South East Asia Loop

Intrepid Travel Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
95%
Travel Style: Array Mixed
Physical Level: Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment. Easy
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
30 days
From: $ 4,405 $ 147 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • This combination trip includes trips in Vietnam & Cambodia that are some of the most popular in the entire Intrepid range. Travel by boat, train, plane, private minibus, taxi and even on the back of a motorbike!
  • Angkor Wat. Need we say more? As well as a guided tour, you'll also have a pass to cover your whole time in Siem Reap. So you can explore this incredible temple complex as much and as often as you like.
  • Settle in for the night and experience overnight train journeys, starting from Hanoi and Bangkok and waking up ready to head out and explore Chiang Mai and Hue.
  • The two-day boat journey down the iconic Mekong River passes incredible rural scenery and is one of the must-dos to truly experience South East Asia.
  • Discover the mysterious beauty of the Lao jungle as you walk side by side with recently rescued elephants on stroll through their natural habitat.
  • Sample local food wherever you go, from a seafood dinner on Halong Bay, street snacks at markets, a meal at a buddhist nunnery, coconut candy and tropical fruits in the Mekong Delta, and dinner at KOTO restaurant.
  • The perfect blend of included sights and free time to make your own discoveries in some of our favourite destinations, like Hoi An and Luang Prabang.
  • Discover Kampong Luong and the countryside around Battambang with a visit to a floating village and a bike ride around farms and cottage industries.
  • Have expert advice on hand the whole way with an experienced local leader to help you get the best out of your time in South East Asia, like Channa: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/channa-intrepid-leader-cambodia/
  • Travel from Vietnam to Thailand, experiencing the contrasts between three of the region’s most fascinating countries.

Short Description

Join us as we travel into the heart and soul of South East Asia. Starting off in Bangkok, get lost in the chaos of Thailand's capital city before succumbing to the slightly more relaxed pace of Chiang Mai. Cruise along the Mekong River to reach peaceful Luang Prabang, a colourful town dotted with monks, pop-up stalls and French-inspired eateries. In Vietnam, cruise through dramatic karst scenery on a boat tour of Halong Bay, travel back to the time of Vietnam’s emperors in Hue, soak up the old-world charm of Hoi An and be wowed by the endless energy of Ho Chi Minh City. Then discover Cambodia's fascinating history and culture in Phnom Penh's bustling streets and in the awe-inspiring temples of Angkor, before wrapping up the adventure back in Thailand.

Style Small group tour
Off the beaten track trips will stretch your comfort zone. They don't always feature tourist highlights, but dive deeper into local life and culture.
Itinerary Focus Off the Beaten Path
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value (3*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City Bangkok
End City Bangkok

Itinerary

Day 1 Bangkok

Sa-wat dee! Welcome to Thailand. Thailand's bustling capital, Bangkok, is famous for its tuk-tuks, khlong boats and street vendors serving up delicious local food. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm, if you arrive earlier, why not venture out into this enigmatic city. Bangkok has so much to offer those with time to explore, so perhaps arrive a day or so early to uncover the Chinatown area, visit the magnificent (but very crowded) Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, wander down the tourist mecca of Khao San Road, indulge in a Thai massage or see the backstreets of Bangkok by bike on an Urban Adventure. Find out more at urbanadventures.com. After the meeting tonight, gather your fellow travellers together and tuck into some into world famous street food for our first optional dinner.

Day 2 Bangkok - Overnight train

Begin the day with a 1-hour river cruise down the Chao Phraya River to explore the famous ‘khlongs’ (canals). Life along these canals seems a world away from the chaotic streets of the capital. Pay a visit to Wat Pho, one of the Bangkok temples, with a 46-metre long gold-plated Buddha reclining inside. Even the feet of this statue are incredible, three metres long and intricately decorated with mother of pearl. The temple grounds are equally fascinating, filled with beautifully decorated stupas, halls, and shrines. This evening you’ll head north to Chiang Mai on an overnight train journey, accommodated in a sleeper carriage (approximately 13 hours). The carriages are air-conditioned, with bunk beds; clean sheets, blanket and pillow are provided. Your baggage travels in the carriage with you. There is a food and drink service available on board. Sometimes the air conditioning can make the carriage quite cold so you may want to bring a warm layer of clothing.

Day 3 Chiang Mai

The most vibrant city in northern Thailand, Chiang Mai has many famous temples and an interesting old city area. Renowned for its lively cafe scene and extremely welcoming locals, this place captivates many travellers. First, embark on a scenic, winding drive up a mountain (around 45 minutes) to one of the country's most stunning temple complexes, Doi Suthep. A 300-step naga-guarded stairway leads you to the temples, and the climb is well worth the effort. The hypnotic atmosphere of chanting Buddhist monks and sweeping views of the city make this a most memorable experience. After making our way back down from the temple, check in to the hotel and plan the rest of your time here. In the evening you can choose to wander through the enormous, colourful Night Bazaar or perhaps relax at a fine restaurant along the riverfront. Make sure to sample some delicious traditional northern Thai food – the signature dish is kao soy, yellow wheat noodles in a curry broth, traditionally served with chicken or beef.

Day 4 Chiang Mai

Today is free for you to explore and there are plenty of optional activities available. Perhaps join a local cooking class today and discover the secrets of real Thai cuisine, you'll learn the key ingredients, how to use them, and what to use in their place if you can’t get them at home. As well as taking your own comprehensive recipe book with you after the class, you'll feast on the fruits of your labour for lunch. Get active with a bicycle tour to discover the city and surrounding countryside from a different perspective, or be spirited away on an early morning Chiang Mai tour that puts you at the epicentre of Buddhist rituals. Learn to meditate, offer alms to monks, and make an offering at a temple. Also popular is the Jungle Flight ziplining and the lovely Elephant Nature Park.

Day 5 Chiang Khong

Take a journey through rural countryside to the Thai border town of Chiang Khong (approximately 5.5 hours). Formerly known as 'Juon', peaceful riverside Chiang Khong remains an important market town for the surrounding hill tribes and for trade with Laos. Stretch your legs with a stroll around town, and if you find yourself with time, then Wat Phra Kaew and Wat Luang are both well worth a visit while you’re here. Tonight, why not enjoy a final Thai drink and dinner, while Laos beckons from across the mighty Mekong.

Day 6 Mekong River - Pak Beng

After crossing into Laos and for the duration of our time in the country we will be joined by additional Laos guides – a government requirement. Board a slow boat for the 2-day journey down the mighty Mekong River to Luang Prabang. The journey is relaxed, so you can experience the slow pace of village life and the breathtaking scenery along the river up close. The river boat is basic in nature, with a toilet, covered roof, and open sides to take in the fresh air. There are seats in the front of the boat and a small open area in the back where you can have a nap on the mat, play cards, read or have lunch. Dock at the small town of Pak Beng (after about 6 hours) to spend the night. Hmong and tribal Thai people are frequently seen on the main streets, where vendors sell local textiles and handicrafts.

Day 7 Mekong River - Luang Prabang

Reboard the boat and cruise to the Pak Ou Caves. An important religious site overlooking the river at the junction of the Mekong and Ou Rivers, the revered Pak Ou Caves consist of two sacred limestone caverns filled with Buddha images of all styles and sizes, brought by devoted villagers over the centuries. The lower cave, known as Tham Ting, is entered from the river by a series of steps and can easily be seen in daylight. The higher cave, Tham Phum, is deeper and requires a torch for viewing. Continue on to the former royal capital of Luang Prabang (approximately 7 hours total journey time). This atmospheric World Heritage-listed city is a favourite of many travellers. Nestled in the hills of northern Laos on the confluence of the Mekong and Khan rivers, the city is claimed to be ‘the best preserved city in South East Asia’ by UNESCO. The city and its people retain a refined, yet relaxed, air and it’s a wonderful place to wander the streets into boutiques, cafes and small shops. Stay in a hotel tonight and if you are feeling energetic, climb Mt Phousi for some sunset views – the large hill that dominates Luang Prabang's skyline, topped by a glittering golden stupa. You can climb the 328 zigzag steps up to the sacred gilded stupa and big drum of the Phu Si Temple for a panoramic view of Luang Prabang and its surrounds.

Day 8 Luang Prabang

Once the heart and soul of the ancient Lao Kingdom (Lan Xang) and designated a World Heritage site in 1995, Luang Prabang is endowed with a legacy of historic red-roofed temples and French-Indochinese architecture, not to mention some of the country's most refined cuisine, a multi-ethnic population and rich culture. Rise with the sun this morning and witness a traditional alms giving ceremony. View the procession of saffron-robed monks on their daily outing collecting food offered by devotees, a practice that dates back centuries. The offerings must be collected early, as the monks cannot eat anything after midday. By giving food to a monk, it is believed you ‘het bon’ (make merit) which will be carried over into the next life. Your leader will guide you through the do’s and don’ts and help you to take part in this alms giving tradition. Return back to your hotel for breakfast and a free morning. In the afternoon, head south of town and stop for a sweet (socially responsible) treat at Laos Buffalo Dairy, an enterprise that works with the surrounding villagers by renting their buffalo, in order to produce delicious products including yoghurt, cheese and ice cream. The Dairy ensures a regular income for locals while ensuring the buffalo and their calves are well looked after. Why not contribute to this local business by purchasing an ice cream! Continue on to the beautiful Kuang Si Falls, a picturesque, multi-level cascade that offers fantastically blue pools that are perfect for a mid-afternoon dip. Back in Luang Prabang this evening you’ll have free time to make further discoveries, including visiting the popular night market.

Day 9 Luang Prabang

This morning, experience a wonderful local elephant project in nearby Mandalao that will give you a new perspective and profound understanding of these magnificent beasts. Discover the mysterious beauty of the Lao jungle as you walk side by side with recently rescued elephants on stroll through their natural habitat – a perfect way for these happy creatures to enjoy their freedom after decades of hard labour in logging camps. Begin by leaving Luang Prabang for the village of Xieng Lom (approximately 30 minutes) before taking a quick boat ride across the Nam Khan River where you’ll be introduced to your new gigantic companions. Feed them some special treats (a sure way to win their friendship) followed by a gentle, therapeutic walk, that offers you the opportunity to absorb their calming energy as you wander along a small dirt path through the surrounding flora and fauna, past traditional farms and the Huay Nok stream – where you may be able to spot elephants splashing around in the water as they cool off from the hot Lao sun! As you prepare to start your walk back to Mandalao, say goodbye to your new friends. Return to Luang Prabang in the afternoon and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

Day 10 Vang Vieng

Take a private minivan through dusty villages and winding mountain roads to Vang Vieng (approximately 7 hours). The mountain scenery is impressive, but the road can be rough, especially as attention is now being diverted from maintaining the roads to building the new railway from China. Situated on the Nam Song River, Vang Vieng is surrounded by towering limestone karsts and is a great place to enjoy being out in and surrounded by nature. After checking in to the hotel, use tonight to plan out your next few days with your group and leader.

Day 11 Vang Vieng

There’s plenty to do in and around Vang Vieng, known as an adventure town thanks to its unique and varied surrounding country. The area is renowned for its caves, many of which are easily accessible from the town. Perhaps the most famous is the cave of Tham Chang, a beautiful cavern fed by a natural spring making it a perfect spot for a refreshing swim. Hire bicycles to explore further afield, hike the trails to nearby lookout points, join a day trip to go kayaking on the river, or you can visit an organic mulberry farm just outside town and enjoy a meal there.

Day 12 Vientiane

Continue by private minibus to the country's capital, Vientiane (approximately 3.5 hours). Possibly Asia's most laidback capital, even here everything seems to be conducted at a relaxed pace. Vientiane has a wealth of cultural delights to discover on foot, or for the less energetic, by jumbo (tuk-tuk). Faded colonial mansions, tree-lined boulevards and old temples create an atmosphere of timelessness, particularly in the older part of town along the Mekong River. Pay a visit to Wat Si Saket, the oldest temple still standing in Vientiane and home to almost 7000 Buddha images. Visit COPE vistors centre, an organisation dedicated to assistance those who have been injured by the multitude of unexploded ordinance across the country. This is an excellent cause and a chance to educate yourself about Laos' devastating war history as well as buy a snack or drink from their Karma Cafe. This evening, maybe join your fellow travellers for dinner tonight.

Day 13 Hanoi

Today you'll fly from Vientiane to Hanoi (approx 1 hour). Please note you will be unaccompanied on this flight. In the arrivals hall of Hanoi Airport you will be met by an Intrepid representative, who will take you to your Hanoi hotel. The flight usually arrives into Hanoi in the late afternoon. As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and you're welcome to attend, as this is a great chance to meet your new fellow travellers. The welcome meeting is followed by a group dinner at KOTO restaurant. This organisation is dedicated to developing the hospitality careers of disadvantaged youth.

Day 14 Halong Bay

Travel by private minibus to World Heritage-listed Halong Bay, which is dotted with sandy coves, grottoes and 1600 limestone islands formed over millennia by wind and water erosion (approximately 4 hours). On arrival, pay a visit to the Green Life Centre, dedicated to cleaning up rubbish left in Halong Bay and turning it into beautifully crafted and useful items. Have a chat with the host of the centre and her colleagues to learn more about their mission, then try your hand at making your own bag from discarded materials. After your visit, board a private boat and cruise the bay, exploring Surprise Cave and perhaps even enjoying a swim from Ti Top Island Beach during the warmer months. Access to Surprise Cave is via staircases. Once inside the cave the pathways are a little uneven and slippery. To end the day, spend an evening aboard the boat beneath the night sky. What better way to get to know your fellow travellers than an old school sleepover in an unforgettable location?

Day 15 Hanoi – Overnight train

Return by boat to Halong Bay. At approximately midday, return to Hanoi by bus. Arrive late this afternoon and enjoy free time until tonight’s train voyage. Be sure to grab a bowl of pho while you’re in town and slurp down this local specialty made from broth, noodles and meat. Maybe chill by Hoan Kiem Lake until you board an overnight train to Hue this evening.

Day 16 Hue

Arrive in Hue at approximately 11 am and transfer to the hotel. Once the imperial capital of Vietnam, Hue holds the treasures of the country’s royal past. Enjoy free time in the morning to rest or explore. If you choose the latter (and who can blame you) the bustling Dong Ba Market is a great place to sample some of the specialties that once graced the Nguyen emperors' tables like banh khoai (royal rice cake). Reunite with the group to visit the war-damaged ruins of the Imperial Citadel, a sprawling city-within-a-city which contains the remains of temples, state houses and the emperor’s palace.

Day 17 Hue

See Hue like a local – from the back of a motorbike! Straddle the saddle and whiz around town with a local guide, taking in historic and contemporary sights along the way. Stop at Thanh Toan to see the 18th-century covered bridge and villagers shopping at their local market. Visit the 17th-century active Buddhist monastery of Thien Mu Pagoda and see the car that belonged to Thích Quang Duc, the monk who self-immolated in 1963 in protest against the treatment of Buddhists by the South Vietnamese regime. For lunch, savour a vegetarian feast in a nunnery. Finish at the lakeside royal tomb of Emperor Tu Duc before heading back to town.

Day 18 Hoi An

This morning travel by bus through coastal rice paddies and the spectacular Hai Van Pass (approximately 3 hours). After a photo stop en route, arrive into Hoi An. Recently declared a World Heritage site, Hoi An was a major international trading port during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Today, parts of the beautifully-preserved town retain the feel of centuries past. It's also a shopping mecca, famous for its plethora of tailors. On arrival your leader will take you on a sightseeing walk through the Old Town to visit a handful of the city's major attractions. You’ll also be given a sightseeing pass so you can further explore select attractions at your leisure.

Day 19 Hoi An

Today is a free day to explore Hoi An. Maybe browse the cobbled streets and art galleries or hire a bike and cycle through rice paddies out to Cua Dai Beach. Maybe browse for paintings, ceramics and colourful cloth lanterns in the town’s markets and preserved Chinese shophouses. If you’re craving a new look, you could pay a visit to one of the hundreds of tailors and get something special made. Hoi An is also known for its delicious regional food, so be sure to enjoy a meal at a riverside restaurant or perhaps partake in a cooking class.

Day 20 Ho Chi Minh City

Today take a short, early morning flight to Ho Chi Minh City (approximately 1.5 hours). Formerly known as Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City has a fascinating history and is arguably Vietnam’s capital of commerce and culture. After landing, take a sightseeing tour around the city by bus. Pass the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral and the Opera House, then stop in at the War Remnants Museum to discover some of the sobering stories of the 20-year-long Vietnam/American War.

Day 21 Mekong Delta – Ho Chi Minh City

This morning head out on a day trip to explore the Mekong Delta. Board a private boat to Ben Tre to visit the coconut gardens and stop at a local home to sample tropical fruits and coconut jams. Afterwards, paddle in sampans (small rowing boats) past coconut trees along the Mekong Delta. Take a tuk-tuk tour around the villages and learn about rural life and the industry created around coconut products like brooms and coconut fibre mats. Eat lunch at a restaurant in the heart of the Delta, sampling regional specialties such as the famous elephant ear fish. Cruise the major waterways to Ben Tre boat pier, then return by bus to Ho Chi Minh City. This evening, perhaps head out to sample some local specialties as a final farewell with your fellow travellers and leader.

Day 22 Ho Chi Minh City

Today you may be required to move to a different hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, for the next section of your trip. Your leader will let you know if this is the case, and will help with the transfer to the next hotel. You have a free day to consider many optional activities. One of these options is to take an Urban Adventures tour to the Cu Chi Tunnels outside the city. This underground tunnel network in the middle of the jungle was used by the Viet Cong during the war. As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group will change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and you're welcome to attend, as this is a great chance to meet your new fellow travellers.

Day 23 Phnom Penh

Travel by public bus across the border, through rural Vietnam and Cambodia and onto Phnom Penh (approximately 10 hours including two border crossings and lunch). Cambodia's capital city is set on a major junction of the Mekong and Tonle Sap rivers and boasts some fine examples of French-inspired architecture. If you're looking for a tasty beverage on arrival, head to the Foreign Correspondents' Club for a mojito on the rooftop or if you're in the mood for shopping, stop in at the art-deco Psar Thmei (Central Market) or travel out to Psar Tuol Tom Pong (the Russian Market) for the best range of local souvenirs.

Day 24 Phnom Penh

Today, confront Cambodia's tragic past on a guided tour of the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (S21), a former school which served as a Khmer Rouge torture centre. It's estimated that more than 20,000 people were held and tortured here. You’ll also head out to the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek, where a stupa made up of some 8000 human skulls marks the execution ground for the torture victims of Tuol Sleng. Afterwards, you may wish to learn about a brighter period in Cambodian history from an optional visit to the Royal Palace and Silver Pagoda. Wat Phnom, shrouded in myth, is equally worth a visit, as is the National Museum with its excellent Khmer collection. Cyclo tours around the city are a great alternative to walking and generally include the Central Market, US Embassy, Wat Phnom, Mekong riverfront, Independence Monument and Royal Palace.

Day 25 Battambang

Travel by private minibus to Battambang (approximately 6 hours). Break up an otherwise long trip with a visit to Kampong Luong, a marvellously colourful village that floats on the water. Spend an hour traversing between houses and other boats before hitting the road once more. Cambodia's second-largest city, Battambang, is a pretty riverside town of French elegance, friendly Khmer people and beautifully preserved colonial architecture. Why not take part in an optional cooking class to learn the secrets of local dishes such as amok, Khmer curry & fried spicy chicken.

Day 26 Siem Reap

Spend a bit of time riding around the countryside by bike, travelling out to local cottage industries to meet with on-site producers. Get a better insight into rural life in Cambodia, share a few snacks, then continue by private minibus to Siem Reap (approximately 3 hours). Arrive in Siem Reap in the evening and relax as you prepare for your much-anticipated visit to Angkor tomorrow. Perhaps hit the markets for some delicious street food.

Day 27 Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

Temple-hop with your local guide and make the most of your visit to the world-famous Angkor complex. The temples, dating back as far as the ninth century, were believed to represent the cosmic world and were set in perfect balance, symmetry and composition. The intricately carved bas-reliefs and architectural designs are mind-blowing and there are spectacular photo opportunities at any time of day. Watching a sunrise or sunset is a must. The ruins are scattered over an area of some 160 square kilometres, but the main cluster of temples is close to Siem Reap, so there will be plenty of time to fully appreciate the great archaeological sites of Angkor Wat, Bayon and the jungle-covered Ta Prohm.

Day 28 Siem Reap / Angkor Wat

Continue your explorations of the Angkor complex. You may like to spend just the morning making further discoveries here and save your afternoon for an optional activity elsewhere. Keen adventurers can take the Angkor zip-line adventure which gives an amazing birds-eye view of the rainforest, not to mention an adrenaline rush.

Day 29 Bangkok

It's a long drive by private minibus from Siem Reap to Bangkok (approximately 10 hours including border crossings and lunch). Arrive in Thailand's bustling capital and take in this exciting world of tuk tuks, khlong boats, and street vendors serving up delicious Thai food. Perhaps head out to sample some local specialties as a final farewell with your fellow travellers.

Day 30 Bangkok

Your trip comes to an end this morning, with no further activities planned. However, if you have more time, Bangkok is full of things to do, including the Grand Palace, Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and the fascinating Jim Thompson museum.

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3,955 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

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South East Asia Loop

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Planes, trains, buses... and a felucca !

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Planes, trains, buses... and a felucca !

My trip started in Cairo at the Pharaoh's Hotel. The hotel is just one block from the river Nile with lots of lovely cafes and restaurants lined along the boardwalk. The area is picturesque and a great place to begin my Egyptian adventure!
I met up with my group and we had a briefing from our local guide, Hassaan. The meeting was a great opportunity to get to know my fellow travellers and Hassaan gave us all the essential information on our tour, including teaching us all a few words of Arabic.

This was my third trip to Egypt and my most enjoyable. Previously, I had been on a diving boat from Hurghada and also in the beach resort of Sharm El Sheikh. Both were beautiful but it was easy to miss the depth of culture and history that exists inland along the Nile.

Don’t leave Cairo without sampling some delicious baklava and of course Koshary! The Hotel Baron have a fabulous pastry shop and sell all types of baklava and chocolates, not to mention Giant Ferrero Rocher's, mouthwatering !

This was an unforgettable holiday and for sure I will return to Egypt, only for longer the next time.
Top Tips
• Don’t forget insect repellant for your overnight Felucca trip
• Make a stop at the Off License for your alcoholic beverages. Wine or beer are not widely available but there is no problem to bring your own into the restaurants and enjoy on the train journey.
• Check out the delicious baklava in Simonds and coffee from Abu Auf
• Cairo drivers are crazy, no traffic lights, no rules - beware!
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Where do I start .......

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Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Where do I start? The whole Egypt experience with Intrepid was superb from beginning to end. We were met at the airport by an Intrepid representative who took hold of our travel documents and whisked us through the airport formalities like we were VIP's. We were waiting for our bags whilst most of the people on our flight were queuing for entry stamps. Bags collected, the representative went with us to the waiting transfer vehicle and accompanied us through the busy Cairo rush hour traffic to our hotel. We'd paid for an pre-night and it would have been nice to have had one of the better "balcony" rooms, but that's a lesson learned for next time - ask first! We met Ramy Hamdy, our guide and the other 6 people in our group the following day. Ramy would be by our side for the whole of the week's tour, and for 2 western blonde women, that was very reassuring. He was practising Ramadan whilst with us, and we felt very guilty at mealtimes, eating whilst he sat watching us. It would have been easy for him to have excused himself whilst we ate, but he made sure we were all OK and had everything we needed. The excursions were well paced in what was quite a hectic tour, but we covered everything you want to do in Egypt, and more. We really felt that we were part of the country, not just visiting it, and Ramy had a lot to do with that. His knowledge, was second to none and he was able to give us insights into the workings of the country that only a resident would know. The "off the beaten track" activities really made this holiday - 24hrs chillaxing on a felucca, sleeping in the middle of The Nile, a visit to a traditional Nubian village and Break fast meal with a resident family there who'd cooked up a real feast, henna tattoos done by the lady of the house, another lunch up a backstreet in the Luxor suburbs that just no-one else would find, camel rides, hot air balloons, the sleeper train too, all experiences to be remembered for a very long time. We left, as we arrived, with personal attention from an Intrepid representative who, again, whisked us through the airport for our flight home. This was the first time we travelled with Intrepid, and there's another trip already booked to look forward to. There's no reason for us to look to another Company for our travel abroad - Intrepid has it all in bucketloads.
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Dubrovnik to Venice - Great Tour

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This was me and husband's third Intrepid tour (first was India, second was Iceland) We so enjoy the immediate friends made within small groups like this and also the knowledgeable guides in countries we are not familiar with. Our tour guide - Ivance was so much fun. She went above and beyond as a tour guide. Responded to late night issues, assisting with finding activities on free days, and creating a celebration for one of the people on our trip for their birthday. All restaurant recommendations were top notch.
There was a slight mix up with our transport when arriving in Dubrovnik. Our flight was delayed, cancelled, and while I was able to communicate the change in itinerary we somehow still missed our ride. However, after emailing Intrepid and explaining we tried to call the emergency number, they reimbursed us for our payment for the transfer as well as the taxi we ended up having to take. This was our first time to the Balkans and were were so happy that we had the most amazing group and tour guide. This was our first big trip since 2018 (due to covid) and we could not have chosen a better one.
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Premium Jordan

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Itinery was very varied, ancient ruins, amazing food, the Dead Sea, Petra hiking then Wadi Rum.

Mohammad was a great leader, appreciate him opening up about his personal life stories and experiences.
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Excellent Tour & Guide - Some Issues at HQ

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
It's very difficult to separate Intrepid the company (office, reservations, customer service) from the in-country guides. I recently took the Mexico Unplugged tour. My original booking process was through an agency (I had actually won the trips as a prize) - and so I couldn't really say what the booking experience was like.

I received no direct contact from Intrepid, but did receive an itinerary document for each trip (3 Intrepid Tours in Total) - which did mention that i had a transfer from the Mexican arrival airport to my hotel.

I was met well and brought to the hotel by a pleasant driver. I had been expecting more basic accommodation, with the word UNPLUGGED in the name of the tour - but we started at an Ibis Styles, and each stop on the tour got more individual (my preferences) sometimes a little more basic, some times much nicer. I was never without Air-Con (or a fan), towels or in room toiletries. Sometimes a safe, once or twice not - but I'd give sacrifice the safe for the family/boutiqe feel of these lovey stays. Being on single supplement meant that I never even needed house-keeping in, with 2 peoples towels to myself.

I felt safe and secure at all times in each hotel, coach, and whenever we were with our EXCELLENT guide, Nathan. In fact, 99.5% of the time, I felt completely safe even when alone, and in the evenings in Mexico, having taken basic self-security precautions.

The tour is RAPID - you will be on the move every 2 nights (sometimes only a one night stay). There are public coach trips (but they are well equipped coaches with air con, entertainment, toilets and charging points).
It is the only way to fit in such a massive chunk of a massive country into 2 weeks. You may feel the need for 5 days recovery afterwards!!

But the pay off is a whirlwind of colour, creativity, history, culture, nature - and our guide was absolutely ON TOP of every moment - always happy to answer questions, had a deep knowledge of the country and was excellent at recommending activities, with consideration each guests individual needs, goals and budget. I think it's worth the pace, the energy and putting all your energy into 2 weeks of making the most of every moment.

We had one major problem on our tour - which was actually a guest. This guest had not been realistic about his physical and mental needs after a serious accident. This meant that the guide, and to some extent the group, were burdened with looking out for them, calling out tripping hazards, assisting at ATMs.

Unfortunately, on top of this, the same person turned out to be a functioning alcoholic and a letch - making unwanted advances and comments at some of the female guests, and eventually going missing for 24 hours. Our Guide dealt with the situation perfectly - but should never have been put in such a position.

Furthermore - Intrepid as a company deemed it fit to welcome the guest back to the tour when they resurfaced. DESPITE the fact that this person had 'prior form' on European Intrepid Tours, (ie was a known problem guest). Intrepid, as far as I know, also allowed this customer to go on to a further tour - which probably took the polish off of another group's experience.

I must also say - that I wrote a lot of feedback to Intrepid Customers service - and they were speedy and attentive in their reply - I really felt like they listened to my feedback - and actually specified what actions they were taking in response! Which was impressive

Soooo...
tour itinerary - excellent, if speedy.
guide in country - EXCELLENT!
Office/Booking/Prep/Customer Service - Fine by me - but they may need to initiate a red flagging system for problem customers!
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Single traveler in new lands

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
As a single traveler going for the first time into Morocco, I wanted the security of a group and a guide who knew the area. I was excited with the itinerary and because I was the only traveler on the tour, I had a first hand experience of everything Morocco had to offer. Live chat ensured that all my questions were answered before hand, and I found many helpful hints (what to wear, what to bring, words to learn) on the website. On the tour itself, the guide and driver became like my family as they explained everything we saw, patiently answered all my questions, warned me and guided me from pickpockets, and made me feel both comfortable and at home in a foreign land. Everything was fantastic and I had the best two weeks of my life!
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Details

Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport Boat,Longtail boat,Overnight sleeper train,Plane,Private minibus,Public Bus,Songtheaw,Motorbike,Taxi

Group Size

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 16

Accommodations

Guesthouse (2 nights),Hotel (24 nights),Overnight boat (1 night),Overnight sleeper train (2 nights)

Guides

All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. We endeavour to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Age Notes :

Min. Age: 15

Max Age: 99

Additional Information

Finish point

  • Nouvo City Hotel (Canal Wing)
  • 2 Samsen 2, Samsen Road, Pranakorn
  • Banglumphu
  • Bangkok
  • 10200
  • THAILAND
  • Phone: +66 22827500

Trip ID#:

intrepid-TTSVC

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