The Indochine Explorer 17 Day / 16 Nights

Single (Superior)from AUD $3450.00

Single (Deluxe) from AUD $3799.00

Twin (Superior)from AUD $2899.00

Twin (Deluxe) from AUD $3099.00

Prices per person

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Tour Description

Day 1 – Arrival in Hanoi – On arrival in Hanoi Noi Bai International Airport you will be greeted by our representative who will provide the transfer to your hotel.

Day 2 – HaLong Bay day trip – Enjoy an early start today as you meet your driver in the hotel foyer who will provide the transfer 3-1/2 hours to HaLong Bay. On arrival at 11.30am board a traditional wooden junk and begin cruising the beautiful HaLong Bay. Enjoy lunch while passing strange rock formations including Stone Dog, Incense Burner (Dinh Huong) and Fighting Cock (Ga Choi) in addition to visiting one of the caves in the centre of the islands such as Thien Cung (Heavenly Residence Grotto). In the mid afternoon cruise back to the Pier and disembark, with your driver waiting, you will be transferred back to Hanoi arriving around 5.30pm. On arrival in Hanoi you will enjoy The Water Puppet show, a fantastic art form originating in northern Vietnam. (B,L)

Day 3 – Hanoi – This morning embark on a full day sightseeing tour of Hanoi.  Start the exploration of the vast Ho Chi Minh Memorial Complex with a stroll past the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum which contains the embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh (closed Mondays, Fridays, and during September and October). View the outside of the Presidential Palace and then walk through the park to the Ho Chi Minh Stilt House where Ho Chi Minh lived from 1958 until his final days in 1969. Continue to the miniature 11th century One Pillar Pagoda which was rebuilt after being destroyed by the French in 1954 and to the Ho Chi Minh Museum displaying more than 120,000 documents, objects and films about President Ho Chi Minh’s life and revolutionary work. Proceed to Hoan Kiem Lake (Hoan Kiem means Lake of the Returned), in the historical centre of Hanoi. The Ngoc Son Temple was erected in the 18th century and honours the 13th -century military leader Tran Hung Dao who distinguished himself in the fight against the Yuan – Mongol invaders, Van Xuong, a scholar and Nguyen Van Sieu, a Confucian master and famous writer in charge of repairs made to the temple in 1864. Jade Island is connected to the shore by the wooden red-painted Huc Bridge (The Huc, means Morning Sunlight Bridge). (B)

Day 4 – Hanoi to Hue – At the completion of breakfast you will meet your driver in the hotel foyer who will provide the transfer to Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport for your onward flight to Hue. On arrival in Hue enjoy a day of sightseeing. Commence the day with a visit to Khai Dinh, the last monument of the Nguyen dynasty constructed between 1920 and 1931. Located in the heart of Hue is the Imperial Citadel, a vast complex built in the early 19th century and modelled after the Forbidden City of Peking.  Approach the city past the striking Flag Tower, where a giant Vietnamese flag waves proudly overhead, to the imposing Ngo Mon Gate, the main entrance to the Imperial Enclosure. In the afternoon embark on a local boat and cruise down the Perfume River to the iconic Thien Mu Pagoda, an elegant seven-tiered octagonal tower which has become Hue’s most widely recognizable monuments. (B)

Day 5 – Hue to Hoi An – Today you will drive south from Hue along scenic mountain roads with spectacular views over the coastline to the port town of Hoi An and on arrival enjoy a 4 hour orientation walking tour. Highlights along the way include the dramatic Hai Van Pass, the high dividing line between the climate zones of North and South Vietnam, Lang Co, a lovely stretch of beach curving outwards between a clear blue lagoon and the East Vietnam Sea, and the large coastal city of DaNang. Hoi An, a picturesque riverside town, was one of South East Asia’s major international ports during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. This walking tour includes many of the town’s highlights with visits to the Japanese Covered Bridge, constructed in 1593 by the Japanese community to link the town with the Chinese quarters across the stream. Near the bridge is Sa Huynh Museum which houses exhibitions from the earliest period of Hoi An’s history. Wander into the Tran Family Chapel, a 200 year old house built for worshipping ancestors. Visit Phuoc Kien Assembly Hall, a Chinese pagoda built around 1690 and enlarged in 1900. It is typical of the Chinese clans in the Hoi An area and is dedicated to Thien Hau Thanh Mau, the Goddess of the Sea and Protector of Sailors and Fishermen. Complete the tour by entering a Lantern Making Workshop to see how the frame is made and the silk cloth put onto the lantern. (B)

Day 6 – Hoi An and DaNang – Today you will journey to My Son, the former religious centre of the Champa Kingdom, a sophisticated civilization which held sway over the region from the 4th to the 13th centuries. Today, all that is left are five archaeological sites from different periods, in a beautifully green setting of hills and winding streams.  The Cham Museum houses probably the best collection of Cham art to be found anywhere in the world with more than 300 artefacts in the museum, many dating to the 4th century. (B)

Day 7 – Hoi An to Ho Chi Minh City – This morning meet your driver in the hotel foyer who will transfer you to DaNang International Airport for your onward flight to Ho Chi Minh City. On arrival at Tan Son Nhat International airport you will be greeted by our airport representative who will provide the transfer to your hotel. (B)

Day 8 – Ho Chi Minh City – This morning meet your guide in the hotel foyer and enjoy a full day sightseeing in Ho Ch Minh City. Pass by classic European-style landmarks such as City Hall (Hotel De Ville), the old Opera House (both may only be viewed from the outside), and pay a quick visit to the neo-Romanesque Notre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post Office. Afterwards dive into modern history with a tour of the Reunification Palace. Formerly the Independence Palace of the South Vietnamese president, this 60s style building was famously stormed by tanks on April 30, 1975 signifying the fall of South Vietnam. Continue to the War Remnants Museum, a powerful experience, this museum is guaranteed to provoke strong emotions. Continue the tour with a visit to the Emperor of Jade Pagoda, one of Ho Chi Minh’s most interesting pagodas.  In the afternoon, head out to Cholon (Chinatown). Explore the highlights of this fascinating area, beginning with a walking tour from Tran Hung Dao Street through Nguyen Trai and Soai Kinh Lam market (cloth wholesale market), visit Cha Tam Church. Continue to Thien Hau Pagoda, built by the Cantonese congregation and dedicated to the heavenly goddess. Conclude the tour at the central Ben Thanh Market. (B)

Day 9 – Cu Chi Tunnels – Enjoy an early breakfast this morning before meeting your driver & guide and embark on the drive to the Cu Chi Tunnels. Stretching over 300 km, this incredible underground network, dug by hand out of hard laterite, connected command posts, hospitals, shelter and weapon factories. Today, walk through the area and learn about the day-to-day life of the VC, see the cleverly disguised entrances and elaborate booby-traps, and even venture inside the tunnels, some of which have been modified to accommodate tourists. Afterward, go to Tay Ninh, the birthplace of the unique Cao Dai religion, a fusion of Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity, Islam and native Vietnamese spiritual beliefs. (B)

Day 10 – Mekong Delta -Enjoy an early morning drive from Ho Chi Minh City to My Tho, a bustling town in the rich agricultural region of the Mekong Delta and visit the Vinh Trang Pagoda, a beautiful temple which illustrates the splendid harmonious fusion of Asian and European architectural styles. Afterwards board a local boat to explore the Mekong River Islands, stopping at a fruit orchard to enjoy fruit and tea while listening to local music and Thoi Son islet. The trip also includes a brief sampan ride through the tiny waterways that thread the island before returning to Ho Chi Minh late in the afternoon. (B)

Day 11 – Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh – At the completion of breakfast meet your driver in the hotel foyer who will provide the transfer to Tan Son Nhat International Airport for your onward flight to Phnom Penh. Upon arrival you will be greeted by our airport representative who will provide the transfer to your hotel. (B)

Day 12 – Phnom Penh – Enjoy a full day tour of Phnom Penh. Start the tour with an insight into Cambodia’s cultural heritage with a visit to the Royal Palace, and the adjacent Silver Pagoda, also known as the Pagoda of the Emerald Buddha. Continue to the elegant National Museum, which contains a comprehensive collection of Khmer Art. Finally, explore the modern-day city, visiting one of Phnom Penh’s two great markets, the Central Market, located in a distinctive domed Art Deco building or the sprawling Russian Market, a labyrinth of stalls selling everything from CDs and DVDs to silks, crafts, jewellery and more. Explore a dark chapter in the history of Cambodia with visits to the TUOL SLENG MUSEUM and the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek. The Killing Fields of Choeung Ek were where many people who were tortured in the S-21 prison were brought to be executed and many mass graves were found in this area. (B)

Day 13 – Phnom Penh to Siem Reap – Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before meeting your driver who will provide the transfer to the airport for your short flight to Siem Reap. On arrival in Siem Reap you will be greeted by our airport representative who will provide the transfer to your hotel. (B)

Day 14 – Siem Reap – This morning enjoy a full day touring with your local guide. The crown jewel of Khmer architecture, Angkor Wat is the national symbol and the highlight of any visit to Cambodia. The largest, best preserved, and most religiously significant of the Angkor temples, Angkor impresses visitors both by its sheer scale and  layout, as well as the delicate artistry of its carvings. Angkor Wat is stunning at any time of the day, but sunrise and sunset are especially beautiful times to watch the play of light on the stones. Continue to Ta Prohm, one of the most popular attractions of Angkor as much of the jungle has not been cleared and it looks very much as most of the Angkor monuments would have appeared when European explorers first stumbled across them. The fortified city of Angkor Thom covers an area of 10 square km enclosed by a high wall and wide moats, the city includes many of Angkor’s most popular sights. Visit the ruined Baphuon, Royal Enclosure and Phimeanakas before continuing to the mysterious Bayon Temple. Watch the sun set over the Cambodian countryside from the upper terraces of an ancient Angkorian temple. (B)

Day 15 – Siem Reap – Today visit the Roluos Group of monuments which mark the beginning of Khmer classical art, and they represent some of the earliest great temples built by the Khmer and served as the capital of Indravarman (who reigned from 877 to 889). Lolei was built on an islet by Yasovarman I (who ruled from 889 to 910), the founder of the first city of Angkor. Preah Ko was erected by Indravarman I in the late 9th century in dedication to his defied ancestors in 880.  Bakong was built and dedicated to Shiva by Indravarman I, and is the largest and most interesting of the Roluos Group of temples and still has an active Buddhist monastery. Pre Rup was built by Rajendravarman II (ruled 944 to 968), it consists of a pyramid shaped temple with the upper-most of the three tiers carrying five square shrines arranged as a quincunx. East Mebon is an ancient Angkor ruin built by King Rajendravarman II, who was also instrumental in the construction of Pre Rup a short distance away. Ta Som was built in the late 12th century by Jayavarman VII for his teacher, Som. Neak Pean was built by King Jayavarman VII (ruled 1181 to 1201), it is a Buddhist temple consisting of a square pool with four smaller square pools arranged on each axis. (B)

Day 16 – Siem Reap -Banteay Srei was built in the late 10th century and is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva. The temple is square in shape with entrances on the east and west.  At Kbal Spean, also known as the River of 1000 Lingas, there are carvings in the riverbed (in the same way as at Kulen).  Near Kbal Spien is a waterfall that can be reached by hiking 2km uphill and offering panoramic photo opportunities. (B)

Day 17 – Siem Reap departure -Today is your last day in Siem Reap. Prior to departing there are still significant sights to visit such as Phnom Kulen, historically revered by all Cambodians as a sacred place of pilgrimage. It was the site, which was then known as Mount Mahendraparvata, that Jayavarman II chose in 802 to proclaim himself a divine universal ruler, which marked the beginning of the Angkor period of Khmer history. Here it is also possible to see some of Kulen’s spectacular riverbed rock carvings, waterfall. In the afternoon you will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight. (B)

Tour Inclusions:

  • Arrival and departure airport transfers.
  • Accommodation in a twin / double share room.
  • Local English speaking guide.
  • Entrance fees for mentioned visits.
  • Transfers and Touring by private air conditioned vehicle.
  • Meals as described in the itinerary – 16 Breakfasts / 1 Lunch
  • Internal Indochina Flights
  • Domestic and International flight taxes / surcharges
  • Bottled water and cold towels.
  • Port fee’s in HaLong Bay.

 

 

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