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VIETNAM & CAMBODIA

#nothingbeatscreative


VIETNAM & CAMBODIA

Ask any seasoned traveller to list their favourite destinations and chances are Vietnam and neighbouring Cambodia will be high on the list. Steeped in history, Vietnam is a country of beautiful natural landscapes, tasty authentic cuisine, and quaint village traditions. Venturing over the border to Cambodia, you’ll notice the region’s rich culture and fascinating history, not to mention the Khmer’s infectious optimism and generosity. Front cover Angkor Wat, Cambodia Inside front cover NinhBinh, Vietnam


CONTENTS Welcome to Creative Holidays

02

Vietnam & Cambodia map

04

Reasons to visit Vietnam

06

Ho Chi Minh

10

Nha Trang

14

Central Coast Vietnam (Hoi An, Danang, HuĂŞ)

16

Hanoi

24

Reasons to visit Cambodia

34

Phnom Penh

40

Siem Reap

42

Hotel features grid

46

Vietnam & Cambodia — 1


Welcome to

CREATIVE HOLIDAYS

We’re about travel. About dreaming. About the best local tips. About creating memories. And for over 30 years, we have been sending travellers across the globe. Our network of travel agency partners and team of destination specialists have the knowledge and expertise to create your perfect holiday. We are a proud member of The Travel Corporation, a fourth-generation family-owned business. Whatever style of holiday you are looking for, wherever you want to go, we have your whole trip covered. Start planning today!

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With worldwide flights, thousands of hotels, cruises, tours, car hire, transfers and incredible experiences to choose from, we’ll design a holiday just for you.

Ask for Creative Holidays at your local travel agency and you can enjoy the benefits of travelling with us with the support of your local agent.

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We negotiate with the world’s leading airlines, hotels and travel operators to bring you exclusive offers, deals and sensational packages. Look for the Creative Club logo for even more value.

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Our team of specialists are passionate about all things ‘travel’ and are committed to providing exceptional personalised service to you.

TRAVEL Enjoy special deals, travel tips and exclusive competitions at: /creativeholidays

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With our hand-picked list of ‘Creative Club’ hotels, you’ll find extra added value and benefits. Look out for the Creative Club logo for:

• Free room upgrades • Bonus nights and discounts • Best rates and price-match guarantees* • Book now, pay later *See terms and conditions

2 — Vietnam & Cambodia

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Hotel amenities KEY HOTEL FEATURES: Villa

Breakfast included

Kids’ Club

Day spa

Complimentary Wifi in rooms or public areas

Recommended ‘Creative Club’ property

HOTEL RATINGS:

Very high standard of room appointment, equipment and furnishing with an extensive range of services and facilities supported by excellent service.

We believe in giving back

TO THE COMMUNITY At Creative Holidays and parent company The Travel Corporation, we understand that travel matters; it allows us to explore the world and gain a deeper understanding of each destination, its history and culture, through enriching experiences. We also recognise that it is our responsibility to help protect the places we visit and take care of the world around us. The Travel Corporation’s not-for-profit TreadRight Foundation works to help ensure

the environment and communities we visit are preserved for generations to come. To date, TreadRight has donated more than USD 2.5 million to sustainable tourism projects worldwide and recently launched a new project partnership with WildAid, whose mission is to end the illegal wildlife trade in our lifetimes, through public awareness campaigns and comprehensive marine protection. Creative Holidays is proud to be an active founder and supporter of TreadRight’s projects and work.

Well-appointed rooms, a comprehensive range of facilities such as food and beverage outlets and a high standard of service level.

Moderate standard of accommodation with a range of facilities and services.

This symbol is used where the accommodation, facilities and service falls between two categories. Ratings are provided for guidance only in comparing and selecting your accommodation and may be subject to change.

treadright.org Vietnam & Cambodia — 3


CHINA HUE PHU BAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

NOI BAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

VIETNAM

HA LONG BAY

HANOI

DA NANG DA NANG AIRPORT

LAOS HOI AN

CENTRAL COAST

THAILAND South China Sea SIEM REAP INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

CAMBODIA NHA TRANG CAM RANH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

PHNOM PENH PHNOM PENH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

SIHANOUKVILLE

Gulf of Thailand

4 — Vietnam & Cambodia

SIHANOUKVILLE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

HO CHI MINH CITY

TAN SON NHAT INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

SIEM REAP


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

THIRTY-FIVE MILLION:

KHMER is the official language in Cambodia

The number of registered motorbikes in Vietnam

ANGKOR

WAT

the number of limestone islands in

was built with bricks joined by vegetable compound, not mortar

HALONG BAY

VIETNAM & CAMBODIA AVERAGE RAINFALL (mm) F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Hanoi

34

50

49

80

200

230

300

330

302

130

50

30

Ho Chi Minh

10

0

1

51

210

300

290

270

340

260

110

51

Danang

100

30

30

30

60

80

90

100

300

550

330

220

AVERAGE TEMPERATURE (˚C, maximum ) Hanoi

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

18

19

22

26

30

32

32

31

31

27

24

21

Ho Chi Minh

31

32

33

33

33

31

31

31

31

30

30

30

Danang

24

25

27

29

31

32

32

32

31

28

26

23

‘CAMBODIA’ is the name of a popular Cambodian beer

NGUYEN

Fuh: pronunciation of the Vietnamese noodle soup

BEST TIME TO TRAVEL J

of the Vietnamese population have the same family name,

PHO The Mekong is the twelfth longest river in the world

The currency of Vietnam is called

THE DONG Vietnam & Cambodia — 5


REASONS to v isit

VIETNAM Vietnam has now fully emerged as a destination with so much to offer, making it a great choice for everyone. From history to beaches to cuisine and everything in between, it’s a country of fascinating contrasts. Bustling cities sit side by side with traditional rice paddies. Hedonistic beaches are tourist playgrounds, while sleepy fishing boats on the Mekong and Halong Bay provide insight into a slower pace of life. Whether you’re seeking luxury or are on a budget, hitting up tourist hot spots or taking the road less travelled, Vietnam has something for everyone.

BREATHTAKING BEACHES: Blessed with more than 3,000 kilometres of coastline, Vietnam is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Nha Trang is a tourist favourite thanks to its fine white sand and azure waters. Equally, if not more beautiful, Danang is up and coming with gorgeous resorts, top golf courses and great restaurants cropping up. Mui Ne is a kite surfing mecca and the romantic island of Phu Quoc is famed for its top notch diving and snorkelling.

WELCOMING LOCALS: Vietnam may boast seven UNESCO-listed World Heritage sites, but the country’s real treasure is its people. Vietnamese people will shower you with politeness, grace and generosity. The friendly locals you meet will ensure you have an unforgettable holiday experience. 6 — Vietnam & Cambodia

FASCINATING FESTIVALS: If you come across a festival in Vietnam consider it a gift. They are an integral part of the culture and provide a fascinating glimpse into the values of the locals. You’ll witness brightly decorated streets, tables over-flowing with delicious sweets and candlelit processions with drums and songs. Notable events include Tet, the celebration of the coming of spring and the new lunar year, the Mid-Autumn Festival where children carry colourful star shaped lanterns through the streets, and Wandering Souls Day when the Vietnamese pay tribute to the dead.


Vietnam’s TOP TASTES

TASTY CUISINE: Vietnamese is one of the world’s most popular cuisines and it’s worth travelling there just for the food – your tastebuds will thank you and the aroma of fresh Vietnamese mint will linger with you long after your holiday has finished. Throughout Vietnam you’ll find both local street food and sophisticated restaurants serving up dishes that reflect the region and cultural history, including their French heritage. In fact you’re just as likely to come across scrumptious baguettes and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee in Vietnam as you are in France.

The essence of Vietnamese food is the salty and distinct fish sauce (Nouc mam). It’s used abundantly in cooking or as a condiment and adds delicious flavour to the fragrant dishes you’ll find throughout the country. Rice is the staple of most meals, with fresh meat, vegetables and herbs such as lemongrass, coriander and kaffir lime combining to create mouth-watering menus for you to enjoy.

1. PHỞ A warming soup made of rice noodles, herbs and either beef or chicken. A popular street food, the styles of Pho can differ from region to region.

2. BÁNH MÌ A throw back from the French influence, Bánh mì are fresh baguettes filled with ingredients like coriander, pate, pork and pickled carrots.

3. GỎI CUỐN Otherwise known as Vietnamese spring rolls, these tasty cold snacks are filled with pork, prawn, vegetables and herbs and rolled in rice paper.

4. BÁNH CUỐN

HISTORIC SITES: Vietnam’s history makes it one of the most interesting of the Southeast Asian destinations and the country is dotted with fascinating sites to explore. From the Cu Chi Tunnels in the south, to the surreal experience of visiting the Snow White-esque glass mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh in the north, history buffs will rejoice. In between you’ll find the beautifully preserved 15th – 19thC old-town of Hoi An, the Imperial Citadel of Huê and the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), the former border between North and South Vietnam.

Mouthwatering noodle rolls found in Northern Vietnam that are filled with seasoned ground pork, mushroom and shallots.

5. BÚN CHẢ A dish consisting of grilled pork, white rice noodles and fresh greens, accompanied by a tasty dipping sauce. Vietnam & Cambodia — 7


BEST OF VIETNAM & CAMBODIA 10 nights from $2,965* per person Embark on a thrilling adventure through some of Vietnam’s most enthralling historical sites and breathtaking natural landscapes, before exploring the aweinspiring regions of Cambodia. HANOI

HA LONG BAY

LAOS

South China Sea THAILAND

HOI AN

SEAM REAP

VIETNAM

CAMBODIA HO CHI MINH CITY

Regional

ITINERARIES DAY 3 – Ho Chi Minh City: Enjoy a boat excursion on the mighty Mekong Delta, including a stop at Turtle Island to visit a local village, before sampling some local delicacies at My Tho for lunch. DAY 4 – Hoi An: Fly to Danang and then transfer Hoi An, with stops at Charm Museum, Marble Mountain and China Beach en route. Spend the afternoon exploring ancient Hoi An on foot.

DAY 1 – Ho Chi Minh City: Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City – free time to explore.

DAY 5 – Hanoi: Enjoy a morning drive to the UNESCO temples of My Son, one of the foremost Hindu temple sites in Southeast Asia, before flying to Hanoi.

DAY 2 – Ho Chi Minh City: Visit the famous Cu Chi tunnels, and explore a range of diverse sites on a Ho Chi Minh City Tour, including Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office, the former Presidential Palace and the War Remnants Museum.

DAY 6 – Hanoi: Explore ancient Hanoi on a full day tour, including sites such as Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda and the Temple of Literature, before heading back to the Old Quarter for a water puppet theatre show.

DAY 7 – Halong Bay: Enjoy an overnight cruise of Halong Bay, with visits to Tien Ong cave and Cua Van fishing village. DAY 8 – Siem Reap: Rise early and explore Ti Top Island before buffet brunch. Transfer back to Hanoi before your flight to Siem Reap. DAY 9 – Siem Reap: Explore the magnificent, historic Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom temples on a full day tour where you will learn how the Khmer Empire prospered between the 9th and 13th centuries. DAY 10 – Siem Reap: Set off on a half day quad bike tour of Siem Reap, taking in the sights of stunning rice paddies and natural surrounds, before visiting a local orphanage and school. DAY 11: Transfer to the airport for your departure flight.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Overnight private cabin in Jasmine Junk • Private transfers and transportation • Local English-speaking guide • Water puppet show (1st class ticket) • Entrance fees and private boat rides • Daily breakfast, two lunches, one dinner • Economy airfares

VIETNAM FOODIE EXPERIENCE 12 nights from $5,823* per person

HANOI

HA LONG BAY

LAOS

HUE THAILAND

South China Sea HOI AN

CAMBODIA

VIETNAM HO CHI MINH CITY

DAY 1 – Hanoi: Arrive in Hanoi and transfer to your hotel. You’ll enjoy an afternoon cycle ride through the French Quarter before a Welcome Dinner with the lively open kitchen on display. DAY 2 – Hanoi: Take a guided market tour with a local chef, before a morning cooking class of Hanoi & Northern Highland cuisine. Later, explore the Old Quarter and enjoy a home-cooked dinner & musical performance with local hosts.

8 — Vietnam & Cambodia

DAY 4 – Halong Bay: Cruise through Bai Tu Long Bay, Vung Vieng and Lan Ha Bay, before enjoying a biking or walking exploration of Cat Ba Island and a barbeque buffet dinner. DAY 5 – Hoi An: Visit Sung Sot Cave before being transferred to Hanoi for your flight. Arrive in Hoi An for an overnight stay. DAY 6 – Hoi An: Cycle through Hoi An’s countryside, exploring Tra Que vegetable village where you can learn traditional gardening & cooking methods from friendly locals. Enjoy dinner overlooking Thu Bon River. DAY 7 – Hoi An: Take advantage of a guided Hoi An Street Food Tour and enjoy the tantalising sights, smells and flavours of traditional Central Vietnamese dishes. DAY 8 – Hue: Arrive in Huê and explore sites including an ancient pagoda, the Imperial Citadel and Khai Dinh royal tomb. Enjoy an exceptional dinner of Salt Rice, one of the most opulent and symbolic dishes in the former Imperial capital of Huê.

DAY 9 – Hue: Enjoy a Huê food tour sampling your way through local markets and villages which each specialise in a different popular dish, before dinner at the remarkable Ancient Huê restaurant. DAY 10 – Ho Chi Minh City: Depart Huê for Ho Chi Minh City, and enjoy a city walking tour of sites before discovering what this thriving metropolis can offer in terms of street food, all from the back of a vintage Vespa scooter. DAY 11 – Ho Chi Minh City: Visit a local market with with the talented chef Ms. Nguyen Dzoan Cam Van, before enjoying an authentic hands-on cooking class at her Ho Chi Minh City house. DAY 12 – Ho Chi Minh City: Head to Ben Tre in the Delta of the Mekong River. Spend the day visiting locals in various towns and listening to their stories while sampling local delicacies. Feast on Delta specialties for lunch before heading back to Ho Chi Minh City for a farewell dinner that is set up like a local food market selling specialties from each region in Vietnam. DAY 13: Depart Ho Chi Minh City.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Private transfers and transportation • Day cruise local boat ride and Bike riding • Economy class domestic airfare • Local English-speaking guide • Entrance fees • Two breakfasts, nine lunches, nine dinners

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

Taste your way through traditional Vietnam on this foodie adventure of a lifetime, learning the inspiring methods from locals and experts alike.

DAY 3 – Halong Bay: Arrive in Halong Bay and board a deluxe ship, before enjoying a cruise through the beautiful scenery, a kayak tour and a cooking demonstration.


CLASSIC VIETNAM 10 nights from $2,066* per person From the bustling cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, to charming Hoi An, historic Huê & scenic Halong Bay, this journey will take you to some of Vietnam’s most prominent attractions.

HANOI

HA LONG BAY

LAOS

South China HUE Sea THAILAND

HOI AN

VIETNAM

DAY 1 – Ho Chi Minh City: Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City – free time to explore.

DAY 6 – Hue: Head to Huê for an afternoon exploring the Imperial Citadel and Tu Duc Royal Tomb.

DAY 2 – Ho Chi Minh City: Visit the famous Cu Chi tunnels, initially started in 1948 to protect the Viet Cong guerrillas from the French air and ground sweeps, followed by an afternoon Ho Chi Minh City Tour, including Notre Dame Cathedral, the former Presidential Palace and the War Remnants Museum.

DAY 7 – Hanoi: Visit Thien Mu Pagoda and the Royal Tomb of Minh Mang in Huê before your flight to Hanoi.

CAMBODIA HO CHI MINH CITY

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Overnight private cabin in Ginger Junk • Private transfers and transportation • Local English-speaking guide • Water puppet show (1st class ticket) • Entrance fees and private boat rides • Daily breakfast, one lunch, one dinner • Economy airfares

DAY 3 – Ho Chi Minh City: Enjoy a day out at the Cai Be Floating Market on the Mekong Delta. Sample delicious specialties and observe traditional Delta life. DAY 4 – Hoi An: Fly to Danang and then transfer to Hoi An, on the way visiting Marble Mountain and China Beach. DAY 5 – Hoi An: In the morning you’ll visit the UNESCO World Heritage listed My Son temple complex and in the afternoon take a guided walking tour of Hoi An including the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge and the colourful market.

DAY 8 – Hanoi: Embark on a full day tour of Hanoi. You’ll visit the historic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the Temple of Literature, the Museum of Ethnology and the Old Quarter. Cap off your day with a show at the water puppet theatre. DAY 9 – Halong Bay: Journey to Halong Bay and board your deluxe vessel, before exploring the mysterious Tien Ong cave and the Cua Van fishing village. You’ll participate in a cooking class with the chef or enjoy sunset on the top deck before dinner. DAY 10 – Hanoi: Rise early for refreshing Tai Chi on the upper deck. You’ll enjoy beach time on Ti Top Island before a delicious buffet brunch and return cruise to Hanoi. DAY 11: Transfer to the airport for your departure from Hanoi.

HISTORIC CITIES OF INDOCHINA 9 nights from $2,641* per person

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

Take the opportunity to explore historic Ho Chi Minh City, reflect at significant Vietnam War sites, marvel at Cambodia’s temples and lunch with Laos’ hill-tribe villagers on this authentic Indochina tour.

DAY 1 – Ho Chi Minh City: Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City – free time to explore. DAY 2 – Ho Chi Minh City: Visit the famous Cu Chi tunnels, and explore a range of diverse sites on a Ho Chi Minh City Tour. DAY 3 – Ho Chi Minh City: Take in lush surrounds of the Mekong River on a boat excursion, including a stop at Turtle Island to visit a traditional village and being rowed on a sampan through the maze of canals.

LUANG PRABANG

LAOS

South China Sea

THAILAND

SEAM REAP CAMBODIA

VIETNAM

HO CHI MINH CITY

DAY 4 – Ho Chi Minh City: Take some time to reflect on the Vietnam War with visits to the Long Tan Memorial Cross, the former 1st Australian Task Force Base at Nui Dat and the wartime tunnel complex at Long Phuoc. DAY 5 – Siem Reap: Fly to Siem Reap with free time to explore.

DAY 6 – Siem Reap: Marvel at the wonder and size of Angkor Wat and the jewel of Khmer art, Banteay Srei temple. DAY 7 – Siem Reap: Head to ancient Angkor Thom to admire the Bayon temple, and overgrown Ta Prohm before visiting Artisans d’Angkor, an organisation focused on training unschooled rural youth in traditional handicraft skills. DAY 8 – Luang Prabang: Fly to Luang Prabang in Laos, enjoy a walk around the ancient town, passing the Royal Palace, Wat Visoun, Wat That Luang, Wat Mai and Mount Phousi. DAY 9 – Luang Prabang: Visit Ban Nayang village, home to the Tai Lu hill-tribe, where you can observe their handicraft skills and talk about daily life activities. Enjoy lunch cooked by the villagers. DAY 10: Be transferred to the airport for your departure flight from Luang Prabang.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, three lunches • Private transfers and transportation • Local English-speaking guide • Entrance fees and private boat rides • Economy airfares

Vietnam & Cambodia — 9


TO

TAN SON NHAT INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

BEN NGHE

REUNIFICATION PALACE

5

EN

4

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LOCAL tips

HAM NGHI

O DA

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• Party animals should head to District 1 for pulsing nightlife. Try the infamous Apocalypse Now nightclub, the always-open Crazy Buffalo, or Ginger 60 for great live music. 1. 2. 3. 4.

Caravelle Saigon Duxton Hotel Saigon Grand Hotel Saigon Hotel Majestic Saigon

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See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

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PHUONG PHAM NGU LAO

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• In Ho Chi Minh City, custom-made clothing is an affordable luxury. Indulge in a perfectly cut suit or dress by visiting one of the city’s many tailors.

10 — Vietnam & Cambodia

EN

NGUYEN CU TRINH

HO CHI MINH MUSEUM

NG

• Counteract the steamy heat of the city by sipping on a Vietnamese iced coffee (ca phe sua da). The coffee is brewed directly into a cup containing sweet condensed milk, before being poured over ice.

• KIDS WILL LOVE: Taking a cylco ride around the city.

A

NGUYEN THAI BIN 6

• Whether you’re a history buff or not, take a visit to the War Remnants Museum and the Cu Chi tunnels for a fascinating insight into Vietnam’s past.

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BEN THANH

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HO CHI MINH SQUARE

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WAR REMNANTS MUSEUM TR

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5. Liberty Central Saigon Centre 6. Liberty Hotel Saigon Parkview

7. Novotel Saigon Centre 8. Sofitel Saigon Plaza

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

The youthful and vibrant Ho Chi Minh City has plenty to keep visitors busy for days. Weaved amongst soaring skyscrapers are wide, Frenchinfluenced boulevards of leafy trees. Captivating museums such as the War Remnants Museum and Reunification Palace play contrast to avantgarde fashion and a buzzing nightlife. Day trips to nearby Cu Chi Tunnels or the Mekong Delta complement this bustling and bewitching city.

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PHUONG 7

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HO CHI MINH CITY


THINGS to do

OUR TOP 5 around Ho Chi Minh City

With over eight million inhabitants, Ho Chi Minh City buzzes day and night. And while there’s endless culture and activities to uncover, we’ve picked out five you simply can’t miss.

1. Ben Tre by Local Boat Step out of the city and take a trip to Ben Tre, one of Vietnam’s southern provinces just 1.5 hours from Ho Chi Minh City. Cruise down the Mekong River past Delta landscapes in a traditional motorboat, enjoy fresh coconut milk at Turtle Island village, and be personally rowed through Mekong canals to an authentic Delta lunch feast and folk performance in the small city of My Tho.

From

67

$

*

2. Cu Chi Tunnels Enjoy a two-hour drive northwest of Ho Chi Minh City, through lush southern Vietnamese countryside, to the famous Cu Chi tunnels. The tunnel complex was started in 1948 to protect the Viet Cong guerrillas from the French air and ground sweeps. Today, a visit to the underground villages will provide a better understanding of the tunnels hard history and Vietnamese resilience during combat. Ask your guide to point out the Viet Cong’s hidden trapdoors and gruesome booby traps – it’s not for the faint of heart!

From

000 122

$

* *

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

3. City Highlights Tour Cut to the chase and pinpoint Ho Chi Minh’s must-see hotspots on this half-day tour. Uncover the city’s vibrant and somewhat turbulent past, from the Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office designed by Gustav Eiffel (yes, of the Eiffel Tower), the former Presidential Palace and the headquarters of the Saigon Government during the American War. Drive to visit the War Remnants Museum for a vivid insight into the war. From

4. Cai Be & The Floating Market

42

$

*

Delve into the “rice bowl of Vietnam”, the mighty Mekong Delta, for a trip to the unmissable Cai Be floating market. Take a motorboat down the famous river to Tien Giang, where you’ll find local boats heaving with Vietnamese goods, then experience traditional Delta life with a home-cooked Mekong lunch at an ancient Mandarin house. After feasting on Mekong Delta specialties, take a stroll around the orchard to see how fruit is cultivated.

From

000 186

$

**

5. Cycling in Mekong Delta From

000 205

$

**

Explore the mighty Mekong River on two wheels with this unforgettable cycling excursion. Glide over easy terrain past lush rice paddies, greet locals down narrow village lanes and be guided around an orchard at the home of a tropical fruit farmer. The trip eases you into things with a charming wooden boat trip from Cai Lay, then it’s seven kilometres of jaw-dropping scenery on your bike ride, a sampan boat through tropical canals and a home-hosted lunch of Mekong Delta specialties. Vietnam & Cambodia — 11


Caravelle Saigon Since the 1950s, the iconic Caravelle has remained a lauded address in the heart of Ho Chi Minh, boasting prime accommodation and fine facilities in one of the city's hottest locales. Why we love it: This luxury hotel offers 335 superbly appointed rooms, suites and lounges, all with elegant furnishings and sumptuous décor. Nowadays, the Caravelle is a favourite for nostalgic travellers and discerning visitors alike, with its historic charm, freeform swimming pool, Kara Salon & Spa, Vegas-style gaming club and swathe of cool restaurants and bars.

Tried & tested HO CHI MINH Searching for the perfect Ho Chi Minh City hotel? Check out some of our favourite stays – from luxury hotels to happening boutiques and family-friendly havens in the metropolis of former Saigon.

Style: Sophisticated Atmosphere: Refined From

130*

$

Sofitel Saigon Plaza A luxury hotel on tree-lined Le Duan Boulevard, Sofitel Saigon Plaza offers newly renovated rooms and suites with a blend of modern French design and Vietnamese influences. Why we love it: Structured as a towering, contemporary pagoda, the renowned Sofitel chain doesn’t fail to impress with its Ho Chi Minh instalment. Located in the centre of the business district, with beautifully finished rooms, holistic spa treatments and an outstanding French restaurant, it’s a stylish hotspot for both business and pleasure. Style: Sophisticated Atmosphere: Peaceful From

111*

$

Hotel Majestic Saigon The enchanting Hotel Majestic has watched the city change throughout the decades, all while maintaining exceptional hospitality and elegant design. Why we love it: A true landmark hotel, Hotel Majestic has been an integral part of Saigon’s city centre since 1925. This grand dame is one of the city’s finest stays, with live pianists, classically designed dining rooms and timber-floored, elegant rooms to infuse your trip with a little Old World magic. Style: Colonial Atmosphere: Historic From

75*

$

Novotel Saigon Centre An ultra-modern stay in the urban centre of District 3, Novotel Saigon Centre is a minimalistic monolith from this international chain, catering to business travellers and city-hoppers alike. Why we love it: Edgy, modern and somewhat futuristic, it offers consistent quality service in relaxing surrounds. Don’t miss the swathe of upscale facilities, including The Square international buffet restaurant, an In Balance Spa, 24-hour fitness centre and onTop bar on the 20th floor, featuring cool cocktails and stunning panoramic views. Style: Contemporary Atmosphere: Relaxing From

78*

$ 12 — Vietnam & Cambodia


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Liberty Central Saigon Centre Sleek and modern, Liberty Central Saigon Centre is a stylish member of Ho Chi Minh’s central district, flaunting a trendy outdoor pool and wine bar as hip accessories. Why we love it: Effortlessly balancing chic style with creature comfort, this centrally located hotel makes for a stylish home in the heart of the action. Close to Ben Thanh Market and Ho Chi Minh City Museum, the hotel’s health club, outdoor pool, Bistro Café and super helpful staff are the perfect accompaniment to a relaxing stay. Style: Sleek Atmosphere: Relaxed From

65*

$

Duxton Hotel Saigon Strolling distance to some of Ho Chi Minh City’s classiest attractions, this boutique hotel specialises in attention to detail – from the snug, stylish spa to the mod-style lap pool. Why we love it: A marble-flanked delight sitting on Nguyen Huê Boulevard, this boutique stay surrounds itself with Vietnamese opulence, inside and out. With lavish deluxe and executive rooms, Vietnamese-style high tea and East-meets-West eateries, it’s perfect for adventure-seekers, families and business travellers alike. Style: Opulent Atmosphere: Chilled From

75*

$

Grand Hotel Saigon

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

A historic 1930s gem within walking distance of downtown Ho Chi Minh, the elegantly appointed rooms and beautifully designed eateries speak to the charms of an era long past. Why we love it: Elegantly restored with Vietnamese-French details, the historic Grand Hotel boasts charmingly furnished rooms, four opulent rooftop restaurants and bars, a business centre and suave fitness and spa facilities. The heritage gem specialises in tasteful throwbacks, and is ideally located for downtown and Saigon River expeditions.

Staff

TIP: “Make sure you pay a visit to Cholon, Vietnam’s largest Chinatown district. Here, you’ll be able to see classical Chinese architecture – including Thien Hau Pagoda, a super-photogenic temple dedicated to the sea goddess Thien Hau.” Caroline Culture buff

Style: French Atmosphere: Refined From

78*

$

Liberty Hotel Saigon Parkview Newly refurbished, the sleek Liberty Hotel Saigon Parkview offers business travellers and tourists a place to call home. With unbeatable hospitality, it’s a perfect base to explore the sights and sounds of Ho Chi Minh City. Why we love it: Close to the upmarket Dong Khoi Street and Ben Than Market, it’s a newly renovated city getaway for the modern traveller. Featuring brand-new, stylish rooms, authentic Vietnamese cuisine, a business centre, spa and barbershop, the hotel guarantees solid relaxation in a busy, urban setting. Style: Sleek Atmosphere: Friendly From

32*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 13


NHA TRANG

Regarded as the beach capital of Vietnam, Nha Trang boasts 6kms of white sandy shores, calm turquoise waters and a year round tropical climate. For those in need of some downtime simply relax at a resort and be pampered to perfection. The active can try wakeboarding, kayaking or even windsurfing. And that’s not where the allure ends – just off Nha Trang’s coast are 19 idyllic islands where you can dive and snorkel the colourful coral reefs.

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1. Novotel Nha Trang

NHA TRANG PORT

2. Sheraton Nha Trang Hotel & Spa

See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

3. Sunrise Nha Trang Beach Hotel & Spa

LOCAL tips • Take a trip to the Thap Ba Hot Springs Centre where you can soak in hot mud before rinsing yourself in mineral water. • Pick up a few souvenirs at Cho Dam, Nha Trang’s largest open-air market. Don’t forget to haggle! • Tour the seafront on a bicycle. Most hotels rent them out on a daily basis. • Feast on fresh seafood or Nha Trang’s famous barbecued pork rolled in rice paper. • KIDS WILL LOVE: Taking the Vinpearl Cable Car from the mainland to the theme park on Hon Tre Island.

14 — Vietnam & Cambodia

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

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For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Sheraton Nha Trang Hotel & Spa An architectural delight, Sheraton Nha Trang is the ultimate indulgence, with a staggering range of facilities, plush pillows and eye-popping ocean views. Why we love it: This feat of modern design is one for the self-pamperers. Enjoy plush, ocean-view rooms, a gorgeous infinity pool and a 28th-floor panoramic cocktail bar, or take an excursion to nearby cultural hotspots, with the beach just two minutes away. Style: Modern Atmosphere: Lively Don’t leave without experiencing: A few leisurely laps in the mod 6th-floor infinity pool, looking out across Nha Trang Bay.

From

126*

$

Sunrise Nha Trang Beach Hotel & Spa A colonial-style stay in the heart of Nha Trang, Sunrise is all about the art of holidaying, with 125 sea-facing rooms located just steps from the beach. Why we love it: Hotels don’t often get more dramatic than this – a grand piano in the lobby, a swimming pool circled by white Roman columns and a Jacuzzi on your private balcony. The elegant Sunrise, with its grand dining, relaxing spa and jaw-dropping views, ticks all the right holiday boxes. Style: Colonial Atmosphere: Charming Don’t leave without experiencing: Tropical cocktails in Sky Lounge, an oasis of calm amidst the hustle and bustle of city life with 180° panoramic views of beautiful Nha Trang Bay.

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

From

103*

$

Novotel Nha Trang Conducting business in paradise? Hanging out with the family? On the main street of Nha Trang, this contemporary Novotel caters to all traveller types. Why we love it: It’s not every hotel that can convincingly fuse business with pleasure, but the Novotel’s bright, modern design and friendly vibe accomplish this feat with savvy ease. Take tea at sunrise on your balcony, then enjoy the outdoor swimming pool, pool bar, fitness centre and The Square restaurant, serving up delicious international cuisine. Style: Contemporary Atmosphere: Laid-back Don’t leave without experiencing: A cooling end-of-day beverage overlooking the town square at the Pool Bar.

From

90*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 15


HOI AN

The charming riverside city of Hoi An is home to an eclectic history, tantalising cuisine and picturesque trails to explore by foot, bicycle, boat and car. As famous for its well preserved 15th to 19th century architecture as it is for the many tailors, visitors will delight in this unique heritage site, once an important trading centre.

HUE

Huê, on Central Coast Vietnam is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Vietnam’s former imperial capital. Divided by the meandering Perfume River, the south bank hosts the modern French quarter while the north retains its old-world charm. Here, encased within thick walls, lies the Royal Palace, temple, gardens, tombs and flag tower. Stroll through the Citadel or hop on a Cyclo and be shown the sights from your three-wheeled chariot.

CENTRAL COAST VIETNAM

When it comes to holiday destinations in Southeast Asia, there is simply no place like Central Coast Vietnam. It plays host to some of Vietnam’s most compelling destinations including the UNESCO World Heritage towns of Hoi An and Huê and the stunning beach town of Danang.

16 — Vietnam & Cambodia

DANANG

With beaches framed by mountain peaks and dense jungles, international resorts, outstanding spa facilities and world-class golf courses, a stay in Danang is the perfect place for a mid-holiday stop off. Use it as a base to explore all that the Central Coast has to offer, or simply while away the days sipping cocktails by the beach.


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

HUE

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“Hoi An is a great place to get clothes made – some families have been tailors for many generations. If you can, bring a sample and get it cut in fabrics of your choice.”

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See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Anantara Hoi An Resort Ancient House Boutique Hoi An Resort Furama Resort Danang Fusion Maia Resort Grand Mercure Danang

7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

Hoi An Beach Resort Hoi An Trails Resort & Spa Hyatt Regency Danang Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort La Residence

12. 13. 14. 15. 16.

Mường Thanh Huế Palm Garden Beach Resort & Spa Pullman Danang Beach Resort The Nam Hai Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

LOCAL tips • Time your trip to coincide with the full moon and see the mesmerising Hoi An Legendary Night, when the city is brought to life by hundreds of floating lanterns and artistic street performances. • Take the Hai Van Pass from Danang to Huê or vice versa. Referred to as “the deserted ribbon of perfection” by Jeremy Clarkson of Top Gear, this scenic drive is not to be missed. • Watch the sunset from the Marble Mountains. There’s nothing like it! • Visit Huê in Autumn to find out why it’s called the Perfume River. Flowers from orchards upriver from Huê fall into the water, giving the river a perfume-like aroma. • KIDS WILL LOVE: Feeding the brightly coloured decorative fish in the ornamental koi pond.

Vietnam & Cambodia — 17


THINGS to do

OUR TOP 10

From

000 69

$

*

*

in Central Coast Vietnam (Hoi An, Hue and Danang)

From

You could easily spend days on the Central Coast of Vietnam. The region around Hoi An, Huê and Danang is steeped in both ancient and recent history, impressive architecture and world heritage sites. Here are just a few suggestions of what you can experience.

000 144

$

**

1. Day Trip from Hoi An to Huế Immerse yourself in a long-gone era and take a trip to Huê, the former capital of Vietnam during the Nguyen Dynasty of Emperors from 1802 until 1945. Take a scenic drive through Danang before climbing the Hai Van Pass – a spectacular, panoramic summit known as ‘Pass of the Ocean Clouds’, looking over the photogenic fishing village of Lang Co. In Huê, visit the seven-floor Thien Mu pagoda and the 19th-century Imperial Citadel, before a picturesque drive back to Hoi An.

From

000 155

$

2. Visit to My Son Temples

**

Head into deep valleys and mysterious hills to find one of the foremost Hindi temple sites in Southeast Asia. A 1.5-hour drive from Hoi An, My Son was an important place of worship for the Cham civilisation that ruled Central Vietnam from the 2nd to the 13th century. Set in a verdant valley overlooked by the looming Cat Tooth Mountain, this UNESCO World Heritagelisted site is the perfect day excursion to connect with Cham culture, architecture and civilisation.

3. Cycling Around Hoi An Cruise the delightful city of Hoi An on a two-wheeler with this all-day cycling tour. After breakfast, start pedalling along the photogenic Thu Bon River, through Thuan Tinh Ecological Village, past family shrines and local villagers going about daily life. From here, you’ll explore stunning Cua Dai Beach, the local fishing village of Cam Thanh, and lend a hand to local farmers in Tra Que village.

4. Walking Tour of Hoi An Between the 17th and 19th centuries, Hoi An was a prosperous trading port. Today, this World Heritage-listed ancient town boasts well-preserved buildings and pedestrianised streets, making it ideal for a guided walking tour. Get a glimpse of the past with visits to old merchant houses, the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, the Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation and the colourful central market.

5. Red Bridge Cooking Class Set in three acres of lush tropical gardens, Red Bridge Cooking School is a highlight of Hoi An’s culinary scene. Meander through Hoi An’s market with your chef, learning about Vietnamese ingredients, then delve into a hands-on cooking lesson and enjoy your own self-made feast! You’ll also meet the chef for Welcome drinks in Hoi An’s Old Town. 18 — Vietnam & Cambodia

From

000 47

$

*

*

From

000 200

$

*


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

From

000 78

$

*

*

6. Huế City Highlights Tour Huê served as an imperial capital to the Nguyen Lords, a feudal dynasty that reigned from the 17th to the 19th century. With splendid emperors’ tombs, ancient pagodas and the remains of the Citadel, the city is a wonderland of royal relics. Take bicycles and vehicles to explore UNESCO-listed sites like the mighty Imperial Citadel, Huê’s best-preserved religious monument, the Thien Mu pagoda, and the elaborate Khai Dinh and Tu Duc Royal Tombs.

From

000 50

$

*

*

7. Royal Martial Arts Performance in Huế Enjoy a great cultural feature inherited from the Nguyen Dynasty with an enlightening performance of different martial art techniques, reminiscent of the past heroic plots of Vietnamese patriots against colonialists’ suppression. The performance is held at the beautiful garden of Mr Kim’s school of martial art.

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

8. Huế Citadel & Tu Duc Tour Pinpoint Huê’s jaw-dropping architectural must-sees with a half-day excursion of the city’s highlights. Walk in the footsteps of emperors at the magnificent UNESCO-listed Imperial Citadel, find peace at the serene Tu Duc Royal Tomb, designed to blend in with its natural surroundings, and built on feng shui principles and then discover the elaborate architecture of Khai Dinh Royal Tomb.

From

000 128

$

**

From

191 000

$

* *

9. Thien Mu Pagoda & Minh Mang Tomb Meet Huê’s best-preserved religious monument and a Nguyen Emperor in one day on this history-filled adventure. Drive from your hotel in Huê to visit Thien Mu pagoda – a sight to behold on the riverbank with its seven-storey tower! From here, you’ll continue to the Royal Tomb of Minh Mang, the second Nguyen Emperor who was incredibly powerful, dedicated to architectural endeavours and supremely distrustful of Western religions.

10. Paradise Cave in Quang Binh & the DMZ

From

000 41

$

*

*

Discover the largest and most sublime cave in the Phong Nha-Ke Bang area, the aptly-named Paradise Cave. Take a four-hour drive from Huê to Quang Binh, where you’ll explore the fascinating Demilitarised Zone of the Vietnam War. Then it’s straight to Paradise Cave, Vietnam’s stunningly photogenic and unmissable natural wonder. Picnic lunch is served with historical ambiance beside the Ben Hai River, within the Demilitarised Zone. Vietnam & Cambodia — 19


The Nam Hai The Nam Hai is a chic clique of 60 dazzling beach villas showcasing contemporary Vietnamese architecture and settled on Ha My Beach.

Tried & tested

HOI AN Take a step back to an era long past and explore the historic magic of the World Heritage-listed Old Town of Hoi An. You’ll find everything from beachfront resorts to traditional retreats and five-star luxury abodes.

Why we love it: An otherworldly blend of western chic and Vietnamese sophistication, the Nam Hai Resort reaches new heights of luxury living. Perfect for couples looking for a refined romantic retreat, this stylish seaside resort features ultra-modern, remarkably designed villas, sleek spa treatment pavilions, two gourmet restaurants and one of the most dramatic resort pools around (not to mention the private infinity pools!). Style: Sophisticated Atmosphere: Serene From

415*

$

Palm Garden Beach Resort & Spa Mere steps from Cua Dai Beach by the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Hoi An town, the award-winning Palm Garden Beach Resort & Spa is perfect for family adventures and beach getaways. Why we love it: Surrounded by five hectares of tropical plantations, this fun-filled resort more than lives up to its jungle-inspired name. Right on Cua Dai Beach, Palm Garden has been showered with environmentally friendly accolades, and is also praised for its sprawling lagoon pool, bursting activity program and breezy, terraced suites. Style: Tropical Atmosphere: Family-friendly From

98*

$

Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa A charming Vietnamese beach retreat, where fun-loving families and canoodling couples alike can kick back on the white sand or explore historic hotspots. Why we love it: Designed to replicate a traditional fishing village, this laid-back resort features water ponds and village houses with clay-tiled roofs. On a serene stretch of sandy beach, guests can enjoy live entertainment, spa treatments and Vietnamese cuisine, or take a complimentary bus ride to Hoi An’s historic port town. Style: Traditional Atmosphere: Laid-back From

109*

$

Anantara Hoi An Resort Lavish luxury and history books go hand in hand at the riverside Anantara Hoi An Resort, located close to some of Hoi An’s best historic hotspots. Why we love it: Designed in the style of a colonial mansion, this luxurious boutique hotel is a sight to behold on the riverbanks of the Thu Bon River. With breezy, multi-level suites flanked by white colonnades, this lush, garden resort boasts charming eateries, a rejuvenating spa and close proximity to Hoi An’s World Heritage Sites and trademark waterways. Style: Colonial Atmosphere: Peaceful From

103*

$ 20 — Vietnam & Cambodia


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Hoi An Trails Resort & Spa Boasting lush, tropical grounds, contemporary Vietnamese design and top-class relaxation features, the peaceful Hoi An Trails is a weary traveller’s delight on the banks of the Thu Bon River. Why we love it: Perfect for zoning out between sightseeing adventures, this countryside resort has everything you’ll need to recharge the batteries. Bountiful breakfast buffets, invigorating jacuzzis, a palmflanked swimming pool and Dermalogica therapies will leave you fully rejuvenated, ready to hit up the nearby beach and ancient town sites. Style: Contemporary Atmosphere: Relaxed From

91*

$

Boutique Hoi An Resort A stunning seaside retreat located on Cua Dai Beach, the vogue-style Boutique Hoi An Resort resembles a magazine spread, from the tastefully furnished rooms to the chic wine bar. Why we love it: Embodying the essence of boutique elegance, this photogenic hideaway is made for travellers seeking their own piece of paradise. With private balconies in every modern room, authentic Vietnamese cuisine and cooking classes, a large swimming pool and relaxing hotel spa, the Boutique Hoi An Resort is sure to impress. Style: Elegant Atmosphere: Tranquil From

84*

$

Hoi An Beach Resort

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

A tranquil, palm-dotted luxury retreat in Quang Nam Province, Hoi An Beach Resort is a perfect spot to soak up the sun. Why we love it: Nestled between the De Vong River and Cua Dai Beach, this stunning spot boasts the architecture and hospitality of a Vietnamese village. Deluxe rooms come with sweeping ocean, garden or river views, the onsite Cua Dai Restaurant is located by the De Vong River, Sands Bar sits on a private beach, and two glistening pools plus a Waterlily Spa will recharge you for nearby sightseeing adventures.

Staff

TIP: “Pay a visit to Reaching Out Arts & Crafts on Nguyen Thai Hoc. It’s a fair-trade gift shop selling everything from jewellery to lanterns, all handmade by disadvantaged craftspeople.” Alisa Souvenir shopper

Style: Traditional Atmosphere: Friendly From

84*

$

Ancient House Enjoy authentic Vietnamese hospitality and traditional culture at this tranquil, family-run resort, just outside the centre of Hoi An. Why we love it: It doesn’t get more authentic than this. Explore the heart of Vietnam’s history and passed-down customs at this charmingly traditional boutique resort, including a 200-year-old ancient family home. From Vietnamese-fusion meals to cooking classes, spa treatments and city tours, it’s perfect for travellers looking to immerse themselves in local culture. Style: Authentic Atmosphere: Cultural From

50*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 21


Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort Enjoy the very best of Vietnam at this luxury hillside resort and spa.

Tried & tested

DANANG From hillside luxury, to private villas and infinity pools overlooking a white sandy beach, our tried and tested Danang hotels will see you relaxed and refreshed in no time.

Why we love it: You’ll feel right at home in this exquisitely designed, four-level property. Each guestroom is decorated in bold black and white, and accompanied by a lavish bathroom featuring a separate bathtub, rainforest shower and couple’s vanity sinks. Be as active or relaxed as you want to be, with a range of recreational activities also on offer. Style: Glamorous Atmosphere: Extravagant From

198*

$

Fusion Maia Resort Asia’s very first all-spa inclusive resort, the hip Fusion Maia Resort Danang successfully sets itself apart from the city’s hotel landscape. Why we love it: There’s no extra charge for spa treatments at this luxury resort! That aside, every room is a villa boasting its own private infinity pool and garden. Have breakfast at any time, enjoy cocktails at Tonic Lounge, or chat to the friendly ‘Fusionistas’ who will help to create your individualised stay. Style: Chic Atmosphere: Relaxing From

315*

$

Pullman Danang Beach Resort Located on the stunning white sands of Bac My An beach, the modern Pullman Danang Beach Resort offers all the activities and facilities you’ll need for a dynamic escape.

Style: Exquisite Atmosphere: Glam From

106*

$

Hyatt Regency Danang Resort & Spa Poised on a tranquil stretch of white-sand beach is the Hyatt’s newest offering in Vietnam. Why we love it: Beyond the 193 guest rooms, Hyatt Regency Danang Resort & Spa offers 27 private pool villas and 95 residences. In the centre of the resort’s oceanfront is a stunning pool where guests can enjoy the refreshing depths or splash about in the narrower shallows. Both upscale and casual dining options are located around the pool, all with views of the stunning Son Tra Peninsula, Cham Islands and tropical terrain behind. Style: Beach-luxe Atmosphere: Family-friendly From

141*

$ 22 — Vietnam & Cambodia

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

Why we love it: The newly renovated beachfront resort features 186 well-appointed spacious guest rooms and cottages, all with private balconies overlooking the beach, infinity pool or verdant gardens. Hit the hotel’s restaurant for exceptional cuisine, or indulge in a musclemelting massage at the Nang Spa.


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Furama Resort Danang It’s hard to achieve a balance between luxury and family fun, but Furama Resort has it nailed, with swathes of activities for the little ones, and the grown ups. Why we love it: Contemporary Vietnamese design sets the scene at this family-friendly resort. Local tradition inspires the modern villas, the little tykes will relish the kids’ club, while parents can treat themselves at the spa or with a cheeky cocktail beside the lagoon pool. Style: Modern Atmosphere: Lively From

183*

$

Grand Mercure Danang Located on exclusive Green Island in the heart of Danang City, Grand Mercure is perfect for both business and leisure travellers. Why we love it: This upscale hotel consists of 272 modern rooms with breathtaking ocean, river or mountain views. With a Brasserie and specialty Chinese restaurant, lobby bar, spa, tennis court and fitness centre, you will have plenty of options to occupy yourself on site – while the complimentary shuttle to town and Danang beach (only 5 minutes drive) allows you to get out and discover your surrounds. Style: Contemporary Atmosphere: Friendly From

63*

$

La Residence Hotel & Spa

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details. details or call our Reservations team.

This architectural gem sits proudly on the banks of the fabled Perfume River overlooking the former Imperial Citadel, and is a grand reminder of Vietnam’s past. Why we love it: Cloaked with opulence, grandeur and warmth, this former residence of the French Colonial Governor was painstakingly restored in 2005 and redeveloped as an exceptional design hotel. With formal gardens, a swimming pool, 122 guestrooms and suites and an art deco style restaurant and bar, the property perfectly echoes the design of a bygone era, yet provides all the mod-cons you’d expect from a 21st Century hotel. Style: Art deco Atmosphere: Classic From

106*

$

Tried & tested

HUE

Immerse yourself in history whilst living it up with all the mod cons at these tried & tested Huê hotels.

Mường Thanh Huế A historic stay in the Imperial city of Huê, the luxurious Muong Thanh Huê captures the essence of Vietnamese culture. Why we love it: Boasting impeccable hospitality and panoramic views of the Perfume River, the ideally located Muong Thanh Huê expertly balances traditional authenticity with modern creature comforts. Nestled in the centre of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed city, this historically surrounded stay is well-stocked with a river view cocktail bar, in-house spa and one of the best breakfasts around. Style: Traditional Atmosphere: Tranquil From

37*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 23


HANOI Vietnam’s charming capital is a perfect blend of old and new. Influenced by its proximity to China, Hanoi will leave you in awe with its ribbon-like boulevards, hundreds of pagodas and temples, and beautiful tree-fringed lakes. Visit the Old Quarter, Hanoi’s historic centre where you can sample local delicacies or admire French colonial architecture. Other must-see attractions include the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, the Tortoise Tower and the unique Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum.

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• Check out the not-for-profit Craft Link for sustainably made souvenirs. Your purchase will contribute to raising awareness of ethnic minority crafts and culture.

24 — Vietnam & Cambodia

PHUC XA

See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

HANOI RAILWAY STATION

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1. Hilton Hanoi Opera 2. Medallion Hotel

3. Melia Hanoi 4. Mercure La Gare

5. Sofitel Plaza Hanoi 6. Sunway Hotel

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

YE

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• KIDS WILL LOVE: The Ho Tay Lake Water Park with slides, a wave pool, a Tibetan suspension bridge and a lazy river to float dreamily along past five bridges.

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• Stroll around the Lake of the Returned Sword where you can watch the locals gently practice their daily Tai Chi.

• Hanoi is a great base for some short side-trips to cruise the famous limestone islands of Halong Bay or the north-west town of Sapa where you’ll see colourful ethnic minority groups and gorgeous terraced landscapes.

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West Lake

LOCAL tips

• Visit the Cho Hom Markets and pick up luxury fabrics for a fraction of the price you’d pay back home. Many stalls close around midday so visit in the early morning.

OC


THINGS to do

OUR TOP 5 in Hanoi

Be enthralled by Vietnam’s vibrant, historic capital. Discover Hanoi’s historic architecture, cuisine and culture awaiting you down every proud promenade and crooked alley.

From

166

$

2. Street Food Tour with Local Chef Eating on the street is a typical activity for Hanoians and makes up an important part of the city’s unique culture. Start your Street Food Tour with an overview of local ingredients by visiting a food market with your local chef. Then with some background knowledge, it’s time to hit the streets. Most street restaurants only serve one or two dishes and each is freshly prepared right in front of you. Be guided down small alleys and bustling lanes to savour Hanoi’s specialties, which are recommended and explained by your culinary guide.

000 48

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

Get a quintessential snapshot of charismatic Hanoi on this comprehensive, fully guided, half-day tour of the capital’s highlights. Explore the historic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (resting place of ‘Uncle Ho’), Ho Chi Minh’s stilt house, the lotus-shaped One Pillar Pagoda and the Temple of Literature, home to Vietnam's first national university. It’s the best and easiest way to enjoy a wonderful overview of Hanoian culture and Vietnamese architecture, with all entrance fees covered.

*

From

$

1. City Highlights Tour

*

*

3. Water Puppet Show Discover one of Vietnam’s most unique and entertaining art forms – water puppetry – at the unforgettable Thang Long theatre. The art of water puppetry began 1,000 years ago, possibly in the flooded rice fields of Vietnam. Puppeteers stand in waist-high water and manipulate their charges to charming Vietnamese classical scores, depicting myths, legends and tales of daily life. This tour includes a first-class ticket plus an early evening transfer to the Thang Long theatre. From

000 30

$

*

*

Well-known Australian chef Tracey Lister takes you from market to table with this appreciation of Vietnamese cuisine. A chef at KOTO, the underprivileged youth charity, Tracey has learnt the fundamental importance of food in Vietnamese life. Head to the market with the chef, learn about your purchases and concoct your own culinary creations. When you’re done, it’s feast time! Private cooking classes are also available at a local chef’s home.

From

000 150

$

4. Hanoi Cooking Centre

**

5. City Pagoda & Temples Tour From

000 47

$

*

*

With ochre-coloured colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards and scenic lakes, Hanoi is full of charm. Discover ancient temples and sublime pagodas in this tour of the city’s otherworldly monuments. Start at the historic Mausoleum, then explore the house where Ho Chi Minh once lived and worked. You’ll also visit the ethereal One Pillar Pagoda, the romantic Quan Thanh Temple and Hanoi’s oldest pagoda, Tran Quoc, which plays home to the original Buddhist Bodhi tree. Vietnam & Cambodia — 25


Staff

HANOI HOTELS

TIP: “Just east of Hanoi, you can’t afford to miss a luxury cruise along beautiful Halong Bay. Allow at least two days to get the most out of your trip so you can experience the Bay at sunrise, sunset and under the stars.” Lauren Luxury traveller

Sofitel Plaza Hanoi Ideally located at a walking distance from the Old Quarter, the elegantly appointed Sofitel PlazaHanoi features 273 luxury rooms, with unrivalled views of the West Lake, Truc Bach Lake and the Red River. Why we love it: Gaze out upon magnificent vistas from the frameless panoramic windows of each luxury hotel room. The elegant interiors, combining contemporary aesthetic with a Vietnamese touch, are a welcome respite for both business and leisure travelers. Don’t miss the stunning services including lively restaurants and bars, a heavenly spa, an all-weather swimming-pool and executive lounge. Style: Elegant Atmosphere: Relaxing Don’t leave without experiencing: A delicious coffee at Brasserie Westlake’s restaurant. From

107*

$

Hilton Hanoi Opera This landmark hotel in the heart of Hanoi’s French Quarter offers high-class amenities and traditionally furnished Vietnamese rooms. Why we love it: Awarded ‘Best Business Hotel in Hanoi 2010’ and voted ‘Vietnam’s Leading Hotel’ at the World Travel Awards for five years running, it’s safe to say the Hilton’s pretty special. Relax in a locally styled guestroom, savour regional Vietnamese specialities at Ba Mien restaurant, host a stylish function at the ballroom, or refresh in the outdoor heated pool. Style: European Atmosphere: Exclusive Don’t leave without experiencing: Beef baked with bamboo at the ultra-modern Vietnamese restaurant, Ba Mien. From

99*

$

26 — Vietnam & Cambodia


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Melia Hanoi A metropolitan double high-rise from the outside, and a luxurious pamper palace from within, this deluxe addition to the Melia group makes for an indulgent Hanoi base. Why we love it: Classical Vietnamese wall paintings and ornate rugs meet modern furnishings at this charismatic stay in the city centre. Melia Hanoi boasts lively restaurants, a bakery and wine lounge and an exclusive 20th-floor realm dubbed ‘The Level’, perfect for super luxury seekers. Style: Traditional Atmosphere: Laid-back Don’t leave without experiencing: A sample of the region’s diverse cooking styles at the Vietnamese-Thai fusion restaurant, El Oriental.

From

114*

$

Mercure La Gare A striking colonial-design establishment with contemporary interiors, Mercure Hanoi La Gare is the perfect inner-city stay for energetic sightseers. Why we love it: Ideal for business travellers and sightseeing enthusiasts, the centrally located Mercure Hanoi La Gare sits walking distance from the best of the city’s attractions. With 102 modern, bright rooms, a fully stocked gym, a French garden brasserie and bicycles for hire, the Mercure is the perfect accompaniment to adventuring in Hanoi. Style: Colonial-contemporary Atmosphere: Cosy Don’t leave without experiencing: A handpicked wine list at the French garden courtyard eatery, Brasserie Le Pavillon.

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

From

65*

$

Sunway Hotel Hanoi

Medallion Hotel

A peaceful retreat from Hanoi’s busy streets, this international hotel – tucked away in the centre of Hanoi – is perfect for travellers needing a comfortable, friendly base for city adventures.

Medallion Hotel is a tastefully designed boutique hotel located in Hanoi’s Old Quarter, one of the most historic and culturally vibrant parts of the capital.

Why we love it: Plush, generous beds, relaxing herbal massages, a health and fitness centre, International Vietnamese Allante Restaurant, and bountiful breakfast buffets are just some of the highlights at this ultramodern business hotel. Located in Hanoi’s French Quarter, the Sunway Hotel is ideal for active travellers wanting a haven to enjoy at day’s end. Style: Urban Atmosphere: Chilled Don’t leave without experiencing: A traditional herbal massage at the on-site Health Spa. From

66

$

*

Why we love it: An ideal choice for business or leisure travellers, this charming, urban hotel puts guests right within reach of Hanoi’s must-see historic sites and cultural landmarks. Your weary sightseeing feet can retreat to one of 70 comfortable rooms, specialised Hanoi cuisine, a luxury bar, fitness facilities and even an antique souvenir shop. Style: Cosmopolitan Atmosphere: Cultural Don’t leave without experiencing: A long, rejuvenating steam in the sauna to regain your strength after a day on the town. From

45*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 27


Regional Vietnam

SIDE TRIPS

Boost your Vietnam holiday with these two and three night side trips. From cruising the mighty Mekong to exploring dense forests and relaxing in top-notch beach resorts, these tours are guaranteed to satisfy – while leaving enough time to explore at your own pace.

SIX SENSES CON DAO ISLAND ESCAPE 3 nights from $2,069* per person

When you’re not staying active, enjoy world-class Western and Vietnamese dishes at the hotel’s four dining options. Indulge at the Six Senses Spa overlooking the Lo Voi Mountains, or simply kick back in your deluxe villa, complete with private infinity pool. INCLUSIONS:

PHU QUOC ISLAND GETAWAY 2 nights from $499* per person Embark on a morning flight from Ho Chi Minh City to the peaceful island of Phu Quoc. You’ll enjoy two days at leisure to explore the sugar-white sands and turquoise waters that entice travellers the world over. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation with daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Economy airfares from Ho Chi Minh City

28 — Vietnam & Cambodia

• Overnight accommodation with daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Economy airfares from Ho Chi Minh City

MAJESTIC DALAT 2 nights from $669* per person Upon arrival in Dalat from Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll have a free day to explore your surrounds at leisure, taking in all the ‘City of Eternal Spring’ has to offer. The next morning, you’ll be driven to Van Thanh hamlet where you can stroll along the garden paths, admire the colourful scenery and learn more about the traditional gardening methods. Continue driving through the beautiful rural outskirts before visiting a family-run silk making factory, getting insights of the entire process from cocoon to garment. See the imposing Elephant Waterfall and after lunch visit the Dalat railway station, which was designed with elements of French architecture. Enjoy a one-way, open-air train ride to Trai Mat hamlet, before heading to the Domain de Marie Church built in 1938. Spend the remainder of the day strolling through the colourful Dalat market with your guide before returning to your hotel. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation with daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Local English-speaking guide • Entrance fees • Economy airfares from Ho Chi Minh City

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

Upon arrival in Con Dao, a breathtaking location, which has been protected for decades as a national marine park, you’ll be transferred to the stunning oceanfront Six Senses Resort. Take advantage of the next two and a half free days in Con Dao, with plenty of activities to be had outside of your hotel – from water sports and beach activities to hiking and discovering nature.


SECRETS OF SAPA 3 nights from $641* per person

EXPLORE THE MEKONG 2 nights from $803* per person Take in the lush surroundings of rice paddies and fruit farms as you head for the southern province of Ben Tre and the Mekong Delta. Embark on a motorboat excursion, and glimpse the Mekong River scenery, houses built on stilts, and local fish farms along the way. Visit a local house at Turtle Island and be introduced to the owner, sample freshly picked fruit and coconut milk while relaxing in the natural surroundings of fruit orchards. Discover the maze of small canals, explore the colourful Cai Rang floating market, visit the harmonious Chau Doc and take a glimpse at a Muslim Cham village. This three-day tour will be a treat for the senses.

From Hanoi, board a night train to Sapa, a colourful north west mountain town. Arriving at your hotel for breakfast you’ll then drive to the Muong Hoa valley, home to the largest terraced rice fields in Vietnam. The magnificent views of the rice paddies, Fansipan mountain range and the cool climate all contribute to an excellent experience. Trek five kilometres through farmlands and rolling hills before heading back to your hotel in the early afternoon. Next day, depart with a scenic drive to the small Coc Ly Market, situated alongside Chay River. Afterwards, take in the sights of beautiful caves and local life on the Chay River from a simple local boat, with lunch onboard. Enjoy a short trek to Na Nen Village and ride a fun water buffalo cart through the village before dinner and the night train back to Hanoi. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, one lunch, one dinner • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English guide • Entrance fees and train ticket *Depending on travel dates, Coc Ly Market may be replaced by Bac Ha Market, Muong Khuong Market, Can Cau Market or Lung Khau Nhin Market.

INCLUSIONS:

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

• Overnight accommodation • Sightseeing with local English guide • Two lunches • Entrance fee • Transfers from Ho Chi Minh City

EXPERIENCE CAT TIEN NATIONAL PARK 2 nights from $874* per person Leave the hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City behind and head to the lush forest of Cat Tien National Park, where you’ll experience lodge accommodation at its best. Enjoy a short trek through the jungle to see the wildlife both before and after dinner, before falling asleep to the sounds of the jungle. In the morning, drive through the forest to begin your hike to the crocodile lake, with lunch en route. The next day, head back to the national park centre for a 700-metre trek through Dao Tien Endangered Primate Species Centre. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, three lunches, two dinners • Private transfers and transportation

Vietnam & Cambodia — 29


Side trips from

VIETNAM

Enhance your Vietnam holiday with a multi-night tour to explore the mighty treasures of Cambodia and Laos. These exciting side trips will let you to experience the best temples, villages and cities, all while staying in luxury hotels and making use of various forms of transport.

MYSTICAL SIEM REAP 3 nights from $514* per person After arriving in Siem Reap and checking into your luxury hotel, you’ll be in the perfect position to begin your Cambodian adventure. The first full day will see you exploring the legendary Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom temples, two ancient wonders of the world, before visiting Artisans d’Angkor, an organisation focused on training unschooled rural youth in traditional handicraft skills. The next day, you’ll take a pleasant drive through the countryside to Beng Mealea, a sprawling 12th century jungle covered temple. Drive on for lunch at a traditional Cambodian restaurant, and then head to Banteay Srei temple to admire one of Angkor’s most significant structures. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English guide • Entrance fees and train ticket

ESSENTIAL CAMBODIA 5 nights from $1,100* per person Start by exploring magnificent Phnom Penh, visiting historic sites including the National Museum, Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and Tuol Sleng Museum. The next day you’ll visit Cheung Ek, the notorious stretch of green fields where 17,000 victims died under the horrific Khmer Rouge regime. Pay your respects at the large memorial and reflect on the tremendous courage it took for the Cambodian people to rebuild their nation. Later, board a flight to Siem Reap where you’ll experience the majestic Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom temples, and visit Artisans d’Angkor. On your final full day, you’ll explore Beng Melea, an Indiana Jones-esque overgrown temple. After lunch, head to Banteay Srei temple with its elaborately decorative wall carvings. INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Specified meals • Entrance fees • Economy airfare

30 — Vietnam & Cambodia


*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

EXPLORE CAMBODIA & LAOS

COLOURFUL LUANG PRABANG

6 nights from $1,592* per person

3 nights from $564* per person

Start your tour of Siem Reap exploring the majestic temples of Angkor Wat, Banteay Srei, Angkor Thom and Ta Prohm over two days. Then fly to Luang Prabang and visit Ban Nayang village, home to the Tai Lu minorities who migrated from Yunnan, China in the late 18th century. Lunch will be cooked by the villagers and served in a local home. Also in Laos you will journey upstream on the Mekong River, passing fishing villages and rugged limestone cliffs. Marvel at the Tham Ting and Tham Teung caves, which are home to about 4,000 Buddha statues, and continue to Ban Pak Ou caves where lunch will be served. Before heading home, you’ll visit the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre to observe valuable artifacts and traditional clothing and implements from each of the 20 ethnic minority groups that inhabit the Luang Prabang area.

Start your tour with a drive to Ban Nayang village, home to the Tai Lu minorities who migrated from Yunnan, China in the late 18th century. Visit the village, where locals grow their own cotton and each household has two or three weaving looms beneath their living quarters. Learn more about efforts to preserve traditional working methods and crafts, before enjoying lunch in a local home. The next day, you’ll embark on a cruise to the Pak Ou caves, which are dramatically located along the Mekong. Lunch is served at the foot of beautiful limestone cliffs, while a selection of typical and tasty Lao dishes can also be enjoyed on board. After lunch, cruise back to Luang Prabang arriving mid afternoon.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, two lunches • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Specified meals • Entrance fees • Economy airfare

LUANG PRABANG

LAOS

South China Sea

THAILAND

SEAM REAP CAMBODIA

VIETNAM

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, two lunches • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Specified meals • Entrance fees

Vietnam & Cambodia — 31


Cruising

HALONG BAY in Vietnam Visit one of the most breathtaking destinations in the world. UNESCO World Heritage-listed Halong Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin is a not-to-be-missed, dramatic seascape dotted with over 1,600 limestone islands and islets. The best way to explore Halong Bay is by boat where you’ll sail past floating fishing villages and spectacular grottoes. Swim or kayak in the clean, green water or trek through the national park on Cat Ba Island.

From

447 pp

$

*

With different itineraries and vessels to choose from, you'll be able to select from a range of different cruise options. Here's a couple to get you inspired. One night cruises are also available for those short on time.

ADVENTURE CRUISE

Halong Bay From

738 pp

$

*

THE GULF OF TONKIN

with Au Co

Two nights, three days.

HIGHLIGHTS: Kayaking through an amazing tunnel under a karst mountain, swimming the turquoise waters, and cycling on Cat Ba Island.

HIGHLIGHTS: Spending three days and two nights aboard the most luxurious vessel in Halong Bay, you’ll get to explore all three bays of the Gulf of Tonkin plus Cat Ba Island whilst enjoying a great range of onboard activities and excursions.

BEST FOR: The keen novice or experienced kayaker, who's partial to cycling and snorkelling.

BEST FOR: Travellers seeking the ultimate luxury experience and a relaxing over-water escape.

Two nights, three days on Bhaya Classic.

32 — Vietnam & Cambodia


Timeless wonders of

VIETNAM, CAMBODIA & THE MEKONG Spend 7 nights onboard River Orchid with Uniworld and 7 nights in deluxe hotels. From

6,653 pp

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

$

From the lively and ever-changing cities of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh, to the floating villages of the Mekong – cruising along the river gives you the chance to experience life as it was lived centuries ago. Throughout your 14 night cruise/ tour, you’ll visit colourful Vietnamese floating markets and homes by way of a traditional sampan. Take a remork (motorcycle rickshaw) ride through Phnom Penh, with

*

its wide boulevards and Frenchinfused architecture. Receive a water blessing from local monks at a temple overlooking the Mekong, and explore the ancient ruins of Cambodia’s Angkor Wat temple complex. You’ll be treated to a traditional Apsara dance performance during dinner in Siem Reap and will have the chance to discover the sights, the sounds and the tastes of two countries joined by one river.

To book a Uniworld Cruise/Tour visit your local travel agent.

HANOI

HA LONG BAY

LAOS

South China Sea

THAILAND

SIEM REAP KAMPONG CHHANG PHNOM PENH CHAU DOC CHAU PHONG ISLAND

VIETNAM CAMBODIA KAMPONG CHAM CAI BE

HO CHI MINH CITY

MY THO SA DEC

Vietnam & Cambodia — 33


REASONS to v isit

CAMBODIA Cambodia may have recently been a scarred nation, but the charming Khmer country is now a model of hope, ambition and fervour. Although most famous for Angkor Wat, there is so much to see and do that you’ll want to extend your holiday. Beautiful French Colonial architecture extends from bustling Phnom Phen to quaint seaside towns such as Kep; white sandy beach resorts and tropical islands dot the south and historic sites permeate the entire country. With affable locals, stunning landscapes and delectable cuisine you can be sure that Cambodia is a colourful country with a sombre past, a cheerful present and a hopeful future.

HISTORICAL SITES: Cambodia’s long and sometimes dark history has had a strong influence on the country it is today. You could never understand this completely without visiting the incredible temples of Angkor Wat and surrounds, legacies of the powerful Khmer Empire from the 12th century, or the Choenung Ek Killing Fields and S21 Prison near Phnom Phen, sites commemorating those killed in the horrific Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s.

FLOATING VILLAGES: For three million Cambodians, Tonle Sap Lake is not just a home, but a livelihood. The lake is extremely important to Cambodia, providing more than half the country’s fish as well as fertile land for the cultivation of rice and agriculture. Bordering Tonle Sap are hundreds of floating villages, with wooden houses and shops teetering on stilts above the water. You’ll be amazed at how these villages co-exist in harmony with the ecosystem of the lake. 34 — Vietnam & Cambodia

STRONG TRADITIONS: Cambodians have developed a unique Khmer belief system combining aspects of Buddhism and Hinduism, which is reflected in every aspect of their daily lives. During your travels you may come across the sampeah greeting (a small bow with hands pressed together), temples decorated with Buddhist and Hindu motifs, and locals sporting a checkered scarf called a ‘krama’. More than anything though, your memories of Cambodia will be filled with the flash of monks’ orange robes – a common sight at every turn.


Cambodia’s best TEMPLES

WELCOMING LOCALS: Despite having lived through years of poverty and political instability, Cambodia’s Khmer people always share a smile. The optimism and spirit of the locals is something you will come to admire on your travels. Cambodian people can be described as conservative and traditional, although western influences are evident in the country’s larger cities.

While guidebooks may immediately direct you to the famous Angkor Wat and its nearby temples, there are a multitude of others that offer just as much history, culture and aweinspiring sights.

PHNOM CHISOR This small but visually impressive Hindu temple is located about 42 kilometres outside of Phnom Penh and is 100 years older than Angkor Wat. The temple’s exceptional views of the surrounding countryside are only rivaled by the exceptionally friendly nature of the old monks that call Phnom Chisor home.

SAMBOR PREI KUK This temple complex is located about 30 kilometres north of Kampong Thom and consists of more than 100 brick and sandstone structures scattered through a sub-tropical forest.

KOH KER BEAUTIFUL BEACHES: For beach lovers the Cambodian coastline doesn’t disappoint. Head to Sihanoukville, where you can tuck into fresh seafood and enjoy a cold beer by the seaside, or sail for Koh Tonsay (Rabbit Island) to lounge on raised bamboo platforms. If you’re after an unspoiled island getaway you’ll love Koh Rong, which is great for trekking, snorkelling or just kicking back on the sand.

What was once the ancient capital of the Angkorian empire, Koh Ker is the home of a mesmerising temple complex, which was built to worship the god of happiness. With 42 major structures in such a huge area, it’s recommended you stay the night to fully appreciate the area. Vietnam & Cambodia — 35


THINGS to do

OUR TOP 10

From

000 83

$

*

*

in Cambodia

From the surrounds of Siem Reap to the sites of Phnom Penh, Cambodia offers a diverse range of sightseeing adventures for all. We’ve selected some of our favourite tours and activities for you to enjoy.

From

000 89

$

*

*

1. South Gate & Angkor Wat Tour Immerse yourself in Cambodia’s thriving past on this day tour of stunning Khmer gems. You’ll visit the mighty South Gate of Angkor Thom, the famous faces of Bayon, the temple mountain Baphoun, Terrace of the Elephants and the mysterious Terrace of the Leper King. Lastly, spend the afternoon at magnificent Angkor Wat and watch an unforgettable sunset from Phnom Bakheng. Full day tour from Siem Reap.

2. Traditional Village by Ox-Cart & Boat Tour

From

000 78

$

*

*

Catch a glimpse of Cambodian daily life with this guided tour through Siem Reap’s local villages. Explore the Cambodian countryside by the ancient ox-cart known as Ro The Ko, cross rice paddies, meet the villagers and visit their local Buddhist temples. Afterwards, you’ll take a wooden boat across the Great Lake of Cambodia, Tonle Sap, to a community of floating houses and boats. Full day tour from Siem Reap.

3. Angkor Thom by Tuk Tuk Tour Explore the stunning temples by tuk-tuk. Visit the Royal city and former capital of the Khmer Empire, Angkor Thom, consisting of several temples including Bayon which reveals enigmatic faces looking into every direction. Continue your exploration with a visit to Baphuon, Terrace of the Elephants and Terrace of the Leper King. Half day tour from Siem Reap.

4. Beng Mealea Temple Tour Uncover ancient & cryptic relics at the sprawling jungle temple of Beng Mealea, a pleasant 1 1/2 hour drive from Siem Reap. Contrary to Angkor, few carvings or bas-reliefs are evident. The temple is largely overrun by vegetation and the stone walls are crumbling which adds to its charm. To see all corners of the temple requires a sense of adventure as you will need to climb over stone blocks or walk through narrow passageways. Half day tour from Siem Reap.

5. Unique Kayak Village Tour Learn the traditional customs on how the local people live, work, and trade on the great Tonle Sap Lake as you gently kayak through a floating village where you will be welcomed by warming smiles from the humble Cambodian people. Finish at a spot for a stunning sunset before being transferred back to Siem Reap. Full day tour from Siem Reap. 36 — Vietnam & Cambodia

From

000 106

$

**

From

000 233

$

**


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

From

000 158

$

**

6. Temples & Elephant Ride Take a picturesque drive through the rural outskirts to Banteay Srei, the birthplace of classical Khmer architecture. You’ll then head to Phnom Bakheng, the first major Angkor temple, and gear up for an unforgettable elephant ride to the most spectacular sunset of your life, with panoramic views over Angkor Wat and West Baray. Half day tour from Siem Reap. From

000 89

$

*

*

7. Silk Weaving Island & Mekong Cycle Tour For those who are interested in Cambodian silk weaving, you’ll cycle from your hotel to catch a boat to the rural weaving village on Koh Dach (Silk Weaving Island) on the Mekong River. The weaving village is a typical rural Cambodian stilted village, dedicated almost entirely to silk weaving. Full day tour from Phnom Penh.

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

8. Phnom Penh City Highlights & Killing Fields Tour Get a feel for Cambodia’s unique art and architecture with a visit to its highlights – the National Museum, the exquisite Royal Palace and majestic Silver Palace. Afterwards come face to face with Cambodia’s tragic history with a guided tour of the devastating ‘Killing Fields’, where 17,000 people suffered at the hands of the Khmer Rouge. Full day tour from Phnom Penh.

From

000 200

$

*

From

000 270

$

**

9. Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum Tuol Sleng was a school turned interrogation prison known as S-21 during the Khmer Rouge era. Today it’s a museum that tells the story of thousands of innocent Cambodians who were tortured on its grounds. While this experience may be confronting, it is a recommended visit in order to truly understand the cruel methods of control the Khmer Rouge implemented over the country. Half day tour from Phnom Penh.

10. Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre Tour

From

000 47

$

*

*

Phnom Tamao wildlife rescue center is home to the world’s largest captive collections of Pileated Gibbons, Malaysian Sun Bears and rare species such as Siamese Crocodiles. You’ll learn how the animals were rescued out of the hands of poachers or from being held as pets. Phnom Tamao is a great outing, especially for kids as they may see elephants paint or play soccer on occasion in the park. Full day tour from Phnom Penh. Vietnam & Cambodia — 37


Cambodia

ITINERARIES From temple tours to cultural cruises, we’ve mapped out your Cambodian expedition so all you have to do is dive in and enjoy.

SIHANOUKVILLE & THE SOUTHERN COAST 4 nights from $1,341* per person DAY 1: Visit Kirirom National Park, Kirirom Hill and Kirirom Resort en route, before arriving at Sihanoukville, one of Cambodia’s premier beach resorts. In the late afternoon enjoy some free time to catch the sunset over the Gulf of Thailand from your resort. DAY 2: Venture out to Kbal Chhay, Sihanoukville’s most famous waterfall, and enjoy the pristine environment before you head back to Sihanoukville to enjoy a free afternoon at leisure. DAY 3: Today you’ll visit Ream National Park, before boarding a boat and exploring the mangroves. Continue over open water and disembark at a white sand beach for swimming, snorkeling and a picnic lunch. Choose to stay on the island or head back to Ream National Park for a short forest trek. DAY 4: Head to beautiful Kampot and admire the French Colonial architecture, before continuing to the quaint seaside town of Kep. If time allows, hike up the nearby hill to witness sunset over the Gulf of Thailand from ‘Sunset Rock’.

PHNOM PEHN TO MONDULKIRI 2 nights from $995* per person DAY 1: Depart Phnom Penh for Sen Monorom, Mondulkiri Province in Eastern Cambodia to explore the sacred mountain, Phnom Dosh Kramom, where many believe that magical spirits dwelling in the lush mountain grasses protect them, ensuring happiness, safety and good health. DAY 2: Visit The Elephant Valley Project, located 20 minutes outside of Sen Monorom, and learn about Cambodia’s elephants and the efforts to protect them.

DAY 5: Enjoy the secluded white sand beaches at Koh Tonsai (Rabbit Island), just a short boat ride from Kep. During your trip back to Phnom Penh, you’ll visit Tonle Bati (a small lake that is popular with the locals) and the 12th century temple, Ta Prohm.

DAY 3: Take a trip to the famous double-drop waterfall of Bou Sraa – a popular bathing and picnic spot for locals. You’ll also visit a minority village, where you can learn about the traditional way of life before heading back to Mondulkiri town, and transferring to Phnom Penh.

INCLUSIONS:

INCLUSIONS:

• Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Entrance fees

• Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, one lunch • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Entrance fees

38 — Vietnam & Cambodia


CAMBODIA HIGHLIGHTS 11 nights from $2,763* per person DAY 1: Arrive in Siem Reap. Free time to explore. DAY 2: Explore the magnificent Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom, taking in the sheer size and intricacy of the historic temples, before visiting the Artisans d’Angkor. DAY 3: Enjoy a grand circuit day tour of the temples, with visits to Preah Kahn Temple, Neak Pean, Ta Prohm and Sras Srang. DAY 4: Depart to Battambang, Cambodia’s second largest city, and spend the afternoon exploring at your own pace. DAY 5: Visit Phnom Banan and 12th Century Prasat Banan Temple and enjoy breathtaking views over the surrounding plains. Return for some wine tasting and a walk through the village of Wat Kor. DAY 6: Depart Battambang for Phnom Penh, where you’ll have the chance to explore at your own leisure. DAY 7: Set out on a city tour that will see you visit the National Museum, Royal Palace, the Tuol Sleng Museum and more. DAY 8: Visit Kirirom National Park, Kirirom Hill and Kirirom Resort en route, to Sihanoukville, one of Cambodia’s premier beach resorts. Catch the sunset over the Gulf of Thailand from your resort.

*Terms and conditions apply for all deals and packages. See online for more details or call our Reservations team.

DAY 9: Venture out to Kbal Chhay, Sihanoukville’s most famous waterfall, and enjoy the pristine environment before an afternoon at leisure in Sihanoukville.

DAY 10: Head to Ream National Park, before boarding a boat and exploring the mangroves. Disembark at a white sand beach for snorkelling, swimming and a picnic lunch. Stay on the island or head back to Ream National Park for a short forest trek. DAY 11: Head to Kampot and admire the French colonial architecture, before continuing to the quaint seaside town of Kep.

LAOS

THAILAND

SIEM REAP BATTAMBANG

CAMBODIA

DAY 12: Enjoy secluded white sand beaches at Koh Tonsai, just a short boat transfer from Kep. During your trip back to Phnom Penh, you’ll visit Tonle Bati (a small lake that is popular with the locals) and the 12th century temple, Ta Prohm.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, six lunches • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Entrance fees

PHNOM PENH VIETNAM

SIHANOUKVILLE

KEP

Gulf of Thailand

PHNOM PEHN TO RATANAKIRI 3 nights from $1,624* per person DAY 1: Start the day with a drive to Kampong Cham, visiting the bamboo bridge, the hill top pagodas of Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei and the ancient Wat Nokor. Lunch is served in town at a local restaurant before continuing to Rattanakiri. DAY 2: Venture to the beautiful crater lake of Yeak Loam where you can swim in the crystal-clear waters. Continue to Ou’Sean Lair Waterfall, south of Banlung, where you can explore the natural surrounds and interact with local Cambodian villagers. DAY 3: Visit the village of Voen Sai on the San River, where you’ll board a boat to one of the area’s minority villages. Here, you’ll explore a traditional cemetery and learn about the unique burial customs of the village. You’ll also visit ethnic Chinese, Lao and Kreung villages, before returning to Ban Lung in the afternoon. Back in Ban Lung, your guide will take you to the stunning Crater Lake for a refreshing swim to finish off the day. DAY 4: After breakfast, take private transport to Phnom Penh before checking into your hotel for an overnight stay.

INCLUSIONS: • Overnight accommodation • Daily breakfast, four lunches • Private transfers and transportation • Sightseeing with local English speaking guide • Entrance fees

Vietnam & Cambodia — 39


PHNOM PENH

Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s vibrant and bustling capital city was once known as the ‘Pearl of Asia’ and it’s obvious why. Nestled on the banks of the Tonle Sap river, you’ll see a mix of gorgeous French Colonial and Khmer architecture at every turn. By day, sites such as the Royal Palace, the National Museum, and the hilltop sanctuary of Wat Phnom will keep you busy. By evening, the waterfront along Tonle Sap is the place to be. Grab a meal from one of many riverside restaurants, then sit back and watch locals ride past on motorbikes, street vendors sell fresh pineapple, and boat captains tout sunset rides.

4

2

WAT PHNOM

CAMBODIA RAILWAY CONFEDER

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LA RUSSIE

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PREA PR

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ROD

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LVD

UAY TH Q WA

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PASTEU

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PREAH M

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Mekong River

PREAH SIHANOUK BLVD PREAH TR

ROYAL PALACE

EM

3

MAO TSE TOUNG BLVD

See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

PHNOM PENH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

1. Ohana Hotel 2. Raffles Hotel Le Royal

3. Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra 4. Sunway Hotel Hanoi

LOCAL tips • At the Cyclo Centre Phnom Penh (located near Sorya Mall), you can organise transport around the city while supporting some of the capital’s poorest people. • Head to Street 178 (also known as Art Street) to pick up a locally made paintings and sculptures. • If you’d like to sample authentic Khmer dishes, you’ll find plenty of options at both the Central Market and Phsar Kabko market. • For a deeper understanding of Cambodia’s past, take a tour of the Killing Fields and S21 Prison. • KIDS WILL LOVE: Kids City – a fun centre complete with ice skating, laser tag, science discovery and toddler town.

40 — Vietnam & Cambodia

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

ASAK PA

NATIONAL MUSEUEM OF CAMBODIA


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra French colonial elegance greets guests at this Sofitel instalment, boasting top-of-the-line facilities, timberfloored rooms and remarkably chic dining experiences. Why we love it: Whether you’re meeting with business associates or spending quality time with the family, the Sofitel Phnom Penh is quite the impressive host. Located in the heart of the city, the classic, plush rooms and stylish bars and restaurants will leave you geared up to explore Cambodia’s lively capital. Don’t miss the onsite Chocolat bakery – it’s a one-stop shop for sweet tooths! Style: French-colonial Atmosphere: Refined Don’t leave without experiencing: A leisurely martini and a dip in the French-style outdoor pool. From

156*

$

Raffles Hotel Le Royal A luxury hotel fit for royalty, Raffles Hotel Le Royal has been the premier hotel in Phnom Penh for nearly a century. Why we love it: Boasting a blend of Khmer, art deco and French colonial architecture, the guestrooms and suites are highlighted by wooden floors, overhead fans and authentic artworks and furnishings. When you’re not kicking back in your stately suite, indulge in the delectable Cambodian and French cuisine at Restaurant Le Royal, or treat yourself to a soothing treatment at Raffles Spa. Style: Stately Atmosphere: Indulgent Don’t leave without experiencing: A Femme Fatale, the signature cocktail of the hotel’s charming and sophisticated Elephant Bar.

*All prices based on per person, per night twin share rates. Terms and conditions apply (please see page 49).

From

194*

$

Sunway Hotel

Ohana Hotel

Freshen up between sightseeing at this Sunway Hotel in the heart of Phnom Penh. With helpful staff and inviting facilities, it’s a perfect choice for the discerning traveller.

From the heart of Phnom Penh, Ohana Hotel boasts authentic Cambodian design with contemporary flair, with stunning rooftop views of the charismatic city.

Why we love it: Home to chic, timber-finished rooms, well-stocked fitness facilities and charming eateries, Sunway offers premium indulgence at an affordable price. Located in one of the more exclusive areas of Phnom Penh, it’s an easy stroll or tuk tuk to some of the city’s best sightseeing – just ask the friendly staff for tips! While here, book for an invigorating reflexology foot massage at 12-to-12 Spa, or get a new holiday look at the Venus Beauty & Hair Salon.

Why we love it: If you’re after a little authenticity in a modern, urban stay, this inner-city gem ticks all the boxes. Tucked away next to the colourful Kandal Market, it boasts 70 elegant rooms, each tastefully appointed with art deco and traditional Khmer furnishings. Little luxuries like a hotel spa and panoramic dining complete the experience.

Style: Urban-chic Atmosphere: Happening Don’t leave without experiencing: An invigorating reflexology foot massage from 12-to-12 Spa. From

76

$

*

Style: Authentic Atmosphere: Relaxed Don’t leave without experiencing: Continental breakfast on the rooftop terrace, with views over the Royal Palace and the mighty Mekong. From

36*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 41


SIEM REAP Siem Reap is one of the hottest holiday destinations in Southeast Asia. Formerly a quiet provincial town, the city is now a thriving tourist metropolis with lavish hotels and top-notch dining options. While the key draw card remains its proximity to the world-famous temples of Angkor, these historic monuments are just the beginning of Siem Reap’s appeal.

42 — Vietnam & Cambodia


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

ANGKOR WAT SIEM REAP INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Staff

SIVATH NA

LH

WY

D

SIEM REAP

6 6

TAPHUL VILLAGE AREA

3

See hotel features grid on pages 46-47

1. Park Hyatt Siem Reap 2. Prince D’Angkor Resort & Spa

ST

NATIONAL ER R

1

RIV

HH

HWY 6

D

AY

RD ONG ST

MC

2 H TEP V

OU

AT SAMDEC

SIV

Pete Culture Vulture

ER R

TIO

ANGKOR NATIONAL MUSEUM

5

RIV

NA

HA

“Opt for a tuk-tuk over a bike to get to Angkor Wat. The ride may look enjoyable on the way there, but it's easy to underestimate the distance from Siem Reap to the temples. You'll be especially thankful when the afternoon temperatures soar.”

A RD

TIP:

CHARLE

S DE GA

4

ULLE

TRANG

OLD MARKET

3. Shinta Mani Club 4. Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa

WAT BO AREA

5. Tara Angkor Hotel 6. Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa

Map is offered as a guide only. See creativeholidays.com for further details and up-to-date information.

LOCAL tips • Take a free guided tour of the Angkor Silk Farm. After the tour, you can purchase high-quality silk garments from the very workshops you just visited. • Head to Psar Chaa (Old Market) to stock up on quality silk. Bring cash and be prepared to bargain but you’ll get some great deals. • For a feel-good dining experience and delicious food try Haven on Sok San Street. It’s a training restaurant for vulnerable young adults from orphanages and safe shelters, as well as underprivileged young adults from very rural poor areas. • Take a visit to the Cambodia Landmine Museum, founded in 1997 by an ex-child soldier. You’ll see the efforts being undertaken to rid Cambodia of their curse. • KIDS WILL LOVE: A visit to the Banteay Srey Butterfly Centre where locals are trained to farm butterflies. It’s the largest butterfly exhibition in the Southeast Asia and is a great short break from the temples. Situated in spectacular surroundings only 25 kilometers from Siem Reap, it was developed as a poverty mitigation project, with revenues used to employ impoverished people in Siem Reap’s remote villages.

Vietnam & Cambodia — 43


Best of

SIEM REAP

Home to the famous temples of Angkor, the city of Siem Reap is infused with historic charm. Take a step back in time or celebrate the modern Cambodian city at one of these Creative Club hotels and resorts.

Park Hyatt Siem Reap

Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa Resort

Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa

A prestigious hotel at an equally prestigious address, Park Hyatt Siem Reap is a perfect base to explore this buzzing city in style.

A peaceful, French-colonial style retreat, the luxury Sofitel features timber floors, period furniture, seven gourmet-dining options and the first internationalquality 18-hole golf course in Cambodia.

Set in a historic Victorian estate, this tasteful, French-colonial style hotel is close to Siem Reap’s must-see sites and is perfect for travellers embracing history and tradition.

Why we love it: Boasting waterlily ponds, promenading jetties and a tasteful colonial style, this pristine resort is the definition of serenity. Golf aficionados will appreciate the sweeping championship course, while luxury lovers can experience Khmer massages and Ayurvedic oil treatments at the So SPA by L’Occitane.

Why we love it: Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa’s main building dates back to the 1930s and is heavily influenced by the French-colonial style. The resort beautifully celebrates a long-gone era in its natural surrounds, with charming, timber-floored rooms, a saltwater pool and even a vintage car collection.

Why we love it: An elegant hideaway, the Park Hyatt Siem Reap boasts 104 stylish guestrooms and 13 suites within a secluded expanse of manicured gardens and glamorous swimming pools – all tucked in the heart of this bustling city. The contemporary accommodation is matched with stylish dining options and a luxury spa, as well as access to some of the best exploring possibilities. Style: Contemporary Atmosphere: Sophisticated

Style: Colonial Atmosphere: Peaceful

Don’t leave without experiencing: • A relaxing swim in the hotel’s infinity-edge pool surrounded by lush gardens. • A soothing treatment at the hotel’s spa facility – open 10am-10pm daily. • A selection of provincial French and traditional Cambodian dishes at Park Hyatt’s restaurant, The Dining Room.

Don’t leave without experiencing: • A crisp cocktail without leaving the gorgeous pool, at the super-chic, swim-up Serpent Bar. • A step back in time, with live piano tunes at the colonial-era Explorer's Tales bar. • An afternoon on the challenging Phokeethra Country Club course, complete with ancient Khmer ruins.

From

259

$

*

44 — Vietnam & Cambodia

From

152

$

*

Style: French-colonial Atmosphere: Refined Don’t leave without experiencing: • An outrageously romantic tour in one of the hotel's vintage Citroën cars. • Modern French gastronomy cuisine at Bistrot de Siem Reap, after a long day's sightseeing. • An afternoon martini and your favourite novel on the terrace at L'Explorateur Bar.

From

114*

$


*All prices *Terms andbased conditions on perapply person, for per all deals nightand twinpackages. share rates. SeeTerms onlineand for conditions more details. apply (please see page 49).

For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Shinta Mani Club

Prince D'Angkor Resort & Spa

Tara Angkor Hotel

An upscale boutique hotel with a social conscience, the hip Shinta Mani Club showcases 39 contemporary rooms and public spaces in a Khmer-inspired design.

Royally furnished with authentic Cambodian touches, the majestic Prince D’Angkor Hotel is perfect for travellers wanting to surround themselves with tradition, culture and indulgence.

The stylish Tara Angkor Hotel is committed to saving the planet, with 206 eco-friendly rooms and suites just a short stroll to the Angkor National Museum.

Why we love it: With a culture of ‘Open Doors, Open Hearts’, Shinta Mani Club maintains a commitment to responsible tourism and supporting the local community. Designed by acclaimed architect Bill Bensley, it features a range of modern facilities including an open-air Bensley’s Bar, relaxing Shinta Mani Spa, signature Kroya restaurant and 20-metre infinity pool surrounded by soaring palm trees and a stone fountain.

Why we love it: A magnificent, palace-like building with six lively bars and restaurants, it’s a sanctuary for tourists and corporate guests alike. Conveniently located, this luxury hotel offers an array of organised tours and activities, elegant furnishings and traditional Cambodian hospitality, plus added extras like a spa, hair salon, fitness centre and the biggest saltwater swimming pool in Siem Reap!

Why we love it: Officially managed by sustainability consultants Envirotel, this stunning retreat works to save the planet, without skimping on the luxury. Alongside immaculate rooms, it boasts two restaurants, a Lobby Bar, hotel spa and sleek swimming pool with a Jacuzzi and sauna on the side. Perfect for action lovers and relaxation seekers alike!

Style: Chic Atmosphere: Relaxed

Style: Majestic Atmosphere: Sophisticated

Don’t leave without experiencing: • The hotel's signature Icy Green Ginger cocktail from the stunning, striped Pool Bar. • A white clay and organic Cambodian coffee beans treatment. Try the Khmer Coffee Scrub from the Shinta Mani Spa. • A tantalising Khmer-inspired fusion dish served outdoors on a Khmer swing at the hip Kroya restaurant.

Don’t leave without experiencing: • A Cambodian-style hot pot at Master Suki Soup – perfect for a fun variation on family dinner. • Live music and bold cocktail concoctions at the happening Mouy Resto & Lounge. • A sunset over the temples… on horseback! Horse riding tours leave right from the hotel.

From

183

$

*

From

48

$

*

Style: Modern Atmosphere: Friendly Don’t leave without experiencing: • An all-inclusive Cambodian cooking class, starting at the local market and ending with a self-made culinary masterpiece. • A creative, pre-dinner cocktail featuring local Cambodian fruit at the sophisticated Lily Lounge. • A de-stress tri-stone massage from Tara Spa – a soothing sanctuary after sightseeing.

From

43*

$

Vietnam & Cambodia — 45


24

A

F

24

5

175

24

P

L

F

L

F

L

P

L

F

O

F

O

F

O

F

O

• •

High-chairs (H) or Cots (C)

F

1

Children’s Swimming Pool

2

Kids’ Club

L

2

Children’s Menu

L

Babysitting

P

Number of Cafés

P

24

Number of Restaurants

24

Family Features

Number of Bars/Lounges

191 226

O

Golf Course

Television

4 3.5

F

Games Room

Newspapers

Tennis Court

Air Conditioning (A) or Fan Cooled (F)

Day Spa

Mini Bar

A

Gymnasium

Tea & Coffee-Making Facilities

Water Sports

Room Service: Limited (L) or 24-hr (24)

Jacuzzi or Sauna

Breakfast Included

24

Swim-up Pool Bar

Internet or Wi-Fi: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

Swimming Pool: Indoor (I) or Outdoor (O)

Shop

F

Internet or Wi-Fi: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

Business Centre

Kitchenette

Laundry Service (L) or Coin Laundry (C)

Refrigerator

Elevator

L

Shuttle Bus

Reception: Limited (L) or 24-hr (24)

P

Villa (V) or Apartment (A)

24

Rating

Dining, cafés & bars

Leisure & Recreation

Parking: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

Room Features

335

Number of Rooms

Page Number or Online (O)

Map reference

Hotel Features

In-house Movies

HOTEL FEATURES GRID

VIETNAM HO CHI MINH CITY (map on page 10) Caravelle Saigon

1

12

Duxton Hotel Saigon

2

13

Grand Hotel Saigon

3

13

Hotel Majestic Saigon

4

12

5

Liberty Central Saigon Centre

5

13

4

139

24

Liberty Hotel Saigon Parkview

6

13

3

89

24

Novotel Saigon Centre

7

12

4

247

24

Sofitel Saigon Plaza

8

12

5

286

24

Novotel Nha Trang

1

15

4

154

Sheraton Nha Trang Hotel & Spa

2

15

5

280

Sunrise Nha Trang Beach Hotel & Spa

3

15

5

4

F

L

F

24

A

A A

• •

A

F

L

F

24

A

F

L

F

24

A

24

P

L

F

24

A

24

F

L

F

24

A

120

24

F

L

F

24

A

94

L

L

F

L

• •

1

1

1

2

2

2

2

3

1

C

1

1

1

C

1

1

1

C

2

1

1

2

2

F

C

F

O

F

O

F

O

2

1

F

O

4

3

F

O

3

3

F

O

1

1

1

1

C

C

NHA TRANG (map on page 14)

• •

C

C

C

C

C

CENTRAL COAST VIETNAM (map on page 17) Anantara Hoi An Resort

1

Ancient House

21

2

21

3

52

24

F

L

F

24

Boutique Hoi An Resort

3

20

4

82

V

24

F

L

F

L

Furama Resort Danang

4

23

5

198

V

24

F

L

F

24

V

24

F

24

24

F

Fusion Maia Resort

5

22

5

87

Grand Mercure Danang

6

23

4

272

Hoi An Beach Resort

7

21

4

121

V

24

F

L •

F

F

L

F

L

F

• •

Hoi An Trails Resort & Spa

8

21

4

100

24

F

L

F

Hyatt Regency Danang

9

22

5

193

V

24

F

L

F

Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort

10

22

5

197

24

F

L

F

La Residence Hotel & Spa

11

23

5

122

24

F

L

Muong Thanh Huê

12

23

4

108

24

F

L

Palm Garden Beach Resort & Spa

13

20

5

212

24

F

L

Pullman Danang Beach Resort

14

22

5

186

V

24

F

L

The Nam Hai

15

20

5

100

V

24

F

L

Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa

16

20

4

109

A 24

F

Hilton Hanoi Opera

1

26

5

269

24

F

Medallion Hotel

2

27

3

70

24

Melia Hanoi

3

27

5

305

24

Mercure La Gare

4

27

4

102

A 24

Sofitel Plaza Hanoi

5

26

5

273

24

Sunway Hotel Hanoi

6

27

4

145

24

24 L

• A

F

O

3

1

A

F

O

3

1

A

F

O

3

4

R

F

O

A

F

O

A

F

O

L

A

F

O

24

A

F

O

R

24

F

F

24

F

O

F

24

A

F

O

F

24

A

F

O

F

24

Y

F

O

F

L

A

F

O

L

F

24

A

F

O

L

P

24

A

P

O

P

L

F

24

A

F

P

L

F

24

F

O

F

L

F

24

A

F

O

F

• •

• 2

1

2

4

2

1

• •

3

2

1

1

C

H

C H •

C

2

2

C

2

3

C

2

3

2

1

2

C

1

1

2

C

2

2

2

1

R

1

1

3

1

2

2

1

1

1

1

1

2

1

R

1

1

1

C • C

H

HANOI (map on page 24)

F

L

F

L

F

24

F

24

A A

F

Pricing and hotel features grids are offered as a guide only and may be subject to variation or change. All facilities may not be available in every room category. Please see creativeholidays.com for a more up-to-date list of hotel features. Firm pricing can be determined and quoted at the time the booking is made.

46 — Vietnam & Cambodia

• •

C C

H

H

2

2

1

1

1

1

C

R = On request


For the best deals see your favourite travel agent

Children’s Swimming Pool

High-chairs (H) or Cots (C)

Kids’ Club

Children’s Menu

1

Family Features

Babysitting

Number of Restaurants

1

Number of Cafés

Number of Bars/Lounges

Golf Course

Games Room

Tennis Court

Day Spa

Gymnasium

O

Water Sports

F

Jacuzzi or Sauna

Swim-up Pool Bar

Swimming Pool: Indoor (I) or Outdoor (O)

A

Internet or Wi-Fi: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

In-house Movies

Television

L

Newspapers

Dining, cafés & bars

Leisure & Recreation

Air Conditioning (A) or Fan Cooled (F)

F

Kitchenette

Mini Bar

L

Tea & Coffee-Making Facilities

Business Centre

Room Service: Limited (L) or 24-hr (24)

Laundry Service (L) or Coin Laundry (C)

F

Breakfast Included

Elevator

Internet or Wi-Fi: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

Parking: Free (F) or Fee Payable (P)

24

Shop

Shuttle Bus

Room Features

Reception: Limited (L) or 24-hr (24)

41

Villa (V) or Apartment (A)

1

Rating

Page Number or Online (O)

Ohana Hotel

Number of Rooms

Map reference

Hotel Features

Refrigerator

HOTEL FEATURES GRID

C

CAMBODIA PHNOM PENH (map on page 40)

3

70

Raffles Hotel Le Royal

2

41

5

175

24

F

L

F

24

Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra

3

41

5

201

A

24

F

L

F

24

Sunway Hotel

4

41

4

138

24

F

L

F

24

Park Hyatt Siem Reap

1

44

5

104

24

F

L

F

24

Prince D'Angkor Resort & Spa

2

45

4

195

24

F

Shinta Mani Club

3

45

4.5

39

24

F

Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf & Spa Resort

4

44

5

238

24

F

A

O

F

O

1

2

R

2

4

1

R

A

F

1

1

1

A

F

1

1

1

2

2

1

3

1

2

2

R

• C

SIEM REAP (map on page 43)

Tara Angkor Hotel

5

45

4

206

24

Victoria Angkor Resort & Spa

6

44

5

130

24

L

L

R

L

F

24

A

F

L

A

F

24

F

L

F

L

F

L

F

24

O

F

O

F

O

F

O

A

F

O

A

F

O

1

1

2

2

2

C

C

H C

Vietnam & Cambodia — 47


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48 — Vietnam & Cambodia

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TRAVEL PRODUCTS AND AVAILABILITY Creative Tours arranges bookings, ticketing and other ancillary services of and related to travel and accommodation including but not limited to, air travel, transfers, car hire and leisure activities (“Travel Products”). Creative Tours is neither a common carrier nor a private carrier, and does not itself provide any of the Travel Products described in its brochures or on the Site. Creative Tours acts as your agent in making the arrangements with third party suppliers, who provide the Travel Products to you as principals (“Suppliers”), and is not the agent of any such Supplier. By booking any Travel Products, you (if booking directly or through a travel agent) and your travel agent on your behalf (if booking through a travel agent) acknowledge and confirm that you have read our booking terms and conditions, that you accept them without reservation as constituting the entire agreement between you and us which cannot be varied other than by an officer of the Company in writing. Bookings of all Travel Products we arrange are provided by Suppliers we believe to be reputable and to operate in accordance with the standards set down by their own local authorities. Those Travel Products are provided subject to those Suppliers’ terms, conditions and limitations (some of which may exclude or limit liability in respect of death, injury, delay, loss or damage to person and/or effects) and we accept no responsibility for them nor do we make or give any warranty or representation as to their standard, quality or fitness for any particular purpose. Any legal recourse you may have in respect of those Travel Products is against those Suppliers and not against us. We recommend all passengers take out adequate travel insurance for the duration of their travel. All Travel Products shown in our brochures and on the Site may be booked, subject to availability at the time of booking.

Method: Payment for all Travel Product bookings can be made via: • PayPal • American Express, MasterCard, Visa • eNett • Payment Gateway • SmartMoney • Direct Deposit For credit cards a fee of up to 2% of the total costs of the booking will be applied at time of payment. Terms: Depending on the Supplier’s terms and conditions of booking, you may be able to hold a Travel Product without payment, pay a deposit for it or you may be required to make an immediate payment in full. • Hold – You will be notified whether a Travel Product may be held and the period it may be held. If held, you must pay a deposit or full payment in accordance with these terms and conditions and the notification (generally within 5 days of it being held, unless your date of travel is less than 10 days from notification). • Deposit – Unless otherwise notified you must pay a deposit to secure the booking. The deposit is a minimum of $165 per person, together with any prepayment specified by the relevant Supplier. You must pay the balance of the price at least 14 days prior to the earliest travel date or earlier if we or the relevant Supplier so specify. • Immediate payment – You will be notified if any Travel Product within a booking requires immediate payment in full. You must make that payment immediately to secure the Travel Product at the notified price. If you fail to make any required payment outlined above, your booking is automatically cancelled unless we notify you otherwise in writing. A travel agent who makes a booking at your request is your agent and is not the Company’s agent for the purpose of receipt of the deposit or any part of the price.

QUOTES AND PRICES We endeavour to ensure the accuracy and currency of all prices displayed in our brochures and on the Site. Prices are: • specified in the currency stated in the brochure or on the relevant page of the Site (generally either in Australian dollars or New Zealand dollars) and are subject to change without notice; • indicative only and subject to change until all of your booking details have been provided to us and we have confirmed your booking; and • for the number of persons or items on the conditions stated in the brochure or on the relevant page of the Site, including but not limited to any hover box. “From” Prices: The expression “from” with respect to a price means the lowest price for the Travel Product we believe is available at the time of publication, based on information we have received from Suppliers. Itineraries and Quotes: You may build an itinerary on the Site and obtain a quote from the Site or by contacting our Call Centre or through a travel agent. Any quote is an estimate only of the current price and subject to change until a booking is confirmed and you receive a unique Creative Tours booking number or, if a quote for an airfare, until it is paid and ticketed. Payment terms are subject to individual Supplier requirements and will be advised at the time of booking. Taxes, Charges and Currency Fluctuation: Government taxes and charges imposed by Suppliers or third parties (including ticketing fees and airline fuel surcharges) are subject to change. If there are any increases in such taxes, charges or Supplier rates or any currency fluctuation which increase the price of your booking, we reserve the right to change the price you must pay by including the additional charges or amount (together with any applicable service fee and GST) at any time prior to and including the date of your departure, even if we have received full payment from you. We will notify you of any such price changes that result in your travel arrangements being materially different from those prior to the change being effected and in respect of which we have already accepted your deposit or full payment. If so, and you do not wish to alter your travel arrangements, you may cancel them and monies you have already paid, less any charges levied by Suppliers, will be refunded. Any refund will be calculated at the currency exchange rate that applied when the booking was confirmed. Errors: We reserve the right to correct any errors in fees, charges, rates or prices quoted or billed, even if we have received full payment from you.

PAYMENT

CREATIVE CLUB Except during peak seasons (such as Christmas-New Year), for special events (such as cultural or sporting events) and other “black out” periods nominated by a Supplier, the following benefits apply to any Travel Product identified with our “Creative Club” logo: Price Match Guarantee: Except for bonus offers and inclusions offered by a Supplier exclusively to a third party, we will match our gross price to a third party’s gross price for a Travel Product if: • it is based on the same currency as our quote or the offer on our Site (i.e. Australian or New Zealand dollars); • the third party’s Travel Product (including any bonus offers, added value or inclusions) and ours are identical; • you provide us with the third party’s written quote, which indicates its availability at the time of the price match in the country of the currency you require the price matched; • you have not booked that Travel Product; • the Travel Product has not previously been price matched; and • you pay for the Travel Product in full when we have matched the price. Added Value Bonuses and Special Upgrade Offers: Subject to availability and to these terms and conditions, we will use reasonable endeavours to ensure you receive the added value bonuses and upgrade offers referred to in the description of Travel Products identified with our “Creative Club” logo. We may, at our sole discretion, withdraw any added value bonus or upgrade offer for any reason and at any time. CANCELLATIONS, AMENDMENTS, REISSUES AND REFUNDS If we are entitled to cancel the booking of any Travel Product and we cancel it or if you cancel it (unless these terms and conditions otherwise specify) the following applies: Cancellation after Deposit is Paid: • You must pay any Supplier/airline cancellation fees. • Your deposit ($165 per person) will be available to apply to the cost of other Travel Products for 90 days after the date of cancellation and, if not so applied, will thereupon be forfeit to us. Cancellation after Full Payment: • You must pay any Supplier/airline cancellation fees. • There is no refund of or credit for the deposit. • We will return to you any amount refunded to us by the Supplier.

Amendments to a Booking: We may accept or reject a request for amendment to a booking of Travel Products in our absolute discretion. If we amend a confirmed booking, it may be repriced and you are liable for any resulting price change, including any cancellation fees imposed by the Supplier. You must pay us an amendment fee of $55 for each amendment, being a genuine pre estimate of the reasonable cost of administrative expenses we incur in amending the booking. Refunds: After your travel has commenced, there can be no refund in respect of any Travel Products not utilised whether by choice or because of late arrival or early departure, including failure of any transport to operate according to schedule. Employees of any Supplier are not authorised by us to give any undertakings in respect of refunds or other matters. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY AND RESPONSIBILITIES We arrange the provision of Travel Products which are provided by Suppliers. We do not ourselves provide the Travel Products you may receive on your holiday. Suppliers Terms and Conditions: Supply of the Travel Products is made, and all itineraries, coupons and exchange orders (collectively “vouchers”) are issued to you, upon the Supplier’s terms and conditions that are then in use, including as to the applicable laws, requirements and policies of any government authority related to, among others, visas, entry, exit or transfer requirements. Your acceptance of the vouchers constitutes those terms and conditions as the entire agreement between you and the relevant Supplier and you bear all costs or losses incurred as a consequence of your failure to comply with them. Exclusion of Liability: In the absence of our negligence, we are not liable for any cancellations, diversions, substitution of equipment, variations, postponements or any other act, omission or default (whether negligent or otherwise) of any Supplier nor are we liable for any loss or damage to baggage or property, injury, illness or death, or any other loss (including consequential loss) damage or claim whatsoever arising from the act, error, omission, default or negligence of any person not our direct employee or under our exclusive control. We are not responsible for any criminal conduct of any third party. Where a motor coach seat is fitted with a safety belt, neither we nor any Supplier concerned will be liable for death, injury, or any loss or damage whatsoever you suffer from any accident or incident if you are not wearing the safety belt at the time of such accident or incident. We are not liable for any injury, damage, loss, delay, additional expenses or inconvenience caused by your acts, omissions or defaults, your state of health, medical condition or circumstances or other reasons which are beyond our control, including force majeure events or failure of equipment or machinery. Warranties: To the extent permitted by law, all express and implied warranties, guarantees, representations or terms are expressly excluded. Where the law implies any warranty guarantee or condition which cannot be excluded, our liability to you for breach thereof is limited to supplying the services again or payment of the cost of having the services supplied again. Maximum Liability: Despite any other provision of these terms and conditions, to the extent permitted by law, our maximum liability to you or any third party is limited to the price you have paid us for the booking. Holiday Variations: We reserve the right to cancel or reschedule departures and itineraries if required by circumstances beyond our control. Where it is necessary to change a hotel we will endeavour to substitute accommodation of no lesser standard. Insurance: We recommend you purchase travel insurance against forfeiture of payment, loss of deposits, cancellation charges, baggage loss, medical expenses, theft and other contingencies. We make no representations as to what you may recover under any insurance. You agree not to hold us responsible for any decision of insurers, and/or any Supplier, or the requirements of any foreign government authority, foreign law or policy.

To ensure the safety of yourself and others, it may be necessary for us to disclose details of your health or medical condition to Suppliers. You authorise us to make such disclosure and you agree that our doing so is not a breach of confidence or duty and that you will not hold us liable in tort, in contract or under any privacy or antidiscrimination laws. OTHER CONDITIONS Brochure and Site Accuracy: We endeavour to ensure that the brochure is accurate at the time of publication and that the Site is and remains accurate at all times. However, we cannot be held responsible for printing or typographical errors or errors arising from unforeseen circumstances. Hotel Locations and Descriptions: Maps in our brochures and on the Site are provided only as a guide to locations and maps on the Site are powered by Google maps. Hotel descriptions featured are based on current international hotel guides and information provided by hotels and Suppliers. Descriptions are provided as guidelines only and any facilities shown as included are subject to change at any time. Hotel room photographs may not be specific to rooms booked. Hotel Check-In: To guarantee charges for incidental items, Suppliers require validation of a current credit card upon check-in. Room Bedding Guide: Prices in the brochure and on the Site are based on existing bedding in the room. Requests for particular arrangements must be made at the time of booking and are not guaranteed. Requests such as twin share - separate beds, additional rollaway beds may be made at time of check-in and charges are payable direct to the hotel. The ‘Bedding Guide’ is provided as guidelines only and are subject to change at any time. Standard of Service: The standard of service in your holiday is based on various factors and we do not represent or guarantee a particular standard or fitness for purpose of the accommodation or services provided. Frequent Flyer Points: Airfares may or may not attract Frequent Flyer points. This decision rests with the airline and is at the sole discretion of the airline. Supplier Loyalty Programs: Travel Products may or may not be eligible for credit, rewards or points in a Supplier’s own loyalty program or a third party Frequent Flyer program. This decision rests with the supplier and is at the sole discretion of the supplier. Complaints: We endeavour to ensure that the arrangements we have made for you are implemented as arranged. If a problem occurs, the most practical way to deal with it is to attempt resolution locally with the Supplier. If you fail to follow this course, any claim for compensation may be reduced or denied. If you have any unresolved complaint, details should be lodged in writing (with supporting documentation, including efforts made with the Supplier to resolve it) with your travel agent or directly with us within 30 days of your holiday concluding. Your Privacy: We will handle your personal information in accordance with our Privacy Policy, which is posted on the Site or will be sent to you upon request. Your booking of any Travel Product constitutes your representation to us that you have read our Privacy Policy and accept its application to you. User Agreement: By using the Site to browse and/or book any Travel Product, you represent to us that you have read our User Agreement posted on the Site and you accept its application to you. Law and Jurisdiction: The agreement between us and you in respect of the services to be provided is constituted solely by these terms and conditions and is governed by the laws of New South Wales, Australia. We and you submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of New South Wales and the Courts of appeal therefrom. Understanding these Terms and Conditions: If you do not understand any aspect of these terms and conditions you should seek advice from an appropriately qualified person.

Passport Checks: You must ensure names used to make a booking are exactly as appear in passports. Any name/initial or spelling changes made after booking confirmation may result in Supplier imposed fees and/or you being unable to travel.

GUIDE TO IMAGES AND PRICING

Passports, Visa, Vaccinations and Baggage: A visa does not guarantee you entry to, or permission to remain in, a country. Some countries may refuse entry or may detain, expel or repatriate you because of your state of health, medical condition or other reasons. You are responsible for all visas, entry, health and other requirements and all documents required by the laws, regulations, orders and/or requirements of countries you intend to visit. You should check the requirements of those countries with their embassies or consulates or other authorities. We accept no responsibility if you are refused entry into any country you intend to visit and you release us from all damages, expenses, costs, liabilities or loss you incur in relation to such matters.

Images: Featured hotel images may not relate to the lead in room category and therefore not represent the room type allocated for your booking. Pricing: ‘From’ pricing is offered as a guide only and, unless otherwise stated, per person, twin share on a lead in room category/service level for the 2015 low season travel period. Prices are confirmed and guaranteed only when a booking is made and may differ from the brochure or Site ‘from’ price and any quote.

Vietnam & Cambodia — 49


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For trade enquiries and bookings, please call: Trade Australia: 131 222 Trade New Zealand: 0800 652 441

Visit your local travel agent or go to creativeholidays.com to start planning today.

Travel Agency Partner:

35 Grafton Street, Bondi Junction, NSW 2022 P.O. BOX 659, Bondi Junction, NSW 1355 License No. 2TA00 2632 ABN 23 003 286 459 Creative Holidays has been serving Australian travellers since 1979 and is a member of the family-owned The Travel Corporation. It is renowned and trusted for outstanding quality, service, value, reliability and financial stability.

www.thetravelcorporation.com

Vietnam & Cambodia 2015/16 Brochure  

Ask any seasoned traveller to list their favourite destinations and chances are Vietnam and neighbouring Cambodia will be high on the list....

Vietnam & Cambodia 2015/16 Brochure  

Ask any seasoned traveller to list their favourite destinations and chances are Vietnam and neighbouring Cambodia will be high on the list....

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