Current as of: June 15, 2024 - 08:23

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure Trip Notes

  • Ways to Travel: Guided Group, Premium Adventures, Private Group Adventures
  • Destination: Cambodia, Vietnam
  • Programmes: Culture, Premium Adventures
  • Activity Level:

    1 out of 7 - Leisurely

  • 16 Days: Flight Inclusive
  • 14 Days: Land Only
  • Ages: 16+
  • Trip Code: AOH
  • Carbon Footprint: 88kg CO2e

Trip Overview

Cover the best of Vietnam and the Angkor temples in Cambodia, while staying in premium accommodation

Immerse yourself in incredible experiences on this expertly led cultural adventure from Hanoi in northern Vietnam to Siem Reap in Cambodia. You’ll explore limestone cliffs and enjoy sundowners on deck as you cruise Ha Long Bay; discover culture and history in Hoi An; witness street life in vibrant Ho Chi Minh City; and slow down on the serene waterways of the Mekong Delta. Finally, you’ll journey to Siem Reap, staying at the intimate Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa – the perfect base to visit one of the great surviving archaeological wonders, the mesmerising temple complex of Angkor.

At a Glance

  • 13 nights in premium accommodation including one night aboard a traditionally handcrafted boat on Ha Long Bay
  • Travel by private air-conditioned minibus, three flights and boat
  • Group normally 4 to 16 plus leader

Highlights

  • Two nights at the intimate Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa – the perfect base to explore Angkor
  • Spend one night aboard a Le Journey Cruise in Ha Long Bay; enjoy sunset drinks on deck
  • Explore the historic trading town of Hoi An; test your culinary skills at a Vietnamese cooking class
  • Traverse the meandering waterways of the Mekong Delta by boat
  • Encounter the spellbinding Angkor Wat

Is This Trip for You?

This Premium Adventure is rated Activity Level 1 (Leisurely). For more on our trip gradings, visit our Activity Level Guidelines page.

This is not a rushed trip and although there are early starts, the focus is on spending time in each area in comfort, with few long road journeys. Both Vietnam and Cambodia are humid, which can be tiring as we explore some areas on foot. We have included three flights to keep travelling time to a minimum but please be aware that delays can occur.

25 November 2024: For this departure, we stay at Sakmut Boutique Hotel rather than Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa. The alternative hotel regularly receives excellent feeedback from our groups and has a saltwater swimming pool, poolside bar, spa and restaurant.

Group

The trip is led by locally qualified Vietnamese and Cambodian English-speaking leaders, chosen for their experience and great customer feedback.

Adult min age: 16

Min group size: 4

Max group size: 16

Itinerary

AOH Map

Land Only

  • Start City: Hanoi
  • End City: Siem Reap

Land Only Itinerary

Day 1
Start Hanoi; welcome dinner in the evening

The capital of Vietnam, Hanoi, is ready to welcome you when you arrive. Get acclimatised and familiarise yourself with the city by wandering the tree-lined avenues.

There will be a group welcome meeting this evening with your expert leader followed by an included welcome dinner at KOTO (Know One, Teach One), a well-established training restaurant for disadvantaged youths where you’ll be served a blend of Vietnamese and Southeast Asian foods.

Premium accommodation: Foreign Relations Hotel, Hanoi (four-star)

Meals included: Dinner

Day 2
City tour of Hanoi; free afternoon

This morning, enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city that includes a visit to the Temple of Literature, the site of the oldest university in Vietnam; Hoa Lo Prison; and the Old Quarter. For lunch, we’ll visit the much-loved restaurant, Bun Cha Huong Lien, to try their bun cha (a local speciality of noodles, broth and meat served with greens).

The afternoon is then free for you to wander around the Hoan Kiem Lake and perhaps enjoy the view from a lakeside cafe.

Premium accommodation: Foreign Relations Hotel, Hanoi (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 3
To Ha Long Bay; cruise followed by sundowners on deck; overnight on board a Le Journey Cruise
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

We make an early start for the approximate four-hour journey to Ha Long Bay, one of the most stunning sights in Southeast Asia with some 3,000 limestone peaks rising directly from the emerald sea. We cruise among this striking karst scenery, stopping to swim and kayak, allowing us to get to places inaccessible by boat (weather permitting), and enjoy a seafood lunch on board. Later in the afternoon, join your expert leader and group for a drink or two on the top deck while watching the sunset before spending the night in twin-share cabins.

Premium accommodation: Le Journey Cruises (join-in basis), Ha Long Bay

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4
Continue cruise; visit Ha Long Women's Association, return to Hanoi

We continue to cruise around Ha Long Bay this morning before returning to port.

Your leader will then introduce your group to the Ha Long Women’s Association in the Hon Gai township, a local sustainable initiative committed to cleaning waste in Ha Long Bay and upcycling it, where possible, into items of value. Here you’ll meet the local women and witness how they upcycle trash into beautiful, handcrafted products. You may also get the chance to try upcycling too.

We then drive back to Hanoi for a free evening to explore or relax. There may be an option of seeing a Water Puppets performance, which your leader can arrange if you wish (subject to availability).

Premium accommodation: Foreign Relations Hotel, Hanoi (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 5
Fly to Da Nang; transfer to Hoi An
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

After breakfast, we transfer to Hanoi Airport for a flight to Da Nang. In Da Nang, we climb Marble Mountain where we explore the large caves used by the Viet Cong as a hospital base during the war. There are wonderful views from the mountain peak over My Khe Beach and the surrounding countryside which leads on to the captivating town of Hoi An, our next destination (approximately one-hour transfer).

This evening, the group will dine at a local restaurant while enjoying views of the atmospheric Thu Bon River.

Premium accommodation: Hoi An Blue Sky Boutique Hotel & Spa, Hoi An (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6
Walking tour of Hoi An; free afternoon

This morning will include a walking tour of Hoi An, the original European trading port in Vietnam dating back to the mid-16th century. It is now a living museum, with attractive wooden merchant houses and pagoda-style temples with Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and European architectural influences. It is also a marvellous place to wander around, dipping into the thriving riverside market and shopping for silk clothing.

After lunch at a local eatery, the afternoon is free to enjoy a town that has become a favourite for so many travellers to Vietnam. Options include a trip to My Son (the spiritual home of the Cham civilisation) where Cham kings were buried as long ago as the fourth century. Although bombing has destroyed much of the site, there are several interesting stone towers and sanctuaries.

Premium accommodation: Hoi An Blue Sky Boutique Hotel & Spa, Hoi An (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7
Morning visit to the local market and cooking class; free afternoon
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

We spend the morning visiting the colourful local market where we will shop for ingredients before visiting the renowned Green Mango Cooking School. Here we learn the intricacies of Vietnamese cooking. Under the supervision of an English-speaking Vietnamese chef, you create your own dishes. You don’t need to be a proficient cook to enjoy this activity – but be warned, you eat your creations at the end of the morning!

The afternoon is free for you to enjoy Hoi An at leisure, or jump on a bike (optional) for a ride through the countryside, passing markets, schools and villages before continuing to Cua Dai beach (3mi/5km).

Premium accommodation: Hoi An Blue Sky Boutique Hotel & Spa, Hoi An (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8
Fly to Ho Chi Minh City; afternoon city tour
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

This morning we transfer to Da Nang Airport for the flight (approximately 1hr 25min) to Ho Chi Minh City (formally Saigon). This is an exciting, absorbing city where scooters pack the streets and temples stand alongside modern developments. Devastated by the Vietnam War, it is now a bustling free-market city where anything goes. The Saigon River and Ben Thanh market are within walking distance and are highly recommended.

After arrival, your group will dine at a Ho Chi Minh City institution, Pho Hoa on Pasteur, which has been in operation for more than 50 years. Here you will enjoy a tasty lunch of southern-style Vietnamese noodles and spring rolls.

An afternoon city tour will include a visit to the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Reunification Palace and the War Remnants Museum. The museum has an interesting photographic record of the Vietnam/American War. Please be aware, some images at the museum are very graphic.

Premium accommodation: Sila Urban Living, Ho Chi Minh City (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 9
Morning visit to Cu Chi tunnels; free afternoon

Today we leave the city and head north to visit the Cu Chi tunnels. Used by the Viet Cong during the war, the network covers three levels and incorporates around 150mi (240km) of tunnels. Traditionally, these were very narrow, but some areas have been widened to allow tourists to explore the system. Claustrophobes may prefer to stay outside in the sunshine.

In the afternoon, we return to Ho Chi Minh City and the rest of the day is free for individual exploration.

Premium accommodation: Sila Urban Living, Ho Chi Minh City (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 10
To Mekong Delta; cruise through waterways
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

In the morning, we drive to Cai Be in the Mekong Delta (approximately 2hr 30min), known as the rice bowl of Vietnam. This region produces most of Vietnam’s fruit, sugar cane and coconuts. We take a boat trip on the mighty Mekong River, passing many orchards and friendly locals also travelling by boat. Recently, Cai Be floating market has become less crowded and smaller as fruit trading is mostly now done by trucks. However, this is still a great opportunity to see a local market and traditional trade on a smaller scale. We stop to see small cottage industries, such as rice paper and coconut candy, getting a chance to sample the produce before enjoying the local specialty, elephant ear fish, for lunch.

After, we continue by boat to Vinh Long where our private transport takes us to Can Tho. This evening, the group will dine and enjoy local Mekong specialties.

Premium accommodation: Ninh Kieu Riverside Hotel, Can Tho (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11
Visit floating market; return to Ho Chi Minh City

This morning, we take a boat trip to Cai Rang floating market, the biggest and most lively floating market in the Delta, with great photo opportunities. It is a maze of hundreds of boats packed with fruits, vegetables and plants, where samples are hung from the tops of long poles so buyers can see from a distance what is for sale.

After, we drive back to Ho Chi Minh City where the remainder of the afternoon is free. This evening, you’ll meet your leader and group for a final traditional meal in a Vietnamese-style house-restaurant in the heart of the city.

Premium accommodation: Sila Urban Living, Ho Chi Minh City (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12
Fly to Siem Reap, Cambodia, and be based at the Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa

Today we transfer to Ho Chi Minh City Airport for the flight to Siem Reap in Cambodia.

On arrival, the group will be met by our Cambodian expert tour leader. Here the group will spend the next two nights at the intimate Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa – the perfect base to explore Angkor.

This evening, we enjoy a welcome dinner in the local village of Lum Orng at the first farm-to-table restaurant in Cambodia where we feast on authentic Khmer cuisine made with many ingredients from the organic garden.

We may also have the opportunity to see the sunset at the temple-complex this evening (flight time dependent). If not, we enjoy this marvel tomorrow.

Premium accommodation: Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa, Siem Reap (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 13
Full day to explore Angkor
Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

We visit the incredible Angkor Wat and the many temples inside the Royal City of Angkor Thom, including the magnificent Bayon, which comprises 54 intricately carved towers in a single temple. The Bayon certainly left an impression on an early traveller in 1925 who stated, ‘we stand before it stunned. It is like nothing else in the land.’ We will also see other less-visited outlying temples. Particularly impressive are Banteay Srei and Ta Prohm, the latter still covered in jungle as it was first found. Re-discovered in the 1870s and described as being ‘grander than anything of Greece or Rome’ by the French explorer Henri Mouchot, this Unesco World Heritage site is one of the most spectacular archaeological zones in the world. A truly magical experience and a photographer’s paradise.

This evening, gather with your leader and group members for a special farewell dinner featuring traditional cuisine and entertainment.

Premium accommodation: Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa, Siem Reap (four-star)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14
End Siem Reap

This cultural tour ends after breakfast. There are free transfers to Siem Reap Airport for all customers (see the Joining Instructions for more information). Alternatively, if you’d like more time to explore this fascinating destination, speak to your sales representative about extending your stay.

Meals included: Breakfast

Accommodation

Premium hotels and Ha Long Bay cruise

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

For this Premium adventure through Vietnam and Cambodia, we handpicked accommodation for their location, comfort, style and unique characteristics. The hotels typically used are on the daily itinerary. However, below are some of the standout places we stay. 

Ha Long Bay: Le Journey Cruise (night 3) 

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

Experience Ha Long Bay, an icon of Vietnam and highlight for many of our travellers, from the comfort of a premium small cruise ship. Enjoy views over the striking scenery from your deluxe/executive cabin or head to the sundeck to gather with the group and soak up the atmosphere. The latter is a prime spot for sunset, which you can experience with a drink in your hand from the bar. 

Siem Reap: Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa (nights 12-13) 

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

Relax at this intimate riverside resort, which sits in the heart of Siem Reap, an ideal location for our adventures! For ultimate peace, there’s the Nirvana Spa, which offers a traditional Khmer massage, plus tropical gardens and a freshwater pool. The Palate restaurant serves modern Cambodian cuisine made from fresh, local ingredients, and has a sky bar for cocktails with a river view. 

Worth knowing 

  • The accommodation shown has been booked and agreed in advance; however, we may need to make changes to a property of similar or higher standard after you have booked. We endeavour to inform you of any changes in advance, which could, on rare occasions, be at late notice. 
  • Single supplements are available (on request) for the 12 hotel nights (not for the Ha Long Bay night). Please advise your sales representative at the time of booking if you would like to request a single supplement. 
  • The Ha Long Bay cruise ship may have other guests on board at the same time. 

Single supplement from £ 595

Food & Drink

All breakfasts, seven lunches and seven dinners are included.

Thanks to the tropical climate, long coast and gigantic range of mountains, Vietnam is blessed with a variety of culinary offerings, and maintains a reputation as one of the healthiest, most delicious cuisines in the world.

Vietnamese food relies on fresh fish, vegetables, rice and a myriad of verdant herbs and spices; lemongrass, ginger, basil and lime all play an important role in the cuisine. The Chinese and French influence is felt throughout the country where you are just as likely to be offered a banh mi (stuffed baguette) as you are a steaming bowl of pho (noodle soup).

Each dish is prepared with the Asian principle of Wu Xing (the five elements) in mind; meaning the perfect combination of spicy, sour, bitter, salty and sweet is the aim. Be sure to also seek out the national beverages: Vietnamese coffee is served iced and sweet with condensed milk, a real sugar and caffeine hit, and beer hoi (local beer, brewed daily) is served on most street corners in the north out of large plastic jugs that are perfect for sharing.

Food is cheap in Vietnam and you can generally avoid the spicier dishes if you wish. Western food is readily available almost everywhere, except for the Mekong Delta area.

Food is cheap in Cambodia and you can generally avoid the spicier food if you wish. Cambodian food is all about contrasts—sweet and bitter, salty and sour, fresh and cooked. It shares many dishes with its neighbours, and you’ll find noodle soup similar to Vietnamese pho, the refreshing salads and sour soups of Thailand, Indian-inspired curries, and noodles and stir fries handed down from years of Chinese migration. From days as a French Indochina colony, Vietnam has a love of coffee, pâté and good bread. Baguettes are served with soup, made into sandwiches, and sold by cyclists carrying baskets filled with long loaves. Western food is also available in most places visited.

Vegetarian food is widely available; however, the offering will be fairly similar in most places. Please advise at time of booking if you have any dietary requirements.

Transport

We use private air-conditioned car, minibus or bus dependent on group size. Boats are used at various points in the itinerary. There are three flights included in the itinerary and all bookings on flights are economy class.

Tet Holiday Period (Vietnamese New Year)

During the Tet holiday period,  9-15 February 2024 and 28 January to 3 February 2025, our itinerary is subject to minor change as, despite booking hotels and trains in advance, rooms and seats are difficult to obtain during this busy festive period when people are travelling home to celebrate with their families. It is unlikely that changes will occur, but if required, suitable alternative premium accommodation will be used.

Weather & Seasonality

The weather will be hot and humid throughout with daytime temperatures usually between 28C and 34C (82F and 93F). It is only a little cooler at night.

There is quite a range of seasons between the north and the south: the south up to Hue has a distinct dry season between December to April and then a rainy season from May to November when it tends to come in short heavy bursts with bright sunshine in between. Hanoi is cool in autumn, and even gets chilly between November and February (with drizzly rain).

There is no ideal time to visit Vietnam; it is quite pleasant at any time of year, though due to the shape of the country it is unlikely the weather will ever be perfect for the entire duration of any trip.

Please be aware, the Ha Long Bay boat trip can be subject to change at short notice if certain adverse weather conditions develop. These could occur year-round, but especially in monsoon season (October to April). Ha Long Bay boat trips are governed by local authorities, who are authorised to make such appropriate safety decisions. If your Ha Long Bay trip is affected by adverse weather, this could either result in a reduced excursion on Ha Long Bay for your group, or less likely, the need to re-arrange the itinerary if it is not possible at all to go out on Ha Long Bay. While this is not a frequent occurrence, our local team and leaders are well equipped to handle such situations and have long offered appropriate options to groups in the instances where this may occur.

In Cambodia, the weather will be hot and humid year-round. The dry season is late October to May and the monsoon is normally between May and October; though there is an obvious transitional time between those settled periods. The dry season is as it sounds, with hot days and generally clear skies, though you can expect the odd shower. The monsoon is characterised by short bursts of rain and is generally overcast all day though this does not detract from the enjoyment of the place; just take an umbrella or buy a cheap poncho locally.

Joining Instructions

Key information

Recommended arrival time: You should aim to arrive by late afternoon to catch the welcome dinner
Airport: Hanoi Airport (HAN)

Getting to the start hotel

Exodus provides free arrival transfers to the start hotel from the airport for all customers.

Catching your return flight

Exodus provides free departure transfers for all customers to Siem Reap Airport (SAI) from the end hotel.

Please note, unless specified otherwise, the transfers will be to the start (or pre-tour) hotel and from the end (or post-tour) hotel and will be on the date on which the tour starts/ends; transfers to other hotels in the same city and/or on different dates may attract an extra charge. Transfers should be booked with your sales representative at least two weeks before the tour starts.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start: Hanoi
Location end: Siem Reap

What To Take

Essential Equipment

  • Casual clothes. As it is generally hot and humid, light cotton clothing is recommended for most of the trip, though it will be cold in Hanoi between November and early March and you should bring a warm jacket, woolly hat and trousers if you are travelling at that time
  • You will be expected to cover your legs and arms (to the elbow) during temple visits. Sandals are useful as they are cooler and are easier to take off when visiting temples and you will need comfortable footwear for exploring the Angkor complex
  • A first-aid kit is carried on each trip, but you should bring your own with diarrhoea treatment, painkillers, rehydration sachets, plasters and a blister-treatment kit.
  • Insect repellent is also highly recommended. Repellent containing DEET is thought to be highly effective
  • Overnight bag. For the night in Ha Long Bay and the Mekong Delta, you will be required to leave your main bag behind at the previous hotel for the night.
  • Large refillable water bottle

There will be plenty of opportunities to get laundry done locally at a very affordable price, so it is fine to pack light.

Internal flights in the destination country are subject to a weight limit of 44lb (20kg). As advice about luggage allowances for both hand and hold luggage is subject to change, we suggest you check the airline website for the latest information prior to your departure.

Water included

Plastic bottles are a big issue in many countries where recycling isn’t yet widely available; they often end up in landfill or get burned. Both processes are harmful to the environment and we would like to reduce our impact here. For your trip, we provide an alternative to single-use plastic bottles to reduce the plastic used. This means that safe drinking water will be available throughout; all you need to do is bring a bottle to refill along the way. Please add this to your packing list.

Optional Equipment

  • A sun hat, sunscreen, swimming suit for Ha Long Bay and where swimming pools are available
  • We recommend you bring a torch for the Mekong Delta and Marble Mountain cave/grottos
  • Money belt
  • Light waterproof or umbrella

Practical Information

Passport

To enter Vietnam and Cambodia your passport must:
  • Have an expiry date at least six months after the day you arrive in each country
  • Be undamaged (including no water damage)
  • Be complete (no pages missing)
Vietnam also specifically requests that you have at least two blank pages, though you will also need sufficient blank pages for Cambodia.

Visa

Vietnam

UK passport holders normally do not need a visa to enter Vietnam for visits up to 45 days, while those with a US or Irish passport normally do need a visa to enter. Visa requirements for EU citizens vary by country.

Please note, visa requirements often change and it is your responsibility to obtain any required visas for this trip. Therefore, we recommend that you check with the nearest embassy or consulate of your chosen destination(s), including any countries you may be transiting or transferring through.

Some local governments provide guidance on what visas their citizens need. To help, we’ve gathered a selection of useful links below.

• Australia: www.smartraveller.gov.au/destinations/asia/vietnam
• Canada: www.travel.gc.ca/destinations/vietnam
• United Kingdom: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/vietnam
• USA:  www.travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Vietnam.html

Cambodia

Travellers from the UK, US and EU normally need a visa to enter Cambodia. Please note, visa requirements often change and it is your responsibility to obtain any required visas for this trip. Therefore, we recommend that you check with the nearest embassy or consulate of your chosen destination(s), including any countries you may be transiting or transferring through.

Some local governments provide guidance on what visas their citizens need. To help, we’ve gathered a selection of useful links below.

Important advice regarding e-Visas:

Please note, e-Visas are not accepted at all border checkpoints when travelling overland into Cambodia.

This applies to the following borders/trips:

  • Tinh Bien,Vietnam/Phnom Den, Takeo, Cambodia border: Thai Indochina Explorer (Trip Code: AOX) and Southeast Asia Express (AOK)
  • Xa Xia, Vietnam/Prek Chak, Cambodia (Ha Tien crossing): South East Asia Adventure (Trip Code: FIJ)

You can only purchase a tourist visa on arrival at these borders as e-Visas will not be accepted.

More information can be found at:

Visa on arrival:

For obtaining a visa on arrival, you will need $30 USD in cash and 2 passport photos. You will be required to fill in a small application on arrival with your personal details including the address of the first hotel you stay at in Cambodia.

Applying for your Cambodia tourist e-Visa:

If you choose to apply for a Cambodia tourist e-Visa before arrival, will need to add in the following information to your application:

Address during visit (Address in Cambodia):

Lynnaya Urban River Resort & Spa
Address: Acha Sva Road, Street 20, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Phone: (+855) 63 96 77 55

AOH 25 November 2024 departure only:

Sakmut Boutique Hotel
Address: 441 National Road 6, Phum Krous, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Phone: (+855) 99 77 76 80

Intended date you enter Cambodia:  The Vietnam & Angkor: Premium Adventure trip (AOH) arrives in Cambodia on Day 12 of the itinerary.

Supporting documents: You can submit your Exodus trip invoice and/or booking confirmation with your application.

Vaccinations and Health

Cambodia

There are no required vaccinations. However, recommended vaccinations include hepatitis A, tetanus, typhoid, cholera, hepatitis B, Japanese encephalitis, rabies and tuberculosis. You will also need a yellow fever vaccination certificate if you’re arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission or transiting for more than 12 hours through a country with risk of yellow fever transmission. Please confirm your vaccine recommendations and requirements with your doctor or travel clinic.

Dengue fever, a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes, is a known risk in places visited. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, so take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Vietnam

There are no required vaccinations. However, you may want to speak to your doctor or travel clinic about vaccinations for hepatitis A, tetanus, typhoid, cholera, hepatitis B, Japanese encephalitis, rabies and tuberculosis. The risk of malaria is slight, but you may want to consult your doctor or travel clinic for further advice.

Similarly, dengue and zika, both viral diseases spread by mosquitoes, are known risks in Vietnam. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, so we strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Local Time

Cambodia's time zone: Asia/Phnom_Penh (UTC +07:00)

Vietnam's time zone: Asia/Ho_Chi_Minh (UTC +07:00)

Electricity

Cambodia's electricity: Plug types A (two flat pins), C (two round pins) and G (three rectangular pins) – 230V, 50Hz

Vietnam's electricity: Plug types A (two flat pins, US standard), C (two round pins, European standard) and F (two round pins) – 220V, 50Hz

Vietnam & Angkor- Premium Adventure

Money

Cambodia's currency: Cambodian riel (KHR); however, US dollars are widely accepted

Vietnam's currency: Vietnamese dong (VND)

ATM Availability

ATMs are now widespread in Southeast Asian cities and are the easiest way of obtaining money. In Vietnam, it is possible to draw a maximum 2m Vietnamese dong or approximately (US$90) in major cities in one go. ATMs in Cambodia dispense money in US dollars or Cambodian riel.

Credit card acceptance is now widespread at restaurants and shops catering for tourists in cities in Southeast Asia. If you would like to bring cash, there will be ample opportunity for you to change this. US dollars and British pounds are both easily exchanged.

As you will likely be carrying much of your money in cash, we strongly recommend using a money belt.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

You will need about US$300‐US$375 for all other meals, which will allow you to eat well. Apart from the food, you should allow money to cover drinks (more if you like a beer/alcohol) and souvenirs.

Optional Excursions

There are several optional activities, which your leader can help arrange for you and advise of costs locally.

Hanoi

  • Water puppets: US$6

Hoi An

  • Tu Bon River boat trip: US$7 depending upon numbers

Tipping

On this Premium Adventure, tipping for any local support staff is included, and will be taken care of by your tour leader (or in some cases through our local agent). So need no for tipping kitties or to make your own tips during the trip.

Our ‘included tips’ will normally cover drivers, local specialist guides, certain hotel staff, and serving staff for included meals. Amounts will be in line with the local standard. Of course, if you wish to make a further tip for some extra special service you may do so.

Tips for the Tour Leader are not included. Whether to tip at all and the amount is entirely at your own discretion, but as a starting point we suggest around 61,000-125,000 dong (US$3- US$6) per person per day for the duration of the trip.

 

People, Places & Planet

We work hard to create trips that improve life for the people and places we visit, and look after the planet we explore. Find out more about our sustainable travel ethos and practice here, and find out about the work of the Exodus Travels Foundation here.

Some sustainable travel highlights of this trip include:

People

How this trip helps improve life for local communities.

  • The use of a local guide means our customers will be well informed about local traditions, and cultural and social sensitivities.
  • This trip brings income and opportunity to the destination community through the inclusion of locally owned hotels and restaurants, the emphasis on eating locally produced food and support of other local enterprise.
  • In Hanoi, we include a welcome dinner at KOTO, an NGO that provides a two-year course in hospitality, English and life skills training to groups of 16 to 22-year-olds from disadvantaged backgrounds. Students also receive accommodation, food, medical check-ups and treatment whilst they are being trained. Many of the 400-plus graduates have gone on to continue developing their careers at KOTO restaurants or have gained employment elsewhere with their training so this is a great initiative to support.
  • In Hoi An, we also stop by a shop called Reaching Out, which sells gifts handmade by artisans with disabilities – helping them to develop their talent and independence.
  • There is the option to see a traditional folk dancing or water puppet show in Ho Chi Minh City. This encourages local customs to continue and creates employment opportunities.
  • We do a lot to celebrate the cottage industries on this tour, as this is not only a way to directly benefit the locals but it is also hugely fascinating and enjoyable for travellers. For example, in the Mekong Delta, we visit a lot of these small businesses and factories which sell handmade coconut sweets, rice paper, soya bean sauce, popped rice and popcorn among other things.

Places

How this trip helps protect and conserve local landscapes and nature.

  • Read about our commitment to nature protection and restoration here, including our rewilding commitment for every customer who travels.
  • By travelling in a small group, led by a local guide, we ‘tread lightly’ to minimise our impact on local resources and the environment. On this trip, some parts of the itinerary stay in smaller towns using accommodation outside of busy cities.
  • Our trips adhere to ABTA’s industry-leading animal welfare guidelines to ensure the best possible practices with regard to working animals and wildlife viewing. Our animal welfare policy can be found here.
  • We work with our partners on the ground to proactively eliminate or reduce waste, for example eliminating all single-use plastic water bottles and instead providing refills for reusable bottles.
  • During our time in the Ha Long Bay area, we visit the Ha Long Women’s Association in Hon Gai township. The association is a local sustainable initiative that is committed to cleaning up waste in Ha Long Bay and upcyling waste where possible into items of value.  Our visit helps support the women who are involved and to help ensure the continuation of this conservation initiative.
  • Our entrance fees to the Angkor complex in Cambodia goes towards preserving these fascinating cultural sites.
  • We provide clients with a reusable tote bag at the start of the tour (made in Hanoi), offering an alternative to single-use plastic bags and a souvenir to take home.

 Planet

How we seek to keep the carbon footprint of this trip low.

  • Read about our climate action here, including our carbon reduction and compensation commitments.
  • Accommodation and restaurants in the itinerary use locally sourced food which has not been transported long distances.
  • Vegetarian and vegan options are available at majority of accommodation and restaurants.
  • During our time in Siem Reap, the group will enjoy an included dinner at Lum Orng Restaurant; the first farm-to-table restaurant in Cambodia. With a focus on New Mekong cuisine, they provide meals using seasonal produce from local farms, markets and growers in the region whilst also focusing on reducing food waste.

 Tips for sustainable travel on this trip

  • Leave no trace: We do all we can to ensure we leave no rubbish behind in the wild and beautiful places we visit; we ask that you do the same. If there are no recycling facilities in-country, we’d ask you to consider bringing recyclable materials home with you.
  • Plastic waste reduction: Please bring your own re-usable water bottle on this trip; filtered water will be provided where tap water is not drinkable.
  • Cultural respect:
    • Please remember you will be expected to cover your legs and arms (to the elbow) during visits to temples and sacred sites so packing a sarong or other suitable clothing is recommended. Also remember to remove hats when visiting a sacred site.
    • Do not rest your chopsticks upright in a bowl of rice as this symbolises the burning of incense (which is usually reserved for times of mourning).
    • One should not show the soles of their feet or touch someone’s head, both are considered disrespectful.

Important Information

Water safety

This trip includes time by a lake, river or sea, where there may be opportunities to swim. You should always seek local advice before deciding whether to swim. Open-water or wild swim spots should be treated with extreme caution. Information on how to keep yourself safe while swimming is shown here.

Important Information

Your safe participation 

When booking this trip, you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability, please call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary. 

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely take part in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity. 

By booking this trip you agree to our Booking Conditions which clearly state that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these rare instances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred. 

How to Book

  1. Check availability: Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.
  2. Secure your place: You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.
  3. Complete your booking and payment

When you’re ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque.

After booking

You will receive your booking confirmation letter and invoice, which includes extra information and guidance about your travel arrangements.

Full joining instructions, including local emergency numbers and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately two to three weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier, please contact our office or your travel agent.

Trip Note validity

These Trip Notes are valid from the “Current as” date on page one. They will occasionally be updated after booking and before departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary, customers will be written to separately. They will also receive a link to the most up-to-date Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions before travelling.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons – climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best-possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

Licensing

Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582, issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA – The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all money paid to us for your trip is fully protected.