Cruising in Vietnam and Cambodia - 15 days
Siemriep - Phnom Penh - The Mekong Delta - Saigon - Nha Trang
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Day 01 - Arrival to Siemriep, Cambodia
Arrive in Siem Reap and transfer to your hotel.
Day 02 - Siemriep
In the morning you will enjoy the majesty and awe of the Temples of Angkor, in the afternoon you will visit the hot spots of Khmer arts, fashion and culture. Transfer by private vehicle to Ta Prohm, pay a visit to Angkor Thom, the Terrace of the Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King to finally end with the magnificent Angkor Wat, one of the largest religious building in the world. In the afternoon, visit some of the hot-spots of Cambodian fine art and fashion: Theams House, Eric Raisina, Artisans d’Angkor and Samatoa.
Day 03 - Siemriep
You will sail for 7 nights on the luxury of the Aqua Mekong vessel and enjoy the view of the southern end of the Tonle Sap Lake, one of the most fascinating eco-systems on earth, the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. Head towards Kampong Khleang, passing through a landscape dappled with kapok trees, sugar palms and bamboo along the riverbanks.
Day 04 - Tonle Sap Lake/ Kampong Khleang/ Moat Kla
After a sumptuous breakfast, cruise onward from Kampong Khleang to the remote fishing village of Moat Kla, the last village in Siem Reap Province on the southeastern end of the lake and only accessible by water with a large Vietnamese descent community. Aqua Expeditions has made special arrangements for our guests to attend the blessing ceremony conducted at Moat Kla’s Buddhist temple.
Day 05 - Tonle Sap Lake/ Moat Kla/ Chnok Tru/ Koh Chen/ Phnom Penh
Explore remote communities around the Tonle Sap River, an ecological hot spot designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1997. In Chnok Tru Village, where everyone travels by small boat, you will see floating schools, riverside churches and pagoda, karaoke bar and police station. Return to the comforts of the Aqua Mekong and continue along the Tonle Sap River to Koh Chen where inhabitants are renowned throughout the region as silver and coppersmiths. You can purchase whatever catches your eye before you continue to the pagoda. If the monks are in residence, we will experience an authentic Buddhist blessing ceremony.
Day 06 - Tonle Sap River/ Phnom Penh
Cruise further south towards the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh and head towards the shore for a visit to the intricately carved Prek Bongkong Pagoda. This area is known for a series of “silk islands” along the river. Visit one of these villages where the weavers allow us to wander among their looms, witness the entire process, learning how silk starts with the worms, see silk thread being looped and dyed, then admire and take the opportunity to purchase the final shimmering Khmer silk accessories. Return to the Aqua Mekong and continue toward Phnom Penh.
Day 07 - Mekong River/ Phnom Penh/ Kaam Samnor/ Cambodia
From the remote charms of the Tonle Sap River, explore Phnom Penh, the country’s political and economic capital, Buddhist temples, French colonial villas and the Royal Palace provide the photogenic backdrop to international business and a new generation of boutique hotels, chic shopping and cosmopolitan nightlife. The National Museum of Cambodia houses the world’s largest collection of Khmer art. Take an optional excursion to the Tuol Sleng Museum of Genocide, with its extensive photographic evidence of the atrocities of the Khmer Rouge era and into the countryside to visit The Killing Fields. Join in the evening for a performance by renowned Cambodian Apsara dancers.
Day 08 - Mekong River/ Vinh Xuong Border Crossing/ Vietnam
Cruise to the Vinh Xuong border and onward to Chau Doc village, which sits along the Hâu River, a tributary of the Mekong. After breakfast on board, head to the shore by skiff then by road to the high Sam Mountain, highest point in the Mekong Delta, home to dozens of pagodas. Still at the top of Sam Mountain, Aqua Expeditions guests have the unique privilege to sit with the venerable Mahayana Buddhist monks at Long Son Tu Temple for a private audience. Enlightened, we head back down at the foot of Sam Mountain, stopping to visit the Temple of Lady Xu, one of the major religious sites of the Mekong Delta. Our chef heads into the local market here, along with any gourmet minded guests interested to explore an authentic Vietnamese wet market.
Day 09 - Bassac River/ Chaudoc/ Sa Dec/ Caibe/ Vietnam
French colonial architecture stands all around us today as we board the skiffs along the Tien River to a 40 square kilometer riverine island called Gieng Islet. Walk or cycle around this peaceful religious enclave on the Mekong Delta. Visit Cu Lao Gieng Church, built in 1875 with materials imported from France. After lunch on board the Aqua Mekong, continue travel back on shore with a tour on foot around the town of Sa Dec. Roam around the fresh produce and exotic spices on sale at the local market and make your way to the colonial house once occupied by French writer Marguerite Duras.
Day 10 - Mekong River/ Caibe/ Mytho/ Vietnam
In the Mekong Delta, people rely on flat-bottom wooden boats called sampan to get around and transport goods to market. On the last morning together, climb aboard to paddle through Cai Be floating market, where more than 400 sampans gather every day, starting in earnest from 5 a.m. Continue your exploration of this area on foot or by bicycle for more up close glimpses of daily life of Mekong Delta dwellers, and take up the invitation of local friends of Aqua Expeditions to dine in their traditional home. Return to the Aqua Mekong and continue cruising towards My Tho. Pack up and bid farewell to the crew and transfer back to Saigon, stopping en route to visit the Dong Tam crocodile and snake farm about nine kilometers west of My Tho. Continue onward by air conditioned bus through the Vietnamese countryside and into the bustling metropolis of Saigon. Transfer back to your hotel with your guide.
Day 11 - Ho Chi Minh City (Formerly Saigon)
Enjoy your free day at leisure.
Day 12 - Ho Chi Minh City - Nha Trang by air
Transfer from the hotel to the airport, then transfer to Amanoi Resort with your guide.
Day 13 - Nha Trang
Enjoy your free day at leisure.
Day 14 - Nha Trang
Enjoy your free day at leisure.
Day 15 - Departure from Nha Trang
Transfer from Amanoi Resort to the airport for flight to HCM City, connect onward flight.
*This is sample itinerary with no selected accommodation suggested unless otherwise stated. International airfares are not included unless otherwise specified within the detailed proposal – please contact our team to tailor this itinerary to your personal specifications.