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The Ultimate Mekong Discovery Upstream With Mekong Princess Cruise

SAIGON - BEN TRE - CAN THO - HOA AN - GIENG ISLAND - HONG NGU / BORDER CROSSING - PHNOMPENH - ANGKOR BAN - KAMPONG CHAM

In this journey, we pass from the vibrant French colonial port of Saigon, through the vast delta, so rich in human life and endeavor, to travel along the main channel into the rich countryside of Cambodia. Your journey will end in Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh.

Trip code : MKPTW-U

Duration : 8 days

Destination : Ho Chi Minh city - Siem Reap

Travel Dates : 2019/2020

Our guide awaits you at the Meeting Point, Park Hyatt Saigon, then transfer to the RV Mekong Princess docking at Saigon Port. Once aboard, you will be welcomed by your Vietnamese and Cambodian ship’s crew, before embarking on the most extraordinary journey of discovery. We sail at midday through the famed Mekong Delta on our way to the ‘Mighty Mekong River’. Lunch, with highly attentive oriental hospitality, will be served soon after departure, as we cruise along the Saigon River. Having settled into your luxurious suites, you can relax and enjoy the new scenes and watch the world pass by.<><> Late in the day we anchor in the heart of the Mekong Delta, where cocktails are served as sun sets, and sampans pass by. A traditional Vietnamese dinner is soon ready, embracing a subtle fusion of dishes for the most eclectic tastes.

This morning, sampans take you through a channel lined with mangroves to visit a local coconut candy maker. After watching the candy-making process, walking through the village to visit an orchard where fruits native to Vietnam can be seen in various stages of maturity on the vine. After a fresh fruit tasting, you continue to a pier where you board small, local boats (two guests per boat) for a trip through the narrow creeks lined with Nipah palm before returning to the ship. <><> This afternoon, the ship sails through an area of the Mekong Delta barely touched by tourism to Can Tho city, the capital riverside city of Mekong Delta of Vietnam. Guests will take a short and orientated city tour with visiting to the Zihuang Pagoda (Chua Ong) and enjoying the welcome unicorn dances. Explore yourself on own around the charming city before having dinner onboard.

We begin our morning before breakfast aboard the sampans for a cruise through the fascinating Cai Rang floating market near Can Tho. The sampans will weave in and out of the many boats that sail into the market each morning to sell produce and other items the residents of the Mekong Delta need in their daily lives. As they weave through the market, there will be many opportunities for amazing photographs, while enjoying fresh fruit and the Vietnamese “anti-aging drink,” fresh coconut water. Before returning to the ship for breakfast, we stop at a local noodle factory, where we witness the amazing process of how they are made. <><> After lunch, continue excursion by boat to Hoa An village, where is untouched and well- known with flower growing and handmade craft. Our first stop at flower gardens where we will see many different kinds of flowers and learn how to grow and take care of them. Then, a short walking to a local house and chat with the host to see how they live and work in their daily life. <><> After a short break, continue our excursion on motor cart to another village. We stop by at the conical hat-making and mat weaving families, have memorable time chatting with local family members and learning how to create products though hands-on experience. Enjoy your walk in the peaceful village with rice fields, fruit trees...in between visiting 2 local families. Then, we say goodbye and go back to the ship by boat.

This morning we board sampans that will take us into Gieng Island. After a short walk around the local sampan village, where hundreds of sampans are produced daily by local families, we take a canal drive to explore the untouched floating area with duck farms, monkey bridges, and tropical orchards along the riverside. We will try one of most popular local transportation named “xe loi” (motor trishaw) driving through this island to visit a Catholic Church, built around the same time as the Notre Dame Cathedral in Saigon in the 1870s.

Today we visit the local island village of Hong Ngu, not far from the Vietnam-Cambodia border. Hong Ngu produces a large number of the traditional, Khmer scarves exported to Cambodia. Woven in many homes around the village, here we have the opportunity to see the weaving process under several homes. Some villagers are also embroidery artists, displaying their art in and around the homes. The inhabitants of this area had only encountered one western visitor prior to the arrival of the RV Mekong Princess, they are especially friendly and welcoming. Guests will also visit the local temple dedicated to a unique religion founded in this area of Vietnam, Hoa Hoa. This afternoon, the RV Mekong Princess will cross the border into Cambodia and continue up the Mekong River.

After breakfast this morning, local cyclo drivers meet you for an exciting city tour of Phnom Penh. You begin your ride along the riverfront to the Royal Palace, where a leisurely walk takes you through the grounds, with opportunities to visit the Throne Hall and Moonlight Pavilion. Upon crossing into the second section of the complex, you walk amongst enormous stupas and spirit houses, on the way to the famous Silver Pagoda, home of Cambodia’s Emerald Buddha and Maitreya Buddha, encrusted with more than 9,000 diamonds. Following a short break, your cyclos take you to the National Museum. Housing the largest pre-Angkorian and Angkorian holdings in Cambodia, the National Museum ends the morning tour with a comprehensive look at many of the artifacts excavated around the Angkor Archeological Area in Siem Reap, as well as other areas around the former Khmer Empire. After a return cyclo ride to the ship, you may wish to take some time to have lunch at a local restaurant, walk along the quay, or visit some of Phnom Penh’s famous markets and lovely boutiques. <><> This afternoon, private motor-coach take you on a scenic 45-minute drive from the ship, arriving at Choeung Ek, the killing fields depicted in the movie, and the center of the darkest days of Cambodian history. You may walk through the fields, visit the small museum and Memorial Stupa, and learn more about the atrocities committed during the Khmer Rouge regime. On the return drive to Phnom Penh, a stop is made at Tuol Sleng (infamously known as S-21), which was converted by the Khmer Rouge from a large school to a prison and torture headquarters. <><> Before dinner, children from a local orphanage entertain guests with a cultural performance including Apsara, Cambodia’s national dance, as well as several traditional folk dances.

Today we start the day with a visit to the charming town of Angkor Ban. Here, we witness the daily life of the local people, starting with a visit to a family’s home, to meet the family and discuss their lifestyle. We continue through the village to the local school where we join the children in their classroom and experience what their typical school day is like.

After breakfast we disembark the RV Mekong Princess in Kampong Cham. Transfer by motor-coach to Siem Reap. Arrive Meeting Point at the Park Hyatt Siem Reap Hotel at noon.

***Important Note***

For operational reasons and passenger safety, Tweet World Travel and its suppliers reserve the right to change, vary, modify or cancel any itinerary or arrangement in relation to the tour/cruise as considered necessary.

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Accommodation:

- 7- Night onboard 5* RV Mekong Princess

Excursions Amenities
- Port charges $220.00 per person
- Crew gratuities $120.00 per person
- All excursions services' gratuities $30.00 per person
- Transfers from/to the meeting point to/from Embarkation/Disembarkation Points
- Shore Excursion program including all admissions
- Unique exclusive cruise program itinerary
- Shoe cleaning after excursions
- Welcome Drinks following excursions
- Individual VOX listening devices throughout cruise
- Maximum 28 guests per guide all excursions
- Full-size motor coach on all excursions (where applicable)
- Deluxe sampans with cold towel service, Fresh fruit, and Tea/Coffee service (where applicable)
Dining, Wellness & Entertainment
- Expertly trained culinary team providing buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, and seated multiple course dinner, including exclusive "Spa Cuisine" and French-Indochine inspired options
- Complimentary Organic Coffee, Herbal Teas, Mineral Water, Soft Drinks, Local Beers, Local Spirits, and Free-Flow House Wine (House Wine with Dinners only)
- Series of Cultural Performances, Educational Talks and Cooking Classes
- Enhanced Fitness Facility
- In-room Breakfast (available upon request)
- Welcome Reception
- Farewell Reception
- Theme Dinners
- Spacious Air-Conditioned Lounge with Onboard Activity & Entertainment