Nice photos. Reminds me of our trip to Thailand 10 years ago, which was about the only group tour we did. But it was possible to "break off" from the tour group for a day (shopping day) to visit the Mt. Ithanon (?) national park, when one could hike up on elephant back in the morning, and drift down by bamboo raft in the afternoon. Also, it is definitely worth a separate visit to Burma and Laos, especially the ancient capital of Pagan in Burma, and Wat Phu in Laos (plus Luan).