Study trips are a core activity of The Siam Society, in line with its mission to promote knowledge of the culture, history, arts and natural sciences of Thailand as well as those of its neighbouring countries. They are one of the most popular activities for members and around 25 study trips are organised each year.
The Siam Society study trips are known for their excellent organisation, which often includes privileged access to places, and the expertise of the trip leaders who include distinguished academics, specialists in local knowledge, and experts in fields ranging from heritage conservation to anthropology to botany.
Within Thailand, study trips typically range from one day to a weekend. They may focus on a historical and archaeological site such as Lopburi or Sukothai, or on local culture and festivities such as the Boon Hae Malai Khaow Tok festival in Yasothon province. They will usually include a museum, or two.
Study trip destinations also range further afield; to Bhutan, China, the rest of Asia and other continents. They tend to include a “new” highlight; perhaps a recently-discovered archaeological site, a newly-opened national park or a historical city about which new research is ongoing or has been completed. Their focus continues to expand to match the interest of members, such as walking the ancient pilgrimage routes of Camino de Santiago in Portugal-Spain, and Shikoku Temple Pilgrimage in Japan.
Feedback on study trips tends to mention the congeniality of travelling with people with like- minded interests, which bears out the Society motto that “Knowledge Gives Rise to Friendship”. Non-members are also welcome to join, at a small surcharge.