Arrive early in the morning and meet your guides and porters. Board an air-conditioned bus for the scenic 1.5-hour countryside ride to My Tho and meet the Aqua Mekong. Settle into your elegantly appointed, river facing suite as the vessel begins to cruise and thus begins one of life's most memorable and photogenic adventures. Take in the beauty of the Mekong as the ship sets sail.
Start the day by paddling through the Cai Be floating market on a sampan, a flat-bottom wooden boat. Then, explore the area on foot or bicycle.
In the afternoon, take a skiff ride to Binh Thanh Island. Observe villagers weaving baskets and mats from reeds and water hyacinths from the Mekong River, go the local temple, and meet local villagers. Before heading back to the Aqua Mekong, stop by a local fish farm and learn how the locals fish directly underneath their floating homes.
After breakfast, take a skiff ride to Tam Nong- the largest bird sanctuary in South Vietnam. This protected national park is home to over 200 waterfowl species as well as one-fourth of the bird species in all of Vietnam. Then cruise through lush cajuput forest. Key a look out for painted storks, rare white-winged wild ducks, lesser adjutants, spot-billed pelicans and sarus cranes-the largest crane species.
The evening is spent on board the Aqua Mekong. Relax by the pool, try a traditional Khmer massage, or listen to a lecture about Vietnam from an expert guide in the lounge.
Welcome to Cambodia! Begin today with a trip to the beautiful island of Koh Oknha Tey. Take a tuk-tuk to a village known for it weaving and silk. You even have an opportunity to witness the entire process, learning how silk starts with worms and ends with a shimmering, beautiful piece of silk. You may also take part in a biking option for travelers interested in exploring the island deeper.
After lunch, cruise further down the Mekong to Preah Prosop, where you may walk through stilt house villages, meet local community members, visit a local brick factory, and visit one of the oldest Buddhist temples in the area. You may also choose to explore Preah Prosop by bicycle.
Shifting gears from the sleepy countryside to this country’s political and economic capital, sail into Phnom Penh, where Art Deco buildings still stand in the shadows of ever-rising skyscrapers and vintage cyclos cruise alongside imported European sports cars. Buddhist temples, French colonial villas and the Royal Palace provide photogenic backdrop to international business and a new generation of boutique hotels, chic shopping and cosmopolitan nightlife.
Then, enjoy an urban adventure on two wheel motorized tuk-tuks while taking in this historic city’s most important sites including the 1866 Royal Palace that is still home to the reigning monarch and its Silver Pagoda, the royal compound’s most famous attraction, so called because in 1962 then Prince Sihanouk ordered the floor inlaid with 5,329 genuine silver tiles. Today the pavilion houses many jeweled statues and images, including the 17th century Emerald Buddha, made of Baccarat crystal, and a life size gold Maitreya Buddha adorned with 9,584 diamonds, the largest of which weighs 25 carats.
Just next door, the National Museum of Cambodia houses the world’s largest collection of Khmer art, much of it removed from Angkor Wat to prevent looting. Here we can linger among the linga, representations of the Hindu deity Shiva, and thousands of other artifacts including an imposing 11th century bronze sculpture of a reclining Vishnu that is considered a monumental example of Khmer statuary.
Return to the Aqua Mekong to pack up and disembark.
|First Deck Mekong Suite||Second Deck Mekong Balcony Suite|