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Indochina, with its rich cultural heritage, stunning natural landscapes, and vibrant cities, is a region that captures the imagination of travelers from all over the world. If you’re planning a trip to Indochina, the Discover Indochina tour is an excellent way to explore some of the region’s highlights. This 14 days & 13 nights tour takes you on a journey through Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia, starting in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. Then move on to Laos, where you’ll spend three nights in the UNESCO World Heritage city of Luang Prabang. Here, you can explore ancient temples, take a sunrise alms-giving ceremony, and visit local villages. Finally, the tour ends in Siem Reap, Cambodia, where you’ll visit the incredible Angkor Wat temple complex, one of the world’s most impressive archaeological sites. Throughout the tour, you’ll stay in comfortable hotels and be accompanied by Golden Lotus Travel‘s knowledgeable guides who will provide insightful commentary and bring you experience the highlights of this fascinating region, with a mix of culture, history, and natural beauty.
1 hour before departure
You are arriving in the biggest & busiest city of Vietnam, the Ho Chi Minh City which was well known as “the pearl of Far East” before 1975 under the name SAIGON. Now it is the major center of politics, economy, culture and education, and tourism of the Vietnam.
Upon arrival at airport, pick up your entry visa (you need to apply visa approval letter beforehand). Our English speaking local guide welcomes your group at Tan Son Nhat International Airport and escort you to your hotel in the heart of the city.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
Breakfast and leave Ho Chi Minh City for exploring Mekong Delta. The journey to Tre Province takes 2 hours only through the Trung Luong highway.
Note: We focus on Ben Tre because this sightseeing route is more interesting and less touristy than Cai Be floating market which is now not as busy as before. On the next day we will see Cai Rang morning market which is more interesting than Cai Be.
After breakfast, depart from your hotel at 08:00, it takes only 2 hours pleasant drive to Ben Treprovince. On arrival in Hung Vuong Pier, hop on a motorized boat on Ben Tre River – one of the tributaries of Mekong river while sight-seeing lively activities along river as fishing, water transferring. Our first stop is at brick kiln to see how to make bricks traditionally by printing and baking. Continue to visit one of plenty of coconut processing workshops located along canal. Return to the boat and go through natural scissors creeks to a village and see some local houses making sleeping mats and enjoying some fruits.
Take a motorized cart (tuk tuk) or bicycle on shady paths, pass by green rice fields and vegetable plains to be able to touch on real life and find out about tropical culture from peasants. Have lunch at local a riverside restaurant.
After lunch, we take a rowing-boat along beautiful water palm creek before meeting up the motorized boat and transfer you back to the pier. Return to hotel after a memorable day merging in Mekong Delta local living. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
In the morning, explore the downtown of Ho Chi Minh City with the most major sites: the War Crimes Museum, theReunification Palace, the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Centre Old Post Office.
If time permits, we take a short break at Café shop at Dong Khoi Street for a cup of Vietnamese coffee before visitingBen Thanh Market.
After the visit and your lunch break, transfer to airport for short flight to Da Nang city. From this point, you meet your local guide and go to Hoi An city for overnight.
Overnight in Hoi An.
After your breakfast, we explore the Hoi An ancient town on foot.
The Japanese Covered Bridge where retains a harmony of architectural styles, combining Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese cultural characteristics. Ong Pagoda is one of the typical pagodas in HoiAn’s old quarter, built in 1653 and is dedicated toQuan Thanh De Quan (Quan Van Truong).
Fukienese Assembly Hall was built in 1692 by Chinese Phuoc Kien merchants, is architecturally unique with its artistic ornaments and beautiful statues, Chinese architectural style combined with Vietnamese workmanship has enriched it with Hoi An’s cultural character.
Tan Ky Ancient House, constructed almost two centuries ago as the house of a Vietnamese merchant. It has always been lovingly preserved and now looks almost exactly as it did in the early 19th century.
Enjoy your free time in the afternoon for further exploration. Overnight in Hoi An.
Have breakfast at your hotel.
08:300 You will be collected at your hotel lobby and Ride bicycles to Tra Que Village. Visit the vegetable village and see the daily activities of the local farmers there.
Continue riding bicycle along De Vong River to Hoi An Beach dock.
Take a boat to Cua Dai sand dune, enjoy casting net show and learn how to cast net by local fishermen.
Continue to Cam Thanh Water coconut village, have a brief introduce to the history there.
Take on the basket boat (02 pax/ boat) and row along the water coconut river. You will learn how to catch the crabs (for fun).
Embark on the motor boat again to enjoy the folk songs show by local people there.
Have lunch at local restaurant (lunch included in the tour package). After lunch, learn how to make amusing tools by water coconut leaf. Then visit a craftsman’s house in the village.
After the amazing countryside exploration, go back to your hotel for picking up luggage, and go to airport for short flight to Ha Noi.
Meet your local guide at airport and go to Ha Noi city for overnight.
The city visits commence after your breakfast.
The city tour included Mausoleum of President Ho Chi Minh, Temple of Literature and the FirstUniversity of Vietnam (Van Mieu- Quoc Tu Giam), and the Army Museum &Hanoi Flag Tower.
Highlights the tour is street food and trishaw ride: Explore the most busy small streets and long narrow lanes in the old quarter that cyclos, taxi, electric cars inaccessible. Get more interesting information about traditional cuisines of Vietnam, its culture and the eating habits of locals. Taste different kinds of local foods (by the way locals do) that are not be seen at luxurious restaurants.
Free time for your lunch.
In the mid-afternoon, we experience a cyclo (trishaws) ride to explore the old streets of Hanoi.
After the “cyclo” trip, enjoy the most relaxed moment at “bia hoi” shop by the street. Have some cups of Hanoi draught beer (bia hoi) with peanut, snacks while chatting with your fellow or watch the lifeline goes…
In the evening, enjoy the famous “water puppets” show which specializes in northern Vietnam. In the evening, enjoy buffet dinner with Vietnamese & other Asian cuisines.
Overnight at hotel in Hanoi.
Note: We consider Hanoi foodie exploration is highlight of the trip because Hanoi is famous for her cuisine. Busy street food stands in Hanoi are not seen elsewhere in the country and you can get to know more insight of many stories about food and learn more about eating culture of the local well as tasting several Vietnamese food as you like.
No private guide on the joined boat cruise.
Goodbye Ha Noi after your breakfast. The land journey to Ha Long Bay takes almost 4 hours with one stopover for restroom.
Upon arrival at Tuan Chau Port for boarding your overnight cruise in Ha Long Bay, the World Nature Heritage. Lunch served on board. The cruise passes by many rocks and islets with different shapes. Join some interesting activities such as visiting fishing village by rowing boat, do kayaking in the Bay and swimming…. Again, your dinner will be served in dining room.
Overnight on board.
Note: The cruise itinerary is subject to change due to weather condition and each cruise itself. Detailed cruise itineraries with timing will be provided once the booking confirmed.
Funny Tai Chi class is available on sun deck for early risers.
Next, your breakfast or brunch will be served while doing further cruise to explore the beauty of the bay before returning to the Wharf. After breakfast or brunch, disembark and take bus trip to Hanoi. Reach Noi Bai airport, check in your flight to Luang Prabang, Laos.
Upon arrive in Luang Prabang, apply entry visa at the airport, then meet your local guide and go to your hotel in the tranquil city of Luang Prabang.
Overnight stay in Luan Prabang.
For early risers, there is a very special dawn visit to watch the monks collecting the alms. As the sun begins to rise, long lines of orange-robed monks leave their pagodas and walk barefoot down the streets collecting offerings from Luang Prabang residents. It is a beautiful, serene ceremony that highlights the spiritualism of the Laos people. Visit Morning Market where you can find all ingredients for local food. Return to your hotel for breakfast.
After breakfast, you board a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, which also gives us a beautiful view of the tranquil countryside as well as an interesting visit to the mysterious of Pak Ou Caves, crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes.
Then in the afternoon, visit the National Museum at the former Royal Palace, which displays a lovely collection of the artifacts reflecting the richness of Lao culture dating from the days of the early kings right through the last sovereign.
In the evening, at your leisure time you may explore Street Night Bazaar, where you can find the lovely collection and handmade textile by local and hill tribe people surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
In the morning, you will drive through the Luang Prabang countryside to Kuang Si Waterfalls. Along the way by the Mekong River you will see gorgeous landscapes of many rice fields, hills and villages. You will visit an ethnic minority at a village where their local culture has remained unchanged for centuries. Upon reaching Kuang Si Waterfalls, relax and enjoy the magnificent natural surroundings.
Continue our city tour with the impressive stupa of Wat Mai and the magnificent Wat Xieng Thong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represent the classical architecture of Luang Prabang temple. Then you will climb up to the top of Phousi Mount for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa as well as a beautiful sunset view of the city and the Mekong River.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.
After breakfast, you will be free until a good time drive to the airport for your flight to Siem Reap, Cambodia. Upon arrive at Siem Reap airport, you will pick up your visa, pay directly and get out of the arrival terminal to meet our tour guide.
Go to your resort for check in. Overnight in Siem Reap.
Early morning activities:
0500: Start at your hotel for sunrise trip to lotus pond in the front of the majestic Angkor Wat. Enjoy very amazing moment to enjoy the sunrise at Angkor Wat.
Next, we go to a Khmer pagoda in the Angkor Wat Compound. Bring candles and incense sticks to the pagoda and participate in a private good luck blessing ceremony, performed by local monks that reside at the pagoda. Sit on the mat while the monks chant blessings and sprinkle holy water on you–a traditional way which is believed pass on the good luck of the gods. Afterwards, a sacred thread will be tied around your wrist. This will protect you from any evil spirits or accidents. Before you continue on your journey, you will receive a small keepsake from the monks to remind you of this special moment.
After the morning blessing ceremony at Khmer Pagoda, back to hotel for breakfast.
After the breakfast, you will visit the famous temple: Angkor Wat. Angkor Wat is a World Heritage Site since 1992, famous for its beauty and splendor. Angkor Wat features the longest continuous bas-relief in the world, which runs along the outer gallery walls and narrates stories from Hindu mythology.
In the afternoon, we continue exploring the Angkor Thom –from the West gate. See the South Gate, Bayon Temple– unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara. Baphuon Temple: lying just to the north of Bayon, a pyramidal representation of mythical Mont MeruThe Royal Enclosure, Phimeanakas. The Elephant Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King.
Later on, we visit Ta Phrom Temple, was a monastery built by Jayavarman VII as a residence for his mother. Ta Prohm has been controversially left to the destructive power of the jungle by French archeologists to show how nature can destroy man’s work.
It has been largely overgrown by the jungle and as you climb through the dilapidated stone structures you see many giant trees growing out of the top of the temple itself. Ta Prohm looks as many of the monuments did when European explorers first laid eyes on them.
Overnight Siem Reap.
After breakfast, you will start to explore the most highlights of Angkor Complex with:
Banteay Srei: nearly everyone’s favorite site. The special charm of this temple lies in its compact size,remarkable state of preservation, and the excellence of its decorative carving
Banteay Samre: Its rose-colored sandstone walls are decorated with carvings and bas-reliefs, which are among the most accomplished Angkor has to offer.
In the mid-afternoon, take short excursion to Tonle Sap Lake for a short boat trip to floating village to explore local life there, enjoy amazing sunset view on the lake. Go back to your hotel in the city.
In the evening, enjoy the dinner with Apsara show at Crystal Restaurant. Overnight at beautiful resort in Siem Reap.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Free time until your departure flight.
Pick up time depends on your flight schedule
The Discover Indochina tour was an amazing adventure! In just two weeks, we were able to discover the unique culture of three countries and visit many incredible destinations. Our tour guide was friendly and knowledgeable, and the itinerary was well-planned. The accommodations were comfortable, and the food was delicious. I highly recommend this tour to anyone interested in exploring Indochina.
My experience on the Discover Indochina tour was unforgettable. The tour offered an excellent balance of sightseeing, culture, and relaxation. Each destination was unique and provided a new experience. Our tour guide was exceptional, and the accommodations were comfortable. I highly recommend this tour to anyone seeking to explore Indochina.