ALLURING VIETNAM & THE TEMPLES OF ANGKOR WITH BANGKOK & SINGAPORE
From 21/01/2024 to 22/11/2024
Breakfasts Included: 19.
Lunches Included: 9.
Dinners Included: 6.
1 ARRIVE IN HANOI, VIETNAM
Hello Vietnam Welcome to Hanoi, the nation's capital and one of Southeast Asia's most engaging cities, rich in Vietnamese history and full of opportunities to experience the traditional culture. Hotel check-in is available mid-afternoon.
The Streets of Hanoi & Uncle Ho Take a [LF] cyclo ride and walking tour through the Old Quarter. Then, look at the life of Ho Chi Minh, the father of modern Vietnam. Visit the mausoleum and the humble cottage from which "Uncle Ho" ruled Vietnam until his death in 1969. Next on the agenda are visits to the One Pillar Pagoda and Ho Chi Minh Museum. Lunch is served at Koto, a non-profit restaurant and hospitality program created to teach local children restaurant skills for stable employment opportunities. You will also visit the ancient Temple of Literature, more than 900 years old and Hanoi's first university, followed by the infamous Hanoi Hilton (Hoa Lo Prison). Join your Tour Director and travel companions for a welcome dinner this evening. (B,L,D) LOCAL FAVOURITE OLD QUARTER PEDALING The ancient Old Quarter is comprised of 36 streets, which was once the thriving centre of the city. The best way to explore this fascinating area is by cyclo (a three-wheeled bicycle taxi) and foot. Here, peddlers trade as they have for centuries and you can find them based on the street name, which reflects their trade - Fish Sauce, Silk, and Bamboo. Along the way stop for an egg coffee, a Hanoi specialty! FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE Consider an outing to see a famed Hanoi water puppet performance. Dating back to the 11th century, water puppetry originated with farmers entertaining their family after the rice harvest.
3 HANOI-HA LONG BAY
Peaks, Caves & Bays, Oh My Travel from Hanoi through the fertile countryside to Hon Gai, gateway to Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Embark on your overnight cruise of Ha Long Bay. This afternoon. visit a pearl farm to learn the process of pearl cultivation before stopping at one of the islands for a swim or stroll. (B,L,D) TOUR HIGHLIGHT BAY BLAST Located in the Gulf of Tonkin, Ha Long Bay is dotted with more than 1600 islands, limestone pillars carved into fanciful shapes by water and coastal erosion. Tunnels, caves, and uniquely shaped outcroppings with creative names can be found on many of the small islets that are sprinkled across the bay. Your overnight cruise explores the caves, and is an opportunity to admire the beauty and scale of the many secluded bays.
4 HA LONG BAY-HANOI-HOI AN
Peaceful Meeting Place This morning, if you choose, wake up early for a Tai Chi lesson on the sundeck before a visit to one of the many caves found in the bay. Explore the caverns and their dramatic stalactites and stalagmites. Disembark the ship later this morning and drive to Hanoi and board your flight to Danang, on Vietnam's historic central coast. Continue to nearby Hoi An, a cultural fusion and well-preserved trading port. The local cuisine and architecture here reflects the influence which Chinese, Japanese, Portuguese, French, and British traders had on Vietnam. (B,L) TOUR HIGHLIGHT HOTEL ROYAL HOI AN Located on the banks of the Thu Bon River with a rooftop pool, bar and restaurant overlooking the enchanting river, your hotel is a perfect blend of historic charm and modern facilities, with a mix of Vietnamese and Japanese influence.
5 HOI AN
Sail, Tackle & Stroll Cruise on the Thu Bon River and participate in a [LF] fishing lesson. Later, explore historic Hoi An on a walking tour including an old merchant house, the Hoi An Museum, a Chinese assembly hall, and the famous Japanese covered bridge. For dinner, participate in a cooking class where you will learn about traditional Vietnamese spices and how to prepare Banh Xeo (Vietnamese crispy rice pancake). (B,L,D) LOCAL FAVOURITE CAST YOUR NET Join a local fisherman to learn about local fishing methods and learn how to throw and retrieve a traditional round fishing net called a ro. Afterward, you will have a chance to throw the net yourself and see what you catch! TOUR HIGHLIGHT PREPARE & SAVOUR Participate in a fun cooking class for dinner and learn to make Hoi An specialty dishes including fried spring rolls, grilled fish in banana leaves, and beef salad in a bamboo basket.
6 HOI AN-HUE
Rest & Ride Time at leisure this morning. Depart the hotel and stop at China Beach, the landing point for U.S. soldiers during the Vietnam War, and then continue over spectacular Hai Van Pass, considered one of the most scenic in all of Vietnam, before arriving in Hue. One of Vietnam's former capitals and the last royal dynasty in Vietnamese history, Hue is a beautiful, welcoming city that remains a cultural and religious centre. (B) FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE Spend time at the beach, visit nearby My Son, or explore pottery and wood carving workshops and stores in nearby villages.
Dynastic Hue This morning's sightseeing provides a unique window into Vietnam and its complex past. Along the banks of the Perfume River visit the tombs of the Nguyen Emperors: the Khai Dinh Mausoleum and the Royal Tomb of Tu Duc. After lunch, a cyclo tour of the city visits the Thien Mu Pagoda, the unofficial symbol of the city, which is the tallest religious building in Vietnam at seven stories. Continue to the Imperial Citadel built between 1804 and 1833. This heavily fortified structure is still very much the heart of modern-day Hue and despite a checkered history, the fortress remains superbly intact. (B,L)
8 HUE-HO CHI MINH CITY
Seeing Saigon Today, fly to Ho Chi Minh City, still known as Saigon to many. After some free time, join your travel companions for a special dinner at a local restaurant. (B,D)
9 HO CHI MINH CITY
Meandering Streets, Landmarks & Markets A walking tour introduces you to the city's famous and historic landmarks. The route winds through the heart of the city along Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat) past the Opera House, Rex Hotel, Ho Chi Minh Square, the Municipal Theatre, Central Post Office, and Notre Dame Cathedral. Next, visit the War Remnants Museum, followed by Ben Thanh Market, the largest and oldest in the city. After lunch at a local restaurant, enjoy some free time. (B,L)
10 HO CHI MINH CITY. CU CHI TUNNELS EXCURSION
Tunnel Vision Drive through vast expanses of rice paddies to explore the Cu Chi Tunnels, an extraordinary network of tunnels more than 120 miles long that was used by the Viet Cong as a hideout and secret village during the war. Return to Ho Chi Minh City and enjoy the remainder of the day at your leisure. (B) FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE The city is booming, and pulses with contagious energy day and night. Sample local food from a street vendor, get a foot massage, or spend more time on Dong Khoi Street. Tonight, be sure to stop at one of several rooftop bars for a drink and magnificent views of the city. Your Tour Director will be on hand to assist with recommendations.
11 HO CHI MINH CITY-SIEM REAP, CAMBODIA
Captivating Cambodia This morning, board your flight to Siem Reap, your base during your visit to Angkor, considered by many to be the most spectacular archaeological ruins on Earth! Enjoy dinner at the hotel this evening. (B,D)
12 SIEM REAP
Awe-Inspiring Angkor Spend the day exploring the Angkor Temple complex. Begin with a visit to Angkor Thom, the ancient royal city of the Khmer Empire. Stops here include the Bayon Temple, Terrace of the Elephants and Leper King, and the Baphuon complex. After an included lunch, visit the most famous of all the temples, Angkor Wat. The temple complex covers more than 81 hectares and is comparable in size to Beijing's Imperial Palace. (B,L) TOUR HIGHLIGHT IT'S COMPLEX Constructed between the 9th and 13th centuries, the Temples of Angkor were built around the Khmer interpretations of Indian religious and political beliefs that evolved from Hinduism to Buddhism. The complex architectural grandeur of the temples is arguably unmatched among the world's ancient ruins. Start your exploration at Angkor Thom to see the Bayon Temple. One of the few Buddhist temples in Angkor, it features more than 200 striking faces carved in 54 towers and impressive bas-reliefs. Next stop is, the best preserved and most famous of all the temples, Angkor Wat, dedicated to the Hindu god, Vishnu. Featuring five trademark towers and stunning bas-reliefs, it has become a symbol of Cambodia. FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE You may consider exploring the temple complex further, a cruise on Tonle Sap Lake to see a floating village, or an exciting performance of Phare, The Cambodian Circus. This and more options throughout your tour are available for purchase with My Account.
13 SIEM REAP
Tempting Temples & Study Session This morning, visit Banteay Srei, a unique temple outside the main complex dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. This temple was built in the 10th Century on a small scale in red sandstone and boasts exquisitely carved figures. On your return journey stop at a local school to interact with the children. Then on to Ta Prohm, which has been left relatively untouched and is surrounded by jungle, with tree roots growing over and through the ruins. You'll be able to experience the temple with the same wonder as the early explorers who discovered it. Enjoy a farewell dinner this evening. (B,D) TOUR HIGHLIGHT DINNER & DANCE Join your Tour Director and travel companions for a farewell dinner followed by a traditional Apsara dance performance, where the ancient Khmer culture is brought to life by talented dancers, singers, and musicians.
14 SIEM REAP-BANGKOK, THAILAND
Capital Gains Today, fly to Bangkok, Thailand's capital city, where you'll spend the next three nights. (B)
Bangkok Bliss Explore Bangkok with our Local Guide. Start the day with a boat ride through the klongs, Bangkok's famous canals, to see family homes, temples, and the way of life that gives this city the nickname "Venice of the East." Next, stop at Wat Arun, the Temple of the Dawn, whose 260-foot-tall spire has become identified with Bangkok. Continue to the Grand Palace, comprised of the Funeral Palace, the Reception Palace, the Throne Hall, the Coronation Hall, the Royal Guest House, and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Lastly, visit the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, the oldest and largest Buddhist temple in Bangkok. It houses more than 1,000 Buddha images, including the 49-foot-high and 151-foot-long massive Reclining Buddha. (B,L)
Free to Wander Enjoy a full day at your leisure. (B) FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE You may consider a visit to Jim Thompson's House, a dinner cruise on the Chao Phraya River, or an excursion to the vibrant Damnoen Saduak floating market.
Today, fly to exciting Singapore. (B)
Sublime Singapore Sightseeing with your Local Guide introduces you to Singapore's highlights. Start with a visit to the Gardens by the Bay, a showpiece of horticulture and garden artistry. The gardens house flora from five continents and award-winning architecture design as well. Your tour ends at Marina Bay, where you will ascend to the Sands Skypark's gravity-defying rooftop for stunning views over the city. (B,L)
At Your Own Pace Enjoy a full day at your leisure. (B) FREE TIME TIPS EXPLORE MORE Visit the National Orchid Garden, take the popular night safari at the zoo, or explore Malay culture at Changi Village.
Homeward Bound Your southeast Asia adventure ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
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