Hue royal tomb, Viet Nam. Image courtesy of Viet Nam National Administration of Tourism.
What You’ll Get
This 16 day/15 night itinerary winds through three countries, exploring their highlights in depth; you’ll never forget the first-hand experiences you’ll find in these stops.
There are countless experiences you can have in this sixteen-day grand tour of Laos, Viet Nam and Cambodia’s highlights: some will dazzle you momentarily, others will change the way you see Indochina for good.
In Vientiane, the capital of Laos, you’ll lose count of the Buddha statues (6,840 in all) preserved in Wat Sisaket, and stand in the shadow of the imposing Patuxay Monument, better known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triomphe.
In Luang Prabang, you’ll tour the well-preserved city streets, and walk 328 steps up Mount Phousi for a magnificent sunset view of the city and the Mekong River flowing through it. If you’re an early riser, you’ll watch saffron-clad monks parading down the street to collect alms from devotees. Further along the roads radiating away from the city, you’ll visit craft villages to watch traditional Sa paper and local fabrics being made.
Down the Mekong River, you’ll explore the mysterious Pak Ou Caves and wonder at the thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues clustered within. At the river’s delta, you’ll experience local village life and eat as the villagers do.
In Hanoi, the capital of Viet Nam, you’ll see a thousand years of Vietnamese national history flash before your eyes, as you visit ancient structures like the Temple of Literature and the One-Pillared Pagoda, and more contemporary structures like the Historical Museum and Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum.
In Ha Long Bay, you’ll board a traditional-style wooden boat for a 4-hour cruise around the area’s strange-shaped islands and magical grottoes within.
In Hoi An, you’ll walk streets that have hardly changed for 300 years, and stroll around the area’s temples, communal houses, and shops before relaxing on a nearby beach.
In Hue, you’ll find remnants of the Nguyen Dynasty along the Huong River and the foothills surrounding the city – the Citadel where the emperors were enthroned, and the tombs in the hinterlands where they were laid to rest.
In Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll visit the last traces of French colonial rule in Viet Nam, many clustered around the city center – the Post Office and Reunification Palace among them.
At Siem Reap, your first stop in Cambodia, you’ll see the mighty Khmer Kings’ handiwork, still standing centuries after their builders vanished from posterity: the 12th century temples of Angkor Wat and the city of Angkor Thom call for several days’ exploring for you to uncover all their secrets.
Finally, in Phnom Penh, you’ll find yourself in the center of Cambodia’s bustling capital, with key landmarks like the Russian Market, Royal Palace and Wat Phnom Temple within easy reach.
For a complete listing of destinations and experiences in this itinerary, visit this page on SaigonTourist’s official site.
Wat Xieng Thong, Luang Prabang, Laos. Image courtesy of Laos Tourism.