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Premium Vietnam & Cambodia

Premium Vietnam & Cambodia

From $ 5,060 AUD

Description

Immerse yourself in the rich historic and cultural heritage of Vietnam and Cambodia on a 13-day Premium adventure. Uncover the oriental influences of the historic Asian traders, settlers and indigenous people that have made this part of the world a cornerstone for empires and colonies. From navigating the various fusions of east and west in Hoi An, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, to cruising the natural UNESCO World Heritage listed wonderland of Halong Bay and exploring war time monuments, and experiencing one of the world’s great archaeological treasures at Angkor, this journey will share the best of these countries’ history, nature and tradition.

Trip Name
Premium Vietnam & Cambodia
Last Updated
2022-07-02
Days
13
Capacity
12
Highlights
  • Explore the cities of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh with your local leaders who will help to uncover the diverse mix of influences and layered histories of each destination.
  • Taste the best of Vietnamese and Cambodian cuisine during Exclusive Experiences – take a cooking class with a local chef in Hue, visit a family-run coffee farm in Da Lat and enjoy a privately catered breakfast on the shores of the Srah Srang Lake.
  • Soak up your surroundings during two Feature Stays – an overnight cruise in Halong Bay on a traditional junk-style boat and a 3-night stay at a resort in Siem Reap, offering a tropical oasis escape.
  • Cruise down the Tonle Sap river to Siem Reap, where you’ll enjoy two days of fully guided temple tours, with in-depth insights and plenty of time at Angkor Wat, plus an Exclusive Experience morning accompanied by a private photography coach.
  • Gain an understanding of local culture during Exclusive Experiences, including a soul-stirring Hat Xam performance, a visit to a working monastery and a tour of a centuries-old pottery village. 

Itinerary

ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any such changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested in the Group Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

Day 1 - Hanoi
Xin chao! Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam’s vibrant capital city. You’ll be met on arrival at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm where you’ll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers. If you arrive early, Hanoi offers plenty of enticing experiences. Perhaps head to the city’s colourful old quarter and explore the charming jumble of shops and cafés, or check out the Vietnam National Fine Arts Museum, showcasing ancient through to contemporary Vietnamese art. This evening, join your leader and small group for a welcome dinner at a beautifully decorated restaurant resembling an old-fashioned Vietnamese house. Dive into the exciting world of Vietnamese cuisine as your leader introduces you to a range of classic dishes made with the freshest local ingredients.
Day 2 - Halong Bay
Depart Hanoi and travel to Halong Bay, one of the great natural treasures of Vietnam. Board your Feature Stay accommodation for the evening, a gloriously beautiful and traditionally decorated junk-style boat featuring modern conveniences. Set sail in total comfort as unforgettable views of scattered islands and towering limestone outcrops slowly unfold in front of you. Explore the bay while enjoying a pleasant seafood lunch onboard. Learn about the fascinating geography of the region and its importance to the Vietnamese people, visit Surprise Cave where your leader will point out interesting rock formations, and in the warmer months you can choose a swim from Ti Top Island Beach or take an optional kayaking tour. Sit back with a drink on the upper deck and face out to the spirit-lifting view that will be stamped on your memory of Vietnam. Soak in the stunning surroundings with a candlelit seafood dinner on deck before settling in for a night of stargazing and swapping stories.
Day 3 - Hanoi
Start your day with a peaceful breakfast and perhaps take part in some Tai Chi on board the boat before returning to Hanoi. This afternoon you’ll take part in a once-in-a-lifetime experience and sit down to a soul-stirring traditional Hat Xam performance. Hat Xam is an art form of Northern Vietnam dating back to the Tran Dynasty. Originally, this was performed by blind performers, and was enjoyed by local working-class audiences, right up until the late 1950s, when a wave of communism deemed all art forms to be corrupting influences. Today these performances are rare, but you and your group will be taken to a private club house and treated to an exclusive performance in one of the few places where artists still sing acoustically. The performance takes around 90 minutes, and includes possible interaction with guests, so be ready to get involved!
Day 4 - Hoi An
This morning you’ll get to know Hanoi’s charms on a half-day tour with your leader. Discover a captivating city where traditional and modern sit side by side as your leader shares knowledge on the Temple of Literature, One Pillar Pagoda, and the former residence of Vietnam’s most famous revolutionary, Ho Chi Minh. Today’s lunch is extra special as you will visit the fantastic KOTO café, a social enterprise that provides hospitality training and experience while empowering at-risk and disadvantaged youth in Vietnam – not to mention a creative menu of food made with local ingredients. This afternoon you’ll say goodbye to Hanoi and fly south to Danang. Drive on to Hoi An and take in views of lush scenery along the way. Arrive in Hoi An in the late afternoon and check into your boutique accommodation. The rest of the day is yours – maybe make the most of your hotel’s fabulous pool.
Day 5 - Hoi An
Set off on a tour of Hoi An’s Old Town and discover a blend of traditional treasures and cultural influences from historical traders. Your leader will discuss the city’s history as you wander the pagoda lined streets, visit a Chinese assembly hall, cross the Japanese Covered Bridge, enter the ornately decorated historic house of a former trader and check out a local museum. Hoi An was once a great trading port for pottery, and centuries-old pottery villages still exist to this day. This afternoon, head out to the Thanh Ha Pottery Village – dating back to the 16th century, this is one of the oldest pottery villages in Vietnam. Stop by the home of an artisan couple. Now both in their 90s, they were once the only artisans in the village and have passed down traditional techniques and practices. Continue your explorations of the village, meet descendants of the artisan couple and find out how traditional pieces are made. Finally, sit down with a cup of tea and perhaps take the chance to test out your own skills and paint on a traditional pottery mask. Return to Hoi An for an evening at leisure.
Day 6 - Ho Chi Minh City
The morning is free for you to enjoy more of delightful Hoi An and the surrounding area. Perhaps browse the market for silk and other materials or collect any garments that you might have had crafted by the efficient tailors, or hire a bicycle and ride along the lanes and out to a nice nearby beach. Your leader will have great recommendations for places to eat and drink. In the afternoon, transfer back to Danang and fly to Ho Chi Minh City. Check into your hotel and enjoy a free evening – the bustling food stalls at Cho Ben Thanh market might beckon you over with the sweet and savoury aromas of pho and bun mam. Delicious!
Day 7 - Ho Chi Minh City
Head out of the city to the nearby Cu Chi Tunnels, an extensive underground network dug by the Viet Minh and later expanded by the Viet Cong. Enter a widened section of the tunnels with your leader who will help you imagine what life underground must have been like and explain how the tunnels contained hospitals, accommodation and schools, and were used for refuge, storage and as a military base for the Viet Cong. Return to Ho Chi Minh City for a tour of the dynamic city where daily life plays out on the streets. Your leader will take you to the Reunification Palace, formally the Presidential Palace and the site of South Vietnam’s surrender in 1975, before visiting the War Remnants Museum. In the evening, perhaps spend some time with your fellow travellers and enjoy a final dinner at a local restaurant. Your leader will know of some wonderful options.
Day 8 - Phnom Penh
Today you will depart Ho Chi Minh City and catch a flight to Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s lively capital city. On arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel where a meeting will take place at 6pm to welcome any new travellers joining you on the next part of your journey. After your meeting, join your leader and small group for dinner at the wonderful Khéma La Poste. This delightful French restaurant is located in the center of the old colonial quarter next to the Phnom Penh Post Office built in 1890. After dinner perhaps cap off the night with a cocktail at the Le Moon Rooftop at Amanjaya Pancam Hotel.
Day 9 - Phnom Penh
Today your leader will introduce you to the sights of Phnom Penh during a full day city tour. The private quarters of the Royal Palace are home to King Sihamoni and closed off to the public, but you will be able to visit the sacred Silver Pagoda that lies in the palace complex. Your included visits to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek will tell the story of the tragic legacy of the Khmer Rouge. There is an optional visit to Wat Phnom, the temple that gave rise to the foundation of the city in the 15th century. Later you will head out of town to a working monastery to gain a special insight into the life of a monk and Theravada Buddhism. You will get to meet the monks, enjoy a sacred water blessing for good luck and prosperity and have a red band tied around your wrist to keep you safe in your travels.
Day 10 - Siem Reap
After breakfast this morning, set sail in style and begin the journey to Siem Reap on a comfortable riverboat. A world away from the hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh, sit back and relax as you float peacefully down the Tonle Sap river. This unique form of transport exposes you to a side of Cambodian life most tourists don’t get to see. Pass by rural villages and watch quiet moments of daily life play out in front of you on the water. After disembarking, you will continue the journey to Siem Reap by road, with plenty of interesting stops along the way. Arrive in the late afternoon and check in to the Navutu Dreams Resort & Wellness Retreat, your Feature Stay accommodation in Siem Reap. The evening is yours to relax at this hotel, hidden away on the quiet fringe of the city. This tropical oasis boasts three pools and an excellent restaurant with a focus on wellness. Bright and spacious rooms are in harmony with the lush grounds, and feature a veranda, private garden and rain showers.
Day 11 - Siem Reap – Angkor Wat
Spend a full day visiting the amazing temples of Angkor on a guided exploration with your leader. The memories of seeing some of the world’s most important ancient sites are ones you’re going to want to preserve forever, so for the first half of the day you will also be accompanied by a private photography coach who will teach you how to take that one-in-a-million shot. Begin at Angkor Wat, the largest and most complete structure, and the only one of Angkor's temples that has its entrance facing west – the others face east. Then there is Angkor Thom, the 'Great Royal City', a temple famous for its series of colossal human faces carved in stone. Of all the temples visited today, Bayon temple is the centrepiece, with over 200 smiling carved faces and more than 50 gothic towers. Your leader will let you in on the secrets of the temples and share their remarkable stories. For lunch you'll visit the Sala Bai Hotel School where underprivileged local youths learn skills that enable them to find gainful employment in the hospitality industry. Here you can enjoy a meal prepared by students at the school. After lunch you will head out of town to an ancient working monastery to gain a special insight into the life of a monk and Theravada Buddhism. You will get to meet the monks, enjoy a sacred water blessing for good luck and prosperity and have a red band tied around your wrist to keep you safe in your travels. Later, enjoy Cambodia’s first farm-to-table restaurant for dinner and enjoy a wonderful menu of new Mekong cuisine. The restaurant is run by a talented local chef with a passion for sharing sustainable and seasonal food using organic ingredients grown on site. The rest of the evening can be spent exploring the bars of Siem Reap, or relaxing in laidback luxury at your resort.
Day 12 - Siem Reap – Angkor Wat
Embrace a very early start today if you wish to experience a sunrise visit to the Angkor complex (this is optional). After sunrise this morning, head to the shores of the Srah Srang Lake. Here you will be treated to an incredible private catered breakfast – take a moment to soak in your stunning surroundings and enjoy a meal as wonderful as the landscape itself. After breakfast, it’s off to the Ta Prohm temple, which has large trees embedded in the stone foundations of the structure – powerful symbols of nature. Next, visit Banteay Srei to snap some enviable pictures of the temple’s intricate stone carvings. You can head back to the resort or use your ticket for the Angkor ruins to continue exploring the site and try out your new photography skills. The vaulted corridors of Preah Khan are well worth a visit, or you may prefer to spend the afternoon getting to know the town. Tonight you will enjoy a final dinner at a great restaurant in town serving local cuisine.
Day 13 - Siem Reap
Your adventure comes to an end after breakfast this morning. If you would like to expend your stay in Siem Reap, additional accommodation can be arranged in advance (subject to availability). .

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
15-07-202227-07-2022AUD $ 5,060-
26-08-202207-09-2022AUD $ 5,060-
16-09-202228-09-2022AUD $ 5,060-
07-10-202219-10-2022AUD $ 5,060-
14-10-202226-10-2022AUD $ 5,060-
04-11-202216-11-2022AUD $ 5,470-
11-11-202223-11-2022AUD $ 5,260-
18-11-202230-11-2022AUD $ 5,260-
02-12-202214-12-2022AUD $ 5,570-
16-12-202228-12-2022AUD $ 5,460-
22-12-202203-01-2023AUD $ 5,460-
21-01-202302-02-2023AUD $ 6,115-
25-02-202309-03-2023AUD $ 5,950-
11-03-202323-03-2023AUD $ 5,950-
18-03-202330-03-2023AUD $ 5,950-
01-04-202313-04-2023AUD $ 5,730-
15-04-202327-04-2023AUD $ 5,730-
06-05-202318-05-2023AUD $ 5,510-
10-06-202322-06-2023AUD $ 5,510-
15-07-202327-07-2023AUD $ 5,730-
26-08-202307-09-2023AUD $ 5,510-
16-09-202328-09-2023AUD $ 5,510-
30-09-202312-10-2023AUD $ 5,510-
14-10-202326-10-2023AUD $ 5,510-
21-10-202302-11-2023AUD $ 5,730-
04-11-202316-11-2023AUD $ 5,730-
18-11-202330-11-2023AUD $ 5,730-
25-11-202307-12-2023AUD $ 5,950-
16-12-202328-12-2023AUD $ 5,950-

Accommodation

Hotel (8 nights),Halong Bay overnight boat feature stay (1 night),Siem Reap feature stay (3 nights)

Transport

Boat,Plane,Private Minibus,Remork (tuk tuk)

Map