Lands of magic and mystery

As neighboring countries in the South China Sea, Vietnam and Cambodia share a complex and deep history. Here, tradition still matters and natural beauty abounds. This compelling adventure takes us on a journey of contrasts through ancient temples, bustling cities and picturesque countryside.

Highlights

  • Enjoy a foodie tour of Phnom Penh by Cyclo

  • Stay two nights in a traditional stilt house

  • Visit the home of a local artist to hear about his craft

  • Explore the ancient wonder of Angkor Wat

  • Choose your adventure: cooking class or boat ride

Itinerary for Vietnam and Cambodia

Day 1: Ho Chi Minh City

Welcome to Ho Chi Minh City! Tonight, we’ll meet as a group and enjoy our first meal together. (d)

  • Transfers are shared among travelers in our group. At the airport, you’ll be met by a Club Adventures representative after passing through customs and shuttled to your hotel. You may need to wait a short time for other members of the group to arrive.
  • Dinner tonight will be at a local restaurant, walking distance from our hotel
  • Our hotel in Ho Chi Minh City: Asian Ruby Hotel

Day 2: Ho Chi Minh City

The scent of fresh coffee fills the morning air as we explore daily life in trendy Ho Chi Minh City, also known as Saigon. Discover the antique treasures of Le Cong Kieu, one of the area’s oldest streets. Explore the War Remnants Museum — a powerful passage through history, where many of the atrocities of war are documented. Later, we will connect with locals during lunch at one of our Local Leader’s favorite spots. (b, l)

  • Breakfast is full buffet
  • Lunch will be at a local restaurant after our visit to the War Remnants Museum
  • Our hotel in Ho Chi Minh City: Asian Ruby Hotel

Day 3: Ho Chi Minh City > Mekong Delta > Dong Thap

Transition from quirky Ho Chi Minh City to the Mekong Delta — where boats maneuver through a labyrinth of rivers, canals and streams. Floating markets and houses share the waterways where we will cruise today, as we explore life in this stunning region. After lunch we’ll hop on a sampan — a traditional flat-bottomed boat — and move toward our Homestay in a customary stilt house, where genuine connections bring you closer to a fascinating way of life. Dinner is prepared by our host, who conjures up a culinary experience drawing on the flavors of the region. (b, l, d)

  • Breakfast is full buffet
  • Lunch will be at a local restaurant in Cai Be
  • Dinner will be at our homestay
  • Our homestay in Dong Thap: Tucalinh Homestay

Day 4: Dong Thap

Wake up among lotus fields in the heart of this land. A cycling tour gives us a closer look at daily life. Later, we cruise through the mangroves of the bird sanctuary in Dong Thap, home to over 15 species of birds. We’ll even stop by a neighbor’s house to hear about their passion for painting using local tree rinds. (b, l, d)

  • Breakfast will be simple this morning during our homestay
  • Lunch and dinner will be included at our homestay
  • Our homestay in Dong Thap: Tucalinh Homestay

Day 5: Dong Thap > Ho Chi Minh City

This morning an area resident shows us how lotuses are used, from flower to stem. On our return to Saigon, we stop to see the amazing colors of Sa Đéc City, the biggest flower and plant supplier for southern Vietnam. (b, l)

  • Breakfast is full buffet
  • Lunch will be at a local restaurant
  • Our hotel in Ho Chi Minh City: Bay Hotel

Day 6: Ho Chi Minh City > Phnom Penh

A flight to Phnom Penh begins our Cambodian exploration. We’ll be welcomed by our Cambodian Local Leader, who takes us on a Cyclo tour of the city. Stop at the Royal Palace food stalls for a tasting of Khmer cuisine. Fried cricket snack, anyone? (b)

  • Breakfast is full buffet
  • Our flight is scheduled to be in the morning (approx. 8:30am) and is approximately a 90-minute flight
  • Our hotel in Phnom Penh: Palace Gate Hotel

Day 7: Phnom Penh

Delve into the tragic history of the Cambodian people during the reign of the Khmer Rouge — with a visit to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. The afternoon is unscripted to write your own adventure. (b)

  • Breakfast is an international buffet
  • Our hotel in Phnom Penh: Palace Gate Hotel

Day 8: Phnom Penh > Siem Reap

Fly to Siem Reap in northwestern Cambodia — the gateway to Angkor. This afternoon, choose between a cooking class in the countryside or a boat excursion through a floating village! (b)

  • Breakfast is buffet and a la carte options
  • Our hotel in Siem Reap: Sakmut Boutique Hotel

Day 9: Siem Reap

At Angkor Wat — the seat of the Khmer kingdom for centuries — bear witness to the morning sun dancing over the temple towers. This imposing structure leaves many awestruck, contemplating the mystery of its beginnings. (b)

  • Breakfast is buffet and a la carte options
  • Our hotel in Siem Reap: Sakmut Boutique Hotel

Day 10: Siem Reap

Explore the rural charms of the countryside by bike today. After a market visit, venture inside a pagoda to learn more about the life of Theravada Buddhism. We will also experience a sacred water blessing for good luck and prosperity. Lunch today is a at favorite spot focused on enhancing the lives of local students. A captivating performance of the Cambodian acrobatic circus awaits us this evening. (b, l)

  • Breakfast is buffet and a la carte options
  • Lunch will be at Marium Restaurant
  • Our hotel in Siem Reap: Sakmut Boutique Hotel

Day 11: Siem Reap

Today we will take a leisurely walk to the tranquil temple of Ta Prohm. We’ll taste nom banh chok (Cambodian noodle) — a unique Khmer dish. Then it’s off to Angkor Thom — the “Great Royal City” — which will include a stop at Terrace of the Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King. Tonight is our final dinner together, overlooking the river. (b, d)

  • Breakfast is buffet and a la carte options
  • Dinner will be at a local restaurant
  • Our hotel in Siem Reap: Sakmut Boutique Hotel

Day 12: Siem Reap

Our adventure ends today. (b)

  • Breakfast is buffet and a la carte options
  • Departure transfers are included on a group basis. The Local Leader will advise on departure times based on the group’s flight schedules

Things to know before traveling to Vietnam and Cambodia

The official unit of currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (VND).

ATMs are available in nearly all cities and tourist areas, and this is a reliable way to access funds.

In Vietnam USD dollars are widely accepted and clean bills can be used in most major restaurants and shops. If paying in USD the exchange rate will be set by the vendor, which may differ from the official exchange rate.

CAMBODIA:
You can use your credit card in ATMs (Automatic Teller Machines), which are now common throughout the country. These machines dispense cash in US dollars. There is no need to bring lots of cash with you unless you prefer not to use ATMs. There is also no need to pre-purchase Cambodian riel prior to arriving in the country. Most travellers never need to have more than US$10 worth of Cambodian Riel on them at any one time, as Cambodia is a country that widely accepts US dollars for all cash transactions. If you are taking in cash, please check that all your notes are in good condition and not old (US banknotes printed before 2006 and any US$2 bills are generally not accepted), crumpled, marked or torn, otherwise they may not be accepted. Please also be warned that some banks outlets at a Cambodian airport may tell you that you will need to change your US dollars cash with them for Cambodia riel, but this is not true! Please note that after transactions, change will be given in riel. Many businesses will be unable to change larger notes such as US$20, US$50 or US$100, so it is wise to carry a mix of denominations.

As this is a combination trip your Local Leader will change when you fly to Cambodia.

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. There’s no obligation to do this though.

INCLUDED BREAKFASTS:
At hotels you’ll often have a buffet with choices of Vietnamese and Western food. At homestays you will have simpler breakfasts of local foods, eggs, bread, jam, tea and coffee.

This trip includes a domestic flight. Checked luggage allowance is a maximum 20kg, with up to 7kg carry on luggage. Any excess luggage charges will need to be paid directly to the airline at check-in.

The stories and history shared at the Killing Fields and S21 are confronting and many travelers will find them upsetting. This is an important part of Cambodia’s recent history that we feel is important for travelers to know. If you would prefer not to join these activities your Local Leader can recommend some optional alternatives.

Severe storms and widespread seasonal flooding, including localized 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, travelers will need to use their contingency funds to cover any additional costs.

MOSQUITO BORNE ILLNESSES:
Mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis are widespread in Cambodia. Malaria is also prevalent in some regions, particularly along the borders in mountainous regions. Take preventative measures such as wearing long clothing, using repellent and being indoors particularly around dusk and dawn. Seek medical advice prior to travel for medication or vaccination advice.

ZIKA VIRUS:
There have been reports of transmission of the mosquito-borne Zika virus in this region and we advise all travellers to protect themselves from mosquito bites. Given possible transmission of the disease to unborn babies, and taking a very cautious approach, we recommend all women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant to consult with their doctors before booking their trip.

Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveler. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it’s important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarize yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

VIETNAM VISA:
Most nationalities are required to obtain tourist visa in advance to travel to Vietnam. When obtaining your visa you should allow 3 weeks for processing with your nearest embassy or consulate, the cost is approximately US$60 to US$100. Please check with your embassy or consulate for further requirements.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Please ask your travel agent or Club Adventures team member for insurance options at time of booking.

Add-ons available before and after your trip to see the most of Vietnam and Cambodia

Pre-Night Add-ons

HO CHI MINH CITY - $70 USD per room, double occupancy or $70 single occupancy


Post-Night Add-ons

SIEM REAP - $140 USD per room, double occupancy or $140 single occupancy


Optional Tours

12 days, from $2,499 USD