One Week in Thailand: Kayaking and Hilltribes

8 Days | See the Thai-riffic northern enclaves of Chiang Mai and its natural surroundings

4.8 out of 5 based on 18 reviews submitted.
18 to 29s
USD $824
View dates and book
This trip is for the 18 to 29 year olds

Head into the hills and get sky-high on this eight-day northern Thailand adventure. Pass through the bustling hub of Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, and take the time to check out the night markets and bars well worth hopping. Trek the hillside villages outside of Chiang Mai, before exploring the city and its colourful nightlife. Find waterfalls, elephants and your new fave activity (kayaking, anyone?) and soak in some gorgeous natural scenery that you’d only see from local hilltribes. This journey will take you through temples, jungles, markets and mountains, sure get your heart pumping and your tastebuds singing.

Trip overview

Map of One Week In Thailand: Kayaking And Hilltribes including Thailand
Bangkok, Thailand
Bangkok, Thailand
18 to 29s
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Min 18 - Max 29
Group size
Min 1 - Max 16
Trip code
This trip generates 47.28 kg of CO2-e per person per day.
We offset these emissions on your behalf. But we know that is not enough, so we also have a carbon reduction target.
Bucket list destinations

Tick off all the popular spots and enjoy unique local experiences

Great value

Affordable trips with the freedom to choose how you spend your time

Responsible travel

You book, we donate to help support local communities

Why you'll love this trip
  • Trek deep – super deep – into the northern Thai hinterland with two days of trekking and two nights staying in a traditional hilltribe village, laughing with the locals and learning about their lifestyle.
  • Immerse yourself in some of the most beautiful landscapes in all of Thailand, from cascading waterfalls and mountainside views to a kayaking adventure on Mae Taeng River (followed by a spot of white-water rafting if you dare) to get a new perspective.
  • Get your street food fix in bustling Bangkok and cool Chiang Mai and tuck into some of the tastiest eats in all of Asia. When you’ve had your fill (is that even possible?), be treated to traditional homecooked dinners during your hilltribe village homestays.
  • Hit the nightlife in cruisy Chiang Mai, in the Nimman area that’s swarming with hipster bars and uber-cool lounges. Bar hop, hit the night markets and find all the best spots from a local leader with all the insights.
  • Enjoy loads of free time to choose your own adventure, whether that’s a bit of rest and relaxation at the local Thai massage place or discovering new friends at the Chiang Chill Elephant Sanctuary.
  • By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, EcoThailand Foundation. Donations help educate school children on important environmental issues like climate change, nature appreciation, conservation and sustainability.

Is this trip right for you?
  • This trip includes a two-day hillside trek, which is challenging and involves a lot of walking. Take note of the time of year you’re trekking to know what to expect weather-wise. The wet season runs from May to October and often results in muddy or slippery paths. Please ensure you bring sturdy walking shoes and comfortable clothes. Hiking boots and long pants during wet season are highly recommended. To make the most of the trip, it's best if you have a good level of fitness.
  • Part of travelling with Intrepid means respecting local cultures and sensibilities. That way you get the most out of your interactions with local people. Please bring clothes that cover the arms and pants/skirts that go past the knees. A light scarf is also a good idea for covering shoulders and arms when it’s hot.
  • This trip involves some long journeys on the road and two overnight trains, which can be tiresome. Although conditions are basic, overnight trains are a true local experience and the best way to travel long distances, meet locals and maximise time at your destinations. Occasionally passengers of different genders will be required to share a compartment and/or you'll be sharing with locals or travellers from other groups. For your own security, take a lock for your luggage.
  • As this is a Basix trip, the majority of activities are optional and you'll have lots of free time. This means you're able to do your own thing at your own pace.


This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2024 to 31 December 2024.

View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2023 - 31 December 2023

Map of One Week In Thailand: Kayaking And Hilltribes including Thailand



4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners


Private mini van, Overnight sleeper train, Songthaew, Tuk-tuk


Hotel (3 nights), Overnight sleeper train (2 nights), Hilltribe Village House (multi-share) (2 nights)

  • Bangkok - Orientation Walk
  • Chiang Mai - Night Bazaar & Anusarn Market
  • Chiang Mai - Orientation Walk
  • Huey Nam Dang - Hilltribe Trek – 2 Days
  • Hilltribe Trek - Mae Malai Market Visit
  • Hilltribe Village - Home-cooked Dinner
  • Hilltribe Trek – Mok Fah Waterfall
  • Sop Kai Village - River Kayaking
Add on activities
  • Bangkok - Thai Massage - THB250
  • Bangkok - Grand Palace - THB500
  • Bangkok - Temple & River of Kings Urban Adventure - THB2900
  • Bangkok - Tuk Tuk Experience Urban Adventure - THB2500
  • Chiang Mai - Thai massage - THB200
  • Chiang Mai - Doi Suthep temple complex - THB50
  • Chiang Mai - Bicycle tour - THB990
  • Chaing Mai - Cooking at Home Cookery School - THB1400
  • Chiang Mai – Zipline (from) - THB1900
  • Mae Taeng - Whitewater Rafting - THB1800
  • Chiang Mai - Muay Thai Class (Thai boxing) - THB460
  • Chiang Mai - Chuan Chom Vocational Training Centre - Massage (from) - THB250
  • Chiang Mai - Wat Prasingh Temple - AUD40
  • Chiang Mai - Wat Chedi Luang Temple - THB40
  • Chaing Mai - Baan Thai Cookery School Half Day Course - THB1000
  • Chiang Mai - ChangChill Elephant Sanctuary - THB1900
  • Chiang Mai – Whitewater Rafting - THB1800
  • Chiang Mai - Doi Inthanon - THB300

Dates and availability

Loading trip dates and availabilities...

Important notes

1. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 2 (Overnight sleeper train), Days 4 & 5 (Hilltribe Village), and Day 7 (Overnight sleeper train) where you will be in shared accommodation and is subject to availability. Some room configurations have two single beds, although a double bed will always be requested. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information


4.8 out of 5 based on 18 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

Filter by rating

Tooba · Traveled March 2023
Despite my expectations, I had a phenomenal time - far better than I could have imagined. The two-day trek was wonderful and I enjoyed it a lot. In addition to being full of information, the tour guide and his team were very friendly and made sure everyone had a great time on the trek. It was an amazing experience thanks to our tour guide, Sasha, who made sure everything went smoothly. Besides ensuring that the group had something to do on our free day and offering us many options, she also arranged travel and tours on those days.
Review submitted 20 Mar 2023

Kate · Traveled March 2023
The best way to travel Thailand! A perfect combo of free time and cultural activities. The Hillside trek was a highlight - hard work but so rewarding. Great way to make new lifelong friends
Review submitted 20 Mar 2023

Kelly · Traveled March 2023
We had so much fun.
Review submitted 20 Mar 2023

Jack · Traveled March 2023
Review submitted 20 Mar 2023

Katie · Traveled February 2023
The hill tribe trek was such an incredible and unique experience - our tour guides and host family could not have been more fun and welcoming. Highly recommend!
Review submitted 18 Feb 2023
One Week in Thailand: Kayaking and Hilltribes
USD $824