DISCOVER VIETNAM & THE MEKONG WATERWAYS

Experience

DISCOVER VIETNAM & THE MEKONG WATERWAYS

HANOI I HALONG BAY I HOI ANIHUE I HO CHI MINH CITY I CAI BE I TAN CHAU I PHNOM PENH I KAMPONG CHAM I KAMPONG I SIEM REAP

WHEN TO GO

NOVEMBER – APRIL

IDEAL LENGTH

20 DAYS

FLIGHT TIME

16 HOURS 30 MINUTES FROM AUCKLAND

DESTINATIONS

10


The Mekong River is the seventh longest river in Asia flowing through Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Historically it has been a major trade route, a natural border and a cultural melting pot for the region. This relaxed journey combines the fascinating natural and historical highlights along its banks in two of these countries.

MAKE THIS ITINERARY YOURS

Inspired by what you see? Remember we design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something that is entirely you. If we need to start from scratch, lets start with a conversation.

CAPITOL INFLUENCES

Your journey begins in Hanoi, the economic capital of Vietnam and centre of the French and American 20th century influences. Venture off on a unique guided tour of the sites followed by a delicious spread at a local restaurant Black Lotus supports. Without a doubt, the best way to enjoy Halong Bay is by cruising through the sparkling turquoise waters by boat –admire the limestone islands, the floating villages and the intriguing caves.

BECOME A LOCAL

Next, it’s the beautiful heritage town of Hoi An, a highlight of Vietnam. The architecture remains as it was centuries before, faded yellow coloured facades with Chinese-style roofing, creating a setting reminiscent of an ancient far east fairy tale. During your down time, we highly recommend trying one of our favourite tours, maybe learn to cook with a professional, take a jeep off the beaten track and visit the locals or take a leisurely bike ride through the rice paddies. It’s time to relax and take a drive over the Hai Van Pass to Hue,this tranquil city is home to Vietnam’s most celebrated (and spicy) cuisine and is known as a centre of literature and arts. Time to head to the glitz and glamour that is Ho Chi Minh City where the possibilities are endless.

CAMBODIA EXPERIENCE

Saving the splendours of Cambodia for your final last days, highlights of this itinerary include a luxury cruise from Saigon to Cambodia on The Lost Civilization, life on board is going to be full of pinch your self-moments, adventures to luxury,Khmer temples to French colonial elegance, hospitable locals and incredible landscapes – Cambodia’s charms cast a spell over all who visit. A century has passed since explorers rode elephants through Cambodian jungle and discovered the temples of Angkor Wat, this incredible complex of creeper-clad ruins outside of Siem Reap has been wowing travellers for years.

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12 NIGHTS ACCOMMODATION IN 4 STAR HOTELS I 7 NIGHTS ABOARD A LUXURY RIVER CRUISE IN THE MEKONG DELTA I BREAKFAST DAILY I 12X LUNCHES I 8X DINNERS I ALL TRANSFERS I SIGHTSEEING AND ENTRANCE FEES I PORT TAXES I THE SERVICES OF AN ENGLISH SPEAKING GUIDE AND DOMESTIC FLIGHTS WITHIN VIETNAM I HANOI-DANANG I HUE-HO CHI MINH CITY



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THE GRANDEUR OF CAMBODIA

Experience

THE GRANDEUR OF CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH I BATTAMBANG I SIEM REAP I KOH RONG ISLAND

WHEN TO GO

NOVEMBER – APRIL

IDEAL LENGTH

14 DAYS

FLIGHT TIME

13 HOURS 15 MINUTES FROM AUCKLAND

DESTINATIONS

4


When one conjures up images of Cambodia, most tend to think solely of the renowned temples in Siem Reap – whilst we definitely can’t deny its Angkor Wat ‘wow’ factor, we do feel that you may be pleasantly surprised by the country if you were to explore further afield. This two week long itinerary allows you to discover more and offers the perfect mix of culture, local life, temples and relaxation.

MAKE THIS ITINERARY YOURS

Inspired by what you see? Remember we design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something that is entirely you. If we need to start from scratch, lets start with a conversation.

ON THE ROAD

Having emerged from decades of civil war and unrest, touchdown in Phnom Penh, a now transformed vibrant and bustling capital city. With its walkable riverfront boulevard along with the numerous restaurants and bars, you’ll find your stay in Phnom Penh is incredibly welcoming. As you head north west to Battambang, make stops in Oudong, the former royal capital of Cambodia after the fall of Angkor. The drive passes through many rural village sand pagodas until you see the temple mountain with its dozens of stupas from afar. As Cambodia’s second largest city, Battambang, not so long ago, was within target range of the Khmer Rouge and was therefore off-limits to most travellers.Upon reopening to the outside world, one fortuitous result of its isolation and lack of development is that Battambang has some of the most well preserved colonial French buildings in the country.

ARCHITECTURE

Next, make your way to Siem Reap but not before stopping at Banteay Chhmar – the main temple here is on the list of possible, future UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Feel like a temple discoverer as you clamber amongst the ruins that are still being reconstructed today. Almost every step within this vast ruin gives another fabulous picture of stone being consumed by nature. It is a spectacular sight with its Bayon-style towers and walls cloaked with vegetation. More stunning Khmer architecture awaits in Siem Reap exploring the Angkor Temple Comple.

BEYOND

Beyond the temples, head out to Kampong Khleang floating village, which is in fact, a stilt house settlement of over 20,000 people where structures can tower up to ten metres above the water. For the final part of your journey, spend three nights of relaxation on Koh Rong Island, known for its sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters.

WHAT’S IN STORE FOR YOU

PHNOM PENH CITY TOUR I OUDONG MOUNTAIN I POTTERY VILLAGE I BAMBOO TRAIN I VILLAGE VISITS I BICYCLE RIDE I COOKING LESSON I TEMPLES EXPLORATION SPHARE CAMBODIAN CIRCUS I TONLE SAP LAKE VISIT I RELAXATION ON KOH RONG ISLAND


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THE KHMER EMPIRE & THE FAR EAST

Experience

THE KHMER EMPIRE & THE FAR EAST

SIEM REAP I KAMPONG THOM I KRATIE I KOH TRONG I RATANAKIRI I MONDULKIRI I PHNOM PENH

WHEN TO GO

NOVEMBER – APRIL

IDEAL LENGTH

9 DAYS

FLIGHT TIME

13 HOURS 15 MINUTES FROM AUCKLAND

DESTINATIONS

7


As one of the smaller countries of Indochina, Cambodia has a tendency to charm all those that visit – this gem of a country definitely offers more than meets the eye. For a slightly different taste of what this country has to offer, travel with us as we not only explore Siem Reap, but also the remote eastern highland areas of Ratanakiri and Mondulkiri. Offering authentic settings away from the heavily trodden path, appreciate the tourism infancy – great for any intrepid traveller.From temples, home stay experiences, rural Khmer life to remote jungles and mountain ranges, this 8 night journey will leave you with many highlights and memories to cherish.

MAKE THIS ITINERARY YOURS

Inspired by what you see? Remember we design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something that is entirely you. If we need to start from scratch, lets start with a conversation.

VILLAGE

Retaining its small-town charm, begin your adventure in Siem Reap which bustles with travellers from afar. Enjoy a lovely village atmosphere and inspirational days discovering the temples, taking in the nightlife and exploring the communities on the great Tonle Sap Lake. From Siem Reap,head to Kampong Thom where you’ll experience an overnight homestay in the Isanborei Community – a simple yet rewarding encounter.

EXPERIENCES

Continue to Kratie, a small colonial style town located on the banks of the Mekong River, popular from which to catch a glimpse of the rare freshwater Irrawaddy dolphins. Overnight on Koh Trong Island – car free, it offers an authentic example of rural life. Travel onto Ratanakiri where the pace slows right down. Living by simple means, the area is home to many different minority groups. With its characteristic red earthen roads, jungles and lakes, the province also borders Laos and Vietnam.

WILD LIFE

Next, head to the mountainous countryside of Mondulkiri – where it’s estimated that 250 wild elephants reside in the vast protected areas of the province. Enjoying a cooler temperature, tranquil waterfalls and plentiful nature, Mondulkiri is one of the least visited areas of the country. As your adventure slowly draws to an end, travel back inland to Phnom Penh, but not before one last stop – the famous Spider Market in Skun. Regularly visited by foreigners, the market is best known for its fried spiders and tarantulas however an assortment of trays with different types of fried bugs and insects can also be found – try if you dare!

WHAT’S IN STORE FOR YOU

CAMBODIAN CULTURAL EXPERIENCE I PHARE CIRCUS PERFORMANCE I ANGKOR TEMPLES EXPLORATION I TONLE SAP LAKE VISIT I OVERNIGHT HOMESTAYS I OPPORTUNITY TO VIEW IRRAWADY DOLPHINS I BICYCLE TOUR I ETHNIC VILLAGE VISITS I LAKES AND WATERFALLS I MARKET VISITS I SPIDER MARKET IN SKUN


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CHRONICLES, CRABS & PEPPER

Experience

CHRONICLES, CRABS & PEPPER

SIEM REAP I PHNOM PENH I KEP I KAMPOT

WHEN TO GO

NOVEMBER – APRIL

IDEAL LENGTH

7 DAYS

FLIGHT TIME

13 HOURS 15 MINUTES FROM AUCKLAND

DESTINATIONS

4


Cambodia offers rich history, both enchanting and depressing. The Khmer shave been to hell and back, struggling through years of poverty and bloodshed,most recently from the Khmer Rouge – but of late, the country has risen to a destination which should be a must visit on any Asia holiday plans. This 7 day itinerary promises a roller coaster of emotions – the Khmer temples will dazzle you, the sombre scenes at Choeung Ek will give you chills down your spine and the relaxed atmosphere of Cambodia’s south coast will put a smile on your face.

MAKE THIS ITINERARY YOURS

Inspired by what you see? Remember we design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something that is entirely you. If we need to start from scratch, lets start with a conversation.

ANCIENT TEMPLES

Start your journey in Siem Reap, whereby day, the town is a buzz with restaurants, bars, boutique shops, colourful markets and tuk tuks – the evenings also offer little respite. Visit Angkor Wat and also Ta Prohm which, unlike most of the temples of Angkor, has been largely left to the clutches of the living jungle. With its dynamic interaction between nature and man-made art,this atmospheric temple makes you feel a little like Indiana Jones or Lara Croft(which was filmed here). You’ll also have an opportunity to admire the incredible carvings of Bayon Temple – known for its huge stone faces of the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, with one facing outward and keeping watch at each compass point. The curious smiling image, thought by many to be a portrait of Jayavar man himself, has been dubbed by some as the ‘Mona Lisa of Southeast Asia’.

HISTORY

Fly to the capital city of Phnom Penh with its bustling streets scenes yet relaxed riverfront. Encounter the Khmer Rouge face on with a visit to the notorious Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. In 1975 Pol Pot’s security forces turned Tuol Svay Prey High School into a prison known as Security Prison 21 (S-21). Slightly further out, the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek offer a stark insight and reminder of some of the country’s darkest moments.

SEA

Then head south to Kep, where crab is the local speciality. Many flock to the nearby offshore islands in search of white sands, turquoise waters and snorkelling, with Koh Tonsai being the closest. With the Bokor Mountains as your backdrop, Kampot is your last stop and home to adeserted hill station, vast salt flats and famed pepper plantations

WHAT’S IN STORE FOR YOU

CAMBODIAN CULTURAL EXPERIENCE TOUR I ANGKOR TEMPLES EXPLORATION I ANGKOR WAT AT SUNRISE I PHNOM PENH CITY TOUR I PHNOM CHISOR MOUNTAIN RELAXATION AT KOH TONSAI I KEP CRAB MARKET I PHNOM CHHNORK CAVES EXCURSION I KAMPOT PEPPER PLANTATION VISIT I KAMPOT EXLORATION I SUNSET RIVER CRUISE


OTHER EXPERIENCES YOU MAY LIKE


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