Epic Cambodia to Vietnam

Trip Code: TKYMC

Why we love it

Take a sunset cruise on the Mekong River of Phnom Penh and raise a glass (the drink is included) to one of the most serene settings in the country. Maybe keep the vibes going at a hip rooftop bar! , See the sunrise over the incredible Angkor complex and take a guided Tuk-tuk tour of all the best sites (including Angkor Wat and jungle-covered Ta Prohm) with a company focused on employing local women in the community. , Bliss out on a luxurious homestay in the National Park of Pu Luong – wake up to the serenity of quiet, terraced rice paddy fields, trek the local land to take in the scenery and meet some local tribes to learn about their culture. , See limestone karsts, blue-green waters, mysterious caves and ancient jungle on Cat Ba Island – this place feels a lot like paradise, and you’ll be kayaking your way through its hidden bays. , Tick Hanoi off your bucket list – walk the picturesque streets, try the famous banh mi and egg coffee and maybe even take a seat at a rooftop bar and order a pho cocktail. You'll have loads of free time to discover this place at your own pace, too!

Is this trip right for me?

Lots of time allocated for optional activities means freedom and flexibility, but also a level of independence. Only a few meals are included but your leader will have plenty of suggestions for great eats at any budget. This is a great way to mingle with locals and discover unexpected delights! 

Temperatures and humidity can be high in Cambodia, especially when walking around sights like the Angkor complex, where there may be little shade. Be prepared by taking plenty of drink breaks and wearing appropriate skin protection. Some travellers find an umbrella handy to keep the sun off (this will also come in handy if it rains!).

The stories shared at Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (S21) and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek are confronting, and many travellers will find them upsetting. This is an essential part of Cambodia's recent history that we feel is important to share, however, if you would prefer not to join in these visits, your leader will be able to suggest alternatives. 

You will visit a number of temples on this trip, and this requires a level of modesty. Be sure to bring clothes that cover your arms and pants or skirts that go past the knees. A light scarf is also a good idea for covering shoulders and arms when it’s hot. 

You’ll cover a lot of distance on this trip, including on overnight trains. You'll also be spending two nights with local families. While the accommodation is shared and basic, this is a great opportunity to connect with the local people (and enjoy delicious home-cooked meals!). Many travellers list these homestay experiences as the highlight of their Vietnam adventure and ease into the night very quickly. 

Important information

1. Please provide your full name exactly as per passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport), for 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.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Days 2, 10 & 19 (homestay), Days 11 and 17 (overnight trains) and Day 16 (guesthouse) where you will be in shared accommodation, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

What to bring/pack

What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage and walk with it for short distances or up or down a flight of stairs. Our travellers usually find the smaller their luggage is, the more they enjoy the trip not having to worry about carrying heavy bags! Aim to keep your main luggage under 15kg.

Many travellers carry their luggage in a compact smaller suitcase or backpack with wheels. We recommend your bag has carry straps or handles so it is easy to lift and carry for the times you are unable to wheel it (ie. on rough surfaces or up steps).

If you are taking overnight trains, or primarily using public transport then the smaller your luggage the easier it will be to store under or above bunks. Large suitcases may not be able to be taken on board. A lockable bag or small padlock for your bag will be useful especially when travelling on public transportation as well.

You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, swimming suit, waterproof pouch/bag for phone, hiking shoes and jacket etc. when you’re exploring during the day.

Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:, https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, WATER BOTTLE
Please bring your own water bottle to refill along the way. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please use the water dispensers which are provided on some of our vehicles and at some of our accommodation. Your group leader or local representative will advise whether tap water is safe to drink in your destination and if it is you can simply refill with tap water. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day. If you are walking or trekking as part of your trip you will need to carry at least 2L of water with you., LOCAL DRESS:
When packing be aware that dress standards are conservative throughout Asia, especially outside major cities. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in the predominantly hot Asian climate. In many rural areas in Asia women will need to wear modest clothing even to swim. Singlets, tank tops and topless sun bathing are all unacceptable. When visiting religious sites men often need to wear long trousers and women a long skirt or sarong.

Physical rating

 
2

Joining your group

lyf Sukhumvit 8 Bangkok, 35 Soi Sukhumvit 8, Khlong Toei, 10110, Bangkok, THAILAND, Phone: +66 22541900

Alternate Joining Point


Joining instructions

Intrepid can assist with pre-booking an arrival transfer from the airport - enquire with your agent. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure.

If you have pre-booked a transfer for an arrival at Suvanabhumi International Airport, you will be met after exiting the Customs Hall. A transfer representative holding a sign with your name on it will meet you between Exit Doors 3-4. If you cannot find your transfer representative, please go to the Information Counter at Exit Door 3. Ask them to call our transfer provider, Ms. Janet, on +66 64 649 0485. Please note that neither the driver nor any representative should ask you for additional payment.

For arrivals at Don Muang International Arrival, when you are at the arrival hall, our representative will be in front of you at Gate 5. Please find the Intrepid Logo and check your name on the signboard held by the representative on your lefthand side. If you have trouble locating our representative, please call our transfer provider Ms. Janet, at +66 64 649 0485. Metered taxis are available outside the airport entrance on the 1st floor. Exit the Customs Hall, go down to the 1st floor and leave the airport at Gate 3, 4, 7 or 8. You will find a table with a “metred taxis” sign. The taxi fare will be the metred fare plus a surcharge of THB50-THB75 (depending on the driver’s use of toll roads). The total fare will be approx. THB400. Pre-paid taxis are also available, where you will be given a docket to pay the driver a set price of THB700. Please avoid taxi touts who tell you that they have a metered taxi parked outside the airport.

Finishing your trip

Van Mieu 1 Hotel, 54B Quoc Tu Giam Street Dong Da Dist, Hanoi, VIETNAM, Phone: +84 2437474254

Van Mieu Hotel in Hanoi is well located in the heart of the city, having the advantage of the location on Quoc Tu Giam Street. Van Mieu Hotel is a hotel designed, equipped in a way to provide internationally recognized services. A couple of minutes’ walks from Hanoi Railway Station, the hotel serves as a stopping place very convenient and safe to tourists from every corner of the country as well as international guests who come to the capital city of Hanoi to do sightseeing or on business. It just takes you several steps to get to one of Hanoi’s most famous places of interest, visit Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam (the first university of Vietnam), Ho Chi Minh Museum and many governmental offices.
Website: http://vanmieuhotel.com/en/van-mieu-i-hotel/

Alternate Finish Point


Intrepid can assist with pre-booking a departure transfer from the airport - enquire with your agent. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to the start of your trip.

If you have pre-booked a departure transfer your leader will advise your pick up time the day before your trip ends.

Taxi fare from your hotel to the airport will cost approx. VND260,000.00. Please ask your leader or hotel staff for assistance in arranging a taxi.

Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 5

Lunches included: 4

Dinners included: 5

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader or local representative will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure.

CAMBODIAN FOOD:
Wondering what Cambodian food is like? Check out our guide to the local cuisine here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/cambodian-food-guide/

Is it true they eat spiders in Cambodia? Read about it here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/cambodia-eating-spiders/

BREAKFASTS:
At some hotels you may have a menu or buffet with choices of Cambodian and Western food. At homestays you will have simpler breakfasts of local foods, eggs, bread, jam, tea and coffee.

FOOD ALLERGIES:
Travelling in South East Asia with a food allergy? We have some advice for you here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/travelling-food-allergies-south-east-asia/

INCLUDED BREAKFASTS:
At hotels you’ll often have a buffet with choices of Vietnamese and Western food. At homestays you will have more basic breakfasts of local foods, eggs, bread, jam, tea and coffee. Take away breakfasts for early starts may be very simple such as a piece of fruit and a bread roll.

DIETARY REQUIREMENTS:
Check out this guide to eating in Vietnam for vegan, vegetarian, gluten & peanut free travellers: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/vegan-vegetarian-gluten-free-vietnam/

FOOD ALLERGIES:
Travelling in South East Asia with a food allergy? We have some advice for you here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/travelling-food-allergies-south-east-asia/

Climate & seasonal information

SONGKRAN FESTIVAL
The Songkran Festival is celebrated to mark the New Year. The festival runs from the 13th to the 16th of April. Traditionally houses and villages are properly cleaned in preparation for the New Year, flowers are gathered to decorate Buddha images, young people pour water over the elders for good luck. Songkran Festival is often referred to as the “water festival” as it is now common to throw water over each other during the festival period. Our advice is to be prepared to get wet! Your group leader or local representative will discuss the festival activities upon day one at the group meeting.

WEATHER IN CAMBODIA
Any time of the year is a good time to travel in Cambodia, with each season having its advantages. The climate in Cambodia is generally hot and humid throughout the year. Temperatures stay in the 30Cs most of the year, dropping back to the 20Cs at night. There are officially two seasons in Cambodia – wet and dry. During November to May you can expect dry conditions, while June to October will have wetter weather.

SEASONAL FLOODING IN CAMBODIA
Severe storms and widespread seasonal flooding, including localised flash flooding, can occur without warning in Cambodia, particularly during the local wet season from July to November. The Cambodia/Thailand land border is occasionally closed due to flooding. Should land travel be disrupted and we need to fly, travellers will need to use their contingency funds to cover any additional costs.

TET
8 - 14 February 2024, 28 January - 3 February 2025
Tet is Vietnam’s New Year festival which takes place in late January/early February based on the lunar calendar and is the most important celebration of the year. While this can be a fascinating time to be in Vietnam, you do need to be prepared for some businesses to be closed, tourist sites to be very busy and for transport to be packed as many Vietnamese are travelling around the country. Although we do our best to run trips during Tet as per the scheduled itinerary, it is likely that there will be some changes to transport, accommodation or order of destinations visited. Due to the high demand on tickets at this time, flights and overnight trains may on occasion need to be replaced with day buses. We will aim to communicate any known changes prior to your departure.

WET SEASON:
Flooding is common across Vietnam during rainy season (June-December) and could also lead to landslides. Typhoons are also common during this period. During these months there may be disruptions to transport and some activities or destinations may need to be changed as a result at short notice.

During public holidays and festival periods in Cambodia some businesses may close, transport may be extremely busy and travel times may increase. The main holidays in Cambodia are:

Chinese New Year (09-12 February 2024)
Khmer New Year (13 - 16 April 2024)
Royal Birthday of the King Sihamoni (14 May 2024)
Pchum Ben Day (01 – 03 October 2024)
Water & Moon Festival (14 -16 November 2024)

In case of emergency

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

We recognise that there may be times when your group leader or local representative may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the group leader or local representative to speak to their direct manager.

You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time.

For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the numbers below:

Intrepid local operator : Available for phone call on +30 697 800 6335 

Available for phone call or WhatsApp call on +855 92 555 969

Intrepid local operator : Available for phone call on +84 90 311 7770

Accommodations

The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline only and may change. On some occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our preferred accommodation. In these cases, we will use a similar standard of accommodation.

Throughout the trip, we request that our properties prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However, this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination or on some trips, have use of shared day rooms until all rooms are available.

HOTELS:
Most of the accommodation on this trip is in hotels (mostly 2 to 3-star). Facilities are often basic, with some properties not having a continuous supply of hot water on occasion. All rooms are either fan cooled or with air conditioning and twin share with private facilities unless stated otherwise in the daily itinerary. Double beds are not widely available in South East Asia.

WINDOWLESS ROOMS:
Some hotels in South East Asia have windowless rooms, or windows that don't necessarily have a view. This is often due to high population density in large cities, however local building standards also do not require rooms to have windows. We do request rooms with windows, however they aren't always available.

DAY ROOMS & EARLY CHECK IN:
Please note in some destinations we will provide use of day rooms. These rooms are provided for shared group use before or after overnight train journeys. We have some days where we arrive at our destination before check in time and a day room is not included. If you have booked a Single Supplement for your trip, it will not apply to these day rooms. Your leader may be able to assist you in booking a room for your sole use (depending on availability) until our regular trip rooms become available for an additional charge. Please talk to your leader at the Welcome Meeting if this is a service you would like to request.

Transportation