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VIETNAM & CAMBODIA – 2 or 3-week Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise – Chris Travel Blog

Mekong Delta Sunset - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Vietnam and Cambodia are considered one of my favourite nations in South East Asia and I’ve all the time needed to return someday. Doing a Mekong Cruise has been excessive on my wishlist too. Over the past summer time holidays I lastly went again with my household. I got here up with this Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary by way of the Mekong Delta and Phnom Penh. My household and I had a good time! We already did a two-week Vietnam journey in central & north Vietnam two years again, however Cambodia was new for my household. I visited Siem Reap already for an extended week a number of years in the past. There’s some overlap in on this Vietnam to Cambodia itinerary however not a lot. It may be used to join each different itineraries to make a 5-6 week itinerary overlaying all locations in each nations.

We began in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam from the place we first visited Phu Quoc island to loosen up. Then certainly one of my goals got here true and we did a Mekong Cruise to Phnom Penh. After Phnom Penh we did a homestay (a primary!) and ended the journey for every week in Siem Reap. This itinerary is for three weeks however you’ll be able to omit Phu Quoc and shorten the keep in Siem Reap to make it 2 weeks. Be a part of me on this daily itinerary which can assist plan your journey from Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap.

Rolus Group - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Planning a Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary

Planning this Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary could be very simple. Main airways fly to each cities and I like to recommend reserving an open jaw flight, so that you don’t have to fly again on the finish of the journey to both one. This protects you additionally visa prices. You possibly can both begin in Ho Chi Minh City or in Siem Reap because the Mekong Cruise goes each methods.

I flew first to Tunisia and began my journey from there. China Southern provided an affordable enterprise class fare at simply 750 euro from Tunisia to Ho Chi Min City (by way of Paris and Guangzhou) and again from Siem Reap. Verify my recommendations on how to e-book low cost enterprise class fares and ebook your subsequent journey additionally low cost in enterprise class. It earned an enormous pile of reward miles too which I can use for a future ticket.

Homestay Biking - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Vietnam visa and Cambodia visa

Vietnam gives visa on arrival for Europeans, however it requires an approval letter. I like to recommend getting the approval letter for a Vietnam visa via e-Visums upfront. They’ve the letter prepared very quickly and quick monitor too which is particularly nice throughout rush hour. You simply sit again and loosen up or perhaps already get an area sim card whereas ready in your visa to be prepared. The Cambodian visa is organized by the Mekong Cruise whenever you go from Vietnam to Cambodia, so that you don’t have to do something for that. Do notice that should you do the journey in other way you want a Cambodia visa which e-Visums also can organize.

I like to recommend reserving all lodging prematurely as typically costs go excessive in excessive season. I booked the Intercontinental Phu Quoc, the homestay in Sambor Prei Kuk, Park Hyatt Siem Reap and Phum Baitang by Zannier Resorts all nicely prematurely. The Mekong Cruise might be an important to ebook properly prematurely because the boats have restricted area particularly within the luxurious phase. I used to be, nevertheless, final minute with reserving reward stays in Ho Chi Minh City although as I didn’t understand how lengthy I might be there.

A abstract of this Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary for you to copy paste!

Day 1: Arrival in Ho Chi Minh City, Day 2: Ho Chi Minh City, Day three: Chu Chi Tunnels & Cao Dai Temple, Day four: Ho Chi Minh City to Phu Quoc, Day 5: Loosen up Phu Quoc, Day 6: Phu Quoc Island Tour, Day 7: Loosen up Phu Quoc, Day eight: Phu Quoc to Ho Chi Minh City, Day 9: begin Mekong Cruise, Day 10-12: Mekong Cruise, Day 13: Mekong Cruise finish in Phnom Penh, Day 14: Phnom Penh, Day 15: Phnom Penh to Homestay Sambor Prei Kuk, Day 16: Homestay, Day 16: Homestay to Siem Reap, Day 17-21: Siem Reap and day journeys, Day 22: Departure from Siem Reap

EXTEND YOUR TRIP: Ensure that to learn my two-week Vietnam itinerary or my 9-day Siem Reap itinerary to get extra inspiration on how to prolong this journey or combine it up.

Mekong Delta - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Cambodia to Vietnam itinerary day 1 by way of four: Arrival & Ho Chi Minh City

It relies upon from the place you come and what number of time you’re within the aircraft however three nights in Ho Chi Minh City will do. You are able to do a metropolis journey and a day journey to the Chu Chi Tunnels & Cao Dai Temple which covers most locations of curiosity.

Ho Chi Min City or additionally referred to as Saigon is the capital of Vietnam. It has a number of locations of curiosity however I personally discovered Hanoi extra fascinating. There are nevertheless sure locations not to be missed they usually can all be visited in a day should you do it environment friendly. They’re: The Reunification Palace, Warfare Remnants Museum, City Corridor, the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Mosque, and three pagodas’. There are a number of different museums which could be visited relying your curiosity. A meals tour on motorcycle can also be one thing I extremely advocate.


The 2nd day I like to recommend doing the normal day journey to the Chu Chi Tunnels & Cao Dai Temple from Ho Chi Min City. The Cao Dai Temple is a spiritual website which faith can’t be in contrast to another faith on the earth. It’s a fairly trendy faith and greatest described as a mixed faith of Christianity, Buddhism and Hinduism with a taste of Confucianism and the place Solar Yat-Sen, Victor Hugo and Nguyen Binh Khiem are the three saints. Be sure to arrive within the morning to be able to attend mass. Most tour teams will depart after half an hour or so however I recommend you to keep until the top. It’s very fascinating to see and I like to recommend to go by personal automotive to have extra flexibility. After the mass proceed to the Chu Chi Tunnels to study concerning the historical past of the Vietnamese struggle. You’ll be able to expertise right here your self the small tunnels and the way the Vietcong lived there and the way they operated.

Learn extra in my Ho Chi Minh City day journey articles:
VIETNAM – Ho Chi Min City meals tour on a motorcycle; scrumptious road meals
VIETNAM – Should do day journey: Cu Chi tunnels and Cao Dai Temple from Ho Chi Min City

Ho Chi Minh City - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Saigon to Siem Reap however first Phu Quoc island (day four by means of eight)

Phu Quoc is Vietnam’s shortly creating island for tourism. In notably Lengthy Seashore which is an extended stretch of seashore the place dozens of resorts are at present being constructed. Once I noticed that the Intercontinental Phu Quoc already opened its doorways I booked a four-night time keep. Simply to get away from all the things as I have a tendency to go see new issues each single day however Phu Quoc you could have merely seen in a day. Take note the climate through the moist season. It’s hit or miss however I had four full days of sunshine on the finish of July.

SHORTEN YOUR TRIP: If you would like to shorten this Saigon to Siem Reap itinerary drastically you’ll be able to take away a go to to Phu Quoc saving four nights.

Phu Quoc Beach - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Someday I did an island tour by taxi which was simply round 40 USD. I like to recommend beginning on the previous Phu Quoc jail because it actually opens your eyes. The unhuman issues the US troopers did there are horrible. Then proceed to the Ho Quoc Pagoda and on the best way again to the primary street cease at a bee farm. To be trustworthy there’s a a lot better bee farm up north on the island however that may take to a lot time to get to on a day journey. Your subsequent cease must be the Suoi Tranh Waterfall after which the Dinh Cau temple. Ask the driving force to cease at a distillery and pepper farm on the best way. These farms are a bit small and simply present you the overall concept. To go to a much bigger pepper farm you’ll want extra time.

I simply relaxed on the Intercontinental Phu Quoc the rest of the times. What an ideal resort!

Phu Quoc Prison - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Vietnam to Cambodia itinerary day 9-13: Mekong Cruise

The Mekong Cruise began early morning, so I nonetheless had to e-book a 1-night time keep (day eight to 9) in Ho Chi Minh City between the Phu Quoc detour and the beginning of the Mekong Cruise. Cruises are provided on numerous elements of the Mekong River however the Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh (or additional upstream) cruise via the Mekong Delta is amongst probably the most well-known. Cruises vary from three, four or 7 nights. I added a four-night time cruise on this Vietnam to Cambodia itinerary.

The Mekong River and its surrounding panorama is a large space in South East Asia. Its supply is on the Tibetan plateau and from there flows via the Yunnan province (China) to Myanmar, Laos (the place I visited the Pak Ou caves on the river) into Cambodia and eventually Vietnam.

Pandaw Cruise - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Daytrips on a Mekong Cruise

Every day of the cruise there’s a morning and afternoon journey on land. I had most enjoyable visiting an area household and see how they reside with a number of generations collectively. Youngsters got here out to see who these white vacationers have been, and we had a number of enjoyable. Make certain to select a cruise the place you actually go to native communities away from different vacationers. There you see the actual native life.

Different actions to select from are visiting fish farms, coconut farms, crafts and far more. Every thing that’s practiced within the Mekong Delta is included within the day excursions. I like to recommend collaborating in all of them as there’s sufficient time left to loosen up on the ship too. After four nights the ship arrived in Phnom Penh the place I disembarked and went to a lodge. The ship went additional upstream.

EXTEND YOUR TRIP: Should you choose to do the complete Mekong Cruise together with upstream to the river dolphins in Cambodia you’ll have to add simply 2 nights. That is due to the very fact the ship stays in a single day in Phnom Penh and three-half-day excursions will take you to all locations of curiosity there too.

Mekong Delta Local Kids - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary day 13-15: Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh is the capital of Cambodia and the most important metropolis within the nation. It’s a busy and hectic typical South East Asian metropolis. A 2-night time keep will suffice to see all of the locations of curiosity. In fact, extra days are simply crammed too by wandering round city. The Mekong Cruise arrived early morning in Phnom Penh and I used to be on the lodge round 11AM.

I like to recommend visiting the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (S-21 Jail) after lunch. Each locations present the historical past of the violent Khmer Rouge occasions underneath rule of Pol Pot who’s tomb in north Cambodia I visited earlier. The jail is the place individuals the place put first after which they have been introduced to the killing fields. Hundreds have been killed there! Take note what you see is surprising!

Killing Fields Skulls - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

The second day I used to see all the opposite locations of involved in Phnom Penh. I like to recommend visiting the Royal Palace first within the morning when it opens at 08:00. Then proceed to the Nationwide Museum of Cambodia and Wat Phnom. The museum has lovely sculptures from the Khmer Empire temples on show. I completed when it was lunch time. After lunch go to Wat Botum, the varied Independence and Liberation memorials. Proceed the afternoon with a take a look at the Grand Submit Workplace Constructing and the Central Market. Each are nice examples of French colonial structure. End the day with a stroll alongside the riverside!

Royal Palace Phnom Penh - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Vietnam to Cambodia itinerary continued day 15-17: Homestay in Sambor Prei Kuk

A homestay is one thing I by no means did earlier than. I did e-book one earlier than however the 2-day trekking to a take away village in Luang Prabang I had to cancel as I received sick. The ONLY time I acquired sick for a day throughout all my travels. Now, in Cambodia, I did a homestay with my household. The youngsters beloved it! I booked the homestay by way of Khiri Travel who additionally organized the transport from Phnom Penh and to Siem Reap. Why a homestay in Sambor Prei Kuk? That’s as a result of these households stay contained in the Sambor Prei Kuk UNESCO World Heritage Website. This website was a should go to this journey and thus nice mixture.

Homestay - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

I booked a two-night time homestay. This manner I had a full morning to discover the villages and see what the individuals do through the day in Cambodia and the afternoon for Sambor Prei Kuk archeological website. It’s a good way to mix a homestay expertise with a go to to a UNESCO World Heritage Website. Should you favor a lodge, it’s potential to make a day journey to Sambor Prei Kuk from Siem Reap or Phnom Penh, however you gained’t have time to look across the nation aspect. The household and I had a good time and my youngsters nonetheless speak about educating the native youngsters English.

EXTEND YOUR STAY: Add an evening within the homestay to have extra time to discover the agricultural areas of Cambodia. It’s fascinating to see what the locals do through the day!

Sambor Prei Kuk - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap day 17-21: Siem Reap, the ultimate vacation spot

I deliberate eight nights in Siem Reap this journey however due to a flight cancellation I had no choice as to depart 2 days earlier. So, lastly, it was nonetheless packed with sightseeing for me and missed the 2 additional days on the pool. My youngsters and spouse nevertheless didn’t be a part of on each single day journey from Siem Reap as they needed to loosen up a bit too. I booked three nights on the Park Hyatt Siem Reap the place I additionally stayed 5 years in the past. It’s a sanctuary in downtown Siem Reap. The second three nights I booked at Phum Baitang Resort which is simply out of city. Every villa is constructed like a standard home (however with trendy amenities) and surrounded by rice fields.

I like to recommend testing my 9 days Siem Reap itinerary of 5 years in the past for six different day journeys you are able to do! You’ll be able to simply trade a number of the day journeys talked about right here for these in that itinerary.

EXTEND/SHORTEN YOUR TRIP: As there are 6 extra day journeys from Siem Reap you are able to do you possibly can simply prolong this Vietnam to Cambodia itinerary by including extra days in Siem Reap. You may also skip a day journey or two in case you want to shorten your itinerary.

Monk Blessing - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Phare Circus Cambodia - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

In fact, I visited Angkor Wat once more as a result of it’s so iconic and my spouse and youngsters didn’t see it but. Go to within the morning then proceed to the Angkor Nationwide Museum the place lovely sculptures and different items of artwork are on show. You miss these on the temples. I didn’t take my household on the large circle tour I did 5 years in the past.

I additionally re-visited the Rolous Group however in a completely totally different means. I booked a tuk tuk tour (bicycle can also be attainable) with Lolei Travel to the temples of the Rolous Group. Fascinating of Lolei Travel is that they then proceed of the crushed monitor to a small city the place lunch is served in an lively Buddhist temple. After lunch the information takes you across the nation aspect and attainable different temples. I opted for a brief model to be again on the lodge round 3PM in order that I had a little bit of pool time. Within the night I visited the Phare Cambodian Circus which is one thing I extremely advocate to do.


Distant temple excursions from Siem Reap

The opposite two days I did two distant temple excursions I didn’t have time for once I first visited. My daughter and spouse joined the tour to Prasat Preah Khan of Kampong Svay and my son and spouse to Banteay Chhmar. When you haven’t been to Siem Reap earlier than I extremely advocate going to Kulen Mountain, Banteay Srei & East Mebon and never to Banteay Chhmar.

Prasat Preah Khan of Kampong Svay is greatest reached by four×four which I booked by means of Lolei Travel too. I didn’t e-book a information although. This temple complicated is probably the most distant one amongst of Cambodia tucked away deep within the Boeng Peae Wildlife Sanctuary. It takes over three hours to get there however is properly value it. Banteay Chhmar can also be of the crushed monitor however simply reached by automotive in slightly below 2 hours. Each are lovely examples of jungle temples as you’ll be able to see within the pictures under. Understand that these complexes are big and exploring them takes between three and 5 hours.

Banteay Chhmar - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Prasat Preah Khan Kampong Svay - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

Vietnam to Cambodia day 22: Departure

As talked about my journey ended two days earlier as deliberate. These sort of issues occur, and I had to select to depart 2 days earlier OR 2 days later. Two days later wasn’t potential as I might be flying to the USA and onward for a Caribbean island-hopping journey to Antigua, St. Lucia, and Barbados. I had to accept 2 days earlier however I didn’t return all the best way to Tunis. In Paris I deserted my ticket and went again to the Netherlands the place I stay. I didn’t need to keep 2 days in Tunis as I simply made a 2-week Tunisia journey earlier this yr.

Angkor Wat - VIETNAM & CAMBODIA - Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary with Mekong Cruise

The top! I hope this Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary helps you propose your journey. It’s a visit that I additionally extremely advocate for a primary time go to to South East Asia since you cowl two nations going from Vietnam to Cambodia. This itinerary has metropolis life, seashores, previous Khmer Empire tradition, native life and a lot extra all packed effectively so that you simply don’t unfastened time.

If you would like to prolong the journey there are a number of choices. I already talked about the 9 days in Siem Reap itinerary and the 2-week Vietnam itinerary. In case you want to add one other nation take a look at my 2-week Indonesia itinerary, 2- or three-weeks Thailand itinerary or perhaps go extra north and add a 2-week Taiwan itinerary. Every one is appropriate to add to this Saigon to Siem Reap itinerary. Take pleasure in combining!

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Gallery Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap itinerary

Examine the gallery for extra photographs taken throughout this journey. Should you like to use any photograph for business, personal or editorial use please contact first for permission and/or pricing.