Images Of Indochina – 14 days
Angkor Wat - Saigon - Cuchi Tunnels - Mekong Delta - Hoian - Hue - Hanoi - Halong - Luang Prabang
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This unique journey is all about showcasing Indochina’s most enduring images – first, you will visit the timeless Temples of Angkor, the limestone islands of Halong Bay, Hoi An’s ancient streets, and the colorful Buddhist Temples of Luang Prabang, are only a few. These are some of the prominent images which strike a chord with anyone who’s ever dreamed of traveling to Asia. But there are others as well; a street vendor setting up their market stall in the early hours of the morning, the graceful outlines of Hanoi locals performing Tai Chi on the shores of Hoan Kiem Lake, a lone farmer tending his rice fields with an ox-drawn plough. Experience it all on the Images of Indochina – the ideal journey for avid photographers and those who want a taste of the region’s diversity in two weeks. From wonder Angkor to the tree-lined boulevards of Hanoi, from the lantern lit streets of Hoi An to beautiful Luang Prabang – these are the images of Indochina that will stay with you long after you have gone home.
Enter the spiritual world of the Great Angkor Wat and its ancient temples in Siemriep, Cambodia
Take a boat trip to the Tonle Sap Lake, discovering the floating villages and market
Visiting one of Asia’s most vibrant and welcoming cities, Saigon
Explore the famous Cu Chi underground tunnels, strategic centre of the Viet Cong struggle
Cruise though floating markets and river-based villages of the vibrant Mekong Delta
Wander the streets of charming Hoi An
Cruise on Hue’s Perfume River to visit tombs, pagodas and temples, former Imperial Capital
Take a leisurely cyclo ride though the classic streets of Hanoi’s Old Quarter
Explore the limestone islands and emerald green waters of UNESCO World Heritage-Halong Bay
Visit famous ancient temples and the National Museum around the centre of Luang Prabang, Laos
DAY 01, ARRIVAL IN SIEMRIEP-CAMBODIA: On arrival, you are met & transferred to your Hotel upon arrival. Afternoon tour to Angkor Wat, one of the most fascinating site in Asia to experience a spectacular sunset at Phnom Bakheng. Drive back to your Hotel in Siemriep for the night.
DAY 02, ANGKOR TOUR: Set up for an early start today around 05.00am (if you wish) to visit intricately carved Khmer Ruins at Angkor Wat for the sunrise. The Temple still owns fine Apsara carvings in Angkorian Era Art. Transfer back to the Hotel for breakfast. Then, transfer to magnificent Banteay Srey Temple, 39Km from the town, believed the finest temple which has the finest sculpture, continue to visit the picturesque Ta Prohm that had nearly disappeared into the jungle and remains overgrown, an oddly haunting and exotic scene. The magnificent roots of the trees, pushing between the huge stone blocks of the temple in a sort of embrace, evoke feelings that you may remember forever. Lunch if you wish (your own expense). Afternoon to visit the mysterious Royal City Angkor Thom and surroundings complex including the Baphoun, Elephant Terraces, Leper King Terrace and the Royal Place. Transfer back to the Hotel for the night in Siemriep.
DAY 03, SIEMRIEP/SAIGON-VIETNAM WITH VN826 (13.30-14.30): Breakfast at the Hotel, set out for the drive over 30 minutes to the countryside of Siemriep. On arrival at the boat quay, board a wooden boat for over 1 hour cruise on Tonle Sap Lake, the biggest fresh water lake the Southeast Asia to visit the whole communities of floating houses and boats accommodating local daily life on water like: schools, markets, police stations…transfer back to the Hotel for checking out, drive to the airport for flight to Ho Chi Minh City (Formerly Saigon), Vietnam. On arrival in Saigon, you are met & transferred to check into the Hotel, free at leisure the rest of the day. Stay in Saigon, Vietnam.
DAY 04, FULL DAY TOUR OF SAIGON AND CUCHI TUNNELS: The Tour will take you around the busiest City of Viet Nam, Ho Chi Minh (its official name, although to residents and visitors alike it is universally and affectionately known as Saigon) has a population of over 8 million and a booming free-market economy. We start our sightseeing with an overview drive round the city’s center to visit the red-brick Catholic cathedral of Notre- Dame, the nearby 19th century Empire-style Post Office and the next door ‘Hotel de Ville’ or City Hall all look indomitably European. We’ll then visit the landmark Reunification Palace, a 1960s award winning building which was the South Vietnamese Presidential Palace. On 30 April, 1975, a Vietcong tanks crashed through the gates of the Presidential Palace which effectively marked the end of the war. Continue viewing the Vietnam’s History from 1945-1975 at the War Museum, an emotional rollercoaster. A stopover at the well-known Lacquer Workshop will help you to understand the art of making lacquer ware in Vietnam where you can pick up some unique gifts for your beloved relatives. After Lunch at a local restaurant, head to Cuchi Tunnels, just about 60 kilometers northwest of Saigon where it lays on one of the most fascinating historical sights of Vietnam-American War. The beginnings of the Cu Chi tunnels date back to Vietnam's struggle for independence from the French, but it was not until the Vietnam-American War that the tunnel network was widely expanded to cover a total distance of some 250 kilometers (155 miles), A small part of this network has been restored and opened to visitors to cast a fascinating light on the lives of the Cu Chi guerrillas and their hideouts. Going to Cu Chi where you are taken underground to experience a glimmer of the conditions in which these people lived and fought. The short visit gives you a better understanding of guerilla fighting tactics of Vietnamese. The tour also tells you more about the War: Why Vietnam were divided into Two, What the CuChi Tunnels were for, Who Viet Cong really was...Additionally, you have a chance to challenge yourself with rifle shooting, the only place in Vietnam you can have real gun shooting (your own account) of AK-47 (VC’s rifle) or M-16 (GI’s one) or M-30, M-60…Overnight in Saigon.
DAY 05, SAIGON-CAIBE/VINHLONG-CANTHO: We set off for a drive in the morning to Caibe Town-deep in the Mekong Delta, the second largest Delta in the world, and embark on a private boat. The tour begins with a visit of the colourful Cai Be floating market, followed by a visit to some locale home factories that produce rice paste, rice popcorn and coconut candy. Proceed to evergreen islands among the Mekong River through a large network of meandering tributaries, crisscrossed with countless arroyos, you can have an easy biking on the local roads if you wish. Lunch is served at a local home before the cruise to Vinh Long to discover beautiful landscapes along the river and observe the typical Mekong Delta rural life. Reach the car and drive to Can Tho, transfer to hotel on arrival. Overnight at blended colonial-style architecture with the natural beauty of the river – Victoria Can Tho Resort.
DAY 06, CANTHO-CAIRANG FLOATING MARKET-SAIGON/DANANG-HOIAN: After breakfast, check out of the Hotel and board the small local boat for a cruise to visit coloful Cairang Floating Market, the largest floating market in South East Asia, there will be hundreds of boats laden with fruits, vegetable, and fish, jostling for trade. Leave Cantho and drive back to Saigon with a lunch stop on the road. Drive straigh to the airport for your flight to Danang. Drive to the Hotel in Hoian on arrival.
DAY 07, HOIAN TOUR: After breakfast, set out for drive to visit Myson Holly Land, the former capital of the ancient Cham civilization that ruled Central Vietnam from the second to the thirteenth century. Afternoon visit to Hoi An Ancient Town, the picturesque riverside town, a major international trading port from the 15th to 19th centuries, has an enchanting Old Quarter full of mansions built by prosperous Japanese, Chinese, and European merchants. Enjoy a vivid sense of history as you walk the narrow streets, visiting houses, temples, artisan workshops, the bustling fish market along the quay. Drive back to the Hotel in the early afternoon.
DAY 08, HOIAN/HUE: Set out for the drive to Hue (130km, 3 hours drive). Upon arrival, check in the Hotel for lunch if you wish. Then the guide will show up in the afternoon for the tour to Hue Citadel, serving as the base of 13 Nguyen emperors. Today, the city is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Back to the Hotel in the late afternoon for the night. Hotel arranged by guests.
DAY 09, HUE TOUR/HANOI WITH VN244 (12.10-13.20): Set out for the dragon cruise along the Perfume River to visit the Thien Mu (Heavenly Lady) pagoda, the oldest pagoda in Southern Vietnam. Leaving the boat, transfer to visit Khai Dinh King Mausoleum before transfer to the airport for the flight to Hanoi. Upon arrival in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. You are met & transferred to your Hotel for the night.
DAY 10, HANOI/HALONG BAY: 08:30 am: Depart for Halong City. Welcome on board of Halong Ginger and set sail through the Bay while lunch is served. Passage into the magical bay, where thousands of sculpted limestone islands rise from the waves like dragons’ teeth. Opportunity to visit beautiful limestone grotto, go swimming or sunbathing (if weather allows). Enjoy cocktails while watching sunset and later unwind at Ginger restaurant. If weather permits, a short night cruise could bring you a nice discovery of the sea life by night.
DAY 11, HALONG/HANOI: Greet the day with a morning Tai Chi exercise with an opportunity to view the sunrise over the bay. After breakfast, a short trek to a nearby summit. Return on board for a final glimpse of the Halong Bay while cruising back to the dock. Return to Hanoi, free at leisure the rest of the day
DAY 12, HANOI HALF DAY TOUR/LUANG PRABANG (LAOS): We start with an early morning visit to Hoan Khiem Lake to see the morning dawn rituals of tai chi and badminton. Later, we visit the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum and the humble ‘house on stilts’, from which Ho Chi Minh ruled north Vietnam until his death in 1969. We also see the presidential palace, the amazing Ho Chi Minh Museum and the One Pillar Pagoda. Drive to the airport for the flight to Luang Prabang at noon time. You are picked up on arrival and drive to visit Former Royal King Palace, National Museum now, visit The Central market at the end of the day before check into the Hotel. Stay in Luang Prabang (Laos)
DAY 13, LUANG PRABANG TOUR: Today we rise early for one of Asia’s great sights; hundreds of robed Buddhist monks collecting morning alms. Later, after a break, we set out for beautiful Kuang Si Falls, and on the way stop off at a Hmong village to learn something of one of Laos’s most significant ethnic minorities. Back to the City to visit: Wat Xiengthong, Wat Visoun, Wat Mai, Wat Sene, Visunnarat and Pha Mahathat. Then get up to the top of Phousi Mount to observe the panoramic view of Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
DAY 14, LUANG PRABANG DEPARTURE: Free till transfer to the airport for your 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.