Asia Adventure holidays: hot tips for 2010 in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos
We asked the experts to reveal the trips they are most excited about – from Vietnam's Fansipan Mountain to Cambodia's Tonle Sap Lake.
1. MOUNTAIN TREKKING, SAPA, VIETNAM
Mount Fansipan is Vietnam’s highest peak located in the far north just outside of Sapa. Mt. Fansipan a very steep mountain that gets a lot of moisture. Those looking to climb it should be in good shape and prepared to to have muddy wet feet. The scenery is incredible remember to bring a camera. For most of Vietnam having a rain coat is a little excessive because it is so warm. On the mountain having a rain coat is not a bad idea especially at night. The trails around Sapa are a lot of fun. You will get the chance to go through some minority villages if you have the time to explore. There are well-marked trails, both long and short, for all skill levels.
Conquer Fansipan Mountain, the highest mountain in Indochina- Vietnam.
Photograph: Active Travel Vietnam
When? October to May are the best months
Book it: Trek Fansipan (00 84 4 3573 8569; trekfansipan.com) offers a year-round, four-day guided mountain-trekking tour of Vietnam from $ 219 including hotel accommodation, some meals and travel gear rent. Flights extra
2. MOTORCYCLING HO CHI MINH TRAIL, VIETNAM
The legendary Ho Chi Minh Trail was the supply line used by North Vietnam to link North and South Vietnam during the American War. Soldiers, ammunition, weapons and supplies were carried by hand, bicycle and truck for hundreds of kilometers through the otherwise impenetrable jungle that covered Vietnam’s mountainous border with Laos. A testimony to the ingenuity, fortitude and commitment of the northern Vietnamese, the trail slipped from use at the end of the war and was taken back by the jungle.
Ho Chi Minh Trail Motorcycling tour - Photo by ATA
Ha Long Bay (also “Halong Bay”) is in northern Vietnam, 170 km east of Hanoi. The bay is famous for its scenic rock formations If you thought the hideout in the James Bond film “The Man with the Golden Gun” was spectacular, imagine a place where there are 3,000 such limestone islands clustered together in the East Sea of Halong Bay. Paddle through caves into secret lagoons, drift down channels surrounded by cliffs and forest and sail out into the open sea.
A holiday in Vietnam would be incomplete without a trip to the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Popularly known as one of the ‘Rice Baskets’ of Vietnam, the Mekong Delta is located in the South Eastern region of Vietnam, where the Mekong River meets the sea. A pride of the Vietnamese and the one of the most popular of the Vietnam tourist attractions, the Mekong Delta is exceptionally rich in scenic beauty. It is a place unique in itself.
Let’s discover the world’s remarkable awesome historical site through this adventure trip and grasp the reasons why the Tomb Raider’s film maker team chose the Angkor Complex in Siem Reap for its screen backdrops. Also experience the biodiversity of Tonle Sap listed as the World Ecological Wonder.
Cycling is a great way to get off the beaten track in this increasingly popular country. Start in Luang Prabang, in north central Laos, and head to Hanoi, in North Vietnam, travelling along the banks of the Mekong River and past the intriguing Viengxay caves.
On the way bike Luang Prabang, Laos - Photo by ATA
When? October to March
Book it: Active Travel Laos(email@example.com; activetravellaos.com) has a 17-day tour with kayaking, trekking, biking and elephant riding Luang Prabang to Hanoi cycling trip from $ 1,553, including most meals, bike hire and sightseeing. Flights extra.