This specially selected small group (maximum 10 people) tour follows the most popular route through Cambodia & Vietnam starting with a thorough exploration of the stunning Angkor temples, then enjoying a comprehensive tour of Vietnam from north to south with the added flexibility to add extra destinations and excursions tailored to you. Our small group tours are designed for those who want to enjoy the financial and social benefits of travelling with others combined with the freedom of flexibility of a private tailor made holiday.
We've selected 2 dates in Februay and March when the bulk of the country should be enjoying superb weather and a range of optional extra destinations and excursions can be best enjoyed. You may want to hike the hills of the north, add a few nights on the beach at the end or adjust the tours that we've included.
Day 1: Depart on your choice of overnight flights to Siem Reap
Day 2: Arrive Siem Reap (Angkor) for 3 nights. Private transfer to your hotel. Rest of the day free
Day 3: Private guided Angkor Temples Highlights tour
Day 4: Morning private tour to Tonle Sap Lake. Afternoon free, additional tours can be added.
Day 5: Flight to Hanoi for 2 nights.
Day 6: Morning Hanoi City tour & evening Street Eats & Market Tour
Day 7: Board your overnight Halong Bay cruise exploring this UNESCO World Heritage site
Day 8: Morning cruise then fly to Hoi An for 3 nights.
Day 9: Private walking tour of Hoi An's historic streets, with time to watch local artisans at work
Day 10: Free day. Spend the day on the beach, explore the Old Town, add extra tours.
Day 11: Drive up dramatic coast road over Cloudy Pass to Hue for 2 nights
Day 12: Full day tour of the Citadel and Thien Mu Pagoda with short cruise on Perfume River
Day 13: Morning free before flying down to Saigon for 3 nights
Day 14: Morning Cu Chi Tunnels Tour
Day 15: Full day Mekong Delta tour with boat ride
Day 16: Overnight flight home
Day 17: Arrive home
Day 1: UK Airport / Siem Reap
Depart on a choice of overnight flights to Siem Reap.
Day 2: Arrive Siem Reap
On arrival you’ll be met by your private guide and transferred to your choice of hotel for 3 nights.
Extra...One evening we would recommend that you visit the circus that performs nightly in the centre of town. It’s organised by the NGO Phare and aims to assist poor and handicapped children gain education and livelihoods. The circus mixes traditional acts with theatre, music, dance and acrobatics. More than a show, it's a joyful celebration of Cambodian culture. We can arrange tickets.
Day 3: Siem Reap - Private Guided Angkor Temples Tour (B / L)
This morning your private guide will pick you up for a private guided tour of the iconic Angkor Archaeological Park. Start off at Angkor Thom, the last great capital of the Khmer Empire. Highlights include the magnificent Bayon, one of the most recognisable sites because of the 54 towers adorned with 216 enigmatically smiling stone faces, the Terrace of Elephants, a giant viewing stand for public ceremonies and the Terrace of Leper Kings, whose walls boast beautifully carved nagas, demons and other mythological beings. In the low morning sun the carvings really stand out and as you stand on the Terrace of Elephants you get a great view across a parkland scene interspersed with giant trees protected in the National Park.
Then move onto the temple of Ta Phrom, jungle covered and pretty much left as originally found by European explorers to create a mystical atmosphere.
Back to Siem Reap (15 minutes away) for lunch and a rest in the hot midday. This afternoon return to explore Angkor Wat, the most famous and best preserved of all the Angkor temples. You’ll have time for a thorough exploration before climbing to the top of Pre Rup temple to watch the sunsetover the jungle. Back to the hotel by early evening.
Day 4: Siem Reap - Tonle Sap Lake Stilted Villages & Angkor Temples Tour (B / L)
This morning you’ll be collected by your guide and transferred 45 minutes through the Cambodia countryside to Tonle Sap Lake where you board a longtail boat to explore the lake and visit Kompong Phluk, an isolated community of three villages built on stilts.
These scenic villages are flooded for around half the year and you will board a local boat, rowed by a villager, to explore the local community. You will also be taken through the flooded mangrove forests that are the main building block of this valuable ecosystem that supports a variety of wildlife.
Lunch will be back in Siem Reap, then you head beack to Angkor Park to visit Banteay Srei and Banteay Samre temples. Built using stone with a delicate pinky hue it has some of the most intricate and best-preserved carvings in Angkor. These exquisite examples of Khmer history are a bit off the beaten track with fewer visitors and so all the more enjoyable to explore. The half hour ride also offers an insight into everyday life as you pass through villages. Look out for sugar palm kilns, scarecrows that keep evil spirits at bay and paddy fields that carpet the land. Back in Siem Reap mid-afternoon.
Day 5: Fly Siem Reap (B) / Hanoi
Morning free, then airport transfer and flight to Hanoi, Vietnam. On arrival met by your private guide and transferred to the city centre where you check in to your choice of hotel for 2 nights. Hanoi offers the chance to enjoy authentic old school Far East. The hotel is in the centre and we’d recommend that you take a walk through the Old Quarter. Don’t be put off by the thousands of motor scooters, just dive in.
Day 6: Hanoi - City Tour - Evening Street Eats & Market Tour (B / L / D)
After breakfast you’ll be collected for a morning tour of the city The day kicks off at Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum where you join thousands of Vietnamese as they pay their respects filing past in solemn silence. The complex is also home to his former stilt-house, Presidential Palace and One Pillar Pagoda. From here you walk a short distance to the archaeological site of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long. The Citadel was built in the 11th century by the Ly Viet Dynasty and was the centre of regional political power for almost 13 centuries without interruption. Its history will be explained as you explore the site. The morning finishes at the Temple of Literature, Hanoi’s first university. Originally built as a temple dedicated to Confucius, it became the site of Vietnam’s first university dating back to 1070. The tour finishes with lunch in a lovely local restaurant and the rest of the afternon is free to further explore the city.
Early this evening meet your guide for a tour that explores the flavours of northern street food amongst the alleys of the Old Quarter. Your guide will take you through a local night market, watching the bustle and array of goods on display, before setting off into the maze of alleys. Here stop at a famous pho stall to try this world renowned beef noodle soup, before grabbing a stool at a ‘bia hoi corner’ where you can try the local brew while watching the busy streets of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Bia Hoi is a draft beer that is brewed daily and usually drunk by locals sat on small plastic stools. Continue through the bustling old quarter and listen as your guide tells you about the various foods on offer. Stop and try some local delicacies such as savoury steamed rice rolls with wood ear mushroom and pork before you head for a Vietnamese style barbeque dinner. Here your guide will select an array meats, tofu and vegetables on skewers while you sit down as they flame grill the food for you. Dessert will be fresh tropical fruits over shaved ice, drizzled with condensed milk as a perfect way for Hanoians to finish off a street food evening.
Day 7: Hanoi - Halong Bay Overnight Cruise (B / L / D)
This morning you’ll be transferred by minibus to Halong Bay (3.5/4 hours). Meet the crew and board the traditional wooden junk for 1 night, then relax and enjoy lunch while the boat heads toward the secluded islands. Visit ancient limestone caves and go sea kayaking and swimming (weather permitting). Return to the junk refreshed & invigorated to relax on deck with a drink watching the sunset and enjoy a seafood dinner under the stars.
Day 8: Halong Bay Cruise (B / L) - Fly Hanoi / Hoi An
Early risers can take an informal Tai Chi lesson on deck before enjoying breakfast as the boat continues to cruise through the bay to Ti Tov Island. Time to explore, hiking up to the scenic viewpoint or swimming off of the beach. On the final leg of your cruise pass by well-known karsts of Thumb Island, Fighting Cocks, the Incense Karst which is featured on the 200,000 dong note. Enjoy your last glimpses of Halong Bay over an early light lunch. Back at the dock you’ll be transferred back to Hanoi Airport for the evening flight to Hoi An. On arrival met and transferred to your hotel of choice for 3 nights.
Day 9: Hoi An (B) - Morning Walking Tour of Old Town
This morning your guide will collect you for a private walking tour of Hoi An’s Old Town. Hoi An grew up as a trading port that welcomed Chinese, Dutch, French, Japanese, Portuguese and Arab merchants between the 16th to 18th centuries. Today it's famous for its restored architecture, homemade silk, expert tailors and delicious noodles and seafood. Its relaxed vibe and pedestrian streets make this town a pleasure to walk around and discover new things.
Historical highlights include the Chua Ong Pagoda dating back to 1653, the Jinshang Temple that is dedicated to the goddess of the sea and the protector of sailors, Tam Ky House a 200 year old ancestral house and the 17th century covered bridge built by Japanese craftsmen and is a major landmark of Hoi An. The historic streets also house some beautifully atmospheric restaurants and this evening we recommend that you come back for dinner, when the town is lit by lantern light.
Day 10: Hoi An (B) - Free Day - Beach, Old Town & Excursions
Hoi An is a great place to take a break from organised touring and so we've left today free. You may be happy just exploring the Old Town under your own steam or perhaps heading down to the beach, but the town is surrounded by beautiful countryside and below are a series of links to excursions that can be added.
- Countryside Cyling
- Informal Cooking Course
- Farmer & Fisherman Tour
- Evening Kayak
Day 11: Hoi An (B) to Hue by car
This morning your guide will pick you up for the car transfer to Hue via the dramatic Hai Van Pass, with plenty of time to stop and take some pictures looking down along the dramatic coastline. On arrival check in to your choice of hotel for 2 nights.
Day 12: Hue - Private Guided Citadel, Tien Mu Pagoda & Perfume River Tour (B / L)
This morning your guide will collect you for the tour to the Imperial Citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Straddling the Perfume River, this was the Nguyen capital, the last dynasty in Vietnam. It dominates Hue and its moated walls protect the forbidden Purple City, the former home of the royal family that’s modelled on the Forbidden City in Beijing.
Take your time wandering through the fascinating tombs, temples and museums and past pagodas, lakes and pavilions. As you walk around you’ll also see the scars still visible from the Citadel’s prominent role during the Tet Offensive. You may also have time to visit the Minh Mang tomb, perhaps the most majestic of all Hue’s elaborate Nguyen mausoleums that are scattered around the countryside.
Lunch will be at a local restaurant, then short cruise down Perfume River to Hue’s best-known religious site, the Thien Mu Pagoda. Built on a hill between the river and pine forest the distinctive seven-tiered octagonal tower is the focal point of the complex and is one of the oldest and most attractive in the country. Continue through the working monastic complex to a beautifully kept garden and cemetery at the base of the Truong Son Mountains. Back at the hotel late afternoon. This evening perhaps take a walk through the small night market that runs through the town.
Day 13: Fly Hue (B) / Saigon
Airport transfer and short flight south to Saigon. On arrival met and transferred into the city centre where you check-in to your choice of hotel for 3 nights. The rest of the day is yours to get your first taste of this vibrant city.
Day 14: Saigon (B) - Morning Cu Chi Tunnels Tour
Early departure with your guide to escape city traffic and get ahead of the crowds on a half day tour to the Cu Chi Tunnels, legendary remnants of the Vietnam War that offer an evocative insight into the horrors that were faced by those involved.
During the guided tour it’s possible to descend into the layers of tunnels that although widened, still create a feeling of creeping claustrophobia. Few other places encapsulate the sheer will-power that the American military was up against - and the lengths that the Viet Cong were prepared to go to in order to evict them. Back to the city by early afternoon and time to explore the city under yoir own steam or perhaps add a Saigon city tour.
Day 15: Saigon - Mekong Delta Tour with Boat Ride (B / L)
This morning you’ll be collected from the hotel lobby and driven south to the Mekong Delta where you board a boat to explore a less-visited area of the Mekong, home to luxuriant vegetation and lush coconut islands, as well as orchards and rice paddies. Visit a local coconut processing enterprise where this vital fruit is treated in the age-old way to separate oil, flesh and husk to be used in oil, matting and candy.
After the boat ride you will be taken on a short walk to a small village to see mat weavers at work, before jumping on the delta’s version of a tuk tuk to travel down the country roads to the pier. Here you board Le Jarai, a beautiful teak boat and continue your cruise along the river. Whilst on board join in a demonstration of Vietnamese cooking before sitting down to a sumptuous three-course lunch of Mekong specialities. After lunch relax on the top deck and watch river life pass you by. Cruise back to Ben Tre where you’re transferred back to Saigon by early evening.
Day 16: Saigon (B) / UK Airport
Day free until your airport transfer a flight home. Arrive back in UK the following morning.
Alternatively why not add a few nights on the beach in Nha Trang, Mui Ne or Phan Thiet.Beach Extensions
This specially selected small group (maximum 10 people) Vietnam tour pulls together the touring highlights of this beautiful country and offers the flexibility to add extra destinations and excursions tailored to you.
Our small group tours are designed for those who want to enjoy the financial and social benefits of travelling with others combined with the freedom of flexibility of a private tailor made holiday.
Each featured itinerary is really a starting point from which to create your ideal holiday.
We can include as much or as little as you like, mix and match hotels, excursions and experiences, add extra nights and change the destinations you'd like to visit.
The common thread is that each is a privately guided holiday, allowing you to travel where and when you want, with your own private transport and dedicated guide.
- Return scheduled international flights (optional if you would like to arrange your own)
- English speaking, local guide & driver
- Choice of hotel accommodation
- Transport in private air-conditioned vehicles
- Domestic flights detailed in itinerary
- Admission fees to all attractions, temples and activities as mentioned in the itinerary
- All meals as detailed (B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner)
- Entry visas (if applicable)
- Optional Tours / Excursions
- Any meals not listed in the itinerary
- Personal expenses
- Tips for Guides / Drivers (discretionary)
- Travel insurance
- Any camera or video fees charged at sites
The hotels below are there as examples, designed to act as a starting point from which to create your holiday. There are plenty of alternatives to choose from and when we quote we will include other suggestions so we get to understand your likes and dislikes. Quite often clients mix and match hotel categories throughout their holiday.
Hotels in Siem ReapAs the main gateway to the temples of Angkor, Siem Reap offers a great range of hotel accommodation.
Browse our suggestions for Siem Reap Hotels here
Hotels in Hanoi
The bustling but elegant city of Hanoi understandably provides a wealth of hotel choice.
Halong Bay Cruise Boats
An overnight cruise on Halong Bay is often seen as an essential part of a Vietnam holiday
Hotels in Hoi An
Hoi An is a stunningly atmospheric UNESCO town, and we know all the great places to stay
Hotels in Hue
Historic Hue is an ancient citadel but with a great selection of high quality accomodation
Hotels in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
A mix of grand colonial buildings and modern luxuries make Saigon a fantastic place to stay