Experience Thailand with meaning
Thailand is so much more than a beach destination. From the bright lights of Bangkok to the glistening temples of Chiang Mai and the wildlife-crammed jungles of the South, Thailand is a land of limitless possibilities. Here at Rickshaw, we specialise in Meaningful Travel experiences that bring you closer to communities, culture and local life. We like our customers to experience the real Thailand and enjoy responsible interaction with the Thai people.
Have a look at some of our bite-sized community-based experiences, supported by the Tourism Authority of Thailand, and combine them to create your own unique itinerary.
Ethical Elephant experiences
At Rickshaw we believe you can experience elephants ethically, so we no longer offer elephant riding. With our Elephant encounters in Chiang Mai bite-sized trip you’ll visit the Elephant Nature Park. You’ll learn all about the the local residents which have been rescued from the logging industry and irresponsible tourist camps and help prepare them a tasty lunch. How does this trip benefit wildlife and the local community? The park rehabilitates elephants and encourages them to live in a herd as they would in the wild. The local community can get employment at the park where they are empowered to make a difference while making a sustainable living.
Trekking to rural Hill Tribes
Explore the pristine nature of northern Thailand and get close to rural communities by spending some time at the Karen village. Your guide will take you into the remote hills of Chiang Mai to places where nature is at its best and most travellers miss out on. You’ll also learn all about local Karen traditions and its people and sample some tasty home-made treats. Because the guides are from the community, they see most of the income from travellers. They can maintain their traditional way of life and feel a sense of pride as they show it off to visitors on their terms. You’ll also visit the Mae Wang National Park trekking uphill to the jungle, through protected forest where the nature is abundant.
Sleep in untamed jungles
Explore the enchanting Thai jungle with our giant trees and lakes of Khao Sok National Park bite-size trip. The park is home to a handful of exotic species, including gibbons, clouded leopards, tapirs and elephants, so keep your eyes peeled. You’ll stay a in a jungle lodge run by the local community. The lodge has trained local guides who help preserve the local ecosystem and run tours throughout the park, giving you an insight into this beautiful area from a local’s perspective. The lodge was built as a sustainable property; recycling, reusing and reducing their impact on the environment.
Discover rural Thailand with a homestay
Get off the beaten path and discover Thailand’s countryside. Stay with a local Dutch-Thai family who run their Thailand homestay in a sustainable, eco-friendly way. Staying with the locals helps the local economy and it’s a great way to learn all about village life and Thai traditions. Expect to see rice farming, drying tobacco leaves, incense stick and charcoal production or rubber tree planting. Not far from the homestay is an artificial lake with a dam. Almost the entire district of Song is irrigated with water from this dam and the lake is quite a peaceful spot for relaxing or taking a dip in the cool waters.
A bit about our partners - Tourism Authority of Thailand
We’ve teamed up with Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to raise awareness and support community-based tourism in Thailand. By engaging the Thai people and learning about their way of life, TAT aims to promote local tourism in various communities in Thailand as opposed to focusing on the customary Thai tourist hot spots. This also gives provinces all over Thailand the benefits of tourism, while maintaining their traditional way of life. Find out more about the Tourism Authority of Thailand.