Join Mekong Navigator for 7 incredible nights of Mekong river cruising from My Tho (Saigon) to Kampong Cham (Siem Reap)!
Depart from SYD MEL BNE ADL
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Discover an urban oasis filled with carefully curated amenities at Renaissance Riverside Hotel Saigon. Luxurious and cosmopolitan, our 5-star hotel invites you to experience the best of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Our enviable location in District 1's financial and commercial hub places guests near attractions like Ben Thanh Market, the National History Museum and Saigon Opera House. After a busy day in Ho Chi Minh City, retreat to spacious hotel rooms and suites, which feature indulgent bedding, floor-to-ceiling windows and high-speed Wi-Fi; many boast views of Saigon River.
At 08:30am you are met at the lobby of your hotel for the exploration of city.
Beginning in the centre of the city, the first stop on today’s itinerary is Reunification Palace. Formerly named the Presidential Palace, this important city landmark was assured its place in history on 30th April 1975, when the first North Vietnamese tanks rumbled past, signalling the Fall of Saigon and ultimately the end of the Vietnam War. Now a museum complete with period meeting areas, war rooms and a basement communication centre, after your visit, walk the short distance to Notre Dame Cathedral. At the centre of HCMC’s government district, this romantic church dates back to the late 19th century and is a popular backdrop for wedding photographs. Across the street from the cathedral is the city’s striking French colonial-era post office, whilst Hotel de Ville de Saigon, officially Ho Chi Minh City Hall, is another of the city’s more prominent buildings. The Museum of Vietnamese History is housed in yet another fine example of Sino-French architecture. Dating back to the 1920s, it contains an excellent series of exhibits dating from the Bronze Age to the Nguyen dynasty, the last ruling family of Vietnam.
As an alternative to the Museum of Vietnamese History, visit the elegant Fine Arts Museum with its impressive collection of ancient and modern art and sculptures, or the War Remnants Museum, which is primarily dedicated to the Vietnam War but also includes exhibits dating back to the French colonialist period and the first Indochina War.
The final stop today is the unforgettable Jade Emperor Pagoda. With the pungent smell of incense hanging heavy in the air and an interior packed full of ornate carvings and fierce-looking statues, this Taoist temple is one of the most atmospheric places of worship in the city.
After lunch at a local restaurant, transfer back to your hotel or alternatively be dropped off at Ben Thanh market for personal exploration and a spot of souvenir hunting.
Anantara Angkor Resort is an all-suite boutique nestled in verdant gardens on the outskirts of Siem Reap. Only 15 minutes from the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor, this luxury hotel in Siem Reap is the closest hotel to Angkor Wat temple – the perfect base for days spent exploring the site by tuk-tuk, Vespa or helicopter. Find remote ruins with your Temple Guru. Explore the best street foods and boutiques with the Streetwise Guru. Relax in comfort after the day's adventures with a blissful in-suite spa treatment or signature pampering at the award-winning Anantara Spa.
This morning (08h00-12h30), visit Angkor Wat, the largest temple in the world, with a volume of stone equaling that of the Cheops pyramid in Egypt. It is unlike all the other Khmer temples in that it faces west, and is inspired by 12th Century Hinduism. Its symmetrical towers are stylized on the modern Cambodian flag. Conceived by Suryavarman II, Angkor Wat took an estimated 30 years to build. It is generally believed to have been a funeral temple for the king. It has been occupied continuously by Buddhist monks and is well preserved. Intricate bas-reliefs surround Angkor Wat on four sides. Each tells a story. The most celebrated of these is the Churning of the Ocean of Milk, which is located on the east wing. In it the Naga serpent, is twisted by demons and gods to spurt out the elixir of life.