Remnants of Indochina

Remnants of Indochina

This journey will take you to three main countries of South-East Asia: Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. Once being part of French Indochina, they are today three lands with different customs and people. You’ll be shown by the monks how to give rituals in Siem Reap before staring at the wonderful sunset from the top of Mont Phou Si. Explore the waters of the Mekong Delta in Laos and Vietnam and continuously forge unforgettable meetings with the local people while learning about their activities. The unique heritages will take you back in time and you’ll realize that their incredible history goes beyond the well-known past of Indochina.

Day 1: Arrival in Siem Reap 

On arrival in Siem Reap you will be transferred to your hotel. This evening, get to know the destination with a welcome dinner.

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Day 2: Siem Reap

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, 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. 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.

Your day ends with a relaxing traditional Khmer foot massage.

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Day 3: Siem Reap

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.

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Day 4: Siem Reap

Off the beaten tracks, visit remote villages to learn how the daily life of the locals is. Get to know the village of Krabei Real as you explore the local market and purchase some supplies for your lunch. Get around the village roads and rice fields. You’ll then spend time with a local family in their house before a delicious hosted lunch. If you want to learn the secrets of the typical Khmer cuisine, assist them to prepare the lunch. Discover the local activities as you pass by the workshops of the Angkor Artwork. Long forgotten traditional methods are used for making those outstanding crafts. If free time, stop at Siem Reap’s market. The rest of the day is free for you to explore the city on your own or relax.

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Day 5: Siem Reap - Luang Phrabang

Fly to Luang Phrabang, the ancient capital of Laos. You’ll explore the city landmarks with the former Royal Palace (now the National Museum), Wat Xieng Thong, Wat Sen and Wat Mai. The must-see sunset from the top of Mount Phou Si will delight your eyes. Get around the Night Market where local hill tribe people sell their wares.  

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Day 6: Luang Phrabang

The flat, quiet roads around scenic Luang Prabang are ideal for cycling. Spend a full day exploring museums, temples and caves by bicycle. In the morning, meet your guide at the hotel and have the mountain bike adjusted to your requirements. After a safety briefing, visit the town’s most important historical site, the Royal Palace, which is now a National Museum housing precious artefacts that belonged to the Royal Family.

Continue on to Luang Prabang’s oldest Buddhist temple, Wat Xieng Thong, built in the 17th century. Notice the stunning “tree of life” mosaic set on its western exterior wall. Venture out of town along winding uphill and downhill roads. Enjoy lunch at the small fishing village of Ban Pak Ou before leaving the bikes and boarding a local boat across the Mekong River to explore the Tham Ting and Tham Phoum Caves, better known as the Pak Ou Caves. Observe the approximately 4,000 miniature Buddha images in different positions, including meditation, teaching, peace, rain, and reclining left by Buddhist pilgrims from around the country. After your visit, transfer back to Luang Prabang by car.

 

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Day 7: Luang Phrabang - Vientiane

This morning, visit the Luang Prabang Market, selling antiques and silver jewellery made by mountain tribes before flying to Vientiane. On arrival, discover Wat Simuang, the religious museum at Wat Sisaket, Wat Pra Keo, the 16th century That Luang Golden Stupa and the Patuxai Victoria Gate. Watch the great sunset on the banks of the Mekong River to conclude your day. 

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Day 8: Vientiane - Hanoi

You will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Hanoi. The rest of the day is at leisure for you to relax or explore the capital.

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Day 9: Hanoi - Halong

This morning enjoy a scenic drive through beautiful rice fields of Red River Delta. On arrival in Ha Long, embark on the junk for your overnight stay on Ha Long Bay. Admire the fascinating rock formations of the bay, visit caves and cruise to island for swimming, kayaking or relaxing on the beach. Stay overnight on the junk with full board seafood meals served.

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Day 10: Halong - Tho Ha Village - Hanoi

Experience the exquisite beauty of Ha Long Bay at sunrise. Visit Vung Vieng fishing village, meet the locals and pass through the floating school and fish farms before disembarking.

On the way back to Hanoi, discover Tho Ha Village, famous for terracotta products. You can see old houses made from remained broken part of terracotta. Visit a house of a typical family in the village and then, enjoy folk music performed by the locals. If you like unique discoveries, go in the 500-year pagoda, the most beautiful one in the Red River Delta.

Conclude your day with a walk to the dike for the amazing view of the village over the lake and have a relaxing chat with villagers. 

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Day 11: Hanoi - Danang - Hoi An

This morning, we will reveal you the orientation of this historic city with a cyclo ride. The ride will take you along the narrow streets in the Old Quarter and you can see many activities of locals along your ride. Visit some of the city landmarks such as Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Temple of Literature or Ethnology Museum before flying to Danang for your transfer to Hoi An. 

On arrival in Hoi An, you will be transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure for you to relax or explore on your own.

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Day 12: Hoi An - My Son - Hoi An

Cam Thanh Village is now an urban ward of Hoi An city. It is known for dense water coconut jungles and immense rice fields. This place supplies seafood, vegetables and rice for the area. Transfer to the picturesque Co Co river for a bamboo basket-boat ride to Thanh Dong village which is the first and only organic farm in Hoi An. Back to town after enjoy the trip.

Hoi An’s narrow lanes are ideal for a guided walking tour of its many atmospheric sights including: the old merchant houses with influences from Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture; the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, first built in the 1590s by the Japanese community to link them with the Chinese quarters across the stream; the Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation with its intricate woodcarvings; and the colourful market with stalls brimming with local specialties. 

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Day 13: Hoi An - Danang - Ho Chi Minh City

You will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Ho Chi Minh City. On arrival, board your coach for the short city tour to the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Central Post Office. 

Continue visiting another area of Ho Chi Minh City: Chinatown. Experience the locals’ nightlife of Saigon on the back of a motorbike. When you will perhaps be thirsty, appreciate a drink at a coffee shop like locals do. For dinner, we have selected for you the best Saigon’s local food. Finally, enjoy your night in one of the many local nightclubs frequented by Vietnamese new generation.

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Day 14: Ho Chi Minh City - Can Tho

Today get to know the secrets of Mekong Delta after being transferred to Ben Tre. Take a boat trip along the Delta and visit a brick factory before stopping at a homemade coconut processing plant (which produces oil, candy, woven mats). There, you can observe mat wavers at work. Travel down the country roads by tuk tuk to the pier before taking a relaxing cruise and joining in the demonstration of Vietnamese cooking. During lunch, appreciate the best of Mekong specialties. Finally, after a long day of visit, relax on the top deck before being transferred to Can Tho.

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Day 15: Can Tho - Chau Doc

Travel by boat to the township of Cai Rang and its floating market and grap a coffee to start your day. Then, drive to Chau Doc near Vietnam-Cambodia border. Continue on your exploration with Tra Su Forest and travel by sampan to visit this eco reserve of 850ha home to more than 100 species of water birds and colonies bats. Say hello to a small village of ethnic Khmer and chat with monks at the local monastery. 

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Day 16: Chau Doc

Discover Vinh Te canal, stop at Ba Chua Xu Temple for a visit. On the way back, visit one of the floating fish farms. Proceed to the Cham Village (Muslim Village), opportunities to contemplate Cham People’s Culture as well as visit Cham People’s weave fabric. Enjoy a view of Chau Doc Floating Market.

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Day 17: Chau Doc - Ho Chi Minh City

This morning, on your way back to Ho Chi Minh City, feast your eyes on the dizzying variety of greens. You will pass by the water world of the mighty Mekong, where boats, houses and markets float upon the innumerable rivers, canals and streams that criss-cross the landscape like arteries.

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Day 18: Ho Chi Minh City

Today is at leisure for you to relax or explore the city. 

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Day 19: Farewell from Ho Chi Minh City 

On your last day, no activities are scheduled until sending off. Your holiday concludes today after breakfast. Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

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Inclusions:

  • Accommodation at selected hotels with daily breakfast;
  • Check-in time is 2.00PM and check-out time is 12.00PM (Early or late service is subject to availability with surcharge);
  • Meals as mentioned;
  • Experienced English speaking guide;
  • Tours and transfers as mentioned by air-conditioned vehicle;
  • Sightseeing fees and permits during guided time;
  • Boat cruises mentioned (group join-in for Halong and Mekong);
  • Domestic flights as program (economy class);
  • Service charge and current government VAT tax.

Exclusions:

  • Entry visas and stamp fees;
  • Early/late check in/out service at hotels (surcharge if request);
  • Tips and gratuities;
  • Services and meals if not mentioned in itinerary;
  • All other drinks not mentioned in the inclusion;
  • Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature;
  • Mineral water, cool tissues on touring days;
  • Travel insurance; 
  • All other expenses not mentioned in the inclusion.
  • Flight

We will arrange all internal flights used within our holiday itineraries. We can also arrange flights from your location to the destination countries. If you would like a quote for your international flights then please complete the required section on the enquiry form.

  • Visa

You may require a visa to enter Vietnam. Your consultant will be happy to advise you on visa requirements.

  • Passport

Please ensure that you have a valid passport with at least 6 months validity remaining after your return date. You will also need at least one blank page for each of the countries you are visiting.

  • Travel Insurance

You will require a comprehensive travel insurance that covers you for medical costs associated with hospitalisation, emergency travel and repatriation back to your home country. We offer our customers a specially discounted insurance policy, ideally suited to the needs that a trip such as this creates. Mention it in the enquiry form and we will send you a quote to suit your needs.

  • Vaccinations and Malaria Prevention

You will undoubtedly require vaccinations for your visit to Asia. Please consult your doctor or a vaccination clinic for the most up-to-date advice. They will also be able to advise you of the most suitable anti-malarial medication if required. It is important that you do this well in advance of your departure date.

  • Booking Procedure

Only once you are completely happy with any holiday itinerary we create for you will we ask for a payment. In order that we can secure availability for your booking we would typically require a deposit of 20%.

  • Travelling Responsibly

We care about the places and the communities that you will travel through. It is important to us that we travel as responsibly as possible throughout Asia and that we are giving something back to the regions and the people that make these journeys so special. Full details on our approach to responsible travel can be found on a dedicated section of this website.

The Blue Sky Travel consultant team are well seasoned travel experts who think of every detail. They have all the knowledge & experience you need to create your most memorable holidays. Call us on: (+84) 28 38 27 70 07

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