Laos and Cambodia Active

tours / Adventure

Laos and Cambodia Active information and booking

from
$2060
  • Duration
    12 days
    Days
  • Group size
    4-16
    Persons
  • Difficulty
    Introductory
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Schedule Details

Summary
  • 12 days
  • 5 day cycle
  • 1 day kayak
  • 10 nights hotel
  • 1 night homestay
Equipment Required
Specialist gear required include walking boots, cycle helmet and day pack (a comprehensive gear list is provided in the pre-departure information provided on booking).

Highlights

  • Discover the beauty of World Heritage listed Luang Prabang by bike
  • Swim in the pools of Kuang Sii Waterfalls
  • Watch the sunset from the banks of the Mekong River in Vientiane, the capital of Laos
  • Kayak the Nam Song River of Vang Vieng with it stunning limestone karst formations and caving systems
  • Explore ancient Khmer temples including Angkor Wat by bike
  • Stay in a local Cambodian homestay

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

Join us as we explore some of the most stunning and culturally significant places these former French colonies have to offer. We commence our adventure in the picturesque World Heritage town of Luang Prabang where we explore its exquisite golden temples, Kuang Sii waterfalls and Mekong River by bike. Heading south to Vang Vieng we kayak the Nam Song River with it stunning limestone karst formations and caving systems. A visit to the capital of Vientiane is a must for its markets, weavings and the Great Stupa- Pha That Luang. From here we cross the Cambodian border to Siem Reap to cycle the glorious Angkor Wat complex of Khmer temples, pagodas and ancient statues. We stay in a local village homestay to experience the warm hospitality for which Cambodia is renown.

What's included

  • 11 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 3 dinners
  • Transfers on day 1 and day 12
  • Expert bilingual guide
  • Internal flights from vientiane to siem reap valued at us$195
  • Medical kit
  • Comfortable hotels on a twin share basis and local homestay
  • Private air-conditioned vehicles
  • Sightseeing and entry fees as listed in the itinerary
  • Kayak and bike hire as listed in the itinerary

Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Luang Prabang
On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Late this afternoon, we enjoy an orientation around this charming city including the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrines of Wat Aham and Wat Mai. We then climb up to the top of mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa as well as a panoramic view of the city and Mekong River at sunset. In the evening we explore the Night Market where there is a lovely selection of handmade textile made by local and hill tribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.
Day 2 In Luang Prabang - city cycle
An optional early start for a unique opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of ‘Alms’ (sticky rice) from the faithful residents. We then walk to the bustling Central Market before returning to hotel for breakfast. Following breakfast, we enjoy a cycling tour around Luang Prabang to explore this beautiful town and its cultural heritage that has given rise to its World Heritage status. We visit Wat Sene and Wat Xiengthong which represent classic Luang Prabang architecture: its several roofs sweeping low to the ground. We then ride to the former Royal Palace; National Museum (closed on Tuesday and Sunday afternoon); through small roads; past colonial buildings and then meander the banks of the Mekong River, stopping to visit the beautiful Wat Siphouthabath. In the afternoon, we continue our cycling to visit the weaving village of Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for silk hand weaving and traditional Saa Paper making.
Day 3 Luang Prabang – Cycling to Kuang Sii Waterfall
This morning we cycle south through some verdant and rugged scenery on our visit to a hill tribe group of people at Ban Lao Soung and Ban Ou. We then continue to the beautiful Kuang Sii Waterfalls, where water tumbles over multi tiered limestone formations into cool and crystal clear pools. We return to Luang Prabang by late afternoon. Cycle approx 64kms
Day 4 Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng
A midmorning start, we travel by roads to Vang Vieng (5-6 hours). Our intrepid journey will be strenuous as we drive along one of the most scenic but also one of the roughest routes in Asia. In the afternoon we arrive in Vang Vieng, a small town nestled on a bend of the Nam Song River. Its stunning scenery, with a mixture of quiet water and limestone outcrops, remains unspoiled despite recent developments with the advent of tourism. We check into our hotel then explore the famous caves of Tham Jang, which were once used by the local people as a hideout from Chinese invaders.
Day 5 In Vang Vieng
We transfer 10km north of Vang Vieng to the Khmu village of Viengsamay. After an introduction to the basics of kayaking, we commence paddling on the Nam Song River navigating the small but fun rapids on the way to our first stop at Tham Nam Thaem Cave. This cave cuts straight through the mountain, so one emerges on the other side of the range for some panoramic views of the Nam Kouang valley. We then trek back over a small pass for a Lao style picnic lunch on the riverside. The next paddle stop the Organic Farm, where mulberry tea and a variety of fruit wines are produced. The Tham None Cave lies further downstream. As one of the biggest caves in Vang Vieng, it served as a rescue shelter for the villagers during the second Indochina War. Today it is home to a bat colony and 'The Magic Stone of Vang Vieng'. The final leg is a gentle paddle - before returning to Vang Vieng in time to catch the sunset. Please note* the above itinerary can only be done in the dry season (October-April). In the wet season (May-September), we start from Pathang village, which is 8km further than Viengsamay village. Lunch will be served at Viengsamay village. Only one cave will be visited, Tham Xang (Elephant cave) due to the fast water running.
Day 6 Vang Vieng to Vientiane
After breakfast, we drive out of town to the fabulous capital, Vientiane ( 6-7 hours). Along the way we make a stop to visit Vang Xang, a famous archeological site dating back 11th century. Vientiane is the charming capital of Laos with a curious mix of Lao, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, French influences. This afternoon is at leisure to explore this fascinating town.
Day 7 Vientiane cycle tour
We fit you for your bike then set off for a fantastic days cycling tour around town stopping to visit the major sights including; the oldest Wat Sisaket- the temple with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha image. No trip to Vientiane would be complete without also visiting That Luang Stupa and the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. In the afternoon, we continue on to the unusual Buddha Park where the largest reclining Buddha in Laos rests. The statues of Buddha Park were built by a Lao man following his studies in India, so that following generations could learn about Buddhism. A larger park was built in Nong Khai, Thailand where his body has been kept. Cycle approx 58kms
Day 8 Fly to Siem Reap
After breakfast, we transfer to the airport for our early morning flight to Siem Reap. This is where we say goodbye to our Laotian guide. Upon arrival in Siem Reap we will be met by our Cambodian guide and transferred to our hotel. Visit Kampong Phluk, a cluster of villages with stilts houses built within the floodplain of the Tonle Sap lake about 16 km southeast of Siem Reap. Flooded mangrove forest surrounds this area and is home to a variety of wildlife including crab-eating macaques. Enjoy taking Ox-cart riding in the village and small wooden boat to visit the floating mango forest. Overnight in Siem Reap
Day 9 Siem Reap - cycling to Phnom Bok
Today we start our days exploration with a cycle out to the temple of Phnom Bok. Phnom Bok is one of the temples that make up the triplicate of mountain temples built by Yasovarman I in the late 9th or early 10th century. The small temple is in reasonable shape and includes two frangipani trees growing out of a pair of ruinous towers. Phnom Bok also offers wonderful views of the plains of Angkor to the south. Phnom Bok is about 25km out of Siem Reap. Tonight we stay in a nearby village where we are hosted by a local family for a real experience of Cambodian hospitality. Our stay will be basic but comfortable. Cycle approx 25kms
Day 10 Siem Reap, cycling to Kbal Spean & Banteay Srey temple
This morning after breakfast, we continue cycling to Kbal Spean about 50km northeast of Siem Reap. It is commonly known as, ‘The valley of a 1000 Lingas’. It consists of a series of stone carvings in and around the Stung Kbal Spean River. Upon arrival at the parking area, we leave our bikes and start our journey on foot to the top of the mountain. In the evening we cycle to visit Banteay Srey and Banteay Samre temple before returning to Siem Reap town. An exploration of some nearby villages and a sampling of some famous Khmer noodle are a must! Cycle approx 55kms
Day 11 Cycling in Angkor Wat area
After breakfast we cycle to the South Gate of Angkor Thom Temple and marvel the wonders of the Bayon, the terrace of Elephants and terrace of Leper King. We then venture further to Ta Prohm Temple, a favorite place amongst visitors for the way in which it is entangled into the giant tree roots and vines of the jungle. In the afternoon we take our final ride to visit the famous Angkor Wat, built for king Suryavarman II in the early 12th century as his state temple and capital city. The largest and best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious centre—first Hindu, then Buddhist—since its foundation. We end our day with a sunset view from Phnom Bakheng then celebrate with a final farewell dinner! Cycle approx 17kms
Day 12 Trip concludes in Siem Reap
Our trip concludes following breakfast. Transfers to the airport will be arranged.