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Bangkok to Singapore                                                                        www.imaginative-traveller.com

    Trip Dossier - SABS
Highlights
▫   Beaches of Thailand
▫   Penang’s Chinatown
▫   Hillstation of Cameron Highlands
▫   Asia’s most exciting and vibrant cities
▫   Melaka’s cultural and historical past
▫   Night markets of Kuala Lumpur

Factfinder
Code: SABS
Style: Adventurer
Maximum group size: 18
Staffing: By Imaginative Traveller leader
Transport: Local public transport – buses, taxis, minibuses,
songtheaws (pick-up trucks), tuk-tuks, ferries, sleeper trains
Accommodation: 10 nights simple hotels, 4 nights beach
bungalows (or hotel on Krabi), 2 overnight trains
Activities: Optional watersports and hiking in Koh Pha Ngan /
Krabi and the Cameron Highlands
Meals: Not included. Please allow US$ 12 per day for meals
Entrance fees: Not included. Allow US$25 for the duration of the trip for sites listed as part of the itinerary.
Tipping: To avoid embarrassment and save you money all tours operate a tipping kitty. Please allow US$12-20 per
week of the tour for this.

    A NOTE ABOUT COUNTRY DOSSIERS & PRE DEPARTURE INFORMATION
This Trip Dossier is designed to be read in conjunction with our Thailand Country Dossier, Malaysia Country Dossier
and Pre-Departure Information. You can download the Country Dossier from the website (see the banner at bottom of
page). Pre-departure information is available in sections online or as a booklet from your booking agent. (Please note those
who book online will NOT be sent a pre-departure booklet and will need to download it at www.imaginative-
traveller.com/downloads). It is ESSENTIAL that you read this dossier and the country dossier and the pre departure
information in full before you travel.


Itinerary (16 nights/17 days)
Day 1, BANGKOK – Arrive in Bangkok and check in to               overview of all the exciting things you will be seeing
hotel. Time to relax or explore this fantastic city. (No         during your tour and include lots of practical information
meals.)                                                          on how to get the most of your time in South East Asia.
                                                                 You will need to bring with you your passport, all tour
ARRIVAL                                                          vouchers and a copy of your insurance policy to this
For details of arrival transfers or making your own way to       briefing so that your tour leader can obtain important
the tour meeting point, please refer to the Thailand             details that are essential to the running of the tour.
Country Dossier and your Pre Departure Information.
                                                                 Important Note: it is a condition of joining our tours that
FREE ARRIVAL TRANSFER!                                           you are in possession of a comprehensive travel
Arrival transfers are included for all clients arriving in       insurance policy. If you do not have a policy you will be
Bangkok on Day 1 or before Day 1 if extra                        required to purchase one from your tour leader in order to
accommodation is booked with The Imaginative Traveller.          join the tour.
If you have booked your flights separately from your tour
please ensure that you inform your tour booking agent of         BANGKOK
your flight details as soon as possible.                         Before you arrive in Bangkok you will probably be
                                                                 imagining a sprawling metropolis. This will change as
                                                                 soon as you meet the people who live within the city’s
TOUR BRIEFING
                                                                 soi’s or side streets. In each area shopkeepers and
Once all the members of your group have arrived your
                                                                 restaurateurs know as much about the gossip of the
tour leader will organize an introductory briefing (usually
                                                                 street as the rice farmers or elephant keepers in rural
on the morning of Day 2). This meeting will give you an
                                                                 villages and the deeper you delve the more you will

                GO ONLINE
             for more details   Thailand Country Dossier              www.imtrav.com/download/countrythailand.pdf
                                                                                   Bangkok to Singapore SABS Issue 04 Page 2 of 5




recognize this phenomenon! Bangkok is also very                   handlines from a local longtail boat afterwards cooking
cosmopolitan, with its Arab, Indian and Chinese areas             your catch for dinner. What more could you ask for?
where you can be fitted for a linen suit by an Indian tailor,
listen to the call to prayer whilst sitting in an Arab            Days 4-6, KOH PHA NGAN – Three full days to do as
restaurant or simply wander Chinatown. Bangkok also               you please. There is snorkelling and diving, jungle and
has a huge number of canals or klongs as they are known           waterfall walks, boat trips to surrounding highlights. Or
in Thai, which criss-cross the city to minimize the chance        you can just laze around on the beach and eat, sleep and
of flooding. These canals are the home to a very large            swim whenever you want.
portion of the city’s inhabitants and as you board a
longtail boat and speed along the klongs past areas rich          Day 7, SURAT THANI – Transfer to Surat Thani and the
and poor, you can't help but realize how much the
                                                                  overnight train to Penang in Malaysia. Approx. 10 hours
Bangkok people love their river and live out their lives
                                                                  overnight train
without ever straying very far from it.

Day 2, BANGKOK – A day to explore this amazing city.              Day 8, PENANG – Arrive in Butterworth where we board
There may be time to visit Kanchanaburi and the Bridge            a ferry to the Island of Penang. Georgetown, the capital
over the River Kwai but this will depend on the time of the       has great colonial British buildings and the best
train to Surat Thani. If you definitely want to visit this area   Chinatown which outdoes Singapore or Hong Kong.
you should consider arriving in Bangkok a day early to            Approx. 30mins ferry
ensure that you have sufficient time. Approx. 13 hours
train journey                                                     PENANG
                                                                  Penang is an amazingly vibrant place where at every
KANCHANABURI                                                      street corner you can see the diversity of cultures that
Kanchanaburi is well known due to its close proximity to          make up this eclectic city. Wander around and discover
the infamous “Death Railway” and the Bridge over the              the intricate Chinese architecture of the fabulous tea
River Kwai, built by POWs and Asian labourers during              shops and Dim Sum restaurants or visit the vividly
WWII. The railway was constructed in 1942-3 under the             coloured South Indian temples. Or why not venture out of
control of the Japanese to link Siam and Burma, providing         the city to Penang Hill where, as well as fantastic views
a shorter route for transporting supplies essential to their      over this island, there is a mosque and Hindu temple and
war effort from Japan to Rangoon. The workforce                   from here you can walk down the hill to visit the botanical
consisted of 61, 000 POWs and 250,000 Asian labourers             gardens.
at its peak. There are numerous day trips to
Kanchanaburi, which can be booked in Bangkok. These               Day 9, PENANG - A free day to explore the markets,
tours normally include visits to the immaculately kept War        beaches and interesting buildings of Penang.
Cemeteries, the JEATH War Museum, the Bridge over the
River Kwai, and a ride on the “Death Railway”.                    Day 10, CAMERON HIGHLANDS – We head back to the
                                                                  mainland and head south to the spectacular hill country of
Day 3, KOH PHA NGAN – Travel to Koh Pha Ngan by                   the Cameron Highlands. Approx. 6 hours driving
ferry then take a jungle rainforest pick-up truck ride to
Thongnaipan Beach, one of Thailand's most beautiful               CAMERON HIGHLANDS
beaches. Overnight in beach bungalows. Approx. 1.5                The rolling misty hills of the Cameron Highlands are a
hours driving, 3 hours ferry, 30mins pick-up                      great place to relax and unwind, perhaps over a scone
                                                                  and cup of tasty locally planted "Bot" tea. You may decide
KOH PHA NGAN                                                      to take an optional trek into the hills through the tea
Anyone who has visited any of Thailand’s beautiful                plantation area, where you will probably see the local
islands may be used to the long beaches and amazing               Indian people plucking the tea leaves or perhaps spot the
sunsets and crazy nightlife. But Koh Pha Ngan is in a             unusual pitcher plant. There is also a chance to visit
league of its own with its famous monthly Full Moon               local bee and butterfly farms. In the evening savour the
Parties and with so much more on offer as well.                   delights of Indian food served on banana leaves or the
                                                                  typically Malaysian "steamboat" which is a large metal
Venturing from the port town of Thong Sala we ride in a           bowl placed in the middle of the table where the
pick-up truck up into the mountains that divide the island,       participants cook a variety of meat, fish and vegetables
through dense jungle and past magnificent waterfalls and          and sauces in steaming hot stock.
mountain scenery. We then descend to one of Thailand’s
hidden secrets, Tongnaipan Noi beach. This is unlike              Day 11, CAMERON HIGHLANDS – Today you can take
most other beaches on the island in that it doesn’t suffer        jungle walks or visit tea plantations and spice gardens.
from the huge tidal levels that its southern neighbours do.
It has waves lapping on its sandy beach all year round            Day 12, KUALA LUMPUR – Travel to the capital of
and its water abounds in nightly phosphorescence –                Malaysia and an interesting mix of cultures and colonial
even a walk in the shallows during the night brings the           influences. At night you can visit the famous KL night
water alive with green luminescence, a truly mesmerising          market. Approx. 5 hours driving
sight. The beach is quiet and has a variety of cafes,
restaurants and internet facilities. From the beach you
can take a boat out to the An Thong Marine Park, or go
diving, snorkelling or even spend the day fishing with



                 GO ONLINE
              for more details   Malaysia Country Dossier            www.imtrav.com/download/countrymalaysia.pdf
                                                                                Bangkok to Singapore SABS Issue 04.2 Page 3 of 5




KUALA LUMPUR                                                    Note: For all departures from November – April
As the capital of Malaysia this city has taken on an            the tour visits Krabi instead of Koh Pha Ngan on
amazing transformation in recent years. No longer is it a       days 3-7 resulting in a slightly amended
sleepy place with an amazing array of cultures from all         itinerary. (See asterisked departures in the
over Asia. Now it is a dynamic powerhouse of
entrepreneurs and development, whilst at the same time it
                                                                brochure for the exact dates of the amended
has managed to retain its wonderful mix of people, culture      tours). This amended itinerary is as follows;
and traditions. The city has an incredible collection of
restaurants with cuisines from across the globe. You can        Day 3, KRABI - Transfer to Krabi Province, famous for its
see all of this as you look down from the world’s tallest       magnificent limestone karst scenery. We spend our time
building. Walking these streets you’ll always find a            in an area named Ao Nang. From this lively resort you
welcoming smile from Malays from all walks of life.             can travel daily by boat to unspoilt beaches. Approx. 3
                                                                hours driving
Day 13, KUALA LUMPUR – A free day to wander this
fantastic city. You may like to take an optional trip through   Day 4 - 6, KRABI PROVINCE - Three full days to take
the surrounding countryside and visit the famous Batu           advantage of all Krabi has to offer.
Caves.
                                                                KRABI PROVINCE
Day 14, MELAKA – Travel to Melaka, the capital of the           Set on the banks of the Krabi Estuary, this small fishing
Melaka Sultanate. This beautiful town reflects Chinese,         town takes its name from the sword or Krabi, allegedly
Portugese, Dutch and British influences. The rest of the        discovered nearby. Surrounded by limestone outcrops
day is free just to wander around. Approx. 3 hours driving      and mangrove shorelines it serves an important role as
                                                                the embarkation point for some of Thailand’s most well
MELAKA                                                          known islands. It’s also a world famous spot for the
The best way to get around the interesting, historical port     challenging climbing that can be done on nearby cliffs, not
of Melaka is to jump on a bicycle and cycle your way            to mention the white sand beaches, emerald sea,
through the heart of this city. Discover the many               lagoons, kayaking, snorkelling and stunning views that
museums and places of cultural and historical interest,         are to be found here too.
and learn why this was such a famous trading port.
Remember to take a trip down Old Jonker Street and              Day 7, PENANG – Drive to the famous island of Penang
rummage through the antique markets, and you might              via Butterworth where we board a ferry to the island or
even be invited to stop for tea with a shop owner.              drive across one of South East Asia’s longest bridges.
                                                                Georgetown, the capital has great colonial British
Day 15, MELAKA – A free day to explore this fantastic           buildings and the best Chinatown, that outdoes Singapore
amazing mix of cultures and their architecture.                 or Hong Kong. Approx. 10 hours driving


Day 16, SINGAPORE – Today we drive to the vibrant               Day 8, PENANG - A free day to explore the markets,
city/island state of Singapore and transfer to our hotel.       beaches and interesting buildings of Penang.
Approx.6hours driving
                                                                Day 9, CAMERON HIGHLANDS – We head back to the
SINGAPORE                                                       mainland and head south to the spectacular hill country of
This incredible island-city-state has on the outside an         the Cameron Highlands. Approx. 6 hours driving
appearance of being a very clean and well organised
town, but it won’t take you long to dig beneath this prim       Day 10, CAMERON HIGHLANDS – A full day to take
exterior to discover the amazing life and atmosphere of         jungle walks, visit tea plantations and spice gardens even
this place. Little India, Chinatown, Orchard Road, Raffle’s     pick your own strawberries!
Hotel all have their own distinctive flavour and life. It’s
great after completing your adventure through Thailand          Day 11, KUALA LUMPUR – Travel on to Kuala Lumpur,
and Malaysia to treat yourself to a Singapore Sling in the      the capital of Malaysia with its interesting mix of cultures
bar at Raffle’s Hotel and to taste the culinary surprises       and colonial influences. At night you can visit the famous
that await us in the many and various food markets              KL night market. Approx 6 hours driving
throughout the city.
                                                                Day 12, KUALA LUMPUR – A free day to further explore
Day 17, SINGAPORE – Tour ends.
                                                                the city or further field. You can take an optional trip
                                                                through the surrounding countryside and the Batu Caves.

                                                                Day 13, MELAKA – Travel to Melaka, the capital of the
         Have a great trip!                                     Melaka Sultanate. This beautiful town reflects Chinese,
                                                                Portugese, Dutch and British influences. The rest of the
                                                                day is free just to wander around. Approx. 3 hours driving

                                                                Day 14, MELAKA – A free day to explore this fantastic
                                                                amazing mix of cultures and their architecture.



                GO ONLINE
             for more details   Thailand Country Dossier             www.imtrav.com/download/countrythailand.pdf
                                                                              Bangkok to Singapore SABS Issue 04 Page 4 of 5




Day 15, SINGAPORE – Today we drive to the vibrant           SUPPLEMENTARY TOUR
city/island state of Singapore and transfer to our hotel.
Why not enjoy a drink at the famous Raffles Hotel?          INFORMATION
Approx. 5 hours driving
                                                            HOTEL MEETING POINT
Day 16, SINGAPORE – A free day to explore Singapore,        UK travellers & those booking over the Internet:
its colonial past and its mixed culture. Tonight we have    Details of the meeting point hotel will be printed on the
the opportunity to eat together and reflect upon our        tour vouchers you will receive one month prior to
amazing journey from Bangkok to Singapore.                  departure. Overseas travellers: your local agent will
                                                            provide vouchers with details of your meeting point hotel.
Day 17, SINGAPORE – Tour ends.
                                                            Please note: A complete list of all meeting point hotels
                                                            can also be found on our website at www.imaginative-
                                                            traveller.com/downloads/meeting.htm. As meeting point
                                                            hotels may be subject to change we recommend you check
                                                            the details online one month prior to departure.

                                                            VISAS
                                                            You will need to obtain the following visas for this tour.
                                                            Contact your travel agent for current prices.

                                                            AVAILABLE ON ARRIVAL

                                                               Thailand single entry
                                                            (Most nationalities can obtain a free Thai visa valid for 30
                                                            days on arrival.)

                                                               Malaysia single entry
                                                            (Most nationalities are usually issued a 30 or 60-day visa
                                                            on arrival.)

                                                               Singapore single entry
                                                            (For most nationalities a 30-day entry permit is issued free
                                                            on arrival.)

                                                            For the latest information for your nationality you should
                                                            contact your local Embassy or Consulate for all the
                                                            countries listed above.

                                                            It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in
                                                            possession of the correct visas for your holiday and
                                                            onward travel. The Imaginative Traveller cannot accept
                                                            responsibility for anyone who is refused entry to a country
                                                            because they lack the correct documentation.

                                                            BORDER TAXES

                                                            THAILAND AND MALAYSIA
                                                            There are no entry or exit taxes payable in Thailand or
                                                            Malaysia

                                                            SINGAPORE
                                                            Entry by land      nil
                                                            Exit by air        US$15 (although this is generally
                                                                               included in your flight ticket)

                                                            SPECIAL LUGGAGE REQUIREMENTS
                                                            The Pre-Departure Information includes an extensive
                                                            luggage checklist. However there are some special
                                                            requirements for this tour.

                                                               Sleeping sheet
                                                            ENTRANCE FEES
                                                            These are not included in this trip. Please allow US$25 for
                                                            sites listed as part of the itinerary. South East Asia also


                GO ONLINE
             for more details   Malaysia Country Dossier       www.imtrav.com/download/countrymalaysia.pdf
                                                                              Bangkok to Singapore SABS Issue 04.2 Page 5 of 5




has a wealth of other historical sites and monuments
which you may wish to visit. If you intend visiting a wide
                                                               GENERAL TOUR INFORMATION
range of different sites you should allow up to approx
                                                               PRICE INCLUDES
US$15 for this.
                                                                Staffing as shown in the ‘Factfinder'
                                                                Accommodation, meals, transportation, and sightseeing
FITNESS
                                                                excursions as per itinerary.
None of the activities featured in this trip require special
                                                                Transfer to hotel on arrival.
training or skills, just a reasonable level of fitness and a
willingness to participate. If you are in any doubt contact
your doctor for advice.                                        PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE
                                                                Visa costs
TRANSPORT                                                       Border Taxes
Thailand by bus                                                 Entrance fees
We use a combination of local transport for most of our         Drinks, tips, laundry and other items of a personal
road journeys such as buses, tuk-tuks, private taxis and,       nature.
in remote areas, jeeps or pickup trucks. Major roads in         International flights
Thailand are good, which means distances can be                 Departure transfers
covered quickly.                                                Meals

Thailand by train                                              ARE YOU READY TO GO?
The Thai Railway system is extensive and considering the       Before you travel it is essential that you read ALL of the
volume of passengers it carries it is reasonably efficient.    following documents which you can download from our
We travel in air-conditioned sleeper carriages which are       website (www.imaginative-traveller.com/downloads) or
arranged in doorless sections each of four berths              obtain from your booking agent:
(although each berth has a curtain for privacy). Each
carriage has wash basins and two toilets. At around 10pm          Trip Dossier (this document)
a train steward will convert your seats to beds, complete
with clean bedding. Meals are not included during train           Country Dossier
journeys, but food is available at railway stations and on        Pre Departure Information
the train. Your tour leader will advise you of the food
options for your journey.
                                                               We regularly update our dossiers. Please check our
Malaysia by bus                                                website to ensure that you have the most up to date copy
We use a combination of local buses, ferries, private cars,    (www.imaginative-traveller.com/dossiers/sabs.pdf).
vans and coaches. The roads are of a good standard
throughout Malaysia so distances can be covered quickly.       The itinerary and supplementary information has been
                                                               compiled with care and provided in good faith. However it
HOTELS                                                         may be subject to change, and DOES NOT form part of a
It should be remembered that Thailand and Malaysia are         contract between the client and The Imaginative Traveller.
two completely different countries with different people
and culture. This can easily be identified by the difference
in standard of hotel accommodation in both countries. In
                                                               Dossier Amendments
Thailand you can expect to stay in a sprawling complex of
                                                               Issue 04.1 – Special luggage requirements updated
hotel rooms with modern facilities, whereas in Malaysia
you will stay in small, basic family-run guesthouses
                                                               Issue 04.2 – Travel times amended throughout
generally with shared amenities. Although the hotels in
Malaysia are very simple they do ooze atmosphere and
this more than makes up for the lack of luxury. In both
countries, your patience, understanding and sense of
humour may be called upon to resolve small problems
that may arise. We don’t deliberately make it this way; it’s
just another example of the diversity of the two
neighbouring countries. That’s what travel is all about!




                GO ONLINE
             for more details   Thailand Country Dossier           www.imtrav.com/download/countrythailand.pdf

				
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