VC18: Exploring Vietnam and Cambodia - 23 days from HCMC

23 days
Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta - Da Nang - Hoi An - Hue - Hanoi - Mai Chau - Ninh Binh - Halong Bay - Siem Reap - Phnom Penh - Sihanoukville Beach

A great tour to Vietnam and Cambodia which will enrich your life with a lot of memorable experience at the most wonderful destinations and attractions of these two countries.

Exploring Vietnam and Cambodia in brief: 

Day 1: Sai Gon arrival
Day 2: Sai Gon - Cu Chi tunnels - Sai Gon
Day 3: Sai Gon - Cai Be floating market - Can Tho
Day 4: Can Tho - Sai Gon - Flight to Da Nang - Hoi An
Day 5: Hoi An - Biking, farming and fishing tour
Day 6: Hoi An - Free day
Day 7: Hoi An - Da Nang - Hue
Day 8: Hue city tour - Flight to Hanoi
Day 9: Hanoi city tour
Day 10: Hanoi - Mai Chau valley
Day 11: Mai Chau - HOa Lu - Trang An grottoes
Day 12: Ninh Binh - Halong Cruise
Day 13: Halong Cruise - Hanoi - Flight to Siem Reap
Day 14: Siem Reap - Angkor Complex
Day 15: Siem Reap - Angkor Complex
Day 16: Siem Reap - Battambang
Day 17: Battambang - Phnom Penh
Day 18: Phnom Penh
Day 19: Phnom Penh - countryside tour
Day 20: Phnom Penh - Sihanoukville
Day 21: Sihanoukville - Free day
Day 22: Sihanoukville - Free day
Day 23: Sihanoukville - Phnom Penh - Departure


  • Tour Class

  • 3 Star Hotel
  • 4 Star Hotel
  • 5 Star Hotel

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    High Season

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    (Jan 1 - Apr 30 & Oct 1 - Dec 31)

  • 3 Star HotelFrom
  • 4 Star HotelFrom 
  • 5 Star HotelFrom 

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    Low season

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    (May 1 - Sep 9)

  • 3 Star HotelFrom 
  • 4 Star HotelFrom 
  • 5 Star HotelFrom 
Day 01

Ho Chi Minh City Arrival (G)

Arrive at Tan Son Nhat airport, welcome by our private Vietnam tour guide and driver and transfer to you hotel for check in. Ho Chi Minh, the most exciting city of Vietnam, a mecca of commerce, also a city with a chequered history and a rich culture, its pagodas, museums, public buildings, parks and boulevards make it one of the most delightful Vietnam Tours and cities to visit in Vietnam.

Free time at leisure.  
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh

Accommodation at:

Day 02

Ho Chi Minh City – Cu Chi tunnels (B/L) (G)

Morning pick up from the hotel for Cu Chi Tunnels tour, en route to visit the bustling market at Thu Dao Mot. Upon arrival in Cu Chi, we visit the incredible underground tunnel network of approximately 200 kilometres hand-constructed by Vietnamese guerillas during the long struggle for independence where you will understand more about the Vietnam War or American War, a must see Vietnam Tour for any tourists to learn about Vietnam past and present days.

Afternoon drive back to Ho Chi Minh.

Accommodation at:

Day 03

Ho Chi Minh – Cai Be floating Market – Can Tho (B/L) (G)

Today we will start our exploration of the Mekong Delta, a major rice producing area. This must be one of the most fascinating riverine deltas in the world. The Mekong splits into nine major arteries. A vast network of rivers and waterways with thousands of ships of all sizes plowing the waters gives the Mekong Delta a very special atmosphere and no doubt one of the most favorite destinations for Vietnam Tours and a smart Vietnam Tour maker would never skip. On arrival, we will make a boat trip to the Cai Be floating Market, visit villages and meet the people of the Mekong Delta. Continue your boat trip to An Binh Island for Lunch in a local family and bike trip in the afternoon. Continue to Can Tho – the heart of Mekong Delta in Vietnam.
Check in on your arrival, free at leisure and overnight in Can Tho.

Accommodation at:

Day 04

Can Tho – Cai Rang floating market – Ho Chi Minh – Flight to Danang – Hoi An (B/L) (G)

In the morning, we make the boat cruise to see the Cai Rang floating market (the nicest one with heaps of rowing boats), truly spotlight of your Vietnam Tours where you will enjoy the beautiful scenery and see the daily activities of the locals who live along the Mekong canals and later, you will roam through the village to visit a rice husking mill, a rice noodles making shop which are nice chances to discover the daily life of Vietnamese people in Mekong Delta. Afternoon, drive back to Ho Chi Minh airport and take the short flight to Danang.

Pick up and transfer to Hoi An.

Accommodation at:

Day 05

Hoi An Biking, Farming and Fishing Tour (B/L) (G)

Today tour begins with a soft biking around the countryside of Hoian from your hotel with our guide ( 15' - 30' ). The biking takes you to Tra Que Vegetables Village, along the way you will stop and try a water buffalo riding in the middle of the rice paddy and take the photography. Arriving at Tra Que Vegetable Village, you will be welcomed by a farmer family, take the typical farmer's clothe and dress up as a farmer. Then get to the farming land  near by with  farming tools to practise all the different steps that a vegetable farmer usually does. Done the farming tour and continue on our biking tour along the narrow path to Cam Thanh village, stop at Bay Mau Water Palm forest, you will take a short walk around the small fishing hamlet along the river then board a Coracle - a typical rounded bamboo boat for fishing from local fishermen  and enjoy a pleasant cruise along the small canal. Back to the hotel and free at leisure.

Overnight in Hoi An.

Accommodation at:

Day 06

Hoi An Free Day (B)

Hoi An Ancient Town - highlight of any tour to Vietnam - is an exceptionally well-preserved example of a South-East Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century. Its buildings and its street plan reflect the influences, both indigenous and foreign, that have combined to produce this unique heritage site.

Day free to cycle through rice paddies in the countryside of Hoi An ancient town, shop for souvenirs among the antique shops and art galleries, or just sit at sidewalk cafes and soak up the atmosphere of this quaint town. Or relax on the white sandy beach of the famous Danang Beach.
Overnight in Hoi An.

Accommodation at:

Day 07

Hoi An – Hue (B/L) (G)

After breakfast, leave Hoi An for Hue, the last imperial capital of Vietnam, well-known for magnific architecture, pagodas and royal tombs laid in small villages and surrounding hills and one of the most popular cities for all the Vietnam Tours. En route have a look at the famous Danang Beach and visit Cham Museum which contains the finest collection of Cham sculpture in the world. Upon arrival in Hue, visit the Imperial Citadel, the Purple Forbidden City.
Overnight in Hue.

Accommodation at:

Day 08

Hue – Flight to Hanoi (B/L) (G)

Hue is one of places, which has many cultural heritages. Up to now, there is no place like Hue remaining a lot of originally historical vestiges as in this ancient Capital City and an enjoyable stop for your Vietnam tours. After breakfast, our tour starts with the beautiful boat trip on the romantic Perfume River and visit Hue's best-known religious site-Thien Mu Pagoda and the Mausoleum of former emperor Minh Mang in a tranquil setting of gardens and lakes. Drive to the airport for the afternoon flight to Hanoi. Upon arrival, our private Vietnam Tours guide and driver will welcome your Vietnam Holiday, pick up and transfer to the hotel for check in. Hanoi, a city where the exotic chic of old Asia blends with the dynamic face of new Asia. Where the medieval and modern co-exist. A city with a blend of Parisian grace and Asian pace, an architectural museum piece evolving in harmony with its history, rather than bulldozing through like many of the region’s capitals. Hanoi is where imagination becomes reality. Free at leisure.  
Overnight in Hanoi.

Accommodation at:

Day 09

Hanoi City Tour (B/L) (G)

Hanoi is choice for any Vietnam Tours. Today we enjoy a full day Hanoi city tour of this charming capital city including the mausoleum of the nation's founder Ho Chi Minh (close on Monday & Friday), the Presidential Palace, the Ho Chi Minh's house on stilts, the One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, the impressive Ethnologic Museum, the beautiful West Lake, the Tran Vu Pagoda, the peaceful lake of the Restored Sword.Late afternoon we take a cyclo tour for a short excursion through the bustling old quarter streets named after the specific goods once offered for sale at these places. In the evening, we end Hanoi city tour with a fantastic traditional water puppet show.

Accommodation at:

Day 10

Hanoi – Mai Chau Valley (B, L, D) (G)

Mai Chau is the heart of a beautiful valley that is a world away from the hustle and bustle of Hanoi. The modern village is an unappealing sprawl, but as you emerge on the rice fields and rural living it is transformed into a real paradise. It’s a stunning area and a memorial experienece for your Vietnam Tours. After breakfast, Indochinatravelplan's private tour guide and driver will pick you up from your hotel and beautiful drive on the hilly road to Mai Chau. On half way, Optional, stop for visiting Hoa Binh Hydro Power Station – The biggest power station in Vietnam. You will arrive at Mai Chau around noon. Have lunch and relax. In the afternoon, we will go trekking for 2 hours to visit Lac & Poom Coong villages here you will have chance to see “Tho Cam” - a unique product of Thai people. See the houses on stilts and sink deep in Thai’s customs by enjoying a traditional music show and taste “Ruou Can” – special local wine.
Overnight in the home of Thai hill tribe (Ban Lac village)

Accommodation at:

Day 11

Mai Chau – Hoa Lu –Trang An Grottoes (B, L) (G)

The next beautiful day of your Vietnam tour started with morning drive to visit Hoa Lu which was the capital city of Vietnam under the Dinh Dynasty between 968 and 980 AD and ancient sanctuaries and tombs can still be seen today. Apart from the historical importance, the area is naturally beautiful, referred to many as the “dry Halong Bay,” with limestone peaks and fertile green valleys. After lunch, take the amzing boat trip to visit Trang An grottoes which is a gathering of 31 valleys, 50 cross-water caves, and home to 600 kinds of flora and over 200 kinds of fauna, many of them in the Red Book of Vietnam. While rowing through Trang An grottoes in the quiet, fresh air of the highlands, with only the sound of birds and the oars stirring the clear water and surrounded by magnificent forested mountains upon which graze white goats, visitors enjoy a heaven on earth.
Overnight in Ninh Binh.

Accommodation at:

Day 12

Hanoi – Halong Cruise (B/L/D) (G)

Pick up from the train station, this morning, we have already arranged a room in a mini hotel for you to have shower and breakfast before driving to Halong Bay (165km), Vietnam most scenic sight, a recognized World Natural Heritage Site and highlight of any Vietnam Tours. Upon arrival, board your traditional wooden junk. Welcome drink on board. After a relaxing break, enjoy a delicious seafood lunch while cruising through the wonderful Ha Long bay visiting its amazing grottoes and caves. Opportunity to dive off the boat and have a pleasant swimming in the deep blue water of East Sea before relaxing on your sun deck to view a Halong sunset.  Dinner on board with excellent fresh seafood.
Overnight on board.

Accommodation at:

Day 13

Halong Cruise – Hanoi & Flight to Siem Reap (B) (G)

People said that your Vietnam Tours would not have been done without a trip to Halong Bay and spending one romantic night on Halong Cruise. People describe Halong Bay as majestic and mysterious, inspiring and imperious and words alone cannot do justice to the natural wonder that is Halong Bay. Imagine 3000 or more incredible islands rising from the emerald waters of the Gulf of Tonkin and you have a vision of breathtaking beauty. Halong Bay is pure art, a priceless collection of unfinished sculptures hewn from the hand of nature. It is absolutely true when you get up early to catch the sunrise on the bay, doing Ta Chi on sundeck and relax with a cup of hot coffee or tea when the boat cruising to explore more of Halong Bay. All make your Vietnam Holiday with full sweet memory. Back to Halong city, end of your beautiful Halong Bay Cruise at around noon where our private guide and driver are waiting for the transfer back to Hano airport for your flight to Siem Reap, one of the most exciting Indochina tour destinations, the home of the Temples of Angkor. Picked up and transferred to your hotel.
Free at leisure and overnight in Siem Reap.

Accommodation at:

Day 14

Siem Reap – Angkor Complex (B) (G)

As usual, getting up early and catch the beauty of the sunrise before having breakfast will make you come prepared for the tour. We will depart to visit Angkor Thom's famous South Gate where you will take an elephant ride to Bayon Temple which depicts intricate scenes of traditional Cambodian life. From the Bayon continue on foot to the Baphuon, recently re-opened to the public, where you will pass by the wooden Royal Palace. Then continue to the Terrace of the Elephants where a parade used to be held for the king. . or you can spend the afternoon exploring Siem Reap's colorful markets.
Overnight in Siem Reap.

Accommodation at:

Day 15

Siem Reap – Angkor Complex (B) (G)

Today will begin with the sunrise over Angkor Wat before driving to Banteay Srei, Kbal Spean (River of 1,000 Lingas) and Banteay Samre. These temples are among the most intricate in all of Cambodia. And then in the afternoon, we will reach Pre Rup, East Mebon, Neak Poan and Preah Khan.
Overnight Siem Reap.

Accommodation at:

Day 16

Siem Reap – Battambang (B/D) (G)

After breakfast, embark on a private boat ride across the Tonle Sap Lake to Battambang (3-5 hours. Note: only possible in the wet season, alternative option by road). This afternoon explore the cultural villages of the area and taster Khmer treats.
Enjoy dinner in local restaurant.
Overnight in Battambang.

Accommodation at:

Day 17

Battambanng – Phnom Penh (B/D) (G)

After breakfast, enjoy a ride on the Bamboo train, a local form of transport to replace regular trains which no longer operate. Transfer overland to Phnom Penh (4hours) and check into your hotel. Enjoy dinner at a charitable restaurant.
Overnight Phnom Penh.

Accommodation at:

Day 18

Phnom Penh (B) (G)

Today explore the sights of the capital in a traditional Cyclo. A leisurely tour will take you to Phnom Penh's main sights including the Royal Palace, National Museum, Wat Phnom and an insightful but moving visit to the Tuol Sleng genocide museum.
Overnight Phnom Penh.

Accommodation at:

Day 19

Phnom Penh Countryside Tour (B) (G)

After breakfast you will have a vehicle and guide at your disposal to partake in any of the options below:
- Rice planting and harvesting in surrounding rice fields
- A visit to the silver workshops at Kompong Luong Village
- Trekking through the nearby forest
- A visit to a local village
- A holy water shower from a local monk
- Having your fortune told
- A sunset boat cruise on the Mekong river
Note: Some activities mentioned above depend upon the season
Overnight Phnom Penh.

Accommodation at:

Day 20

Phnom Penh – Sihanoukville (B)

After breakfast transfer to Cambodia's most famous beach resort, Sihanoukville. Arrive in around midday and transfer to the hotel where you can enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.
Overnight at Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville (5 star).

Accommodation at:

Day 21

Sihanoukville (B)

Today, enjoy more time at leisure with the vehicle and guide also available. There is an optional visit and boat ride to Ream National Park (not included).
Overnight at Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville (5 star).

Accommodation at:

Day 22

Sihanoukville (B)

Breakfast at hotel. Enjoy the day free at leisure.
Overnight at Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville (5 star).

Accommodation at:

Day 23

Sihanoukville – Phnom Penh – Departure (B) (G)

Enjoy some time at leisure until your direct transfer to Phnom Penh International Airport for your individual departure flight. Indochinavalue thanks you so much for traveling with us. We hope you had a beautiful Cambodia holiday. All the best, goodbye and see you again!

END OF SERVICE

Accommodation at:

Inclusion:

• All transfers and transportation in private air-conditioned vehicle with driver
• Accommodation in twin/double sharing (triple room, extra bed, interconnecting room... are on request)
• Meals as indicated in the itinerary (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
• English speaking guide (French, Spanish, Russian, Italian Speaking tour guides are available and on request)
• Entrance fees to indicated sights and activities as stated
• Flight tickets & train tickets (if mentioned)
• Boat trips (if mentioned)
• Bottled mineral water during touring days

Exclusion:

• International FLIGHTS
• Tips
• Drinks
• Other meals
• Insurance
• Personal expenses
• Expenses for any optional tours or activities during free time

Tour guide

Tour guides who work with us are well-paid, experienced with a university background, eager to exchange our cultures and lifestyles ... with travelers, and have a great passion for their country and understand the personal touch. In some parts such as Sapa, we may use local tour guides who come from the ethnic hilltribes like H'Mong or Red Dao as they know about their land much better than anyone else and this is also the way that Indochinavalue helps the local people a better life.

Vietnam tour guide

Tour guide is one of the most important factors to a successful holiday. Indochinavalue understands that a good tour guide needs not only good knowledge on history, culture, good English, French... but also needs to have general requirements and follow our guidelines as below:

1 - Licensed at least for 4 years with work experience.

2 - Guiding does require more than just hanging out in the sun. Guides must be friendly and good with people, organized enough to keep groups or people on schedule, quick on their feet and ready for the inevitable snafus that arises.

3 - Must be an honest broker of their services and able to take criticism.

4 - Should be qualified at some level in health, health care or first aid.

5 - Able to relate to people from a wide range of cultures and backgrounds.

6 - Clear speech and good hearing.

7 - Must not be a alcoholic or No-alcohol during working time or anytime when on tour.

8 - Tour guide is a nurse to take care of visitors, a boss to keep the right itinerary, a teacher to give information, an ambassador to introduce our country, an entertainer because Indochinavalue's clients want to be entertained in extend, a friend...

9 - Must be on time every time. Being late or delay is unacceptable.

10 - Check flight tickets, train tickets, meals, weather... to make sure things are in order and inform local office if any changes that might effect the tour.

11 - Solve problems with care when there is dissatisfy. Argument should be averted by courtesy.

Transport

Kind of vehicle (offered on tour) depends on the size of your group size or your requirements. To ensure your comfort, all cars feature air conditioning and enough room inside. Drivers are local, with years of experience, taking you to your destination quickly and safely.

1 - Our drivers are professional and reliable with at least 5 years of experience, driving safely.

2 - Our drivers are not allowed to hear cell-phone or smoke, chat, drink when driving.

3 - Our drivers must be friendly, helpful with good behavior and attitude.

4 - Our drivers are not allowed to take you to shops unless you ask for.

Vietnam hotel

2 Stars from: US$35 -> US$40

The 2 star hotels are good for budget travelers and sometimes, we have no choice but stay in a guesthouse, mini hotel, 2 star hotel in the remote and mountainous areas. Basically, 2 star hotels will offer good size and clean guest rooms with AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms

3 Stars from: US$40 -> US$80

The 3 star hotels are good for many travelers because they offer basic needs for a comfortable stay, good size and clean guest rooms with Free access high speed Internet, Welcome baskets and drinking water, Telephone with international dialing, Electronic safe box in room, Hairdryer, Coffee and Tea, Wake-up service, AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms. On-site restaurants with breakfast included and lunch or dinner at your own pick up. A small fitness center, spa and swimming pool can be expected.

4 Stars from: US$80 -> US$130

Offering a wide range of comfortable boutique hotels are available with shopping, dining and entertainment facilities nearby. Featuring quality service, fully furnished rooms, restaurants, fitness center with spa (and swimming pool in most cases), the hotels are expected to offer an above-average accommodation experience.

5 Stars from: US$130 -> US$200 –> US$ 300

Offering an extensive range of facilities for an excellent experience. Multiple restaurants on site and a wide range of choice for buffet breakfast, good size of swimming pool, fitness center and concierge service round out the experience.

The restaurants we will take you for lunch or dinner are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. They have very good sanitary conditions and the food is prepared fresh and clean.

Note: If you have any special dietary needs, just let your travel consultant know when booking.

Breakfast:

Breakfast is included at all hotels and is buffet breakfast with Asian and Western food.

Lunch:

Lunches (if included) are usually set menu at handpicked local restaurant with comfortable dining environment where you can rest assure to taste the local flavor. All restaurants are carefully selected and highly recommended.

Vietnam restaurant

Dinner:

Dinners are only included if you stay overnight in a homestay with a local family, on cruise in Halong Bay, Mekong Delta or at some special occasions such as welcome dinner, farewell dinner or on requested. So dinners are at your own choice and arrangement, but our tour guides will always give you good suggestions based on your preferences.

If allergic to some food

We suggest you to list any food or ingredients that you are allergic to and let our travel consultant know. Then your travel consultant will mark them in the guide’s itinerary, so that our guides in different cities can make some preparations and arrangements in advance.

Do our guide and driver join the meal with us?

The tour guides and driver will be at the same restaurants with you, but they will only join the meal when you invite. Sometimes the drivers are shy to join as they usually eat fast and could not understand English talk around the table, so the guide will be with you more often.

Street food tour:

Street foods in Vietnam are very delicious and should you want to taste the specialities of each Vietnam holiday destination, we can arrange a street food tour for you. Please contact us at info@indochinavalue.com for a detailed tour itinerary and quotation.

How to request a tour package?

To request for a free tour itinerary and quotation, you can just fill out the tour inquiry form at www.indochinavalue.com or send us an email at info@indochinavalue.com then give us as much information as possible. One of our experienced travel consultants will get back to you shortly. All changes will be made (free of charge) until the your tour package meets your needs and personal interests.

How to book a tour package?

As soon as you agree on our proposal, please send us your full name, international flight information (if you have) and your special requirements. We will make reservations and arrange everything then confirm back to you when all done.

Payment

- Deposit is a "must". We request 30% of the tour cost. You can pay by wire transfer, credit cards, western union, onepay (online)

- Balance can be made before your arrival or on arrival in cash or by credit cards.

Changes

Changes are possible at the last minutes. However, if changes caused extra costs, you will have to pay for. (For examples, hotels, flights, cruises...)

Cancellation

In case of cancellation, we will not apply any charge if we are not charged by the third parties such as hotels, cruises, flights, trains...We will recalculate the costs and resend you the money as soon as possible.

Tipping

Thanks you Tipping is not mandatory but it is expected in many circumstances for service. You can tip your driver/tour guide more or less or nothing. All depends on the services you receive.

Suggested tips:

- US$10 – US$ 15 per day for tour guide

- US$7 – US$ 10 per day for driver

- US$1 – US$ 3 per meal for waiter or waitress

- US$2 – US$ 5 for short boat trips/ cyclo/ tuktuk (1 – 2) hours

Note: Please check with your travel consultant before coming and your tour guide if you are to tip someone on tour.

What you get when booking a private tour with Indochinavalue?

1. Private guide, driver and vehicle are for your exclusive use; no matter you are individually, or in a family or friends group. The tour is run exclusively for you without strangers.

2. Every itinerary can be customized to meet your specific interests/ wishes, that is, you can choose your favored hotels, sightseeing spots, the tour length, means of transportation, budget, etc. All are free of charge.

3. Start the tour on any date you want.

4. Escort you from start to finish. All private transfers during the tour are offered, including airport/ train station transfer, hotel-attractions round trip transfer.

5. The sightseeing during the tour could be based on your own timetable and pace. Flexible to change at your short notice.

6. Considerate care and assistance, such as the old, the disabled or families with small kids and children.

7. You can save time and money when traveling with us or your wants meet you budget.

How do I get a visa?

Vietnam Visa On Arrival is available for help. It is legitimated and supported by the Vietnamese Immigration Department. We recommend that you choose visa upon arrival, as picking up visa at the Vietnam int'l airport/ border is quite simple, easy, no additional charges and no fail.

Please provide the following information for us to apply for your visa:

apply vietnam visa1) Full name on passport

2) Passport number

3) Date of birth

4) Nationality

5) Date of arrival

6) Date of issue

7) Date of expire

8) Please make sure that your passport is still valid for 6 months.

Can I use credit cards in Vietnam?

Major credit cards such as Master Card, Visa, Diner's Card, American Express and JCB can be used to purchase goods in large shopping malls and stores in the big and medium cities, to pay for hotel rooms and for meals in some of the fancier restaurants, and to buy plane tickets with them.

Note:

- You can use US dollar, Euro in all big cities or at major tourist sites, airports.

- If you are to travel to those small cities or even remote rural areas, only cash in Dong can be used.

Do I need to bring my medical record with me?

Yes, we suggest you take your medical record with you in case that you need it in the event ofan emergency, and please also take with you your doctor's name, address and phone number, emergency contact name and phone number, and your insurance company's name, address and phone number.

Note: You can buy medicines everywhere in Vietnam so do not need to bring medicines from home.Money exchange in Vietnam

When I finish my tour in Vietnam, if I still have some local money, what can I do?

Upon leaving Vietnam, if you still have some local money, you can change them back to foreign currency with your passport and the exchange memos given by the banks or money exchange counters. So please keep those exchange memos well whenever you change money.

What should we bring along on our trip to Vietnam?

It is best to travel light in Vietnam. One medium sized bag and a day pack will provide more than enough room to carry everything you'll need, and enough space for the things you'll buy in Vietnam.

There are lots of consumer goods in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, so do not worry about running out of something. If you do forget something you can easily find it here. Before you leave home complete the following checklist:

- Lightweight and quick dry clothing is most appropriate for the summer months, and warmer  clothing for the winter months. As well, sun hat, swim suit, ultra lightweight rain jacket.

- Travel Documents: Passport, Visa, Travel Insurance, Air Tickets (you should scan them and email them to yourself in case you loose them).

- Health requirements, medications, and travel insurance arranged.

- Flashlight, alarm clock, sunglasses, sunscreen, insect repellent, small personal first aid kit, personal toiletries.

- Money: US dollars or travelers cheques and/ or credit card(s).

- Raincoat or umbrella, good hiking shoes are needed for all Footprint trekking trips.

- Camera with charger, extra batteries, and memory cards.

Are there any restrictions on the type of luggage that we bring? Domestic airlines have their weight restrictions. On most domestic and low-cost airlines You may only have one suitcase or backpack, with a maximum weight of 20kg, and one piece of hand luggage, with a maximum weight of (5 – 7)kg. An extra charge for overweight is applied.

There is no actual limit on our trips, but we would suggest you travel light with one suitcase or backpack and one small daypack or small bag which you can access during the day and carry items like your camera, drinking water, toilet paper, hat, sunscreen, etc.

It is essential that you have a lock for each piece of luggage. Without one, railway and airline staff and some hotels may refuse to handle it.

What is the best type of clothing we should bring?

Here is a short checklist of best type of clothing you should bring:

- Shorts and comfortable pants;

- Shirts, t-shirts and maybe some long sleeves shirts (for regions with mosquitos like the Mekong delta);

- Swim suits (for the beaches and Halong Bay);

- Good sandles as well as good shoes if trekking.

Nevertheless, it will really depend on where you travel to, when you plan on travelling, and what you plan on doing. Please note that the weather can be very cold during the winter in the Northern Vietnam (Nov to Mar) and quite cool in the central highlands (Dalat). You will need to bring a good jacket along for this time of the year, the avarage temperature is about 15 oC, but can get as cold as 3 oC.

Tip: Do not worry if you do not pack enough clothes or forget something because you can buy in Vietnam.

Shopping in Vietnam

Shopping in Vietnam: Many tourists can’t help but throw themselvesShopping in Vietnam head-first into shopping while in Vietnam. Why? Probably the variety of quality goods and the tempting prices have a lot to do with it. Many low-budget travelers considered Vietnam a heavenly place because in many shopping situations they can bargain the prices down to as much as a third of the original cost.

The list of Vietnamese bargains is seemingly endless and features bespoke tailoring and the national dress, the 'ao dai' from high-quality silk and many other types of material and textiles while many shoppers cannot get enough of the local handicraft, art and jewelry.

How to bargain?

Bargain is not common in some countries, but in Vietnam it really is. In Vietnam, bargaining is always worthwhile. Yet, it is not always due to the fact that the local have a great deal of time and very little money. Bargaining is part of Vietnamese culture as through bargaining people communicate with others, create and build up their relationship, not to mention a form of entertainment.

Rule - 1: It's like the monster ride at the amusement park. If you're not having fun, get off.

Rule - 2: Don't bargain with the first person who approaches you (i.e., when looking for a taxi at the airport.) In general the further you go from the center of action, the cheaper the price.

Rule - 3: Don't be afraid to use walking away as a bargaining tool. You can always come back.

Rule - 4: Don't let pride get in the way of coming back (or Rule #3 is useless).

Rule - 5: If you really want something and the price isn't coming down, give in gracefully. (It's that pride thing again.)

Rule - 6: Don't always assume you're getting ripped off just because you're in a third-world country. Sometimes the price they're asking is the real one.

Rule - 7: Bargaining is a time/ money tradeoff. If you're in a hurry, be prepared to pay for it.

Rule - 8: Ask (Vietnamese) fellow shoppers the price of an item before you begin bargaining.

Rule - 9: Always carry small bills. Otherwise all that work is likely to be for nothing.

Rule - 10: Always bargain in native currency. Conventional wisdom says anyone who has dollars can afford to spend them.

Rule - 11: If possible, keep going back to the same person until you've gotten to know him/ her. Most third world countries have a name for this kind of relationship. The deal is that you offer your business on a regular basis and the seller responds by saving you their best tomatoes

Rule - 12: No matter what your parents told you, when you're bargaining it's perfectly okay to lie

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Activities:

This tour is sample tour and can always be customized to meet your personal needs and budget.

This is private tour with a flexible schedule. There is no other traveler on the tour. You will have a private English speaking tour guide and a private air-conditioned vehicle in each destination.

Planning the tour:
Prompt response in 0.5-10 hours
Supported by private travel consultant
Unlimited changes, no charge

Our guarantee:
Fair Price with added value
Use of excellent local guides
Use of well-selected Hotels
Use of comfortable vehicles
Worry-free & one-stop Service
Focus on customer care

Methods of payment:
Deposit 30% in advance after the tour is confirmed
Balance paid on arrival
Online and secure payment by bank transfer or credit cards

VC18: Exploring Vietnam and Cambodia - 23 days from HCMC map
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