Discover Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam by road is a great way to know the life and culture of the Mekong River. Explore the most colorful Floating Market and historical temples in Thailand, set-off through the lush Thai countryside with its endless miles of rice paddies and fruit orchards to border between Thailand and Cambodia. You will enjoy bamboo train village with a great experiences of sliding on this funny train in Battambang, admire the incredible Angkor Archaeological Park and take sunset cruise along the Phnom Penh riverfront are in Cambodia. After 4-hours on speed boat, you’ll spend 5 days in the South of Vietnam, where you’ll have a chance to see the bustle of Ho Chi Minh City, the fertile Mekong Delta and the legendary Cu Chi tunnels.
Upon arrival, meet our driver/tour guide and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day is free at leisure
After breakfast, we leave from hotel to the most colorful Floating Market in Thailand where boat people sell their wares from boat to boat or boat to shore. On the return, a stop is made at Nakorn Pathom to see the “Phra Pathom”; which is said to be the tallest Buddhist monument in Thailand. Then return to Bangkok in the afternoon. Continue to visit a site the Thai people consider the most sacred in the Kingdom: Royal Grand Palace. This is one of the most beautiful examples of an ancient Thai court, with several Halls in same compound. You will also visit the Wat Phra Kaew or the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (officially known as Wat Phra Sri Rattana Satsadaram) is regarded as the most important Buddhist temple in Thailand.
Located in the historic centre of Bangkok, within the grounds of the Grand Palace, it enshrines Phra Kaew Morakot (the Emerald Buddha), the highly revered Buddha image meticulously carved from a single block of jade. The Emerald Buddha is a Buddha image in the meditating position in the style of the Lanna school of the north, dating from the 15th century. and drive to visit the famous Reclining Buddha at Wat Po, where the blind may be trained to become masseuses.
Early this morning set-off through the lush Thai countryside with its endless miles of rice paddies and fruit orchards. At Ban Pakkard, you clear Thai Immigration and Customs, say goodbye to the Thai guide, then take a short walk to the Cambodia side of the border at Pailin/Psar Pruhm. Here be met by the Cambodian guide and be assisted with immigration and customs formalities.
From here drive east, first through Pailin and then onto Battambang (2 hours) along a bumpy tree-lined highway that cuts through an amazing countryside dominated by rice paddies and sugar palm trees.
In Battambang, check-in to the hotel. Spend the afternoon at leisure to relax by the hotel pool or stroll through the charming town centre.
Breakfast at the hotel: Drive along the picturesque Sangker River to Wat Slaket Pagoda, the residence of the provincial Buddhist patriarch. Continue to visit Wat Ek Phnom. Visit a market where Prahoc, the Cambodian fish paste, is made. Visit the Provincial Museum (closed on Saturdays / Sundays) and the local market.
Drive to Phnom Banon, with its five sandstone towers on top of a hill and enjoy a magnificent view of the surrounding plains until sunset. Later, we are also enjoying bamboo train village with a great experiences of sliding on this funny train. And transfer to Siem Reap.
Early morning, we will visit the sunrise at Angkor Wat – the idea is to view the reflection of amazing Angkor temple in the morning sun. Return to the hotel for breakfast.
After that, we will start our full day visit, firstly with the sightseeing tour of Angkor area we spend a full day exploring the wondrous ancient ruins with the South Gate of Angkor Thom, which is famous for its series of colossal human faces carved in stone, the impressive Bayon Temple, the Royal Enclosure, Phimeanakas, the Elephant Terrace, the Terrace of the Leper King and the largest as well as the most complete temple of Angkor Wat. This architectural masterpiece was constructed in the 12th century and covers an area of about 210 hectares. We stroll around this massive edifice, seeing the many galleries with colums, libraries, pavilions, courtyards and ponds full of water reflecting the towering temple.
Breakfast at hotel, heading out of town we make our way by traveling on a newly paved road to the intricately carved and well preserved temple of Banteay Srei. Along the way we make stopover at the Preah Dark village and we follow these with a visit the Banteay Samre Temple adorned with impressive relief’s depicting scenes of Vishunu as well as Krishna legends.
Afternoon, visiting the jungle covered temple of Ta Prohm is an incredible sight. There are enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers which embrace themselves in the stone foundations of the structure giving the impression of man’s creation being reclaimed by the powerful forces of nature and we also explore the surrounded temples if time permits.
Morning free to do your own exploring.
Afternoon, your guide will meet you at your hotel and transfer you to the airport for your flight. On arrival, you will be picked up and taken you the hotel. Late afternoon will enjoy Sunset Cruise on the Mekong River. Short river cruises and sunset cruise along the Phnom Penh riverfront are easy to arrange and offer an interesting view of the city.
Option: transfer from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh by bus (6 hours) – 20 USD/pax
Begin your half-day tour with a visit to the Royal Palace overlooking the confluence of the Mekong and Tonle Sap Rivers. Built in 1866 by King Norodom, the palace is now home to the reigning monarch. Within the palace grounds you will find the Silver Pagoda, its floor covered by 5,000 silver tiles each weighing 1 kg. But that’s not all, there is a beautiful emerald and crystal Buddha sitting on top of a gilded pedestal, and life-sized Buddha made from solid gold weighing 90 kgs and encrusted with 9,584 diamonds, the largest weighing in at 25 carats!
Next you will visit the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, which documents the atrocities of the Khmer Rouge against both their political enemies and many thousands of everyday Cambodians. In 1975 this former high school was taken over by Pol Pot’s security forces and converted into Security Prison 21 (S-21). It soon became the largest detention and torture centre in the country. Please note that the images on display are quite graphic and unsettling.
End you day on a lighter note at the city’s art deco inspired Central Market. This main market sells everything from fresh fish to flowers. You can buy gold jewelry, precious gems, silk, t-shirts, souvenirs and more!
After breakfast, you will board a speedboat for the 5-hour journey (depart approx 01:30pm) to Chau Doc. On arrival,you will meet the Vietnamese guide and transfer to the hotel. The rest of day will be your own for strolling the city.
Today, you take a walk around the town and see the bustling market, then continue to Sam Mountain with its breathtaking views over the rice paddies to the Cambodian border. Continue the tour to visit Tra Su Cajuput Forest, getting to the wild birds Sanctuary, cruising smoothly with small boats to discover the arrays of splendid canals deep into the forest, watching storks, cranes and other tropical birds. You will then be transferred to Can Tho, enjoying typical rural scenery en route.
This morning we make an early rise to be captivated by Vietnam’s most legendary floating markets, ‘Cai Rang’. We board our boat and commence our journey along the Mekong River, observing ‘true life on the river’, the hustle and bustle of families carrying out their morning chores and the locals heading our way to the markets to pick up their daily supplies.
We weave in and out of the masses of floating boats selling all kinds of fascinating wares and produce and side with them to test our skills in bargaining, ‘the local way’, picking up some amazing fresh fruits to snack on whilst we sit and observe. And then transfer to Ho Chi Minh City.
This morning, we will visit the former Vietcong tunnels 25 miles northwest of Ho Chi Minh City. On arrival the visit starts with a short video documentary before spending the next couple of hours exploring the Ben Dinh section of the tunnels where you will learn more about the history and the incredible tenacity and ingenuity of the Cu Chi inhabitants. The more adventurous you will have the opportunity to crawl through the tunnels and to fire off some rounds from AK47 or M16 assault riffles at the shooting range.
Taste typical boiled tapioca and hot tea before return to Ho Chi Minh for a late lunch, and then enjoy a tour of the highlights of the city.
You will begin with a visit to the Reunification Palace, a 1960s award-winning building that was the South Vietnamese Presidential Palace and headquarters for the Saigon Government during the Vietnam/American War. Now preserved as a museum, the tour will also include the underground communications bunkers. Continue to the History Museum, housing an excellent display tracing the origins of the indigenous Vietnamese.
You will then visit the 19th century Post Office and the ‘Hotel de Ville’ or City Hall. End of the day with walking along Dong Khoi Street, formerly known as Rue Catinat, which has some excellent shopping.
Day at leisure until to transfer to the airport to take flight back to your country.