Ultimate Southeast Asia & The Majestic Mekong with Sapa, Hue & Danang - Southbound
This inspiring river cruise vacation begins in vibrant Bangkok, Thailand. A boat ride on the klongs, Bangkok’s famous canals, is the perfect way to start your sightseeing. Continue at the Grand Palace featuring the Temple of the Emerald Buddha followed by the Temple of the Reclining Buddha—the oldest and largest Buddhist temple in the city. Fly to Siem Reap, Cambodia, where you’ll see the magnificent Temples of Angkor, such as Angkor Wat and the Bayon temple, featuring some 200 mysterious faces carved in its many towers. Next, board your ship and begin your cruise along the mighty Mekong River. Visit the capital city of Phnom Penh, with the magnificent Royal Palace featuring its striking Silver Pagoda and the National Museum. Take in the stunning views at the 8th-century temple of Wat Hanchey before walking through the rural village of Angkor Ban to visit with welcoming schoolchildren. Continue your cruise into Vietnam and stop in the villages for interactions with locals, such as a visit to the home of a skilled family who make handcrafted sampans for a living. Go on an excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels, the unbelievable network of tunnels used extensively during the war. In exciting Ho Chi Minh City, enjoy a walking tour of the famous landmarks and try your hand in the kitchen with a Vietnamese cooking class.Disembark your cruise ship and fly to Hanoi, where you’ll explore the famous Old Quarter with peddlers trading goods among its 36 ancient streets. From here, travel to Ha Long Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin, where you’ll be amazed at the more than 3,000 limestone islands of varying shapes. Enjoy a 2-night cruise along the bay, and then head to Sapa, which provides the most beautiful scenery. Here, you’ll visit one of the famous Weekly Markets where homemade goods are sold and the ethnic minority groups of the area wear their colorful costumes. Hue, a former capital of Vietnam, remains an important cultural mecca. Sightseeing will show you the imposing Imperial Citadel; Thien Mu Pagoda, the unofficial symbol of the city; and the Royal tombs of past emperors. Arrive in Danang, where you’ll visit the Cham Museum and explore Hoi An Ancient Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where architecture influenced by traders from around the world has been largely preserved. The beautiful scenery, ornate temples, and interactions with locals make this river cruise vacation one you won’t soon forget!
Day 1 Arrive Bangkok: welcome to ThailandDay 2 Bangkok: boat ride on klongs; visit the Grand Palace, Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and the Temple of the Reclining Buddha Day 3 Bangkok: day at leisureDay 4 Bangkok–Siem Reap: fly to Siem ReapDay 5 Siem Reap: visit Angkor Wat and Banteay Srei; Apsara Dance PerformanceDay 6 Siem Reap: visit Angkor Thom, Bayon Temple, and Ta Prohm by tuk-tuk; Les Artisans d’AngkorDay 7 Siem Reap (Embarkation): onboard welcome receptionDay 8 Kampong Tralach–Konpong Louang–Phnom Penh: ox cart through the countryside and visit a local farmer’s home in Kampong Tralach; visit the silversmith village of Konpong Louang; sightseeing by private cyclo in Phnom Penh including the Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda, and the National MuseumDay 9 Phnom Penh: visit the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and of the Killing Fields; afternoon at leisure; show by children from local orphanageDay 10 Wat Hanchey–Angkor Ban: visit Wat Hanchey and partake in a traditional water blessing by local monks; walking tour through Angkor Ban village with school visitDay 11 Vietnam Border Crossing–Chau Doc: visit a local market and the religious sites of Sam Mountain in Chau DocDay 12 Long Khong A-Cu Lao Gieng: walking tour of Long Khong A with cotton-weaving demonstration; visit a sampan-making family and interact with a Catholic priest in Cu Lao Gieng Day 13 Ben Tre: visit a local workshop to see how rice wine & traditional candy are made and a local gardenDay 14 Ho Chi Minh City (Disembarkation): walking tour of the city’s landmarks; visit the famous Rex Hotel for a drink, War Remnants Museum, and Ben Thanh Market; cooking class Day 15 Ho Chi Minh City: Cu Chi Tunnels excursionDay 16 Ho Chi Minh City–Hanoi: fly to HanoiDay 17 Hanoi: visit Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh Museum, and Temple of Literature; lunch at Koto; electric cart ride through the Old Quarter; water puppets performanceDay 18 Hanoi–Ha Long Bay (Embarkation): drive to Ha Long Bay; visit Cua Van floating villageDay 19 Ha Long Bay: cruise the bay; visit Titop Island, Luon Cave, and Dark and Bright Cave; opportunity to explore by kayakDay 20 Ha Long Bay (Disembarkation)–Hanoi: visit Sung Sot Cave; drive to Hanoi Day 21 Hanoi–Sapa: drive to Sapa; visit a local marketDay 22 Sapa: visit Ta Van village, Lao Chai village, Silver Waterfall, and Heaven GateDay 23 Sapa: visit a weekly market and a Red Dao villageDay 24 Sapa–Hanoi–Hue: drive to Hanoi; fly to HueDay 25 Hue: visit the Imperial Citadel, Thien Mu Pagoda and the tombs of the Nguyen EmperorsDay 26 Hue–Danang: drive to Danang; visit the Cham Museum and Monkey MountainDay 27 Danang: excursion to Hoi An including a cruise on the Thu Bon River and a walking tour of the Ancient Town Day 28 Danang: day at leisure Day 29 Danang: end of vacation
American breakfast daily17 lunches12 dinnersWhile on board the ship, enjoy complimentary wine with lunch & dinner and complimentary coffee, tea, soft drinks, local beer, and local spirits throughout the day.
Dates and Prices do not include air travel. Participation in this vacation requires purchase of the following flights from Avalon Waterways, not included in pricing: (1) roundtrip air from your U.S. gateway and intra-vacation air segments; or (2) intra-vacation air segments only, starting at $642. Required intra-vacation air segments: Bangkok/Siem Reap; Ho Chi Minh City/Hanoi; Hanoi/Hue. Air prices were effective on April 5, 2017, and their availability is limited. At the time you purchase your tour, air prices may be higher.Gratuities to Local Guides & drivers are included.Price is per person, based on double room occupancy. Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.Prices shown include cruise in Category B in an Avalon Suite on Mekong Deck. To upgrade to a Category A on the Tonle Deck, add $400 per person in double occupancy or $800 in single occupancy.Extra Nights per person in Bangkok:January-October: in single room $248; in twin room $129November-January 6, 2019: in single room $270; in twin room $140January 7, 2019-April 30, 2019: in single room $224; in twin room $117Extra Nights per person in Danang: in single room $384; in twin room $197