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Audley Traveler

Vietnam or Cambodia

My husband and I are visiting Hong Kong to see friends in mid January and cannot decide whether to travel on to Vietnam or Cambodia? I would really appreciate some advice on which has the most to offer?

Celia Williams, 14 October 2011
Monk gathering thoughts, Angkor Wat

Answer

Dear Celia

Thank you for your enquiry.

Hong Kong is one of the main hubs of Southeast Asia onto other countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia. Both countries have lots to offer depending on what you would like to do.

Vietnam has the French colonial influenced capital of Hanoi plus the bustling city of Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), which offers a great insight into the Vietnam War. Most Audley itinerary ideas travel from either north to south, or vice versa, taking in both cities plus Halong Bay, a UNESCO world heritage sight with breathtaking views and the chance to overnight on one of the traditional junks. That said, you may want to save this area for a future trip as the weather will be a bit cooler in January. Hue and Hoi An, in central Vietnam, are also popular places to visit. The Imperial city of Hue and UNESCO world heritage sight of My Son, not far from Hoi An, are must see attractions. The Mekong Delta in the South is also a fascinating place to visit as you can see the floating villages and how some of the local people live their lives here.

Cambodia has the magnificent temples of Angkor. I would recommend spending at least three nights in Siem Reap to give you the best chance to see as much as possible in the time allowed. Phnom Penh is a wonderful city providing an insight into the turbulent history of the Khmer Rouge. The National Museum and Silver Pagoda are interesting places to visit with a popular eatery called ’Friends’ around the corner, offering delicious food and helping the local street kids get a kick-start in life. South coast Cambodia has the sleepy fishing village of Kep and the tranquil 4 Rivers resort near to the Cardamom Mountains, where you can go trekking and kayaking.

Both countries offer something different for your trip, it just really depends on how long you want to go for and what appeals to you the most.

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