Top 7 Destinations in Your River Expedition in Vietnam

1. Saigon: You can not finish the book called “Vietnam travel” if you miss out the page written about Saigon. It’s the place where you can find the balance of the traditional and modern values that could not find in any other place in Vietnam.

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2. Sa Dec: Sa Dec was considered as one of the largest cities in the South-western region before the nineteenth century. This destination leaves strong impression on visitors as “a true hidden gem in the Mekong Delta” with busy and authentic market near the river, several remarkable architectures as well as old mansion and merchant house.

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3. My Tho: Known as one of the tourist hubs in “the rice bowl of Vietnam”, My Tho is the capital city of Tien Giang Province. It welcomes travelers to come and discover its own natural beauty, enjoy the idyllic life as well as delicious dishes. This destination is a good option for starting a fantastic trip in Mekong Delta.

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4. Cai Be: Cai Be is a district of Tien Giang Province in Mekong Delta, Vietnam. It does not take you a long time to travel to Cai Be from Ho Chi Minh City by boat. From 1732-1757, it was called Cai Be Dinh which was economic and political centre of South Vietnam. Nowadays, Cai Be not only provides agricultural products like tropical fruits for the whole country but also is an attractive place to those who love travelling.

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5. Vinh Long: Vinh Long is a province in Mekong Delta - the rice bowl of Vietnam. It gains the nice fame for the rustic life, friendly people, idyllic landscape and the temples.

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6. Chau Doc: Located in the lush Mekong Delta region, Chau Doc is not only a popular pilgrimage destination but also a beautiful attraction in Vietnam tourism with charming sights and diverse culture.

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7. Tan Chau: Situated in An Giang Province, Tan Chau town is well-known for its high quality silk which is considered as “Queen” of silk. Coming to this silk making village definitely makes you feel like take a step back in time of industrial revolution.

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Top 11 Destinations in Your River Expedition in Cambodia

1. Siem Reap: Siem Reap is well known as the gateway to Angkor region. According to the tales pass over time, Siem Reap literally means “Defeat of Siam”. It was named by King Ang Chan (1516-1566) as a way to celebrate his great victory after defeating the Siamese. However, in reality when Cambodia was under the rule of Ayutthaya Kingdom, Siem Reap was known as Nakhorn Siam (Siam’s city) not as “Defeat of Siam” in the traditional tales.

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2. Phnom Penh: Once known as the Pearl of Asia, there’s no doubt that Phnom Penh is a tourist hub in the Land of Wonder. This biggest city which is located near the Tonle Sap River is the combination between the past and the present. It offers visitors several cultural and historical attractions as well as a variety of modern services.

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3. Oudong: On the journey of exploring Kingdom of Wonder, Oudong is a must-see destination where you can take step back to the early history of Cambodian through stupas, temples and the stories behind them.

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4. Angkor Ban: Located along the Mekong River, Angkor Ban is a khum meaning commune of Sampov loun District in north-western Cambodia. It’s not a tourist hub, but worth paying a visit to enjoy the rustic life in the small village in which variety of century-old wooden houses still exist.

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5. Wat Hanchey: Wat Hanchey which is considered as a thriving religious site is a complex of both Hindu and Buddhist temples. The oldest part in this complex dating from 7th or 8th century plays an important role in the worship during the time of Chenla Empire.

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6. Kampong Cham: Comparing with Siem Riep and Phnom Penh, Kampong Cham is not really a tourist hub. However, it is considered as an ideal destination for travellers who want to escape the hustle and bustle in the modern life and experience something new and different. Kampong Cham gains the nice fame with tourists by its picturesque landscape, ancient temples as well as the peaceful and laid-back life.

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7. Kratie: Kratie which lies on the bank of Mekong River is a small province in the northeastern Cambodia. It was the part of the Kingdom of Funan until Funan itself was absorbed by Chenla in the 6th century. It is home of several temples built in the 8th century, ancient houses built in Khmer style and colonial French buildings.

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8. Prek Toal: If Siem Reap and Phnom Penh are considered as the lands of ancient structures, Prek Toal located in Battambang Province is known as the natural heaven by travellers especially bird watchers. It gains the nice fame for ecotourism, biodiversity and an area abundant in rare birds.

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9. Koh Chen: Each of destinations in Kingdom of Wonder has it own attraction and Koh Chen is such a location. Friendly people, idyllic landscape and the items which are decorated with meticulous engraving leave a deep impression on visitors when they have an excursion to Koh Chen.

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10. Chong Koh: The small village Chong Koh is situated on the bank of Mekong River, Cambodia. Beside agriculture and fishing, weaving is another piece of the locals’ lives. Thus, it’s not surprising that each family has a loom which is made of wood and powered by foot pedals.

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11. Tonle Sap: Like other destination, the name of the lake also reveals one of its features. In Khmer, tonle literally means large river and sap is fresh or not salty. Thus, Tonle Sap can be understood as the large freshwater river. In Cambodia, the Tonle Sap Lake which is well-known as Great Lake is the combination of lake and river system.

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Top 7 Destinations in Your River Expedition in Laos

1. Luang Prabang: Luang Prabang is located at the confluence of two rivers (Nam Khan and Mekong rivers) in northern Laos and encircled by lush green mountains. One of the legends told that when Buddha stopped to rest in this area, he predicted that one day it would be a prosperous and influential city. In the early day, it was known as Muang Sua, then Xieng Thong.

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2. Vientiane: Vientiane is located on a curve of the Mekong River. The history of the largest capital city related to the myth which is about Prince Thattaradtha. After denying the throne, he left the Lao Kingdom and established a city called Maha Thani Si Phan Phao which later became Udon Thani, Thailand. However, one day, a seven – headed Naga advised the Prince to found another city opposite to the old one on the eastern bank of the river. The prince called the new city “Chanthabuly Si Sattanakhanahud", which was believed to become Vientiane nowadays.

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3. Huay Xai: Located on the banks of the Mekong River, Huay Xai is considered as a particular gateway to the land of million elephants. A travel to Huay Xai is worthwhile since it gives you an unforgettable adventure as well as vivid memories about the local life of Laotian, homemade food, unique villages and the vibrant temples.

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4. Don Khong: Khong Island or Don Khong which is 18km long and 8km wide is the largest and most peaceful one in Si Phan Don area. It is home to approximate 60,000 people living in the two main villages Muang Saen in the west and Muang Khong in the east. Unlike some other islands, in Don Khong, there are some hills rising above sea level, which makes the view of island more idyllic. 

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5. Pakbeng: Located between Huay Xai and Luang Prabang, Pakbeng is easy to reach by boat from those destinations. The odd town between two tourist hubs does not have a lot to offer, but it still attracts visitors by its idyllic landscape, friendly people as well as the natural and wildlife area.

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6. Champasak: From 1st to 9th century, Champasak province was a part of the Funan and Chenla Kingdom respectively. In the period which is from 10th to 13th century, it belonged to the Angkor empire. However, when the Angkor empire fallen, Champasak was under control of Lan Xang. It became an independent kingdom having three monarchs: Soi Sisamut, Saignakuman and Fai Na in 18th century. When Laos was under the French colonial rule, Champasak was known as Bassac or Pasak – the shortening form of its real name.

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7. Pakse: Pakse was the capital of the Champasak Kingdom until 1946 when the Lao Kingdom was established. During the French colonial period, Pakse was recognized as a place having the commercial advantage since it is located in the confluence of two rivers and near Thailand. Thus, the French made it become an administrative outpost in the South and the capital of Champasak province as we know today.

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