Angkor Wat & the Mekong River: The Wonders of Cambodia & Vietnam

On a riverboat voyage along the legendary Mekong River, meet the people and discover the places that make Cambodia and Vietnam two of the most fascinating countries in Southeast Asia.
Rating (5)
Program No. 19033RJ
15 days
Starts at
Special Offer
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Flights start at

At a Glance

Watch in wonder as the natural beauty, historic temples, and unique cultures of Southeast Asia come alive before your very eyes. Cast off on a riverboat journey along the mystic Mekong River as you discover gems in storied Vietnam and striking Cambodia. Sample scrumptious Pho and other regional specialties, explore floating villages and spiritual landmarks, and spend three full days in Siem Reap, home to the remarkable Angkor Wat temple complex, all while examining how ever-changing modern culture is melding with centuries-old traditions and values along the way.

Extend Your Adventure

This program offers an optional program extension.

Extension: Northern Vietnam Discovery

Enjoy three additional nights in Northern Vietnam, immersing yourself in tranquil villages, traditional art, sacred temples and Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Keep the Pace: For people who can walk as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail. Involves walking on uneven sidewalks and stairs without railings. Climbing ramps and stairs to board and get off boat. Hot and humid conditions. <br><br> On Your Feet: For people who can walk as much as 1.5 miles a day, getting on and off of buses and sitting and standing for at least 3-4 hours per day. Involves walking on uneven sidewalks and stairs without railings. Climbing ramps and stairs to board and get off boat. Hot and humid conditions.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Go ashore in traditional villages along the beautiful Mekong River to discover their cultural heritage and learn their way of life.
  • Explore the magnificent temples at the Angkor Wat complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with an expert temple instructor.
  • Learn about how modernity is shaping traditional cultures in both city and village life.

General Notes

Please note that some dates operate in reverse. Looking to extend your stay? Continue your adventure on "Extension: Northern Vietnam Discovery" (#14574).
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Davuth (Bros) Peach
Davuth (nickname Bros) was born and raised in Siem Reap. After training in hospitality in 1992 and working as an interpreter for the United Nations national election in 1993, he knew that he was interested in the English language. He thought working in the travel industry would be a great way to immerse himself in that interest. Bros has welcomed visitors to Cambodia since 1998 and has been one of Road Scholar participants’ favorite Cambodian group leaders. Bros enjoys reading, playing volleyball, farming and gardening.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Davuth (Bros) Peach
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Vietnam, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by John Balaban, Nguyen Qui Duc
From rain forest and rural countryside to the cities, these 17 stories from Vietnam's finest writers explore its landscapes, myths and changing traditions.
Vietnam, Rising Dragon
by Bill Hayton
The veteran BBC newsman covers the tangled politics, rapidly changing economy, culture, history and people of Vietnam with great insight in this timely portrait of a nation in transition.
Communion, A Culinary Journey Through Vietnam
by Kim Fay
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.
Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia Map
by Nelles
A convenient, double-sided map of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam at a scale of 1:1,500,000, with city maps of Hanoi, Vientiane, Ho Chi Minh City, Luang Prabang, and Phnom Penh. Includes the eastern portion of Thailand and Bangkok.
Birds of Southeast Asia
by Craig Robson
This authoritative, masterfully illustrated guide, featuring 140 color plates covering 1,270 species throughout the region, also includes Malaysia, Burma, Borneo and Indonesia.
The Quiet American
by Graham Greene
A classic, this is the most famous Western work of fiction on Vietnam. Greene writes of a love triangle between a war correspondent, his Vietnamese consort and an optimistic young American during the last days of French rule.
Fire in the Lake
by Frances FitzGerald
A classic historical, political and cultural portrait of the Vietnam War, seen through the eyes of the Vietnamese. Winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award, FitzGerald, a staff writer at the New Yorker and a reporter in Vietnam, presents a vivid image of a revolution and a clear-sighted case for why the U.S offensive was doomed from the start.
Lonely Planet Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos & the Greater Mekong
by Nick Ray
This compact practical guide covers the entire Mekong from the heights of Yunnan to Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.
The Mekong, Turbulent Past, Uncertain Future
by Milton Osborne
A cultural history of the great river from prehistory to European exploration, colonial tensions and modern challenges. It's an engaging introduction to the history of Southeast Asia.
The Gods Drink Whiskey
by Stephen T. Asma
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.
A Traveller's History of Southeast Asia
by J.M. Barwise, Nicholas J. White
A compact history of the region, including the Khmer and the various ancient kingdoms that produced Borobudur, Angkor and other architectural marvels.
Cambodia's Curse, The Modern History of a Troubled Land
by Joel Brinkley
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Joel Brinkley returns to Cambodia a generation after the fall of the Khmer Rouge regime to report on the country's continuing struggle to recover from its past.
Vietnam Journeys
by Charles Fields
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.
Temples of Cambodia, The Heart of Angkor
by Helen Ibbitson Jessup, Barry Brukoff (Photographer)
Jessup (Art and Architecture of Cambodia) provides the accompanying essays to this oversized portfolio of dazzling color images by Barry Brukoff, who has been photographing the monuments of Cambodia since 1963.
The Eaves of Heaven, A Life in Three Wars
by Andrew X. Pham
Pham recounts the story of his father's life during the French occupation, Japanese invasion and the American War, weaving such momentous events with anecdotes from his childhood and details of family, friends, food and daily life.
Eyewitness Guide Vietnam and Angkor Wat
by Eyewitness Guides
Featuring innovative site diagrams, local maps and hundreds of color photographs, this handy companion introduces the culture, history and attractions of Vietnam.
A Dragon Apparent, Travels in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam
by Norman Lewis
A classic account of travels and adventure during the last years of French Indochina, strong on atmosphere and including wonderfully detailed descriptions of local cultures and archaeological treasures. First published in 1951.
Arts of Southeast Asia
by Fiona Kerlogue
A handsome guide to the art, architecture, textiles and crafts of Southeast Asia.
The River's Tale, A Year on the Mekong
by Edward Gargan
A personal, probing chronicle of a 3,000 mile journey on the river from its source in China through Tibet, Burma, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam.
The Road of Lost Innocence
by Somaly Mam
Sold into servitude by her grandfather, Mam recounts the experiences of her early life, her awakening as an activist -- and work to rescue thousands of women and children in Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Laos.

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