Vietnam & Cambodia Uncovered
If Vietnam and Cambodia are on your bucket list, look no further than this itinerary which covers the best of both.
Following the classic trail from Hanoi to Siem Reap, we’ve added plenty of twists to show you hidden sights away from the crowds - like Halong Bay’s quieter neighbor, rural villages around Hoi An, and the backstreets of Phnom Penh. But don’t hold back. Tell us what you like to do on vacation and we’ll tailor a trip to match.
This trip has three internal flights, each an hour to 90 minutes long. Getting to and from Lan Ha Bay is 2.5 hours by car transfer. There’s also one long car journey across Cambodia of 5.5. hours. It’s very scenic and you’ll break up the ride with a sightseeing boat cruise en-route.
We’ve designed this itinerary to showcase the crème de la crème of Vietnam and Cambodia with a strong focus on food, history and culture
Instead of Halong Bay, we highly recommend its quieter neighbor Lan Ha Bay. There are far fewer tourist boats but the scenery’s just as beautiful with the added bonus of a few alabaster beaches
We can easily lengthen your trip to include time on the beach. The Cambodian Islands have their best weather from November to March, or extend your stay in Hoi An from March to August.
Things to consider
This trip hits all the classic sights of Vietnam and Cambodia. It’s a well-trodden trail so there will always be other tourists around, although our guides are high-skilled at navigating busy times of day to avoid big crowds
Indochina has a diverse climate, so whenever you travel there will always be one destination that’s not enjoying optimal weather
Some of the foodie experiences on this trip are not great for people with dietary requirements. If that’s you, let us know and we’ll come up with suitable alternatives - rest assured we won’t let you go hungry!
Good Morning Vietnam! Wake up early on your first full day to explore two faces of Hanoi. We’ll team you up with a knowledgeable guide who’ll first introduce you to daily life in the capital. At 5.30am head to Long Bien Market to see fruit and vegetable wholesalers in full swing. Stroll around Hoan Kiem Lake, then do as the locals do by joining a tai chi class. Having worked up an appetite, tuck into the Hanoian breakfast of choice, a steaming bowl of pho noodles washed down with a sweet Vietnamese coffee. In the afternoon, the focus is on history at the 1,000-year-old Temple of Literature and One Pillar Pagoda. Visit the house where Ho Chi Minh lived to learn about his life and legacy.
Get the day started with a tai chi class in the park
Pull up a plastic stool for a typical Hanoian breakfast of pho noodles
Explore Hanoi’s historic landmarks including the Temple of Literature
Lan Ha Bay
Head east from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay, one of the most spectacular seascapes in the world, where hundreds of limestone karsts dot the ocean. Neighboring Halong Bay is the famous spot but these days its chock-a-block with cruise boats. That’s why we recommend peaceful Lan Ha which is just as beautiful, with the added bonus of white beaches on some of the islets. You’ll spend a day and a night aboard a gorgeous traditional junk. They’ve got a whole menu of activities for you: kayaking, squid fishing and cooking classes, as well as island excursions. Of course, nobody’s going to blame you if you opt instead to relax with a cocktail and watch the scenery drift past your cabin balcony.
Cruise through stunning Lan Ha, a bay sprinkled with karst mountain islands
Spend the night in a private cabin aboard a traditional junk boat
Take an island excursion, go kayaking or try your luck at squid fishing
The finer detail
- Breakfast every day
- Two lunches: one on board the Lan Ha Bay cruise; one during the Vespa tour of Hoi An
- Four dinners: one on board the Lan Ha Bay cruise; a street food tour of Ho Chi Minh City; dine-around in Phnom Penh; street food tour of Siem Reap
- Two full-day experiences: countryside tour of Hoi An by Vespa; visit the temples of the Angkor Temple Complex
- Seven half-day experiences: Good morning Hanoi; Hanoi city tour; Ho Chi Minh City backstreets tour; Cu Chi Tunnels; walking tour of Phnom Penh; Khmer Rouge sites of Phnom Penh; boat trip on the Tonlé Sap Lake
- Four evening experiences: street food tour of Ho Chi Minh City; dine-around in Phnom Penh; street food tour of Siem Reap; Phare, The Cambodian Circus performance
- All entrance fees to sites included in guided experiences
- All internal transport & accommodation
Logistics and journey times
Car transfer from Hanoi Airport to Hanoi (45 minutes)
Car transfer from Hanoi to Lan Ha Bay (2.5 hours)
Car transfer from Lan Ha Bay to Hanoi Airport (2.5 hours)
Flight from Hanoi to Danang (1.5 hours)
Car transfer from Danang Airport to Hoi An (45 minutes)
Car transfer from Hoi An to Danang Airport (45 minutes)
Flight from Danang to Ho Chi Minh City (1.5 hours)
Car transfer from Ho Chi Minh City Airport to Ho Chi Minh City (30 minutes)
Car transfer from Ho Chi Minh City to Ho Chi Minh City Airport (30 minutes)
Flight from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh (1 hour)
Car transfer from Phnom Penh Airport to Phnom Penh (1 hours)
Car transfer from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap (5.5 hours)
Car transfer from Siem Reap to Siem Reap Airport (20 minutes)
What's not included
- International flights
- Meals not mentioned
- Entrance fees to any sites not included in guided experiences
- Tips for guides & porters