Cambodia | Classic Journeys Blog
  • Exploring the Best of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia: Indochina's Greatest Hits

    Before you ever set foot in <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Cambodia</a>, you know that Angkor Wat will be awesome in the original sense of the word. The epic scale, the insanely rich detail, and the haunting abandonment are almost too much to take in. Like a song that gets stuck in your head and plays on a constant loop, Angkor Wat isn&#39;t forgotten easily. The scene only gets better as a tropical tangerine sunset kicks in and the jungle birds all go quiet as if someone flipped a switch. Just—WOW.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T0000026SGw&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000012BiR" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>Though Angkor Wat is a spectacular finale to a 10-day journey that includes<a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"> Laos and Vietnam</a>, all along the way you’ll have plenty of show-stopping moments that reveal the beauties of these cultures and countries.<br><br>In <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Laos</a>, you quickly come to appreciate that this is a culture that takes reverence and community seriously while indulging in fun and spirited celebration. Take a spin through Luang Prabang’s night market — what feels like the world’s largest flea market/craft festival/block party/food fair — and you’ll see there’s nothing shy and retiring about the Laos&#39;. But by dawn’s early light, the mood shifts. Buddhist monks walk a barefoot circuit through the town in a silent alms ritual. Our longtime friend and your <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/local-tour-guides/" target="_blank">local guide Toubee</a> entered the monkhood as a boy, so he arranges for you to be welcomed into the ceremony and to offer an allotment of rice to the monks. You connect with Laos&#39; culture and become a part of a centuries-long tradition in a way that tourists are rarely able to do.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T0000026SGw&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000012BiM" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>That innate Laotian respectfulness ratchets up to elephant size at the 2,000-acre sanctuary you visit in the unspoiled Nam Khan River Valley. Dedicated to protecting native elephants, the mahouts and conservationists show a real tenderness and concern for the animals. And you? You get a super up-close look at elephants just being elephants. You can even go right into the river with them as they use their trunks for a good hose-down bath.<br><br>In <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Vietnam</a>, it’s the energy of the people that takes your breath away. Picture this day: You wake in Saigon, one of the most revved up cities anywhere. Fast forward (but only an hour or two!), and you’re floating on a long-tailed boat on the Mekong River. At <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Cam Son Bridge</a>, a beach cruiser bike with a cushy saddle is waiting for you. And your <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/local-tour-guides/" target="_blank">local guide Phong</a> leads your low-tech pack along narrow country lanes that are completely off the usual tourist circuit. As you pedal past a rice paddy, a farmer is likely to straighten up, greet you with a “xin chao!” and wade to the edge for a talk about the weather or his family. Farther on, your new friend Hai Cu invites you to grab a fruit from one of the trees in his orchard. Back to the water, a sampan drops you off for lunch at a family house.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T0000026SGw&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000012BiW" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>It’s a quiet life, but quite lively too. Case in point: a remarkable morning on <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Halong Bay</a>. While you’re still getting your caffeine infusion on the deck of the luxury junk where you spent the night, the fishermen are out. Ignoring the scenic limestone crags reflected in the emerald water, they’re casting nets and calling to one another. It’s cinematic as can be, but it’s real too — the kind of moment that puts you in touch with the country (not to mention some of the inner peace that’s hard to come by at home).<br><br>Where will your &quot;aha&quot; moments happen? Maybe in a chat with schoolchildren in a small country school near <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Hanoi</a>. Or in the Cu Chi tunnels under Saigon. Or <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/cuisines/" target="_blank">learning how to wrap the perfect spring roll with a local cook</a>. What’s totally predictable is that you’ll come home from <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Indochina </a>with your own personal list of greatest hits ... and a true feel for the rich cultures of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia</a>.

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  • Halong Bay Vietnam

    10 Best Experiences To Have While Traveling in Indochina

    Most tourists never see <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Halong Bay</a> in the morning. They miss the fishing junks sliding past limestone spires that thrust from the turquoise water. They can&#39;t imagine how the scent of fresh coffee hangs in the air as eagles float overhead. While in Indochina,  don&#39;t just visit the great cities... stop at the simple homestead of a rice farmer; meet the enormous residents of a Laotian elephant preserve; wander the temples of Angkor; stay in Indochina’s finest hotels and resorts. Along the way, wend your way through exotic markets, eat truly remarkable local specialties, and experience the traditional cultures you only find if you approach the region like a traveler, rather than a tourist.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#1 Bike Through Mekong Delta</b></a><br>Enjoy an ultra-leisurely bike ride along flat and empty roads into the heart of the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Mekong Delta</a>. Follow narrow country roads that curve over tiny canals and past fruit gardens and sleepy villages all while taking in the lush, tropical landscape, carpeted with rice fields.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Women on a bike in Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7UG" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#2 Visit Saigon by Rickshaw</b></a><br>A rickshaw is a great way to see, hear and soak up the action, and it’s an efficient way to get to key sites like City Hall, Notre Dame Cathedral and Dong Khoi Street, the city’s premier shopping district for custom-made silk garments, embroidery and more.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Vegetable Vendor in Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7Uu" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#3 Visit the scenic Rice Fields outside Danang</b></a><br>Depending on the season you can see the fields being plowed by buffalo, rice planted by women, or harvested by the men. Visit a mill to see how the rice is dried and husked. This unique glimpse into the rural lives of the villagers is a sight very few visitors see and will be one of the highlights of our time in Vietnam<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Rice Farmers in Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7VE" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#4 Hindu Monuments at My Son (Danang)</b></a><br>This beautiful region is known for its cluster of Hindu temples, some of which date back to the 7th Century. Get a haunting look into the region’s rich cultural past.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Hindu Monuments at My Son (Danang), Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7UL" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#5 Hanoi and Northern Vietnam Countryside</b></a><br>Beginning at <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Phuong Pagoda</a>, famous for its vast display of finely carved wooden statues of 18th-century monks, take a scenic walk among rice fields and through bamboo groves to a local village.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Phuong Pagoda, Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7V9" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">#6 See Halong Bay from a Luxury Junk Boat</a></b><br>After boarding our luxury Junk Boat,cruise on the emerald green waters of the bay which offers a chance to visit and explore many islands and caves<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Halong Bay, Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7UQ" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">#7 Laos</a></b><br>Explore <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Luang Prabang’s</a> night market, known especially for fine handicrafts from ethnic villagers.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Luang Prabang&#39;s night market, Laos" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7Uz" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#8 Elephant Sanctuary in Luang Prabang</b></a><br>Enjoy a visit to a 2,000-acre elephant sanctuary in the beautiful and unspoiled Nam Khan River valley. Meet the mahouts that train and care for the elephants and get a chance to play and bathe them firsthand.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Women feeding Elephant" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7Ua" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#9 Guided tour of Angkor Thom </b></a><br>Taking time to visit Ta Prohm is an incredible experience. Unlike many of the region’s temples, this one still looks much as it did when it was discovered – surrounded by jungle with great trees growing from the ruins.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="Interior of Angkor Thom" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7Uk" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><b>#10 Angkor Wat</b></a><br>It&#39;s well worth it to get up early to be able to see <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Angkor Wat</a> at sunrise. Its the largest temple in the world, and worth every bit of exploration. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATJm&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000f7Uf" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>If you&#39;d like to do all these activities, plus a little more, without the hassle of logistics—join a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys Culture + Walking or Family trip to Vietnam, Laos, &amp; Cambodia</a>. You&#39;ll have the trip of a lifetime!

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  • Halong Bay, Vietnam

    5 Southeast Asia UNESCO World Heritage Sites to Visit

    <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Southeast Asia</a> has so much to offer visitors that it&#39;s often hard to decide how to best spend your time. However, on a Classic Journeys <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Culture + Walking</a> tour or an exciting <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnamfamily/" target="_blank">Family Journey</a> you can follow an itinerary that guarantees you&#39;ll visit the best spots. Enjoy a leisurely cruise or kayak through Halong Bay, explore the night markets in Luang Prabang, or relax at a luxury boutique hotel that sits right next to Angkor Wat. On your trip of a lifetime, you&#39;ll be able to visit five UNESCO World Heritage Sites between three countries in Southeast Asia and yet still have plenty of time to relax and enjoy your vacation. Below are five of our favorite UNESCO World Heritage sites in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos that are visited on this <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys tour</a> of Southeast Asia!<br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">#1 Hoi An</a></b><br>This small town is one of the best-preserved representations of ancient <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Vietnam</a>. Untouched by the war, you&#39;ll get the chance to see the influence of Chinese, Japanese, and European architecture as you walk along the city&#39;s cobbled streets. This was once one of the busiest trading ports in Asia, and you&#39;ll be able to catch a glimpse of what that may have looked like years ago as boats and people interact along the river. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="Harbor and buildings in Hoi An, Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATc7&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000fA0T" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><b>#2 Halong Bay</b></a><br>One of our favorite travel experiences and <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Vietnam&#39;s eighth wonder of the world</a>, Halong Bay is made up of 3,000 limestone and chalk outcroppings, cliffs, arches, and coves that form a dragon’s tail of islands across the bay. Here you&#39;ll board a luxury junk boat (an ancient sailing vessel) and set sail on the emerald green waters to see the beauty up close. Do not turn down the opportunity to explore the floating villages by kayak or by jumping in the warm bay for a swim.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="Ship in Halong Bay, Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATc7&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000fA0Y" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><b>#3 My Son Sanctuary</b></a><br>Also known as &quot;Beautiful Mountain,&quot; this beautiful area of Vietnam is known for its cluster of Hindu temples that were constructed between the 4th and the 14th century. On a guided visit of the ruins, you’ll get a look into the region’s rich cultural past and the tales of the religious and political capital of the ancient Champa Kingdom.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="Ruins in My Son Sanctuary, Vietnam" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATc7&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000fA0J" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">#4 Town of Luang Prabang</a></b><br>During your time in Luang Prabang, Laos, you&#39;ll barter with merchants for their fine handicrafts, visit a 2,000-acre elephant sanctuary and interact with local Lao people working in their fields as you sail along a nearby river. Additionally, you&#39;ll be able to admire the incredible traditional Lao architecture as well as many structures built in the 19th and 20th centuries that reflect the blending of European and traditional Lao architectural styles. <br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="Market in Luang Prabang at night, Laos" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATc7&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000fA0O" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">#5 Angkor</a></b><br>Angkor, Cambodia is considered one of the most important archaeological sites in Southeast Asia. The ancient site contains many temples built over 800 years ago such as <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, and the Bayon Temple</a>. On tour with Classic Journeys, you&#39;ll stay at the nearby <a href="https://www.raffles.com/siem-reap/" target="_blank">Raffles Grand Hotel d&#39;Angkor</a> and spend your time exploring the archeological sites with a personal local guide who will help you grasp the enormity of the monuments.<br><br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="View of Angkor Wat over water, Cambodia" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002ATc7&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T000000fA0E" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br>If you&#39;re interested in visiting these incredible sites, check out our <a href="http://www.classicjourneys.com/indochina-tours/" target="_blank">trips to Southeast Asia</a>. Whether you&#39;re looking for a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Culture &amp; Walking </a><a href="http://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnam/" target="_blank">Tour</a> or <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/vietnamfamily/" target="_blank">a Family Journey</a>, <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys</a> will surely provide you with a trip of a lifetime!

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