Premium South East Asia in Depth

Trip Code: TTPEC

Why we love it

Enjoy three fabulous Feature Stays – the immersive community-based Lisu lodge in Thailand, a tropical oasis wellness resort in Cambodia and a magnificent junk-style boat on Halong Bay in Vietnam., Get to the heart of Vietnamese culture with Exclusive Experiences, including a soul-stirring Hat Xam performance, an afternoon in an ancient pottery village, and a cooking class with a local chef in Hue., Travel from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap on a charming riverboat then enjoy two guided days exploring the temples of Angkor, including a morning accompanied by a private photography coach (Premium Exclusive Experience)., See the important sights of Phnom Penh on a full day guided tour. Visit the sobering Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek, then stop by a working Buddhist monastery to meet the resident monks., Learn about Thai culture during Exclusive Experiences – ‘make merit’ at a local temple in Bangkok, cruise on rice barges while enjoying traditional meals and visit the village of Kup Kap , home of the Lahu people.

Is this trip right for me?

In 2023, Tet (Lunar New Year) will run from the 21st to the 27th of January. This is a fascinating and rewarding time to see the region, however 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. Please consider your travel arrangements carefully before booking travel for this period.

Important information

1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 13 (boat) where you will be in shared accommodation, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information. 
3. This trip includes domestic and international flights as indicated on the trip map. The luggage allowance is 20kg for check in luggage and 7kg for carry on.
4. Full name exactly as per passport required at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on the passport), for internal flights. 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.
5. Due to limited luggage space in our vehicles, please ensure that you are packing light and compact. Large, bulky suitcases are unsuitable for this trip. Please refer to the Packing section of the Essential Trip Information for details. 
6. Travel is always an adventure and, as destinations reopen, there are a few challenges as everyone gets back up to speed and adjusts to the new normal. Our leaders are experts when it comes to dealing with anything unexpected along the journey, so pack your understanding and flexibility, sit back and relax while they take care of the rest.
7. Flight schedules within South East Asia are currently limited. Whenever possible, you will be on a direct fight. However, some flights may require a stop.

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. We recommend you pack as lightly as possible, ensuring 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. Help will be on hand in most locations, but there may be times you need to handle your own luggage, for example in airports and train stations.

A lockable suitcase with wheels is ideal for this trip. It is recommended that you keep your main luggage weight around 15kg and certainly no more than 20kg. A small or medium-sized backpack (45-50 litres) is another good option.

You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, jacket, etc. when you’re exploring during the day.

Below is a link to our ultimate packing list, a guide to get you started:, https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, 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., WATER BOTTLE:
This trip includes one or more sections in a private vehicle with a water dispenser. We encourage all our travellers to bring a refillable water bottle on your trip to help reduce the use of disposable plastic bottles.

Physical rating

 
2

Joining your group

Ramada Plaza by Wyndham Bangkok Menam Riverside, 2074 Charoen Krung Rd, Wat Phraya Krai, Bangkok, THAILAND

Joining instructions

"Suvanabhumi International Airport is 32.3 kms from the city center – approximately 40min – 1 hour driving depend on traffic. Don Muang International Airport is 28 kms from the city center – approximately 30min – 45min driving depend on traffic.

An airport arrival transfer is included. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your departure. If you plan to arrive earlier, this arrival transfer can only be offered in conjunction with pre trip accommodation booked through Intrepid.

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 will meet you at between Exit Door 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.

If you cannot find your driver, or if you need to advise of flight delays, please call: +66 898 103 722.

If you have not pre-arranged a transfer, taxis can easily take you to the hotel.

Suvanabhumi International Airport
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 metered 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.

Don Muang International Airport
Metered taxis are available outside the airport entrance on the 1st floor. Exit the Customs Hall, turn left and walk until the end of the building, turn left and a short walk along the sign of Taxi, there’ll be the room of ‘Metered Taxis”, press the machine for the queue. You will find a table with a “metered taxis” sign. The taxi fare will be the metered fare plus a surcharge of THB50 (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

Navutu Dreams Resort & Spa, Angkor High School Road 1.3km from Siem Reap French Quarter, Siem Reap, Kingdom of Cambodia, Siem Reap, CAMBODIA, Phone: +855 63964864

Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 21

Lunches included: 8

Dinners included: 10

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader 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.

THAILAND FOOD:
One of the most popular take away foods in the world, you'll have a chance to try authentic Thai food, local and fresh, throughout this trip. Here's just some of what you can look forward to: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/best-food-thailand/

For vegans and vegetarians, you'll need to look out for ingredients like shrimp paste (often in curry sauces), fish sauce, dried shrimp and cooked egg added to stir fries and soups. If you are a vegan foodie, check out our Thailand Food Adventure trip: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/thailand/thailand-vegan-food-adventure-114827

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/

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/

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 leader will discuss the festival activities upon day one at the group meeting.

TET
11-16 February 2021, 31 January - 4 February 2022
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.

CAMBODIAN FESTIVALS & HOLIDAYS:
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 (21-27 January 2023)
Khmer New Year (14 - 17 April 2023)
Royal Birthday of the King Sihamoni (14 May 2023)
Pchum Ben Day (24-27 September 2022, 13-16 October 2023)
Water & Moon Festival (7-9 November 2022, 26-29 November 2023)

WEATHER IN VIETNAM
The most popular times to visit Vietnam are spring (February-April) and autumn (September-December) but because of the huge variations in latitude and altitude, there is no one best time to go to Vietnam. Temperatures vary from 4°C (39°F) in Sapa in winter to humid 36°C (97°F) days in Saigon in the middle of the dry season. The monsoons bring heavy rain to the south, and a cooler winter to the north. It’s a good destination all year.

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.

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.

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 our 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/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader 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 number below.

Intrepid’s Local Operator: +855 92 555 969

Intrepid's local Operator: +84 903 117 770

Intrepid's local Operator: +66 898 103 722

Intrepid's local Operator: +66 89 810 3722

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.

Transportation

VIETNAM FLIGHTS:
Please provide your exact name (including middle name) as per passport 45 days prior to your trip's departure date for flight tickets to be issued. Internal flights will be on the following safety audited airlines: Pacific Airlines, Vietjet or Vietnam Airlines.

UNACCOMPANIED FLIGHTS:
During peak travel times your group may be required to travel on different flights at different times of the day, and you may be unaccompanied on the internal flight. In this case you will be assisted by additional tour escorts on departure and arrival.


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