Cycling Bangkok to Saigon 15 Days
The trip will start in Bangkok and the meeting point is Grand President Hotel located in the city center in Sukhumvit area. People who join this trip can also stay at their own hotel choice in Bangkok but it will take a bit longer for our guide to pick up due to bad traffic in Bangkok in the morning. Then transfer to the starting point near Rayong where mountain bikes are prepared and the guide will brief on the cycling tour. From the border to Pailin, the road is dirt with some potholes as well as from Pailin to Battambang. From Battambang to Siem Reap, we will cross Tonle Sap lake by boat.
We ride about 808 km on asphalt roads and sometimes broken road or vehicle-width dirt roads, which may be smooth, gritty, stony, rocky, rutted, loose or hard-packed. The 85km from Pailin to Battambang is probably the worst road but still interesting things to see along the road.
Visiting Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam on bicycle is really a great experience where you will see the differences. Entering to the former Khmer Rouge stronghold in Pailin reminds the past bad experience of Cambodia and seeing the change they have now and the Angkor historical complex on the back road and the Great Mekong Delta on bike.
Tour Price Includes:
– Accommodation 4* stars & 3* stars in tourist towns, guesthouse in Takeo (aircon-hot water)
– Cycling experienced guide
– Full board meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
– Support van for transfer & tour with cool box
– Snack, water, fruits and cold drink (Coke light)
– Boat ticket Battambang-Siem Reap-Phnom Penh
Note: In case the boat is not running, we will arrange the transfer by van with some extra cycling.
– All entrance fees and boat fees
Tour Price Excludes:
– International Flights
– Departure Tax $25 (international)
– Visa Fees $30 (issued on arrival) for Cambodia, for Thailand and Vietnam, please check with us.
– Alcoholic, and other beverages
– Tips for guides & drivers.
– Personal travel insurance
– Any services not mentioned in itinerary
|Destination||Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam|
Day 1: Bangkok-Rayong (Cycling 50km)
Meet with our guide at Grand President Hotel to brief on the tour and check the bike. Then transfer the starting point near Rayong. Start cycling by taking coastline road by the sea around 50km. Stop for lunch. Late afternoon, we arrive in Rayong. Dinner at local restaurant. Overnight in Rayong at the beach hotel. (L,D)
Day 2: Rayong-Chantaburi (Cycling 60km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Start biking to mangrove study center around 60km. On the way we stop and pay visits and talk to local people, see how they earn their livings. At the mangrove, we can walk around and visit one of the most successful forest restoration project of Thailand. Then check in and spend the night in Chantaburi. Dinner at local restaurant. (B,L,D)
Day 3: Chantaburi-Pailin (Cycling 47km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to Pongnamron and start cycling to the border 27km. Afterthe immigration, lunch at local restaurant. Then cycling 20km to the Pailin town located on the foothills of the scenic Cardamom mountains. Pailin used to be Khmer Rouge Strong-hold survived by trading gem stones. Until 1998, Khmer Rouge has demobilized their forces into the government army, then the town had got completely peace. The town is now home to some of the former Khmer Rouge leaders who are – now in jail awaiting for international tribunal. After cycling on the dirt red bumpy road, we arrive in the small dusty town of Pailin. View sunset at Phnom Yat to overlook Pailin. This temple of on Phnom Yat hill is more for Kula Muslim minority who earn their living with gem stone business. The Muslim minority made up 5% of the whole population in Cambodia. Return back to the hotel for shower and welcome dinner. Overnight in Pailin.
Day 4: Pailin-Battambang (85km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Fill the water and briefing on the road condition and water stop. Afterthe town, there are a few climbs and then down hill. Watch for large potholes, and cows might be crossing the road with the string so there might a trap. We cycle along this Cadarmom mountain range passing the rice field and we won’t be tired as the kids like to say hello and waving from their houses. Recently, the road from Pailin to Battambang has been improved. We stop for water, snack and drink under a big shad of a tree. Then continue cycling another 20km before stopping for lunch in Sneung overlooked a nearby a temple near the road. A little rest on the mat would be good. After lunch we cycle another 20km to Phnom Sampov, overlook the hilltop pagoda and the cave. Just 15km to Battambang, we do a bit of transfer as to avoid the busy traffic in town. Battambang used to be second biggest city but now become a relaxed town where Siem Reap is getting more boom. Situated on the bank of Sangker River, Battambang has many French colonial building and traditional Cambodian house. It is worth to take the Bamboo train as the local railway is running only twice a week for passenger train and cargo train is running more often. So local people enjoy taking more bamboo train. Overnight in Battambang. (B,L,D)
Day 5: Battambang – Siem Reap (18km)
An early breakfast before cycling for 15 minutes to board on the boat to Siem Reap. The boat has toilet and life jacket and takes about 6 – 7 hours. It is one of the best boat trip in Cambodia to cross the Sangker river viewing the fishermen and all their activities on the river. Then crossing Tonle Sap lake (South East Asia’s largest freshwater lake). It is the main reserve for water when the Mekong is flooded, without the lake, Cambodia will be flooded every year. In rainy season, the water reaches 10,000 square Km when it is only 5,000 square Km in dry season. The lake is as important as for the human-being and the fish, birds and other wild animals. One hour before reaching the dock, the boat passes Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary home and breeding area for some thousands of water birds.
After crossing Tonle Sap lake, we arrive at Chong Kneas floating village. The village combines of Cambodian, Muslim and Vietnamese and they move up and down depends on the season. All the houses are floating with support of the bamboo. After arrival at the dock, get off and prepare to ride bicycle 15km to our hotel. Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 6: Siem Reap-Angkor Complex (30km by bicycle)
Depart from the hotel on the main road and cycling through Angkor pass check point. Cycling through the shady road with a little pumping because of the a few pot-holes. There you will begin to see Kravan temple, Banteay Kdei, and stop at the famous Ta Phrom, embraced by the roots of enormous fig trees and gigantic creepers. Visit Ta Phrom (45 minutes-1 hour). It was built in 12th century by the famous King Jayavarvan VII indicated to his mother. While clearing back the forest archaeologists decided to leave the vegetation of Ta Phrom in place to serve as a reminder of how the original discoverers found it and the other Angkor temples.
Many of the trees have grown around and through the remains and soar high above the temples. Continue the cycling through small circuit passing Ta Keo temple, Chao Say Tevoda, Tommanon before reaching to Angkor Thom city. There you will see, Terrace of Leper King, Terrace of Elephant, Baphoun, Phimean Akas. Stop at Bayon temple and start the visit (45 minutes-1 hour). Angkor Thom built by Cambodia’s great king, Jayavarman VII. Overnight in Siem Reap. (B,L,D)
Day 7: Banteay Srei and River of Thousand Lingas (90km)
Depart from the hotel on the main road. Arrive at Angkor Wat and turn left to the west. Continue to cycle 2km before turn right to the rural road. The road is good for cycling as you can avoid the busy traffic but you can see rice field, village, pagoda. Arrive in Banteay Srei before lunch. Visit (45 minutes) Banteay Srei temple known as women citadel (built in 967 A.D dedicated to Brahma). While some of temple are impressive because of their sheer size, Banteay Srei stands alone in the quality of its construction and decoration. Its pink sandstone walls are decorated with what some consider the best carving of all, and still an excellent state of preservation.
Continue cycling to visit Kbal Spean, the River of Thousands Lingas, lying under the river bed, people believe it brings fertility and blessing Angkor area as the river flows to Siem Reap. Walk 1,200meters to visit the Lingas and enjoy lunch and the water fall. On the way back, cycle on the main road to visit Landmine Museum of Mr. Akira. Mr. Ra is dedicated to clearing the Cambodian countryside of landmines laid during the years of conflict and relies entirely on visitors’ donation to fund his work. Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 8: Rolous Group & Tonle Sap Lake (50km)
Depart from the hotel, crossing the bridge at Old Market to cycle 15km toward Rolous Group. The first 2km, is on the tarmac road toward the bus station. Then, passing the rice field and the village. Rolous Group was the first capital of Angkor Empire during 800 A.D. Visit the Pre-Angkorian temples including Preak Ko, Bakong and Lo Lei. Afternoon, cycling to Tonle Sap Lake. Turn left at the crocodiles farm crossing the bridge. Then cycle on small road along the river through villages, pagodas and schools. This road is good for cycling as to avoid the busy traffic. After cycling 8km, turn right across the bridge to the main road as there is no further access on the small road. Continue cycling toward the hill about 3km (July-December) where the boat stop. (Note: January-June, the water is low and the boat will stop further 3km). Board on the boat to visit the floating village, floating school, fishing farm. After 1 hour boat drive. Return the Siem Reap on the main road to avoid cycling the same road. Overnight in Siem Reap. Meals include: Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Day 9: Siem Reap-Phnom Penh (18km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to board speedboat to Phnom Penh (best from July to February). This boat trip takes 6 hours; the boat has life jacket and toilet. It is one of the best boat trip to cross Tonle Sap lake, one of the biggest fresh water lake in South-East Asia. When the boat leaves the dock, immediately you will be able to view the picturesque floating village. This community comprise of Cambodian, Vietnamese and Muslim minorities. The market, gas station and school are also floating. They move up and down depends on the season. In rainy season, Tonle Sap lake reaches 10,000 squre Km, but in dry season it’s got only 5,000 squre Km. Arrive in Phnom Penh port, afternoon visit Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and National Museum. Overnight in Phnom Penh. (B,L,D)
Day 10: Phnom Penh (35 km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Today be guided through this bustling city to explore the main sights by bike, including Wat Phnom and Cheung Ek killing field. Phnom Penh has got more than 1 million population and the traffic has become very busy now. There is another option to visit the city by van. In the afternoon, visit the Independence Monument, Tuol Sleng Museum and Russian Market. Overnight in Phnom Penh. (B,L,D)
Day 12: Takeo-Chau Doc (78km)
Early breakfast. Fill in water and check visa for Vietnam one more time as Vietnam visa has to be done in advance. Cycle 53km to Phnom Den border crossing point. Take a break in half way for water stop. After immigration, say goodbye to our Cambodian driver. Lunch at the local restaurant at the border. After lunch, cycle to discover along the Mekong Delta road into the beautiful green countryside. Along the way you will see rice fields and water buffalos nearby the road. Arrive in Chau Doc, those with energy to spare can climb Sam Mountain for sunset! Dinner and overnight in Chau Doc. (B,L,D)
Day 13: Chau Doc – Can Tho (50km+cycling)
After breakfast, we leave for the floating houses on upper Mekong river by boat where we can see plenty of catfishes, red snappers… breeding under right their houses. What is an amazing life! Then keep boating to visit the Cham village with about 12.000 people who those are weaving sarongs, hats…by hands as keeping their ancestral tradition. Walk to the mosques that Muslims pray and teach Cham kids in Arabic for a while. Then we start cycling along incredible country roads from Chau Doc to Bachuc along the border, or re-trace back to triton (depending on road conditions). The cycling starts to gently undulate and mountains begin to loom as you ride out off Chau Doc. The presence of Thnot trees indicates the growing proximity to Cambodia and the local people speak Vietnamese as their second lanaguge. This afternoon, you will cycle to the killing fields of Vietnam at Bachuc, where Polpot’s regime massacred over 3,000 Vietnamese in 1978. Dinner and overnight in Can Tho. (B,L,D)
Day 14: Cantho – Travinh (80km+cycling)
After breakfast, there will be time to explore side tracks and trails as the cycling distance today is not far. This gives a great first impression of the “heart of Mekong”. We take first short boat trip to Vinh Long, one of the famous fruits town in Mekong. Then you bike along narrow country lanes, easy dirt tracks and trails. This biking is at its most glorious-through tiny orchards, witness colorful life along the riverside, pedal pass picturesque delta homes, pause to chart with welcoming villagers, clack across innumerable wooden bridges. Cross narrow canals on a local sampan, before finishing at the main ferry for a refreshing boat trips across the expansive Co Chien River. Ride final few km to the very pretty Khmer town of Travinh. Overnight in Travinh. (B,L,D)
Day 15: Travinh – Mytho – Ho Chi Minh (50km+ cycling)
After breakfast, start with a section of biking cuts off road onto gravel and dirt lanes, and weaves around hamlets, across water channels, and through quiet dense vegetation. This makes for superb biking after a ferry across the graping expanse of Cochien river from Travinh, the pretty tree lined town with a large population of ethnic Khmer. Then another section of crossing rivers and canals by numerous, ubiquitous, fascinating ferries, we bike through the route takes us through narrow roads and lanes, past banana plantations, fields of sugar cane, through the lush green landscape of the delta. The ride lead us right into the heart of the rural Mekong before arriving at Mytho – the gateway of the Mekong delta to end our cycling trip. From Mytho, we transfer a couple of hours to Ho Chi Minh City to avoid the busy traffic. TOUR ENDS.
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