12 Day Siem Reap To Saigon By The Jayavarman Cruise

From 3,890 USD/Person 12 days / 11 nights Based on 2 travelers

Trip overview

  • Explore one of the world’s great rivers
  • Cruising on the Great Lake "Tonle Sap"
  • Visit Phnom Penh - Paris of the East
  • Visit the glittering Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda in Phnom Penh
  • Explore the National Museum, which has the world's top collection of Khmer sculpture and art
  • Explore Tuol Sleng Museum and Killing Fields, learn about the horrors and crimes of the Khmer Rouge.
  • Embark on the luxurious river vessel RV the Jayavarman
  • Explore the bustling and exciting city of Saigon
  • Visit famous Cu Chi tunnels and city tour
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Tour itinerary

Day 1: Embark The Cruise, Tonle Sap Lake (L, D)

The Tonle Sap (The Great Lake) is the flowing heart of Cambodia, giving love and life to this nation. The Tonle Sap has more fish than any other lakes in the world and is a home to an incredible variety of birds, including rare – and endangered – feathered life. At noon, we gather at the meeting point followed by a transfer to the boutique Ship. The ever-smiling crew welcomes us with unbridled warmth. A refreshing welcome drink awaits us followed by a buffet lunch on the Ship. Then, it is a relaxing afternoon as the Ship glides along the water. Dinner is served at Dining Hall. Enjoy a spectacular experience on the sun deck as we bathe in the glow of the moon and the radiance of the stars. Lunch and dinner are included. The Ship will anchor midstream on the Tonle Sap river.

Day 2: Kampong Chnang And Kampong Tralach (B, L, D)

Everyday, our journey will start with an invigorating Tai Chi lesson at the sun deck just as the sun begins its slow rise. Coffee and tea awaits the early bird. Before dawn, the Ship sets sail across the Tonle River, we see spectacular marshlands floating along the river banks of the Kampong Chhnang province. The afternoon cruise continues with a languid meander along the Tonle Sap River. Here, the river is so narrow that we can be greeted by kids waving enthusiastically at us from the banks. Follow a short bus trip to the see the Khmer-styled pottery. We then embark to see the wetlands, floating houses and fish farms in the region before reaching Kampong Cham in the evening. Further down the river we take part in an ox cart rally in the afternoon before being introduced to the Heritage Line pro bono “literacy project”.

Day 3: Kampong Cham - Wat Hanchey (B, L, D)

We will wake up in the early morning after an overnight cruising, truly energized to embark on a land journey to the pre-Angkorian temple of Wat Hanchey. Travelers can either take a motor-taxi or climb 303 steps to the top. Located at the top of a hill overlooking the river, the temple offers one of the most breath-taking views in Cambodia. Built in the 8th century, this ancient structure, together with a bigger and newer addition underscores the superb architecture of the Chenla Empire which predates the mighty Angkor temple complex. We even get to engage in light banter with some of the monks in the area. We will return to the Ship to witness a blessing ceremony performed by orange-clad local monks. We will then cruise towards Kampong Cham to visit Wat Nokor, a Wat built within the ruins of an ancient temple which holds a timeless story.

Day 4: Phnom Penh (B, L, D)

Phnom Penh was once the Paris of the East. Despite its rapid development, it has retained a lot of its rustic charm and elegance. Sightseeing in the morning will include the Killing Field. Be prepared to be heart wrenched by this stark reminder of the genocide that transpired during Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge regime, then visit S21 Genocide Museum. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will visit the dazzling white and gold edifice of the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda, and witnessing exceptionally beautiful Khmer craft at the National Museum. We go back to the Ship by “cyclo” – traditional vehicles after our museum visit. Take a rest on your cabin balcony or the lounge and get prepared for an exciting evening event. The evening starts with a variety of cocktails served on the sun deck, BBQ dinner is serving right after that. Take a seat and enjoy the following Apsara dance performance. Experience the brilliance and richness of this culture, the soothing sounds of traditional music, the calming scent of incense sticks and a barbeque on the sun deck. It is indeed a truly marvelous experience, dining in the open air.

Day 5: Border Crossing, Tan Chau (B, L, D)

Start new day with Tai Chi at the sun deck with fresh tea and coffee, be ready to serve. After breakfast, we will be captivated by a comprehensive lecture on Cambodia’s modern history. The cruise liner then sets sail for a lazy day of cruising along the main Mekong Channel. As this is an international shipping route, you will witness large commercial ships plying this route. Later, in the afternoon, we set off to the Vietnamese border for the requisite cross border paperwork. As the process tends to take some time, we bask in the glow of the afternoon sun on the sun deck, pamper ourselves silly at the Spa, or sharpen our culinary skills with the Heritage Line’s Cambodian and Vietnamese cuisine cooking class. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included. The Ship anchors midstream overnight in Tan Chau.

Day 6: Tan Chau - Sa Dec

Welcome to the fish sanctuary of Vietnam. We begin our day with a hearty breakfast at the Dining Hall or at your private balcony. We will brace ourselves for a short excursion in Tan Chau, a pleasant town near the Cambodian border with sizeable Chinese, Kinh and Khmer communities. We will start the trip by a traditional vehicle called “ xeloi” to local market and get to a local boat to visit fish farm and back to the Ship (or opposite). Here you will see the daily life of Vietnamese people in Mekong. Lunch on board. In the afternoon, we will set off for My An Hung Village. Passengers walk to the family house through the vegetable garden. We will cross a monkey bridge and see seasonal vegetable fields. Then gather at the family’s house to taste tea with honey with local delicacies and fruits before back to the Ship to set off for Sa Dec in the late afternoon. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included. Overnight in Sa Dec.

Day 7: Sa Dec - My Tho (B, L, D)

In the morning, we embark a traditional sampan (a flat bottomed traditional Vietnamese wooden boat) to tour Binh Thanh Island and its man-made canals. Here, every villager is involved in the process of growing and processing water hyacinths into natural fiber floor mats and rattan baskets. After lunch on board, the Ship arrives in Cai Be. The tour starts with a visit to Cai Be’s boisterous and colorful floating market where traders gather in a cacophonous congregation. During the languid ride, we discover breathtaking landscapes along the river and quaff the rustic life on the Mekong Delta. The evergreen islands along the Mekong River remain unknown to many people. The cruise will halt intermittently to allow us to observe how rice paste, rice cookies and coconut candies are made, along with the Longan fruit drying process. We then board the Ship for a tranquil evening cruise towards My Tho. A wonderful farewell party awaits us on the terrace deck.

Day 8: My Tho - Ho Chi Minh City (B)

Our magnificent cruiser winds its way to My Tho, approximately 70km south of Saigon on the upper Mekong River in Vietnam. We bid farewell to the cruise as our journey comes to an end. But the memories and the friendships made on board linger on for a lot longer. We disembark at around 08:30am and we join the transfer to the busy crowd of Saigon. Drop off will be at the meeting point in Saigon. Transfer to hotel and rest of the day at leisure

Day 9: Saigon, At Leisure (B)

Breakfast at the hotel. Your first day in Saigon is free to relax or explore at your own leisure. The local night market is a nice introduction, bright, colourful and easy to navigate. Here you can find a selection of excellent value souvenirs. Overnight at hotel in Ho Chi Minh city.

Day 10: Saigon City Orientation (B, L)

Good morning Saigon! After your breakfast you will enjoy a comprehensive city of Saigon. Discover a city full of contrasts; French colonial architecture competes with Chinese influences and traditional characters. You will visit Catholic Notre Dame Cathedral and Post Office which are both wonderful examples of French Colonial architecture nearby and then we will head to visit the Presidential Palace. There is a chance to take a closer look at the City Opera Hall. Back to the hotel for lunch break, At 14:00 pm, visit Thien Hau pagoda - this gorgeous 19th-century temple is dedicated to the goddess Thien Hau, and always attracts a mix of worshippers and visitors to visit daily. Come back to the city to visit Ben Thanh market to test your shopping skills. There are lots of photo opportunities about the local life during the visit. Overnight at hotel in Ho Chi Minh city

Day 11: Morning/Afternoon Cu Chi Tunnels (B, L)

Wake up early to have breakfast. Start the Cu Chi Tunnels tour early at 07.00 am to beat the large tour groups. Travel to the famous Cu Chi Tunnels in style on one of Les Rives’ modern speedboats, while learning about life on the river as you glide through the floating hyacinths. Explore the historic war site of Cu Chi Tunnel, from weapons to underground bunkers. After the tour, enjoy a traditional Vietnamese lunch right by the river. Then relax as the graceful Les Rives speedboat brings you back to Ho Chi Minh City. Free time at your own account.

Trip Inclusions

  • All cruises include group shore-excursions, entrance fees, transportation, tour guide services (English speaking), taxes, fuel, river pilots, port dues, transfers in Saigon and Siem Reap from/to the meeting point to/from embarkation/disembarkation point or vice versa. Meals are included full board. Drinking water, coffee/tea (from jug) is included all day. Fruit juices are included in addition during breakfast.
Trip Exclusions
  • Port tax per passenger of 65 USD (levied by Port authorities and port taxes appear on our invoice). Crew gratuities (8 USD – 10 USD per passenger per day are recommended). Cambodian Visa (available on Upstream cruise only/37 USD)
Please Remember
  • Although it is our intention to operate the itinerary as detailed proposal, we cannot be held responsible for any last minute changes that might occur. It may be necessary to make some changes as a result of climatic conditions, levels of water, alterations to cruise schedules or other operational factors.

NOTE: The above price is based on two people travelling together and sharing accommodation in low season. The price is only a guide and can vary according to selected hotels and date of travel. If you wish to travel with your family, friends or on your own we will be very happy to assist you with your arrangements. Click to email us or use the booking form to customize your own vacation.

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