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21868
Thailand/Myanmar/Laos/Cambodia

Timeless Cultures of Southeast Asia: Myanmar, Thailand, Laos & Cambodia

Gain a deeper understanding of the cultures of Southeast Asia, as you visit four countries to discover ancient temples, natural wonders, traditional villages and unique traditions.
Rating (4.88)
Program No. 21868RJ
Length
19 days
Starts at
4,899
Flights start at
950
Thailand/Myanmar/Laos/Cambodia

Timeless Cultures of Southeast Asia: Myanmar, Thailand, Laos & Cambodia

Gain a deeper understanding of the cultures of Southeast Asia, as you visit four countries to discover ancient temples, natural wonders, traditional villages and unique traditions.
Length
19 days
Starts at
4,899
Flights start at
950
Program No. 21868 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 17 - Nov 4, 2021
Starting at
4,899
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 17 - Nov 4, 2021
Starting at
5,799

At a Glance

Sandstone temples soar above the thick jungle canopy. Monks in saffron robes make their early-morning alms walk. Beside the Mekong, villagers live off the river much as their ancestors did. In Southeast Asia, ties between today and the timeless are never far off. Experience the historic, the spiritual and the exotic in four fascinating countries on this expert-led journey.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles per day in hot and humid conditions; some stairs and uneven terrain. Climbing into and out of small boats. Walking barefoot on temple grounds.
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 ...

  • Board a traditional boat for a two-day voyage on the Mekong River and experience life in riverside villages.
  • Attend a shinbyu ceremony during which Buddhist boys, clad in colorful royal clothing, become novice monks.
  • Walk among the ruins of the Khmer Empire including Angkor Wat and the “jungle temple” Ta Prohm.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Anthony Zola
Anthony is a senior researcher at the Mekong Environment and Research Institute in Thailand. He earned a BA in international affairs from George Washington University, a MA in economics from Syracuse University, and a certificate in French civilization from the Sorbonne. Coming to Thailand as a Peace Corps volunteer in 1970-72, he has since lived mainly in Thailand and Laos. He has been active in agribusiness and economic development consulting. His work includes auditing social safeguards and livelihood restoration at infrastructure development projects in Laos.

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

Profile Image of Anthony Zola
Anthony Zola View biography
Anthony is a senior researcher at the Mekong Environment and Research Institute in Thailand. He earned a BA in international affairs from George Washington University, a MA in economics from Syracuse University, and a certificate in French civilization from the Sorbonne. Coming to Thailand as a Peace Corps volunteer in 1970-72, he has since lived mainly in Thailand and Laos. He has been active in agribusiness and economic development consulting. His work includes auditing social safeguards and livelihood restoration at infrastructure development projects in Laos.
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.
Cambodia's Curse
by Joel Brinkley
A generation after genocide, Cambodia seemed on the surface to have overcome its history--the streets of Phnom Penh were paved; skyscrapers dotted the skyline. But under this façade lies a country still haunted by its years of terror.
Freedom from Fear and Other Writings
by Aung San Suu Kyi, Michael Aris (Editor)
This collection of speeches, letters and interviews by and about Burma's Nobel Prize-winning human rights leader, edited by her late husband and with forwards by Vaclav Havel and Desmond Tutu, provides essential background to her role in Burmese politics and the situation of the country today.
Arts of Southeast Asia
by Fiona Kerlogue
A handsome guide to the art, architecture, textiles and crafts of Southeast Asia.
From the Land of Green Ghost
by Pascal Khoo Thwe
The astonishing story of a young man's upbringing in a remote tribal village in Burma and his journey from his strife-torn country to the tranquil quads of Cambridge. In lyrical prose, Pascal Khoo Thwe describes his childhood as a member of the Padaung hill tribe, where ancestor worship and communion with spirits blended with the tribe's recent conversion to Christianity.
The Glass Palace
by Amitav Ghosh
In this panoramic novel full of tales and anecdote, Ghosh follows the lives and fortunes of Rajkumar and his family over three eventful generations in Burma, India and Malaysia.
Ancient Angkor
by Claude Jacques & Michael Freeman
A visual and historical guide to the Angkor temple complex containing maps and historical information of Angkor Wat.
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.
Brother Number One: A Political Biography Of Pol Pot
by David P Chandler
A dramatic account of Pol Pot's rise to power in 1975 and his direction of Cambodia's auto-genocide. The book details an absorbing and authoritative portrait of Brother Number One and insight into Cambodia's cruel history.
Southeast Asia Wildlife, A Folding Pocket Guide to Familiar Animals
by James Kavanagh
A laminated, pocket-sized reference to 140 birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians common to Southeast Asian. Each is profiled with detailed illustrations and easy-to-read descriptions.
The Lady and the Peacock, The Life of Aung San Suu Kyi
by Peter Popham
Currently on her first visit to the United States in decades, the Burmese activist has been busy indeed, meeting with President Obama in the Oval Office, with Hillary Clinton and many others, making speeches at Harvard and Yale, and receiving the Congressional Medal of Honor, awarded to her in 2008. Peter Popham's timely biography follows the arc of Suu Kyi's life from her childhood in Rangoon, formative years in India and Oxford, marriage to Michael Aris and her return to Burma, where she has become a potent symbol for the Burmese people. The British journalist doesn’t dodge from Suu Kyi's moral decision to remain in Burma, even as her husband was dying in 1999, and her children Alexander and Kim remained behind in Britain.
The Golden Triangle: Inside Southeast Asia's Drug Trade
by Ko-Lin Chin
The Golden Triangle region that joins Burma, Thailand, and Laos is one of the global centers of opiate and methamphetamine production. Opportunistic Chinese businessmen and leaders of various armed groups are largely responsible for the manufacture of these drugs. The region is defined by the apparently conflicting parallel strands of criminality and efforts at state building, a tension embodied by a group of individuals who are simultaneously local political leaders, drug entrepreneurs, and members of heavily armed militias. Ko-lin Chin, a Chinese American criminologist who was born and raised in Burma, conducted five hundred face-to-face interviews with poppy growers, drug dealers, drug users, armed group leaders, law-enforcement authorities, and other key informants in Burma, Thailand, and China.
Birds of Thailand
by Craig Robson
A compact, comprehensive guide with 128 color plates by a team of illustrators. Robson is also the author of the authoritative Birds of Southeast Asia.
Lao Folktales
by Steven Jay Epstein
a selection of the best-known and best-loved Lao folk tales that have entertained the Lao people for generations.
A Dragon Apparent
by Normal Lewis
This modern classic was once a beautiful account of a distant place: French Indochina in its twilight. Now it is also the story of a lost world. Originally published in 1951, it is said that A Dragon Apparent inspired Graham Greene to go to Vietnam and write The Quiet American. Norman Lewis traveled in Indo-China during the precarious last years of the French colonial regime. Norman Lewis traveled through Saigon to Phnom Penh, and then via Angkor Wat on to Laos. Every person Lewis meets – monks, farmers, royalty, colonialists – become important in his or her own right; the writer's keen eye for telling detail puts the reader right beside him.
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 and Cambodia to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam.
Never Fall Down
by Patricia McCormick
An unforgettable story of Arn Chorn-Pond, who defied the odds to survive the Cambodian genocide of 1975-1979 and the labor camps of the Khmer Rouge. Based on the true story of a young boy, this novel is about a child of war who becomes a man of peace. It includes an author's note and acknowledgments from Arn Chorn-Pond himself.
Burmese Days
by George Orwell
Orwell, a veteran of the Colonial police force in Rangoon, writes with irony and insight in this sharp novel of politics, folly and the British.
Enchanting Laos
by Mick Shippen
Tackles the mountainous and landlocked Laos andits sense of mystery that intrigues traveller's mind. Regarded as Southeast Asia'ssleepy backwater for many years.
Twilight over Burma, My Life as a Shan Princess
by Inge Sargent, Bertil Lintner (Introduction)
A memoir (though told in the third person) of Inge Sargent, an Austrian who in 1953 married Sao Kya Seng, the princely leader of Shan, an ethnic enclave in the hill country of northeastern Burma. A fascinating story.
The Burma Chronicles
by Guy Delisle
Posted to Burma with his Doctors Without Borders wife and young son, Delisle captures the absurdities, challenges and routines of everyday life in Burma in bold black-and-white panels in this droll graphic travelogue, his third.
The Piano Tuner
by Daniel Mason
In this transporting first novel, a mild-mannered tradesman is seduced by late Victorian Burma. Mason's complex, absorbing tale dives into the world of 19th-century colonial Burma, its traditions, trappings, personalities and politics.
First They Killed My Father
by Loung Ung
A heart-wrenching historical autobiography that recounts the brutality of war. Told from the perspective of a child, one who is thrust into situations that she doesn't understand, as she is only five years old when the terror begins. Loung Ung made many difficult journeys during her Cambodian youth, starting with being evacuated from her hometown of Phnom Penh. More meaningful were the journeys of self, which led her from a life as the child of a large and privileged family to that of an orphan and work camp laborer.
Art & Architecture of Cambodia
by Helen Ibbitson Jessup
Complemented by numerous photographs of freestanding statuary and illustrations of the temples, Jessup’s history of Cambodia from the perspective of Khmer art is a wonderful story for those interested in Cambodian religion and culture.
A Short History of Laos, The Land in Between
by Grant Evans & Milton Osborne
A comprehensive history of Laos from the pre-modern dynastic era to the present day
Burma, Rivers of Flavor
by Naomi Duguid
A culinary adventurer, Naomi Duguid presents the food, local markets, people and culture of Burma in this exceedingly informative (not to mention beautiful) cookbook and cultural guide. The 125 personable recipes (most get at least a page) are interspersed with tales and photographs from her many travels in the region. Her first solo venture (she parted ways with husband and co-author Jeffrey Alford a few years ago), Burma, Rivers of Flavor, like Beyond the Great Wall and Mangoes & Curry Leaves introduces a new world through its food.
Where China Meets India
by Thant Myint-U
From their very beginnings, China and India have been walled off from each other: by the towering summits of the Himalayas, by a vast and impenetrable jungle, by hostile tribes and remote inland kingdoms stretching a thousand miles from Calcutta across Burma to the upper Yangtze River.
In Buddha's Land
by Moe Min
This beautiful, illustrated portrait of monuments, monasteries and rituals is both a striking visual overview of Buddhism as practiced in Burma, and a splendid introduction to the country.
The Ravens
by Christopher Robbins
An in-depth look in to the American government’s‘secret war’ in Laos from 1961-75.





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