Why take an adventure Cambodia and Vietnam Tour? 

Having travelled with friends and partners previously, my trip to South East Asia was my first solo travel venture and it was pretty nerve racking! Especially as I had originally planned the trip with an ex. That was until we broke up 2 months beforehand..!

Still determined to go, I decided to ease myself into solo travel by taking a Cambodia and Vietnam Tour with G Adventures.

boat in the mekong delta on a cambodia and vietnam tour

Travelling with an adventure tour company is a great way for solo travellers to meet other like-minded adventurers to travel with. Having done several group tours in South East Asia and beyond now, I’ve made several friends for life.

For those who are apprehensive about safety travelling solo, group travel offers a solution. It’s safer to travel in small groups where you can watch each other’s backs. But also each tour is led by a local guide who can ensure you stay in the safer areas and not find yourself lost in the dark in the dodgy part of town!

Taking a Cambodia and Vietnam tour also meant that I got to see the highlights of both countries whilst also getting to see some off-the-beaten-track places I would never even have known about otherwise. One of the highlights of the trip was taking a homestay where we got to learn more about the local lifestyle and even had some Vietnamese cooking lessons!

My Experience with Group Tour Companies

Since my first group tour in Cambodia and Vietnam, I have taken several other group tours with several companies. I’ve sailed the Thai islands and The Galapagos Islands, Climbed mountains in Peru, travelled through Laos, Thailand and Malaysia and taken overland trips through South America and East Africa. 

Whilst I also take plenty of solo trips and sometimes travel with friends, I still love to go on plenty of group adventure tours and G Adventures is my personal favourite tour company to use. I’m also a big fan of Intrepid which are actually very similar to G Adventures and you can read about them in my article; G Adventures vs Intrepid, which is best?! 

The long and short of it, however, is that whilst both offering very similar trips, G Adventures is fractionally cheaper and has a better cancellation policy whilst Intrepid has a great loyalty programme if you plan to travel with them a lot. 

What to expect on a G Adventures Cambodia and Vietnam Tour?

If you’re anything like me and you’re considering booking your first adventure group tour, you probably have a LOT of questions!

sihanoukville beach in cambodia on a cambodia and vietnam tour

Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions in the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer them. But in the meantime, I will try to address some of the common questions people have before booking a group adventure tour in South East Asia.

But first, the fun stuff, let’s talk about this Cambodia and Vietnam Tour Itinerary!

Cambodia and Vietnam Tour Itinerary with G Adventures

Your trip will start in Bangkok in Thailand where you will meet your new team at a central hotel. All G Adventures trips start with a group meeting where they tell you what to expect from the tour, iron out any problems and you can get to know your team. It’s usually followed by a team meal out and sometimes a few drinks in Bangkok.

Read More| Best hostels in Bangkok

From Bangkok you will travel to Cambodia. Heads up, the toilets at the Thailand-Cambodia border are the worst I came across during my time in South East Asia so I recommend crossing your legs until your next stop!

During your time in Cambodia, highlights will include

Angkor Wat Ancient temples (where Tomb Raider was filmed.) I highly suggest visiting for sunrise! Not only is it pretty special to see but the complex is so huge, you’ll need to allow a full day to explore fully.

Tonle Sap Floating Village. Take a boat trip out to see the floating villages on Tonle Sap Lake. The sunset on the way back is also pretty epic!

Phnomh Penh – the capital city. Take an optional trip to see Tuol Song prison and the killing fields. Its incredibly sad and will be a sombre visit but also is very educational. I’m glad I went but I can’t exactly call it a highlight!

Sihanoukville Beach – enjoy some R&R and take an optional snorkel trip which I enjoyed. We were also taught to fish on the ride out! Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins!

angkor wat on cambodia and vietnam tour
beach on cambodia and vietnam tour

During your time in Vietnam, highlights will include;

Can Tho Homestay – stay in a little village in someone’s home. We enjoyed cooking dinner with our families and it was a really lovely evening. We stayed as a group so you don’t need to worry about awkward silences!

Ho Chi Minh City (otherwise known as Saigon.) This city is incredibly fast-paced! I also enjoyed a trip to Chu Chi tunnels to see where people hid in the war. Not for the claustrophobic! Read more about Ho Chi Minh city.

Nha Trang – this is a lovely beach town and you may just want to relax as the beachside bar as we did one afternoon. I also recommend a trip to ThapBa Spa where you can take a traditional mud bath! Just don’t wear a white bikini…

Hoi An – this was my favourite city we visited especially for Hoi An Old Town which is a world heritage site. Explore quaint old streets lit with colourful lanterns. There are so many brilliant cafes, restaurants and shops to explore. You can also visit one of the many tailors and have clothes made for you. I went to Yaly Couture which was featured on a Top Gear Vietnam Special episode. I had several skirts trousers and dresses made at an absolute bargain price!

Hue – visit the beautiful Royal Citadel and take a motorbike tour into the countryside – this was SO much fun! Though please note the helmets provided are more like tin shells so take this into consideration – it’s not risk-free!

Halong Bay Cruise through the stunning Halong Bay, known for its emerald waters and limestone islands which tower above you as you float past. There are opportunities to go kayaking here which I recommend.

Finish in Hanoi. I have to admit, Hanoi wasn’t quite what I expected and after spending time in Hue and Hoi An, I didn’t feel it quite compared. So I wouldn’t plan to spend much extra time here unless you are using it as a base to get to Sapa.

hoi an in vietnam on a cambodia and vietnam tour
halong bay in vietnam on a cambodia and vietnam tour

An Optional Extra Trip to Sapa

This 20 day trip can be done by itself or as part of a longer 30 day Indochina loop trip.

I actually took the full Indochina but split the trips into two giving myself a week in North Vietnam by myself. This was because I wanted to trek in the mountainous region of Vietnam from Sapa.

I’d encourage everyone to do this as trekking from Sapa was my highlight. We stayed at a homestay in a little village and the trek itself was just beautiful, also giving us insight into how the hill tribes live.

You can either tack it onto the end of your Cambodia and Vietnam tour, do it between tours completing the Indochina loop like I did or you could take a slight variation of this tour. The Best of Vietnam Tour includes a trek to Sapa but skips Cambodia so you may then need to see Cambodia separately for example by taking the Cambodia on a shoestring tour or Ultimate Cambodia adventure tour ( a little more comprehensive.)

If you decide to do the Sapa Trek independently of your G Adventures tour, then Intrepid, a similar company’ do offer a 5 day Sapa trekking trip.

Intrepid travel offer very similar tours to G Adventures so it’s definitely worth checking out both. In general G Adventures are marginally cheaper and have a better cancellation policy whereas Intrepid has a good loyalty programme if you intend to travel with them a lot. You can read more about it in my review article; G Adventures vs Intrepid.

sapa hiking vietnam on a cambodia and vietnam tour

Frequently Asked Questions about G Adventures Tours in Vietnam and Cambodia

How many people will be on the tour? How old will they be?

It depends on which level of tour you take. I took their shoestring tour which has now been rebranded as an 18-39 tour so you know everyone on the trip will be below 40. There may be slightly more people on the cheaper style trips like this. A maximum of 18 people though the average is 12.

There are also classic tours which are slightly more expensive which is reflected in the size of the group – maximum 15, average 12. The accommodation is a little more luxury and they usually attract slightly older travellers, usually in the 20’s – 50’s though anyone is eligible for these trips as long as they are > 18 years OR > 12 years and travelling with an adult.

Will I have a roomie if I travel alone?

You can usually opt to pay an extra single supplement allowing you to a room by yourself. But this is not compulsory. Most of the time they will match you up with someone of the same gender and similar age to share a twin room with throughout the trip.

It’s worth taking some earplugs just in case your roomie is a snorer but in general, I’ve always got on well with my roomies. Most people who travel on these sorts of tours are like minded adventurous, friendly people so it’s easy to make friends.

Is the leader local to Cambodia or Vietnam?

Yes and this is one of the reasons I love travelling with G Adventures. The tour leader will be from one of the countries visited on the full indochina loop – Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand or Laos.

The leaders are always local and so they can offer great insight into the local traditions and ways of life. They can also help translate when there is a language barrier. That said, I never really had a problem communicating in South East Asia as most people speak English.

What sort of accommodation will we stay in on a group tour in Cambodia and Vietnam? 

This was my biggest concern since I booked the most budget tour G Adventures offered! However, the accommodation was actually really nice. Some places even had lovely swimming pools and an area where you could chill out. One place even had its own spa. The accommodation does vary and there were a few places which were more budget and a few places where there was no lift so I recommend packing light.

Top Tip: The G Adventures detailed itineraries usually highlights where they usually stay so you can look up the standard of accommodation in advance. If it’s not up to standard then take the slightly more expensive classic trip!

hoi an at night on a cambodia and vietnam tour

What is G Adventures transport like?

G Adventures usually uses a combination of local and private transport so you may be travelling by local bus, private minibus or by overnight train.

There are at least a few nights where you will be sleeping on an overnight train. We were all curious about what this would be like. It was actually really good fun!

Each cabin has 2 bunk beds so you will likely be sharing with 3 of your group. We took our own drinks and had a little cabin party cramming lots of us into one cabin playing games and chatting most of the night!

Security can be an issue on overnight trains anywhere in Asia so I recommend always locking the door once you are all in bed. I Also slept with my valuables in a bag under my pillow just in case.  

Where will we eat? 

For the most part, it’s completely up to you where you eat and if you want to join the group or go it alone. Your tour leader will usually make suggestions for where to eat and in general, most people usually eat together. Occasionally breakfast is included with the hotels and hostels.

Can I have Alone time on a group tour?

Yes! You do not need to spend every waking moment with your group if you don’t want to! There are plenty of opportunities for free time where you can choose to join in group activities or go off and do your own thing!

I also used bus and train journeys as an opportunity for some me time. Some headphones and a good book was enough for me to relax a bit!

cambodia and vietnam tour - picture of a lady in a typical triangular vietnamese hat

Is a group tour in Cambodia and Vietnam worth the money?

Yes, I think so.

Taking a group tour means you fit much more into a limited time. Therefore you can save money in the long run as you don’t need to be away from home for quite as long. Having the trip pre-organised saves a lot of faff and time working out logistics!

Also, sometimes you actually save money by taking a group tour as most costs are already included. It’s amazing how your costs add up when you travel solo be it a room for one or a taxi for one. So eys tours CAN work out pricey but they can also be great value for money.

The other advantage is you know in advance how much it will cost you so you are less likely to run out of money and get yourself into a pickle abroad!

How Much Spending money do I need in Vietnam, and Cambodia?

In general whenever I take a group tour, I factor in about 20% of the cost of the tour as spending money to afford meals out and additional activities. The cheaper tours have less included activities so remember to factor this in too. Usually a recommended amount of spending money is included in the detailed trip notes.

angkor wat cambodia

What should I pack for a group tour in South East Asia?  

  • Dry Bag. You will have a few opportunities to go snorkelling on this trip. Keep your valuables safe on the boat with a dry bag. My dry bag goes with me on every adventure tour I take just in case!
  • Packing Cubes. You move between hotels and hostels pretty quickly on an adventure tour. Packing cubes are invaluable to help keep your belongings organised and to avoid having to repack every single time!
  • Head Torch. This is useful when you’re sharing a room so you can read a book if jetlag is keeping you awake at night.
  • Kindle. Speaking of books, a kindle is a great way to bring plenty of reading options with you for the journeys.
  • Microfibre towel – you’ll need a fast drying towel which will dry overnight and not stink out your backpack!
  • Padlock – useful for when you are on an overnight train to help keep your belongings secure.
  • Water bottle with a filter – save money and help the environment with a water to go bottle which filters any water making it safe to drink straight from the tap. Use the code GLOBETROTTERGP to get 15% off at checkout!
  • Powerbank – a power bank will b really useful to keep your gadgets charged on the overnight train journeys.
  • A 50L backpack. The bigger your backpack, the more you’ll fill it. I’m often guilty of overpacking and trust me its never fun! Try to stick to a 50L backpack if you can and choose one with plenty of pockets to help keep you organised.

Read more | A detailed packing list for Southeast Asia Travel

Don’t forget to ensure you have travel insurance which covers you for adventure activities especially if you are planning to take the motorbike tour in Hue or go kayaking in Halong Bay! I recommend Nomads for adventure travel insurance.

angkor wat at sunrise cambodia

Still Interest in taking a Cambodia and Vietnam Tour with G Adventures?

Great!

Here are the links to take a look in more detail at the tours we’ve discussed!

If you book through one of these links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to yourself which goes towards the costs of running this website. Authenticity is really important to me so I ONLY every recommend products and tours and truly believe in. In this case, I have paid to travel with G Adventures myself five times!

Other Tours I’ve Taken which I would recommend

Overall, I really loved this Cambodia and Vietnam Tour with G Adventures. Having travelled with G Adventures 5 times and many other similar companies too, I truly believe G Adventures is one of the best (if not THE best) small group adventure travel company. I’m hoping to travel with them at least a few times this year.

Whilst I also love solo travel, and am planning plenty of that too, there’s something I really love about a group tour. Sharing these experiences with like-minded people often leads to long-lasting friendships. To illustrate the point, whilst writing this article, I have been receiving group messages from people I travelled with over a year ago! How nice is that?!

I’d love to hear about your experiences with group adventure companies or with G Adventures too. Please feel free to add a comment in the commenst box below!

As always, I really appreciate any social shares using the share buttons or pins I created below! Thanks a million!

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