Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam holidays
Description of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam holidays
This four week trip includes all the highlights of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam but also some more off the beaten track surprises as well.
In Cambodia you will not only see the Angkor Temples but will also ride on the bamboo train in Battambang (essentially a bamboo platform on wheels!), have lunch with a local family near the pre-Angkorian ruins of Sambor Prei Kuk and climb over lianas and giant tree roots in the fabulous temple of Beng Melea, far from the tourist crowds.
In Laos you will see the exquisite temples of Luang Prabang and the stunning landscape around Vang Vieng but will also take a boat ride down a tiny tributary of the Mekong, stopping in a small village for a picnic lunch.
In Vietnam, you will visit the Imperial City of Hue and enjoy the hustle and bustle of Saigon and Hanoi but will also get away from it all on a homestay in the Mekong and on a two night cruise through the magnificent scenery of Halong Bay.
There are cooking lessons, kayaking excursions, gentle bike rides, temple visits, local lunches, sunset boat rides, delicious meals, friendly locals and much much more.
1 Reviews of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam holidays
Reviewed on 24 Mar 2018 by Joan Day
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
This is a difficult one, as everyday was different and full of interest. Five of us went on this holiday and the best part for me was the morning view from our homestay balcony in Vietnam. Oh, and the cruise on Halong Bay, eating street food in Hanoi & having a delicious lunch prepared for us in a local home in Battambang.
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
Be prepared to get down with the locals and feel you really get an insight into their lives.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
I felt quite smug, knowing that lots of tourists were staying in large impersonal hotels and travelling around in large coaches, while we were getting to see the real people & their lives.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
Perfect. Thank you so much for this wonderful experience.
PlanetAll of our tours in South East Asia are run in conjunction with local partners that have been chosen partly because they provide a fantastic service but also because they share our environmental and social goals.
As an example, the more demanding (and longer) treks that we arrange in the north of Vietnam operate with strict environmental guidelines, for example we take all plastic water bottles away from the areas that we pass through rather than leaving them behind to litter host communities. Our trekking guides also ensure that travellers behave in an environmentally responsible manner, for example ensuring that no soap or detergent products are used in local water courses when travellers are refreshing themselves.
In Cambodia, many of our groups visit a site called Sambor Prei Kuk. This is in an area where landmines have been a problem and our guides use the opportunity to educate visitors about the problems that landmines can cause. There is also a landmine museum in Siem Reap that we encourage those with older children to visit and it provides an excellent insight into this environmental issue.
Throughout the region we try to use small locally owned hotels that have been built and furnished using local materials.
Our UK office is run as environmentally as possible. Wwe operate a primarily paper free environment and do not produce brochures (which often leads to a lot of waste) but market our tours exclusively on the internet.
PeopleOur programmes in South East Asia are run together with partners that are owned and run by local people and who share our belief in the importance of operating in a socially responsible way.
In Phnom Penh and Hanoi we always encourage families to visit one of the excellent restaurants that are run in conjunction with street children. These provide older street children with a way of earning a living through tourism whilst also providing visitors with information about some of the issues facing in the area.
We also provide the opportunity for our guests to visit other social projects if this is something that they are interested in. In particular there is an excellent museum in Siem Reap that gives details about the use of landmines in Cambodia, something which is a significant problem.
One of the main issues facing tourism in both Laos and Vietnam involves the exploitation of some hilltribe communities. We have been working closely with our partners to ensure that all of our visits are carefully controlled to ensure that they bring about a positive rather than negative impact on host communities. As an example we try to 'share out' the hosting experience amongst different families where possible, to ensure that tourist revenue is spread evenly within a village and not just concentrated with one family.
Most of our groups will use local guides throughout their visit. The guides are from the local area and will give an excellent insight into the way of life in the region.