Days
20
Price from
£2,640GBP

Discover the incredible diversity, delectable cuisines, dramatic histories and natural beauty of Cambodia and Vietnam. Delve into the dramatic Khmer legacy in Phnom Penh, view Vietnam's colourful history on the busy streets of Saigon and explore the colonial-era amongst the grand architecture of Hanoi. This trip offers places of breathtaking beauty, from the beaches of Nha Trang and the backwaters of the Mekong Delta, to the jungles of Cambodia and the wonder of Halong Bay. Add to that a mix of friendly locals and age-old traditions for the ultimate Indochina experience.


Start
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Finish
Hanoi, Vietnam
Countries
Cambodia, Vietnam
Style
Peregrine
Code
PAJIC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why we love this trip

  • Discover the incredible diversity, delectable cuisines, dramatic history, natural beauty, friendly locals and age-old traditions of Cambodia and Vietnam on the ultimate Indochina experience

  • Delve into the dramatic Khmer legacy in Phnom Penh, view Vietnam's colourful history on the busy streets of Saigon and explore the colonial-era amongst the grand architecture of Hanoi

  • This trip serves up a wealth of South East Asia’s breath-taking beauty, from the beaches of Nha Trang and the backwaters of the Mekong Delta, to the jungles of Cambodia and the wonder of Halong Bay

Is this trip right for you?

  • The bloody rule of the Khmer Rouge is a painful but important part of Cambodian history to confront. If you would rather not visit the Tuol Sleng Prison Museum and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek, just let your leader know.

  • One night is spent in more basic homestay accommodation. While the homestays used can vary, be prepared for camp beds with mosquito nets in a dormitory style, with shared facilities. However, most travellers find that this experience is the best way to connect with locals, and a real highlight.

  • A boat trip from Nha Trang is included, riding in a smaller basket boat, with the opportunity for snorkelling. Let you leader know if you have any concerns about water-based activities.

  • Vietnam average temperatures vary greatly between South and North. While there is no best time of year, it's best to check the seasonal patterns on our country information page to gauge what the weather will be like and to pack layers to tackle this disparity in weather.

Itinerary

Sua s'dei. Welcome to Phnom Penh, Cambodia. You'll be transferred to your hotel – check with hotel reception for more information about your important group meeting this evening. If you have free time in the afternoon, perhaps stroll the streets of Phnom Penh and explore the city, taking in the interesting French colonial architecture. The National Museum, with its collection of classic Khmer craftsmanship, is well worth a visit. Dinner tonight will be at the restaurant run by the Friends organisation. You might decide to go for a drink at the Foreign Correspondents' Club afterwards. 
Accommodation
  • Aquarius Hotel or similiar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Special Information
The restaurant run by the Friends organisation is closed on public and school holidays. Alternative dinner arrangements will be made during these times.
Today a full city tour introduces you to the sights of Phnom Penh, a city that lies near the confluence of the Mekong and Tonle Sap rivers. The private quarters of the Royal Palace are home to King Sihamoni and are closed to the public. You will, however, be able to visit the Silver Pagoda that lies in the palace complex, which is the most sacred temple in the country. Phnom Penh remains a living relic of the country’s past struggles and successes. Your included visits to the Tuol Sleng Prison Museum and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek 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. An ideal way to spend your second evening here is to relax in a cafe by the riverfront.
Accommodation
  • Aquarius Hotel or similiar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng Prison Museum (S21)
  • Phnom Penh - Choeung Ek (Killing Fields)
  • Phnom Penh - Royal Palace & Silver Pagoda
Optional Activities
  • Phnom Penh - Wat Phnom - USD2
  • Phnom Penh - National Museum - USD5
  • Phnom Penh - Cyclo tour - USD4
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
The Tuol Sleng Prison Museum and Killing Fields of Choeung Ek are major parts of the experience here, but if you don't wish to visit them, please inform your tour leader.
Fly north to Siem Reap (approximately 40 minutes) where the great temples of Angkor await. 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. Later you head out of town to a working Monastery to learn more about the life of a Monk and Theravada Buddhism. Buddhism in Cambodia is a way of life that most people incorporate into their daily life. You will get to meet the Monks, enjoy a sacred water blessing for good luck and prosperity and see the fascinating Pagoda art at this temple. On the way back into town you will visit Angkor Children’s Hospital Friends Centre to learn more about the hospital’s activities. The Friends Centre features rotating art and photography exhibitions as well as the work of founder Kenro Izu.
Accommodation
  • Navutu Dreams Resort & Spa or similiar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Childrens Hospital Visitor Center
  • Siem Reap - Buddhist Monastery visit
  • Siem Reap - Lunch at Sala Bai
Optional Activities
  • Siem Reap - Phare Cambodia Circus Ticket - USD15
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
The Sala Bai Hotel School is closed on public and school holidays, so on these days an alternative restaurant will be used.
Spend a full day visiting the amazing temples of Angkor on a guided exploration. Angkor Wat is 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 is 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. After lunch you will head to the Ta Prohm temple, which has large trees embedded in the stone foundations of the structure – a powerful symbol of nature. In the afternoon you will travel into the countryside to a local farming community, take a walk through the rice fields and learn about Cambodian stilt homes and life in a typical farming village. Husk Cambodia - a non government organisation is working directly with this community and you will get to hear the wonderful support they are providing to help improve the lives of Cambodian families. End the day with a stop for cocktails at a scenic point overlooking the countryside before returning back to our hotel.
Accommodation
  • Navutu Dreams Resort & Spa or similiar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Siem Reap - Three Day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour
  • Siem Reap - Countryside village walking tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Embrace a very early start today if you wish to experience a sunrise visit to the Angkor complex (this is optional). From here, continue onto Banteay Srei. You'll see it's not a huge temple, but thanks to its intricate stone carvings it is sometimes referred to as ‘the jewel in the crown of Angkorian art’. At this point you can either head back to your hotel or carry on exploring more temples, such as Preah Khan. This temple contains a maze of vaulted corridors and is another complex that has been largely reclaimed by the jungle. Your ticket for the Angkor ruins also lets you spend more time exploring this site. Otherwise you might like to take a free afternoon to explore the town. If you have time, perhaps indulge in a traditional Khmer massage. Tonight you will enjoy a final nights dinner at a great restaurant in town serving local cuisine.
Accommodation
  • Navutu Dreams Resort & Spa or similiar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Banteay Srei temple
Optional Activities
  • Siem Reap - Khmer Traditional Massage - USD17
  • Siem Reap - Landmine museum - USD5
  • Siem Reap - Tonle Sap Lake Boat Trip - USD15
  • Siem Reap - Remork transport to Tonle Sap Lake - USD10
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Leave Cambodia behind today with a transfer to the airport and a short flight to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Please note that you are likely to be unescorted on this flight, but you will be met in the arrivals hall of the Tan Son Nhat International Airport by a local representative and transferred to your hotel.

This evening you will gather together for another briefing with your Vietnamese tour leader. This meeting is followed by a group dinner with your group at one of the Ho Chi Minh City's excellent eateries.
Accommodation
  • Millennium Boutique Hotel or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Sit down to a leisurely buffet breakfast at KOTO this morning. This restaurant is designed to give disadvantaged youth an education in hospitality. Then you'll drive south to Cai Be for a boat cruise along the intricate and beautiful waterways of the Mekong Delta. En route you'll stop and visit an orchard and sample some local tropical fruit, and visit some local cottage industries. As the sun starts to drop, continue to your homestay, your place of rest tonight. Here you will enjoy a beautiful home-cooked meal of local specialties.
Accommodation
  • Mekong Delta Homestay (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Mekong Delta - Sightseeing tour including cottage industries
  • Ho Chi Minh City - KOTO breakfast
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
The sleeping arrangement is a dormitory-style room with single camp beds. Bedding and mosquito nets are supplied. Keep in mind that the bathrooms are very simple and will only have cold water available. We do rotate the homestays to share business around, so amenities may vary slightly. While accommodation tonight is basic, typically our travellers find that the experience of seeing life in a local community is more than worthwhile.
Today is an early start, as after breakfast you will be taken to visit the bustling Cai Be floating market, a place awash with colour and activity. Mingle with the locals and browse the stalls at this delightfully unconventional bazaar. You will then return to Ho Chi Minh City for a walking tour around the city. You'll visit Reunification Palace, the War Remnants Museum and Notre Dame Cathedral. Admire the many beautiful French colonial buildings along the way, such as the main post office and the former Hotel de Ville (city hall).
Accommodation
  • Millennium Boutique Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ho Chi Minh City - Reunification Palace
  • Ho Chi Minh City - War Remnants Museum
  • Mekong Delta - Floating Market
  • Ho Chi Minh City - City tour
Optional Activities
  • HCMC - A O show - VND1050000
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This morning after breakfast it's time for a half-day trip to the Cu Chi Tunnels, an extensive underground network (some 200 kilometres) of tunnels dug initially by the Viet Minh and later expanded by the Viet Cong. They contained hospitals, dwellings and schools and were used extensively for refuge and storage, as well as being a military base. As you explore this extraordinary labyrinth you will learn more about its history and the 1968 Tet Offensive. A section of the tunnels has been widened to allow tourists to get a feel for what the underground life must have been like. Note that this will be hot and can be a little claustrophobic. Later this afternoon, fly to Nha Trang (approximately 1.5 hours).
Accommodation
  • Stella Maris Nha Trang Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ho Chi Minh City - Cu Chi Tunnels
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
With palm trees, white sandy beaches and a hip cosmopolitan atmosphere, Nha Trang is often referred to as the Cannes of the Orient. Venture out on a boat to explore the nearby islands today. From the main boat, you will take basket boats to shore and visit a fishing village. There's also the chance to snorkel in the pristine water, feast on a fresh included seafood buffet lunch and enjoy the sunshine on the deck of the boat.
Accommodation
  • Stella Maris Nha Trang Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Nha Trang - Boat trip including lunch
  • Nha Trang - Hon Mun Island swimming and snorkelling
  • Nha Trang - Basket boat ride
Optional Activities
  • Nha Trang - Mud baths - VND280000
  • Nha Trang - Po Nagar Cham Tower - VND22000
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Take a short flight to Danang (approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes). From here you will embark on a short minibus ride to Hoi An (approximately 1 hour). Hoi An was originally a Cham port town, but has been influenced by a myriad of traders from various cultures. With its charming low tiled houses and tranquil feel, this is a delightful town to walk around. You'll notice a distinctly Chinese appearance here, with pagodas and assembly halls scattered along the small lanes.
Accommodation
  • Atlas Hotel Hoi An or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
A morning walking tour today takes you to a historic house (formerly home to a prominent trader), the Japanese Covered Bridge, a Chinese assembly hall and a museum. Afterwards, sit down to a delicious lunch with the group. This afternoon you are free to make the most of Hoi An and its surrounding areas. Your leader will be able to help with suggestions for extra activities in Hoi An.
Accommodation
  • Atlas Hotel Hoi An or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hoi An - Ancient town walk and entrance ticket
Optional Activities
  • Hoi An - Street Food By Night Urban Adventure - USD28
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This evening, take a boat trip on the Thu Bon River and enjoy some drinks as you watch the sunset over picturesque Hoi An. This is one of the best times of day to see the city, as it basks a lovely sunset glow beside the river. Before this activity, the day is yours to spend as you please. Hoi An is renowned for its specialist tailors, so perhaps take this opportunity to get some clothing made from some unique local fabrics. If you feel like getting active, a lovely beach is located just nearby and is easily accessible by bicyle (these are easily rented). Or take a tour to My Son Cham to explore the ruins dating back to the 4th century. You might like to visit a local workshop to learn how to make your own rice paper. A Vietnamese cooking class too is a great way to familiarise yourself with some age-old culinary techniques, not to mentioning feasting on the fruits of your own labour.
Accommodation
  • Atlas Hotel Hoi An or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hoi An - Thu Bon sunset river cruise
Optional Activities
  • Hoi An - Hoi An Walking & Cooking Class Urban Adventure - USD49
  • Hoi An - My Son Cham day trip - USD35
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Depart beautiful Hoi An today for Hue, the former imperial capital and hub of Vietnam's historic past. En route pass through the Hai Van Pass – a scenic mountainous stretch of highway with views across Lang Co beach. You will also make a stop at this beach to stroll the shore. Arrive in Hue and discover its eclectic mix of frenetic streets and peaceful beauty. In the afternoon you will visit the Imperial Citadel, including the Forbidden Purple City. The latter was almost completely destroyed during the Tet Offensive in the Vietnam War, but its humble, foliage-covered ruins remain a testament to its proud history. Here you'll gain some insight into the horrific damage endured during the war.
Accommodation
  • Cherish Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hue - Imperial citadel
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Take a boat cruise on the Perfume River before visiting the Thien Mu Pagoda, the unofficial symbol of Hue. The Pagoda is an active Buddhist monastery that dates back to 1601. You will also enjoy lunch at a local nunnery or monastery. This not only allows you to sample some of Hue’s famed vegetarian food, but also offers a chance to learn about Vietnamese Buddhism. You will also visit the elaborate royal tomb of Emperor Tu Duc, with its beautiful lake, frangipani and pine trees.
Accommodation
  • Cherish Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hue - Royal tomb
  • Hue - Perfume River cruise
  • Hue Thien Mu Pagoda
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Fly from Hue to Hanoi today (approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes). Your departure will mostly likely be in the morning, but can vary a little. After some free time on arrival, be taken through the ancient '36 streets' and discover an amazing selection of shops that sell everything from souvenirs to exquisite silk clothing, jewellery and beautifully embroidered tablecloths. This afternoon, sit down to a water puppet performance. Your host Liem invites you into his home, a veritable small-scale theatre that continues a long running family tradition, passed down from generation to generation. Witness not only the show itself but gain an behind-the-scenes insight into how the puppets are made and animated. Liem is only too happy to discuss the history and development of this age-old cultural practice.
Accommodation
  • Lan Vien Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hanoi - Local water puppet performance
  • Hanoi - Old Quarter Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy a guided half-day tour of Hanoi, visiting the major sights, including the Temple of Literature, One Pillar Pagoda and the former residence of Vietnam’s most famous revolutionary, Ho Chi Minh.
In your free time, the Vietnam Fine Arts museum is well worth a visit. Walking is a great way to explore the city, with fun shopping and many lakes and parks provide enjoyable escapes. You'll see that this enchanting northern capital can be quieter than its southern counterpart.
Accommodation
  • Lan Vien Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Hanoi - Temple of Literature
  • Hanoi - One Pillar Pagoda & HCM stilt house
  • Hanoi - Old Quarter Tour
Optional Activities
  • Hanoi - Fine Arts Museum - VND30000
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Leave your luggage at the hotel and pack an overnight bag as you drive to Ha Long Bay (approximately 3 hours). Take in glorious views of this World Heritage-listed beauty and its spectacular limestone islands. You will travel to Bai Chay (Halong City West) and board a boat for an exploration of the bay, enjoying a seafood lunch and dinner (non-seafood is also available). A candle-lit dinner on the deck of the boat, weather permitting, is a truly memorable experience, as the views at sunset are stunning. You'll also visit a cave in the area, and there's the the chance to do some kayaking (optional and at extra cost). During the warmer months your leader will discuss the option for swimming from Ti Top Island. If the weather is obliging, the views at sunset are especially incredible.
Accommodation
  • Overnight boat (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Halong Bay - Overnight boat cruise
Optional Activities
  • Halong Bay - Kayaking - VND220000
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Our wooden junk-style boat has twin-share cabins with en suite facilities and air-conditioning. Due to the limited cabins on board our smaller vessel, the single supplement is excluded for tonight, and accommodation will be on a twin-share basis.
Local authorities only permit a limited number of boats to stay overnight in Halong Bay. To ensure we can accommodate all travellers on board available boats, on rare occassions we will use larger boats (approx. 12 cabins) or split the group between different vessels. A group leader will be present on each boat, and the route taken and inclusions on board will remain the same.
In the morning, sail back to the port, disembark and then take a bus back to Hanoi (approximately 4 hours). Arriving back in the capital, there will be free time to wander around and enjoy some of the city’s attractions you may have missed the first time. You can shop on Hang Gai Street or perhaps enjoy some afternoon tea at the Metropole Hotel. In the evening, enjoy a final dinner in a Hanoi restaurant, bidding farewell to your newfound friends.
Accommodation
  • Lan Vien Hotel or similar (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Hanoi - Hoa Lo 'Hanoi Hilton' Prison - VND30000
  • Hanoi - Museum of Ethnology - VND180000
  • Hanoi - Museum of Ethnology - VND40000
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Your journey comes to an end after breakfast today.
Optional Activities
  • Hanoi - Hanoi Street Food By Night Urban Adventure - USD31
  • Hanoi Urban Adventure - Citadels, Karsts & Cycle - USD88
  • Hanoi Urban Adventure - Village Discovery by Bike - USD33
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

18 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners

Transport

Boat, Plane, Private vehicle, Taxi

Accommodation

Homestay (1 night), Hotel (15 nights), Overnight boat (1 night)

Included Activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng Prison Museum (S21)
  • Phnom Penh - Choeung Ek (Killing Fields)
  • Phnom Penh - Royal Palace & Silver Pagoda
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Childrens Hospital Visitor Center
  • Siem Reap - Buddhist Monastery visit
  • Siem Reap - Lunch at Sala Bai
  • Siem Reap - Three Day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour
  • Siem Reap - Countryside village walking tour
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Banteay Srei temple
  • Mekong Delta - Sightseeing tour including cottage industries
  • Ho Chi Minh City - KOTO breakfast
  • Ho Chi Minh City - Reunification Palace
  • Ho Chi Minh City - War Remnants Museum
  • Mekong Delta - Floating Market
  • Ho Chi Minh City - City tour
  • Ho Chi Minh City - Cu Chi Tunnels
  • Nha Trang - Boat trip including lunch
  • Nha Trang - Hon Mun Island swimming and snorkelling
  • Nha Trang - Basket boat ride
  • Hoi An - Ancient town walk and entrance ticket
  • Hoi An - Thu Bon sunset river cruise
  • Hue - Imperial citadel
  • Hue - Royal tomb
  • Hue - Perfume River cruise
  • Hue Thien Mu Pagoda
  • Hanoi - Local water puppet performance
  • Hanoi - Old Quarter Tour
  • Hanoi - Temple of Literature
  • Hanoi - One Pillar Pagoda & HCM stilt house
  • Halong Bay - Overnight boat cruise

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. An airport arrival transfer is included. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking.
2. A Single Supplement to have your own room is available on this trip and excludes nights 7 (Mekong Delta homestay) and 18 (Halong Bay boat) where you will be in shared accommodation.
3. Passport Details: Please provide your full name exactly as per passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport), for internal flights and train tickets. Ticketing fees may apply for amendments to details within 45 days of departure, and in some cases you will be required to cover the cost of issuing a new ticket.
4. In 2016 the code for this trip was PAJI.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.