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Best Vietnam & Cambodia – 17 Days

Within 17 days, this combination trip provides you the best part of Vietnam and Cambodia, from the spectacular Halong Bay to the majestic temple of Angkor ( Angkor Thom, Angkor Wat, Bayon, Banteray Srei and countless other masterpieces of Khmer architecture). From the historical and charming center parts of Vietnam to the exciting Mekong delta.

Best Vietnam & Cambodia–17 Days

Tour Duration: 17 days / 16 nights
Tour Route: Hanoi – Sa Pa – Ha Long – Hue – Hoi An – Ho Chi Minh – Mekong delta – Phnom Penh – Siem Reap.
Dates: No fixed departure dates. You may go whenever you wish.
Starts/Ends: Hanoi (Vietnam) / Siem Reap (Cambodia)
Tour Type: Landscape and Nature, Halong Bay Cruise Holidays, Angkor Temple and Folk Arts
Activity Level: Regular itinerary, Moderate walking
Tour Customizable: Absolutely! (Tell us your specific requirements in the inquiry form)

BRIEF ITINERARY:

Day 01: Hanoi – Arrival (D)
Day 02: Hanoi – Overnight train to Lao Cai (B, L)
Day 03: Lao Cai – Sa Pa (B/L)
Day 04: Sa Pa – Lao Cai – Overnight train to Hanoi (B, L)
Day 05: Hanoi arrival – Ha Long (B, L, D)
Day 06: Ha Long – Hanoi – Flight to Hue (B, L)
Day 07: Hue – Hoi An (B, L)
Day 08: Hoi An (B, L)
Day 09: Hoi An – Da Nang – Flight to Ho Chi Minh City (B, L)
Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City (B/L)
Day 11: Ho Chi Minh – Vinh Long - Can Tho (B, L)
Day 12: Can Tho – Chau Doc (B, L)
Day 13: Chau Doc – Phnom Penh (B)
Day 14: Phnom Penh – Flight to Siem Reap (B)
Day 15: Siem Reap (B)
Day 16: Siem Reap (B)
Day 17: Siem Reap - Departure (B)

Day 01: Hanoi – Arrival (D)
Upon arrival, welcome by our Tour Guide and transferred to your hotel. In the late afternoon, we will take an hour Cyclo - tour viewing the charming French colonial architecture to the bustling Old Quarter and attend the performance of the unique water puppetry. Welcome dinner will be reserved at local restaurant.
Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 02: Hanoi – Overnight train to Lao Cai (B, L)
We begin a full-day city tour by visiting the Ho Chi Minh complex, including the One Pillar Pagoda, the former leader’s house on stilts and his Mausoleum. Keep forward to the peaceful Temple of Literature - the first university of Vietnam.
Lunch will be served at a local Vietnamese restaurant.
In the afternoon, proceed to the Ethnologic museum, which focuses on the 54 officially recognized ethnic groups in Vietnam, it is widely considered to be the finest modern museum in Vietnam and a tourist attraction in Hanoi.
Back to the city central, visit Ngoc Son temple then free time until transfer to Hanoi railway station for overnight train to Lao Cai.

Hanoi Vietnam
Hanoi Old Quarters
One Pillar Pagoda Vietnam
One Pillar Pagoda in Hanoi

Day 03: Lao Cai – Sa Pa (B, L)
After early arrival at Lao Cai, a Chinese border town, we enjoy breakfast at a local Vietnamese restaurant before drive to overland to a market of the hill tribal people. Depending on the day of the week, Bac Ha, home to the flower H’mong hill tribe minority people is open on Sunday; Can Cau on Saturday or Coc Ly on Tuesday.
In all these markets, we can meet hundreds of beautiful women from Flower Hmong tribe, who are famous for their wonderful craft and hand-made flowering clothes and textile fabrics, or intermingle with people from Black Hmong, Dzay, Dzao and other ethnic groups coming to the market not for purchasing stuffs, but for meeting and chatting – just once a week - like in a real cultural center. After lunchtime, we drive to Sa Pa. Check in to the hotel and free at the leisure.
Overnight in Sa Pa.

Day 04: Sa Pa – Lao Cai – Overnight train to Hanoi (B, L)
We will start walking to Cat Cat village in the bottom of Muong Hoa valley. Enjoy the spectacular views of the beautiful valley towards Fansipan – highest peak in Viet Nam and Indochina. Go through the village of Black H’mong ethnic minority; see people weaving and embroidering their clothes, keep going down enjoy colorful rice terraces and the interesting waterfall.
Continue on, we will walk from Cat Cat towards Muong Hoa valley where we can admire magnificent landscapes and trek on a small trails going to Y Linh Ho village. Enjoy picnic lunch before trek through lush rice – terraces towards Lao Chai village, experiencing Black H’mong people’s daily life and traditional culture and then head to Ta Van village inhabited by Zay minorities.
Take a fresh shower in the hotel before heading to Lao Cai train station for the night train back to Ha Noi.

Sapa Vietnam
Sapa erraced fields
Sapa Vietnam
Ethnic local people in Sapa

Day 05: Hanoi arrival – Ha Long (B, L, D)
Arrival at Hanoi railway station in the early morning, take a shower and enjoy breakfast at a mini hotel near by before departs for Ha Long bay, listed as a World Heritage Area of outstanding natural beauty. “Dragon descending to the sea“ as it is known in Vietnamese, picturesque Ha Long bay has more than 1.000 limestone islets rising from the sea, many of them containing beautiful grottoes
Upon arrival at Ha Long Bay we embark on a boat trip to cruise discovering this magnificent UNESCO World Wonder. This is a great journey among surreal islands rising from a tranquil emerald sea.
In the late afternoon, we anchor for the night on the bay and enjoy a delicious seafood dinner on board.
Overnight on a junk boat in Ha Long Bay.

Day 06: Ha Long – Hanoi – Flight to Hue (B, L)
Early morning coffee and tea will be served on the sundeck followed by a Tai Chi class. After breakfast we take a Sampan boat to explore Luon Cave. We may have a chance to see the wild monkeys that gather around waiting for food from the tourists. After that we continue to cruise around the bay. Lunch is served on the boat on our way back to the docks then transfer to Noi Bai airport for flight to Hue. On the way, stop over for Dinh Bang Village in Bac Ninh Province to visit Do temple, this temple was building during the Le Dynasty and has been altered several times since. The major reconstruction took place under the reign of Le Trung Hung in the 17th century. Then we enjoy traditional music show “Quan Ho” or called Quan Ho Folk song. Arrival Hue, welcome then transfer to the hotel, check in and free time at the leisure.
Overnight in Hue.

Ha Long bay Vietnam
Sunset in Halong Bay
Quan Ho Folk song Vietnam
Quan Ho Folk Song

Day 07: Hue – Hoi An (B, L)
Breakfast at the hotel.
We board a dragon boat on the Perfume River to visit Thien Mu Pagoda. Continue on, visit the Forbidden Citadel before processing to Hoi An via the Hai Van Pass (Pass of the Ocean Clouds). Stop on the way to visit Cham Museum, Lang Co Beach, Marble Mountain. Arrival Hoi An, check in to the hotel then free time at the leisure.
Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 08: Hoi An (B, L)
This morning we take a walking tour of the old town Hoi An. Hoi An nestled on the banks of the Thu Bon River. Before the river silted up, Hoi An was one of the most important trading ports in Southeast Asia, and a center for East-West exchange and trade. From the 2nd until the 10th century, Hoi An was one of the principal Cham cities. Over the years, Indian, Dutch, Portuguese, French, Thai, Indonesian, Spanish, American, Japanese, Filipino and Chinese ships docked in Hoi An. In the 19th century, as the result of warfare and environmental changes, Hoi An was replaced by Da Nang as a major port. Reflecting the diversity of the traders and missionaries that settled in the port (including Alexander of Rhodes), the ancient architecture is a fascinating mix of Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese. The rooftops of Hoi An retain a magical old world Oriental feel and are a favorite subject for Vietnamese artists. In the early 1980s Hoi An’s ancient quarters and historical monuments came under the protection and restoration efforts of UNESCO and the Polish government. Visit the Japanese covered bridge, Phuc Kien assemble hall, Phung Hung old house, Hoi An museum and Quan Cong temple.
The rest of time is fee to walk in the old town, feel the atmosphere of its original culture, enjoy shopping for tailor clothing, lanterns, shoes and food, or simply relaxing on the beach.
Overnight in Hoi An.

Hue Vietnam
Hue Citadel
Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An Ancient Town

Day 09: Hoi An – Da Nang – Flight to Ho Chi Minh City (B, L)
Free at your leisure until transfer to the airport for onward flight to Ho Chi Minh City, the former Saigon. Arrive at the airport, you are welcomed by our tour guide and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City (B, L)
Today, you will literally feel the excitement of Ho Chi Minh City.
First, we visit the Reunification Palace, the former palace of President Thieu and his predecessors. Today this building is a museum and venue for official receptions. Inside you can visit the private rooms of the president, the “War Room” from where the South Vietnamese forces were controlled, and, most poignantly, the room where the North Vietnamese army finally took control in 1975. Next, we visit the War Remnants Museum, Historically, the war museum as part of the Vietnam and World Peace museums system was born on Sep 4 1975 at 28 Vo Van Tan street, district 3, HCMC. Since its 30-year inception, the museum has attracted over 10 millions arrivals of domestic and foreign tourists, especially, student delegations from provinces and cities nationwide. It helps reappear the then-wars, helping students well realize on the values of patriotism, struggle for peace and national liberation from forefathers. This museum includes 8 specific exhibitions and various collections of the truth of history (conspiracy and process from hostile forces for the war in Vietnam); crime evidences and war consequences; kinds of weapon and tools serving for the wars; prison (prison house system, concentration camp, torture, maltreatment, corporal mutilation and spiritual oppression against political prisoners).
We also stop at the Notre Dame Cathedral and Old Post Office. The post office, built between 1877 and 1883, is an excellent example of classic French colonial architecture. In deference to the Chinese heritage, you will also visit Thien Hau Pagoda, built in 1863 by the ethnic Chinese of Saigon and dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea, and Cho Lon market.
The rest of time is free at the leisure.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.

Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam
Post Office in Ho Chi Minh city
Notre Dame Cathedral Vietnam
Notre Dame Cathedral

Day 11: Ho Chi Minh – Vinh Long - Can Tho (B, L)
After breakfast, we drive three-hour through the lush fields and farms will take us to the southernmost region of Vietnam - the Mekong Delta, often referred to as the rice basket of Vietnam as it produces three harvests per year
Upon arrival, we embark on a boat trip to visit Cai Be floating market before visiting Dong Hoa Hiep, a village that makes rice paper - a crucial element in Vietnamese cuisine!
We will also visit one of many local orchards where we can enjoy some of the exotic fruit before transfer to Can Tho.
Overnight in Can Tho.

Day 12: Can Tho – Chau Doc (B, L)
After breakfast we take to the water to witness Vietnam’s largest floating market. See local farmers trading their produce on the water as they have done for centuries. Continue on to a fruit orchard where you can sample the tropical fruits grown in this region and try some local tea then drive deeper into the Mekong to Chau Doc. On arrival in Chau Doc, boat to cruise through Islamic Champa village and fishing breeding house on Mekong River. Continue to Tri Ton, a place renowned for its numerous Khmer sanctuaries.
Overnight in Chau Doc.

Day 13: Chau Doc – Phnom Penh (B)
Check out hotel for the speed boat trip along Mekong River to Cambodia. Upon arrival Phnom Penh International port, you are met and transfer direct to hotel for check in.
The rest of time is free at the leisure.
Overnight in Phnom Penh.

Mekong Delta Vietnam
Cai Rang floating market
Mekong Delta Vietnam
Cai Be floating market

Day 14: Phnom Penh – Flight to Siem Reap (B)
In the morning, visit the Royal Palace, built by King Norodom in 1866 on the site of the old town, and the Silver Pagoda, Located within the grounds of the Royal Palace, the Silver Pagoda is so named because of its floor, which is made up of 5000 silver tiles. Then continue your visit at the National Museum, This is one of Phnom Penh's true architectural gems. The Museum is instantly recognizable with its warm red terracotta and its gracefully cured roof topped by dozens of guardian nagas. It was designed in Khmer style in 1917 by famed French architect Georges Groslier & Ecole Des Arts Cambodgiens.
In the afternoon, transfer to the airport for flight to Siem Reap.
Arrival Siem Reap, meet and transfer to hotel for check in and free at your own leisure.
Overnight in Siem Reap

Day 15: Siem Reap (B)
Visit to Ta Prohm, one of the area’s most beautiful temples. Ta Prohm has been relatively untouched since it was discovered and retains much of its mystery. Neak Pean, a fountain built in the middle of a pool (representing the paradisiacal Himalayan mountain-lake), Ta Som, built in late 12th century C.E. the most distant temple on the grand circuit, small but classic. Preah Khan temple, Built by the King Jayavarman VII. Preah Khan is, like Ta Prohm, a place of towered enclosures and shoulder hugging corridors. Unlike Ta Prohm, however, the temple of Preah Khan is in a reasonable state of preservation and ongoing restoration efforts should maintain and even improve this situation. Lunch not included
Visit to the unique interior brick sculptures of Prasat Kravan, Srah Srang ("The Royal Baths" was once used for ritual bathing), Banteay Kdei (surrounded by 4 concentric walls), Ta Keo, constructed in late 10th early 11th century C.E, the first temple to be constructed wholly of sandstone.
Overnight in Siem Reap

royal palace phnom penh
royal palace phnom penh

Day 16: Siem Reap (B)
Drive to Visit the antique capital of Angkor Thom (12 century): the South Gate with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk, the Bayon Temple, unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara, the Phimeanakas, the Royal Enclosure, the Elephants Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King.
Lunch not included
It is time to visit the most famous of all the temples on the plain of Angkor: Angkor Wat. The temple complex covers 81 hectares and is comparable in size to the Imperial Palace in Beijing. Its distinctive five towers are emblazoned on the Cambodian flag and the 12th century masterpiece is considered by art historians to be the prime example of classical Khmer art and architecture. Enjoy wonderful sunset from the top of Phnom Bakheng Hills
Overnight in Siem Reap

Day 17: Siem Reap - Departure (B)
This morning we will enjoy a boat ride on the Tonle Sap lake. This is the largest permanent fresh-water lake in South East Asia and flows into Tonle Sap River, joining the Mekong in Phnom Penh. We will see a fishermen's "floating village" with floating schools, floating police station, etc. It is same as a big village floating on the lake, and the "village" move from place to place following water levels and current.
Transfer to Siem Reap International airport for your flight home.

Siem Reap Cambodia
Siem Reap Cambodia

What's included ?

  •  All accommodation on twin share with daily breakfast
  •  All transfer & transports by private A/C coaches or cars
  •  Meals as listed in the itinerary: B - Breakfast, L - Lunch, D - Dinner
  •  Fluent & knowledgeable English speaking guide in each city (Other languages upon request)
  •  1 unique cultural performance – Water Puppet Show
  •  Entrance fees to all scenic spots listed in the itinerary
  •  Luggage transfers between airports and hotels
  •  Government taxes and service charges except tips for tour guides and drivers
  •  Boat trip and Junk Cruise as dedicated in the itinerary
  •  Domestic airport tax in Vietnam

What's Excluded ?

  •  Visa to Cambodia and Vietnam(Get in advance)
  •  Meals and drinks, except those mentioned
  •  International flights .
  •  Insurance, Tipping and other personal expenses
  •  Domestic flights
  • Travel insurance
  •  Personal expenses
  •  Early check-in and late check-out
  •  Other services not mentioned in the itinerary

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Customer Reviews

My family and I would like to thank you especially and Ciao Asia Travel for a wonderfully planned trip to Vietnam and Cambodia It was an amazing cultural experience where we met and admired the Vietnamese and Cambodian people their food and traditions In such a short time we were introduced to your history and customs I will recommend your services to all my friends We love Vietnam and we will remember it forever.
Thank you !

Michael Daras - USA Tuesday, February 28, 2017 detail...

Dear Nancy, many thanks for the excellent planning of our tour. We have safely returned home during the weekend and enjoyed our visit 100 % We can especially recommend the day you arranged in Hoi An - it was a highlight of our trip.
I would be happy to recommend your company in tripadvisor if you want, just send me the link.
Hope you have a great week !
With kind regards

Reetta Laari Monday, February 27, 2017 detail...

Hello Giang, Thank you for touching base! I'd love to give some feedback on the tour. Firstly, you have been absolutely extremely accommodating and very very helpful in this entire process start to finish! We will most definitely recommend you to our friends. We loved Sapa, though it was rainy and foggy it was a really lovely place. Lan our village tour guide on the...
In saying that, the Halong Bay tour was the best part of our trip so far! The boat upgrade was an absolute plus so thank you so much! The staff on the boat, Tom the tour guide, Quaong the Manager, the chef and...
So thank you so much for an amazingly planned trip!
Best regrds,

Victoria Conway Friday, February 10, 2017 detail...

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