Day 1 Arrival in Phnom Penh
Arrival in Phnom Penh and you are met and welcomed by your guide at the airport and continue for sightseeing.
Sightseeing in Phnom Penh
Explore Phnom Penh, a chaotic, energetic and always fascinating city. Graceful tree-lined boulevards and riverfront promenades are reminders of bygone eras; today they teem with life and activity, as motorcycles weave in and out of traffic, vendors hawk their wares, and pedestrians go about their business. Start the tour with an insight into Cambodia’s cultural heritage with a visit to the Royal Palace, still the official residence of King Norodom Sihamoi and the adjacent Silver Pagoda, also known as the Pagoda of the Emerald Buddha. Continue to the elegant National Museum, which contains a comprehensive collection of Khmer Art. Finally, explore the modern-day city, visiting one of Phnom Penh’s two great markets, the Central Market, located in a distinctive domed Art Deco building or the sprawling Russian Market, a labyrinth of stalls selling everything from CDs and DVDs to silks, crafts, jewellery and more.
Sunset cyclo ride around Phnom Penh
Enjoy a cyclo ride around Phnom Penh at sunset.
Overnight in Phnom Penh
Category A Property: Mondulkiri Boutique Hotel (Superior)
Category B Property: Ohana Hotel (Deluxe)
Category C Property: The Juliana Hotel (Deluxe)
Day 2 Phnom Penh – Siem Reap (Breakfast: Hotel)
Transfer to the airport for your flight from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap.
Arrival in Siem Reap and you are met and welcomed by your guide at the airport and continue for sightseeing in Angkor.
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 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.
Overnight in Siem Reap
Category A Property: Claremont Angkor Boutique Hotel (Superior room)
Category B Property: Khemara Angkor Hotel (Deluxe room)
Category C Property: Sokha Siem Reap Resort & Convention Center (Deluxe Garden View)
Day 3 Siem Reap (Breakfast: Hotel)
Full day sightseeing of Angkor.
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.
Visit Banteay Samre, a mid-12th century temple dedicated to the god Vishnu.
Visit Ta Prohm temple
Ta Prohm is 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 Ta Keo
Ta Keo was built by Jayavarman V who ruled from 968 to 1001, it was the first Angkorian monument built entirely of sandstone and was dedicated to Shiva. The summit of the central tower is 50 metres high and is surrounded by four lower towers.
Visit a temple for sunset
Watch the sun set over the Cambodian countryside from the upper terraces of an ancient Angkorian temple.
Day 4 Siem Reap – Saigon (Breakfast: Hotel)
Visit Roluos Group Temples
The Roluos Group of monuments mark the beginning of Khmer classical art, and they represent some of the earliest great temples built by the Khmer. They served as the capital of Indravarman (who reigned from 877 to 889). Lolei was built on an islet by Yasovarman I (who ruled from 889 to 910), the founder of the first city of Angkor. The sandstone carvings in the niches of the temples are notable as are the Sanskrit inscriptions on the doorposts. Preah Ko was erected by Indravarman I in the late 9th century in dedication to his defied ancestors in 880. There are inscriptions in Sanskrit on the doorsteps of each temple. Bakong was built and dedicated to Shiva by Indravarman I, and is the largest and most interesting of the Roluos Group of temples and still has an active Buddhist monastery.
Afterwards, transfer to the airport for your flight from Siem Reap to Saigon.
Arrival in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) and you are met and transferred to the hotel for overnight.
Overnight in Saigon
Category A Property: Le Duy Grand Hotel (Grand Deluxe)
Category B Property: Vissai Saigon Hotel (Deluxe)
Category C Property: Renaissance Riverside Hotel Saigon (Deluxe City View)
Day 5 Saigon (Breakfast: Hotel )
Full day sightseeing In 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.
Saigon City Tour
A vibrant metropolis, Saigon teems with energy, activity and motion. Everywhere you look, you see the convergence of traditional and modern life. Begin the trip into modern history with a tour of the Reunification Palace. Formerly the Independence Palace of the South Vietnamese president, this 60s style building 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.
Afterwards, drive to the historic centre to visit the Emperor of Jade Pagoda, one of Saigon’s most interesting pagodas. Proceed to pay a quick visit to the neo-Romanesque Notre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post Office. Pass by the 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). Finally, end up at the central Ben Thanh Market, where vendors display a vast array of goods and handicrafts, appealing to every taste.
Day 6 Saigon (Breakfast: Hotel)
Full day excursion to Mekong Delta
Excursion to Ben Tre with boat trip on Mekong River
After a journey through Ben Luc and Tan An, proceed to Ben Tre to take a boat trip on the Mekong River to Vam Xep canal where local handicrafts and coconut sweets are produced. Enjoy fresh seasonal fruits, a performance of traditional songs, and observe the local life. Take a short ride on motor cart to a typical local house to taste some homemade honey-tea. Proceed by sampan through the small canals to observe the daily life of local people along the riverbanks with some stops for a leisurely stroll.
Day 7 Saigon – Hue (Breakfast: Hotel)
This morning, you are transferred to the airport for your flight from Saigon to Hue.
Upon arrival, you are met and welcomed by your guide and then taken for sightseeing in Hue.
Hue served as the capital of Vietnam for more than 140 years. It houses ancient temples, imperial buildings and French-style edifices. It was established in the 17th century.
Visit the Imperial Tombs of Tu Duc and Khai Dinh
Venture into the countryside around Hue to the Imperial Tomb of Tu Duc. Tu Duc, the longest reigning Vietnamese emperor, designed and built this elegant tomb during his lifetime, using it as a retreat for meditation, reading and theatre performances. Take some time to soak in the tranquil atmosphere, wandering among the gracefully proportioned pavilions, courtyards and lotus ponds. Afterwards visit the Imperial Tomb of Khai Dinh, dramatically located on a hillside. The last of the monumental tombs of the Nguyen dynasty, completed in 1931, this tomb incorporates distinct European elements into traditional Vietnamese architecture.
Overnight in Hue
Category A Property: Mondial Hue Hotel (Superior with City/Pool View)
Category B Property: Muong Thanh Hue Hotel (Deluxe City View)
Category C Property: Imperial Hotel, Hue (Deluxe City View)
Day 8 Hue – Hoi An (Breakfast: Hotel)
This morning, enjoy an excursion to Thien Mu Pagoda with a boat trip on the Perfume river.
Excursion to Thien Mu Pagoda with a boat trip on the Perfume River
Embark on a local boat and cruise down the Pefume River to the iconic Thien Mu Pagoda, an elegant seven-tiered octagonal tower which has become Hue’s most widely recognizable monuments. During the early 1960s, this became a centre of anti-government protests, and the site of the famous self-immolation by the monk Thich Quang Duc.
Visit the Old Imperial City
Located in the heart of Hue is the Imperial Citadel, a vast complex built in the early 19th century and modelled after the Forbidden City of Peking. The original walls stretched for 10 km and were surrounded by a wide moat. Today, most of the buildings have been destroyed due to bombing during the Vietnam-American War, but the monuments that remain provide a fascinating glimpse into the court life of the Nguyen Dynasty. Approach the city past the striking Flag Tower, where a giant Vietnamese flag waves proudly overhead, to the imposing Ngo Mon Gate, the main entrance to the Imperial Enclosure. Enter into an area of spacious courtyards and serene lotus ponds, and visit Dien Tho Residence (Dien Tho palace) where the Queen mother lived, visit Thai Hoa Palace, the magnificently decorated reception hall, the Halls of the Mandarins, and the original Nine Dynastic Urns, among other sites, including a visit to the Hue Royal Antiquities Museum.
When finished touring Hue, drive from Hue to Hoi An and on arrvial, enjoy a city tour of Hoi An.
Hoi An city tour
Hoi An, a picturesque riverside town, was one of South-East Asia’s major international ports during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. This walking tour includes many of the town’s highlights. Visit the Japanese Covered Bridge, constructed in 1593 by the Japanese community to link the town with the Chinese quarters across the stream. Near the bridge is Sa Huynh Museum which houses exhibitions from the earliest period of Hoi An’s history. Wander into the Tran Family Chapel, a 200 year old house built for worshipping ancestors. Visit Phuoc Kien Assembly Hall, a Chinese pagoda built around 1690 and enlarged in 1900. It is typical of the Chinese clans in the Hoi An area and is dedicated to Thien Hau Thanh Mau, the Goddess of the Sea and Protector of Sailors and Fishermen. Also enter into a Lantern Making Workshop to see how the frame is made and the silk cloth put onto the lantern.
Overnight in Hoi An
Category A Property: Lotus Hoian Boutique Hotel & Spa (Superior)
Category B Property: Thanh Binh Riverside Hoi An (Deluxe River View)
Category C Property: Sunrise Premium Resort Hoi An (Deluxe)
Day 9 Hoi An – Danang – Hanoi – Halong (Breakfast: Hotel)
This morning, transfer from Hoi An to Danang airport for your flight from Danang to Hanoi.
Upon arrival, you are met and welcomed at the airport by your guide and then enjoy a tour of Hani
Hanoi city tour
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’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 miniature ONE PILLAR PAGODA. Also dating from the 11th century, this monument was rebuilt after being destroyed by the French in 1954.
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.
Finally, discover the OLD QUARTER of Hanoi by walk. This fascinating network of narrow alleys and shophouses is also known as ‘The 36 Streets,’ each street being named after the merchandise traditionally sold there, ranging from fabrics to crafts to medicines to tombstones. A handicraft-lover’s paradise and a endlessly interesting place to explore local life.
Afterwards, travel by vehicle from Hanoi to Halong Bay and on arrival, check in to your hotel.
Overnight in Halong Bay
Category A Property: Heritage Halong Hotel (Superior)
Category B Property: Royal Lotus Hotel Halong (Premium)
Category C Property: Novotel Ha Long Bay
Day 10 Halong – Hanoi (Breakfast: Hotel / Lunch: Meals incl. in itinerary (Vietnam) )
This morning, transfer to the Tuan Chau Marina Port and board your boat for a cruise through Halong Bay including lunch.
Halong Bay Cruise
Board a traditional wooden junk and begin cruising through the beautiful Halong Bay. Enjoy lunch while passing interesting rock formations including Stone Dog, Incense Burner (Dinh Huong) and Fighting Cock (Ga Choi). Visit one of the caves in the centre of the islands such as Thien Cung (Heavenly Residence Grotto).
Cruise back to Halong Pier and disembark, then you will be transferred back by vehicle from Halong to Hanoi.
Overnight in Hanoi
Category A Property: May De Ville City Centre 2 (Run of the House)
Category B Property: Anise Hotel (Deluxe room)
Category C Property: Sheraton Hanoi Hotel (Deluxe)
Day 11 Hanoi – Vientiane (Breakfast: Hotel )
Today, you will be transferred to the airport for flight from Hanoi to Vientiane.
Sightseeing in Vientiane
The capital city of Laos, Vientiane, still feels like a sleepy city with relaxed charm, tree-lined boulevards, and interesting temples and colourful markets. Tour the many highlights of the city, including Pha That Luang, a gleaming golden stupa which is perhaps the most important national monument in Laos; Ho Pha Keo, the formal royal temple, now a museum with beautiful examples of Buddhist sculpture; Wat Si Saket; and Patuxai, a monumental arch inspired by the Arc de Triomphe, but executed with Lao motifs.
Category A Property: Sengtawan Riverside Hotel
Category B Property: Ibis Vientiane Nam Phu Hotel
Category C Property: Ansara Hotel
Day 12 Vientiane – Luang Prabang (Breakfast: Hotel )
Today, you will be transferred to the airport for flight from Hanoi to Luang Prabang.
Upon arrival, you are met and welcomed by your guide and then enjoy a tour of Luang Prabang.
Sightseeing in Luang Prabang
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. Begin your tour with Wat Visoun (Wat Wisunalat). The oldest living temple in Luang Prabang, Wat Visoun dates back to 1513 and contains a collection of antique wooden Buddhas. Visit the nearby Wat Aham before continuing to Wat Xieng, the crown 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 (Wat Street) of Luang Prabang. Time permitting, stop at some of the many temples that line its sides, including Wat Sibounheuang, Wat Si Moungkhoun, Wat Sop and Wat Sene.
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.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Category A Property: Treasure Hotel Laos (Studio Courtyard)
Category B Property: My Dream Boutique Resort (Classic Garden Dream)
Category C Property: Luangprabang View Hotel (Standard)
Day 13 Luang Prabang (Breakfast: Hotel )
Sightseeing in Luang Prabang
In the morning, visit a local market to see the bustle and activity of the early morning. 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.
Excursion to Kuang Si Waterfalls
From Luang Prabang, travel by vehicle to to Kuang Si Waterfall. This waterfall is located in a perfect natural setting near Luang Prabang, this multi-tiered waterfall tumbles over limestone formations into a series of turquoise pools. Enjoy swimming in the clear water or just relaxing in the natural environment. Visit a local village (Ban Ou or Ban Na Ouane) on the way, before returning to Luang Prabang by vehicle.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.
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, a local village famous for the production of lao lao, the local rice wine whisky.
Visit the weaving village of Ban Xang Khong
Visit 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 (Breakfast: Hotel )
This morning is free at leisure until the time for your transfer to the airport for onward flight.
Based on Category A
- For 7-11 passengers: $2290
- For 3 – 6 passengers: $2665
- For 2 passengers: $3000
- For 1 passenger: $4645
- Single supplement: $495
Based on Category B
- For 7-11 passengers: $2445
- For 3 – 6 passengers: $2825
- For 2 passengers: $3155
- For 1 passenger: $4960
- Single supplement: $645
Based on Category C
- For 7-11 passengers: $3025
- For 3 – 6 passengers: $3405
- For 2 passengers: $3740
- For 1 passenger: $6095
- Single supplement: $1195