Discovery Vietnam and Cambodia Tour 14 Days

Discovery Vietnam and Cambodia Tour – 14 days

Day 1: Welcome to Hanoi (-/-/-)
Day 2: A palace, a museum, pagodas in Hanoi (B/L/-))
Day 3: Hanoi / Overnight cruising on Halong Bay (B/L/D)
Day 4: Halong Bay / Hue via Hanoi (B/L/-)
Day 5: Hue City tour (B/L/-)
Day 6: Hue – Danang – Hoian (B/L/-)
Day 7: Hoian – day for special experience tours/Join a group (B/L/-)
Day 8: Hoian – HCMC – Cu Chi Tunnel (B/-/-)
Day 9: Mekong Delta – Cai Be floating market -2 hrs by minivan (B/L)
Day 10: Ho Chi Minh city tour – Express bus to Phnom Penh (B/-/-)
Day 11: Phnom Penh, Cambodia(B/-/-)
Day 12: Phnom Penh – Siem Reap (B/-/-)
Day 13: Siem Reap Discovery (B/-/)
Day 14: Siem Reap – Departure (B/-/)
Tips for visiting Vietnam & Cambodia
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Day 1: Welcome to Hanoi (-/-/-)

Meals: N/A

Fly to Hanoi, VIETNAM 

This is your first day of Vietnam and Cambodia discovery

Welcome to Vietnam.

Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport, obtain your Vietnam visa (with pre-approval letter), and then clear Immigration and Customs. After collecting your baggage, exit the airport to meet outside our tour guide. He/she will be holding a sign with your names on it. From the airport, you will be privately transferred to your lovely hotel. Settle in and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.

Overnight in Hanoi

Day 2: A palace, a museum, pagodas in Hanoi (B/L/-))

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Morning, you’ll head out with your guide and begins with a visit Ba Dinh Square to see Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum (Closed on Monday, Friday and all afternoon), the museum to his life and the simple cottage where he lived and worked, along with his “house on stilts” and his final resting place; and take in Hanoi’s famous One-Pillar Pagoda, constructed in 1049 to resemble a lotus blossom. Continue to the Museum of Ethnology, where we’ll learn about the fascinating cultural diversity of this ancient land.

This afternoon, drive through Colonial Hanoi, seeing the Opera House and other local sights. Go inside infamous Hoa Lo Prison museum (“Hanoi Hilton”), where Senator John McCain and Douglas “Pete” Wilson were once imprisoned, and continue to the Temple of Literature, which dates back to 1070 and is dedicated to the cult of Confucius. Next enjoy a cyclo tour through the Hanoi’s Old Quarter, a network of narrow alleys and shop houses also known as “The 36 Streets.” This is a wonderful place to watch the local life, and peruse items from fabrics to crafts to exotic medicines. Enjoy a traditional Vietnamese water puppet performance, a uniquely North Vietnamese art form celebrating rural life and folklore for over 1,000 years, this evening. 

Please note:  The city tour program is flexible. Your guide will be more than happy to adjust the tour itinerary to suit you. You can skip one site or add another if you so wish.

Overnight in Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi / Overnight cruising on Halong Bay (B/L/D)

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

After breakfast you will leave Hanoi for the 3.5 hour journey to Halong Bay, passing through a number of North Vietnamese towns and villages. Upon arrival you will be welcomed aboard your traditional junk; designed in the same style as those that have sailed the bay for 100’s of years. Begin a relaxing and unforgettable cruise around the breathtaking and unique limestone karsts and islets. A delicious fresh seafood lunch will be served as you cruise this spectacular bay, a UNESCO listed site.  After lunch you will explore some of Halong Bay’s famous caves by bamboo boat or kayaking based on your preference. And then reach on the top of Soi Sim beach to have a panorama view of Halong Bay.  All activities arranged by the cruise are on a shared basis. 

Return to your junk boat to watch a cooking class or fruits & vegetable carving on sundeck – How to make spring rolls. Then enjoy Sunset Party together and Happy Hour (buys two drinks, gets one free from 18.00 to 19.00). It is time for chit chat and relaxing before enjoy your dinner and evening activities around the bar.

Please note: Program may differ slightly base on cruise ships. An extra night can be added to the program. If your time is flexible, we highly recommend it.

Overnight onboard in Halong bay

Day 4: Halong Bay / Hue via Hanoi (B/L/-)

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Keep joining the 2nd day’s activities as Wake to see the sunrise over the spectacular horizon, reflecting in the pristine waters of the bay, with a cup of tea or coffee. Then join a Tai Chi class on the sundeck if you wish before enjoying breakfast in the fresh air. Continue to sail around this natural wonder. Visit a fishing/pearl farm village in the bay.

Get on the shuttle bus again to coming back Hanoi.

Arrive in Hanoi, collect big baggage and take a private transfer to Hanoi airport for your short flight to Hue, Vietnam’s most beautiful city, and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located on the central coast of Vietnam. Fly Hanoi to Hue on Vietnam Airlines VN 1905, departing 19:05, arriving 20:15

Welcome to Hue. Upon arrival at Phu Bai Airport, collecting your baggage, exit the airport and meet our driver. He will be holding a sign with your names on it. From the airport, you will be privately transferred to your lovely hotel. Settle in and enjoy the evening at your leisure.

Overnight in Hue

Day 5: Hue City tour (B/L/-)

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Morning tour of the Imperial Citadel & Thien Mu Pagoda: This morning visit the Imperial Citadel and the Forbidden Purple City nearby. Modeled on the Forbidden City in Beijing by the Nguyen emperors in the early 19th century, the city was badly damaged during the war but the imposing city walls surrounded by a large moat afford good views of Hué. The palace retains a feeling of its past scale and importance, with detailed stonework and pavilions and it is at the moment in the process of being restored to its former magnificence. Take a boat trip along Perfume River to Thien Mu Pagoda, sitting on the riverbank outside the city, this octagonal seven tier stupa has long been regarded as the symbol of Hué and was founded in 1601. It is still a site of Buddhist worship and its huge bell is said to be audible from the city.

Afternoon tour of Royal Mausoleums: After lunch at local restaurant (on own account) you’ll continue to explore Emperor Tombs Hue’s environment is dotted with tombs of past emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty. Construction of the tombs was meticulous carried out starting whilst the king was still alive in order to ensure his comfort in the next life. Most of the tombs have courtyards, a temple for worship, statues of elephants and figures and a pond, but the layout of each is different reflecting differing each king’s personality and style. They have a lovely peaceful atmosphere. Khai Dinh and the tomb of 19th-century emperor Tu Duc, considered the most beautiful mausoleums around Hue. Each ruler of the Imperial City built his own tomb during his reign.

Overnight in Hue

Day 6: Hue – Danang – Hoian (B/L/-)

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch 

Road journey from Hue to Hoian: Morning, you’ll be driven south along highway 1 to Hoian, a journey of approximately 3 hours with a short visit Cham architecture & art museum in Danang.

Afternoon tour of Hoi An: Today you’ll discover how the traditions of the past are treasured in the present in Hoi An on the Thu Bon River, a key international trading port between the 15th and 19th centuries – now a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its well-preserved, centuries-old streets, dwellings, temples and pagodas, touring Hoi An’s historic highlights. Explore its shop-lined streets, view the red-painted Japanese Covered Bridge – the three Chinese characters over the door mean “bridge for passers-by from afar” and tour the 200-year-old “Phung Hung” house, noted for its unique architecture. What you’ll see there will reveal much about the lives of Hoi An merchants long ago. Visit the workshop of a traditional lantern maker for a demonstration of this time-honored craft; meet the artisans and try your skills as you create your own lantern to take home. 

Overnight in Hoian

Day 7: Hoian – day for special experience tours/Join a group (B/L/-)

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Day guided tour to discover Hoian & Vietnam in special way

Among these tours below, please select one which you are wishing to experience most.

  1. Wet Rice Farmer (4.5 hours)

Learn hands on about the whole process of how rice reaches its finished product.  Start the day by riding a water buffalo and then take part in plough, raking, sowing, planting, grinding and separating the rice and making rice flour. At the end of the tour you will have the opportunity to cook and eat beautiful crispy pancakes which will be served with a cool drink. This whole experience is held on a family farm and will be something you will never forget. 

  1. Fishermen & Palm Paradise (4 hours)

With this tour, you will enjoy a wide range of experiences – from learning traditional fishing techniques to paddling the strange and unique Vietnamese bamboo basket boats while exploring the now tranquil coconut-palm flanked waterways of a past war.  On this tour we provide an authentic social and cultural insight into the local Vietnamese way of life. As well you will take part in some hands-on activities that are fun, safe and interesting to people all of ages.  

  1. Wet market visit and cooking class at Red Bridge Restaurant & Cooking School (4.5 hours) 

Join this tour to enjoy fun & interesting half-day learning about Vietnamese food and the Hoian way of life.  You will have a change visit Hoian’s colorful market with the professional chief, experience the amazing sights, sounds and aromas of this busy market, interact with the local sellers and learn about all the ingredients to be used in the cooking lesson before enjoy a leisurely cruise (25 minutes) along the Hoi An River to the Red Bridge Cooking School. This is a chance to view local river life, so make sure your camera is handy. 

The cooking lesson runs for about 2 hours – the Red Bridge chefs first demonstrate each dish before we prepare the same dish ourselves. Included in the class is a brief introduction to Vietnamese food carving (plate decoration). After the lesson, we sit down and eat what we have cooked. 

Bring your swimsuit and after the cooking tour has finished relax and enjoy free use of our 20 meter swimming pool – towels and showers provided.

Overnight in Hoian

Day 8: Hoian – HCMC – Cu Chi Tunnel (B/-/-)

Meals: Breakfast

Morning, you’ll be transferred to the airport in time for your flight to Ho Chi Minh. Fly Danang to HCMC on Vietnam Airlines VN 7129, departing 09:35, arriving 10:55 

Welcome to HCMC. Upon arrival at HCMC Airport. After collecting your baggage, exit the airport to meet outside our guide. He/she will be holding a sign with your names on it. From the airport, you will be privately transferred straight to Cu Chi Tunnel,  enjoy scenic drive through the countryside as people work on their rice paddies and thatched hut villages scattered along the way.

Have a short break and enjoy Lunch before visiting the historical site.

Arriving at the Cu Chi Tunnels to explore part of the 151-mile underground network that zigzagged from the southern tip of the Ho Chi Minh Trail near Cambodia to the Saigon River. Cu Chi is a must for anyone interested in understanding a vital aspect of guerrilla warfare fought by the Vietnamese against both the French and the Americans. These criss-crossing tunnels were begun in the late 1940s by local resistance fighters looking for a place to hide their weapons from the French. Discover secret trapdoors, field hospitals, command posts, underground kitchens, living areas and meeting rooms. 

Back to HCMC in the late afternoon. Settle in and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.  

Overnight in HCMC

Day 9: Mekong Delta – Cai Be floating market -2 hrs by minivan (B/L)

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Transferring from your hotel at 7.00am to Mekong Delta, you will reach Cai Be at 9.30 AM. You first stop-over – Cao Dai Temple in Cai Be which is symbolizing for the local unique religion and then the Cai Be Cathedral

After that, you will embark on the boat to visit the inland and floating markets of Cai Be to observe the daily life of local people as well as to know how the two markets different from each other. 

You will buy fresh tropical fruits right at locals’ own boats and have chance to talk to them for exploring more their own culture value along with their daily life.

Leaving the market, you will continue with a hand-rowing boat tour to discover the exciting Mekong river life. The small boat will travel through the tiny canals and lead you to our mysterious spots here. 

Back to the main tourist boat and transfer to a hosted family (located on Tan Phong Island). Take a short rest, have a drink and taste the local fresh fruits. 

Next, we will cycle/motorbike around Tan Phong Island to visit Tan Phong Island. If it is on schooldays, you will also have a chance to make friends with local cute and gentle pupils in a village school. Stop at a local farmer’s house to savour a cup of tea and local specialties of banana candies. You can try plucking the fruits at the host’s garden and talk to him to understand how local farmers take care for their gardens.

Saying goodbye to the hospitable host, we keep on biking to the bang conical hat (nón bàng) workshop if they open. You will cycle back to the family for lunch with local food and break before embarking on boat to leave Tan Phong Island for the pier to come back Ho Chi Minh City at 17:30. Finish this day. 

Overnight in HCMC

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh city tour – Express bus to Phnom Penh (B/-/-)

Meals: Breakfast 

 HCMC Morning city tour: We’ll discover Saigon’s historic landmarks including the Independence Palace. Also known as Independence Palace, the building was built on the site of the former Norodom Palace and designed by by architect Ngo Viet Thu. This used to be the home and workplace of the President of South Vietnam during the war until the Fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975, when a Vietnamese Army tank crashed through its gates.

Next visit the FITO Museum. It is the first museum of Vietnamese medicine. On display are nearly 3,000 items dating back to the Stone Age. Exhibits include tools used to prepare medicine, knives, mortars and pestles, documents and objects from a traditional pharmacy. The museum regularly screens a documentary about the history of medicine. Continue visiting to the 1880’s General Post Office and the late 19th century Notre Dame cathedral, located in a peaceful part of the city.

At 13:00 pm in the afternoon, we will take you to the bus station for a shuttle bus to Phnom Penh . Enjoy a journey 6 hours and a half on our comfortable bus. You are provided free wifi, a bottle of water, cold towel, and snack. 

When you arrive in Phnom Penh station, you will be picked up and transferred to your hotel by private driver. Settle in and enjoy the evening at your leisure. 

Overnight in Phnom Penh

Day 11: Phnom Penh, Cambodia(B/-/-)

Meals: Breakfast

This morning, meet your personal guide and driver and drive to the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek and Tuol Sleng Museum. Between 1975 and 1978 about 17,000 men, women, children and infants (including nine westerners) detained and tortured at S-21 prison were transported to the extermination camp of Choeung Ek. They were often bludgeoned to death to avoid wasting precious bullets. Over 8,000 skulls, arranged by sex and age, are visible behind the clear glass panels of the Memorial Stupa, which was erected in 1988.

After lunch at a local restaurant (on own account) continue to discover the Royal Palace built in 1866 by King Norodom. See the different structures of this pagoda-style compound and stroll in its beautiful garden. Visit the Silver Pagoda so named because of its floor that is comprised of 5,000 silver tiles. A gold Buddha encrusted with 9,584 diamonds and a small 17th century emerald and baccarat crystal Buddha are also housed here. Next, visit the National Museum. Hundreds of pieces are housed here including both pre-and post-Angkorian pieces. Finish your tour at the city’s namesake, Wat Phnom. Founded in 1373, the pagoda was built to house Buddhist relics washed ashore by the river. Later this afternoon enjoy one-hour sunset cruise on the Mekong and Tonle Sap Rivers. The boat will pass past floating villages, providing great views of the city’s rapidly changing skyline. 

Overnight in Phnom Penh

cambodia trAVEL Tips & advices

Day 12: Phnom Penh – Siem Reap (B/-/-)

Meals: Breakfast

After leisurely morning, you will be transferred to the airport in time for your flight to Siem Reap

Fly Phnom Penh to Siem Reap on Cambodia Angkor Air K6 103, departing 10:30, arriving 11:15 

Welcome to Siem Reap. Upon arrival at Siem Reap Airport. After collecting your baggage, exit the airport to meet outside your tour guide. He/she will be holding a sign with your names on it. From the airport, you will be privately transferred to your hotel.  

Afternoon tour of Angkor Thom & the Bayon: After settling in and enjoying a bit of free time, you’ll head out with your guide and spend the afternoon visit the ancient capital of Angkor Thom (12th century). See the South Gate with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk, visit Bayon temple (unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara), Baphuon (recently re-opened after years of restoration), the Royal Enclosure, Phimeanakas, the Elephants Terrace, and the Terrace of the Leper King. 

Overnight in Siem Reap

Optional excursion: Please contact us if you interest. 

– Enjoy an Elephant Ride : Enjoy a 20-minute ride on these majestic and good-natured animals from South Gate of Angkor Thom to Bayon or around Bayon Temple. 

– Performance show at Phare Circus

Day 13: Siem Reap Discovery (B/-/)

Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast spend the morning on an extensive tour of The jungle covered temple of Ta Prohm is an incredible sight. There are enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers which have entwined themselves in the stone foundations of the structure, giving the impression of man’s creation being reclaimed by the powerful forces of nature.  You will explore this masterpiece, as well as some of the surrounding temples, including Banteay Kdei, Sra Srong, Ta Keo, Thommanon and Chau Say Tevado.  

In the afternoon, take a discovery to the magnificent 12th century Angkor Wat. This architectural masterpiece was constructed in the 12th Century and covers an area of about 210 hectares. You will stroll around this massive edifice, seeing the many galleries, with ornate columns, libraries, pavilions, courtyards and ponds reflecting the towering temple.  Next, you’ll walk up Phnom Bakheng Hill for a view of the spectacular sunset overlooking sandstone monuments.  

Overnight in Siem Reap

Day 14: Siem Reap – Departure (B/-/)

Meals: Breakfast

Today is your final day of Vietnam & Cambodia tour

You are free to chill out and relax. Depending on your departure flight, your private driver will pick you up from the hotel and transfer you to the airport in time for your flight to the next destination. They will ensure you are the correct gate. We wish you a safe and pleasant journey. 

Suggestion: If your departure flight is in the afternoon or evening,  you can think about taking an Optional morning tour to Lake Tonle Sap: 

“This is an excursion to the floating village of Chong Khneas, located 10 kilometers south of Siem Reap and then take a traditional wooden boat for a ride on the Tonle Sap Lake, the “Great Lake”of Cambodia, one of the largest in Asia” 

Discovery Vietnam and Cambodia Tour 14 Days
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