The Majestic Vietnam & Cambodia in 16 Days

In this land, the oriental mysticism blends with modernity and the progress that two countries undergo during these years. It is fascinating and inspiring to see these countries are sometimes traditionally bound folk – exuding faith in the future and hospitably welcoming foreign travelers.

The appetite for life is also reflected in the momentum that is now seriously underway in Vietnam and Cambodia, and which becomes visible to us on our journey through the two countries. Impressions from the big city life in the Hanoi and Phnom Penh metropolises, where we have both planned city sightseeing and experienced local activities such as morning gymnastics, national flag raising and rickshaw tours around the lively streets of the central city blocks.

The program emphasizes variation in the attractions that we must visit along the way. For example, vibrant Asian metropolises, boat trips with overnight stays in the Bay of Halong – with the wings of the past from the French colonial era, from the old days in the quaint trading town of Hoi An, and not least from the visit to the Angkor temples from Khmer people’s heyday.

But the rushing present is passing us everywhere on the journey as the Vietnamese and Cambodians get on & drop off on a motorcycle. We gain insight into their daily lives in the market, in the rice fields, on the rivers and, not least, on the excursions out in the upland and the rural areas – all in the attempt to get all the way around to experience the contradictions with a smile & the ingenuity.

The tour starts in North Vietnam, goes via Central Vietnam and ends in Cambodia. We live in beautiful hotels right in the city center and are part of the city’s vibrant street life as soon as you step out of the hotel.

Overview

  • Gastronomic experiences from selected restaurants, from street food tours local’s cuisine in Mekong.
  • 2 days 1 night boat cruise in the marvelous limestone landscape of Halong Bay.
  • From Vietnam to Cambodia via 3 days through the Mekong Delta with stays at the lodge, where few tourists come.
  • The major sights include Angkor temples, but also more excursions with local experiences in mind.
  • Sightseeing and transfers with various modes of transport: walking, bicycle, rickshaw, motorcycle rickshaw, sampan, boat, junk, speedboat, car and 3 domestic flights.
  • On our trips with Halong Bay we only use boats whose sailing route comes to Bai Tu Long or to Lan Ha, where there are not so many cruise boats and tourists
Day 1
Day 1: Arrival Hanoi //D

<p>Welcome to Vietnam. Our smiling driver will welcome you at the airport and transfer you to hotel in town for check in. Today you will have a full day free time to relax after a long flight to our far east country and immerse yourself to the local surrounding. </p><p>After the whole day relaxing, You are taken on a gastronomic experience at the restaurant Madame Hien. French chef Didier Coulor has been living in Hanoi for almost 2 decades and has studied Vietnamese cuisine thoroughly and subsequently experimented with the many local ingredients and flavors. So you will have a special colonial experience tonight with Vietnamese food with a French twist in his charming restaurant, located in an old colonial style villa.</p>

Day 2
Day 2: Hanoi Capital City Tour // B,L

<p>City tour. We will visit the father of country – Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum. He lies embalmed in the glass coffin in memory of the president who fought for Vietnam’s independence against Japan, France and the United States. We pass the Presidential Palace and Ho Chi Minh’s stilt house, from which the strategies for the fight against South Vietnam were laid. The road passes the One pillar Pagoda and then we visit the serene Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university where hundreds years ago The teachers and officials of the emperor time were trained and graduated here. Today’s students come here just before exams, and pray for a good result. The names of successful students of the past are engraved on memorial plaques placed on top of the shield of figurative turtles.</p><p>Lunch at the Koto Restaurant, in which, through an educational course, trains former street children to cook and serve guests. At the end of the apprenticeship, many of the children will end up at other good restaurants in the city.</p><p>After lunch, you pass a private living quarters where you find debris from a shot down B52 bomber from the US Christmas bombings in 1972. When the peace talks in North 1972 between North Vietnam and the United States went into hardship – President Nixon and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger agreed would bomb the North Vietnamese back to the negotiating table.</p><p></p>

Day 3
Day 3: Hanoi Morning Flag Rising &amp; Rickshaw tour // B, D

<p>In the early morning, you ride the rickshaw and with the guide through Hanoi’s almost traffic-free streets. In the early twilight you overtake some inhabitants who walk or run off into the fresh morning air. Inside the house walls, the breakfast restaurants scramble to light up the soup kitchens and set the small plastic tables and chairs ready for the first eating of the day. The silence is interrupted in between by the small motorcycles, which are well loaded, are on their way to the market with fresh goods.</p><p>You reach Ba Dinh Square at Parliament and the Presidential Palace. Here – before the sun rises – city dwellers jog back and forth in the square just in front of former President Ho Chi Minh mausoleum, while others swing arms and legs, stretching the body well with agility exercises. In a corner, a bunch of women stand up a bit over the years and do joint morning gymnastics with a volunteer instructor who strikes the beat. More local women are coming along, and if you stand up in the crowd, the Vietnamese smile will definitely be drawn. At least you are welcome to join them.</p><p>At 6.30 am, a fanfare sounds beyond Ba Dinh Square and people pull away from the square just in front of the mausoleum behind a line painted on the tiles. In stagnant position, the face faces the mausoleum and a high, high flagpole. Then 25-30 white-clad soldiers march into the square and towards the flagpole – one of them carrying the national flag. The rising Flag Ceremony Begins. </p><p>Once a few of the soldiers have baked the flag on the leash, Vietnam’s national tune begins to tone out of the speakers, and the red flag with the yellow star in the middle slowly disappears. The red color symbolizes the blood of the country’s martyrs, who have sacrificed life in the struggle for the country’s independence from foreign powers, while the yellow star marks the bright future of the country. The five peaks of the star symbolize the desire for national cohesion between the five general population groups: the farmer, the workers, the intellectuals, the business people and the military.</p><p>You continue in the rickshaw to Hoan Kiem lake. The place buzzes with life. Individually and in groups, they stand around the lake and at Ly Thai To Square. The younger city dwellers do aerobics for fast techno-like rhythms, whileLS

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The Majestic Vietnam & Cambodia in 16 Days