Road Scholar : Home
Voyages to Antiquity: Exotic Southeast Asia

Program Number: 20570RJ
Start and End Dates:
2/12/2015 - 3/4/2015;
Duration: 20 nights
Location: Cambodia/Thailand/Vietnam/Malaysia/Singapore
Price starting at: $6,645.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Ocean Cruises
Meals: 50; 18 Breakfasts, 15 Lunches, 17 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Low Fat; Gluten Free; Low Salt    

On this journey that leads from the temples of Angkor Wat to the vibrant ethnic neighborhoods of Singapore, discover some of the best that Southeast Asia has to offer: the early morning chants of Buddhist monks, the pristine beaches of Thailand, the faded elegance of old colonial buildings, and more.

Activity Particulars

Walking over uneven terrain; standing for up to 90 minutes at a time; stairs without railings; hot and humid conditions.

Itinerary At-a-Glance

Siem Reap (Cambodia), 3 nights; Bangkok (Thailand), 2 nights; aboard Aegean Odyssey, 11 nights; Singapore, 2 nights.

Days 1-2: Flight from the U.S.A.

Days 3-5: Arrival Siem Reap (Cambodia)

Take a field trip to the beautiful temple of Banteay Srey, and thrill in the magnitude of Angkor Wat. Enjoy a boat ride along Tonlé Sap Lake. Lodging: Four-star hotel.

Days 6-9: Flight to Bangkok (Thailand) / embark Aegean Odyssey / At Sea

Pay a visit to the home of silk millionaire Jim Thompson, and experience the early morning chants of monks at Wat Pho. Lodging: Centrally located hotel.

Days 10-12: Ko Samui (Thailand) / Phnom Penh (Cambodia) / At Sea

Enjoy the pristine beaches of Thailand’s second largest island. Walk along the beautiful gardens of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, and view the artworks of the National Museum.

Days 13-15: Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam) / At Sea

Sample the world famous Vietnamese cuisine of Ho Chi Minh City and explore the moving War Remnants Museum.

Days 16-18: Kuantan (Malaysia) / At Sea / Malacca

Explore the beautiful seaside town of Kuantan. Walk through the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Malacca and visit the historic British settlements in Georgetown.

Days 19-21: Singapore / disembark / departure

Explore the three main ethnic regions of Singapore — Malay, Chinese and Indian — and visit their gardens, temples and marketplaces. Lodging: Centrally located hotel.

Aegean Odyssey

The Aegean Odyssey is a premium-class ship especially rebuilt for sailing along shallow coastlines, among remote islands and into small, uncrowded harbors that larger ocean liners can’t reach. Public areas include several gourmet restaurants, library, Internet center, sweeping sun decks, outdoor pool, gym and spa.

Meals and Lodgings
   Tara Angkor Hotel
  Siem Reap, Cambodia 3 nights
   Majestic Grande
  Bangkok, Thailand 2 nights
   Aegean Odyssey
  Aegean Odyssey - At Sea, At Sea
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Aegean Odyssey - At Sea, At Sea
11 nights
   Carlton City Hotel
  Singapore, Singapore 2 nights
 Tara Angkor Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The Tara Angkor Hotel is conveniently located on the road to Angkor, 15 minutes from the airport and a short ride to the center of town. With 206 rooms it is equipped with modern amenities and is elegantly furnished to make your stay luxurious and enjoyable.
  Contact info: Vithei Charles De Gaulle (Road to Angkor Wat)
Siem Reap,   Cambodia
phone: +855 (0) 63 966 661/2
  Room amenities: Each room has individually controlled air conditioning, television, free wireless Internet access, coffee and tea making facilities, mini bar, complimentary bottled water, hair dryer, personal safe, 220 voltage adapters and transformers (available upon request), wardrobes with bathrobe and slippers for your convenience, and ironing board and iron.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a restaurant, spa, lounge, room service, poolside bar, lobby bar, swimming pool, Jacuzzi, fitness center, sauna, complimentary bicycles, business center, hotel-wide wireless Internet access, gift shop, currency exchange, laundry service, shuttle van, and a shoe shine service.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: N/A Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check in time: 2:00 PM

 Majestic Grande
Type: Boutique Hotel
  Description: The Majestic Grande combines contemporary décor and state-of-the-art technology with warm hospitality that is uniquely Thai. It is closely located to major Embassies, banks, and the Queen Sirikit Convention Center, and it is within walking distance to the BTS Sky-train Station, which is linked to the MRT Underground.
  Contact info: 12 Sukhumvit Soi 2
Bangkok,  10110 Thailand
phone: +66 (0) 2 262 2999
  Room amenities: Each room has a satellite television, telephone, mini bar, personal safe, two daily complimentary bottles of water, coffee and tea making facilities, wireless Internet access, and a hair dryer.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a coffee shop, restaurant, bar, laundry and dry-cleaning services, rooftop terrace, outdoor pool, whirlpool, steam room, sauna, gym, and free wireless Internet access.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Aegean Odyssey
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: The Aegean Odyssey offers boutique-style cruising at its best. In contrast to the massive vessels cruising to and from major ports, it is a midsized ship adapted for island and coastal cruising. The Aegean Odyssey can visit smaller, less crowded harbors and sail closer to the coast enabling you to really appreciate the magical views.
  Ship Information: Ship’s Tonnage: 11,563 Length: 461 feet Beam: 67 feet Draft: 20.5 feet Cruising Speed: 18 knots Passenger Decks: 7 Stabilizers: 2 Passenger Staterooms/Cabins: 198 Passengers – lower beds: 378 Classification: Lloyd’s Register Society London Ship’s Registration: Malta
  Contact info: Voyages to Antiquity
1800 SE 10th Avenue, Suite 230
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316 USA
phone: 877-398-1460
  Room amenities: All cabins are equipped with a flat screen TV, air-conditioning, and personal safe. Particular importance is placed on the standard of bedding in cabins. Luxury bedding, including fine duvets, covers and sheets, ample soft pillows and quality towels can be expected. Also, shampoo, bath and shower gel, soap, and shower cap are provided. Your cabin steward is always available. Cabins and suites feature outlets with 220 voltage, using the “European” two round pin plug. Hair dryers are provided in your cabin and electric rollers, curling irons, electric shavers and other small appliances can be used in your cabin. For safety reasons, travel irons are not allowed.
  Facility amenities: Dining: Aegean Odyssey offers many dining facilities: The Marco Polo Restaurant is the ship's more formal restaurant, providing casual country-club elegance for lunch or dinner; The Terrace Cafe offers a combination of indoor and outdoor seating where you can indulge in breakfast, lunch and dinner from the grill or the sumptuous daily buffet. In the evenings, enjoy breathtaking views over dinner at Tapas on the Terrace. *There is a complimentary choice of wine, beer, or soft drinks with your evening meal. There will be a string trio, pianist and casual dancing before and after dinner. You may also wish to partake in afternoon tea, served in the Observation Lounge or enjoy an evening snack and cocktail, available in the Lido and Rendezvous bars. A limited room service menu is available. Special Diets: Please advise us at the time of booking of any special dietary requirements. The ship can usually meet most general requests such as those made with an air carrier; however, this cannot always be guaranteed. Services: Library; outdoor pool; spa; health center, saunas, massage and beauty treatment rooms and early morning yoga on the Lido Deck; elevators; beauty salon; medical center; laundry and pressing services (order form and laundry bag is provided in cabin); lecture theater and cinema and on board shop. Internet: The ship has an Internet center (open 24 hours) and WiFi is available in the reception area. Fees begin at 10mb for $20. As a rough guide you could send around 200 standard emails with no attachments for $20. However, if you start adding medium size web standard photographs (not hi res), each one would be about 1.5mb. There are no refunds for unused capacity. PLEASE NOTE: Due to the nature of satellite connectivity on board a ship, the internet connection is slow, erratic and may be unavailable at times.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Carlton City Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Carlton City Hotel Singapore is strategically located nearby China town and the central business district. The hotel can be easily accessed from the airport (20 km distance) and is a brief walk away from Tanjong Pagar MRT station. The hotel is also near key attractions such as the Singapore Flyer, Marina Bay, and Vivocity Shopping Mall. Carlton City Hotel Singapore has 386 inspiring guest rooms.
  Contact info: 1 Gopeng Street
Singapore,  078862 Singapore
phone: +65 66328817
  Room amenities: Each room has a hair dryer, iron, ironing board, mini bar, bathrobe, bedroom slippers, toiletries, safe box, telephone, TV, Internet access in room.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a restaurant, sky bar, outdoor swimming pool, fitness room, lounge, air conditioning, laundry facilities, fax machine, sauna, shop, Internet access (computers in lobby, wireless in room or public areas), and a safe box.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: TBD Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check out time: 12:00 PM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Siem Reap, Cambodia. Program starts at 6 PM in the hotel lobby. You will be staying at Tara Angkor Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
Singapore, Singapore. After breakfast on the last day. You will be staying at Carlton City Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required. The Voyages to Antiquity Guest Registration Form is required.
  Parking availability:
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
To Start of Program
  Location:  Siem Reap
  Transportation to site: Options for traveling from the Siem Reap International Airport to the Tara Angkor Hotel in Siem Reap include a four seat car for $7 or an eight seat minivan for $10; a tuk tuk from the airport to the hotel is $6. Please call the Road Scholar programming office in Amherst, MA, to book a transfer: 413-253-9736.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Singapore
  Transportation from site: A taxi from the hotel to the Singapore airport costs approx. SGD 25-30 and takes approx. 30 minutes.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: In transit
(Thursday, February 12)
 In Transit: Depart on international flight.

Day 2: In transit
(Friday, February 13)
 In Transit: Continue international flight.

Day 3: Arrival in Siem Reap, Cambodia
(Saturday, February 14)
 Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel. Program orientation and introductions.
Accommodations: Tara Angkor Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 4: Siem Reap, Cambodia / Angkor Wat
(Sunday, February 15)
 Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Field trip to the legendary ancient city of Angkor Wat. Built during the reign of King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, Angkor Wat is constructed following the model of the temple mountain symbolizing Mount Meru, the home of the gods. Inside the temple, the walls are covered with stone carving and bas-reliefs depicting Hindu mythology and the ways Suryavarman II fought during his reign. Angkor Wat is well known for the more than 2,000 Apsara dancers decorating the temple. Construction is thought to have taken around 30 years of intensive labor. Today, Angkor Wat is featured on the Cambodian national flag as it symbolizes the soul of the Khmer people. Continue to explore Ta Prohm, a temple that is unique in that it has been left largely as it was found, overgrown by jungle vines and trees.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Visit the ancient city of Angkor Thom. This city was the last capital of the Great Khmer Empire under the reign of Jayavarman II. It is surrounded by a 26 foot high wall, with each side of the city being 2.5 miles long, forming a perfect square. Enter the city through the ancient South Gate. Continue to the exact center of the city to find the Bayon Temple. This temple is unique because of the 54 towers with four faces representing the 54 provinces of the then Great Khmer Empire. The Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King are also a must, as they are both known for their intricate bas-reliefs. Afterwards, enjoy a very special ceremony in which Buddhist monks will perform a private blessing ceremony for you, wishing you health and safety during your journey.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
Accommodations: Tara Angkor Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Siem Reap, Cambodia
(Monday, February 16)
 Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Travel to the gem of the Angkor area, the beautiful temple of Banteay Srey, which is best viewed in the warm morning light. The so-called "Citadel of the Women" was built between the 11th and 13th century and remains the best preserved temple in Cambodia. It displays some of the finest examples of classical Khmer art and this small temple is noted for its truly remarkable fine bas-reliefs depicting the Hindu god Shiva. Banteay Srey is unique because of the pink sandstone used in its construction and which is not seen anywhere else in Angkor. On the way back to Siem Reap, stop at the Landmine Museum where the museum's founder, Mr. Aki Ra, was a child soldier during the Khmer Rouge regime and is working today as a de-miner. The museum also serves as a rescue center for a number of landmine amputee children that Aki Ra has brought off Phnom Penh's streets or from impoverished rural communities.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Embark on a fascinating boat ride on the Tonlé Sap Lake, where you will learn about life on the lake. Tonlé Sap is South East Asia's largest freshwater lake and its size varies greatly between seasons, sometimes swelling up to four times its original size during the wet season! Visit the small village of Kampong Phluck where you will see houses built on stilts to protect them from Tonlé Sap Lake's ebb and flow. On the way, you will pass floating houses and impressive flooded forests.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
Accommodations: Tara Angkor Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Bangkok, Thailand
(Tuesday, February 17)
 Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Transfer to airport for departing flights to Bangkok on Bangkok Airways 924 at 9:50 AM arriving at 10:45 AM. Coach to hotel.
 Lunch: Lunch in hotel dining room.
 Afternoon: A visit to Jim Thompson's House is a must when in Bangkok. This beautiful, riverside, teak mansion was the former residence of Jim Thompson, the charismatic American silk millionaire who spent years filling it with priceless antiques before his mysterious disappearance in 1967. Situated near the museum is Baan Krua, a Cham Muslim village whose artisans used to weave for Jim Thompson.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
Accommodations: Majestic Grande
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Bangkok, Thailand
(Wednesday, February 18)
 Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: An early start will take you to Wat Pho in time to experience the monks early morning chanting ritual. After this uplifting and often private experience visit the temple grounds and the famous 146 foot reclining Buddha. Continue to the Grand Palace and marvel at the mysterious Emerald Buddha, the most revered Buddha image in Thailand.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Visit Prasart Museum filled with a vast collection of artifacts from throughout Thailand's history as well as contemporary exhibits.
 Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.
Accommodations: Majestic Grande
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8: Bangkok, Thailand / Embark
(Thursday, February 19)
 Breakfast: Breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Enjoy an exhilarating long tail boat ride through the klongs of Bangkok to Nonthaburi in the far north of the city, where the cityscape turns into countryside. Stop the boat to walk through a bustling local market place and discover a riverside temple with an impressive reclining Buddha far from the tourist crowds.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Transfer to Aegean Odyssey for embarkation. Late afternoon Road Scholar orientation to the ship in the "Observation Lounge."
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 9: At sea
(Friday, February 20)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Take advantage of the ship's well stocked library that has a wide selection of volumes covering classical history, literature, art, architecture, and philosophy. The frequently updated collection also includes an extensive reference section as well as modern and classic novels.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Ko Samui, Thailand
(Saturday, February 21)

Note: This is not an organised excursion -- extra logistical information will be provided on board.

 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Ko Samui is an island of natural beauty and charm. This is the perfect place for some time at leisure: beautiful white sand beaches, clean, clear warm water, lush tropical gardens and gentle ocean breezes await you. If you love the beach, this is the place for you. The two largest and commercial beaches on Ko Samui Island are Chaweng and Lamai. A taxi point can be found in Nathon Town. The beaches are approximately 25km away, a 30-minute taxi ride. Other beaches include Bophut Beach, which is known for its fisherman's village and the beaches of Maenam and Choeng Mon, which are both quiet and beautiful on the northern coast. Along the palm-fringed beaches you will also find a number of excellent familyrun restaurants serving traditional – somewhat spicy – southern Thai food. The main shopping destinations can be found on Na Amphoe Road and Chonwithee Road. The shops sell a selection of items ranging from local ceramic ware to beach sarongs and local arts and crafts.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: Enjoy the ship's amenities as it makes its way to Sihanoukville, Cambodia.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Sihanoukville, Cambodia / Phnom Penh
(Sunday, February 22)

Note: Please note that the trip to Phnom Penh is a very long day; those participants wishing a less strenuous excursion can take the Sihanoukville & surroundings field trip instead.

 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Long considered one of the loveliest cities in Indochina, Cambodia's capital is imbued with the feel of Old Asia. It's a lengthy trip, but well worth it to see Phnom Penh's Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and unrivaled cache of Khmer cultural treasures.

A morning drive through the countryside takes you past water buffalo, rice paddies and stilt houses to this port at the confluence of the Mekong River and two tributaries. The hellish days of the Khmer Rouge are gone, leaving a city determined to thrive. Vestiges of French colonial times can still be seen in the tree-lined boulevards. Visit the magnificent National Museum to view the world's finest collection of Khmer artifacts and sculptures from Angkor, including the statue of the Leper King.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: After lunch, discover the majestic Royal Palace, with its Throne Hall where kings and queens once paraded on elephants or in gilded sedans. Visit the Silver Pagoda floored in over 5,000 silver tiles, each weighing over two pounds. This temple is famous for its life sized Buddha in solid gold encrusted with thousands of diamonds.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: At sea
(Monday, February 23)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Enjoy the Observation Deck if the weather is nice. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. Attend a late afternoon Road Scholar cocktail party in the Observation Lounge.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
(Tuesday, February 24)

Note: The Ben Thanh market area is very busy and passengers are advised to take minimal valuables with them and to be wary of pickpockets. The exchange of $10-$20 into local currency is recommended for purchases.

 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: A spectacular arrival in one of Southeast Asia's most exciting cities as the Aegean Odyssey cruises up the Saigon River to berth in the center of Ho Chi Minh City.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: Called Saigon until 1975, this city is a potpourri of pagodas, modern towers and grand old buildings influenced by its French colonial past. Bicycles and motorcycles speed frantically past carts selling all manner of goods from loaves of French bread to crispy roasted ducks.

Get acquainted with the city's incredible mix on this half-day excursion that includes a photo stop at the neo-Romanesque cathedral of Notre Dame. Built in the mid-1800's, the cathedral is the focal point of the city center. Just across the square, visit the Central Post Office, designed by none other than Gustave Eiffel to showcase French colonial style. High vaulted ceilings, colonial furnishings and period pieces accentuate the feeling of being in another place in time.

In sharp contrast to this vibrant city's colonial past is the newly renovated War Remnants Museum. The grounds are dotted with an array of aircraft, tanks and other weaponry left behind. The museum itself extends over three floors and consists primarily of photos, all labeled in English, documenting the Vietnam War and its aftermath.

From the museum, step into the lively world of Ho Chi Minh City today at the Ben Thanh main market, and find everything from coffee beans to bowls of the local noodle soup, pho. If you wish, stay behind to explore and later make your own way back to the ship.

Alternatively, instead of the War Remnants Museum, you may elect to visit the city's Fine Arts Museum.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14: Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
(Wednesday, February 25)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Free time for independent exploration of Ho Chi Minh. Alternatively, the ship will offer an optional excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels, an amazing network of underground tunnels used in guerilla warfare (additional cost, bookable on board).
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: The ship sets sail in the early afternoon. Attend a lecture by a guest speaker.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: At sea
(Thursday, February 26)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Attend a talk by your Road Scholar Group Leader before enjoying the sunshine as the ship makes its way to Malaysia.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 16: Kuantan, Malaysia
(Friday, February 27)

Note: Please cover knees and shoulders when visiting religious sites.

 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Dive into a good book from the ship's library. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: The Malaysian port of Kuantan is a fast developing city and yet it manages to retain its unique age-old charm with modern high rises coexisting harmoniously with pre-war shops and colonial buildings. Kuantan is also a surprisingly lush city and the many parks and green areas give the place a pleasant countryside atmosphere.

After arriving in Kuantan, you will have a photo stop at the Kuil Sri Mariamman Hindu Temple located in the middle of the city. This temple has very interesting and colourfully painted idols of Hindu gods (the intricately painted ceilings are also stunning). Next is the Masjid Negeri, which is the east coast’s most impressive mosque with its distinct dome and minarets in a pastel shade of sky blue and mint green. The State Mosque stands regal as the most prominent structure in the capital.

Kuantan’s modern and historical divide can be seen most clearly at the colonial-styled Courthouse that stands proudly in contrast to the many buildings that have sprouted up around it. Continue to the Esplanade Tanjung Api where, in complete contrast to the hustle and bustle of Kuantan, you will be able to observe life at a local fishing village. Then a scenic drive of the Residential Suburbs where you will have the opportunity to see the Regent and Chief Minister’s residence as we head towards Teluk Chempedak, a famous beach in Kuantan. Here you will find many local stalls selling all kinds of handicraft and local food.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 17: At sea
(Saturday, February 28)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. A chance to relax on deck and enjoy the shipboard guest lectures.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. You may wish to enjoy a treatment at the ship's spa.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 18: Malacca, Malaysia
(Sunday, March 1)

Note: There are approx. 120 shallow steps to reach the ruins of St. Paul’s Church. Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule.

 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Discover the history of Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008, as you visit a ruined Portuguese fort, picturesque Dutch Square and St. Paul's Hill with its sweeping view of the straits that gave this city its name. Malay history is said to have begun with the founding of Malacca in 1403. This once-sleepy fishing village became a stopover for traders from Asia and then Europe. Centuries of colonization influenced the architecture and cultures.

Drive to Dutch Square and a visit to either the 17th-century Stadthuys, once the former governor's residence that is now a History Museum, or the Istana Melaka Museum. Ascend the 120 steps up St. Paul's Hill for spectacular views over the waters once plied by schooners laden with silks and spices.

Visit St. Paul's Church, built to honour St. Francis Xavier, who brought Christianity to Malacca. At Porto de Santiago, view the remains of a Portuguese fortress whose 9-foot-thick walls once encircled the entire hill. Continue to the oldest part of Malacca to visit the Nanking-style Cheng Hoong Teng Temple, one of the oldest Chinese temples in Southeast Asia. Afterwards, there'll be time to wander towards Jonker Street, an intriguing area dotted with antique shops, craft stores and colorful restaurants.
 Lunch: Lunch on board, or explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free time for independent exploration of Malacca.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Prepare belongings for disembarkation.
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 19: Disembark / Singapore, Singapore
(Monday, March 2)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Following disembarkation, explore historic and modern Singapore during this full-day cultural excursion. First visit Merlion Park -- its iconic sculpture, a popular landmark. Next explore Arab Street, home to Singapore's Muslim community with shops selling colorful textiles and other artifacts from throughout the Islamic world. Also visit the Malay Heritage Centre which showcases the culture and history of this sect of Singapore's population.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: After lunch, explore Chinatown -- an area of rich significant and cultural significance. From here, visit Little India where age-old trades still flourish in its alleys. On to the National Orchid Garden where you will view the world's largest display of orchids. Before returning to the hotel, enjoy a photostop at the legendary Raffles Hotel.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
Accommodations: Carlton City Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 20: Singapore, Singapore
(Tuesday, March 3)
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: The focus of today's excursion will be the way of life in this third most densely populated country in the world. First, visit the Singapore City Gallery which features a finely detailed architectural model of the city. Coach to Toa Payoh, a 'New Town' built in the 1960s to address an acute housing shortage. Here view a characteristic layout of the various towns, as well as the apartments, in which typical Singaporeans live. Next, you will take a subway to a nearby housing complex built in the 1990s to accommodate a wealthier segment of Singapore's population. Here you will have the opportunity to visit with locals in their home. For those wishing to explore the city independently, a stop will be made at the Raffles City Shopping Mall en route to return the rest of the group to the hotel.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free time to explore the vibrant and diverse city of Singapore on your own.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner in hotel dining room.
Accommodations: Carlton City Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 21: Departures
(Wednesday, March 4)
 Breakfast: Early breakfast in hotel dining room.
 Morning: Transfer to Singapore's Changi International Airport (SIN) for departing flights.
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
  Singapore Singapore Flyer
Enjoy a beautiful walk along the Marina promenade before getting into the gigantic ferris wheel known as the Singapore Flyer. Delight in the astounding views of the Singapore skyline during the 30 minute ride. Reaching 541 feet, this ferris wheel is the tallest in the world.
  Sultan's Mosque
The Sultan's Mosque is often considered one of the most important mosques in Singapore. Built by the Sultan Hussain Shah of Johore with a grant from Sir Stamford Raffles, this mosque was built in 1825 and can accommodate 5,000 worshippers.
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List

A Dragon Apparent, Travels in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam

Author: Norman Lewis

Description: A classic account of travels and adventure during the last years of French Indochina, strong on atmosphere with wonderfully detailed descriptions of local cultures and archaeological treasures. First published in 1951.

Angkor, Heart of an Asian Empire

Author: Bruno Dagens

Description: An excellent guide to the site, this shirt-pocket encyclopedia of discovery features hundreds of color photographs, illustrations and maps.

Arts of Southeast Asia

Author: Fiona Kerlogue

Description: A handsome guide to the art, architecture, textiles and crafts of Southeast Asia.

Birds of Southeast Asia

Author: Craig Robson

Description: This authoritative, masterfully illustrated guide, featuring 140 color plates covering 1,270 species throughout the region, also includes Malaysia, Burma, Borneo and Indonesia.

Communion, A Culinary Journey Through Vietnam

Author: Kim Fay

Description: Fay recounts in savory detail a five-week journey with two friends from Hanoi to Saigon in search of the traditions, rituals and pleasures of food from local markets and street foods to haute cuisine.

Evening Is the Whole Day

Author: Preeta Samarasan

Description: Set in post-colonial Malaysia, this richly textured debut novel depicts the unraveling of a wealthy family and the six-year-old daughter left reeling from losses and departures. Samarasan's unflinching yet tender examination of one immigrant family's experience exposes the complexities and layered history of Malaysia itself.

Eyewitness Top Ten Singapore

Author: Eyewitness Guides

Description: A compact, illustrated guide in the popular series, featuring favorite attractions. With handy pullout map.

Fodor's Bangkok's 25 Best

Author: Sylvie Franquet, Anthony Sattin

Description: This slim guide to Bangkok includes an excellent pullout map of the center of the city along with essential information on its highlights.

Letters from Thailand, A Novel

Author: Botan, Susan Fulop Kepner (Translator)

Description: A prize-winning novel, first published in 1969 and here newly translated into English. Taking the form of a series of letters back home to his mother, the novel follows the fate of Tan Suang U, a Chinese immigrant in Bangkok at the close of World War II, who marries, raises a family and runs a successful business. The novel, among its many pleasures, depicts daily life in Bangkok's thriving Chinatown.

Phnom Penh, A Cultural History

Author: Milton Osborne

Description: As a one-time resident of Phnom Penh and an authority on Southeast Asia, Milton Osborne provides a colorful account of the troubled history and appealing culture of Cambodia's capital city.

Southeast Asia Map

Author: Nelles

Description: A clear, double-sided map of all of Southeast Asia at a scale of 1:4,500,000.

Temples of Cambodia, The Heart of Angkor

Author: Helen Ibbitson Jessup

Description: Jessup (Art and Architecture of Cambodia) provides the accompanying essays to this oversized portfolio of dazzling color images by Barry Brukoff, who has photographed the monuments of Cambodia since 1963.

The Gods Drink Whiskey

Author: Stephen T. Asma

Description: Asma writes with verve and wit in this eye-opening account of his yearlong stint teaching at the Buddhist Institute in Phnom Penh. His account is both an overview of Theravada Buddhism and a down-to-earth portrait of contemporary Cambodia.

Vietnam Journeys

Author: Charles Fields

Description: Photographer and traveler Charles Fields portrays the cultures and landscapes of Vietnam from the World Heritage Site of Hue and the Phung Hiep floating market to its forests and coastline in stunning color photographs.

Vietnam, A Traveler's Literary Companion

Author: John Balaban, Nguyen Qui Duc

Description: From rainforest to city, these 17 stories from Vietnam's finest writers explore its landscapes, myths and changing traditions.

What the Buddha Taught

Author: Walpola Sri Rahula

Description: A classic account of Theravada Buddhism by a respected monk and scholar from Sri Lanka. Provides translations from original texts with explanations for Western readers. A good foundation for any visitor to Southeast Asia.

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