A Portrait of Thailand with Me Ra Koh tour

A Portrait of Thailand with Me Ra Koh tour

Tour Experience

A Portrait of Thailand with Me Ra Koh - photography workshop tour

Available

Set departure

Location

Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Khao Sok NP & Krabi

A Portrait of Thailand is part of our best-selling travel photography workshop tours with celebrity photography, Me Ra Koh, and her husband, Brian Tausend, award winning photographer and cinematographer. Thailand is one of their favorite countries in the world. They've travelled with their kids to photograph this beautiful country eight times in the last ten years, and they are incredibly excited to take you off-the-beaten path to experience the exotic beauty and magic of "The Land of Smiles". Brian and Me Ra are even going to take you to their family's secret getaway in the south where the white sand beaches, snorkeling/diving and rock climbing is unlike anything you've ever seen!

Summary of your Portrait of Thailand tour
The tour will start in Bangkok where we'll see the famous and photogenic Damnoen Saduak floating market before we head north to Chiang Mai to photograph street markets, hill tribe villages and an ethically run elephant sanctuary. Next we go off-the-beaten path to the spectacular lakes and limestone cliffs of Khao Sok National Park. The tour ends at Me Ra and Brian's secret, beautiful spot (yep, we're not telling you until you're registered). You will sleep in boutique hotels, floating bamboo huts, and gorgeous Thai style homes on stilts. The country's orchid fragrances, sing-song language, sounds of the jungle's wildlife, and amazing food will inspire your senses and photography in a way you've never experienced. You will not be able to put your camera down. This 9-day Thailand photography workshop tour is a dream for both Me Ra and Brian. Their family LOVES Thailand, and they can't wait for you to fall in love with it too!

Photography Workshops
This tour is designed for ALL levels of photography. Me Ra and Brian have been teaching photography workshops and travelling abroad for over a decade. Me Ra is also one of the select Sony Artisans of Imagery, inspiring both beginners and pros. She hosts the Disney Junior show "Capture Your Story with Me Ra Koh". Whether you are a newbie who simply loves taking photos or a pro needing inspiration, this charismatic duo will take you to new levels with your camera proficiency and creativity while exploring the most gorgeous areas of Thailand. And true to their reputation, you laugh way more than you have in a long time!

Several photography workshop break-out sessions will be included during the trip. Me Ra and Brian will discuss specific shooting techniques, creative composition, lighting, editing, and best camera settings for specific situations. There will be ample time for personal feedback and hands-on help from both Me Ra and Brian. Most of all, you will have an unforgettable, life changing adventure that will take your breath away many times! There is built in time for wandering, exhaling, taking in the scenery, and always freedom to skip a photography workshop or group dinner. Me Ra and Brian are always available to enhance your experience, but we want you to feel free to take space at any time to soak up the magic of Thailand with your journal and camera alone.

If your spouse, kids, relative or friend is not a photographer but wants to experience Thailand, they are more than welcome to join us! While you do photography excursions with Me Ra and Brian, they can enjoy the white sand beaches and explore

Due to the hands-on style of this photography workshop there is limited space available and with the high demand for our tours led by Me Ra and Brian we strongly recommend booking early to secure your place.

VIEW THE PHOTOS

INCLUDED

  • Photo workshops, hands-on instruction, tuition and mentoring by Me Ra Koh and Brian Tausend
  • Airport-hotel arrival & departure transfers
  • Internal flights from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and Chiang Mai to Surat Thani
  • 1 night's accommodation in boutique style hotel in Bangkok in double/twin room on breakfast only basis
  • 3 nights' accommodation in boutique style hotel in Chiang Mai in double/twin room on breakfast only basis
  • 1 night's accommodation in basic floating raft houses in Khao Sok in double/twin room on full board basis
  • 3 nights' accommodation in a mystery location in double/twin room on room only basis
  • Khantoke dinner in Chiang Mai including return transfers
  • All other meals as detailed in the itinerary
  • Tours and transfers as mentioned by private a/c coach with driver
  • Professional local guide for sightseeing tours as detailed in the itinerary
  • Full day visit to Elephant Nature Park
  • Hotel city taxes

EXCLUDED

  • International flights (available on request)
  • Travel Insurance (compulsory, available on request)
  • Single room supplements (chargeable if a same-sex room share is not available)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Drinks, snacks and other personal expenses (e.g. laundry)
  • Tips for tour guide, drivers, restaurants etc.
  • Arrival and departure airport transfers
  • Any other items not mentioned above

PACKAGE DETAILS

Itinerary

DAY 1: Depart home and fly to Thailand

Those travelling to the tour on flights from the west will generally always need to depart a day early. Flights are available from a range of airports on request.
OVERNIGHT:
On flight

DAY 2: Arrive in Thailand, Transfer to hotel

On arrival in Bangkok (BKK), you are met at the airport by your private transfer who will bring you to the boutique hotel accommodation in the centre of the city.
The rest of the day is free to relax and settle in after your flights, meet up wtih Me Ra and Brian, and perhaps head out for your first taste of Thailand’s famouse cuisine.
OVERNIGHT:
Bangkok hotel
EXTRAS:
Single Room Supplement (THETPT)

DAY 3: Bangkok, Floating Market, fly to Chiang Mai

From the start today, we jump into photographing the exotic wonders of Thailand at what are undoubtedly some of Thailand’s most famous markets, Our first stop is at Maeklong Railway Market where fresh market stalls lie on both sides and across the railway tracks. We’ll witness and photograph the amazing scenes as stalls and produce are whisked out of the way just metres before the train passes through. Then we continue to the renowned authentic floating market at Damnoen Saduak where we step back in time and photograph this unforgettable, colorful scene of locals trading exotic fruits on small, narrow rowing boats of all kinds.
This afternoon we transfer to the airport and take the short flight north to Chiang Mai. In the evening, our guide will escort us on a walking tour through the Sunday market (or Walking Street), which is a large market located right in the centre of the old walled city area of Chiang Mai. Starting at the Tha Phae Gate at one end, the Sunday Market extends for roughly 1km down the full length of Ratchadamnoen Road containing a huge number of stalls run by local people from all the surrounding areas, selling food & drink, clothes, and some excellent quality crafts. Bring your tripod as Brian and Me Ra teach you how to capture night photography!
OVERNIGHT:
Chiang Mai hotel
MEALS:
Breakfast

DAY 4: Doi Suthep Temple, Hill Tribe Visit, Khantoke Dinner

After breakfast, bring your favorite images from yesterday to the morning photography workshop. We will review them together and discuss what is working, and answer questions so you can break through creative and photography glass ceilings. At the end of our time, you will be given the daily photo exercise.
Later, we head out of town to one of Chiang Mai’s most sacred landmarks, Doi Suthep Temple. Perched 15 km away on the glorious mountain overlooking the city, your route up to the temple is fun and exciting with the road twisting and turning through the thick jungle. Once at the top, take the 300 stairs of the beautiful carved mythical Naga Serpent Staircase – or opt for the cable car as a relaxing final stretch – to reach the temple. Get up close to the glistening golden chedi that makes this temple famous and photograph the intricate Lanna-Buddhist architecture.
Afterwards, we head back down to the roadside, and swap the car for an open-air truck to continue up the mountain. We’ll pass by the Coffee Research Department of Chiang Mai University, where you can taste fresh “Coffee Arabica”, before finally reaching a remote White Hmong hill tribe village. Keep your eyes peeled for the famous bamboo housing raised on stilts above the ground. We’ll meet the locals and get a closer look at how the community is sustained with traditional handicrafts. We switch our focus to portrait photography, using shadows and light to help accentuate emotion, camera settings for best color and sharpness, photo exercises to inspire the photojournalism side of you.
This evening we enjoy a traditional Khantoke Dinner for a taste of what makes northern Thai food distinctive and famous even among Thailand’s iconic cuisine. These meals, with multiple dishes served in large platters on low tables, are a Lanna tradition stretching back centuries. During the meal we’ll enjoy a line-up of live traditional dance and music performances by members of surrounding ethnic hill tribes, including Karen, Hmong, Lahu, Akha, Mien and Lisu. To cap off a memorable night, we’re invited to join in with the final act called ‘Ramwong’, where you can dance, smile and laugh alongside the local performers.
OVERNIGHT:
Chiang Mai hotel
MEALS:
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5: Elephant Nature Park. Street Food Tour

Today we enjoy a full day visit to Elephant Nature Park; a natural home and sanctuary for elephants, buffalos, exotic birds and many other rescued animals. Our visit starts with a picturesque drive through Thailand’s rural countryside. We’ll hear the moving stories of rescued and orphaned elephants and witness how they have become a proud herd, free from abuse for the first time in their lives. Me Ra and Brian have supported the rescuing of elephants for years, and they know this experience will be magical. Many people say their visit to the Elephant Nature Park is rewarding, inspiring and relaxing.
We’ll observe free roaming elephants (no riding) and other rescued animals enjoying the natural surroundings of the sanctuary. You will have the opportunity to feed, walk alongside, and help bathe the elephants in the river as they splash around. If going into the river is not for you then photograph the elephants from the bank as they play and bathe while you stay dry. Bring your wide angle lens to capture these magnificent, gentle giants. Your visit helps support regional projects and offers an invaluable opportunity of helping elephant conservation.
*Park visits are all about spending quality time observing and being with the herd. We do not adhere to a strict schedule; the best way to make the most of your day’s visit is to relax, watch, and learn from the elephants. Some fantastic photos are guaranteed here.
Back in Chiang Mai, we get a taste of northern Thailand’s unique flavour on an evening journey blending culture and culinary discovery. Under a blanket of stars, head out into Chiang Mai’s culinary heart, stopping first at a collection of food stalls frequented by hungry locals after the sun sets. Make sure to sample some of the locals’ favourites here – Thai curry fish cake, sticky rice with pork and crispy fried munch! After getting your fill, follow your guide into a small nearby alley leading to a sleepier residential area, and pick up a refreshing fruit shake along the way. Wander further on to at Wat Chedi Luang, a 15th Century stupa that looks its most mysterious and beautiful in the moonlight. Sample some famous Thai noodles here before heading onto another of Chiang Mai’s most famous food streets, this time for a taste of pork skewers, pork leg with rice and coconut desserts. Afterwards, hop on board a local truck and zip off to a hidden bar that’s well-known with local night owls. Wrap up your culinary journey with a refreshing drink and a chat with your guide.
OVERNIGHT:
Chiang Mai hotel
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6: Fly to Surat Thani, and on to Khao Sok National Park

After a full few days, you get to sleep in. This second half of the tour takes you to more remote, exotic places. You have free time this morning to review your images from the last couple of days, or perhaps enjoy a relaxing and stimulating traditional Thai massage. Then we check out of the hotel and head to the airport for a direct, short flight with Thai Air Asia to Surat Thani.
On arrival we transfer to Khao Sok National Park (Cheaw Lan Lake) and go off-the-beaten path to one of Me Ra and Brian’s favorite places in Thailand. The spectacular scenery of Khao Sok National Park is formed by the erosion of limestone karsts and these rocky outcrops jut out amongst the lush jungle and forests surrounding the lake. Me Ra’s family calls Khao Sok National Park “Jurassic Park” because when the longtail boat takes you between the limestone cliffs to your floating raft houses for the night, you will feel like you’ve reached the end of the world! Bring your telephoto lens and learn how to capture wildlife in their natural habitat, as well as the breathtaking scenery of the jungle (wildlife often spotted in Khao Sok includes Gibbon Apes, Great Hornbills, Wild Boar, Wild Elephants, various monkeys, and more!). Here you can also enjoy swimming, kayaking, floating in an inner tube and soaking in the surrounding sounds of the jungle.
Our accommodation for this night is one of the highlights of the tour, as we stay in basic but comfortable floating raft houses. The towering cliffs surrounding us in this remote part of the forest means we are happy to offer you NO WiFi; in fact no internet, no telephone signal and no electricity (except for a few hours at night)! What we DO offer you is the chance to enjoy one of the most natural, peaceful places in the world. Though peaceful doesn’t actually mean quiet…the jungle is full of amazing sounds even at night!
OVERNIGHT:
Raft houses
MEALS:
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 7: Khao Sok National Park, to the Beach

Your adventure on the lake continues this morning with a short jungle trek, and then a fun bamboo raft trip to visit “Coral Cave”. Inside the cave you will see stalactites and stalagmites that look remarkably like coral reefs. Wear your bathing suit under your clothes and jump in the lake if you feel daring! But keep your eyes and ears open for Gibbon Ape families that sing beautiful songs throughout the jungle’s canopy. This place is magical.
After lunch we leave the lake and head to the coast and to our final destination of the tour. We’re keeping your accommodation and location for the next few days a surprise. Me Ra and Brian have spent weeks and weeks at this place, and love it so much, they just have to keep it secret! Suffice to say, it’s one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with gorgeous accommodation and great spots to eat and drink while you enjoy the sunsets just steps from your door.
OVERNIGHT:
Mystery location
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 8: Snorkelling Boat Trip

Our adventure continues today with a boat trip to scenic Koh Hong. As part of a National Marine Park and with a spectacular backdrop of Phang Nga Bay, this stunning collection of islands is considered the most beautiful in Krabi Province. Entirely uninhabited, Koh Hong promises a spectacular excursion to meet birds, white-faced gibbons and giant monitor lizards just off of the main white sand beach.
We spend the day exploring Koh Hong’s pristine beach and incredible wildlife before heading onward to its central lagoon – an area only reached through a dramatic cliff passage. You can take some photos and enjoy a picnic lunch in the open air before heading onward to Koh Lahding, another of the area’s beautiful islands that boasts impressive sand bars only visible at low tide. During the tour, go beneath the water’s surface for at least two snorkelling trips at Koh Daeng, Koh Hong and Lahding Bay. After your day of snorkelling, sun-bathing and relaxing in this far-flung corner of Krabi, we head back to our own beach. (Note, the itinerary for today will vary depending on tides and the time of the month so that the lagoon can be entered before low tide and we can include a picnic lunch on one of the islands).
Me Ra and Brian have brought you to this part of Thailand because it’s not only a gorgeous place but one of the very best places in the world to snorkel or dive! If you think snorkeling in Hawaii or Mexico was wonderful, you haven’t seen anything yet! We recommend you bring a rent or buy an underwater housing unit for your camera or an underwater point-and-shoot for this day. Brian and Me Ra will teach you specific shooting techniques for being underwater; how to use White Balance for best color, photo tips to getting great shots of sea life (and yourself!) during this unforgettable, dreamy, all day excursion.
This evening you could have dinner on your own or with some of your new friends or feel free to stick with Me Ra and Brian. Have a cocktail on the beach as you watch the magnificent sunset. Later, those interested can set up their tripods for a special night photography lesson with Brian on time lapse, shooting stars, night landscape and light motion.
OVERNIGHT:
Mystery location
MEALS:
Lunch
EXTRAS:
Ko Phi Phi extension

DAY 9: Free day by the sea

Your day is free to relax on the beach and explore your beautiful surroundings. For the adventurous, there will be an option to go rock climbing with Me Ra and Brian in the morning/early afternoon. This is not included in the tour, but we highly suggest you joining them. Beginners welcome! This area is one of the top places in the world to rock climb, and if Me Ra can do it with her fear of heights…we know you can too. Or, find your perfect spot and relax on the beach with a coconut smoothie. There’s plenty of time to meet and review favorite images and have a last Q&A with Me Ra and Brian.
This evening we’ll head out for a sumptuous, final, Thai cuisine, group dinner and look back on what we’ve enjoyed and seen. We’ll reflect on your photography skills and how your knowledge has developed. And be on the lookout, there may be a few, final surprises from Me Ra and Brian!
Now…where to next with your camera and Me Ra and Brian to guide you!
OVERNIGHT:
Mystery location

DAY 10: Departure transfer to Krabi or Phuket airport

Your time is free today until we transfer you to the airport for your departure flight. Our location allows for transfers to both Krabi and Phuket airports. If you’d like assistance with flights, please don’t hesitate to ask.
OVERNIGHT:
N/A

DURATION

9 days

Price

A$0

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