Day 1 YANGON
Upon arrival in Yangon you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
SUMMIT PARK VIEW – Superior room
Day 2 YANGON (RANGOON)
Full day is free to explore Yanggo on your own.
Tonight meet your tour leader (or local guide) and the rest of the group in the reception area of your hotel for a welcome drink and a tour briefing. This is a great chance to get to know your fellow travellers and talk about the adventure that awaits you.
Day 3 YANGON
Start your exploration of Yangon with a walking tour taking in some of the best examples of the city’s wonderful colonial architecture, the lovely Mahabandoola Garden and Independence Monument as well as the lively Indian Quarter. Stop at a local tea house in time for lunch then explore Chinatown before heading down to the local port area for a glimpse into local life. Finally, end the day at the magnificent Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon’s crowning glory. Watch the changing colours of this stunning temple as the sun sets behind its enormous spire. Breakfast included.
Day 4 YANGON TO MANDALAY
Early morning flight to Mandalay. On arrival in Mandalay, start your visit with the lively Jade Market buzzing with traders and workers cutting and polishing jade – great for people watching and a feel for local life! Continue with a wander through the backstreets behind the market which reveals a number of cottage industries which have been operated by the same families for generations. Here you will see various snack foods made by hand, produced in vast quantities, packaged-up and sent for sale to local markets and to other parts of the country.
Continue with an afternoon city tour including the Royal Palace, Shwe Nandaw Kyuang or ‘Golden Palace Monastery’ noted for its intricate wood carvings and Kuthodaw Pagoda, home to ‘The World’s Largest Book’, a collection of some 729 marble slabs inscribed with Buddhist teachings. Breakfast included.
HOTEL YADANAPON DYNASTY – Superior room
Day 4 MANDALAY
Head out of Mandalay to Sagaing Hill, widely regarded as the religious centre of Burma. Sagaing Hill is covered with over 600 white-painted pagodas and monasteries, and is home to over 3,000 monks and nuns. Here you will visit a local nunnery where you will contribute food at the daily alms offering before joining the nuns for lunch. After lunch, there will be a chance to interact with the nuns and learn something about their lives of spiritual devotion.
Continue to U Bein Bridge – a 200 year-old teak bridge which spans over 1.2 km and offers fabulous views of the surrounding farmlands and streams. Return to your hotel in the late afternoon or early evening. Breakfast and lunch included.
Day 5 MANDALAY TO BAGAN
Head off very early this morning to board a local boat for a full day cruise on the Irrawaddy. Sit back and relax as you observe life along the Irrawaddy: oxen working the fields, water buffalo wallowing in the mud, golden pagoda spires, fishermen, villagers bathing in the river and, of course, every type of boat and river craft that you can imagine. Arrive in Bagan as the sun sets and transfer to your hotel. NOTE: The cruise to Bagan is subject to cancellation if river conditions are unfavourable. In the event that this cruise is cancelled, transport to Bagan will be by flight. This may also necessitate some changes .
THAZIN GARDEN – Superior room
Day 6 BAGAN
Eat breakfast as the locals do and chow down on delicious noodles at a local tea house.
Later, start your discovery of Bagan with some of this magnificent ancient city’s most important monuments such as Shwezigon Pagoda, and famous Ananda Temple, an architectural masterpiece. Built 1105 AD in the early Mon-style, Ananda contains two unique Buddha images whose expressions seem to change depending on the distance and angle from which the statues are viewed.
This afternoon visit the charming Minnathu village. The people here are very friendly and will greet you with warm smiles as they going about their business. You will make a stop at the village blacksmith who still makes wagon wheels and more by hand. Continue with a visit to the imposing 12th century Dhammayazika Paya, known as ‘the bad luck temple’, then stop at a neighbourhood workshop or two to see how some of the local handicrafts are made such as lacquer ware and wood carvings.
End the day with a short climb to the top of one of Bagan’s monuments for a stunning sunset view of this vast ancient city. Breakfast included.
Day 7 BAGAN TO INLE LAKE
This morning catch a flight to Heho airport, then drive to Nyaung Shwe beside glorious Inle Lake. Stop at Shwe Yanghwe Kyaung (Shwe Yan Pyay) – the unique oval windows of its ancient teak ordination hall are the subject of hundreds of photographs – then board a local boat to start your exploration of Inle Lake. Along the way you will gain a fascinating insight into life on the waterways of Inle Lake, passing fishermen famous for their curious ‘leg-rowing’ technique and lush ‘floating gardens’ where local farmers grow a surprising variety of fruit and vegetables. Later, take a stroll through a village which straddles the water and shores of the lake then continue to some villages known for their local crafts such as the weaving village of Inpawkhone, a Silversmiths’ village and a community which specialises in the production of hand-made ‘cheroot’ (typical Burmese cigars). This evening you will spend the night at a lovely hotel on the shores of Inle Lake. Breakfast included.
INLE RESORT – Garden Cottage room
Day 8 INLE LAKE
Start the day with a visit to the region’s morning market, which rotates its location around the lake’s villages in a 5-day rhythm and is visited by all kinds of people from surrounding villages and hill tribes. The market is not just a place for trade, it is also an important central meeting place for the locals in the region*. Later, cruise along foliage cloaked canals to the lakeside village of In Dein. Here you will explore the ancient stupas of Nyaung Ohak and Shwe Inn Thein Paya. The structures date from the 17th and 18th centuries and while some have been restored, many of the intricately carved stupas are crumbling, weather beaten and choked with Banyan tree roots and other thick foliage. These crumbling remains of a glorious past are hauntingly beautiful in their ruined state. Breakfast included.
Day 9 INLE LAKE TO YANGON
This morning, transfer to Heho for your flight back to Yangon. The afternoon is free for your own explorations. This evening, celebrate the end of your journey with a farewell dinner. Breakfast and dinner included.
SUMMIT PARK VIEW – Superior room
Day 10 YANGON – CHIANG MAI
Today your tour ends with a transfer to the airport for your onward travel. Breakfast included
Upon arrival in Chiang Mai, you will be met by an English speaking representative and start your private half day Doi Suthep and Temples tour.
On arrival in Chiang Mai, you will be met by an English speaking representative and start your private half day Doi Suthep and Temples tour. Afternoon Doi Suthep and Temples Visit the most sacred temple in the North of Thailand: Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep is the most sacred temple in Chiang Mai and contains a holy relic of the Lord Buddha. Tucked away in the mountains at an elevation of 1,056 meters (3,520 feet), the temple can be reached by the carved mythical Naga Serpent Staircase. The temple offers an exhilarating view of Chiang Mai city and its surrounding countryside. Drive back down to the city centre to visit some of the other impressive temples of Chiang Mai. Wat Suan Dok is one of them, and dates back to the 14th century when the Thai monarchy was taking leisure walks in its gardens.Nowadays, it houses several white Chedis, all containing the ashes of Chiang Mai’s former Royal family, and features one of the most famous Monk Schools in the whole locality of Chiang Mai. We will also visit Wat Jedyod, also known as The Temple of Seven Spires
PURIPUNN BABY GRAND BOUTIQUE
Day 11 CHIANG MAI (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner)
Full Day Long Neck Karen Thaton and Boat Trip (with lunch)
This trip begins with a 3.5 hour ride from Chiang Mai to Thaton, but this long journey is worth every minute. We will first stop at the Hmong hill-tribe village, where we will have lunch at a local restaurant. You will then embark in a 30-minute boat trip along the Mae Kok River to Baan Mai before continuing by mini-van to visit three more hill-tribe villages: Akha, Palong and Long Neck Karen.
This last tribe is particularly fascinating as women of this tribe wear brass rings on their necks and limbs. The number of the rings increases according to their age and as a consequence, their shoulder blades are pressed lower and lower while their necks seem to be longer and longer. Upon returning to Thaton, you will visit Wat Thaton, which is situated on the top of the hill and offers beautiful panoramic views of local villages, of the river and the forests standing on the surrounding mountains. If time permits, a stop at a local market will be proposed on the return trip to the hotel.
Evening Kantoke Dinner
One of the most famous Northern traditions in Chiang Mai is the Kanthoke dinner. Diners will sit on the floor and share a succession of tasty dishes, accompanied with sticky rice. While enjoying this superb Northern Thai Dinner, all guests will be entertained by local dancers, dressed in traditional clothing, and performing Sword dances, Candle dances, Fingernail dances and the traditional Ramwong where guests are generally invited to participate. After dinner, there will be a special hill tribe show giving an excellent opportunity to see a number of tribes in rotation and to note differences in appearance and costumes.
Day 12 CHIANG MAI – LUANG PRABANG (Breakfast)
Morning visit the Elephant at Work & Orchid Farm
Elephants are Thailand’s working pride and one of the country’s national symbols. A 30-kilometre drive away from Chiang Mai, you can admire the strength of these immense gentle animals. At a local elephant training centre in a jungle area in the North of the city, you will see elephants at work and wonder at a formidable demonstration of how these trained elephants help the local community in logging work. Before ending the tour, we will stop by an orchid farm where you can admire gorgeous species of orchids, which are another national symbol of the Land of Smiles.
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Luang Prbang. Upon arrival in Luang Prabang, private transfer will take you to the hotel and rest of the day is free at leisure.
Set between the Nam Khan and Mekong rivers, Luang Prabang is an enchanting town filled with historic temples and colonial style buildings. The entire town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.
Vila Santi Hotel Deluxe Room
Day 13 LUANG PRABANG (Breakfast: Hotel )
Start the day at Wat Visoun (Wat Wisunalat), the oldest living temple in Luang Prabang, Wat dating back to 1513 and contains a collection of antique wooden Buddhas. Visit the nearby Wat Aham before continuing to Wat Xieng Thong, the crowning jewel of all the monasteries and temples in the city. Its many ornate buildings feature exquisite mosaic and gold-stencilled murals. From there, stroll down the main street of Luang Prabang, stopping at some of the many temples that line its sides, including Wat Sibounheuang, Wat Si Moungkhoun, Wat Sop and Wat Sene.
Continue to the National Museum (Royal Palace), a modest but graceful building which combines traditional Lao and French beaux-arts motifs. This turn-of-the century royal residence has been preserved as it was when the royal family last lived here and provides unique insights into the history of Laos. Then, visit Hor Phrabang. In the right front corner room of the Palace which opens to the outside, is a collection of the palace’s most prized art, including the Phrabang, cast of a gold, silver and bronze alloy. This Buddha stands at 83 cm tall and weighs around 50 kg. Afterwards, visit Wat Mai.Visit Mount Phousi for sunset
Climb 328 steps starting from the entrance on the opposite side of National Museum, or 410 steps on the other side of Khan River to the small temples atop Phou Si. The hill is 150m high and sits in the middle of the town, offering beautiful views over the temples and river.
Day 14 LUANG PRABANG (Breakfast: Hotel )
Excursion by boat to Tham Pak Ou Caves. Travel up the Mekong River to the steep limestone cliffs overlooking the Mekong and Nam Ou rivers, home to the Tham Pak Ou Caves. These extraordinary caves are filled with Buddha images, of every style and material imaginable. On the way to Pak Ou Cave, stop at Ban Xang Hai Village (If time permits, open 6.00 am – 15.00 pm and closed every major Buddhist holiday), a local village famous for the production of lao lao, the local rice wine whisky.
Visit the weaving village of Ban Xang Khong, a village near Luang Prabang well known for its traditional handwoven cotton and silk, as well as production of the local sa (mulberry) paper.
Day 15 LUANG PRABANG – HANOI (B)
Today’s journey start with Give alms to the monks (early morning). An early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the procession.
Return to the hotel for breakfast and rest of morning at leisure. Check out from your hotel and take a leisure walk at the local market before transfer to the airport for your flight to Hanoi. On arrival. Transfer to the hotel for overnight.
Apricot Hotel Sketch Room
Day 16 HANOI
Although it is the modern-day capital of Vietnam, Hanoi still retains the mystery and charm of past centuries. Narrow lanes and traditional shop houses invite an exciting exploration by walking, while its many beautiful public spaces – lakes, parks, tree-lined boulevards and monuments – give the city an air of elegance and harmony with nature unique among Asian capitals. Begin your day visiting the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, where visitors can pay respects to the embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh. The Mausoleum is closed every Monday and Friday and also closes annually in October and November for restoration. Continue through the park to Ho Chi Minh’s Stilt House, the simple two-room dwelling where Ho Chi Minh lived from 1958 until his final days (1969). Preserved in the same condition as during his life, it may be viewed through the windows. Continue to the Temple Of Literature, a peaceful series of walled courtyards and graceful gateways; and one of the best serving examples of traditional Vietnamese architecture. Founded in 1070 and dedicated to Confucius, this was also the site of Vietnam’s first university. Afterwards head to visit one of Hanoi’s famous museums, the Museum Of Ethnology (Closed on Mondays and Vietnamese New Year), which brings to life the astonishing ethnic diversity in Vietnam, with art and artefacts from the 54 different ethnic groups that inhabit the country. Inside the museum are detailed descriptions of minority groups, with examples of their traditional clothing and way of life. Outside are faithful reconstructions of traditional longhouses, cemeteries and other distinctive ethnic buildings. In the afternoon, visit Hoan Kiem Lake and Ngoc Son Temple, located in heart of Hanoi, which contains an islet with the tiny Tortoise Pagoda. En route, pass other colonial landmarks such as the magnificent Opera House (may be seen from the outside only) and ST Joseph’s Cathedral.
Visit the Old Quarter , they have well over a thousand years of history and remain one of Vietnam’s most lively and unusual places, where one can buy anything from a gravestone to silk pajamas. Explore by walking to the maze of back streets with fascination wonderment at every turn and there are endless things to buy from wool clothes, cosmetics, gold and silver jewellery, silk clothes and herbal medicines.
Watch a Water Puppet Show, a fantastic art form originating in northern Vietnam, best seen in Hanoi.
Day 17 HANOI – HALONG (Breakfast: Hotel / Lunch/Dinner)
By vehicle from Hanoi (city) to Halong Bay and take a Cruise aboard traditional junk through Halong Bay.
Depart from Hanoi to Halong Bay; en route take a short stop for a break. Transfer with a tender to the comfortable junk and enjoy a welcome drink aboard. Begin the cruise through majestic Halong Bay while lunch is served. Enjoy the magical bay where thousands of sculpted limestone islands rise from the waves like dragon’s teeth. The junk continues cruising through a fishing village on the bay and passes the spectacular limestone caves dotted around the bay. Soak up the sun on the top deck with optional on-board activities: sunbathing, and photo opportunities. In the evening the chef will prepare a splendid meal comprised of fresh seafood dishes and other traditional dishes.
Paradise Luxury Cruise Cruise Deluxe Balcony
Day 18 HALONG – HANOI (Breakfast: Hotel )
Cruise aboard traditional junk through Halong Bay
Greet the day with a morning Tai Chi exercise that offer a perfect opportunity to view the sunrise over the bay. After breakfast, visit a beautiful limestone grotto then back to the boat for a final glimpse of the Halong Bay while cruising back to the dock. Check out luggage and bid tidings to beautiful Halong Bay. By vehicle from Halong to Hanoi
Rest of the day is free at leisure.
Day 19 HANOI – DANANG – HOI AN (Breakfast)
Transfer to Hanoi Airport in the morning.
Up on arrival in Danang, visit the Cham Museum. The Cham Museum houses probably the best collection of Cham art to be found anywhere in the world. There are more than 300 artefacts in the museum, many dating to the 4th century. There are beautiful sculptures reflecting the 1000 year Cham period.
Afterwards, transfer by vehicle to Hoi An for overnight.
Sunrise Hoi An Beach Resort Ocean Deluxe room
Day 20 HOI AN (Breakfast: Hotel )
Full day is free and relax.
Day 21 HOI AN (Breakfast: Hotel )
Sightseeing in Hoi An with a boat trip on the Thu Bon River. The exquisitely preserved merchant town of Hoi An was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. Its colourful shop houses and temples reflect a diverse heritage, dating back to the 16th and 17th century, when it was a major port for Western, Chinese and Japanese traders. Today it is a thriving centre of traditional crafts and a shopper’s paradise, best explored on foot.
Wander through the cobbled streets, past low tile-roofed buildings, the bustling central market and the small harbour where colourfully painted boats are moored. The walking tour will include visits to a private house, where members of the same family have lived continuously for centuries in a traditional setting; to one of the family chapels built by prominent merchants and official families as centres for ancestor worship; and to a typical Chinese-style Pagoda or assembly hall. Continue to Sa Huynh MUSEUM, located near the Japanese Covered Bridge, it contains exhibitions from the earliest period of Hoi An’s history. Visit a handicraft workshop in Hoi An where local products are being made by the industry itself. Finally, continue to the famous Japanese Covered Bridge, first constructed in 1593 by the Japanese community of Hoi An to link the town with the Chinese quarters across the stream.
In the afternoon, board a local boat and cruise down the Thu Bon River, enjoying the unspoiled countryside and stopping to visit a pottery village and a woodcarving village before returning to Hoi An harbour.
Day 21 HOI AN – SIEM REAP
Transfer to Danang airport for your flight to Siem Reap. Arrival in Siem Reap transfer to you hotel.
Saem Siemreap Hotel Deluxe Pool View
Day 22 SIEM REAP (B) Sightseeing in Angkor
Visit Angkor Thom. The fortified city of Angkor Thom covers an area of 10 square km. Enclosed by a wall and wide moats; the city includes many of Angkor’s most popular sights. Enter by the monumental South Gate over a causeway lined on either side by statues of demons and gods, each carrying a giant naga. Continue to the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper Kings, former spaces for public ceremonies, both adorned with dramatic bas reliefs. Visit the ruined Baphuon, Royal Enclosure and Phimeanakas before continuing to the mysterious Bayon Temple. In this temple, one of the most popular and compelling in Angkor, explore the galleries of beautifully preserved bas reliefs and ascend narrow stairs to reach the central sanctuary, where giant stone faces smiling enigmatically down from every angle.
Visit Ta Prohm, one of the most popular attractions of Angkor as much of the jungle has not been cleared and it looks very much as most of the Angkor monuments would have appeared when European explorers first stumbled across them.
Visit Banteay Srei Temple,seemingly miniature in comparison to the other Angkor temples, Banteay Srei is considered to be the jewel of classical Khmer art. Built in pink sandstone, the walls are covered in exquisitely preserved carvings of unusual delicacy. Because of its small size, wondrous atmosphere and extraordinary examples of Khmer sculpture, this temple is often a favourite with visitors.
Day 23 SIEM REAP (B)
Visit Angkor Wat, the crown jewel of Khmer architecture, Angkor Wat is the national symbol and the highlight of any visit to Cambodia. The largest, best preserved, and most religiously significant of the Angkor temples, Angkor impresses visitors both by its sheer scale and beautifully proportioned layout, as well as the delicate artistry of its carvings. To approach the temple, first cross the vast moat, continuing along a broad causeway lined with naga balustrades. Upon entering the main structure, ascend through a series of galleries and courtyard before reaching the central sanctuary, which offers beautiful views back over the causeway and across the surrounding countryside. On the way, stop to enjoy the intricate stone carvings that adorn nearly every surface of the temple, with some 1,700 Apsaras, or celestial dancers, sculpted from the walls. Along the outer gallery walls run the longest continuous bas‐relief in the world, which narrates stories from Hindu mythology, including the famous Churning of the Ocean of Milk. Angkor Wat is stunning at any time of the day, but sunrise and sunset are especially beautiful times to watch the play of light on the stones.
Visit local school, Wat Bo Primary School.
Day 24 SIEM REAP
Cambodia Cultural Village & Artisans d Angkor
The Cultural Village is a unique open air museum with exhibits that represent the various ethnicities and cultures in Cambodia. Exhibits include replicas of important buildings and building styles, traditional apsara dances, ethnic performances and demonstrations of traditional Khmer rituals.
Visit the Chantiers Ecoles (Artisans d Angkor)
Les Chantiers Ecoles vocational centre trains 650 apprentices a year including 160 in fine arts and crafts trades united in the Artisan d Angkor production network. Guided tours through the different workshops like stone sculpture, woodcarving, polychromie, and watch the artisan at work.
Day 25 SIEM REAP – JAHAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Transfer to the pier and cruise aboard the Jahan from Siem Reap to Saigon
At 8.00 am, we gather at the meeting point and join a transfer to Kampong Cham on the Mekong River. Enjoy snacks along the journey. In the early afternoon, we will embark the Ship in Kampong Cham followed by a welcome drink.Cruise to Wat Hanchey. Enjoy performance of the school boys & girls from Obt- a project of Heritage Line and organization for training. Later that evening, we meet and greet our fellow passengers at a briefing at the Lounge. This is followed by a welcome dinner at the Dining Hall.
Lunch box and dinner are included. Overnight in Angkor Ban.
Overnight in Cruise The Jahan/Jayavarman – Superior Cabin
Day 26 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Everyday, your journey starts with an invigorating Tai Chi lesson on the sun deck, just as the sun begins its gentle glow. Coffee and tea awaits the early bird.
After the Taichi, you will be truly energized to embark on a land journey to the pre-Angkorian temple of Wat Hanchey. Travelers can either take a motor-taxi or climb 303 steps to the top. Located at the top of a hill overlooking the river, the temple offers one of the
most breath-taking views in Cambodia. Built in the 8th century, this ancient structure, together with a bigger and newer addition underscores the superb architecture of the Chenla Empire which predates the mighty Angkor temple complex. We even get to engage
in light banter with some of the monks in the area. We will return to the Ship to witness a blessing ceremony performed by orange-clad local monks. Lunch on boat.
In the afternoon, we will depart for a little known silk weaving village. We will then return to the ship and will cruise past the
Mekong’s tranquil villages, exhilarating river life and sun-hardened fishermen on their fish boats. Overnight in Kampong Cham.
Day 27 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Kampong Chhnang is a busy rural port town with bustling markets and boisterous children who wave and greet us as we arrive on the Ship.
Here we take a van along the paddy fields to visit the Khmer-styled pottery at the Aundaung Russey village. Then, it is back to the river bank for an adventurous excursion to the wetlands, floating houses and fish farms in the region. We then return to the Ship for lunch whilst cruising the narrow and meandering Tonle River.
The afternoon cruise continues with a languid meander along the Tonle River to Kampong Tralach, which narrows through leafy swaths of the Southeast Asian jungle. Here, the river is very narrow and we are greeted by kids waving enthusiastically at us from the banks. Experience the ox cart, visit Heritage Line -Linblad National Georaphic library project.
Dinner awaits us at the Dining Hall while the Ship cruises to Phnom Penh. Overnight midstream near Phnom Penh.
Day 28 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Phnom Penh was once the Paris of the East. Despite its rapid development, it has retained a lot of its rustic charm and elegance. Sightseeing in the morning will include the Killing Field in town. Be prepared to be heart wrenched by this stark reminder of the genocide that transpired during Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge regime. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will visit the Genocide Museum visiting the dazzling white and gold edifice of the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda, and witnessing exceptionally beautiful Khmer craft at the National Museum.
We go back to the Ship by “xichlo” – traditional vehicle after our museum visit. Take a rest on your cabin balcony or the lounge and get prepared for an exciting evening event. The evening starts with a variety of cocktails served on the sun deck. Bbq dinner is serving right after that. Take a seat and enjoy the Apsara dance performance. Experience the brilliance and richness of this culture, the soothing sounds of traditional music, the calming scent of incense sticks and a barbeque on the sun deck. It is indeed a truly marvelous experience, dining in the open with the moon and the stars as our companions. Overnight in Phnom Penh.
Day 29 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Before the sun peeks over the horizon, the cruiser sets sail towards Kampong Chhnang (we leave Phnom Penh after midnight) and the Tonle Sap River – an amazingly narrow river – which glides through leafy swaths of the Southeast Asian jungle. We are greeted by cacophonous children who waive enthusiastically early in the morning when they bring their livestock for a bath in the meandering Tonle Sap River.
Then we approach Kampong Chhnang, Cambodia’s “waterworld” where everything is on stilts balanced on rich water rich soil- it’s an awesome sight whilst practicing Tai Chi on the deck.
Here we take a motorboat excursion to the landing, followed by a short bus trip to see the Khmer-styled pottery at the Aundaung Russey village. Then, it is back to the river for an adventurous motorboat excursion to the wetlands, floating houses and fish farms in the region.
We then return to the ship for lunch whilst cruising the narrow and meandering Tonle Sap. We will cruise toward Prek K’dam where we will take a walk through the silversmith village of Koh Chen where the entire community of villagers are involved in making various silver items for sale. Back on board, the Ship sails back towards Phnom Penh again and will moor for overnight midstream near Phnom Penh.
Day 30 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
Welcome to the fish sanctuary of Vietnam. We begin our day with a hearty breakfast at the Indochine Dining Hall or in the quiet sanctuary of your balcony. We will brace ourselves for a short excursion in Chau Doc, a pleasant town near the Cambodian border with sizable Chinese, Kinh and Khmer communities. We will also visit the colorful local market near an ancient temple. This is followed by a trip to the quay, where we will be feted to a boat excursion to the floating villages and rustic catfish farms. Enjoy watching schools of basa fish being fed by hand. Then, it is back to the ship for a lunch.
In the afternoon, we set off for My An Hung Village around 3:30 pm. Passengers walk to the family house through the vegetable garden to see the boat building yard, canals. We will cross a monkey bridge and see chili, corn and beetle nut plantations amongst other vegetable fields. Then gather at the family’s house to taste tea with honey with local delicacies and fruits before back to the ship to set off for Sadec.
Day 31 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE (B, L, D)
In the morning embark on a traditional sampan to tour Binh Thanh Island and its man-made canals. Here, every villager is involved in the process of growing and processing water hyacinths into natural fibre floor mats and rattan baskets. After lunch on-board, the ship arrives in Cai Be. The tour starts with a visit to Cai Be’s boisterous and colourful floating market where traders gather in a cacophonous congregation. During the languid ride, discover breath-taking landscapes along the river and take in the rustic life on the Mekong Delta.
The evergreen islands along the Mekong River remain unknown to many people. The cruise will halt intermittently to allow passengers to observe how rice paste, rice cookies and coconut candies are made, along with a Longan fruit drying process. After touring the canals, head to an ancient house surrounded by fruit orchards before heading to the ship for dinner.
Board the Ship for a tranquil evening cruise towards My Tho as A wonderful farewell party awaits us on the cruise.
Day 32 JAHAN /JAYAVARMAN CRUISE – SAIGON (B)
The cruise on the magnificent ship comes to an end as the ship winds its way to My Tho, approximately 70km south of Saigon on the upper Mekong River in Vietnam. Bid farewell to the cruise as our journey comes to a close. But the memories – and the friendships made on board – linger on for a lot longer. Disembark at around 9:00 am and take the transfer to the busy city of Saigon.
Arrival in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City). Time at leisure
Saigon Grand Hotel Saigon Premium Deluxe
Day 33 SAIGON (B)
Sightseeing in Saigon [Half day]
A vibrant metropolis, Saigon teems with energy, activity and motion. Everywhere you look, you see the meeting of traditional and modern life. Begin with a tour of the historic centre, strolling along Dong Khoi Street, formerly known as the Rue Catinat, the main shopping thoroughfare and heart of old colonial Saigon. Pass by classic European-style landmarks such as the ornate City Hall (Hotel De Ville), the old Opera House (both may only be viewed from the outside), and pay a quick visit to the neo-Romanesque Notre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post Office.
Afterwards dive into modern history with a tour of the Reunification Palace. Formerly the Independence Palace of the South Vietnamese president, this 60s style was famously stormed by tanks on April 30, 1975 signifying the fall of South Vietnam. It has been preserved in its original state, and the original tanks remain on display near the entrance gates. Continue to the harrowing War Remnants Museum, which comprehensively documents the travails of the long Vietnam- American War. Inside are detailed photographic exhibitions; outside is a collection of tanks, planes and weapons. A powerful experience, this museum is guaranteed to provoke strong emotions. Finally, visit the Emperor Of Jade Pagoda, one of Saigon’s most interesting pagodas.
Afternoon at leisure
Day 34 SAIGON
Excursion to Cu Chi Tunnels
Never discovered by American forces, the Cu Chi Tunnels were an important Vietcong base during the American War. Stretching over 200 km, this incredible underground network, dug by hand out of hard laterite, connected command posts, hospitals, shelter and weapons factories. Today, walk through the area and learn about the day to day life of the Vietcong, bear witness to the cleverly disguised entrances and elaborate booby-traps, and even venture inside the tunnels, some of which have been modified to accommodate tourists.
Day 35 SAIGON – HOME
Transfer to the airport for flight home.
- Valid for Travel from May – Sep, 2016
- Guaranteed Departure for minimum 2
- Valid for Travel from Oct 2016 – Apr, 2017
- Guaranteed Departure for minimum 2