From Thai temples to Civil War battlefields: transformative trips for 2019

With 2019 quickly approaching, University of Wisconsin–Madison Continuing Studies is gearing up for educational travel experiences across the country and across the globe. The first half of the year features trips to Thailand and Laos (Feb. 16-March 8) and Civil War sites in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. (April 24-May 1). Each offers guided tours, delicious meals, high-quality lodging, and the memories of a lifetime.

Natural and spiritual wonders

The Thailand and Laos trip begins with three days in Bangkok, a bustling city filled with temples, monuments, markets, and other landmarks. Another highlight is a visit to Luang Prabang and surrounding villages, which provide a unique glimpse into local customs and spiritual practices. Other stops include Vientiane, Laos’s temple-rich capital; Sukhothai, Thailand’s spiritual epicenter; and Wat Rong Khun, an art exhibition in the style of a Buddhist temple. All are excellent places to learn about Thai culture while reflecting upon one’s own life and aspirations.

The itinerary also includes many chances to enjoy the beauty and tranquility of nature. In Kanchanaburi travelers will ride a train through a jungle and stay at a floating, electricity-free eco-lodge on the Kwai Noi River. After that, they’ll admire an orchid farm near Chiang Mai and ride bamboo rafts on the Mae Taeng River. A two-day cruise on the Mekong River is an opportunity to relax and enjoy the scenery, including that of two ancient caves: the Tam Ting and the Tham Phoum. There’s even a visit to a resort where visitors can get up close and personal with elephants.

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