Intrepid Travel
More
Real Cambodia
Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok
Duration: 12 days
Tour code: TKYR

Highlights

  • Your trip starts in action-packed Ho Chi Minh City, the perfect place for a glimpse of Vietnam.
  • Is Angkor the most incredible thing in Southeast Asia? Decide for yourself as you temple-hop with an expert local guide
  • A homestay in Chambok puts you right in the heart of everyday village life in Cambodia.
  • Enjoy a meal at the excellent Friends International restaurant dedicated to training vulnerable young people in hospitality
  • Learn more about Cambodia's confronting but important history, with optional visits to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and Choeung Ek Memorial
  • There's loads of free time to make your own fun (Flight of the Gibbon zip-line anyone?) and have your own experiences
  • Need some time to chill? This trip has got you covered, with two days on the beach, your launching pad to secluded island beaches and mangrove forests
  • End your trip in Bangkok, a frenetic wonderland of delicious street food and tuk tuks, and the ideal launching pad for further travel

Start in Ho Chi Minh then hightail it to Phnom Penh, then there's beach time on the coast, island visits near Kampong Cham, ancient wonders in Siem Reap and… fish pedicures in Bangkok? Forget everything you know about traffic lights, pedestrians and stop signs. They don't matter here. Wait until you're safely on the other side before you start high-fiving your success.

What's included?

Meals

2 breakfasts, 2 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle , Local bus , Remork (tuk tuk)

Accommodation

Guesthouse (2 nights), Homestay (1 night), Hotel (8 nights)

Included activities

  • Chambok - Traditional Dancing
  • Siem Reap - 1 day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour

Itinerary

Day 1
Ho Chi Minh City
Arrive in hectic Ho Chi Minh! There will be a pre-departure meeting at around 6 pm. Look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. There's nothing planned for the first day, so go get amongst it. A good place to start is the Ben Thanh Market, where you can snack on chao tom (barbecued shrimp paste on sticks of sugar cane). If you have time, a visit to Reunification Palace or War Remnants Museum are both recommended.

Optional activities:

  • Ho Chi Minh City - War Remnants Museum ($40000)
  • Ho Chi Minh City - Reunification Palace ($40000)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 2
Phnom Penh
Travel to Phnom Penh by public bus today (approximately 6–7 hours). If you're looking for a tasty beverage on arrival, hit the Foreign Correspondents' Club for a mojito on the rooftop. Or you can explore the city on a cyclo tour – generally these go to the central market, USA Embassy, Wat Phnom, Mekong river front, independence monument and Royal Palace. Phew! Maybe it's time for a traditional Khmer massage. Look no further than Seeing Hands, a great cause supporting visually impaired masseurs. Tonight, tuck in at Friends Restaurant – not only will you get a serious taste of delicious local food, you'll also support an organisation that helps vulnerable local children.

Optional activities:

  • Phnom Penh - Cyclo tour ($4)
  • Phnom Penh - Traditional Khmer massage ($8)
  • Phnom Penh - Mekong Sunset Urban Adventure ($65)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Meals: dinner

Day 3
Phnom Penh
Today there's the option of visiting Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum or Choeung Ek (Killing Fields) – both pretty sobering but important and informative. The very different Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda are also well worth visiting, offering brighter aspects of the past. You might also head for the National Museum or Wat Phnom (more like 'Wat Phenomenal'). If your Riels are burning a hole in your pocket, look no further than the Central or Russian markets, both choice places to interact with the locals.

Optional activities:

  • Phnom Penh - Wat Phnom ($2)
  • Phnom Penh - Transport to Choeung Ek (Killing Fields) ($15)
  • Phnom Penh - National Museum ($10)
  • Phnom Penh - Royal Palace & Silver Pagoda ($10)
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng Prison Museum (S21) ($5)
  • Phnom Penh - Choeung Ek (Killing Fields) ($3)
  • Phnom Penh - Killing Fields - guide ($17)
  • Phnom Penh - Tuol Sleng (S21) - Guide ($17)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 4
Sihanoukville Province
Take a private bus through the idyllic Cambodian countryside to the gorgeous coast of Sihanoukville Province. Whether you like your beaches lively or chilled, you'll find something to your taste along these shores. You might like to boat out to one of the nearby islands, hire a bike for a few hours, or just kick back on the shore with a good book and a beer.

Optional activities: Sihanoukville - Foot massage ($8)

Stay: Guesthouse (1 night)

Day 5
Sihanoukville Province
The day is wide open, so why not take a trip to nearby Ream National Park? While exotic wildlife isn't something most people think of when they picture Cambodia, this stunning, thick park is bursting with birds and other beasties.

Optional activities:

  • Sihanoukville - Island Boat Trip & Snorkelling ($20)
  • Sihanoukville - Ream National Park entry fee ($5)
  • Sihanoukville - Express Boat to Koh Rong Island ($25)

Stay: Guesthouse (1 night)

Day 6
Chambok Homestay
Travel by private bus into rural Cambodia (approximately 4 hours) to the region of Kampong Speu and the village of Chambok. It's right next to the beautiful Kirirom National Park, so you can imagine how serene it is here. A homestay tonight is your chance to really immerse yourself in everyday life. Not to mention feast on a traditional Khmer dinner, prepared by your lovely hosts. Weather permitting, you might be able to trek to the awesome 40-metre waterfall nearby today too (this is optional).

Included activities: Chambok - Traditional Dancing

Optional activities:

  • Chambok Homestay - Bike Ride ($2)
  • Chambok- Entrance Fee to Waterfall ($3)

Stay: Homestay (1 night)

Meals: dinner

Day 7
Kampong Cham
Kampong Cham in a nutshell: frontier charm, French-colonial character. Take a private bus there (approximately 5 hours) and soak it all up. Koh Paen Island is a good option while you're here, and you can hire a bike and get there with no fuss (you'll just have to take a ferry over the water if you visit during wet season). The 11th-century Wat Nokor is also worth a look. A little further away are the twin 'mountain temples' of Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei which, as well as being fascinating sites of religious, historic and spiritual significance, are more than Instagram-worthy.

Optional activities:

  • Kompong Cham - Wat Nokor ($1)
  • Kompong Cham - Bicycle hire ($2)
  • Kompong Cham - Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei ($10)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Meals: breakfast

Day 8
Siem Reap
Take a public bus to Siem Reap (approximately 5 hours). Your leader will take you on a walk to get you acquainted with the town. Afterwards you might want to hit the markets for some cheap and tasty street food, then get some rest and relaxation before tomorrow's visit to... (drumroll please!)... Angkor Wat!

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 9
Siem Reap/Angkor Wat
Get your camera ready, strap on your walkin' boots and get excited: Angkor is one of Southeast Asia's number one highlights, possibly THE highlight. The obvious banger is Angkor Wat, which is every bit as amazing as everyone says it is, especially at sunset. But you'll also spend plenty of time visiting the other gems of this sprawling complex, like the giant carved faces of Bayon and the crazy jungle-juxtaposition of Ta Prohm (a temple that looks like it's being swallowed by the vice-like grip of Mother Nature's tentacles). And the places Tomb Raider made famous.

Included activities:

  • Siem Reap - 1 day Angkor Pass
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Temples Guided Tour

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 10
Siem Reap
Kick back in Siem Reap and wander around town, visiting its market, shops and restaurants. You may be a little templed out, so take this opportunity to explore your options and do something different. Depending on the season, you might be able to visit Tonle Sap, the big freshwater lake, for a glimpse of local life. Adventure-seekers and adrenaline-junkies can do the Angkor zip-line course that will have you soaring like an eagle over the lush rainforest. For even more bragging material, you can learn the tricks of the trade in a Khmer cooking class. And if you just can't not go back to Angkor, longer passes than the standard 1-day passes are available, just ask your leader.

Optional activities:

  • Siem Reap - Remork transport to Angkor complex ($20)
  • Siem Reap - Three Day Angkor Pass ($62)
  • Siem Reap - Landmine Museum ($5)
  • Siem Reap - Phare, the Cambodian Circus ticket ($18)
  • Siem Reap - Urban Adventure Cambodian Cook-Out ($52)
  • Siem Reap - Urban Adventures Tonle Sap Secrets ($45)
  • Siem Reap - Angkor Zipline ($129)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 11
Bangkok
Drive from Siem Reap to Bangkok in a private minivan (approximately 8–9 hours, including border crossing and lunch). Again, your leader will assist with the border-crossing formalities. If you expect a soothing and charming backwater, think again – it's go, go, go in Thailand's frenetic capital. If you don't go home exhausted from here, you didn't do it properly! Still, the khlongs (canals) are a great escape from it all – maybe take a boat to the highly recommended Chinatown for a delicious street food dinner. A Thai massage may also be a good option at this point. Those staying on can perhaps visit the Grand Palace, Temple of the Emerald Buddha, or the very cool Jim Thompson museum.

Optional activities:

  • Bangkok - Grand Palace ($500)
  • Bangkok - Khlong boat canal tour ($900)
  • Bangkok - Wat Pho ($200)
  • Bangkok - Jim Thompson's House ($150)

Stay: Hotel (1 night)

Day 12
Bangkok
Your adventure comes to an end today, with no more activities planned. You're free to depart the accommodation at any time after check out.

Optional activities:

  • Bangkok - Tuk Tuk Experience Urban Adventure ($1790)
  • Bangkok - Temple & River of Kings Urban Adventure ($2465)
  • Bangkok - Chinatown Food Discovery Urban Adventure ($2149)
  • Bangkok - Bangkok by Bike Urban Adventure ($1913)

Meals: breakfast

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