LUxury tour of Vietnam and Cambodia

Luxury Indochina: A Journey Through Vietnam and Cambodia

Countries: CambodiaVietnam

21 Days | $22,750

Spend three weeks immersing yourself in the history, culture and beauty of Indochina as you travel in style through Vietnam and Cambodia. This trip hits the highlights of these unique nations — from Vietnam’s ancient cities and bustling backs streets to Cambodia’s Angkorian-era temples and breath-taking landscapes.

Sail through the mist into Halong Bay and take in the splendor of the UNESCO Heritage Site’s limestone monolithic islands. Explore the rich culture of the Vietnam through traditional music, dance and puppetry, with each activity carefully selected to suit your interests and deliver a one-of-a-kind experience.

After taking in the wonder of Angkor Wat, board a helicopter to the cliff-side temple of Preah Vihear — a holy site with the most spectacular setting of all Cambodia’s temples. Our knowledgeable guides will take you off the beaten track and into the homes, lives and kitchens of locals; after learning about the past, this is a great way to dive into present day life in rural Southeast Asia.

This 21-day customizable luxury tour will take you beyond the well-worn tourist route and take you into the heart of Indochina.


Day 1  Hanoi: VIP Arrival

Arrive in Hanoi where you will be greeted at the entrance of the terminal building off the jet way by a representative with a welcome sign with your name on it. Hand over your photo, visa letter and passport to the representative, who will then ask you to sign the visa form already completed on your behalf before receiving the visa label in your passport. You will be escorted to the Fast Track Immigration counter where your entry into Vietnam will be expedited as the representative will handle all airport formalities with immigration officials. You will then need to collect your luggage on your own, and once you safely have your luggage you can walk through customs to your waiting guide. You will then be transferred by private vehicle to your hotel in Hanoi.

Meals Included: None

Overnight at Sofitel Metropole – Historical Wing, Grand Luxury Room

Day 2  Hanoi: Personally Designed Tour of the City

Hanoi

Today you will explore the city of Hanoi on a tour which will be designed exclusively based on your interests. Your tour consultant will discuss with you your travel preferences and will then design a tour which includes the sights best suited to you! Below outlined is an idea of the highlights of this incredible city to give you a sense of what could be included in this exclusive day of touring.

Hanoi, originally named Thang Long or “City of the Ascending Dragon” was the first capital of Vietnam in A.D. 1010. Situated in the Centre North of Vietnam, the city is known as one of the most attractive and interesting places for visitors. In addition, after the fusion in 2008, Hanoi ranks in the top 20 biggest cities in the world.

Hanoi’s sightseeing highlights, which cannot be missed, include the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Museum, where you can see Uncle Ho laid out to rest. Ho Chi Minh was the founder and president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. Also, the National Art Museum or Fine Art Museum; the Hoa Lo Prison; central Hoan Kiem Lake, where Hanoians enjoy their early mornings with Tai Chi and “Vietnamese style” aerobics in a very peaceful atmosphere; the Old Quarter, where streets are named after the individual trades practiced here since the 15th century; the Hanoi Hilton, where John McCain and other prisoners were held during the war now houses a museum; and the Temple of Literature as an example of Vietnamese architecture where it is always relaxing to take a stroll. Hanoi is Vietnam’s cultural center, and the galleries, puppetry, music, and dance performances are worth staying at least a few days to take in.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Overnight at Sofitel Metropole – Historical Wing, Grand Luxury Room

Day 3  Hanoi: Beyond City Limits – Dong Ngac Cultural Village

At 8 am your guide and private car will meet and take you to Dong Ngac cultural village about 15 km from Hanoi center. This is an ancient village and a cultural heritage site in honor of its educated and heroic people recognized by the kings of Vietnam. By 8:30 am, you will arrive in the village where you will embark on an interesting market tour with the host from the traditional house belonging to the Pham family, where you will be cooking your lunch.

At the local market you will have the chance to experience the bustling market and local life as your host and your tour guide show you and help you to purchase all the ingredients which you need to cook for your lunch today. This is a local market so you can bargain easily, so have a go and enjoy the experience.Back at the traditional house it is time for your private cooking demonstration. After watching your host then practice yourself and then the best part of all, try your dishes!

After all your efforts you can reward yourself and rest back into some reclining chairs in the fragrant retreat of your host’s village garden. All too soon it is mid-afternoon and time to say good bye to your new friends. Continue on your cultural village experience. Visit one of the oldest schools in Hanoi built in 1921, the ancient communal house and pagoda, and drop in on some of the families who are very welcoming and happy to share their knowledge of their homes and history with you.

Take special note as you walk down the cobbled streets of the village in and out of the historical homes that each brick is part of a dowry of brick cobbles paid for by grooms’ families in earlier times when the daughters of Dong Ngac village wed. After lunch you will cycle around Thuy Phuong village. Here you will stop and spend time at the local kindergarten. Mid- afternoon, you will visit Thuy Phuong secondary school where you can enjoy an interactive lesson with the children. In the late afternoon return to Hanoi city by private car. In the evening you may contact the Journeys Within Luxury Concierge to make restaurant or spa reservations.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Sofitel Metropole – Historical Wing, Grand Luxury Room

Day 4  Private Charter Halong Bay Cruise Day 1

Halong Bay Cruise

Your guide will meet you at your hotel at 8 am. Today, you leave bustling Hanoi behind on your private transfer to wonderful Ha Long Bay. Your journey will take around 3 ½ hours through the historical countryside of the Red River Delta peppered with hundred year old villages.

At 12:30 pm you will be welcomed onboard your private junk. After settling in to your cabin, lunch will be served in the main restaurant as you cruise along. Enjoy the amazing views of sculpted limestone islands rising out of the water. At around 3:00 pm you will stop and take a small rowing boat through Cua Van fishing village. You can see the school and watch day to day life in this amazing floating world. In the late afternoon visit Tien Ong Cave and enjoy sunset cocktails followed by dinner on the boat at 7 pm. Relax in the evening or enjoy the stars from the top deck.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight at Violet Junk Cruises – Private Charter

Day 5  Private Charter Halong Bay Cruise Day 2 and Return to Hanoi

At 7 am Tai Chi is offered on the top deck so you can start the day with this traditional morning exercise. Tea, coffee and pastries are served in the main restaurant. After breakfast you will have the opportunity to visit Sung Sot Cave or Ti Top Island. Then return to the boat for a final glimpse of Halong Bay while cruising back to the pier. Disembark around 11 am.

Your guide will meet you as you disembark and you will have a private car transfer to Hanoi. Along the way you will reach Hai Duong province where you will stop at Ninh Giang Village to enjoy an hour water puppet show at Hong Phong Water Puppet Theater. After the show you will visit the Ninh Giang Communal House. Around 4:30pm you will leave to complete your remaining journey to Hanoi.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Sofitel Metropole – Historical Wing, Grand Luxury Room

Day 6  Hoi An: Arrival and Wander the Ancient Town

Hoi an

In the morning you will be met by your guide and will be transferred to the Hanoi airport for your onward flight to Danang. On arrival in Danang you will be met by your guide and will be transferred to your hotel. Check into the luxurious Nam Hai Hotel and take your time to relax and enjoy the beach before heading into town to explore the culture of this Central Vietnam Town.

Your guide will meet you at your hotel and take you on a walking tour of Hoi An. Visit the Ancient Town, which is home to the beautiful Chua Cau, or roofed bridge, as well as Hoi Quan, the ancient meeting places, some ancestral family homes and some of the lovely hidden pagodas. You will end your time in the Ancient Town with a meal at a local restaurant. After exploring the town you will be transferred back to your hotel by private air-conditioned car.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Nam Hai Hotel – One Bedroom Beach Front Villa

Day 7 – 8  Hoi An: Days at Leisure

Enjoy these days at your leisure in Hoi An. You can choose to relax at the beach, or if you would like to arrange an activity for the day this can be done prior to your trip through your Tour Consultant or while on tour through the Journeys Within Luxury Concierge.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Nam Hai Hotel – One Bedroom Beach Front Villa

Day 9  Saigon: Arrival and Private Music Performance at Truc Mai House

Your guide will meet you at your hotel for your private transfer to Danang airport (an hour long drive), where you will arrive at the airport in time for your onward flight to Saigon. Upon arrival in Saigon you will be greeted at the exit of the airplane (staircase/bridge) as you disembark by your host/hostess with a welcome sign with your name on it. Depending on your flight you may also have a short private car transfer from the airplane staircase to the terminal.

You will be escorted to the VIP departure lounge where your entry into Saigon will be expedited. Relax with your host/hostess and enjoy some refreshments whilst your luggage is collected from the carousel, processed and is brought to you in the VIP departure lounge for you to counter-check. Your host/hostess will handle all airport formalities with immigration and customs officials on your behalf. Your host/hostess and porter will escort you to your waiting transport for your onward private transfer to your hotel. Check into the hotel and take the time to settle into this city before heading out for your cultural evening.

In the evening your guide will meet you and will transfer you to the home of Mr and Mrs Mai. The stories of Vietnamese history and culture can be heard and understood through its traditional music. Mr Truc and Mrs Ngo (husband and wife) are experts at playing the melodious traditional Vietnamese musical instruments (monochord zither, bamboo xylophone, stone lithophone…) and have been granted special permission to share their knowledge with guests in Vietnam.

For an hour you will be taken on a journey back in time. Hear the instruments played and learn about the stories they tell, then you will have a chance to have a go at playing some of the instruments yourself. At the end of your time with these wonderful people you will have had a unique personal insight in to Vietnam. You will then be taken to a restaurant for your dinner and later returned to your hotel.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Park Hyatt Hotel – Park Deluxe Room

Day 10  Saigon: Culture and Culinary Experience by Motorbike

Saigon

Saigon is a vibrant and bustling city. Relax as you sit behind your trusted driver on a motorbike for a journey where you can combine some of the classic historical highlights the city has to offer (Reunification Palace, museums, pagodas, Cho Lon…), getting a real insight into local life behind the main streets. Meet and chat to local people, try special local cuisine at the different locations you stop by and learn about daily life. Get to know Saigon with a refreshing twist to suit your culinary and cultural tastes. Our guides are the experts, and they will discuss the plan for the time with you in advance so that you get the very best experience designed just for you. Please note helmets will be provided.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Park Hyatt Hotel – Park Deluxe Room

Day 11  Saigon: Exclusive Cao Dai, Cu Chi and Dinner with Veteran

Today is an 8am start. Leaving Saigon behind and heading northwest in to Tay Ninh province you will find the Cao Dai Great Temple. Along the way if you wish you can stop for a short break to stretch your legs and meet Kim Phuc’s family (The Girl in the Picture). Later at the temple you will see where Cao Daism is practiced and witness the midday mass. Cao Daism is a unique religion worshiping Jesus, Confucius and Buddha! Have lunch at a local restaurant in Tay Ninh.

After lunch you will be driven back in a southeasterly direction to arrive at the Cu Chi tunnels. Here you will learn about, and be given the opportunity to descend into, the tunnels themselves where the guerilla fighters constructed an amazing underground base and village network during the French Resistance, and the Vietnam War. Finally, to end your trip, you will be taken to the private home of a war veteran of the Vietnamese American war. Here you will have the opportunity to meet and chat with him and his family whilst enjoying a delicious home cooked dinner before heading back to Saigon.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight at Park Hyatt Hotel – Park Deluxe Room

Day 12  Saigon to the Mekong Delta

Mekong Delta

This morning you will be driven to Cai Be Village in the Mekong Delta (approx. 2½ hours from Saigon). Your guide will discuss the day ahead with you and plan the best experience for you. Explore the local waterways and islands as you cruise the Mekong River in your private wooden boat, are rowed along the smaller river veins in traditional sampans, or wander the islands by foot. Relax over lunch in a beautiful traditional garden, after which, you will carry on with your boat trip towards Vinh Long.

Spend some time in the town taking in the local market and other highlights of interest to you. Having stretched your legs a little, sit back and relax for your private transfer to your hotel in Can Tho ( about an hour), where you will have some free time to enjoy your surroundings. Before your guide leaves you today together you will decide your preferred time for visiting the largest floating market in the Mekong and your highlights for tomorrow. The earlier to the market the better!

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight at Victoria Can Tho – Victoria Suite

Day 13  Can Tho to Chau Doc: Discover the gems of the Mekong Delta

Depending on the plans you agreed with your guide you may have some leisure time before or after your private boat cruise to visit Cai Rang floating market. See what the locals are selling by the produce they hang from the poles on their boats. A freshly prepared pineapple straight from the sellers early in the morning tastes fantastic! Have lunch at a local restaurant before you set off or en route to Chau Doc. Check in to your hotel on arrival. There are a variety of highlights in Chau Doc from pagodas, to local Cham fishing villages and Sam Mountain with its wonderful photo opportunities and views over to the Cambodian border. Or you may simply prefer to wander this border town. As you return to your hotel your guide will wish you farewell to enjoy the rest of your day at leisure.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Victoria Chau Doc – Victoria Suite

Day 14  Crossing Borders: From Vietnam into Cambodia

Phnom Penh

In the morning catch your 7am private speedboat for a 6-hour trip up the Mekong to Phnom Penh. Initially the river is bustling with boats going about their business but you will soon notice as you creep further north that the river traffic lessens. Check out through Vietnam immigration and into Cambodia where you will pass rural villages with children playing in the water as you continue on up the Mekong towards Phnom Penh.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra – Prestige Suite

Day 15  Phnom Penh: City Tour

This morning take a tour of the Royal Palace, which to this day is still the royal residence. See the amazing royal collection and the beautiful architecture before heading to the National Museum, where you will be taken around by a trained museum guide who will show you some wonderful pre-Angkorean pieces as well as a number of special pieces from the temples.

After your cultural morning, enjoy a break for lunch.

After lunch your guide will take you to Central Market, reported to be the biggest domed market in the world, and to the famous Russian Market where everything from souvenirs to car parts is on sale. Enjoy a shopping spree or just browse along with the locals out doing their shopping.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra – Prestige Suite

Day 16   Phnom Penh: Toul Sleng Prison and the Killing Fields

Your guide will take you to the Tuol Sleng Prison Museum where you will visit the prison and be told by your guide about the history of this sad school. You will also get the chance to meet with one of the survivors, Mr. Chum Mey, who will enlighten you further on the sordid history of this once-peaceful school. After some lunch continue on to the Killing Fields where you can see the fields now featuring large holes from excavated mass graves, but also featuring the clothes and bones that couldn’t be excavated. This simple field often has cows grazing on it and children playing and begging nearby, a stark difference to the suffering that once took place here.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra – Prestige Suite

Day 17  Siem Reap: Arrival and Blessing Ceremony

You will be taken to the airport in time to catch your onward flight to Siem Reap.

You will be met at Siem Reap Airport by your guide and will be transferred to the Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor. In the late afternoon your guide will meet you once again to take you to an active Wat. Be sure to change into clothes you can get wet in as here you will experience the ceremony “Srouch Tec”, which roughly translates into “pour water”. A monk will chant in ancient Pali as he splashes water over you, washing away your sins and bad luck so you can start fresh and by being a good person can increase your good luck.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor – Cabana Suite

Day 18  Siem Reap: Highlights of Angkor

Siem Reap Angkor highlights

Wake up early and head out to watch the sun rise over Angkor Wat. Return to your hotel for a delicious breakfast. After breakfast head back to Angkor Wat with your guide. Explore this majestic temple throughout the morning while it is still cool and has fewer tourists. Return to your hotel for lunch and a nap. In the afternoon head to Angkor Thom, the famous walled city and see the many temples within its borders, including the fascinating Bayon temple with its many magnificent faces smiling out. Discuss with your guide the best place to view the sunset for the perfect end to a magical day.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor – Cabana Suite

Day 19  Siem Reap: Helicopter to Preah Vihear and Koh Ker

Preah Vihear Koh Ker

Leave early morning for your helicopter ride to Preah Vihear, a Khmer temple situated atop a 525-metre cliff in the Dangrek Mountains in Cambodia, close to the Thailand border, but most notably in Cambodian territory. As a key edifice of the empire’s spiritual life, it was supported and modified by successive kings and so bares elements of several architectural styles. Affording a view for many kilometers across a plain, it has the most spectacular setting of all the temples built during the six-century-long Khmer Empire.

Long been the subject of intense ownership disputes between the two neighboring countries, Cambodia was officially awarded control of Preah Vihear in 1962 by the International Court of Justice and it is now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Late morning depart Preah Vihear for the Koh Ker temple area by helicopter, located 100km northeast of Angkor Wat. It was briefly the capital of the Khmer empire between 928 and 944 under King Jayavarman IV and his son Hasavarman II.

A vast number of temples were built under his reign, until his successor returned to the Angkor area about twenty years later. The Koh Ker site is dominated by Prasat Thom, a 30 meter tall temple mountain raising high above the plain and the surrounding forest. These lonely temples provide an interesting and peaceful change to the busier temples of the Angkor Wat complex. In the late afternoon return to Siem Reap via helicopter. Upon landing you will be met by your driver and will be transferred back to your hotel. If you would like to head into town for dinner in the evening, this can be arranged through our concierge.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor – Cabana Suite

Day 20  Siem Reap: Beyond Angkor with JWOC Active Philanthropy Free Class Sponsorship

Beyon Angkor Wat

This morning set off with your guide to Banteay Srei, the intricately carved temple located just 30km beyond Angkor Wat. You will also take some time to visit Banteay Kdei and Ta Prohm, two of the prettiest temples in the complex. Return to your hotel for lunch and a mid-afternoon break.

JWOC’s Free Classes program provides free English, IT, Science and other special subjects to over 800 students who would otherwise not be able to afford these extra-curricular learning opportunities. These classes give students an amazing opportunity and a chance to compete in the local job market.  As a sponsor of a class, you will see firsthand the opportunities that you have provided to these students when you visit our community center. You will meet the teacher (who is also one of our scholarship students) and the class that you are supporting, before engaging with them as a teaching assistant (perhaps to provide a cultural exchange or reading out loud) during the lesson.  This is a wonderful opportunity to witness first-hand the ambition and hunger for learning that these local students possess. After the lesson, you will have the opportunity to see the community where our students are reside and gain a better understanding of their daily lives as you visit a local village, before returning to JWOC to meet with an alumnus of the Free Classes program.

Late afternoon you will be transferred back to your hotel.

Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor – Cabana Suite

Day 21  Siem Reap: Departure

Your driver will meet you at your hotel for your private transfer to the airport, where you will arrive in time for your onward flight to Hanoi.

Meals included: Breakfast

Tour Rate starting from: $22,750 per person based on two people traveling.

Price includes:

  • Business Class air tickets Hanoi – Danang – Saigon / Siem Reap – Hanoi
  • Economy Class air tickets Phnom Penh – Siem Reap
  • Boat tickets as specified above
  • Accommodation as specified above
  • Luxury air-conditioned car/van with driver
  • Licensed English speaking guides
  • Tours and admission fees as mentioned above
  • Meals as specified in itinerary, including non-alcoholic drinks
  • Journeys Within Luxury Tours Concierge service

Price excludes:

  • Personal expenses
  • Visa fees
  • Meals not mentioned in itinerary
  • Tips
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