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ASIA 2014

get lost find your way make mistakes learn what matters

appreciate the small things

and the big things


Adventure.. It’s in our DNA. Whether we’re haggling with the locals, trying weird and wonderful food or trekking new territory, we like to keep things interesting. It’s the whole reason we set up STA Travel in 1979. We love nothing more than getting to know a new language, culture or environment and, 35 years later, we’re still exploring. We’re convinced that experiencing the wonders of our planet opens your mind and stretches your horizons. We listen to our travellers, our expert staff visit faraway places and use this knowledge to create your very own life-changing experience. Inside, you’ll find no end of incredible adventures to inspire your ultimate trip to Asia, whether you’re looking for an iconic overland journey or just a quick break to explore a little-known corner of this breathtaking region. From shoestring hostels to luxurious resorts, and from great value group tours to indulgent sailing adventures, we’ve also got every budget covered. Our expert advice, unique experiences and amazing special offers will make sure you never look at the world in quite the same way again. So buckle up, you’re about to uncover a whole new way to travel.

Start the adventure


CONTENTS We Know Because We Go! Save With STA Travel Flying High Start The Adventure Sleep With Us Go Smart or Go Home Feeling Social? Responsible Travel Discover Asia

18

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Contents

04 05 06 08 10 12 13 14 16

20 Multi-Country Touring 38 Bamba Experience 40 Stray Bus 42 Thailand 43 Touring & Sailing 52 Bangkok 56 Chiang Mai 59 Beaches & Islands 75 Burma 77 Malaysia 80 Kuala Lumpur 82 Malaysian Beaches & Borneo 87 Singapore 90 Indonesia 91 Touring - Bali & Beyond 96 Bali 101 Cambodia, Vietnam & Laos 108 Cambodia & Laos 110 Vietnam

114

ORIENTAL ASIA

119 Vodkatrain 124 China & Hong Kong 132 Dragon Experience 134 Hong Kong 137 Beijing & Shanghai 139 Japan 142 Tokyo 144 Kyoto & Osaka

146

INDIAN SUB-CONTINENT

149 India 150 Touring & Holy Cow Rail Tours 159 Delhi & Mumbai 160 Sri Lanka 163 Nepal 168 Kathmandu

169 looking for inspiration 170 Terms & Conditions facebook.com/statravel.uk twitter.com/statravel_uk statravel.co.uk/travel-blog 3


WE Know Because We Go!

Save with Sta travel Save with STA Travel and make that hard-earned cash stretch a little further, by taking advantage of some of our amazing offers. We’ve come up with some great, exclusive discounts to make sure you get the best deals going.

No single supplements

Repeat traveller

Multi-trip deals

Free Nights +BONUS

Top 10

REASONS to travel with STA Travel 1.

Wherever you are, we’re there for you 24/7

2.

World-class travel partners

3.

Exclusive low Flexible airfares

4. 5.

We work with only the most reputable tour operators and accommodation providers across the globe Our unique airline partnerships mean you always get the lowest fares around and you can also change your plans at the last minute without breaking the bank

HAND-PICKED

Experiences, trips and accommodation options - all hand-picked and vetted by us

100’S of stores worldwide

With stores all over the world, you’re never far from one of our Travel Experts

Cardholder discounts

Stay longer at many of our hotels and hostels and we’ll often throw in a free night, or two...

Flex

Great discounts on airfares and a load of free stuff too, just for being a student, teacher or young person. Check out our range of discount cards on page 12.

STA Travel’s unique range of flexible products aim to make travelling easier and cheaper. Check out our Multiflex pass on page 6 to reduce the cost of changing your travel plans.

Mates rates

EARLY BOOKING

Save cash if you travel as a group, or maybe earn a free place if there are enough of you.

Book your trip well in advance of your travel date and you may qualify for reduced rates.

Make it Happen Its pretty easy really - you’ve done the most important bit by picking up this brochure. Next step – go in and see one of our Travel Experts and start planning your route. There are all sorts of things we can help you with from here.

checklist Pick up my copy of the STA Travel Asia brochure Book an appointment with a Travel Expert and get planning!

6.

One-stop shop

7.

We are the experts

Buy my ISIC or IYTC card for amazing discounts all over the world

Over 30 years’ experience

Get my Cashcard so I can manage my money easily while I’m away

8.

Picture courtesy of G Adventures

Global travel help

Buy two or more tours with the same operator and get up to 5% off your total price.

Travel with the same tour operator more than once and you’ll often find your loyalty is rewarded with a discount.

Book everything with us and spend less time worrying and more time having fun Our Travel Experts are the go-to people for tips and advice, whatever your question We know our stuff when it comes to travel adventures, we’ve been there, done that and bought the T-shirt!

9.

Price beat guarantee

10.

Adventures for all

We’ll beat any price that you find lower elsewhere* No matter what your age or budget, we’ll inspire you to create your ultimate trip *For full terms and conditions on our price beat guarantee please visit www.statravel.co.uk/pricebeat

save with STA TRAVEL

We know because we go!

Travelling alone but happy to share a room with a same-sex traveller? If so, you’ll save the single supplement on many of our tours.

Get my flights booked

Get a phone card so I can phone home cheaply Book somewhere to stay for at least my first few nights Check and arrange any visas required Speak to my GP or STA Travel Clinic about my jabs Get packed, it’s time to hit the road

5


The absolute lowest fares with the world’s leading airlines including exclusive discounts and flexible booking conditions for students holding an ISIC card and for youths under 30 holding an IYTC card. We even throw in discounts for teachers holding an ITIC card for good measure! The flexibility to change your travel dates and route before and after departure.

Build your very own itinerary using our exclusive one-way fares.

100s of STA Travel stores worldwide giving you personal support as you travel the globe.

GET THE BEST PRICE

We’ve been helping our customers get the best airfares for over 30 years so our Travel Experts know exactly where to look and what to check to give you the deal of a lifetime! Buy an ISIC, IYTC or ITIC card to be eligible for our exclusive student, under 30 and teacher fares. We’ll beat any competitor on price and that’s a promise – see statravel.co.uk or ask in store for details. Sign up to our weekly newsletter by visiting statravel.co.uk to receive our best offers and the chance to win amazing prizes!

ROUND THE WORLD

We practically invented the concept of flying round the world, so we’ve got a huge range of exclusive choices and plenty of suggestions for you. Our fares are totally flexible and some even last up to 18 months; so you can work for a year and travel the other six.

STOPOVERS

The vast majority of our fares allow discounted, or even free, stopovers en route to your final destination. You don’t need to limit it to a night or two as some of our fares allow stopovers of weeks or even months! So, in effect you could be getting two or more countries for the price of one. These aren’t bookable online so be sure to ask your Travel Expert what’s available for you.

MULTIFLEX PASS

On average, an STA traveller on a round the world trip will change their flight dates five times. By buying your date changes up front you could save over £100 and change your mind during your trip, without having to worry about the cost. You can get three date changes for £69 or unlimited date changes for £99, saving you heaps of cash!

Discover the wonderous Taj MahaL party on the beaches of Goa, explore the backwaters of Kerala and come face to face with the majestic tiger. Whatever your expectations of your Indian adventure, Jet Airways can get you there and now celebrating over 20 years of excellence, you’ll travel in comfort and style! Why not combine the colour and diversity of India with favourites Nepal, Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore or Sri Lanka? A unique combination possible with Jet Airways to get the most out of your big trip! •

Non-stop flights from London Heathrow to Delhi and Mumbai with connections to over 40 Indian gateways

Combine India with Asia favourites Bangkok, Singapore, Hong Kong, Colombo or Kathmandu

Complimentary alcohol and soft drinks on international flights

Choose from European dishes or authentic Indian cuisine from the kitchens of exclusive London restaurant Bombay Brasserie. Available on all flights to and from London A virtual feast of entertainment, from blockbuster movies to the latest music albums, from awardwinning TV to games all ondemand when you want it

Price guarantee on all Jet Airways flights – you won’t find cheaper anywhere else.

Discounted and fully flexible fares for students and youths under 31 years of age - negotiated just for you

All fares eligible for the STA Travel Multi-flex pass

Start your Asia adventure and discover why Jet Airways are one of our favourites.

FLIGHTS & OUR PREFERRED AIRLINES

FlIGHTS & OUR PREFERRED AIRLINES

FLYING HIGH

Aside from our unbeatable prices, many of our airfares are unique and exclusive, meaning we can book just about anything you desire, from one-ways or simple return tickets, to complex and exciting round the world itineraries. Below is just a snippet of what we can do for you.


Start The adventure

To help you choose the trip style that’s right for you, see the ‘Inclusions’ box on each of the tour pages and look out for the following logos throughout the brochure:

Trip Styles STA Travel is proud to partner with G Adventures to deliver an amazing range of small group adventures worldwide. G Adventures has been redefining small group travel for over 20 years and their trips feature active exploration, cultural immersion and the creation of true, lifelong connections with the people and places they visit. All trip styles / service levels have a few things in common: 100% Guaranteed Departures – once you book, you’re going! Lifetime Deposits – if you need to cancel or postpone, your money’s protected for use against a future trip.

These tours encourage you to step off the beaten path and immerse yourself in your chosen destination. You’ll usually share your trip with no more than 16 like-minded travellers, though the average group size is often lower.

No Single Supplements – you can be paired up with a same-sex roommate at no extra cost or, if you prefer your own space, look for the ‘My Own Room’ prices.

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

As above, but aimed at younger travellers looking to experience the best of Asia with a bunch of fun and friendly travel mates. Please note that some of our touring partners set an official age limit, while for others it is suggested as a guideline - see individual tour pages. As a world leader in youth travel for 18-35s, Contiki’s experiences are designed with young travellers in mind. Their journeys are packed with culture, inspiring places, lifelong friendships and making every moment count. A trip with no regrets, no compromises and definitely no travelling with other people’s kids or grandparents.

On these trips, which typically have a larger group size, you’ll travel only with 18-35 year olds who share your passion for travel. These trips are super sociable, ideal for making new friends through shared experiences.

Independent travel in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Malaysia is easy with Bamba Experience and Stray Bus, whose hop-on, hop-off bus networks allow you to explore at your own pace and according to your own itinerary. Stay as long as you like in each destination and jump back on the bus whenever you’re ready to move on. It’s really that simple!

Contiki includes access to blockbuster sights such as Angkor Wat, the Great Wall Of China and the Royal Palace in Bangkok (and they even skip the queue). They offer amazing places to stay and

If you are looking for private arrangements for you and your travel buddy(ies), check out our range of itineraries that usually come complete with private driver/guide.

Exactly what it says on the tin. These exciting short tours can be booked on their own, added on to a longer tour or mixed and matched to create your own itinerary. You are likely to be travelling with other like-minded people but each tour is different, run by our local operators and designed for maximum enjoyment.

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Picture courtesy of G Adventures

If there’s any better way to travel from Europe into Asia than on the legendary Trans Mongolian Railway, we want to know about it! Travelling with no more than 15 people, all aged between 18 and 35, you’ll escape the restrictions of an organised tour but Vodkatrain will take care of all the boring red tape. In each city, you’ll meet a friendly local guide (or ‘honcho’) who can show you all the cool things to see and do. Na Zdarovie!

YOLO – popular with 18-39 year olds, Yolo trips are for those who want to take on the planet in a fun and affordable way. Classic – for travellers of all ages seeking extraordinary landscapes and wildlife, and real interaction with local cultures. Comfort – unforgettable trips with upgraded accommodation and transport, plus more meals and included activities. Active - geared towards adventurers with a love of the great outdoors who are hungry to hike, trek, bike, raft and more. Local Living – immersive, one-of-a-kind stays in traditional accommodation, to get you close to the land and its people. Marine Cruising & Sailing – explore the idyllic islands of Thailand on a sailing catamaran that sleeps a maximum of 8.

plenty of free time to get even more from your trip. And with a dedicated Contiki team and local guides on-hand, you’ll have constant access to valuable insider knowledge. Best of all, on every date listed for Contiki tours in this brochure, you’ll benefit from: Guaranteed Departures – once you book, you’re going! No Single Supplements – we don’t charge any extra if you’re travelling solo - we’ll match you up with a same-sex room-mate. Or you can opt for a ‘A room to myself’ for a small supplement.

For nearly 50 years, Sundowners Overland has been offering extraordinary journeys across Asia following the ancient routes of trade and conquest. Their ‘Experience Tours’ offer a unique alternative to conventional touring, with sightseeing in each city arranged by expert local guides rather than a tour leader to accompany your entire journey. If you are seeking even more freedom, you can opt for an ‘Independent’ or fully tailor-made tour.

Service Levels

Camping – great value trips with the odd hotel stay; public and private transport. Basic – simple and clean hostels, hotels and guesthouses; public and private transport; great optional activities. Standard – comfortable and central midrange accommodations; public and private transport; top highlights included. Upgraded – well-equipped hotels; private and upgraded transport, more included meals, activities and transfers.

Physical Grading

1. Easy – you can walk unaided, climb a few stairs and carry your own bag. 2. Light – some gentle walks or hikes, but still suitable for all fitness levels. 3. Average – includes moderate activities such as hiking, biking, rafting or kayaking. 4. Demanding – some hikes at higher altitudes or other strenuous activities. 5. Challenging – serious high-altitude treks, climbing, cycling and heavy exercise.

Service LevelS

Superior – experience the best of Asia travelling by plane, boat and convenient private coach. Stay near the sights in a mix of comfortable hotels and unique local stopover options. Add to this a raft of meals, local knowledge and amazing experiences and you have an epic trip!

TOURING Asia

TOURING Asia

There’s no more convenient way to travel than on a tour, it takes all the hassle out of travelling, opens your mind to local cultures, gets you trying out a whole bunch of exciting new activities and is a great way to make new friends from all over the world. You’ll visit all the mustsee highlights, of course, but expert guides will also take you to authentic, out-of-the-way places that only those with insider knowledge would know. You’d probably never find them on your own! Taking a tour can usually be cheaper than trying to put it together yourself, so whatever your budget, we’re confident you’ll find your perfect trip. We also guarantee that you will not find the same tour cheaper anywhere else.


SLEEP WITH US sleep with us

sleep with us

Star ratings are often not the best way to categorise hotels. Depending on what country you’re travelling through, perceptions of each standard can vary quite dramatically. To make things much easier for you, we’re giving you our own, very educated opinion on each property that we feature. We’ve horizontally tangoed with the cool, the interesting, the enviable and the luxe to the off the wall to bring you our curated offering of hostels, hotels, lodges and apartments, all chosen especially for you.

Shoestring

Our wallet-friendly digs are hand-picked by us. No frills and no nasty surprises but a great sociable atmosphere and fantastic locations!

WHY SLEEP with us

Top Inn, Bangkok

There are loads of very good reasons to book your accommodation with us. Here are our favourite four.

Glampacker

Hand-picked

Stay in some of the most expressive and one-of-a-kind hostels and budget hotels around, without breaking the bank. They are cool and unique, just like you!

We’ve searched every corner of the globe for the very best properties around, in every conceivable style.

Bunc@Radius Little India, Singapore

Vetted

We’ve slept in it and vetted it for safety.

Rock Solid

Best Price Guaranteed

You want a comfy bed, a hot shower and a good range of amenities. Ranging from low key 2* hotels to well known 4* brands, you know it’s a safe bet!

No hidden extras, no nasty surprises.

24 hour Concierge

Patong Merlin Hotel, Phuket

With our worldwide network of stores, backed by our 24/7 global service desk, we won’t leave you stranded.

A-LiST

+BONUS

These flash and funky hotels are worth splashing out on. Great facilities, classy interiors and a bit of luxury thrown in. Get your bling on.

Look out for our STA Travel bonus offers. We’ve sourced the very best deals that will ensure you save money and make the most of your stay. Please ask your STA Travel Expert for applicable dates, terms and conditions.

Shangri-La Golden Sands Resort & Spa, Penang

nomads bed hopper HOSTEL PASS

This hostel pass is the perfect way to explore Thailand without the confines of planning your journey and booking in advance. Choose from five, ten or 15 nights - see page 63 for more details. The pass can also be used in Australia and New Zealand if you are continuing your travels.

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Westin Langkawi

Pricing and Photography The accommodation prices featured in this brochure are based on per person, twin share. The ‘from’ pricing shown has been calculated using low season stays and is based on lead-in room types. We’re sourcing great deals all year long so we recommend using the prices in this brochures only as a guide and to ask your STA Travel Expert for the best available deal for your travel period. The accommodation photos featured are representative of the the room types available at each property however this may not be the actual room type that you receive. If you have a preference for a particular room your Travel Expert will be happy to help. Just ask!


GO SMART OR GO HOME Travel insurance

multiflex pass

Change your mind? Change your ticket without fees. Save £100s on date changes with our totally unique STA Travel Multiflex pass. Ask your travel Expert if your flights are eligible.

STA Travel Cashcards

Don’t travel anywhere without an STA Travel Prepaid MasterCard® Cashcard! Our range of cards offer a safe way to carry money on your travels and you don’t have to worry about exchanging currency.

Why choose an STA Travel Cashcard • Two card types; STA ISIC Cashcard for students or our Cashcard for all • Free UK and overseas transactions* • Safe - no need for cash and the card’s not linked to a bank account • Stay in control – only spend the amount you’ve loaded. Funds can be easily managed 24/7 • Top up free at STA Travel UK stores or via bank transfer • Use in over 35 million locations including 1.5 million ATMs • No credit checks needed • Parents or friends can top-up your card if you run out of money

GLOBAL SIM CARD

It’s good to stay in touch whilst you’re away. It’s even better to keep your costs down and control your spending with it.

What’s the deal? • No more running up uncontrollable roaming bills • Call rates fr 30p per minute & SMS fr 10p • Excellent data rates • Great coverage in 190 countries • Free incoming calls in over 80 countries • Add call time from anywhere in the world • One number all over the world • Free Facebook notifications* • Micro and Nano sims also available • Includes £10 top up *capped at 20 per day

Discount Cards

Thousands of travel, online and lifestyle discounts in the UK and worldwide. Grab an STA ISIC Cashcard for student benefits and an easy way to manage your money all in one, just £12. Also available: under 30 and teacher discount cards. Same great discounts worldwide, also priced at £12.

Visa SERVICE

Whether you’re touring the sights or planning on earning as you travel, it’s important you have the correct entrance visa. Check out your visa requirements with an STA Travel Expert. Our visa service for working and tourist visas is hassle free, efficient and the safest way to process your visas for your travels.

FOREIGN CURRENCY

Get your travel fix straight from the source, with the brilliant STA Travel Blog. Not only is it brimming with original travel ideas, it’s fast becoming the most popular spot to lay down your opinion on the topics that matter the most to you! Get the inside track on adventure travel ideas, and stock up on knowledge from behind the scenes here at STA Travel.

STA Travel Clinics

Visit www.statravel.co.uk/travel-blog

For all your health needs. Ask your Travel Expert where your nearest clinic is, we have more opening all the time! The benefits of using our clinics include:

Like us on Facebook

• Convenience • Professional staff • Easy consultation booking • Competitive prices

Not a student

Available exclusively to students offering all the benefits of a prepaid cashcard for managing your money as well as being an internationally recognised student ID and discount card. Free UK transactions and up to 11% cashback as you spend allow you to go crazy in the UK as well!

Don’t worry! We also have a great STA Cashcard available to everyone.

• For full time students 18 and over • A Student ID, discount card & pre-paid currency card in one! • Student discounts with STA Travel, cheap flights & more • 1,000s of discounts as you travel with ISIC worldwide • Use before you go, earn cashback at UK retailers

Visit the STA Travel BLOG

Land with cash in your hand! Order your foreign currency from us and enjoy 0% commission, great rates of exchange as well as quick and easy delivery to your home or nearest store. Only online at www.statravel.currencyandmore.com

Our STA ISIC Cashcard Only £12

What’s the deal

Being social is at the very heart of what we do; from the moment you step into one of our stores, it’s all about engaging with you at a level which suits you. This way, we learn to understand your needs as an individual, and we learn where to tweak things to ensure you have an unforgettable adventure. And guess what? We extend that philosophy right across the web! Come and join us…

Over 150,000 travel fanatics ‘like’ us on Facebook… are you one of them? If not, get in there right now! As well as giving away some of the world’s best travel prizes, we also smother you with inspiration. Whether you’re looking to connect with other travellers, share your best travel tips and ideas, or find the latest deals from STA Travel, hit the wall on our Facebook page and get involved today! Like us at www.facebook.com/statravel.uk

What’s the deal • Only £22 • Available to all UK residents over 18 • Comes with £10 pre-loaded • Easy and safe way to manage your money abroad • Avoid the cost and hassle of exchanging currency

Follow us on Twitter Get your tweet on and join the world’s biggest conversation! We’re on hand to answer your questions, and fuel your curiosity about the world’s most exciting destinations, as well as bringing our latest and greatest deals, straight to your Twitter stream. Wherever you are in the world, we’re only a tweet away. Follow twitter.com/statravel_uk

Sign up to our Newsletter

*Free UK transactions only available on STA ISIC Cashcard The STA Travel ISIC Prepaid MasterCard Cashcard and the STA Travel Prepaid MasterCard Cashcard are issued by IDT Financial Services Limited pursuant to a license from MasterCard International Incorporated. MasterCard and the MasterCard Brand Mark are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated. IDT Financial Services Limited is a regulated bank, licensed by the Financial Services Commission, Gibraltar. Registered Office: 57-63 Line Wall Road, Gibraltar. Registered No. 95716. All communications should be sent to STA Travel, PO Box 3753, Chester, CH1 9UH.

Be the first in line for our best deals and promotions, by signing up to our weekly email newsletter. We’ll slam it straight into your inbox, for when the urge to travel takes you. Picture courtesy of Contiki Holidays

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Sign up at www.statravel.co.uk/travel-deal-alerts

feeling social?

Go Smart or go home

OK, travel insurance might not be the most exciting thing in the world, but it could be the most important purchase you make before you take off on your travels. You must take travel insurance before you leave, you won’t be able to get it once you have left your home country. The chances are that you’ll have the time of your life and you’ll return home with a big smile on your sun-bronzed face – but just in case things don’t quite go according to plan it’s wise to have a safety net in place for that extra peace of mind. So if you plan to cycle around colourful city streets, cross a few roads, eat weird and wonderful food, cart your expensive camera or iPod from hostel to hotel or get adventurous bungee jumping, skydiving or more, then make sure you ask us to organise the cover that’s right for you.

FEELING SOCIAL?


MAKING IT COUNT Despite its beautiful surroundings and the buzz that comes with a thriving tourism industry, Cuzco is a tough place to grow up for many children. For those living in extreme poverty there’s no room for big ambitions and many turn to begging, taking drugs and living on the streets. The Inti Runakunaq Wasin Centre (House of the People of the Sun) offers food, somewhere to safe to play, and educational support for children and young people. They learn valuable skills including jewellery making, leather working, sewing, cooking, music and English. Thanks to the amazing work of volunteers and supporters from around the world these guys can finally afford to dream big. We’re proud to be building a new art workshop for the centre, which will open up even more opportunities for local children and young people. This US$32,000 facility is just one of the many projects we’re involved in around the world.

THE STA TRAVEL FOUNDATION Responsible tourism is at the heart of what we do, and our Foundation is something we’re hugely proud of. It allows us to use all our existing resources, expertise and experience and make sure every penny goes towards our chosen causes around the world. It’s a registered charity, so you can be sure that everything you donate goes right to the people who need it most. We focus on a number of different projects throughout the year, including conservation, clean water, kids’ projects and medical centres. Follow us on Twitter for the latest news and check out our Facebook to find out what we’re up to right now. To donate, ask one of our Travel Experts or visit www.statravelfoundation.org

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100...

“When I grow up you can work for me.”

The number of volunteering projects we offer – from one day to six months worldwide. Whether you’re into working with children, communities, animals, conservation, building or sports, there’s something for everyone.

US$230,000.00.. That’s how much we’ve invested so

far in our projects.

US$25,000..

The amount our new water tank in Panama’s Bocas del Toro cost us. It’s been going strong for a year and it’s a lifeline for the local community, who had no safe drinking water up until then.

80..

Kids and young people are currently studying for their futures in the drop in centre in Cuzco.

4.in.right The number of countries we have projects now.

VOLUNTEERING We offer over 20 incredible volunteering adventures throughout Africa that will give you the opportunity to do some good of your own. Some are featured within this brochure but here are five more of our favourites:

Thai Elephant Conservation, Thailand, 1-8 Weeks From £399, see page 58

Volunteer & Teach Kids In Thailand, Thailand, 2-12 Weeks From £995, see page 71

Explore Borneo & Conserve Orang-utans Voluntour, Borneo, 14 Days From £1,195, see page 85

Teaching Children in Cambodia, Cambodia, 2-8 Weeks From £569, see page 109

Volunteer China Pandas Voluntour, China, 14 Days From £1,149, see page 131

Pick up a copy of our Volunteer, Work and Learn brochure or ask your Travel Expert for more details.

THE RESPONSIBLE STA TRAVELLER

We owe everything to the incredible communities who open their doors and allow us to experience their beautiful backyards. So it’s up to us to be courteous and understanding. Visit www.statravel.co.uk/responsibletraveller to make sure you set off on the right foot.

RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL

RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL

Coming from a 11-year-old girl in one of our projects in Peru, this was, without question, the best job offer we’ve ever had.

AT A GLANCE


Discover ASIA

STUFF NOT TO BE MISSED ULAANBAATAR

MONGOLIA

ULAANBAATAR

MONGOLIA

NORTH KOREA

BEIJING

BEIJING

PYONG YANG SEOUL

PYONG YANG SEOUL SOUTH KOREA

XI’AN

CHINA

SOUTH KOREA

JAPAN

OSAKA

JAPAN

TOKYO

OSAKA TOKYO SHANGHAI

XI’AN

CHINA

NORTH KOREA

SHANGHAI

AFGHANISTAN

Discover Africa & THE MIDDLE EAST

Discover Africa & THE MIDDLE EAST

AFGHANISTAN

PAKISTAN PAKISTAN

NEW DELHI

NEW DELHI BHUTAN

KATHMANDU

NEPAL

KATHMANDU

NEPAL

DHAKA

KOLKATA

DHAKA

KOLKATA

GOA

LAOS

HANOI VIENTIANE YANGON CHIANG MAI VIENTIANE THAILAND CHIANG MAI BANGKOK LAOS

YANGON BANGKOK

GOA

THAILAND

CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH

CAMBODIA

MANILA MANILA HO CHIPHILIPPINES MINH CITY

HO CHI MINH CITY

PHNOM PENH

KOTA KINABALU

SRI LANKA SRI LANKA

COLOMBO

HONG KONG

VIETNAM

HONG KONG HANOI

VIETNAM

MUMBAI MUMBAI

GUANGZHOU BURMA

BURMA

FLI GHTS

TAIPEI TAIPEI GUANGZHOU

BANGLADESH BANGLADESH INDIA

INDIA

BHUTAN

COLOMBO

MALAYSIA

MALAYSIA

KUALA LUMPUR

KOTA KINABALU KUALA LUMPUR

MALAYSIA

SINGAPORE

MALAYSIA

SINGAPORE INDONESIA INDONESIA

PHILIPPINES

Been inspired

thinking about spreading your wings a little fArther Then pick up one of our other brochures

INDONESIA

INDONESIA

BALI BALI

ADVENTURE TRI P S

PAPUA NEW GUINEA

JAKARTA JAKARTA

ACCOMMODATI ON

PAPUA NEW GUINEA

PORT MORESBY PORT MORESBY

ESSENTI ALS

MY SUMS

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SOUTH EAST ASIA SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Average High Temperature (ยบC / ยบF) City

JAN

FEB

MAR

APR

MAY

JUN

JUL

AUG

SEPT

OCT

NOV

DEC

Bangkok

31 88

32 90

33 91

34 93

33 91

32 90

32 90

32 90

31 88

31 88

31 88

30 86

Bali

30 86

30 86

30 86

30 86

30 86

29 84

28 82

23 73

29 84

30 86

30 86

30 86

Chiang Mai

28 82

31 88

34 93

36 97

33 91

32 90

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

29 84

27 81

Hanoi

18 64

19 66

22 72

26 79

30 86

32 90

32 90

31 88

31 88

27 81

24 75

21 70

Kuala Lumpur

31 88

32 90

32 90

32 90

32 90

32 90

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

Phnom Penh

31 88

32 90

33 91

35 95

33 91

32 90

32 90

32 90

31 88

30 86

30 86

30 86

Singapore

29 84

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

31 88

30 86

30 86

30 86

30 86

30 86

29 84


£1,599

INDOCHINA Discovery Bangkok

FR

30 DAYS

Bangkok

Halong Bay

Hanoi Mekong River

Luang Prabang

Chiang Khong Chiang Mai Vientiane Vang Vieng

Hue L AO S

Hoi An

T H A I L A N D

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Siem Reap/Angkor Wat

V I E T N A M

Bangkok

Nha Trang

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh Sihanoukville

• • • • • • • •

Highlights

Witness the wonders of Angkor Wat Lay back and relax on golden beaches Kit yourself out in Hoi An Cruise magical Halong Bay Explore the vibrant streets of Hanoi Get adventurous in Vang Vieng Absorb rich history in Luang Prabang Live like a local on the Mekong

Departures 2014

Mekong Delta

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Discover the heart and soul of Indochina on this all-encompassing trip. From the ancient Khmer Kingdom and colonisation by the French, to the wild cruelties of the Vietnam War and the Pol Pot regime; the history of this wonderful region is nothing short of startling. Discover ancient temples and lost cities and bear witness to some of the world’s finest ecological creations - pristine beaches, jungle-piercing rivers and majestic misty mountains. Be prepared to return home far more enlightened and with pictures that will make your mates very jealous.

DAY ITINERARY

Jan - Mar & Jul - Aug

Daily

Apr - Jun & Sep - Dec

Regular departures, typically 3-4 times per week

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (23 nts), sleeper trains (4 nts), homestays (2 nts) Transport: Local bus, airconditioned bus, train, tuk-tuk, local boat, junk boat, plane Meals: 20 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners Budget: Allow USD $620-800 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour code: GAATID

My Own Room Available: Fr £609

YOU MIGHT LIKE Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? South East Asia Adrenalin Pack Fr £130 Jungle ziplining (Bangkok, half day), cave/ temple rappelling (Hoi An, half day) & Sunset ATV Tour (Siem Reap, 1.5 hours) South East Asia Culinary Pack Fr £70 Thai cooking (Bangkok, half day), Cambodian cooking (Phnom Penh, half day) & Vietnamese cooking (Hoi An, half day)

20

02-03

Leave Bangkok behind and journey through some spectacular scenery into Cambodia. You’ll travel to Siem Reap, home of the amazing Angkor Wat. The former capital of the Khmer Empire, Angkor is one of the wonders of the archaeological world and quite simply the biggest religious building to be found anywhere on the planet. Re-discovered at the end of the last century by French explorers, partially hidden by overgrown trees and foliage, this vast ruined city has become one of the most popular sites in South East Asia. Marvel at the tantalising blend of Hindu and Buddhist art and architecture and check out Ta Promh, the ‘Tomb Raider’ temple. Tonight, a local dinner is included to tantalise your tastebuds! (2B, D)

Phnom Penh

04-05 06-07

15-17

Explore this pleasant riverside city. Check out the colourful cafés, shady streets and thriving markets full of vibrant textiles and curios. Options over these two days include visiting the dramatic and moving site of Choeung Ek (also known as the Killing Fields), the Central Market, Cambodia’s National Museum and the Royal Palace. (2B)

Sihanoukville

Relax on the white, sandy beaches of Cambodia’s southern coast with plenty of time for swimming in the warm waters or taking a peek into the underwater world with a spot of snorkelling. Take a boat trip out to one of the uninhabited islands to enjoy fresh seafood and a cold drink as the sun sets. (B)

18-19

08

A short flight takes you to the capital city of Laos. There is a wealth of cultural delights to discover in Vientiane - on foot, by bicycle or, for the less energetic, by tuk-tuk. Visit Laos’ most important national monument, Phat That Luang, or meander down the dusty riverside tracks to discover neighbourhoods full of friendly children, dogs and chickens. Go in search of handicrafts and souvenirs at Vientiane’s vibrant, colourful markets. Round off the day with a spectacular sunset over the Mekong at one of the many riverside restaurants. (B)

20 21-22

09-10 11-12

Nha Trang

Sit on a perfect beach soaking up the sun. Opt for a nearby island boat trip to get in some snorkelling before caking yourself in mud at a natural mudbath. Head off on an optional motorbike tour of the countryside. On Day 12, travel by overnight train northwards to Hoi An. (B)

Vang Vieng

The quiet town of Vang Vieng is set along the Nam Song River amidst rice fields and limestone cliffs. Explore the caves by bike or stop off for a cold drink at one of the numerous bamboo bars. In the evening, soak in the beauty as the sun sets over the rippling river. (2B)

Luang Prabang

23-24

The beautiful town of Luang Prabang has a magical feel about it. Nestled in the hills of northern Laos on the confluence of the Mekong and Khan Rivers, it is dotted with ornate temples and French colonial architecture. Check out the impressive Royal Palace Museum, untouched since the royal family departed in 1975. Opt to hop on a songthaew to the beautiful Kuang Si Falls, where turquoise waters cascade over limestone formations or cook up a storm in an optional cooking class. (2B)

Mekong River

Begin a two-day river cruise - a truly amazing ‘live like a local’ experience. Head up the mighty Mekong River through magnificent jungle-covered hills to Pakbeng, an ethnic minority town. Experience an authentic overnight stay in a local village homestay, but bring your woolies if you’re travelling from Nov-Feb as it can get a little bit chilly! (B, D)

25

Chiang Khong / Chiang Mai

26-28

Ho Chi Minh City

Lose yourself in the maze of Ho Chi Minh City’s central market. Write a quick postcard in the stately colonial post office, one of the many French-era buildings that add grace to this modern metropolis. Dine out like a king at a local restaurant and take a step back in time at the spine-chilling War Remnants Museum. You also have the option to visit the remarkable Cu Chi Tunnels or go shopping in the Ben Tranh Market. On the evening of Day 10, you take the overnight train to Nha Trang. (B)

Explore one of dozens of traditional guild streets that make up Hanoi’s ancient Old Quarter and join Buddhist monks for prayers in a serene lakeside pagoda. In the evening, you’ll have the option to attend a performance at the famous Water Puppet Theatre, whilst other optional sightseeing here includes a visit to Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, the Hoa Lo Prison or the Temple of Literature. (2B)

Vientiane

Mekong Delta

Drive from Sihanoukville to Can Tho in the Mekong Delta, and relax on a boat trip through its myriad of convoluted waterways. Check out this rich, green river world of orchards, rice fields, floating markets and cottage industries. Overnight accommodation is in a local village homestay which will provide you with a unique cultural experience. (D)

Explore riverside garden tombs built for Vietnam’s last emperors or take a motorbike trip out into the stunning countryside. On the evening of Day 16, board the overnight train to Hanoi. On Day 17, arrive in the early morning into bustling Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam before driving out to beautiful Halong Bay. Float through the strangely-shaped islands that dot this vast, emerald bay in a traditional wooden junk (boat). Eat your fresh seafood lunch and later enjoy a pre-dinner swim before you head to Cat Ba Island, where you’ll spend a peaceful and relaxing night. (2B, L)

Hanoi

Bangkok

On the first day you’re free to relax and explore the city, adjusting to the frenetic pace and humidity of Thailand’s intoxicating and infectious capital. There’ll be a group meeting in the evening where you can meet your fellow travellers and tour leader, perhaps heading out afterwards for dinner.

01

Hue / Halong Bay / Bai Chai Harbour

Continue by slow boat up the Mekong and cross over into Thailand at the Houeisay border. Chiang Khong is a small riverside town with cross-border trading from nearby villages. On Day 27, a drive through the hills of Northern Thailand takes you to Chiang Mai, the largest and most culturally significant city in the north of this country. Explore the city and visit the temple of Doi Suthep, catch a Thai boxing match or grab a bargain at the famous Night Market. Spend Day 28 exploring Chiang Mai before boarding the overnight train to Bangkok in the evening. (B, L)

Bangkok

29 30

Arrive back into Bangkok early in the morning and set out exploring the city’s many varied sights. Check out the Grand Palace, Wat Po, National Museum and Jim Thompson’s House - just for a few suggestions! A trip along the Chao Phraya River and through the canals (or klongs) gives you a different perspective of daily life in this busy city. Get out and about in the colourful nightlife and enjoy a few goodbye drinks with your new friends.

Bangkok

It’s the end of your South East Asian adventure! Your tour ends after breakfast. (B)

Hoi An

13-14

The buildings in this 16th Century trading port bear traces of Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and French architectural styles. Hoi An is also a shopping Mecca for tourists. Tailors can produce virtually anything overnight so get yourself kitted out with a new wardrobe or take an optional cooking class! For sun-worshippers, Cua Dai Beach with its fine white sand and blue sea is just 4km from town. (B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

21


£2,049

indochina encompassed Bangkok

FR

29 DAYS

Bangkok

Halong Bay

Hanoi Luang Prabang Chiang Khong Chiang Mai

Vientiane Vang Vieng

Hue Hoi An

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

L AO S T H A I L A N D

Angkor Wat

V I E T N A M

Siem Reap

Bangkok

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

• • • • • • • •

Highlights

Experience the hutongs of Bangkok See Chiang Mai’s Night Bazaar Journey the mighty Mekong River Watch the monks in Luang Prabang Get adventurous in Vang Vieng Check out Hanoi’s hectic streets Cruise through beautiful Halong Bay Visit the ancient Angkor Wat complex

Departures 2014 Regular departures, typically 2-3 times per week

Jan - Dec

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (24 nts), village homestay (1 nt) sleeper train (2 nts), junk boat (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-conditioned bus, plane, songthaew, boat Meals: 20 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 4 dinners Budget: Allow USD $600-800 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATIE

My Own Room Available: Fr £1,119

YOU MIGHT LIKE Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? South East Asia Adrenalin Pack Fr £130 Jungle ziplining (Bangkok, half day), cave/ temple rappelling (Hoi An, half day) & Sunset ATV Tour (Siem Reap, 1.5 hours) South East Asia Culinary Pack Fr £70 Thai cooking (Bangkok, half day), Cambodian cooking (Phnom Penh, half day) & Vietnamese cooking (Hoi An, half day)

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

A rainbow of colours, a cacophony of smells, a melange of flavours. All this adds up to an infinitely memorable trip through the wonderful world of Indochina. To experience it all you need a bit of time, and someone organising the nuts and bolts for you. Cue STA Travel! Jump on this stupendous trip and we’ll get you all the way from the cityscape of Bangkok to the magnificent Mekong, and from Halong Bay’s luscious landscape to Cambodia’s ancient sights. This all-encompassing South East Asian bonanza takes you everywhere you want to go. Oh, and to those hidden gems you’ve never even heard of as well.

DAY ITINERARY Bangkok

01

Arrive in Bangkok at any time, grab your backpack and head out exploring! The frenetic pace of the city can take a little adjusting to at first, but go with the flow and you’ll quickly find that Thailand’s capital is really getting under your skin. Meet your group and tour leader this evening, and perhaps enjoy a few beers and an optional dinner, getting to know your fellow travellers.

Bangkok

02

Today you jump on board a longtail boat to discover Bangkok’s famous klongs (canals). Stop off at Wat Po with its huge reclining Buddha for an introduction to Buddhist culture before some free time in the afternoon. Hunt out a bargain in Bangkok’s many shops and markets or keep it cultural with a visit to the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Keow. Take the overnight train to Chiang Mai. (B)

22

12-13

03

Arrive into the northern city of Chiang Mai, an important Buddhist centre and home to more than 300 temples. In the afternoon, check out the famous temple complex of Doi Suthep in its hillside setting outside of the city. Spend the rest of your free time riding an elephant, cruising down a stream on a bamboo raft or honing your culinary skills with a cooking class. Not to be missed is the Night Bazaar, a series of covered markets, shops and stalls.

Chiang Khong

04 05

Travel onward to Chiang Khong and your guesthouse overlooking the churning Mekong River. Wander the local food market to sample traditional delicacies or sit back and enjoy the slow pace of life on your last evening in Thailand. Check out the stunning views across the river to Laos and eagerly anticipate your journey across the border.

Mekong River

Today your adventure through Laos begins. Cruise down the Mekong by slow boat watching local life pass you by. If travelling between November-March, bring your woolies, the nights can get cold here!

14-15

06-08

Vang Vieng

09-10

A scenic drive through winding mountains takes you to the picturesque riverside town of Vang Vieng. Nestled along the Nam Song River and surrounded by limestone karsts, Vang Vieng is a great place to explore the countryside by bicycle, go swimming or head into the caves. Alternatively, simply sink into the town’s chilled-out vibe, grab a beer and relax by the river or in one of the many cafés. Enjoy a traditional homestay in a local village. (B, D)

11

Arrive into one of Asia’s sleepiest capital cities, Vientiane. Enjoy the highlights of of the city including Wat Sisaket (one of the city’s oldest and most fascinating temples), and That Luang, which is Laos’ national symbol and one of its most sacred sites. Drop by the morning market, which in reality is an all-day affair selling virtually everything to everyone - it’s an authentic slice of daily life in Laos and definitely not to be missed.

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Thousands of islands rise dramatically from the crystal-clear waters of Halong Bay. From the comfort of your sailing junk you can stop off at some of these islands, explore the many caves and jump into the enticing water. Have a splash about before dining on delicious fresh seafood and chatting with your new friends beneath a clear star-speckled sky. On the evening of Day 15, take the overnight train to Hue. (2B, 2L, D)

Hue

16

Arrive early into Hue, once the imperial capital of Vietnam. Visit Tien Mu Pagoda and the tomb of one of the Nguyen Emperors or get out into the gorgeous surrounding countryside.

Hoi An

17-19

In the morning of Day 17, you will have a guided tour of Hue’s old Citadel, containing the Forbidden Purple City modelled on the Forbidden City in Beijing. Next you’ll cross over the scenic Hai Van Pass on your way to Hoi An where you’ll stay for three nights. Stroll the historic streets, pause for lunch at riverside restaurants and hit the shops! Tailors here can produce virtually anything overnight, so it’s a great opportunity to refresh your wardrobe! For sun-worshippers, the sandy shores of Cui Dai beach are only 4km from town. (3B)

Ho Chi Minh City / Cu Chi Tunnels

20-21

Flight to Ho Chi Minh City, the sprawling metropolis that was once the capital of South Vietnam. On the morning of Day 21, you have a guided tour of the Cu Chi Tunnels; a complex network of tunnels where the locals lived during the Vietnam War to keep safe. You have free time in the afternoon to explore the city’s many sights. A visit to the immense Ben Thanh Market is a great way to while away a few hours. (B)

Mekong Delta

Travel out of town to the start of the Mekong Delta, where the mighty Mekong River approaches and empties into the sea through numerous waterways. Board a boat and navigate the small canals, observing riverside life in the villages. (B)

22

Phnom Penh

23-24

Luang Prabang

Spend the next few days in the charming city of Luang Prabang. Your time here includes a visit to the Pak Ou Caves, a dramatic sight housing thousands of Buddha statues, and a trip out to the stunning Kuang Sii waterfalls. Spend the rest of your time exploring the 32 temples or observing the local monks collecting offerings. Then lick your lips ready for an included traditional Lao meal experience. (3B, D)

A flight on Day 12 takes you away from quiet Laos and into the bustling city of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. A leisurely walk through the Old Quarter and a traditional Vietnamese meal are the perfect ways to kick off your visit to this diverse country. On Day 13, you’ll visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Presidential Palace before setting off to Tran Quoc Pagoda, the Temple of Literature and the Museum of Ethnology. Late afternoon or early evening attend a performance at the famous Water Puppet Theatre, a timeless tradition representative of the culture of rural Vietnam. (2B)

Halong Bay

Chiang Mai

Vientiane

statravel.co.uk/travel-blog

Hanoi

Cross into Cambodia and continue to Phnom Penh, where your time in this fascinating country begins with a cyclo ride around the riverside capital. Day 24 gives you the opportunity to learn about the darker side of Cambodian history with visits to Choeng Ek, the site of the infamous Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Prison, the notorious Khmer Rouge jail where thousands of Cambodians perished under the regime of Pol Pot. (2B)

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

25-27

After a bus trip through the Cambodian countryside you arrive in Siem Reap, the stop-off point to explore the magnificent Angkor Wat. This is the world’s largest religious building, and so expansive is it, it’s hard to believe that it lay undiscovered until relatively recent times! As the former capital of the Khmer Empire and one of the wonders of the archeological world, Angkor Wat is sure to take your breath away. Watch the sun rise over this ancient capital and see the famous ‘Tomb Raider’ temple. Enjoy a traditional meal of Khmer food either at the Planeterra-supported New Hope project or in a local home. (2B, D)

Bangkok

28 29

Say your goodbyes to Cambodia and re-acquaint yourself with the Kingdom of Thailand. Stare agog at the skyscrapers of Bangkok, a world away from Cambodia’s ancient sights. Tonight is your last evening together, so make the most of it! Bangkok certainly has all you need for a great last night out with your travel buddies. (B)

Bangkok

Sadly your trip ends today. Depart at any time, taking your fantastic memories with you. (B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

23


big indochina ADVENTURE Bangkok

• • • • • • •

£2,775 25 DAYS

Hanoi

£1,435

ASIAN ADVENTURE

FR

Bangkok

Highlights

Explore bustling canals in Bangkok Ride an elephant in the rainforest Tuck into modern Cambodian cuisine Watch the sun rise over Angkor Wat Stay with locals in the Mekong Delta Soak up the rays on Nha Trang beach Sail off on a Chinese-style junk boat

• • • • • • •

14 DAYS

Siem Reap

Highlights

Relaxing cruise on the Mekong River See local life at a Laotian guesthouse Elephant ride in the forests of Laos Visit Phnom Penh’s Killing Fields Bike tour of pretty Luang Prabang Relax in the serenity of Chiang Mai Watch the sun rise over Angkor Wat

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014/15

FR

Departures 2014/15

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 19 Jan 22 Jan 26 Jan 29 Feb 02 Feb 05 Feb 09 Feb 16 Feb 19 Feb 23 Feb 26 Mar 02 Mar 09 Mar 16 Mar 23 Mar 26 Mar 30 Apr 06 Apr 20 Apr 27 May 11 May 21 Jun 01

Feb 12 Feb 15 Feb 19 Feb 22 Feb 26 Mar 01 Mar 05 Mar 12 Mar 15 Mar 19 Mar 22 Mar 26 Apr 02 Apr 09 Apr 16 Apr 19 Apr 23 Apr 30 May 14 May 21 Jun 04 Jun 14 Jun 25

Jun 15 Jun 22 Jul 06 Jul 16 Jul 27 Aug 10 Aug 17 Aug 31 Sep 10 Oct 26 Nov 02 Nov 05 Nov 09 Nov 12 Nov 16 Nov 19 Nov 23 Nov 26 Nov 30 Dec 03 Dec 07 Dec 10 Dec 14

Jul 09 Jul 16 Jul 30 Aug 09 Aug 20 Sep 03 Sep 10 Sep 24 Oct 04 Nov 19 Nov 26 Nov 29 Dec 03 Dec 06 Dec 10 Dec 13 Dec 17 Dec 20 Dec 24 Dec 27 Dec 31 Jan 03 Jan 07

Dec 17 Dec 21 Dec 24 Dec 28 Dec 31 2015 Jan 04 Jan 07 Jan 11 Jan 14 Jan 18 Jan 21 Jan 25 Jan 28 Feb 01 Feb 04 Feb 08 Feb 11 Feb 15 Feb 18 Feb 22

Jan 10 Jan 14 Jan 17 Jan 21 Jan 24 Jan 28 Jan 31 Jan 04 Jan 07 Feb 11 Feb 14 Feb 18 Feb 21 Feb 25 Feb 28 Mar 04 Mar 07 Mar 11 Mar 14 Mar 18

Spend 25 days indulging in South East Asia, on this trip designed exclusively for 18-35 year olds. Wind your way around this amazing collection of countries getting a taste for a local way of living. Cycle through the countryside, cruise through riverscapes and roll through the terrain in a private comfy coach... whilst six included internal flights mean you can see four fabulous countries in less than a month! From the bustle of Bangkok to the serenity of Thailand’s north, the amazing colours of Vietnam, the archaeological treasures of Laos and the rich-but-tragic past of Cambodia, it’s an incredible mix of good times in great places.

Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details.

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels (20 nts), guesthouse (2 nts), overnight train (1 nt), boat (1 nt) Transport: Private coach, plane, train, boat Meals: 24 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners Group Leader: Experienced Tour Manager, local English-speaking guides Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Code: COBICA

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Feb 01 Feb 04 Feb 08 Feb 11 Feb 15 Feb 18 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 04 Mar 08 Mar 11 Mar 15 Mar 22 Mar 29 Apr 05 Apr 08 Apr 12 Apr 19 May 03 May 10 May 24 Jun 03 Jun 14

Jun 15 Jun 22 Jul 06 Jul 16 Jul 27 Aug 10 Aug 17 Aug 31 Sep 10 Sep 21 Oct 26 Nov 02 Nov 05 Nov 09 Nov 12 Nov 16 Nov 19 Nov 23 Nov 26 Nov 30 Dec 03 Dec 07 Dec 10

Jun 28 Jul 05 Jul 19 Jul 29 Aug 09 Aug 23 Aug 30 Sep 13 Sep 23 Oct 04 Nov 08 Nov 15 Nov 18 Nov 22 Nov 25 Nov 29 Dec 02 Dec 06 Dec 09 Dec 13 Dec 16 Dec 20 Dec 23

Dec 14 Dec 17 Dec 21 Dec 24 Dec 28 Dec 31 2015 Jan 04 Jan 07 Jan 11 Jan 14 Jan 18 Jan 21 Jan 25 Jan 28 Feb 01 Feb 04 Feb 08 Feb 11 Feb 15 Feb 18 Feb 22

Dec 27 Dec 30 Jan 03 Jan 06 Jan 10 Jan 13 Jan 17 Jan 20 Jan 24 Jan 27 Jan 31 Feb 03 Feb 07 Feb 10 Feb 14 Feb 17 Feb 21 Feb 24 Feb 28 Mar 03 Mar 07

Allow yourself to be whisked around Asia the easy way with a bunch of like-minded travellers. This fabulous trip will take you to three different countries - Thailand, Cambodia and Laos, each of them unique and unforgettable. Stay in comfy three-star hotels enjoying a host of amazing experiences at every stop. From the bright lights of Bangkok to cultural Chiang Mai, onward to the chilled-out waterways of the Mekong before getting an insight into Cambodia’s troubled past, you’re guaranteed an amazing contrast at every turn. The perfect intro to South East Asia!

Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details.

DAY ITINERARY

Inclusions

Start

Jan 19 Jan 22 Jan 26 Jan 29 Feb 02 Feb 05 Feb 09 Feb 16 Feb 19 Feb 23 Feb 26 Mar 02 Mar 09 Mar 16 Mar 23 Mar 26 Mar 30 Apr 06 Apr 20 Apr 27 May 11 May 21 Jun 01

Bangkok / Chiang Mai

01-03 04-05

DAY ITINERARY

Inclusions

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels (11 nts), guesthouse (1 nt), overnight train (1 nt) Transport: Plane, private coach, overnight train, boat Meals: 13 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Group Leader: Experienced Tour Manager, local English-speaking guides Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Code: COASAD

Arrive into busy Bangkok, where people from all walks of life share the streets. Meet your group and head out to explore the city by night. On Day 2, you’ll check out the sights before sailing along the klongs (canals) on a typical Thai boat. After an overnight train, you’ll wake up in chilled-out Chiang Mai on Day 3. Visit the Wat Phrathat temple and listen to pilgrims ringing bells. Explore your way, maybe relax with a Thai massage or take a cooking class before scouting the Night Bazaar. (2B)

Chiang Mai / Chiang Rai / Pakbeng

Travel to Chiang Rai, a quiet town and gateway to the ethnic tribes of Northern Thailand. On Day 5, cross the border into laid-back Laos. Travel down the famous Mekong River on a private boat. Glide past remote villages, hillside crop farms and bamboo fish traps as you soak up the scene. (2B, L, D)

Bangkok

01-02

Bangkok / Chiang Mai

Arriving into Chiang Mai, inhale the refreshing mountain air and soak up its spiritual atmosphere. Check out Wat Phrathat and take part in a Buddhist blessing ceremony while you’re there. You can also opt to whip up some authentic Thai food with a cooking class, chill by the pool or visit the famous night market. (B)

03

Pakbeng / Luang Prabang / Vang Vieng

06-09

V I E T N A M

Hanoi

Luang Pakbeng Prabang

MYA N M A R

Chiang Rai Chiang Mai

Halong Bay

L AO S

Vang Vieng / Vientiane / Phnom Penh / Siem Reap

Vang Vieng Vientiane

Hue

T H A I L A N D

Siem Reap

Bangkok

Visit the Pak Ou Caves on the way to this UNESCO World Heritage mountain kingdom, Luang Prabang. Marvel at temples, brightly-robed monks and the Wat Xieng Thong Monastery. Ride an elephant before cooling off at the Kuang Si Falls or visiting the historic Royal Palace. On Day 8, drive through limestone-dotted scenery to Vang Vieng. Spend Day 9 cycling through the countryside or taking a swim in the river. (4B, L)

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh Mekong Delta

Da Nang Hoi An

10-13

Nha Trang

Head to Vientiane; the French-influenced capital of Laos where you’ll have a guided tour of the city. Tonight enjoy dinner at Friends Restaurant which helps train disadvantaged young people in hospitality. On Day 11, say goodbye Laos and hello Cambodia. Visit the Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum to learn about the Khmer Rouge and Cambodia’s dark past, then settle in for the evening right by the Mekong. On Day 12, fly to Siem Reap. Cruise on Tonle Sap, South-East Asia’s biggest freshwater lake before getting an early night ready for sunrise over the incredible Angkor Wat. Get your camera ready for the awesome Buddhas and temples entwined with trees. (4B, D)

Siem Reap / Ho Chi Minh City / Mekong Delta / Ho Chi Minh City / Nha Trang

Ho Chi Minh City

14-18

Today, you’ll catch a flight into vibrant Vietnam. Formerly known as Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City is an up and coming metropolis of urban activity. On Day 15, explore the colourful floating markets of Vietnam’s Mekong Delta on a traditional sampan boat. On Day 16, head back to Ho Chi Minh City via the Viet Cong’s tunnels in Cu Chi. On Day 17, it’s a change of scene, you’ll hear Vietnam’s stories on a city tour and peruse the sobering War Remnants Museum. That afternoon you’ll fly to Nha Trang, famous for its sweeping golden beaches and turquoise waters. Do your own thing or opt in for a trip to explore the waters of Nha Trang, and a chance to go swimming and snorkeling. (5B, L, D)

Chiang Mai / Chiang Rai V I E T N A M

Burma

Pakbeng Chiang Rai Chiang Mai

Luang Prabang

Travel through a landscape of stunning rice paddies to Chiang Rai, a gateway town for trekking in the surrounding jungle. Visit Wat Rong Khun, the unconventional modern Buddhist temple. Opt for a trip out to visit the hilltribes and meet the charming Akha, Yao, Lanu and Karen people, before heading to Chiang Rai, the former imperial city. Eat amongst the locals at the town’s night bazaar and find out what the colourful Thai nightlife has to offer. (B)

04

L AO S

Chiang Rai / Pakbeng

Vang Vieng Vientiane

Crossing the Thai/Laos border, you’ll board a private traditional boat and cruise the mighty Mekong River, taking sneak peeks of local life in remote waterside villages. This journey alone depicts a stereotypical day in South East Asia. Stay at a local guesthouse in Pakbeng for an authentic overnight Laos experience. (B, L, D)

05

T H A I L A N D

Bangkok

Pakbeng / Luang Prabang

06-07

Siem Reap C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

08-09

You might like Island Hopping in Thailand Thai Island Hopper East Fr £539 Thai Island Hopper West Fr £615 (COTIKS / COTIPH) - see pages 48/49

24

19-22

10-11

23-25

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Luang Prabang / Vang Vieng

Today it’s on to riverside Vang Vieng, an outdoor adventurer’s heaven. Spend your days exploring this activity capital of Laos by bike, or don your speedos and dive into one of the many swimming holes. While away the evenings checking out the buzzing nightlife in this vibrant backpacker town. (2B) Head to Vientiane, the French-influenced capital of Laos. Visit the COPE support and rehab centre, the religious symbol of Pha That Luang and the Patuxai Monument. On Day 11, travel by plane to the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh. Walk down tree-lined boulevards and past gleaming palaces. You’ll visit the Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum to learn about the Khmer Rouge regime and Cambodia’s dark and troubled past. Tonight enjoy dinner at Friends Restaurant which helps train disadvantaged young people in hospitality. (2B, D)

Phnom Penh / Siem Reap

Hanoi / Halong Bay / Hanoi

Board a Chinese-style junk boat in beautiful Halong Bay and cruise overnight through the waters of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. You’ll stop for a swim in an idyllic lagoon before docking at Dao Titop for sunset. Settle back under the stars before you head back to Hanoi in the afternoon of Day 24. On Day 25, enjoy a final breakfast and say goodbye to your new buddies. (3B, 2L, D)

Arrive in the historic hotspot of Luang Prabang. Visit the Pak Ou Caves, marvel at gold-spired temples, royal buildings, monks in their colourful robes and the Wat Xiang Thong Monastery. Ride an elephant and catch stunning views on a sunset walk up Mt. Phu Si. Munch on local food at the market, or head out on an optional half-day trip to a beautiful cascading waterfall. (2B, L)

Vang Vieng / Vientiane / Phnom Penh

Nha Trang / Hoi An / Hue / Hanoi

Fly to Da Nang and hop on a bike as the sun sets into the countryside or opt in for a cooking class. On Day 20 you can choose to explore the temples of My Son. On Day 21, take in coastal views as you travel onto the former imperial city of Hue. Start with a visit to Hue’s Imperial Citadel by cyclo, then stop at the Thien Mu Pagoda and learn about the Hue Massacre. On Day 22, fly to Hanoi. Take a tour of the Temple of Literature and explore the city’s maze of back streets. (4B)

Big, booming, bustling Bangkok - the gateway to Asia. Meet your crew before sampling the varied nightlife. Neon lights, night markets or classy cocktails anyone? On Day 2, it’s a cultural morning visiting the incredible Grand Palace before cruising the klongs (canals) to experience the local way of living. In the evening, board an overnight train north to Chiang Mai. (B)

12-14

Fly to Siem Reap before taking a private boat cruise to see the unique floating villages found here. Get up for sunrise and travel by tuk-tuk to the incredible 13th Century Angkor Wat - one of the biggest religious monuments ever built. Enjoy your last night and reminisce on your incredible Asian journey. Your trip ends after breakfast on Day 14. (3B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

25


VIETNAM, LAOS, Thailand on a shoestring Ho Chi Minh City

• • • • • • •

£1,049

FR

22 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

Tour Ho Chi Minh’s markets Try superb seafood in Nha Trang Get yourself a tailored suit in Hoi An Sail the picture-perfect Halong Bay Wander the streets of Vientiane Learn about Luang Prabang’s history Browse the markets of Chiang Mai

Bangkok

• • • • • • •

14 DAYS

Hanoi

Highlights

Lose yourself in the mania of Bangkok Explore Chiang Mai’s night bazaar Float down the mighty Mekong River Discover the past in Luang Prabang Explore the magnificent Pak Ou Caves Soak up the atmosphere of Vientiane Get wet under the spray of waterfalls

Departures 2014

Jan - Mar

Daily

Apr - Dec

Regular departures, typically 3-5 times per week

Jan - Dec

Regular departures, typically 1-3 times per week

Inclusions

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (16 nts), sleeper trains (4 nts), local homestay (1 nt) Transport: Local bus, air-conditioned bus, train, tuk-tuk, local boat, junk boat, plane Meals: 14 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $425490 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAVVL

My Own Room Available: Fr £419

From the dazzling blue waters and intricate city streets of Vietnam to the exotic traditions of Laos, this adventure promises more than your average saunter through South East Asia. Starting in hectic Ho Chi Minh City and finishing in the chaotic city of Bangkok, you’ll be in awe at every turn. Step into Laos, a land that time seems to have forgotten about - full of serene landscapes and ancient customs. A jaunt through northern Thailand and a visit to the charming city of Chiang Mai completes your trip, before bouncing into Bangkok, wide-eyed with wonder.

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

Luang Prabang

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (11 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), village homestay (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-conditioned bus, riverboat, songthaew, taxi, cyclo, plane Meals: 8 breakfasts, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $265-350 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATBH

My Own Room Available: Fr £479

Hanoi

03-06

Halong Bay

Chiang Khong

L AO S

Hoi An

T H A I L A N D

07-09

C A M B O D I A

Bangkok

Nha Trang

Ho Chi Minh City

10-12 13-14

You might like

Focus on Vietnam Vietnam on a Shoestring (12 days, Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi) (GAAVRV) see page 104 Fr £599 Focus on Laos Laos & Thailand on a Shoestring (12 days, Hanoi to Bangkok) (GAAVRL) see page 30 Fr £649

15-16

Take a boat trip into the dazzling blue bay that surrounds this vibrant beach town and see the underwater world. Stop to swim at a pristine beach or take a motorbike tour of the area. Board an overnight train on Day 4 to Da Nang (the jumping-off point for the attractive town of Hoi An). On Day 5, wander through the picturesque streets of Hoi An, a 16th Century trading port, where the buildings bear traces of Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and French architectural styles. (2B) Explore the riverside garden tombs of Hue built for Vietnam’s last emperors, or take a motorbike trip out to the stunning countryside. Overnight train to Hanoi. On Day 9, float through the islands that dot this vast emerald bay in a wooden junk boat and munch on fresh seafood in a sumptuous lunch. Spend the night in the harbour town of Bai Chai and sit out under the stars. (2B, L)

01-02

19-20

V I E T N A M

Luang Pakbeng Prabang Chiang Khong

04-05 06-08

Admire the fantastic limestone rock scenery and get the adrenalin pumping with hiking, biking and caving opportunities. On Day 14, explore some of the caves by bike or take a relaxing walk. In the evening, soak in the natural beauty of Vang Vieng as the sun sets over the river. (2B)

Prepare for a breathtaking journey as you cruise up the mighty Mekong River. Tonight, experience a traditional overnight homestay in a local village for an authentic spot of cultural exchange. On Day 18, continue by boat up the Mekong and cross into Thailand at the Houeisay border. Chiang Khong is a small riverside town with cross-border trading from nearby villages. Spend the night here. (2B, L, D)

Chiang Khong / Mekong River

You might like Stay longer in Bangkok See pages 52-55 Stay longer in Hanoi See page 110

09-10

facebook.com/statravel.uk

21-22

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

A scenic drive through the mountains takes you to picturesque Vang Vieng, situated amongst limestone karsts, vast rice fields and the Nam Song River. This is an adventure-lover’s nirvana - get your thrills swimming, tubing or exploring caves. Alternatively, head out into the countryside on a bike ride or simply relax by the water with a good book. You will get the opportunity to experience a traditional overnight stay in a local village and a dinner of Laotian food on Day 9. (B, D)

Vientiane

Quiet and relaxed, Vientiane has a wealth of charms - from its eclectic blend of French and Lao architecture to the riverside cafés and quiet temples, there’s plenty to keep you busy. The markets are alive with colour and noise, and you can’t help but be tempted by the vast array of produce and souvenirs on offer.

11

Hanoi

12-13

Bangkok

Arrive into Bangkok with its chaotic streets and colourful markets. Visit the Grand Palace, Wat Po, National Museum and take a trip along the Chao Phraya River to get a different perspective of daily life in this busy city. Enjoy your final night with authentic Thai food and perhaps some beers with your new travel friends before your tour comes to an end on Day 22. (B)

A beautiful town of historic temples, multi-cultural locals, vibrant markets and textile treasures. Wander the UNESCO Heritage-listed streets. A visit to the legendary Pak Ou Caves filled with hundreds of miniature Buddha sculptures is included as well as a visit to the Kuang Si waterfalls. Dinner is a feast of local produce with a meal cooked by local hosts. (3B, D)

Vang Vieng

Chiang Mai

Arrive into Chiang Mai. Free time here to explore this northern Thai city, visit the temple of Doi Suthep, catch a Thai boxing match or grab a bargain at the famous night markets. Catch an overnight train to Bangkok on Day 20.

After a five-hour bus ride, arrive in Chiang Khong and relax at your guesthouse overlooking the mighty Mekong River. Sit back, relax, sip on a cold beer and enjoy the slow pace of life. On Day 5, begin the journey down the world’s 10th-longest river by slow boat. The Mekong is a hub of activity, from fishing to trade and transport between the villages that line its banks. Watch the world go by.

Luang Prabang

Vang Vieng

Nestled in the hills of northern Laos on the confluence of the Mekong and Khan Rivers, Luang Prabang is studded with ornate temples and French colonial architecture. Explore this beautiful town of multi-cultural traditions and rich heritage. (2B)

03

Bangkok

Explore traditional guild streets in Hanoi’s Old Quarter or join Buddhist monks for lakeside prayers. On Day 12, a short flight takes you to the capital city of Laos. Quiet and relaxed, Vientiane has a wealth of charms. Opt to visit temples, the National Museum, That Luang or markets. (3B)

Luang Prabang

Arriving into Chiang Mai this morning, you’ll soon understand why this northern city has long been a travellers’ favourite. With fantastic street food, a bustling night bazaar, hundreds of temples, beautiful surrounding countryside and an eclectic hilltribe culture, you will never get bored while exploring this energetic city. Included is a guided visit of the city’s most famous temple, Doi Suthep, which is said to have been founded as early as the 14th Century. Climb the 309 steps to the top and be rewarded with impressive views back toward Chiang Mai.

L AO S T H A I L A N D

Arrive into the energetic world of Thailand’s capital city, Bangkok, at any time. On Day 2, set off on a local exploration by Thai longboat - cruise through the klongs (canals) of Bangkok’s backstreets and see the city from a different perspective. Stop by Wat Po and check out the huge reclining Buddha on a guided tour. Travel by overnight train to the capital of the north, Chiang Mai. (B)

Chiang Mai

Hanoi

Vang Vieng Vientiane

Chiang Mai

Hanoi / Vientiane

Mekong River / Chiang Khong

17-18

DAY ITINERARY Bangkok

Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City at any time and set out to explore the city. Lose yourself in the maze of Ho Chi Minh City’s central market, where you’ll find everything from woven silk fabrics to flanks of beef. On Day 2, take an overnight train to the beach resort of Nha Trang.

Hue / Halong Bay / Bai Chai Harbour

Hue

Vang Vientiane Vieng

For an experience that’s altogether different from the norm, look no further than this northeastern adventure across to Vietnam. You’ll head deep into the lush highlands of Thailand before crossing the border into Laos where you’ll spend a week falling in love with everything this little landlocked country has to offer. Cruise the mighty Mekong River and while away the hours in sleepy traditional towns. Things finish up amongst the kaleidoscopic and sensual highs of Hanoi, where you’ll have two full days of exploration with the group. A perfect end to a perfect trip.

Ho Chi Minh City

Nha Trang / Hoi An V I E T N A M

Mekong River

26

£899

FR

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014

Chiang Mai

thailand & laos ADVENTURE

14

A short flight to Hanoi allows you to get ready for a whirlwind of activity and colour. Hanoi offers endless temptations in the shops and markets of the old quarter, relaxing lakeside coffee shops, fascinating museums and unbeatable food. Check out a performance of water puppetry, a tradition that dates back as far as the 11th Century when villagers would entertain themselves with puppet play in the flooded rice fields. (2B)

Hanoi

Say your goodbyes to your travelling buddies, as your tour concludes in Hanoi. (B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

27


CAMBODIA & VIETNAM on a Shoestring Bangkok

• • • • • • •

£1,079

FR

20 DAYS

Hanoi

Highlights

Embrace Bangkok’s vibrant streets Marvel at the magnificent Angkor Wat Discover Cambodia’s sandy shores Tour Ho Chi Minh’s buzzing markets Munch on fresh seafood in Nha Trang Make a fashion statement in Hoi An Sail the stunning Halong Bay

Hanoi

• • • • • • •

17 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

Visit colourful charismatic Hanoi Set sail on spectacular Halong Bay Discover temple-dotted countryside Get a whole new wardrobe in Hoi An Explore the amazing Mekong Delta Learn the history of Cu Chi Tunnels Marvel at the incredible Angkor Wat

Departures 2014

Regular departures, typically 4-7 times per week

Regular departures, typically 2-4 times per week

Jan - Dec

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (15 nts), sleeper trains (3 nts), homestay (1 nt) Transport: Local bus, airconditioned bus, junk boat, local boat Meals: 13 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $380-500 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATCV

My Own Room Available: Fr £399

This trip is a perfect example of how travel can broaden the mind, highlighting the amazing endurance of both Vietnam and Cambodia. Absorb the stark beauty of their unique landscapes, their vibrant cultures and their fascinating history. Wander chaotic, colourful streets, laze on white sandy beaches, explore verdant inland deltas and interact with remarkable people from a variety of different lifestyles. Angkor Wat will leave you openjawed with wonder as you explore one of the greatest architectural statements mankind has ever made. Take a moment to reflect as you watch the sunset over this awesome creation.

DAY ITINERARY 01

Bangkok

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (14 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), junk boat (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-conditioned bus, plane, cyclo, boat Meals: 13 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $325-375 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAVEV

My Own Room Available: Fr £609

Arrive into Bangkok at any time. Go for a wander and explore this busy, bustling city.

02-03 Halong Bay

04-05

L AO S

Hue T H A I L A N D

Hoi An

Angkor Wat V I E T N A M Siem Reap Nha Trang C A M B O D I A Phnom Penh

Bangkok

Sihanoukville

Ho Chi Mekong Minh City Delta (Saigon)

06-07 08 09-10 11-12

you might like

Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? See page 29 Shorten your trip Cambodia on a Shoestring (10 days, Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City) GAATRC) see page 102 Fr £549 Vietnam on a Shoestring (12 days, Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi) (GAAVRV) see page 104 Fr £599 Extend your stay in Bangkok See pages 52-55

28

13-14

Phnom Penh

Explore this pleasant riverside city of cafés, shady streets, funky bars and thriving markets. Head off on an included walking tour and choose from optional trips to the historical sites, which include the Choeung Ek, more infamously known as the Killing Fields since the rule of Pol Pot. (2B)

Hanoi

Arrive into the hectic city of Hanoi at any time. Navigate the scooter-filled streets, check out the local markets, eat delicious street food and drink some cheap local beer. Visit the Temple of Literature (Van Mieu) or Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and Museum to experience the intoxicating essence of this splendid Asian city.

Halong Bay / Hanoi V I E T N A M

Hanoi

Relax on the white, sandy beaches of Cambodia’s southern coast. Visit one of the nearby islands, splash about on an optional snorkelling trip or just lie back and relax with a good book. (B)

Mekong Delta

Cross into the Mekong Delta surrounded by a rich, green world of orchards and rice fields, floating markets and candy factories. Cruise along this world-famous river and watch the world go by before staying overnight in a village homestay - sure to be a memorable experience! (D)

Halong Bay

Hoi An

T H A I L A N D

Bangkok

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Take a boat trip into the dazzling blue bay that surrounds this fun beach town. Swim at a pristine beach and take advantage of the fresh fish on offer and the buzzing beer-time bars. On Day 12, take to the rails with an overnight aboard a sleeper train to Hoi An. (B)

Explore one of dozens of traditional guild streets that make up Hanoi’s ancient Old Quarter and join Buddhist monks for prayers in a serene lakeside pagoda. Spend your last night intertwined in this city’s buzzing atmosphere. On Day 20, leave the mayhem of Hanoi’s streets and say goodbye to your terrific travel buds. (3B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

05-07 08-09

Nha Trang

Reflect on ancient culture and explore riverside garden tombs built for emperors before taking an overnight train to Hanoi, for the onward journey to Halong Bay. On Day 17, float through the dreamlike islands that dot this vast, emerald bay in a traditional wooden junk. Tuck into a sumptuous seafood lunch before spending the night in the harbour town of Bai Chay. (2B, L)

04

C A M B O D I A

Lose yourself in Ho Chi Minh City’s central market. Check out the War Remnants Museum and write a quick postcard at the stately colonial post office which bears witness to Vietnam’s former French heritage. Board an overnight train on Day 10 to the beach resort of Nha Trang. (B)

Wander through this pretty 16th Century trading port, where buildings bear traces of Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and French architectural styles. Budding Stella McCartneys beware - you might just get a little excited at the hundreds of miracle-performing, superb tailors here! (B)

Once the imperial capital, Hue is surrounded by some of the most beautiful countryside in Vietnam, scattered with the tombs of Nguyen emperors and timeless temples. Visit the Tien Mu Pagoda and admire the magnificent Vietnamese architecture. Opt to head out into the countryside on a guided motorbike tour.

Angkor Wat

Siem Reap Phnom Penh

Head out to Halong Bay where you’ll hop aboard a traditional wooden junk and sail out into this UNESCO World Heritage-listed region. Marvel at all the weird and wonderful limestone rock formations rising from the crystal-clear waters. Tuck into fresh seafood for your lunch before taking a swim. Spend the night up on deck chatting away to your newfound friends under a star-lit sky. You’ve just found a little piece of paradise and definitely one of Vietnam’s highlights. On Day 3, travel back to Hanoi for the overnight train to Hue. (2B, L, D)

Hue

Hue

Ho Chi Minh City

Hoi An

02-03

L AO S

Sihanoukville

Hanoi

18-20

DAY ITINERARY

Welcome to the Khmer Empire gateway and one of the world’s finest artistic heritages. At the empire’s peak in the 12th Century, Khmer civilisation culminated in the construction of the massive Angkor Wat, one of Asia’s most incredible sites. In the evening, enjoy a traditional Khmer meal at a Planeterra-supported volunteering project in a village on the outskirts of Siem Reap. (2B, D)

Hue / Halong Bay

15-17

A wide-ranging adventure showcasing the region’s natural wonders and fascinating cultures. Head out on a traditional junk boat into Halong Bay, tuck into fresh fish from sunny coastal shores, check out imperial citadels, tombs and explore a darker side of the region’s history at the remarkable Cu Chi Tunnels. Journey along the Mekong Delta and head into Cambodia where you’ll stand in gob-smacked awe at ancient Angkor Wat. Arriving back into Bangkok, you’ll have more than a few stories to share with your mates back home, making their eyes glow green with envy.

01

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

Hanoi

£1,299

FR

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

ESSENTIAL VIETNAM & CAMBODIA

YOU MIGHT LIKE Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? South East Asia Adrenalin Pack Fr £130 Jungle ziplining (Bangkok, half day), cave/ temple rappelling (Hoi An, half day) & Sunset ATV Tour (Siem Reap, 1.5 hours) South East Asia Culinary Pack Fr £70 Thai cooking (Bangkok, half day), Cambodian cooking (Phnom Penh, half day) & Vietnamese cooking (Hoi An, half day)

Hoi An

Take in the scenic views on the twisting Hai Van Pass before arriving into Hoi An. Celebrate the rich trading heritage of this city with its fabulous markets, galleries, tailor shops, craft stalls and quaint local restaurants. Come home loaded with glad rags made to your own individual style. (3B)

Ho Chi Minh City

Discover the eating, shopping, sightseeing and entertainment secrets of the world-class city of Ho Chi Minh. Enjoy a tour of the Cu Chi Tunnels; an immense network of tunnels used by the Viet Cong guerrillas during combat. Experience life as they did as you crawl through these tiny spaces. (B)

Mekong Delta

10

The lush green serpentine waterways of the Mekong Delta are a thriving centre of cottage industries, floating markets and orchards. Discover all this on a guided day trip to this fascinating area. (B)

Phnom Penh

11-12

Travelling to Phnom Penh you can enjoy this pleasant riverside city of cafés, shady streets and colourful markets. You will set off on a guided tour of Tol Sleng Prison and Choeung Ek (the Killing Fields) before a cyclo tour of the colonial district. You also have free time to explore further and make optional visits to the National Museum, the Royal Palace and the city markets. (2B)

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

13-15 16-17

Home to one of Asia’s most incredible sites. Check out this growing tourist town and surrender to the wonder of Angkor Wat on a guided tour. Arrive early for sunrise and admire the tantalising blend of art and architecture. In the evening enjoy a traditional meal of Khmer food either at the Planeterrasupported New Hope project or in a local home in villages outside the city. (2B, D)

Bangkok

From countryside to expressway, arrive back in Bangkok and spend your last night out on the town having a final drink and a farewell meal with your new friends. Your tour ends on day 17. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

29


LAOS & THAILAND ON A shoestring Hanoi

• • • • • • •

£649

FR

12 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

Visit colourful, charismatic Hanoi Admire French colonial architecture Discover temple-dotted countryside See the karsts of Vang Vieng Float down the amazing Mekong Delta Shop the night markets in Chiang Mai Check out Bangkok’s buzzing nightlife

Feb-Mar & Aug

Daily

Apr-Jul & Sep

Regular departures, typically 4-7 times per week

My Own Room Available: Fr £209

This all-singing, all-dancing adventure will show you the wonders of utterly tranquil Laos and the gems of northern Thailand. As you leave the dazzle of Hanoi behind, prepare to be engulfed in French colonial style as you head into Laos. This endearing country boasts wholesome people, a laid-back attitude to life and beautiful symbolic monasteries. Life after Laos continues to get sweeter as you cruise the Mekong River and fall into the loving arms of the ‘Land of Smiles,’ more commonly known as Thailand. Enjoy its breathtaking beauty, bustle and iconic gold-spired Buddhist temples.

DAY ITINERARY Hanoi

01 V I E T N A M

Pakbeng Chiang Khong Chiang Mai

Luang Prabang

Hanoi

Vientiane L AO S T H A I L A N D

03-04 05-06

Extend your trip Indochina Discovery (30 days, Bangkok to Bangkok) (GAATID) see page 20 Fr £1,599

Arrive into hectic Hanoi at any time. Navigate the bustling streets, check out the local markets, eat delicious street food and drink cheap local beer sitting on tiny plastic chairs at the side of the road. Go to a water puppet show, visit the Temple of Literature (Van Mieu) or Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum to get your first cultural fix of Indochina.

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 05 Jan 19 Feb 02 Feb 16 Mar 02 Mar 16 Apr 06 Apr 20

Jan 19 Feb 02 Feb 16 Mar 02 Mar 16 Mar 30 Apr 20 May 04

May 04 May 18 Jun 01 Jun 15 Jul 06 Jul 20 Aug 03 Aug 17

May 18 Jun 01 Jun 15 Jun 29 Jul 20 Aug 03 Aug 17 Aug 31

Aug 31 Sep 14 Oct 05 Nov 02 Nov 16 Dec 07 Dec 21

Sep 14 Sep 28 Oct 19 Nov 16 Nov 30 Dec 21 Jan 04

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/guesthouses (12 nts), basic family homestay (1 nt), sleeper train (1 nt) Transport: Private bus, local bus, plane, boat, train Meals: 11 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $285-375 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATCM

My Own Room Available: Fr £449

This morning you’ll take a short flight to Vientiane; the laid-back capital of Laos. Here there is a wealth of cultural delights to discover - on foot, by bicycle or, if you’re feeling lazy, by tuk-tuk. Opt in to visit Phat That Luang or simply meander down the dusty riverside tracks to find neighbourhoods brimming with friendly children, dogs and chickens. (B)

Vang Vieng

A picturesque drive north takes you to beautiful Vang Vieng. This quiet town is set along the Nam Song River amidst rice fields and limestone karsts. On Day 4, opt in to explore some of the caves and in the evening, soak in the natural beauty of Vang Vieng as the sun sets over the river. (2B)

07 08

Welcome to magical Luang Prabang! This beauty is nestled in the hills of northern Laos at the confluence of the Mekong and Khan Rivers. Luang Prabang is studded with ornate temples and inspirational French colonial architecture that will give you goosebumps. Witness the giving of alms to the Buddhist monks, opt to take a cooking class, ride an elephant, ride a bike, visit temples, visit the Royal Palace Museum, Kuang Si Waterfalls and Bear Rescue Centre. If you have any energy left after all that, haggle your way round the bustling night markets, phew! (2B)

Mekong River

Today you will cruise the serpentine waterways of the verdant Mekong Delta on a long houseboat. The Mekong is a thriving centre of cottage industries, floating markets and orchards, which really personifies a textbook Asian scene. Tonight, you’ll experience a village homestay. (B, D)

DAY ITINERARY Bangkok

01

Arrive in Bangkok at any time and wander around this vibrant city with its frenetic pace of life.

02-03

V I E T N A M

Luang Prabang Vang Vieng Vientiane

T H A I L A N D

04-05 Champasak

Dhon Khong Angkor Wat

Bangkok

Start Day 8 continuing your leisurely cruise up the Mekong River before arriving at the Laos/Thai border and crossing into Thailand later this afternoon. (B, L) Wind through charming countryside to Chiang Mai which is a popular location for any traveller to Thailand and generally regarded as the capital of the north. This afternoon, you’ll have heaps of free time to explore this fascinating and sacred city. Chiang Mai is enclosed by a moat and crumbling walls and offers pretty scenery, traditional architecture, charming locals and vibrant markets; all with a strong Buddhist presence. Visit Doi Suthep or the Chiang Mai Zoo or catch a traditional Thai boxing match. On Day 10, hop on board a local overnight train to travel south through the Thai countryside towards the bustle of Bangkok.

Siem Reap

Steung Treng Kratie

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

11-12 30

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Travel to Cambodia’s riverside capital of Phnom Penh. Explore this pleasant city of cafés, shady streets and thriving markets full of vibrant textiles and curios. Witness the dark side of Cambodian history with visits to Choeung Ek, the site of the infamous Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Prison, the notorious Khmer Rouge jail where thousands of Cambodians perished. At the end of the day, kick back with a beer at one of the riverside bars and watch a beautiful sunset. (2B)

Kratie / Don Kong

06-07

Rise and shine for an early morning start. Pass through Skuon, a small town famous for its delicious edible spiders. Tuck into one if you dare! In Kratie, opt to spot the rare Irrawaddy River dolphins that inhabit this part of the Mekong. On Day 7, stay in one of the most beautiful stretches of the Mekong in the heart of Si Phan Don (4,000 Islands). With rice fields, small villages and ancient wats, the stunning scenery makes it perfect for cycling. Also famous for brewing lao-lao; very fiery, a jigger of lao-lao is usually followed with a plain water chaser! (2B)

Champasak / Dong Deng

Travel to the quiet riverside town of Champasak, once capital of a Lao kingdom and visit Wat Phu Champasak along the way - one of the most important and impressive archaeological sites in Laos. Stay with the locals tonight in a rustic homestay on Dong Deng Island and taste some delicious local cuisine when you are served a home-cooked dinner. (D)

08

Luang Prabang

09-11

Luang Prabang is undoubtedly the jewel of Laos - a peaceful riverside town of tranquil temples, incredible textiles, cafés and bakeries. Discover Laos’ Buddhist and architectural heritage, watch the sun set over the horizon or rise at dawn to watch the monks collecting food. You’ll have time to visit the fascinating Ethnology Museum and take a trip out to the stunning Kuang Sii Waterfalls. Optional activities here also include hiking, biking and cooking classes, and you won’t want to miss the chance to pick up a few souvenirs at the atmospheric night market. (3B)

Vang Vieng

A scenic drive through winding mountains will take you to the picturesque town of Vang Vieng, nestled along the Nam Song River and surrounded by limestone karsts. This is an adventure-seeker’s paradise with options to cycle, kayak, go caving or swim in the river. (B)

12

Bangkok

One of Asia’s most incredible cities, Bangkok will set your cultural tastebuds on fire! Check out famous Wat Po Temple and the Grand Palace, as well as numerous neon-lit backstreets, rough-andready noodle shacks and noisy street vendors. Round the trip off by diving headlong into Bangkok’s nightlife scene, which ranges from backstreet cabaret bars to stylish open-air cocktail places on top of the city’s skyscrapers. On Day 12, your adventure finishes after breakfast. (B)

Explore Indochina’s most incredible and historic attraction - the vast temple palace complex of Angkor, capital of the Khmer Empire. Re-discovered at the end of the last century by French explorers, this vast ruined city is becoming one of Asia’s most popular sites. It’s also possible to make optional visits to the Angkor Museum and the ‘floating village’ of Tonle Sap. (2B)

Phnom Penh

L AO S

Chiang Khong

Chiang Mai

09-10

Embrace the chance to trace your way along much of the Mekong River route and delve into the fascinating countries of Cambodia and Laos where you’ll stumble upon busy markets, tranquil temples and awesome Khmer ruins. An undeniable highlight of your trip will be a visit to the beautiful and mystifying Angkor Wat temple complex; one of the true wonders of the archaeological world. With activities like spotting rare river dolphins and/or eating furry eight-legged friends (yes, really!), you’ll soon get to know the natural way of life around here. Expect the unexpected!

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

Luang Prabang

Bangkok

You might like

Highlights

Revel in Bangkok’s vibrant colours Marvel at the magnificent Angkor Wat Discover Cambodia’s exotic capital Look for river dolphins on the Mekong Experience local life at a homestay Explore Khmer temples and history Bargain at Luang Prabang’s markets

Vientiane Bangkok

02

Vang Vieng

15 DAYS

Bangkok

Departures 2014

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (9 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), local homestay (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-conditioned bus, plane, slow boat, boat Meals: 8 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $200-250 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAVRL

£1,099

FR

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Regular departures, typically 3-4 times per week

Bangkok

• • • • • • •

Departures 2014 Jan & Oct-Dec

CAMBODIA & LAOS MEKONG ADVENTURE

Vientiane / Bangkok

13-15

Arrive into one of Asia’s sleepiest capital cities. Scour the morning market for souvenirs, count the Buddha images in Wat Si Saket or chill out with a Beer Lao in one of the many riverside restaurants. Cross the ‘Friendship Bridge’ back into Thailand to board the overnight train back to Bangkok. On Day 15, arrive back in Thailand’s busy capital. Your trip will end on arrival at Bangkok train station mid-afternoon. (B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

31


£2,699

SOUTH EAST ASIA IN DEPTH Bangkok

FR

41 DAYS

Sanur (Bali) THAILAND

Bangkok

CAMBODIA

Ko Phangan Ko Samui

Medan Penang Cameron Highlands

Bukit Lawang

MALAYSIA

Tangkahan Berastagi

Kuala Lumpur Malacca

MALAYSIA

Singapore

Sipirok Maninjau

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Samosir Island

Bukittinggi INDONESIA

Tawangmangu Yogyakarta Jakarta

Mt Bromo Malang

Cianjur

Bandung

• • • • • • • •

Highlights

Wander the hectic streets of Bangkok Enjoy Thailand’s stunning beaches Watch the sunrise from Mt. Bromo Befriend orangutans in Bukit Lawang Taste an authentic cup of Java coffee Swim in a beautiful volcano lake Explore Singapore’s ethnic quarters Visit ornate temples and museums

Departures 2014

Kalibaru

Pemuteran Sanur

This 41-day adventure leaves no stone uncovered! From Bangkok and Bali to Sumatra and Singapore, you’ll discover everything from famous tourist areas to little-known marvels off the beaten track. Spend your days on boat decks sunning yourself in the hot Asian sun, send your heart pumping on a sunrise hike up Mount Bromo, get your caffeine kick with an authentic cup of Java at Kalibaru’s coffee plantations, and dive into the warm waters of Lake Toba, the world’s largest volcano lake. It’ll be a journey of first experiences, and ones that you’ll never forget! Grab your passport and get booking.

DAY ITINERARY Bangkok

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 13 Feb 10 Mar 10 Apr 07 May 05

Feb 22 Mar 22 Apr 19 May 17 Jun 14

Jun 02 Jun 30 Jul 28 Aug 25 Sep 22

Jul 12 Aug 09 Sep 06 Oct 04 Nov 01

Start

Finish

01-02

Oct 20 Nov 29 Nov 17 Dec 27 Dec 15 Jan 24

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (38 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), local homestay (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, minibus, ferry, songthaew, taxi, flight Meals: 30 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD$750-900 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATSE

03-04 05-06

Shorten your trip Bangkok to Singapore on a Shoestring (GAATRM, 14 days) see page 36 Fr £799 Highlights of Sumatra (14 days, Medan to Pedang) (GAAESH) Fr £1,749 Java to Bali (15 days, Jakarta to Sanur) (GAAEKS) see page 93 Fr £949

Koh Phangan

After a short boat ride to Koh Phangan, get stuck into all the activities the island has to offer. Whether it’s kayaking, snorkelling, swimming in the lagoons, or visiting its waterfalls, it’s the perfect place to get into a relaxed holiday mood and a complete antidote to the bustle of Bangkok!

Koh Samui

Just off Thailand’s east coast lies Koh Samui, the next destination. The largest island in an archipelago of around 80 islands, you’ll have two days to relax amongst white, sandy beaches and clear, warm waters while tucking into fresh seafood and sipping on fruity cocktails.

17-20

07 08-09 10-11 12

Cross the border into Malaysia and enjoy a scenic boat trip to Penang. Eat your way through a street food crawl with your travel group and opt for a tour of the city. Save time to visit Kek Lok Si, one of the most well-known Buddhist temples on the island, while Little India and Chinatown are the perfect places to explore, filled with temples, markets and other interesting things to see. (B)

21-23 24-25

Melaka

Today, it’s off to Melaka, a historic port town. With a wealth of temples, churches, mosques, museums and forts to explore, this town will keep you busy for the day. For a unique view of Melaka, take a boat tour of its canals.

Singapore

13

Cross the border into Singapore with time to explore all its many attractions and to wander around the neighbourhoods of Chinatown and Little India. For a true taste of the city, call by the opulent Raffles Hotel and order yourself a Singapore Sling! Don’t miss the Night Safari nocturnal zoo; a real favourite amongst travellers. From the rugged Himalayan foothills to the swampy banks of the Asian Riverine forest, a tram will take you to see 2,500 animals in their natural night time habitats.

After a short drive, hike the final hours down to the crater lake of Maninjau for stunning sunset views. This is a good place to wind down and enjoy a slower pace of life. (B)

Jakarta

27-28

twitter.com/STATravel_UK 32

14-16

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Get a transfer to Padang and fly into Jakarta; the action-packed capital of Indonesia. Opt to take a guided city tour and experience the delights of a street food crawl with your travel group. Indonesian dishes you might have come across include peanut satay, beef rendang and nasi goreng, but you’ll soon discover that it’s much more varied than you would find at home, incorporating many regional differences from across the countless islands of Indonesia. (2B)

Cianjur

In Cianjur, you’ll see its floating villages and have the chance to teach English to local children. This corner of Java sees little tourism, and you’ll experience local life by spending the night at a family homestay. (B, D)

29

Bandung / Yogyakarta

30-33

Travel to Bandung for an orientation walk and an opportunity to explore on your own. From Bandung, take the scenic route to Yogyakarta where there’s plenty of time to see sights such as Mt. Merapi and the incredible Borobudur, which dates back to the 9th Century and is the largest Buddha sanctuary in the world. The nine platforms are crowned by 72 Buddha statues seated inside perforated stupas. It’s an impressive site and has become one of Indonesia’s most-visited attractions since knowledge of its existence was leaked to the world by Sir Stamford Raffles in 1814. (4B)

Tawangmangu

On a journey through Javan landscapes, stop off at the Prambanan temples to explore Java’s largest Hindu temple complex. The next stop is the Sukuh temple for a beautiful walk through villages and farms to Tawangmangu. (B)

34 35-37 38-39

Medan / Bukit Lawang

Fly to Medan, the capital of North Sumatra, and stroll around the city to take in the many art deco buildings and Buddhist and Hindu temples. On Day 15, see the opulent Maimoon Palace, the Great Mosque and the Vihara Gunung Timur temple. In Bukit Lawang, visit the orangutan viewing platform to watch these adorable creatures being fed or opt to go jungle trekking in Gunung Leuser N.P. (3B)

A bustling cultural town of West Sumatra, you’ll take an orientation walk around Bukittinggi to help you get the lay of the land. With a free day to explore, head to the magnificent Ngarai Sianok canyon for spellbinding views or head underground to check out Lubang Jepang, or the Japanese caves; a network of underground bunkers and tunnels built by the Japanese in WWII. If that’s not your thing, there’s always the option of rafting and kayaking! (2B)

Maninjau

26

Kuala Lumpur

The bustling capital of Kuala Lumpur is Malaysia’s most populous city. Opt for a city tour to see the sights. Petronas Towers, the tallest twin buildings in the world, boasts amazing city views and the Islamic Arts Museum, National Mosque and Chinatown are also not to be missed.

Travel to Lake Toba, the world’s largest volcano lake, to relax and swim in its warm waters, or opt for a cultural visit to local Batak villages. Meander around local weavers and markets en route to the beautiful hilltop town of Sipirok, surrounded by rice fields and mountains, where your tour leader will give you the lowdown on an orientation walk. (3B)

Bukittinggi

Cameron Highlands

Head to the hills for a visit to Cameron Highlands. One of Malaysia’s most extensive hill stations, it’s famous for its tea plantations and strawberry farms. If the optional highlands tour doesn’t appeal, go off hiking independently on one of the many well-marked trails. (B)

Drive across bumpy roads to reach the small jungle community of Tangkahan where you can go hiking or choose to participate in an optional elephant feeding session. You can even hitch a ride on an elephant if you wish, it’s quite an experience! Hike from Tangkahan to Bukit Lawang, then continue by bus to charming Berastagi to get a taste of Indonesian life without the tourist crowds. Opt to hike up Sibayak volcano at sunrise for breathtaking views of the valleys below or tour traditional villages to get a feel for life as a local. (4B)

Samosir Island / Sipirok

Penang

My Own Room Available: Fr £1,259

You might like

Arrive into Thailand’s frenetic capital at any time and head out to explore before meeting your group and tour leader on the first evening of this awesome six-week adventure. Day 2 is free to discover the sights of Bangkok, including the Wat Po Temple and the Grand Palace, before catching the overnight train to Surat Thani. (B)

Tangkahan / Berastagi

Malang / Mt. Bromo / Kalibaru

With an early morning start, travel to Malang, the second-largest city in east Java, to catch a glimpse of Mt. Bromo’s dramatic landscapes at sunrise; it’s a distinctive volcanic peak having blown its top off completely. On Day 37, it’s onwards to Kalibaru, the famous Indonesian coffee plantations. (3B)

Pemuteran

On your journey to Bali, journey past tea plantations and coastal lowlands to reach Pemuteran, which sits between national parks and boasts pristine coral reefs and lush rainforests. Wander through the national park or opt for a snorkelling trip to Menjangan Island, one of the best diving sites in Bali. (B)

Sanur

40-41

Unwind in hot springs en route to the Balinese beach resort of Sanur where you can finish your trip with an optional farewell dinner with your fellow travellers. On Day 41, feel free to head home at any time or ask your Travel Expert for ideas how to extend your stay on Bali or Lombok. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

33


£2,369

INDOCHINA EXPLORER Bangkok

• • • • • • •

FR

18 DAYS

Siem Reap

Highlights

Marvel at the Angkor Wat at sunset Browse and bargain at local markets Observe the daily life of monks Cruise along the stunning Halong Bay Cycle around Ho Chi Minh’s sights Explore the Pak Ou Caves Learn about Cambodia’s dark history

£1,099

COLOURS OF ASIA Singapore

• • • • • • •

FR

14 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

Explore gleaming Singapore Marvel at the Petronas Towers Hike through the Cameron Highlands Hunt out bargains at the markets Snorkel in marine paradise Dine out on delicious Asian dishes Jump into a whirlwind of Bangkok

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014

Departures 2014 Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 04 Feb 08 Mar 15 Apr 19 May 24

Jan 21 Feb 25 Apr 01 May 06 Jun 10

Jun 28 Aug 02 Sep 06 Oct 11 Nov 15

Jul 15 Aug 19 Sep 23 Oct 28 Dec 02

Dec 20 2015 Jan 03

Jan 06

Inclusions

Jan 20

Trip Style: Comfort Service Level: Upgraded Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Comfort hotels (15 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), junk boat (1 nt) Transport: Private bus/van, boat, train, tuktuk, plane, cyclo, traditional junk boat Meals: 17 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $300-400 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATIC

My Own Room Available: Fr £579

Ever dream of travelling through Indochina but couldn’t decide where to go? This trip is your dream come true! Over 18 days you’ll journey from Bangkok to Siem Reap, and everywhere in between, without scrimping on comfort or adventure. Observe monks going about their daily life in Chiang Mai, tour amazing museums, watch the sun paint the sky atop a hill in Luang Prabang, float past the stunning limestone islands of Halong Bay, and make like Lara Croft and head to Ta Prohm, the ‘Tomb Raider’ temple. Top your travels off with a healthy dose of mouthwatering local cuisine and you’ve got yourself a return ticket to paradise!

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

Bangkok

Arrive into Thailand’s frenetic capital city and settle in. The next day take to the canals to observe locals going about their daily lives. The decadent halls and murals of the Grand Palace, built in 1972, and the sacred emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Kaew temple will be a favourite with culture lovers! (B)

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 04 Jan 11 Jan 25 Feb 08 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 15 Mar 29 Apr 12

Jan 17 Jan 24 Feb 07 Feb 21 Mar 07 Mar 14 Mar 28 Apr 11 Apr 25

Apr 26 May 10 May 24 Jun 07 Jun 21 Jul 06 Jul 20 Aug 09 Aug 23

May 09 May 23 Jun 06 Jun 20 Jul 04 Jul 19 Aug 02 Aug 22 Sep 05

Aug 30 Sep 20 Oct 04 Oct 18 Nov 08 Nov 22 Dec 06 Dec 20

Sep 12 Oct 03 Oct 17 Oct 31 Nov 21 Dec 05 Dec 19 Jan 02

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Simple hotels (11 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), homestay (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, minibus, ferry, songthaew, taxi, trishaw Meals: 7 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $325-425 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAGCA

My Own Room Available: Fr £609

Exciting capital cities, traditional culture and tropical natural wonders - this trip is spiced with all the flavour you’d expect from exotic Asia. Filled with golden temples and saffronrobed monks, soft white beaches and blue skies, tantalising seafood and some of the world’s best shopping spots, you’ll be guaranteed to have the time of your life. You’ll come home a sucker for the food, the climate and the bright and buzzing atmosphere that couldn’t be further from your normal routine back home. Jump onboard for your Asian adventure, you’ll never look back!

DAY ITINERARY Singapore

Arrive into this modern and welcoming Asian haven at any time and set off for a wander around the city. Explore the streets of Singapore’s ethnic districts such as Little India, Chinatown and the Malay Quarter (it’s like doing the whole of Asia in one whirlwind day) or head down to the brand new Marina Bay Sands casino and resort complex, three skyscrapers with a ship balanced on the top! Meet your group and tour leader this evening and perhaps get to know them over an optional dinner.

01

Chiang Mai Halong Bay Hanoi

03-04

V I E T N AM

Luang Prabang Chiang Mai

05-07

Angkor Wat

Siem Reap Phnom Penh

As a World Heritage site, Luang Prabang is overflowing with cultural attractions and is small enough to explore on foot. Visit the Royal Palace museum and the Wat Xiengthong and Wat Visoun temples before catching a boat to the Pak Ou Caves. These natural caves hide a treasure trove of Buddhist statues left by pilgrims over the centuries - 3,000 to be exact! On Day 6, rise at dawn to observe monks collecting food offerings and giving blessings. Spend the afternoon visiting the stunning Kuang Sii Waterfall then watch the sun set atop Phuosi Hill. It’s up to you what you do on Day 7, whether’s it’s relaxing in one of the coffee shops or visiting the town’s 32 temples! (3B)

Hanoi / Halong Bay

C A M B OD I A

08-10

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

11-12

Fly to Hanoi and take in its French colonial architecture and vast parks. Then, take a cyclo tour of the city’s Old Quarter, stopping off for lunch at Hoa Sua, a training school for disadvantaged youth. On Day 9, visit Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum before driving to Bai Chay Harbour and boarding a traditional junk boat for the evening. With all the comforts of a hotel, cruise around Halong Bay and explore the breathtaking limestone islands rising from the Bac Bo gulf. On Day 10, visit one of the caves on a bamboo boat before heading back to dry land in Hanoi for shopping and museums. (2B, 2L, D) Fly to Ho Chi Minh City and take a thrilling cyclo tour of its main attractions. On Day 12 head underground into the infamous Cu Chi tunnels for a unique view of what life was like during the Vietnam War. With the afternoon left free, head to Ben Thanh market or sail the Saigon River. (2B)

13-14

Take part in a cyclo tour around Phnom Penh’s main attractions, with an option of refreshing drinks at the famous Foreign Correspondents Club. On Day 12, explore the dark side of Cambodia’s history under the rule of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge with visits to Choeung Ek Memorial, the site of the infamous Killing Fields, and the Tuol Sleng Prison. (2B)

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

15-18

Drive to Siem Reap and tour its entertainment district, with a stop off at an exciting night market, then head to Angkor at sunset to see the magnificent Angkor Wat temple, the world’s largest religious monument. Visit other fantastic temples, such as Preah Khan and Ta Prohm, the ‘Tomb Raider’ temple, then travel to Mondul, one of the poorest areas of Cambodia. Witness the good work project New Hope is doing to help the underprivileged locals and taste the delights of Khmer cuisine they prepare for you over lunch. On Day 18, depart at any time you wish. (4B, L)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Cross the border into Malaysia to the historic city of Melaka - a cultural mosaic - its rich heritage ever apparent in its unique collection of Islamic mosques, Chinese temples, Portuguese architecture and fascinating museums. See the city on a bicycle rickshaw tour before taking an optional boat trip and trying the local Nyonya cuisine.

02 T HA ILA N D

Bangkok

03-04

Krabi Langkawi Penang

Cameron Highlands

05-06

M A L AYS I A

Kuala Lumpur Melaka

Singapore

You can’t think of Kuala Lumpur without the iconic and awe-inspiring Petronas Towers springing to mind. Enjoy a half-day tour of the city with your group. You’ll then have free time to set out and explore the city and see everything from the Petronas Towers to the Islamic Arts Museum. (B)

Cameron Highlands

Head for the Cameron Highlands, one of Malaysia’s most famous hill stations surrounded by tea plantations and strawberry fields. The cooler weather up here makes it the perfect opportunity for chilling out and having a walk through the lovely cloud-covered forest. (B)

07-08

Hire a bicycle rickshaw to meander the streets of Georgetown, soaking up the old Chinese atmosphere. Sample the variety of Chinese, Malay and Indian street foods, explore colourful night markets and catch the funicular railway up Penang Hill for stunning mainland views. Spend the evening tasting delicious local food from one of the many street stands in Georgetown.

Krabi

Leave Malaysia and take the ferry to the Thai port of Satun. From there, travel by bus and songthaew to Krabi Province on the beautiful west coast. You will stay in a homestay close to the beach and a perfect spot to mellow out and relax. (B)

Krabi / Ao Nang

You might like

Extend your trip Northern Thailand Experience (12 days, Bangkok to Bangkok) (GAATNE) see page 46

Kuala Lumpur

Penang

09

Ho Chi Minh City

Phnom Penh

34

Melaka

Luang Prabang

L AO S

T H A I L A N D

Bangkok

Head to Chiang Mai on Day 3, tackling the 300 steps to reach the top of the Doi Suthep, one of the most sacred Buddhist temples in Thailand. The spectacular views from the top are definitely worth the exercise! Tuck into an authentic khantoke dinner and take a trip to a local village. Opt to see the friendly creatures at the Elephant Conservation Centre or visit some local handicraft workshops. The next day, test out your culinary skills with a Thai cooking class and whip up some popular Thai dishes for lunch. Later, visit a lively night market to browse and bargain away the evening. (2B, L, D)

10-12 Fr £699

Bangkok

13

facebook.com/statravel.uk

Transfer from your homestay to a hotel. You have free time here to jump on an optional snorkelling trip to heavenly Phi Phi island or entertain yourself on the amazing beaches. Feeling restless? Try a spot of rock climbing, sea kayaking or learn to cook your very own Thai feast at a cooking school. Some shopping might be on the agenda before jumping on a ferry and catching the overnight train back to Bangkok on Day 12. (3B)

14

An early arrival into Bangkok leaves plenty of time to get to know this eclectic capital, with your hotel offering the perfect base for discovering Khao San Road. Glide through the maze of ‘klongs’ on a traditional long-tail boat and visit the impressively-decorated Wat Pho Temple. Opt to visit the Grand Palace and National Museum or go shopping for bargains.

Bangkok

Your amazing tour ends today and you are free to depart at any time you wish. (B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

35


BANGKOK TO SINGAPORE on a shoestring Bangkok

• • • • • • •

£799

FR

14 DAYS

Singapore

Highlights

Explore the frantic streets of Bangkok Laze on Thailand’s idyllic beaches Cool off under a refreshing waterfall Cycle the charming streets of Penang Wander Kuala Lumpur’s night markets Absorb the vivid cultures of Melaka Check out the city sights of Singapore

Bangkok

• • • • • • •

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (10 nts), basic bungalows (2 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), Transport: Train, local bus, minibus, ferry, songthaew, taxi Meals: 3 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $265350 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Oficer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATRM

My Own Room Available: Fr £379

Flying into Bangkok and out of Singapore is easy to organise. Trying to successfully travel between these two destinations in only 14 days ain’t so simple. Deciding where to go, how to get there and where to lay your head when you arrive - all sounds a bit too much like hard work? Fear not, help is at hand! This hugely popular adventure trip will take care of all that giving you time to absorb the staggering highlights of Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. With its combination of pulsating cities, delicious street food and luscious island beaches, this tour will give you a guaranteed fascinating insight into South East Asia.

DAY ITINERARY T H A I L A N D

01

Bangkok Koh Pha Ngan Koh Samui

Highlights

Get lost in Bangkok’s busy backstreets Explore Koh Phangan’s waterfalls Hike through hillside rice terraces See the grand Petronas Towers in KL Take a ‘night safari’ at Singapore Zoo Admire endless ancient temples Wander Indonesian coffee plantations

Bangkok

Arrive at any time and head out to explore this atmospheric, colourful and deliciously noisy city.

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 13 Jan 27 Feb 10 Feb 24 Mar 02 Mar 04 Mar 10 Mar 24 Apr 07

Feb 09 Feb 23 Mar 09 Mar 23 Mar 29 Mar 31 Apr 06 Apr 20 May 04

Apr 21 May 05 May 19 Jun 02 Jun 16 Jun 30 Jul 14 Jul 28 Aug 11

May 18 Jun 01 Jun 15 Jun 29 Jul 13 Jul 27 Aug 10 Aug 24 Sep 07

Aug 25 Sep 08 Sep 22 Oct 06 Oct 20 Nov 03 Nov 17 Dec 01 Dec 15

Sep 21 Oct 05 Oct 19 Nov 02 Nov 16 Nov 30 Dec 14 Dec 28 Jan 11

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Hotels (24 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), local homestay (2 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, minibus, ferry, songthaew, taxi, flight Meals: 17 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $500-600 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATBS

My Own Room Available: Fr £799

Bangkok

02

Nakhon Si Thammarat

Jump aboard a longtail boat or maybe a tuk-tuk and explore Bangkok’s charismatic mix of markets, klongs and temples. Shop ‘til you drop at the wealth of mega markets, melt under the hands of a relaxing Thai massage and feast both your eyes and belly on the tantalising Thai cuisine that dominates the street scene. Yum! Take an overnight train later this evening to Chumporn. (B)

Cameron Highlands

Kuala Lumpur Melaka

03-04

Singapore

On arrival into Chumporn, a bus journey and short boat ride takes you to the small island of Koh Phangan where you have the next few days to explore the island’s waterfalls, swim in its lagoons or just relax. Options for snorkelling, hiking, visiting waterfalls or simply chilling out. With everything from yoga and meditation courses, natural beauty and its famous Full Moon Parties, Koh Phangan has something for everyone.

Koh Samui / Nakhon Si Thammarat

05-06

Another short boat trip will see you arriving at Koh Samui in the afternoon of Day 5. Koh Samui is well known for its fabulous beaches and buzzing party nightlife. Take a tour of the island or just kick back and enjoy the awesome beaches. The following day head off to Nakhon Si Thammarat, a place with an intriguing blend of cultures, where Muslim mosques and Buddhist temples blend with 17th Century European factories and houses.

07

Cameron Highlands

08-09 10-11

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Upgrade your trip Colours of Asia (14 days, Singapore to Bangkok) (GAAGCA) see page 35 Fr £1,099

12 13-14

Head for the Cameron Highlands, one of Malaysia’s most famous hill stations. Established in 1885 by William Cameron, a British surveyor, it is surrounded by pretty tea plantations and strawberry fields. The cooler weather is perfect for a relaxing walk through the cloud-covered forest. This is a great place to read a book, write a postcard or reflect on life and all its riches.

Kuala Lumpur

There’s tons to see and do in Kuala Lumpur. Stare up at one of the world’s tallest buildings, explore the famous Batu Caves or check out the Oran Asli Museum. Evenings are best spent sampling some of the finest cuisine in South East Asia and bargain-hunting in Chinatown’s night market.

Melaka

With its historic fusion of Chinese, Indian, Malay and Portuguese influences, Melaka remains one of Malaysia’s great destinations. Try a riverboat ride, see local historic parks or climb the steps to St. Paul’s Church.

Singapore

Arrive into Singapore where you have a free afternoon to explore the city’s many attractions. Do the famous night safari at Singapore’s world-class zoo or browse for bargains on Orchard Road. Splash out on your last night with a legendary Singapore Sling cocktail at the famous Raffles Hotel. (B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

DAY ITINERARY Bangkok / Koh Phangan

01-04 05-09

Koh Phangan Koh Samui

Penang

Cameron Highlands

Singapore

Cianjur

I N D O N E S I A

Koh Samui offers everything you could possibly want in a tropical retreat: white sandy beaches, coconut palms, fresh seafood and warm, clear waters. Arrive in time for a sunset cocktail then get out and explore. On Day 7, you’ll cross into Malaysia and take a scenic boat trip through the sheltered archipelago to Penang. Your eyes will be dazzled by colourful bazaars, noisy night markets and Chinese temples. Next up, the Cameron Highlands, with their rolling green hills, tea plantations and strawberry fields, flatlands and breathtaking mountain scenery. Here you can walk along one of the many well-marked jungle trails, visit the tea plantations or simply chill. (2B)

Kuala Lumpur / Melaka / Singapore

M A L AYS I A

Kuala Lumpur

Jakarta

Adapt to Bangkok’s lovably hectic pace, humid climate, backstreets and colourful markets before you meet your fellow travellers later the first evening. On Day 2, wander its neon alleyways and goldenspired Buddhist temples. Later, embark on a journey by overnight sleeper train, sharing tales with locals as you travel south to Surat Thani. On Day 3, meet Koh Phangan! This Thai treasure boasts of hammock-filled beaches, long-tail boats, Thai whisky buckets and rebellious Full Moon parties. (B)

Koh Samui / Penang / Cameron Highlands

Bangkok

Penang

The winding streets of Georgetown are best explored by bicycle rickshaw. Check out the fort’s colonial architecture, pop into the colourful Indian quarter and visit lively Chinatown. If time allows, a visit to the Butterfly Farm is superb. Indulge in a meal at the waterfront’s bustling night markets where you can choose between a delicious fusion of Chinese, Malay and Indian food. (B)

Ever dreamt of an adventure which takes you from the infectious buzz of Bangkok to ancient Indonesian temples, and from the spine-tingling sunrise vistas of Mt. Bromo to the whitesand beaches of Bali? South-East Asia truly ticks every box on any traveller’s hitlist; ancient culture, friendly locals, blissful beaches, vibrant cities infused with a mesmerising blend of spirituality and unforgettable beauty. Along the way, you can slurp down everything from rice noodles and Pad Thai in Bangkok to peanut satay in Indonesia. Bangkok to Bali on a Shoestring will show you exactly how to do South East Asia!

T H A I L A N D

Koh Phangan M A L AYS I A

36

28 DAYS

Sanur (Bali)

Departures 2014

Every Saturday & Selected Mondays

Penang

£1,749

FR

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Bangkok TO BALI on a shoestring

10-13 Malang Kalibaru Perumteran

Yogyakarta Tawangmangu Mt. Bromo

Sanur

Welcome to one of South East Asia’s most cosmopolitan cities, with its architecture and unique cultural mix, Kuala Lumpur is sure to impress! See the Petronas Towers, Chinatown and the KL Tower to name but a few. On Day 12, head to the old port town of Melaka, the most important trading port in South East Asia back in the 15th Century. On Day 13, you’ll be immersed in Singapore’s mix of Chinese, Malay, Indian and Western cultures. Visit the Night Safari, take a harbour cruise or stop at Raffles Hotel for a cheeky Singapore Sling!

Jakarta / Cianjur / Bandung / Yogyakarta

14-20

Take a short flight to Jakarta, the economic heart of Indonesia. Here you can chill with a cup of Java coffee or walk around the old Dutch colonial heart of Kota. On Day 16, venture to Cianjur via Bogor to visit the floating villages or to perhaps teach English to local children. Enjoy an orientation walk of the sprawling city of Bandung on Day 17. On Day 18, you’ll take a scenic train journey to Yogyakarta, where you can visit the nearby Buddhist temple complex and town of Borobudur. (7B, D)

Tawangmangu / Malang / Mt Bromo

21-23

Today, you will continue to Sukuh Temple to start a beautiful walk through small villages and farms to Tawangmangu. On Day 22, head for Malang where you can check out the gorgeous parks, the Singosari Temple and the bird and flower market. On Day 23, you’ll be whisked through tropical landscapes towards the grandeur of smouldering Mt. Bromo. (3B)

Kalibaru / Pemutaran

24-26

Start Day 24 with a pre-dawn trek across the ‘Sea of Sand’ to watch the sunrise over Mt. Bromo’s crater. Next up, you’ll head through Kalibaru’s coffee plantations. On Day 25, your first night in Bali is spent close to the north shore of the island at Pemuteran, which is sandwiched between national parks containing coral reefs and rainforest. Spend your day here relaxing by the beach, exploring the national parks or opt for a snorkelling trip to Menjangan Island. (2B)

Sanur

27-28

Head south through Bali’s lovely countryside and rice paddy fields and enjoy a relaxing soak in some local hot springs en route to the exotic beach destination of Sanur. On the south coast of the island, Sanur boasts a gorgeous white-sand beach sheltered by a tropical reef, and a colourful main street perfect for picking up some last-minute souvenirs. Unwind and depart anytime on Day 28. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

37


BAMBA SOUTH EAST ASIA Bamba Rice Field B U R M A Ways or v.v FR £570

Why Travel with Bamba Bamba Experience flexible Hop-On

Hanoi

L AO S S OU T H CH IN A S E A

Hue Hoi An

T H A I L A N D A N DA M A N S E A

Bangkok Inclusions: 4, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 & 15

Bangkok Siem Reap C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

Nha Trang Dalat

V I E T N A M

Bamba Buddha Ways FR £902 Bangkok Bangkok Inclusions: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 & 15

Bamba believes that the freedom to travel how you want will bring you happiness. It is for this reason that there’s a team dedicated to making sure you’re always a happy traveller with assistance before, during and after your trip.

What’s Special About our Hop-On Hop-Off Passes Customer service: The Happy Team is here to make sure you enjoy your trip every step of the way. Online trip manager: Access your trip online to make as many changes to your itinerary as you wish anywhere, any time. Great value: Bamba has the best quality transportation and activities with trusted and reliable local operators at the most competitive rates. Travel independently: Explore the world exactly as you have always dreamed by travelling freely at your own pace to the best hotspots with no tour leader or set schedule.

Tuk Tuk Express & v.v FR £327

T H A I L A N D A N DA MA N S E A

Bangkok C A M B O D I A

Chumphon

Bangkok

Koh Phangan GUL F O F THAIL AND

Singapore Inclusions: 1, 3, 4 & 19

Penang

Tuk Tuk Ways & v.v FR £436

M A L AYS I A

Kuala Lumpur

Choose your own accommodation: Accommodation is not included so you choose where to sleep every night with the help of recommended hotels. Please see your STA Travel Expert.

Chumphon Koh Tao Koh Phangan G ULF OF T H AI LAND

Phuket

Koh Samui

B U R M A

£531

Bangkok Bangkok Inclusions: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 14 & 15

S OU T H CH IN A S E A

T H A I L A N D

C A M B O D I A

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Phuket Inclusions:

3, 19 & 20

Luang Prabang Kuang Si Waterfall Adventure: See the spiritual landscapes of the Mekong River with breathtaking views and a mystical vibe, plus visit the pristine Kuang Si Waterfalls.

8.

Vang Vieng Kayaking & Tubing Adventure: Float down the river on a tube, try out kayaking, go swimming and more!

9. 10. 11.

Hanoi Ha Long Bay 3 days / 2 nights: Cruise through the tranquil waters of Halong Bay.

12. 13.

Nha Trang Snorkelling Day Trip: Snorkel, swim, sunbathe or get stuck into water activities in Nha Trang.

14.

Phnom Penh Quad Bike Killing Fields Day Trip: An up-close look into the sombre and gruesome regime of the Khmer Rouge.

15.

Siem Reap Angkor Wat Tour: See the impressive national heritage of Cambodia’s ancient Khmer dynasties.

19.

Koh Phangan Beaches & Elephant Safari: Experience the best snorkelling sites and beaches and ride an elephant in the jungle.

20.

Koh Samui Zip-Line Adventure: Go on a scenic zipline adventure through the rainforest treetops over more than 500 metres of steel cable.

V I E T N A M

Krabi Koh Phi Phi

S OU T H CH IN A S E A

Full Thailand Ways FR £491

L AO S

Chiang Mai

Bangkok Inclusions:

Bangkok

3, 4 &19

Chumphon Koh Tao Koh Phangan

C A M B O D I A

Bangkok Inclusions: 3, 4, 5 & 19

S OU T H CH IN A S E A

Sukhothai

Bangkok

T H A I L A N D

Krabi Koh Phi Phi

B U R M A

T H A I L A N D A N DA M A N S E A

Bangkok C A M B O D I A

Chumphon Koh Tao Koh Phangan

V I E T N A M

G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

Phuket

V I E T N A M

Krabi Koh Phi Phi

Chiang Khong L A O S Pak Beng Luang Prabang Vang Vieng Chiang Mai VientianeC HSI ON UA T SH E A Sukhothai ANDAMAN SEA

T H A I L A N D

Bangkok

Chiang Mai Elephant Camp & Rafting Day Trip: Ride an elephant, visit a waterfall and bamboo raft in scenic Thailand.

7.

V I E T N A M

L AO S

Bangkok Bangkok Bike Explorer: Get to know the crazy city of Bangkok by bicycle!

Nha Trang Dalat

Koh Tao Koh Samui

B U R M A

Koh Phi Phi - Maya Bay The Beach Trip: Swim, snorkel and kayak or search for monkeys on Koh Phi Phi.

Chiang Mai River Expedition to Laos 3days/2nights: Float down the Mekong River, stopping to see a unique Buddhist/Hindu temple and a bustling market place.

Koh Phangan

Phuket

Cameron Highlands Rainforest Expedition: Hike into the lush Cameron Highlands Rainforest.

6.

C A M B O D I A

G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

Kuala Lumpur Foodie Experience: Sample Malaysian street food by going to the city’s best street stands!

Hue Hoi An

B U R M A

Hue Tombs & Pagoda Day Trip: Walk through the elaborate tomb complexes of venerated Vietnamese emperors. Hoi An Love of Life Bicycle Day Trip: Check out rural Vietnam by riding through the countryside just outside of Hoi An.

Ho Chi Minh City Mekong Delta 2 days / 1 night: Visit the region’s most important delta where the Mekong River empties into the South China Sea.

Additional passes

Pakse

Siem Reap

Bamba also offer passes in Bali, the Gili Islands and Nepal. Inclusions 16 to 18 and 21 to 23 are featured in these passes. Ask your STA Travel Expert for details.

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

G ULF OF T H AI LAN D

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

L AO S

A N DA M A N S E A

Phuket

FR

Ha Long

Hanoi

T H A I L A N D

G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

Singapore

V I E T N A M

G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

S OU T H CH IN A S E A

Cameron Highlights Kuala Lumpur M A L AYS I A

Dalat

L AO S

A N DA M A N S E A

Koh Phi Phi Penang

Thai Island & Beaches Ways FR £258

Bangkok

Krabi

Nha Trang

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

G U L F OF T H A IL A N D

V I E T N A M

Nit Noi Ways

38

C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

INCLUSIONS

A N DA M A N S E A

Thai Island Hopping FR £299

C A M B O D I A

Melaka

Singapore

Type of transportation: Travel on safe and reliable public buses, shuttle vans, trains, planes and boats.

Bangkok

Bangkok Singapore Inclusions: 1, 2, 3, 4 & 19

Unique experiences: Experience tons of adventue plus historical, natural and cultural moments that will change the way you see the world.

Siem Reap

Bangkok

Hanoi Inclusions: 9, 10, 11, 12 &13

Unlimited schedule changes: Make unlimited changes to your schedule before and during your trip. Your pass is valid for 12 months so you can take all the time you need to enjoy your journey!

T H A I L A N D ANDAMAN SEA

V I E T N A M

Krabi

A N DA M A N S E A

Good Morning B U R M A Vietnam or v.v FR £401 Saigon

Bamba Experience passes include both convenient transportation options and exciting activities along the route of your choice. You have the flexibility to choose your departure dates and make unlimited changes on the go. All you have to do is choose a route and a departure date; they take care of the rest.

Hanoi Chiang Khong L A O S Pak Beng Luang Prabang Vang Vieng Vientiane Chiang S OU T H Mai CH IN A S E A Sukhothai T H A I L A N D Hue Hoi An

B U R M A

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Hop-off passes in South East Asia provide a platform for you to explore the world in a new and unique way. Bamba believes travelling is about living life, exploring the unknown to change the way we see the world. It’s about having fun and life-changing experiences because as you discover the world, you discover yourself.

Ha Long

Hanoi

V I E T N A M

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

39


STRAY Asia Pass Options

Get further off the beaten track. Travel with Stray’s guided adventure travel network and discover places no one else goes.

Mai Chau

Houay Xai

Minority villages, rice terraces,trekking, cycling

Ban Lad Khammoune Remote village homestay

Chiang Rai

Famous White Temple

Cam Lo

Ninh Binh

Luang Prabang

World heritage town, Kuang Si Waterfalls, elephants, silk weaving, temples, monks’, alms ceremony at sunrise

Vang Vieng

Rock climbing, kayaking, tubing

450 year old Capital, COPE centre

LAOS

Kong Lor (2)

Cam Lo

Mighty 7km cave

Nong Khai

Stunning coastline

Xe Champhone

Ho Chi Minh City (2)

Vinh Moc Tunnels Demilitarized Zone from the Vietnam War

Hue

UNESCO World Heritage monuments, perfume river Hi Van Pass Old French American Fortifications

THAILAND

Hoi An (2)

Laos, Dtui Noy PASS

French heritage buildings, good food, access to My Son Ruins, tailoring

Ubon Ratchathani Ayutthaya

My Lai

Pakse Wat Phou

Marsacre Sites

Provincial Capital, Tree Top Explorer

World Heritage Temple Houay Xai

Preah Vihear Temple

LAOS

Access to Angkor Wat, and night markets

Battambang

Kompong Thom

Tonle Sap Lake

Fishing and farming village homestay

Kompong Chhnang

Travel responsibly, and respectfully

MUST-DO STRAY EXPERIENCES

OUR TRAVELLERS LOVE..

• • • • • • Unexplored secret spots Dong Hoi, Vietnam

“The homestay was a real once in a lifetime experience for me. We were welcomed into the village with a traditional ceremony, taken round the local school & hospital and then went swimming with the local kids. We watched sunset over the Mekong River while enjoying the locals’ favourite tipple Rice Whisky, with not a hotel in sight!” Lucy Dellow, STA London

40

East meets West at the White Temple: Chiang Rai , Thailand Ancient Buddhist books: Hotay Pitok Library Laos Ride in old bomb boats: Tha Bak, Laos Sacred UNESCO temples: Wat Phou, Laos Beachfront bungalows: Koh Tunsay island, Cambodia Epic underground caves: Dong Hoi, Vietnam

You need to know • • •

All passes are valid for 12 months from your first day of travel (subject to normal visa restrictions). We organise accommodation at overnight stops, typically family-run guesthouses or hotels. Expect to pay between $5 - $25 per night for a twin/double, depending on location and season. Just pay as you go. You manage your own travel bookings online. If you hop off, just log-in, check the seasonal timetables and update your itinerary. Easy!

We recommend adding extra days to give you time to hop off along the route.

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Yak Don National Park, Lak Lake, cultural hub

Emperor Bao Dia Palace, Lakes, valleys, coffee and tea plantations

War Remnants Museum, Mekong Delta, Cu Chi tunnels

Salt and pepper farm, Koh Tunsay Island Bokor National Park Remote relaxed beach, swimming, reefs

KEY Overnight stops

Koh Phangan

Full Moon Party, SCUBA diving, yoga

Unique overnight stops Point of interest Guided bus route Guided rail route Private minivan Unguided connection

£1,370

FR

TOM YUM Pass

£433

FR

Start/Finish: Bangkok Hanoi Why: Discover all of Southeast Asia, in-depth, like a local. Minimum days: 38 Recommended Days: 42 Inclusions: All 1 to 21

Anywhere Start/Finish: Why: The highlights of Northern Thailand and Laos, for adventure, home stays and rivers Minimum days: 11 Recommended Days: 16 Inclusions: 1 to 4

MEKONG PASS

FULL MOON PASS

£996

FR

Start/Finish: Anywhere Why: Explore Northern Thailand, in-depth Laos and Cambodia off the beaten track. Minimum days: 32 Recommended Days: 32 Inclusions: 1 to 15

Tha Bak

Kong Lor (2) Tha Kek

Pha Tam Kam

Xe Champhone

Bolaven Plateau

Wat Phou

Cambodia, Khmer PASS

Ho Chi Minh City (2)

Kep

LAOS Buddhas Footprint Temple

Start: Houay Xai, (or Chiang Mai add $45) Finish: Pakse or Don Det Why: Ancient Buddhist libraries, sticky rice, bomb boat rides Minimum days: 12 (includes free days) Recommended Days: 16 Inclusions: 2 to 10

Boun Ma Thout

Capital city, architecture and historical sites

Kampot

Vang Vieng

Vientiane

Phnom Penh (2)

Chumporn

Luang Prabang

Authentic Vietnamese beach town, Ancient Cham Temples

Da Lat (2)

Kampong Cham

Pak Ou Caves

Qui Nhon

CAMBODIA

Siem Reap (2)

Ban Lad Khammoune

Pak Beng

Angkor Wat Night markets, China Town, street food

LOT PASS

£404

FR

Bolaven Plateau

Waterfalls, coffee and tea sampling

Old Capital of Siam, temples, cycling

Koh Tao

Boun Ma Thout

Phong Nha Caves, access to National Parks, local farm stay

Remote homestay, Mokey Forest, Turtle Lake, ancient library and Temple ruins

Bangkok

Expert guides will ensure you experience the real Southeast Asia, whether translating at homestays or showing you the best spot for a beer by the Mekong River. They’ll offer support every step of the way, and organise accommodation and activities on your behalf.

Qui Nhon

Dong Hoi (2)

Rock climbing

Entry/Exit point to Cambodia

Go Guided

My Lai

Da Lat (2)

Pha Tam Kam

Don Det/ 4000 Islands

We operate a sustainable travel network; we educate our crew and travellers to respect the culture, specific customs and the environment. We support local operators in smaller communities and worthwhile projects, such as building new roofs on the temple at our homestay on the Mekong River, Laos.

Hoi An (2)

Tha Kek

Meet Fellow adventurous travellers

With our own buses, we take you to incredible locations, without the worry of unreliable, crowded public transport. Sightsee as you go, rather than paying for extra side trips.

Birthplace of Ho Chi Minh

Bomb boats

Hi Van Pass

Start: Ho Chi Min City Finish: Hanoi Why: Unexplored caves, hill-tribe homestays, pristine coastline Minimum days: 12 (includes free days) Recommended Days: 16 Inclusions:16 to 21

Hoang Tru

Tha Bak

Buddhas Footprint Temple Access to National Parks and Limestone Forest

Travel in small groups, share experiences and make lifelong friends. Stray attracts adventurous people, exactly the sort of mates you want to share your once-in-a-lifetime experiences with.

Vinh Moc Tunnels

Hue

Vientiane

Reliable, safe Stray transport to get closer to the action

Dong Hoi (2)

Access to Cucphuong National Park and Primate Centre

Adventure town, Flight of the Gibbon, Muay thai boxing, Cooking classes, mountain biking, markets

If you want to stay anywhere for longer, Stray’s passes are flexible - so just hop-on and hop-off where you like.

Hoang Tru

Pak Ou Caves

£689

FR

Pakse

Don Det/ 4000 Islands

£471

FR

Start: Siem Reap Finish: Preah Vihear Temple Fresh seafood, Angkor Angkor Wat temples, silk farms Why: Siem Reap (2) CAMBODIA Fresh seafood, Angkor Tonle Sap Kompong Battambang Lake Thom temples, silk farms Kompong Chhnang Kampong Minimum days: 8 Cham Phnom (includes free days) Penh Kampot Recommended Days: Kep Koh Tunsay Island 12 Inclusions:11 to 15 FREE connections to/from Bangkok or Ho Chi Minh City

Bucket PASS

£71

FR

Bangkok Start/Finish: Bangkok Why: Head to the beautiful Thai Islands to dive, party and chill. Minimum Days: 3 Note: This pass is unguided. Ask about our Stray Thai Full Moon Beach Adventure: All inclusive island escapade

Anywhere Start/Finish: Why: See Northern Thailand, all of Laos, laid back culture and remote destinations Minimum days: 18 Recommended Days: 26 Inclusions:1 to 10

Ask about our Arrival Packs in Bangkok, Luang Prabang, Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi

INCLUSIONS 1. Ayutthaya UNESCO Temples 2. Pha Tok Secret War caves 3. Pak Ou Buddha site

4. Tham Jang limestone caves 5. Phu Hin Bun National Park 6. Kong Lor caves 7. Turtle Lake 8. Hotay Pitok ancient library

9. Tad Ngeuang Waterfall 10. Wat Phou UNESCO Temples 11. Preah Vihear Temples 12. S21 Prison 13. Killing Fields

14. Udong Historical site 15. Bamboo train 16. Dantania Falls 17. My Lai Memoria 18. Marble Mountains

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

19. Vinh Moc Tunnels 20. Thien Duong (Paradise Cave) 21. Cuc Phuong National Park

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SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

LAOS

Pak Beng

Gateway to Laos

Ninh Binh

Capital city, old French Quarter, temples, access to Ha Long Bay

Mai Chau

Chiang Mai (2)

Remote Homestays Mekong River, Laos

Ha Noi

Ha Noi

Chiang Khong

FR

VIETNAM

VIETNAM

Stray’s expert guides will provide invaluable local knowledge and support, taking you to unforgettable homestays, immersing you in the culture and ensuring you get the best out of your experience.

£526

Vietnam, Dong PASS


Thailand

chiAng rai

sukhothai

kanchanaburi ayutthaya bangkok koh samet

If you would like to travel on your own private tour, just for you and your party, please ask about our range of koh tao khao sok tours designed for the national park independent traveller. It’s koh pha ngan much less expensive than koh samui khao you might think! Follow lak a similar itinerary to phuket some of our most krabi popular small group koh adventures, such as: • Northern Hilltribes & Villages (page 45) • Northern Thailand Discovery (page 45) Or ask us to customise a private tour designed to your exact requirements.

phi phi koh lanta

Highlights

Explore the frantic streets of Bangkok Check out night markets in Chiang Mai Trek through the jungles of the north Stay with the local hilltribes Relax in Khao Sok - paradise! Enjoy the beaches of Koh Samui Snorkel the reefs around Koh Tao

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 04 Jan 06 Jan 11 Jan 18 Jan 20 Jan 25 Feb 01 Feb 03 Feb 08 Feb 15 Feb 17 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 03 Mar 08 Mar 15 Mar 17 Mar 22 Mar 29 Mar 31 Apr 05 Apr 12 Apr 14 Apr 19 Apr 26 Apr 28 May 03

Jan 19 Jan 21 Jan 26 Feb 02 Feb 04 Feb 09 Feb 16 Feb 18 Feb 23 Mar 02 Mar 04 Mar 09 Mar 16 Mar 18 Mar 23 Mar 30 Apr 01 Apr 06 Apr 13 Apr 15 Apr 20 Apr 27 Apr 29 May 04 May 11 May 13 May 18

May 10 May 12 May 17 May 24 May 26 May 31 Jun 07 Jun 08 Jun 14 Jun 21 Jun 23 Jun 28 Jul 05 Jul 07 Jul 10 Jul 12 Jul 19 Jul 21 Jul 24 Jul 26 Aug 02 Aug 04 Aug 07 Aug 09 Aug 16 Aug 18 Aug 21

May 25 May 27 Jun 01 Jun 08 Jun 10 Jun 15 Jun 22 Jun 24 Jun 29 Jul 06 Jul 08 Jul 13 Jul 20 Jul 22 Jul 25 Jul 27 Aug 03 Aug 05 Aug 08 Aug 10 Aug 17 Aug 19 Aug 22 Aug 24 Aug 31 Sep 02 Sep 05

Aug 23 Aug 30 Aep 01 Sep 06 Sep 13 Sep 15 Sep 20 Sep 27 Sep 29 Oct 04 Oct 11 Oct 13 Oct 18 Oct 25 Oct 27 Nov 01 Nov 08 Nov 10 Nov 15 Nov 22 Nov 24 Nov 29 Dec 06 Dec 08 Dec 13 Dec 20 Dec 22

Sep 07 Sep 14 Sep 16 Sep 21 Sep 28 Sep 30 Oct 05 Oct 12 Oct 14 Oct 19 Oct 26 Oct 28 Nov 02 Nov 09 Nov 11 Nov 16 Nov 23 Nov 25 Nov 30 Dec 07 Dec 09 Dec 14 Dec 21 Dec 23 Dec 28 Jan 04 Jan 06

Don’t spend all your time in a Bangkok bar or stuck on an island beach. While both are understandably vital to many who visit this beautiful country, there’s also a lot more to see here. This adventure will see you hiking through thick jungle and gleaming rice paddies in the northern mountains and learning first-hand about life in a hilltribe village. You’ll also have ample time to lose yourself in the hedonism of Bangkok and laze on beautiful island beaches underneath the sweltering sunshine. After 16 wonderous days, you’ll walk away from Thailand having pretty much done it all!

DAY ITINERARY

Inclusions

chiAng Mai

independent touring

• • • • • • •

16 DAYS

Bangkok

Departures 2014

1. meet the hilltribes of chiang mai 2. learn to dive in koh tao 3. go wild at the full moon party 4. camping on the similan islands 5. eat pad thai from a street stall

hua hin

Bangkok

£799

FR

south east asia

south east asia

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s

THAILAND on a shoestring

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels/ bungalows (9 nts), basic hilltribe village huts (2 nts, multishare), sleeper train (4 nts) Transport: Local bus, train, elephant, boat Meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $325-425 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), trekking staff Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATRT

Bangkok

01

Arrive at any time. Get settled in your hotel before heading out and exploring this urban jungle.

Bangkok

Delight in the dazzling Grand Palace and the city’s countless pagodas. If you’re a shopper you could spend weeks sifting through Bangkok’s fantastic malls and open-air markets. Jump on one of the local ferries and see the cityscape from the water, wander the streets of Chinatown before snapping up some street food and a local beer. Tonight, board the overnight train north to Chiang Mai.

02

Chiang Mai

Arrive into this northern gem early in the morning. Try the fantastic street food, shop at the Night Bazaar, visit some of the hundreds of temples, or explore the beautiful surrounding countryside by bike. Fancy yourself as a bit of a cook? Add to your culinary repertoire on a Thai cooking course.

03

Hilltribe Trek

My Own Room Available: Fr £339 Hilltribe Trek

Chiang Mai

THAILAND

Bangkok

Koh Tao Khao Sok NP

04-06 07-09

Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip?

Chiang Mai / Bangkok

Return back to the northern capital and take care of any last-minute shopping. Chiang Mai is known for its distinctive handicraft, especially silverwork, woodcarving, pottery and weaving. Bound back to Bangkok on Day 8, with time to visit all the temples, shops and gardens you missed first time.

Khao Sok National Park

Settle into paradise for two days of exploration and discovery. Khao Sok is a diverse area of natural beauty, perfect for people who want to hike and get out there amongst nature. Alternatively, choose to just chill out in a hammock by the riverside and watch the monkeys take their afternoon bath. (B)

10 11-12

Koh Samui

you might like

Journey out to the countryside to start an amazing three-day hilltribe trek. You’ll visit a diverse group of tribes, each with their own language, clothing and religion. Walk for approximately four to five hours each day along sloping hills and valleys, spending starry nights in village huts. With the chance to ride an elephant, navigate a river by bamboo raft and to eat local-style meals, this is a real opportunity to get a taste of authentic rural Thailand and a truly awesome experience! (3B, 2L, 2D)

13-15 16

Koh Samui

Experience one of Thailand’s most popular island getaways and see what makes this island retreat so popular. Koh Samui offers everything you could possibly want for a laid-back break; white sandy beaches, coconut trees, fresh seafood and warm, clear waters. Time to relax, cocktail in hand.

Koh Tao

A beach paradise so laid-back that even the palm trees can’t be bothered to stand up straight! Scuba dive or snorkel here amongst stunning marine life in some of South East Asia’s best reefs.

Bangkok

Arrive back into Thailand’s capital on Day 16. The trip ends at the railway station, mid-afternoon.

Thai Adventure Pack Fr £155 Jungle ziplining (Bangkok, half day), elephant nature park (Chiang Mai, full day), sea kayaking (Krabi, 2 hours)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

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£1,299

Thailand discovery Bangkok

• • • • • • •

FR

18 DAYS

Bangkok

NORTHERN HILLTRIBES & VILLAGES Bangkok

NORTHERN £449 THAILAND DISCOVERY

£649

FR

8 DAYS

Bangkok

Bangkok

FR

10 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

See bustling riverside Bangkok Check out historical Sukhothai Take a memorable elephant ride Visit the famous Golden Triangle Shop in Chiang Mai’s night bazaars Laze on paradise Thai islands Snorkel in clear blue seas

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 03 Jan 10 Jan 17 Jan 24 Jan 31 Feb 07 Feb 14 Feb 21 Feb 28 Mar 07 Mar 14 Mar 21 Mar 28 Apr 04 Apr 11 Apr 18 Apr 25

Jan 20 Jan 27 Feb 03 Feb 10 Feb 17 Feb 24 Mar 03 Mar 10 Mar 17 Mar 24 Mar 31 Apr 07 Apr 14 Apr 21 Apr 28 May 05 May 12

May 02 May 09 May 16 May 23 May 30 Jun 06 Jun 13 Jun 20 Jun 27 Jul 04 Jul 11 Jul 18 Jul 25 Aug 01 Aug 08 Aug 15 Aug 22

May 19 May 26 Jun 02 Jun 09 Jun 16 Jun 23 Jun 30 Jul 07 Jul 14 Jul 21 Jul 28 Aug 04 Aug 11 Aug 18 Aug 25 Sep 01 Sep 08

Aug 29 Sep 05 Sep 12 Sep 19 Sep 26 Oct 03 Oct 10 Oct 17 Oct 24 Oct 31 Nov 07 Nov 14 Nov 21 Nov 28 Dec 05 Dec 12 Dec 19

Sep 15 Sep 22 Sep 29 Oct 06 Oct 13 Oct 20 Oct 27 Nov 03 Nov 10 Nov 17 Nov 24 Dec 01 Dec 08 Dec 15 Dec 22 Dec 29 Jan 05

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation (Nov-Apr): Guesthouses/ hotels (9 nts), sleeper train (2 nts), simple bungalows (4 nts, fan-cooled), camping (1 nt), homestay (1 nt) Accommodation (May-Oct): Guesthouses/hotels (15 nts), sleeper train (2 nts) Transport: Train, public bus, taxi, songthaew, bicycle, long-tail boat, plane, elephant Meals (Nov-Apr): 15 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners Meals (Nov-Apr): 15 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $325-425 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATDT

south east asia

south east asia

Departures 2014

Highlights

Take a step back as Thailand throws everything it’s got at you; friendly people, sacred sites from days gone by and the beaches... oh, the beaches *sigh*. Words can’t describe the bliss of sitting on some of the best beaches in the world, lazing on pure white sands and dunking yourself in sparkling blue seas. Take an unforgettable ride on an elephant, explore Chiang Mai and the Golden Triangle and cycle the streets of ancient Sukhothai. The southern section of the trip varies seasonally: Nov-Apr departures travel down the West Coast and May-Oct departures travel down the East Coast. Either option is perfect for chilling out.

DAY ITINERARY 01

04

My Own Room Available: Fr £449

Golden Triangle

Chiang Rai

Chiang Mai

Nov-May May-Nov

05-06

T H A I L A N D

Railay Beach

07-09 10

Krabi Koh Phai Koh Klang

you might like

Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? Thai Adventure Pack Fr £155 Jungle ziplining (Bangkok, half day), elephant nature park (Chiang Mai, full day), sea kayaking (Krabi, 2 hours)

44

Continue to Lampang, the temporary capital of the Lanna Kingdom from 1776-1791 when Chiang Mai was deserted as a result of successive wars with the Burmese. Free afternoon to explore. (B) Drive to Chiang Rai Province stopping at the Lampang Elephant Conservation Centre. Tour the facilities of the elephant hospital and see how young and sick elephants are cared for. Opt to take a ride on the back of these majestic animals, which many find to be a highlight of their trip to Thailand. Head onwards to Chiang Rai and the Golden Triangle where Myanmar, Thailand and Laos meet. In the morning of Day 6, visit the border town of Mae Sai where you can observe Burmese traders at work and pick up a few souvenirs. There is also time for a visit to the fascinating Opium Museum. (2B)

Chiang Mai

Sukhothai

Koh Tao Koh Phangan Koh Samui

Lampang

Head off to Chiang Mai, an important Buddhist centre since the 14th Century and home to more than 300 temples. Explore the best known of these, Doi Suthep, perched on top of a hill outside the city. Optional activities on offer include a cooking class, bike tour or a visit to the Mae Sa waterfall. You’ll also get the chance to enjoy a home-cooked meal, kantoke-style, with a village family. The rest of your time in Chiang Mai is free to explore; not to be missed is the vibrant Night Bazaar, with shops and stalls showcasing the best of Thailand’s handicrafts. Overnight train back to Bangkok. (3B, D)

Bangkok

Arrive back into Bangkok this morning for a free day to continue to explore the capital city. Some of the options available include the Grand Palace, Jim Thompson’s House or the Baiyok Tower.

Island Hopping

11-17 18

Nov-Apr (West Coast): Fly from Bangkok to the chilled-out town of Krabi and head for a homestay on Koh Klang. Visit a community project before returning to Krabi to experience the beachside vibe of Ao Nang, with optional rock climbing, kayaking, snorkelling or diving. Travel by private long-tail boat Koh Phai to snorkel its coral reefs. Transfer to Railay Beach to indulge in its huge array of activities such as jungle trekking, cooking classes, whitewater rafting and quad biking. Return to Krabi for one last night before catching the overnight train back to Bangkok. (7B, L, D) May-Oct (East Coast): Fly from Bangkok to the tropical island of Koh Samui where you can take an optional snorkelling trip to Ang Thong Marine Park. Ferry to nearby Koh Phangan to swim in lagoons and explore the island’s waterfalls. Time your trip right and you could also enjoy the Full Moon Party. Next up is Koh Tao, a haven for snorkelling and diving and a good spot for a few cocktails. On Day 17, transfer back to the mainland in time to catch the overnight train back to Bangkok. (7B, L)

Bangkok

Arriving from your overnight sleeper train, bid farewell to your fellow travellers as your journey ends.

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

DAY ITINERARY

Arrive into Bangkok at any time. Explore the city’s many sights such as the Wat Po Temple and the glittering Grand Palace, check out the atmospheric klongs by boat and go on a street food crawl with your new tour mates. Thailand is a city of immense contrasts, from towering skyscrapers and fashionable rooftop bars, to Chinese shophouses, pushcart vendors and countless temples, pagodas and other cultural sites. On Day 2, take the overnight train north. (B)

01-02

Arrive into Bangkok at any time. Spend your day adjusting to the frenetic pace of the city. Your trip starts with a chance to see Bangkok from the ‘klongs’, the canals that wind their way through the city. Watch local life in the city as you cruise by in a traditional long-tail boat. Stop off at Wat Po, home of the giant reclining Buddha, before travelling to the town of Sukhothai with its impressive historic ruins. Check out the awe-inspiring Buddha images. Day 3 will be spent cycling around the remains of this ancient royal realm, now one of Thailand’s World Heritage Sites. (2B)

Highlights

• Enjoy a cooling long-tail boat tour through the klongs of Bangkok • Cycle through the lush, green scenery of Sukhothai Historical Park • Visit Chiang Rai’s fascinating Opium Museum for a historical insight

Bangkok

Chiang Mai

Arrive into Chiang Mai, the most culturally significant of the northern cities. A long-term travellers’ favourite, you’ll soon see why tourists flock here. Visit the famous Doi Suthep temple, wander through the old city and night markets or get some schooling in Thai cooking.

03

Hilltribe Trek

Spend three days trekking through Northern Thailand’s rolling hillsides and meeting diverse hill tribes, each with their own culture, traditions, language and costumes. Climb aboard an elephant for a ride through the jungle and speed down the river on a bamboo raft. (3B, 3L, 2D)

04-06

Chiang Rai / Golden Triangle

Lampang

Bangkok

DAY ITINERARY

Bangkok

Sukhothai

02-03

• Explore Bangkok with its many markets and countless temples • Barter for bargains in Chiang Mai’s brilliant Night Bazaar • Trek through the pristine jungles of Northern Thailand

Chiang Mai

Return to enchanting Chiang Mai where you have time for activities such as further temple explorations or perhaps a relaxing post-trek massage. Later, board the overnight train back to Bangkok. (B)

07

Bangkok

08

Arrive back to Thailand’s capital where your tour ends mid-afternoon on Day 8. (B)

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (3 nts), basic hilltribe huts (2 nts, multishare), sleeper trains (2 nts) Transport: Local bus, songthaew, train, elephant, river raft Meals: 5 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $100120 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), trekking staff Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATHV

Bangkok / Sukhothai

01-03 04

Arrive into Thailand’s capital any time. On Day 2, visit Wat Po Temple, home of the reclining Buddha, before enjoying a long-tail boat cruise of Bangkok’s canals, an opportunity to see the city from a different perspective. Travel on to the ancient capital of Sukhothai and cycle through the national park, famous for its 13th Century pagodas. (2B)

Lampang

Take a stroll through the temples of this old-style Thai town and maybe see the vista from a traditional horse and cart. (B)

Chiang Rai / Golden Triangle

05-06

With the days of the opium trade well in the past, the Golden Triangle is now a peaceful area where Laos, Thailand and Burma meet. Learn about the production of the drug at the Opium Museum before visiting the Elephant Conservation Centre where sick animals are cared for. An optional elephant ride here is a real highlight! (2B)

Chiang Mai

07-09 10

Check out the Night Bazaar for trinkets and climb Doi Suthep temple. If you’ve enjoyed the included home-cooked dinner, served khantokestyle by a local village family. If that’s inspired you to cook for friends and family when you return home, sign yourself up for a cooking class which, along with bike tours and massages, is just one of the optional activities available. Catch the overnight train to Bangkok on Day 9. (2B, D)

Bangkok

Arrive back to Thailand’s vibrant capital where your trip comes to an end at the train station mid-afternoon on Day 10.

Inclusions Hilltribe Trek Chiang Mai

T H A I L A N D

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (8 nts), sleeper train (1 nt) Transport: Train, public bus, taxi, elephant, songthaew, bicycle Meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $170225 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATBC

Chiang Rai Chiang Mai

Golden Triangle

Lampang Sukhothai T H A I L A N D

My Own Room Available: Fr £89

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Most Saturdays and twice-monthly on Mondays

Bangkok

My Own Room Available: Fr £159

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Bangkok

Every Friday

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

45


northern thailand experience Bangkok

thailand hike, £699 bike & Kayak

£1,089

FR

12 DAYS

Bangkok

Bangkok

FR

14 DAYS

Bangkok

southern thailand sojourn Bangkok

thai £499 island hopping

£729

FR

9 DAYS

Bangkok

Bangkok

FR

9 DAYS

Bangkok

south east asia

south east asia

Highlights

• Contrast Bangkok’s frantic pace with the unique vibes of Chiang Mai • Trek through the northern jungles and stay with the local hill tribes • See the Bridge over the River Kwai & go rafting in Erawan N.P.

DAY ITINERARY 01

DAY ITINERARY

Bangkok

Arrive into Bangkok at any time and feel free to explore.

01-02

Kanchanaburi

02-03

Travel to Kanchanaburi and board your raft to float down the river in Erawan National Park past a multitude of stunning waterfalls and the famous Bridge over the River Kwai. Stay overnight aboard your floating raft house which promises a great night’s sleep. (2B, D)

Ayutthaya / Chiang Mai

04-06

Highlights

• Cycle along the backstreets and hidden quarters of Bangkok • Refresh yourself under a waterfall at Erawan National Park • Meet the hilltribe people of Northern Thailand on a multi-day trek

Arrive into Ayutthaya and tour the city’s historic sites, many of which date from the 1350-1767 period when this was Thailand’s capital. Opt to visit the Chan Kasem National Museum and Chao Sam Phraya Musuem, packed with cultural treasures. On Day 6, travel to Chiang Mai and explore the city with its many optional activities. (2B)

05

Hilltribe Trek

07-09

Lace up your boots for an amazing three-day hilltribe trek visiting diverse ethnic minority groups to discover their unique languages, clothing and religions. Walk for 4-5 hours per day and spend starry nights in village huts dining on traditional delicacies. Rest your legs for a while as you traverse the jungle on elephant back. (3B, 2L, 3D)

12

Bangkok

Return to the glorious chaos of the capital from where onward travel arrangements can be booked any time after 3pm.

Inclusions

My Own Room Available: Fr £129

Arrive in Bangkok and spend the evening bonding with your group before jumping onto two wheels the next day to explore the city. In the afternoon, travel by private van to historic Kanchanaburi. (B) Set out and explore the historic past of Kanchanaburi. First grab your wheels for a cycling tour of the town itself before spending the night on a floating raft house. Day 4 is spent visiting Erawan National Park where you can hike the many tiers of its famous waterfall and swim in crystal-blue pools, before an afternoon transfer to Ayutthaya. (D)

Ayutthaya

06-08 09-13 14

Arriving into Chiang Mai in the morning, head to the mountains for an unforgettable jungle hike. Emerge to discover remote hilltribe villages. Spend time with your hilltribe hosts, learn about their unique cultures and sleep in traditional bamboo houses. (2B, 2L, 2D) Following an early lunch in Chiang Mai, you take a flight south to Phuket before travelling to the laid-back resort of Krabi. The following day set off on a sea kayaking safari along the Andaman coast and relax on untouched beaches. On Day 13, return to the mainland and catch the overnight train back to Bangkok. (2B, 3L, 2D)

Bangkok

The trip ends with a late morning arrival at Bangkok train station.

Inclusions Hilltribe Trek Chiang Mai

T H A I L A N D

Kanchanaburi

Ayutthaya

Trip Style: Active Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Guesthouses/hotels (5 nts), hilltribe villages (2 nts, multishare), sleeper train (3 nts), camping (2 nts), rafthouse (1 nt, multishare) Transport: Train, minibus, local bus, bicycle, raft, long-tail boat, plane Meals: 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 5 dinners Budget: Allow USD $265-350 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATHB

03

DAY ITINERARY

Bangkok

Delight in Bangkok’s dazzling Grand Palace and countless pagodas and temples. Shop your heart out in the malls and markets or explore the ‘klongs’ on a boat tour. Head south by overnight train tonight. (B)

Chiang Mai

T H A I L A N D

Kanchanaburi

Ayutthaya

Bangkok

Koh Samui

04-05

Justifiably one of Thailand’s most popular resort spots, you’ll soon see why this place is so visited! From the buzzing beach of Chaweng to the quieter coves, you’re sure to find your own little piece of beach paradise. Water activities abound on this island, so you can opt to go snorkelling through a national marine park or, if you prefer to stay on ‘terra firma’, sign up for a Thai cooking class. (B)

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Saturdays, typically 2 departures per month

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

02-08

Koh Tao

06-08 09

Snorkel or scuba dive around what are arguably some of the best reefs in the world. The underwater world here is truly fantastic. On the evening of Day 8, you’ll jump on the overnight train back up to the capital, Bangkok. (B)

Bangkok

Arrive into Bangkok train station where your tour comes to an end. Say farewell to your group and make any onward travel arrangements for 3pm or later.

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (3 nts), sleeper trains (2 nts), simple bungalows (3 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, air-conditioned bus, boat, tuk-tuk, songthaew, taxi, ferry Meals: 3 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $200-250 for meals not included. Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATSS

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Every Saturday & twice-monthly on Mondays

Arrive into Bangkok at any time and explore! You are free to discover the many fascinating markets, shopping centres and temples. Spend time wandering round the Grand Palace or take a river taxi down the Chao Phraya River and the smaller canals, before meeting your tour leader and the rest of your group this evening. Don’t worry too much about adjusting to the frantic pace of Bangkok - the rest of the week you’ll be super-chilled!

Island Hopping

Arriving into the naturally beautiful Khao Sok National Park is like stepping into paradise. It’s perfect for hiking, swimming and outdoor pursuits. Chill out in a riverside hammock and watch the monkeys.

09

Nov-Apr (West Coast): Fly from Bangkok to the chilled-out town of Krabi and head for a homestay on Koh Klang. Visit a community project before returning to Krabi to experience the beachside vibe of Ao Nang, with optional rock climbing, kayaking, snorkelling or diving. Travel by private long-tail boat Koh Phai to snorkel its coral reefs. Transfer to Railay Beach to indulge in its huge array of activities such as jungle trekking, cooking classes, whitewater rafting and quad biking. Return to Krabi for one last night before catching the overnight train back to Bangkok. (7B, L, D) May-Oct (East Coast): Fly from Bangkok to the tropical island of Koh Samui where you can take an optional snorkelling trip to Ang Thong Marine Park. Ferry to nearby Koh Phangan to swim in lagoons and explore the island’s waterfalls. Time your trip right and you could also enjoy the Full Moon Party. Next up is Koh Tao, a haven for snorkelling and diving and a good spot for a few cocktails. On Day 8, transfer back to the mainland in time to catch the overnight train back to Bangkok. (7B, L)

Bangkok

Your trip ends upon arrival at Bangkok train station this morning, but please ask for further ideas should you wish to extend your stay!

Inclusions T H A I L A N D

Bangkok

Koh Tao Koh Samui Khao Sok NP

Krabi

01

Khao Sok National Park

Inclusions Hilltribe Trek

Bangkok

Arrive into Thailand’s capital city at any time. Head out into the chaotic streets with your new tour buddies for a street food crawl!

Bangkok

Jan - Dec

46

02

Highlights

• Browse the markets, temples and palaces in bustling Bangkok • Island-hop down the East or West Coasts (seasonally dependent) • Spend a chilled week sunbathing, snorkelling and swimming

Bangkok

My Own Room Available: Fr £249

Departures 2014 Alternate Wednesdays

01

Enjoy a cycling tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ayutthaya, marvelling at its huge monasteries and past splendour. Tonight, take the overnight train to the capital of northern Thailand, Chiang Mai.

Krabi / Andaman Sea / Krabi

Return to Chiang Mai where you can opt to indulge in a traditional Thai-style massage, explore more of its temples, hire a moped to visit the rice paddies and waterfalls in the surrounding countryside and stock up on souvenirs at the world-famous night markets. (2B)

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Guesthouses/hotels (6 nts), rafthouse (1 nt), hilltribe village huts (2 nts, multishare), sleeper trains (2 nts) Transport: Train, minibus, local bus, songthaew, long-tail boat, elephant Meals: 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 4 dinners Budget: Allow USD $150-200 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATNE

Bangkok

Chiang Mai / Hilltribe Trek

Chiang Mai

10-11

DAY ITINERARY

Kanchanaburi / Ayutthaya

03-04

Highlights

• Explore the frantic and colourful streets of Bangkok • Relax in the lush green paradise of Khao Sok National Park • Enjoy the beachside nightlife of idyllic Koh Samui

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation (Nov-Apr): Hotel (1 nt), sleeper train (1 nt), simple guesthouses with fan (4 nts), homestay (1 nt), camping (1 nt) Accommodation (May-Oct): Hotels/ guesthouses with air-con (7 nts), sleeper train (1 nt) Transport: Train, bus, boat, tuktuk, songthaew, taxi, ferry, plane Meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 lunch (plus 1 dinner Nov-Apr) Budget: Allow USD $150-200 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATTW

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Saturdays

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

T H A I L A N D

Bangkok Koh Tao Koh Phangan Koh Samui Railay Beach Krabi Koh Phai Koh Klang Nov-May May-Nov

47


THAI ISLAND HOPPER EAST Koh Samui

• • • • • • •

£539

FR

9 DAYS

Koh Samui

Highlights

Experience laid-back island life Discover the underwater world Chill out on white sand beaches Hunt for treasures in local markets Go wild at Koh Pha Ngan’s party spots Explore Chaweng Beach’s epic nightlife Chat to locals on the island ferries

THAI ISLAND HOPPER WEST Phuket

• • • • • • •

9 DAYS

Phuket

Highlights

Explore bustling night markets Watch a sunset at Phi Phi lookout Check out Patong’s pulsing nightlife See the sun set over the Andaman Sea Snorkel in crystal-clear water Enjoy beautiful white sand beaches Admire the stunning views in Ao Nang

Departures 2014

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Apr 08 May 08 May 11 May 21 May 28 Jun 06 Jun 09 Jun 14 Jun 18 Jun 21 Jun 25

Apr 16 May 16 May 19 May 29 Jun 05 Jun 14 Jun 17 Jun 22 Jun 26 Jun 29 Jul 03

Jun 28 Jul 02 Jul 07 Jul 10 Jul 13 Jul 19 Jul 23 Jul 26 Jul 30 Aug 04 Aug 09

Jul 06 Jul 10 Jul 15 Jul 18 Jul 21 Jul 27 Jul 31 Aug 03 Aug 07 Aug 12 Aug 17

Aug 13 Aug 16 Aug 20 Aug 23 Aug 27 Aug 30 Sep 02 Sep 10 Sep 17

Aug 21 Aug 24 Aug 28 Aug 31 Sep 04 Sep 07 Sep 10 Sep 18 Sep 25

Feb 01 Feb 05 Feb 08 Feb 12 Feb 15 Feb 19 Feb 22 Feb 26 Mar 01 Mar 05 Mar 08 Mar 12 Mar 15 Mar 19 Mar 22 Mar 26 Mar 29 Apr 02 Apr 05 Apr 09 Sep 24 Sep 27 Oct 01 Oct 04 Oct 08 Oct 11

Feb 09 Feb 13 Feb 16 Feb 20 Feb 23 Feb 27 Mar 02 Mar 06 Mar 09 Mar 13 Mar 16 Mar 20 Mar 23 Mar 27 Mar 30 Apr 03 Apr 06 Apr 10 Apr 13 Apr 17 Oct 02 Oct 05 Oct 09 Oct 12 Oct 16 Oct 19

Oct 15 Oct 18 Oct 22 Oct 25 Oct 29 Nov 01 Nov 05 Nov 08 Nov 12 Nov 15 Nov 19 Nov 22 Nov 26 Nov 29 Dec 03 Dec 06 Dec 10 Dec 13 Dec 17 Dec 20 Dec 24 Dec 27 Dec 31 2015 Jan 03 Jan 07

Oct 23 Oct 26 Oct 30 Nov 02 Nov 06 Nov 09 Nov 13 Nov 16 Nov 20 Nov 23 Nov 27 Nov 30 Dec 04 Dec 07 Dec 11 Dec 14 Dec 18 Dec 21 Dec 25 Dec 28 Jan 01 Jan 04 Jan 08

Jan 10 Jan 14 Jan 17 Jan 21 Jan 24 Jan 28 Jan 31 Feb 04 Feb 07 Feb 11 Feb 14 Feb 18 Feb 21 Feb 25 Feb 28 Mar 04 Mar 07 Mar 11 Mar 14 Mar 18 Mar 21 Mar 25 Mar 28 Apr 01 Apr 04 Apr 08

Jan 18 Jan 22 Jan 25 Jan 29 Feb 01 Feb 05 Feb 08 Feb 12 Feb 15 Feb 19 Feb 22 Feb 26 Mar 01 Mar 05 Mar 08 Mar 12 Mar 15 Mar 19 Mar 22 Mar 26 Mar 29 Apr 02 Apr 05 Apr 09 Apr 12 Apr 16

Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details.

Inclusions

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels/ resorts (5 nts), bungalows (3 nts) Transport: Local ferries Meals: 8 breakfasts, 2 dinners Group Leader: Tour Manager Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Code: COTIKS

Beaches, bikinis and the ultimate relaxing holiday. that’s this trip in a nutshell, plus it’s designed exclusively for 18-35 year olds. Let’s start with beaches; this holiday hotspot definitely boasts some of the best in the world. Catching the sublime rays will be unavoidable on this trip and you’ll need to be ready to dive into that clear blue sea at any moment. Get ready for long days of sunkissed swimming, sunbathing and sipping cocktails. Top this off living it up at the party spots of Koh Pha Ngan and try to fit in a Full Moon Party for the absolute once-in-a-lifetime Thai party experience.

DAY ITINERARY Koh Samui

01

Koh Tao

Arrive at the unbelievable paradise island of Koh Samui, check-in to your hotel then hit the streets for some exploring. With its amazing white-sand beaches with palms blowing in the wind, green sparkling seas and out-of-this-world food, you’ll be sure to feel chilled out right away as you settle quickly into island life. Later, you’ll meet with your Tour Manager and fellow travellers before heading out to indulge in a delicious Thai meal and enjoy the Chaweng nightlife.

Koh Samui

02-03 Koh Pha Ngan

With two whole free days here, relax and soak up the sublime rays and feel totally chilled as you explore Koh Samui’s many divine beaches. You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy a therapeutic atmosphere and get a fabulous Thai massage, so lie back and let relaxation flow from your head to your toes. If you’re feeling more energetic you can try your hand at water sports in the azure seascape that glitters a mile away. Fancy seeing some of the local sights? Sign up for a tour of the island where you can experience beautiful lagoons and cascades, as well as a much-needed waterfall swim. Enjoy unwinding to the absolute max for two days before you leave one Thai gem onward to the next, Koh Tao. (2B)

Jan 11 Jan 15

Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details.

Inclusions

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels/ resorts (8 nts) Transport: Local ferries Meals: 8 breakfasts, 2 dinners Group Leader: Experienced Tour Manager Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Code: COTIPH

Koh Samui

04

Stay longer on Koh Samui Check out pages 60-63

06

Today, you have plenty of free time so choose to sit back with a good book or take the opportunity to explore this world-renowned island by foot. Alternatively, jump on an optional cruise out to stunning swimming spots and some beachtime on a private island! Grab a snorkel and get acquainted with the brightly-coloured tropical fish. (B)

DAY ITINERARY Phuket

02-03

09

05-06

Today, you’ll jump on a ferry and set sail to the famous party island of Koh Pha Ngan. This island combines laid back beachlife with euphoric buzzy nightlife. Get involved and dance the night away at one of the island’s legendary Full Moon Parties (specific tour dates only). (B, D)

07

48

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Koh Phi Phi is an incredible island whether you choose to explore or relax. Check out the perfection that is Phi Phi on a day cruise around nearby islands – dip your toes in the sea and feel the sand beneath your feet as you stare in awe at the seaside vista around you. You’ll have the chance to snorkel and swim in the warm waters of the Andaman Sea before lying on the beach to unwind. Tonight, you can kick back on the sand and relax as you’re mesmerised by the amazing fire dancing right on the beach. (2B)

Koh Phi Phi / Krabi

Today you’ll sail to one of the most popular beaches on Krabi – Ao Nang. Set amongst the limestone karsts, Krabi is home to unspoilt islands and beautiful beaches. Tonight, you can grab a meal at a cool beachside restaurant or party by night in popular Bar Street. (B, D)

Krabi

Choose how to spend your next few days: lying on the beach surrounded by coconut trees with an occasional wander down white sands to the sparkling sea, or laze about in a hammock... sounds like bliss! By night there is plenty to keep you entertained with many restaurants, bars and beach parties. (2B) Say ‘la gon’ to Koh Pha Ngan as you catch a ferry to your final destination of Koh Samui where it’s time to bid farewell to your island-hopping buddies. You can either take a free transfer to the airport or back to the start hotel in Koh Samui. (B)

Chat with the locals as you board a ferry and travel to picturesque Phi Phi Island, setting for the movie ‘The Beach’. You’ll take a stroll around the island to get your bearings, ending with an unbeatable panoramic sunset from a hill top. Later head out on the town and take in beach-side bars and the atmosphere of Phi Phi by night. (B, D)

Koh Phi Phi

Phuket Koh Phi Phi

Take your pick of the beaches over the next few days. If you’re looking for action, shopping and partying into the night, head for Patong Beach; quieter than Patong and great for watersports is Karon Beach, with its fine powdery sand; whilst Kata Beach is a good choice for anyone who enjoys a great selection of restaurants and bars, but prefers it a little less wild than in Patong. Beaches not your thing? Don’t worry, there’s something for everyone on Phuket - hit the shops or sip cocktails while watching the sun slip over the horizon. On the other hand if you feel like taking it up a level, try out some of the many watersports on offer or opt for a day tour out to the popular ‘James Bond Island’, so called after its starring role in the James Bond film, ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’. (2B)

Phuket / Koh Phi Phi

Krabi

Koh Tao / Koh Pha Ngan

Koh Pha Ngan / Koh Samui

Arrive into the beach-fringed island of Phuket. Get yourself settled in your hotel before heading out to explore Phuket’s exotic sights. In the evening, you’ll meet your Tour Manager and fellow travellers. Then head out for some tasty Thai food together and explore Patong’s pulsing nightlife.

01

Koh Pha Ngan

07-08

Phuket

04

This morning you’ll cruise to nearby Koh Tao – an island known for its spectacular underwater scenery. When people think of this island they would usually think of world-class diving, vibrant coral reefs, laid-back island attitude, glistening beaches and heart-stoppingly blue seas... and well, they would be 100% right! Koh Tao is everything you could possibly dream of! So grab your diving gear or snorkel and experience it. (B, D)

Koh Tao

05

Get ready to chill on some of the world’s best beaches with a bunch of new travel mates. Hop from the buzzing island atmosphere of Phuket to the famous getaway of Koh Phi Phi, lazing in the sun on blindingly white beaches or canoeing through beautiful clear waters. Finish up in Krabi with its incredible scenery, sit back and relax as you get used to the daily view - white sands and blue waters. Who couldn’t get used to a view like that? With multiple nights in each place the mix is just right so you can get as active or be as chilled as you like, plus travelling by regular ferry is a great way to mingle with the friendly locals.

T H A I L A N D

Koh Samui / Koh Tao

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south east asia

south east asia

Departures 2014

£615

FR

08

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Explore South East Asia Big Indochina Adventure (25 days, Bangkok to Hanoi) (COBICA) see page 24

09

A day for you to laze about on the beach, take a boat trip out to isolated Rai Leh or, if you are feeling adventurous, try climbing the 1,237 steps to the amazing view at the Tiger Cave Temple. Located near Krabi Town in southern Thailand, this is one of the most interesting temple complexes in southern Thailand with monks living and worshipping within a maze of natural caves nestled within overgrown jungle. You could also go explore some of Krabi’s jungle at a different angle... on the back of an elephant at a nearby elephant camp. (B)

Krabi / Phuket

Rise early to make the most of your island stay before heading back to Phuket, where your trip started and where, today, it sadly must come to an end. You have a choice to travel to the airport or back to the starting point hotel in Phuket. (B)

Fr £2,755

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

49


THAi SAILING ADVENTURE

THAI SAILING ADVENTURE Phuket

What Life’s Like At Sea Small Group Sailing Meet your new home at sea: a 37ft sailing catamaran. Sailing takes all of the hassle out of island hopping and is a fantastic way to avoid the crowds. On board, there is ample space inside the vessel and on deck for eating, drinking and for those who like to indulge in a spot of sun worshipping! You’ll be taken care of by an experienced skipper who will navigate you from island to island and will even teach you the ropes if you fancy. If that’s not your thing, sit back and enjoy the beautiful scenery of southern Thailand passing you by.

Itineraries These itineraries will allow you to explore the Andaman Sea without a worry in the world. Cruise for seven awesome days or hop on for a quick three-night taste of paradise – the choice is yours! We’ve shown just three of the many options available, please check with us for more details. With fantastically flexible itineraries, you’ll sail to pristine islands and the region’s best snorkelling spots, waking up in a new sunkissed heaven every day.

4 DAYS

Kho Phi Phi

Please note the itinerary may need to change due to inclement weather conditions. This decision will be made solely at the skipper’s discretion, based on the safety of the group and the vessel.

Relaxing Nights

Highlights

T H A I L A N D

Learn To Sail With just a skipper on board, there’s always an opportunity to get involved if you’ve ever fancied yourself as a crew member. Pick up the basics of sailing from the skipper, or just sit back and let your shipmates take the wheel. There’s no pressure!

Meals & Food Kitty Any of these sailing itineraries will set your taste buds buzzing as you enjoy traditional Thai and international meals, freshly prepared with local produce by your on board cook. A range of very reasonablypriced drinks are available for purchase on board the vessel. When meals aren’t included, you can dine with locals on shore.

DAY ITINERARY

James Bond Island Phang Nga

By night, you’ll anchor up in the most beautiful bays and picturesque harbours. Sleep in your bunk or camp out on the deck under a blanket of Thai stars.

• Sail to beautiful southern Thai islands • Enjoy tantalising traditional cuisine • Laze on pure white secluded beaches

Kho Phi Phi

4 DAYS

Phuket

Phuket

Krabi Railay Beach Koh Yao Yai Koh Khai Nai

Arriving no later than 1pm today you’ll meet your group and skipper to start your Thai sailing adventure. Later, choose to go on a dinghy exploration, suntan on the deck or go for a swim under the stars before a delicious dinner of Thai-style cuisine. (D)

01

Phuket Koh Phi Phi

£949

Phuket

FR

7 DAYS

Phuket

Meet your fellow sailors and your skipper at 3pm in Koh Phi Phi today before setting sail for Phi Phi Leh to visit Maya Bay, where ‘The Beach’ was filmed with Leonardo di Caprio. (D)

01

Visit a Sea Gypsy village and Koh Phing Kan, popularly known as ‘James Bond Island’ in the idyllic Phang Nga Bay. Opt to take a tour to see mangroves and pre-historic cave paintings. (B, L, D)

02

Southern Phuket Islands

Prepare for a full day sailing as you make your way through the beautiful Southern Phuket Islands. Enjoy snorkelling with the stunning sea life and a lunch break amongst remote islands and sandy beaches. In the evening, step off the boat and enjoy dinner with your new friends at a local restaurant. (B, L)

02

Krabi Islands / Railay Beach

Set sail this morning for magnificent Railay Beach where you’ll enjoy a stunning beach and beaming sunshine. Railay Beach is also famous for its rock-climbing options and a great nightlife. (B, L)

03

Koh Khai Nai / Phang Nga Bay

Continue your wonderful sailing adventure as you move on to the tiny island of Koh Khai Nai where you can swim and snorkel as much as your heart desires! Sail into Phang Nga Bay and ejnoy dinner in a secluded anchorage. (B, L, D)

03

Koh Phi Phi

This morning you’ll sail towards the Phi Phi Islands, one of the most beautiful of all Thai island groups! Prepare for a snorkel stop in Monkey Bay and the unmatchable beauty of Koh Phi Phi Beach. Your adventure will finish around 3pm. Please see page 72 if you’d like to extend your stay at Koh Phi Phi. (B)

04

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 04 Jan 11 Jan 18 Jan 25 Feb 01

Jan 07 Jan 14 Jan 21 Jan 28 Feb 04

Feb 08 Feb 15 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 08

Feb 11 Feb 18 Feb 25 Mar 04 Mar 11

START

FINISH

Mar 15 Mar 18 Mar 22 Mar 25 Mar 29 Apr 01

Inclusions

Trip Style: Marine Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Sailing catamaran (3 nts) Transport: Sailing catamaran Meals: 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $40-50 for meals not included Group Leader: Skipper, assistant/cook Group Size: Max 14, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATSK

Phuket

01

Arriving around 1pm today you’ll meet your fellow sailors and skipper. (D)

Koh Ping Kan

Set off sail to Phang Nga Bay including a visit to the world-famous ‘James Bond Island’ and one of the last Sea Gypsy villages. (B, L, D)

02

Krabi Islands / Railay Beach

Raise anchor and sail around sandfringed islands, stopping to dive into the clear blue sea as you go, before arriving to the laid-back Railay Beach. (B, L)

03

Koh Phi Phi / Maya Bay

Next up; Koh Phi Phi! Along the way you’ll pause at stunningly beautiful Maya Bay for a swim. Think you recognise it? Possibly, as this is where the movie ‘The Beach’ was filmed. (B, D)

04

Southern Phuket Islands

05

Enjoy snorkelling to view marine life and cruising amongst remote islands. (B, L)

Koh Yao Yai / Koh Khai Nai / Phuket

Phuket

It’s an early start this morning as you depart for Phuket. After a stop for a swim, arrive into Yacht Haven Marina just before lunch where your adventure concludes. (B)

04

Departures 2014

START

Highlights

• Sail aboard an exclusive catamaran • Hop between beautiful paradise islands • See the filming location for James Bond

DAY ITINERARY

Koh Phi Phi Leh / Maya Bay

Phang Nga Bay

Please ask for departure dates from Nov 2014-Mar 2015.

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Highlights

• Relax on the deck of your sailing yacht • Swim and snorkel in stunning bays • Visit the filming location for ‘The Beach’

DAY ITINERARY

Departures 2014

50

THAI SAILING £529 ADVENTURE

FR

south east asia

south east asia

Get out there and island hop from one idyllic Thai island to the next! This mesmerising corner of Asia is brimming with sublime rays, rugged landscapes, mouthwatering Thai cuisine and azure snorkelling hotspots. Anchor up under the stars at these wellknown and off-the-radar islands in a catamaran, complete with an experienced skipper. Get face to face with southern Thailand and prepare to enjoy a little slice of paradise!

THAI SAILING £529 ADVENTURE

FR

More opportunities for snorkelling and swimming as you continue sailing. Enjoy dinner in a secluded anchorage in Phang Nga Bay. Cruise ends in Phuket just before lunchtime on Day 7. (2B, L, D)

06-07

Departures 2014

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 07 Jan 14 Jan 21 Jan 28 Feb 04

Jan 10 Jan 17 Jan 24 Jan 31 Feb 07

Feb 11 Feb 18 Feb 25 Mar 04 Mar 11

Feb 14 Feb 21 Feb 28 Mar 07 Mar 14

START

FINISH

Mar 18 Mar 21 Mar 25 Mar 28 Apr 01 Apr 04

Please ask for departure dates from Nov 2014-Mar 2015.

Inclusions

Trip Style: Marine Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Sailing catamaran (3 nts) Transport: Sailing catamaran Meals: 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $40-50 for meals not included Group Leader: Skipper, assistant/cook Group Size: Max 14, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATSH

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 04 Jan 11 Jan 18 Jan 25 Feb 01

Jan 10 Jan 17 Jan 24 Jan 31 Feb 07

Feb 08 Feb 15 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 08

Feb 14 Feb 21 Feb 28 Mar 07 Mar 14

START

FINISH

Mar 15 Mar 21 Mar 22 Mar 28 Mar 29 Apr 04

Please ask for departure dates from Nov 2014-Mar 2015.

Inclusions

Trip Style: Marine Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Sailing catamaran (6 nts) Transport: Sailing catamaran Meals: 6 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners Budget: Allow USD $85-120 for meals not included Group Leader: Skipper, assistant/cook Group Size: Max 14, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATSA

51


Bangkok

travelling around thailand

SUVARNABHUMI INTERNATIONAL AIRPOR T: 25km mm ro Bo

11 9

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8

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KHAO SAN ROAD

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MBK SHOPPING CENTRE

10

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5

Routes & Passes Starting in Bangkok Fr £58 Starting in Samui Fr £46 Starting in Phuket Fr £92

run

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PATPONG MARKETS

1 4 4 14

GLAMPACKER

LUB D SILOM

GLAMPACKER

LUB D SIAM SQUARE

£9 DORM £11 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

THTRPA

Shoestring

£11 DORM £15 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

NEW WORLD CITY HOTEL

rock solid

£27 SINGLE £14 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

viengtai HOTEL

£32 SINGLE £18 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

• People-watch with a beer at the streetside café • Watch your favourite movie in the lounge • Chill out in your comfy, funky dorm room

• See all of Bangkok from this central location • Have a beer with new friends in the streetside bar • Laze on beanbags in the movie room

• 10/10 for location, five minutes from the infamous Khao San Road • Re-charge your batteries using the spa and massage service • 24-hour reception - no curfew!

• Enjoy a top location close to Bangkok’s famed Khao San Road • Take time out from sightseeing at the relaxing outdoor pool • Spotlessly clean and comfortable rooms

This is one of the hottest properties on the Bangkok hostel scene with funky communal areas and cool rooms. Each dorm bed has its own reading light and plug socket and all the rooms have air con. Spacious female-only dorms are available as well as private rooms. There’s free Internet and a movie lounge to take time out in.

This hostel has super-trendy rooms, free Internet and a buzzing bar. There’s a choice of rooms from the four-bed deluxe dorms and ladies-only dorms to private rooms with queen-sized beds, LCD TV and en suite bathroom. The location is near Siam Square and less than a minute’s walk from the Skytrain to whiz you around the city.

Looking for convenience? Then this large, modern hotel is the perfect hassle-free option. All rooms come with balconies, private bathrooms and satellite TV. There’s also a restaurant, massage service and Internet access - meaning you can relax, get out there and enjoy the delights of vibrant Bangkok to the max.

With a restaurant, bar, spa, outdoor pool and shops all onsite, this hotel is a great place to stay. Adjacent to the bustling Khao San Road, it’s just steps to all the street stalls, cafés and backpacker bars. All the guestrooms come fully equipped with great facilities, air con, TV’s and en suites.

BKKLUB

5% discount when bookied 30 days in advance

SHOESTRING

TOP INN

£14 SINGLE £10 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

BKKTOP

52

rock solid

BANGKOK PALACE

£37 SINGLE £19 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

Located right in the heart of the action in backpacker heaven on Khao San Road, this simple hotel is a great base for your time in Bangkok. Clean, comfy and well-located and all for a price that won’t blow your baht! Rooms have private bathrooms and air con to escape Bangkok’s heat and there’s 24-hour Internet in the communal area.

BKKLUS

5% discount when bookied 30 days in advance

£45 SINGLE £23 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

BKKBAN

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Elegant, artistic and exuding an air of luxury from the moment you step inside, it’s fantastic service all the way! The little extra touches are what make this hotel special, from the free Wi-Fi to the complimentary daily bottled water and fresh fruit on arrival to the pillow menu. Cool off with a dip in the refreshing pool! STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 01Apr14- 31Oct14, BOOK EARLY FOR FREE BREAKFAST UPGRADE

BKKvie

glampacker

buddy boutique inn

£24 SINGLE £12 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

BANGKOK STARTER PACK

£108

FR

4 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

This tried and tested favourite won’t disappoint. Go for a dip in the pool and a work out in the gym before you head to the Thai massage parlour. The staff are ultrafriendly and will give you a few tips on what to do at the travel desk. The simple rooms contain everything to make you feel happy, comfy and relaxed. STAY 3 PAY 2 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

A=-List

rembrandt hotel

BKKNWL

ISIC CARD HOLDERS GET LATE CHECK OUT

BKKRHT

• A touch of class in the heart of the backpacker district • Exclusive feel with just 23 rooms • Rooms with every amenity you could possibly need

Stay right next to bustling Khao San Road but with a big serving of style at this chic little boutique hotel. With LCD TVs, air con, fridge and free Wi-Fi in all the rooms, you will be living it up in the backpacker district. For a small fee you can also use the pool, gym, sauna and steam room at their sister hotel Buddy Lodge. ISIC CARD HOLDERS GET 10% discount on food & beverage at buddy’s outlets

Bangkok can seem a little daunting to visitors, especially if it’s your first time in Asia. So get organised and make sure that your first few nights are hassle-free. Grab this smart little starter pack - a great intro to Thailand’s cart wheeling capital. You’ll be picked up at the airport and safely deposited in a great central hotel and you can enjoy a half-day ‘City and Temples’ tour and a half-day ‘Thonburi Klongs’ spin along the city canals. Accommodation: Royal Hotel (3nts) Transport: Coach Included Touring as specified Meals: Daily breakfast Tour Code: BKKROP

BKKBOU

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

53

south east asia

south east asia

ek Ratchadaphis

13 2

Lan

Travel & Island Hopping Passes Need unbeatable value and flexible transport between the Thai Islands but not sure when you’re travelling or where? Keep your options open and sort yourself out with a handy transfer from Bangkok or an island hopping pass. Valid for up to three months, the passes can start in Bangkok, Samui or Phuket and take in between 2 and 9 Thai islands and resorts. Multiple services daily are offered on all routes. Add on a Nomads Bed Hopper Pass for greater flexibility - see page 63.


rock solid

BANGKOK CHA DA HOTEL

£40 SINGLE £20 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

STAY 2 PAY 1, STAY 4 PAY 2 - All Year

PATHUMWAN PRINCESS HOTEL

£100 SINGLE £50 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This leading hotel is smack bang in the centre of the city adjacent to the MBK shopping centre. Pay a trip to the hotel’s health club on the 6th floor, one of the best in town. There, you can relax at the end of the day with breathtaking views of the city from the hot and cold Jacuzzi pools. Bliss! STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4 - 01Apr14-31Oct14, STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6 - 01Jan14-31Mar14

BKKCHD

rock solid

TRANG HOTEL BANGKOK

FR

This hotel combines a great location, near Khao San Road, with slick service and a relaxing atmosphere. Check out the stunning indoor pool set under an enormous skylight. The rooms ooze style and modernity with plush beds and free Wi-Fi. You’ll notice that extra touch of care and attention throughout.

BKKPAp

BKKtra

£50 SINGLE £25 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

SIAM@SIAM DESIGN HOTEL & SPA

£95 SINGLE £48 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

• After a day of sightseeing, treat yourself to a massage • Unwind in the lounge and listen to some live music • Relax in your stylish room and take in the views

Right in the heart of Chinatown, this is a little gem of a hotel. Rooms are beautifully decorated with luxurious facilities and the hotel boasts a trendy restaurant and jazz bar. It’s easy to get around the city thanks to its top location near the river, and a free shuttle service to take you to other city sights is also available.

Hotels don’t get much trendier than this masterpiece in the heart of Bangkok. Each of the elegant rooms feature high ceilings, large window bays and plenty of modern amenities. Overlooking the city, The Roof Wine and Champagne Bar is the place to take in the view. In search of relaxation? Check out the amazing spa and sauna.

BKKSHA

BKKSIA

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

rock solid

Truthai experience Bangkok to Koh Phangan

£425

FR

8 DAYS

Take a breather from tumultuous Bangkok and embark on this exciting historic tour. Visit the Summer Palace on the banks of the Chao Phraya River before discovering the ancient ruins of World Heritage listed Ayutthaya. Next, it’s on to Kanchanaburi to delve into its WWII history. See the Bridge over the River Kwai and the beautiful Erawan N.P. Enjoy three days of delicious Thai food, swimming under waterfalls and admiring fascinating temples. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Tourist class hotel (2nts) Meals: 2 breakfasts Tour Leader: Local English speaking guide Tour Code: BKKRKW. We also offer a day trip to River Kwai - please ask for details.

Bamboo rafting, a trip to spectacular Khao Sok National Park, traditional Thai massages, a night in a floating bungalow, elephant riding, snorkelling in idyllic Koh Tao, plus dining and beach partying aplenty! This truly is an action-packed, adventure-filled tour to start your backpacking trip or an equally ideal one week holiday. Sample the infamous Bangkok nightlife and meet some awesome people on this fabulous trip! Departs: 3-4 times monthly Accommodation: Guesthouse (2 nts), overnight train (1 nt), floating bungalow (1 nt), villa (2 nts), beach bungalow(1 nt) Meals: 1 breakfast, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Tour Code: BKKTTE

river kwai FLOATHOUSE

£188

FR

2 DAYS

FLOATING MARKETS

£46

FR

HALF DAY

bangkok food expedition

£42

FR

HALF DAY

Head out into the unspoilt mountainous jungle scenery of Kanchanaburi, just over two hours from Bangkok and home to the iconic River Kwai. Visit the museum, the Allied POW Cemetery and take a historic train ride on the Death Railway. Come nightfall, bed down in an elegant floating villa, complete with private terrace, DVD player and rain shower at the luxurious Float House. Enjoy a guided jungle trek on Day 2 before returning to Bangkok. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Luxury twin shared room in boutique, floating villa (1 nt) Includes: Transfers & admission fees Meals:1 breakfast, 2 luches, 1 dinner Transport: Air con van/coach, boat Tour Code: BKKRKF

Go bargain hunting at Damnoen Saduak, the most famous of Bangkok’s floating markets. Colourfully clad merchants at these lively markets paddle along the canals selling fresh fruit and veg to shoppers. Also included is a visit to South East Asia’s largest pagoda.

Visit the local fresh market of Phra Khanong to buy the raw ingredients for your cookery course that will follow. Board a longtail boat to tour Phra Khanong canal before arriving at the house for your cookery course where you will prepare four amazing dishes.

BKKDAM

BKKBFE

a-list

£66 SINGLE £33 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

SIVATEL BANGKOK

£113 SINGLE £57 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

CHINATOWN & NIGHT MARKETS

£40

FR

half DAY

Damnoen Saduak & TIGER TEMPLE

£57

FR

FULL DAY

BANGKOK CITY & Temples TOUR

£22

FR

HALF DAY

TEMPLE & RIVER OF KINGS

£45

FR

HALF DAY

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Minutes away from buzzing Patpong and shopping hotspots • Cool down in the outdoor pool, with a cocktail from the poolside bar • Work up a sweat in the fitness centre and sauna

• Make a splash in the infinity pool with a view • Check out the idyllic retreat, The Eight Spa • Munch on international cuisine at the pool-side restaurant

Steps away from shopping Meccas Asiatique, Siam Paragon, Central World and Platinum Shopping Mall and near the nightlife district of Patpong, Novotel offers a comfortable sanctuary from Bangkok’s hustle and bustle. Its newly-designed, stylish rooms come with free Wi-Fi and great views of Bangok’s skyline.

Get the five-star experience at this high-rise haven. Just 75 suites all come with modern decor and flat screen TV’s plus a relaxed and friendly atmosphere; this place has all the luxury and style you could ever need! Contemporary and chic with outstanding views across the capital, you can be sure of a fantastic stay.

54

3 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Surf the free Wi-Fi in your oriental-style room • Daily replenished mini-bar, free of charge • Enjoy live music and tasty food at Cotton

STAY 3 PAY 2 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

£243

FR

a-list

FR

Novotel bangkok fenix Silom

RIVER KWAI & ANCIENT KINGDOMS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

a-list

SHANGHAI MANSION

£37 SINGLE £23 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

BKKFEN

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

BKKSVT

Immerse yourself in the culture, soak up the atmosphere and learn how the community originated hundreds of years ago. Explore and visit a 100 year-old coffee shop and the world’s largest golden Buddha. Try different foods and bag some bargains at the markets!

Bag a bargain at Damneon Saduak, Bangok’s most popular and colourful floating market before heading to the ‘Tiger Temple’ rescue centre, where you’ll get up close with these majestic wild animals. Finish up with a trip to the world-famous River Kwai Bridge. Grrrrreat!

BKKCHI

BKKSTT

Feed your inner culture-vulture and check out several of Bangkok’s most magnificent temples, including the famous reclining Buddha. There’ll also be plenty of sightseeing, shopping and eating opportunities. A great way to find your feet!

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

BKKCTT

The Grand Palace, the Emerald Buddha and Wat Po (Bangkok’s oldest Buddhist temple) are all ticked off on this exciting tour. You’ll also hop on a long-tail boat to visit Bangkok’s canals. Escape the chaotic streets and explore the city’s longforgotten nooks and crannies. BKKRIV

55

south east asia

south east asia

Conveniently located in the bustling heart of the city, rises the 14-storey Bangkok Cha-Da Hotel. Combining modern design and comfort, expect 24-hour smiling, traditional Thai hospitality. Relax and let yourself be pampered at the spa, sauna and steam room or take a dip in the rooftop swimming pool.

a-list


CHIANG MAI

hilltribe hut experience Chiang Mai

£181

FR

3 DAYS

Chiang Mai

Eco Resort

Rock Solid

IMM THAPHAE HOTEL

£10 DORM FR £17 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Expect polished wood and sumptuous silks. Set in lovely gardens, each of the dorms boast air con, Wi-Fi and lockers. It’s located close to downtown Chiang Mai and a short walk from the Night Bazaar. When you’re not chilling in the coffee corner, have a game of table soccer, take a dip in the outdoor pool, or maybe even rent a bike! STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4 STAYS 01May14-30Sep14, BOOKED 18Mar13-30Apr14

rock solid

CENTARA DUANGTAWAN

£21 SINGLE FR £11 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located in the centre of the old walled city and near to Tha Phae Gate you’ll escape the humid hustle of Chiang Mai in this beautiful haven. Fresh colours are the decor of this amazing hotel, where simplicity meets comfort, combined with floor to ceiling glass wherever you look. Check out the games room for some fun!

CNXECO

£35 SINGLE FR £20 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

• Explore rural villages by foot and see local cultures • Snooze in jungle surrounds in authentic accommodation • Get a taste of city life in Thailand’s northern capital

Take to the hills on this adventure-packed trip taking in the unique sights of northern Thailand. Set out from Chiang Mai into the surrounding region, absorb the local culture and try the different cuisine (deep fried pork fat with a fiery chilli dip anyone?). You’ll hike through remote villages, learn the secrets to jungle survival from local minority tribes and get immersed in this beautiful area. Feast on delicious local food and spend two nights shacked up with the locals in traditional bamboo huts. If you’re looking to escape the cities and get a taste of the real Thailand, then this whirlwind journey is for you.

Get in touch with the local lives of unique and intriguing hilltribes in the ethnic north of tantalising Thailand. These hills are home to stunning landscapes, colourful minority groups and rural outposts where communities live in small, thatched houses sitting on stilts. Hike from village to village through fresh forests and over rolling hills and see the eclectic local culture first-hand where tribes have their own language, clothing and belief systems. Sleep in traditional local huts as the jungle sounds soothe you to sleep. There’s also time to explore the city wonders of Chiang Mai with a nights’ accommodation pre and post your adventure.

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hilltribe villages (2 nts) Meals: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Tour code: CNXHUT

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hotel (2 nts), floor mats in a local bamboo hut (2 nts) Meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Tour Code: CNXHIL

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

glampacker

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4 04Jan14-28Dec14

CNXCDH

CHIANG MAI & GOLDEN TRIANGLE Chiang Mai

a-list

£280

FR

3 DAYS

Chiang Mai

Highlights

• Trundle through the jungle on an elephant’s back • Take a long-tail boat to the ancient capital of Chiang Saen. • Explore the five interconnected Chiang Dao Caves

£20 SINGLE FR £10 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

MANATHAI VILLAGE CHIANG MAI

£80 SINGLE FR £40 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Chill out and watch a DVD in the comfort of your room • After the sun goes down hit the G-Bar for a cocktail • Explore the surrounding atmospheric streets

• Have a private dinner with 24-hour room service • Get your knots massaged out at the spa • Eat tasty Thai food in the fantastic restaurant

A quaint and trendy hotel tucked away in the old town of Chiang Mai. With a ‘loft art’ concept, the design is intimate yet funky. Enjoy cracking views, with a backdrop of mountains. After a day’s sightseeing take a refreshing dip in the pink-coloured plunge pool before tucking into a meal at the rooftop restaurant.

In a great location next to the Night Bazaar, this is a chic and charming resort. Most areas are open-air with poolside menus and drinks. Rooms feature high ceilings, dark wooden floors and white decor splashed with coloured accents. The bathrooms boast huge tubs, large shower heads and luxurious smellies.

DCNXDH

56

honeymoon extras available

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

5 DAYS

Deep in the heart of the ancient city of Chiang Mai, just moments away from the stellar Night Bazaar. You’ll love the beautiful outdoor pool and sun terrace surrounded by lush land with panoramic views. Other facilities include a gym, sauna, steam room and Jacuzzi. All rooms offer air con, mini-bar, satellite TV and Internet.

CNXIMM

SMALL HOTEL

£214

FR

Chiang Mai

Highlights

• Sleep in authentic bamboo huts in local villages • Go jungle trekking through remote Northern Thailand • Opt to go river rafting

GLAMPACKER

Chiang Mai

CNXMAN

Kiss the mayhem of Chiang Mai goodbye as you head north to a land of myth and fable... Actually, it’s the area where Thailand, Burma and Laos meet, but it still conjures up images of poppy fields, Chinese warlords and smugglers! Ride elephants in the jungle, meet friendly Akha people, visit an opium museum and perhaps step a sneaky foot into laid-back Laos. Take a breather with a cup of tea in a traditional Chinese tea house overlooking the misted mountains. Absorb the rich history, scenic beauty and melting pot of cultures and cuisines and return to Chiang Mai more serene and with great memories. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hilltribe homestays (2 nts) Transport: Return transfer from local accommodation, boat, walking, elephant Meals: 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches Tour Code: CNXGOL

GOLDEN TRIANGLE TREK Chiang Mai

£185

FR

Chiang Mai

3 DAYS

Highlights

• Experience the real Thailand staying with hilltribe communities • Get up close and ride elephants • Take a refreshing dip in a waterfall, relax in hot springs

For an authentic Thai adventure, get off the beaten track on this three-day tour of the picturesque Golden Triangle. Heading straight out of Chiang Mai, you’ll pass great scenery before getting the chance to trek to a number of traditional villages (including Karon, Lahu and Akha) where you will stay in a different one each night. Take a three-hour scenic motorboat ride down the Kok River, cool down in a refreshing waterfall and visit an elephant camp. And yes, you’ve guessed it, there will be a chance to ride on one of these gentle giants too! Enroute back to Chiang Mai, visit hot springs for a relaxing pitstop. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Basic hilltribe accommodation (2 nts) Transport: Transfer from local accommodation, walking and motorboat Meals: 3 lunches, 2 dinners Tour Code: BKKG3D

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

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south east asia

south east asia

Highlights

CHIANG MAI & HILLTRIBE ADVENTURE


Northern Thailand HILLTRIBES TREK Chiang Mai

KOH SAMET, KOH TALU & HUA HIN

£199

FR

5 DAYS

Chiang Mai

THAI ELEPHANT CONSERVATION

Mae Taeng District (Chiang Mai)

£399

FR

1 - 8 WEEKS

south east asia

south east asia

Highlights

• Assist with local conservation • Bathe and feed elephants • Learn about elephant health and treatment

Highlights

• Explore the vibrant and laid-back northern capital of Chiang Mai • Visit the hilltribes of Northern Thailand and meet friendly locals • Get to know the Karen tribe and witness their traditional weaving

DAY ITINERARY Chang Mai

01

Arrive to the cultural centre of northern Thailand, Chiang Mai, at any time today and start exploring this charming city. This moated old city is surrounded by rolling hills and houses hundreds of sacred temples, great cafés and shops.

Set in a valley surrounded by forested mountains, this project offers a peaceful home for over 30 neglected and abused elephants. Headed up by Lek, a co-founder of the park, also known as the ‘Elephant Whisperer’ by locals for her affinity with these majestic grey, giants, her focus on the elephants’ wellbeing is inspiring. Providing an essential role in caring for this endangered species, you will treat and feed residents onsite as well as learning how they communicate and make friends. All the mahouts (elephant caretakers) bring the elephants down to the river so that everyone can have a go at bathing them - the best part of the day! Project Start Date: Mondays Location: Mae Teng District (60km north of Chiang Mai) Accommodation: multi-share volunteer huts (6 nts) Meals: most meals included Extra Weeks: Fr £389 per week Trip Code: GATATECT

Hilltribes Trek

02

River Rafting / Chiang Mai

04-05

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (2 nts), basic huts (2 nts, multi-share) Transport: Open truck, van, elephant, raft Meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD 50-75 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, avg 12 Tour Code: GAATHH

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

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Every Sunday, Tuesday & Friday

STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 14 PAY 10 11Jan14-19Dec14

CHIANG MAI EXPERIENCE

Bangkok

Wake up to a day of real fun as you set off down the Mae Tang River on a bamboo raft! Stop at a Lahu village before continuing to a Shan village for lunch. Return to Chiang Mai this afternoon for your last night on the town with your new friends. Your amazing adventure ends on Day 5 and you are free to depart at any time. (2B, L)

Chiang Mai

THA IL A N D

Sai Kaew BEACH Resort, Koh SaMet

£56 SINGLE £31 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

Located on Noi Na beach on the quiet northern part of Koh Samet, this small, intimate resort offers just 30 simple but modern bungalows and cottages set around a pool. Just a few hours from Bangkok, close to Sai Kaew beach and Na Dan village with its local bars and restaurants, this is the perfect beach break.

Hilltribes Trek / Baan Mae Ma Nain

03

Samed club, Koh Samet

a-list

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Early start this morning as you travel in an open pick-up truck to Mae Malai where you will enjoy lunch before starting your trek. Trek through forests and rural terrain to visit some of the most colourful and unchanged traditional hilltribe villages. As you trek through the tropical forest from one village to another, you will be impressed by the variety of languages, clothing styles and beliefs that differ hugely from one another. (B, L, D) This morning you will set off on a two- to three-hour trek in the forest, visiting rice and vegetable fields along the way as you pass the villages and learn about their traditional methods of cultivation. Re-charge your energy levels over lunch and then continue trekking to the Karen village of Baan Mae Ma Nain where there’s a chance to ride an elephant through the forest. Experience local ways and learn how to construct a bamboo raft, then go fishing at Mae Tang River using local tools. (B, L, D)

rock solid

rock solid

KOH TALU BEACH RESORT, Koh Talu

£70 SINGLE £40 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This place is all about the vibe. From the modern minimalist rooms and the glass-walled fitness centre suspended above the pool to the cool beachfront cocktail bar, the facilities are young and fun. Choose from lively Sai Kaew beach or secluded Pineapple beach, the hotel is between the two so take your pick. STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 14 PAY 10 11Jan14-19Dec14

KSZSAM

£131 SINGLE £66 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT FULL BOARD

Enjoy an authentic Robinson Crusoe experience. The idyllic beach location is great for diving and snorkelling and all chalets come with air con, private deck, satellite TV and garden views. Dine at the pier-side restaurant or chill at the beach bar. This is a very chilled resort on a very chilled island. DBPQKT

KSZSAI

£111

FR

Bangkok

6 DAY

a-list

Highlights

• Adrenalin-pumping white water rafting • Once-in-a-life chance to feed, ride and interact with elephants • Whizz through the jungle’s treetops on a zipline (optional)

This adventure-packed tour takes you from Bangkok to the mystical city of Chiang Mai, home to the ethnic tribes of Northern Thailand. There’s tons to experience - not just what you’ve seen in ‘The Hangover’! Arrive by overnight train, then explore this colourful city. Flex your bargaining skills at the local night bazaar, take a cooking class or fly through the jungle as part of the ‘Flight of the Gibbon’ ziplining experience (optional - at own expense). Head deep into the jungle on a guided trek and learn about local life as you rest your head at a village homestay. Top it all off with time at an elephant camp followed by a white water rafting trip down the jungle river! Return to Bangkok by overnight bus. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Overnight train (1 nt), guesthouse (2 nts), overnight bus (1 nt), multi-share homestay accommodation (1 nt), Meals: 1 breakfast, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Transport: Train, bus Tour Code: CNXEXP

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

ANANTARA HUA HIN, Hua Hin

£82 SINGLE £41 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

bangkok to Koh Samet adventure

£366

FR

6 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Pure luxury, set in 14 acres of stunning, exotic gardens • Stylish rooms with beach views and large terraces • Unwind al fresco with a massage in the spa’s garden courtyard

‘Wow’ is probably the word that best describes this swish beachfront hotel. With lush, tropical gardens, an outdoor pool, tennis courts and even an onsite cookery school, you won’t be straying far. Should you choose to venture further afield, the night market is a five-minute drive away. 10% Discount if booked 45 Days in Advance - 08Jan14-20Dec14

Get under the skin of bustling Bangkok with a sensory-filled visit to buzzing Silom Road and Chinatown followed by a trip out of the city to historical Kanchanaburi’s seven-tiered Erawan Waterfall and National Park, plus Thailand’s best floating markets. Continue on to the tranquil island of Koh Samet in the Gulf of Thailand. Relax, soak up the sun and enjoy a day on Koh Samet’s magnificent beaches. Why not extend your stay here for a few extra days. Departs: Tuesdays Accommodation: Hotel (5 nts) Meals: 5 breakfasts Transport: Air con minibus and ferry Tour Code: BKKCNB

HHQANA

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

59


Koh Samui - Chaweng Beach

FULL MOON PARTY TRANSFERS SAMUI AIRPORT

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3

2

9

5

It’s not often you get to party at one of the most famous beach bashes in the world. See our Koh Phangan accommodation options on pages 64 & 65 although we recommend taking one of the following hassle-free packages:

10 8 6

4 day Full Moon Experience from Koh Samui (see page 63) 6 day Hacienda Party Phangan on Koh Phangan Island (see page 65)

7

SHOESTRING

NORA LAKEVIEW HOTEL

rock solid

AL’S RESORT

£29 SINGLE £15 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

rock solid

chaweng resort

£48 SINGLE £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Nora Lakeview offers no frills accommodation in a great location just across the road from Chaweng Beach. In terms of value for money the rooms are huge and well appointed with flatscreen TV’s and air con. This is a fantastic bargain if you don’t want a pool and all the trimmings.

Enjoy a laid back and relaxed ambience at this chilled resort overlooking Chaweng Beach. Take a cooling dip in the outdoor swimming pool, work up a sweat in the gym or unwind with a massage. Feeling hungry? Check out the resort’s hotel restaurant, relax with a drink at the bar or check out the shops and nightlife a short walk away. stay 7 pay 6 - 01apr14 - 30dec14. book 30 days in advance for a 10% discount

USMNLH

£43 SINGLE £22 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A slice of paradise, these bungalows are tastefully furnished, spacious and come with air con. Take a dip in one or both of the two beachside swimming pools and sample fresh, tasty cuisine at the seaside restaurant. The location is fab for access to the shops, stalls, restaurants and nightlife of the island plus the beach!

USMALR

ROCK SOLID

stay 7 pay 5, stay 14 pay 10 - 11jan1431oct14. early booking discount available

USMCHA

rock solid

SAMUI NATIEN RESORT

£74 SINGLE £40 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

NORA CHAWENG HOTEL

shoestring

THE ROOM

£42 SINGLE £21 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Cool, modern and unashamedly avantgarde, this place has everything you need for a comfy stay. There’s a gym, sauna, Jacuzzi and freshwater pool. The terrace restaurant is one of the best in town and the bar is open till the early hours. Rooms are bright with lush garden or partial sea view from their private balcony or terrace. STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 8 PAY 6 - 01-30 Apr14, 01May14-20Jul14, 21Aug14-30Sep14, 01Oct14-30Nov14

ROCK SOLID

Baan Samui Resort

However, if all you want is to pre-book your transfer from Koh Samui to ensure you’re there for a timely arrival, then our speedboat transfers arrive into Koh Phangan at about 7pm and leave the following morning at 7.30am. Fr £35 return. For details of Full Moon party dates, see page 65. USMFUL

£27 SINGLE £14 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Offering clean rooms and great value for money, the beauty of The Room lies in its central location. A five-minute stroll from Chaweng Beach, one of the best in Samui, and just ten minutes from the market, bars and shops of downtown Chaweng, everything’s in easy reach. All 30 rooms come with Wi-Fi, satellite TV and mini-bar. dusmtr

USMSAN

rock solid

CHABA CABANA BEACH RESORT & SPA

£63 SINGLE £32 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

CHAWENG regent beach resort

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

With its tropical surrounds, this charming hotel is a beachside paradise. Welcome to a land of sea, sun and fun! Rooms are very well equipped and comfy. The hotel has two outdoor swimming pools, a bar, a restaurant and a team of beachfront masseurs. With all this there’s no doubt you’ll leave this resort full of happiness. STAY 6 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7 01Apr14-31Jul14 & 01Sep14-27Dec14

a-list

FR

£100 SINGLE £53 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

USMCHC

a-list

£139 SINGLE £78 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

NORA BEACH RESORT & SPA

£112 SINGLE £56 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Laze by the fabulous beachfront pool • Check out vibrant Chaweng, steps from this hotel hideaway • Watch the sun set from the beachfront restaurant

• Catch up with folks back home in the Internet café • Cool off with a dip in the stylish swimming pool • Pamper yourself with a facial or massage in the spa

• Prime location. Enjoy the atmosphere or shop ‘til you drop! • Indulge in happy hour cocktails at the beachfront restaurant • Take the plunge with the scuba diving service or simply relax poolside

• Go snorkelling and admire the colourful fish and coral • Swim up to the bar for a cocktail and lap up the view • Dine in and try ingredients from the resort garden

Relax and take in the atmosphere of this beachfront hotel. Start your day diving into the sparkling sea or head for the pool. Book in a massage on the beach or grab a jetski. Get to grips with delicious Thai food at the hotel restaurant before retiring to your room, designed for maximum comfort after a long day in the sun.

This great hotel in downtown Chaweng Beach offers those little extras such as complimentary bottled water, bathrobes and slippers. There’s also free Internet throughout the property. Facilities include a stunning pool, restaurant and luxury spa and sleek Thai-style rooms complete with free Wi-Fi and satellite TV.

Shaded by majectic coconut trees, this beachfront hotel is just a short walk from Chaweng’s entertainment and shops. Add to this two swimming pools, two restaurants, a bar, health spa and fitness centre and you’ve the perfect recipe for a hassle-free holiday. Rooms are modern and spacious with Wi-Fi and DVD players.

Set in a spectacular hillside setting, this secluded resort feels like a little village, yet is close enough to all the action of Chaweng. With stunning beach views, a pool and a sensational spa, there’s a permanent ambience of tranquillity and relaxation. The wonderful rooms fuse classical Thai style with contemporary luxuries.

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 8, STAY 16 PAY 11 01Apr14-24Dec14, STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9, STAY 16 PAY 12 - 07Jan14-31Mar14

60

USMBAS

STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 13 PAY 9 - 11Jan14-31Mar14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

USMNRA

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 5 PAY 3, STAY 7 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 5, STAY 11 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7 - 01-15Apr14, 01May14-31Jul14, & 01Sep14-19Dec14

USMCHN

STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 12 PAY 8 01Apr14-31Jul14 & 01Sep14-19Dec14

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

USMNBR

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south east asia

CHAWENG BEACH


Koh Samui - other beaches

KOH PHA NGAN: 16KM

MAENAM

nomads bed HOPPER pass

CHOENG MON BEACH

6

BOPHUT

SAMUI AIRPORT

CHAWENG

south east asia

2

3 1

LAMAI

5 nights  Fr £92 10 nights Fr £165 15 nights Fr £251

4

5

NATIEN

AUSHOP

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SAMAYA BURA, Lamai

£42 SINGLE £21 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Open, airy and typical of Thai architecture, the absolute draw card of this resort is the beachfront pool and bar. Feeling peckish? Check out the hotel bakery or sample the restaurant’s tasty, fusion food served up on a private beach. Work off those excess calories using the yoga and thai boxing classes or opt for pure relaxtion in the spa.

rock solid

Thai house beach resort, lamai

£83 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 14 PAY 7, STAY 21 PAY 15 16Apr14-15Jul14 & 01Sep14-31Oct14, STAY 7 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 12, STAY 12 PAY 8 - 11Jan1415Apr14, 16Jul14-31Aug14, BOOK 60 DAYS IN ADVANCE FOR 20% DISCOUNT - 11Jan14-31Oct14

USMBUR

BUDDY ORIENTAL BEACH RESORT,Lamai

£48 SINGLE £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Nestled in a lush tropical garden right on the white sandy beach of Lamai, Thai House offers comfortable, modern Thai-style accommodation, with bars, restaurants and shops on your doorstep. Take a dip in the pool, unwind in the spa, not forgetting to indulge in the hotel’s 2-4-1 cocktails as the sun goes down. USMTHA

a-list

ROCK SOLID

rock solid

Whether you’re munching your dinner with the sound of the waves crashing on the shore, dancing to live music in the Irish pub or sipping a cocktail with your feet in the sand at Coco bar, this plush place will not disappoint. The location on Lamai Beach is second to none, there are two pools and gorgeous rooms come with free Wi-Fi. USMBOS

10% discounts at selected outlets

IBIS SAMUI, BOPHUT

a-list

£36 SINGLE £18 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

£86 SINGLE £43 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

CENTARA VILLAS, Natien

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Bright and trendy with an idyllic beachfront location and beautiful views, this hotel is packed with things to do. Relax by the pool, chill out in the bar, try tasty Thai food in the restaurant or explore the authentic fishing village nearby. The rooms are modern with amenities including Wi-Fi, LCD TV, air con and en suite facilities.

Located along the white sands of Bophut Beach, this resort boasts stylish and spacious rooms with excellent facilities. The rooms ooze class, with private balconies, pillow menus, home entertainment system and free Wi-Fi. If you’re feeling flush and fancy your own private plunge pool, go for one of the villas.

10% Discount When Booked 48 Days in Advance 01Apr14-14Jul14 & 01Sep14-25Dec14

£74 SINGLE £40 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Swim in the lovely beachside pool • Grab dinner overlooking the beach • Chill out in the quiet surrounds of Bophut

• Unwind in the privacy of 80 metres of Natien Beach • Relax in Thai-style villas with picturesque views • Experience the Lamai nightlife just 15 minutes away

If you want something a little bit special, look no further than these beautiful bungalows. In a quiet location on Bophut Beach yet just a short taxi ride from Chaweng’s nightlife, you can chill out by the beachside pool or at the bar and restaurant. All bungalows are set within garden surroundings and have private terraces.

Nestled on a stretch of private beach, this resort will wash away all your worries. Steps from the pool, you can choose to unwind on the hotel’s very own beach instead. The exotic villas cascade down a gentle hillside to the beachfront, all boasting modern amenities and private balconies with views of the gardens or ocean.

STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 14 PAY 10 - 01Apr14-15Jul14 & 01Sep1423Dec14, BOOK 60 DAYS IN ADVANCE FOR A 10% DISCOUNT - 06Jan14-31Mar14

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USMPEA

STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 14 PAY 10, 07Jan14-31Mar14 & 01Jul1431Aug14. sTAy 5 pay 4 - 01apr14 - 30jun14 & 01sep14 - 24dec14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

FR

• Bliss out with some well-deserved pampering in the outstanding spa • Enjoy a sumptuous seafood dinner at the beachside restaurant • Relax in the tropical gardens, pools and white sands

usmibh

STAY 8 PAY 4 - 01Apr14-15Jul14 & 01Sep14-21Dec14, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7 - 06Jan14-31Mar14 & 16Jul14-31Aug14

£90

FR

4 DAYS

Highlights

PEACE RESORT, Bohput

£107 SINGLE £54 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

• A stunning hotel, right on the beach! • Indulge your Thai food cravings with some traditional dishes • Explore an authentic fishing village closeby

FULL MOON EXPERIENCE

ROCK SOLID

BANDARA RESORT & spa, Bohput

Departs: See Full Moon dates on page 65 Accommodation: Guesthouse or hotel (3nts) Transport: Speedboat Note: Entry to the party is approx US$4 payable on the island Tour Code: USMFU3

Koh Tao & Koh Nang Yuan

USMban

£62

FR

1 DAY

Highlights

• Samui accommodation as your base • Return transfers to the Full Moon Party • A hangover to remember!

• Zoom around on an awesome speedboat • Spend a full day of top-class snorkelling • Chow down on a scrummy Thai lunch

Calling all party animals! Experience the world famous Koh Phangan Full Moon Party on this great four day package. Choose between guesthouse or hotel accommodation and chill out during the day before taking a speedboat transfer late afternoon to Koh Phangan for the party of your life. A bucket or two of booze later, whenever you’re ready to rest your weary head, take the boat back to Samui and sleep it off in the comfort of your own bed. The speedboats run every 30-60 minutes on party days so you’re never stuck!

Enjoy a breathtaking day out to the beautiful islands of Koh Tao and Koh Nang Yuan. Picked up from your hotel and taken to the pier, you’ll travel by speedboat. The first stop is at Muang Bay, a shallow dive site with lots of colourful fish where you can snorkel. You’ll stop for lunch at a restaurant on another Koh Tao beach and then the speedboat takes you to the picturesque island of Koh Nang Yuan. Here, you can relax on the white sands of the three-pronged beach or snorkel in the clear waters before speeding back to Samui. USMKOK

USMCVS

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

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south east asia

This pass allows you to explore the Land of Smiles without the confines of planning your trip in full and booking all your hostels ahead of time. Choose the number of nights you want to stay and move on at your leisure. Enjoy hostel-style accommodation but in hotel-style surroundings, with fab facilities. Hostels are located in: Chiang Mai, Phuket and Koh Tao. Why not add on an Island Hopping Pass to maximise the flexibility? See page 53 for more details. Travelling on to Australia or New Zealand? You can use your Bed Hopper Pass there as well which is a result if you ask us!

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Koh Phangan

FULL MOON FACTS & DATES

BOTTLE BEACH

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The first Full Moon Party was held in 1985 at an improvised wooden disco near Haad Rin beach. About 20 people were invited.

NAI PAN NOI BEACH NAI PAN YAI BEACH

4

Attendance now averages about 20,000 to 30,000 people on Full Moon Party nights. Full Moon Parties are complemented by twice monthly Half Moon festivities in the eerie surrounds of the Ban Tai jungle.

PHAENG WATERFALL

1

BAN THAI BEACH

6

YUAN BEACH

2

south east asia

south east asia

3

2014 Full Moon Party dates: Wednesday 15 Jan Sunday 13 Jul Saturday 15 Feb Sunday10 Aug Saturday 15 Mar Monday 8 Sep Monday 14 April Friday 10 Oct Wednesday 14 May Thursday 6 Nov Thursday 12 Jun Saturday 6 Dec

HAAD RIN

SHOESTRING

HACIENDA BACKPACKERS

£7 DORM £8 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

BEST WESTERN PHANGANBURI

£62 SINGLE £31 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located in the heart of Koh Phangan and in easy reach of all the parties, this is a great choice for large groups and solo travellers alike. Choose from private double and twin rooms or mixed dorms. All come with air con and en suites, plus guests have full use of facilities at Hacienda Resort & Beach Club, which is a five-minute walk away. Free pick up from Thong Sala Pier – Must send travel details or call upon arrival

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Set on a quiet and serene sunset beach on the south side of Haad Rin town, it’s a mere ten-minute walk from the infamous Full Moon beach. Facilities at this resort include two swimming pools, an outdoor pool bar, a beach restaurant and even a minimart. You can also experience a traditional Thai massage at the spa. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6 - 01Apr14-14Jul14 & 01Sep14-23Dec14, STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 05Jan14-31Mar14 & 15Jul14-31Aug14. early booking discount available

PHAHAC

KHPPRH

ROCK SOLID

Havana Beach Resort

HACIENDa RESORT & BEACH CLUB

£13 SINGLE £7 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

£82 SINGLE £41 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

A five-minute drive from Thong Sala port, this funky hotel has private, air con rooms with en suites. By day, lounge around the hotel’s pool, complete with swim-up seats at a magnificent bar. Come nightfall, catch all the must-see games on big screen plasma TVs, then party ‘til late with the resident local and international DJs. Free pick up from Thong Sala Pier – Must send travel details or call upon arrival

KHPHRB

£46 SINGLE £23 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PANVIMAN Resort

£105 SINGLE £53 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

SANTHIYA KOH PHANGAN RESORT & SPA

£131 SINGLE £66 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Near the action of Haad Rin yet in a peaceful and secluded location • Local beachfront restaurants on your doorstep • For those with plenty of energy - try some diving

• Enjoy a veranda or balcony, satellite TV and DVD player • Take a refreshing dip in the huge outdoor pool • Traditional teak wood rooms and villas

Situated on the private Yuan Beach on the south eastern coast of the island, Haad Rin Beach is only five minutes by boat. Relax after a Full Moon Party at the beachfront swimming pool or pamper yourself in the spa. There is also a restaurant, bar, dive centre and Wi-Fi. The villas’ amenities even include an aromatherapy burner!

Experience paradise on Koh Phangan. Relax in this eco-chic hideaway, stretched out over18 acres of tropical landscape. Lush forest, a crystal clear bay and private beach set the perfect backdrop for gourmet meals, delicious cocktails and luxurious spa treatments. Sounds pretty close to paradise to us.

STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 10Jan14-14jul14 & 01Sep14-31Oct14. must book 90 days prior to arrival.

KHPCEN

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 8, STAY 15 PAY 10, STAY 18 PAY 12: 01May14-14Jul14. 16Sep14-31Oct14 & 01Nov14-22Dec14, STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12, PAY 9, STAY 16 PAY 12 - 06Jan14-31Mar14, 1-30Apr14, 15-31Jul14 & 01Nov14-22Dec14.

USMSRS

koh PHANGAN PACKAGE

£216

FR

7 DAYS

Hacienda Party Phangan

£148

FR

6 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Triple rooms available which make this hotel very affordable • Rooms offer tasteful decor and a large balcony • Indulge in kayaking, snorkelling or fishing

• Indulge in a massage with stunning bay views at the hillside spa • Choose from a range of watersports; dive, snorkel and kayak • Savour a variety of cuisines at its hillside and beachfront restaurants

With picture postcard views of the beach and bay framed by a backdrop of tropical mountain ranges, this charming resort has it all. Take a dip in the pool or make some time to soothe your body with a Thai massage. This is a geat option for longer stays due to the idyllic setting. Transfers to Full Moon Party are available.

This dreamy retreat amongst tropical greenery overlooks Thong Nai Pan Bay and boasts its own private beach as well a pool and lush gardens. Luxurious air con rooms come with Jacuzzi bathtubs and postcard-perfect views, some with private balconies. Come nightfall, enjoy live music or hit the hotel’s very own nightclub!

64

PARIYA RESORT & VILLAS

a-list

a-list

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

STAY 7 PAY 6 - 01Jan14-15dec14, STAY 4 PAY 3 - 01Nov14-15Dec14

a-list

GLAMPACKER

KHPHAV

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6 - 01Apr14 – 14Jul14 & 01Sep14-22Dec14, STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 08 Jan 14-31Mar14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

KHPPAN

Head south to the popular party island of Koh Phangan for this fab week-long package. It includes travel from Bangkok by overnight train, bus and ferry and a five-night stay at the island’s Best Western Phanganburi. Once you’re all Phangan partied out, you decide what to do next - take it easy and extend your stay or move on to the nearby islands of Koh Samui or Koh Tao. Alternatively head back to Bangkok - it’s up to you! Accommodation: Hotel (5 nts) , overnight train (1 nt) Transport: Overnight train, bus, ferry boat Meals: 5 breakfasts Tour Code: BKKPHA

With Hacienda Backpackers as your base, get loose with an allyou-can-drink party kicking off from 8pm ‘til 2pm the next day (pace yourself!) Day 2, energy levels permitting, freshen up with an afternoon dive or chill by the hotel’s infinity pool. Day 3, it’s time to hit the world-famous Full Moon Party followed by a day’s rest before rounding off your trip with full-day tour covering off snorkelling, beachtime, a temple visit and cruise to a waterfall. Departs: Selected dates Jan-Oct Accommodation: Beach backpackers (5 nts) Meals: 1 breakfast, 1 lunch Includes: free pick-up from Thong Sala pier Tour Code: KHRFU5

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

65


KOH tao

LEARN TO DIVE PADI OR SSI COURSE

£282

FR

4 DAYS

Highlights

• See the best of Thailand’s marine world on this PADI/SSI Open Water Course • Experience the dive community meeting travellers from all over the world • Spend your days in the ocean and your free time in Koh Tao’s chilled surrounds

Starts: Daily Accommodation: Thai chalet (3 nts) Equipment: Open Water Dive Course and certification fees, online training materials & all scuba equipment Group Size: Maximum of four Meals: One meal per day Tour Code: FJJKTL

SHOESTRING

LEARN TO DIVE PADI Open Water Diving Course

ROCK SOLID

£210

FR

5 DAYS

Highlights

KOH TAO BACKPACKERS HOSTEL

KOH TAO CORAL GRAND RESORT

£6 Dorm

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

• Air con or fan-cooled dorm-style accomodation either steps from the beach or pool • Learn the theory and get practical experience in the pool and sea • Get your PADI Open Water certification with a professional PADI IDC Resort

£74 SINGLE £37 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Swap stories and make mates at the free, weekly BBQ • Central but quiet location - great for those up early dives! • Sociable vibe and staff available 24/7 to help with trips, tickets etc.

• Great beachfront location on Sairee beach • National Geographic PADI 5* Gold Palm Dive Resort • Sleep in traditional air con Thai cottages with bamboo ceilings

Located in the heart of Sairee and just minutes from the beach, this is a cheap and cheerful budget option associated with the Davy Jones Locker dive school. Clean, mixed dorms come with air con and lockers to store your valuables. Make new friends at the hostel bar and pool or catch up with mates online using the Wi-Fi.

Coral Grand is an excellent mid-range option, located right on Sairee Beach. This beachfront resort offers 42 charming cottages complete with free Wi-Fi. Its dive centre, Coral Grand Divers, operates PADI diving courses and packages as well as fun dives. Why not take a Thai cooking course while you’re here! STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6 - 11Jan14-30Jun14 & 01Sep14-31Oct14

FIJKTB

rock solid

Inclusions

Starts: Daily Accommodation: air con dorm/fan-cooled bungalow (4 nts) Equipment: All equipment & manuals, plus e-manual for after course Group Size: Maximum four participants per instructor Meals: None Tour Code: FJJLEA

Your days will be taken up with learning to dive, hanging out on cool beaches and staying in dorm-style bungalow accommodation. The course involves theory as well as practical (dives, of course!) and all instructors are experienced and 100% certified. The course is a starting point for those who want to continue on to more advanced courses and even more challenging dive sites around the world. Over four full days you’ll have a mix of theory time in the classroom, shallow dives in the pool and deeper dives out in the sea at depths of up to 18 metres. Savour the first taste of Thailand’s fantastic underwater world. On Day 4 this will be captured on film as you head down to the deeps with an underwater videographer. In the evening you can watch your diving film back and celebrate with a beer as you receive your PADI Open Water certification.

FJJKTO

Learn to Dive week

A-list

£400

FR

7 DAYS

Highlights

KOH TAO MONTRA RESORT

£84 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Combining comfort and service with Thai charm and hospitality, this beachfront hotel offers rooms, suites and two beachfront villas. The multi-level swimming pool is surrounded by a lush garden. Facilities include free Wi-Fi, massage, restaurant, pool side bar, fitness centre and in-house dive centre offering all types of diving. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6 11Jan14-30Jun14 & 01Sep14-31Oct14

66

usmkoh

charm churee villa

£91 SINGLE £46 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

KOH TAO FUN DIVING PACKAGE

• Hang out with new friends at the beach or in the bar • Complete eight Open Water dives and a memorable night dive • Gain a diving qualification for use all over the world in the future

£254

FR

7 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

White sands and beachfront villas, this is the perfect place for you. Charm Churee Villa is a rustic hillside retreat located on one of Koh Tao’s most beautiful and secluded beaches on the southwest section of the island. Dive into the clear blue sea, chill out at the restaurants, sip a drink at the beach bar or spoil yourself at the spa. STAY 7 PAY 5 - 01May14-30Jun14, 01Sep1414Dec14, STAY 7 PAY 6. STAY 12 PAY 10 15Jan14-30Apr14, 01-31Jul14

USMCCV

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

For those who are already qualified to scuba dive and just want to dive! No course, no test, no pressure - just lots of amazing moments exploring the fish-filled waters of Koh Tao. Enjoy ten fun dives plus one night dive. You’ll have a varied schedule, planned to take you to sites when they are at their quietest. Perfect.

Inclusions

Starts: Daily Accommodation: Thai chalet (6 nts) Equipment: Open Water Dive Course and certification fees, training manuals & scuba equipment Group Size: Maximum four Meals: One meal per day Tour Code: UDMLTD

Spend a full week learning to dive on the beautiful island of Koh Tao. You’ll learn everything from the basics upwards to ensure you feel 100% confident when diving down into the depths of Thailand’s tropical waters. This PADI/SSI Open Water Diver course includes theory sessions, shallow beach sessions and local open water dives. Complete your theory online before arriving for less classes and more diving! Groups are small and personalised (maximum four per group) with highly qualified and experienced instructors. The package includes learning manuals and use of all dive equipment, certification as well as traditional Thai-style chalet accommodation. And because you have a whole week, you also get to spend two days doing fun dives, including a night dive - an experience not to be missed!

UDMFUN

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

67

south east asia

south east asia

Inclusions

Complete your dive theory online before you arrive so that you can spend more time relaxing in paradise and enjoying the underwater world. Learning to dive this way ensures that you don’t spend any of your precious time on the idyllic island of Koh Tao in the classroom and instead spend more time in the sea. When you arrive you will complete a quick review of your online theory before your first dip. Groups are kept to a maximum of four to ensure your safety and enjoyment and a small, professional dive centre with experienced instructors will make learning easy. This course will certify you to dive to a depth of 18 metres. Accommodation is in traditional Thai chalets which are simple but clean and comfortable. Spend your days in the ocean, your nights out with new friends! Koh Tao is one of the cheapest places to learn so take advantage.


Phuket - Patong Beach

phuket’s beaches

PHUKET AIRPORT: 30KM

Patong Beach Action-packed, great for shopping and partying the night away. Karon Beach One of the best beaches for watersports, with calm seas and powdery sands.

1 8 3

PATONG

4

11 9 5 10

Head out to Phi Phi Island Explore this stunning island on a day tour from £54 or chill out on the beach and stay a little longer. See page 72 for accommodation choices.

2 6

SHOESTRING

PATONG LODGE HOTEL

£21 SINGLE £11 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Set amongst tropical gardens on a hill with views out over the water, this hotel is close to all the action of Patong. You’ll love the large outdoor pool to soak up the sun, the open-air restaurant and the all important cocktail bar. En suite rooms have air con, TV, Wi-Fi and private balconies with outstandingly beautiful views. hktpat

rock solid

PATONG MERLIN HOTEL

£94 SINGLE £50 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This popular resort boasts an awesome location in the heart of Patong Beach. The entire hotel weaves its way around four sculptured swimming pools in a labyrinth of curved walkways and swaying palm trees. Rooms come with satellite TV, Wi-Fi access and a balcony all wrapped up in a modern Thai style. STAY 5 PAY 4,STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

rock solid

ROYAL PARADISE Hotel

£40 SINGLE £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

In the heart of popular Patong beach, this tall, comfy hotel is the perfect place to destress. Stroll to nearby shops and nightlife or retreat back to the hotel with its many facilities including a split-level swimming pool, sauna and a traditional massage centre. There’s plenty of cuisine choice to tickle those tastebuds. STAY 2 PAY 1, STAY 4 PAY 2, STAY 6, PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

68

HKTRPH

HKTPMH

IBIS PHUKET PATONG HOTEL

£48 SINGLE £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

An oasis in the heart of buzzing Phuket. Laze by the pool before you load up on Singhas and Mai Tais at the 24-hour bar. If you miss out on the tasty Thai restaurant, you can order from the takeaway service. The modern and spacious rooms are amazingly well equipped with a cosy bed, climate control and Wi-Fi access. HKTpph

stay 8 pay 4 - 01apr14-31oct14

rock solid

BANTHAI BEACH RESORT & SPA

£71 SINGLE £38 TWIN/DOUBLE

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Set in five acres of land amid lush gardens and facing the turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea, it would be easy to forget you’re just steps from buzzing Patong Beach. Renovated in 2012, there are plenty of amenities. The resort also has three large free-form swimming pools with swimup bars and a luxurious spa. STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

HKTbbr

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

DEEVANA PATONG RESORT & SPA

£105 SINGLE £53 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

Burasari

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Sophisticated style, privacy, tranquillity and first-class international dining - this gem in the heart of Patong has it all! Visit the luxurious spa, grab a drink from the juice bar or enjoy authentic regional cuisine and traditional dance in the restaurant. Contemporary Thai-style rooms come with flatscreen TVs, free mini-bar and Wi-fi. STAY 4 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

HKTBUR

a-list

phuket graceland Resort & SPA

£44 SINGLE £22 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT ROOM ONLY

£71 SINGLE £36 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Now which bar will you try first - you’re spoilt for choice • Enjoy in-room flatscreen satellite TV, balcony and free Wi-Fi • Escape the madness in this tranquil location

• Great location, just across the road and on to the beach! • Sunset Wing is stylish with an expansive azure pool • Stylish rooms, satellite TV, minibar, bath and separate shower.

A subtle blend of classical Thai and contemporary Asian styles. The tropical gardens and friendly ambiance create an oasis of calm, combining a Garden Wing and Spa Wing, each with its own swimming pool. The resort is located in the centre of Patong, near to the beach, nightlife, entertainment and shopping malls.

This fabulous resort is packed full of amenities, from the pool and the bubbling Jacuzzi, to the fully-equipped fitness centre and even its very own bowling alley; you definitely won’t get bored! Top off your day with a blissful massage before dining, Thai-style, in the elegant restaurant. Lively Bangla Road is just a short stroll away.

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 5 PAY 3, STAY 7 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 5, STAY 11 PAY 6, STAY 13 PAY 7 - 01Apr14-19Dec14

A-List

FR FR

rock solid

rock solid

STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7 - 01Mar14 – 20Dec14

HKTDPR

rock solid

Patong beach hotel

£76 SINGLE £41 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This place has a list of fantastic facilities; restaurants and bars, an onsite spa and glistening swimming pool. It’s also in a great location in the heart of bustling Patong on a gorgeous stretch of sandy beach. Rooms are styled like a traditional Thai home with the addition of a balcony, TV, minibar and pool or garden view. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7 01Apr14-31Oct14, STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 8 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 01Nov14-24Dec14

HKTPBH

HKTPGR

rock solid

HORIZON PATONG BEACH RESORT

£48 SINGLE £29 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Right in the heart of Patong, this is a great central location. All the goodies the area has to offer are on your doorstep, but here you can relax with a drink in the swim-up pool bar, a massage in the spa or some Indian food in the award-winning restaurant. Spotless rooms with air con mean a good night’s sleep is a sure bet. STAY 4 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5 - 16Apr14-31Oct14

HKTHPB

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

A-LIST

THE KEE RESORT & SPA

£79 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A spectacular hotel and plaza complex, offering a quiet oasis in the heart of buzzing Patong Beach. The hotel’s stunning modern rooms are luxurious and full of the latest gadgets. By day you can perch on the swim-up bar and have a drink without ever having to leave the water. By night, check out panoramic views from the rooftop bar. STAY 7 PAY 5 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

HKTKEE

69

south east asia

south east asia

Kata Beach Just a few minutes south of Karon Beach, Kata has many great restaurants and bars but things are less wild than in Patong.

7


Phuket - other beaches

volunteer £995 & teach kids 2-24 WEEKS

PHUKET AIRPORT: 15KM

SURIN BEACH

FR

PATONG BEACH

TRI-TANG BEACH

PHUKET TOWN

6

KARON BEACH

KATA NOI BEACH

glampacker

Nomads PHUKET, Chalong

rock solid

CENTARA KARON RESORT, Karon

£14 DORM £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located on the sands of Chalong Beach on Phuket’s south east coast overlooking the islands in the Andaman Sea. This is a hostel set within a four-star resort as the facilities would suggest - three restaurants and bars, two pools - one with Jacuzzi, a spa and daily speedboat to stunning nearby Coral Island with free sunb ed on the beach. STAY 4 PAY 3 FOR DORMS - 01Mar14-31Oct14, STAY 6 PAY 5 FOR PRIVATE ROOMS 01Mar14-31Oct14

rock solid

PEACH HILL HOTEL, Kata

£58 SINGLE £29 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A modern, mid-rise hotel split into four resort zones caters to everyone! The resort has three swimming pools, tennis courts, gym and a spa, plus a variety of bars, restaurants and cafés - so if you’re really feeling lazy, you won’t have to walk very far! All rooms, suites and villas offer warm décor in beautiful Thai-style. STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7, STAY 16 PAY 8, STAY 18 PAY 9, STAY 20 PAY 10 - 01Apr14 – 31Oct14

HKTCLP

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located on the west coast of Phuket between Kata and Karon Beach, and looking out to the Andaman Sea, this hotel is superbly situated! Lounge by the pool surrounded by lush greenery, head to the beach, or hang out at the nearby shops and eateries. All the airy rooms are en suite and have cable TV, air con and Wi-Fi access.

HKTKAR

ROCK SOLID

SUGAR PALM KATA RESORT, Kata

£66 SINGLE £33 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 5 PAY 3, STAY 7 PAY 4, STAY 9, PAY 5, STAY 11, PAY 6, STAY 13, PAY 7- 16Apr14-31Oct14

HKTPEA

£49 SINGLE £25 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

KATA BEACH RESORT, Kata

CHALONG BAY

1

9

rock solid

MERLIN beach RESORT, Tri Tang

rock solid

HORIZON KARON BEACH RESORT & SP,A, karon

£108 SINGLE £57 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This resort is located on its own secluded beach on 12 acres of swaying coconut palms so you’re guaranteed maximum privacy. Patong is super-easy to get to, only minutes away using the resort’s free shuttle. All rooms feature balconies overlooking the sea or pool and have Wi-Fi. You can even splash out for pool access rooms. STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

a-list

FR

Most days will be spent assisting teachers in the local school in Phang Nga, two hours north of Phuket. Help lead English classes and with the kids’ homework. By volunteering you’ll help to provide children with better opportunities and a way of breaking the poverty cycle. The project starts on selected Saturdays and costs from £995. Ask your Travel Expert for more details. STAGVIKID

£52 SINGLE £33 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

If escaping the crowds but still being close to white sand and clear blue waters is your bag, then Horizon Karon is the place for you. It prides itself on offering peace and privacy with two wings each set around a pool (or two!). Rooms come with TV, DVD player and mini-bar. Why not treat yourself to a poolside massage while you’re at it! STAY 4 PAY 2, STAY 6 Pay 3, STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

HKTMBR

HKTHOR

a-list

£87 SINGLE £48 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

KATaTHANI PHUKET BEACH RESORT, Kata Noi Bay

rock solid

ANDAMAn CANNACIA, Kata

£71 SINGLE £36 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Nestled on a peaceful green hillside, 400 metres from Kata beach, pamper yourself on an indulgent break at this island escape. Marvel at the stunning setting and enjoy the Thai hospitality. For total bliss throw in a spa treatment, salon appointment and dip in the pool. This hotel does not accept guests under 18 years old. STAY 3 PAY 2, stay 5 pay 3, STAY 7 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 5, STAY 11 PAY 6, STAY 13 PAY 7 - 16Apr14-31Oct14

HKTACR

a-list

£178 SINGLE £89 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

MOVENPICK KARON, Karon

£121 SINGLE £61 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Soak up the rays on the white sandy shores at Kata • Try the delectable seafood caught fresh each day • Hang out with the locals at the beachfront clubs

• Stunning beach location, with views of Kata Bay and Pu Island • Work up a sweat at the fitness centre and sauna or chill by the pools • Enjoy a Happy Hour sundowner at the poolside bar

• Indulge in a garden massage and enjoy the six restuarants on offer • Choose from six pools, three Jacuzzis and a mini water slide! • All rooms have balcony, TV with DVD player and tea/coffee facilities

• Set in lush tropical gardens steps away from Karon beach • All rooms have a sitting area • Choose from Brazilian, Asian or delicious Italian cuisine

This fashion hotel is a mix of simplicity and sophistication. You’ll be grinning from the moment you step into your room overlooking the central swimming pool, with air con, free Wi-Fi and mini-bar. After relaxing on the sundeck for the day, why not sample some freshly caught seafood at the onsite restaurant?

Embodying quiet luxury, the gardens, spacious pools and great facilities of Kata Beach Resort combine to create a peaceful yet exotic experience. Contemporary Thai-style rooms all come with private balconies, air con, satellite TV, free Wi-Fi and mini-fridges. There’s also a beauty salon, restaurant and bar. Perfection!

Enjoy your own slice of paradise at this exclusive, award-winning hotel on the golden sands of secluded Kata Noi Bay. Choose from two separate wings and a wide range of facilities, take a Thai cookery class, do some yoga or simply spoil yourself rotten in the luxurious spa. Heaven!

Four is the number of choice at this premium resort in Karon. There are four swimming pools and four restaurants, giving you plenty of options! You can relax in the spa, work out in the fitness centre or spend hours in the tropical gardens. The rooms all have private balcony or terrace, satellite TV and mini-bar as standard.

hktspk

70

STAY 8 PAY 4 - 01Apr14 - 31Oct14, STAY 7 PAY 5 - 01Nov14 - 26Dec14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

HKTKBR

HKTKAT

STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6 - 01Apr14-31Oct14, STAY 7 PAY 5 - 01Nov14 - 24Dec14

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

HKTMOV

71

south east asia

south east asia

KATA BEACH

2 10 7 3 4 5 8


Koh Phi Phi

KRABI & RAILAY BEACH

south east asia

south east asia

ROCK SOLID

ROCK SOLID

BAYVIEW resort

£69 SINGLE £35 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Arayaburi Resort

rock solid

£63 SINGLE £32 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

£48 SINGLE £24 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Enjoy some comfort and seclusion on the private beach • Take advantage of the benefits of a relaxing Jacuzzi • Learn to dive at the Diving School

• A stunning resort overlooking Tonsai Bay • Phi Phi Town is only a ten-minute walk away • Enjoy a candlelit dinner on the beach

Stay in split-level bungalows dotted along the hillside of Laem Hin Beach, surrounded by lush tropical gardens. Offering enviable comfort and privacy on the island, relax on the hotel’s own beach, swim in the free-form pool, try a traditional Thai massage, enjoy a seafood BBQ on the beach or learn how to dive at the school.

Quality bungalows, nestled amongst tropical rainforest gardens on the hillside which overlooks spectacular Tonsai Bay, this resort provides the best of both worlds. Just walk down to the small quiet beaches for a relaxing holiday or take a ten-minute walk into town. Why not end your day with a candlelit dinner on the beach?

KBVBAY

KBVARA

rock solid

KRABI CHA DA

In the heart of Ao Nang, this hotel reflects Thai and Chinese charm. It is set within lush gardens with amazing views of the sea. The rooms personify style with funky furnishings and intimate private balconies. There’s a restaurant, a bar, a Jacuzzi pool, Wi-Fi and free shuttle buses to the private beach club, with sunbeds and showers. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 8 - 16Jan14-31Oct14 & 01Nov14-15Dec14

KVBKRA

A-List

RED ginger chic resort

£65 SINGLE £33 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

With stunning views of nearby Nopparat Thara National Park and just 200 metres from Ao Nang Beach, this chic resort has a very exclusive feel. The rooms boast bold, contemporary design, all well-equipped and with private balconies. Enjoy the pool with its swim-up bar or laze in the bubbling Jacuzzi. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 6 PAY 4, STAY 9 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 8, STAY 15 PAY 10, STAY 18 PAY 12 - 01Apr14-31Oct14

KBVRED

RAILAY Experience

a-list

Krabi Town

A-List

KRABI THAI VILLAGE RESORT

£105 SINGLE £53 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A short walk to Phra Nang Bay, this is one of Krabi’s best resorts. You’ll be calmed by the traditional Thai design, earthy colours, huge interiors and breezy walkways. Add to this a spectacular swimming pool complex with waterfalls and fountains, a private beach club and free shuttle service and you’ve got the makings of a luxurious stay. STAY 3 PAY 2, STAY 12 PAY 9 - 1APR14-31OCT14, STAY 8 PAY 6 - 16JAN14-31MAR14

KBVTVR

£133

FR

5 DAYS

Krabi / Phi Phi

Highlights

PHI PHI NATURAL RESORT

£56 SINGLE £28 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

outrigger PHI PHI ISLAND resort & spa

£121 SINGLE £61 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Enjoy a TV, balcony or terrace and tea/coffee facilities in your room • Get away from the crowds on the north of the island • Choose from hillside townhouses, rooms or cottages

• Grab yourself a sun lounger on the private beach • Dive into the stunning infinity pool • Thatched roof bungalows with TV, DVD player and balcony

Located right on the stunning unspoilt beach of Laem Thong on the northern shores of Phi Phi. Facilities include a stunning beachside pool, restaurant and bar. Spend your days lazing on the private white sand beach, doing laps in the pool or diving into the crystal clear sea under brilliant blue skies.

Unwind in one of Koh Phi Phi’s most exclusive resorts. Overlooking the spectacular scenery of the Andaman Sea and surrounded by lush vegetation, this stunning resort oozes tranquillity. With a massive private beach, infinity pool, fitness centre and eight sumptuous restaurants and bars - this is pure heaven.

PHZNat

72

• Marvel at the tropical paradise of Railay Beach flanked by towering limestone cliffs • Speedboat tour of four stunning islands • Try your hand at rock climbing if you’re feeling adventurous

STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 6 PAY 4 - 01May14-31Oct14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Inclusions

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Beach resort (4nts) Transport: Transfers to/from Krabi Meals: Packed lunch on Day 2 Tour Code: KBVRAI

With no road access and famous for its gorgeous white, powdery sands, Railay Beach is truly idyllic. Kick off your chilled out stay with a long-tail boat transfer from Krabi Town to Railay. The rest of Day 1 is yours to spend as you please - dive, snorkel, kayak or simply veg on the beach. The following day, take an exhilarating speedboat tour of the area, weaving through the cliffs and secluded beaches of Phra Nang Bay. Snorkel in the crystal clear waters, visit the sacred Phra Nang Cave, Tup Island, Chicken Island and Poda Island, stopping to refuel with a picnic lunch. Day 3, test your nerve with a spot of rock climbing (optional) or soak up some rays by the pool and beach. Half day climbing adventures with all equipment are available. Your final day is a relaxed affair with the choice of forward travel on to Phi Phi or back to Krabi.

PHZOUT

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

73


Khao Lak

south east asia

rock solid

SENTIDO GRACELAND KHAO LAK RESORT & SPA

a-list

£61 SINGLE £31 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

LA FLORA RESORT & SPA, KHAO LAK

£93 SINGLE £47 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Beached out? Work up a sweat at the four bowling lanes instead! • Relax in the sauna and steambath or unwind with a yoga class • Choice of Italian, Thai and International fusion restaurants

• Modern yet classic, well appointed, air-con rooms • Close to Khao Lak’s restaurants • Extensive watersports, mountain bikes and tennis courts

Away from the hustle and bustle, this sprawling resort offers luxury with 5-star service. Built in 2013 on Bangsak Beach, the resort boasts three restaurants, two swim-up bars, plus tennis and squash courts. Rooms are decorated in contemporary Thai style and come with private balconies with either sea or pool views.

Just an hour from Phuket, this luxurious hotel is paradise. With a wide selection of rooms on offer, including poolside and villas, you will be spoilt for choice. Chill out in the sun and take a dip in the free-form pool before getting a relaxing Thai massage in the spa. You can’t beat cocktails at sunset for the perfect end to the day.

STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 7, STAY 16 PAY 8 - 22Jul14 - 31Oct14

KHAO sok & elephant hills SAFARI

FLYSEN

£491

FR

5 DAYS

A unique way to experience Southern Thailand - by safari truck! You’ll meet amazing people, kayak along mangrove channels, explore Khao Sok National Park - home to rich wildlife, and sleep close to nature at Elephant Hills luxury tented camp. Discover the jungle on foot, accompanied by an experienced guide, spotting monkeys and wild boar. Visit interesting temples and historical sites, enjoy amazing Thai food and sample local delicacies. Departs: Every Wednesday from Phuket or Khao Lak Accommodation: Campsite with folding beds (1 nt), Luxury tents (2 nts), floating luxury tents with en suites (1 nt) Meals: All meals included Transport: Safari truck Tour Code: FYLSAF

74

STAY 8 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 5 - 01May14 – 31Oct14, STAY 7 PAY 6, STAY 14 PAY 12 - 11Jan14-31Mar14

SIMILAN ISLANDS Camping

FYLFLO

£285

FR

3 DAYS

Grab your swimmers and snorkel gear for a trip to paradise in the turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea. Bed down under the stars in tents, falling asleep to the sounds of nature. Snorkel in beautifully diverse coral reefs, explore the pristine Similan Islands and keep those energy levels up with fresh and delicious Thai food rustled up aboard your boat. Soak up the rays, get in some serious beachtime and forget about life as you know it for three days. Departs: Daily from Phuket or Khao Lak (15Oct-15May)Accommodation: Camping tents (2 nts) upgrade to fan/air con rooms at extra cost Meals: 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners Transport: Car, speedboat Tour Code: XYZSIC

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK


BURMA SOUTH EAST ASIA

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s 1. witness a different way of life 2. see the fishermen of inle lake 3. watch dawn break over bagan 4. take in yangon’s colonial charm 5. cruise down the irrawaddy MYITKYINA

mandalay lashio

bagan kalaw

Nay pyi taw

Yangon MAWLAMYINE


CLASSIC BURMA ADVENTURE Yangon

• • • • • • •

£1,799

FR

MALAYSIA

14 DAYS

Yangon

Highlights

Uncover the mysteries of Yangon Hike to the summit of Golden Rock Stroll Mandalay’s humbling temples Float down the Irrawaddy River Admire ancient Bagan’s imperial ruins See Burma’s largest reclining Buddha Relax at the tranquil Inle Lake

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 04 Jan 11 Jan 18 Feb 08 Feb 15 Feb 22 Mar 08 Mar 22 Apr 12

Jan 17 Jan 24 Jan 31 Feb 21 Feb 28 Mar 07 Mar 21 Apr 04 Apr 25

Apr 26 May 10 May 24 Jun 14 Jun 28 Jul 12 Jul 26 Aug 16 Aug 30

May 09 May 23 Jun 06 Jun 27 Jul 11 Jul 25 Aug 08 Aug 29 Sep 12

Sep 13 Sep 27 Oct 11 Oct 25 Nov 15 Nov 29 Dec 20

Sep 26 Oct 10 Oct 24 Nov 07 Nov 28 Dec 12 Jan 02

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (12 nts), simple guesthouse (1 nt) Transport: Private bus, public bus, plane, boat, bicycle Meals: 13 breakfasts, 1 lunch Budget: Allow USD $250350 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAABCB

My Own Room Available: Fr £929

As a relative newcomer to adventure travel, the enigmatic and fascinating nation of Burma (Myanmar) is a well-hidden Asian gem, and often feels like an untouched planet. With few other travellers to contend with, it’s guaranteed to give you a truly fulfilling and unforgettable experience. Turn back the clock and get face-to-face with a country that has barely changed and still happily uses horse and cart in place of cars, buses and trams. Burma will awaken and shake up your senses in every way possible, mesmerising you with its lakes, floating gardens, imperial ruins, palaces and friendly locals.

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s

DAY ITINERARY Yangon

01

Start today off at your own pace and explore Yangon’s quirky warren of historic streets that ooze with an endearing colonial charm. Formerly known as Rangoon, Burma’s capital is an intriguing place and there is plenty to explore. Later on, you’ll meet up with your tour leader and the rest of your group and, if you fancy, head out for some mouth-watering local cuisine.

1. scale the petronas towers 2. explore penang’s colonial past 3. chill on the beaches of langkawi 4. see dawn break at Mt. Kinabalu 5. volunteer with orang-utans

Golden Rock

02 Mandalay Bagan Kalaw

Inle Lake

03

B U R M A

Today kicks off with a visit to the world-famous golden Stupa of Shwedagon Pagoda, the absolute heart of Buddhist Myanmar and believed to be around 2,500 years old. The glittering Stupa is surrounded by dozens of intricately-decorated buildings and statues. Later, you will travel through the delta and over the Sittang River to Kyaikhtiyo, before continuing by truck towards the Golden Rock. Enjoy a one-hour hike to its summit, where a simple but beautifully-located hotel awaits. (B)

Bago / Mandalay

First stop this morning is Bago, the ancient capital of the Mon people and home to the biggest reclining Buddha in Burma. After you’ve strolled the markets and visited the Kyaikpun Pagoda with its four Sitting Buddhas facing the cardinal points, head back to Yangon for a flight to Mandalay. (B)

Mandalay / Mingun

04-05 Yangon

Golden Rock

Today you’ll visit the famous Golden Monastery, Shwe Nandaw, the only building still existing from the more than one hundred that once stood on the palace grounds of the Konbaung Kings. Pay a visit also to the Mahamuni Temple, which houses the country’s holiest Buddha, made from pure gold. On Day 5, you’ll visit the nearby ancient royal capital of Amarapura, where you can opt to traverse the world’s longest teak bridge if you’re brave enough! Visit the Mahagandayong monastery, home to over 1,000 monks, and travel by boat along the mighty Elephant River enjoying sights of washerwomen, buffalo carts and daily life en route to the charming village of Mingun. (2B)

Bagan

06-08

You might like

Upgrade your trip Burma Adventure (12 Days, Yangon to Yangon) (GAABBA) Fr £1,899

09-10 11-12

If you cruise down the Irrawaddy River (Burma’s ‘Super Highway’) you’ll find yourself stumbling across ancient Bagan, the first and most beautiful capital of the Burmese. Along with Angkor Wat in Cambodia, it’s also the most important temple and pagoda system in Asia. Pretty impressive, hey? During your time in Bagan you’ll meander the Nyaung U marketplace and get a glimpse into the lifestyle of the delightful Burmese folk. (3B)

Kalaw

76

13-14

MT. KINABALU PENANG

•CAMERON HIGHLANDS TAMAN NEGARA N.P. KUALA LUMPUR

KOTA KINABALU

Brunei MALAYSIAN BORNEO

On today’s itinerary: sun-parched plains sprinkled with Palmyra Palms, the Mountain of Deities and Mt. Popa. Enjoy a half-day trek up Mt. Popa (Sanscrit for flower), passing local food stalls and stores selling Burmese herbal remedies. You’ll also get to hang out with a local Kalaw hilltribe. (2B, L)

Inle Lake

On Day 11, you’ll travel to serene Inle, home to the Intha people. The life of the Intha, who originally came from the south of Burma, revolves completely around the lake. On Day 12, you’ll visit some of the intriguing floating villages and gardens, stopping en route to visit the Pindaya Caves. (2B)

Yangon

facebook.com/statravel.uk

LANGKAWI

Today, you’ll fly Burma’s length and head back to Yangon, where the afternoon is yours to explore the markets and sights of Yangon, with plenty of time for some last-minute shopping! Bid farewell to your new travel buddies over an optional traditional dinner later this evening. The tour ends after breakfast on Day 14, and you’re free to depart at any time. (2B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

INDONESIAN BORNEO

SANDAKAN/ SEPILOK


BORNEO SABAH ADVENTURE Kota Kinabalu

• • • • • • •

£1,299

FR

10 DAYS

Kota Kinabalu

Highlights

Explore Mt. Kinabalu National Park Trek to the top of mighty Mt. Kinabalu Cruise the Kinabatangan River Get close to wild orang-utans See turtles in their natural habitat Snorkel and swim in tropical waters Visit the POW Memorial Park

Kota Kinabalu

• • • • • • •

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 18 Feb 01 Feb 15 Mar 01 Mar 15 Apr 05 Apr 19 May 03

Jan 27 Feb 10 Feb 24 Mar 0 Mar 24 Apr 14 Apr 28 May 12

May 17 Jun 07 Jun 21 Jul 05 Jul 19 Aug 09 Aug 23 Sep 06

May 26 Jun 16 Jun 30 Jul 14 Jul 28 Aug 18 Sep 01 Sep 15

Sep 20 Oct 04 Oct 18 Nov 01 Nov 15 Dec 20

Sep 29 Oct 13 Oct 27 Nov 10 Nov 24 Dec 29

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 4 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (5 nts), jungle lodge (2 nts), national park lodges / mountain huts (2 nts, multishare) Transport: Private van, local bus, speedboat, plane Meals: 9 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners (or 3 dinners if not climbing) Budget: Allow USD $170-225 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAASA

From lush powdery beaches to smiling longhouse villages and through wild jungles in between, Borneo offers a medley of highlights. This fantastic 10-day trip guarantees oncein-a-lifetime experiences by the bucket load. Meet one of mankind’s closest relations, the orang-utan, at a unique rehabilitation centre and have a chance to watch baby turtles inch past you searching for the great blue sea. Top this off with an epic journey to climb one of the mightiest peaks of Asia, Mt. Kinabalu, and you’ll be left speechless. Every day on this trip brings a new adventure, so jump on board and enjoy.

DAY ITINERARY Kota Kinabalu

01

Highlights

Marvel at views from Mt. Kinabalu Observe turtles at their nesting site Spot amazing wildlife on jungle walks Meet an orang-utan face-to-face Explore the biggest caves in the world Visit Borneo’s oldest museum Sleep in a local tribe’s longhouse

Arrive at any time and feel free to go exploring. Kota Kinabalu, which is the capital of Sabah, is set between the jungles of Borneo and the South China Sea. In your free time, you can immerse yourself in history at the Sabah State Museum or visit the Monsopiad culture village, before meeting your tour leader and the rest of your new travel companions this evening.

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 26 Feb 23 Mar 23 Apr 20 May 18

Feb 08 Mar 08 Apr 05 May 03 May 31

Jun 22 Jul 20 Aug 24 Aug 31 Sep 14

Jul 05 Aug 02 Sep 06 Sep 13 Sep 27

Sep 28 Oct 12 Oct 26 Nov 16 Dec 21

Oct 11 Oct 25 Nov 08 Nov 29 Jan 03

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Simple hotels/guesthouses (9 nts), traditional longhouse (2 nts), national park lodges/mountain huts (2 nts, multishare) Transport: Private van, kayak, ferry, minibus, plane Meals: 13 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $270-350 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAAHB

My Own Room Available: Fr £579

02 03-04 Mt.Kinabalu Turtle Island

05-06

Set off early on Day 3 to tackle the mighty Mt. Kinabalu, whose summit stands at an impressive 4,095m (13,435 feet)! It’s a fair slog to the top but well marked and with shelters along the way to take brief rests. The surrounding scenery is varied and should be enough to take your mind off the journey ahead of you. Altitude can be a problem for some people so take your time, enjoy the pristine environment around you and hopefully you will successfully reach the top of this monumental peak. Night three is spent sleeping in a basic mountain hut before rising early to climb upwards towards the peak. After reaching the summit, pat yourself on the back before heading back down, a walk of around five to seven hours. What an achievement! (2B, 2L, D) Journey along the Kinabatangan River, Sabah’s longest river and home to an incredible variety of wildlife. Take an afternoon cruise and look out for kingfishers, macaques and proboscis monkeys. If you’re lucky, you may also spot more elusive species including elephants, otters and orang-utans. Stay overnight in the jungle where you can check out all kinds of species in their native environment before being soothed to sleep by the sounds of the surrounding wilderness. (2B, 2L, 2D)

Sepilok Orang-utan Centre

07 08

Upgrade your trip Wonders of Borneo (12 days, Kota Kinabalu to Kota Kinabalu) (GAAABE) Fr £2,239

Kota Kinabalu / Kudat

01-02

Kudat

Kota Kinabalu

Passing through rainforest and Sabah’s arable farming areas you reach Sepilok. You’ll now experience one of the highlights of this trip, coming face-to-face with orang-utans. You’ll spend time at the centre where they focus on re-introducing domesticated, injured and orphaned orang-utans back into the wild. Visit one of the feeding platforms and explore the many walking trails. (B)

Poring

03-04

Weston Miri

MALAYSIA

Mt Kinabalu Mulu

05-06

INDONESIA

07-08 09-10

Sandakan / Kota Kinabalu

12

09 10

Kota Kinabalu

Your adventure finishes on Day 10. (B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

You’ll reach the summit on Day 5 in time for an awe-inspiring sunrise which will more than make up for your efforts (and the early start). Head back down the mountain with the promise of relief for your muscles with a dip in Poring’s hot springs. Spend the next day exploring Poring with a host of activities – go wildlife-spotting at the Lupa Masa jungle and a sun bear sanctuary or visit the famous Sabah tea plantations and, if you haven’t had enough walking, take to the local hiking trails. (2B, L) The quaint town of Weston is your next destination where you can visit the oldest wooden school in Borneo and a 100-year-old jetty before kayaking down the river to spot wild proboscis monkeys and other exciting wildlife. After dinner, opt to take a boat ride to see fireflies light up the night. On Day 8, a speed boat will zoom you up to Labuan to catch a flight to Miri – take advantage of the city’s famous music scene and stock up on supplies for a long day of travel to Mulu. (2B)

Mulu

After a day of travelling by boat, stretch your legs and get active on Day 10 with cave exploring, wildlife night parks, abseiling and traipsing along the Headhunters Trail’s in lush green forests. At dusk you can even watch thousands of bats flutter out of some of the world’s largest caves! (2B)

Kuching

11

Explore the former POW camp that has become Sandakan POW Memorial Park and perhaps there’ll be time to check out the historic town and waterfront markets before the short (45-minute) flight back to Kota Kinabalu. Look out for Mt. Kinabalu peeking through the clouds as you fly past! (B)

Top up your tan on the beach in the morning before heading to Kota Kinabalu Park. You’ll attend a briefing on the next day’s hike up Mount Kinabalu, the highest mountain between the Himalayas and New Guinea! If trekking up a mountain isn’t your thing, ask for the tour guide to arrange for a place for you to stay on the base of the mountain. Start your journey with a climb to Laban Rata on Day 4, with a reward of a buffet-style dinner at the end. Take in your beautiful surroundings and keep your eyes peeled for the rafflesia, the world’s largest flower! (2B, L, D)

Weston / Miri

Selingan (Turtle) Island

Head out on a boat to Selingan Island, otherwise known as ‘Turtle Island’. On arrival you have free time to snorkel, swim, explore the island, or just relax on the tropical beach. Tuck into a sumptuous dinner as the sun sets before visiting the Island Discovery Centre where you can learn about turtles and see them in their natural habitat. (B, L, D)

Arrive at any time during the day and feel free to venture out into the city to explore. Don’t forget to save room for a delicious local home-cooked dinner after meeting the rest of your travel group! On Day 2, drive to secluded Kudat on the northern tip of Borneo for a magical day visiting a turtle nesting site and lounging on secluded beaches, or there’s fishing, surfing and jungle trekking for the more adventurous. You can even get involved in a local beach clean-up project if you wish. (B, D)

Mount Kinabalu Summit / Poring

Kuching

Kinabatangan River

M A L AYS I A ( SA BA H )

DAY ITINERARY

Mount Kinabalu

Today, you travel out to Mt. Kinabalu National Park and to the base of the highest mountain between the Himalayas and New Guinea. Catch a glimpse of the summit, often shrouded in cloud. The huge rock monolith looms over you as a daunting reminder of the climb you are about to embark on but don’t be discouraged, it’s a hugely rewarding experience! Spend the afternoon exploring the trails around the park or opt to travel to Ranau and the Poring Hot Springs for a relaxing soak. (B)

Mt. Kinabalu

Kinabatangan

Borneo’s lush rainforests engulf the island’s jagged mountains, exotic wildlife, and a diverse tribal people that have lived there for thousands of years – and it’s all there just waiting to be explored! This two-week long journey keeps you on your feet and takes you to the tip of northern Borneo to watch turtles nest and complete their pilgrimage to sea, up steep Mount Kinabalu to marvel at the sunrise that peaks above the horizon, trekking through caves and jungles teeming with fantastic animals, and curling up for a night in a tribal longhouse. You’ll explore every inch Borneo has to offer and it’ll only leave you wanting more!

Mt. Kinabalu National Park

My Own Room Available: Fr £259

78

14 DAYS

Kuching

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Start

You might like

FR

Departures 2014

Departures 2014

Kota Kinabalu

£1,699

best of borneo

After your flight to Kuching, you have a free day to explore! Your tour guide will help you get the lay of the land with an orientation walk and then you can venture off to what takes your fancy. Opt to take a cooking class or go for a walk along the promenade. If you want to learn more about Kuching’s culture and history, hit up the Sarawak Museum, Borneo’s oldest museum, the Chinese History Museum and don’t forget to save time for Fort Margherita. (B)

Longhouse Stay

Get some insight into the local way of life when you stay at a tribe’s longhouse just outside Kuching, soaking up their culture and feasting on all the incredible food! (B)

Kuching

13-14

Go wild at the Semenggoh Nature Reserve on Day 13 for an afternoon of feeding orang-utans and exploring the centre which has been rescuing orphaned, injured or animals in captivity since 1975. On Day 14, it’s time to say your final goodbyes to Borneo and head home. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

79


KUALA LUMPUR

Jalan

n Ism

KUALA LUMPUR CITY TOUR

all

2 6

PETRONAS TOWERS

Wang l

Su

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nI

g an P in

sm

all

5

Jalan K uchi

ng

an

an

ma n l Rah

Jal

ja Chulan

hulan

DAY TOUR TO MALACCA

TIMES SQUARE

Bi

Im Ja lan

it

uk

nB

a al

Abdul Rahman

J Jal

an

Ha

ng

Jeb

al

KUALA LUMPAR AIRPORT: 35KM

Chinatown Inn

£16 SINGLE £8 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

CORUS HOTEL

£83 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

FULL DAY

Check out medieval churches and Chinese temples at one of Malaysia’s most historical cities. Visit the Christ Church, the Cheng Hoon Teng Chinese temple and take a stroll along Jonker street - Malacca’s antique row. An English speaking guide and a local lunch are included. KULDAY

ROCK SOLID

rock solid

£57

FR

HoTEL SENTRAL PUDU

a-list

£39 SINGLE £20 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

RENAISSANCE EAST WING

£88 SINGLE £44 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Affordable accommodation in the heart of Chinatown • A lively night market right on your doorstep • Spacious, comfy rooms all with en suites

• Contemporary style rooms come with air con and Wi-Fi • Sample tasty Chinese and Japanese food at its two restaurants • Take advantage of the shuttle service to/from major shopping hotspots

• Within walking distance of the ‘golden triangle’ - Bukit Bintang • Enjoy daily complimentary brekkie in the hotel’s restaurant • Free area shuttle service, the ultimate convenience for city exploring!

• Cool off with a refreshing dip in the free-form pool • Soak up the rays amongst the tropical greenery • Catch a game with your friends in the Mezzo Bar

This cheap and cheerful budget hotel has basic but comfy and clean rooms, all with en suite bathrooms, TVs and free Wi-Fi. Deluxe rooms also have air con to keep you cool on those tropical nights. Step into Chinatown, great for shopping and cheap tasty food. Good value for money in a vibrant area.

A five-minute walk from Suria KLCC shopping mall and next door to the LRT station - location-wise Corus is hard to beat. Surrounded by a garden terrace, the pool has cracking views of nearby Petronas Towers. There’s also a gym, sauna and steam room, perfect to unwind in after a night out on the tiles!

This brand new hotel is excellently located within walking distance of the monorail station, Times Square and Pavilion Mall. Dishing up real urban appeal, its rooms are stylish and modern with LCD flatscreen TVs and free Wi-Fi. Grab a bite to eat in the restaurant before heading out to shop ‘til you drop!

This centrally located, luxurious hotel in the ‘golden triangle’ district has eight restaurants and an Olympic-sized free-form pool - an ideal retreat amongst the tropical landscaped greenery. All rooms offer contemporary style and include a sofa, air con and marble bathroom. You even get your own bathrobe and slippers.

KULCHI

rock solid

Berjaya Times Square

KULCOR

STAY 5 NIGHTS OR MORE FOR ROOM UPGRADE - 01Apr14 - 14Dec14

£116 SINGLE £58 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

Hotel Sentral

£36 SINGLE £18 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

KUALA LUMPur STOPOVER PACKAGE

£92

FR

3 DAYS

KL to Penang - a GLIMPSE OF the NORTHERN PENINSULAR

£536

FR

4 DAYS

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• In the heart of the shopping district with easy monorail access • Enjoy live entertainment and cocktails in the vibrant lounge • Fine dining and fab views from the 14th floor restaurant

• After sunset cocktails pop out to enjoy the nightlife • Try yummy local dishes at the Starmint Coffee House • Enjoy some channel surfing in your comfortable room

A very handy location within a huge shopping mall with many restaurants, bars and entertainment venues on your doorstep! The rooms are stylish with Internet access and cable TV. There is a swimming pool, squash courts, a gym, steam and sauna rooms, as well as three great restaurants to enjoy.

In the heart of KL and walking distance to the main transport hubs, you won’t miss out staying here. The rooms are stylishly furnished with LCD flatscreen TVs, mini-bar and free Wi-Fi. Don’t miss the Starmint Coffee House for mouth-watering cuisine, washed down with exotic cocktails at sunset in the Sentro Lounge.

80

KULREN

rock solid

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

STAY 4 PAY 3 - 06Jan14 - 31Mar14, 01Apr14 - 31May14 & 01Jul14 - 17Dec14

KULPUD

KULBER

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

KULSEN

This package ticks all the boxes for a stress-free stay in Malaysia’s exciting capital. Included in the price are return airport transfers, accommodation and breakfast in a fab, centrally located hotel. We’ve also thrown in a half-day city tour which includes all the highlights such as the National Mosque, Independence Square, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, Selangor Club, St. Mary’s Church plus a drive through colourful Chinatown. Accommodation: Hotel Sentral (2 nts) Transport: Return airport transfers included Meals: No meals included Includes: Kuala Lumpur city tour Tour code: KULLSP

Head out of KL to the Batu Caves - a huge limestone outcrop that houses ornate Hindu temples - before moving on to the hill resort of Cameron Highlands, standing a heady1,542 metres above sea level! Next up, is Banding Island. Explore the lush rainforest or swim to an uninhabited island. On your final day, head to Penang and be wowed at Kek Lok Si temple, a majestic Buddhist temple with 10,000 pagodas! This beats simply flying to Penang any day. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hotels (3nts) Meals: 3 breakfasts Transport: Car / coach between KL and Penang Tour Code: KULGNP

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

81

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

1

ng

a nt

bi

3

CHINATOWN

shoestring

FULL DAY

KULKLC Jaian R a

ja C n Ra Jaia

4

£32

FR

Get artistic at a fab batik factory and pick up some gorgeous handicrafts. Get spiritual with a climb to an awesome temple cave and check out the country’s finest mosque. Top it off with a history fix at the National Museum and a time trip back to the Tudors at the kitsch Cricket Club!

Jal

Abdu

Jalan Dang

Sulta

aharu au B u ng nS a l Ja


Langkawi

Penang

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

rock solid

HOLIDAY VILLA BEACH RESORT & spa langkawi

a-list

CASA DEL MAR

£80 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Right on its own private stretch of sandy beach and a short stroll from all the action, this resort promises relaxation. There’s a womens-only indoor pool, a couple of great restaurants and a gym. All the rooms are spacious and well-equipped and time can be spent in the lobby lounge listening to music or try your hand at karaoke! STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 9 01APR14 - 31OCT14

£183 SINGLE £92 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Set on lovely Pentai Cenang Beach, this resort is a true tranquil hideaway. It offers breathtaking sea view accommodation, innovative beachside dining and a stunning spa. Each of the 34 rooms is a peaceful oasis, with outside areas to enjoy stunning sunsets and all kinds of luxuries to make you feel a million miles away.

LGKHVB

A-LIST

THE WESTIN LANGKAWI

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

LGKCDM

STAY 7 PAY 5 - 11Jan14-31Mar14. STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 8 - 01Apr14 - 24May14, 26Jun14 27Jul14 & 01Sep14 - 20Dec14

LGKWLR

a-list

£110 SINGLE £55 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

MERITUS PELANGI beach resort & spa

SYOK @ CHULIA STREET HOSTEL

rock solid

Rainbow Paradise BEACH Resort

£6 DORM

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Infused with breathtaking natural beauty, this luxurious resort combines white sandy beaches, the beautiful Andaman Sea and lush tropical foliage. Serene, modern rooms come with exhilarating views and opulent amenities - from rain showers to the delights of the ‘Heavenly Bed’. Soak up the sunshine on the resort’s private beach.

ROCK SOLID

BERJAYA langkawi BEAch RESORT

£165 SINGLE £83 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

glampacker

A melting pot of art, cultural design and homely comfort, this ‘flashpacker’ hostel, set in Georgetown, is ideal for creative types. Expect custom-made quality beds and roomy, bright dorms. Meet likeminded travellers in the large lounge area, equipped with free Wi-Fi and foosball table or catch some rays on the rooftop terrace. 50% off foUrth night 01oct13-21dec14

rock solid

THE BAYVIEW BEACH RESORT

£53 SINGLE £27 TWIN/DBL

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Right on the beautiful sands of Tanjung Bungah Beach, this great value hotel offers a range of watersports including jet skiing, snorkelling and parasailing. Studio-style rooms come with their own balcony, kitchenette (at extra cost), satellite TV and air con. Facilities include an outdoor pool, beach volleyball and gym.

PNGSYO

STAY 5 PAY 4 - 06Jan14 - 31Mar14

£173 SINGLE £87 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

SHANGRI-LA GOLDEN SANDS resort & spa

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

With a magical beachfront setting at the quieter end of Batu Ferringhi beach, this solid hotel delivers on every level. Its spacious rooms have private balconies, perfect for taking in the tropical view. In addition, there’s a spa, gym, tennis court, several restaurants and a cool outdoor pool with sunken swim-up bar.

PENPAR

a-list

FR

£60 SINGLE £30 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 14 PAY 10 - 01Feb14-31Mar14,01Apr1431May14 & 29Jun14-19Dec14

pngbbr

a-list

£113 SINGLE £57 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

PARKROYAL PENANG RESORT

£92 SINGLE £46 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Dine under the stars on the private beach • Have a cheeky one at the lagoon pool swim-up bar • Enjoy the buzzing Rimba lounge with its lively music

• Make yourself at home in your spacious Malay-style wooden chalet • Make the most of the expansive, attractive grounds • Enjoy in-room amenities like satellite TV and tea/coffee making facilities

• Choose from countless activities at the watersports centre • Stroll straight onto Batu Feringgi beach • Dine under the stars at the Sigis Bar and Grill

• Stroll out to the nearby lively nightmarket • Dive into either of the two pools • Sip a cocktail or two in the sunset bar

Nestled within a rainforest sanctuary, Berjaya embraces boundless views of emerald waters and tropical mountains. Spread over 70 acres, choose to stay amongst the rainforest or by the waters of the Andaman Sea. The chalets embody early Malay architecture and come with private balconies, air con and ceiling fan.

Covering 30 acres on a beachfront location, it’s time to think tranquility, white sandy beaches, stunning sunsets and romance. Relax in your wooden chalet and have a drink on your private veranda as the sun goes down. Facilities are immense and include pool, gym, steam and sauna rooms and squash courts.

This multiple award winning four-star resort is located along the vibrant Batu Ferringi Beach. The watersports centre, Adventure Zone, three tennis courts, mini-golf course, swimming pools and Segway will ensure an action-packed vacation. Added to this the chic, contemporary rooms all come with DVD players and Wi-Fi.

Situated right on Penang’s stunning Batu Ferringhi beach, this idyllic retreat effortlessly mixes great hospitality with stylish design and a lively location. Sip cocktails by one of the two pools, indulge in a soothing massage or work up a sweat on the tennis court. Reward your efforts with a cocktail at the sunset bar.

STAY 6 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 8 - 01Apr14 - 30Jun14 & 01Sep14 31Oct14

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LGKBLR

STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 14 PAY 10 - 01Apr14-30Jun14, 01Sep14-19Dec14

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

LGKMPR

STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7 - 01Feb14-15JUN14 & 01Sep14 - 18Dec14

PENGOL

STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 10 PAY 7, STAY 14 PAY 10 01Feb14-31Mar14,01Apr14-28May14 & 01Jul14-19Dec14

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

PENPRP

83


BORNEO

mt kinabalu trek SANDAKAN

1 2 3 MT. KINABALU SEPILOK

TURTLE ISLAND

SABAH

SARAWAK

£435

FR

3 DAYS

A jampacked three-day tour from Kota Kinabalu through some of Borneo’s most stunning panoramas as you aim for the summit of the mighty Mount Kinabalu! Spend two nights at a mountain resthouse and all your meals are included as well as an English speaking guide. BKIMKT

KUCHING

ORang-utans & turtles

£254

FR

2 DAYS

SDKTUR

rock solid

A-List

A-LIST

NATURALLY SABAH Kota Kinabalu

£656

FR

5 DAYS

Kota Kinabalu

Highlights

NEXUS BEACH RESORT & SPA

£125 SINGLE £63 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT including breakfast

Get away from it all at this great resort set in acres of natural surroundings, 30km from Kota Kinabalu. There’s an 18-hole championship golf course, eight restaurants, bars and a spa, meaning you don’t have to miss out on choice despite your secluded location. This is the perfect relaxing hideaway. STAY 5 PAY 4, STAY 10 PAY 8 - All Year

BKINRS

SHANGRI-LA RASA RIA

£129 SINGLE £65 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

SHANGRI-LA TANJUNG ARU

£131 SINGLE £66 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

In a tropical setting beside exquisite Pantai Dalit Beach, just 45 minutes from Kota Kinabalu, thie Shangri-La has its own nature reserve with an orang-utan rehabilitation centre and even a golf course. All ground floor rooms have a private lawn while the upper floors boast balconies with sea or landscape views.

Set in 25 acres of lush garden, this gem has its own private beach overlooking the islands of Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park. Providing modern luxury, guests are treated to a whopping 2,000-square metre pool with an infinity section, seven restaurants and bars, a health club and spa. Rooms come with air con and Wi-Fi.

STAY 7 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 10 - 05-27jan14, 04feb14 - 16apr14, 24Apr14 - 14Jul14, 01Sep14 - 20Dec14. FREE ROOM UPGRADE FOR 7nights STAY - 01Apr14-31Dec14, HONEYMOON OFFERS AVAILABLE

STAY 7 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 10 - 05-26jan14, 05feb14 - 16apr14, 24Apr14 - 14Jul14, 01Sep14 - 20Dec14. FREE ROOM UPGRADE FOR 7 nights STAY - 01Apr14-31Dec14, HONEYMOON OFFERS AVAILABLE

BKISRU

KOTA KINABaLu HIGHLIGHTS Kota Kinabalu

• Marvel at the towering peak of Mount Kinabalu • Get close to those cuddly, cute orang-utans! • Enjoy sun and fun on Coral Island’s coastal paradise

BKISLT

£219

FR

5 DAYS

Kota Kinabalu

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

Inclusions

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hotel (3 nts), river lodge (1 nt) Transport: Coach, boat Meals: 4 breakfasts, 4 lunches (3 from 01Apr13), 2 dinners Tour Leader: English speaking guide Note: Internal flight cost is not included Tour Code: BKINAT

Departs: Daily Accommodation: 3* hotel with upgrade option to 4* (4 nts) Transport: Car, boat Includes: English speaking guide, entrance & boat fees Meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches Tour Code: BKIKKH

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VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

03-05

Drive out to Sukau and ride up the Kinabatangan River to your lodge for the night. Take an afternoon cruise searching for proboscis monkeys, macaques, hornbills, pigmy elephants and orang-utans. On Day 4, you’ll visit the Orang-utan Sanctuary at Sepilok before a short flight back to the capital. Enjoy a day trip to Coral Island on Day 5 for swimming, snorkelling and beachtime before returning to Kota Kinabalu Airport, where your trip ends. (3B, 2L, D)

VoluntourING - Experience Borneo & Conserve Orang-utans Kuching

Matang

Bako

Sarawak

Highlights

Inclusions

Arrive Kota Kinabalu and transfer to your hotel. Explore the town at your leisure. Day 2, head to Kinabalu Park to enjoy the stunning mountain scenery and trek along forest trails. (B, L, D)

Sukau / Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary / Kota Kinabalu / Coral Island Day Trip

Semenggoh

Batang

£1,195

FR

Ai Kuching

14 DAYS

Highlights

• Enjoy a bird’s eye view of the world’s oldest rainforest from treetop walkways • Swim, snorkel or simply relax at one of the coral islands • Witness Southeast Asia’s highest peak at World Heritage Site, Kinabalu Park

Rebuilt after the Second World War, Kota Kinabalu is Sabah’s capital city and one of the fastest growing in Malaysia. A historic tour of KK (as the locals call it) will cover the City Mosque and Chinese Temple before you swing by the eclectic spice market. Here, you’ll learn about the special ingredients used in Malaysian cuisine and don’t forget to sample a local pancake, called roti canai - absolutely delicious! Join the jungle trail at Kinabalu Park, venturing onto the canopy walkway which is a series of bridges built 40 metres above the ground (just don’t look down!). Time permitting, take a dip in the theraputic sulphur baths. On your penultimate day, take a boat trip to one of the coral islands in Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, spending the day snorkelling, swimming or just topping up that tan.

Kota Kinabalu

• Once-in-a-lifetime experience of visiting an orang-utan rehabilitation centre • Live with local indigenous rainforest tribes • Couple touring with volunteering - the perfect match!

Inclusions

Project Start Date: 3rd/17th of each month Getting There: Transfers to/from Kuching Airport included Accommodation: Basic shared rooms (4-6 per room) (13nts) Meals: Most meals included Trip Code: STACHVOL

This voluntour is designed to raise awareness of the conservation efforts made in Sarawak and to bring harmony between people and orang-utans. Be one of the special few who experience and help with orang-utans being rehabilitated and see the semi-wild orang-utans at the world-famous Semenggoh Nature Reserve. Postvolunteering, enjoy an exhilarating week’s adventure into the rainforest, where you’ll meet the descendants of the legendary headhunters of Borneo - the Iban tribe - who are now custodians of the wild orang-utans. Experience an incredible stay with them in a traditional longhouse. Please note, there will be no touching of orang-utans on the tour as this runs contrary to efforts to rehabilitate them back into the wild as well as carrying significant risks for injury or disease to both animals and humans.

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

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SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Enjoy some face time with two of Borneo’s most iconic creatures. Head out from Sandakan to Turtle Island to see the little guys lay eggs on the beaches followed by a visit to Sepilok Orang-utan Rehab Centre. Includes overnight chalet stay, plus breakfast, lunch and dinner.

KALIMANTAN


EXPLORE Malaysia

SINGAPORE SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

full Malaysia Ways hop-on hop-off travel pass

£184

FR

9 DAYS +

Create your ideal Malaysian holiday with maximum flexibility using a Hop-On Hop-Off bus pass. The route kicks off in Kuala Lumpur (with a free foodie tour) before continuing up to the Cameron Highlands for an included rainforest expedition. Cross over to the East Coast and the stunning Perhentian Islands before heading over to Penang, back down to Melaka and finishing in KL. All your transport is included and the minimum recommended time is 9 days but you can take much longer if needed. For more details on how the passes work check out pages 38-39.

Malaysia ROUNDTRIP

£554

FR

7 DAYS

Discover the amazing culture and heritage of Malaysia in this all encompassing trip. Start in KL and head up the west coast stopping at the Batu Caves before an overnight stop in the Cameron Highlands. Continue to Ipoh and the island of Penang for two nights before switching sides to the culturally rich east coast and overnighting in Kota Bharu, Terengganu and Kuantan or Cherating. Your final journey takes you back to KL. Departs: Every Wednesday Accommodation: Assortment of 3 - 4* hotels (6 nts) Meals: 6 breakfasts Transport: Coach Includes: All touring en route and a hald day tour of Penang Tour Code: KULRT6

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s 1. Night safari at singapore zoo 2. Hit orchard road’s mega-malls 3. sip a singapore sling in raffles 4. Explore sentosa’s theme parks 5. Dine out in little India

WOODLANDS

£229

Cameron Highlands explorer

FR

3 DAYS

Surround yourself with picturesque tea plantations at Malaysia’s largest hill station, standing 1,542 metres above sea level! Explore the famous limestone Batu Caves and pay a trip to a tea plantation and tea factory (the area is world-renowned for production of this tipple). After a visit to vegetable and strawberry farms, barter for fresh produce at a local market and gain a peek into the Highlands’ rich history at the Time Tunnel Museum. Cuppa anyone? Departs: Every Wednesday Accommodation: 4* hotel (2 nts). Meals: 2 breakfasts Transport: Coach Tour Code: KULCE2

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BUBU DivE PACKAGE Perhentian islands

£302

FR

• SERANGOON

5 DAYS

A tropical paradise, the Perhentian Islands, off the north east coast of Malaysia, are blessed with breathtaking white sand beaches lapped by crystal waters teeming with marine life. As part of this package enjoy four dives at world-renowned dive sites getting up close to spectacular coral formations. Witness stunning sunsets, fish-filled waters and colourful reefs. Suitable for certified and non-certified divers. Departs: Daily Mar-Oct only Accommodation: Twin share hotel (4 nts) Meals: 4 breakfasts Includes: Land transfers in private vehicles from Kota Bharu & boat transfers to the island Tour Code: KBRBDP

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

SINGAPORE CITY CENTRE

SENTOSA

KATONG


Singapore

THINGS TO DO IN SINGAPORE

tr al Ex py

CHIANGI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT: 12km

Ce n lan

Se

ra n

Be sa r

go on Rd

LITTLE INDIA

5

SINNIG

6

oast P East C

10 11

SINCIT

Singapore Tripper Pass

3

CHINATOWN

glampacker

hangout@ mt.emily

£23 DORM £34 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

hangout@mt.emily offers chic accommodation located near Little India close to the centre of the city, but away from the hustle and bustle. All dorms and private rooms have air con and free Internet, plus there’s a lounge that screens free movies. Enjoy a game of pool or chill out on the rooftop, taking in the cityscape. ISIC cardholders get early check in

glampacker

BUNC @ radius Little India

£21 DORM

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This trendy and modern boutique hostel is located within the culturally rich Little India district, providing the total ‘flashpacker’ experience. Each dorm bed comes with a private reading light, a locker and you’ll definitely get a good night’s rest with comfy mattresses, two fluffy pillows and duvets provided.

£85 SINGLE £43 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This great little property has its own inhouse hangout - a spacious restaurant/ lounge serving food throughout the day, perfect for meeting others. And if you need more, there’s also a pool and fitness centre. All rooms have air con and en suites. Orchard Road is just a 15-minute walk away or you can take the free shuttle. STAY 7 PAY 6, STAY 12 PAY 10 - 01Apr14 - 16Apr14, 24Apr14 - 14Jul14, 01Sep14 20Dec14. FREE ROOM UPGRADE FOR STAYS 7 NIGHTS OR MORE - 01Apr14-31Dec14 SINMET

88

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

SINQUA

rock solid

bayview HOTEL

£121 SINGLE £61 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

You’ll adore the rooftop swimming pool at this smart city centre hotel - perfect for a revitalising dip and taking in the city views. Other facilities include a restaurant, bar and gym. All the plush rooms have air con, cable TV and Wi-Fi. Singapore’s most popular shopping area is close to the hotel so you can shop ‘til you drop. STAY 3 NIGHTS OR MORE AND GET FREE ROOM UPGRADE

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

SINcbh

£24 DORM

FR

Style meets great value for money at this brand new boutique hostel based just off pedestrianised Boat Quay - aka restaurant central. Enjoy customised “bunc” beds with luxuries like two fluffy pillows, duvets, individual lockers, personal bed light and power outlets. As for location it just can’t be beaten.

SINBUN

SINHAN

shoestring

METROPOLITAN Y

BUNC @ RADIUS CLARKE QUAY

furama riverfront singapore

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

STAY 4 PAY 3 - 01Jan14-09Feb14, 16-28Feb14, 01-06APR14, 11APR14 - 31JUL14 & 01-30DEC14

SINPEN

furama city centre

£144 SINGLE £72 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

£144 SINGLE £72 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

• Award-winning property in a great location • Set in Chinatown where there are many funky restaurants • All the facilities you could need for a relaxing stay

This award-winning hotel is located just five minutes from the vibrant nightlife and entertainment belt along the river - Robertson Quay and Clarke Quay. Lounge on a sunbed by the pool or bubble away in the Jacuzzi. Rooms boast a huge range of amenities and overlook either the city skyline, greenery or the swimming pool.

A landmark in Singapore’s cityscape, this award-winning hotel is found in the heart of Chinatown with its fabulous choice of shops, bars and restaurants, and is a short distance from the waterfront dining district. The modern rooms boast fab amenities, while the hotel facilities include a Halal-certified restaurant, pool and gym.

sinfrf

STAY 4 PAY 3 - ALL YEAR

RENDEZVOUS GRAND HOTEL

£154 SINGLE £77 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

STAY 4 PAY 3 - 01Jan14-28Feb14, 01Jul1431Aug14 & 01Dec14-31Dec14

A-LIST

SWISSOTEL STAMFORD

£197 SINGLE £98 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

Rendezvous is a fresh blend of old and new - sleek and sophisticated, yet retaining the old-world charm and gracious style of a bygone era. Take a dip in the Balineseinspired pool or take it easy in the Jacuzzi. Enjoy the great central location close to Orchard Road and well equipped and comfy guestrooms. SINrhs

SINFUR

STAY 4 PAY 3 - ALL YEAR

rock solid

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

Looking for some comfort during your stay in Singapore, why not opt for this little gem? In the heart of the city, the location is pretty unbeatable. You can also take in the city from the 270-degree panoramic views this 22-floor hotel has to offer. As far as facilities go, there is a pool, gym, sauna and choice of restaurants.

rock solid

• Cool Robertson Quay location - great for nightlife • Chill in the pool or Jacuzzi • Shop in Clarke Quay’s little stalls and boutiques

rock solid

FR peninsula £121 SINGLE excelsior hotel FR£61 TWIN/DOUBLE

SINTRI

rock solid

glampacker

£164

FR

Take the hassle out of your Singapore trip. This two-day pass gives you access to all of the city’s top attractions and provides transportation wherever possible.

7 8

FR

Visit the waterfront (where Sir Stamford Raffles first landed), a Taosit temple, Mount Faber, one of the city’s oldest parks, and, finally, the botanical gardens.

kwy

ORCHARD ROAD

£20

Singapore City Tour

a-list

Marina Mandarin

£216 SINGLE £108 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

As one of South East Asia’s tallest hotels, you’re hard beat to find better views of Singapore. Everything is top-of-the-line here with comfortable chic rooms, a spa, tennis courts and two free-form swimming pools. There’s also a huge choice of places to eat with everything from Japanese to French cuisine up for grabs. Wow! QSINSS

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

A five-star luxury hotel in the heart of the city, with breathtaking views of Marina Bay and convenient access to the Marina Square Shopping Mall. Rooms offer a home away from home, with private balconies, Wi-Fi and large flatscreen TVs. Don’t forget to take a re-invigorating dip in the 25-metre mineral water pool. STAY 3 PAY 2 - 01Jan14-28Feb14, 01-30APR14, 01Jul14-31Aug14 & 15-31DEC14

SINMAN

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SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

xpy ral E Cent

9

2 d ir R Oph

Ja

Lebar Expy

1

FR

Check out the world’s first night wildlife park. Set in 40 hectares of secondary jungle, you are able to view over 1,000 nocturnal animals in naturalistic habitats.

a Pay ang Kall

4

£32

Night Safari


Classic Bali & lombok

INDONESIA & BALI

Sanur

• • • • • • •

£1,099

FR

14 DAYS

Sanur

Highlights

Hike up an active volcano, Mt. Batur Chill out on awesome tropical beaches Hike through stepped rice paddies Enjoy Bali culture in chilled-out Ubud Swim under tropical waterfalls Snorkel through the underwater world Marvel at floating palaces

south east asia

South east Asia

Departures 2014

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 04 Jan 18 Feb 01 Feb 15 Mar 01 Mar 15 Apr 05 Apr 19 May 03 May 17

Jan 17 Jan 31 Feb 14 Feb 28 Mar 14 Mar 28 Apr 18 May 02 May 16 May 30

Jun 07 Jun 21 Jul 05 Jul 12 Jul 19 Jul 26 Aug 02 Aug 09 Aug 23 Aug 30

Jun 20 Jul 04 Jul 18 Jul 25 Aug 01 Aug 08 Aug 15 Aug 22 Sep 05 Sep 12

Sep 06 Sep 20 Oct 04 Oct 18 Nov 01 Nov 15 Dec 06 Dec 20

Sep 19 Oct 03 Oct 17 Oct 31 Nov 14 Nov 28 Dec 19 Jan 02

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/simple guesthouses (13 nts) Transport: Mini-bus, local bus, ferry, private boat Meals: 13 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $250- 320 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAESS

1. surf & party in kuta beach 2. enjoy balinese culture in ubud 3. snorkel the gili islands 4. visit a javanese tea plantation 5. climb smouldering mt. bromo

My Own Room Available: Fr £499

DAY ITINERARY Sanur Beach

01

Arrive into the resort of Sanur at any time. Explore its colourful main street, lined with interesting shops and restaurants, or wander to the beautiful white-sand beach to make a start on your tan!

Bedugal / Munduk

Ascend from the lowlands and soothe weary limbs in the Angseri Hot Springs. Continue via Lake Bratan Temple and over the mountains to the town of Bedugal, which is surrounded by serene crater lakes and majestic mountains. Continue to your overnight stop at Munduk, where you can experience true Balinese hospitality with an included dinner of flavourful local specialities. (B, D)

02 Bedugal/ Munduk BA L I

Kintamani Mt. Batur Candidasa Gili Islands L O M B O K Ubud

SUMATRA

Although these two wondrous islands are just across the sea from each other, they remain worlds apart in contrasting cultures, though both are undeniably beautiful in their own unique ways. On this epic adventure you’ll explore active volcanoes, snorkel and sunbathe to your heart’s content, peruse local markets and relax on the idyllic Gili Islands as you travel the length and breadth of this tropical paradise. With a perfect mix of guided excursions and free time to explore these fascinating islands at your own pace, after this two-week adventure you’re sure to have been bowled over by Bali and its laid-back neighbour.

Sanur

INDONESIA

Kintamani

Travel through lush rice paddies and up Gunung Batur to Kintamani, which has a refreshingly cool climate due to its location, perched 1,500 metres above sea level on the edge of a crater overlooking Lake Batur with Mount Batur towering above. Optional activities include a village walk, soaking in hot springs or a volcano hike, or you could just mix with the locals at the produce market. (B)

03

Ubud Senaru Tetebatu

04-05

V I E T N A M

06-07

JAKARTA

Head to the cultural and artistic town of Ubud, which is quite regarded as the home of Balinese culture. Surrounded by scenic rice paddies and ancient temples, this popular town has inspired artists from all around the world and attracts a diverse mix of backpackers, hippies and intrepid travellers. Opt to visit the Monkey Forest or explore the numerous temples and craft markets, and take time out to enjoy the Balinese and international cuisine on offer in the town’s smart restaurants. (2B)

Candidasa

Travel the short distance by bus to the coast and to the legendary beaches of Candidasa, for a relaxing two-night stay with plenty of time for swimming, snorkelling and diving. Opt to visit the water temple, Tirta Gangga, or visit some secluded beaches along the coast. (2B)

Tetebatu (Lombok)

java

LOMBOK

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BALi

bali

lovina

denpasar seminyak legian kuta

tulamben candidasa ubud

Senaru

Start your day with a visit to the tobacco plantations of Tetebatu, before a spectacular drive through the forested slopes of Lombok’s interior and the dry, eastern side of the island. Approaching from the north, you’ll once again climb the slopes of the Rinjani Volcano, to the idyllic town of Senaru. (B)

09

Gili Islands

10-12

NUSA LEMBONGAN

sanur nusa dua

Extend your trip Indonesia Java, Bali & Lombok (22 days, Jakarta to Sanur) (GAAEJL) see page 94 Fr £1,849 Indonesia Encompassed (29 days, Medan to Sanur) (GAAEIE) Fr £2,449

Head down to the port of Padangbai for the 4hr 30min ferry crossing over to the port of Lembar on the island of Lombok. Though every bit as beautiful as Bali, Lombok receives a fraction of the visitors of its more popular neighbour, so it’s a great place to escape the crowds. Continue by road to the village of Tetebatu on the slope of the Rinjani Volcano, and spend the afternoon exploring. (B)

08

NUSA PENIDA

Start the adventure

13-14

Jump on the local boat to Gili Meno, the smallest of the three Gili Islands, which makes its living from fishing, coconut plantations and small-scale tourism ventures. With a population of only 400 and no cars, and surrounded by pearlescent white-sand beaches and pristine waters, Gili Meno is the ideal place to relax and enjoy the sun, sea and sand. Take an optional snorkelling excursion if you want to explore the spectacular underwater marine life and coral reefs. (3B)

Sanur Beach

Return to Bali on Day 13 and transfer back to Sanur. Reflect on your adventure under a Balinese sunset, before your tour comes to an end on Day 14. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

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CLASSIC BALI Sanur

Classic £599 Lombok

£599

FR

8 DAYS

Candidasa

Candidasa

FR

8 DAYS

Sanur

£949

JAVA to bali Jakarta

• • • • • • •

FR

15 DAYS

Sanur

Highlights

Trek in the shadow of Mt. Bromo Travel through winding rice terraces Soak up tranquil Balinese shores Admire Buddhist temple complexes Explore coffee plantations in Kalibaru Snorkel off Menjangan Island Hike through Bali’s tropical jungles

south east asia

south east asia

Departures 2014

Highlights

• Swim, snorkel and relax on Candidasa’s tropical beaches • Marvel at the power of active volcanoes amidst spectacular scenery • Absorb the unique atmosphere in the cultural arts centre of Ubud

DAY ITINERARY 01

Highlights

• Explore the volcanic landscapes and rice paddies of Tetebatu • Dunk yourself under refreshing tropical waterfalls • Snorkel to your heart’s content on the laid-back Gili Islands

Arrive at any time and explore Sanur’s beaches and colourful streets.

01

Bedugal / Munduk

02 03

Head upwards from lowlands towards Bedugal, pausing for a soak in the therapeutic waters of Angseri Hot Springs. Lie back and enjoy the bubbles as you take in the tumbling waterfalls and tropical plants. Spend the afternoon exploring the area around Bedugal with its impressive temple complex. Arrive into Munduk and get a taste of true Balinese hospitality with an included local dinner. Tasty! (B, D)

Kintamani

Travel through rice fields and up Gunung Batur to Kintamani. Marvel at the views of Lake Batur with the towering mountain behind it before an optional village walk, hot springs soak or volcano hike. (B)

03

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

May 03 May 04 May 18 May 31 Jun 01 Jun 15 Jun 29 Jun 29 Jul 13 Jul 26 Jul 27 Aug 10 Aug 23 Aug 24

May 17 May 18 Jun 01 Jun 14 Jun 15 Jun 29 Jul 12 Jul 13 Jul 27 Aug 09 Aug 10 Aug 24 Sep 06 Sep 07

Sep 07 Sep 20 Sep 21 Oct 05 Oct 18 Oct 19 Nov 02 Nov 15 Nov 16 Nov 30 Dec 13 Dec 14

Sep 21 Oct 04 Oct 05 Oct 19 Nov 01 Nov 02 Nov 16 Nov 29 Nov 30 Dec 14 Dec 27 Dec 28

Travel to the ferry harbour at Padangbai for the 4hr 30min ferry crossing to the port of Lembar, on Lombok. Drive to the village of Tetebatu on the slopes of the Rinjani Volcano, where you can explore the area’s rice paddies, tobacco fields and the small village. (B) Enjoy a spectacular drive through the forested slopes of the Rinjani Mountains and across the dry, eastern side of Lombok. Approaching the Rinjani Volcano from the north, climb its slopes once more to reach idyllic Senaru. (B)

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-39s Accommodation: Simple hotels (13 nts), local homestay (1 nt) Transport: Minibus, local bus, ferry, train Meals: 14 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $275-325 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAEKS

My Own Room Available: Fr £389

04-06

Take a short bus journey to the southeastern coast of Bali and the renowned beaches of Candidasa. Soak up this awesome location either swimming off secluded white-sand beaches, chilling out or with optional snorkelling or scuba diving. You may also like to pay a visit to the water temple, Tirta Gangga, take a yoga class or treat yourself to a massage. After a final night out with your group, the tour comes to an end on Day 8. (3B)

Hike through the valley at the base of Mount Rinjani and enjoy the hospitality of local villagers before a refreshing swim at a secluded waterfall. Travel for around four hours to the harbour where you jump on an outrigger boat to Gili Meno, the smallest of the three Gili Islands, with coconut plantations and beautiful white beaches. With a population of just 400 people and no cars, there’s no doubt that this is an ideal place to relax and really get away from it all. If you’re feeling energetic, you can head off of an organised snorkelling trip. The underwater sealife is fantastic and well worth exploring. (3B)

Sanur Beach

07-08

Return to Bali by boat and transfer to the resort of Sanur to enjoy a final evening with your group, plus an optional dinner as you admire a beautiful Balinese sunset. Your Indonesian adventure comes to an end on Day 8 after breakfast. (2B)

Fancy a piece of mouth-watering Indonesian heaven? Well this all-singing, all-dancing Asian adventure will set your cultural tastebuds on fire and will lead you from the bustle of Java to the blissful shores of Bali. Imagine the busy city of Jakarta with its teeming streets and friendly faces, and now imagine tranquil beaches and serene Balinese culture. Are you still with us? Asides from daydreaming into its picture-perfect mountain, jungle and beach landscapes, you’ll soak up an plenty of culture and excitement along the way. This incredible corner of the world is an Asian Shangri-La and truly personifies spirituality and tranquility.

DAY ITINERARY Jakarta

01-02 03-04

Bandung Cianjur

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/simple guesthouses (7 nts) Transport: Private van, public bus, boat Meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $170-200 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAESU

Malang NP Mt Bromo

05-07

I N D O N E S I A

Kalibaru Yogyakarta Tawangmangu Pemuteran Sanur

My Own Room Available: Fr £319

Departures 2014

Kintamani Mt. Batur

BA LI

Ubud

Sanur

Candidasa

Begin Day 8 with another charming journey through Javan landscapes, stopping at the Prambanan Temples where you can hire a bicycle to tour around the largest Hindu temple complex in Java. From the Sukuh Temple, begin a beautiful walk through small villages and farms to Tawangmangu. (B)

08

Malang

10-11 BALI

Candidasa

My Own Room Available: Fr £199

You might like

Gili Islands LOM B OK

Senaru

Sanur

Tetebatu

Extend your trip Indonesia In Depth - Sumatra, Java, Bali (28 days, Medan to Sanur) (GAAEID) see page 95 Fr £1,749

Departures 2014

Jan-Jun & Sep-Dec

Saturdays, twice-monthly

Jul-Aug

Every Saturday

Jul-Sep

92

Today, you head eastward to Malang, the second-largest city in east Java. You’ll pay a visit to Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park and will have chance to check out the bird and flower market. (B)

Mt. Bromo / Kalibaru

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/simple guesthouses (7 nts) Transport: Private van, public bus, boat Meals: 7 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $170200 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAEUS

Jan-Jun & Oct-Dec

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

The day kicks off with a scenic train journey to Yogyakarta, once home to the Mataram Palace. This little stunner is nestled in the shadow of Mt. Merapi and is close to the famous 8th Century Buddhist temple complex of Borobudur. Get out and explore tranquil Yogyakarta on foot and take a stroll around the fascinating bird market or head to a local Wayang (puppet) show. (3B)

Tawangmangu

Inclusions Bedugal/ Munduk

Start today off with a bus journey south east to Cianjur, passing the 100 year-old Gunung Mas or ‘Golden Mountain’ tea plantation on the way. Here you can learn from wise locals how tea is hand picked and then processed throughout the year. Cianjur will also show you its floating villages and give you the chance to teach English to local children. This corner of Java sees very little tourism, and you can experience local life by sleeping at a family homestay this evening. On Day 4, travel to Bandung for an orientation walk and time to explore under your own steam. (2B, D)

Yogyakarta

Jakarta

09

Inclusions

You’re free to parade Java’s thriving political and economic capital as you see fit today, as you don’t meet the group until this evening. On Day 2, take an optional city tour, walk around the old Dutch colonial heart of Kota or, in true Indonesian style, find a roadside coffee hut and pick up an authentic cup of Javan coffee! It’s world famous and so damn tasty, we’re sure it won’t be your last! (B)

Cianjur / Bandung

Gili Islands

Head into inland Bali to beautiful Ubud which represents the heart of Balinese culture. Nestled amongst scenic rice fields and with a landscape dotted with temples and palaces, it’s easy to see why artists have found inspiration here for decades. You can visit the Monkey Forest or numerous temples and markets. (2B)

Candidasa

06-08

Arrive at any time into the beautiful beach resort of Candidasa and meet your tour leader and the rest of your group this evening.

Senaru

Ubud

04-05

Candidasa

Tetebatu (Lombok)

02

Finish

Jan 19 Jan 26 Feb 09 Feb 22 Feb 23 Mar 09 Mar 22 Mar 23 Mar 29 Mar 31 Apr 06 Apr 19 Apr 20 May 04

Inclusions

DAY ITINERARY

Sanur Beach

Start

Jan 05 Jan 12 Jan 26 Feb 08 Feb 09 Feb 23 Mar 08 Mar 09 Mar 15 Mar 17 Mar 23 Apr 05 Apr 06 Apr 20

Alternate Fridays Fridays, typically 3-4 departures per month

Make an early start today to catch a glimpse of Mt. Bromo’s enchanting moonscape. Wind through the tropical landscape of eastern Java and climb upwards through the area’s largest volcanic range. Mt. Bromo is only one of many peaks, but is distinct in appearance, having blown its top completely off and it constantly smoulders with white smoke. Day 11 starts with a journey to Kalibaru’s coffee plantations. Brought to Java by the Dutch, Indonesia is now the world’s fourth-largest producer and the name ‘Java’ has come to symbolise top-notch quality in coffee shops from Jakarta to Paris. (2B)

Pemuteran

12-13

Bali is calling! On your journey you’ll pass rolling hills, tea plantations and coastal lowlands as you bid farewell to Java. Pemuteran lies sandwiched between national parks containing pristine coral reefs and luxuriant rainforest. Opt for a snorkelling trip to Menjangan Island, one of the best dive sites in Bali. Wander up the beach and pass through countryside for magnificent coastal views, ornate temples and monkeys. (2B)

Sanur

facebook.com/statravel.uk

14-15

Today’s agenda is all about the exotic shores of Sanur. Passing naturally diverse and intense cultural wealth, you’ll see why Bali is such a sought-after destination. Enjoy hot springs and pristine cascades before your trip comes to an end on Day 15. (2B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

93


Indonesia java, bali & lombok Jakarta

• • • • • • •

£1,849

FR

22 DAYS

Sanur

Highlights

Soak in hot springs in Kintamani Stand in awe of the Rinjani Volcano Explore the hectic capital of Jakarta Discover the huge Borobudur temple Laze around the stunning Gili Islands Experience life in local villages Treasure hunt at busy marketplaces

Medan

• • • • • • •

28 DAYS

Sanur

Highlights

Visit the opulent Maimoon Palace Play with orangutans in Bukit Lawang Tuck into delicious Balinese cuisine Trek in the shadow of Mt. Bromo Sip coffee fresh from the plantation Climb to the top of Borobudur Explore Bali’s stunning Hindu temples

south east asia

south east asia

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 24 Feb 21 Mar 28 Apr 25 May 30 Jun 27

Feb 14 Mar 14 Apr 18 May 16 Jun 20 Jul 18

Jul 18 Aug 15 Aug 29 Sep 12 Sep 26 Oct 10

Aug 08 Sep 05 Sep 19 Oct 03 Oct 17 Oct 31

Start

Finish

Oct 24 Nov 14 Nov 07 Nov 28 Nov 28 Dec 19 Dec 12 Jan 02 Dec 19 Jan 09

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Simple hotels/guesthouses (21 nts) Transport: Plane, boat, private van/ minibus, horsecart, bike, bamboo raft, train, bus, ferry Meals: 21 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner Budget: Allow $450-620 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAEJL

Alight every sense with this Indonesian adventure – the perfect mix of natural splendour, bustling cities, serenely remote villages and exotic wildlife. You’ll see the best of what the country has to offer in a whirlwind 22 days! Soak in Java’s rich history and culture at its many temples and monuments, dive amongst some of the world’s most beautiful coral reefs in Bali, and visit the looming Rinjani Volcano and enchanting waterfalls on the paradise island of Lombok. With some of the friendliest locals around, the only issue you’ll face is forcing yourself to go back home!

DAY ITINERARY

Finish

Mar 22 Apr 19 May 17 Jun 14

Start

Finish

Jun 15 Jul 12 Jul 13 Aug 09 Aug 10 Sep 06 Sep 07 Oct 04

Start

Finish

Oct 05 Nov 01 Nov 02 Nov 29 Nov 30 Dec 27

01-02 MALAYSIA

03-04

THAILAND

Settle in and get your bearings as you arrive into Java’s thriving capital, Jakarta. On Day 2, you’ll be taken around for a guided tour of the city. Wander through Kota and uncover its rich colonial past and tour Sunda Kelapa Harbour, a historic port filled with magnificent Makassar schooners. In the afternoon, depart for Bandung and make sure to opt for a traditional angklung children’s orchestra – the air will be filled with the sounds of its bamboo instruments. (B)

Candidasa

05-07

Gili Islands

Bandung Yogyakarta

Senaru Tetebatu

Sanur

From Sumatra, Java and on to Bali, traverse rich jungles, climb towering volcanos, sink your toes into white sandy beaches, and explore temples and sanctuaries, uncovering exactly why everyone loves Indonesia! This 28-day adventure will see you jump into the heart of the action in Jakarta, sightseeing and bargaining for souvenirs, or get back to the basics and live the life of a local, discovering new cultures and traditions along the way. Climb to new heights up a Buddha sanctuary before coming back down to earth for countless hours of relaxing and tanning in the balmy Indonesian sunshine. What more could you ask for?

DAY ITINERARY Medan / Bukit Lawang

CAMBODIA

Watch the sprawling countryside whizz past on a morning train to Yogyakarta before opting for a stunning dance performance by the Ramayana Ballet in the evening. On Day 4 drive to the village of Candirejo and get back to basics – take a horsecart tour and uncover the many customs, traditions and local ways of life. Later take in the majestic views atop the biggest Buddha sanctuary in the world, the Borobudur, a sight that stakes a claim to be one of the seven wonders of the world! (2B, L)

01-03

Bukit Lawang

Medan

Today you’ll head to Solo; the traditional capital of the Javanese Kingdom and offering a fascinating insight into the island’s identity. En route you’ll explore every twist and turn of the lavish Prambanan temple complex, a World Heritage Site. Massive and ancient, this is a sight that has to be seen to be believed! Across the agricultural heartland of Java, you’ll find Batu, a large hill resort. With stunning natural scenery, crisp mountain air, and famed for its delicious apples, you’ll never want to leave. On Day 7, the smouldering grandeur of volcanic Mount Bromo will take your breath away. (3B)

Malang / Sanur / Bedugal / Munduk

08-10

04-07

Berastagi

Samosir Island Bukittinggi Sipirok Maninjau

INDONESIA

Jakarta Cianjur Bandung

Mt Bromo Kalibaru Pemuteran Sanur

Malang Tawangmangu Yogyakarta

After driving to Malang, you’ll take a short flight to Sanur, a popular beach resort on the southern coast of Bali. Take advantage of some spare time the next day to lounge by the ocean as on Day 10 you’ll be up and at it on the way to Munduk. You’ll visit hot springs and the stunning Lake Bratan temple en route before tucking into mouthwatering Balinese cuisine. (3B, 1D)

08-10

You might like

Short on time? Classic Bali (8 days, Sanur to Candidasa) (GAAESU) see page 92 Classic Lombok (8 days, Candidasa to Sanur) (GAAEUS) see page 92 Best of Java (9 days, Jakarta to Sanur) (GAAEJV)

14-16

11-13 14-15

Fr £599

Fr £749

16-20

Candidasa / Tetebatu / Lombok

17-20 21-22

Sanur

Head back to Bali by boat for to say your goodbyes to your tour buddies over an optional farewell dinner. On Day 22, you can depart at any time you wish. (2B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Travel to Lake Toba, the world’s largest volcano lake, to chill out and swim in its warm waters, or opt for something more cultural with a visit to local Batak villages. Enjoy visits to local weavers and markets en route to the beautiful hilltop town of Sipirok which is surrounded by rice fields. (3B) It’s a long day travel today, but hopefully an orientation walk on arrival into Bukittinggi will make you realise the journey’s been worth it! Day 12 is free to go rafting, kayaking, visit Sianok Canyon or check out the Japanese Caves built during World War II. After a short drive on Day 13, hike the final hours down to the crater lake of Maninjau to enjoy the sunset and the easy-going pace of life. (3B)

Jakarta

Fly from Padang to Jakarta, and get to grips with this action-packed city on an optional guided tour before enjoying a street food crawl to dine on spicy satay and other Indonesian specialities. (2B) Travel by bus to Cianjur, where you can see its floating villages and have the chance to teach English to local children. This corner of Java sees little tourism, and you’ll experience local life by spending the night at a family homestay. On Day 17, travel to Bandung for an orientation walk and time to explore under your own steam. From Bandung, take the scenic train ride to Yogyakarta where there is plenty of time to explore sights such as Mt. Merapi and the magnificent Borobudur, the largest Buddha sanctuary in the world. (5B, D)

Tawangmangu / Malang / Mt. Bromo / Kalibaru

Drive to the relaxed resort of Candidasa for a beach day to swim with the fish, snorkelling or scuba diving below the azure waters. Once on the ferry to Lombok, plan your time carefully to see its many sweeping beaches, lush evergreen landscapes and imposing Rinjani Volcano. (3B) Hit the road and explore the lush tobacco plantations of Tetebatu, surrounded by countryside littered with fruit orchards, rice fields and gushing waterfalls. On Day 18, you’ll head to the stunning Gili Islands, scattered with beachside bungalows, white sandy beaches hiding vibrant coral reefs, and friendly locals – a perfect piece of paradise for the last leg of your Indonesia adventure. (4B)

Samosir Island / Sipirok

Cianjur / Bandung / Yogyakarta

Drive up north through lush rice fields to Kintamani to see the awe-inspiring sight of Gunung Batur, Bali’s second-highest volcano; unwind in steamy hot springs or opt to explore the village on foot. When you arrive at Ubud, the ‘heart of Balinese culture’, your CEO will help you get the lay of the land with an orientation walk. Optional activities in Ubud include a variety of cultural sites, the Monkey Forest, teeming markets, majestic temples and traditional rice paddies. (3B)

21-24

Senaru / Gili Islands

Fr £599

Traverse bumpy roads to reach the small jungle community of Tangkahan, where you can participate in an optional elephant feeding session, go hiking or ride an elephant. Hike from Tangkahan to Bukit Lawang, then continue by bus to quaint Berastagi to get a taste of Indonesian life without the tourist crowds. Opt to hike up Sibayak volcano at sunrise for breathtaking views of the valleys below. Don’t forget to treat your muscles to an afternoon unwinding at the local hot springs afterwards! (4B)

Bukittinggi / Maninjau

Kintamani / Ubud

11-13

Arrive into Medan at any time. Take in the many art deco buildings and Buddhist and Hindu temples on a city tour on Day 2, which also includes a visit to the opulent Maimoon Palace, the Great Mosque and the Vihara Gunung Timur temple. In Bukit Lawang, visit the orangutan viewing platform to see these adorable and intelligent creatures, and opt to go jungle trekking in Gunung Leuser N.P. (2B)

Tangkahan / Berastagi

Tangkahan

Solo / Batu

Kintamani

Solo Batu

My Own Room Available: Fr £909

Yogyakarta

INDONESIA

Bedugal/ Munduk

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Recommended for 1839s Accommodation: Simple hotels (26 nts), local homestay (1 nt) Transport: Minibus, local bus, ferry, train, plane Meals: 27 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow $500-750 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAEID

Jakarta / Bandung

My Own Room Available: Fr £739

Ubud

Start

Feb 23 Mar 23 Apr 20 May 18

Inclusions

Inclusions

94

£1,749

FR

Departures 2014

Departures 2014

Jakarta

INDONESIA IN DEPTH - SUMATRA, JAVA, BALI

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Short on time? Highlights of Sumatra (14 days, Medan to Padang) (GAAESH)

Day 21 begins with another charming journey through Javan landscapes, stopping at the Prambanan Temples where you can hire a bicycle to see Java’s largest Hindu temple complex. From the Sukuh Temple, enjoy a lovely walk through villages and farms to Tawangmangu. Travel via Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park to Malang, the second-largest city in east Java. Rise early on Day 23 to catch a glimpse of Mt. Bromo’s lunar-like landscape; it’s a distinctive volcanic peak having blown its top off completely. Travelling onwards, hit the top-quality coffee plantantations of Kalibaru. (4B)

Pemuteran / Sanur

25-28 Fr £749

On your journey to Bali, you’ll pass tea plantations and coastal lowlands to reach Pemuteran, which lies sandwiched between national parks containing pristine coral reefs and luxuriant rainforest. Opt for a snorkelling trip to Menjangan Island, one of the best dive sites in Bali. On Day 27, travel to the popular resort of Sanur to relax on its sandy beaches before the tour concludes on Day 28. (4B)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

95


KUTA

beaches & beyond

N

3

2

Jal an Su ns et

n Legio Jalan

4

Kuta, Legian & SEMINYAK Party central Kuta is packed full of bars and clubs, as well as cheap restaurants and great surf. A little quieter than their brasher sister Kuta but still nice and close to the action, Legian and Seminyak still offer plenty of beach bars, a good restaurant scene and boutique shops.

Ro ad

Jalan Imam Bonjol

Jalan Patih Jelantik

10

South east Asia

6 des Jalan Ken De ya Kuta Jalan Ra

7 8

5

9

SHOESTRING

IDA HOTEL

£33 SINGLE £17 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Bask on your balcony, kick back in the gorgeous garden, paddle around the pool, unwind with a massage or enjoy a beer at the bar. There are endless options at this budget Bali hotel, plus you’re only ten minutes from Kuta’s crazy clubs! Your comfy room comes complete with en suite bathroom, air con, TV and fridge. stays 5 pay 4 - 04jan14-27dec14

GLAMPACKER

DEWI SRI HOTEL

£41 SINGLE £21 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

In the heart of Kuta, this budget boutique hotel is a quiet oasis within the bustling Bali streets. The hotel has a pool with a swim-up bar, perfect for quenching your thirst on a blue-sky, scorcher of a day! All rooms have garden views from their balcony or terrace, and come with private bathrooms and air con as standard.

DPSIDA

stays 5 pay 4 - 01apr14-27dec14

rock solid

WINA HOLIDAY VILLA

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Peace, quiet and relaxation, but still just 100 metres from Kuta beach, the main shopping area, restaurants and nightlife. This traditional hotel is surrounded by a tropical garden with two large swimming pools. All the bright, cool rooms have air con and their own private balconies. Enjoy a refreshing welcome drink on arrival.

DPSDSC

rock solid

BOUNTY HOTEL

£54 SINGLE £27 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

DPSWIN

rock solid

ramayana resort & spa

£68 SINGLE £34 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

BALI RANI Hotel

£85 SINGLE £43 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Tropical gardens, koi pools and cascading water features - who would believe this hideaway is a only a five-minute walk from raucous Kuta! Boasting the largest sports cafe in Bali, a choice of restaurants, two swimming pools and fun-packed activities such as Balinese dance classes and cocktail mixing, the Ramayana ticks all the boxes. STAY 6 PAY 5, STAY 12 PAY 10 - 01Apr14-25Dec14

rock solid

FR

UBUD Just an hour north of the southern beaches, the picturesque town of Ubud works perfectly as an add-on to any holiday.

rock solid

kuta paradiso

£99 SINGLE £50 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Just 50 metres from the beach and 50 metres from Kuta Square shopping centre makes this Balinese hotel hard to beat in terms of location. Tastefully decorated rooms overlook the ocean and the hotel has beautifully landscaped gardens. There’s also a pool to relax by and you can take your pick from a number of restaurants. STAY 7 PAY 5, STAY 14 PAY 12, STAY 21 PAY 18 - All Year

DPSRRT

dpskph

rock solid

£83 SINGLE £42 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

THE VIRA BALI HOTEL

rock solid

bali dynasty resorT

£87 SINGLE £44 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A popular resort near to central Kuta with its shops and nightlife. The facilities include six restaurants, five bars, three swimming pools, a spa and gym; plenty of things to keep you occupied! Enjoy a Guinness at the famous Gracie Kelly’s Irish Pub or front crawl over to the swim-up bar and order yourself a colourful cocktail. STAY 7 PAY 6 - 04Jan14-30Jun14 & 01Sep1425Dec14 PLUS FREE GIFT WHEN STAYING MORE THAN 6 NIGHTS

dpstur

a-list

£70 SINGLE £35 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

hard rock HOTEL

£148 SINGLE £74 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Simple rooms with LCD TV, balcony or terrace and minibar • Legendary pool parties • Great central location

• South Kuta location • Bright, modern decor and a welcoming atmosphere • Great value for money

• Relax with a drink on your private balcony • Stroll straight out in to the nightlife of Kuta • Soak up the sun in the Balinese garden or pool

• Let the Centerstage bar entertain you every night • Dine al-fresco by the pool with wood-fired pizzas • Hit the San Island or why not learn to surf?

Partying dusk ‘til dawn? If you’re after a fun atmosphere, get yourself booked in here. Nurse your hangover on a sun lounger by one of two pools, or swim up to one of the pool bars which are open until midnight! Need some downtime? Crank up the air con and chill out with a free in-house movie available in your room.

A graceful hotel that exudes the mystical culture of the Balinese, but still with loads of modern comforts. Dive into the lavish swimming pool with bar, comfy sunbeds and two great restaurants. The rooms are decked out with everything including TV, mini-bar and private balcony. Treat yourself to a luxurious spa treatment.

Set amongst a leafy tropical garden, this chic and intimate hotel is beautifully designed with comfortable rooms and luxury facilities such as a pool, steak restaurant, bar and exotic spa. Just a few steps away from the excitement of Kuta, it’s close to an exciting array of restaurants, cafes, shops... and, of course, the beach!

Splash in Bali’s largest free-form swimming pool, indulge in a treatment at the luxurious spa, try out the popular poolside cabana or play the latest video games at TABU. Every room has its own private balcony and is fit for a rock star - literally - the walls adorned with music memorabilia and icons!

STAy 5 pay 4 & stay 10 pay 8 - all year

96

DPSBOU

STAY 5 pay 4 - 01Apr14-25Dec14, STAY 7 PAY 6 & STAY 10 PAY 8 - All Year

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

DPSBRH

stay 5 pay 4 - 06jan14 - 31mar13

DPSVHB

STAY 5 PAY 4 - 01-31May14, 01-30Jun14 & 01Nov14-20Dec14, HONEYMOON OFFERS AVAILABLE

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

DPSHRH

97

south east asia

Sanur The quieter side of Bali, this is the perfect destination to watch the sunrise as you walk along the white sand beaches with many beautiful temples nearby.

1


legian, seminyak & sanur beaches

rock solid

a-list

jayakarta beach resort & spa, legian

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Gaze out to sea with a cold drink in the beach bar • The first resort on the island with a star-lit pool • Several intimate restaurants to choose from

Situated in lush gardens on the white sands of Legian Beach, you’ll feel at peace here. Each room has a private balcony as well as cable TV, mini-bar and many other amenities. With a wealth of facilities including a swimming pool and a range of restaurants, you could almost be excused if you never left the hotel!

Located on Legian Beach and surrounded by spectacular lush tropical gardens, you will find a classic Balinese hotel with modern facilities. This paradise is set in expansive grounds, with a white sandy beach and panoramic ocean views. Features include two ocean view swimming pools, a beachfront bar and free Wi-Fi.

a-list

£25 SINGLE £14 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

O-Ce-N Bali by outrigger, legian

DPSJRR

£142 SINGLE £71 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

padma resort bali at legian, legian

GXZBMB

STAY 7 PAY 6 & STAY 14 PAY 12 - All Year

a-list

FR

FR

a-list

BREEZES BALI RESORT, Seminyak

£178 SINGLE £89 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

£98 SINGLE £48 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Indulge in blissful massages and poolside cocktails • Be spoilt with your own private balcony • It’s all about location with this hotel

• Sat on a palm-fringed beachfront, just south of Seminyak • Spoilt for choice with a seafood bistro and tapas bar • Relax in total harmony and luxury

• Enjoy a choice of swimming pools • Traditional Balinese decor with a stylish twist • Spa-style bathrooms with luxurious bathtubs in the rooms

• Bright and airy guestrooms all set round the centrepiece pool • Enjoy in-room LCD TV, luxury smellies and 200-thread count sheets • Work up a sweat on the tennis court or in the fitness centre

Less than five minutes from the white sands of Legian Beach and within stumbling distance of Kuta’s many bars, this hotel dishes up Balinese hospitality, massages, poolside cocktails and free Wi-Fi. The rooms have en suite bathrooms, air con, satellite TV, fridge and some even have their own private balcony too.

This little getaway is the perfect place for some serious downtime! Only half a mile north of Kuta, you can still enjoy all the action but with the peace and escapism only a resort of this standard can offer. Wake up to luxury surroundings in your chic and contemporary room kitted out with all mod cons.

More of a sanctuary than a hotel, Padma Resort is all about comfort and luxury. In your rooms you will be sure to get a good night’s sleep with spacious beds and even a pillow menu! There’s an infinity pool, a steam room and sauna and, if you can tear yourself away, a traditional art and fashion market close by.

Located in the heart of hip Seminyak, the centrepiece of this recently refurbished resort is the four-tiered lagoon pool running the length of the grounds, with its own beach on one side and a swim-up bar on the other. Add to this a 30-seater private cinema, spa and there’s almost no need to leave the hotel.

DPSLEG

STAY 7 PAY 6 - 11JAN14 - 31MAR14

Rock Solid

legian paradiso, legian

dpsout

STAY 7 PAY 6 & STAY 14 PAY 12 - All Year

£52 SINGLE £26 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

legian beach hotel, legian

£140 SINGLE £70 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A pool with a swim-up bar? Check. Close to all the action? You got it. Beautiful setting away from the hustle and bustle? Of course. This place has all you could need for a relaxing stay in Bali whilst still being near to the best restaurants, bars and clubs in the area. All the rooms come with a balcony, TV, air con and a mini-bar.

Located right on the beach, Legian offers traditional Balinese-style rooms set amidst a landscaped tropical oasis dotted with coconut palms. Enjoy the range of amenities including two swimming pools, tennis courts, spa, diving and four places to eat. Take in the dramatic coastline and view the best fiery sunsets in Bali.

gxtleg

STAY 7 PAY 6 & STAY 14 PAY 12 - All Year

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

taman agung beach inn, sanur

£26 SINGLE £14 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Enjoy a tropical cocktail at the swim-up pool bar • Ride the thrill of the waves and learn how to surf • Relax in your authentically decorated room with TV and air con

STAY 5 PAY 4 - 01Jan14-31Mar14, STAY 7 PAY 5 & STAY 14 PAY 12 - All Year

qdpsbb

SHOESTRING

Rock Solid

• A Mediterranean-style building with spacious rooms • Within walking distance of Bali’s best shops, restaurants and bars • Set in tranquil, landscaped gardens away from busy streets

98

qdpspa

DPSLBH

Built in Balinese-style architecture, this hotel offers a peaceful atmosphere with all rooms centrally located to the beautiful pool with a sunken bar and restaurant. Rooms have air con or fans, mini-bar, TV and some even boast private terraces. This place is just 200 metres from the beach and close to local restaurants and bars. Free night when staying 7 - 10 nights - All Year

DPSTAM

rock solid

sanur paradise plaza hotel & suites, sanur

£77 SINGLE £39 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Set around the tropical poolside garden, all the rooms have air con, TV, mini-bar and free Internet access. A convenient shuttle bus transports guests between the hotel, suites, beach club and shopping area. For those seeking more space, the suites are perfect with two or three bedroom apartments. STAY 7 PAY 6 & STAY 14 PAY 12 - 05Jan14 - 26Dec14

DPSSPP

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

glampacker

diwangkara holiday villa beach resort & spa, sanur

£50 SINGLE £25 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This boutique hotel is located directly alongside Sanur Beach and is surrounded by Balinese galleries, shopping arcades and temples. The swimming pool is set in relaxing gardens where guests can enjoy a cool drink and the onsite restaurant overlooks both the sea and Mount Agung for food with a view. 15% DISCOUNT IF STAYING 3 NIGHTS OR MORE - 01APR14-30Jun14 & 01Sep1420Dec14,

DPSDHV

99

south east asia

south east asia

legian village HOTEL, legian

£150 SINGLE £75 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

• Take a cooling dip in the beautiful pool • Pick from a choice of restaurants in the evening • Stroll along Legian Beach, right on your doorstep

STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 7 PAY 5 - 06Jan14-30Jun14 &16Oct14-23Dec14

glampacker

bali mandira beach resort & spa, legian

£74 SINGLE £37 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR


ubud & beyond

south east asia

shoestring

Puri garden II

£29 SINGLE £15 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Housed in a typical Balinese building with red brick walls and a thatched roof right in the heart of Ubud. Relax at the outdoor swimming pool surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens and taste the restaurant’s Indonesian cuisine. The rooms are simple but comfortable with en suites, TV and fan cooler. STAY 7 PAY 6 - All Year

DPSPUR

rock solid

hotel tjampuhan spa

£61 SINGLE £31 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located in a quaint spot in Ubud where sacred rivers meet, this is a rare setting for an exceptionally tranquil holiday. The rooms evoke a sense of peace with views of the river valleys of the 900 year-old Gunung Lembah Temple, complete with a terrace to enjoy the views. Delight your senses in the spa and spring water pool. STAY 4 PAY 3 - 01Jan14-31Mar14, 01Apr14–30Jun14, 01Sep14-31Dec14

DPSTJA

A-LIST

furama villas & spas

£163 SINGLE £82 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This luxurious resort is located 20km southwest of Ubud in a gorgeous tropical setting surrounded by mountain views. Unwind in your Balinese villa with your very own pool, indulge in the luxurious spa or enjoy sumptuous cuisine at the restaurant serving local specialities. Jump on the free shuttle to Ubud’s buzzing market. FREE AIRPORT TRANSFER IF STAYING 2 NIGHTS OR MORE

G-LAND JOYO’S SURF CAMP

DPSSPA

£410

FR

4 DAYS

Plengkung, Southern tip of Java

Highlights

• Surfing! Some of the world’s very best waves right on your doorstep • Take in the jungle surrounds and explore its wild environment • Meet new travel buddies at the bar or on the beach

Departs: Regular selected dates Accommodation: camp bungalow/villa (3 nts) Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner every day, includes beer & soft drink vouchers Extras: Surf board hire & lessons available Tour Code: BGLJSC

Experience the best of Indonesia’s legendary waves whilst staying in funky, jungle accommodation! Spend your days in the surf, your nights chatting with new found friends. Choose from standard, superior or deluxe packages. The standard package, designed for those with their budget in mind, includes three nights in a rustic, fancooled bungalow complete with al fresco shower, all meals plus beer and soft drinks each day! If you fancy a bit more comfort, pick the deluxe package. You’ll get air con, plus your own shower and terrace. Want to go all out? Then opt for the superior package which offers all of the above, plus free massages! Return transport from Kuta beach in Bali is included, as are zodiac transfers to the main waves drop-off zone. There’s also the option to stay longer. Awesome!

100

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Inclusions


TOP 5 MUST-DO’s 1. catch sunrise over angkor wat 2. search for irrawaddy dolphin 3. give alms to a buddhist monk 4. explore colonial vientiane 5. sail on unique halong bay SAPA

LAOS

HALONG BAY HANOI

LUANG PRABNG VANG VIENG VIENTIANE THAKHEK HUE

Independent touring If you would like to travel on your own private tour, just for you and your party, please ask about our range of tours designed for the independent traveller. It’s much less expensive than you might think! Follow a similar itinerary to some of our most popular small group adventures, such as: • Cambodia On A Shoestring (page 102) Or ask us to customise a private tour designed to your exact requirements.

PAKSE DON DET ANGKOR WAT SIEM REAP

CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH SIHANOUKVILLE

DA NANG

HOI AN

VIETNAM NHA TRANG DALAT

HO CHI MINH CITY

SOUTH EAST ASIA

CAMBODIA, VIETNAM & LAOS


CAMBODIA ON a SHOESTRING Bangkok

• • • • • • • •

£549

FR

10 DAYS

Ho Chi Minh City

Ultimate Cambodian ADVENTURE Bangkok

CAMBODIA £899 EXPERIENCE

£649

FR

14 DAYS

Bangkok

Ho Chi Minh City

FR

9 DAYS

Bangkok

Highlights

Catch the sunrise over Angkor Wat Swim the clear waters of Sihanoukville Make friends on a local homestay Chill on Cambodia’s golden beaches Journey along the Mekong Delta Brave Ho Chi Minh’s busy streets Explore Khmer temples and history See glittering palaces in Bangkok

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Jan - Mar

Daily

Apr

Daily, except Thursday

May - Jun

Every Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday

Jul - Aug

Daily

Sep - Dec

Every Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 1839s Accommodation: Simple hotels (8 nts), homestay (1 nt) Transport: Local bus, air-conditioned bus Meals: 6 breakfasts, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $200-250 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAATRC

My Own Room Available: Fr £199

Highlights

Cambodia’s troublesome past, jaw-dropping natural beauty, laid-back vibes and goodhearted people all blend together effortlessly, to ensure you’ll want to know and experience absolutely everything about this Asian treasure. This adventure kicks off in the bright lights of Bangkok and will weave you through colourful Cambodia, witnessing the magnificent Angkor Wat temple complex, the historic yet sombre site of the Killing Fields, Sihanoukville’s glittering turquoise waters, the incredible Mekong Delta and rounds it all of with the charm and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City.

DAY ITINERARY 01

Bangkok

Arrive at any time and feel free to explore this energetic city. Take a tuk-tuk to the markets, a boat down the river or explore the maze of streets on foot. Be captivated by this extraordinary city’s sights, colours and aromas, amongst streets brimming with people from all walks of life.

• See sunrise over the world’s biggest religious building, Angkor Wat • Search for the endangered Irrawaddy dolphin in the Mekong Delta • Grab some beach time in Sihanoukville and dine on fresh seafood

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

02-03

Angkor Wat

Bangkok

Siem Reap C A M B O D I A

Phnom Penh

Sihanoukville

Chau V I E T N A M Doc

Ho Chi Minh City

Head across the Cambodian border and onwards to Siem Reap, where you’ll explore the intricate temples and palaces of the vast Angkor complex - the world’s largest religious building and one of Asia’s most incredible and most-visited sights. There is also time to visit Tonle Sap Lake to see one of its intriguing floating villages. Later, you can enjoy a delicious Khmer meal at a Planeterrasupported project in a village just outside of Siem Reap. This particular meal is kindly prepared and served by local partners who have set up a school to teach English to Cambodian children, whilst at the same time providing comprehensive healthcare and education for vulnerable kids and their families. So rest assured you’ll be contributing to help out and support this local grass roots project whilst enjoying an incredible Cambodian meal. (2B, D)

06-07

04-05

08-10

06-07

You might like

Extend your trip Cambodia and Vietnam on a Shoestring (20 days, Bangkok to Hanoi) (GAETCV) see page 28 Fr £1,079

Mekong Delta / Chau Doc

08

Ho Chi Minh City

09-10

102

Cross the Vietnamese border into the intriguing water world of the Mekong Delta. Absorb the green river world of orchards, rice fields, floating markets and cottage industries on an optional boat trip through its myriad waterways. Tonight’s stop is in Chau Doc where you can explore the town, market or river front park by foot. (D) After breakfast on Day 9, you’ll journey to Ho Chi Minh City, previously known as Saigon. This city was once a sleepy Khmer trading and fishing port, but is now a hub of activity. As you arrive later that day explore Ho Chi Minh’s myriad of rooftop bars, quirky restaurants or shop ‘til you drop at Ben Than Market. A fun way to spend your last evening in Ho Chi Minh City is to go on a street food crawl with your group, as your tour leader will know the best places to find the tastiest and most authentic snacks that represent the best of Vietnamese cooking. Those with an interest in Vietnam’s recent war history may like to visit the Reunification Palace, the residence of the presidents of South Vietnam before 1974 and the fascinating nearby War Remnants Museum. Also very interesting is Cholon, Saigon’s Chinese quarter. A cyclo can take you to any of these places for a very reasonable price and is a fun way to travel around Ho Chi Minh City. Bid your farewells to your new-found buddies as your trip ends shortly after breakfast on Day 10. (B)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Journey to Siem Reap; home of the Khmer Empire and gateway to Angkor Wat. Your knowledgeable local guide leads you through the pages of history as you explore this astounding temple complex. Optional excursions include the ‘floating village’ of Tonle Sap. (2B, D)

01

At Kampong Cham, the third-largest city in Cambodia, visit the Bridge of Jayavarman VII, a silk farm and a rubber tree plantation, before an included dinner experience. An early start on Day 7 for the drive to Kratie on the banks of the mighty Mekong River. In the afternoon, take a boat excursion to spot the Irrawaddy River dolphin. (2B, D) Get your bearings on an cyclo tour of Cambodia’s capital, and take in the sombre history of this tenacious country with visits to the infamous Killing Fields and notorious Tuol Sleng Prison. Opt to visit the Royal Palace or National Museum. On Day 10, journey along the coast to Kampot, home of Bokor National Park. (2B)

11-14

Arrive in Cambodia’s laid-back beach town of Sihanoukville. Feast on fantastic fresh seafood, take a day trip snorkelling the coral reefs, or just sit back and let the warm waves wash gently at your feet. Fly back to Bangkok on Day 13 to perhaps enjoy a final night out with the group, before the tour concludes on Day 14. (3B)

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotel (13 nts) Transport: Private bus, local bus, cyclo, boat, plane Meals: 10 breakfasts, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $275-375 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAATUC

My Own Room Available: Fr £479

Jan - Dec

Saturdays, typically 2-3 departures per month

Arrive into the dynamic destination of Ho Chi Minh City at any time and head out onto the streets to explore.

02

The lush green serpentine waterways of the Mekong Delta are a thriving centre of cottage industries, floating markets and fertile orchards. Watch the watery world float by on a day trip into this intriguing aquatic wonderland, visiting candy factories en route. (B)

Phnom Penh

03-04

Cross into Cambodia. Witness the darker side of Cambodian history with visits to Choeng Ek, the site of the infamous Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Prison, the notorious Khmer Rouge jail. You then have free time to spend getting to know this fabulous city; exploring the lovely cafés, tree-lined streets and thriving markets, or perhaps make time to visit the Royal Palace or National Museum. (2B)

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

05-07 08-09

The next three days are spent in Siem Reap and exploring Angkor, the former capital of the Khmer Empire. Spend time exploring this vast ruined city with a local guide, it won’t take you long to understand why this is fast becoming one of the most-visited sites in Asia. See sunrise over the magnificent temple of Angkor Wat and enjoy a traditional Khmer-style meal either at a village home or a community charity project. (3B, D)

Bangkok

Arrive in Bangkok with time to head out for drinks and an optional farewell meal with your travel buddies. On Day 9, it’s time to say goodbye to your group before heading for your next adventure! (2B)

Inclusions THAILAND

Angkor Wat Battambang

Bangkok

Kampong Cham CAMBODIA

Siem Reap Sihanoukville

Kratie Phnom Penh

Kampot

Departures 2014

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

Sihanoukville / Bangkok

Sihanoukville

Today, travel by public bus to Cambodia’s southern coast and the sun-kissed beaches of Sihanoukville. Time to relax to the max on the white sand while perhaps enjoying a massage and eating fresh seafood, or why not join a boat trip for a day of snorkelling and lunch on an uninhabited island as the sun goes down? Sihanoukville’s breezy, laid-back attitude will ensure you unwind and recharge your batteries. (B)

Arrive at any time and get a head start on your sightseeing. On Day 2, cross the border to colonial Battambang, with time to explore the countryside or hone your culinary skills with a cooking class. (B)

Phnom Penh / Kampot

Phnom Penh

Absorb the spectacular scenery as you journey by local bus to the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh. This pleasant riverside city oozes Cambodian charisma and is a hub of politics, history and cultural renaissance. You’ll experience a walking tour and check out the colourful cafés, shady streets and thriving markets full of vibrant textiles or choose to learn about Cambodia’s sombre past and its descent into the horror of the Khmer Rouge regime at Tuol Sleng Prison and the Killing Fields. Cambodia really is an inspirational country, but sadly dashed with an heart-wrenching past. (2B)

Bangkok / Battambang

Kampong Cham / Kratie

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat / Siem Reap T H A I L A N D

DAY ITINERARY

Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

03-05

Highlights

• Discover the rich green river world of the Mekong Delta • Visit the chilling Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Prison • See a sunrise to remember over the amazing Angkor Wat

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (8 nts) Transport: Local bus, air-con bus, cyclo Meals: 8 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $150200 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAVCW

My Own Room Available: Fr £319

Departures 2014 Jan - Apr

Regular departures, typically 4 times per week

May - Jun

Every Fri/Sun, plus occasional Tue

Jul - Oct

Every Fri/Sun, plus additional departures

Nov - Dec

Every Fri, plus additional departures

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

THAILAND

Angkor Wat

Bangkok Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

Phnom Penh

Ho Chi Minh City

103


vietnam on a shoestring Ho Chi Minh City

• • • • • • • •

£599

FR

12 DAYS

Hanoi

BEST OF VIETNAM Hanoi

CLASSIC £899 VIETNAM

£649

FR

15 DAYS

Ho Chi Minh City

Hanoi

FR

10 DAYS

Ho Chi Minh City

Highlights

Bask on the beaches at Nha Trang Buy tailor-made clothes in Hoi An Explore the Cu Chi Tunnels Float along Halong Bay’s green waters Discover Hue’s citadels and pagodas Wander Ho Chi Minh’s hectic streets Dine on delicious local cuisine Bike around Hue’s lush countryside

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Jan - Mar

Daily

Apr

Daily, except Fridays

May - Jun

Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays & Sundays

Jul - Aug

Usually Daily

Sep - Dec

Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays & Sundays

Inclusions

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Recommended for 18-35’s Accommodation: Simple hotels (8 nts), sleeper trains (3 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, air-con bus, boat Meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 lunch Budget: Allow USD $225-300 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAVRV

My Own Room Available: Fr £219

Highlights

Calling all budget travellers! Experience everything Vietnam has to offer in this 12-day steal of a tour. No one day will be the same; uncover Vietnam’s rich history in stunning temples and ruins, whizz around the countryside on bikes or cruise through the waters of Halong Bay on a traditional junk boats, all with an amazing group of travel mates. Add to that bustling markets overflowing with potential treasures and mouth-watering local cuisine just waiting to be devoured and you’ve got yourself a jam-packed holiday that makes every second count!

• Meet the Hmong people on a hilltribe village trek in verdant Sapa • Admire the blue, pink and yellow houses in French colonial Hoi An • Sail a wooden junk through the magical landscape of Halong Bay

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

DAY ITINERARY Ho Chi Minh City

01-02

The first day is free for you to ease yourself into the frenetic pace of Ho Chi Minh City. Make sure to return to the hotel at 6pm for a group meeting to meet your fellow travellers. On Day 2, explore the amazing sights the city has on offer. Head to the Cu Chi Tunnels, a complex network of tunnels that locals lived in during the war, the fascinating War Remnants museum or the Reunification Palace, the residence of South Vietnam’s presidents before 1974. Stop off at the Ben Thanh market for a delicious bite to eat from one of the stalls or take a cyclo tour of the city’s former colonial quarter. In the evening, catch an overnight train to Nha Trang.

06-07

Halong Bay

Hanoi

03-04

08-11

Hoi An L AO S

05-06

Hue Hoi An T H A I L A N D

The picturesque port town of Hoi An is your next destination. Walk through this living museum visiting cultural sights such as the Museum of History and Culture, the Tan Ky House, a preserved 19th Century merchant’s house, and the My Son ruins, an intellectual and religious centre built by the Cham civilisation. Opt to attend a cooking class to learn how to create delicious local cuisine, enjoy a river boat tour, or take advantage of this shopping Mecca and get clothing tailor-made for you at extremely reasonable prices! (B)

V I E T N A M

Nha Trang

07-08

Ho Chi Minh City

09

Head north to Hue via the Hai Van Pass for spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. In Hue, options include a trip to the Royal Citadel, modelled on the Forbidden City in Beijing, or a boat trip down Perfume River. Fit in a visit to the city’s oldest religious building, the seven-tiered Tien Mu Pagoda, and the Imperial Tombs to explore the resting places of Vietnam’s former rulers, all of which are like self-contained mini palaces. For nature lovers, grab a bike and cycle around the beautiful countryside for a breathtaking experience before getting another sleeper train to Hanoi. (2B)

Hanoi / Halong Bay / Bai Chai Harbour

Arriving into Hanoi in the early morning, catch a bus to the beautiful and famous Halong Bay. Take in the dramatic sight of thousands of islands rising from the waters of the Bay aboard a traditional junk boat. Tuck into deliciously fresh seafood and explore the islands and caves. (L)

Hanoi

You might like

Extend your trip Vietnam, Laos and Thailand on a Shoestring (22 days, Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok) (GAAVVL) see page 26 Fr £1,049 Cambodia and Vietnam on a Shoestring (20 days, Bangkok to Hanoi) (GAETCV) see page 28 Fr £1,079

104

10-11 12

After breakfast, head to Hanoi for an orientation walk of the city’s Old Quarter. Opt to visit the Buddhist temple of Tran Quoc Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, or Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and Museum, dedicated to the man who was leader of North Vietnam when the Vietnam War began. Follow this up with a walk around Hoan Kiem Lake and keep your eyes peeled for one of the famous 100 year-old turtles that live in its waters. In the evening, opt to attend a performance at the famous Water Puppets theatre and make sure to leave time to sample Hanoi’s amazing eateries. (2B)

Hanoi

Say your goodbyes and feel free to leave at any time. (B)

12-15

Take in the spectacular scenery of steep rice terraces and lush green hills as you trek the villages of Vietnam’s colourful hilltribe people. Experience local life spending the night in homestay accommodation before travelling by overnight train on Day 5 back to Hanoi. (2B, L, D)

Halong Bay

Sail through limestone karst islands, explore huge caves and swim in secluded bays as you travel through Halong Bay on a traditional junk boat with fresh seafood meals. Overnight train to Hue. (B, 2L, D)

01

Arrive into the crazy capital of Vietnam at any time and explore!

Halong Bay / Hanoi

02-03 04

Feast your eyes on the azure waters of magical Halong Bay, where thousands of sculpted limestone islands rise from the sea. Explore the illuminated caves, have a swim or splash about on a kayak before a sumptuous seafood dinner and a peaceful night beneath the stars. On Day 3, catch the overnight train to Hue. (2B, L, D)

Hue

Stroll past lacquered red pavilions and ponds covered with lotus buds. Take a guided tour of the Imperial Citadel and Tien Mu Pagoda, and an optional motorbike tour of the surrounding countryside.

05-07

Travelling over the spectacular Hai Van Pass you reach Hoi An. Wander through the colourful colonial homes, wooden shop houses and pagodas. Cooking classes, riverboat trips, bike rides and beach times could all be on the agenda. Hoi An is also a shopper’s paradise, the tailors here can produce virtually anything overnight! (3B)

Ho Chi Minh City

A short flight takes you to hectic Ho Chi Minh City, with time to enjoy an optional cyclo tour to soak up all its infectious energy. Send your postcards from the pretty French colonial-style post office. On Day 13, take a boat cruise through the countless waterways of the Mekong Delta and dine on traditional cuisine with a local homestay. Return to HCMC on Day 14 to visit the War Remnants Museum or pick up souvenirs at Ben Tranh Market. Tour ends on Day 15. (4B, D)

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (8 nts), sleeper train (3 nts), junk boat (1 nt), basic family homestay (2 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, air-con bus, boat, cyclo, plane Meals: 11 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners Budget: Allow USD $210250 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAVBV

Hanoi

Hoi An

In Hue, stroll past the ponds, pavilions and palaces of Vietnam’s last imperial court. Explore Tien Mu Pagoda and the Royal Tombs, before travelling via the stunning Hai Van Pass to the former trading port of Hoi An. Optional activities include cooking classes, riverboat cruises, bike rides, beach time or splashing out in the tailor shops. (3B)

Inclusions

08-10

A short flight south takes you to bustling Ho Chi Minh City. Discover the infectious energy of Vietnam’s biggest city, with its blinking neon lights and overflowing markets. On Day 9, enjoy a guided visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels where you can explore this underground network dug by the local Vietnamese to hide and fight during the war. Other options include the War Remnants Museum or a cyclo tour of the colonial district. Enjoy a last night out with the group before this short but sweet tour comes to an end at any time on Day 10. (3B)

Inclusions Sapa Halong Bay

Hanoi L AO S

Hue Hoi An T H A I L A N D

My Own Room Available: Fr £359

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (7 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), junk boat (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-con bus, boat, cyclo, plane Meals: 8 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $200-230 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAVCH

My Own Room Available: Fr £319 C A M B O D I A

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Arrive in Hanoi and navigate the scooter-filled streets of the vibrant Old Quarter. Check out the water puppets show, an age-old tradition from rural Vietnam. On Day 2, board the overnight train to Sapa. (B)

Ho Chi Minh City / Mekong Delta / Ho Chi Minh City

Hue C A M B O D I A

Hanoi

Hue / Hoi An

Nha Trang

Enjoy the next couple of days of rest and relaxation in Nha Trang, whether it’s taking a boat to explore nearby islands, snorkelling through warm waters or soaking in traditional mud baths. For another fun way to see the city, opt for a motorbike tour. On Day 4, it’s on to Hoi An, travelling via an overnight train. (B)

DAY ITINERARY

Sapa

03-05

Highlights

• Absorb the hustle and bustle of the hectic streets of Hanoi • Explore ancient Vietnamese culture and beautiful architecture in Hue • Take a guided tour of the remarkable wartime Cu Chi Tunnels

Sundays, typically 2-3 departures per month

Mekong Delta

V I E T N A M

Ho Chi Minh City

Departures 2014 Jan - Dec

Hanoi

Halong Bay

L AO S

Hue Hoi An V I E T N A M C A M B O D I A

Cu Chi Tunnels

Ho Chi Minh City

Regular departures, typically 2-4 times per week

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

105


Timeless Vietnam Hanoi

VIETNAM £1,299 HIGHLIGHTS

£899

FR

13 DAYS

Ho Chi Minh City

FR

Ho Chi Minh City

10 DAYS

Hanoi

£1,089

VIETNAM EXPERIENCE Ho Chi Minh City

• • • • • • • •

FR

12 DAYS

Hanoi

Highlights

Experience life on the Mekong Stay in a village guesthouse Climb through the Cu Chi Tunnels Explore progressive Ho Chi Minh City Soak up the rays on Vietnam beaches Stroll the streets in historical Hoi An Take a cyclo ride to Hue’s Citadel Sleep on a Chinese-style junk boat

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Departures 2014 Highlights

• Experience authentic Vietnam, meeting ethnic hilltribe villagers • Cruise the turquoise waters of Halong Bay in a traditional junk boat • Step back into a turbulent history at the legendary Chu Chi Tunnels

DAY ITINERARY 01

Highlights

• Explore cosmopolitan Ho Chi Minh and gain insight into local history • Enjoy Nha Trang beach and design custom-made clothes in Hoi An • Explore rural Asia on a bike ride and tuck into local Vietnamese food

DAY ITINERARY

Hanoi

Ho Chi Minh City

Arrive at any time and take your transfer to Hanoi city (included). The day’s yours to spend exploring Vietnam’s northern capital.

01

Hanoi / Mai Chau

02-03

Enjoy breakfast at a local not-for-profit restaurant before heading to Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum. Travel to the lush Mai Chau Valley to your comfortable lodge where you can do a walking tour of the ethnic villages, cycling, rock climbing, kayaking or a cooking class. (2B)

Formerly known as Saigon, cosmopolitan Ho Chi Minh City is a dynamic and progressive city with loads of things to experience. Enjoy your first night out with your crew trying tasty Vietnamese specialities and exploring the wealth of bustling nighlife.

04-05

Take a morning sightseeing tour of Ho Chi Minh City’s sights before catching a flight up to the beach paradise of Nha Trang. Get out amongst the islands on an optional cruise or do your own thing. (2B)

02-03

Hoi An

After a short flight to Da Nang this morning, you’ll then drive to Hoi An and absorb its blend of foreign influences. Check out the Old Quarter, spy the 400 year-old Japanese bridge and peruse the Chinese temples. Choose to head out to a tailor for bespoke clothes, or pick up some local culinary skills with a cooking class. (2B)

04-05

Hanoi / Hue

06-07 08-10 11-13

Spend a chilled morning on the bay before heading back to Hanoi for a flight to Hue. On Day 7, check out the walled Citadel containing the former Imperial Palace then head to the countryside to see the final resting place of former emperors and impressive royal tombs. (2B, L)

Hoi An

Take a scenic drive to ancient Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here, enjoy a walking tour and a local cooking lesson. Ensure you see My Son ruins or visit a local tailors for a keenly-priced suit. (3B, L)

Ho Chi Minh City

Fly to HCMC. Enjoy a cyclo tour and visit the local markets and shops. Day 12, visit the legendary Cu Chi Tunnels, famous for their part in the Vietnam War. Your tour ends after breakfast on Day 13. (3B, D)

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 29 Feb 01 Feb 05 Feb 12 Feb 15 Feb 19 Feb 22 Mar 05 Mar 12 Mar 15 Mar 19 Mar 22 Mar 26 Apr 02 Apr 09 Apr 16 Apr 19 Apr 23 Apr 30 May 14 May 21 Jun 04 Jun 14 Jun 25

Jun 28 Jul 05 Jul 19 Jul 29 Aug 09 Aug 23 Aug 30 Sep 13 Sep 23 Nov 08 Nov 15 Nov 18 Nov 22 Nov 25 Nov 29 Dec 02 Dec 06 Dec 09 Dec 13 Dec 16 Dec 20 Dec 23 Dec 27 Dec 30

Jul 09 Jul 16 Jul 30 Aug 09 Aug 20 Sep 03 Sep 10 Sep 24 Oct 04 Nov 19 Nov 26 Nov 29 Dec 03 Dec 06 Dec 10 Dec 13 Dec 17 Dec 20 Dec 24 Dec 27 Dec 31 Jan 03 Jan 07 Jan 10

2015 Jan 03 Jan 06 Jan 10 Jan 13 Jan 17 Jan 20 Jan 24 Jan 27 Jan 31 Feb 03 Feb 07 Feb 10 Feb 14 Feb 17 Feb 21 Feb 24 Feb 28 Mar 03 Mar 07

Jan 14 Jan 17 Jan 21 Jan 24 Jan 28 Jan 31 Feb 04 Feb 07 Feb 11 Feb 14 Feb 18 Feb 21 Feb 25 Feb 28 Mar 04 Mar 07 Mar 11 Mar 14 Mar 18

Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details.

Ho Chi Minh City / Nha Trang

Hanoi / Halong Bay

Return to Hanoi to explore Hoa Lo Prison (Hanoi Hilton) with a local guide. Transfer to Halong Bay on Day 5 where sculpted limestone islands rise from calm waters. Explore the caves, kayak or hike up one of the islands, and spend the night on a junk boat. (2B, L, D)

Start

Jan 18 Jan 21 Jan 25 Feb 01 Feb 04 Feb 08 Feb 11 Feb 22 Mar 01 Mar 04 Mar 08 Mar 11 Mar 15 Mar 22 Mar 29 Apr 05 Apr 08 Apr 12 Apr 19 May 03 May 10 May 24 Jun 03 Jun 14

Hue / Hanoi

Take a cyclo ride to the Imperial Citadel in Hue, then visit the iconic Thien Mu Pagoda. On Day 7, take a short flight to Hanoi. Check out the maze of backstreets in the Old Quarter and hang out with the locals at a simple bia hoi (draught beer) sidewalk bar. (2B)

06-07 08-10

Inclusions

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels (9 nts), guesthouse (1 nt), boat (1 nt) Transport: Plane, private coach, junk boat Meals: 11 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners Group Leader: Experienced Tour Manager, local English-speaking guides Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Code: COVIEP

V I E T N A M

Hanoi

Halong Bay

Departures 2014 Jan - Jun & Sep - Oct

Sundays, typically 1-2 departures per month

Jul - Aug & Nov - Dec

Sundays, typically 2-3 departures per month

106

Nha Trang

Ho Chi Minh City

Mar 15

Feb 15

Jan 15

Dec

Nov

Sep

Aug

Jul

THAILAND

CAMBODIA

Departures 2014-15 Jun

Hoi An

May

Hue

Apr

LAOS

Mar

My Own Room Available: Fr £579

Hanoi

Mai Chau

Jan

Trip Style: Comfort Service Level: Upgraded Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Comfort hotels (10 nts), junk boat (1 nt), lodge (1 nt) Transport: Bus, boat, cyclo, plane Meals: 12 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $275-350 for melas not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAVHC

Da Nang

Service Level: Superior Age Group: Exclusively for 18-35s Accommodation: 3 star hotels (8 nts), junk boat (1 nt) Meals: 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Transport: Plane, private coach, junk boat Group Size: Max 30, Avg 25 Tour Leader: Experienced Tour Manager, local English-speaking guides Tour Code: COVIHI

20 03 03 07 05 05 07 11 01 10 08 01 02 02 23 06 06 10 12 16 21 25 15 13 11 05 05 05 27 10 10 14 26 30 31 25 17 15 08 09 09 13 13 21 20 18 12 12 17 17 24 22 15 16 20 24 27 25 19 19 24 31 29 22 23 26 26 29 Additional departure dates are available, please ask for details

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V I E T N A M

Hanoi

Halong Bay

Cosmopolitan Ho Chi Minh is a medley of pagodas, streetside shops and high-rises. Tonight, you’ll meet your Tour Manager and fellow travellers before tantalising your tastebuds at the thriving Ben Thanh Market.

Ho Chi Minh City / Mekong Delta

Embark on a two-day journey into the Mekong Delta. Try out sampans (local boats), learn about local industries and observe life at the floating markets, giving you a glimpse of everyday life on water. Tonight check out a musical performance before having dinner at your local guesthouse. (B, L, D)

02

Mekong Delta / Ho Chi Minh City

Head back to Ho Chi Minh City via the Viet Cong’s legendary tunnels in Cu Chi. See traps, hidden doors and experience first-hand some of the 250kms of tunnels that Vietnamese resistance fighters dug by hand during the Vietnam War. (B)

03 04-05

Fly to Da Nang and travel down to Hoi An. On arrival, you’ll take a guided walking tour through the Old Quarter. Get your clothes order in at one of the many tailors this city is famous for. (B)

Hoi An

07

Free day to explore further. Wander the streets checking out galleries and antique shops or head to the temples of My Son. In the evening, stroll along the historic waterfront to the local market. (B)

Hoi An / Hue

Hoi An

T H A I L A N D C A M B O D I A

Today, you’ll travel over the ‘Pass of the Ocean Clouds’ with its far-reaching views to the city of Da Nang. On arrival to the former royal city of Hue you’ll take a cyclo to the Imperial Citadel, former home of Vietnam’s Emperors. It is then on to the impressive Thien Mu Pagoda with views of the Perfume River. (B)

08

Nha Trang

Hue / Hanoi

L AO S

Ho Chi Minh City

Hue Da Nang

Hoi An

Mekong Delta

Today brings a flight to Hanoi. Full of French flair, Chinese culture and Vietnamese vitality, Hanoi is a city like no other! On arrival, visit the Temple of Literature before walking the wide Parisian-style boulevards or relaxing with a bia hoi (draught beer). (B)

09

T H A I L A N D

Hanoi / Halong Bay

Climb aboard a Chinese-style junk boat for an overnight cruise on heavenly Halong Bay. Pass hidden coves, sheer cliffs and stunning beaches. You’ll check out the Sung Sot Caves before stopping for a swim amongst limestone karsts. Dock for sunset and be rocked to sleep by the ocean. (B, L, D)

10

C A M B O D I A

Nha Trang

In the morning, you’ll set off on a city tour to see Notre Dame Cathedral, the General Post Office and the Presidential Palace. You’ll then catch a flight to Nha Trang, famous for its golden beaches. On Day 5, sink back into laid-back beach life with a free day to enjoy the sun and sea. Indulge in a mineral mud bath and hot springs experience before getting a taste of Nha Trang by night. (2B)

Nha Trang / Hoi An

06

Hue

Inclusions

Halong Bay

Feb

VIETNAM

Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City / Nha Trang

L AO S

Inclusions

DAY ITINERARY 01

Halong Bay / Hanoi

Today, you’ll drive to Halong Bay for an overnight cruise on a Chinese-style junk boat. Enjoy a sumptuous seafood dinner and a night of chatting under the stars. On Day 9, return to Hanoi and spend your last evening tucking into some delicious Vietnamese treats. Your trip ends after breakfast on Day 10. (3B, 2L, D)

There’s nowhere on earth quite like Vietnam. From the moment you step off the plane you’ll be absorbed in an intense explosion of colour, sights, sounds and experiences. From the hustle and bustle of city streets to golden temples glistening in the sun, to jade green waters lapping on the shores and paddy fields stretching into the distance, each day is different to the next. Cruise the waters of the Mekong, stay overnight with the locals, sleep in a Chinese-style junk boat - all of this against a backdrop of great nation of people and with a bunch of like-minded mates.

Halong Bay / Hanoi Ho Chi Minh City

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11-12

Wake to fantastic views before returning to Hanoi. There’s time to see Hanoi’s world-famous water puppet performance before a farewell dinner to toast an amazing adventure with your new friends. Depart on Day 12, shortly after breakfast. (2B, L)

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

107


Cambodia & Laos

Teach Children in Cambodia

£569

FR

2 - 8 WEEKS

Siem Reap

TARA ANGKOR, Siem Reap

£46 SINGLE FR £23 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

The elegant furnishings ensure you will enjoy luxury and feel like royalty! All rooms have air con, great views and boast beautiful bathrooms. There’s also an outdoor pool, courtyard and poolside bar for relaxing with cocktail in hand. The staff’s warm hospitality and sincerity will make you feel instantly at home.

rock solid

juliana hotel, phnom penh

£46 SINGLE FR £23 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

A 20-minute walk from The Royal Palace, this mid-range hotel offers facilities you’d usually associate with a resort, including tropical gardens, a beautiful swimming pool, Thai massage service, plus a choice of two restaurants serving Western and Chinese food. A perfect respite from the city’s hustle and bustle.

REPTAR

PNHJUL

GLAMPACKER

Chang inn, luang prabang

£29 SINGLE FR £15 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

Project Start Date: Sundays Accommodation: Guesthouse (13 nts) Meals: Some meals included Note: Background check required Stay Longer: Fr £229 per week Trip Code: GATAKSRT

FULL DAY

If you’re short on time, explore the amazing temples of Angkor on this nifty day tour from Siem Reap. Check out the famous Angkor Wat, Bayon with its 54 towers decorated with more than 200 enigmatic smiling faces and Ta Prohm, the jungle temple made famous in the ‘Tomb Raider’ movie. Regain your energy by enjoying an included sumptuous Khmer feast at lunchtime. Round off the day, time permitting, by climbing the brick temple of Pre Rup. Departs: Daily Transport: Car / minivan Meals: lunch Tour Code: REPADV

108

SECRETS OF ANGKOR

LPQCHA

STAY 4 PAY 3 - 18Apr14 - 30Sep14

£201

FR

3 DAYS

Uncover the secrets of Cambodia’s amazing history. Setting out from Siem Reap explore the incredible temples of Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm, Bayon, Angkor Thom and Banteay Srei, followed by a trek through Cambodia’s jungle to see 1,000 year-old Hindu sculptures carved into a riverbed. Sample tasty Khmer cuisine and meet locals living in floating fishing villages on a boat cruise on a freshwater lake. Truly experience the very best of this fascinating region. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Simple hotel (2 nts) Transport: Car, minivan, tuk tuk & boat Meals: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches Tour Code: REPSEC

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Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hotel with a choice of Superior/Deluxe class (3 nts) Meals: 3 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners Transport: Tuk tuk, bicycles and some car/minivan transfers Tour Code: REPSB3

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

LAOS EXPERIENCE

£105

FR

4 DAYS

Luang Prabang

Highlights

£53

The formidable Angkor Wat is an absolute must on any bucket list and what better way to explore than by tuk tuk and your own pedal power! Throw in the temples of Banteay Srei and Kdei, the Srah Srang reservoir and Pre Rup and you’ve got a jaw-dropping tour steeped in Khmer culture and history. As well as visiting Angkor Thom, Bayon Temple and the Elephants Terrace, you’ll also stop at a local village to meet families that make palm sugar, take an excursion to a floating village on Tonle Sap Lake and visit the Senteurs D’Angkor workshop, which sells traditional, handmade products made by impoverished rural communities.

This centrally located eight-room hotel has bags of Laotian charm, decorated in traditional yet modern colonial style with polished hardwood floors, antique furniture and en suites. Rooms come with air con, free Wi-Fi and complimentary smellies. Take advantage of the free bike hire or use the Mercedes Benz 1970s transfer service.

• Enjoy a slice of authentic and untouched South East Asia • Two-day slow boat trip along the mystical Mekong River • Be privy to the traditional rituals of Buddhist monks

FR

4 DAYS

• Explore a floating village on one of Asia’s largest lakes • Stock up on fragrant, authentic souvenirs made by locals • Sunset at the iconic Angkor Wat, cameras at the ready!

The New Hope Community Outreach centre is based in Mondul Bai, one of the poorest slum areas on the outskirts of Siem Reap. This project aims to restore hope and dignity to these once-proud and prosperous communities by providing education, health and vocational training. You will be supporting Khmer teachers to assist with English, maths and computer lessons. Creative types are also welcome to lend a hand with sewing workshops. A portion of the cost of the trip will be used to buy a bicycle for you to transport yourself to and from the project. After you leave, the bike is donated back to the community for their use.

Chiang Mai

ANGKOR ADVENTURE

£317

FR

Siem Reap

Highlights

• Help families break out of the poverty cycle • Explore the formidable Angkor Wat • Get creative with art-based workshops

rock solid

Siem Reap

A truly off-the-beaten-track experience, this gem of a tour serves up picturesque mountains and heartbreakingly beautiful landscapes as you spend four magical days exploring Laos. Kick off your adventure by travelling from Chiang Mai up to the Chiang Kong border village. Day 2, cross the Laos border and begin your two-day boat trip along the Mekong, immersing yourself in local life as you pass small fishing villages on the riverside. On Day 3 you’ll overnight in Luang Prabang, a french-influenced city with a strong Buddhist presence. Day 4, rise early to witness the age old tradition of alms giving by locals to Buddhist monks. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Budget guesthouse on twin share basis (2 nt) Second night’s stay is at your own expense, budget US$10-35 (1 nt) Meals: 1 breakfast, 1 dinner Transport: Minivan & slow boat Tour Code: LPQEXP

LAOS CLASSIC TOUR Luang Prabang

£487

FR

Vientiane

5 DAYS

Highlights

• The crown jewel of Laos, charming Luang Prabang • Interact with traditional, local communities at weaving villages • Experience an unforgettable sunset on the Mekong River

Spectacular natural scenery, temples, waterfalls, caves and traditional boat trips on the mighty Mekong River - this tour may be short but is activity-packed, guaranteeing you bags of fab Laotian memories. Start in enchanting Luang Prabang, arguably South East Asia’s best preserved traditional city, explore the famous Pak Ou caves, home to thousands of Buddha statues, and meet minority villagers. Take a relaxing dip in the Khuang Xi Waterfalls, stock up on souvenirs at a night bazaar and discover the delights of the capital city, Vientiane, including the Buddha Park and impressive Friendship Bridge, linking Thailand and Laos. Departs: Saturdays Accommodation: Choice of 3/4* accommodation with en suite (4nts) Includes: tours, transfers (excludes airfare Luang Prabang to Vientiane) Meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches Transport: Coach Tour Code: LPQLCT

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

109

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Highlights

SIEM REAP BY BIKE & TUK TUK


Hanoi & Halong Bay

sapa Adventure Hanoi

£145

FR

4 DAYS

Hanoi

Rising Dragon estate hotel

rock solid

Prince Hotel

£19 SINGLE FR £10 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

An innovative hotel at the epicentre of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Staff put the guest experience at the heart of everything they do. Gaze out at the bustling streets of Hanoi from the balcony of your room complete with marble countertops, air con, free Wi-Fi and hardwood floors. Some even come with a full-size bathtub.

£19 SINGLE FR £11 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT

free internet

hanoi amanda hotel

£21 SINGLE FR £13 TWIN/DOUBLE FR

• Action-packed rock climbing and kayaking • Half-day soft trek in Cat Ba Island National Park • Stunning, secluded scenery

Want to see the hilltribes but don’t have enough time to stay with them too long? Then this brilliant four-day trip up to Sapa is just for you. Take in all the awesome scenery whilst learning about these friendly communities and experience the famous Vietnamese sleeper trains! Sapa is famous for both its fine, rugged scenery and rich cultural diversity. It’s also host to many hilltribes, as well as rice terraces, lush vegetation, and Fansipan, the highest peak in Vietnam. With two days of trekking, village visits and trip to a waterfall thrown in, you’ll really get to experience what the area has to offer.

Get out of hectic Hanoi and experience the natural beauty of Cat Ba Island, a reserve lying on the edge of Halong Bay, a UNESCO natural World Heritage Site. Journey out of the city arriving at Cat Ba Island in the afternoon. On Day 2, board a traditional junk boat to cruise to unvisited parts of the bay. Kayak in secluded lagoons, explore a deserted beach or simply relax on the boat. Go on a rock climbing adventure on a massive limestone cliff before reaching Nam Cat Island, where you’ll stay in simple bamboo huts and enjoy a local barbecue dinner on the beach. On Day 3 enjoy a half day soft trek in the national park before returning to Hanoi.

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Hotel on twin share basis (2 nts), sleeper train (1 nt) Meals: 2 breakfasts, 1 lunch,1 dinner Tour Code: HANSAP

Departs: Daily Accommodation: Basic hotel (1nt), non air con bamboo hut (1nt) Transport: Local buses and ferry Meals: 2 breakfasts, 1 dinner, 2 lunches Tour Code: HANHOL

HANPRH

hangrn

Halong Bay Cruise 2 star

Hanoi

Hanoi

£171

FR

3 DAYS

Highlights

£32 SINGLE FR £17 TWIN/DOUBLE

Hanoi street food

£17

FR

HALF DAY

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Hook up with folks back home on the in-room computer • Take advantage of the 20% discount at the restaurant • Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the Old Quarter

The stylish Boss Hotel is the perfect place to stay. Getting peckish? Enjoy 20% discount at the hotel restaurant. Need to exchange money? The currency exchange is there. The rooms are super-stylish with essential air con and the en suite comes with a shower and wooden bathtub! stay 6 pay 5 - all year

110

Hanoi serves up some of the world’s greatest street food and there’s no better way to sample authentic, local dishes away from the tourist trail than on this unique walking tour. Led by an expert guide, you’ll be taken to the city’s best-kept secrets, hunkering down with locals on the street at a variety of atmospheric stalls. Sample tasty French-inspired snacks, barbecued meats, bread specialities and - if you’re up for it - egg coffee, a local delicacy! Departs: Daily at 5pm close to Dong Xuan Market Includes: Touring as specified Tour Code: HANSFN

HANBOS

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Halong Bay Cruise 4 star

Hanoi

Hanoi

£208

FR

2 DAYS

Highlights

• Kayak in the gorgeous ‘Bright and Dark Cave’ area • Visit Halong Bay’s largest floating fishing village • Vietnamese and western dinner

FR

3 DAYS

You can’t beat the location of this place! It’s in the heart of the Old Quarter, just minutes from the night market and Hoan Kiem Lake. Open since 2010, everything is as good as new and each of the 35 rooms come with LCD TVs and air con. You’re ideally located for venturing out for dinner, although the hotel does have a restaurant.

glampacker

Boss hanoi hotel

£187

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This modern hotel is well suited to the independent traveller, with friendly staff on hand to give advice on local tours and attractions. The spacious rooms are traditional in style and come with air con and satellite TV. The central location means you are just a short walk to the main attractions, such as Hoan Kiem Lake.

hanqah

rock solid

Hanoi

Highlights

• Mountain trekking through lush vegetation and rice terraces • Meet indigenous hilltribe communities • Bed down on a Vietnamese sleeper train

glampacker

Hanoi

• Experience Halong Bay untouched on an exclusive route • Visit caves, go kayaking, fishing and meet the locals • Relax on the sun deck of your traditional yet luxurious junk

Sail away from the crowd on this lovely trip taking you around the wonders of scenic Halong Bay. Departing from Hanoi, you will travel to your home for the next two nights, a traditional, wooden junk boat. Spend your days relaxing on the spacious sun deck, casting your eye over the views or jumping in the water - it looks so good you’ll find it hard not to! Explore Surprise Cave by foot, enjoy an hour’s kayaking or join in squid fishing from the boat. The junk has 5-8 roomy cabins, each with en suite facilities and a window for taking in those stunning views. Included local meals are served in the dining room with panoramic views out to the bay. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Junk boat in air con twin/double cabin (2 nts). Can also be done as 4-star or as a 2 day tour Includes: Bus transfers to/from Hanoi, all fees Meals: All meals whilst onboard Tour Code: HANCRU

To date, only about a quarter of the total area of World Heritage Site, Halong Bay, has been discovered. As part of this exclusive tour you’ll be privy to Bai Tu Long Bay, an area less travelled by other boats. Aboard the elegant Prince junk, limited to either three or four cabins, you’ll cruise the magnificent, primitive bay with countless small islets. Go kayaking and swimming, explore Thien Canh Son cave and relax on Hon Co Island’s white sandy beach. Visit a fishing village by rowing boat, check out the floating school and fish farms and meet with local people to understand firsthand about their fascinating culture. Departs: Daily Accommodation: Junk boat in deluxe air con twin cabins (1nt). Can also be done as 2-star or as a 3 day tour Includes: transfer to/from Hanoi, all fees Meals:1 breakfast, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Tour Code: HANPJC

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

111

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

Highlights

CAT BA ISLAND EXPERIENCE


Ho Chi Minh City

vietnam beaches

SOUTH EAST ASIA

SOUTH EAST ASIA

rock solid

sanouva HOTEL

£38 SINGLE £22 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Expect smart, clean rooms with air con, free Wi-Fi, modern bathrooms and black out curtains at the Sanouva hotel. You’ll also get some pretty great views of the city thrown in too! The location is hard to beat, with the main tourist attractions close by. Friendly staff are always happy to help, so a good stay is all but guaranteed.

Rock solid

elegant hotel saigon city

£30 SINGLE £15 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

With a prime central location, you won’t be disappointed with this smart little joint. Rooms are bright and come with air con, flatscreen TVs, a fridge and en suites. Enjoy drinks at the bar, a coffee in the cafe or a choice of Asian or Western cuisine in the restaurant. Looking to explore? The helpful staff are more than happy to help.

SGNSAN

rock solid

grand silverland HOTEL & SPA

£72 SINGLE £36 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

It’s all about the rooftop at the Grand Silverland. There’s a pool you can enjoy cocktails by and a roof garden restaurant with spectacular views. This elegant hotel is located just one minute from Ben Thanh market in the main tourist hub of the city. For respite from the hustle and bustle, relax in your comfortable room.

SGNELE

rock solid

ASIA PARADISE HOTEL, Nha Trang

rock solid

Sunrise Nha Trang Beach Hotel & Spa

£62 SINGLE £31 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Located in the heart of Nha Trang and a short walk from the white sandy beach, this hotel offers you comfort and luxury at an affordable price. All the modern rooms have private bathrooms, air con, cable TV and a mini-bar. Enjoy relaxing by the pool, work out at the fitness centre and have your laundry done for you by the expert staff!

SGNGRA

rock solid

swiss-belhotel

£99 SINGLE £56 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

This great boutique hotel is the only colonial-style property in Nha Trang, located in the heart of the city - just steps from the beach and within walking distance of all the action. Boasting seafront balcony rooms with views over one of the most beautiful bays in the world. Indulge the senses in the spa! STAY 4 PAY 3, STAY 7 PAY 5 11Jan14-31Oct14

NHAASI

£183

FR

4 DAYS

MEKONG DELTA FARMSTAY

£115

FR

2 DAYS

THUY DONG 3 HOTEL, Hoi An

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

NHASNT

With its meandering waterways and flourishing farms, the Mekong Delta is one for the Vietnam checklist. Venture through this iconic landscape by boat and discover riverbanks dotted with coconut palms, sprawling rice fields and ramshackled houses on stilts. You’ll spend a fascinating evening staying at a farm with local hosts discovering their authentic culture and enjoy village cycling before bidding farewell to the Mekong on Day 2.

Departs: Daily Accommodation: 4* hotel twin share (3nts) Meals: 3 breakfasts Includes: coach transfers to/from Ho Chi Minh City Tour Code: SGNMNE

Departs: Sun, Tue & Fri Accommodation: farm homestay, shared accommodation (1 nt) Meals: 1 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Transport: Boat (private & rowing), minibus Tour Code: SGNFAR

112

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SWIBEL

a-list

£39 SINGLE £20 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

Mui Ne is an idyllic, laid-back beach town with palm trees, white sand beaches, great seafood and a range of hotel options making it a great short break getaway from the city. There’s also a range of exciting water-based activities to get your blood pumping, including kite-surfing and windsurfing. Three nights accommodation with en suite, air con and breakfast is included as well as return transfers from your hotel in Ho Chi Minh City.

FR

Decorated in traditional Vietnamese style but with a modern twist, this beachfront hideaway surrounded by palm trees is pure heaven! With swimming pools, fitness centre and spa facilities on offer, the rooms come with air con and a terrace or balcony – the perfect place to enjoy a drink while watching the sun set in plush surroundings.

glampacker

mui ne beach package

£82 SINGLE £41 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

GOLDEN SAND, H0i An

VICTORIA HOI AN BEACH RESORT, Hoi An

£132 SINGLE £66 TWIN/DOUBLE

FR

FR

PRICES ARE PER PERSON PER NIGHT INCLUDING BREAKFAST

• Centrally located for easy access to Hoi An’s sights • Tasteful rooms with all the amenities you could want • Escape the heat with a swim in the pool

• Take a shuttle to the charming ancient town of Hoi An • Dust off the cobwebs with some early morning Tai Chi • Explore the rice fields on a free mountain bike

Situated in the centre of Hoi An, a charming 15th Century town, this hotel is an ideal location. It offers plenty of modern comforts with impressively designed rooms including air con, minibar and en suite bathrooms. Spend your days relaxing by the pool, working up a sweat in the sauna or sampling local delights at the restaurant.

This beachfront resort provides everything you need for rest and relaxation, mirroring a traditional fishing village with small streets and water ponds. All the rooms combine the elegance of Japanese and Vietnamese local handicrafts, plus amazing views. Indulge yourself with a herbal massage in the spa or chill out by the pool.

DADTH3

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

DADVIC

113


£1,299

hanoi to hong kong

oriental asia

Hanoi

• • • • • • • •

FR

15 DAYS

Hong Kong

Highlights

Hike along the Longji Rice Terraces Float past the dramatic Halong Bay Soak up culture in remote villages Belt out karaoke in Liuzhou bars Stroll over the bridges of Chengyang Party it up in glitzy Hong Kong Take in the views from Victoria Peak Explore and bargain in local markets

oriental asia

oriental asia

Departures 2014 Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jan 26 Feb 23 Mar 23 Apr 20 May 18 Jun 22

Feb 09 Mar 09 Apr 06 May 04 Jun 01 Jul 06

Jul 20 Aug 17 Aug 31 Sep 14 Sep 28 Oct 12

Aug 03 Aug 31 Sep 14 Sep 28 Oct 12 Oct 26

Oct 26 Nov 16 Nov 23 Dec 07 Dec 21

Nov 09 Nov 30 Dec 07 Dec 21 Jan 04

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/guesthouses (12 nts), junk boat (1 nt), sleeper train (1 nt) Transport: Train, local bus, air-con bus, boat Meals: 3 beakfasts, 3 lunches, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $190-250 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAVHK

Get the best of both worlds on this 15-day tour across China and Vietnam. From sprawling countryside hills and trickling rivers to the sparkling lights and bustling streets of fastpaced cities, you’ll journey through the rural and urban charms of both countries! You’ll climb atop the stunning limestone karsts in Guilin, bamboo raft down the winding rivers of Yangshuo, and float past the breathtaking islands of Halong Bay. Get to know friendly locals in remote villages or buzzing city karaoke bars, and live the high life in Hong Kong. What more could you ask for? Grab that suitcase and get packing!

DAY ITINERARY

My Own Room Available: Fr £359

Hanoi

Arrive into Hanoi at any time. Before meeting your tour leader and fellow travellers in the evening, venture out to get a taste of the city. Wander through Hanoi’s Old Quarter, a maze of streets dating back to the 13th Century, each dedicated to a different product or industry, or opt for an evening performance at the famous Water Puppet Theatre, a real taste of rural Vietnamese traditions.

01

Halong Bay / Cat Ba Island

CHINA

Liuzhou

Chengyang Longji

02-03

Hua Shan Yangshuo Lang Son VIETNAM

Hanoi

Hong Kong

Hua Shan / Liuzhou

04-06 Halong Bay/ Cat Ba Island

Head back to the mainland and drive north into China. In the remote mountain village of Hua Shan, home to the local minority people, the Zhuang, stay in traditional wooden buildings and take in the splendour of the huge cliff fresco painted by their ancestors 2,000 years ago. On Day 6, visit the sprawling metropolis of Liuzhou, and wander the bustling city streets or try your hand at karaoke in a local bar. (B, L)

Chengyang

07-08 LAOS

09-10

Average High Temperature (ºC / ºF)

Come morning, it’s time to head to Halong Bay to witness the spectacular views of 2,000 or more limestone islands rising from the waters of the Gulf of Tonkin. Legend claims these islands were created by a great dragon in the mountains, and its beauty will definitely capture your imagination as you explore aboard a traditional junk boat. Opt for a pre-dinner swim and spend a peaceful night beneath the stars. The next stop is Cat Ba Island to take in the stunning scenery and explore. Dine on fresh seafood and sip cocktails overlooking the floating villages in the bay or whizz around the island on motorbike. (2B, L, D)

DEC

Another minority people, the Dong, reside in the lush landscapes of Chengyang. Lining the many waterways and sprawling paddy fields are the impressive ‘wind and rain’ bridges and lazy waterwheels that help the Dong farm their land. Take a guided tour of the village, catch the locals performing traditional songs and dances and marvel at their daily life activities.

Longji Rice Terraces

Head into the clouds to visit the Longji Rice Terraces, whose steep sides are said to resemble those of a dragon’s backbone. Traipse along the mountain on intricate slate paths carved out by the locals, drinking in the amazing scenery surrounding you.

City

JAN

FEB

MAR

APR

MAY

JUN

JUL

AUG

SEPT

OCT

NOV

Beijing

1 34

3 37

11 52

19 66

25 77

29 84

30 86

29 84

25 77

18 64

9 48

2 36

Chengdu

8 46

10 50

15 59

21 70

25 77

27 81

28 82

28 82

24 75

20 68

15 59

10 50

Hangzhou

7 45

8 46

12 54

20 68

24 75

27 81

32 90

31 88

26 79

22 72

16 61

10 50

Hong Kong

19 16

19 16

21 70

25 77

28 82

30 86

31 88

31 88

30 86

28 82

24 75

21 70

A mix of rolling limestone hills, rice fields and trickling rivers, rural China is a sight to behold, and Yangshuo is the best place to experience it. Hike alongside stunning natural scenery, bamboo raft down rushing rivers, and get the heart pumping with an afternoon of rock climbing. For a more relaxed day, indulge in a Chinese massage, take a cooking class or catch a famous Light and Sound show. To get a true taste of the spectacular countryside, you’ll bike through the limestone karst mountains, passing rice paddies and water buffalo and the many bustling markets and villages. (L)

Osaka

8 46

8 46

12 54

18 64

23 73

27 81

30 86

32 90

28 82

22 72

17 63

11 52

Hong Kong

Shanghai

7 45

8 46

11 52

18 64

23 73

27 81

31 88

30 86

26 79

22 72

16 61

10 50

Tokyo

8 46

9 48

12 54

17 63

22 72

24 75

27 81

30 86

26 79

20 68

16 61

11 52

Xian

4 39

8 46

14 57

20 68

26 79

32 90

32 90

31 88

25 77

19 66

12 54

6 43

Yangshuo

11-13 14-15

Make your way to Hong Kong via an overnight sleeper train. Hong Kong is truly one of the world’s most exciting and invigorating cities, a fascinating blend of ancient Chinese traditions and modernday metropolis. Cruise the harbour aboard the Star Ferry (Hong Kong’s best bargain!) or search for souvenirs at Stanley Market, or take in the views of the twinkling skyline from Victoria Peak, the highest point in Hong Kong. Alternatively, pack in some theme park thrills at Ocean Park, or take a trip to one of the outlying islands such as Lantau where you can see the famous Buddha. The tour comes to an end at any time on Day 15.

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

115


tibet adventure Beijing

Ancient £1,699 empires

£2,699

FR

15 DAYS

Kathmandu

Beijing

FR

18 DAYS

Tokyo

NAADAM festival MONGOLIA Ulaanbaatar

LOCAL LIVING MONGOLIA £1,699 NOMADIC LIFE

£639

FR

15 DAYS

Ulaanbaatar

Ulaanbaatar

FR

8 DAYS

Ulaanbaatar

oriental asia

oriental asia

Highlights

• Explore bustling Beijing and hike along the Great Wall of China • Ride the rails on the spectacular Trans-Tibetan high-altitude railway • Absorb the amazing spirituality of Tibet’s historic capital, Lhasa

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

Highlights

• Combine two great tours - China Express & Japan Express • See Tiananmen Square and walk the most famous wall in the world • Get a bird’s-eye view of Mt. Fuji and stay in a traditional ryokan

DAY ITINERARY

Arrive in Beijing and start to explore this immense city, where the vast expanse of Tiananmen Square beckons. Enjoy a guided tour of the Forbidden City and an included trip to the Great Wall of China.

01-03

Depart Beijing on the world-famous 48hr train journey to Lhasa. Watch the scenery changing as this high-altitude railway climbs onto the Tibetan Plateau. Comfortable sleeper compartments contain six berths, all bedding is provided and meals are served in the dining car. This historic city is situated over 3,700m above sea level and dominated by the massive Potala Palace. Take an orientation walk around Barkhor Square and visit the Jokhang Temple, the spiritual heart of Tibet, around which prostrating pilgrims circle endlessly. (3B)

Gyantse / Shigatse / Sakya

09-11

04-05

12-15

06-09

The spectacular drive to Gyantse crosses three passes over 5,000m and skirts the shores of the beautiful Yamdrok Tso Lake. On Day 10, take a short drive to Shigatse, Tibet’s second-most important city and boasting the huge complex of Tashilhunpo. In Sakya you can visit its great monastery and the ruins of North Sakya across the river. (B)

10-11

Rombuk / Everest Base Camp / Zhangmu / Kathmandu

12-15

Take an exhilarating drive to Rombuk, at 5,200m, and embark on the 7km hike to Everest Base Camp, before visiting the highest monastery in the world. Later, cross to Zhangmu, via a most spectacular mountain pass. The historic city of Kathmandu reveals a world of colour and life. Take time out to explore before your tour ends on the morning of Day 15.

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 4 Age Group: Any Age Accommodation: Hotels (11 nts), guesthouse (1 nt, multishare), sleeper train (2 nts) Transport: Train, private bus Meals: 4 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $225-325 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACTA

My Own Room Available: Fr £199

Arrive to the vibrant Chinese capital, Beijing. Be blown away by the sheer spectacle of the Great Wall on an included tour, and discover China’s opulent past as you tour the Forbidden City. Take an evening flight to Xi’an on Day 3. Discover one of China’s greatest archaeological treasures - the Terracotta Warriors. Opt to cycle the ancient city walls before boarding a comfortable sleeper train to Suzhou, known as the ‘Venice of the East’. Take in a cultural Master of Nets performance. (L)

Explore Hiroshima’s history at the Peace Park and Museum, and witness the famous floating Torii Gate. On Day 14, head to historic Kyoto to visit the impressive Nijo Castle and the famous Kinaku-ji Golden Pavilion. Practice meditation in Daisen-in’s Zen rock garden.

Hakone / Mt. Fuji / Tokyo

16-18

Enjoy stunning views of Mt. Fuji, a boat ride on Lake Ashino-ko and stay in a traditional ryokan accommodation. Explore the frenetic streets of Tokyo on Day 17 before your tour ends the next day. (B, D)

Rombuk / Mt. Everest Shigatse Lhasa N E PA L

Gyantse

Kathmandu

C H I N A

Departures 2014

Departures 2014

Apr - Oct

Mar - Oct

116

Selected Saturdays (typically 2-4 departures per month)

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Hakone and Mt Fuji

CHINA

Beijing

Xi'an

Kyoto Himeji Hiroshima Suzhou

Shanghai

My Own Room Available: Fr £159

Departs most Sundays (Apr 06-Oct 19)

Next, it’s on to the Selenge River before hiking up Pot Mountain, actually a volcanic crater, to marvel at the views. On Day 4, learn about Mongolian nomadic culture by staying with a nomadic family, with a chance to try a delicious traditional barbecue! (2B, 2L, 2D)

03-04

Khovsgol Lake / Shine Ider / Great White Lake

05-09

Mongolia’s largest lake, Khovsgol Lake, is next. Hike around the protected National Park and take part in horse riding, fishing or archery. On Day 7, visit the beautiful Lake District of Mongolia and spot wildlife in the hills. At the Great White Lake on Day 9 visit a volcano, crawl inside lava tubes and drink in the views. (5B, 5L, 5D)

LAOS THAILAND CAMBODIA

Tokyo

Osaka Koyasan

Arrive into Ulaanbaatar at any time. Feel free to venture into the city to explore. On Day 2, travel to reach your first nomadic family hosts by oxcart or horse through a stunning mountain river valley in the Terelj National Park. The night will be spent learning Mongolian techniques to saddle a horse and prepare an oxcart before dinner and a night of traditional Mongolian games. (L, D)

01-02

Terelj National Park

Horseback ride through beautiful forests and landscapes to a well-known nomadic seamstress and learn how to make traditional Mongolian garments and tie a horse bridle. You may have realised by now that this is most definitely not your normal holiday?! (B, L, D)

03

Terelj National Park

Visit another nomadic family after a 9 km journey to learn the art of tying traditional knots to tether livestock and make buttons for traditional nomadic garments. (B, L, D)

04

Tsenger Hot Springs / Bayan Gobi

Visit a monastery museum in Tsetserleg, and sample some treats from its yummy bakery, en route to Tsenger. Stay the night at a ger camp after a soothing soak in the hot springs. Arrive at the Bayan Gobi and opt for a hike to an oasis lake to see local wildlife, ancient stone carvings and a terrific desert sunset. (2B, 2L, 2D)

10-11

Terelj National Park

05-06

Ulaanbaatar

Return to Ulaanbaatar on Day 12 for the opening ceremony to see wrestling matches and archery contests. Watch the finish line of the Naadam horse race before the festival closing ceremony. Depart at any time on Day 15. (3B, 2L)

12-15

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (12 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), ferry (2 nts, multishare), mountain monastery (1 nt), Japanese-style ryokan accommodation with hot springs (1 nt) Transport: Train, bus, ferry, boat, plane, bullet train Meals: 4 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners Budget: Allow USD $400-590 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 15, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACCJ

Ulaanbaatar / Terelj National Park

Selenge River

Explore Japan’s culinary capital and home to the nation’s funniest and friendliest locals. On Day 11, visit the centre of Japanese Buddhism and sleep on futons in an authentic monastic lodgings. (B, D)

Inclusions Beijing

01-02

Osaka / Koyasan

Hiroshima / Kyoto

DAY ITINERARY

Arrive in Mongolia’s capital and explore the city streets. The next day you’ll start a 350km drive to Amarbayasgalant Monastery located in the stunning Iven Gol Valley. Stargazing tonight takes on a new meaning with your first stay in a traditional ger camp. (B, L, D)

Shanghai / Ferry to Japan

Explore dynamic Shanghai. Take a walking tour along the Bund and opt to see an acrobat show. On Day 8, board a modern passenger ferry for the 48-hour trip across the East China Sea to Japan. (2B)

Highlights

• Horseback ride through the lush landscapes of Terelj National Park • Challenge local nomadic families to a friendly archery competition • Gain a deep understanding of Mongolian customs and tradition

Ulaanbaatar / Amarbayasgalant

Xi’an / Suzhou

Lhasa

05-08

DAY ITINERARY

Beijing

Beijing

Trans-Tibetan Rail Journey

03-04

Highlights

• Explore this remote land of steppes, sand dunes and Genghis Khan! • Experience stays in traditional ger camps and meet a nomadic family • Cheer on the archers, wrestlers and horse riders at Naadam Festival

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotel (4 nts), nomad family stay/camping (1 nt), Mongolian gers (9 nts, multishare) Transport: Private van Meals: 13 breakfasts, 12 lunches, 10 dinners Budget: Allow USD $55-75 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAAMNF

Khovsgol Lake River

Amarbayasgalant Selenge River

Shine Ider

Great White Lake MONGOLIA

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jul 13

Jul 10

Jul 24

Learn to steer an oxcart with your nomadic hosts and tuck into a traditional lunch before travelling back to the Mongolian capital for a last night as a group. On Day 8, depart at any time. (B, L)

Trip Style: Local Living Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Traditional ger (5 nts), basic hotels (2 nts) Transport: Public bus, oxcart, horse Meals: 5 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 5 dinners Budget: Allow USD $55-75 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAAMNL

Ulaanbaatar

Terelj National Park

Bayan Gobi

Departures 2014 START

Terelj National Park / Ulaanbaatar

Inclusions

Tsenger Hot Springs

Jun 29

07-08

On Day 5, practice with Mongolian bows and arrows before challenging nomads to an archery competition. After, it’s back in an oxcart for a 6 km trip to the next family. On Day 6, rise bright and early to help the nomads milk the cows before learning how to make traditional dairy products. Sample your efforts at breakfast before heading on a 7 km journey to the next destination. (2B, 2L, 2D)

Ulaanbaatar CHINA

Departures 2014 START

FINISH

Jun 21 Jul 19

Jun 28 Jul 26

START

FINISH

Aug 06 Aug 13 Aug 24 Aug 31

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

MONGOLIA START

FINISH

Sep 14

Sep 21

117


£2,495

Mongolia & beyond St. Petersburg

• • • • • • • •

FR

19 DAYS

Beijing

Highlights

Travel the Trans Mongolian Railway Indulge in opulent St. Petersburg Explore the majestic city of Moscow Admire the beauty of Lake Baikal Live as a nomad in a ger camp Visit the land of Genghis Khan See the unique Great Wall of China Soak in the vibe of electrifying Beijing

START

extend your journey Vodkatrain has a range of VodkaPack FINISH

Jul 16 Aug 03 Aug 13 Aug 31 Sep 10 Sep 28

START

FINISH

Sep 24

Oct 12

from beijing

START

FINISH

May 04 May 22 Jun 12 Jun 30

START

FINISH

Jul 31 Aug 18 Aug 14 Sep 01

START

FINISH

Sep 04

Sep 22

Inclusions

Trip Style: Experience Tour - featuring local guides in each city rather than a tour leader to accompany the whole journey Service Level: Standard Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (7 nts), Mongolian ger (1 nt), guesthouse (2 nts), trains - 4 berth sleepers (8 nts) Transport: Train, minibus Meals: 11 breakfasts, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $380-475 for meals not included Group Leader: Local guides in each city Group Size: Max 15 Tour Code: MBSB / MBBS

Twin berth supplement: Fr £860

Lose yourself on this extraordinary journey between two of the world’s most inspiring and action-packed cities; from the extravagant palaces of St. Petersburg to the electrifying vibe of Beijing. This unique alternative to conventional touring is designed for experienced travellers who enjoy the freedom and flexibility of independent travel combined with the benefits of travelling as a small group. Along the way, you’ll discover that Moscow is alive with culture, arts and buzzing nightlife, make new friends on the legendary Trans Siberian Railway, admire the beauty of Lake Baikal and have the chance to walk on the Great Wall of China.

city breaks and RailPacks through Europe, China, Japan and Vietnam to help you plan your journey. If Vodkatrain is part of a bigger trip and you are leaving or returning to Europe we’ve even made sure that the tour dates match up with those at Busabout (see our Europe brochure) so you won’t have to get on a plane between London and Hong Kong. That’s 12,000km overland!

DAY ITINERARY St. Petersburg

01-02

RUSSIA

Irkutsk

St. Petersburg

Lake Baikal

Ulaanbaatar

MONGOLIA

03-05

Ger Camp

Beijing CHINA

Arrive to the charming St. Petersburg and start exploring the richly-filled palaces and museums, wide boulevards and canals. The gilded halls of the Hermitage Museum are adorned with the works of Da Vinci, Rembrandt and many other great masters. Known as Russia’s ‘Window to the West’, St. Petersburg is sure to seduce with its dazzling architecture, whilst just beyond the city lie the incomparable summer palaces of the Tsars at Petrodvorets. If you are here in summer, experience the legendary white nights, when the sun barely dips below the horizon. In the evening of Day 2, jump aboard the overnight express to Moscow. Prepare to be amazed by the fascinating city of Moscow, bursting with energy and packed with contemporary art galleries and bohemian cafés. Discover Moscow’s metro system and experience the echoing vastness of Red Square. Admire the splendid twirled cupolas of St. Basil’s Cathedral, one of the most beautiful Russian Orthodox monuments, and the Kremlin itself, a treasure house of magnificent relics and monuments of art. In the evening, flock to one of Moscow’s great wine bars and restaurants or enjoy a buzzing scene of nightclubs and underground bars.

INDIA

Welcome on board the longest railway line in the world, the Trans Siberian Railway, for the scenic journey east, across spectacular mountains and rivers, into the heart of Siberia. Settle into life on board in your comfortable four-berth compartment, enjoy the company of your travel companions and meet some locals in the dining car.

Irkutsk / Lake Baikal / Trans Mongolian Railway

You might like

Classic Trans Siberian (14 Days) Fr £2,090 Board the Trans Siberian Railway for the world’s longest and most famous railway journey - one country, seven time zones and 9,288 kilometres (5,767 miles). Tour Code: CTSM Gobi and Nomads (15 Days) Fr £1,595 Complete a full Trans Mongolian journey and venture out into the realm of Genghis Khan, discovering the true hospitality of Mongolia’s nomadic people. Tour Code: GNBM/GNMB

118

09-12

Almost in the centre of Asia, Irkutsk is the nearest big city to the glorious Lake Baikal. Known as the ‘Paris of Siberia’, the town is filled with 18th Century churches, brightly-painted shutters and log houses decorated with wooden lacework. Explore the spectacular region around the world’s oldest, deepest and largest (by volume) freshwater lake from the sleepy village of Listvyanka. On the evening of Day 11 hop on a train for the two-night journey into Mongolia and on to Ulaanbaatar.

Ulaanbaatar / Mongolian Steppe

13-15 16

Arrive to the dynamic city of Ulaanbaatar, known for its great leader Genghis Khan. In the afternoon travel out across the grasslands where you will get to experience life as a nomad as you spend a night in a traditional Mongolian ger set among spectacular rock formations and wild rolling hills of Terelj National Park. On Day 14, return to Ulaanbaatar and enjoy your final night in this restless capital before a morning departure aboard the Trans Mongolian Express to Beijing.

Trans Mongolian Railway

Watch the changing landscapes as you travel over the steppe of northern Mongolia and the Gobi Desert, then through border formalities where the train wheels are changed and on to Beijing.

Beijing

17-19

Welcome to Beijing, China’s capital, and a city of staggering proportions. Use the opportunity to visit the majestic Great Wall, one of the greatest wonders of the world. The Great Wall winds up and down across deserts, grasslands, mountains and plateaux, stretching approximately 8,851 kilometres (5,500 miles) from the east to west of China. Visit the magnificent Summer Palace and enjoy the history and significance of the amazing Forbidden City with its complex of remarkable halls, palaces and gates. Soak in the colours and sounds, smells and tastes of this amazing city before your journey concludes on Day 19.

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

Vodkatrain brings together young, like-minded individuals with different backgrounds from all around the world to travel together through some of the most unique and interesting destinations on routes less travelled. You’ll be travelling with the locals wherever you go and will discover each new city with the help of your local Honcho.

Transport & Accommodation

Trans Siberian Railway

06-08

Experience the Trans Siberian Railway, Mongolia and the Silk Road at ground level. Travel with the locals, explore cities with your local Honcho, decide what you want to see and do and pay local prices along the way!

Vodkatrain is a great combination of independent backpacking and small group travel at affordable do-it-yourself prices. If you’re looking for an alternative to traditional tour groups with fixed schedules and regimented sightseeing, Vodkatrain gives you the chance to do your own thing or let your Honchos show you around the cities they live in and love!

Moscow

Moscow

oriental asia

Oriental asia

FINISH

what’s included

Honcho services in every city stop All your train tickets Accommodation on shared basis Arrival / departure transfers en route All Trans Mongolian journeys include a stay in a traditional Mongolian ger • Visa support for pre-booked tours

From st.petersburg

START

Trans Mongolian Railway & the Silk Road

• • • • •

Departures 2014 May 14 01 Jun Jun 18 Jul 06 Jul 02 Jul 20

vodkaTrain

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Project Vodkatrain Complete a full Trans Mongolian journey and spend a week discovering Mongolia’s wilderness, learning the nomadic life and assisting with an environmental project. (19 days) (PVMB) Fr £1,735

The trains are a destination in themselves, especially the dining car! These are not chartered trains but regular scheduled services and they ferry families, traders, students, soldiers, business people, travellers and monks, so there is always an interesting mix of people. Overnight trains have comfortable bunk-bed style, mixed gender, four-berth compartments (sleeping configurations and facilities differ for some journeys) and they have bedding, reading lights, a big window, a small table, room for your backpack and constant hot water so you’ll never run out of instant noodles! At each stop a local Honcho will meet you and transfer you to and from your accommodation. They’ll also take care of the train tickets and make sure you’re on the right train and going in the right direction! You’ll stay in a mixture of hotels, hostels, guesthouses and traditional Mongolian gers (a real highlight); some accommodation may be multi-share but most will be twins. All are centrally located (or really close to public transport) and clean.

travellers around to share experiences with and to provide a support network so you don’t have to tackle any hard bits alone! Vodktatrain is a travel revolution born out of the bureaucracy and challenges of travel through some of Asia’s most incredible, unique and unusual destinations.

honchos Honchos have grown up in their city and love showing you around, not only to the tourist sites (they are important too) but to the real heartbeat of the city, its people and those underground places you normally need weeks to find! They can show you how to use local transport, where to change money, their favourite cafés, bars and restaurants, can translate all the latest gossip and if there is something they don’t know they have the language skills to find out.

Vodkatrain is 18-35 only, so you’ll be sharing your adventure with like-minded and independent travellers from across the globe. These are not ‘escorted’ tours but it is group travel. This means you’ll have other

Your Honchos are available from 9am ‘til 9pm each day and some choose to stay out later for a drink. All their expenses are covered to ensure they’ll only take you to the places they would want to go themselves so there’s no funny business! Your Honcho probably has some ideas about what you should see in their city - but there is no pressure to do any suggested activities; if you want to do your own thing, they will help you with directions, a few local sayings or maybe scrawl a basic map on a napkin - then leave you to it...

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

119

Group Travel as Individual As You


the vodkatrain St.Petersburg

£1,990

FR

21 DAYS

Beijing

£945

the budgeting bolshevik Moscow

FR

12 DAYS

Beijing

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

DAY ITINERARY Ulaanbaatar / Terelj National Park

Moscow

01-02 03-05

Meet your group, jump on the metro and start your journey in Red Square! On Day 2, continue exploring this great city before an afternoon departure to Irkutsk.

Trans Siberian Railway

Settle into life on board, spend time with the locals, share stories and watch the landscapes change out of the window.

Irkutsk / Lake Baikal

DAY ITINERARY St. Petersburg

01-03

Arrive to the beautiful St. Petersburg, known as the ‘Window to the West’. It boasts a maze of romantic canals and modern architecture that give the city a real European charm. If you happen to find yourself here in summer, experience the legendary White Nights, when the sun barely dips below the horizon. However, St. Petersburg is sure not to disappoint at any time of year; with its rich culture, opulent palaces, gardens and canals, the city dazzles and delights. Visit the grand avenue of Nevsky Prospekt and get to know your new travel buddies, enjoying the live music scene. In the evening of Day 3, board the overnight train to St. Petersburg’s big brother, Moscow.

Moscow / Trans Siberian Railway

Departures 2014 From st.petersburg

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 06 Jan 13 Jan 27 Feb 17 Mar 03 Mar 17 Mar 31 Apr 14 May 05 May 12

Jan 26 Feb 02 Feb 16 Mar 09 Mar 23 Apr 06 Apr 20 May 04 May 25 Jun 01

May 19 May 26 Jun 09 Jun 16 Jun 30 Jul 07 Jul 14 Jul 28 Aug 04 Aug 18

Jun 08 Jun 15 Jun 29 Jul 06 Jul 20 Jul 27 Aug 03 Aug 17 Aug 24 Sep 07

Sep 01 Sep 08 Sep 15 Sep 22 Sep 29 Oct 13 Oct 27 Nov 17 Dec 08

Sep 21 Sep 28 Oct 05 Oct 12 Oct 19 Nov 02 Nov 16 Dec 07 Dec 28

04-06

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 25 Feb 22 Mar 08 Mar 22 Mar 29 Apr 12 Apr 26 May 10 May 17 Jun 04

Feb 14 Mar 14 Mar 28 Apr 11 Apr 18 May 02 May 16 May 30 Jun 06 Jun 24

Jun 11 Jun 25 Jul 02 Jul 09 Jul 30 Aug 13 Aug 20 Sep 03 Sep 10 Sep 17

Jul 01 Jul 15 Jul 22 Jul 29 Aug 19 Sep 02 Sep 09 Sep 23 Sep 30 Oct 07

Oct 01 Oct 08 Oct 15 Oct 29 Nov 12 Nov 26 Dec 10 Dec 24

Oct 21 Oct 28 Nov 04 Nov 18 Dec 02 Dec 16 Dec 30 Jan 13

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 27 Feb 10 Feb 24 Mar 10

Feb 07 Feb 21 Mar 07 Mar 21

Mar 24 Apr 07 Apr 21 Sep 15

Apr 04 Apr 18 May 02 Sep 26

Sep 29 Oct 13 Oct 27 Nov 10

Oct 10 Oct 24 Nov 07 Nov 21

18-21

Beijing

Your journey comes to an end as you arrive in Beijing early afternoon.

Watch the traders at the border and catch a glimpse of your first yak in Mongolia.

£1,240

the genghis khan Moscow

FR

14 DAYS

Beijing

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

DAY ITINERARY Moscow

01-03 04-07

Return to Irkutsk and head straight for Mongolia, to its capital Ulaanbaatar! Enjoy your two-day journey on the Trans Mongolian Railway, watch the traders at the border and catch a glimpse of your first yak. On Day 15, arrive in Ulaanbataar and travel to Terelj National Park, where you will get a chance to experience life as a nomad first-hand, with a stay in a ger camp. On Day 17, return to Ulaanbaatar, a pulsing hub of bohemian culture and great nightlife. The city is a clash of old and new; from horses to Hondas, throat singing to karaoke. Get back on the train to cross the Gobi Desert and your final border into China. Prepare for the crowds, mouth-watering smells and a city of staggering proportions. No other city in China can compete with the stunning historical panorama on display in Beijing. The city is home to fascinating temples, buzzing markets and enchanting ancient alleyways. Delve between the high rises to discover the secrets of hutong life, visit Tiananmen Square and encounter the dazzling array of dishes, from succulent Peking duck and delicious dumplings, to more exotic Asian cuisine. And of course, let’s not forget the majestic Great Wall snaking its way across the hills! Your epic journey comes to an end on Day 21 and you are free to depart at any time.

Morning departure on the Trans Mongolian Railway across the legendary Gobi Desert and into China.

TOUR CODE: BBMB

Make the most of your three-day journey, as you trundle through underpopulated landscapes. Head down to the dining car to practice your Russian or try some vodka with the locals. In the morning of Day 10, arrive in Irkutsk, situated in the heart of Siberia and the perfect base to explore the great outdoors and the glorious Lake Baikal. Known as the ‘Paris of Siberia’, Irkutsk offers traditional Russian hospitality, but laces it with a hefty shot of Siberian vodka when you’re not looking! Head to Lake Baikal, pack a picnic and enjoy a hike along its beautiful shores. Clean your pores in a toasty traditional banya (sauna) and discover the magic that a dip in the waters does for you!

Trans Mongolian Railway / Beijing

TOUR CODE: VTSB / VTBS

12

Trans Mongolian Railway

From Moscow

Trans Mongolian Railway / Ulaanbaatar / Terelj National Park

12-17

08

Trans Mongolian Railway

11

Return to Ulaanbaatar for a last chance to pick up some felt slippers and enjoy one more night of Mongolian hospitality.

Departures 2014

Trans Siberian Railway / Irkutsk / Lake Baikal

07-11

From Beijing

Lose yourself in the speldour of this action packed city. The commanding and progressive Moscow is alive with arts, culture and nightlife; from a wide range of museums and modern art galleries, to a vibrant scene of nightclubs, bohemian art cafés and underground bars. Discover the highlights around Red Square, known as the heart and soul of Russia. See one of the most famous pieces of architecture in the world, St. Basil’s Cathedral, as well as the constructivist pyramid of Lenin’s Mausoleum. Spend some time in Gorky Park, where you can find some of the best views of the city from the yellow and blue pedestrian bridge that spans the river. After a full-on couple of days of sightseeing and partying, it is time to relax on the train as you begin your journey for Irkutsk in the afternoon of Day 6.

06-07

10

Ulaanbaatar

Just because you are a bit tight on time doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the Trans Mongolian. Three countries in two weeks - that’s what we call an adventure!

Departures 2014 From Moscow

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Jan 13 Feb 10 Mar 10 Apr 07 Apr 21 May 05 May 19

Jan 26 Feb 23 Mar 23 Apr 20 May 04 May 18 Jun 01

Jun 02 Jun 09 Jun 23 Jun 30 Jul 07 Jul 14 Jul 28

Jun 15 Jun 22 Jul 06 Jul 13 Jul 20 Jul 27 Aug 10

Aug 04 Aug 18 Sep 01 Sep 08 Sep 22 Oct 20 Nov 24

Aug 17 Aug 31 Sep 14 Sep 21 Oct 05 Nov 02 Dec 07

FINISH

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

08

Meet your group and Honcho. Check out the Kremlin, pay a visit to Lenin or travel on the dazzling metro system. On the afternoon of Day 03, it’s all aboard the Trans Siberian!

11

Trans Siberian Railway

Settle in to life on board, spend time with the locals, share stories and watch the landscapes change out the window. Arrive into Ulaanbataar. Get a great view of the town from the Zaisan Memorial or mingle with monks at the Gaandan Khiid Monastery. Head out to Terelj National Park and your ger camp. Relax in the fresh air and sample some nomadic delicacies. Climb Turtle Rock and play some pool with the locals in the wilderness before returning to Mongolia’s capital city.

Board your final train and cross the mighty Gobi Desert before an impressive change of wheels on the train as you cross the border into China.

Beijing

12-13

Ulaanbaatar

Terelj National Park / Ulaanbataar

09-10

Ulaanbaatar / Trans Mongolian

Explore the hutongs, markets and Tiananmen Square here in China’s capital. Ride a bicycle around to get an idea of the scale of the city and the metro to grasp the density of the population.

Beijing

14

Your adventure concludes and it’s time to farewell your new friends. If you’d like to explore more of China, check out our RailPacks on page 123.

From beijing

START

*Jan 22 Feb 05 *May 14 May 28 Aug 14 Aug 28 *Feb 19 Mar 05 Jun 05 Jun 19 Aug 28 Sep 11 *Mar 19 Apr 02 Jun 12 Jun 26 Sep 11 Sep 25 *Apr 02 Apr 16 Jun 26 Jul 10 Sep 25 Oct 09 *Apr 16 Apr 30 Jul 10 Jul 24 Oct 16 Oct 30 *Apr 30 May 14 Jul 24 Aug 07 Nov 20 Dec 04 Due to rail schedules, dates marked (*) have one less night in Beijing and Moscow, two extra nights on trains and a day trip to Hohot.

tour code: gkmb / gkbm

120

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

121

oriental asia

oriental asia This is the classic Trans Mongolian journey. Visit all the best places from Russia’s ‘Venice of the North’ through to electrifying Beijing. You’ll live with the nomads in Mongolia and party in quirky Ulaanbaatar. Enjoy a dip in Lake Baikal after a few nights on the train and absorb fascinating history in Moscow or while strolling along the Great Wall.

If you want an iconic Trans Mongolian journey whilst watching your roubles this is the journey for you. Be prepared to travel in low season (that means less tourists) and in a lower grade of train compartment on the longest journey in order to take advantage of this moneysaving adventure. It might be thrifty but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the good times!

Early morning arrival in Irkutsk and then on to Lake Baikal. Enjoy a refreshing swim and try the famous lake’s tasty fish. On Day 7, return to Irkutsk and board an evening train to Ulaanbaatar.

09

Arrive in Ulaanbaatar and head out to Terelj National Park. Relax in the serenity of the wide open steppe and learn about the nomadic way of life as you stay in a ger camp.


£1,465

the ruski huski Moscow

FR

17 DAYS

Beijing

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

01-02 03-05

Trans Siberian Railway

Meet your room mates, swap some stories and have a picnic in your cosy compartment.

10 11-13

08-09

Irkutsk / Trans Mongolian Railway

Return to Irkutsk to catch an early evening train to Ulaanbaatar.

Experience life as a nomad as you stay in a ger camp. Prepare for a magical morning in the snow! On Day 13, return to Ulaanbaatar.

FINISH

START

FINISH

Mar 07 Mar 21 Mar 28 Nov 07

Mar 23 Apr 09 Apr 13 Nov 23

START

FINISH

START

14-16 17

Beijing

Get lost in hutongs and take in the smells, sights and sounds of traditional Beijing. Then it is time to bid farewell as your tour ends.

START

FINISH

Mar 16 Apr 01 Nov 06 Nov 22 Nov 20 Dec 06

START

START

START

£2,380

FR

23 DAYS

Beijing

05-07 See and do more on this once-in-alifetime adventure. You’ll have stops in the unusual and interesting destinations of Suzdal and Ulan Ude and spend more time in Mongolia enabling you to travel to Kharkhorin, the remote ancient capital of Genghis Khan. In the summer you can even enjoy some included extras!

Choose your own adventure in Moscow, maybe the Kremlin or a visit to Lenin? On Day 3, depart for Suzdal and on Day 4 experience your first Russian banya!

08-09

Get transferred to Murom and depart to Kazan. On Day 6, explore a mesmerising mix of cultures and religions in the capital of Tatarstan. Catch a train to Irkutsk in the evening of Day 7. Watch the scenery change as you pass from Europe into Asia across the Urals.

Irkutsk / Lake Baikal / Ulan Ude

10-13

Arrive to Irkutsk and head out to Lake Baikal for a magnificent hike along its shores. On Day 12, return to Irkutsk for the train to Ulan Ude where you’ll discover the world’s biggest statue of Lenin’s head.

Samarkand / Tashkent

14-17

Tehran / Isfahan

Arrive in Tehran early evening and spend the next morning exploring Iran’s modern capital before transferring to Isfahan.

18-20

Isfahan / Mashhad

Discover this ancient mosaic-clad jewel of Persia. In the afternoon of Day 8 depart for Mashhad to see the shrine of Imam Reza.

Mashhad / Ashgabat

Morning train to Samarkand and spend a couple of days exploring its breathtaking monuments before travelling to Tashkent on Day 16. Head for Almaty on Day 17.

Almaty

Stroll the leafy streets of Almaty before a late evening departure for Urumqi on Day 20.

Urumqi / Beijing

21-24

Depart for Ashgabat and on Day 11, exploring this white marble city before the night train.

FINISH

START

FINISH

25 Jun 16 Jul

01 Sep 22 Sep

24 Sep 15 Oct

START

FINISH

20 Jun 14 Jul 29 Aug 22 Sep

START

FINISH

19 Sep

13 Oct

Pass through the Dzungarian Gate, an ancient Silk Road trade route on your way to Urumqi, the farthest city in the world from the ocean! On Day 23, depart for Beijing where your epic journey concludes the next day.

START

FINISH

Jun 07 Jun 21 Jul 19

Jun 29 Jul 13 Aug 10

START

FINISH

START

FINISH

Aug 23 Sep 14 Sep 13 Oct 05 Oct 25 Nov 16

From beijing

Jun 23 Jul 16 Jul 28 Aug 20 Sep 01 Sep 24

START

£240

rail packs

FR

China, Vietnam, Japan

14 15 16-18

We can also book the following journeys for you: Moscow to Riga, Moscow to Berlin, St. Petersburg to Riga, St. Petersburg to Tallinn (bus), Beijing to Shanghai, Beijing to Hong Kong, and Beijing to Hanoi. Tailor-made independent options are available to and from all sorts of destinations in Asia - not subject to age restrictions. Please enquire for details.

Trans Mongolian Railway

Morning departure on the overnight train to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia’s modern capital.

Ulaanbaatar

Morning arrival in Ulaanbaatar and a chance to take in all the city sights.

Bayangobi / Kharkhorin

Inclusions

Spend your first night as a nomad in a ger camp. Then on Day 17 it’s on to Genghis Khan’s ancient capital on the sweeping steppe.

* Visa support for pre-booked services. * Rail tickets as outlined in the itinerary (all tickets must be picked up from the local office, delivery service is not available).

Ulaanbaatar / Beijing

19-23

Return to Ulaanbaatar and depart for Beijing the next day. Arrive on Day 21 and journey out to the Great Wall or wander the hutongs and markets. Chill out by Beihai Lake as you bid farewell to your new friends on Day 23.

Like the idea of continuing your journey by train but want to safeguard yourself from language barriers, incorrect ticket purchases, day-long waits at the station and unexpected fuss or confusion? Travel on your terms with the added assurance of pre-organised train tickets. RailPacks are the perfect way to travel, ensuring you get from A to B without any fuss! How do RailPacks work? Simply tell us the cities you’d like to travel to and your preferred travel dates and we’ll make sure your rail tickets are organised and waiting for you in each city upon arrival. En route all you need to do is simply exchange your RailPack voucher for a rail ticket at a local office in each city and you’re off! Too easy!

From Moscow

FINISH

Sep 29 Oct 22 Nov 03 Nov 26

TOUR CODE: CKMB / CKBM

122

Bus to Ankara and a chance to explore the city before departing on the Trans Asian Railway across Turkey on Day 3.

GETTING THERE AND AWAY

Trans Siberian Railway

Departures 2014

Mar 20 Apr 12 Apr 21 May 14 May 26 Jun 18

START

02 Jun 23 Jun

DAY ITINERARY Murom / Kazan

FINISH

Ankara / Trans Asia Express

Move on to Bukhara where you can relax by the ponds and watch daily life unfold.

TOUR CODE: MPIB / MPBI

01-04

START

FINISH

02 May 26 May 30 May 23 Jun

Moscow / Suzdal

FINISH

10-11

12-13

Bukhara

From Beijing

FINISH

Dec 04 Dec 20 Dec 18 Jan 03

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

START

FINISH

28 Apr 21 May 19 May 11 Jun

the cossack

Mar 15 Apr 06 Apr 19 May 11 May 17 Jun 08

07-09

Meet your new friends and begin your journey.

From istanbul

TOUR CODE: RHMB / RHBM

Moscow

Traverse deserts and mountains, exploring the fabled old Silk Road in the footsteps of Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan and of course, Marco Polo. Discover the jewels of ancient Persia and the caravanserai of Old Turkestan where tea, silk and spices have been traded for over a millennium, on this journey well off the beaten track.

Istanbul

Departures 2014

FINISH

Nov 28 Dec 14 Dec 12 Dec 28 Dec 26 Jan 11

From beijing

Jan 12 Jan 28 Jan 26 Feb 11 Feb 16 Mar 04

05-06

Trans Mongolian Railway / Beijing

Departures 2014 START

02-04

Terelj National Park / Ulaanbaatar

From Moscow

Jan 10 Jan 26 Jan 24 Feb 09 Feb 07 Feb 23 Feb 21 Mar 09

01

Set out to explore this quirky capital and make sure you grab some toasty warm felt slippers from the markets before you head out onto the steppe.

Depart for Beijing early in the morning. Arrive on Day 15 and start exploring. See the Great Wall covered in snow, check out Tiananmen Square or visit the bustling night markets.

DAY ITINERARY

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

code ITINERARY

price

VTRP01

Beijing – Xian – Shanghai

£260

VTRP02

Shanghai – Xian – Beijing

£260

Beijing – Xian – Shanghai - (Ferry 8 Berth) Kobe/Osaka

£645

VTRP03

Beijing – Xian – Guangzhou (Transfer) – Hong Kong

£470

VTRP04

Hong Kong – Guangzhou (Transfer) – Xian – Beijing

£325

VTRP05

Beijing – Xian – Chengdu – Kunming –Nanning - Hanoi

£595

VTRP06

Hanoi – Nanning – Kunming –Chengdu - Xian – Beijing

£365

VTRP07

Hanoi – Hue – Hoi An (Da Nang)* – Nha Trang – Ho Chi Minh

£240

VTRP08

Ho Chi Minh – Nha Trang – Da Nang (Hoi An)* – Hue – Hanoi

£240

VTRP09

£735

VTRP10

Beijing – Chengdu - Xian - Yichang // Chongqing** Guilin – Guangzhou (Transfer) – Hong Kong

* You’ll need to make your own way from Da Nang to Hoi An ** You’ll need to make your own way from Yichang to Chongqing

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

123

oriental asia

oriental asia

06-07

24 DAYS

Beijing

Ulaanbaatar

Lake Baikal

Marvel at the depth of the ice and perhaps a ride in a hovercraft? Opt for some dog sledding, snowboarding or even ice diving! Lake Baikal, in the heart of Siberia, offers a range of unique winter landscapes and activities for you to enjoy.

FR

SMALL GROUP ADVENTURE (18-35s)

Arrive Moscow

Think snow, big furry Moscow hats, temperatures well below zero, oh and probably some vodka too! The Ruski Huski is a special winter itinerary that apart from the usual basics also includes some added value winter activities such as dog sledding in Siberia and a Mongolian cookery class.

Istanbul

DAY ITINERARY Let the journey begin! Visit Red Square and St Basil’s Cathedral lit up like a fairytale in the snow. On Day 2, enjoy more of Moscow before an afternoon departure to Irkutsk.

£2,380

the MARCO POLO


china & hong kong

china ON A Shoestring Beijing

• • • • • • • •

£1,049

FR

18 DAYS

Hong Kong

Highlights

Walk along the Great Wall of China Wander Beijing’s old backstreets Live the city life in vibrant Shanghai Meet China’s most famous warriors Take in the sights of the Three Gorges Experience Chinese village life Marvel at the scenery on the Li River Explore the bright lights of Hong Kong

oriental asia

oriental asia

Departures 2014 Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Feb 24 Mar 03 Mar 10 Mar 17 Mar 24 Mar 31 Apr 07 Apr 14 Apr 21 Apr 28 May 05 May 12 May 19

Mar 13 Mar 20 Mar 27 Apr 03 Apr 10 Apr 17 Apr 24 May 01 May 08 May 15 May 22 May 29 Jun 05

May 26 Jun 02 Jun 09 Jun 16 Jun 23 Jun 30 Jul 07 Jul 14 Jul 21 Jul 28 Aug 04 Aug 11 Aug 18

Jun 12 Jun 19 Jun 26 Jul 03 Jul 10 Jul 17 Jul 24 Jul 31 Aug 07 Aug 14 Aug 21 Aug 28 Sep 04

Aug 25 Sep 01 Sep 08 Sep 15 Sep 22 Sep 29 Oct 06 Oct 13 Oct 20 Oct 27 Nov 03 Nov 10 Nov 17

Sep 11 Sep 18 Sep 25 Oct 02 Oct 09 Oct 16 Oct 23 Oct 30 Nov 06 Nov 13 Nov 20 Nov 27 Dec 04

Inclusions

TOP 5 MUST-DO’s

Trip Style: YOLO Service Level: Basic Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Recommended for 1839s Accommodation: Simple hotels (10 nts), sleeper train (5 nts, 6-berth compartments), boat (2 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, air-con bus, boat Meals: None Budget: Allow USD $270-360 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 10 Tour Code: GAACRG

My Own Room Available: Fr £319

1. walk along the great wall 2. admire the terracotta warriors 3. volunteer with giant pandas 4. catch hong kong’s star Ferry 5. practice your tai chi skills

For ambitious travellers on a tight budget who are after an experience full of the very best this country has to offer, this trip showcases China’s scenic wonders without missing its most famous cities and sights. The majesty of China is on show at every turn as you absorb the grandeur of powerhouse urban mega-cities, learn the fascinating history of the Terracotta Warriors and discover a simple and beautiful way of life surrounded by the paddy fields of Yangshuo and the Yangtze. An undeniable highlight is the spectacular Three Gorges, where you’ll come face-to-face with the ferocious ambition of this country.

DAY ITINERARY Beijing

01

Arrive in Beijing at any time, setting out to explore the bright lights and big business this city is famous for.

Beijing

02-04

China’s capital is a world-class city with a remarkably well-preserved past. Walk in the footsteps of history as you explore the vast Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, the Great Wall of China and the Temple of Heaven. Be sure to venture into the backstreet hutongs for a look at how old-world China is still thriving today. In the evening of Day 4, board the overnight train south to Shanghai.

Shanghai

05-07

Beijing

Xi’an

C H I N A

Xi’an Shanghai Three Gorges

The vibrant pulse of new China and the country’s largest and most dynamic city; Shanghai is where new skyscrapers clash with the traditional architecture of the Bund. Take a stroll along this riverside path marvelling at the spectacular array of art deco-style buildings or take in the sights of Pudong, a modern financial centre, with its towering skyscrapers. Perhaps visit the world-famous Shanghai Museum, explore the busy Yu Yuan Bazaar, shop ‘til you drop in China’s hippest stores or witness the breathtaking Chinese acrobats. Take the overnight train to Xi’an on Day 7.

08-09

Yichang

This ancient city, the capital of China for many years, is home to one of the Middle Kingdom’s greatest archaeological treasures – the Terracotta Warriors. Spend time exploring this historical wonder. You also have time to check out the vibrant Muslim Quarter with its serene Great Mosque and exotic street food stalls and the majestic Ming Dynasty city walls. Cycle along these ancient city walls to see the city from a different (and lofty!) perspective. Catch the overnight train on Day 9.

Three Gorges Yangshuo

Hong Kong

10-13

Yangshuo

beijing

14-16

XI’AN three gorges shanghai

chengdu

hangzhou LHASA kunming

guangzhou hong kong

An inspiration to painters, poets and a source of international controversy, the Three Gorges remain one of the world’s natural scenic wonders, while the massive dam is an incredible feat of modern technology. Experience it first hand as you travel down the mighty Yangtze River in a Chinesestyle riverboat, stopping at various sites en route. Cabins are clean with private facilities, but not luxurious. There is basic Chinese food available for purchase in the on-board restaurant. Continue by overnight train on Day 13.

you might like

Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? China Cultural Pack Fr £70 Kung fu dance show (Beijing, 1.5 hours), acrobat performance (Shanghai, 1.5 hours) & Li River light show (Yangshuo, 1 hour)

Arrive in Guilin in the early morning and then travel by bus to the small country town of Yangshuo. The scenery in this area is stunning, with the Li River and limestone karst mountains interspersed with picturesque riverside villages and markets. Experience real village life meeting locals and seeing rural China in action, or immerse yourself further with a cooking class or by practicing tai chi. You may also wish to see the sound and light show on the river produced by Zhang Yimou. On Day 16, head to Guilin for the overnight train to Hong Kong.

Hong Kong

17 18

Hong Kong is one of the world’s most vibrant and fascinating cities. It boasts an unbeatable array of cultural sights, shopping, restaurants and has an electric atmosphere. Ride the Star Ferry across Victoria Harbour, wander Stanley Market and catch the views of Hong Kong from The Peak. Don’t forget to pick yourself up some shopping bargains before heading home.

Hong Kong

The tour ends today, and you’re free to leave at any time.

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

125


£1,799

essential china Beijing

• • • • • • • •

FR

21 DAYS

Hong Kong

highlights of china Shanghai

best of £1,499 yunnan

£899

FR

14 DAYS

Beijing

Kunming

FR

10 DAYS

Kunming

Highlights

Find your way around bustling Beijing Walk on the Great Wall of China Stroll the streets of dynamic Shanghai Meet the unique Terracotta Warriors Fall in love with the Chengdu pandas Cruise along the Yangtze River Marvel at the huge Three Gorges Dam Live the high life in Hong Kong

oriental asia

oriental asia

Departures 2014 Start

Finish

Mar 02 Mar 09 Mar 16 Mar 23 Mar 30 Apr 06 Apr 13 Apr 20 Apr 27 May 04 May 11 May 18 May 25 May 30

Mar 22 Mar 29 Apr 05 Apr 12 Apr 19 Apr 26 May 03 May 10 May 17 May 24 May 31 Jun 07 Jun 14 Jun 19

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jun 01 Jun 08 Jun 15 Jun 20 Jun 22 Jun 29 Jul 06 Jul 11 Jul 13 Jul 20 Jul 27 Aug 03 Aug 10 Aug 17

Jun 21 Jun 28 Jul 05 Jul 10 Jul 12 Jul 19 Jul 26 Jul 31 Aug 02 Aug 09 Aug 16 Aug 23 Aug 30 Sep 06

Aug 24 Aug 31 Sep 05 Sep 07 Sep 14 Sep 21 Sep 28 Oct 05 Oct 12 Oct 19 Oct 26 Nov 02 Nov 09 Nov 16

Sep 13 Sep 20 Sep 25 Sep 27 Oct 04 Oct 11 Oct 18 Oct 25 Nov 01 Nov 08 Nov 15 Nov 22 Nov 29 Dec 06

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (12 nts), basic monastery (2 nts), sleeper train (4 nts), boat (2 nts) Transport: Train, local bus, airconditioned bus, boat, bicycle, plane Meals: 1 lunch, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $350-420 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACEC

My Own Room Available: Fr £449

Highlights

Next time you pop into your local takeaway for half a crispy duck, you’ll have more than just the weather to talk about. Over the tantalising smells of your dinner start planning an adventure of a lifetime. Prepare to indulge in the exotic and mystical and live the true essence of China in all its wonderful diversity. Visit cosmopolitan cities, quaint tea houses, the immense Great Wall and the alluring Three Gorges. Stand shoulder to shoulder with the remarkable Terracotta Warriors. This incredible journey delivers exactly what it says Essential China. And you thought you were just ordering a takeaway, huh?!

DAY ITINERARY 01-04 05-07

10

C H I N A

Beijing

Arrive at any time and meet up with the rest of your group before beginning your explorations. From the vast expanse of Tiananmen Square to the Forbidden City and the Great Wall of China, Beijing is a city of incredible sights. Don’t miss some of the best shopping, food and entertainment in the world.

Shanghai

Shanghai is China’s largest and most dynamic city, where traditional architecture sits in the shadows of brand spanking new skyscrapers. Visit the world-famous Shanghai Museum, shop on Nanjing Road or try not to wince as you take in an optional performance of the death-defying Chinese Acrobats.

Xi’an

Enjoy an orientation walk through Xi’an’s fascinating Muslim Quarter then visit one of China’s greatest archaeological treasures, the Terracotta Warriors. Dine on some of the best market food in the country and get on your bike with an option to cycle the ancient city walls.

Shanghai

11-12

Yichang

04-06

See giant pandas up close at the Panda Breeding Centre before continuing on to Emei Shan Mountain, one of the four sacred Buddhist peaks of China. Tonight you’ll sleep in a traditional monastery, definitely one of the highlights of the trip. Facilities are basic but the experience is unique and the views are breathtaking.

Chongqing Guilin Yangshuo

13-16

Hong Kong

Depart for Chongqing with an en route stop at Leshan, home of the largest stone carved Buddha in the world. At Chongqing, you’ll have the chance to sample the famous regional speciality dish, the delicious Sichuan hot pot. Cruise down the mighty Yangtze on board a Chinese-style boat through the Three Gorges. Enjoy the views from the deck and embark on riverside excursions up stunning tributaries and to historic sites. On Day 16, travel by overnight train from Wuhan to Guilin. (D)

Yangshuo

17-19

YOU might like

Why not add an optional theme pack to customise your trip? China Cultural Pack Fr £70 Kung fu dance show (Beijing, 1.5 hours), acrobat performance (Shanghai, 1.5 hours) & Li River light show (Yangshuo, 1 hour)

Arrive into Guilin on the morning of Day 17 and transfer by bus to the small countryside town of Yangshuo, where the Li River winds its way around thousands of limestone karst mountains. Take a boat ride along the stunning Li River, stop at markets and picturesque villages along the way or observe one of the local traditions - cormorant fishing. On Day 18, take a full-day bike ride through the surrounding countryside with a local guide and an included lunch. On Day 19, travel back to Guilin in the afternoon by public bus before boarding an overnight train to Shenzhen. (L)

Hong Kong

20-21

After an early arrival in Shenzhen, cross the border and catch the metro into the heart of Hong Kong. Prepare for the change of pace as you enjoy your last night in the most dynamic city in Asia - what a way to end your trip! Explore Stanley Market, make the trip up Victoria Peak for the great views, or take a harbour cruise. You’ll probably want to stay longer than a night as there’s so much excitement to be had here. This is undeniably one of the world’s most fascinating and impressively-situated cities. The tour comes to an end at any time on Day 21.

07-09 10-11

Shanghai

Arrive in Shanghai and meet your group over an optional dinner. Day 2 starts with a guided orientation walk before a free afternoon to explore both the historic and ultra-modern sides of this city.

Kunming

Arrive into Kunming at any time and, if time permits, explore the bird and flower markets or watch the locals practicing tai chi in Green Lake Park, before meeting your group this evening.

01

Hangzhou

One of China’s most historic and dynamic cities, enjoy an optional boat ride on Hangzhou’s West Lake before an afternoon visit to a tea plantation (with time to enjoy a brew) in nearby Longjing Village.

Dali

02-03

Take an evening flight to Guilin and travel through stunning limestone karst scenery to the riverside town of Yangshuo. Cycle through the surreal landscape past farmers and water buffalo or enjoy optional activities such as a cooking class, tai chi or Chinese calligraphy. (L)

04-05

Fly to Chongqing and travel by private bus to board a typical Yangtze cruise boat, which is comfortable but not luxurious. Spend two days exploring this powerful river passing the stunning Three Gorges and taking side trips to villages and riverside temples. (2B, L, D)

Xi’an

Visit the enormous Three Gorges Dam before travelling by overnight train to Xi’an, the ancient capital of China. Explore the Muslim Quarter and Terracotta Warriors before an overnight train to Beijing.

12-14

Arrive in the morning of Day 12 and throw yourself into the Chinese capital with included tours of Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Great Wall. Shop for souvenirs either in world-class malls or timeless traditional markets before the tour concludes on Day 14.

Inclusions

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 2 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels (9 nts), sleeper train (2 nts), Yangtze boat (2 nts) Transport: Train, plane, local bus, air-conditioned bus, boat Meals: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner Budget: Allow USD $260-320 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACHC

My Own Room Available: Fr £359

Sundays, typically 2-3 departures per month

Tiger Leaping Gorge / Zhongdian (Shangri-La)

06-08

Less well-known than the Three Gorges, but absolutely no less impressive, the narrow and dramatic Tiger Leaping Gorge takes its name from the legend that a tiger once escaped capture by jumping across. It’s a relatively strenuous hike on local tracks and, weather conditions permitting, you’ll ascend the ‘28 Bends’ to be rewarded with incredible views. Travel by bus to the unique town of Zhongdian on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau. Visit the Songzanlin Monastery to admire its gilded roofs, frescos and Buddhist sculptures. (3B)

Kunming

09-10

Enjoy a free morning in Zhongdian before catching a flight back to Kunming. Your tour comes to an end after breakfast on Day 10. (2B)

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Hotels/guesthouses (9 nts) Transport: Train, private van, plane, public bus Meals: 9 breakfasts Budget: Allow USD $115150 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO), local guides Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACBY

Beijing CHINA

2

Xi'an

Guilin

LAOS

Home to China’s Naxi minority people, the World Heritage Site of Lijiang is packed with picturesque old buildings, fast-flowing canals and women in typical Naxi costume. Spend an afternoon resting in a pavilion in Black Dragon Pool Park, gazing at the reflection of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and listening to traditional Naxi music. (2B)

Inclusions

Three Gorges

Departures 2014

The ancient walled town of Dali nestles between Erhai Lake and the Cang Shan Mountains and is perhaps most famous for the beautiful Three Pagodas. It’s small enough to explore on foot or you could travel by bus or bike out to traditional countryside villages. (2B)

Lijiang

Beijing

Mar - Oct

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

DAY ITINERARY

Yangtze River

Chengdu

Take a full day to explore the teahouses and the streets of Chengdu, try a rejuvenating massage or sample some of the local culinary classics. There’s no shortage of delicious and fiery Sichuan food.

Highlights

• Slow the pace down as you wander the scenic highlands of Yunnan • Hike through the huge (and hugely spectacular) Tiger Leaping Gorge • Explore the Ming Dynasty-era streets in the ancient city of Dali

Guilin / Yangshuo

Leshan / Chongqing / Three Gorges

Leshan

126

03

Panda Research Centre / Emei Shan

Xi’an

Chengdu

DAY ITINERARY 01-02

08-09 Beijing

• Cycle through Yangshuo’s rice fields and dramatic limestone scenery • Relax on a Three Gorges cruise along the mighty Yangtze River • Customise Your Trip: see page 126 for our optional add-on packs

Shanghai

Chongqing

Yangshuo

Hangzhou

My Own Room Available: Fr £149

Zhongdian CHINA

Tiger Leaping Gorge Dali

Kunming

Departures 2014 START

FINISH

Jan 19 Feb 16 Mar 23 Apr 13 May 18

Jan 28 Feb 25 Apr 01 Apr 22 May 27

START

FINISH

Jun 08 Jun 17 Jun 29 Jul 08 Jul 13 Jul 22 Jul 27 Aug 05 Aug 10 Aug 19

CALL 0333 321 7852 TO BOOK

Lijiang

START

FINISH

Aug 24 Sep 07 Sep 21 Oct 12 Nov 03

Sep 02 Sep 16 Sep 30 Oct 21 Nov 12

BURMA LAOS

127


CHINA EXPRESS Beijing

BEIJING to SHANGHAI £799 ADVENTURE

£649

FR

8 DAYS

Shanghai

Beijing

FR

8 DAYS

Shanghai

£1,599

wild china Beijing

• • • • • • • •

FR

21 DAYS

Hong Kong

Highlights

Walk on the Great Wall of China Marvel at the Terracotta Warriors Lose your heart to the Chengdu panda Explore the sacred Mount Emei Enjoy the lovely lakeside town of Dali Absorb Lijiang’s fascinating culture Trek the dramatic Tiger Leaping Gorge Discover village life in Yangshuo

oriental asia

oriental asia

Departures 2014 Highlights

• Visit Beijing’s highlights on this great ‘first-timer’ tour of China • See Tiananmen Square and walk the most famous wall in the world • Marvel at the ancient and well-preserved Terracotta Warriors

DAY ITINERARY

Highlights

• Trek along the world-renowned Great Wall of China • Visit Xi’an’s unique standing army of Terracotta Warriors • Practise tai chi with the locals in the historic town of Suzhou

Beijing

01-03

Arrive in the Chinese capital, one of the world’s most impressive and vibrant cities. Be blown away by the size and sheer spectacle of the Great Wall of China on an included visit, and discover China’s opulent past as you tour the Forbidden City. Wander through the vast and iconic Tiananmen Square and gain an insight into local life exploring the hutongs (backstreets). On Day 3, you board a flight to Xi’an, the ancient capital of China.

01-03

04 05

Discover one of the world’s greatest archaeological treasures – the Terracotta Warriors. This amazing army of statues were built to guard the tomb of Qin Shihuang and discovered only as recently as 1974. Check out the Great Mosque, scour souvenir stalls and indulge in superb street food. Opt to cycle the ancient city walls before joining in with tai chi or ballroom dancing in the parks. (L)

Suzhou

Today you will visit Suzhou, otherwise known as the ‘Venice of the East’. Explore the beautiful classical gardens and take in a cultural performance in the exquisite Master of Nets garden.

04-05

08

Explore exotic and dynamic Shanghai. See how east meets west and ancient rituals sit side-by-side with modern life. Take a stroll along the Bund, the old Colonial waterfront, or shop on the famous Nanjing Road before having a final dinner with your tour mates. Get ready to be amazed by an optional Chinese acrobatic performance.

Start

Finish

Start

Finish

Jun 08 Jun 22 Jun 29 Jul 06 Jul 20 Jul 27 Aug 03 Aug 10

Jun 28 Jul 12 Jul 19 Jul 26 Aug 09 Aug 16 Aug 23 Aug 30

Aug 17 Sep 07 Sep 14 Sep 28 Oct 05 Oct 12 Oct 26

Sep 06 Sep 27 Oct 04 Oct 18 Oct 25 Nov 01 Nov 15

Start with an orientation walk of Xi’an’s fascinating Muslim Quarter and then take the chance to visit the incredible Terracotta Warriors, a giant army of statues built to guard the tomb of Qin Shihuang. You can also cycle the remaining city walls and enjoy some phenomenal street food. Travel by overnight train to Suzhou on Day 5.

Trip Style: Classic Service Level: Standard Physical Grading: 3 Age Group: Any age Accommodation: Simple hotels (11 nts), guesthouses (4 nts), basic monastery (2 nts), sleeper trains (3 nts) Transport: Train, public bus, air-conditioned bus, plane Meals: 1 lunch Budget: Allow USD $315-450 for meals not included Group Leader: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) Group Size: Max 16, Avg 12 Tour Code: GAACWC

My Own Room Available: Fr £389

06 07-08

Your adventure ends on Day 8. You can leave at any time.

Check out the canal town of Suzhou, the ‘Venice of the East.’ This historic city has beautiful Chinese gardens, full of flowers and friendly locals and monks practising tai chi. If you want to take in a traditional Chinese performance complete with ancient costumes, folk singing and dancing, this is the place to do it!

Beijing C H I N A

Welcome to the dazzle of modern-day Shanghai, China’s boomtown that has lured millions with the promise of economic progress. You’ll start your time in this glamorous city with an orientation walk to help you get your bearings. On your final evening with your group, let loose like the locals with a karaoke session in a private room, this is sure to be an unforgettable night, Shanghai-style! On Day 8, your trip comes to an end at any time.

Xi’an Chengdu

My Own Room Available: Fr £159

Jan-Mar, Jun & Dec Apr-May & Oct-Nov

Regular Saturdays & Occasional Mondays

Jul-Sep

Every Saturday & Alternate Mondays

128

Every Saturday

Guilin Yangshuo

Lijiang Kunming

Xi’an

C H I N A

Xi’an

Suzhou

Shanghai

Departures 2014 Mar-Dec

Wednesdays, typically 2 departures per month

VISIT WWW.STATRAVEL.CO.UK

09-10

Leshan / Emeishan

Hike Mount Emei, one of the four sacred Buddhist mountains of China and stay the night in a monastery seeing how real monks live. Opt to board a boat and head out into the Mingjiang River to get an overall view of the world’s largest sitting outdoor Buddha in Leshan. Lijiang is a World Heritage Site and home to the Naxi minority. Old men smoking pipes and women in their traditional costumes are to be found everywhere. The best way to spend a day here is to get lost in the small pedestrian lanes that meander throughout the town. Every twist and turn reveals picturesque old buildings, local arts and crafts, canals and beautiful arched bridges. Optional visit to the Black Dragon Pool Park where you may be lucky enough to hear Naxi music.

Tiger Leaping Gorge