A cruise down the Mekong River will be one of those trips that has you reminiscing for years to come. Avalon Waterways takes you right into the heart of Vietnam and Cambodia with a journey filled with a variety of excursions each day. Here are six unmissable excursions while cruising on the Mekong River.
1. Visit a local school in Angkor Ban
There’s nothing quite like the feeling when you’re wholeheartedly welcomed and feel instantly at home. This is exactly what happens when you visit the school of the tiny village of Angkor Ban. Its students are genuinely excited to take you through their recent English study and practice holding a conversation. You can’t help but smile at their enthusiasm and this excursion is one of the most heart warming while cruising down the Mekong.
2. Discover the island of Cu Lao Gieng
While only measuring 12 x 7 kilometres, Cu Lao Gieng is filled with marvellous architecture that you wouldn’t expect to see on such a small island along the Mekong. One such landmark is its Catholic church, built in the 19th century. Featuring Romanesque and Gothic architecture, its vibrant exterior is unmissable with the bell tower able to be spotted from a distance.
3. Join in on early morning tai chi onboard
The early morning tai chi lesson isn’t classed as an official excursion however it is definitely worth the early wakeup call! Just a hop, skip and a jump from your Panorama Suite, one of the crew will take you through some easy breath work and movements at the Observation Lounge. Accompanied by the sun rise, this is a great way to start your day.
4. Roll your sleeves up for a cooking class in Ho Chi Minh City
One for the foodies, this interactive, high-energy cooking class will teach you the tips and tricks of some delicious local specialties…plus you get to eat it all at the end! From fresh summer rolls to a good-for-the-soul curry, you will not be leaving hungry or empty-handed – a mini cookbook with your recipes to take home is a handy souvenir.
5. Marvel at Banteay Srei
You will always remember the first time you visited the amazing temple complex of Angkor. One of our favourites is Banteay Srei, regarded as the ‘jewel of Khmer art’ with its intricate carvings in red sandstone and smaller-than-Angkor-standards construction.
6. Feel at peace at Wat Hanchey temple
Wat Hanchey temple dates back to the 8th century and sits high on a hill above the Mekong. Once you reach the top, you will be rewarded by magnificent views across the mighty river. Turn to the temple and take your time to admire its colourful depictions on both its exterior and interior. You will feel an instant sense of calm once you enter, which leads perfectly into a traditional water blessing given by local monks – an incredibly special moment.
Join Avalon for a truly memorable experience along the Mekong – take a look at our river cruises today.