Vietnam and Cambodia: Saigon to Angkor Bike Tour

cambodia bike tour 1

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Overview

This tour takes you through the two most fascinating countries of Southeast Asia: Vietnam & Cambodia. We start our journey witnessing the life around Mekong Delta in Vietnam and then take a boat ride and enter into the land of the majestic Angkor Wat and home to some of the most pristine and untouched sceneries on earth, Cambodia is sure to leave you wonderstruck. Enjoy pulsating history stored in its vivid monuments, local culture rife on its river banks, warm and welcoming people, and awesome food.

Terrain Info:

The terrain largely remains flat, however, road surface varies often from small gravel to large gravel, to the pavement, to dirt, to sand, to rutted narrow dirt, to narrow « crescent bridges, » some without rails, and requires frequent turns in the villages. Also, please note, most days there will be a shuttle transfer, varying from 1 to 2 hrs.

Start

Saigon | 17:00hrs

Finish

Siem Reap

Lodging

casual

Level

easy

Avg. dist. cycled

50km or 30mi

Group size

Min. 2, Max. 12

Fly-In

SGN

Fly-Out

REP

Highlights

Highlight Image

two countries

Experience the contours of two countries of Southeast Asia

Itinerary

Brief Itinerary

DayPlacecasual Inns or similarMealsDistanceActivity
DAY 1SaigonSilverland YenD
DAY 2Tra VinhCoco Riverside LodgeB,L,D40km / 24micycling
DAY 3Can ThoTTC PremiumB,L60km / 36micycling
DAY 4Chau DocChau PhoB,L,D50km / 30micycling
DAY 5Boat to Phnom PenhDuong Chan HotelB,L
DAY 6Kampong ThomSambor VillageB,L,D40km / 25micycling
DAY 7Siem ReapSteung SiemreapB,L60km / 36micycling
DAY 8Siem ReapSteung SiemreapB,L,D30km / 18micycling
DAY 9Siem ReapB

Detailed Itinerary

Itinerary Image

Day 1: Saigon

Our guide meets you at your hotel at 17:00hrs for a bike fitting followed by dinner to celebrate the start of our journey on a bike.

The morning is free for you to explore the city. We recommend exploring some of the most popular sites - Ben Thanh Market, Saigon Opera House, Continental Hotel, The Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral and Post Office, The War Remnants Museum, China Town (Cho Lon in Dist 5), Thien Hau Pagoda, Landmark 81 building and Jade Emperor Pagoda. It gives you an excellent introduction to the city’s history with plenty of opportunities to soak up the unique mix of chaos and tranquility that is modern-day Saigon.

If you intend to arrive in Ho Chi Minh City a day in advance, we recommend seizing the chance to explore the Cu Chi Tunnels—an elaborate network of underground passages that were extensively used during the Vietnam War.

Meals: D
Accommodation: Silverland Yen
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Day 2: Tra Vinh

A short shuttle transfer brings us to the outskirts of My Tho — the gateway to the Mekong delta. We ride along a small creek to Mekong estuary past gorgeous paddy fields and lush orchards. Along the way, we cross a river on a local ferry. After 20 kms (12.5 mi) of biking, we stop for lunch at a local restaurant.

Post-lunch, we drive in the van for 30 minutes before beginning our afternoon cycling. We ride past coconut plantations on a smooth surface, and under a green canopy of trees growing on either side of the road. En route, we stop at a local family to see how they use coconut fiber to make ropes and use coconut leaves to make thatched huts. After another 30 kms (18.6 mi) miles of cycling, we load our bikes in the van and drive for 40 minutes to our hotel, the Coco Riverside Lodge.

Before dinner, our hotel organizes a fun cooking class where they teach how to make rice pancakes. Saigon-Tra vinhh.PNG

Meals: B,L,D
Cycling Distance: 40km / 24mi
Accommodation: Coco Riverside Lodge
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Day 3: Can Tho

We begin the day with a 40 minute shuttle transfer to head deeper into the delta. We then visit a beautiful Khmer Pagoda before beginning the day's biking. We ride past numerous rice fields, rivers, and canals, and over a multitude of bridges that may offer views of floating villages. Apart from rice fields, the region is dotted with many plantations of banana, coconut, and citrus trees.

We stop for coffee after biking for 25 kms (15.5 mi), and then bike another 21 kms (13 mi) before stopping for lunch at a local restaurant.

It’s a long ride today through the interior trails of Mekong Delta to Can Tho. Post lunch, we ride another 20 kms (12.4 mi) on these trails and even cross a river on a local ferry before loading our bike in the van and driving for 90 minutes to Can Tho.

Set on the southern bank of the Hau River, Can Tho is known for its network of canals and nearby floating markets. We reach our hotel around 5 PM. Tra Vinh-Can Tho.png

Meals: B,L
Cycling Distance: 60km / 36mi
Accommodation: TTC Premium
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Day 4: Chau Doc

We start this day at 7:30am and hop on to a boat to experience the early morning Cai Rang floating market. Each boat in this market showcases its distinct specialty, which can be identified by the items hanging on tall poles. While many boats anchor in place, a few gracefully float around, particularly those dedicated to snacks or coffee, catering to the shop owners' needs. The majority of the boats appear weathered, constructed from aged wood and exude a rustic charm.

This bustling market primarily focuses on the sale of fresh produce and food items, ranging from sweet potatoes and watermelons to lychee. Unlike clothing or household goods, the market solely revolves around agricultural products. Exploring this lively marketplace provides a fascinating glimpse into the authentic daily life of the locals. After the boat ride, we disembark onto a pathway made of old railroad ties and proceed to walk along a busy road lined with numerous meat markets, eventually making our way back to the van.

After a shuttle transfer of about 10 minutes, we get on our bikes and ride through country roads flanked by coconut and palm trees, and through rice paddies, and banana plantations. After about 30 kms (19 mi), we load our bikes on the van and drive around an hour to our lunch stop.

Post lunch, we take another shuttle transfer of around 1 hour before resuming our biking. We bike for 20 kms (12.5 mi) through beautiful vegetable farms and on a smooth surface. We stop for a visit at a Vietnamese pagoda, before loading our bikes in the van and calling it a day. We drive for about 10 minutes before arriving at the culturally diverse Chau Doc as we get to see mosques, temples, and churches here. If we make it on time, we take a boat trip to the Cham communities across the river. Can THo-Chau Doc.png

Meals: B,L,D
Cycling Distance: 50km / 30mi
Accommodation: Chau Pho
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Day 5: Boat to Phnom Penh

Take an early morning 07:30 am speed boat and arrive at the capital city of Cambodia via boat, Phnom Penh, at the edge of the Mekong River. The border checks between Vietnam and Cambodia take around 45 minutes to take. Make sure to carry your passport and $35 handy for speedy processing.

Historical splendors are spread in every corner whether it’s the local palace or the horrific remnants of the Khmer atrocities.

Post-lunch get ready to be immersed in the Cambodian culture and history of the city as we kick off our walking tour from Wat Phnom. Enjoy walking along the Tonle Sap river, considered the lifeline of the region. Continue towards the National Museum, which houses several national treasures from three different eras: Pre-Angkorian, Angkorian, and Post-Angkorian, giving the flavor of diverse culture and architecture. The last leg of our walk takes us to the gilded Royal Palace, shimmering with silver tiles and sculptures of Buddha, which gives an insight into Cambodian Royal Life.

We recommend tasting some local Khmer cuisine at one of Phnom Penh’s finest dining place ‘Romdeng’. End day with a walk or tuk-tuk ride back to the hotel.

Meals: B,L
Accommodation: Duong Chan Hotel
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Day 6: Kampong Thom

After a hearty breakfast, we start our day with a short shuttle transfer to the outskirts of Phnom Penh. Here, set out on a bike ride on a dirt road through some of the most interior parts of Cambodia. It’s a flat ride past paddy fields, lotus farms, and typical rural hamlets. Expect young kids to stretch their arms and give a big wave or locals inviting you into their homes. We may have to share our road with water buffaloes and cows and reach Oudong. Oudong was the capital of Khmer for around 200 years. A gradual climb takes us to the top of a mountain surrounded by many stupas. Admire the spectacular views all around. An hour shuttle brings us to Kampong Thom. Phnom penh-Kampong Thom.png

Meals: B,L,D
Cycling Distance: 40km / 25mi
Accommodation: Sambor Village
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Day 7: Siem Reap

In the morning, ride around Kampong Thom’s Sambor Prei Kuk temple complex, which predates Angkor Wat by at least 200 years.

Later, ride through the bucolic countryside with a spectacular view of paddy fields and lotus farms all around. Kampong Thom-Sien Reap.PNG

Meals: B,L
Cycling Distance: 60km / 36mi
Accommodation: Steung Siemreap
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Day 8: Siem Reap

The Angkor temple complex is synonymous with Cambodia, so a ride around the temple is essential. Our guide meets you at your hotel and takes you back into the Angkor era on a bike ride. After bike fit, start riding directly from the hotel and reach the moat of Angkor Wat. Catch the brilliant morning rays on the ancient temple complex and spend ample time photographing as you would have seen nothing like this before. We will loop back to Angkor Wat for a detailed tour at the end of our ride.

Continue riding towards Angkor Thom and enter the city from the South gate. Beat the crowd and climb the surrounding wall of the city and ride on top of it. Take a break here for a rich fascinating account of the city from our guide. A further ride through East gate takes us to Bayon, a richly decorated face temple within the Angkor complex is one of the highlights here. Exit from the second East gate of the city and ride towards jungle-clad TA Prohm. Our guide shares historical anecdotes and walks you through temples along the way.

The Angkor Wat requires more than a morning, so we loop back for a more detailed guided tour. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is considered one of the largest religious complexes in the world and it’s bound to enthrall you. Climb Phnom Bakheng for a classic view of Angkor during sunset. Siem Reap-ANgkor.PNG

Meals: B,L,D
Cycling Distance: 30km / 18mi
Accommodation: Steung Siemreap
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Day 9: Siem Reap

We recommend making a final early morning visit to Angkor and witnessing the magnificent views in the backdrop of sunrise. If you prefer to do, please have a chat with your guide about the same. There may be further entry charges for Angkor that you can pay directly.

Meals: B
Accommodation:

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Map

Dates and Prices

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Single Supplement

From US $350

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From US $150


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Essential Info

Inclusions

LODGING

All hotels as mentioned in the tour details or similar (subject to availability).

trip leader

Expert Trip Leader(s) who look after your every need and add meaning to your vacation.

bike

Immaculately maintained bike with helmet, suited to a terrain.

shuttle

A Van support follows the group of riders and carries all belongings.

meals

Meals as per itinerary. Guests are given the opportunity to dine on their own so that they discover a location independently.

refreshments

Refreshments and mineral water while cycling.

entrance

Entrance fees to most of the monuments and temples.

E-bikes

E-bikes are available (subject to availability) on this trip at a surcharge.

Exclusions

Airport pickup and drop

We recommend to book direclty from airport or hotel.

Beverages

Beverages such as alcohol, tea, coffee, juice at a hotel or restaurant.

Gratuity

Gratuities for your guide team are not included in the trip price.

Bikes

When you have a road and the thrill of a journey ahead of you, it’s imperative to have a good bike to enjoy it. Our fleet majorly consist of the below bikes as a part of this tour. However, sometimes due to height or availability constraints, we may provide a different but similar quality bike.

Bike Image

Trek Marlin 5 (Vietnam) or similar

mountain

Included in your trip price

Bike Image

Trek X-Caliber 7 (Vietnam) or similar

mountain

Included in your trip price

Bike Image

Cannondale Trail 4 (Cambodia) or similar

mountain

Included in your trip price

Bike Image

Trek EBike (Vietnam) or similar

ebike

Available at a surcharge

Bike Image

Senior (Cambodia) or similar

ebike

Available at a surcharge

Weather

South Vietnam and Cambodia is a year-round cycling destination because of its pleasant tropical climate. April and May can be hot, but for the rest of the year, the temperature hovers around 30°C. There is moderate rainfall from May to early November but it settles soon, leaving the weather cool and the countryside lush. November to February is the best time for cycling in South Vietnam with warm weather, clear blue skies, and a light ocean breeze blowing in from the Pacific.

January

Best

February

Best

March

Best

April

Good

May

Good

June

Good

July

Good

August

Good

September

Good

October

Good

November

Best

December

Best

Best

Good

Mixed

Offseason

Visa

Vietnam Visa

Residents from a number of countries have visa exemption status for tourist visits to Vietnam. For a full list of up-to-date visa-exempt countries, see the Vietnam Foreign Affairs website.

Starting August 15, 2023, the Vietnam government will start offering an e-visa valid for up to 90 days with multiple entries, replacing the current 30-day, single-entry option. Furthermore, passport holders from Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom will benefit from an extended visa exemption period of 45 days, up from the current 15 days. Eligible foreign nationals will either benefit from a longer duration of stay and greater flexibility with the extended e-visa validity of up to 90 days and multiple entries, or enjoy an extended visa exemption period of 45 days.

e-Visa – You can apply for an e-visa through the government website, then, once approved, simply print it out and present it upon arrival in Vietnam. The additional benefit of the e-visa is that it's valid at land borders, not just airports. The processing time ranges from 2 to 7 working days. We recommend applying 2 weeks in advance to avoid unexpected delays. Read more about tourist e-visas for Vietnam at the Vietnam Immigration portal and apply there.

While applying online for an approval letter, please ensure that you have the following documents:

  • Passport scanned copy: A scanned copy of your passport - front (main) page. It shouldn't be a mobile photo or a photo taken from a laptop. Strictly scanned copy done through a computer scanner.
  • Passport size photo: portrait photo (4*6 size, colored photo, white background, straight looking without glasses). A photo taken from a mobile or laptop may or may not work, so I would strictly advise getting one made through a nearby photo studio (retail shop) that specializes in taking photos for visas.

Here is an excellent resource on Vietnam visas that may be worth looking at.

Cambodia Visa

Cambodia has three international gateways for arrival by air – Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Sihanoukville – and a large number of land borders with neighboring Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos. Formalities at Cambodia’s international airports are generally smooth.

Travelers can get a Cambodia visa upon arrival at the airport with a valid passport for 6 months and no longer need to have a pre-arrival COVID-19 test, present a full COVID-19 vaccination card/certificate, or a passenger's health declaration form on arrival in Cambodia. Remote electronic temperature-checking systems remain at the entry and exit gates for Immigration officers to check and advise passengers who may have COVID-19 symptoms.

On this tour, we will cross into Cambodia via the land border between Vietnam and Cambodia through Chau Doc. Here, you can apply for a Cambodian visa at the border during your bike tour wherein we enter Phnom Penh from Chau Doc via boat. The port on the Vietnam side is Vinh Xuong border gate named Sông Tiền. Its counterpart across the border is Khaorm Sam Nor Kaoh Roka border gate, Kandal Province, Cambodia. Please bring 2 current colored passport photos and ensure you have the visa fee of US $30-40 each. Please note that e-Visa is not applicable at the port of entry during your bike tour. Please apply for a visa in advance with the embassy or obtain a visa on arrival at the port.

For Visa on arrival at the Cambodian border, please make sure to bring the following things:

  • 2 current passport photos
  • Ensure you have the visa fee of US $30-40 each
  • Passport copy
  • Vaccine card copy (proof of vaccination)

Reviews from our friends

Reviews—2023 and older

Mike M. from US

5.0

Great Adventure!

The Glimpse of Saigon Bike Tour from Ho Chi Minh city to Seim Reep (Angkor Wat) was such a great adventure. Not being seasoned cyclists, we chose an “Easy” rated trip. Our longest day was 63 KM but with almost no elevation gain. While it was hot our tour Guides and the Drivers with the support vehicles took amazing care of us with snacks, mineral water and electrolyte drinks every step of the way. We were treated like family. Even though we selected a more modest package the accommodations were just great ranging from quaint cottages in the Mekong Delta to a first-class Hotel in Phnom Penn. The care and support we received along the way was truly great. Our routes were never on busy thoroughfares but rather on well maintained and safe routes through villages and rice fields. The people of Vietnam and Cambodia were incredibly friendly. We even “crashed” a Vietnamese Wedding being invited to take our picture with the Bride and Groom and sample the Rice Wine. We are already considering our next trip with Art of Bicycles. We would highly recommend this company.

End of reviews

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