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R Xi

Ha Giang Bl

ac

kD

Lai Chau

Cao Bang

Lao Cai

Sapa

a

V I E T N A M Lang Son

Dien Bien Phu

Hanoi

Son La

Halong Bay

Golden Triangle and Chiang Saen Salw

M ek

on

g

Muang Ngoi Seuang River Houay Xai Pak Ou Luang Prabang

een

Pakbeng

Yom

Phayao

Chiang Mai

Viengsay

Ninh Binh

Thanh Hoa

Vieng Thong

LAOS

Nan

Chiang Rai

Cat Ba Island

Mai Chau

Sam Nuea

Vang Vieng

Nan

g on ek M

Lampang

Vientiane

g

Pin

een Salw

Phrae

Nong Khai Nakhon Phanom

Sukhothai

Udon Thani

Loei

Phitsanulok

Dong Hoi

Sakon Nakhon

Quang Tri

Mae sot

Savannakhet

hi Ubon CRatchathani

Mun

Mun

Lop Buri

Quang Ngai

Pakse ng

Ko

Surin

Ayutthaya

Kontum

4000 Islands

Ban kok

Khao Yai

Pattaya

Aranyaprathet

Rayong Chanthaburi Hua Hin

Hoang Sa Island

Hoi An

Chi

THAILAND

Phetchaburi

Danang

g on

Khon Kaen

Nakhon Sawan

Kanchanaburi

Hue

ek M

Kamphaeng Phet

Stung Treng

Angkor Siem Reap

Quy Nhon

Ban Lung Srepo

k

CAMBODIA

Battambang

Kompong Thom

Srep ok

Buon Me Thuot

Kratie

Mekong

Koh Samet

Nha Trang

Kampong Chom Koh Chang

Koh khong

Phnom Penh

ng

Do

Dalat

i

Na

Tay Ninh Cu Chi

Sihanoukville

Chumphon Ranong

Koh Tao Island

Kep

Phu Quoc Island

Koh Pha Island

Chau Doc My Tho Vung Tau Can Tra Vinh Tho

Koh Samui Island

Ca Mau

Khao Sok

Krabi Phuket Koh Yao Noi Island Koh lanta Island

Bac Lieu Con Dao Island

Phang Nga Bay

Hat Yai

MALAYSIA

Mui Ne

Ho Chi Minh City

Phan Thiet

Truong sa Archipelago


Dear Partners and Industry Colleagues, In 2012, Buffalo Tours will be 18 years old. I have the utmost pleasure to have grown with this company from the very beginning. Today Buffalo Tours is amongst the top tour operators in the region and our goal remains the same: for every traveller and partner to have a great experience with Buffalo Tours. So what makes Buffalo Tours different from everyone else in the market? Why has not only Buffalo Tours grown to be number one but several of our partners grown to be number one in their respective markets too? Buffalo Tours and our global partners share the traits of high performers: dedication, focus, positive culture, the ability to attract and develop talent, and a belief in “continuous improvement”. We always do right by OUR CUSTOMERS through honesty, simplicity, personal touches and going the extra mile. This brochure is designed to showcase the best and most popular travel concepts and ideas in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand. There are tested journeys which we have run for over a decade and there are new concepts which reflect the trends and developments in our destinations. We hope this brochure will be your ultimate reference guide for inspired travel ideas for your clients. Global uncertainties mean that the challenges we face in 2012 will be great. But I believe in the resilience of our industry and our partnership and I believe in the strength of 18 years’ experience to take us even further forward. Tran Trong Kien CEO and Founder

ABOUT BUFFALO TOURS

Buffalo Tours started 18 years ago when CEO Tran Trong Kien set up his own travel company to help fund his medical studies. Since then Buffalo Tours has developed into a multinational company with over 200 local and international staff, 8 offices in Indochina & Thailand, and offices in London & Sydney. Although Buffalo Tours has grown enormously over the years we try to remain true to our core values. The buffalo represents strength and prosperity in Vietnam and we never forget that our business can bring strength and prosperity to others. We continue to run not just a thriving business but one which helps protect the environment, improves people’s way of life and supports local communities.

WHY CHOOSE BUFFALO TOURS?

• Experience. We have been operating in Indochina and Thailand for 18 years and Buffalo and its group travel companies carry over 80,000 passengers every year • Knowledge and innovation. Our staff have great travel knowledge of Indochina and Thailand • Passion. Our staff love travel and the travel styles we offer • Support. We have 24 hour support and offices throughout the region, in Hanoi, Danang, Ho Chi Minh City, Siem Reap, Luang Prabang, Bangkok, Phuket and Chiang Mai • Responsible Tourism. Buffalo Tours is committed to sustainable and responsible best practices • Security and safety. Buffalo Tours has full public liability and professional indemnity insurance. All guides are trained to international standards and carry first aid kits. We are members of ABTA & ATOL in the UK and TCF in Australia

TOURING OPTIONS

Buffalo Tours offers two different forms of travel: customised tours and group tours.

CUSTOMISED TOURS

Customised private tours offer ultimate flexibility. Our sales staff will create an itinerary which perfectly suits you, on your preferred departure date and within your budget. You travel only with the friends and family who are included in your booking. Choose suitable accommodation from comfortable 4 star hotels and luxury properties to friendly home stays and locally-owned guesthouses. Follow one of the itineraries listed in this brochure or have a new one created for you.

GROUP TOURS

Meet like-minded travelers and share cultural interaction and fascinating experiences on one of our group tours. These are designed to showcase the highlights of the destination as well as including something a little different. Enjoy quality 4 star hotels and private transportation with a qualified tour leader in each country visited as well as local guides at specific sites. The maximum group size is 20 with regular set departure dates. Please see pages 20, 40, 57, 76 and 89 for more details of customised tours.

BOOKING PROCESS

Please contact our offices on the back of this brochure or email agents@buffalotours.com for assistance Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 2


CONTENTS WELCOME

CAMBODIA

1 2 3 4

43 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59

Regional map Introduction Contents Travel Styles

VIETNAM 5 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 23

Introduction Vietnam Highlights Sapa to the Sea Family Vietnam Vietnam Beach Break Cycle Vietnam Ultimate Adventure Gourmet Vietnam Health and Harmony Active Halong Mekong Boat and Bike Unseen Vietnam Mai Chau Break Vietnam Voluntourism Vietnam Group Tour Vietnam Beach Resorts Vietnam Hotels

LAOS 25 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41

Introduction In Depth Laos Laos Highlights Seuang River Experience Family Laos Adventure Laos Cycle the Grand Loop Lux Laos Cuisine and Culture Northern Laos Cruise 4000 Islands Cruise Laos for Locals Trek Muang Ngoi Laos Voluntourism Laos Group Tour Laos Hotels

Introduction In Depth Cambodia Cambodia Highlights Family Cambodia Tuk Tuks and Temples Cycling Cambodia Trek Mondulkiri Luxurious Cambodia Angkor Honeymoon Cruise Cambodia Monastery Experience Rural Battambang Cambodia Voluntourism Cambodia Group Tour Cambodia Beach Resorts Cambodia Hotels

THAILAND 61 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 79

Introduction Thailland Highlights Siam Culinary Adventure Elephants & Beaches Nature & Family Adventure Coast to Coast Cycle Thai Eco Adventure Boutique Isaan Lanna Luxury Houseboat Safari Sailing the Andaman Kayak Khao Sok Culture and Cuisine Thailand Voluntourism Thailand Group Tour Thailand Beach Resorts Thailand Hotels

MULTI COUNTRY 80 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90

Introduction Hidden Laos & Cambodia Family Indochina Extreme Cycle Indochina In Style Vietnam to Cambodia Cruise Cuisine Connoisseurs Multi Country Group Tour Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Events

USEFUL INFORMATION 91 92 93 94

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Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

Vietnam Laos and Cambodia Thailand The Buffalo Tours Team


CUSTOMISED TRAVEL STYLES Below is an overview of all the different travel styles available in our tailor made series. You can follow the itineraries as shown in the brochure or contact us to add or remove activities and destinations to suit your taste.

HIGHLIGHTS TOURS

Our ‘Highlights’ collection features the main highlights of Indochina and Thailand, perfect for first time visitors and travelers who wish to ensure they experience the most popular sites in each country.

FAMILY TOURS

Our ‘Family’ collection features the main highlights of Indochina and Thailand, but with the itineraries designed with families in mind. The featured experiences minimize long journeys as much as possible and include more focus on activities suitable for children.

ADVENTURE TOURS

Our ‘Adventure’ collection contains some of our favourite itineraries in each country but includes more adventurous activities such as kayaking, rock climbing, trekking and cycling.

LUXURY TOURS

Our ‘Luxury’ collection features some of the top hotels and resorts in Indochina and Thailand, and caters to the discerning traveler who enjoys the finer things in life. Experience the region’s deluxe accommodation, award winning spas and world-class golf courses.

CRUISES

Cruising is rapidly increasing in popularity. From taking in the UNESCO World Heritage destinations of Halong Bay, weeklong luxury river cruises in the southern Mekong Delta to cruising through the beautiful 4000 Islands region of Laos, we can offer it all.

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

Our ‘Something Different’ collection features sample itineraries that showcase what Buffalo Tours can provide for those seeking a holiday ‘with a twist’. Whether it is a romantic honeymoon, culinary tour or wildlife experience, we can customize an itinerary to fit your interests.

SHORT BREAKS

Our ‘Short Break’ collection features some of our favourite destinations in the region, either for those wanting to extend their trip or for those with limited time.

VOLUNTEER & EDUCATIONAL TRAVEL

Our Volunteer and Educational Travel Department is responsible for sourcing sustainable and ethical volunteer projects and experiences. If you want to put be involved in a local project or have a special interest group looking to make positive impact on a local family or community we can put together a rewarding project for you.

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 4


VIETNAM


Vietnam is a country with immense geographic and cultural diversity. The country’s varied climate and landscape range from four seasons in the mountainous North, to year-round tropical temperatures in the lush South. Visitors to the country almost always comment on the friendly locals and the delicious cuisine. When visiting the country you can choose to travel at various levels of comfort, staying in anything from deluxe to budget accommodation, using various forms of transportation and dining in fine Vietnamese and international restaurants or in more local style eateries.

P5 P7 P8 P9 P 10 P 11 P 12 P 13 P 14 P 15 P 16 P 17 P 18 P 19 P 20 P 21 P 23

Introduction Vietnam Highlights Sapa to the Sea Family Vietnam Vietnam Beach Break Cycle Vietnam Ultimate Adventure Gourmet Vietnam Health and Harmony Active Halong Mekong Boat and Bike Unseen Vietnam Mai Chau Break Vietnam Voluntourism Vietnam Group Tour Vietnam Beach Resorts Vietnam Hotels


VIETNAM HIGHLIGHTS 12 DAYS

Day 1-4

Hanoi Sapa HALONG BAY Hoi An Ho Chi Minh City Mekong Delta

Enjoy a guided city tour of Hanoi and explore the narrow, ancient streets of the Old Quarter in a traditional cyclo. Travel on an overnight sleeper train to Lao Cai and transfer to Sapa before trekking through the lush valleys and mountains that surround the town. Overnight with a local family in Ta Van village, or return to the comfort of your hotel in Sapa. Hike to a beautiful waterfall before continuing on to a picturesque village, populated by the Red Dao ethnic group. Return to Hanoi on the overnight train.

Sapa

V IETNA M HANOI Halong Bay

Hanoi – Sapa

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore Hanoi’s Old Quarter in a cyclo • Meet ethnic minorities in the mountainous North West • Cruise through stunning Halong Bay on a traditional junk • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Citadel in Hue • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An • Explore the Mekong Delta’s verdant waterways

Day 5-8 Hoi An

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Experience this fascinating country’s main highlights in just twelve days with flights between each city. This enables you to see many of the country’s main destinations and attractions in a relatively short time. The perfect way to explore Vietnam.

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Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

Hanoi - Halong Bay – Hue – Hoi An

On your return to Hanoi, freshen up and have breakfast before starting your journey to Halong Bay. Board a traditional junk for an overnight cruise. Explore caves, kayak, swim and enjoy delicious seafood dishes during this unforgettable experience. Next, fly to the old imperial capital of Hue and explore the UNESCO World Heritage listed Citadel, before enjoying a sunset cruise on the Perfume River. Drive south over the scenic Hai Van Pass, to the picturesque fishing village of Hoi An. On arrival, enjoy a walking tour of this charming traditional town, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Day 9-12

Hoi An – Ho Chi Minh City – Mekong Delta

Spend the day at leisure on the beach or having clothes made at one of the many inexpensive tailors. Alternatively, explore the local produce market with an expert chef who will then teach you the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine. Next, fly to Ho Chi Minh City and enjoy a guided tour of the highlights of this bustling metropolis. Later in the day, enjoy an evening dinner cruise on the Saigon River. The next day, travel to the heart of the Mekong Delta and cruise on a traditional sampan. Visit floating markets and get a feel for a way of life that has changed little for centuries.

Phan Thiet Extension Famous for its vast sand dunes and water sports facilities, Phan Thiet is only a short drive from frenetic Ho Chi Minh City. During your stay in this peaceful resort you may wish to go kitesurfing, make a trip to the area’s vast sand dunes or simply relax on the beach and enjoy the delicious seafood on offer.


Sapa to the Sea UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Admire French colonial architec ture in the capital • Meet ethnic minorities in the mountainous North West • Trek through stunning scenery ringed by lofty peaks and terraced rice paddies • Cruise through stunning Halong Bay on a traditional junk • Kayak through stunning limestone karst scenery • Feast on delicious seafood

Day 1-3

5 DAYS

You will be met at the airport and transferred to your comfortable hotel. Enjoy a guided city tour of Hanoi and explore the narrow, ancient streets of the Old Quarter in a traditional cyclo. Enjoy a fun performance of traditional Water Puppets. Take in some of the main sights before continuing your adventure with an overnight train journey from Vietnam’s capital city to the border town of Lao Cai. On arrival, you will be transferred to the former French colonial hill station of Sapa. Spend the rest of the day trekking through the fascinating ethnic minority villages of Cat Cat, Ta Van and Cau May. Overnight with a local family in a nearby ethnic minority village to enjoy some unique cultural interaction. Alternatively, return to the comfort of your hotel in Sapa for the night. On Day 3, climb the town’s Ham Rong Mountain for superb panoramic views of Sapa and its mountainous environs. Continue your exploration of the area with a visit to a village populated by the colourful Red Dao ethnic group. In the evening, transfer from Sapa to Lao Cai for the overnight train journey back to Hanoi.

Hanoi Sapa Halong Bay

Hanoi – Sapa

Day 4-5

Hanoi – Halong Bay - Hanoi

Mai P Chau Extension AFam less touristy alternative to the more well known Sapa and only a four hour drive from Hanoi, the Mai Chau Valley offers a peaceful stay in picturesque scenery. A stay in the valley offers visitors the chance to trek and cycle through fascinating ethnic minority villages and emerald green rice paddies.

On your return to Hanoi, freshen up and have breakfast before starting the onward journey to Halong Bay. On arrival, you will board a traditional junk for an unforgettable overnight cruise through the majestic scenery of this UNESCO World Heritage listed bay. The bay is punctuated by thousands of limestone islands, cavernous grottoes and floating fishing villages. Observe a unique way of life as you cruise through the beautiful bay. You will have the opportunity to explore vast caves, kayak into secluded lagoons and swim in the emerald green waters. You are also sure to enjoy delicious seafood dishes expertly prepared on board your junk. This memorable experience ends on Day 5 with a transfer back to the capital and the chance to reflect on your adventure through the north of Vietnam.

Sapa

VIETNAM HANOI Halong Bay

SUMMARY This five day adventure will take you from the bustling capital to mountainous north-west of the country, where you will have the chance to learn about some of the ethnic groups that make the region their home. Round off the experience with an overnight cruise in majestic Halong Bay.

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family VIETNAM 12 DAYS

Day 1-4

Hanoi Mai Chau Halong Bay Hoi An

Spend the first day strolling around Hoan Kiem lake and the atmospheric Old Quarter. The next day, enjoy a morning cyclo tour of Hanoi which will take you through the Old Quarter and the French Colonial District. In the evening, enjoy a traditional Water Puppets performance. On Day 3, depart Hanoi for Mai Chau and a peaceful stay in this stunning valley. Over the next two days, take advantage of the swimming pool and spa facilities at your comfortable lodge. If you are feeling adventurous you may wish to enjoy a light trek or cycling adventure through some of the ethnic minority communities that dot the valley.

Sapa

Hanoi - Mai Chau

V IETNA M HANOI Halong Bay

VIETNAM HANOI Halong Bay

Mai Chau

Hoi An

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Take in a traditional Water Puppet performance in Hanoi • Learn how to dance with the White Thai • Cycle through emerald green rice paddies • Kayak through stunning limestone karst scenery • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An • Count the colourful fishing boats in Hoi An

Day 5-8

Mai Chau - Hanoi - Halong Bay - Hoi An

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta Hoi An

SUMMARY Vietnam is perfectly suited for a family adventure. Children have few inhibitions and quickly break through cultural and linguistic barriers. This tour is designed to cater for the needs of youngsters by including plenty of time in the countryside and at beach destinations.

After a morning at leisure, journey back to Hanoi from Mai Chau and enjoy some free time to explore the capital. The following day, drive to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Halong Bay for a two night cruise on a traditional junk. Cruise through the breathtaking seascape as you cruise past thousands of limestone islands. Spend your time kayaking into secluded lagoons and swimming in the emerald green waters. Transfer back to Hanoi the following day and in the evening board the Reunification Express for the overnight journey to the centre of the country. Your final destination is the picturesque fishing town of Hoi An.

Day 9-12 Hoi An

Enjoy an afternoon walking tour of Hoi An’s ancient streets. Soak up the atmosphere in this relaxed town and dine in many of its fine riverside restaurants. Venture just out of town and spend your time relaxing on beautiful Cua Dai beach. Alternatively, get suited and booted in one of the numerous inexpensive tailors that the town is famous for. Alternatively, take part in a fun cooking class for the whole family or embark on a cycling adventure in the picturesque countryside that surrounds Hoi An.

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Mekong Delta Extension Journey from Ho Chi Minh City into the heart of the Mekong Delta to get a glimpse of what life is like in this fertile region. Explore the narrow waterways on a sampan cruise, discover colourful floating markets filled with fresh produce and observe a way of life that has changed relatively little over the years.


Vietnam Beach Break UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-5

14 DAYS

• Explore Hanoi’s fascinating Old Quarter in a cyclo • Enjoy an overnight cruise in Halong Bay • Take a boat trip to the beautiful islands off Nha Trang • Feast on delicious seafood • Crawl through the fighting tunnels at Cu Chi • Get a taste of exciting Ho Chi Minh City • Learn how to kitesurf

Enjoy a guided city tour of Hanoi and explore the narrow, ancient streets of the Old Quarter on a traditional cyclo. The next day, travel to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Halong Bay for an overnight cruise through thousands of limestone islands on a traditional junk. The following day, journey to the picturesque fishing town of Hoi An. Take a guided walking tour through the old streets, enjoy a fun cooking class or visit the ancient jungle enveloped Cham ruins of My Son. Enjoy some time to relax on beautiful Cua Dai beach, which is a short journey from the centre of town.

Hanoi Halong Bay Hoi An Nha Trang Ho Chi Minh City Mekong Delta phan thiet

Hanoi – Halong Bay – Hoi An

Sapa

VI E T N AM

V I ETN AM

HANOI HANOI

HalongBay Bay Halong

HoiAn An Hoi

Day 6-10

Hoi An – Nha Trang – Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta

Travel onwards to the beach town of Nha Trang, where you can enjoy a day trip to the offshore islands to go snorkeling and swimming. Take advantage of the excellent kayaking or diving on offer, before heading further south to Ho Chi Minh City. Enjoy a guided city tour of the city’s main sights or make the journey out to the famous fighting tunnels at Cu Chi. The next day, journey to the fertile Mekong Delta where you will enjoy a cruise on a traditional sampan and the chance to sample some local delicacies. Observe a way of life that has changed little over the years as you cruise the verdant waterways of this fertile region.

Day 11-14

Nha Trang

Ho ChiMinh Minh Ho Chi City City

Phan Thiet

Mekong MekongDelta Delta

SUMMARY Soak up the culture of Vietnam whilst enjoying one of the most beautiful coastlines in Asia. This fourteen day trip includes stays in the atmospheric capital Hanoi and cosmopolitan Ho Chi Minh City, with beautiful beaches and comfortable resorts along the way.

Ho Chi Minh City – Phan Thiet Ho Chi Minh City

P Chau Extension Mai AFam less touristy alternative to the more well known Sapa and only a four hour drive from Hanoi, the Mai Chau Valley offers a peaceful stay in picturesque scenery. A stay in the valley offers visitors the chance to trek and cycle through fascinating ethnic minority villages and emerald green rice paddies.

Your last few days of this relaxing experience will be spent in the peaceful town of Phan Thiet. Just a four hour drive from frenetic Ho Chi Minh City, it seems a world away. This beautiful seaside resort is a popular place for watersports, such as windsurfing and kitesurfing. Also, the area is home to giant sand dunes, which are perfect for adventurous jeep safaris. Being on the coast, the area is also justifiably well-known for its cheap and fresh seafood which you are sure to enjoy during your relaxing stay here.

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CYCLE VIETNAM 15 DAYS

Day 1-5

Hanoi Hue Hoi An Quang Ngai Kontum Buon Me Thuot Dalat Nha Trang Ho Chi Minh City

On the first evening, enjoy a performance at Hanoi’s famous Water Puppet Theatre. The following morning, enjoy a guided tour of Hanoi’s main sights. In the evening, transfer to the train station for the overnight train journey southwards to Hue. Later the next day set out on your first ride in Vietnam, which will take you through the former imperial capital of Hue. On Day 4 there is the optional challenge of riding to the top of the Hai Van Pass, which is some 500 metres above sea level. You are sure to enjoy the fantastic views from the top of the pass. Continue on to Hoi An, and take a short walking tour through the old streets.

Sapa

V IETNA M

V IET N A M

HANOIHANOI

Halong Bay Bay Halong

Hue Hoi Hoi An An Quang Ngai

Buon Ma Thuot Nha Trang Dalat

Ho Chi Minh City Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY See Vietnam at a slower pace with this exciting cycling adventure. Visit some of the country’s main sights whilst getting off the beaten track. This rewarding experience will allow you to travel through some of the country’s most spectacular scenery.

See Vietnam at a slower pace with this exciting cycling adventure. Visit some on the country’s main sights whilst getting ‘off the beaten track’. From the capital Hanoi to the bright lights of Ho Chi Minh City, this rewarding experience will allow you to travel through some of the country’s most spectacular scenery.

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Admire French colonial architecture in the capital • Travel on the famous Reunification Express • Enjoy stunning views from the top of the Hai Van Pass • Cycle through emerald green rice paddies • Get ‘off the beaten track’ in the Central Highlands • Enjoy a boat trip to the beautiful islands off Nha Trang

Day 6-10

Hoi An - Quang Ngai - Kon Tum – Buon Me Thuot - Dalat

Kontum

11

Hanoi – Hue - Hoi An

Depart Hoi An southwards before cycling through Chau O to a hamlet called My Lai, the scene of an infamous massacre perpetrated during the Vietnam War. The following day, venture into the Central Highlands and through some exceptional scenery and ethnic minority villages. On Day 9, cycle through deep valleys before taking in the mountainous route of Highway 27. In Dalat, enjoy a cycling tour of the city and take in the main sights of this relaxed mountain retreat, including Emperor Bao Dai’s Summer Palace.

Day 11-15

Dalat - Nha Trang – Ho Chi Minh City

On Day 11, you will cycle mostly downhill towards the coast and the beach resort of Nha Trang, passing through ethnic minority villages as you descend. On Day 12 enjoy a relaxing full-day boat trip to explore the nearby islands for a day of swimming and snorkelling in the azure waters. Next, fly to Ho Chi Minh City and enjoy a guided tour of the city’s most famous sites. The next morning, pay a visit to the remarkable network of tunnels at Cu Chi, the scene of fierce fighting during the Vietnam War. The afternoon is at your leisure for you to explore this fascinating city.

Halong Bay Extension Embark on an overnight cruise through the majestic scenery of this UNESCO World Heritage listed bay. Marvel at the thousands of islands rising dramatically from the Gulf of Tonkin. Kayak and swim in the emerald waters, explore hidden caves and fishing villages and feast on delicious seafood.


ultimate Adventure UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-3

• Explore Hanoi’s crowded Old Quarter in a cyclo • Stay in an ethnic minority homestay • Marvel at the emerald green rice terraces near Sapa • Trek in the mountainous north-west • Cruise through stunning Halong Bay on a traditional junk • Kayak through stunning limestone karst scenery

Enjoy a guided city tour of Hanoi and explore the narrow, ancient streets of the Old Quarter in a traditional cyclo. The following day, you will depart the capital by vehicle before cycling to the stunning valley of Mai Chau, where you will spend the night. The next day’s cycling is more challenging as you climb high mountain passes and descend into picturesque valleys.

Hanoi - Mai Chau

Day 4-7

Mai Chau - Son La - Dien Bien Phu - Lai Chau - Sapa

Continue on to the settlement of Son La, which is notable for its colourful ethnic minorities, terraced rice fields and tea plantations. The next day’s cycle from Son La to Dien Bien Phu is truly breathtaking as you ascend and descend high passes. Your onward journey to Sapa will take you through bustling ethnic minority markets and beautiful mountain scenery.

Day 8-10

Sapa - Hanoi

On Day 8, depart Sapa and trek to the Black Hmong village of Lao Chai, before taking a jeep transfer and trekking downhill to the village of Thanh Phu. There you will be hosted for the night by a family from the Tay ethnic group. Next, trek through an area populated by the Xa Pho ethnic group, the smallest ethnic group in the region. Continue trekking to Nam Ken Village, where you will spend the night as guests of the Red Dao ethnic group. The next day trek to Su Pan, before transferring to Lao Cai for the overnight train to Hanoi.

12 DAYS

Hanoi Mai Chau Son La Dien Bien Phu Lai Chau Sapa Halong Bay

Sapa

VI E T N AM HANOI Halong Bay

Sapa Lai chau

VIETNAM

Dien Bien Phu

HANOI

Son La

Halong Bay

Mai Chau

Hoi An

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY The Northwest mountainous region offers some of the most spectacular scenery anywhere in Vietnam and the opportunity to learn about the culture of Vietnam’s ethnic minorities. Discover Northern Vietnam and all its charm with a journey for the truly adventurous.

Day 11-12

Hanoi – Halong Bay - Hanoi P An Extension Hoi Fam beaches, culture and advenWith ture, Hoi An is sure to impress. Explore the surrounding countryside by bicycle and amble through the town’s ancient streets. Mingle with the locals in the local produce markets and learn the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine with a fun cooking class.

On Day 11, transfer from Hanoi to Halong Bay and spend the next two days cruising the emerald waters of the UNESCO World Heritage listed bay. Over the next two days you are sure to enjoy swimming in the emerald green waters, kayaking through secluded lagoons and exploring cavernous grottoes. At the end of this memorable experience you will be transferred back to Hanoi.

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Gourmet Vietnam Day 1-3

9 DAYS Ho chi minh city mekong delta hoi an hue hanoi

Sapa

V IETNA M

V I E T N AM

HANOI HANOI

Halong Bay

Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta – Ho Chi Minh City

Enjoy a guided city tour of this bustling metropolis or venture out of the city to visit the historic Cu Chi Tunnels. Begin your culinary discovery with a fun cooking class, assisted by an expert chef. Learn how to pepare some traditional Vietnamese dishes before enjoying the fruits of your labour. The next day, head to the Mekong Delta where you will enjoy a cruise in a traditional sampan along the region’s verdant waterways and the chance to sample some local delicacies.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Get a taste of frenetic Ho Chi Minh City • Explore the Mekong Delta’s verdant waterways • Feast on delicious seafood • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An • Enjoy a bowl of tasty ‘Bun Bo Hue’ • Sample regional specialities as you travel through the country • Sip green tea with the friendly locals

Day 4-6

Hue AnAn Hoi Hoi

Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City Mekong Delta

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Vietnam is a gourmet paradise known for its fabulous, exotic cuisine that differs between the southern, central and northern regions of the country. Experience a culinary tour that incorporates cultural highlights, cooking classes and dining in gourmet restaurants along the way.

Ho Chi Minh City – Hoi An - Hue

Journey from Ho Chi Minh City to the quaint fishing town of Hoi An and enjoy a guided walking tour through the atmospheric streets of this UNESCO World Heritage listed town. The next day, enjoy a tour of the local produce market followed by a relaxing river cruise to a villa on the banks of the Thu Bon River. Enjoy a fun cooking class at the villa and learn how to prepare some dishes that the central region is famous for. Then, make the scenic journey to Hue stopping to enjoy the views from the top of the Hai Van Pass as you go. Spend the afternoon on a guided tour of this former Imperial city, with the imposing Citadel as a highlight. In the evening, enjoy a fabulous authentic Hue dinner and the chance to sample some local specialities.

Day 7-9

Hue – Hanoi

Vietnam is a gourmet paradise well known for its fabulous, exotic cuisine that differs between the southern, central and northern regions of the country. Experience a Vietnam culinary tour that incorporates cultural highlights, cooking classes and dining in gourmet restaurants along the way.

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Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

From Hue fly to Hanoi, where you will have the chance to sample some unique dishes that the north is famous for. Experience a ‘street eats and market tour’ with a local chef and learn all about the unique delicacies of northern Vietnam. In the evening enjoy dinner at one of the oldest restaurants in Hanoi which specializes in the famous fish dish, ‘Cha Ca’. During your stay in Hanoi, you will visit a well-known restaurant, which acts as a hospitality training institute for underprivileged street kids and offers Vietnamese and Western fusion dishes.

Bai Tu Long Bay Extension Enjoy a unforgettable overnight cruise on a traditional junk in Bai Tu Long Bay, known as the ‘off the beaten track’ alternative to Halong Bay. Kayak and swim in the emerald waters, explore some of the area’s hidden caves and fishing villages and feast on the delicious seafood on offer.


Health and Harmony UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-4

12 DAYS

• Admire French colonial architec ture in the capital • Join the locals for early morning Tai Chi at Hoan Kiem Lake • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An • Pamper yourself with luxury spa treatments • Relax on stunning tropical beaches • Get a taste of frenetic Ho Chi Minh City • Feast on gourmet cuisine

Enjoy a guided tour of the capital including a cyclo tour through the fascinating streets of the Old Quarter. The next day, travel to Halong Bay for a cruise on a traditional junk through the stunning limestone karst islands. Enjoy swimming in the emerald green waters, kayaking into secluded lagoons and visiting floating villages. Observe life on water before returning to your junk. In the evenings, enjoy cocktails on deck and gourmet dinners prepared by a private chef. In the mornings, you may wish to take Tai Chi classes on deck. At the end of this luxurious experience you will be transferred back to the capital for an overnight stay.

Hanoi Halong Bay Hoi An Nha Trang ho chi minh city

Hanoi – Halong Bay - Hanoi

Sapa

VI E T N AM

VIE T N A M

HANOI HANOI

Halong Bay Halong Bay

Hoi AnAn Hoi

Day 5-8

Hanoi – Hoi An – Nha Trang

Fly from Hanoi to central Vietnam and travel to the UNESCO World Heritage town of Hoi An. Enjoy a walking tour of this atmospheric town and be inspired by its fascinating architecture and relaxed vibe. Explore the town’s bustling riverside market with an expert chef, before being taught some of the secrets of fine Vietnamese cuisine. At the end of the this fun and informative cooking class enjoy the fruits of your labour and feast on your delicious creations. Next, take the short flight to the beach resort of Nha Trang and transfer to your luxury resort, with the last part of the journey being by speed boat.

Day 9-12

Nha Trang

Ho Chi Minh City Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Experience pure Zen on a health and harmony relaxation getaway. This tour revolves around luxury resorts and spas, with time to learn Tai Chi in the most beautiful destinations around Vietnam. A perfect way to de-stress and soak up the flavours and culture of Vietnam.

Nha Trang - Ho Chi Minh City

P Sapa Extension Fam Journey into the mountainous north-west and enjoy a stay in the former French colonial hill station of Sapa. During your stay you may wish to enjoy hikes through the region’s stunning valleys, visit local ethnic minority villages and hunt for souvenirs in the bustling markets.

Over the next couple of days, relax at the resort and take advantage of the luxury facilities on offer. Alternatively, snorkel in the azure waters, go kayaking through the calm waters or go scuba diving at some of the country’s best dive sites. On Day 11, travel back to Nha Trang in the afternoon and take the short flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Upon arrival you will be met by a guide and accompanied to your hotel. Your final evening and the following day is at leisure for you to explore Ho Chi Minh City further. Later on you will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Experience pure Zen on a health and harmony relaxation getaway. This tour revolves around luxury resorts and spas, with time to learn Tai Chi in the most beautiful destinations around Vietnam. A perfect way to de-stress and soak up the flavours and culture of Vietnam in harmonious style. If desired, a private yoga instructor can be arranged to travel with you for daily classes.

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ACTIVE HALONG Day 1

3 DAYS Hanoi HaLong Bay Cat Ba Island

Sapa

V IETNA M HANOI Halong Bay

VIETNAM HANOI Halong Bay Cat Ba Island

Hanoi – Halong Bay - Cat Ba Island

Depart from the capital and make the four hour journey to Haiphong, which is situated on the Gulf of Tonkin. Here, you will board a ferry for the trip to spectacular Cat Ba Island. It is the largest of the 366 islands in the beautiful Cat Ba archipelago. Spend the afternoon exploring the national park by bicycle and enjoy a visit to a traditional northern Vietnamese fishing village, where you will be able to interact with the friendly locals.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore beautiful Halong bay • Enjoy an overnight cruise on a traditional junk • Kayak through secluded lagoons • Go rock climbing amongst spectacular karst scenery • Feast on delicious freshly caught seafood • Trek through beautiful Cat Ba Naional Park • Cycle through picturesque villages and quiet roads

Day 2

Halong Bay – Lan Ha Bay

Hoi An

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Hundreds of towering pillars of limestone karst make Halong Bay an unforgettable sight. This three day rock-climbing, trekking and kayaking tour explores the area’s famous Cat Ba archipelago. Experience an overnight cruise on a luxurious junk, combined with adventurous activities.

This morning, embark on a cruise on your luxurious junk through beautiful Lan Ha Bay, an area of Halong Bay most tourists overlook. Kayak into serene, hidden lagoons where you can swim in the emerald waters and marvel at the stunning scenery. Later on, you will cruise through a maze of fantastic karst towers to a pristine beach on uninhabited Moody’s Island. After your cruise, our certified climbing guides will outfit you with safe and comfortable UIAAstandard climbing harnesses and rock-climbing gear. With the coaching of our experienced guides, you can climb as high as you like to enjoy spectacular views across the emerald waters of Halong Bay. At the end of this exciting experience you will be transferred back to your junk.

Day 3

Cat Ba Island - Hanoi

This morning enjoy the relaxing cruise back to Cat Ba Island. On arrival, you will embark on a soft trek through beautiful Cat Ba National Park. This national park differs from others in Vietnam because of the great variety of landscapes and ecosystems within it. It is abundant in diverse fauna and flora, with 896 plant species and 548 animal species recorded, Cat Ba is considered one of the most beautiful areas in northern Vietnam. At the end of this adventurous experience you be met by a vehilce and will then be transferred back to the capital. On arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel.

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Mai Chau Extension A less touristy alternative to the more well known Sapa and only a four hour drive from Hanoi, the Mai Chau Valley offers a peaceful stay in picturesque scenery. A stay in the valley offers visitors the chance to trek and cycle through fascinating ethnic minority villages and emerald green rice paddies.


Mekong Boat and Bike UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1

3 DAYS

• Explore the Mekong Delta’s verdant waterways on a converted rice barge • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine with a fun cooking class • Observe life in floating villages in the Mekong Delta • Learn about the Cham ethnic minority group • Haggle with the locals in floating markets

Depart Ho Chi Minh City early in the morning by private car for the journey to Can Tho. On arrival at the Victoria Can Tho Resort, you may like to relax by the swimming pool or participate in a fun cooking class and learn about various Vietnamese spices and herbs. This wonderful opportunity to learn the art of Vietnamese cuisine can be done in a variety of locations such as a rice paddy, the Binh Thuy ancient house or on the converted rice barge, the ‘Lady Hau’. At the end of your class you will get the chance to feast on your gourmet creations.

Ho Chi Minh City can tho cai rang

Ho Chi Minh City – Can Tho

Sapa

VI E T N AM HANOI Halong Bay

Ho Chi Minh City

Day 2

Hoi An

Can Tho - Cai Rang – Can Tho

This morning, enjoy a unique breakfast cruise on the Lady Hau. The vessel will take you from the resort to the nearby Cai Rang floating market. Observe traders and river vessels jostling for the most favourable positions in a scene that has changed remarkably little over the years. You will then be transferred to a local traditional boat to venture further into the market. Continue cruising along narrow creeks to visit a local noodle factory and a fruit orchard. The fertile delta region is justly famous for its variety of delicious produce, including many exotic fruits. After sampling some local fruits, you will be escorted back to the hotel by local boat through the myriad of verdant canals.

Day 3

Cai Rang

Can Tho

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY This three day experience allows you to venture deep into the Mekong Delta and get a real taste of local life. Enjoy a comfortable cruise on the ‘Lady Hau’, followed by a boat and bike adventure that will take you deep into the countryside of the delta.

Can Tho – Ho Chi Minh City

P Phan Thiet Extension Fam Famous for its vast sand dunes and water sports facilities, Phan Thiet is only a short drive from frenetic Ho Chi Minh City. During your stay in this peaceful resort you may wish to go kitesurfing, make a trip to the area’s vast sand dunes or simply relax on the beach and enjoy the delicious seafood on offer.

Depart from the hotel jetty on a traditional boat with bicycles on board. Make the short crossing over the Hau river, before cruising along Cai Von canal. On disembarkation you will pay a visit to an interesting incense making community. Continue by boat before beginning your cycling adventure through the verdant countryside. Observe the simplicity of rural life as you pass ‘monkey bridges’, water buffalos in the rice paddies and fishermen tending their nets. Later on, return to the resort and be transferred in a private car back to Ho Chi Minh City.

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unseen vietnam Day 1-4

12 DAYS Hanoi Mai Chau Thac Ba Lake Ha Giang Yen Minh Dong Van Meo Vac Ha Giang

Ha Giang

Thac Ba Lake

VIETNAM HANOI

Mai Chau

SUMMARY Get ‘off the beaten track’ and explore the beautiful, mountainous far north of Vietnam. Starting in Hanoi, head west to Mai Chau and then north into remote Ha Giang. Enjoy trekking through minority villages and exploring colourful markets in this fascinating part of the country.

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Hanoi - Mai Chau – Yen Bai (Thac Ba Lake)

Enjoy a city tour of the highlights of historic Hanoi before driving out west to the beautiful valley of Mai Chau. Here you may wish to take pleasure in nature walks, cycling and visiting ethnic minority villages in the spectacular scenery. The next day, drive North to Yen Bai province and Thac Ba Lake where you are sure to enjoy a stay in a lovely ecolodge.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Admire French colonial architecture in the capital • Learn about Vietnam’s ethnic groups at the Museum of Ethnology • Meet ethnic minority villagers in the far north • Marvel at the emerald green rice terraces in the far north • Get well and truly ‘off the beaten track’ • Take in breathtaking mountain views

Day 5-8

Yen Bai (Thac Ba Lake) – Pan Hou - Yen Minh

A spectacular boat trip awaits on the huge expanse of Thac Ba Lake where you can also hike to a scenic look out point in this beautiful area. Continue north to Pan Hou village, located on the banks of the Lo River in Ha Giang province. Surrounded by a densely forested mountain range you will cross deep valleys and rice paddies framed by the imposing mountains. The next day’s trekking will take you through mountainous landscapes and past emerald green rice paddies. The area is home to the Man Ta Pan ethnic minority group.

Day 9-12

Yen Minh – Dong Van - Meo Vac – Ha Giang - Hanoi

Head out on a spectacularly high road, stopping at the many small local markets along the way. Later you will reach Dong van, which is located in the most northerly point of Vietnam. From here, explore Dong Van and Meo Vac, which are considered the most isolated areas of Vietnam. Due to its isolation the region still retains a very traditional way of life. The scenery is stunning in this very remote area. Next, you will visit the interesting market in Dong Van and old streets of the town. Drive from Dong van to Meo Vac, a truly incredible drive with spectacular views of the deep valley below. This is considered by many to be the most scenic drive in the country. Visit small markets and continue driving to Ha Giang. The next day you will make the return journey to the capital for the chance to relax and reflect on this amazing experience.

Hoi An Extension With beaches, culture and adventure, Hoi An is sure to impress. Explore the surrounding countryside by bicycle and amble through the town’s ancient streets. Mingle with the locals in the local produce markets and learn the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine with a fun cooking class.


MAI CHAU BREAK UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Meet ethnic minority villagers in Mai Chau Valley • Learn how to dance with the White Thai • Cycle through emerald green rice paddies and peaceful villages • Trek through stunning mountain scenery • Learn about traditional ethnic minority textile weaving • Relax at a comfortable mountain lodge

Day 1

2 DAYS

You will be met at your hotel by your guide and vehicle. Depart the capital in the early morning for the scenic four hour drive to the Mai Chau valley. On arrival at Mai Chau Lodge, you will be introduced to activities on offer at the lodge and in the surrounding area. During your stay, you may wish to visit the White Thai villages of Pom Coong and Lac, where you will have time to shop for handicrafts that are skillfully produced by the local inhabitants. The White Thai ethnic minority is justly renowned for its detailed colourful textiles. In the afternoon there is an optional trip to a private cave attached to the Lodge. The cave, which used to be a military base, is looked after by a team from the local ethnic minority inhabitants. During the cave tour you will learn more about the limestone karst cave and its historic importance in the region. Alternatively, you may wish to relax at the comfortable lodge and take advantage of the spa facilities and swimming pool. A fabulous dinner will served in the early evening, accompanied by a traditional dance performance by the local White Thai ethnic minority.

Hanoi Mai Chau

Hanoi – Mai Chau

Day 2

Mai Chau – Hanoi

Bai Tu Long Extension Enjoy a unforgettable overnight cruise on a traditional junk in Bai Tu Long Bay, known as the ‘off the beaten track’ alternative to Halong Bay. Kayak and swim in the emerald waters, explore some of the area’s hidden caves and fishing villages and feast on the delicious seafood on offer.

After breakfast, you may wish to embark on a guided cycling adventure through the mountainous valley or a gentle trek in the surrounding area. You will have the opportunity to observe timeless rural scenes of farmers tending their fields with buffaloes and the friendly ethnic minority inhabitants travelling from village to village along the narrow pathways that weave through the emerald green rice terraces. Alternatively, just relax at the lodge and take advantage of the facilities on offer. Relax by the swimming pool, enjoy a massage or spa treatment at the lodge. Later on in the day enjoy a delicious lunch before travelling back to the capital. You will arrive in Hanoi in the late afternoon and on arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. In the evening, reflect on a magical experience through this truly beautiful part of Vietnam.

VIETNAM HANOI

Mai Chau

SUMMARY This package is ideal for those wanting to see the real Vietnam but with limited time. On this tour explore this mountainous region and meet some of the local ethnic minorities that reside in the area. Enjoy trekking and cycling through the valley or learn about local handicraft production.

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vietnam voluntourism If you want to make a difference whilst on holiday then our Volunteer and Educational Travel Experiences are for you. Through Volunteer and Educational Travel, our aim is to provide you with an alternative, affordable and unique experience that will not only change your outlook on life but will also make an enormous difference to the lives of the communities you work in. Your placement is part of a wider development plan that aims to bring about sustainable long-term changes. You will live in the local community and work alongside its members to achieve these development goals.

Vietnam Village Treks in Mai Chau

Mai Chau Experience

This scenic valley is home to many economically disadvantaged ethnic minority groups. Annually, Buffalo Tours sponsors and co-ordinates a medical trek project with Seattle Community College to provide health check-ups and immunization for children. Many local people see a doctor for first time. American and Vietnamese doctors, nurses and students volunteer their skills and time to make this life changing event possible.

We work with schools, university and community service groups to fund and build specific community development projects within rural villages. Projects are based on a strict needs analysis process but typically involve construction, livestock improvement schemes and health education. During the volunteer work we encourage taking an active role in village life and there are opportunities to visit local schools, community health clinics and learn about traditional crafts.

Volunteering at Orphanages, Schools and Disabled Children‘s Centres

Cu Chi Wildlife at Risk

Buffalo Tours works with carefully selected orphanages, schools and centres around Hanoi that do not receive government support and rely on private donations and assistance. Many of these centres are homes for children suffering from ‘agent orange’ syndrome, which has been passed from generation to generation, and other health related problems. Groups can volunteer their time to assist with construction, renovation, health and educational projects.

The centre is unique in being the first of its kind in southern Vietnam. At WAR’s Rescue Centre volunteers dedicate their time to assist the permanent staff in providing clean, safe, natural environments for rescued wildlife. Volunteers are involved in many different activities and will learn a lot about endangered Vietnamese wildlife.

Pu Luong Nature Reserve Project We work with several villages in a very remote area adjacent to Pù Luông Nature Reserve. We are seeking participating groups to fund and build schools, school libraries, water filter systems and access roads to these remote villages. There are opportunities to provide scholarships to deserving students who are at risk of dropping out of school owing to family poverty.

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Vietnam GROUP TOUR Features • Destination highlights and lesser visited areas • Culturally enriching travel and unforgettable experiences • Comfortable 4 star hotels throughout • Travel with like minded people • Flexible itineraries easy to combine with other tours • Professional tour leader throughout • Group size of maximum 20 people

Day 1-4

18 DAYS

Head west to Mai Chau, a beautiful valley home to many different ethnic minority groups. Explore the region from the comfort of your lodge on foot or bicycle.

Hanoi mai chau halong Bay hanoi sapa hue hoi an ho chi minh city

Hanoi – Mai Chau - Hanoi

Day 5–8

Hanoi – Halong Bay – Sapa – Hanoi

Continue to magnificent Halong Bay and enjoy an overnight cruise on a traditional junk. Next, take a deluxe overnight train to Sapa and spend your days strolling through the emerald green rice paddies and ethnic minority villages. Learn about the cultures of the different minority groups. Return back to Hanoi on the overnight train.

Sapa

VIE T N A M HANOI Halong Bay Mai Chau

Hue Hoi An

Day 9–11

Hanoi – Hue

Explore Hanoi taking in the Temple of Literature amongst other important historical sites. Discover local markets and lesser visited temples, hidden amongst the back alleys of the Old Quarter. Enjoy a cooking class and see a performance of Water Puppets. Fly to the old imperial capital of Hue. Spend the day exploring the Citadel, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage site, before relaxing on a sunset cruise on the Perfume River.

Day 12 –14 Hue - Hoi An

Depart Hue and drive over the scenic Hai Van Pass, to the picturesque fishing town of Hoi An to enjoy a walking tour of this charming town. Enjoy an informative cooking class and cycle to quiet villages.

Ho Chi Minh City

SUMMARY See the highlights and share your experiences with new friends, on one of our group tours. This tour takes you to the most important destinations in the country, taking in historic sights, stunning Halong Bay and atmospheric Hoi An before ending in bustling Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 15–18 What’s included? • 4 star accommodation • Daily buffet breakfast • Economy class flights • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles • Qualified local tour leader • Local guides at selected sites • All entrance fees • Support from local offices

Hoi An – Nha Trang – Ho Chi Minh City

Fly to Nha Trang and take a boat ride to the islands. Finish in Ho Chi Minh City with a guided tour of this buzzing metropolis. On the last evening there will be a farewell dinner. This is just an example of a large selection of group tours we will offer in Indochina and Thailand. Please contact us for the full range.

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VIETNAM BEACH RESORTS

The Victoria Phan Thiet Beach Resort & Spa PHAN THIET Famous for its vast sand dunes and water sports facilities, Phan Thiet is only a short drive from frenetic Ho Chi Minh City. During your stay you may wish to go kitesurfing, make a trip to the area’s vast sand dunes or simply relax Tours on the beach.2012 22  Buffalo Brochure

Due to its long coastline, the country possesses a number of beautiful beaches that are easily accessible to the visitor. In recent years, the range of accommodation options in some of Vietnam’s premier beach destinations has improved enormously meaning that there is something for everyone.


HOI AN A stay in the quaint fishing town of Hoi An means more than just a relaxing time on the beach. There are many fantastic resorts near Cua Dai beach, complete with spa and pool facilities, the town offers endless entertainment options. Visitors can enjoy cooking classes and excellent dining, not to mention the opportunity to have clothes tailored inexpensively.

The Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa

NHA TRANG With kilometres of golden beaches, Nha Trang is justifiably the premier beach resort in Vietnam. It is tempting to just sit back and relax on the beach, but for those who can tear themselves away from their sun loungers, there are many options. The islands offshore offer excellent snorkeling and scuba diving.

CON DAO This stunningly beautiful archipelago can now be reached in a 45 minute flight from Ho Chi Minh City. Famed for its azure waters, golden sands and blue skies it is a great beach break destination. The archipelago is also an important egg-laying area for sea turtles, as well as being home to the rare dugong.

Vinpearl Luxury, Nha Trang

Six Senses, Con Dao

La Veranda Resort, Phu Quoc PHU QUOC This beautiful island just off the Vietnamese and Cambodian coastlines is a short flight from Ho Chi Minh City. At the time in the year when resorts on the mainland are experiencing the rainy season, the weather in Phu Quoc is excellent.


VIETNAM hotels NORTHERN VIETNAM

Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel Luxury - Hanoi

InterContinental Hanoi West lake Hotels Luxury - Hanoi

Silth Path Hotel Hanoi Deluxe - Hanoi

Mercure hanoi La Gare Hotel Superior - Hanoi

Sunway Hotel Superior - Hanoi

Hong Ngoc Hotel Standard - Hanoi

Serenade Hotel Standard - Hanoi

Mai Chau Lodge Superior - Mai Chau

Victoria Sapa Hotel Deluxe - Sapa

La Residence Hotel & Spa Deluxe - Hue

Pilgrimage Village Boutique Resort & Spa Deluxe - Hue

Festival Hue Hotel Standard - Hue

Fusion maia danang Luxury - Danang

The Nam Hai Luxury - Hoi An

Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa Deluxe - Hoi An

CENTRAL VIETNAM

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Palm Garden Resort Deluxe - Hoi An

Life Heritage Resort Hoi An Deluxe - Hoi An

Hoi An Beach Resort Superior - Hoi An

Hoi An Historic Hotel Superior - Hoi An

Thuy Duong 3 Hotel Standard - Hoi An

Sunrise Nha Trang Beach Hotel & Spa Superior - Hoi An

Park Hyatt Saigon Luxury - Ho Chi Minh City

Renaissance Riverside Hotel Saigon Deluxe - Ho Chi Minh City

Rex Hotel Deluxe - Ho Chi Minh City

Grand Hotel Saigon Deluxe - Ho Chi Minh City

Liberty Central Hotel Deluxe - Ho Chi Minh City

Hoang Phu Gia Hotel Standard - Ho Chi Minh City

Hoang Hai Long Hotel Standard - Ho Chi Minh City

Tan Hai Long 3 Hotel Standard - Ho Chi Minh City

Victoria Chau Doc Hotel Deluxe - Chau Doc

SOUTHERN VIETNAM

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LAOS


Laos is a landlocked country of stunning natural beauty and strong spiritual traditions which remains relatively unexplored. The country has a population of roughly seven million people, making it one of the least populated nations in the world. Much of the country is dominated by forested mountains, verdant valleys, gorges and broad snaking rivers. Laos is a welcoming country that is perfect for nature lovers, adventurers and those seeking a laid-back, relaxing holiday with rich cultural experiences.

P 25 P 27 P 28 P 29 P 30 P 31 P 32 P 33 P 34 P 35 P 36 P 37 P 38 P 39 P 40 P 41

Introduction In Depth Laos Laos Highlights Seuang River Experience Family Laos Adventure Laos Cycle the Grand Loop Lux Laos Cuisine and Culture Northern Laos Cruise 4000 Islands Cruise Laos for Locals Trek Muang Ngoi Laos Voluntourism Laos Group Tour Laos Hotels


IN DEPTH LAOS 12 DAYS

Day 1-4

LUANG PRABANG XIENG KHOANG PLAIN OF JARS VANG VIENG VIENTIANE PAKSE 4000 ISLANDS

Enjoy a guided tour of Luang Prabang’s highlights. On Day 2, enjoy a cruise down the Mekong River to visit the sacred Pak Ou Caves and the many Buddha images. Continue on to the village of Ban Xang Khong where you can observe traditional Lao textiles being woven on ancient wooden looms. The next day, rise early to observe the traditional Buddhist rite of almsgiving. Later in the day, drive to beautiful Kuang Si Falls and enjoy a swim in the refreshing waters. On Day 4, drive to the mountainous plateau of Xieng Khouang.

Sapa

V IETNA M HANOI Halong Bay

LAOS Luang Prabang

Xieng Khouang

Luang Prabang - Xieng Khouang

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the relaxed atmosphere in UNESCO listed Luang Prabang • Cruise down the mighty Mekong • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Hunt for souvenirs in Luang Prabang’s night market • Admire glittering Wat Xieng Thong • Ride elephants through the jungle • Discover mysterious Vat Phou • Marvel at the thundering Khone Pha Peng Falls

Vang Vieng

Day 5-8

VIENTIANE

Hoi An

Pakse 4000 Islands

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Explore this tranquil country on a comprehensive tour taking in the main sights. Visit charming Luang Prabang, the mysterious Plain of Jars, sleepy Vientiane, and the scenic 4000 Islands area of the legendary Mekong River. A truly unforgettable experience.

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Xieng Khouang – Plain of Jars - Xieng Khouang - Vang Vieng Vientiane

Explore the Plain of Jars, one of the most mysterious sites in the country. Visit the Old Town and the Stupa and temple at Muang Khoun. On Day 6, travel along picturesque winding roads to Vang Vieng. The afternoon is free for you to relax on the banks of the Song River or explore this sleepy town. The following day, try your hand at kayaking or caving near the town. The next day, depart for the capital, Vientiane. Enjoy a guided tour of the main sights, including famous Wat Sisaket, with its thousands of miniature Buddha statues.

Day 9-12

Vientiane – Pakse – 4000 Islands - Pakse

Fly to Pakse in the south of the country, before embarking on a hike up to the Bolaven Plateau. Later, enjoy a guided tour of Pakse and the chance to explore this charming town. Next, drive south to the famous temple complex of Wat Phou. Continue on to an elephant camp to see how mahouts handle these gracious animals before continuing on to 4000 Islands region. The next day, explore deeper into a stretch of the Mekong River that boasts thousands of tiny islands. Enjoy a cruise to the largest waterfalls in Asia, Khone Pha Peng and Li Phi Falls. If you are lucky enough, you may spot some of the Irrawaddy (freshwater) dolphins that make the area their home.

Luang Prabang Extension Enjoy a stay in this cultural gem and its wealth of sightseeing options. Learn more about the history of the town with a guided city tour of the main sights. Take a boat ride to the Pak Ou caves, bathe in the clear waters of the Kuang Si Falls and learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class.


LAOS HIGHLIGHTS UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-3

5 DAYS

• Slow the pace down in refined Luang Prabang • Watch sunset over the Mekong • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class • Learn how to dye silk • Take a boat trip to the sacred Pak Ou Caves • Learn about Lao monarchs at the Royal Palace • Soak up the atmosphere in laid-back Vientiane

You will be met on arrival and transferred to your comfortable hotel in this UNESCO World Heritage town. Nestled in a stunning setting amid lush mountains, this sacred city of golden temples and saffron robed monks provides endless opportunities for sightseeing. Visit a number of beautiful Wats and some of this peaceful town’s main highlights, including the former Royal Palace. The next morning, enjoy a peaceful cruise on the Mekong River to the sacred Pak Ou Caves, with its many Buddha images. In the evening stroll through the colourful night market to find that perfect souvenir. On Day 3, you can choose from many optional activities. You may wish to embark on a fun bicycle ride through the spectacular mountain scenery in the environs of the town or pay a visit to a nearby elephant camp where you can enjoy a ride through the jungle on one of these magnificent creatures. Venture out to Kuang Si Waterfalls to enjoy a swim in one of the clear pools at its base and visit the nearby Sun Bear Rescue Centre. Alternatively, you could enjoy an informative cooking class and learn the secrets of Lao cuisine. At the end of your experience you will have the chance to feast on your delicious creations or you may wish to learn more about local textile production with a lesson in the art of silk dyeing.

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang

Day 4-5

Luang Prabang - Vientiane

P Bangkok Extension Fam a stay in the ‘City of AnEnjoy gels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.

In the morning, you will be transferred to the airport for the short flight to Vientiane, the sleepy capital of the country. You will be met on arrival and be transferred to your centrally located hotel. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided tour of Vientiane’s main sights. Admire the city’s faded French colonial architecture. In the evening, go for a gentle stroll along the banks of the Mekong River and enjoy a drink as the sun sets over this mighty waterway. The last day of this experience is at leisure for you to further explore the city or simply relax by the pool. On the last day you will be transferred to the airport for your onward journey.

Sapa

Vientiane

VI E T N AM HANOI Halong Bay

LAOS Luang Prabang

Hoi An

VIENTIANE

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY Experience the best of Luang Prabang and Vientiane in just a few days. Enjoy guided tours taking in the highlights, fun cooking classes and visits to caves full of Buddhas and jungle waterfalls. This short trip can easily be added to a tour through Vietnam, Thailand or Cambodia.

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Seuang River EXPERIENCE 5 DAYS

Day 1-2

Luang Prabang Seuang River

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Depending on when you arrive optional activities can be arranged for the rest of the day. The next morning make the journey to the Seuang River Experience which is approximately two hours north of Luang Prabang. Enjoy a guided tour of the village and learn about local lifestyles. Later on you may wish to visit one of the local homes for a fun cooking class and the chance to sample some local specialities. Your hosts will first provide an overview of the menu with a description of the ingredients. At the end of the class you will enjoy the meal you have prepared. You will overnight in a local family’s house.

Seuang River

LAOS

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang - Seuang River

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the Buddhist flavour of Luang Prabang • Stay in an ethnic minority homestay • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during an informative cooking class • Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony • Take a boat trip to the sacred Pak Ou Caves • Find that perfect souvenir in Luang Prabang’s night market

Day 3-5

Seuang River - Luang Prabang

SUMMARY Exclusive to Buffalo Tours, the Seuang River Experience is a sustainable community tourism project set up to both provide income to 12 villages in the region, and to encourage cultural exchange and interaction. This experience is a great insight into rural life in Laos.

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In the morning, join villagers on a walk through community forest areas to learn of their importance. When you arrive back at the village prepare the seeds you collected for germination at the community tree nursery. These seedlings will be planted by villagers in the next rainy season. Later in the day, you will embark on an adventure down the river on a bamboo raft passing waterfalls and towering mountains as you go. Return back to the village later in the day. In the evening, spend some time assisting local school teachers at the community education centre. The following morning you will bid farewell to your hosts and mark the occasion with a traditional ‘Baci’ blessing ceremony. Depart from the village and drive to Pak Ou, where you will begin a cruise that will take you to nearby sacred caves that are filled with Buddha images. Explore the atmospheric caves before returning to your boat and cruising on to Luang Prabang. Enjoy sunset over the Mekong River and in the evening stroll through the town’s atmospheric night market and hunt for souvenirs. The following day is at leisure for you to enjoy one last stroll through the town. Later on you will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Vientiane Extension Extend your experience with a stay in the sleepy capital of Laos. Enjoy a guided tour of the most important historic and cultural sites in the capital. Besides visiting the main sights you are sure to appreciate the languid atmosphere and the faded colonial architecture of this quiet city.


FAMILY LAOS UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Discover hidden Wats in Luang Prabang • Slow down the pace in refined Luang Prabang • Ride elephants through the jungle • Observe the Buddhist ritual of almsgiving • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Shop for fresh produce in Phou Si Market • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine

Day 1-3

6 DAYS

You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. After some free time to explore this peaceful town, you are sure to enjoy a spectacular dinner with a dance performance depicting the history of Laos and various local folk stories. On Day 2 you will visit to a nearby Elephant Village, where you can enjoy a ride through the jungle on one of these magnificent creatures. Enjoy a delicious buffet lunch at a local restaurant, before it is time to take a 15-minute boat trip to Tad Sae Waterfall. You will have some free time to enjoy a refreshing dip in the pools at its base. Later in the day, return to your hotel in Luang Prabang and enjoy some free time to relax. In the evening, you may wish to visit the night market to hunt for souvenirs and just enjoy a stroll around this lovely town. The following day, enjoy a guided tour of Luang Prabang, with visits to the fascinating National Museum and the informative Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre.

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang

LAOS Luang Prabang

Day 4-6

Luang Prabang

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.

This morning you may wish to rise early to observe the traditional Buddhist rite of almsgiving. Hundreds of monks from the town file though in a silent procession. You can also visit the bustling morning market to learn about exotic ingredients that go into Lao cuisine. Later in the day drive to nearby Kuang Si Waterfalls, stopping along the way to visit the Living Crafts Centre. When you arrive at the falls, you will have ample time to enjoy a refreshing dip in crystal clear pools at its base. At the nearby Sun Bear Refuge you will be able to learn more about the plight of these beautiful creatures. The following day, make a visit to the colourful and vibrant Pho Si Market. An expert chef will guide you through the market to select the ingredients you need for a fun cooking lesson. At the end of the lesson enjoy the delicious feast you have prepared. The afternoon and evening are free for you to relax in the tranquil atmosphere of this charming destination. The last day is free until you are transferrd to the airport for your onward journey.

SUMMARY Luang Prabang is a UNESCO World Heritage listed town, renowned for its charm and beauty. This experience is perfect for children and adults alike. Spend a day at an elephant camp, swim in cool pools at the base of a jungle waterfall, and learn the secrets of Laotian cuisine.

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Adventure Laos Day 1-4

14 DAYS Vientiane Thakhek Vang Vieng Luang Prabang Luang Namtha Houay Xai

Luang Namtha

Houay Xai

LAOS Luang Prabang

Vientiane - Thakhek – Ban Natan

Enjoy a guided city tour of this sleepy capital before travelling to the small town of Thakhek for an overnight stay. Travel through the imposing karst landscape of Khammouane to the Lao Loum village of Ban Nahin, where you will begin a two hour trek through the forest to Nam Sanam waterfall. Continue by bicycle until you reach Ban Nahin, where you will overnight. The next day, cycle to Ban Konglor through stunning countryside, before taking a long-tail boat to Konglor Cave. Hike on to Ban Natan, where you will experience a traditional Lao dinner.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere in laid-back Vientiane • Discover hidden Wats in Luang Prabang • Trek through colourful ethnic minority communities • Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony • Kayak on broad rivers framed by dense rainforest • Cycle through stunning mountain scenery

Vang Vieng

VIENTIANE

Day 5-9

Ban Natan – Ban Konglor - Vang Vieng – Luang Prabang Thakhek

SUMMARY Experience an ultimate hiking, cycling, kayaking and caving adventure in Laos. Begin in the capital, before kayaking on the tributaries of the mighty Mekong. Then, journey north to explore the cultural capital of Luang Prabang before trekking through remote countryside.

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Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ blessing ceremony before embarking on a kayaking adventure. Paddle downstream through a cave complex, before driving back to Vientiane in the afternoon. Journey on to Vang Vieng for an overnight stay, before embarking on another kayaking adventure on the Nam Song River. Day 8 takes you back to Vang Vieng and on to Luang Prabang, where you will enjoy a guided walking tour and a visit to the beautiful Kuang Si Falls and the chance to enjoy a refreshing dip.

Day 10-14

Luang Prabang – Luang Namtha – Ban Hat Nalaeng – Houay Xai

Rise early to watch the morning almsgiving, as hundreds of monks file through the town. Then, journey to Luang Namtha to embark on the next phase of your kayaking adventure. Kayak through the dense forest of the Nam Ha National Park, before enjoying an open fire dinner in the evening. On Day 11, continue down the Nam Tha River until you reach the Khmu village of Ban Hat Yawng. Upon reaching Ban Hat Nalaeng, you will be met by a longtail boat and transferred to the village where you will overnight. Next, continue tavelling along the Mekong on a slow boat, before ending your experience at the border town of Houay Xai.

Chiang Mai Extension Enjoy a stay in the cultural capital of Thailand. Stroll through the famous Night Bazaar to hunt for that perfect souvenir, climb to the top of nearby Doi Suthep to enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding area and enjoy a fun cooking class to learn more about the refined cuisine of the region.


Cycle THE Grand Loop UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the Buddhist flavour of Luang Prabang • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Cycle through colourful ethnic minority villages • Explore the ‘cave city’ of Viengsay • Discover the mysterious Plain of Jars • Enjoy a drink as the sun sets over the Mekong • Feast on traditional Lao dishes

Day 1-3

13 DAYS

Arrive in charming Luang Prabang and spend first couple of days exploring. You may wish to visit colourful markets or nearby Kuang Si Falls. Then it is time to begin cycling. Pass through picturesque villages before reaching Pak Ou to visit the sacred Buddha caves. Then head north through rolling mountains to the ethnic minority village of Ban Huay Pene. You will then continue by vehicle to the pretty town of Nong Khiew.

Luang Prabang nong Khiew vieng thong sam neua Viengsay muang kham Plain of Jars

Luang Prabang – Nong Khiew

Day 4–6

Nong Khiew – Vieng Kham – Vieng Thong – Sam Nuea

Cycle through charming villages and the forest of the Nam Et-Phou Loei National Protected Area. Continue on through mountainous scenery before arriving in the settlement of Sam Neua, which is loacted near the Vietnamese – Laos border.

Nong Khiew

LAOS Luang Prabang

Sam Nuea Viengxay Vieng Thong

Muang Kham

Day 7–10

Sam Neua – Nam Neun – Muang Kham – Xieng Khouang

Explore the town before heading off to Viengsay, the ‘cave city’ to visit the historic caves the town is famous for. Cycle further into remote territory to see the fascinating standing stones in Hintang and Tham Piu Cave. Continue onto Muang Kham, where you can soak your tired muscles at the hot springs. The next morning cycle on to Xieng Khouang to take in the mysterious Plain of Jars and enjoy a trip to the historic capital of Muang Khoun.

SUMMARY Explore this beautiful, tranquil country by bike during an adventurous and comprehensive tour. You will visit charming Luang Prabang, the mysterious Plain of Jars and numerous villages enroute. This is an unforgettable way to experience a charming land that most travelers overlook.

Day 11–13

Xieng Khouang - Phou Khoun – Luang Prabang

Vientiane Extension Extend your experience with a stay in the sleepy capital of Laos. Enjoy a guided tour of the most important historic and cultural sites in the capital. Besides visiting the main sights you are sure to appreciate the languid atmosphere and the faded colonial architecture of this quiet city.

Cycle to Muang Soui before driving to Phou Khuon whre you can explore the town’s interesting market before driving to Kioukacham. Your last stretch of cycling will be the final descent to Luang Prabang. Enjoy the spectacular scenery as you descend through minority village of the Hmong and Khmu. Later in the afternoon, you will arrive in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Luang Prabang. Enjoy an evening stroll along the river or hunt for last minute souvenirs in the town’s night market.

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LUX LAOS 5 DAYS

Day 1-2

Vientiane Luang Prabang

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Later in the day, enjoy a walk along the city’s riverfront promenade that runs along the Mekong. Enjoy a drink as you watch the sunset over this mighty waterway.In the evening, dine in a cozy restaurant overlooking the central Fountain Circle. The next morning, enjoy a guided tour of the main temples and monuments in this quiet capital. You will visit the most important historic and cultural sites in the city including the That Luang Stupa, the Patouxai Victory Monument, Wat Sisaket and Ho Pha Keo. Later in the day, transfer to the airport and take the short flight to the cultural capital of the country, Luang Prabang. You will be met on arrival and transferred to your elegant hotel. Spend the day being pampered in the hotel’s luxurious spa before venturing into town to enjoy a stroll through the town’s atmospheric night market.

LAOS Luang Prabang

VIENTIANE

Vientiane – Luang Prabang

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the atmosphere in laid-back Vientiane • Enjoy a drink as the sun sets over the Mekong • Pamper yourself with luxury spa treatments • Slow the pace down in refined Luang Prabang • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony

Day 3-5

Luang Prabang

SUMMARY Experience stylish hotels, privately guided tours, luxury spas and divine gourmet restaurants in serene Laos. This itinerary enables you to see the sights of sleepy Vientiane and the cultural gem of Luang Prabang while staying in luxury and comfort.

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This morning, rise early to observe the early morning Buddhist tradition of almsgiving, as several hundred monks that reside in the city file through the centre in a quiet procession. Return to your hotel for breakfast. Later in the day, visit a few select temples and the beautiful Royal Palace before retreating from the heat for a rest and a delightful lunch of local specialties. The remainder of the day is free for you to spend at leisure. You may wish to further explore this UNESCO World Heritage city or return to your hotel to relax by the pool. The following day head out of Luang Prabang to the beautiful Kung Si Falls and cool off in the clear blue pools at its base. Enjoy a gourmet picnic accompanied by the soothing sound of the waterfall. After ample time to relax by the falls you will return to Luang Prabang. In the evening you will receive Lao blessings of good luck in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony, before enjoying some fine dining. The last day is at leisure until you are transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.


CUISINE & CULTURE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony • Shop for fresh produce in Phou Si Market • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during an informative cooking class • Learn how to dye silk • Hunt for that perfect souvenir in Luang Prabang’s night market • Trek through colourful ethnic minority communities • Feast on Lao cuisine

Day 1-3

6 DAYS

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Depending on when you arrive activities can be arranged for the rest of the day. In the evening, enjoy a special ‘Baci’ blessing ceremony before dinner. The next morning, join a cooking class during which you will learn the secrets of Lao cuisine. Begin by visiting the colourful and vibrant Phou Si Market with an expert chef. After preparing the dishes, it’s time to enjoy the delicious feast you have prepared. On Day 3, pay a visit to the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre in order to learn more about the ethnic groups that reside in northern Laos. After your visit, make the trip to a local weaving centre. At the centre you can experience a half-day traditional silk-dyeing lesson. Following the lesson, enjoy a drink while watching the sun set over the Mekong. In the evening, feast on local specialities.

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang

LAOS Luang Prabang

Day 4-6

Luang Prabang - Ban Long Lao Luang Prabang

Vientiane Extension Extend your experience with a stay in the sleepy capital of Laos. Enjoy a guided tour of the most important historic and cultural sites in the capital. Besides visiting the main sights you are sure to appreciate the languid atmosphere and the faded colonial architecture of this quiet city.

Today, you will cycle out of Luang Prabang for approximately 20 kilometres to the settlement of Ban Thin Som. There, you will begin a trek through the stunning countryside to visit a village populated by the Kamu ethnic group. After lunch, hike through the forested mountains and marvel at the spectacular views. At the village of Ban Long Lao, you will be able to gain an insight into everyday life in the village with a guided tour. Enjoy a delicious dinner prepared by your hosts. The following day, breakfast will be served at the village headman’s house. Following this you will have some free time to further explore the village. Later in the morning begin trekking to stunning Kuang Si Falls. Enjoy a refreshing dip in the cool pools at its base. After a tasty lunch at the falls you may wish to visit the nearby Sun Bear rescue centre. In the late afternoon drive back to Luang Prabang and dine out in one of the town’s fine restaurants. The last day is at leisure until you are transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

SUMMARY Culturally Laos has so much to offer. This six-day culinary and cultural experience combines artisanal pursuits, a cooking class and light treks. You will also have the chance to experience an ethnic minority homestay and experience a way of life that has changed little over the years.

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Northern Laos Cruise Day 1-3

5 DAYS Chiang Rai Houay Xai Luang Prabang

Pakbeng

LAOS Pak Beng Luang Prabang Houay Xai

Chiang Rai

THAILAND

Chiang Rai – Houay Xai Border Pakbeng - Luang Prabang

Early this morning, you will be met and transferred to Chiang Khong, where you will cross the river to Houei Say, which is on the Laos side of the border. The Luang Say boat leaves Houay Xai pier at 9am for a cruise down the Mekong River. Your end destination is the town of Pakbeng. You will arrive in the town just before sunset. After checking in at the Luang Say Lodge, a delicious dinner will be served on a terrace overlooking the Mekong River. The following day you will continue cruising to Luang Prabang. A short stop will be made to visit a village which is home to one of the region’s ethnic minorities. After a stroll through the village you will continue cruising before arriving in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Luang Prabang just before sunset. On arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. On Day 3 enjoy a guided tour around the atmospheric town of Luang Prabang. Visit Wat Xieng Thong and the National Museum, a former Royal Palace, where relics from Laos’ royal past remain.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Cruise down the mighty Mekong River • Enjoy a drink as the sun sets over the Mekong • Slow the pace down in refined Luang Prabang • Observe the Buddhist ritual of almsgiving • Admire the glittering Wat Xieng Thong • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls

Day 4-5

SUMMARY Enjoy a cruise between Northern Thailand and Luang Prabang in Laos. This cruise down the mighty Mekong provides a tranquil alternative to flying. The cruise ends in the peaceful town of Luang Prabang, nestled in the jungle covered mountains of Northern Laos.

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Luang Prabang

Rise early this morning to observe the traditional Buddhist rite of Almsgiving. Hundreds of saffron robed monks file through silently collecting alms. This is an amazing sight and your guide will be on hand to explain this important ritual. Later in the day, pay a visit to the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre. After an informative tour enjoy lunch in the adjacent cafe. After lunch, you will move on to the Living Crafts Centre. The workshop shows the whole process of silk production from the silkworms themselves to the natural dyes and weaving techniques. On the morning of Day 5 travel south of town to the beautiful Kuang Si Falls. Enjoy a refreshing dip in the pools before visiting the nearby Sun Bear Refuge Centre to learn more about the poaching of these endangered creatures. Later in the day, return to Luang Prabang and wander through the town’s atmospheric night market in search of that perfect souvenir.

Chiang Mai Extension Enjoy a stay in the cultural capital of Thailand. Stroll through the famous Night Bazaar to hunt for that perfect souvenir, climb to the top of nearby Doi Suthep to enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding area and enjoy a fun cooking class to learn more about the refined cuisine of the region.


4000 islands CRUISE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1

3 DAYS

• Marvel at the thundering Khone Pha Peng Falls • Cruise down the mighty Mekong River • Explore tranquil Khone Island on foot • Discover mysterious Vat Phou • Search for river dolphins on the Mekong • Feast on gourmet Lao cuisine • Get ‘off the beaten track’ in this tranquil destination

Depart Pakse by Route 13 and travel to the historically significant Pha Pheng waterfalls, the “Niagara of the East”. You will then be driven to the fishing village of Xieng Di for a tasty lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, you will transfer to a smaller boat for a visit to peaceful Khone Island. Enjoy a relaxing stroll around this peaceful island. Visit the old French railway and cross the bridge that links Khone and Det Islands. The boat will drop you at the Khong Island village of Ban Veuthong, where you will board the waiting Vat Phou boat for an atmospheric sunset cruise and sumptuous dinner on the Mekong River.

Pakse Khone Pha Pheng 4000 Islands Oum Muong Champasak

Pakse – 4000 Islands

Pakse

4000 Islands

Day 2

4000 Islands – Oum Moung

Enjoy breakfast on board the Vat Phou vessel as you cruise towards the settlement of Ban Deua Tia. Enjoy a gentle walk through this small village as you gain an insight into local life in this peaceful region. The Vat Phou boat then continues cruising north on the Mekong, past the island of Don Xai and many other small islets in this beautiful river archipelago. After a delicious lunch on board, continue your exploration of the area with a visit to the village of Huei Thamo and the mysterious Oum Muong forest temple. After exploring the temple you will be transferred back to the Vat Phou. In the evening enjoy another delicious dinner of Lao specialities as you cruise on this mighty waterway.

SUMMARY Culturally, Laos has so much to offer the visitor. This six day culinary and cultural experience combines nature, cuisine and art to offer you an unforgettable experience. This experience is a great way to explore a side of the country that few visitors see.

Day 3

Oum Moung – Champasak – Pakse

Luang Prabang Extension Enjoy a stay in this cultural gem and its wealth of sightseeing options. Learn more about the history of the town with a guided city tour of the main sights.Take a boat ride to the Pak Ou caves, bathe in the clear waters of the Kuang Si Falls and learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class.

While enjoying breakfast on board, the Vat Phou continues cruising towards the settlement of Champasak. The highlight this morning is a visit to the mysterious Vat Phou ruins, the majestic pre-Angkorian 10th century temple complex after which your vessel is named. You will have ample time to visit the interesting museum at the ruins and explore the atmospheric temple complex. After enjoying a tasty lunch, a small boat will take you for the journey back to Pakse.

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Laos for Locals 5 DAYS

Day 1-2

Luang Prabang

This unique experience begins with a sedate cycling tour around beautiful Luang Prabang. Along the way, stops will be made at glittering Wat Xien Thong and the National Museum before you climb Mount Phou Si for spectacular views of the town at sunset. The following morning head off to a local family’s house to learn how to cook the Lao way. You will begin with a visit to a local market to select your ingredients for your culinary experience. Learn how to prepare sticky rice and bamboo shoots. Then it is time to enjoy your delicious creations at lunch. In the afternoon take a boat cruise on the river to the sacred Pak Ou Caves to view the numerous Buddha images. Later in the day you will visit a local silk making village. Return to Luang Prabang in the afternoon and explore the impressive night market.

LAOS Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Slow the pace down in refined Luang Prabang • Try your hand at making traditional Lao pottery • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class • Take a boat trip to the sacred Pak Ou Caves • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Ride elephants through the jungle • Authentic cultural interactions

Day 3–5

Luang Prabang

SUMMARY Discover another side of Luang Prabang and enjoy some true cultural interaction with the locals. Learn their way of cooking and weaving and visit a local workshop to observe the efforts to preserve Laotian art. You will also have the chance to enjoy a fun elephant ride through the forest.

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In the morning visit a local family to learn how to weave traditional sticky rice baskets that are so integral to Lao cuisine. Then head out to the magnificent Kuang Si Falls to cool off in the glistening pools at the base. You may also wish to visit the nearby Sun Bear rescue centre to learn more about the plight of these endangered creatures. The following day cycle on the other side of the mighty Mekong to visit the village of Ban Chan. Enjoy some time with a local family and learn how to make traditional Lao styles of pottery. Spending time in villages in this manner affords you the opportunity to really interact with them and to gain a better understanding of life in rural Lao. On the final morning, depart Luang Prabang for a visit to a nearby elephant village. You will have the opportunity to ride one of these majestic beasts throught the forest. You will also be able to learn more about the relationship between the mahouts and the elephants they care for. This is sure to prove to be a truly memorable experience. In the afternoon, learn more about efforts to preserve traditional Laoation forms of art, with a fascinating visit to a local workshop.

Vientiane Extension Extend your experience with a stay in the sleepy capital of Laos. Enjoy a guided tour of the most important historic and cultural sites in the capital. Besides visiting the main sights you are sure to appreciate the languid atmosphere and the faded colonial architecture of this quiet city.


Trek Muang Ngoi UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the Buddhist flavour of Luang Prabang • Stay in an ethnic minority homestay • Learn about everyday life in the countryside • Trek through stunning mountain scenery • Feast on delicious traditional Lao dishes • Find that perfect souvenir in Luang Prabang’s night market

Day 1-2

Luang Prabang – Muang Ngoi – Ban Kioukhan

Depart Luang Prabang and drive north through the beautiful mountain scenery to Nong Khiew. Continue travelling by local boat to Muang Ngoi, where you will stay overnight in a local guesthouse. In the evening, you will be able to learn more about daily life in this remote part of Laos. You will see that little has changed over the years and the people still retain their traditional culture. Enjoy interacting with the friendly villagers and observe their day to day life. This peaceful location is the perfect start to your trekking experience. Transfer by local boat up stream on the Nam Ou River to Ban Hadsapheui, which is populated by the Khamu ethnic group. You will then begin trekking uphill to Ban Kioukhan for about four hours through beautiful forest. Enjoy a picnic lunch at a scenic point. Later in the day you will arrive in Ban Kioukhan. Enjoy dinner and overnight in a traditional village homestay.

4 DAYS Luang Prabang Nong Khiew Muang Ngoi

Nong Khiew Muang Ngoi

LAOS Luang Prabang

Day 3-4

Ban Kioukhan – Ban Houay Sene – Luang Prabang

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.

On Day 3, begin trekking to Ban Nam Tap which is populated by the Hmong ethnic group. Later you will arrive in Ban Sengsavang, which is a Khmu ethnic minority village. Enjoy learning about the difference between ethnic minorities in this area and gain a greater understanding of their cultures, lifestyles and traditions. On Day 4 you will walk for about six hours, taking in great mountain views as you pass through remote villages that punctuate this beautiful region. After lunch, continue trekking until you reach Ban Houy Sene, where you will enjoy a dinner of local specialities and will overnight in the home of a local family. The next morning, explore the village before setting of for the 2 hour trek to Muang Ngoi. Along the way, you will stop to explore Tham Kang Cave which was used as a shelter during the Vietnam war. At around midday you will arrive in Muang Ngoi. Then, take a boat back to Nong Khiew before travelling back to Luang Prabang by vehicle.

SUMMARY Beginning in delightful Luang Prabang, this trekking experience will take you to the mountainous north of the country. Travel by boat, vehicle and on foot through ethnic minority villages. Learn about the ethnic groups that make this beautiful region their home.

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laos voluntourism In the very heart of what was once colonial French Indochina the traditional lifestyles of the rural communities continue much as they have for centuries. Modern life is however making its mark and there is a great need to assist these communities to develop sanitation, health and education standards. Explore beautiful Laos whilst spending some time assisting rural communities and learning more about the local culture. We offer a number of projects to organizations and groups.

Education Saving Lives Volunteer Service & Education tour

Seuang River Experience Volunteer Service in Ethnic Communities

Laos is the most heavily-bombed country in the world per capita and still has thousands of unexploded landmines. This contamination hinders poverty alleviation and social progress and your help can end the legacy of destruction. Visit North East Laos and assist communities that are finally safe from UXO contamination. Support local efforts in school building, village water supply & sanitation and income generation projects.

This is a unique educational travel destination for schools, universities and volunteer-service groups. Working in partnership with international and local NGOs our goal is to fight poverty, preserve traditional cultures and conserve nature in the area.

Seuang River Experience

Southern Laos Educational Adventures

Seuang River Experience is a cooperative educational-tourism partnership between Buffalo Tours and local authorities.

Don Daeng is a peaceful island in the middle of the gently flowing Mekong River in southern Laos. There is plenty of opportunity for meaningful community service projects because the island’s schools and healthcare facilities are in dire need of assistance. Volunteer groups will gain a warm welcome into the communities while providing a helping hand where it is urgently needed.

Experience a living-classroom of natural beauty and cultural history in the Seuang River Valley Learn hands-on traditional techniques from Lao village elders and develop leadership skills and personal confidence through group and individual outdoor challenges that are fun and experiential. Conduct community service and field studies, tailored to suit your needs and to complement your institutions’ core curriculum.

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We are seeking participating schools, university and community-service groups to fund and build specific community development projects in rural villages. Main projects include construction, restoration, agriculture, education and handicraft production but projects are tailored to suit.

Each school is unique, and so too are each of our outdoor education programmes. To ensure you get the right combination of activities for your students our team of experienced teachers and travel experts are ready to assist.


laos group tour Features • Destination highlights and lesser visited areas • Culturally enriching travel and unforgettable experiences • Comfortable 4 star hotels throughout • Travel with like minded people • Flexible itineraries easy to combine with other tours • Professional tour leader throughout • Group size of maximum 20 people

Day 1-3

14 DAYS

Enjoy a city tour of Vientiane, followed by dinner and a traditional dance show. Drive north to Vang Vieng and visit Tham Jang cave. Overnight in Vang Vieng before driving to the charming town of Luang Prabang the following day.

vientiane vang vieng luang prabang pakbeng chiang rai chiang mai bangkok

Vientiane – Vang Vieng

Day 4–5

Luang Prabang

Observe morning almsgiving to the monks. Explore this serene town by bicycle, taking in the main highlights including Wat Xieng Thong and Mount Phou Si. Enjoy a special ‘Baci’ blessing ceremony before continuing to a nearby village, where you will have the chance to ride an elephant. Then, travel south of the town to the Kuang Si Waterfalls.

Day 6-7

Luang Prabang – Pakbeng – Chiang Rai

Board your boat for a cruise upstream to Pakbeng stopping off at Pak Ou Village where you will visit caves filled with beautiful Buddha images. Stay overnight in Pakbeng, before crossing into Thailand to Chiang Rai.

Day 8-11

Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai

Explore some of Chiang Rai’s temples before driving to Chiang Mai. Explore the sights of Chiang Mai and learn about the thriving arts and craft scene before a traditional Thai massage at one of Chiang Mai’s famous spas. Try your hand at Thai cooking with an authentic cooking class and enjoy a traditional Lanna dance show whilst dining on delicious northern Thai cuisine. Take the overnight train to Bangkok.

LAOS Pak Beng

Luang Prabang

Chiang Rai

Chiang Mai

Vang Vieng VIENTIANE

THAILAND

BANGKOK

SUMMARY This experience takes you from relaxed Laos before you venture into northern Thailand. This itinerary really is for those looking to experience the region’s culture at a sedate pace. This group tour allows you to take in the main highlights and make new friends as you travel.

Day 12 – 14 What’s included? • 4 star accommodation • Daily buffet breakfast • Economy class flights • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles • Qualified local tour leader • Local guides at selected sites • All entrance fees • Support from local offices

Bangkok

Wander past the glistening gold temples at the Grand Palace, and enjoy a cruise along the klongs (canals). Enjoy your final evening with a dinner cruise on the river. This is just an example of a large selection of group tours we will offer in Indochina and Thailand. Please contact us for the full range.

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LAOS HOTELS

Xiengthong Palace

Situated next to the revered Wat Xieng Thong and opposite the Mekong River is the recently opened Xiengthong Palace. The last residence of the Lao Royal family of Laos, it offers luxury accommodation with an elegant mix of traditional and contemporary design. This boutique property offers 26 spacious rooms that are complete with modern amenities.


laos hotels luang prabang

La Residence Phou Vao Luxury - Luang Prabang

XiengThong Palace Deluxe - Luang Prabang

Shinta Mani Luang Prabang Deluxe - Luang Prabang

Hotel De La Paix Deluxe - Luang Prabang

Satri House Deluxe - Luang Prabang

Villa Chitdara Standard - Luang Prabang

Salana Boutique Hotel Deluxe - Vientiane

Settha Palace Hotel Deluxe - Vientiane

vientiane

Sala Prabang Hotel Standard - Luang Prabang

Province

Ansara Hotel Deluxe - Vientiane

Mercure Hotel Superior - Vientiane

La Folie Lodge Standard - Champasak

The Elephant Crossing Hotel Standard - Vang Vieng

The Boat Landing Guest House & Restaurant Standard - Luang Namtha

Nong KHiaw Riverside Resort & Restaurant Standard - Nong Khiaw Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 42


CAMBODIA


The Kingdom of Cambodia boasts some of the most spectacular sights on the planet. From massive ancient temple complexes and varied wildlife to dense rainforest and pristine beaches the country has a huge amount to offer the visitor. Having suffered a traumatic recent history, Cambodia has set about reinventing itself and has opened its doors to visitors keen to experience this exotic destination.

P 43 P 45 P 46 P 47 P 48 P 49 P 50 P 51 P 52 P 53 P 54 P 55 P 56 P 57 P 58 P 59

Introduction In Depth Cambodia Cambodia Highlights Family Cambodia Tuk Tuks and Temples Cycling Cambodia Trek Mondulkiri Luxurious Cambodia Angkor Honeymoon Cruise Cambodia Monastery Experience Rural Battambang Cambodia Voluntourism Cambodia Group Tour Cambodia Beach Resorts Cambodia Hotels


In Depth Cambodia Day 1-4

12 DAYS Phnom Penh Stung Treng Ban Lung Stung Treng Kratie Kompong Cham Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

Ban Lung Stung Treng

Siem Reap

Kratie Kompong Cham

PHNOM PENH

Phnom Penh - Stung Treng Ban Lung

Explore the capital with a guided tour of the main attractions including the National Museum, the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda. On Day 2 explore the city further and visit Wat Phnom, the fascinating Russian Market, sobering Tuol Sleng Museum and the poignant Killing Fields. On Day 3, make the journey to Stung Treng, which is located near to Cambodia’s northern border with Laos. It is also the point where the Mekong River enters Cambodia. Next, you will drive to Ban Lung, the capital of Ratanakiri Province. Enjoy a swim in Boeng Yeak Lom Lake and admire Cha Ong waterfall before enjoying sunset on top of Eisey Pak Ta Mak mountain.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Learn about Cambodia’s ancient and recent history • Meet ethnic minorities in the mountainous north-east • Ride elephants through the jungle • Trek through dense rainforest and go wildlife spotting • Search for river dolphins on the Mekong • Marvel at majestic Angkor Wat • Cruise past floating villages on the Tonle Sap

Day 5-8

Banlung - Stung Treng - Kratie Kompong Cham - Siem Reap

SUMMARY Whilst taking in bustling Phnom Penh and the temples of Angkor, this tour also takes you off the beaten track to some of the country’s more remote and dramatic areas. Along the way encounter beautiful scenery, ethnic minority villages and archaeological gems at Angkor.

Venture out to Ven Sai village and meet inhabitants from some of ethnic minority groups that make the region their home. Later in the day, journey to beautiful Ka Chanh waterfall. Travel on to Kratie and embark on a river cruise to try and spot the endangered Irrawaddy freshwater dolphins that inhabit this stretch of the river. Move on to Kompong Cham, stopping en route at the historic hill temples of Phnom Srei and Phnom Pros. Explore the Sambor Prei Kuk temple complex before arriving in Siem Reap on Day 8.

Day 9-12

Angkor Complex - Tonle Sap

Begin your exploration of the Angkor complex with a visit to Angkor Thom, before exploring magical Angkor Wat and enjoying sunset from Phnom Bakheng. Visits will also be made to Banteay Srei, Ta Prohm and Banteay Kdei. Later, take in the “Grand Circuit” which includes Preah Khan, Neak Pean, Ta Som, East Mebon and Pre Rup. On Day 11, head out to the Tonle Sap Lake, South East Asia’s largest lake and observe life in the fascinating floating villages. Finish this comprehensive experience with an exploration of the Rolous Temple Group.

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Battambang Extension Famed for the prized rubies and garnets that are mined in the province, the city and its environs has some noteworthy sights. Discover faded French Colonial architecture in the city and pay a visit to the nearby Ek Phnom Temple, an 11th Century structure with beautiful carvings.


Cambodia Highlights UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Observe life on Phnom Penh’s charming riverfront • Gorge on Cambodia’s national dish ‘Amok’ • Discover the glories of the Angkorian Empire • Visit mysterious temples reclaimed by the jungle • Admire the intricate carvings on sacred Mount Kulen • Relax next to beautiful jungle waterfalls

Day 1-3

Phnom Penh – Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided tour of the capital taking in the main sights. Make visits to the Grand Palace, sobering Tuol Sleng Prison, the National Museum and the bustling Russian Market. In the evening, enjoy a stroll along the capital’s atmospheric riverfront. On Day 2, you will depart the capital for the drive to Siem Reap. This will be your base to explore the fabled temples of Angkor. Later in the day begin your discovery of Angkor with a visit to the Rolous temple complex, the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Angkor during the 9th century. On Day 3, visit the vast walled city of Angkor Thom, entering through the South Gate. Explore the mysterious Bayon temple with its numerous faces, the terrace of the Elephants and the terrace of the Leper King. Later in the day, make your way to the hilltop temple of Phnom Bakheng to enjoy sunset over the Cambodian countryside and reflect on your day’s adventure.

7 DAYS Phnom Penh Siem Reap temples of angkor

Angkor Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH

Day 5-7

Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

Kep Extension Travel to the relaxed seaside resort of Kep, only a couple of hours drive from the capital. You are sure to enjoy a pleasant stay and the opportunity to sample some delicious seafood. During your stay, you may wish to visit Rabbit Island, where you can relax on the beach or swim in the azure waters.

On Day 4, venture out to peaceful Mount Kulen to view the great reclining Buddha and the Shiva lingas which are intricately carved on the riverbed. Enjoy a tasty picnic lunch before continuing on to the beautiful temples of Banteay Srei and Banteay Samre. The next morning is reserved for you to admire the majestic beauty of Angkor Wat. Your guide will give you a thorough commentary as you explore the site. Enjoy ample time to explore this awe-inspiring structure and reflect on the glories of the Kingdom of Angkor. In the afternoon pay a visit to jungle covered Ta Prohm and the temple of Banteay Kdei. On Day 6, visit the silk farm at Pok and learn about the production of this valuable fabric. Later on in the morning, visit the informative and sobering Land Mine museum and in the afternoon visit Wat Bo before exploring the old market in Siem Reap. Day 7 is at leisure until you are transferred to the airport for onward travel.

SUMMARY A fantastic itinerary incorporating the best of Cambodia at a leisurely pace, starting in the capital Phnom Penh and moving on to Siem Reap. Enjoy three days to explore the vast temple complex and make a trip out to nearby Mount Kulen, where you can view some beautiful waterfalls.

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family Cambodia 10 DAYS

Day 1-3

SiEm Reap temples of angkor phnom penh Sihanoukville

Enjoy the first 3 days of this experience exploring the fabled temples of Angkor. View the temples from a balloon before exploring the majestic Angkor Wat. Venture out to the atmospheric jungle temple of Ta Prohm. You will also visit the city of Angkor Thom, the Bayon temple, the Elephant Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King. These remarkable temples and complexes offer a startling insight into the beauty and power of the Angkorian era.

Angkor

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • View majestic Angkor Wat from above • Climb sacred Mount Kulen and view the beautiful carvings • Learn about Cambodian history at the Royal Palace • See the sights of Phnom Penh during a fun rickshaw ride • Explore the environs of the capital by bicyle • Relax on the beach in the coastal resort of Sihanoukville

Day 4-6

Siem Reap

CAMBODIA PHNOM PENH

Sihanoukville

SUMMARY Discover the magical Temples of Angkor and the ecological wonder of the Tonle Sap Lake before venturing south to explore Phnom Penh, the atmospheric capital of the country. Finish your Cambodian experience with a relaxing stay at the peaceful coastal resort of Sihanoukville.

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Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

Siem Reap – Tonle Sap Lake – Phnom Kulen - Siem Reap – Phnom Penh

Transfer by Tuk Tuk to Tonle Sap lake and cruise to the floating villages to observe life on water. On Day 5, head out to Mount Kulen and view the Reclining Buddha and Shiva Lingas that are carved into the riverbed. Enjoy a picnic lunch before returning to Siem Reap. On Day 6, take the morning flight to Phnom Penh. Upon arrival you will be met by your English speaking guide and transferred to your hotel. After lunch, enjoy a cycle rickshaw tour of the capital. Visits will be made to the Russian Market and the Royal Palace before you embark on an hour long boat trip on the Mekong River to watch the sunset.

Day 7-10

Phnom Penh – Silk Island Sihanoukville - Phnom Penh

Travel by vehicle to Silk Island, where you can learn more about the traditional silk weaving techniques still practiced in this region. Afterwards take a traditional sampan boat across the Mekong and explore picturesque villages by bicycle. Return to the hotel and spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure. On Day 8, make the 4 hour journey from Phnom Penh to the coastal resort of Sihanoukville. The next couple of days are free for you to relax at your resort or laze on the beach. You may wish to venture further out of town to explore the rugged coastline of the region. On Day 10 you will be transferred back to Phnom Penh.

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.


TUK TUKS AND TEMPLES UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Marvel at majestic Angkor Wat • Travel in the Buffalo Tours’ Tuk Tuk • Reflect on the glories of the Angkorian Empire • Visit mysterious temples reclaimed by the jungle • Enjoy a fun ox cart ride through the countryside • Cruise through floating communities on the Tonle Sap • Enjoy a traditional performance of Khmer dance

Day 1-2

4 DAYS

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon, ride in the Buffalo Tours’ Tuk Tuk to visit the city of Angkor Thom. Start at the South Gate and walk along the ancient city wall to see the lost temple of Prasat Chroung. Continue to the Bayon temple, where you will be surrounded by the smiling faces of numerous Buddhas. Also make visits to the Terrace of the Elephants, the Royal Palace and the Terrace of the Leper King. The following day, rise early and travel in the Buffalo Tours Tuk Tuk to visit the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Enjoy ample time to explore this atmospheric temple complex before moving on to the highlight of any visit to the temples; Angkor Wat. Enjoy a guided tour around this huge structure and learn about the glories of the Kingdom of Angkor. Return to the hotel for a late breakfast and a rest. In the afternoon, head to the temple of Banteay Srei or ‘Citadel of the Women’ and marvel at the intricately carved bas reliefs that it is famous for. On your way back to Siem Reap, enjoy the sunset from the top of the pyramid-shaped temple of Pre Rup.

SIEM REAP temples of ANGKOR TONLE SAP lake

Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

Day 3-4

Siem Reap - Tonle Sap Lake

Luang Prabang Extension Enjoy a stay in this cultural gem and its wealth of sightseeing options. Learn more about the history of the town with a guided city tour of the main sights.Take a boat ride to the Pak Ou caves, bathe in the clear waters of the Kuang Si Falls and learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class.

This morning, venure out of Siem Reap in the Buffalo Tours Tuk Tuk. At the edge of town you will leave the tuk tuk and embark on a fun buffalo cart ride through the beautiful countryside that surrounds Siem Reap. Your buffalo cart experience ends on arrival at Cambodia’s largest freshwater lake; the Tonle Sap. Board a boat and spend the rest of the morning at one of the largest floating villages on this incredibly vast expanse of water. In the village of Kompong Phluk, you will be able to observe the fascinating daily lives of the local people who live on the water. Drive past floating schools, pig farms and even churches. The boat service is provided by local people, and the profit goes directly back to the community. The rest of the day is at leisure. On Day 4 you will be transferred to the airport for your onward journey.

Angkor Wat Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

SUMMARY Explore the ancient temples of Angkor in Buffalo Tours’ very own Tuk Tuk. Travel in style as you are shuttled around the highlights of the temple complex. Round off your experience with a ride to the Tonle Sap Lake and a fascinating boat trip around the lake’s floating communities.

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Cycling Cambodia Day 1-4

8 DAYS Phnom Penh Kep Kampot Phnom Penh

Takeo Kampot Sihanoukville

CAMBODIA PHNOM PENH

Takeo Kep Sihanoukville

Kampot

Phnom Penh – Takeo – Kampot

You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. Explore this fascinating capital city with visits to Wat Phnom, the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda as well as the informative National Museum. In the afternoon, cycle to the Independence Monument, the Tuol Sleng Museum and sobering Choeung Ek killing fields. On Day 3 you will cycle to Tonle Bati, where you will enjoy a tasty picnic lunch. Continue cycling to Phnom Chiso, whereb you can climb to the summit to admire stunning views over the surrounding area. Later on, you will arrive at Takeo where you will spend the night. The next day, board a boat with your bicycle and journey to Angkor Borei. From there you will continue to Phnom Da and the chance to relax and enjoy lunch on the hilltop. You will then return to Takeo, before continuing on to the atmospheric riverside town of Kampot and the chance to view the town’s faded colonial architecture and languid atmosphere.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Observe life on Phnom Penh’s charming riverfront • Cycle through the stunning countryside • Stop in villages to interact with the friendly locals • Feast on famous Kampot pepper crab • Relax on the beach in Sihanoukville • Snorkel through the azure waters of the Gulf of Thailand • Get truly ‘off the beaten track’

Day 5-8

Kampot – Kep - Kampot – Sihanoukville – Phnom Penh

SUMMARY This adventure combines travel by bicycle, car, ferry and foot. Explore Cambodia’s diverse landscape of verdant waterways, pristine beaches, emerald green rice paddies and dense rainforest. Feast on delicious seafood, relax on beautiful beaches and discover ancient temple complexes.

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On Day 5, depart the town of Kampot and head for the relaxed seaside resort of Kep. Along the way you will stop to explore the impressive limestone caves of Phnom Sia. Continue your experience with a boat trip to beautiful Rabbit Island, which is located just off the coast. Enjoy ample time to go swimming in the azure waters and relax on the beach. Later in the day you will return to Kampot for the night. On Day 6, cycle along the beautiful coast to the relaxed beach town of Sihanoukville. You will arrive in the mid-afternoon and may wish to spend the remainder of the day relaxing on the beach. The next day you will make the journey to Ream National Park to enjoy the stunning coastline. Later, cycle back to Sihanoukville. The following day, enjoy some free time to further explore this peaceful town. Take a stroll through the town’s market or simply relax on the sandy beaches. In the afternoon you will return to the capital for your last night.

Vientiane Extension Extend your experience with a stay in the sleepy capital of Laos. Enjoy a guided tour of the most important historic and cultural sites in the capital. Besides visiting the main sights you are sure to appreciate the languid atmosphere and the faded colonial architecture of this quiet city.


trek Mondulkiri UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Get well and truly ‘off the beaten track’ in remote Mondulkiri • Learn about the ethnic minority cultures of the region • Ride an elephant through the jungle • Learn about the relationship between mahouts and their elephants • Go wildlife spotting • Trek and camp in the rainforest • Swim in a jungle waterfall

Day 1-2

6 DAYS

Rise early and head to a village populated by the P’nong ethnic group. You will have the opportunity to learn about everyday life in this remote region. Explore the forest by elephant and learn from the Mahout how to control one of these majestic beasts. You will also discover more about the relationship between the Mahouts and their elephants. If you are lucky you may see some of the monkeys, monitor lizards, deer and wild boar that make the dense rainforest their home. Later in the day you will arrive at your camping site for the night and set up camp. Enjoy a swim in a nearby waterfall and help to bathe your elephant with the Mahout. In the evening, enjoy dinner around the campfire listening to the sounds of the jungle.

mondulkiri P’nong villages bu sra waterfall

Mondulkiri - P’nong Village

CAMBODIA Mondulkiri

Day 3–4

Mondulkiri - P’nong Village

Make your way deeper into the jungle to a remote P’nong community which is only accessible on foot. You will spend the next couple of days exploring the dense rainforest during the daytime and getting to know more about the communities you are passing through in the evenings. The first night will be spent in a friendly homestay where you can enjoy local hospitality and cuisine and the second will be spent in a comfortable lodge.

Day 5-6

Mondulkiri - Bu Sra

Kep Extension Travel to the relaxed seaside resort of Kep, only a couple of hours drive from the capital. You are sure to enjoy a pleasant stay and the opportunity to sample some delicious seafood. During your stay you may wish to visit Rabbit Island, where you can relax on the beach or swim in the azure waters.

In the morning visit thundering Bu Sra, which is the biggest waterfall in Mondulkiri Province. At the waterfall you will have a chance to enjoy a refreshing swim in the cool waters at the base. Continue with visits to traditional communities and enjoy a tasty picnic at another natural swimming spot. Spend the afternoon visiting local coffee growers and learn more about production of this crop. Later, continue hiking until you reach a spectacular view point that boasts stunning views of the surrounding rainforest. At the end of this adventurous day return to your lodge for the chance to reflect on this ‘off the beaten track’ experience.

SUMMARY Embark on a unique adventure in remote Mondulkiri province. Venture into the eastern highlands, populated by the P’nong ethnic group. Ride elephants and trek through an area that boasts stunning scenery of jungle clad mountains, dense rainforest and thundering waterfalls.

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LUXURIOUS CAMBODIA Day 1-3

6 DAYS Phnom Penh Siem Reap TEMPLES OF Angkor

Angkor Tonle Sap Lake

Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH

Phnom Penh – Siem Reap -Angkor Complex

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided city tour in a cyclo with visits to the National Museum, the Royal Palace and the Silver Pagoda. End your day with a river cruise as the sun sets over the capital. On Day 2 you will visit the genocide museum, also known as Toul Sleng and the sobering Killing Fields just outside the city. In the afternoon, visit the Sovann Phum centre to learn more about traditional Khmer culture. On the morning of Day 3 take the short flight to Siem Reap and transfer to your comfortable hotel. In the afternoon, transfer ancient walled city of Angkor Thom. Later on, continue to the Bayon Temple, the Terrace of Elephants, the Royal Palace and the Terrace of the Leper King. In the late afternoon, return to your hotel in Siem Reap. Relax by the pool or venture into town to hunt for souvenirs in the market.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Learn about Cambodian history at the Royal Palace • Observe life on Phnom Penh’s charming riverfront • Discover the glories of the Angkorian Empire • Cruise through floating communities on the Tonle Sap • Transfers in luxury vehicles • Enjoy luxury spa treatments and soothing massages • Savour fine Khmer cuisine

Day 4-6

Siem Reap - Tonle Sap Lake Angkor Complex

SUMMARY Combine a tour of the Kingdom’s main highlights with luxury accommodation, fine dining and spa treatments. From the bustle of Phnom Penh to the awe-inspiring Temples of Angkor and the serenity of the Tonle Sap Lake you are sure to enjoy this luxurious experience.

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On the morning of Day 4, rise early and travel in the Buffalo Tours Tuk Tuk back to the temples. Your first visit will be to the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Later on, you will visit the magnificent Angkor Wat, the highlight of any trip to the region. Enjoy a guided tour around this huge structure and learn about the glories of the Kingdom of Angkor. You will have ample time to explore this masterpiece. Return to your hotel for a late breakfast and some free time. In the afternoon, head to the temple of Banteay Srei, which is also known as the ‘Citadel of the Women’. On your way back to Siem Reap, enjoy a memorable sunset from the top of the pyramid-shaped temple of Pre Rup. The following day, drive to the edge of Siem Reap to the Tonle Sap Lake. Board a boat and spend the rest of the morning exploring Kompong Phluk. The boat service is provided by local people, and the profit goes directly back to the community.

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.


ANGKOR HONEYMOON UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore the ancient temple complexes of Angkor • Enjoy luxury spa treatments • Get an aerial view of the temples with a fun balloon ride • Cruise through floating communities on the Tonle Sap • Search for that perfect souvenir in bustling markets • Gorge on Cambodia’s national dish ‘Amok’ • Stay in luxurious hotels

Day 1-2

4 DAYS

You will be greeted at the airport and transferred to your comfortable hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to relax by the pool or explore the town. The following day you will begin your exploration of the temples at the South Gate of Angkor Thom. Continue on to the Bayon temple, the Terrace of Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King. Make a stop at the atmospheric jungle covered temple of Ta Prohm, before enjoying lunch and some free time. Later in the day, enjoy ample time to explore the majestic structure of Angkor Wat. Reflect on the glories of the Angkorian Empire before returning to Siem Reap. Later in the afternoon enjoy a soothing Khmer massage at a luxury spa. This magical day’s adventure ends with a balloon ride to watch sunset over the temples. In the evening, feast on delicious Khmer cuisine.

SiEm Reap TEMPLES OF Angkor

Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

Angkor Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

Day 3-4

Siem Reap - Angkor Compex Tonle Sap Lake

Luang Prabang Extension Enjoy a stay in this cultural gem and its wealth of sightseeing options. Learn more about the history of the town with a guided city tour of the main sights.Take a boat ride to the Pak Ou caves, bathe in the clear waters of the Kuang Si Falls and learn the secrets of Lao cuisine during a fun cooking class.

On the morning of Day 3 begin with a visit to the exquisitely carved Banteay Srei, which translates roughly as the “Citadel of the Women”. This beautiful temple displays some of the finest examples of classical Khmer art in all Angkor. After ample time to explore this unique site, you will head back to town and your hotel to enjoy some free time to relax by the pool or further explore Siem Reap. In the afternoon, venture out of town to the vast expanse of the Tonle Sap Lake. On arrival, you will enjoy a private boat trip to explore the lake’s fascinating floating villages. During this relaxing cruise, champagne and fruit will be served on board as you enjoy a stunning sunset on the water. At the end of this fascinating experience you will return to Siem Reap. In the evening, enjoy a gourmet dinner for two and the chance to reflect on a wonderful experience in this exotic destination. On the last day relax by the pool in your luxurious hotel, enjoy some treatments at the Spa or further explore Siem Reap. You will then be transferred by private vehicle to the airport for your onward journey.

SUMMARY Enjoy a unique honeymoon experience with the temples of Angkor as an exotic backdrop. Besides exploring the temples of Angkor, you will also enjoy a sunset balloon experience to enjoy magnificent views of the temples, luxury spa treatments and a champagne cruise on the Tonle Sap.

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Cruise Cambodia Day 1

3 DAYS Phnom Penh kampong tralach kampong chnang tonle sap Siem Reap

Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

Phnom Penh – Koh Chen - Oudong - Kampong Tralach

Depart Phnom Penh and cruise to Koh Chen where you will visit a small village that specialises in silverwork. The village also carves tropical fruits, which are then used in traditional ceremonies at local pagodas. Continue cruising until you reach Oudong, which was once the capital of the country. Indeed, the royal stupas of the site can be seen from a few kilometers away. Re-embark the Toum Tiou II and continue cruising until you reach the settlement of Kampong Tralach, where you will drop anchor close to the village for the night.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Observe life on Phnom Penh’s charming riverfront • Cruise on the mighty Mekong • Explore the former capital of Oudong • Visit fascinating riverside settlements • Gain an insight into life on the water • Cruise through floating communities on the Tonle Sap • Savour fine Khmer cuisine

Day 2 PHNOM PENH

SUMMARY Enjoy a more relaxed way of travelling between the capital and Siem Reap with a three day river cruise. This form of travelling will enable you to observe fascinating scenes of everyday life on the river, which has changed relatively little over the years.

Kampong Tralach – Kampong Chnang - Chnok Trou

Cruise on to Kampong Tralach and visit its beautiful Wat. Enjoy lunch back onboard before arriving at Kampong Chnang which is one of the largest fishing ports on the Tonlé Sap. Fish farming is also common in the area. The area is famous for its pottery ware, unchanged in style for centuries. It is produced in sufficient quantities to supply the entire country. And not to be overlooked are the products of the sugar palm, which is considered a national symbol. The tree produces a mellow tasting, caramel-colored sugar sold in large cakes and palm wine. Return to the vessel and cruise to near the entrance to Tonle Sap Lake, where you will drop anchor for the night.

Day 3

Chnok Trou – Siem Reap

Visit a local floating village that is almost totally overlooked by tourists because of its remoteness and difficult access. The village is completely self-sufficient, with all trades are represented. All locals, from children to grandparents, travel by boat through the network of canals that cross this little town. Depending on the time of year, you will transfer to Siem Reap onboard the vessel or by speed boat. On arrival in Siem Reap, transfer to your hotel. You may wish to extend your stay in the area and explore the majestic temples.

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Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


Monastery Experience UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Marvel at the majestic stucture of Angkor Wat • Visit mysterious temples reclaimed by the jungle • Learn more about Buddhist philosophy and practices • Learn about and practice meditation techniques • Enjoy interacting with Buddhist monks • Overnight in a monastery near the Temples of Angkor

Day 1

3 DAYS

Begin this experience with a visit to the majestic temples of Angkor. Begin at the South Gate of Angkor Thom, before moving on to the centerpiece of this ancient city, the Bayon temple. The Bayon contains 54 towers decorated with more than 200 enigmatic smiling faces. Move on to visit the Royal Enclosure, Phimeanakas, the Terrace of Elephants and the Terrace of Leper King. Later on you will visit the jungle covered temple of Ta Prohm. Next it is time to explore fabled Angkor Wat, the most famous of all the temples within the Angkor complex. Spend most of the afternoon here reflecting on the glories of Angkor before heading back to Siem Reap, where you will spend the night.

Siem Reap TEMPLES OF ANGKOR

Siem Reap - Angkor Complex

Angkor Siem Reap

CAMBODIA

Day 2

Siem Reap - Angkor Complex Monastery

Head to the exquisite Banteay Srei which is roughly translated as the’Citadel of the women’. The temple displays some of the finest examples of classical Khmer art. Next, move on the temple of Banteay Samre. After lunch, you will travel to a local monastery where you will meet the monks who live there. Learn about Buddhist philosophy and monastic life during this unique cultural exchange. No dinner is planned as the monks have their last dinner at 11am in the morning. It is permissible for you to have snacks, which will be provided. You will spend an atmospheric night in the monastery.

SUMMARY A unique tour that includes a visit to the famous Angkor Wat and a night in a local monastery. Meet the resident monks, learn about Buddhist philosophy and monastic life. Rise early to the sound of drums for a half day of meditation practice. A truly spiritual experience.

Day 3

Siem Reap - Monastery

Kep Extension Travel to the relaxed seaside resort of Kep, only a couple of hours drive from the capital. You are sure to enjoy a pleasant stay and the opportunity to sample some delicious seafood. During your stay you may wish to visit Rabbit Island, where you can relax on the beach or swim in the azure waters.

Rise in the early morning, at around 4am, to the sound of the drums. Enjoy a simple breakfast at the monastery, before an introduction to meditation techniques. This is followed by a half day of meditation in the monastery. At the end of this fascinating and truly enriching experience you will be transferred back to Siem Reap. You may wish to extend your stay in the area with a trip out to the Tonle Sap Lake, where you can enjoy a boat trip through the lake’s fsacinating floating communities.

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RURAL BATTAMBANG Day 1

3 DAYS Phnom Penh Siem Reap battambang Wat Kor Cultural Village

Siem Reap

Battambang

CAMBODIA

PHNOM PENH

Phnom Penh/Siem Reap – Battambang – Wat Kor Cultural Village

In the morning, drive to Battambang by private car. After lunch, enjoy a walking tour of Battambang which will include visits to some of the old French Colonial buildings along the river and a visit to the former Governor’s residence. Just two kilometers away from Battambang on the Sangker River is the village of Wat Kor. Here you will gain a fascinating insight into the Cambodian way of life in the province. Many of the structures in the town were constructed in the early 20th century. Locals give the visitors a short tour of the village and explain some of the history and show them around a traditional Khmer home. An optional evening activity is offered on Thursday evenings only. You can assist in a circus show organized by the NGO Phare. The entertaining performance helps poor, handicapped children gain an education and improve their future prospects.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Learn about Cambodia’s fascinating history • Discover the crumbling colonial architecture of Battambang • Explore the beautiful countryside of Cambodia • Discover ancient temples • Savour fine Khmer cuisine • Get a feel for rural life in this exotic destination • Enjoy opportunities to interact with the friendly locals

DAY 2

Battambang - Wat Phnom Banan – Phnom Sampeau

SUMMARY If you like to get ‘off the beaten track’, this rural Cambodia adventure is for you. Battambang is famous for its French colonial architecture, fertile soil and the rubies and garnets mined in the province. The city is only a three hour drive from Siem Reap and four from Phnom Penh.

This morning depart Battambang for a visit to Wat Phnom Banan, an 11th century temple built by King Jarvarman VII. Located on top of a 400 metre high hill, the views from the temple are simply breathtaking. The next destination is Phnom Sampeau, which is a natural rock formation which contains a series of caves. The area was a former stronghold of the Khmer Rouge and some of the caves were used as “killing caves”. Your guide will be able to give you a history of the area.

DAY 3

Battambang – Siem Reap/ Phnom Penh

Depart Battambang and spend the morning exploring nearby Ek Phnom Temple, an 11th century Hindu temple built by King Suryavarman I. The temple contains some beautiful carvings that have remained in remarkably good condition. After lunch, make the onward journey to Phnom Penh/Siem Reap.

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Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


cambodia voluntourism Cambodia is one of the poorest countries in the world with 40% living on less than a dollar per day. Although the Cambodia is progressing, there are still high levels of poverty, especially in Siem Reap province. The province receives the highest number of tourists, but very little of the revenue from tourism reaches the most vulnerable. Dedicate some of your time to helping the Khmer people out of the poverty cycle by participating in one of our carefully selected projects.

Keeping Children Safe and off the Streets We work with the Sangkheum Centre for Children whose goal is to prevent the increase of street children in Siem Reap. With local partner organizations and village leaders we have developed a comprehensive program to support the resident children by providing education, training, social and medical support. Group volunteer tasks include construction and painting of school buildings, installation of solar panels and teaching English. Individuals can visit the centre to learn more about the situation of Khmer children and visit their silk production centre.

Sustainable Community Development through Educating Children The education system in Cambodia is poor and approximately 85% of Cambodia’s population lives in rural areas where access to basic services is almost non-existent. There is a shortage of schools, classrooms and teachers. We are seeking participating schools, universities and community-service groups to fund and build schools, offices for teacher’s libraries and even install solar electricity to bring light to areas without electricity. This project is in partnership with a Siem Reap based grassroots, not-for-profit, nongovernment community development organisation. In addition to school building there are opportunities to provide scholarships to deserving students who are at risk of dropping out of school because of family poverty. This includes an innovative project providing bicycles to students whose schools are not within walking distance.

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CAMBODIA GROUP TOUR 11 DAYS

Day 1

BANGKOk BATtAMBANG SIEM REAP PHNOM PENH CHAU DOC CAN THO HO CHI MINH CITY

Arrive in Bangkok and enjoy a splendid dinner cruise on the Chao Praya.

Bangkok

Day 2

Bangkok - Battambang

Drive from Bangkok through the lush Thai countryside of rice paddies and fruit orchards to the border with Cambodia at Aranyaprathet. Once inside Cambodia and its border town of Poipet, you will continue to Sisophon. The contrast between Thailand and Cambodia is quite dramatic. Mid-afternoon arrival in Battambang for an overnight stay in Cambodia’s second city. A short sightseeing tour on arrival is included.

THAILAND

BANGKOK

Features • Destination highlights and lesser visited areas • Culturally enriching travel and unforgettable experiences • Comfortable 4 star hotels throughout • Travel with like minded people • Flexible itineraries easy to combine with other tours • Professional tour leader throughout • Group size of maximum 20 people

Siem Reap Battambang

Day 3–5

CAMBODIA

Battambang – Siem Reap PHNOM PENH

Ho Chi Minh City Chau Doc

Drive to Siem Reap and spend 3 days exploring ancient Khmer temples including Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom and Ta Prohm, the jungle temple made famous in the movie ‘Tomb Raider’. Visit the floating villages of Tonle Sap, journey through the countryside and observe local life. Spend the evening at a special dinner accompanied by a display of Khmer Classical Dance.

SUMMARY

Day 6–7

See the highlights whilst sharing memorable experiences with new friends. Starting in Bangkok, you will travel across exotic Cambodia and through the heart of the fertile Mekong Delta, before arriving in the bustling metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.

Fly to Phnom Penh, once considered the loveliest of the French-built cities in Indochina. Sightseeing includes the magnificent Royal Palace, with its Silver Pagoda of 5000 silver floor tiles and the National Museum and Wat Phnom.

Siem Reap – Phnom Penh

Day 8-11

Phnom Penh – Chau Doc – Can Tho – Ho Chi Minh City

Travel by boat down the mighty Mekong, crossing the border into Vietnam and the town of Chau Doc. Continue through the Mekong Delta to Can Tho, before finishing your journey in Ho Chi Minh City. You will have a chance to see the sites of this bustling city before enjoying a final dinner. This is just an example of a large selection of group tours we will offer in Indochina and Thailand. Please contact us for the full range.

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What’s included? • 4 star accommodation • Daily buffet breakfast • Economy class flights • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles • Qualified local tour leader • Local guides at selected sites • All entrance fees • Support from local offices


CAMBODIA BEACH RESORTS

Song Saa Private Island In Cambodia’s untouched Koh Rong Archipelago, two pristine islands lie side by side. They are known locally as Song Saa, which is Khmer for ‘The Sweethearts’. The Song Saa Private Island is as seductive as the name implies. Think intimate. Think luxurious. But above all think harmony – with all the elements of nature that make this place so special. It will feature 27 luxury overwater, rainforest and beach villas built with sustainable materials and with the deepest respect for the natural environment.

Knai Bang Chatt, Kep

Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville


The Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa, Siem Reap

The building’s graceful colonial architecture provides a sense of peace and tranquility. Designed to be in total harmony with its natural surroundings, it is situated in the heart of Siem Reap, opposite the Royal Park and within close proximity to UNESO World Heritage listed Temples of Angkor.


cambodia hotels siem reap

Hotel de la Paix Deluxe - Siem Reap

La Residence d’Angkor Deluxe - Siem Reap

Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor Deluxe - Siem Reap

Angkor Village Resort Superior - Siem Reap

Borei Angkor Resort & Spa Superior - Siem Reap

Steung Siem Reap Standard - Siem Reap

phnom penh

Casa Angkor Hotel Standard - Siem Reap

Frangipani Villa Hotel Boutique - Siem Reap

Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra Deluxe - Phnom Penh

Raffles Hotel Le Royal Deluxe - Phnom Penh

Sunway Hotel Superior - Phnom Penh

Amanjaya Pancam Hotel Superior - Phnom Penh

battambang

Castle Hotel Standard - Phnom Penh

Villa Langka Boutique - Phnom Penh

Bambu Hotel Boutique - Battambang

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THAILAND


A destination that truly has something for everyone. Whether you want to go island hopping, enjoy worldclass shopping or explore the country’s national parks, you are guaranteed a fantastic stay in the ‘Land of Smiles’. Justly famous for its beaches, there is another side to Thailand. The country offers rich cultural experiences as well as a divine cuisine. Allow us to design a more ‘complete’ tour that takes you into the heart of Thailand and show you more of what this special country has to offer.

P 61 P 63 P 64 P 65 P 66 P 67 P 68 P 69 P 70 P 71 P 72 P 73 P 74 P 75 P 76 P 77 P 79

Introduction Thailand Highlights Siam Culinary Adventure Elephants & Beaches Nature & Family Adventure Cycle Coast to Coast Thai Eco Adventure Boutique Issan Lanna Luxury Houseboat Safari Sailing the Andaman Kayak Khao Sok Culture and Cuisine Thailand Voluntourism Thailand Group Tour Thailand Beach Resorts Thailand Hotels


Thailand HIGHLIGHTS 12 DAYS

Day 1-3

Bangkok Ayuthaya Chiang Mai phuket Phang Nga

Rise early, and head to Wat Pho to witness the chanting of the monks. Continue on to the Grand Palace and the fascinating Siam Museum. Enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant on the river before enjoying a longtail boat trip along the klongs (canals) of old Bangkok. On Day 3 drive to the ancient capital of Ayuthaya. Wander the magnificent city ruins and explore Wat Phra Sri Sanpetch with its three-spired pagoda, the imposing Buddha image of Phra Mongkol Bophit and Wat Chaiya Mongkol. Continue your exploration of the area with a visit to view the beautiful interior of Chinese Wehat Chamrun Palace. Cruise back to Bangkok on the Grand Pearl, arriving in the capital in the late afternoon.

Chiang Mai

THAILAND Ayutthaya

BANGKOK

Bangkok – Ayuthaya - Bangkok

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Witness the chanting of the monks at Wat Pho • Feast on some of the best street food in Asia • Wander through the majestic ruins of Ayuthaya • Hunt for bargains in Chiang Mai’s night bazaar • Climb to the top of Doi Suthep for magnificent views • Cruise through Phang Nga Bay’s stunning seascape

Day 4 -7

Bangkok – Chiang Mai - Phuket

Phang Nga bay Phuket

SUMMARY Explore the magical Kingdom of Thailand taking in the main sites from bustling Bangkok to the peaceful city of Chiang Mai. End your experience in beautiful Phuket, with ample time to enjoy its white sandy beaches, sunshine and delicious seafood.

Transfer to the airport for your short flight to Chiang Mai and spend the afternoon on a guided city tour of this relaxed city. Visit the main sights before spending the evening exploring the sprawling night bazaar. The following day you will depart Chiang Mai for the Chiang Dao Elephant training camp and the chance to ride one of these magnificent creatures. Following this, enjoy a bamboo rafting adventure down a stretch of the Ping River. The following day join a Thai cooking class, where you will learn some of the secrets to this refined cuisine. The next day you will be transferred to the airport for the direct flight to Phuket.

Day 8 –12

Phuket - Phang Nga

On arrival in Thailand’s biggest island, travel by boat to the beautiful Phang Nga Bay, with its spectacular limestone islands and secluded beaches. A highlight of this trip is a visit to ‘James Bond Island’. Enjoy a seafood lunch on board your vessel and plenty of opportunities to swim in the azure waters. Return to your comfortable hotel in Phuket in the late afternoon. The next few days are at leisure for you to relax on the beach or explore Thailand’s largest island.

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Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


SIAM CULINARY ADVENTURE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-3

13 DAYS

• Discover serene temples in the bustling capital • Explore the klongs of old Bangkok in a Longtail boat • Explore Bangkok’s fascinating Chinatown • Sample delicious Thai cuisine • Learn how to cook like a local • Go wildlife spotting in Khao Yai National Park • Laze on picture perfect beaches • Finish a fiery Thai curry

Begin your experience by exploring some of Bangkok’s magnificent temples, including the Grand Palace and Wat Po. Enjoy a cruise on a private boat through the klongs (canals) of old Bangkok and in the evening enjoy dinner with Thai music and dancing. Spend Day 3 exploring Bangkok’s markets, taking in Pak Klong Talad, the city’s biggest flower market. Continue on to Chinatown to weave through the tiny networks of streets before continuing on to Aw Taw Kaw Market which is famous for its seafood and fruit.

Bangkok Ayuthaya Khao Yai National Park Koh Samet

Bangkok

Sapa

VI E T N AM HANOI Halong Bay

THAILAND Ayutthaya

Khao Yai

BANGKOK

Day 4-8

Bangkok - Ayuthaya - Khao Yai National Park

Enjoy three days of cooking classes at our favourite cooking school in Bangkok. Begin the days by visiting Bang Rak morning market where you will learn about the use of Thai fruits, vegetables and spices. The rest of the mornings are spent in the classroom and the kitchen with hands on instruction from top chefs. The afternoons are free for you to relax at your own leisure. In the afternoon of Day 6, you will have a fruit carving demonstration. From Bangkok, head north to the former capital of Thailand, Ayutthaya; stopping off at Bang Pa-In Summer Palace along the way. In Ayutthaya, admire the remnants of the magnificent temples before the onward journey to Khao Yai National Park to visit Khao Yai Winery. Enjoy a guided tour of the estate with a chance for some wine tasting. Spend the next day in the beautiful National Park, followed by a night drive through the forest to try and spot wildlife

Hoi An

Koh Samet

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY This gastronomic adventure will leave your mouth watering and your taste buds tingling. Besides enjoying cooking classes, you will visit colourful markets and visit vineyards for wine tasting. Finish your holiday on the island of Koh Samet and the chance to feast on fresh seafood.

Day 9-13 P Chiang Mai Extension Fam a stay in the cultural capital Enjoy of Thailand. Stroll through the famous Night Bazaar to hunt for that perfect souvenir, climb to the top of nearby Doi Suthep to enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding area and enjoy a fun cooking class to learn more about the refined cuisine of the region.

Khao Yai National Park - Koh Samet - Bangkok

Travel south to Rayong Pier for the short boat transfer to Koh Samet. Spend two days on this tropical paradise soaking up the sun, swimming in the clear waters and dining on mouth watering seafood. Transfer by boat and vehicle back to Bangkok, with the last day at leisure until you are transferred to the airport for your onward flight. Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 64


ELEPHANTS & BEACHES 12 DAYS

Day 1-3

BANGKOK Khao sok national park KRABI

Explore the golden, glittering temples at Bangkok’s most famous landmark, the Grand Palace. Walk up to Wat Sraked for panoramic views of Old Bangkok before enjoying an exciting Tuk Tuk ride to Baan Baat. Visit Wat Suthat and the Giant Swing. For lunch, sample delicious Thai cuisine before visiting The Siam Discovery Museum. In the evening, enjoy a cultural show at Siam Niramit. Day 3 will be spent at a local cooking school where you will learn how to prepare traditional Thai cuisine.

THAILAND BANGKOK

Bangkok

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Discover serene temples in bustling Bangkok • Learn how to cook Thai dishes like a local • Laze on picture perfect beaches • Snorkel over pristine coral reefs crowded with colourful fish • Spot wildlife from your elephant in Khao Sok National Park • Sample delicious Thai cuisine • Trek through dense rainforest and stay at a jungle camp

Day 4-6

Bangkok - Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok

Krabi

SUMMARY This adventure is designed for families or anyone looking to combine nature and beaches. Start in Bangkok before heading south to explore magnificent lakes and jungle by elephant, boat and on foot. The experience ends with a stay at one of the Kingdom’s finest beaches.

On the morning of Day 4 take the short flight from Bangkok to Surat Thani. After a scenic drive, you will board a dinghy to navigate through the small channels along the coast. Then, board a traditional Burmese junk and begin your cruise adventure. Spend the afternoon swimming and relaxing on a deserted beach. Return to the boat and continue cruising, before transferring to Elephant Hills in Khao Sok National Park. At the elephant camp you will get the chance to interact with and learn more about these magnificent beasts. On Day 6 board a local boat and visit a beautiful lake, where there will be ample time for swimming. After a relaxing day at the lake return to the camp for dinner.

Day 7-12

Khao Sok National Park - Krabi - Bangkok

Enjoy a trek through the dense rainforest to get closer to the sights and sounds of the forest. Weather permitting, lunch will be served in the rainforest cooked in bamboo, a tradition of jungle explorers for centuries past. In the afternoon leave the magical forests and head to the paradise of Krabi. A variety of sea and land based activities are available for those who wish to explore more than the beach. On Day 11, you will take the short flight from Krabi to Bangkok for an overnight stay and the chance to do some last minute shopping.

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Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


NATURE & FAMILY ADVENTURE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore the klongs of old Bangkok in a longtail boat • Shop ‘till you drop in the capital’s markets • Wander through the majestic ruins of Ayuthaya • Trek through dense rainforest in Khao Yai National Park • Cool off in beautiful jungle waterfalls • Enjoy a relaxing beach break in Hua Hin

Day 1-3

13 DAYS

Enjoy a guided tour of the Grand Palace and marvel at its magnificent temples before boarding your private longtail boat to explore the klongs (canals) of old Bangkok. Then, board a public ferry and cruise to Siam Ocean World. Continue your adventure with a trip to Siam Niramit for dinner and a cultural show called ‘Journey to the Enchanted Kingdom of Thailand’. The next day take to the saddle for a morning’s cycle in the countryside near Bangkok. On Day 3, you will visit an incense workshop and an old temple before enjoying some delicious local dishes.

Bangkok Khao Yai National Park nakorn pathom Hua Hin

Bangkok

THAILAND Khao Yai

Nakorn Pathom

BANGKOK

Hua Hin

Day 4-7

Bangkok – Khao Yai National Park - Nakorn Pathom - Hua Hin

Head north to Ayutthaya, the former capital of the Kingdom. Along the way stop off at Bang Pa-In to explore the European and Thai architecture in the beautiful gardens. In Ayutthaya you will explore the magnificent ruins of temples that date back several hundred years. Continue north east to Khao Yai National Park where you will stay for the night. On Day 5, embark on a soft trek along one of the most scenic trails in the park. Enjoy some time to cool off at Heiw Sawat Waterfall before heading back to your hotel for dinner. After dinner, head out on a night safari drive to search for Indian civet cats, porcupines, deer, wild dog and wild elephants. Day 6 takes you west to The Rose Garden Riverside Hotel. In the afternoon enjoy a spectacular cultural show at a theatre that is a replica of a typical village, complete with Thai houses. The next day, head south to the beautiful beach town of Hua Hin.

SUMMARY Designed for families, this adventure takes in culture, nature and beaches. After an action packed stay in Bangkok, take in the ruins at Auytthaya before heading to Khao Yai National Park. End your journey in relaxed Hua Hin with the opportunity to relax on the beach.

Day 8-13 Chiang Mai Extension Enjoy a stay in the cultural capital of Thailand. Stroll through the famous Night Bazaar to hunt for that perfect souvenir, climb to the top of nearby Doi Suthep to enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding area and enjoy a fun cooking class to learn more about the refined cuisine of the region.

Hua Hin - Bangkok

Spend the next three days in the seaside resort of Hua Hin, where you can relax on the beach or enjoy the facilities in and around the hotel. On Day 12, take the short flight back to Bangkok and spend your last evening exploring at your own leisure and the chance to reflect on a magical experience.

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THAILAND

Coast to Coast CYCLE Day 1-3

7 DAYS phuket ban bangnu Phang Nga ban takhun ban yan yao ban tha chang

Ban Tha Chang

Ban Takhun

Phang Nga Bay Phuket

Phuket - Ban Bangnu - Phang Nga

Early in the morning transfer from Phuket to a beach on the Andaman Sea side of the Malay Peninsula. On the first day, cycle through farmland, stopping off for lunch in a small village. After lunch you will continue cycling along narrow dirt tracks. The terrain is undulating, so it can be quite challenging at times. The next day’s cycling takes you onto more dirt tracks passing picturesque villages along the way. There is no tourism here, so the area is quite untouched. At the end of the day you will visit a small Buddhist Wat. The next day, cycle to Phang Nga Town, a charming little town with plenty of character. The town is framed by towering limestone mountains. Dinner is at a riverside restaurant that serves spicey Isaan food.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Get well and truly ‘off the beaten track’ • Cycle through a variety of landscapes • Get a feel for rural life in Thailand • Sample delicious Thai cuisine • Enjoy many opportunities to interact with the friendly locals • Discover serene temples in the peaceful countryside • See the country at a slower pace on two wheels

Day 4-7

Phang Nga - Ban Takhun - Ban Yan Yao - Ban Tha Chang

SUMMARY Phang Nga Province offers mountain bikers the opportunity to experience the best that rural southern Thailand has to offer. Ribbons of trails abound and cross the many rubber and palm plantations, pass through dense rainforest and picturesque villages.

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The ride today will take you into a beautiful mountain range. This is the old route from Phuket to Krabi, which is known as the “Hundred Curve Road” for good reason. The road is challenging, but certainly not something that is a problem for a reasonably fit cyclist. If you wish, you can be driven to the top of the mountain and the just cycle the downhill side. At the end of the descent, you will stop to visit a very interesting temple, with ample time to stretch your legs. Travel though valleys and along rivers to Ban Takhun, where you will stay at a small resort just outside of the National Park. You will pass by farms, small villages, and through stunning limestone karst mountains. The route consists of smooth dirt roads, rough dirt tracks, single tracks and occasional secondary roads. Your final day begins with winding trails through rubber plantations. You will cycle past farms and peaceful villages and eventually be travelling on secondary roads. The first half of the day is primarily on dirt before you get to the road area. The last part of cycling takes you past beautiful mangrove forest as you near the coast and the end of the fantastic adventure.

Phang Nga Bay Extension Easily accessed from Phuket, visitors to this natural wonder are sure to enjoy Phang Nga Bay’s dramatic and beautiful karst islands. Enjoy a cruise through the stunning scenery, go kayaking into secluded lagoons and diving or snorkeling to view the area’s pristine coral reefs and colourful fish.


Thai Eco Adventure UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore the klongs of old Bangkok in a Longtail Boat • Feast on some of the best street food in Asia • Discover the mysterious Khmer ruins of Phi Mai • Go wildlife spotting in Khao Yai National Park • Ride elephants through the jungle • Learn the story behind the ‘Bridge on the River Kwai’ • Laze on picture perfect beaches

Day 1-4

Bangkok - Khao Yai National Park

Enjoy a guided tour of Bangkok’s highlights and a longtail boat cruise through the klongs (canals) of old Bangkok. On Day 2 depart Bangkok and travel to Khao Yai National Park, where you will trek to a beautiful waterfall for a swim. In the evening, enjoy a night safari with the Park Rangers. The next day, rise early and follow jungle trails for a gentle three hour hike. Visit the superbly restored Khmer Temples of Phnom Rung and Muang Tham. On the way to Korat stop at a pottery making village. On Day 4 visit Ban Prasat archaeological excavation site and the Khmer ruins at Phi Mai. Return to Bangkok later in the day.

Day 5-7

13 DAYS Bangkok Khao Yai National Park kanchanaburi Khao Laem Lake hua hin

THAILAND Khao Laem Lake

Kanchanaburi

Khao Yai

BANGKOK

Hua Hin

Bangkok – Kanchanburi – Khao Laem Lake

Drive to Kanchanburi and the infamous ‘Bridge on the River Kwai’. Continue to a Khao Laem Lake and board a traditional-style Thai houseboat. Spend the afternoon swimming, relaxing on deck or napping in a hammock. On Day 6 embark on a fun kayaking adventure on the lake. Take a short hike through the jungle to a waterfall for a refreshing dip before moving on to Coconut Island, one of few inhabited islands in this area. After exploring the island return to the houseboat to relax and swim. On Day 7 explore some nearby caves before returning to the houseboat and heading north. Then, board a longtail boat and cruise upriver to an ethnic minority village to embark on a jungle elephant trek, followed by rafting downstream.

SUMMARY Enjoy Bangkok’s highlights before travelling to Khao Yai National Park for an eco adventure. Swim in waterfalls, hike along jungle trails, and visit ancient Khmer ruins. Then venture to Khao Laem Lake for a houseboat adventure before hitting the beach at Hua Hin.

Day 8-13

Khao Laem Lake – Hua Hin – Bangkok Chiang Mai Extension Enjoy a stay in the cultural capital of Thailand. Stroll through the famous Night Bazaar to hunt for that perfect souvenir, climb to the top of nearby Doi Suthep to enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding area and enjoy a fun cooking class to learn more about the refined cuisine of the region.

Depart the houseboat and journey by motorboat to the village of Wang Kha, which is home to a number of ethnic minorities. Explore a picturesque temple and wander through the interesting Burmese market. Continue to Sangklaburi via Thailand’s longest wooden bridge. Then, you will be transferred to Hua Hin for a relaxing four day beach break.

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BOUTIQUE ISaAN 12 DAYS

Day 1-4

Bangkok khon kaen udon thani loei pak chom dan sai Phitsanulok

Begin your experience with a soothing traditional Thai massage. In the evening, dine on one of Bangkok’s best river cruises and take in the night skyline. The next day enjoy a guided tour of Bangkok’s main sights. Visit Wat Pho, Jim Thompson’s House and Museum before moving on to explore Siam Square in the afternoon. Enjoy some free time to explore this bustling metropolis before taking the short flight to Khon Kaen on the morning of Day 4. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided tour of the main sights.

Loei

Udon Thani

Phitsanulok

THAILAND

Khon Kaen

Bangkok - Khon Kaen

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Enjoy a soothing Thai Massage • Discover serene temples in bustling Bangkok • Learn about the history of silk at Jim Thompson’s House • Shop ‘till you drop in the capital • Get ‘off the beaten track’ in Isaan • Sample deliciously spicey Isaan cuisine • Visit a Buddha casting workshop and learn about this fascinating process

Day 5-8 BANGKOK

SUMMARY For those with an interest in archaeology who want to explore remote areas of Thailand, this itinerary has it all. Explore Bangkok, then head to Isaan, where you will trek through National Parks, wander around deserted temples and explore colourful markets.

Khon Kaen - Udon Thani - LoeiPak Chom

This morning visit Ban Kho Sa Nga to learn about traditional medicines and the local practice of keeping king cobras in each house. Continue your experience with a visit to Non Mueang Ancient Town, before moving on to explore Phu Wiang National Park. On Day 6, you will drive to Udon Thani, where you will spend the rest of the morning at Ban Chiang National Museum. Continue on to Nong Khai, stopping off on the way to visit the cotton and silk trading centre of Ban Na Kha. Continue your exploration of the region with a visit to Phu Phra Bat Historical Park, which contains a large number of ancient buildings and objects. Continue to Pak Chom District in Loei Province and visit to Phu Rua National Park. Later in the day you will visit Chateau de Loei Winery and Vineyard for some wine tasting.

Day 9-12

Pak Chom - Dan Sai - Phitsanulok - Bangkok

On Day 9 travel to Phra That Sri Song Rak Pagoda and Wat Neramitt Vipatsana, which sits majestically on a hillside. The next day visit the historical battlefield site at Phu Hin Rong Kla National Park and enjoy a refreshing dip in some beautiful waterfalls nearby. Spend the remainder of your days exploring Phitsanulok, with its bronze image casting workshop, folklore museum and numerous temples.

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Phang Nga Bay Extension Easily accessed from Phuket, visitors to this natural wonder are sure to enjoy Phang Nga Bay’s dramatic and beautiful karst islands. Enjoy a cruise through the stunning scenery and go kayaking into secluded lagoons and diving or snorkeling to view the area’s pristine coral reefs and colourful fish.


Lanna Luxury UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Snorkel over pristine coral reefs crowded with colourful fish • Laze on picture perfect beaches • Hunt for bargains in Chiang Mai’s night bazaar • Learn how to cook delicious local specialities • Journey to the infamous Golden Triangle • Ride elephants through the jungle • Wander through the majestic ruins of Ayuthaya

Day 1-4

12 DAYS

Spend the first few days of your holiday soaking up the rays of Phuket on a beach holiday in Paradise. De stress and leave the western world behind as you swim in the crystal waters and lounge about on the white sandy beaches.

phuket chiang mai golden triangle bangkok ayuthaya

Phuket

Day 5–8

Phuket – Chiang Mai – Golden Triangle

Feeling refreshed and ready to go, fly north to the beautiful, cultural city of Chiang Mai, nestled in the hills. Explore the famous night bazaar and soak up the atmosphere of this ancient capital. Brace the mountain air and morning mist and head to a temple to give alms to the monks while they go about their morning rutual. Learn the ‘Secrets of Thai Cuisine’ at a famous Thai cooking school, by preparing delicious Thai food. Walk it off visiting historic Chiang Mai’s important sites and glittering Buddha, including a walk up to Doi Suthep for fantastic views over the city. Enjoy a thai massage in one of the city’s famous spas, the perfect way to soothe your muscles after a day of sightseeing. Journey to the famous Golden Triangle past Chiang Rai and onto the Mekong River and the Golden Triangle. Check into your luxury lodge which is your base to explore colorful Myanmar border markets and local hilltribe villages. Rejuvenate in the Spa, or ride on an elephant through lush tropical jungle surrounding the luxurious Elephant Camp.

Golden Triangle and Chiang Saen

Chiang Mai

THAILAND Ayutthaya

BANGKOK

Phuket

SUMMARY Start this luxurious experience on the beach with the opportunity to explore Thailand’s largest island. Venture up to Chiang Mai and get a taste of northern culture in the capital of the old Lanna kingdom. End your experience in Bangkok, the capital of this fascinating destination.

Day 9-12

Bangkok - Ayutthaya - Bangkok

Isaan Extension Get a feel for contemporary life in the Thai countryside, with this ‘off the beaten track’ experience. Meet the Suay tribal people and enjoy a ride on one of their elephants, shop until your heart’s content for great value local textiles and silver and enjoy the spicy local cuisine which is famed throughout the country .

Fly to bustling Bangkok and check into your luxurious hotel. Explore this ever changing city visiting the historic Jim Thompson House to see the fabulous collection of antiques and Thai textiles. Cruise to the ancient capital of Ayutthaya on a beautifully restored luxury rice barge. Spend the night onboard and arrive in Ayuthaya to explore the ruins of the old capital before returning to Bangkok for an afternoon of shopping or exploring on your own before departing from this wonderful country.

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HOUSEBOAT SAFARI Day 1-2

4 DAYS Bangkok kanchanaburi Khao laem lake sanglaburi

Sangkhlaburi

THAILAND

Khao Laem Lake Kanchanaburi

BANGKOK

Koh Samet

Bangkok – Kanchanaburi– Khao Laem Lake

Head out of Bangkok and drive to Kanchanaburi and visit the War Cemetery before continuing the last leg to the town of Sangklaburi. Upon reaching a small fishing village you will board the houseboat, to begin your scenic cruise to a sunset spot on this beautiful lake. The cook will prepare a variety of different Thai dishes which you will sample at dinner. Spend the following day kayaking to the end of a small bay near the Dai Chong Thong waterfall, a mere 30 minute walk through the dense rainforest. In the afternoon you will continue your visit to a ‘boutique’ plantation. The island the plantation is located on is inhabited by only seven people from the Mon ethnic minority. The plantation produces two unusual foods; the cacao plant and a rare, delicious kind of coconut which is prized for its rich oil and milk.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Learn the story behind the ‘Bridge on the River Kwai’ • Get off the beaten track in ‘the Land of Smiles’ • Enjoy a unique stay on a houseboat • Feast on delicious Thai cuisine • Ride elephants through the jungle • Meet ethnic minorities near the border with Myanmar • Discover hidden temples and cool waterfalls in the forest

Day 3-4

Khao Laem Lake – Sangkhlaburi - Bangkok

SUMMARY Experience Kanchanaburi at its best. Using your houseboat as a base, you will explore this stunningly beautiful region. Visit waterfalls, kayak on the lake, ride elephants and explore markets. A perfect itinerary for those wishing to enjoy a unique adventure away from the crowds.

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Buffalo Tours Brochure 13 Buffalo Tours Travel 2012 Brochure 2011

On day 3, paddle a kayak to several small limestone caves where you will have time to explore. At the caves there is a chance that you may encounter the bats that inhabit them. Return to the houseboat and cruise slowly north. Then enjoy a ride in a long-tail boat up a tributary river to a village populated by the Karen ethnic group. Here you will have the opportunity to ride elephants in the jungle. Climb aboard with your mahout and enjoy an elephant-back safari which will take you through the jungle. This will be followed by an exciting rafting adventure. The following morning, rise to learn the story of the ‘sunken temple’ as you pass by on the last leg of the houseboat’s journey to shore. Bid farewell to the houseboat crew and visit a beautiful temple and a Burmese market before continuing with a short drive to Sangkhlaburi town. Learn about the fascinating and unique history of the town from your guide and enjoy a stroll over the long wooden Burmese style bridge. In the afternoon, you will return to bustling Bangkok.

Phang Nga Bay Extension Easily accessed from Phuket, visitors to this natural wonder are sure to enjoy Phang Nga Bay’s dramatic and beautiful karst islands. Enjoy a cruise through the stunning scenery and go kayaking into secluded lagoons and diving or snorkeling to view the area’s pristine coral reefs and colourful fish.


SAILING THE ANDAMAN UNIQUE EXPERIENCES

Day 1-2

7 DAYS

• Laze on picture perfect beaches • Sail through the azure waters of the Andaman Sea • Snorkel over pristine coral reefs crowded with colourful fish • Discover Phang Nga Bay’s stunning seascape • Kayak through secluded lagoons • Sample delicious Thai cuisine • Visit the beach where the film ‘The Beach’ was shot • Enjoy dinner under the night sky

Spend the first day of this exciting adventure rest exploring Phuket at your own leisure. On Day 2, you will be transferred to your catamaran for check in. The catamaran features two Spacious doubles and two comfortable singles with the option of a saloon (double berth conversion) for larger groups of eight. Begin your Andaman adventure and set sail for Koh Panak where you can enjoy some kayaking (tide permitting). Stop off for lunch and swimming along the way. Continue sailing to Koh Hong before reaching your anchorage for the night at Koh Roi. Dine under the stars in the saloon using the unique retractable cabriolet roof, or relocate the dining table to the cockpit for alfresco dining.

Phuket koh panak Koh roi koh hong east koh phi phi don

Phuket – Koh Panak- Koh Roi

THAILAND

Day 3-4

Koh Roi - Koh Chong - Koh Hong East

Rise early for a morning swim followed by breakfast on deck. Hoist the sails and head north to visit a fascinating floating village. Enjoy lunch at beautiful Koh Pan Yi before sailing south to your anchorage for the night at Koh Chong. The following day, head to Koh Hong East which offers fantastic kayaking and swimming in its sheltered bay. Spend the day sailing around this area as you look for a suitable anchorage for the night.

Day 5-7

Koh Hong East - Koh Phi Phi Don - Phuket

Bangkok Extension Enjoy a stay in the ‘City of Angels’. Visit the city’s main sights on a guided tour with stops at the famous Jim Thompson’s House and Textile Museum, the Grand Palace and a longtail boat cruise on the picturesque Chao Phraya River and the ‘klongs’ for a taste of old Bangkok.

Phuket

koh hong east

koh phi phi don

SUMMARY Set sail on a beautiful 38 foot catamaran and explore the secluded beaches, hidden caves and serenity of Phang Nga Bay. Enjoy snorkeling in the azure waters and kayak into hidden into grottoes. The catamaran can be chartered with or without an experienced skipper.

Head towards Krabi and pass chicken island on the way. Tide permitting it has a sand bar that you can swim from. Sail on to Koh Mai Phai (Bamboo Island) then south to Phi Phi Don to find a sheltered anchorage for the night. On Day 6 spend the day snorkeling and exploring Phi Phi Island or simply relax on the stunning beach. In the evening head over to Maya Bay on Koh Phi Phi Le to see where the film ‘The Beach’ was shot. On Day 7 depart Koh Phi Phi sail west back towards Phuket stopping off at Koh Mai Ton to anchor for lunch. You will arrive into Chalong Bay on Phuket in the afternoon.

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KAYAK KHAO SOK Day 1-2

4 DAYS phuket surat thani Khao Sok national park

Khao Sok

Surat Thani

Phuket

SUMMARY Get ‘off the beaten track’ in Thailand with this exciting jungle adventure in Khao Sok National Park. Enjoy exploring the beautiful rainforest and discover its wide variety of flora and fauna as you kayak and trek through the jungle. A true nature lovers adventure.

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Phuket/Surat Thani - Khao Sok National Park

You will be met by your guide and vehicle at your hotel in Surat Thani or Phuket. Then you will travel by road to Khao Sok National Park, which is a journey of just over two hours by car. On arrival at the park, you will board a motorboat for the scenic river journey to your bungalow accommodation, located in the national park. The gentle river cruise will last for about ninety minutes. Along the way you may be lucky enough to spot some of the park’s wildlife. The scenery along the way is dramatically beautiful, with towering limestone karst cliffs and dense rainforest. Check in to your accommodation and embark on your first paddling excursion through the park. You are likely to see dusky langurs, hornbills, gibbons and macaque monkeys. Early the next morning, head out to do some bird watching and wildlife spotting at a time when Gibbons make their strange morning calls. Spend the rest of the day on the kayaking on the tranquil reservoir, returning to the bungalows for lunch and a rest during the hottest part of the day.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Trek through dense rainforest • Kayak in Khao Sok National Park on broad rivers framed by the jungle • Listen to the sound of gibbons at dawn • Explore caves deep in the jungle • Marvel at the majestic limestone scenery • Stay in atmospheric accommodation in a national park • Admire exotic birds in the canopy

Day 3- 4

Khao Sok National Park Phuket/Surat Thani

Early in the next morning, head out on your kayak again to continue bird watching and wildlife spotting. On this morning’s paddle you will head to a more remote and inaccessible part of the national park. Later on, enjoy a soft trek along trails which meander through dense rainforest. Marvel at the majestic scenery as the massive limestone cliffs frame the valley. The following day, board a longtail boat for a cruise with the kayaks in tow and head to some of the tallest limestone cliffs in the park. Paddle in the direction of the national park’s dam, stopping to visit an impressive cave along the way. Continue kayaking until you board the longtail boat and head back to the bungalows. At the end of this exciting experience you will be transferred back to either Phuket or Surat Thani for your onward journey.

Phang Nga Bay Extension Easily accessed from Phuket, visitors to this natural wonder are sure to enjoy Phang Nga Bay’s dramatic and beautiful karst islands. Enjoy a cruise through the stunning scenery, go kayaking into secluded lagoons and diving or snorkeling to view the area’s pristine coral reefs and colourful fish.


Culture & Cuisine UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Appreciate the refined legacy of Sukhothai • Wander through the majestic ruins of Ayuthaya • Meet ethnic minorities near the infamous Golden Triangle • Sample delicious Thai cuisine • Climb to the top of Doi Suthep for magnificent views • Ride elephants through the jungle • Learn how to prepare Thai dishes during informative cooking classes

Day 1

3 DAYS

Arrive at Chiang Mai Airport and transfer to your hotel. In the afternoon visit Chiang Mai’s highlights. Visit some of the city’s many beautiful temples, including Wat Chiang Mun, the oldest in the city. Enjoy a stroll along the ancient city wall and moat passing saffron robed monks. Walk up to Doi Suthep to enjoy panoramic views over the city. There might even be time for a Thai massage to soothe your aching body. In the evening, walk around the night market where you can sharpen your bargaining skills, feast on delicious cuisine and soak up the fun atmosphere that this market is famous for.

Chang Mai

Chiang Mai - Doi Suthep

chiang dao

Chiang Dao

Chiang Mai

Day 2

Chiang Mai - Chiang Dao

Prepare yourself for a memorable day, spent with elephants. In the morning, leave for the Chiang Dao Elephant training camp, which is one of the few authentic elephant camps in the country. Observe the elephants taking their morning bath in the stream before commencing their daily work. Then, you will ride on elephants into the jungle to visit a Lizu village. This journey takes about an hour and a half. Then, you will start your next adventure on a bamboo raft and travel down a stretch of the Ping River, passing local villages along the way. At the end of your reafting adventure you will be transferred back to your hotel in Chiang Mai.

Day 3

THAILAND

SUMMARY Discover the distinct cuisine and culture in the capital of the ancient Kingdom of Lanna. This three day culinary and cultural experince in the northern city of Chiang Mai is perfect for those who want to see more of Thailand than just beaches.

Chiang Mai

Koh Yai Extension Enjoy a jungle and wildlife adventure in the most accessible national park in the Kingdom. Trek through dense rainforest, swim in cool jungle waterfalls, go on night safaris with Park Rangers to spot wildlife, and hike through small villages to discover ancient Khmer temples.

Thai food is internationally famous for being deliciously spicy, especially for its use of hot chilli and lemongrass. Take this opportunity to practice your skills at a cooking class at one of Chiang Mai’s famous schools where you will learn the secrets to this tantalizing cuisine so you can impress your friends and family at home. Choosing from a variety of dishes, you will cook each one yourself while the expert teachers will be on hand to help and guide you with step-by-step instructions. At the end of your class you will be able to feast on the delicious creations that you have prepared

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thailand voluntourism Thailand is a diverse country, ranging from beautiful hill tribe villages in the North to the magnificent beaches in the South. Whilst on holiday in Thailand put something back and learn more about yourself through our educational, personal development projects.

Give an Opportunity to abused, abandoned and trafficked children

EarthCare: Learning, Discovery, Awareness

In 2007 there were 1.5 million reported cases of abuse of children in Thailand. The location of our project, Buriram Province, is a primary source of trafficked children and women, and domestic violence and child abuse are common.

EarthCare, based in Northern Thailand, is a community based project that combines awareness of environmental responsibility and conservation, understanding of community issues and self-development and discovery. EarthCare welcomes you into a hill tribe community to engage and exchange about their way of life and natural environment

We are seeking participating schools, university and community-service groups to fund and build housing for children rescued from abuse, abandonment and trafficking. This project is in partnership with Opportunity Foundation under the supervision of the Thai Ministry of Social Services. Each house costs approximately two million Thai Baht ($60,000 USD) so all contributions are greatly appreciated.

EarthCare is about learning, discovery and awareness. Learning activities include field studies, reforestation, water conservation, ethnic hilltribe cultures and community development. This is complemented by outdoor activities and visits to local hilltribe villages.

Northern Thailand: Outdoor Education Centre Flexible enough to complement any school’s curriculum this outdoor education program introduces students to new environments, allowing them to critically assess their role in creating a better world. Based in beautiful Northern Thailand there are numerous activities that focus on recreational, educational and personal growth. Buffalo Tours tailors the activities to suit your school curriculum and expectations.

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THAILAND GROUP Tour Features • Destination highlights and lesser visited areas • Culturally enriching travel and unforgettable experiences • Comfortable 4 star hotels throughout • Travel with like minded people • Flexible itineraries easy to combine with other tours • Professional tour leader throughout • Group size of maximum 20 people

Day 1-3

9 DAYS

Explore the glistening gold temples at the Grand Palace and observe monks chanting in their saffron robes. Later on, enjoy a cruise along the klongs (canals) of old Bangkok, where you will observe scenes from everyday life on the Chao Phraya River. Make the journey from Bangkok to Ayuthaya, the ancient capital of of the country. Here you will enjoy ample time to explore the magnificent ruins of the city. Then venture north to the city of Chiang Mai by comfortable overnight train.

bangkok ayuthaya chiang mai

Bangkok - Ayuthaya - Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai

THAILAND

Day 4–7

Chiang Mai

Explore the essential sights of Chiang Mai on two wheels and learn about the thriving arts and craft scene in this city, known as being the cultural capital of the country. Venture into the beautiful countryside and enjoy a fun elephant ride through the jungle, a truly memorable experience. Soothe your tired muscles with a traditional Thai massage at one of Chiang Mai’s famous spas. Next, try your hand at Thai cooking with an authentic and fun cooking class. After your class you will have the opportunity to feast on your delicious creation. In the evening, enjoy the spectacle of a traditional Lanna dance show whilst dining on delicious northern Thai cuisine.

Day 8–9 Bangkok

What’s included? • 4 star accommodation • Daily buffet breakfast • Economy class flights • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles • Qualified local tour leader • Local guides at selected sites • All tipping and entrance fees • Support from local offices

Spend your final day back in the capital Bangkok exploring the shopping area of Siam Square. Make a visit to Jim Thompson’s House to learn about the history of silk in Thailand before moving on to explore the markets in this area of the capital. After enjoying some retail therapy spend your final night in Bangkok cruising the Chao Praya River. Reflect on a magical journey through this exotic destination as you enjoy some delicious Thai cuisine on board a comfortable river vessel.

Ayutthaya BANGKOK

SUMMARY Experience a true insight into Thai culture with one of our Thailand Group Tours. Taking you from the bustling metropolis of Bangkok to the charming city of Chiang Mai, this tour gives you the best of Thailand in a relatively short amount of time.

This is just an example of a large selection of group tours we offer in Indochina and Thailand. Please contact us for the full range.

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THAILAND BEACH RESORTS

PHUKET Thailand’s largest island offers the visitor palm fringed beaches, beautiful limestone karst scenery and clear blue waters. Diving, sailing and fishing trips are available in abundance, but if you are seeking less activity, Phuket’s stunning beaches will keep you occupied.

The Naka Island, Phuket


Justifiably famous for its beach resorts, for many a visit to the Kingdom is about sand and sea. Visitors are attracted to the Thailand’s many white sand beaches, stunning limestone rock vistas and crystal-clear waters. What follows is just a short selection of our favourite resorts and destinations.

HUA HIN Home to one of his Majesty the King of Thailand’s Residences, Hua Hin has always been a popular beach destination for the wealthy when escaping the heat of Bangkok. Offering a variety of entertainment and activities, this town is perfect for those looking for a short beach holiday in Thailand.

Let’s Sea Al Fresco Resort, Hua Hin

Rawai Palm Beach Resort, Phuket

Kata Palm Resort & Spa, Phuket

Cape Nidhra Hotel, Hua Hin


The LIT, Bangkok

Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Bangkok


thailand hotels bangkok

Praya Palazzo Boutique Deluxe - Bangkok

Salil Hotel Sukhumvit Soi Thonglor 1 Standard - Bangkok

chiang mai

Hotel De’Moc Bangkok Standard - Bangkok

chiang rai

Veranda Chiang Mai Deluxe - Chiang Mai

Puripunn Baby Grand Boutique Hotel Boutique Deluxe - Chiang Mai

cha - am

Serene at Chiang Rai Standard - Chiang Rai

koh samui

Holiday Inn Cha Am Superior - Cha-am

Veranda Resort and Spa Hua Hin Superior - Hua Hin

Dara Samui Beach Resort & Spa Villa Boutique Deluxe - Koh Samui

phuket

Outrigger Koh Samui Resort & Spa Standard - Koh Samui

Chaba Samui Resort Standard - Koh Samui

Outrigger Laguna Phuket Resort & Villas Deluxe - Phuket

Banthai Beach Resort & Spa Superior - Phuket

Burasari Resort Patong, Phuket Boutique Standard - Phuket

Paradise Koh Yao - Boutique Beach Resort & Spa Boutique - Phuket Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 80 


MULTI COUNTRY


At Buffalo Tours we believe Indochina and Thailand is one of the most enthralling regions in the world. If you 5 DAYS want to experience more than just one country then why not consider a trip which visits multiple countries? Travel in style across Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam with a fully customised tour that fully meets your needs and allows you to experience more of these fantastic countries.

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Introduction Hidden Laos & Cambodia Family Indochina Extreme Cycle Indochina in Style Vietnam to Cambodia Cruise Cuisine Connoisseurs Multi Country Group Tour Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Events


LAOS

Hidden Laos & Cambodia 12 DAYS

Day 1-4

Pakse 4000 Islands ratanakiri kratie Phnom penh

This exciting southern Laos adventure begins as you venture up onto the beautiful Bolaven Plateau to visit the towering ribbon-like Tad Fane waterfall. Enjoy some light trekking through the beautiful scenery before driving south to the famous UNESCO-protected Khmer Temple complex of Vat Phou. On Day 4 you will travel to the largest waterfalls in Asia; Khone Pha Peng and Li Phi Falls. If you are lucky you might see some of the 50-100 Irrawaddy freshwater dolphins that make the 4000 Islands their home.

Pakse

4000 Islands

Ratanakiri

Pakse – Tad Fane – 4000 Islands

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Discover mysterious Vat Phou • Marvel at the thundering Khone Pha Peng Falls • Search for river dolphins on the Mekong • Ride through the jungle on an elephant • Discover ethnic minority cultures in Cambodia’s mountainous north east • Admire faded colonial architecture in Phnom Penh

DAY 5-8

4000 Islands – Ratanakiri

CAMBODIA Kratie

PHNOM PENH

SUMMARY Get well and truly ‘off the beaten track’ in these two fascinating countries. Discover ancient Khmer temples in southern Laos then venture to remote Ratanakiri province in northeastern Cambodia. Enter a world of mountains, elephants and ethnic minorities before finishing in Phnom Penh.

On Day 5, you will cross the border into Cambodia and travel to the settlement of Ban Lung, which is located in Ratanakiri Province. The following day, visit the Virachey National Park and go wildlife spotting in the dense rainforest. Later on in the day, you will visit the settlement of Voen Sai with its rich mix of the ethnic groups. Continue with a walk to the huge natural volcanic lake of Yeak Loam. On Day 7 travel to Borkeo and explore the ethnic minority villages of Cha Rai and Tampoun, before visiting one of the region’s active Gem mines. The next day make the journey to beautiful Katieng Waterfall, before continuing on to Lumphat for a fun elephant ride through the surrounding villages.

DAY 9-12

Ratanakiri - Kratie - Phnom Penh

Depart Ban Lung for the scenic journey to Kratie, which is located on the banks of the mighty Mekong River. A short river trip by sampan will take you to peaceful Koh Trong Island, where you will spend the night. The following day, explore the picturesque village and the surrounding area on two wheels. Along the way, stop to chat with the friendly locals and learn a little about their daily lives. The following day travel by vehicle to the capital bustling capital of the country, Phnom Penh. Along the way you will stop at the kitsch temple of Wat Nokor along the way. 83

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Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


FamilY Indochina UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore Hanoi’s crowded Old Quarter in a cyclo • Take in a traditional Water Puppet performance in Hanoi • Learn how to dance with the White Thai • Cycle through emerald green rice paddies • Kayak through stunning limestone karst scenery • Ride elephants through the jungle • Learn the secrets of Lao cuisine

Day 1-5

14 DAYS

Enjoy a morning cyclo tour of Hanoi’s bustling Old Quarter and French Colonial District. Later on, take in a traditional Water Puppet performance. On Day 3 drive to stunning Mai Chau Valley for a peaceful stay in a comfortable lodge, complete with a swimming pool and spa facilities. Relax by the pool, trek through emerald green rice paddies and cycle through the fascinating ethnic minority communities that dot the valley. On Day 5 depart Mai Chau and drive back to the capital.

Hanoi Mai Chau Halong Bay Luang Prabang

Hanoi - Mai Chau - Hanoi

Day 6-9

Hanoi - Halong Bay – Hanoi– Luang Prabang

Next, drive to the World Heritage listed Halong Bay for a two night cruise on a traditional junk. You are sure to enjoy cruising through the thousands of limestone islands that punctuate the bay. Enjoy kayaking into secluded lagoons, swimming in the emerald green waters, rock climbing and feasting on the fresh seafood. On Day 8 make the journey back to Hanoi and fly to Luang Prabang the following day. In the evening, enjoy a spectacular dinner with a dance performance depicting the history of Laos and various local folk stories.

Day 10-14

Luang Prabang

Hoi An Extension With beaches, culture and adventure, Hoi An is sure to impress. Explore the surrounding countryside by bicycle and amble through the town’s ancient streets. Mingle with the locals in the local produce markets and learn the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine with a fun cooking class.

On Day 10 visit a nearby Elephant Village to enjoy a ride through the jungle on one of these magnificent creatures. Enjoy a delicious buffet lunch, before taking a boat trip to nearby Tad Sae Waterfall where you can enjoy a refreshing dip in the pools at its base. In the evening, you may wish to visit the night market to hunt for souvenirs. The following day, experience a guided tour of Luang Prabang, with visits to the main sights. The next day, rise early and observe the traditional Buddist rite of almsgiving before travelling to Kuang Si Waterfalls. Take a refreshing dip in crystal clear pools at its base and visit the nearby Sun Bear Refuge Centre. The next day, visit the colourful and vibrant Phou Si Market, to select the ingredients you need for a fun cooking lesson.

VIETNAM HANOI Halong Bay Mai Chau Luang Prabang

LAOS

SUMMARY Indochina is the perfect destination for a family adventure. This experience combines the highlights of Vietnam and Laos with activities suitable for families. From performances of traditional puppetry to riding elephants through the jungle, this is the perfect family adventure.

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EXTREME CYCLE Day 1-5

14 DAYS Luang Prabang Nong Khiew Ban Sopjam Vieng Kham Sam Neua Vieng Say Nam Meo Border Mai Chau Hanoi

VIETNAM HANOI

Nong Khiew

LAOS Luang Prabang

Mai Chau

Sam Nuea Viengsay Vieng Kham

Luang Prabang – Nong Khiew Ban Sopjam

Enjoy a cycling tour of Luang Prabang and take in the main sights of this UNESCO World Heritage listed town. Visits will be made to Mount Phou Si, Wat Mai, Wat Xieng Thong and the Royal Palace. On Day 2 cycle out to the Kuang Si Falls and enjoy a refreshing dip before returning to Luang Prabang. Then, cycle north and visit the Pak Ou Caves and their many Buddha images before being visiting Ban Huay Pene and its beautiful Wat. Enjoy a boat trip on the Ou River before being welcomed at a village homestay where you will have the chance to taste some local specialities and stay in the village

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Soak up the Buddhist flavour of Luang Prabang • Cool down in the beautiful Kuang Si Falls • Participate in a traditional ‘Baci’ ceremony • Admire the beautiful mountain scenery of Indochina • Explore the ‘cave city’ of Viengsay • Cycle through emerald green rice paddies • Get truly ‘off the beaten track’

headman’s house.

Day 6–10

Ban Sopjam - Vieng Kham Vieng Thong – Sam Neua - Vieng Say

SUMMARY Buffalo Tours are experts in cycling expeditions across the region. This exciting cycling itinerary takes you from Luang Prabang and across mountainous Laos before crossing the border into Vietnam. The last leg takes you to the beautiful valley of Mai Chau and ends in Hanoi.

Spend the next day exploring the village and the surrounding area before participating in a special farewell blessing ceremony. After this traditional rite, known as ‘Baci’, enjoy a delicious feast. The next day, return to Nong Khiew and continue your cycling adventure through mountainous scenery and picturesque villages. Continue on through Phou Loei National Biodiversity Protected Area and more mountainous terrain before arriving at Sam Neua. Along the way you will visit the mysterious menhirs (standing stones) at Hintang. Venture to the the cave city of Vieng Say and marvel at the amazing karst landscape in the middle of town.

Day 11-14

Vieng Say – Nam Meo BorderMai Chau - Hanoi

Cycle out to a nearby cave that was used as a hospital during the war in the 1960s. Next, set off for the Vietnamese border and once across continue to Mai Chau Valley. During your stay in the area you will have the opportunity to learn about the lifestyle and culture of the White Thai ethnic group that make the area their home. Your adventure ends when you reach Hanoi on Day 15.

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Halong Bay Extension Embark on an overnight cruise through the majestic scenery of this UNESCO World Heritage listed bay. Marvel at the thousands of islands rising dramatically from the Gulf of Tonkin. Kayak and swim in the emerald waters, explore hidden caves and fishing villages and feast on delicious seafood.


INDOCHINA IN STYLE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • View the temples of Angkor from the air during an exciting helicopter ride • Pamper yourself with luxury spa treatments • Stay at some of the most luxurious resorts in Indochina and Thailand • Cruise through stunning Halong Bay on a traditional junk • Enjoy transfers in restored vintage vehicles • Enjoy gourmet cuisine

Day 1-4

Bangkok - Siem Reap - Ho Chi Minh City

Enjoy a guided city tour of the capital before enjoying dinner in a spectacular rooftop restaurant overlooking the glittering night skyline. Next, fly to Siem Reap and explore the Angkor complex on a privately guided tour. Next view the temple complex from above with an exciting helicopter flight. Enjoy a round of golf the next morning or simply relax at your luxury resort, before flying to bustling Ho Chi Minh City. Transfer by limousine and check into your centrally located hotel before enjoying a dinner cruise on the Saigon River.

Day 5-8

Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta - Hanoi - Halong Bay

Spend the day on a traditional sampan cruising the Mekong River and dine in a French colonial villa set in lush tropical surroundings. Return to HCMC and take a guided tour of this fascinating city before flying to the capital, Hanoi. Transfer by luxury vintage Citroen to your colonial classic hotel located in Hanoi’s French Quarter. Experience a city tour in style in a vintage Citroen or by traditional cyclo. In the evening, feast on authentic Northern Vietnamese cuisine. Journey to Bai Tu Long Bay and enjoy a private cruise on your very own junk. Visit caves, swim in the emerald green waters and explore this stunning area by sea kayak. In the evening, feast on delicious seafood prepared on board the junk.

Day 9-12

12 DAYS bangkok siem reap ho chi minh city mekong delta hanoi halong bay vientiane luang prabang

VIETNAM HANOI

Halong Bay

LAOS Luang Prabang

VIENTIANE

THAILAND

BANGKOK Siem Reap

Ho Chi Minh City

Mekong Delta

SUMMARY On this perfect luxury Indochina holiday, you will stay in some of the best hotels and resorts, where you can experience pure relaxation and culture in style and comfort. Premium vehicles, helicopters and special touches all the way make this a truly unforgettable experience.

Halong Bay – Hanoi – VientianeLuang Prabang

Phang Nga Bay Extension Easily accessed from Phuket, visitors to this natural wonder are sure to enjoy Phang Nga Bay’s dramatic and beautiful karst islands. Enjoy a cruise through the stunning scenery, go kayaking into secluded lagoons and diving or snorkeling to view the area’s pristine coral reefs and colourful fish.

The next day, continue cruising through Bai Tu Long and visit the floating fishing village of Vong Vieng. Transfer back to Hanoi before flying to the capital of Laos, Vientiane. Take a privately guided walking tour of this charming city before flying to Luang Prabang, the cultural capital of the country. Check into your luxurious hotel before wandering the atmospheric streets of this UNESCO World Heritage listed town. Take a private boat cruise downriver to Pak Ou caves filled with numerous statues of the Buddha. Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 86


VIETNAM to CAMBODIA CRUISE Day 1-3

8 DAYS ho chi minh city Cai Be Chau Doc Phnom Penh kampong cham Tonle Sap siem reap

Tonle Sap siem reap

CAMBODIA Kompong Cham

Ho Chi Minh City - My Tho - Cai Be - Sa Dec - Chau Doc

Depart Ho Chi Minh City by vehicle, heading south west to My Tho to board your home for the next week. Start your cruise up the Mekong River enjoying a fabulous dinner whilst watching the sunset. The next morning, rise early to a Tai Chi lesson on the sundeck before visiting Cai Be’s colourful floating market on board a Sampam boat. In the afternoon cruise to Sa Dec to explore Binh Thanh Islands then cruise onto Chau Doc. The following day, take an excursion into Chau Doc town to visit a local market and a Muslim community village. In the afternoon, cruise across the border into Cambodia and onto Phnom Penh.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore the Mekong Delta’s verdant waterways • Haggle with the locals in bustling floating markets • Cruise between countries instead of driving or flying • Get ‘off the beaten track’ in these two exotic destinations • Savour fine Vietnamese and Khmer cuisine • Observe life on one of the world’s greatest waterways

PHNOM PENH

Day 4-6 Chau Doc

Ho Chi Minh City

Cai Be

SUMMARY This cruise takes you on an exploration of the Mekong Delta, from Vietnam to the Kingdom of Cambodia. The Jayavaraman, launched November 2009, is a four deck opulent boat accommodating up to 65 guests, with each cabin featuring private balconies.

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Phnom Penh- Kampong Cham

Wake up in historical Phnom Penh and enjoy a city tour of this dynamic and fascinating capital city. After sampling some local cuisine make a sobering visit to the Genocide museum and the Killing Fields. In the evening enjoy a traditional dance performance back on board the ship. The following day, depart bustling Phnom Penh and head further upsteam, stopping at Chong Koh silk weaving village followed by a tour of rural Angkor Ban village.

Day 6-8

Kampong Cham - Wat HancheyKampong Chhnang- Tonle Sap - Siem Reap

Embark on a land journey to the pre-Angkorian temple of Wat Hanchey, climbing to the very top for panoramic views. Photos taken, enjoy a surprise sojourn in inflatable boats to the nearby beach to swim in the Mekong river. Continue cruising towards Kampong Cham to visit Wat Nokor before enjoying the evening on the ship. The following day, sail towards Kampong Chhnang, taking a scenic motorboat excursion to the wetlands. Your final day takes in the stillness of the water and the quiet tranquility to prepare yourself for the temples that await you in Siem Reap.

Siem Reap Extension Explore the fabled Temples of Angkor, with ample time to explore majestic Angkor Wat and the jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm. Aside from exploring the ancient temple complexes, you may wish to visit floating villages on the Tonle Sap or enjoy a fun Ox cart ride through the beautiful countryside.


CUisine Connoisseurs UNIQUE EXPERIENCES • Explore the bustling metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City • Feast on delicious seafood • Discover the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine in Hoi An • Enjoy a bowl of spicy ‘Bun Bo Hue’ • Sip green tea with the friendly locals • Shop for fresh produce in Phou Si market • Feast on some of the best street food in Asia

Day 1-4

17 DAYS

Your gourmet experience begins in Ho Chi Minh City with a market tour and a fun cooking class. Enjoy a traditional sampan on the Mekong River, sipping green tea and tasting exotic local fruits. Try local delicacies such as ‘Elephant Ear’ fish. Fly to the quaint Hoi An where you will enjoy a stroll through this charming town, full of markets, delicious restaurants and inexpensive tailors.

Ho chi minh city hoi an hanoi luang prabang chiang mai Bangkok

Ho Chi Minh City – Hoi An

Day 5-8

VIETNAM HANOI

Luang Prabang

Chiang Mai

Hoi An – Hanoi

Visit Hoi An’s colourful market before a fun cooking class. Make the scenic journey to Hue for a guided tour of this former Imperial city. You will have the opportunity to chat with one of the city’s chefs who will explain the history of Hue’s cuisine and traditions. Dine on an authentic dinner fit for an emperor. Continue your journey to Hanoi to try some local street food before participating in an informative cooking class.

Day 9-12

THAILAND

Hoi An

BANGKOK

Ho Chi Minh City

Hanoi – Luang Prabang – Chiang Mai

Fly to the charming city of Luang Prabang. Visit bustling markets and try fresh herbs as you learn to cook Lao cuisine. Visit the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre where you will get an insight into the daily lives of ethnic minorities in Northern Laos. Visit a local weaving centre and make your own hand-dyed silk scarf as a memento. Having mastered Lao cuisine, fly to Chiang Mai in Thailand and soak up the atmosphere in the town’s night bazaar.

SUMMARY Experience the ultimate culinary adventure of Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. These three countries possess some of the most refined cuisines in the world. Enjoy informative cooking classes and sampling a range of delicious local specialities in these exotic destinations.

Day 13–17

Chiang Mai – Bangkok Phan Thiet Extension Famous for its vast sand dunes and water sports facilities, Phan Thiet is only a short drive from frenetic Ho Chi Minh City. During your stay in this peaceful resort you may wish to go kitesurfing, make a trip to the area’s vast sand dunes or simply relax on the beach and enjoy the delicious seafood on offer.

Join a cooking class in a famous cooking school before flying to the capital to explore the city’s magnificent temples. Cruise through on the Chao Phraya and its small canals before visiting the city’s biggest flower market. Continue to China Town and the fascinating Weekend Market. Head to Aw Taw Kaw Market to gorge on succulent seafood and fresh fruit. Spend your final day learning to cook Thai cuisine.

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 88


MULTI COUNTRY GROUP TOUR Day 1-8

28 DAYS HO Chi minh city nha trang hoi an hue hanoi halong bay sapa luang prabang siem reap phnom penh chau doc can tho Sapa

VIETNAM HANOI Halong Bay

LAOS

Luang Prabang

Ho Chi Minh City – Nha Trang – Hoi An – Hue - Hanoi

Start your journey in bustling Ho Chi Minh City before flying to Nha Trang. Snorkel, dine on seafood and relax on the beach. Continue north to the picturesque town of Hoi An to cycle to local villages and explore this charming town. Drive along the scenic Hai Van Pass to the old imperial capital of Hue. Explore the Citadel and relax on a sunset river cruise on the Perfume River. Continue to Hanoi to explore the capital.

Features • Destination highlights and lesser visited areas • Culturally enriching travel and unforgettable experiences • Comfortable 4 star hotels throughout • Travel with like minded people • Flexible itineraries easy to combine with other tours • Professional tour leader throughout • Group size of maximum 20 people

Day 9–14

Hanoi – Halong Bay – Sapa – Hanoi

Hue

Head to magnificent Halong Bay to enjoy an overnight cruise on a traditional junk before taking a deluxe overnight train to Sapa to spend your days strolling through the lush rice paddies whilst learning about the different cultures and minority groups.

Hoi An

Siem Reap

CAMBODIA Nha Trang

PHNOM PENH

Ho Chi Minh City Chau Doc Can Tho

SUMMARY This is the ultimate tour of Indochina. During this experience you will take in the highlights of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. Along the way you will also stop in some of the lesser visited destinations in the country. A perfect way to discover exotic Indochina.

Day 15–22

Hanoi – Luang Prabang – Siem Reap – Phnom Penh

Fly to Luang Prabang and participate in the almsgiving and explore the town by bicycle. Enjoy a special ‘Baci’ blessing ceremony and travel to a nearby village to enjoy an elephant trek. Visit the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall. Continue to Siem Reap and spend 3 days exploring the temples of Angkor. Visit the floating and fishing villages of Tonle Sap and spend an evening at a dinner accompanied by Khmer Classical Dance. Fly to Phnom Penh for a guided city tour.

Day 23-28

Phnom Penh – Chau Doc – Can Tho – Ho Chi Minh City

Travel by boat down the mighty Mekong and cross into Vietnam where you will stay in Chau Doc. Continue on to Can Tho where you will explore the colourful floating markets before finishing your journey in Ho Chi Minh City. This is just an example of a large selection of group tours we will offer in Indochina and Thailand. Please contact us for the full range.

89 

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

What’s included? • 4 star accommodation • Daily buffet breakfast • Economy class flights • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles • Qualified local tour leader • Local guides at selected sites • All tipping and entrance fees • Support from local offices


M.I.C.E INCENTIVES AND EVENTS What greater incentive to offer employees than the chance to experience the magic of Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand? With extensive practical experience in the region and expert staff in every destination, Buffalo Tours offer truly extraordinary incentive adventures. Get your clients or employees away from the routine and the mundane - a new place could help them gain new perspectives. From meetings to seminars, gala dinners to conferences - we are able to provide a wealth of information, contacts and expertise to ensure a successful event. With our close association with the Department of Foreign Affairs we can also help forge links between new businesses. We aim to continually exceed our customers’ expectations while offering you the best in terms of service and value. Buffalo Tours have experience working with a variety of international organizations providing educational trips to national forests and remote communities, office retreats, VIP and delegation trip management and special corporate events.

INCENTIVE AND EVENT HIGHLIGHTS: - Experience a truly unique event in an unusual place. - Use state-of-the-art convention facilities, in a region which offers unforgettable inspiration. - Combine business and pleasure with a golfing tour. - Tailor-make your own soft adventure programme. We recognize that your corporate and private clients have different requirements and budgets. For this reason we offer different levels of planning and organization from Total Event Planning to Consultation.

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 90


Useful information Our Useful Information Section provides a convenient reference tool for information on weather, time zones, currencies, visas, festivals and events - all the basics you need to know right at your fingertips. www.buffalotours.com

VIETNAM Best Time to Go

Vietnam’s elongated shape includes tropical and subtropical zones and is the reason for the varied climate in the country. Generally speaking it is fine to travel in Vietnam all year round.

Low Season

May to September

The South (Ho Chi Minh City to Phan Thiet)

The South is hot year round and has two seasons; one wet and the other dry. The wet season lasts from May to October and you can expect brief daily downpours. The dry season from November to April is generally sunny and humid.

Peak Season

The Centre (Nha Trang to Hue)

Visas/Passports

For most of the year Nha Trang is bathed in beautiful sunshine. However, between November and December the area has heavy rain. Dalat, at an altitude of 1,500 metres is cooler than the coastal area, particularly from November through to March. Danang, Hoi An and Hue experience typhoon activity from mid-October to mid-December when the climate becomes cooler, more overcast and wetter.

Summer in the north lasts from May to October when temperatures range between 30 and 35 degrees Celsius with high humidity and bursts of heavy rain. The temperature varies from 10 to 15 degrees in Winter (December to March). February and March can be damp with drizzle.

hanoi (north)

MONTH

Approximately 20th December – 10th January

Time

GMT + 7 hours

Visas are required for most nationalities and can be obtained in the guest’s home country or Buffalo Tours can arrange them in advance. Visitors can obtain a visa on arrival but must have a letter of approval. Otherwise, visitors must have a valid visa on arrival. Passports must be valid for 6 months after final departure date.

Airports

The North (Hanoi to Sapa)

Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat airport is approximately 7 kilometres northwest of the city centre. Hanoi’s Noi Bai airport is approximately 35 kilometres north of the city centre.

danang (centre)

ho chi minh city (south)

average temp

rain

AVERAGE TEMP

rain

AVERAGE TEMP

rain

degrees Celsius

(mm)

degrees Celsius

(mm)

degrees Celsius

(mm)

12/21

26

17/25

21

21/32

26 10

jan

91 

High Season October to April

feb

13/21

26

18/26

22

22/32

mar

16/23

60

20/28

23

23/33

15

apr

20/28

110

23/30

75

25/35

50

may

25/32

220

25/35

200

25/35

200 325

june

28/33

280

29/36

280

24/33

july

28/33

350

29/36

300

24/33

300

aug

28/33

340

25/34

280

24/33

300

sep

28/33

280

23/30

260

24/33

325 225

oct

23/28

160

23/28

260

23/32

NOV

18/27

80

21/28

80

23/32

100

DEC

15/21

10

20/27

40

22/32

50

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012


Useful information Cambodia

Laos

SIEM REAP

PHNOM PENH

Best Time To Go

Laos has a tropical monsoon climate with two distinct seasons: May to October is the rainy season and November to April is the dry season. It is hottest in March and April when temperatures can reach as high as 38C/100F. The lowest temperatures, usually in December, are around 15C/59F. The average temperature is between 25C/77F and 30C/84F.

Visas/Passports

Passports should be valid for six months after your planned date of departure from the country. Visas valid for 30 days can be easily obtained on arrival. Cost depends on nationality (from US$ 30 to US$ 42). One passport-sized photograph is also required.

Airport Departure Taxes

Airport departure taxes are already included.

AVERAGE TEMP

RAIN

AVERAGE TEMP

RAIN

degrees Celsius

(mm)

degrees Celsius

(mm)

22/31

25

19/32

0.7

feb

23/32

11

20/33

3

mar

24/34

58

26/34

28

apr

25/34

101

25/35

61 175

MONTH jan

25/34

111

25/35

june

25/33

177

24/33

221

july

24/32

195

24/32

236

aug

24/32

172

25/32

151 276

may

24/32

248

24/32

oct

23/31

318

23/31

248

NOV

22/30

135

22/30

81

DEC

21/30

80

20/31

10

sep

Airports

Vientiane Wattay Airport is located 3 kilometres from the centre of Vientiane. Luang Prabang International Airport is located 4 kilometres from the centre of Luang Prabang.

High Season

Best Time to Go

October to April

The ideal time to visit Cambodia is between October and March. From November to February the cool, dry northeastern monsoon carries relatively little rain whereas the southwestern monsoon carries up to eighty percent of the country’s rainfall between the months of May and October. Maximum daily temperatures range from 31 degrees Celsius in January to 34 degrees Celcius in April. Daily minimum temperatures are usually no less than 24 degrees.

Low Season

May to September

Peak Season

November to February

Time

GMT +7 hours

High Season

October to April

LUANG PRABANG

MONTH

VIENTIANE

Low Season

AVERAGE TEMP RAIN

AVERAGE TEMP

RAIN

May to September

degrees Celsius (mm)

degrees Celsius

(mm)

Peak Season

Approximately 20 Dec – 10 Jan jan

13/28

15

14/28

5

feb

14/32

18

17/30

15

mar

17/34

31

19/33

38

apr

21/36

109

23/34

99

may

23/35

163

23/32

267

june

23/34

155

24/32

302

july

23/32

231

24/31

267

aug

23/32

300

24/31

292

sep

23/33

165

24/31

302

oct

21/32

79

21/31

109

NOV

18/29

31

18/29

15

DEC

15/27

13

16/28

3

Time

GMT +7 hours

Visas/Passports

A passport with at least six month validity is required. A visa is required for most nationalities and is available upon arrival at both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap international airports. A tourist visa costs US $20 and is valid for 30 days. One passport-sized photograph is also required. To save time guests can arrange their visa on arrival in advance via http://cambodiaonarrival.com/ or http://www.mfaic.gov. kh/e-visa/vindex.aspx

Airports

Phnom Penh Airport is approximately 8 kilometres west of the city centre. Siem Reap Airport is approximately 7km west of the city centre. Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012 92


Useful information

THAILAND Best Time to Go

Thailand has a tropical monsoon climate with two distinct seasons. May to October is the rainy season and November to April is the dry season. It gets hottest in March and April when temperatures can reach as high as 38C/100F. The lowest temperatures, usually in December, are around 15C/59F. The average temperature is between 25C/77F and 30C/84F.

Approximately 20 Dec – 10 Jan

Time

October to April

GMT +7 hours Visas/Passports Guests can easily obtain a 30 day visa at the border ‘on arrival’ and it is free for most nationalities. No picture is required. Note that your passport must be must be valid for six months after your planned date of departure from the country.

Low Season

Airports

High Season

May to September

Suvarnabhumi Airport is approximately 25 kilometres east of Bangkok.

BANGKOK RAIN

AVERAGE TEMP MONTH Degrees Celsius

KO CHANG (Central)

CHIANG MAI (Northern)

AVERAGE TEMP RAIN

(mm) Degrees Celsius (mm)

AVERAGE TEMP

KO SAMUI (South East)

RAIN

Degrees Celsius (mm)

PHUKET (South West)

RAIN

AVERAGE TEMP

RAIN

(mm)

(mm)

Degrees Celsius

(mm)

23/31

38

21/32

40

23/33

25

RAIN

jan

21/26

10

23/32

21

13/29

feb

21/28

28

23/34

15

14/32

10

23/32

8

mar

21/29

30

25/35

82

17/34

8

24/33

12

24/34

56

22/36

25/33

62

26/33

126

25/31

186

25/32

320

24/31

289

0

apr

22/30

70

25/36

129

may

23/30

190

26/35

266

23/34

june

23/29

150

26/34

118

23/32

112

25/31

113

july

23/29

160

26/34

111

23/31

213

25/31

143

24/31

295

23/31

24/31

123

24/31

276

24/30

210

23/30

361

23/30

305

36 122

aug

23/28

180

26/34

175

sep

23/28

320

25/34

269

23/31

OCT

22/28

242

27

380

22/30

122

25/31

260

NOV

21/27

48

28

100

19/29

53

24/30

30

22/31

207

27

21

98

21/31

52

DEC

93 

Peak Season

21/26

Buffalo Tours Brochure 2012

10

14/28

193 249

20

23/31


BuffaloEs Around the World Tran Trong Kien

ray petts

CEO Kien graduated as a doctor in 1995 but left this behind to start Buffalo Tours, using his experience of running local tours for travelers to fund his way through medical school. With the rapid growth of Buffalo Tours, Kien feels it is vitally important for him to promote local empowerment and sustainable development. Kien takes part in Buffalo’s annual medical trek to remote ethnic minority villages and in his spare time he thrives on adventure, particularly trekking, and has climbed Vietnam’s highest peak several times.

GENERAL MANAGER - VIETNAM Ray started his career in the Tourism industry as a Tour Leader travelling on coach tours throughout Europe and has since worked for several leading worldwide tour operators in Operations and General Management. He has qualifications in Workplace Training & Assessment and Business Management. Through working and travelling overseas Ray has acquired significant experience in international and cross-cultural leadership.

BEV TAYLOR

Deborah Youl

SARAH GRIFFIN

TRAN GIA BACH

Michele Whealy

Panya Thin

Kenneth Joergensen

Ed Pettitt

MARKETING DIRECTOR With experience in product management, sales and marketing in the travel industry, Bev moved to Hanoi in 2011 to join Buffalo Tours. She has been delighted and amazed by the variety and quality of travel experiences in Indochina and Thailand and hopes that many more overseas visitors will be able to experience these fascinating countries.

REGIONAL DIRECTOR - AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND Sarah came to Buffalo Tours in 2005 and spent two years working in Head Office in Hanoi and travelling extensively throughout the region. Later moving to Sydney, Sarah set up our Australian Sales office and supports our valued trade partners in the region.

CAMBODIA COUNTRY MANAGER Originally from Australia, Michele travelled to Vietnam on a 2 week holiday in 2004 and has been in Indochina ever since. Michele spent 4 years with Buffalo Tours in Head Office in Hanoi before relocating to Siem Reap last year. Her enthusiasm for Cambodia and its friendly people is infectious and she wants as many people as possible to visit this fascinating, welcoming country.

GENERAL MANAGER - THAILAND Kenneth is originally from Denmark and has lived in Thailand for 13 years. He has extensive experience in Purchasing, Contracting, Product and General Management. Kenneth is looking forward to showcasing new and exciting products in Thailand.

DINH DOAN TRANG

Australia AGENT Sales - Team Leader Trang graduated in Hospitality and Tourism 10 years ago and has put her experience to good use working in Agent Sales at Buffalo Tours. Trang is one of Buffalo’s most experienced sales staff and she enjoys working closely with agents to find holidays and experiences which customers will love.

DIRECTOR - UK Following extensive travel in the Middle East and South Africa, Deborah first discovered Indochina and Thailand as a backpacker in 1996 and she has been spellbound ever since. Deborah has 14 years’ experience in Sales and Marketing for tour operators and airlines in the UK. She is proud to be one of the original UK Buffalos and loves promoting these extraordinary destinations.

RESERVATIONS MANAGER Bach earned an MBA in Australia and has over 11 years’ experience in the Tourism and Hospitality industry. Bach joined Buffalo Tours in 2010 and manages the busy Inbound Reservations team. Bach looks forward to sharing his passion for Indochina with you.

LAOS COUNTRY MANAGER Panya completed his degree in Business Management in Thailand and worked in Operations for a European tour company before joining Buffalo Tours. Originally from Siem Reap, Panya’s extensive travels in Laos have shown him many fantastic things for visitors to see and do and he looks forward to making every visitor’s holiday a memorable experience.

Sales Executive - UK After studying History at university Ed’s first job in travel was with a tour operator to India. Ed subsequently lived in China and travelled extensively in Asia, his favorite region being Indochina. He is proud to work for Buffalo Tours sending people to wonderful destinations.

VU MINH HIEU

UK Agent Sales - Team Leader Hieu has a degree in Tourism Administration and Hospitality and worked as a guide showing tourists the best of Vietnam before living full time in her native Hanoi to work in Agent Sales for Buffalo Tours. She loves helping agents and particularly enjoys arranging unusual holidays for customers.

Brochure 2012  

Brochure 2012