconic landmarks, like Wat Arun, on a dinner cruise
Plan your trip to Thailand
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
After breakfast, you'll transfer to the airport and catch a one-hour flight to Bangkok. Welcome to the capital of Thailand! Upon arrival, a driver will meet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel in the city. You'll then have some time to relax and unwind.
Later, discover Bangkok's luminous beauty on a luxury dinner cruise down the Chao Phraya River, the city's arterial waterway. During the ride, you'll pass some of Bangkok's most iconic landmarks, which look even more spectacular at night (highlights include Wat Arun, Wat Pho, and the Grand Palace). Even better, you'll admire this great scenery while enjoying a delectable buffet dinner accompanied by a traditional Thai dance performance. After the cruise, your guide will pick you up at the pier and escort you back to the hotel.

Day 6: Bangkok City Tour

Grand Palace
Visit the temples in and around the Grand Palace complex
In the morning, your private guide/driver will pick you up at your hotel for a full-day city tour. Head over to Wat Pho in time to hear the monks’ morning chanting ritual. Dating to the 13th century, this is one of the oldest temples in Bangkok, but it's most famous for being home to a 150-foot (46 m) statue of a reclining Buddha. You'll then visit Wat Traimit (Temple of the Golden Buddha) to see another gilt deity, this one 900 years old and weighing 5.5 tons. Afterward, head to Wat Arun, an iconic temple dating to the 17th century known for its towering 259-foot (79 m) central spire.

In the afternoon, continue on to the Royal Grand Palace. As the official residence of successive Kings of Siam (and later Thailand) from 1782 until 1925, it is one of the most important landmarks in Thailand. The adjoining Wat Phra Kaew (Temple of the Emerald Buddha) is the most famous Buddhist pilgrimage site in the country. Here, your guide will reveal more insight into Thailand's traditional art and architecture. After the tour, you'll return to your hotel for a rest. 

In the evening, you'll forgo dinner in a restaurant for a food tour around the city. During the excursion, you'll pass street vendors selling staples like pad thai, papaya salad, moo ping (grilled pork skewers), and jok (rice porridge). The last stop is a rooftop bar where you'll enjoy a relaxing drink amid incredible views overlooking the river and Bangkok's skyline. 

Day 7: Visit Mae Klong Railway Market & Floating Market

Damnoen Saduak floating market
Shop for fresh produce at Bangkok's famous floating markets
The deep dive into Thailand's cuisine continues on a tour of its most unique markets. In the morning, you'll meet your driver/guide for the 1.5-hour ride west out of the city to Mae Klong Railway Market. The name is no gimmick—Mae Klong got its name because the vendor stalls sit on a narrow stretch of railroad track between buildings. Even more incredible is that trains pass by at regular intervals. When they do, the vendors quickly gather their products, wait for the train to pass, and replace them as if nothing happened. It's a great place to shop for fresh produce (just be mindful of the train whistle).

Afterward, you'll travel to a nearby klong (canal) and visit Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. This is one of Thailand's many "floating markets"—commercial hubs where local vendors ply the waterways selling items out of small boats. On a stop here, you can meet hawkers and shop for fresh fruits, vegetables, snacks, souvenirs, and other items. After browsing the market, you'll return to your Bangkok hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Day 8: Fly to Chiang Mai, Cultural Dinner Show

Traditional Khantoke Dinner Show
Sit down for a traditional "khantok" dinner and dance performance
After breakfast, you'll transfer to the airport and catch a one-hour flight to the far north of the country and Chiang Mai. Nicknamed "Rose of the North," This city is unique because from 1296 to 1558 it was the capital of the independent Lanna Kingdom. Much of this history is well-preserved in the form of ancient walls, moats, and the Buddhist temples dotting the Old City (historic center). Upon arrival at the airport, a driver will pick you up and transfer you to your hotel.
When the sun goes down, you'll head out to experience some of Chiang Mai's rich culture with a traditional khantoke dinner show. A "khantok" is a wooden tray the Lanna people use to serve food. Tonight's dinner will introduce you to this culinary culture, because when you arrive in the dining room, you'll sit on a floormat and enjoy a variety of authentic northern dishes served khantoks. The evening's entertainment includes performances of traditional dances like the fon lep (Thai finger dance), ram dab (Thai sword dance), fon thielen (Thai candle dance), and ram wong (group dance).

Day 9: Chiang Mai City Tour & Monk Chat

Full Day Chiang Mai City Tour with Monk Chat
Wat Prathat Doi Suthep, one of the most famous temples in Thailand
Meet your guide this morning and head out to discover Chiang Mai's highlights. First, you'll visit Warorot. Located on the riverfront, the city's largest municipal market sells everything from fresh produce to clothing to flowers. Then make your way to the Thapae Gate, one of the four original city gates, which you'll tour in a traditional samlor (rickshaw). End the morning at Wat Suan Dok, a 14th-century temple known for its impressive whitewashed chedi (Buddhist stupas). Here, you'll meet an English-speaking monk and gain insight into the Buddhist religion.

Enjoy lunch at a restaurant near Huay Kaew Waterfall before driving up to Wat Prathat Doi Suthep, one of northern Thailand’s most famous pilgrimage destinations. Founded in 1383, this temple complex allegedly houses a bone shard relic from the Buddha’s shoulder. Climb up the 306 steps of the Golden Naga staircase to reach the gilt pagodas, admire the delicate Lanna architecture, and experience a blessing ceremony here. You will also be rewarded with gorgeous views over Chiang Mai and the countryside beyond.

Day 10: Day Trip to Elephant Sanctuary

Spend the day with rescued elephants in the mountains of Chiang Mai
Leave Chiang Mai this morning and drive 1.5 hours outside the city to mountain forests and the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary. Here, you'll meet your guide, change into traditional tribal clothing, and spend the day with rescued elephants. After an introductory speech in which you'll learn about these animals' history and behavior, you'll meet your elephant friends, feed them, and interact with them in a natural environment.

After enjoying traditional Thai food and fresh fruit for lunch, you'll learn how to make herbal medicine balls for the elephants. Then, along with your group, lead the elephants to a nearby river where you can bathe and brush them before joining in a therapeutic mud spa. Afterward, change into clean clothes, say goodbye to these gentle giants, and head back to Chiang Mai.

Day 11: Fly to Phuket, Guided Tour

Phuket Landmark - Big Buddha Statue
Big Buddha, one of Phuket's most famous landmarks
After breakfast, your driver will pick you up and transfer you to the airport for the two-hour flight south to Phuket. Now you're in sunny southern Thailand! Sitting on the Andaman Sea, Phuket is the largest island in the country, famous for beautiful white-sand beaches, forest-covered mountains, and relentless nightlife. 
To help introduce you to the new region, a guide will meet you at the airport and lead you on a city tour. During this excursion, you'll head up to famous overlooks like Karon Viewpoint and Cape Promthep, where you can stare out over the city and coast to the Andaman Sea.
Then visit the 19th century Wat Chalong, Phuket's largest and most important Buddhist temple. Next, head over to the 148-foot (45 m) Big Buddha, a white marble statue of a sitting Buddha perched on a hilltop. The tour ends in Phuket's lively Old Town, where you'll stroll among colorful Sino-Portuguese shophouses, colonial mansions, and cafés.

Day 12: Phi Phi Islands Speed Boat Tour

Phi Phi Island
Visit the villages and beaches of the Phi Phi Islands
This morning you'll leave on a full-day island-hopping, snorkeling, and swimming tour around the famous Phi Phi Islands. You'll arrive at the pier in Phuket around 7:30 am and board a speedboat for the one-hour trip to Phi Phi Lee (Maya Beach). One of the most stunning destinations in Thailand, Maya Beach is a secluded bay hemmed in by towering limestone cliffs. After a period of over-tourism, Maya Beach was closed for conservation but was re-opened to the public in early 2022.
After snorkeling and swimming at Maya Beach, you'll visit nearby highlights like Pileh Lagoon and Viking Cave. You'll also stop at Monkey Beach, named for its community of crab-eating macaques. Upon arrival, do some more snorkeling and then enjoy a delicious buffet lunch. Then you'll go sightseeing and shopping in the charming village at Ton Say Bay before heading back toward Phuket by boat. En route, you'll stop at Khai Island, where you can spend some time lazing on the white-sand beaches of this romantic islet. You'll arrive back in Phuket around 4:30 pm.

Day 13: Free Day in Phuket

Enjoy Phuket on your own schedule
Today is yours to enjoy Phuket however you like. If you want, make it a beach day and while away the hours with your feet in the sand. The 7-mile (11 km) Mai Khao Beach might be a good choice if you want a quiet, laid-back place. The water is shallow and calm, and you can have a fun time swimming and sunbathing. There's also Bangtao Beach, which is great for families as it features 5 miles (8 km) of white sand, beautiful lagoons, and numerous restaurants. Other beaches, like Kamala Beach, Patong Beach, and Karon Beach, are also good options.

Day 14: Depart Phuket

Ko Ta Pu, better known as James Bond Island
Unfortunately, the time has come to bid farewell to Thailand. At the appropriate time, a driver will pick you up at the hotel and transfer you to the airport in Phuket, where you'll catch your connecting flight home. See you soon!

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Map of Highlights of Cambodia & Thailand - 14 Days
Map of Highlights of Cambodia & Thailand - 14 Days