Multi-Day Tour | Group, Independent

CULTURAL VIETNAM, CAMBODIA & CRUISE (11 days)

Trails of Indochina - Vietnam

Hanoi, Vietnam To Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Valid for Departures Now Through: 21 Dec 2018

Itinerary

DAY LOCATION(S) HOTEL MEALS DESCRIPTION
Day 1
Hanoi, Vietnam
Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi None

Upon arrival at Noi Bai Airport, either Domestic or International arrival, after clearing all customs

procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the

Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it. Your guide will then escort you to the hotel.

The rest of the day is for you to relax after your flight(s).

Day 2
Hanoi, Vietnam
Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi Breakfast, Lunch

Tour the city of Hanoi, with its ochre-coloured colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards and scenic lakes. Stop at the old coffee shop in the Old Quarter to explore the daily life of a Hanoian. Then visit the historic highlights like Ho Chi Minh Mausoleu, One Pillar Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh's House and the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first national university built in the late 11th century.

In the afternoon, take a street food tour of Hanoi’s best culinary spots with a food blogger – Mr. Van Cong Tu. Stroll through the Old Quarter past the old east gate to Thanh Ha market. Along the way, trying local delicacies and listening to his explanation of Vietnamese food practices. This busy, eclectic market is alive with the sights and sounds of Hanoi and is the essence of Vietnamese culture.

Day 3
Hanoi, Vietnam
Jasmine Cruise Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Depart for a 3.5 hour journey to Halong Bay. Make a stop en route for some refreshment (around 15-20 minutes). On arrival in Halong Bay, board your deluxe junk, settle into your cabin and prepare your appetite for an enjoyable lunch on deck.

In mid-afternoon visit the mysterious Tien Ong Cave - a wide cave but short entrance which is said to resemble the shape of frog’s mouth. In 2007 a team of Vietnamese archeologist conducted extensive research which led to the discovery of human bones and artifacts dating to 10,000 - 8,000BC, and then continue to Cua Van area. It was once the fishing village, however most of them have moved on land for their children’s future due to the lack of education system and access to vital information. Head back to the boat, participate in a cooking demonstration with the chef or enjoy sunset on the top deck before dinner.

Day 4
Ha Long, Vietnam
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Belmond La Résidence d’Angkor Breakfast

Rise early and greet the day with another refreshing Tai Chi demonstration on the upper deck. Then it is time for an early morning swim - in the Bay. By tender boat we bring the guests to a natural white sandy stretch. Sporty ones can also climb up to a hill top to have a last view from above over Halong Bay before we return to the boat and cruise slowly back to Halong City. During our trundle breakfast is served before we arrive at the jetty in late morning. Disembark at Heritage Line Lounge in Tuan Chau New Marina.

Drive back to Hanoi. Make a stop on the way at a local village for stretching your legs or having a chance to witness the local life of Northern countryside. Then, transfer directly to the airport for your flight to Siem Reap.

Upon arrival Siem Reap International Airport, after clearing all customs procedures, walk to the main exit gate, you will be met by Trails of Indochina representative carrying Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it.

Your guide will escort you to the hotel. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

Day 5
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Belmond La Résidence d’Angkor Breakfast, Lunch

Start the day early with a transfer to Banteay Srei. This red sand-stone temple is one of Angkor’s most significant structures as its walls are decorated with elaborate carvings, which have been preserved remarkably well. They provide an excellent insight into the Angkor civilization and their beliefs. After your visit, enjoy a Khmer or western breakfast at Srei Kulen Restaurant. After, visit Banteay Samre, a structure often compared to a mini Angkor Wat.

Today you will also be part of a culinary experience, creating some of Cambodia’s most fashionable and iconic dishes, while engaging in the daily routine of the local people. Walk with the chef to explore local traditions, weave past market traders and view the range of produce, selecting key ingredients to use in your class. Your Chef will then lead you through the remarkable ingredients used to make your 3 course lunch. Afterwards, you will eat your lunch, at the Farm House and enjoy the fruits of your labour in a truly philanthropic, engaging experience in Cambodia.

Day 6
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Belmond La Résidence d’Angkor Breakfast, Lunch

Wake up early and transfer by private vehicle to the West Gate of Angkor Wat from where the sunrise can be best observed. Angkor Wat (early 12th century) is surrounded by a 190-metre-wide moat 1.5 kilometres by 1.3 kilometres and is claimed to be the largest religious building in the world. It built as the earthly representation of the universe with its' central tower symbolising Mt Meru which, Hindus believe, is at the centre of the Universe.

As part of your Temple visits, you will be transported towards a private, local house situated close to Angkor Wat where you will have the incredible opportunity to meet with a local family, and hear their account of survival and overcoming life before and after the Pol Pot Regime, in an exceptional once-in-a-lifetime experience. Khean Prang was born in 1950s Cambodia when the country was undergoing an exceptional strive for modernity. His incredibly powerful story is one of adversity, a fight for survival, of tragedy for his friends and family and the fight for the peace and happiness he now encounters today with his extended family.

Lunch will then be severed at Chanrey Tree restaurant before continuing to Ta Prohm, built in 1186 as a Buddhist temple dedicated to the mother of JahanVII. The magnificent roots of the trees have merged over the centuries with the temple’s huge stone blocks, creating a ‘forgotten city’ feeling. End The day with exploring Angkor Thom, not a temple, but an entire walled city of 9 sq km and served as the ancient royal Capital of the Khmer Empire from approx. 1181. After wandering the anceint grounds, return to the South gate where you will board a small, private boat out to Prasat Chrung Temple to watch the amazing sunset.

Day 7
Siem Reap, Cambodia
The Jahan Cruise Breakfast, Lunch

Your guide will escort you to Victoria Angkor Hotel & Spa for cruise check-in and later transfer to the pier for embarkation by local boat.

Lunch on board while the vessel gently glides over Tonle Lake. Let your soul float and your eyes wander while the boat makes its way across.

In the afternoon, there will be a high tea at the bar. Enjoy your cruising day on board, relax on your balcony or relish a spa treatment before dinner. An expert guide will also offer a presentation about the “Geography of the Mekong and Ton Le Sap”.

The boat moors at the Ton Le River. You can join the evening cinema session (offered every night) featuring selected classic movies.

Day 8
Siem Reap, Cambodia
The Jahan Cruise Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Wake up early to witness the spectacular scenery at the break of down. The morning Tai Chi class has the perfect backdrop today. Breakfast buffet is served in the dining hall.

You are at Kampong Chhnang, Cambodia’s “water world”, where everything is on sticks balanced on water rich soil. Perhaps this is the most fascinating cruise locale in Cambodia.

Take a local boat to the shore. With mini buses head to a rural village nearby and go on a walking tour. Your guides introduce the village specialties – Khmer style pottery and the making of palm sugar. Definitely you should bring some home. Before returning to the boat, explore the local floating villages and wetlands of the region.

Back on board lunch is served while the cruise continues with a languid meander along the Ton Le River towards Kampong Tralach. A Monks’ blessing ceremony on board delivers spirits and wishes for health and prosperity for all. Gliding through leafy swaths of this jungle-like landscape we arrive in Kampong Tralach. Cacophonous children wave enthusiastically while bringing their livestock for a bath in the meandering river. Stop at the “Green School” which is supported in part by Heritage Line. Travel to see all this life - which is so much different than ours - by a local ox cart ride.

Back on board to sail downstream, passing the confluence of the Ton Le and Mekong Rivers. The boat cruises overnight and you can enjoy a fine dinner in the dining hall.

Day 9
Kampong Cham, Cambodia
Okhna Tey, Cambodia
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
The Jahan Cruise Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After a sumptuous breakfast, stay on board to understand more about the education of the young Cambodian generation (NGO project). The children join us on board, always excited to show their skills in music and art. Be sure to be bathed in smiles upon your applause.

Leave the boat around 09:30am to arrive at the enchanting pre-Angkorian temple of Wat Hanchey (7th century). This small complex sits on a hill top right on the shore with breath-taking views on the Mekong.

After some refreshment back on the ship for lunch. During the afternoon the staff will show you the variety of traditional Khmer fashion. Watch the riverbank life along the Mekong during the high tea as the ship proceeds to its next stop.

Arrive at the Island of Koh Oknha Tey. This spot in the middle of the Mekong owns its fame for the manufacturing of high class silk products. Explore the island with its workshops by tuk tuk and learn how silk is processed from its source, provided by little silkworms, to a final top quality product made of original Cambodian silk.

After some additional cruising time the boat arrives and docks at the pier of Phnom Penh. Feel free to have your first exploration by yourself after dinner. Stroll along the river promenade and watch the locals chit-chatting, selling odds and ends or have a drink in one of the numerous bars.

Day 10
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Raffles Hotel Le Royal Breakfast

After breakfast it's time to bid farewell from your luxurious floating home.

Home to about 1.5 million people, Phnom Penh has been Cambodia’s capital since French colonisation of the country. Located on the banks of the Tonle Sap and Mekong River, Phnom Penh was once known as the “Pearl of Asia”, one of the loveliest French-built cities in Indochina.

Enjoy a 3hr tour by cyclo, a bicycle-powered carriage, exploring this charming city which boasts a rich blend of Khmer and French colonial architecture. Hear the history underlying the abandoned facades as well as discover churches and Chinese temples hidden down narrow alleys.

The rest of the day is at your own leisure.
Day 11
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Raffles Hotel Le Royal Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, explore Wat Phnom and discover the legend of Lady Penh, the founder of the city, the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda, two of the most striking buildings in the capital and considered as some of the finest examples of Khmer architecture.

Also visit the National Museum, designed in Khmer style by a French archaeologist and painter in 1917. The museum houses Khmer art and sculptures from different periods of Cambodian history.

Enjoy lunch at Friends Restaurant, a leading social enterprise and training restaurant serving up tasty, creative Khmer cuisine.

In the afternoon, learn more about the turbulent Khmer Rouge years with visits to Tuol Sleng, a high school turned interrogation prison known as S-21 during the Khmer Rouge era and now a genocide museum; and Cheung Ek, a large memorial commemorating the 17,000 victims who died there under the reign of Khmer Rouge leader, Pol Pot, made famous by the movie “The Killing Fields”. While sombre reminders of the cruelty of the Khmer Rouge regime, these visits will also provide an appreciation of the struggle that Cambodian people have faced and their tremendous courage to move on and rebuild their nation. Return to your hotel.

Tour Features

Experience(s)

  • Cruises & Water Tours
  • Culture, History & Arts
  • Romance & Honeymoons

Description

Combine Vietnam and Cambodia for a journey to explore the highlights. Discover Hanoi, the charming capital city of Vietnam, and cruise on the magnificient Halong Bay.

Head to the home of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Angkor Complex to gain an understanding of the diverse culture that goes beyond the tourist facade.

Embark on a luxury voyage along the Tonle Sap River, the flowing heart of Cambodia, to get a glimpse of the rustic and peaceful life along the riverbanks. Cruise across the country ending your excursion in Phnom Penh, once the "Pearl of the East," to experience a rich blend of Khmer and French colonial architecture.

About Us

Trails of Indochina had its humble beginnings in 1999 as a boutique inbound tour operator. Headquartered in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), and now with more than 250 employees throughout the region, Trails of Indochina has grown to be a full-service Destination Management Company and tour operation across Indochina. At Trails of Indochina, our personal relationships can make anything possible. We invite you to experience our part of the world where you will uncover the hidden gems and see a different perspectives of Southeast Asia.

Insider Tip

Vietnam is a top destination for foodies with its cuisine differing greatly from north to south. We suggest a combination offood experiences including food tours, cooking classes and craft beer tours.

Terms & Conditions

To read our Booking Terms and Conditions, please click here.



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Reviews and Recommendations for Trails of Indochina - Vietnam

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Friendly Service

By: Andy37


Reviewed on: 02 Sep 2015

Overall, our experience was a great one. The drivers, tour guides, etc were all there to pick us up and get us to where we were going and everyone was extremely friendly and outgoing. We did have a minor issue with a few additional charges that we were given and we were not told (at all) that any of them would have been an extra charge. Additionally, our tour guide in Bali seemed to be really pushing us to sign on to additional tours with him on days that we had chosen to be on our own. Our experience on Lombok was top-notch, however in Bali, the tour guides were much more chatty with what seemed their prescribed talk and not so attentive to specific questions that we had. Additionally, when we were picked up for our bike tour, the guide asked to see our itinerary, as he had no idea what we were supposed to be doing. We ended up not doing a number of activities outlined on the itinerary and instead just did what the guide wanted to do. We had a great time, but these were concerns.
Travel Advisor:  Sari Greene

Very informative

By: Jandm42


Reviewed on: 21 Nov 2015

They made the arrivals and departures very easy. All guides were personable and very well informed. They added greatly to our travel experience.
Travel Advisor:  Judy Perl

Recent trip

By: Fletch


Reviewed on: 31 Jan 2017

Our experience was excellent. The organization proved to be very professional and reliable
Travel Advisor:  Cheryl Everhart

Southeast Asia

By: David Nixon


Reviewed on: 19 Feb 2017

The tour, with a few exceptions, we well organized. We saw most of what there was to see. The hotels and guides were excellent.
Travel Advisor:  Roxanne Girard