Bayon, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Thai Indochina Explorer Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Destinations:
Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam
Programmes:
Culture
Trip Code:
AOX
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Leisurely / Moderate

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

17 Days Flight Inclusive
15 Days Land only
Min age: 16

Trip Overview

Beginning in frenetic Saigon we cross three countries in two weeks, making for a varied and fascinating trip. We encounter the majestic ruins of Angkor, the lush fertility of the Mekong Delta and the sobering faces of the tragic recent history of Vietnam and Cambodia. Getting off the beaten track, we journey into rural Cambodia and have time to relax by the beach as well as visiting the UNESCO site of Khao Yai National Park exploring jungle trails. A short stay in Bangkok rounds off our trip perfectly as we explore the colourful markets that provide a mouth-watering array at meal times. The delicious cuisine is a treasure of this exotic region.

At a Glance

  • 13 nights comfortable hotels and 1 night homestay guesthouse to experience Mekong Delta hospitality
  • Travel by  private minibus or bus (subject to group sizes) and boat
  • Rural locations and city days
  • Countries visited: Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam

Trip Highlights

  • Experience three distinctly different countries in two weeks
  • Overnight in the Mekong Delta at a homestay
  • Visit the moving Killing Fields of Cambodia
  • Explore the world famous Angkor complex
  • Jungle trails of Thailand
  • Visit the Royal Palace complex and Wat Po of Bangkok
  • Crawl through the Cu Chi war tunnels

Is This Trip for You?

This trip is rated Activity Level 2- Leisurely/Moderate

This holiday is designed so that you can see the best parts of South East Asia using a mixture of private buses and boats in the Mekong Delta. There is a lot to see in the time you are there, but it is paced so that it doesn't feel too rushed. On some days, there are a few longer necessary drives between destinations. However, there is plenty of time for sightseeing and the trip has numerous stops where we spend 2 or more nights.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

The trip is lead by locally qualified Vietnamese, Cambodian and Thai English-speaking leaders.

Adult min age:
16
Min group size:
5
Max group size:
16

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
Saigon
End City:
Bangkok

Flight Inclusive

Start City:
London
End City:
London

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Saigon

    The day is free to recover from the flight. Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), formerly known as Saigon, is an exciting and absorbing city where bicycles battle with lorries and temples stand defiantly alongside modern developments. Devastated by the Vietnam War, Saigon is now a bustling free market city where anything goes. The Ben Thanh Market and Notre Dame Cathedral are highly recommended.

    There will be a welcome briefing with your leader this evening followed by an optional group dinner at a local restaurant.

    Huong Sen Hotel or similar

  • Day 2

    Visit Cu Chi Tunnels; tour of Saigon

    This morning we leave the city behind us and head west to visit the Cu Chi Tunnels. Used by the Viet Cong during the war, the network covers 3 levels and approximately 240 kms 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 Saigon for a tour which include visits to the Reunification Palace and War Remnants Museum where there is an interesting record of the Vietnam/American War. Please be advised some of the images are of a graphic nature.

    Huong Sen Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Mekong Delta; visit floating market; overnight homestay guesthouse

    We drive to Cai Be in the Mekong Delta via a Cao Dai temple used by devotees of this strange indigenous religion that fuses all the great religions of the east and west. En route we pass magnificent countryside and stop at some small cottage industries. The Mekong is locally known as the rice bowl of Vietnam and produces much of Vietnam's fruit, sugar cane and coconuts. Cai Be floating market is becoming less crowded and smaller as fruit trading is mostly now done by trucks due to the bridge being built. However, this is still a great opportunity to see a local market and the trade being conducted traditionally on a smaller scale. We take a relaxing sampan cruise in the afternoon and arrive at our accommodation. The evening is tranquil as we have dinner on an island and enjoy some 'Delta' hospitality. We spend the night sleeping at a simple homestay guesthouse built in the style of a local house. Bedding, a mosquito net and a small towel are provided.

    Mekong Homestay Guesthouse

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Dinner
  • Day 4

    Walking tour in the delta; visit Sam Mountain for sunset; overnight Chau Doc

    This morning we take a short walk around the surrounding village to uncover the daily lives of the people. We board our boats once again and cross the main channel to Vinh Long where we re-join our vehicle for the drive further into the Mekong Delta to the small border town of Chau Doc. After checking into the hotel we will enjoy a sunset visit to the top of the holy Sam Mountain with views stretching across into Cambodia.

    The evening is free to wander around this town, situated on the banks of the Mekong River.

    Chau Pho Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 5

    To Cambodia: via Kampot to Otres beach town in Sihanoukville

    After driving approximately 1 hour to the Tinh Bien/Phnom Den land border we will bid farewell to Vietnam and cross into Cambodia. Our drive takes us via the former French colonial town of Kampot to Otres Beach in Sihanoukville, Cambodia's premier beach resort.

    Upon arrival you will have free time to relax, refresh with a swim, try a Khmer beach massage and sip cocktails as the sun sets. For those who like to cook, there's also an opportunity to join a half day traditional Khmer cooking class (optional).

    Naia Resort or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Free day at the beach

    Our hotel is located near the white sands of Otres Beach and today you will have free time to relax on the beach or wander around Otres beach town and Sihanoukville and get a feel for the place.

    A boat trip out to one of the deserted islands off the coast for fishing, snorkelling and swimming is recommended (optional). The more energetic can also rent bicycles to explore more of the Sihanoukville beaches and countryside.

    Naia Resort or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Drive to Phnom Penh; free afternoon

    This morning we drive around the peninsula past Sokha, Independence and Victory beaches before driving on to Phnom Penh. The afternoon is free to explore this city that still retains a frontier atmosphere. There is time to wander among the traditional buildings, or shop at either the impressive Central Market or the sprawling Russian Market, a souvenir hunter's paradise.

    Ohana Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Full day sightseeing including the Royal Palace and the 'Killing Fields'

    We will visit the beautiful Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda inside the Palace complex, so named for the solid silver tiles that make up the floor. Thankfully the complex escaped the worst excess of the Khmer Rouge. Similar in style and scale to the Grand Palace in Bangkok, the Royal Palace has significantly fewer visitors and there is plenty of time to wander amongst the traditional buildings.

    We will also visit Tuol Sleng museum or S21 (Museum of Genocide), which graphically displays the horrors of the 4 years when Pol Pot systematically ordered the murder of between 2 and 3 million Cambodians. Tuol Sleng was originally a school but was used as a torture and interrogation centre between 1975 and 1979. It is a sobering, but enlightening place to visit. We complete our day with a moving late afternoon visit to the 'killing fields' of Choeung Ek. A football-field-sized area surrounded by farmland, the killing fields contain mass graves for perhaps 20,000 Cambodians, many of whom were tortured before being killed.

    Phnom Penh is a city in transition and, despite its horrific recent history, it is now starting to find its feet. Some of its former French colonial buildings have been restored and there is a small but lively restaurant and bar scene developing along the riverfront.

    Ohana Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 9

    To Siem Reap

    Today we have a long drive to Siem Reap (approximately 8 hours). En route we stop at the town of Skuon, famous for its local delicacy - fried spiders.

    We will also stop off at Sambor Prei Kuk, Cambodia's most impressive group of pre-Angkorian monuments and some of the oldest structures in the country. We'll also pause for a traditional Khmer lunch at a community restaurant before continuing our journey to Siem Riep.

    Angkor Holiday Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
  • Day 10

    Full day exploring temple complex at Angkor

    A full day spent exploring the complex. We will visit the incredible Angkor Wat, the many temples inside the Royal City of Angkor Thom, including the magnificent Bayon, which comprises of 54 intricately carved towers in one 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 Kdei and Ta Prohm, which is still covered in jungle as it was first found. Re-discovered in the 1870s and famously described as being 'grander than anything of Greece or Rome' by the French explorer Henri Mouchot, this world heritage site stands alongside Chichen Itza and Machu Picchu as one of the world's most spectacular archaeological sites. A truly magical experience and a photographer's paradise. One evening we will make our way to watch the sunset over this magnificent scene.

    Angkor Holiday Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 11

    Further time at Angkor; free afternoon

    This morning we will continue our exploration of the Angkor complex with a visit to the small but charming Temple of Banteay Srei, which is noted for the intricacy of its carvings, 35km from Siem Reap town. Our route takes us past paddy fields, and through pretty villages. Banteay Srei was built in the 10th century and contains some of the finest examples of Khmer sculpture. Although much smaller than the later temples, here all of the buildings are covered in exquisite carvings. The afternoon is free for you to continue with further independent exploration of the temples or to wander around Siem Reap town or visit a floating fishing village and enjoy a boat trip on the Tonle Sap Lake (optional).

    Angkor Holiday Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Drive to Khao Yai N.P (a UNESCO site) in Thailand

    Today we journey (approx. 7 hours) through a variety of landscapes from Siem Reap to the UNESCO site Khao Yai National Park in Thailand.

    Khao Yai is Thailand’s oldest nature reserve and home to elephants, tigers, leopards, bears as well as the great hornbill. Blessed with lush, mountainous landscape this location provides the perfect contrast to the heat of Cambodia. 

    Khao Yai Greenery Resort or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Full day exploring the waterfalls and jungle trails of Khao Yai

    Today we have a full day exploring the trails of Khao Yai. We’ll visit the park’s magnificent waterfalls and learn about the biodiversity of the area while taking a gentle trek through the jungle. Khao Yai is the best place in Thailand to try and see elephants in the wild which makes this protected park a big draw for Thai nationals who hope to glimpse this revered animal.

    Khao Yai Greenery Resort or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 14

    Transfer to Bangkok; afternoon city tour

    Transfer to Bangkok (approx. 3 hours). This afternoon we take a short walk to the Chao Praya River where we board a long tail boat for a tour of the local canals. Please be advised there may be a possibility of larger groups being accommodated in a bigger boat. Bangkok was once known as the Venice of the East because of its intricate canal network. We get a glimpse of daily life as we pass locals selling their wares by the river. We will visit what to this day remains the home of the Thai Royal family at the Royal Palace complex followed by Wat Phra Kaew, home to the Emerald Buddha, one of Thailand's most venerated images. Another highlight is Wat Po, the largest temple in Bangkok, housing a 46m long, 15m high gold-plated reclining Buddha.

    Rembrandt Bangkok Hotel or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 15

    End Bangkok

    For land only clients, the tour ends this morning in Bangkok after breakfast.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Hotels & Guesthouses

You will stay 13 nights in comfortable hotels, all with en-suite facilities and 1 night spent in a local homestay guesthouse.

Most of the hotels used on this trip are of a 3 star standard by local classification. At the homestay guesthouse in the Mekong Delta you will be sharing 1-3 people to a room depending on group size.

Please be advised that the accommodation listed in each location on the day to day itinerary are the standard hotels used. However, there may be some departures where groups stay at similar hotels of the same standard and quality.

Single supplements are available (on request) except the one night at homestay guesthouse in the Mekong Delta. Please advise the sales team at the time of booking if you would like to request a single supplement.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single only guarantees a room for single use. It does not always mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Single supplement from £400.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

All breakfasts, 1 lunch and 1 dinner are included.

The food on this trip is a real highlight for many. Southeast Asian cuisine is known for its abundance of freshly prepared dishes with strong aromatic flavours. There is a focus on herbs and citrus to ensure each dish packs a punch; chilli does feature highly too but is easily avoided if desired.

Typically most dishes will come with rice and many are often served in a banana leaf with a variety of dips and herbs served separately. The three countries visited ensure a different culinary experience every time you cross the border; ensure you try the freshly made Pad Thai noodles from the street stalls of Bangkok, the fish amok curry in Cambodia for a creamy coconut-based fragrant curry and the Banh Xeo (huge sizzling pancakes) found in Vietnam cannot be missed!  

Western food is readily available almost everywhere, with the exception of the night in the Mekong Delta.

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

Transportation

Throughout the tour we use a private coach/mini-bus, usually with air-conditioning. Most of the driving days are not long, usually no more than four hours, but there are a few days taking between five to 9 hours (with stops along way). Road conditions are fine in Vietnam and Thailand but generally not so good in Cambodia but improving all the time, and progress can be slow there. 

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

The weather will be hot and humid throughout with temperatures during the day between about 28ºC and 34ºC but at times is may reach 40ºC. It is only a little cooler at nights. The region is mostly dry 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.

In Cambodia the weather will be hot and humid all year round. The dry season is late October to May and the monsoon is normally between June and September; 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, sharp bursts of rain and is generally overcast all day, though this does not detract from the enjoyment of the place; you just need to take an umbrella!

In Thailand the weather patterns are very similar to Cambodia and you should expect year round temperatures from 23-35ºC. The rainy season will normally run from June to September when you should expect short sharp showers but the sun will normally break through.

Weather Charts

Bangkok

Phnom Penh

Hanoi

Joining Instructions

Travelling flight inclusive from London: 17 Days

The group flight from London is an overnight flight departing the day before Day 1 of the itinerary.

Flights from London

We normally use the scheduled services of Malaysian Airlines (depending on availability). As flight timings and schedules change regularly we recommend you call one of our specialist sales staff or your agent to confirm up‐to‐date timings. Please note timings may change at a later date and cannot be confirmed until approximately two weeks before departure.


Travelling land only: 15 days starting in Saigon and ending in Bangkok

Your trip normally starts at our accommodation in Saigon in the afternoon of Day 1 of the itinerary. Details of how to reach the start point are provided in the Final Joining Instructions ‐ sent approximately two weeks before departure.

As advice about luggage allowances for both hand and hold luggage is subject to change, we suggest you check the airline's website for the latest information prior to your departure. The usual, standard check-in baggage weight allowance is 20kg.

Regional Flights

The Flight Inclusive price is based on a London departure, but we are happy to tailor this to your local or regional airport. Please ask about flights from local or regional airports.

If booking regional flights other than with Exodus, you must allow a minimum connecting time (in addition to the international check-in time) of 1 hour at Gatwick, and 1.5 hours at Heathrow; this is longer than the official minimum, but baggage handling is known to be subject to delays.

Free Transfers

Exodus offers FREE airport arrival and departure transfers on any flight for this trip, for both Land Only and Flight Inclusive clients. Unless specified otherwise, the transfer will be to the Exodus 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 may be shared with other Exodus customers on the same flight, or on a flight with similar arrival times. All those taking advantage of the free airport transfers must provide full flight details for both arrival and departure in advance. 

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.

Transfers Details

Free transfers are only applicable if booked in advance directly through Exodus before a trip commences.

Location start:
Saigon
Location end:
Bangkok

What to Take

Essential Equipment

  • As it is generally hot and humid, light cotton clothing is recommended for most of the trip. Light casual cotton clothing is recommended which can easily be bought in Bangkok and elsewhere. Please remember that you will be expected to cover your legs (to the ankle) and arms (to the elbow) during visits to some temples and palaces. 
  • Sandals are useful as they are cooler and are easier to take off when visiting temples.
  • A first aid kit is carried on each trip, but you should bring your own first aid kit 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.
  • A sun hat and suncream are recommended, and a swimming costume will be well used 
  • Refillable water bottle (1-2 litre capacity)
  • Light waterproof or an umbrella are useful
  • Swimming costume
  • Torch

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

As advice about luggage allowances for both hand and hold luggage is subject to change, we suggest you check the airline's 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 sites or get burnt, 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 in order to reduce the amount of plastic used. This means that safe drinking water will be available throughout so all you need to do is bring a bottle to re-fill along the way. Please add this to your packing list!

If while packing you find a spare bit of space in your bag please be sure to check out our partner ‘Pack for a Purpose’ to identify items that are needed locally by schools and medical clinics. Your Tour Leader can assist with donating the items. http://www.packforapurpose.org

Reading List

First They Killed My Father
Loung Ung (Mainstream)
A moving first hand account of a child growing up under the Khmer Rouge.

Romancing Vietnam
Justin Wintle (Penguin)

Turtle Beach
Blanche D'Alpuget (Penguin) About the boat people.

The Quiet American Graham Greene (Penguin) Considered to be his best book.

A Dragon Apparent
Norman Lewis

Vietnam: A History
Stanley Karnow

Two Cities: Hanoi & Saigon
Neil Sheehan

Travels in Siam, Cambodia & Laos
M. Henri Mouhot

Practical Information

Passport

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Cambodia

Arriving By Flight:

An electronic visa (e-Visa) facility is available via the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Co-operation website at the cost of $37.

A tourist visa can be obtained on arrival for British nationals at most border crossings. Two passport photos are required. The cost is US$30, although an additional express fee of US$5-6 may be incurred at the border. For further information see the FCO site and check under Cambodia / 'Entry Requirements'.

Arriving Overland:

A tourist visa can be obtained on arrival for British nationals at most border crossings. Two passport photos are required. The cost is US$30, although an additional express fee of US$5-6 may be incurred at the border. For further information see the FCO site and check under Cambodia / 'Entry Requirements'.

Important advice regarding E-Visas

Please be advised, e-Visas are not accepted at all border check points when travelling overland. This applies to the following borders/trips:

Tinh Bien, Vietnam/ Phnom Den, Takeo, Cambodia border: AOX- Thai Indochina Explorer and AOG- Thai Indochina Grand Tour

Xa Xia, Vietnam/ Prek Chak, Cambodia (Ha Tien crossing): FIJ- South East Asia Adventure

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: 

https://www.evisa.gov.kh/

https://www.evisa.gov.kh/information/port_entry/3

 

Thailand

A visa for Thailand is not required for British nationals for stays of 30 days or less. If you are unsure of the requirements please check with your nearest Thai embassy.

Vietnam

A visa is no longer needed for British, German, French, Spanish and Italian citizens travelling to Vietnam (for all purposes) for a period of up to 15 days, and on the basis of meeting all conditions prescribed by Vietnamese laws. The visa exemption period will end on 30 June 2021. All other nationalities require a visa to enter Vietnam and this must be obtained prior to departure.

For further information please check the FCO site and check under Vietnam / 'Entry Requirements'. If you have any questions about whether you need a visa for your trip please contact the Customer Operations department.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

Cambodia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. The risk of malaria is slight but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice.

Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Thailand

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. The risk of malaria is slight but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Vietnam

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Polio, Typhoid, Hepatitis A and Diphtheria. The risk of malaria is slight, but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice.

Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

The above information can change at short notice; as we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Cambodia's Timezone:
Asia/Phnom_Penh +07 (GMT +07:00)
Thailand's Timezone:
Asia/Bangkok +07 (GMT +07:00)
Vietnam's Timezone:
Asia/Ho_Chi_Minh +07 (GMT +07:00)

Electricity

Cambodia's Electricity:

230 Volts. Plug types A, C & G; establishments can often take two round pin plugs and/or two flat parallel pin plugs.

Thailand's Electricity:

220 Volts. Plug types A, B, C and F. Establishments can often take two round pin plugs and/or two flat parallel pin plugs.

Vietnam's Electricity:

220 volts AC, 50 Hz. In Vietnam all sockets are generally dual US (2-pin plug) /Euro (2-pin type) compatible but it is worth having both adapters with you.

Money

Cambodia's Currency

 The national currency of Cambodia is the Cambodian Riel (KHR), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (April 2019) of approximately 5231 to the GBP, 3976 to the USD, 2984 to the CAD, 4467 to the EUR, 2828 to the AUD and 2697 to the NZD.

In practice the economy of Cambodia as far as the visitor is concerned, runs mainly on US dollars (and is preferred). However, you will receive some change in Riel, which can be useful for smaller purchases. USD bills will not be accepted if they are torn, or printed before 2010.

Thailand's Currency

The national currency of Thailand is the Thai Baht (THB), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (April 2019) of approximately 42 to the GBP, 32 to the USD, 24 to the CAD, 35 to the EUR, 22 to the AUD and 21 to the NZD.

 

Vietnam's Currency

The national currency of Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (VND), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (April 2019) of approximately 30,400 to the GBP, 23,100 to the USD, 17,3700 to the CAD, 26,000 to the EUR, 14,450 to the AUD and 16,000 to the NZD.

In Vietnam, the local currency, the Vietnamese Dong is preferred. However, US dollars may be accepted in some tourist shops and restaurants. You can obtain Vietnamese Dong before travel or by using an ATM or changing money upon arrival.

ATM Availability

ATMs are now widespread in SE Asia's cities and are the easiest way of obtaining money. There is a minimum 150 Baht fee for all ATM transactions in Thailand.  In Vietnam, it is possible to draw a maximum 2,000,000 VND or approx. 60GBP/80-100USD in major cities in one go. ATMs in Cambodia dispense money in US dollars or Cambodian Riel. 

Credit card acceptance is now widespread in cities in SE Asia at restaurants and shops catering for tourists.

If you would like to bring cash there will be ample opportunity for you to change this. Sterling and US Dollars are both easily exchanged.

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

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

You will need about £225‐£275/$290‐$400 for all other meals, which will allow you to eat well. Apart from the food, you should allow money for the Cambodia visa and money to cover soft drinks (more if you like a beer/alcohol) and souvenirs.

Optional Excursions

Sihanoukville
Bike hire £2/$3
Island boat trip £15/$20 ‐ price dependent on numbers
Khmer cooking class £15/$20

Siem Reap
Boat trip on the Tonle Sap Lake £7/$10 ‐ price dependent on numbers

Tipping

This is entirely at your own discretion however; we suggest that you allow a few pounds/dollars for tips for the local guides and staff. In the countries visited, with the increase in tourism, tipping has become customary. The local staff will probably expect some gratuity and we suggest you allow for this. The leader will suggest to the group that they donate a sum of £22/$30 per person towards a kitty on arrival. This money is then used for tipping of local guides, hotel porters, drivers etc. It is basically to ensure that the hassle is taken out of various activities for you. If you do not wish to contribute to a central pool for tips you are of course free to do so.

If you feel that your leader has performed well over the course of your trip, you may want to show your appreciation of their services. The sum you choose to give is entirely personal, but as a guide, £2/$3 per person per day would be a reasonable starting point.

The 'tipping kitty' explained above is entirely separate from any contribution to the tour leader. Our local staff are paid well and fairly for their work with Exodus.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake 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.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances 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.

On all trips

In 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 you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

In an emergency, please contact our 24 hour out of hours service on +44 (0) 844 326 7041.

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 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.

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; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, 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.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

This trip includes time by a lake, river or sea, where there may be opportunities to swim. Swimming results in more tourists deaths than any other activity. All customers should always seek local advice before deciding whether to swim, and are requested to treat the sea with extreme caution if they choose to enter the water. Details on how to keep yourself safe while swimming are shown here.

TRAVEL AWARE –STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

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 www.exodus.co.uk for online booking, 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. Book with confidence: 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 monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.