Our first trip together to South East Asia was a rewarding one, it took us right out of our comfort zone and gave us a crash course in Vietnamese and Cambodian history, culture, food and way of life. We also happened to be in Vietnam at a very important time for them, they were celebrating the 40 years reunification of the North and South of Vietnam. Every city and town went all out with street lights, posters and events in celebration of this important moment in history.

40 Year Reunification Anniversary
40 Year Reunification Anniversary
Reunification Day
Reunification Day

In General – Highlights

  • Definitely Angkor Wat in Cambodia. There’s no adequate way for me to express the awesomeness that is Angkor Wat.

    Sunrise over Angkor Wat
    Sunrise over Angkor Wat
  • The city of Ho Chi Minh City– My favourite city in Vietnam, it’s incredibly overwhelming at first: the heat, the traffic, the people …. but it is so enjoyable!

    Streets of HCMC
    Streets of HCMC
  • Vietnamese food and coffee – Every meal we had was an absolute delight. This was our first holiday where it was so easy to go without fast food! Fresh spring rolls, lemongrass and chilli chicken, the list goes on – we loved the balance of flavours.

    The Food!
    The Food!
Prawn curry
Prawn curry

I liked my Vietnamese coffee with condensed milk and iced – ahhhhh, the best!!!

  • Affordability – Our South African Rand actually took us quite far in these two countries, we got to hire private cars and eat in the fanciest of restaurants without thinking twice.

Itinerary Summary

Total days: 18 (inclusive of inbound/outbound travel time)

Dates:16 April -3 May 2015


No. of nights: 3

Places visited: Siem Reap

Transport used: Flights, Tuk-tuk


No. of nights: 12

Places visited: Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, Hoi An

Transport used: flights, private car with driver, taxi


16 April 2015  EK76419:15 – 5:15 Johannesburg to Dubai (4.5 hour layover)9:25 – 19:35 Dubai to HCMC
17 April 2015 19:35 Arrive in HCMCTransfer to Catina Saigon Hotel (Mai Linh Taxi approx. 16 USD)Dinner in HCMC – Vietnam House

Overnight at Catina Saigon Hotel

18 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel City tour – Trails and Tails (3 hours) meet at 8:45 , opp Crazy Buffalo, 185 De Tham, Quan 1. (take taxi)

Lunch in HCMC – Marina

War Remnants Museum

Dinner in HCMC – Ganesh

AO Show – Opera House

Overnight at Catina Saigon Hotel

19 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel Full Day tour Mekong Delta (AsianaLink)

Dinner-  Quan Bui

Ben Than Night Market

Overnight at Catina Saigon Hotel

20 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel Cu Chi Tunnels Half Day Tour (Asiana Link)

12:00 Lunch in HCMC

14:00 Transfer by taxi to airport.

16:30 – 17:30 HCMC – Siem Riep

Transfer to Tara Angkor Hotel (confirm free transfer from hotel)

Dinner in Siem Riep – Moab

Overnight in Tara Angkor Hotel

21 April 2015 Purchased 3 Day temple pass5:00: Angkor Wat sunrise

Breakfast at Hotel

Temple tour Day 1: Bayon Temple, Ta Prohm, Angkor Thom.


Angkor Wat Museum


Overnight in Tara Angkor Hotel

22 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel7:00 Temple tour day 2: Pre-Rup, Banteay Srey, Cambodian Land Mine Museum, Preah Kahn, Angkor Wat

Dinner: Chantey Tree

Phare Cambodian Circus

Overnight in Tara Angkor Hotel


23 April 2015 Breakfast at hotelFoot massage

Lunch on Pub Street

2:30pm Transfer to airport

18:10 – 19:50 Siem Reap to Hanoi

Dinner: Orchid Restaurant

Transfer to Oriental Central Hotel.

Overnight at Oriental Central Hotel

24 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel

Hanoi City Tour (HanoiFreeTours): Temple of Literature, Old Citadel, Hai Lo Prison,

Lunch –  Blue Butterfly Restaurant,

Women’s Museum, Old Quarter, French Quarter.

Dinner – Cau Go Restaurant

Water Puppet Show

Overnight at Oriental Central Hotel

25 April 2015 Breakfast at hotelHanoi- Full day Ninh Binh and Tam Coc Tour (GoAsiaTravel)

Dinner in Hanoi – Red Bean Restaurant

Night Market

Overnight at Oriental Central Hotel

26 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel7:45 Pick up hotel Lobby (Paloma Cruise)

Hanoi to Halong Bay

Overnight cruise

27 April 2015 Halong to Hanoi

12pmHanoi Elegance Ruby  Hotel at 5 pm

Dinner: Purple Cherry

Overnight at Hanoi Elegance Ruby Hotel

28 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel

8:55 – 10:05 Hanoi to Hue VN1541Transfer to Holiday Diamond Hotel

13:00 Lunch in Hue – Shiva Shakti Indian Restaurant

Citadel Tour

19:00 Dinner in Hue – DMZ Bar

Overnight at Holiday Diamond Hotel


29 April 2015 Breakfast at hotel (incl)Tombs and Temples Tour (Private Car)Tu Duc TombMinh Mang Tomb

Khai Dinh Tomb

Thien Mu Pagoda

Dinner in Hue: Risotto

Night Market

Overnight at Holiday Diamond Hotel


30 April 2015 Breakfast at HotelHue to Danang (07:00 – 11:26)Private Car with City Stops

Marble Mountain

Danang to Hoi An (11:30 – 12:30) Private Car

Lunch: Nu Eatery

Town walk around – Minh Hinh Tailor (1st Fitting)

6pm – 8pm Hai Café – Cooking Class

Night markets

Overnight at Thanh Binh Riverside


1 May 2015 Early morning to  Cua Dai BeachBreakfast at hotel (incl)

1 pm: My Son Tour – Private Car

Dinner-The Little Menu

Night Markets

Overnight at Than Binh Riverside


2 May 2015 9:35 – 10:55 Danang to HCMC

Shopping in HCMC: Saigon Square, Ben Than Market,

Lunch – Propaganda Café

Vincom Centre, Dhong Koi Street

Dinner – Dining Room

00:25 – 4:55 HCMC to Dubai (5 hour layover)

3 May 2015 10:15 – 16:25 Dubai to Johannesburg.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *