The best of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia

  • icon-date17 DAYS
  • icon-date25 Meals

This tour was focusing on promoting cultural exploration. The trip not only offers the “cannot miss” destinations but also takes you to many off-beaten path destinations. Starts from the hill tribal villages and most spectacular rice terrace fields in northern Vietnam and crosses the border to Laos to delve into the culture of the Buddhist land to Angkor Wat, the largest ancient monument in the world. Join us on a journey where you can touch and feel the cultural connection with the beauty of Indochina.

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Day 1: Hello Siem Reap (D)

Upon arriving at Siem Reap Airport, our guide and driver will be there to welcome you then drive you to your hotel. Relax after your long flight and enjoy a delicious welcome dinner at a local restaurant in town (Our first-day schedule could be modified to meet your time of arrival).

Day 2: Siem Reap – Angkor Temples (B)

Heading out of town we drive beyond the Angkor Complex through the Preah Dark village to the intricately carved and well-preserved Banteay Srei Temple. Stroll around this beautiful landmark which was designed to leave no space undecorated. The roads begin to deteriorate but it is still fascinating to drive past the rolling mountain scenery toward Kbal Spean. This interesting site, locally named the river of 1000 Lingars, has been largely reclaimed by the jungle; however, it involves a walk to catch a view over its riverbed carvings. The next stop is Banteay Samre which is adorned with striking relief depicting the scenes of Vishnu and Krishna legends. Today we also see various famous temples of the grand circuit such as Preah Khan, Kravan, Neak Pean, Krol Ko, Ta Som, East Mebon, and Pre Rup.

Day 3: Siem Reap – Ta Prohm – Ta Keo – Phnom Bakkeng Hill (B)

After enjoying our delicious breakfast, we will make our way to the jungle-covered temple of Ta Prohmw. There are enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers which embrace themselves in the stone foundations of the structure giving the impression of man’s creation being reclaimed by the powerful forces of nature. We first explore the well-known Ta Prohm and some nearby temples of Banteay Kdei, Sra Srong, Ta Keo, Thommanon, and Chau Say Nevado. They almost belong to the small circuit according to the archaeologists’ division. The architectural masterpiece of Angkor Wat is not to be missed. Strolling around this massive monument, exploring the many galleries with columns, libraries, pavilions, courtyards, and ponds full of water reflecting the towering temple. We round off our day with a walk up Phnom Bakheng Hill to admire the spectacular sunset over these sandstone monuments. After that, you will have a night free to explore the area on your own time.

Day 4: Siem Reap – Sai Gon arrival (B)

Temple exploration is not the only activity in Siem Reap. After breakfast we will visit the famous Tonle Sap Lake on a boat trip. This shallow lake boasts the largest natural freshwater body in Southeast Asia and flows into the Tonle Sap River which joins the Mekong River in Phnom Penh. The traditional boat navigates along a small river towards the gigantesque lake, giving us a chance to explore the floating village, local lifestyles, friendly children in small boats, and fishermen pulling in morning catch close up. Going back to your vans, and the driver and guide transfer you to Siem Reap Airport for a flight to Sai Gon. Our driver will be there already waiting to welcome you and then take you to your hotel in Saigon where you spend the night relax and get ready for another adventure.

Day 5: Saigon half day city tour – Cu Chi tunnels (B, L)

The guide and driver will pick you up from your hotel to Sai Gon. Arrive Sai Gon, we start our half-day city tour in Ho Chi Minh City. Our first destination in the city is the War Remnants Museum where we can be informed about the US invasion of Vietnam, and its absorbing exhibits give visitors an invaluable insight into a defining chapter in the Vietnam war’s history. Departure to Reunification Palace which was named in global history in 1975 and was built for the South Vietnam Government during the Vietnam-American War. After that, we will visit the famous French architecture Notre Dame Cathedral, and General Post Office. After seeing the attractions in Sai Gon, we will depart to Cu Chi tunnels. The tunnel system stretched over 250km, consisting of 3 levels of deep along the underground road from Saigon to Cambodia border. Once enter the gate, we will first watch an introduction video about the history of Cu Chi and its hardship during the American War. This will also give you an overview of the creation process of the tunnel systems. Explore the permitted areas of the tunnel systems including living areas (bedrooms and kitchens) and martial facilities (storage, field hospitals, weapon factories, and command center). Enjoy a complementary steamed coconut casava, Vietnamese guerillas surviving food during the war before heading back to Saigon. The night is at your free time.

Day 6: Mekong Delta – Sai Gon (B, L)

After having breakfast, we travel to Hung Vuong Pier in Ben Tre. Take a boat at Ben Tre River for sight-seeing lively activities along the river such as fishing, and water transfer. We will stop at the most popular places for handicraft workshops including a craft brickyard where the locals still use centuries-old traditional methods to handmade bricks, process coconut into many different forms, and weave mats with the aid of dried reeds and a huge loom. A local Xe Loi (motorized rickshaw) will take us into a tropical garden where we can taste the exotic tropical fruit and enjoy our homemade lunch. Spend the rest of the afternoon lounging on a sampan boat rowing through Ben Tre’s iconic backwaters with water palms and coconut trees. We will get back to Sai Gon for the night.

Day 7: Sai Gon – Fly to Da Nang airport – Hoi An (B)

Enjoy your delicious breakfast at your hotel. It is your time to explore Sai Gon city independently before the tour guide and driver come to transfer you to Tan Son Nhat Airport for flying to Da Nang. Then the driver escort you to your hotel in Hoi An, check-in, put off your luggage and get relax.

Day 8: My Son Holyland – Hoi An half day city tour (B)

Having your breakfast, you will be pick at your hotel to travel to My Son Holyland. The narrow valley at My Son, which was constructed about 900 years ago, consists of 70 monuments of ancient Champa art. This place used to be a religious ceremony site for the Champa’s Kings and national heroes. Takes 2 hours mini tour to explore and enjoy the wonderful architecture of the ancient Champa Kingdom.

Going back to Hoi An and having lunch. Then we begin a city tour with a walk through the old town to see remarkably well-preserved traditional houses that have withstood 200 years of weather and war. Visit a Japanese Covered Bridge which was first constructed in the 1590s by linking it with the Chinese quarters. Following TranPhu Street, we will get to The Assembly Halls. There are 4 Assembly Halls in Hoi An, each of those Halls belongs to a Chinese community that has its own beliefs, different assembly halls worship different gods and goddesses. On these tours, we’ll visit a local home on the outskirts of Hoi An to learn about the family’s long tradition of lantern-making.

Day 9: Hoi An – Da Nang – Hue (B, L)

After your breakfast, we begin to travel from Hoi An to Hue by car. On the way, we take you over beautiful Hai Van Pass – Vietnam’s geographical and psychological boundary between the North and the South. Hai Van attracts the tourists by the scenery of mountains hiding in the cloud, curvy roads surrounding from bottom to the top, it is a great place for the adventure to conquer and test self-limits. After that, we will stop at Lang Co beach to have a break and take some photos. Lang Co is an 8km white sandbank, mixing with the natural scenery of Hue forming a mysterious picture. The peaceful and charming fishing village and the beaches will win the hearts of tourists. Arrive at Hue city, check-in to the hotel and relax.

Day 10: Hue – Imperial City (B)

Our guide will pick you up at the hotel to visit the ancient tomb of Vietnam’s kings. The first stop will be The Nguyen Emperor Khai Dinh’s Royal Tomb which consists of many royal tombs. One of those belonged to Khai Dinh, who built his final resting place to be monumental in style and bombastic in execution. It has mixed architecture of Western and Asia, modern and traditional Vietnam. Tu Duc tomb is our next stop which is a complex system of the pavilion, temple, chamber, courtyard and personal palace and is also a symbol of himself, portraying one of the Nguyen Dynasty’s Emperors with majesty, power but elegance and grace. Afterward, make our way to the Citadel has a variety of structures in the royal style. Our guide will explain in depth about the history of the 13 reigns of the Nguyen Emperor while seeing the tombs. Then, take a romantic dragon boat trip on the Perfume River in front of Thien Mu pagoda to enjoy the sunset.

Day 11: Hue – Hello Hanoi (B)

Having your delicious breakfast at your hotel and exploring the city before the driver and guide come and take you to the airport for a flight to Ha Noi. Enjoy the rest of the day in your own free time. Don’t forget to get lost in the Old Town for good food and drinks. Do feel free to ask us for hot tips.

Day 12: Hanoi city tour (B)

After having breakfast, the first destination is the Temple of Literature – Quoc Tu Giam. It’s not only the first university in Vietnam, but it always lights the fire to light up the traditional fondness for the learning Vietnamese people. Students come here to get motivated before the upcoming important exam. Quoc Tu Giam has also been chosen for organizing the complimentary ceremonies, events on holiday, and being the icon of Ha Noi city. The second destination is the Ho Chi Minh complex, an important place for pilgrimage, which has built to honor and express gratitude to Uncle Ho. The most important part of the complex is the Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, where Uncle Ho’s corpse is for people all over the country and international visitors to visit their beloved old father. In front of the mausoleum is the Ba Dinh square. It has preserved many imprints of great events of the Vietnamese nation. On September 2, 1945, at this square, President Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence that gave birth to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. And then you will come to visit the Presidential Palace, a large French design building used as the workplace of the president. Behind the Presidential Palace is Ho Chi Minh’s Residence. This place will show you how simple the president lived in his whole life. Another signature place in the complex is One Pillar Pagoda, a strange architectural style pagoda built from 1049. And the final place will be the Ho Chi Minh Museum, a place to express gratitude and eternal memory of the great merits of President Ho Chi Minh. Continue to West Lake to visit Tran Quoc pagoda and Quan Thanh temple, one of the Thang Long four sacred temples. You will know more about the Taoism culture of Vietnam and enjoy the picturesque view of the biggest natural lake in Hanoi. Related tour: Hanoi Tours (Daily Tour)

In the afternoon, you will visit the fascinating Ethnology Museum (close on Monday), which is both a research center and a public museum exhibiting the ethnic groups of Vietnam. Besides visiting indoor and outdoor objects demonstrating the Vietnamese culture of 54 ethnic groups, you can join many interesting activities such as traditional festivities, water puppet, … The day ends beautifully with 1 hour on the cyclo to discover the alive Hanoi 36 streets in the Old Town. The bustling narrow streets will show you thousands of businesses and shopkeepers. “36 streets’ ‘ used to wellcome artisans and traders from villages around Ha Noi from 2000 years ago. The streets were named for what they sold.

Day 13: Spectacular Ha Long Bay (B, L, D)

After breakfast, you will be picked up and driven to Ha Long Bay- The “cannot miss” destinations when visiting Vietnam- wonder of the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Upon arrival, get on a cruise ship to start the journey around Ha Long Bay. It is no need to describe how amazing it is to see the spectacular landscapes with approximately 1600 limestone islands scattering the emerald green water surface and numerous natural caves. You will immerse yourself in nature by floating in the middle of the sea with a kayaking adventure. After kayaking, watch the sunset. I am sure being there at that magical hour will be a memorable experience for your trip. There will be drinks at the desk or interesting activities such as fishing with local people in the evening. Overnight on boat.

Day 14: Ha Long Bay – Hanoi – Fly to Luang Prabang (B, Br)

Your breakfast will be served while floating on the sea giving you another opportunity to capture the beauty of Ha Long Bay before disembarking time or join a cooking class that shows you how to make Vietnamese spring rolls and other traditional food. We will get back to Hanoi after having lunch on the boat. The driver transfers you to Noi Bai airport for a flight to Luang Prabang where you spend the night in your free time.

Day 15: Big Brother Mouse – Ban Khia Luang – Park Ou Cave (B, L)

This morning, we will visit the Big Brother Mouse shop to select some books for the visit to Ban Khia Luang village. The books will be given to the kids at school. After spending time with the local children, we will explore the village, see weaving, and visit local temples. Lunch will be served with a Western picnic style or traditional Laotian food. After lunch, we drive to Ban Khoklin and then took a private boat down to the Nam Ou River to get to Pak Ou Caves. The 2 linked caves are crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes. Return to Luang Prabang by the same means for the night.

Day 16: Luang Prabang – Kuang Si Waterfall – Ban Chan (B)

After breakfast, we will leave Luang Prabang by boat for the picturesque Ban Chan village, then visit Phousi market where we can see a variety of offers from dried buffalo skin, local tea, saltpeter among chickens to hill-tribe weavings. And now, it is the time to know the ethnic minority groups by visiting H’mong’s Ban Ouay village, then Laoloum’s Ban Ou village, and Khmu’s Ban Thapene village. In the afternoon, we will visit the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall which offers a natural swimming pool and a walk in the forest. Stay the night in Luang Prabang.

Day 17: Farewell Luang Prabang (B)

We enjoy one last hearty breakfast with our travel companions before getting transferred to Luang Prabang Airport where your journey with us ends with wonderful memories.