2023 The Heart of Cambodia & Vietnam
2023 The Heart of Cambodia & Vietnam
- 17 Nights / 19 Days
- * Avalon Saigon Travel from Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam & Return from Hanoi, Vietnam
- * Escorted From Honolulu
Countries: Vietnam & Cambodia
Rivers: Mekong River
Tour Date & Manager:
November 26 – December 14, 2023 * Tour Manager: Lori Lee
ITINERARY AT A GLANCE
DAY 1 – SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 26: HONOLULU – Departure Flights to Vietnam
DAY 2 – MONDAY, NOVEMBER 27: ARRIVE IN HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM: Welcome to Ho Chi Minh City, still known as Saigon; Hotel rooms are available for mid-afternoon check-in.
DAY 3 – TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 28: HO CHI MINH CITY: CLASSIC: Take a walking tour of Ho Ci Minh City’s historic landmarks, including a stop at the Rex Hotel for a refreshing drink at the rooftop bar where the U.S. Military held the infamous “Five O’Clock Follies” during the war. Visit the War Remnants Museum and bustling Ben Thanh Market; DISCOVERY: At lunch, participate in a hands-on Vietnamese Cooking Class. Learn to prepare several local dishes and how to recreate at home. Sample your delicious creations – Free time this afternoon; PM: Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant (B.L.D)
DAY 4 – WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 29: HO CHI MINH CITY – EXCURSION TO CU CHI TUNNELS: CLASSIC: Driver from the city for a Guided Visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels – a network of tunnels = 120 miles in length – and used as a hideout & secret village by the Viet Cong. This Afternoon & Evening are free; Perhaps a drink at the famous rooftop bar at the Caravelle Hotel. (B)
DAY 5 – THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 30: HO CHI MINH CITY (EMBARKATION): The Avalon Saigon is Ready for Boarding; Transfer to the port on the Saigon River for embarkation; Get acquainted with the ship; Relax before your welcome reception this evening. AFTERNOON/EVENING CRUISE TO VINH LONG (B,L,D)
DAY 6 – FRIDAY, DECEMBER 1: VINH LONG- CU LAO GIENG: DISCOVERY: AM Board a sampan to visit a local workshop in Vinh Long where you will learn how rice paper, rice wine & traditional candies are made. DISCOVERY: This afternoon, scenes of daily life on Cu Lao Gieng Island via sampan and local motor cart. Your Guided Excursion starts at a local workshop. Where a skilled family hand-crafts sampan boats. Visit a local family making “ Non la” (traditional conical hats) using palm leaves & bamboo. The iconic hats are used as sun & rain protection BUT you may see them used as a basket to carry home goods from the market; Last stop = one of Vietnam’s oldest Catholic churches: AFTERNOON/EVENING CRUISE TO CHAU DOC (B,L,D)
DAY 7 – SATURDAY, DECEMBER 2: CHAU DOC-LONG KHANH A – BORDER CROSSING, CAMBODIA: DISCOVERY: In Chau Doc there’s a Guided Walk thru a local market – A wet market with fish, meat & produce; Next onto a River Excursion thru the backwaters of the Mekong River; Enroute, it’s traditional floating hoems, speedboat merchants, religious sites, a dried goods market plus so much more…DISCOVERY: Afternoon – a sampan brings you to Long Khanh A to see Cotton-Weaving – a well- preserved artisan’s tradition; Return to the ship & set sail for the Cambodia border; EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO PHNOM PENH (B,L,D).
DAY 8 – SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3: PHNOM PENH: CLASSIC: A City tour by private cyclo visiting the Royal Palace w/ it’s Silver Pagoda + the National Museum featuring Khmer artifacts; Remainder of the day is at leisure to enjoy the city. Consider a Guided Optional Tour: A local brewery & local beer; then, Prior to dinner, children from a local orphanage will present a show of local song & dance. (B,L,D).
DAY 9 – MONDAY, DECEMBER 4: PHNOM PEHN: CLASSIC: AM – A GUIDED VISIT OF THE Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and one of the Killing Fields – a glimpse into the atrocities inflicted on the Cambodians by the Khmer Rouge regime, OR DISCOVERY: Ride a Tuk-Tuk to a lively Central Market – checkout it’s Art Deco Design. After Lunch, depart Phnom Penh enjoying some leisure afternoon sailing; AFTERNOON/EVENING CRUISE TO WAT HANCHEY (B,L,D).
DAY 10 – TUESDAY, DECEMBER 5: WAT HANCHEY – ANGKOR BAN: DISCOVERY: Visit Wat Hanchey, a hilltop temple dating to the 8thC. Climb or drive to the top where stunning views of the surrounding area are perfect for photos; partake in the traditional water blessing by local monks. DISCOVERY: After Lunch – a wlking tour thru the rural village of Angkor Ban – where you will visit a traditional khmer house + enjoy and interact with local school children. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KONPONG LOUANG. (B,L,D)
DAY 11 – WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 6: KONPONG LOUANG-KAMPONG TRALACH: DISCOVERY: Guided sightseeing at the silversmith in the village – Konpong Louang – craftsmen use age-old techniques turning pure silver into works of art. In Kampong Tralach – onto an ox cart for a right thru the beautiful Cambodian countryside (watch where you walk!). Stop & meet a local farmer – learn about daily life. This PM – enjoy scenic cruise on the Tonle River; EVENING CRUISE TO PHNOM PENH (B,L,D)
DAY 12 – THURSDAY, DECEMBER 7: PHNOM PENH (DISEMBARKATION) – SIEM REAP: FLY to Siem Reap, home to the Temples of Angkor – considered the most spectacular architectural ruins on Earth! CLASSIC: AFTER LUNCH BOARD YOUR TUKTUK TO EXPLORE THE TEMPLES. Begin in the most famous of all temples: Angkor Wat. The features include 5 trademark towers – the symbol of Cambodia; The Angkor Thom where you will explore Bayon Temple = 200 striking faces carved in 54 towers & impressive bas-relief sculptures. OR ACTIVE: Vist Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, & Bayon Temple BY BIKE! Tonight is your own: explore charming Siem Reap – watch for the sunset at Angkor Wat OR maybe a Guided Optional Excursion to the Cambodian circus. (B,L).
DAY 13 – FRIDAY, DECEMBER 8: SIEM REAP: CLASSIC: Continue guided sightseeing of the Angkor Temples at Ta Prohm. Tree roots cover ruin walls – explore! Then visit Banteay Srei, a temple build on a small scale from red sandstone – enroute stop at a local village – See how Khmer noodles made by hand; Afternoon at leisure; Available: a Guided Optional Excursion via tuk-tuk to explore Siem Reap. DISCOVERY: Tonight – an Apsara Dance Private Performance – brings ancient Khmer culture to life thru music, song & dance. (B,D).
DAY 14 – SATURDAY, DECEMBER 9: SIEM REAP – HANOI: Transfers to the airport for your flight to Hanoi; Upon Arrival transfer to your hotel for the evening. (B).
DAY 15 – SUNDAY, DECEMBER 10: HANOI: CLASSIC: Join a Guided visit of the mausoleum & cottage from which “Uncle Ho” ruled Vietnam until his death in 1969; See iconic sites, including One Pillar Pagoda, the Presidential Place, and the infamous “Hanoi Hilton” – Lastly, cist the 900 year old Temple of Literature, Hanoi’s first university; Lunch at Koto: a non-profit restaurant offering a hospitality program teaching local children restaurant skills – to ensure employment skills; CLASSIC: After lunch, enjoy an Electric Cart Ride thru the Old Quarter – with its 36 ancient streets – where merchants have traded for centuries. DISCOVERY: An Early dinner followed by a Live performance of Hanoi’s renowned water puppets – an 11thC art form. (B,L,D).
DAY 16 – MONDAY, DECEMBER 11: HANOI – HA LONG BAY: Travel from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay – a UNESCO World Heritage Site; there are more than 3,000 limestone islands carved into fascinating shapes; Board the luxurious Paradise Elegance for a twonight cruise on the bay. DISCOVERY: Visit b bamboo raft: Cua Van Floating Village –where 700+ people live OR ACTIVE: Take a Kayak Ride to visit Cua Van Village; Enjoy scenic sailing for the remainder of the day before anchoring tonight. (B,L,D).
DAY 17 – TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12: HA LONG BAY: DISCOVERY: Visit Ti Top Island – a guided excursion for a swim, OR climb 400 steps to the top of the island for amazing views; You can also visit Luon Cave by boat and/or explore Dark & Bright Cave by bamboo raft OR Kayak Ride. At the end of the day – consider a spa treatment or relax for happy hour prior to dinner (B,L,D)
DAY 18 – WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13: HA LONG BAY – HANOI: AM: relax on board ship OR visit Sung Sot Cave – considered one of the most beautiful in the area – see the magnificent formations; Return to Hanoi and check-in to your hotel; Remainder of the day is at leisure (B).
DAY 19 – THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14: HANOI – HONOLULU: Your Southeast Asia visit end this morning; Flights to Honolulu (B).
A NON-STOP TRAVEL
Save $1,000 Per Person & Pre-Paid Cruise Gratuities
MUST RESERVE BY
October 31, 2022
Package includes: Round Trip Airfare from Honolulu, 10 Nights Hotel Accommodations, 7 Nights River Cruise, Meals & Sightseeing as Indicated on Itinerary, transfers, taxes & fees.