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Join us for a cycle trip that explores the classic highlights of South East Asia in an active way. Travel by bike, bus and boat to discover cultural diversity, natural beauty and fascinating history. Along the way we visit Khao Yai National Park, Angkor, the Killing Fields and silk weaving villages on the Mekong Delta.
Explore Tour Leader
1 nights comfortable homestay
9 nights comfortable hotel
3 nights premium hotel
Trip maximum 16 Explore Average 11
Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.
Arrive in Bangkok, the bustling capital of Thailand famous for its street vendors serving up tasty Thai food, bright lights, tuk tuks and longtail khlong boats plying the network of canals and waterways.
Our Leader plans to meet you in the hotel reception at 6pm for the welcome meeting and for those that wish, there is the chance to go out for dinner afterwards. There are no other included activities planned today, so you are free to arrive in Bangkok at any time. If you would like to receive a complimentary airport transfer today, you will need to arrive into Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International airport (BKK), which is around an hour from the hotel. Should you miss the welcome meeting, your Leader will inform you of any essential information as soon as you catch up.
Please note that if you wish to join the optional khlong canal trip today, the Tour Leader will be in reception at 12noon to get numbers of those interested and the excursion will depart at 1pm, returning at around 4pm. The traditional longtail boat is an ideal way to explore Bangkok's network of backwaters that branch off from the Chao Phraya River. You will also visit Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn) - built to represent the towering slopes of Mount Meru. If you are booking your own flights, we recommend giving yourself at least one hour to clear the airport, so therefore the latest your flight can arrive is 10am.
Royal Rattankosin Hotel (or similar)
From busy downtown Bangkok we take a short hop across the Chao Praya River to an extraordinary place known to locals as Bang Kra Jao. Crossing the river is like taking a journey back in time where we find a peaceful place with a maze of waterways, small villages, temples and real tropical jungle. If it wasn't for Bangkok's skyline, you would never believe you were so close to the city and there is no traffic! We ride through the local communities, temples and schools stopping for a snack at a river pier across from Thailand's naval academy. Next we visit a fascinating temple, built in the Ayutthaya period more than 250 years ago with a unique teak wood roof, windows and shutters painted in the ancient Mon style. We cycle on to the relaxing Sri Narkon Park and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before returning to the hotel for some downtime. Later this afternoon we see another side to Bangkok on our night ride, visiting a night market and the flower market. Please note for safety reasons we will only operate the night ride with a maximum of nine passengers. For larger groups we will run a night walk instead.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 30-40 kilometres (flat)
This morning we drive for about 1.5 hours to Nakornnayok Province, where we spend the rest of the day cycling in Khoa Yai National Park. On our ride we will take in the impressive sight of Thailand's largest dam, Khun Dan Prakan Chon Dam, where we can enjoy panoramic views from the top. We then cycle to Heaw Narok waterfall with three cascades and at the base of the falls are a few rustic restaurants where you can get some great authentic Thai food and a cool beer. We recommend you try the somtam (spicy papaya salad) with grilled chicken and sticky rice. We then have a short drive to our hotel for the night.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 50 kilometres
Juntra Resort & Hotel (or similar)
After breakfast we drive for about two hours toward Aranyaprathet. We break up today's bus journey with an afternoon ride past typical scenes of rural Thailand. We will cycle through villages and enjoy the relaxed pace of life in the countryside. Rong Kluea Market also known as Ban Khlong Luek Border Market, it is said to be one of Thailand's most frequented border markets. Once we have finished exploring the market we take a short drive to our hotel in Aranyaprathet and freshen up before dinner.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 40-50 kilometres
The VELO'S Hotel (or similar)
This morning we drive just 15 minutes to Poipet International border. After completing the Cambodia visa formalities we say farewell to our Thai support team and bikes and meet our hosts for the rest of the trip. The drive will take us about 4 hours to get to Siem Reap, the gateway town for the incredible Khmer temples of Angkor. On arrival in Siem Reap, we will check into our hotel and have time to visit the temple of Bayon and the South Gate of Angkor Thom by bus for sunset. This evening is free for you to explore the town and its restaurants.
Please note that from the 1st January 2020 the third tier of the Bayon Temple - the striking centrepiece of the ancient city of Angkor Thom - will be closed until 2022 for extensive restoration. As a result, it will only be possible to view the large stone faces from a distance and it will not be possible to get up close. However, the two lower tiers will remain open and accessible, so it will be possible to view the impressive bas-reliefs and intricate stone carvings around the temple.
No cycling today
Tara Angkor Hotel (or similar)
Today we drive a short distance to Angkor Wat to collect our bikes which we will use for the rest of our trip, then set off to discover several of the ancient temple cities by bike. We cycle to the impressive Ta Prohm Temple, which remains in the clutches of the encroaching jungle. Here we spend time visiting the temple, before pedalling along small hidden trails to the ruins at Phimeanakas, the Elephant Terraces, the Bayon, Baphoun and Preah Khan. In the afternoon we visit magnificent Angkor Wat with its extraordinary architecture and bas-reliefs. At the end of the day we cycle back to our hotel.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 25 kilometres. 80% of todays riding is off road but not technical.
Today we will leave the crowds behind on a cycle ride to the small village of Rolous where we visit the temples, before continuing to a local market. After a rest and time to explore the stalls we take a boat to the floating village of Kompong Phluk. Our ride through rural Cambodia offers plenty of opportunities to once more connect with local people. The fascinating village of Kompong Phluk is built on stilts in Tonle Sap Lake. Its residents live a communal lifestyle and you will see everything from floating pig pens to young children paddling around in what looks like a bowl selling souvenirs and singing songs. After our boat trip we enjoy a home hosted lunch where we can ask questions and learn about local cuisine as well as everyday life. The the afternoon we take to our bus to visit Banteay Srey, where we collect our bikes again and cycle 25 kilometres to either Pre Rup to enjoy watching the sunset, before either cycling or driving back to Siem Reap.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 56 kilometres
Today we leave the temples of Angkor behind and drive south to Phnom Penh. It's a longer day in the bus today with about six to seven hours driving. On the way as well as comfort stops, we'll stop at the famous ancient bridge at Kompong Kdei. We continue on to the capital, then leave the highway and from drive to Koh Dach ferry dock. From the dock, we take an excursion by local ferry along the Mekong River to Koh Dach Island where we visit a traditional Khmer weaving village. There are many handicrafts that come from this sleepy island but they are best known for the silk weaving. You will see how the villagers produce their own dyes and weave silk on old looms. Discover and learn about the traditional way of life as you cycle for about 22 km around the island. We return to our bus by the same ferry before driving the short distance on to busy Phnom Penh.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 37 kilometres
Katari Hotel (or similar)
Phnom Penh is a lively city with many French colonial buildings and plenty to see. Angkor was Cambodia's capital city until the 1440s when it switched to Phnom Penh. Today we explore the emotive Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, formerly a high school that became the Khmer Rouge's main torture and interrogation centre; the National Museum, a treasure trove of beautifully preserved carvings and lintels rescued from Angkor; the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda, all with a local guide. We then drive out of the city to the infamous Killing fields of Choeung Ek - the memorial stypa is a glass tower filled with human skulls - a gruesome reminder of the scale of Pol Pot's atrocities.
After breakfast, we drive for about three hours directly to Prek Chak and cross the border. Once we have completed the Vietnamese visa formalities we continue the short distance by bus to Ha Tien town. Getting on the bikes we spend the afternoon cycling around this charming, colourful town alive with vibrant riverside markets. Dramatic limestone formations are scattered around and, with its location sitting right on the Gulf of Thailand, this is a truly scenic spot to spend the night.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 20 kilometres
River Hotel Ha Tien (or similar)
We drive for about 30 km from Ha Tien town before starting today's ride. The journey takes us on flat terrain along the Vinh te Canal which once marked the border between Vietnam and Cambodia. At Tri Ton via Ba Chuc we see the Bone Pagoda, another ghastly reminder of the Khmer Rouge regime. We explore the emerald green wetlands of Tra Su Cajeput forest with its many water hyacinths and water lilies. Our ride ends at Chau Doc, a lovely little town on the banks of the Hau Giang River where we will spend the night.
Chau Pho Hotel (or similar)
This morning we drive from Chau Doc to Long Xuyen, which should take us less than a couple of hours. After catching the ferry we get back on the bikes for a ride to Dinh Yen village where sedge mattresses are weaved from seagrass. Continue cycling through Lai Vung and Tan Quy; districts famous for their mandarin oranges. The final short section of todays journey is by bus before arriving at our homestay for the night in Binh Hoa Phuoc. We stay in a traditional house that is equipped for tourism and the owners live next door. Rooms are simple and clean with fans, mosquito nets and ensuite bathrooms. There is a living room, as well as indoor and outdoor dining options. Dinner is included and will consist of local dishes made from fresh locally sourced ingredients, a great opportunity to try traditional dishes and learn more about Vietnamese cuisine and cooking methods.
Ut Trinh & Ut Quynh Homestay (or similar)
We enjoy our last ride today with a cycle around the beautiful island of Binh Hoa Phuoc. The island is littered with tropical fruit orchards and as well as admiring the colour and variety of fruits we will also stop to sample produce along the way. We take leave from the bikes and travel by boat to Cai Be. Back on land we drive the final leg to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam's largest city and most vibrant.
Our total cycling distance today is approximately 30 kilometres
Huong Sen Annex Hotel (or similar)
The trip ends after breakfast at our hotel in Ho Chi Minh City.
There are no activities planned today, so you are free to depart from Ho Chi Minh City at any time. If your flight is departing later in the day luggage storage facilities are available at our hotel. If you would like to receive a complimentary airport transfer today, you need to depart from Saigon's Tan Son Nhat International Airport (airport code SGN) which is between 45 minutes and an hour from the hotel.
Total distance : 412 kilometres
Cambodia is a hot and tropical country, being hottest in April and coolest in January (still high 20s). Although rainfall is at its maximum in October, Phnom Penh and Siem Reap receive very little rain compared to the coastal areas, and when it does rain it tends to be in the form of sporadic mid afternoon downpours. There is normally very little rain between December and March.
2 Pin Round
Generally hot with high humidity. There is some rainfall from April to September with most days being hot (around 33 Degrees) and a light breeze on the islands. If it does rain, it will be more of a heavy tropical downpour that lasts a few hours. Additional information and climate charts can be accessed at http://www.explore.co.uk/weather.
As Vietnam is a long, narrow country from north to south climate conditions vary considerably. The climate can be divided into three distinct patterns between the north, central and south regions. The climate in the north is generally humid and subtropical, although the winter months from November to March can be colder with temperatures from 10 - 15 degrees. Summer months, May to September can be quite hot with temperatures from 30 - 35 degrees. Meanwhile south Vietnam enjoys a tropical climate all year round, with little variation throughout the year (around 27 - 32 degrees), however May to November is the rainy season when short, heavy downpours are quite frequent. Central Vietnam lies somewhere in between. The coastal strip is usually dry and hotter from April to October while November to March is wetter and cooler. A light rain jacket and small umbrella are recommended year round.
Mahayana Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism
Grand Palace Bangkok Excursion - USD 40 Half day walking tour to Rattanakosin Exhibition Hall - USD 18 Bangkok - Longtail boat excursion on the Klongs includes visit to Royal Barge museum and Wat Arun USD32 Both cash and card accepted but cash is preferred The prices stated are based on a minimum number of participants (usually 5-6). Please be aware that the optional excursions can run with fewer people but the price may be higher. Likewise, a slightly reduced price may be applicable where the participation greater. The prices listed are generally only entrance fees and do not include the price of transport to and from the excursion, Your Explore Leader will quote this when you are on tour, as the price for transport will depend on the number of participants. These excursions are generally run via our agent in the country. Local companies may offer similar excursions at a cheaper price. Should you want to use these companies please be aware that a lower price may mean that not all costs are included (entrance fees etc.) or services will not operate at the same safety and quality standards.
When cycling: bring quick drying cycle tops, padded cycle shorts, plus a lightweight wind and water proof jacket. From December through to February warmer clothing is needed for the North and the highlands. Days are hot and humid.
If you are not bringing cycle shoes then try to bring stiff-soled shoes as these are better for cycling - transmitting your energy into the pedals more efficiently. This becomes more relevant and recommended the more demanding the grade and distances to cover. SPD cycle shoes are not well suited to trips that combine sightseeing with cycling. Comfortable walking shoes or sandals, trainers or flip flops are useful when not on the bike.
We recommend you bring a daypack and one main piece of luggage (total allowance: 44lb/20kg) which will be transported between hotels while you cycle. If you plan to bring more than 1 piece of main luggage please note that this can incur an additional charge payable in Bangkok or it may not be possible to bring the bag along with you. For this reason we recommend you advise us at time of booking. Check the bike details section to see if a pannier or handlebar bag is provided on the bike.
On all Explore cycle holidays we strongly recommend you bring along and wear your cycle helmet. In case of an accident resulting in personal injury, certain insurance policies are invalidated in cases where a helmet was not being worn. Cycle glasses to protect against dust, pollen and the sun, padded cycle gloves and a water bottle or water delivery system (e.g. camelback or platypus) are also useful. You may choose to bring your own gel seat cover for added comfort. If a handle bar bag or pannier is not provided (check bike details) then you may like to bring a small rucksack to wear while cycling. Other items to consider bringing are a sunhat and sun cream, torch, earplugs and insect repellent. Please carry some or all of your cycling equipment e.g. helmet as part of your hand luggage.
Bus, Bicycle, Boat
Premium - Hand-picked and chosen for their character, location or local importance, these properties have excellent facilities and a higher level of comfort and service. They provide the perfect wind down after an active day. Comfortable - Our mid-range accommodation offers a good level of service often with other amenities such as a restaurant, bar, garden or swimming pool. Generally rooms will be comfortable with en-suite facilities. Simple - These are often small, family run establishments or campsites which provide a no-frills experience with adequate amenities and service standards. Sleeping arrangements are simple, sometimes with en suite facilities.
We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK citizens, check the latest Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advice.
Please refer to our COVID-19 entry requirements page for any country-specific conditions of entry. Whilst we strive to update this on a regular basis we recommend you also check the FCDO website for the latest advice on entry requirements in this fast-evolving situation. Information can change at any time.
Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.
Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. However, please note that if you voluntarily make any changes to your booking including changing your trip or departure date, any additional costs or charges incurred will not be covered. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions
Thailand: Visas are not required by UK, Australian, New Zealand, US and Canadian citizens for a stay of less than 30 days. All passports must have at least 6 months validity remaining on entry to Thailand. Other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office. Cambodia: A single visa is required by UK, New Zealand, Australian, USA & Canadian citizens and can be obtained on arrival. A passport sized photograph for immigration will also be required. Alternatively you can now obtain an e-visa prior to departure from www.mfaic.gov.kh Vietnam: On this trip you will enter Vietnam overland at the Ha Tien Border crossing . 3 Vietnam: 'British Citizen' passport holders can visit Vietnam for up to 45 days without a visa. A visa will be required if you wish to re-enter within 30 days of your departure. Visas are required for citizens of the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand and can be obtained in the form of an eVisas via: \ul \ulnone Please note that it is a pre-requisite for entry into Vietnam that your passport is valid for a minimum of 6 months from your date of entry All visa related issues including information for other nationalities should be confirmed with the relevant Embassy prior to departure. If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See \ul www.travcour.com \ulnone to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on \ul 0208 5431846 \ulnone . It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination. 3
If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.
It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.
Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information.
You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.
Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The complimentary transfers will be arranged from the Explore designated airport or train station to your trips joining point, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. Generally the airport or station that Explore have selected will be the one that is closest to the town or city where the trip starts, or the one nearest to the joining point. It will be either an airport or train station but not both.
The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.
Free transfers are not available for Polar customers.
If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.
For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here
It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.
Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.
You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.
We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.
On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.
Nothing compulsory, but we recommend protection against malaria, infectious hepatitis, tetanus, typhoid, diphtheria and polio. Consult your GP regarding tablets advised for malaria. Though not compulsory, travellers may wish to immunise themselves against japanese encephalitis. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.
Nothing compulsory, we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus, diphtheria, polio and infectious hepatitis. Although not compulsory, travellers may also wish to immunise themselves against Japanese encephalitis. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on Dengue, Malaria and Zika Virus. Please take preventative measures to avoid mosquito bites - these include mosquito repellent as well as long trousers and long sleeve shirts to cover up when necessary. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.
Nothing compulsory, we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus, diphtheria, polio and hepatitis A. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on Malaria and Zika Virus. Although not compulsory travellers may also wish to immunise themselves against Japanese encephalitis. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.