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Charms of the Mekong 2020
(Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi)

16 days with AmaWaterways  Rating: Deluxe

River Cruise Itinerary
DAY 1 ARRIVE IN HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM
Ho Chi Minh City, still affectionately referred to by locals as Saigon, is Vietnam’s former capital. Once known as the “Paris of the Orient,” it is now an industrial, cultural and educational hub.
 
 
DAY 2 HO CHI MINH CITY
Always bustling, Ho Chi Minh City is a city of contrasts blending old and new, and east and west. In the morning, explore some of the city’s most famous landmarks, including the former Presidential Palace, the Central Post Office, Notre Dame Cathedral and the War Remnants Museum. In the afternoon, visit Cu Chi, an immense underground network built during the Vietnam War. (B,L)
 
DAY 3 HO CHI MINH CITY – EMBARKATION
In the morning, visit Ben Thanh Market—one of the oldest and most iconic structures in Ho Chi Minh City. Board the AmaDara at My Tho Port. Meet your fellow travelers at a Welcome Dinner as the ship cruises to Cai Be. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 4 CAI BE – SA DEC
Take a local boat to Cai Be. You will have an opportunity to visit candy and rice paper making workshops, or alternatively, visit the historic Kiet Old House. Later in the day, journey to Sa Dec, a sprawling town on the Mekong Delta, where French writer Marguerite Duras spent part of her childhood. You will visit the local market, Cao Dai Temple and the house of Mr. Huynh Thuy Le, Duras’ Chinese paramour, which her prize-winning novel, “The Lover,” is said to be based on. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 5 TAN CHAU – BORDER CROSSING
Enjoy a visit to Tan Chau, a small Mekong River town unspoiled by tourism. You will have the opportunity to get an authentic experience and take a traditional “xe-loi” (trishaw) ride around the town, with stops at silk-making and rattan mat workshops, followed by a boat ride through the narrow channels of the Mekong River to “Evergreen Island.” Alternatively, simply take the boat ride to Evergreen Island and return to Tan Chau, where you will visit a rattan mat workshop. Later in the day, cruise from Vietnam to the Cambodian border en route to Phnom Penh. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 6 PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA
This morning’s excursion takes you to Cambodia’s infamous Killing Fields and the Khmer Rouge’s grim Tuol Sleng S21 detention center (Genocide Museum). After lunch on board, you’ll explore the highlights of the city, followed by a visit to the Royal Palace, the spectacular Silver Pagoda and the National Museum, which has an outstanding collection of Khmer crafts. After returning to the ship, enjoy Khmer folk dancing performed by local children in the Saigon Lounge. (BL,D)
 
DAY 7 PHNOM PENH – OKNHATEY VILLAGE
Experience Phnom Penh via an authentic Tuk Tuk ride and be enchanted by the city's French Colonial architecture and tree-lined boulevards set amidst monumental Angkorian architecture. Alternatively, you may wish to shop for unique treasures at the bustling yellow-colored Central Market. Later in the morning, set sail for Oknhatey Village. Oknhatey is “Silk Island,” located on the lush banks of the Mekong River and known for its rich tradition of silk weaving. While here, you’ll visit a local elementary school and observe the traditional silk weaving of handicrafts. Afterwards, the ship set sail to Kampong Chhnang. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 8 KAMPONG CHHNANG
A local motorboat takes you into the lakeside wetlands that form the mouth of Tonle Sap River. Enjoy the stunning variety of bird life here as well as tranquil floating villages. Later in the day, the ship sails to Kampont Tralach. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 9 KAMPONG TRALACH
In Kampong Tralach, you’ll have a truly authentic excursion – an oxcart ride through a local village along the river bank. Afterwards, you’ll go to Oudong, Cambodia’s former royal capital from the early 17th century until 1866. Today, Oudong is a place of pilgrimage for Cambodians. While here, be treated to a memorable Buddhist Blessing Ceremony at a monastery. During the afternoon, take a leisurely walk through Koh Chen and visit home workshops specializing in silver- and copper-smithing. You’ll get an up-close view of how local artisans make ornamental items often used in traditional ceremonies. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 10 PREK KDAM – DISEMBARKATION – SIEM REAP
Disembark at Prek Kdam, a small village on the Tonle River, and transfer by motorcoach to Siem Reap, gateway to the Angkor Archaeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the former capital of the Khmer empire. You’ll visit nearby Ta Prohm, known as the “Kingdom of the Trees,” for the way in which the temple stones have become intertwined with thick forest vegetation. (B,D)
 
DAY 11 SIEM REAP – ANGKOR
Begin your morning exploration of the temple complex at Angkor Wat, the most iconic of all Angkorian temples. You’ll also see the fascinating jewel in the crown of Angkorian art, Banteay Srei, which means “Citadel of Women,” as it has been said that the carving is too fine to have been done by the hand of man. Later in the day, visit the English-language school sponsored by AmaWaterways in the village of Ta Toum. During the evening, be treated to a special “Apsara Dancing Show” at your hotel, featuring local Cambodian/Khmer folk dancers. (B,D) 
 
Note: The English-Language school visit is capacity controlled
 
DAY 12 SIEM REAP – HANOI
After breakfast, you will have a guided sightseeing tour of Angkor Thom meaning “the great city." This is home to Bayon Temple, best known for its gigantic smiling stone faces, as well as the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King. Later in the day, take a short flight to Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam. (B,L)
 
DAY 13 HANOI
From ancient temples to French Colonial architecture and modern-day skyscrapers, along with beautiful parks and lakes, Hanoi is an eclectic and lively city. A morning sightseeing tour will showcase some of Hanoi’s most famous historic and cultural sites, including Ba Dinh Square and The Temple of Literature. You will also visit the infamous prison that American POWs sarcastically dubbed the “Hanoi Hilton” during the Vietnam War. In the afternoon, experience an authentic rickshaw ride (known as a “cyclo”) in the Old Quarter, followed by a traditional Water Puppet Show. (B)
 
DAY 14 HANOI – HA LONG BAY
Take a scenic drive from Hanoi to one of Vietnam’s most renowned locations, Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Board an elegantly appointed ship designed with all the modern conveniences to ensure smooth sailing for an incredible once-in-a-lifetime experience and an AmaWaterways exclusive. The backdrop of the bay’s magnificent scenery and dramatic limestone cliffs and rock formations provide you with the perfect setting for a memorable sojourn. (B,L,D)
 
DAY 15 HA LONG BAY – HANOI
Spend the morning sailing across the emerald waters of Ha Long Bay with more than 2,000 small islands rising from the water like a dragon’s back. Later in the morning, disembark the ship and transfer back to Hanoi where you can enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure. (B,L)
 
DAY 16 DEPART HANOI
Bid farewell to Vietnam and prepare for your homeward flight (B)
All This Included
Two lively cities, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, provide the perfect start and end to your incredible journey. Cruise along the Mekong, visiting rural villages, historic pagodas, local markets and a Buddhist monastery where you’ll be treated to a special blessing by monks. Indulge your inner adventurer in Siem Reap, exploring the grand temples of Angkor Archeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. And be treated to an AmaWaterways’ exclusive with an overnight sojourn on board an elegantly appointed ship in Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

SPACIOUS STATEROOMS
  • 7 nights luxury accommodation in a twin-balcony stateroom
  • Flat-panel screen that features in-house movies
  • Desk and sitting area
  • Bottled water replenished daily
AN ARRAY OF AMENITIES
  • Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land programs
  • Sun deck with pool
  • Fitness room and three spas
  • Saigon Lounge with panoramic views and bar
  • Daily entertainment including cultural performances
AWARD-WINNING DINING
  • All onboard dining in a variety of venues
  • Regionally inspired cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients
  • The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
  • Welcome Cocktail and Dinner
  • Unlimited wine with lunch and dinner
  • Complimentary local beer, house-brand spirits and soft drinks during cruise
  • Snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge
A WORLD OF EXPLORATION
  • Immersive tours in every destination
  • Knowledgeable guides
  • Personal headset for easy exploration
  • Airport transfers with purchase of air from AmaWaterways
  • Gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
LAND PROGRAM
  • 2 nights hotel accommodation in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) at the Sofitel Saigon Plaza (or similar), including buffet breakfast
  • 2 nights hotel accommodation in Siem Reap at the Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa Resort (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
  • 3 nights hotel accommodation in Hanoi at the Sofitel Legend Metropole (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
  • Overnight stay on board an elegantly appointed ship in Ha Long Bay
Accommodations on this Tour
Ho Chi Minh City: Sofitel Saigon Plaza (or similar)
Cruising: Cabin onboard MS AmaDara
Siem Reap: Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa Resort (or similar)
Ha Long Bay: Elegantly appointed ship
Hanoi: Sofitel Legend Metropole (or similar)
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Dates, prices & itineraries are subject to change.
  • Port Charges: $168 per person
  • Intra-Asia Air (Siem Reap - Hanoi): Additional $360 per person including taxes and fuel surcharges.
  • Single Supplement:  Category A, B & C 50% of twin price; Suite is 75% and Luxury Suite is 100% of twin price.
  • Single Supplement for Land:  $1,099 per person
  •  A visa is required for travel to Vietnam and Cambodia. Passengers with a cruise and land itinerary must obtain a multiple entry visa for Vietnam (as there are two different points of entry into the country) and a single entry visa for Cambodia. Please consult with your Consulate for more information.
  • Phnom Penh:  No bare shoulders or shorts for ladies during the Royal Palace visit.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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