Classic Vietnam & Cambodia - 16 days
An inspirational 16 day journey through Vietnam and Cambodia! Taking in the limestone peaks of Halong Bay and lush rice paddies along the Mekong. From one capital city to another, visiting farms and floating markets, imperial palaces and ancient temples. Finishing at Siem Reap and the spectacular Angkor Wat!
Hello Hanoi! Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Spend the remainder of the today at leisure.
Hanoi City Tour
This morning we embark on a tour of Vietnam’s capital. Our first stop is to the Ho Chi Minh Museum, where we gain insight into the life of the President Ho Chi Minh. Continue to the Presidential Palace, the president’s iconic house on stilts, and the One Pillar Pagoda. Our last port of call is to the Ethnology Museum where we learn about Vietnam’s diverse ethnic groups. Spend the afternoon at leisure. Perhaps take stroll along the ancient streets of the exotic old quarter and immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of Vietnam's enchanting capital.
Overnight: Hanoi | Breakfast
Hanoi - Halong Bay. This morning transfer from your hotel in Hanoi to Halong City, the drive takes about 4 hours and you will stop off for a refreshment break en route. Upon arrival meet the crew of the traditional Junk boat at the dock and cruise to the famous islands of UNESCO Listed Halong Bay, exploring the many grottoes and myriad of tiny islands. Back on board we enjoy a cooking demonstration followed by a scrumptious dinner while soaking up an incredible sunset over the bay.
Overnight: Halong Bay - Junk boat | Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Bai Tu Long Bay
Halong Bay - Hue. Enjoy the fresh air and the gentle breeze of the bay this morning as you relax onboard the Junk. There will be more opportunities to swim and explore hidden caves before returning to port.
Our next stop is Dong Ho Village, famous for its long-preserved art of making pictures. We’ll visit a studio in village, where you can watch the procedure of carving and printing these paintings and learn about the local folk tales represented in the paintings. Onward to Hanoi Airport for our flight to Hue in central Vietnam, where upon arrival we are met and transferred to our hotel.
Overnight: Hue | Breakfast
Hue was the Vietnamese capital during the Nguyen Dynasty 1802-1945 and ruins of the city’s regal past can still be seen inside the Citadel and the Imperial City. Created in the 19th century, the Imperial City was modelled on the Forbidden City in Beijing and holds many palaces and temples inside its giant walls. Many of the buildings were damaged by French aerial bombing and the Tet Offensive in 1968. Now it is slowly being restored thanks to generous funding by UNESCO. Your tour begins after breakfast with the ancient walled Citadel containing the former Imperial Palace. Spend the morning wandering through the enclosure before lunch and a trip into the surrounding countryside to see the final resting place of the Emperors at one of the most impressive Royal Tombs.
Continuing, we travel to the quaint Thuy Bieu Village, famous for growing Thanh Tra fruit. Here we’ll see garden houses, ancient ancestral temples and chat with the local people. You can join them in gardening or drinking tea and discover the daily life of the locals. This evening enjoy a scenic cruise along the Perfume River.
Overnight: Hue | Breakfast, Lunch
Hue - Hoi An. This morning, continue south to the picturesque riverside town of Hoi An. The five hour drive takes you along the South China Sea coastline with breathtaking views particularly as the road winds its way up Hai Van Pass (“Pass of the Clouds”).
From the 16th to 18th centuries, Hoi An was a thriving international commercial port for Chinese, Dutch, French, Japanese, Portuguese and Arab merchants. Today, Hoi An is a quaint riverside town, renowned for its silk and popular with tourists for its eclectic architecture, tailors shops and numerous cafes. Some of the buildings in the narrow streets have remained unchanged for more than a century and much of the town is now heritage-listed. This afternoon enjoy a half day walking tour through the narrow winding streets of the Ancient Quarter visiting Chua Ong Pagoda, Assembly Hall, 200-year-old Tam Ky house and the Japanese Covered Bridge.
Overnight: Hoi An | Breakfast
Free time is offered for days 7 and 8. There is plenty to do and see in this charming town and its surrounds. Opt to take a cycling tour into the countryside, a cooking demonstration, a river cruise to meet and engage with local fisherman, paddle a unique bamboo basket boat, shop till your hearts delight, or simply relax on the beach.
Overnight: Hoi An | Breakfast x 2
Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City. Transfer to the airport in Danang this morning and catch the flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Upon arrival, you will be met by your guide and transferred to your hotel.
Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as the city is still referred to by all except officials, is Vietnam’s largest city. It is a fast-paced metropolis full of contrasts, with street vendors selling fruit and vegetables next to glitzy western-style bars and boutiques. Amazingly, the city’s history dates back only 300 years. In 1859 the city was captured by the French and became the capital of Cochin China. From 1956 until April 1975 it was the capital of the US-backed Republic of Vietnam. Today, Ho Chi Minh City is very much the heart of Vietnamese business and entrepreneurial activity. The French left their mark with some fine colonial-era buildings such as the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post Office.
Enjoy a guided tour of the city this afternoon. Highlights include the Notre Dame Cathedral (from the outside as renovations are taking place), and the Old Post Office. Dong Khoi Street, which is home to many boutiques and fine restaurants, the Opera House and the beautiful Peoples’ Committee Building. The War Remnants Museum, formerly known as the Museum of American War Crimes, this is a poignant display of the futility of war and the Reunification Palace which is one of the most important buildings in the city. Here on 30 April 1975 the ‘American War’ officially ended when a North Vietnamese Army tank crashed through the gates of what was, at the time the residence of the President of the Republic of Vietnam.
Tonight offers free time to explore the bustling city, or you could opt to join a Taste of Saigon tour, featuring the unique flavours of Ho Chi Minh City’s cuisine. Start your tour at the last street market still remaining in the city centre, walk on one of the city’s oldest bridges, built more than 120 years ago. Taste some local specialties such as goi cuon (fresh spring rolls), banh mi (Vietnamese baguette) and more, before enjoying lau (hot pot) at a “secret” restaurant. Enjoy a drink and a birds-eye view of a modernizing Ho Chi Minh City from its highest building, before entering the “sleepless streets area” where you can try the local beer and possibly extend your time here exploring more of Ho Chi Minh City’s nightlife activities.
Overnight: Ho Chi Minh City | Breakfast
Day at leisure to independently explore Ho Chi Minh City.
Overnight: Ho Chi Minh City | Breakfast
Ho Chi Minh City - Chau Doc. Enjoy a cruise on the Mekong Delta today! Ben Tre is famous for its coconut production and quiet, peaceful waterways. Here we enjoy a traditional sampan boat that will take us to visit a brick making shop, a fruit garden and a local family where rice paper made.Vietnam.
We continue to our final stop for the day, Chau Doc.
Overnight: Chau Doc | Breakfast, Lunch
Chau Doc - Phnom Penh. After breakfast, we take a speed boat from Chau Doc to Phnom Penh, arriving at midday. Located on the banks of the Mekong River, Cambodia's energetic capital is noted for its beautiful colonial architecture and historic sites. See the highlights of this bustling, vibrant city on a guided tour this afternoon, including the fascinating Royal Palace, the Silver Pagoda, and the National Museum. You can climb the hill to Wat Phnom, the city’s main temple, where you’ll find throngs of worshippers and troops of monkeys.
We finish today with a stroll along the riverside starting at the Royal Palace. Witness the locals doing their daily exercises and feel free to join in.
An optional sunset cruise is available this afternoon - Travel along the Tonle Sap River towards the Mekong. Relax onboard and enjoy some drinks while watching the sunset over Phnom Penh city.
Overnight: Phnom Penh | Breakfast, Lunch
Phnom Penh - Siem Reap. Spend time at leisure this morning before your flight to Siem Reap. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. With its picturesque riverside location, colonial and Chinese-style architecture and leafy tree lined boulevards, Siem Reap is an ideal base to explore Cambodia's legendary Angkor Temple complex over the next two days.
This afternoon we drive to the edge of the city where we enjoy a buffalo cart ride through the countryside, until we reach Cambodia’s largest freshwater lake – the Tonle Sap. Here we board a boat and cruise to one of the largest floating villages on the lake, Kompong Phluk, where we witness the fascinating daily lives of the locals. Return to Siem Reap for an evening at leisure.
Overnight: Siem Reap | Breakfast
This morning there is an optional visit to the famous Angkor Wat, built by King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, to watch the sun rise. Our first stop is to the ancient city of Angkor Thom, the last capital of the Great Khmer Empire, surrounded by an 8-meter wall. As we walk through the heart of the city, we stop at the12th century masterpiece known as Bayon Temple.
Later, we have some free time to explore Angkor Wat, the most famous and undoubtably best preserved temple within the complex. Continue to Ta Prohm Temple, which unlike most of the other Angkor temples, has not been repaired, restored or preserved but has been left as it was found. The jungle trees and roots growing in, out and through the ruins have made this temple ruin a favourite among visitors. We then explore Angkor Wat further before returning to Siem Reap. This evening we have the opportunity to enjoy a Phare Circus performance.
Overnight: Siem Reap | Breakfast
Today your exciting Asian adventure comes to an end after breakfast, hotel check out and a transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Prices & Dates
Prices shown are ‘per person’, based on a travelling party of at least 2 adults. The single supplement price needs to be added to the twin/double price if single rooms are required. If travelling solo, an additional ‘1-person’ supplement will apply.Read More
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