|Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam|
|Bangkok, Thailand||Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam|
From Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City this is a little beauty of a trip.
Don't miss a sunset drink on the rooftop at Sky Bar - Lebua at state Tower. Oh and the group briefing with your local tour guide.
It's a temple-filled day but we guarantee you'll come out with some awesome shots for Facebook.
Rice paddies, sugar palms, old pagodas and super friendly locals - that just about sums this place up.
Free time to visit the Killing Fields and Choeung Ek Museum and grab a bargain at Psar Thmei market.
Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 dinner
It's basic but it's only for a night so enjoy the home cooked meal and the chats with your local host family.
The beaches are really quiet here. Find your patch of sand and soak up the sun.
Have one of the best massages of your life at Seeing Hands, where massages are performed by the visually impaired.
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Long bus ride to Ho Chi Minh City. This place is fast-paced so best thing to do is hit the sites or watch it go by from one of the street-side cafes.
This trip is run by our sister company, Intrepid.
• Gecko’s expert English-speaking local tour guides throughout the tour, and local site guides at some sites.
• Free time to explore Saigon, Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, Siem Reap and Bangkok.
International flights, arrival and departure transfers, departure and airport taxes, visas, all other meals, entrance fees to local sites, all optional tours or activities during free time, transfers outside of the tour program, travel insurance, tips and items of a personal nature.
We have chosen a selection of some great optional activities to enhance your travel experience. You will need to cover any additional costs yourself. The below list is not exhaustive and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination.
Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed below have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
Crossing cultures When you are taking a tour that covers 3 different countries, you will be tempted at times to draw comparisons between them. However, you will get the most of your travel experience if you try to understand and respect each culture and the people living there, regardless of whether you preferred the destination you were in previously. There are some cultural elements that do cross over between countries in South East Asia: · Patting someone on their head is considered extremely rude and insulting. · Public displays of affection are not acceptable, especially kissing. · Losing your temper or showing anger and shouting or yelling will lose respect immediately, to remain cool, calm and collected at all times is an admired quality · When visiting temples ensure your shoulders and knees are covered. They are places of worship please treat them as such. · The monarchy is held in high esteem in Thailand & Cambodia, please treat them with respect
Local Tour Guides By employing and training local site guides to lead our group holidays, there is a two-fold benefit. Firstly, we provide employment opportunities for the local community. Just as importantly is the benefit to you, the traveller. Your tour guide’s friendship, humour, passion and intimate knowledge of the region will be key factors in making your holiday a success.
Tipping Tipping has become an accepted part of tourism in South East Asia. Your tour guide will be able to advise you in this area; however, as a guideline we would recommend tipping 10% of the total bill in restaurants and a small tip to hotel bellboys for carrying your bags. At you pre-tour briefing your tour guide will discuss with you the idea of running a tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then the tour guide pays the tips and keeps a record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour is returned to group members. This is often the easiest way to avoid the hassles of needing small change and knowing what is an appropriate amount to tip. It is customary to tip your tour guide, at the end of the trip, if you are happy with the service. A minimum tip of US$2 per day, from each member of the group, is the usual amount expected.
Thai Visas Please note that any travellers of certain nationalities (ie. Australians, Americans, Canadians, British and New Zealanders) do not normally require a visa for Thailand if flying in and staying up to 30 days. However, travellers will only get 15 days of stay if arriving without a visa at a land border checkpoint from a neighbouring country. Travellers arriving in Thailand this way and planning to stay in the country longer than 15 days should obtain a Thai visa before they leave home. All other nationalities should check for visa requirements with their travel agents. Please note that those nationalities requiring a visa may need to acquire one before they arrive Thailand, as a visa on arrival is not available at certain land borders.
Infrastructure and Tet Holiday Period Please note that Vietnam and Cambodia are developing countries whose infrastructure may differ from what you expect in your homeland. Expect poor road conditions and be prepared for some inconveniences due to such things as restaurants or tourist sites being closed and our regular transport services not always being available, especially so during the Tet holiday period (Vietnamese New Year) and Songkran festival (Cambodian and Thai New Year). During Tet (Vietnamese New Year) most businesses will be closed as Vietnamese people usually spend this period returning to their homes and celebrating with their families. This will involve a major burden on all forms of transport, and despite booking in advance, tickets for planes and trains especially are extremely difficult to obtain. Even if bookings are obtained, transport services during this period will be overcrowded and heavy delays are to be expected, so you will need to make sure that you pack your sense of humour. In order to facilitate your travels during the Tet period, we may need to substitute your train/plane journey with a private bus trip, if required. This is an 'adventure' trip and we hope to expose you to all aspects of the local cultures. Please be open-minded. Please note that, on your tour, you may link up with passengers booked on other tours in our Gecko’s Asia program.
Please note that this trip is run by our sister company, Intrepid.
Due to the style of accommodation on our trips it might not always be possible to book you in a single room throughout the trip. If you book a single supplement it will not apply to nights on the overnight trains, homestays, Longhouses, village huts, mountain huts, rainforest lodges ,on hill tribe treks, on boats, Camp 5 in Sarawak, Iban Longhouse, ryokan’s and on the Kokoda Track. If you are unsure of where a single supplement will apply please check with your travel agent before booking.
The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please ensure that you have the most up-to-date information for your trip. We recommend that you check the trip notes for your tour around one month before departure. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!
6 November 2013