7 NIGHT CRUISE WITH 2 NIGHTS SIEM REAP POSTCRUISE
Lively Ho Chi Minh City, once known as the “Pearl of the Orient,” offers a vibrant mix of old and new and provides the perfect start to your incredible journey through Vietnam and Cambodia. Cruise along the mighty Mekong, discovering a glimpse into another era; one where people still happily honor the timeless traditions passed down through the centuries from their ancestors. Throughout your trip, immerse yourself into the culture and heritage with visits to rural villages, historic pagodas and colorful markets. Be treated to a special blessing by monks in Buddhist monastery, and witness skilled artisans who create exquisite handicrafts and delicacies. Experience all this and more on this lifeenriching cruise along the Mekong.
Ho Chi Minh City My Tho
Transfer via motorcoach from Ho Chi Minh City to AmaDara at My Tho Port for your 7night river cruise and then meet fellow travelers at a Welcome Dinner as the ship cruises to Cai Be. (L,D)
* All cruise only guests should meet us at Sofitel Saigon Plaza at 11:30 am in Ho Chi Minh City on Embarkation day to join the transfer to the ship in My Tho Port. We recommend that you fly into Ho Chi Minh at least one day prior to embarkation; please inquire about important arrival arrangements prior to your cruise.
Cai Be - Sa Dec
Take a local boat to Cai Be. You will have an opportunity to visit candy and rice paper making workshops, or you may also choose to add an active walking tour to the historic Kiet House followed by a visit to candy and rice paper workshops. Later in the day, journey to Sa Dec, a sprawling town on the Mekong Delta, where French writer Marguerite Duras spent part of her youth. You will visit the colorful market, Cao Dai Temple, home to the unique religion of Caodaism in Southern Vietnam. It is a fusion of Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Confucianism. (B,L,D)
Tan Chau - Border Crossing
Enjoy a visit to Tan Chau, a small Mekong River town unspoiled by tourism. Be treated to an authentic experience on a traditional “xeloi” (trishaw) ride around the town, with stops at silkmaking and rattan mat workshops. You may also choose the trishaw ride with visits to craftsmen’s workshops, followed by an active walking tour to “Evergreen Island.” As a third alternative, visit Tram Chim National Park, which protects the Plain of Reeds, a seasonal wetland area, in the Mekong Delta. Explore this area by tender boat, gliding along the inland waterway that forms this unique ecosystem. This biodiversity conservation site is home to several rare species of birds, including the highly vulnerable sarus crane. Later in the day, cruise from Vietnam to the Cambodian border en route to Phnom Penh. (B,L,D)
This morning’s excursion takes you to Cambodia’s infamous Killing Fields and the Khmer Rouge’s grim Tuol Sleng S21 detention center (Genocide Museum). After lunch on board, you will explore the highlights of the city, followed by a visit to the Royal Palace, the spectacular Silver Pagoda and the National Museum, which has an outstanding collection of Khmer crafts. Alternatively, you may wish to shop for unique treasures at the bustling, yellowcolored Central Market after your visit to Royal Place. After returning to the ship, enjoy Khmer folk dancing performed by local children in the Saigon Lounge. (B,L,D)
Oudong - Kampongtralach - Phnom Penh
Visit Oudong, Cambodia’s former royal capital from the early 17th century until 1866. Today, Oudong is a place of pilgrimage for Cambodians. While here, be treated to a memorable Buddhist Blessing Ceremony at a monastery. You may walk around Oudong’s monastery or take an active walking tour to see panoramic views of the Oudong plain. In Kampong Tralach, you will have a truly authentic excursion – an oxcart ride through a local village. Later in the day, experience Phnom Penh via a tuk tuk ride and be enchanted by the city's French Colonial architecture and treelined boulevards set amidst monumental Angkorian architecture. (B,L,D)
In the morning, set sail for Oknhatey Village. Oknhatey is the “Silk Island,” located on the lush banks of the Mekong River and known for its rich tradition of silk weaving. While here, you will visit a local elementary school and observe the traditional silk weaving, an art that has been preserved for centuries. Your cruise continues to sail to Angkor Ban. (B,L,D)
Ankgor Ban - Kampong Cham
Go on a walking tour of Angkor Ban, one of the few villages in Cambodia that was not destroyed under the Khmer Rouge regime in the 1970s. Here people still live in their traditional wooden abodes and keep their old cultural traditions alive. Hundreds of wooden houses stand intact on stilts, shaded with banana trees, among the hustle and bustle of the daily agricultural ongoing of the local villagers. After visiting here, the ship sets sail for Kampong Cham, where you will go on an afternoon excursion via motorcoach to the Twin Mountains, known as Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei (male and female mountains). In the annals of Khmer legend, the twin mountains were formed as the result of a competition between the men and women of an ancient Cambodian kingdom to resolve which gender would be responsible for wedding proposals. Cap the day off with a festive Farewell Dinner on board. (B,L,D)
Kampong Cham - Siem Reap - Disembarkation
Disembark in Kampong Cham and transfer by motorcoach to Siem Reap, gateway to the Angkor Archaeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the former capital of the Khmer empire. You’ll visit nearby Ta Prohm, known as the “Kingdom of the Trees,” for the way in which the temple stones have become intertwined with thick forest vegetation. (B,D)
Begin your morning exploration of the temple complex at Angkor Wat, the most iconic of all Angkorian temples, built by King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century to honor the Hindu god, Vishnu. An afternoon excursion takes you to see the fascinating jewel in the crown of Angkorian art, Banteay Srei, which means “Citadel of Women,” as it has been said that the carving is too fine to have been done by the hand of man. During the evening, be treated to a special “Apsara Dancing Show” at your hotel, featuring local Cambodian/Khmer folk dancers. (B,D)
Depart Siem Reap
After breakfast, you will have a guided sightseeing tour of Angkor Thom meaning “the great city” and the last capital of the Khmer Empire. This is home to Bayon Temple, best known for its gigantic smiling stone faces, as well as the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King. Later in the day, bid farewell to Siem Reap as you prepare for your return flight home. (B)
*We recommend that you schedule your onward flight to depart Siem Reap after 3:00pm today to avoid potential missed connections if you wish to join sightseeing tour to visit Angkor Thom in the morning.