Fascinating Vietnam, Cambodia & the Mekong River with Hanoi, Ha Long Bay & Bangkok (Southbound) 2020/21

19 day River Cruise Hanoi to Bangkok

Cruise WHSN

From 

£4,991  pp

Cruise only

Departing 24 January 2020

From 

£5,756  pp

Cruise with flights & transfers

From London Gatwick

Overview

This inspiring Southeast Asia river cruise takes you to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand. You’ll be immersed in the cultures and ancient traditions as you sightsee and spend time with locals in the most fascinating places along the mighty Mekong River.

The best way to experience Vietnamese culture is with a tour of its fascinating capital of Hanoi. Go on a cyclo ride through the ancient streets of the Old Quarter and enjoy a water puppet performance. Travel through the peaceful countryside to Ha Long Bay where you’ll cruise by its breathtaking limestone islands.

In Siem Reap, Cambodia, see the phenomenal Temples of Angkor with an intricacy and architectural grandeur unmatched in the world. Enjoy an inspiring Aspara dance performance before embarking on your river cruise. In the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, tour the National Museum and Royal Palace with its striking Silver Pagoda. On a hilltop at the site of the 8th-century temple of Wat Hanchey, take in the stunning views before walking through the rural village of Angkor Ban to visit with welcoming schoolchildren.

Continue your Southeast Asia cruise into Vietnam and visit a colorful market, the home of a local family making handcrafted sampans, and a workshop to learn how rice wine and traditional candies are made. In Ho Chi Minh City, see the famous landmarks and try your hand in the kitchen—Vietnamese-style, with a cooking class. On an excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels, walk through a section of the immense underground tunnel system used during the Vietnam War.

Your adventure ends in Bangkok, where you’ll visit its most renowned temples, including the Temple of the Reclining Buddha—the oldest and largest of its kind. The perfect way to conclude this unforgettable river cruise vacation!
This inspiring Southeast Asia river cruise takes you to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand. You’ll be immersed in the cultures and ancient traditions as you sightsee and spend time with locals in the most fascinating places along the mighty Mekong River.

The best way to experience Vietnamese culture is with a tour of its fascinating capital of Hanoi. Go on a cyclo ride through the ancient streets of the Old Quarter and enjoy a water puppet performance. Travel through the peaceful countryside to Ha Long Bay where you’ll cruise by its breathtaking limestone islands.

In Siem Reap, Cambodia, see the phenomenal Temples of Angkor with an intricacy and architectural grandeur unmatched in the world. Enjoy an inspiring Aspara dance performance before embarking on your river cruise. In the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, tour the National Museum and Royal Palace with its striking Silver Pagoda. On a hilltop at the site of the 8th-century temple of Wat Hanchey, take in the stunning views before walking through the rural village of Angkor Ban to visit with welcoming schoolchildren.

Continue your Southeast Asia cruise into Vietnam and visit a colorful market, the home of a local family making handcrafted sampans, and a workshop to learn how rice wine and traditional candies are made. In Ho Chi Minh City, see the famous landmarks and try your hand in the kitchen—Vietnamese-style, with a cooking class. On an excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels, walk through a section of the immense underground tunnel system used during the Vietnam War.

Your adventure ends in Bangkok, where you’ll visit its most renowned temples, including the Temple of the Reclining Buddha—the oldest and largest of its kind. The perfect way to conclude this unforgettable river cruise vacation!

Save up to £1,500 per couple

Book your 2020 river cruise by 30 Apr and you could save up to £1,500 per couple.

About this offer

Itinerary

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are three types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Classic

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Day 1 HANOI, VIETNAM


Welcome to Vietnam!

Day 2 HANOI

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

This morning, your Guided Sightseeing takes a look at the life of Ho Chi Minh, the father of modern Vietnam. First, visit the mausoleum and the humble cottage from which “Uncle Ho” ruled Vietnam until his death in 1969. Next on the agenda: One Pillar Pagoda, the Presidential Palace, and the infamous “Hanoi Hilton.” Also visit the ancient Temple of Literature, over 900 years old and Hanoi’s first university. Lunch is at Koto, a non-profit restaurant and hospitality program that trains local street children in restaurant skills they can use to find a job and build a stable life. After lunch, enjoy an electric cart ride through the fascinating Old Quarter, with 36 ancient streets where peddlers trade as they have for centuries. An early dinner this evening is followed by a fascinating performance of Hanoi’s renowned water puppets, a traditional art form dating back to the 11th century.

Day 3 HANOI—HA LONG BAY

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Travel from Hanoi through the fertile countryside to Hon Gai, gateway to Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located in the Gulf of Tonkin, the bay is dotted with more than 3,000 limestone islands carved into fanciful shapes by the action of the water. Tunnels, caves, and weirdly shaped outcroppings with imaginative names can be found on many of the small islets sprinkled across the bay. Board a Cruise Excursion to explore the caves, and admire the beauty and scale before stopping at one of the many secluded bays.

Day 4 HA LONG BAY—HANOI—SIEM REAP

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

This morning, drive to Hanoi and board your flight for Siem Reap.

Day 5 SIEM REAP

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The Tranquil Temples of Angkor and Joyful Dances

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Explore the temples by tuk-tuk. Start at the best preserved and most famous of all the temples: Angkor Wat. Featuring five trademark towers, it is the symbol of Cambodia. Then, continue your Guided Excursion to visit Angkor Thom, where you will explore Bayon Temple with its 200 striking faces carved in 54 towers and impressive bas relief sculptures, OR:

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Visit Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, and Bayon Temple by bike.

Enjoy some time at your leisure this afternoon to explore Siem Reap’s shops for local artisan crafts.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

This evening, a private Apsara Dance Performance brings ancient Khmer culture to life through music, song, and dance.

Day 6 SIEM REAP

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Root-Covered Ruins and Native Noodles

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Continue your Sightseeing Tour of the Angkor temples at Ta Prohm. Tree roots cover the ruin walls, allowing you to experience the temple with the same wonder as early explorers. Then visit Banteay Srei, a unique temple built on a small scale from red sandstone, which can be carved like wood. En route, stop at a village famous for making Khmer noodles by hand.


Spend the afternoon at your leisure.

Day 7 PHNOM PENH (EMBARKATION)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Your Intimate Suite Ship® Awaits!

Fly to Phnom Penh and transfer to the port where your ship’s crew will be waiting to welcome you onboard. Get acquainted with the ship and relax before your welcome reception this evening.

AFTERNOON/EVENING CRUISE TO WAT HANCHEY

Day 8 WAT HANCHEY—ANGKOR BAN

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Water Blessings and Back-to-School Adventures

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Visit Wat Hanchey, a hilltop temple dating back to the 8th century. Climb or be driven to the top where you will enjoy stunning views of the surrounding area and partake in a traditional water blessing given by local monks.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

After lunch, enjoy a Walking Tour through the rural village of Angkor Ban. Here, you will visit a traditional Khmer house and interact with children at a local school.

 

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KAMPONG TRALACH

Day 9 KAMPONG TRALACH—KONPONG LOUANG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Calm in the Cambodian Countryside

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Your Guided Sightseeing starts in Kampong Tralach with an Ox-Cart Ride through the beautiful Cambodian countryside. Along the way, stop to meet a local farmer and learn about his daily life. At the silversmith village in Konpong Louang, see talented craftsmen use age-old techniques to turn pure silver into works of art.

Sail to the capital city of Phnom Penh this afternoon.

PHNOM PENH

A Dark History or Market Dynamics

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

After lunch, a Visit to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and one of the Killing Fields provides a glimpse into the atrocities inflicted on the Cambodian people by the Khmer Rouge regime, OR:

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Visit the lively Central Market with its unique Art Deco design by tuk-tuk.

This evening, spend some free time exploring the city on your own. Perhaps follow the riverfront promenade to the historic Foreign Correspondents Club (FCC).

Day 10 PHNOM PENH

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The Royal treatment

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Join a Guided Tour of the city by private cyclo with visits to the Royal Palace with the spectacular Silver Pagoda, and the National Museum featuring an outstanding display of Khmer artifacts.


The remainder of the day is yours to enjoy at your leisure. Consider a Guided Optional Tour of a local brewery with free-flowing local beer!

Just before dinner, children from a local orphanage will perform a show, featuring local song and dance.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIETNAM/CAMBODIA BORDER

Day 11 BORDER CROSSING–CHAU DOC, VIETNAM

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Good Morning, Vietnam!

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Take a Village Walk through the Chau Doc market, and absorb the atmosphere as locals are busy buying and selling fish, meat, and produce. After lunch, embark on a Guided Excursion down the backwaters of the Mekong. Along the way, see traditional floating homes, speedboat merchants, religious sites, a market selling dried goods, and more.


EVENING CRUISE TO LONG KHANH A


Day 12 LONG KHANH A—CU LAO GIENG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Cotton Weaving, Conical Hats, and Handcrafted Sampans

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

This morning, a sampan brings you to the village of Long Khanh A, for a Cotton-Weaving Demonstration of this well-preserved tradition.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

This afternoon, enjoy scenes of daily life on Cu Lao Gieng Island via sampan and local motor cart. Your Guided Excursion starts with a stop at one of Vietnam’s oldest Catholic churches. Then, visit the home of a local family that makes Vietnamese conical hats, or “Non la,” from materials available to them such as palm leaves and bamboo. These iconic hats are primarily used as protection from the sun and rain but you may also see them used as a basket to carry home goods from the market. Lastly, visit a local workshop where a skilled family hand-crafts sampan boats.

 

EVENING CRUISE TO VINH LONG

Day 13 VINH LONG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Sweets and Rice Treats

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Board a sampan this morning to Visit a Local Workshop in Vinh Long where you will see how rice paper, rice wine, and traditional candies are made.

This afternoon, enjoy time on board the ship as we sail to exciting Ho Chi Minh City.

AFTERNOON CRUISE TO HO CHI MINH CITY

Day 14 HO CHI MINH CITY (DISEMBARKATION)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Motorbikes, Monuments, and Mouthwatering Cuisine

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Take a Walking Tour of Ho Chi Minh City’s historic landmarks, including a stop at the Rex Hotel for a refreshing drink at the rooftop bar where the U.S. Military held the infamous “Five O’Clock Follies” during the war. Then, visit the War Remnants Museum and bustling Ben Thanh Market.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

For lunch, participate in a hands-on Vietnamese Cooking Class. Learn to prepare several local dishes and how to recreate them at home. Last, but not least, sample your delicious creations!

Enjoy time at your leisure this afternoon and evening for independent exploration. Maybe stop for a drink at the famous rooftop bar at the Caravelle Hotel.

Day 15 HO CHI MINH CITY. EXCURSION TO CU CHI TUNNELS

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Secret Passageways and Underground Hideouts

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Drive out of the city for a Guided Visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels—an extraordinary network of tunnels more than 120 miles in length—used as a hideout and secret village by the Viet Cong.

Explore the city further during free time this afternoon.

This evening, join your traveling companions for a special dinner in a local restaurant.

Day 16 HO CHI MINH CITY—BANGKOK, THAILAND.

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

This morning, fly to Bangkok. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel.

Day 17 BANGKOK

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

This morning, your Guided Sightseeing begins with a boat ride on the klongs, Bangkok’s famous canals. Stop at the stunning Grand Palace featuring the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Also, Visit the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, the oldest and largest Buddhist temple in Bangkok. It houses more than 1,000 Buddha images, including the 49-foot-high and 151-foot-long massive Reclining Buddha. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

Day 18 BANGKOK

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Enjoy a full day at your leisure.

Day 19 BANGKOK

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Your extension ends with breakfast this morning.

Questions? Our travel specialists can help with any queries, quotes or special requirements.  Request a callback or email us.

Notes

Note: During low water conditions we may not be able to cruise upriver to Tonle Sap. Low water levels vary each year, depending on rainfall, but are generally between mid-December and June. Our ability to cruise to Tonle Sap will be evaluated on a cruise-by-cruise basis.

2020 departures may be subject to itinerary modifications and full details will be published in February 2019. If we have to modify an itinerary, you will have an opportunity to cancel without penalty. See our full terms and conditions for more details.

Cruise options

Start sooner, stay longer. Start your vacation earlier or stay longer with destination options before or after your Avalon cruise.

Fascinating Vietnam, Cambodia & the Mekong (Southbound) 2020/21

Ship details

Onboard every one of our Suite Ships you'll find the same exacting standards and attention to detail. They all feature our one-of-a-kind Panorama Suites, with the widest opening windows in river cruising, and beds facing the incredible views. This cruise operates on the following ships.

Avalon Saigon

With its colonial charm and modern features, Avalon Saigon is specifically designed to offer the best cruise experience on the Mekong River, and is one of only two ships cruising from Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap and vice versa. Accommodating up to 36 passengers, the ship is built as long and wide as other ships that carry twice as many guests, so the public spaces never feel congested. From the air-conditioned Panorama Lounge to the open-air observation lounge, there are plenty of places to relax, and with lounges located at the front of the ship, you’ll always have a great view.

Panorama Suite (B,A)
245 sq. ft.
Category A - Tonle Deck - floorplan
Picture of Category A Stateroom (245 sq ft) with large open-air balcony - Tonle Deck
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium mattress covers
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens, woolen blankets and European-style duvets
  • Soft and firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one king-size bed
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Wall-to-wall panoramic window measuring 14-feet wide that opens to transform the living space into a large, Open-Air Balcony®
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium bath amenities
  • Spacious wardrobe with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror & chair
  • In-house telephone
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
Deck Plans
deck plan

Deck plan key

  • Open-air observation lounge with premium lounge chairs
  • Panorama Lounge
  • Bar
  • Reception
  • Spa treatment room
  • Dining room
  • Kitchen
  • Navigation Bridge
  • Fitness centre

Stateroom categories

  • Category A
  • Tonle Deck
  • Category B
  • Mekong Deck

Avalon Siem Reap

The all-suite Avalon Siem Reap has been designed to provide a luxurious and intimate experience for just 36 guests and give you the chance to experience life along the Mekong. Built by local craftsmen, the ship has modern features yet still retains and reflects the charms of Vietnam and Cambodia. Avalon Siem Reap also delivers a refreshing outdoor experience, with all suites opening to the outside and two comfortable lounges offering unrivalled panoramic views. From the air-conditioned Panorama Lounge to the open-air observation lounge, there is plenty of seating and spots to relax. Plus, our lounges are located at the front of the ship, so no matter where you sit you'll always have a great view.

Panorama Suite (B,A)
245 sq. ft.
Category B - Mekong Deck - floorplan
Picture of Category B Stateroom (245 sq ft) with large open-air balcony - Mekong Deck
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium mattress covers
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens, woolen blankets and European-style duvets
  • Soft and firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one king-size bed
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Wall-to-wall panoramic window measuring 14-feet wide that opens to transform the living space into a large, Open-Air Balcony®
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium bath amenities
  • Spacious wardrobe with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror & chair
  • In-house telephone
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
Deck Plans
Avalon Siem Reap deck plan

Deck plan key

  • Open-air observation lounge with premium lounge chairs
  • Panorama Lounge
  • Bar
  • Reception
  • Spa treatment room
  • Dining room
  • Kitchen
  • Navigation Bridge
  • Fitness centre

Stateroom categories

  • Category A
  • Tonle Deck
  • Category B
  • Mekong Deck

Hotels

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