This is the official warm-up tour for TropOut Thailand 2018 – the modern gay festival in Phuket. Enjoy two days in Bangkok, a chance to get up close and personal with Asian elephants, then getting soaked at the famous Songkran water-fight to ring in the Thai New Year. All before you meet up with a global village of guys for a week of fun in the sun, sand and sea. To quote that unforgettable circuit ditty, “Let’s get soaking wet.”
Songkran Festival which is also the Thai New Year starts on from the 13th of April to the 15th of April will have you all soaked into the hustle and bustle that consists of three days of fun-filled water-fights and non-stop revelries.
Songkran stands to be the most popular festival of Thailand that marks the beginning of the new solar year and the start of the summer season as well.
• Experience the Thai New Year, Songkran Water Festival
• Devour the cuisine of Bangkok on a Private Food Tour
• Explore the Grand Palace, home to the King of Siam
• Immerse yourself in Silom nightlife
• Cook a three-course meal in Chiang Mai
• Shop for souvenirs at Chiang Mai Night Bazaar
• Learn about, and spend time with, the majestic Asian Elephant
• Watch the sun set over Chiang Mai from Doi Suthep Temple
• Lounge poolside at luxurious lodges and hotels
• Arrival transfer to accommodation booked through OUT Adventures
• Domestic flights: Bangkok/Chiang Mai & Chiang Mai/Phuket
• Group leader from beginning to end of tour
• 5 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners
• 3.5/4-star accommodation (5 nights)
• Grand Palace & Wat Pho tour, including Queen Sirkit Textile Museum (Bangkok)
• Local food tour (Bangkok)
• Elephant experience & ride (Chiang Mai)
• Doi Suthep Monastery (Chiang Mai)
• Thai cooking class & dinner (Chiang Mai)
• Temple Tour by Songthaew (Chiang Mai)
• Travel insurance package covering medical, trip interruption & baggage loss
• International Airfare
• Departure Transfer
• Meals & Activities not mentioned in itinerary
• Gratuities for Tour Leader ($30-$50 USD)
• Gratuities for drivers, hotel staff, porters ($30-$50 USD)
4 Star Boutique Hotels (5 nights)
We have carefully chosen these gay-welcoming properties with you in mind. They have the right balance of comfort and luxury while still being locally owned.
Joining Point Hotel
Sofitel So Bangkok
Sofitel So Bangkok is the city's first truly urban hotel, bringing together elegant French luxury and warm Thai hospitality. This design hotel was styled by Monsieur Christian Lacroix, and the result is a one-of-a-kind collaboration between an award-winning architect and five of Thailand's leading designers. The hotel features two restaurants, a fantastic pool, free mini-bar and wifi and a monthly LGBT party at their famous rooftop bar!
This stylish urban oasis boasts stunning interior design inspired by the 5 natural elements of Water, Earth, Wood, Metal and Fire. Rising 30 stories above the city, Sofitel So Bangkok has rooms equipped with Apple Mac minis and suites with iPads.
Elegant and modern, the themed rooms feature full-length windows with views or the city or Lumpini Park. All come with free Wi-Fi, a 40-inch flat-screen TV and a free minibar. Bathrooms have a bathtub and separate rainshower.
An arrival transfer is included on day 1 of this trip. Transfers cannot be arranged on arrival. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure. If you plan to arrive earlier, this arrival transfer can only be offered in conjunction with pre-tour accommodation booked through us. You are provided with one complimentary arrival transfer per booking even if clients are arriving at different times.
Sa-wat dee! Welcome to Thailand.
Bursting with life and colour, Bangkok is a modern city with an ancient heart.
Our trip begins with a food tour of culinary delights before we head for Silom – the financial district that let its hair down after dark. The gay scene here is impressive, so prepare to have fun.
Sofitel So Bangkok - 4 star Hotel
Sa-wat dee! Welcome to Thailand.
Soak in Bangkok by river en route to the the Grand Palace. Gleaming spires, Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and the Queen Sirikit Textile Museum are all part of the journey.
Another Buddha, this one in recline, awaits at Wat Pho, before we climb the steps of Wat Arun, or Temple of Dawn.
Today includes a delicious lunch and time to lounge by the infinity pool.
Dinner is optional, then we’ll head into Silom for another night of shenanigans.
Sofitel So Bangkok - 4 star Hotel
Have your boarding passes handy, because we’re flying to Chiang Mai this morning.
Upon landing in Thailand’s Jewel of the North, we’ll break things down with an Orientation Walk, leaving you free to explore in the afternoon.
Sunset will be savoured from a hilltop temple replete with chanting monks, where copper-plated stupas pepper the sweeping views.
Tonight’s dinner is included, then we’ll stroll to Chiang Mai’s Night Bazaar for some friendly haggling and souvenir-hunting.
Today begins with a scenic drive in a songthaew - an iconic public bus. We’ll stop by a flea market full of scents and flavours, offer alms to monks, then enjoy a traditional Chiang Mai breakfast.
Then we’re off to Wat U-Mong, a 600-year-old temple with a large painted pagoda and underground tunnel. Wat Suan Dok is another temple where you can take some time to learn about meditation.
Tonight’s dinner begins with a cooking lesson: we’ll make our own meal to savour as the sun sets.
The evening is yours to enjoy in solace, or join us out for drinks.
Spend your morning ruminating over elephants, because today is devoted to those magnificent beasts. We’ll learn about their health, then join them on a hike through the jungle (we don't ride the elephants), before we break for lunch (it’s included).
Tonight we partake in Songrkran, an epic water fight to ring in the Thai New Year. Prepare to get wet. Really, really wet!
That completes our warm-up. This morning we fly to Phuket, Thailand’s party island, where you’ll be transferred to your hotel to kick off TropOut Thailand Phuket Gay Festival 2018!
How We Travel
OUT Adventures is all about good times with likeminded guys. Whatever's on the itinerary - from fireside camping to five-star decadence - our goal is to make the experience magical. To ensure authenticity we hire local guides, stay in locally-owned accommodations whenever possible, and seek out local cuisine. It's a great way to immerse yourself in the culture while supporting the communities we visit.
A visa is not typically required for American, Australian, British and Canadian citizens travelling to Thailand for fewer than 30 days. There may be exceptions, and all visas are the responsibility of the traveller.
Tourism in Thailand is developed enough to afford the luxuries of home, but the manic culture be overwhelm. Relax, take a deep breath, and have a sense of humour.
Celebrated every year from April 13-15, Songkran is Thailand's New Year, and the biggest holiday in the country. It also tends to be very wet, because the highlight is a water-fight where literal buckets of water get bandied about.
Local LGBT Scene
Most Thai cities like Bangkok and Chiang Mai have vibrant gay scenes. Paraodixically, being queer isn't socially acceptable for locals, but it's one of world's most gay-friendly countries for tourists.
Expect it to be hot and sticky, though it can cool down in the evenings. There is a chance of showers (although they are not common during our tours). We recommend travelling with a light sweater and jacket, but don't leave your summer clothes at home: mid-day temperatures can climb well above 30°C/85°F.
Based on the entry requirements for Thailand, there are no vaccinations needed for entry. To determine if you should take preventative measures to reduce the risk of illness, you should consult your doctor or a travel medical clinic, as OUT Adventures cannot provide vaccination recommendations.
You will need an international travel plug/adapter for type A/B/C sockets.
All of our hotels will have Wi-Fi access, so feel free to tweet, pin, post and share your experience with your friends and family at home. They might be a tad jealous!
For everybody's peace of mind, all OUT Adventures include comprehensive travel insurance. That's up to $200 you won't have to fret about adding to your budget, unless you want to insure the value of your trip for cancellation. Here's what's covered:
• Unlimited Trip Interruption
• Up to $50,000 Emergency Medical plus up to $300,000 for ambulance transportation, up to $5,000,000 CAD with valid GHIP coverage.
• Baggage Loss or Damage up to $1,500
• Baggage Delay up to $500
• Flight Accident up to $100,000
• Travel Accident up to $50,000
All OUT Adventures are led by a gay (or gay-welcoming) guide. Whenever possible, we hire destination locals. And we can also connect you with the right people if you'd like to delve deeper into the local culture. If you're pleased with your guide, we recommend a tip of US $5-10 per person, per day...they'll certainly appreciate it!
OUT adventures are a great way to meet people from around the world and all walks of life. Bear in mind that everybody's there for a good time, so mutual respect will go a long way. Please be on time for any meet ups, empathetic to the needs of others, and ready to roll with whatever the adventure brings.
Although we can't tell you who your fellow travellers will be for privacy reasons, we can tell you many great friendships began with an OUT Adventure. And just because we're a gay tour operator doesn't mean we're exclusive: friends and family are always welcome to join the fun.
Maximum of 16 travellers per group.
If you've never travelled on your own, it's an amazing way to get to know yourself while making new friends along the way. We can arrange for you to share a room with people in your age range at no charge, or you can pay a supplement for your own room. And if there's an odd number of solos, we'll rotate a single room on a random basis.
The itinerary is correct at time of publishing. If anything, it will only get better based on feedback from prior travellers and our own research. It's best to reference your final trip documents rather than our website in case there have been any changes that affect your departure.
Every OUT Adventure offers optional excursions that are not included in price of this trip. Please see your daily itinerary in your final pre-trip packet to see what's available.
To keep things flexible, not all meals are included in the trip price. Although we typically dine together so that everybody can get a taste of everything, feel free to explore on your own...your guide will always have some restaurant recommendations.
If you are happy with services throughout your trip, a tip is recommended. Tipping details will be provided in your final trip documentation, however we recommend budgeting approximately $150 USD.
The local currency is Thai Baht. We usually recommend carrying local currency for small purchases, however credit cards are accepted at most upscale restaurants, and at hotels. We recommend carrying approximately $400 USD to be used only in the case of an emergency, or if your credit/ATM cards are placed on hold.
What to Bring
Most OUT Adventures entail carrying your own luggage on occasion. And while you'll never schlep far, things can quickly get heavier than a celebrity breakup if you don't keep your baggage under 20kg/44lb. If you bring along a steam trunk, chances are you'll have costly surcharges on domestic flights. You should also bring something smaller for day trips to carry water, your camera, and any souvenirs you pick up along the way.