Indochina tour packages are designed to include the highlights of this fascinating region. It is impossible to cover everything but once you book anIndochina travel itinerary, you can expect a fantastic experience that is likely to bring you back time and again. There are different packages available based upon clients’ interests but most will include the following places as the best introduction to South East Asia.
Hanoi and the North
Today’s capital of Vietnam, Hanoi, is one alternative when you book an Indochina holiday. The City itself is a fascinating mix of old and new, Colonial and traditional. There are many landmarks within Hanoi and the importance of religion is evident throughout the City. The bustling narrow streets of Old Hanoi offer street food and vibrant markets. While chaos reigns in terms of traffic, you will love the time you spend in Hanoi before heading off to see more of the North.
Sapa Terraces in the Northern Highlands towards the Chinese border offer great photographs. The colours on the terraces vary by season through different shades of green before the rice crop is ready when the predominant colour is golden.
Due east of Hanoi, there is Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site where many hundreds of limestone islands, the vast almost all uninhabited, come in all shapes and sizes. Exploring this stunning Bay on a cruise is a definite ‘’must.’’
The main city in Central Vietnam is Danang, a place where there was plenty of action in the Vietnam War but the two places to concentrate on are closeby. Hue was the capital during the Nguyen Dynasty throughout the 19th Century and the first half of the 20th, a period coinciding with French colonial occupation.
Hoi An dates back to the Champa Kingdom that existed from as early as the 7th Century. Hoi An was an important trading port for many centuries and there is much to see, especially for those interested in Vietnam’s history and culture.
Ho Chi Minh City& the Mekong Delta
The former Saigon is the commercial hub of Vietnam, as well as its largest city. There are good examples of French architecture as well as 21st Century skyscrapers. The City is also the gateway to the iconic Mekong Delta, Vietnam’s most fertile region. The Delta has towns and cities as well as tiny farming and fishing villages, orchards and fields. The Produce is sold at floating markets that are worth a visit, but you need to start off early because the markets open at sunrise.
One of the main reasons for visiting Cambodia’s capital is a sad one. The terrible years at the end of the 1970s when Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge ran the country has never been forgotten. The prison where many ordinary citizens were held and tortured is now a museum while the thousands of skulls at the ‘’Killing Fields’’ just outside the City act as a memorial to the huge numbers who died during that short reign.
There are one or two less macabre things to see in Phnom Penh; the Royal Palace was built in the 19th Century and the site where you will also see the Silver Pagoda and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha is the top choice of most visitors.
Siem Reap& Angkor
Siem Reap is an interesting place though its popularity deserves much to its proximity to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Angkor which is located in a forested area covering 400 square kilometres. Angkor Wat is among the most photographed manmade structures in Asia, if not the World. Angkor is busy because so many people make it their number one priority within Indochina.
Perhaps the answer is to get there early before the crowds? However, there is much more than Angkor Wat to see and guides will ensure you see other highlights before you move on.
Vientiane is the capital of Laos but the highlight of the country is an ancient capital, Luang Prabang.It is located where the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers meet, below lovely green forested mountains. There are great vantage points to look over the whole area, the Royal Palace, now a museum, and several temples and monasteries.
In the immediate area, there are several natural highlights including the Kuang Si Waterfalls (and the butterfly park of the same name) and the Pak Ou Caves.
If time is no problem, you may decide to head on to Myanmar and Thailand. There are certainly compelling reasons for seeing both countries. Myanmar has only just returned to the tourist map after a long period of isolation. As a result, the tourist infrastructure is still developing. However, if you just get a small flavour of Myanmar by going to Bagan, you will not regret it. Bagan has 2,000 temples and once had more than 10,000; say no more. Yangon was the capital of Myanmar, formerly Burma, though a new capital has been built in the centre of the Country. If you have time, you can see what it has to offer before moving on.
Bangkok in Thailand deserves some days while the coastal resorts of Thailand have found favour with huge numbers of tourists. However, if you just look at Bangkok, there are several places that you should go. The Royal Palace Complex, Wat Arun, the Temple of the Gold Buddha and city life in general offer so much to tourists; Bangkok’s visitor numbers each year are a match for anywhere in the world. Why not join them on an Indochina holiday?
When it comes to Indochina travel packages, a good local travel agent will be happy to discuss ideas with you and organise an Indochina tour accordingly. There are several alternatives when it comes to starting or ending a tour. Hanoi is certainly popular but if you wish to start elsewhere, perhaps Phnom Penh, that can be arranged as well.
If you book an Indochina holiday, you will never regret it.