Itinerary | 12 Nights - Vietnam, The Mekong River & Cambodia


12 Nights - Vietnam, The Mekong River & Cambodia

SOLD OUT

Hosted Group Gay Men & Women

From September 05, 2019 to September 17, 2019

Abercrombie and Kent

Saigon, My Tho, Jahan Cruise, Cai Be, Sadec, Tan Chau, Phnom Penh, Kampong Cham (Mekong), Kampon Chhnang, Tonle Lake, Siem Reap, Temples At Ankor Wat.

Day 1

Thursday 05 Sep 2019

Saigon

Arrival Saigon Airport arrival fast track service. 2 night stay at The Reverie Hotel

On arrival at Tan Son Nhat Airport you will be met by an Abercrombie & Kent representative who will assist you with Immigration and Custom formalities.


You will be met by an Airport Representative at the arrivals gate (or aerobridge) and ushered to the Visa Landing counter to obtain a Vietnam visa stamp and express clearance through immigration. You will then follow the Airport Representative, who will assist you with collection of your luggage before leading you out of the terminal to meet with the Abercrombie & Kent Guide.


You will be then transferred by private vehicle to your hotel. The driving time is at approximately 30 minutes.


Lunch and dinner are under your own arrangement.


The regular check-in time is at 1400; early check-in is subject to availability


Meals: Use hotel Credit of $100 per room stay
Accommodation: The Reverie Saigon Hotel/ Luxury


The Reverie Saigon


AQUAFEST AMENITIES
US$ 100 Food and Beverage, and Spa treatment credit per room per stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full).Welcome amenity.
Free upgrade to 01 category level (subject to availability).
Early check-in and late-check-out (subject to availability).

Day 2

Friday 06 Sep 2019

Saigon – Cu Chi Tunnels

Half Day City Tour / Welcome Dinner at the Stylish Ly Club Restaurant B/L/D

At 08:00 this morning your Abercrombie & Kent guide will collect you from your hotel and take you on a drive to the Cu Chi Tunnels.
The Cu Chi Tunnels are an incredible network of hundreds of miles of narrow tunnels that were built during resistance to the French colonisation and utilized extensively during the Vietnam War. The (sometimes claustrophobic) tunnels give an amazing insight into life during the war. You will have the opportunity to enjoy a guided exploration of the complex network, discovering underground storage rooms, make-shift hospitals and sleeping quarters used to evade enemy bombings.


Please note: Crawling inside the Cu Chi Tunnels involves being in a confined space. It is a worthwhile experience, which takes approximately 15 minutes, or more, depending on how much you wish to explore. There are also several interesting things to see on ground level, so guests who experience claustrophobia, fear of the dark, cardiac problems or have any other health concerns, may explore these areas without entering the tunnels.


After your exploration, return to Ho Chi Minh City by private air-conditioned vehicle, arriving around 13:00 and have lunch at a local restaurant.


After lunch, your guide will escort you on an exploration of Ho Chi Minh City with the War Remnants Museum. Over the years, the museum has held a number of colourful names, primarily as it contains exhibits relating to the American phase of the Vietnam War. Among the at-times grisly items on display are an American tank, infantry weapons, war photographs, the original French guillotine brought to Vietnam in the 20th century, and even a once-operational UH-1 "Huey" helicopter.


Continue on to visit the Reunification Hall, one of the most historic landmarks in Ho Chi Minh City built on the site of the former Norodom Palace. Designed as the Presidential Palace during the Vietnam War, it was where the official handover of power took place during the Fall of Saigon in 1975. The building is preserved almost as it was under the old regime with elegant interiors decorated with fine Vietnamese arts and crafts. One of the many attractions within the building is the underground Command Post of the now-exiled president.


Make a brief photo stop at the Notre Dame Cathedral in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City. It has a neo-Romanesque façade and two bell towers tipped with iron spires that reach a height of 190 feet, dominating the skyline. Your next stop will be to visit the classic 19th century French colonial Post Office. The largest post office in Vietnam, it is an important communications hub for most of the city’s inhabitants. Inside, the building has huge vaulted ceilings with vast maps of Vietnam on both sides of the main hall.


Your four-hour guided tour will finish at Ben Thanh Market before you return to your hotel.


At 18:30, your guide will meet and transfer you to Ly Club Restaurant for a light cocktail at the terrace.


Symbolized by the chrysanthemum flower, Lý Club takes its name from the 11th century Lý dynasty emperors who were renowned for setting the standards of the Vietnamese refined society. The Saigon branch serves a diverse selection of western & Vietnamese fusion cuisine set amidst a sculpted, neo-modern garden with an infinity fountain.


After the pre-dinner cocktail, you will have dinner at a private area at this restaurant.
The Reverie Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City
Deluxe Room


Day 3

Saturday 07 Sep 2019

Saigon – My Tho – Jahan Cruise – Cai Be

B/L/D

Enjoy Breakfast at your hotel.
The morning is yours to enjoy at leisure.
At 12:00, your A&K guide will meet and transfer you to a local restaurant for lunch before moving ahead to My Tho Pier where you will embark to the Jahan Cruise. The driving time is at approximately 90 minutes.
After the Jahan crew warmly welcomes you, you check in to your well-prepared staterooms. The ship sets sail and a fascinating voyage along the Mekong begins. Lunch buffet is served in the restaurant while the vessel steadily glides upstream to reach the overnight spot. Make yourself familiar with all the ship facilities. Now it is time to become one with one of the largest streams in Asia. The afternoon allows you to leisurely pass time on your private balcony or join our tea time at the open-air bar as the twilight bathes the Mekong Delta in a golden haze. During the time you savor your dinner, the ship reaches Cai Be. It is a charming town, famous for its Catholic French church and the manufacturing of traditional crafts and food products. The floating market of Cai Be is getting smaller every year, since trading on the water is shifting more and more to the modern central markets. We anchor mid-stream near Cai Be for dinner and moor there overnight. After dinner our lounge cinema features selected classic movies (every night)


General Inclusions of cruise packages: Accommodation, daily (group) shore-excursions as mentioned in the program, all entrance fees, transportation as mentioned in the program, transfers to/from the meeting point/ship, tour guide services (English speaking), taxes, fuel, river pilots, local anchorage fees, daily Tai Chi classes and onboard entertainment, sauna or steam bath (The Jahan only), welcome drink, breakfast – lunch - dinner (on full sailing days or as indicated in program), free flow of beverages - mineral water, soft drinks, juices, tea, coffee - at all times, free flow of local beer and house wine by glass during lunch and dinner, drinking water in cabin and during excursions, insurance (passenger liability), internet throughout the boat (subject to cellular network signal).


Exclusions: Crew and guide gratuities, any visa fees, private transfers and any other transfer not stated in the program, personal expenses and purchases, all further beverages, premium spirits and other services not mentioned in the program, fuel surcharges if any, medical services, spa treatments (please see special cabin inclusions), telephone.


Optional Upgrade to Deluxe cabin: quoted separately

Day 4

Sunday 8 Sep 2019

Cai Be – Sadec – Tan Chau

B/L/D

Each morning, we offer our guests an invigorating Tai Chi class on the sun deck. Start your day, just as many local people do in Asia, as the sun begins its gentle glow. A sumptuous buffet breakfast is served for the perfect first exploration day in the Mekong Delta.


Our morning tour takes you to Cai Be. We can still see some boat to boat trading of local goods such as fruits and agricultural products. Our guide will explain the particularities of this long-lasting trading culture. Each boat has a special marker that lets buyers know what goods it is selling. Cai Be is a rustic town crisscrossed by many water canals. We go on-shore to visit a workshop and learn how rice paste, rice paper, rice cookies and rice wine is manufactured. Cai Be and its surrounding areas are covered with palm trees and hence the region is also famous for the production of coconut candies. With our local boat, we continue to explore the lush and green canal network and observe the farmers working in the fields. Back on-board lunch is served.


You can enjoy time for yourself then to either enjoy a true Vietnamese coffee at the bar or simply watch the life on the riverbanks floating by.


In the afternoon, we reach the area of Sa Dec. We embark on a traditional local boat and head towards Binh Thanh Island. This island is one of the larger ones in the vast stream of the Mekong. Some communities have settled here and make their living by growing water hyacinths. We exclusively visit one of those untouched areas. By wandering through the village, we get a deep understanding of the native life. Moreover, we see the whole process of mat making. You can try weaving yourself, which is still done manually. We will meet also an elderly local couple who shares their story on this island. They are happy to engage in a conversation with you. Back on board you may like to pamper yourself with a spa treatment or take a dip into the pool on the sun deck. Our expert guide offers a presentation on the “Life on the Mekong Delta” as the ship continues sailing to Tan Chau - the border town to Cambodia. We moor mid-stream near Tan Chau. Dinner is served and afterwards you can join our evening cinema session (offered every night) featuring selected classic movies.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: The Jahan Cruise/ Luxury


Heritage Line


Day 5

Monday, 9 Sep 2019

Tan Chau

B/L/D

Welcome to the fish sanctuary of Vietnam. Begin your day with a hearty breakfast at the dining hall or in the quiet sanctuary of your balcony.


Brace yourself for an excursion around Tan Chau, a pleasant, slow-paced town near the Cambodian border with a sizeable Chinese, Kinh and Khmer community. Once arrived on-shore we hop on “xelois” to explore Tan Chau. A xelaoi is a local vehicle which is still used as taxi in this region. We slowly move around the streets to see all the workshops, houses and domiciles. Get to feel the laid-back vibes of this place. We stop at the colorful local market near one of the ancient temples. This is the best time you can interact with the vendors of this friendly town to make your own bargain experience. We board our local boats and cruise along floating houses to finally reach a floating fish farm. This region is the source of fish production to be sold all over the world and we can see closely how fish farming works.


Back on board our “home” we sail towards the Vietnamese-Cambodian border. Get ready for a fascinating and leisurely cruise through the deep Cambodia countryside towards Phnom Penh.


The whole afternoon is at your own arrangements. This is the cruise part when even the last passenger will turn into cruise mode and hopefully experience the therapeutic influence this mighty river radiates. It is time for massages, time for sun bed relaxations, time for private balcony kick-backs - forsooth the time to merge with the river.


A culinary class if offered during the afternoon to sharpen your knowledge and skills on the local cuisine. Some may like to do a flying visit at the bridge - the captain always has a story to share about “his” river. “The Highway Blues” beckons as we float into a state of mild bliss and before you totally drift away join our afternoon high tea for some treats.

Dinner is served before we arrive in the capital of Cambodia around 8 o’clock. The boat docks at the pier of Phnom Penh. You are free to go for your first exploration by yourself. Stroll along the river promenade and watch the local’s chit-chatting, selling odds and ends or have a drink in one of the numerous bars (kindly inform our crew once you are leaving the ship on your own).


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: The Jahan Cruise/Luxury


Heritage Line

Day 6

Tuesday 10 Sep 2019

Phnom Penh

B/L/D

Welcome to Phnom Penh the once called Paris of the East. Despite its rapid development, it has retained a lot of its rustic charm and elegance. It is an amazing town to bespeak centuries of incredible history and culture which can still be felt at many street corners.


After breakfast we bid farewell to our passenger of the Pearl of the Orient Cruise (3-nights).


At the same time we welcome around 8 o’clock our passengers of the Serenity Cruise (4-nights).


We start with a full sight-seeing tour right after breakfast. By bus we visit the Killing Fields at the outskirts of the city and after the centrally located prison “S21”. Both historic sites display the sad and cruel chapter of Khmer history when once the Khmer Rouge ruled the country with terror and suppression. Those places have merely changed much since the horrific time back in the early seventies and, so it can be heart wrenching. There is the alternative to explore the city during the morning by your own pace individually before re-joining the group.


Lunch we take in a nice restaurant in town. Our exploration of Phnom Penh focuses afterwards on the fascinating cultural heritage of Phnom Penh. The golden edifice of the Royal Palace with its Silver Pagoda and the exceptional Khmer crafts at the National Museum are the afternoon highlights. The day trip ends with a “cyclo” ride back to the ship through the bustling streets of downtown Phnom Penh.


Take some rest in your spacious cabin or join other fellow passengers at the bar for some refreshing drinks before our capturing evening activities start:


It begins with a variety of cocktails served on the sun deck or at the open bar. We move to the lounge which is set up for a captivating lecture about Cambodian modern history, held by a professor of the Royal University of Phnom Penh. Definitely among the highlights of this cruise to receive knowledge out of first hand as our lecturer had a private relation to the former King of Cambodia and many other high-ranking politicians.


After the lecture a feast of barbecue dinner on the sun deck commences. The dinner is accompanied by an Apsara dance performance. You have to witness the brilliance and richness of this dance along with the soothing sounds of traditional music.


As the evening unwinds enjoy your supper with a good glass of wine and marvel at the skyline of Phnom Penh and the calming flow of the Tonle River.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: The Jahan Cruise/ Luxury


Heritage Line


Day 7

Wednesday 11 Sep 2019

Phnom Penh – Kampong Cham (Mekong)

B/L/D

We depart before the break of dawn from Phnom Penh towards the small Angkor Ban village up the Mekong River. Wake up to the gentle cruise motion and get ready for breakfast in the dining room.


The Angkor Ban village is famous for its unspoiled community and beautiful, traditional houses. It feels like being transported back a hundred years into an era unaffected by modernity. Villagers characterize an unbridled warmth.


Back on board our staff is keen to show you the variety of traditional Khmer fashion. Lunch is served after this performance.


We cruise further up the Mekong to visit a local school to understand more about the education of the young Cambodian generation (the project is funded by an NGO). Those children here are always excited to show their skills in music and art and will bath you in smiles upon your applause. We continue the travel by road to the enchanting pre-Angkorian temple of Wat Hanchey (7th century). This small complex sits on a hill top right on the shore with breath-taking views on the Mekong. Another temple on the way is the tiny, colorful monastery of Wat Nokor. Here we might get the chance to engage in a light banter with some of the monks living in the area.


Relax back on board until dinner is served. The boat moors mid-river near Kampong Cham.

Day 8

Thursday 12 Sep 2019

Kampong Cham (Mekong) - Kampong Chhnang (Tonle)

B/L/D

We sail downstream the Mekong during breakfast time and stop at the Island of Koh Oknha Tey. This spot in the middle of the Mekong owns its fame for the manufacturing of high class silk products.


By tuk tuk we explore the island with its workshops and learn how silk is processed from its source, provided by little silkworms, to a final top-quality product made of original Cambodian silk.


Before lunch our expert guides offer a presentation about "Geography of the Mekong and Tonle Sap".


After lunch a Monks’ blessing ceremony on board will deliver spirits and wishes for our health and prosperity for all.


The cruiser continues its journey, passing the confluence of Mekong and Tonle River towards Kampong Tralach. Gliding through leafy swaths of this jungle-like landscape we reach Kampong Tralach. Cacophonous children waive enthusiastically while bringing their livestock for a bath in the meandering river. Live to see all this life - which is so much different than ours - by a local ox cart ride.


The boat finds its anchor spot later in the Tonle River near Kampong Chaung allowing you to observe the interesting and close-by life on shore until dinner is served in the restaurant.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: The Jahan Cruise/ Luxury


Heritage Line


Day 9

Friday 13 Sep 2019

Kampong Chhnang – Tonle Lake

B/L/D<

Wake up early to witness this spectacular water-world in the break of down. Our morning Tai Chi class has the perfect backdrop today. Breakfast buffet is served in the restaurant.


We are now at Kampong Chaung, Cambodia’s “water world”, where everything is on sticks balanced on water rich soil. This is the most fascinating cruise part in Cambodia.


We take a local boat to the shore. With mini buses we head to a rural village nearby and go on a walking tour. Our guides introduce the village specialties – Khmer style pottery and the making of palm sugar. Definitely you should bring home some. Before returning to the boat we explore the local floating villages and wetlands of the region.


Back on-board lunch is served as your floating sanctuary cruises gently along the narrow and meandering Tonle, towards the Great Tonle Lake. The river opens up to a vast “sea” - known as the biggest fresh water lake in Asia. This lake can only be crossed during high water season (approx. from End-July to Mid-November). Let your soul float and your eyes wander while the boat makes its way towards Siem Reap.


In the afternoon we serve a high tea at the bar and as the sun sets, our crew invites for a farewell event. Enjoy your dinner and some dance and music afterwards together with the crew.


The boat moors mid-lake near Siem Reap.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: The Jahan Cruise/ Luxury


Heritage Line


Day 10

Saturday 14 Sep 2019

Siem Reap

An Afternoon Discovering Siem Reap B/L/D

The Tonle Sap (The Great Lake) is the flowing heart of Cambodia, giving love and life to millions of people. It has more fish than any other lake in the world and is home to an incredible variety of birds, including rare and endangered feathered life. Our Heritage Line cruise comes to an end. We prepare to disembark the ship and take a local boat to the shore, passing a vast floating community.


Around nine o’clock, we arrive at the Siem Reap pier. Your Abercrombie & Kent tour guide will meet and transfer you to your hotel. Check in time is at 14:00. Early check in is subject to availability.


12:00 Transfer from Park Hyatt Siem Reap to a nice local restaurant for lunch.


14:00, start a half day discovering Siem Reap. Much more than the gateway to the Temples of Angkor, Siem Reap has earned a reputation for its many trendy boutiques and artsy workshops. Spend an enjoyable afternoon getting to know Siem Reap, visiting places including: the Angkor National Museum, an institution that offers a glimpse into the rich history of the ‘Golden Era’ of the Khmer Kingdom. The museum utilizes technology and multimedia to enhance the experience as they tell the tale of Cambodia and the Khmer people; Wat Damnak, once a royal palace during the reign of King Sisowath and now one of the major pagodas in Siem Reap, to receive a blessing from one of the monks; and the new and old market on both sides of the river, an excellent spot for photos and picking up handmade souvenirs.


Have dinner at a nice local restaurant tonight.


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Park Hyatt/ Luxury

Day 11

Sunday 15 Sep 2019

Siem Reap

Full day Temples At Angkor Wat B/L/D

07:00, meet your guide at the hotel and transfer by private vehicle to Ta Prohm, this beautiful temple, built in 1186 as a Buddhist temple dedicated to the mother of Jayavarman VII, is one of Angkor’s jewels and is overgrown with fig trees, giving a haunting yet exotic atmosphere. One of the largest temple sites in Angkor it took almost 80,000 people to maintain the temple. Drive a short distance to Ta Keo, which would have been one of the finest temples in Angkor had it been completed. Continue to Angkor Thom, not a temple, but an entire walled city of 9 square kilometers and the royal Capital from 1181. With a population of 1 million, it was far bigger than any city in Europe at the time. The center piece is Bayon temple crowned with 216 giant smiling faces of King Jayavarman VII. Also visit the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King, which houses almost perfectly preserved carvings.


Have lunch at a nice local restaurant


After a leisurely break your exploration continues as you enter the rear gate of Angkor Wat (early 12th century). Surrounded by a 190 meter wide moat 1.5 kilometers by 1.3 kilometers it is claimed to be the largest religious building in the world. The temple, which took 30 years to construct & used the labors of 300,000 workers was built as the earthly representation of the universe with its' central tower symbolizing Mt Meru which, Hindus believe, is at the center of the Universe.


Sun protection is recommended


Insect repellant is advised


Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Park Hyatt/ Luxury

Day 12

Monday 16 Sep 2019

Siem Reap

Morning Free at leisure / Afternoon Visit Artisans D'Angkor Workshops B/L/D

14:00, start to visit the Angkor Silk Farm. Located 20 minutes away from downtown Siem Reap, the silk farm is an extensive and well documented foundation that gives excellent insight into how silk is traditionally made in Cambodia. The farm supports vulnerable women to make a living for their families. Visit the Silk Farm and follow each step of the silk process, from growing the mulberry trees to providing the essential ingredients to grow and feed silkworms. There are craftswomen at work allowing you to observe how silk is processed traditionally. They remove the silk thread from the cocoons and work the thread prior to weaving. An on-site shop allows you to bring home some memorable souvenirs or gifts for your loved ones back home. Then, head to Artisans d’Angkor, back in Siem Reap. The focus is on training unschooled rural youth in traditional handicraft skills. Here you can discover traditional Cambodian handicraft skills and observe the artisans at work. Ancient techniques are still practiced such as

wood and stone carving, lacquering, gilding and silk painting. A guided tour will provide you with more insight into this organization and you may direct any questions to one of the artisans through your guide. Learn about the overall operations and their goals for the future. You will also learn more about the artisans’ backgrounds and how this training has helped them to get a head start in life. Bid farewell to the artisans and have dinner at a nice local restaurant before returning to your hotel.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Accommodation: Park Hyatt/ Luxury

Day 13

Tuesday 17 Sep 2019

Siem Reap

Departure (Flight information to be advised / Own tickets)/ Siem Reap airport departure fast track service

Free at your own leisure until transfer to the airport for your departure flight


Tickets, passport, and immigration form will be collected in advance, so our Representative can collect your boarding pass and immigration stamp ready by the time the you arrive at the airport. Upon arrival at the departure terminal, our representative will accompany you to the airlines counter for checking in. (The luggage must be checked by individual client). After check-in, head to the waiting lounge until the flight is called.


Meals: Breakfast

Disclaimer: All advertised events are exclusive to guests who book through Aquafest only. Aquafest Events are private group departures. All rates are land only and per person, based on double occupancy subject to availability at time of booking. Non-discountable fees and taxes, airfare, air taxes and transfers are additional. A $30 processing fee is addition and subject to change without notice. Events based on a minimum of 20 group passengers. Pricing and other information may change without notice. We reserve the right to correct errors. Information and pricing are subject to change without notice. All cancellations are subject to a $50 per booking cancellation fee from Aquafest in addition to any Aquafest or vendor cancellation penalties. Trip Cancellation Insurance is required for all reservations. More information will be provided to you at the time of booking confirmation. Please contact us for a more detailed description of restrictions, cancellations, and penalties.

Cancellation Policy:


Must be made in writing.



  • The 25% deposit is non- refundable

  • March 2- May 20, 2019 50%

  • May 21, 2019 to departure 100%


PASSPORTS


Please ensure your passport is valid more than 6 months from the date of return for every country you are visiting. Please also ensure there is sufficient space in your passport to allow for all immigration procedures, taking note that some South East Asian countries take up a full page for the visa sticker and need yet more space on a separate page for entry & exist stamps.



TRIP & TRAVEL INSURANCE


The tour price does not include personal insurance. Travelers are highly recommended to purchase Trip Insurance & Travel Insurance upon commitment of the booking in case of force majeure. Trip Insurance covers the cost of your trip should you be forced to cancel your trip before you start the trip. Travel Insurance covers such costs as emergency and medical evacuation, hospital fees, property loss, etc. which could possibly happen during the trip.