08:00 hours Just at the outskirts of Chiang Mai, visit a small family-owned enterprise that produces rice noodles. Visit the The Huay Luek Royal Project - an initiative to allocate farming areas for the local population who are Hmong and Lahu tribal people, and to support research works on plant breeding. The project also serves as a demonstrative development model based on the philosophy of promoting knowledge and agricultural technology to improve the livelihood of hill tribe farmers.
Learn about rice processing whilst your visit to a rice mill.
OPTIONAL (with surcharge): Visit the "longneck women" of Baan Yapa Hilltribe Village. The women wear brass rings around their necks, wrists and ankles as part of their culture. You can explore, with respect, the village to get a little feel of their culture and way of life and support their income by purchasing (not obligatory) a few souvenirs. Surcharge @ THB 500 per person
Then continue to Ban Lorcha - a small Akha hilltribe village and the site of a community-based tourism scheme run by the Population & Community Development Association (PDA) that aims to create a "sustainable tourism strategy and alternative model of tourism development" for hill-tribe villages.
Transfer to Mae Sai, Thailand's northernmost city. You can stroll to the bridge over the Ruak River that connects Mae Sai with Tachilek on the Burmese side, observe the lively traffic of the border trade and explore the market best known for gemstones like Burmese rubies, emeralds and jade.
"Golden Triangle", the words evoke images of opium poppies, of hill tribes, of mist-shrouded hills, of the mighty Mekong River, and of tropical forests. Visit the House of Opium - this small museum explains the history of opium production and opium trade in the region. It's full of opium artefacts and a exhibit explaining how opium was made, how it was traded and used in the region and how opium has impacted the people in the region. Embark a motorized boat and cruise along the Mekong River close by the border of three countries and glimpse the simple lifestyle and stop at Don Sao, an island that is technically on the Laos side of the border.
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel
Lunch at a local restaurant. Crispy Skin Chicken, the signature chicken dish is uber crispy outside, moist & tender inside and complimented with a sweet & spicy chili sauce.