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Dental Study Tour and Cruise in Thailand and Laos

10 - 22 Mar 2025
  • Medical & Professional Tours

About the tour

Journey from Bangkok into the mountainous north of Thailand before embarking on a cruise through the languid lands of the Mekong into Laos. Visit destinations that provide a rich experience for the visitor, with ancient and complex histories, exquisite art and culture, natural beauty and some of the world's finest cuisine.

Cruise on the lovely boutique riverboat, Mekong Pearl, through Laos. The elegant decor of this vessel reflects the lands it travels through, making this a comfortable and stylish way to experience the Mekong.

Perhaps the greatest treasure of the region, however, is its people with their warmth, culture and welcoming smiles. Learn about the culture, history and contemporary society of this area through meetings and specialist visits throughout the tour and cruise.

There will be a range of professional visits and talks throughout, making this tour and cruise eligible for CPD.

The boutique Mekong Pearl was built in 2017 and offers 15 cabins on two decks, all of which are outside cabins equipped with air conditioning and private bathrooms with WC and shower. The upper deck offers an indoor restaurant, a bar area and a separate sun deck featuring a retractable roof. A small spa on the main deck is the ideal place to relax. The ship’s crew of 18 takes attentive care of a maximum of 29 guests.

2 nights Bangkok – 2 nights Changa Rai – 5 nights Upper Mekong Cruise - 2 nights Luang Prabang – 1 night Vientiane

Download our brochure

Dental Study Tour and Cruise in Thailand and Laos

Our online booking system is temporarily unable to accept payments. If you would like to book this tour please call our office on:(Toll Free) 1-8777-398-764.

Your tour leader

Picture of JBT tour leader, ​Professor Phillip Dowell

​Professor Phillip Dowell

Professor Phillip Dowell is a specialist periodontist and past president of the British Society of Periodontology. He qualified at The London Hospital and after a number of hospital jobs, he entered general practice. Some years later, after working in the West Indies, he won an international fellowship to study at the Eastman Dental Centre in the USA. He continued his post graduate studies at the University of Wales College of Medicine and subsequently taught both undergraduates and postgraduates in the area of periodontology.

Phillip Dowell has lectured both nationally and internationally and is the author of many publications. He has been a visiting Professor at the University of Surrey and President of the European Section as well as the International President of the International College of Dentists (ICD).

He is currently Director of Development of the ICD and chair of its Global Visionary Fund (GVF). He has led previous study tours to China, Ecuador, South Africa, Vietnam, Isreal, Cambodia and around the Mediterranean.

Need more information?

  • Tel: (Toll Free) 1-8777-398-764
  • Mon-Fri: 9am-5pm
Contact us

Itinerary at a glance

  • Day 1: Bangkok, Thailand (Mon, 10 March) Briefing at the Riva Surya Hotel. Welcome dinner.
  • Day 2: Bangkok, (Tues, 11 March) Visit Bangkok Dental Hospital. Partner programme: visit a local market and take part in a food tour. Explore two of Bangkok’s most famous temple, Wat Traimit and Wat Pho. Wat Traimit houses a 3m (10ft) tall, 5.5-tonne, solid-gold Buddha image cast sometime in the 13th century. Continue to Wat Pho, home to the famous 45m (148ft) Reclining Buddha and the Chedis of the Kings. Walk in between the two temples via a flower market and China Town. Local dinner followed by rooftop cocktails.
  • Day 3: Bangkok / Chiang Rai (Wed, 12 March) Fly to Chiang Rai in the north of Thailand and transfer to the Legend Hotel. Take a rickshaw tour, passing by the King Mengrai Monument commemorating the founding of Chiang Rai in 1262. See the golden clock tower before continuing to the White Pagoda and the Blue Pagoda and the famous local market of Chiang Rai. Dinner in the Night Market with free time to explore.
  • Day 4: Chiang Rai (Thurs, 13 March) Visit Doi Tung (The Flag Mountain). Visit the Mae Fah Luang Park, the beautiful botanical gardens which feature year-round flowers, and enjoy the cool climate and surrounding areas. Meet with an NGO working in health care or at leisure, or take an optional cookery class.
  • Day 5: Chiang Rai / The Golden Triangle / Cruise (Fri, 14 March) Drive from Chiang Rai into the Golden Triangle region. Visit the Golden Buddha of Sop Ruak and the Hall of Opium, which provides an in-depth look at the history and politics of the opium trade and the health impact of opium use. Board the Mekong Pearl and settle into your comfortable cabin for a six-day cruise. Welcome cruise reception for dinner.
  • Day 6: Cruise (Sat, 15 March) The voyage along the upper Mekong River gets underway, departing the Golden Triangle region, where Myanmar (Burma), Laos and Thailand meet. Visit the nearby Laotian town of Huay Xay on the Laotian-Thai border and enter Laos. Cruise into northern Laos amidst stunning scenery and on to the small village of Pak Tha. Take a long-tail boat excursion on the Namtha River to a local village of the Khmu minority and visit a small village school. Continue cruising downstream and anchor on the riverbank.
  • Day 7: Cruise (Sun, 16 March) Dental CPD talks on board after breakfast. The river traffic increases as the ship cruises through a densely populated region, accessible only by water. This is part of the Mekong river’s most beautiful landscapes; hills covered with tropical vegetation, dramatic rock formations, and a fascinating mixture of fast currents and more placid stretches of river. The power of the mighty Mekong lends the cruise the feeling of an expedition. Relax on deck, in your cabin, or in the lounge and enjoy the beauty of these spectacular surroundings. On the way you will visit a remote village.
  • Day 8: Cruise (Mon, 17 March) Dental CPD talks after breakfast, before relaxing during a morning cruise. Stop at a small riverside village for a visit to the famous Pak Ou Caves, with thousands of small Buddha statues inside the caverns. There is the option to take a short jungle trek through the forest to a local village to see their local distillery. Alternatively, visit the village by boat. Nearby elephants can be seen. Enjoy a BBQ dinner in a beautiful riverside location.
  • Day 9: Cruise (Tues, 18 March) Reach Luang Prabang, the former royal capital of Laos, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located at the confluence of the Mekong River and the Nam Khan (Khan River), UNESCO-protected Luang Prabang is a beautiful mix of ancient, gilded temples, saffron-clad monks, faded Indochinese villas and peaceful river scenery. Take part in a city walk to the famous Wat Xieng Thong temple with its golden tiled roofs. Explore other highlights during this full day excursion through Luang Prabang. In the evening walk up Phou Si-hill, which offers a spectacular view over the Mekong as well as the Khan River and the surrounding mountains. Enjoy strolling along the Mekong promenade or visiting the colorful night market of the local Hmong minority. As Luang Prabang offers many opportunities for fine dining, tonight you are free to choose from the numerous offerings in town or along the Mekong River. We will provide a list of restaurants.
  • Day 10: Cruise / Luang Prabang, Laos (Wed, 19 March) Option to witness the traditional giving of alms in the streets of Luang Prabang and explore the traditional morning market. Disembark the Mekong Pearl after breakfast. Visit the UXO Lao Visitors Centre. Laos is the most heavily bombed nation, per capita, in history. Between 1964-1973 the US dropped more bombs on Laos than during WWII. The centre details the work being done to clean up the bombs and survivor rehabilitation. Transfer to the Maison Souvannaphoum and at leisure. Luang Prabang is filled with charming boutiques - time at leisure to explore the town’s most unique shops including antiques in an impressive old French mansion, a riverfront shop with treasures gathered from abroad, hand-woven silks by local weavers and indigenous Lao wood handcrafted by master carvers and turners, and a variety of semi-precious stones and silver.
  • Day 11: Luang Prabang (Thurs, 20 March) Take a half-day walking tour exploring one of Luang Prabang’s most picturesque sights, the cascading Kuang Si Waterfall with its electric turquoise waters. Drive south of Luang Prabang, with a stop at the vibrant Phousi Market. Continue on to the waterfalls. Swimming in the refreshing waters is possible. Return to the hotel and afternoon at leisure. Farewell dinner in a garden.
  • Day 12: Luang Prabang / Vientiane (Fri, 21 March) Take the new high speed train to Vientiane. Orientation tour of Vientiane and check in to the Vientiane Crowne Plaza Hotel. Farewell dinner in the evening.
  • Day 13: Vientiane (Sat, 22 March) Depart hotel after breakfast or take a Thailand beach extension.

Tour cost

The cost of the tour sharing a classic cabin on the cruise is from USD $5,827 (see brochure for options)

Our online booking system is temporarily unable to accept payments. If you would like to book this tour please call our office on:(Toll Free) 1-8777-398-764.