Cycling from Saigon to Angkor Wat is a fascinating bike trip with 13 days of riding through the inner Mekong Delta, enjoy stunning rural landscapes dotted with ruins of ancient Angkor temples in Siem Reap. The challenge from Ho Chi Minh, cross Vietnam's rice basket to Ha Tien, cross the border to Kep, then to Kampot. Explore the Bokor Hill Station, and it's a large national park, enjoy the most spectacular panoramic views of the landscape of Kampot and stay a night in the capital city of Phnom Penh before travelling through Oudong ancient town to Battambang. Follow the Mekong River upstream to Siem Reap. Explore the incredible ruins of Angkor Watt, Cambodia. Travel Vietnam and Cambodia
Welcome to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. Vietnam Backroads team will meet you at the airport, take you to Saigon centre, check in at the hotel, and have a rest of the day. Welcome dinner at a famous restaurant in town. Ho Chi Minh is known as Saigon formerly, and today locals often called it the city centre. It used to be the "Pearl of the Far East" in the last centuries as it was an important trading centre for Asian traders and Western merchants. It's one of the country's leading commercial city centres with plenty of changes.
We begin today's cycling with 1.5 hours transfer to the hamlet in Can Duoc Dist, 45km from Saigon city center. We enjoy dirt track riding in removed hamlets, through jasmine rice paddies, join locals crossing the rivers on ferries, explore beautiful waterways lined with lush foliage of water palms, stilt houses along the rivers. Experience the easy life of locals, passing fish farms and shrimp farms, pedal along the Vam Co River through rustic hamlets hidden in verdant farmlands. See locals harvest fruit and vegetables.
We stop off in the rural village, visit Alluvia Farm & Chocolate Factory, learn step by step how to make delicious chocolates. Taste fresh coca fruits and chocolate. Enjoy tasty Banh Xeo at the farm and explore picturesque scenes in authentic villages to Cho Gao, where we back on the vehicle and transfer to Ben Tre in the late afternoon.
After a hearty breakfast, we'll transfer to Ha Luong River, explore tiny villages under shady coconut trees through villages, share space with locals on little ferry boats, mingle with locals on mopeds on narrow pathways. Visit small markets along the villages, enjoy fresh fruits and coconut milk. Afterwards, we explore the ornamental lands, bonsai trees and lush ornamental plants, and nursery gardens in Cai Mon.
The rural villages are ideal places for nature and plant lovers. We will immerse ourselves in the green fields of durian orchards and mangosteen in the countryside we ride past. We mostly travel on shady paths and cross numerous rivers on small bridges and little ferries—lunch en route. Then, we continue biking down the Cai Mon town, enjoy watching the endless lush vegetation. Lunch en route, enjoy watching the peaceful scenery of Co Chien River on the ferry boat to Vinh Long.
In the afternoon, ride cross ride paddies, verdant orchards, pass many brick factories along rivers. The routes are open-air and a little wider than the paths in the morning. We stay on small roads along lively rivers and some sleep rivers. The complicated network of waterways and the vast fertile farmlands offer fantastic scenery and the friendliest people. It's also a bit hard for your guide to navigating the routes to keep your speed continually. Our vehicle will pick us up in Long Ho township and transfer 1. hour to Can Tho city.
Can Tho is also called Tay Do as it is the capital city of the Mekong Delta. It's famous for its floating markets of Cai Rang and Phong Dien, not far from the city. After your breakfast at the hotel, then get on board the Ninh Kieu pier for a 40-minute motorboat ride. You can see the water taxi, and many commercial sampans sampan boats advertise what to sell on loudspeakers. You could see literally hundreds of big and small boats every morning to buy and sell just about anything you can imagine – freshly harvested fruit and vegetables, rice, and even noodle soup, broken rice, and coffee are also for sale aboard a tiny boat or another! Primarily, you can see many grocery boats and floating houses and surroundings.
Get off your boat, pick up the bikes, explore lively villages hidden in the lush water palms in Phong Dien's countryside. The truly off-the-beaten-path allows us to experience Mekong easy life on shady paths alongside winding rivers to Thoi Lai. We break for lunch in a small town, we follow a small road, cross the ride rice fields to Giong Rieng. The afternoon ride mostly travels through ride paddies, and the routes are quiet, smooth concrete along agricultural canals. We get back on the vehicle in Giong Rieng township and rest on transfer to Rach Gia City. The city is famous for its fresh seafood in Mekong Delta, and we will have a big seafood dinner in the town.
Depart at 7:30 am from the hotel, and we travel 30 minutes on the vehicle to a rural township. We cycle to explore the stunning coast of Cay Duong Bay. We ride down the beach, the first-hand witness, and experience the life of locals living in seaside villages in the Mekong Delta. There are some tiny mountains, some undulating routes the part and the last part near Hon Chong but flat in the long distance in middle part.
Stop at some small town situated on irrigation canals down to the sea, and visit small fishing villages along the trails. There are plenty more to see on the bay of Cay Duong, but the water is not blue, and there is no sandy beach at all. We have a chance to visit Khmer hamlets, visit colourful Khmer temples. Have a picnic lunch in a small town, and carry on our fantastic ride to Hon Chong. Hon Chong has few rock pinnacles and limestone karsts, and caves with colourful pagodas. It's a great place to break for coffee and enjoy the scenery before 1 hour's transfer to Ha Tien.
After an early leisurely breakfast, you will transfer 15 minutes to Xa-Xia border, cross the border, get through the customs office, and meet the new team in Cambodia. Continue travelling 30 minutes by vehicle to the Kampong Trach for a full day ride to Kampot. We cross the paddy fields, rustic villages, then we explore the stunning landscape of Kampong Track mountain park and water caves. The area offers limestone karst mountains that hide numerous caves and caverns with beautiful mountain views.
The routes are gentle dirt track and a little hilly but more undulating. Afterwards, we continue the ride to explore chilli pepper farms and the many vast plantations. Chilli pepper in Kampot is one of the most well-known chilli pepper in the world. The pepper is a cultivar of pepper grown and produced in Kampot province, Cambodia. It has been a certified geographical indication (GI) product since 2010.
This is a chance you learn more about this and experience the way to process it. Ride past the Brateak Krola Lake, enjoy watching lotus fields and cycle through lush farms to Tuek Chhou where we stay on the main road for a couple of km and ride on a small country road to salt fields. Mee locals on farms and continue across the salt paddies to the beautiful river. Then we stay on a small road along the river to Kampot city.
Bokor Hill Station is a collection of French colonial buildings constructed as a peaceful mountain luxury resort and retreats for colonial residents in the early 1920s atop Bokor Mountain in Preah Monivong National Park, about 37 km west of Kampot in southern Cambodia. The mountain is rich in lush forests and a varied range of wildlife, and Bokor Hill Station is about 1.027m above levels. This is one of the highlight visits in the town.
After breakfast at the hotel, you'll transfer to Bokor gateway, pick the bikes, to challenge 35 km on the scenic road winding through the dense jungle of Bokor national park. The routes are smooth and have less traffic, and the support vehicle is always behind you. Explore the colonial buildings, an old church, hotels, see the spectacular scenery from the mountain top. Stop at the lake, see the waterfalls, visit the Sampov Pram Pagoda, and admire the luxury Thansur Sokha hotel. Its a great time to explore every corner of Bokor Hill Station and its surroundings. Enjoy lunch, return to the hotel, shower, and check out for 3.5 hours transfer to Phnom Penh.
Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s busy capital, sits at the Mekong and Tonlé Sap rivers, and it was a hub for both the Khmer Empire and French colonialists. On its walkable riverfront, lined with parks, restaurants and bars, are the ornate Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and the National Museum, displaying artifacts from around the country. At the city’s heart is the massive, art deco central market. We take a guided walking tour to explore the Royal Palace, National Museum in the morning, free on your own to relax your legs at hotel's swimming pool after many days of the beaten track by bicycle.
Oudong was an ancient city of the post-Angkorian period (1618-1863 C.E), located in present-day Psadek commune, Punhea Loeu district, Kandal province, about 35 km northwest of Phnom Penh city via National Road Number 5. The city faces Kampong Loung village and Tonle Sap river on the east, Vang Chas village and Oudong market in the north, National Road Number 5 on the south, and its southwest side faces Prasith mountain. It is approximately 10Km away from another post-Angkorian city of Longvek.
After breakfast, you'll transfer out of Phnom Penh city, and we start riding from Preaek Pnov. Enjoy a leisurely cycle through many Khmer communities, local farmlands, and removed hamlets. The routes are varied terrains, from tarmac to gravel through stilt-house villages. Ride through rice paddies and stopping along the way to learn rich culture and history about this region. We explore Oudong Mountain, visit the Phreah Reach Traop Mountain, enjoy the stunning scenery, enjoy the views, looking over the lush fields. Have tasty lunch at a local home, continues to explore the Oudong town's outskirts toward to Kampong Chhnang. We back on the vehicle in a rural village on the way, and have a transfer to Kampong Chhnang.
Kampong Chhnang is an amazing tiny town and near the Ton Le Sap. Kampong Chhnang Province centuries ago was a coastal city on the route between China and India; due to sedimentation from the Mekong River, the coastline moved much farther to sea. When the Tonle Sap river changed its course, the city lost its primary water source and thus was deserted, the population moving to a town called Kampong Tralach. A city gradually formed around it, bring new life to Kampong Chhnang. A museum presents the archaeological record of the city's history.
Today we set off a bit earlier because there is a long way to Battambang. We'll transfer 1.5 hours to Krakor township, and we ride to Kampong incredible Luong Floating village. Take a-30 minute composite boat ride to experience local daily activities, pass grocery shops, local schools, petrol stations, pagodas, hospitals, and ice factories. See locals making dried fish. Fish lined up in neat rows on skewers on the sun, fish will be kept for up to a year. The entire village life is on floating houses and boats. Afterwards, we enjoy dirt track cycling through lowland country farms of mixed vegetables, rice paddies, passing numerous ancient temples, stilt houses. The routes are trail, dirt track, and many are shady palm trails. We ride along sleep Pusat River. We will have a picnic lunch on the way. Today's ride will end at Pusat town, and you'll transfer to Battambang.
Battambang is located in North West Cambodia and by the Sangker River with colonial architecture. The particular to be seen in Battambang is Bamboo trains. Build by local engineers with local material primary are bamboo, small engine, and four steel wheels. They are the open-air trains to observe the beautiful scenery and rice paddies. After leisurely breakfast, we ride from the hotel, follow the minor road running along Sangker River.
Once we get out of the town, we stop at the old colonial railway that was abandoned for a long time and then locals use the rails to transfer goods and farm products- called bamboo trains. Enjoy a short bamboo trip through lush countryside, and continue the ride. Explore the verdant agriculture fields, ancient temples, and vibrant villages and learn more about local businesses and industries. Visit many workshops making local snacks from rice, bananas, tapiocas, and cook sticky rice in bamboo. We enjoy a half-day ride for today and transfer to the hotel, take a shower, check out and enjoy lunch before 2.5 hours transfer to Siem Reap.
Angkor is one of the most important archaeological sites in South-East Asia. Stretching over some 400 km2, including forested area, Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century. They include the famous Temple of Angkor Wat and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple with its countless sculptural decorations. UNESCO has set up a wide-ranging programme to safeguard this symbolic site and its surroundings.
It's your highlight spot on your trip, and you'll transfer to Angkor Wat's entrance. We ride a circuit around some of the temples and ride to Ta Prohm, the well-known temples overgrown by trees, then to Bayon in Angkor Thom, Bayon temple, the Terrace of the Elephants. Explore many mysterious giants carved faces, incredibly detailed carvings. Enjoy lunch at a small restaurant and continue your discovery of Angkor.
Enjoy breakfast and spend your time shopping, relax until a pick up for Siem Reap international airport. Tour End!
The Mekong Delta, Vietnam, has complicated rural path network systems, well-developed and maintenance by governments. The region comprises 12 provinces: Long An, Dong Thap, Tien Giang, An Giang, Ben Tre, Vinh Long, Tra Vinh, Hau Giang, Kien Giang, Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, and Ca Mau, along with the Mekong Delta Capital of Can Tho. All country back roads are asphalt, concrete paths connecting villages to villages as it's a rural transports. The rest are dirt tracks, so do not worry about exploring the Mekong Delta by bicycle, even you are a beginner. Depending on each province's regions, lowlands, or jungles, and rural villages, our hand-picked routes are the best for your biking trips. Mekong Bike Tours
Flexible route - The most important key is to your trip
You do not have to ride the exact kilometer distance as it's showing on the daily biking of each itinerary. It will be flexible as you want. Even you could choose the longest distance that more than 80km per day if a whole day ride. You could spend more time cycling if you think the biking distance is too short! Or you can enjoy short routes and spend more time taking photos, stopping at villages/ small markets, or the home of locals to find something interesting.
Throughout the Mekong Delta and its rivers with thousand branches! You will ride on various roads; flat trails, paths, rural roads, and country back roads where they are too small for vehicles. However, the Mekong Delta River network has natural creeks and canals that small ferry boats are such essential ways of travelling in the countryside, and riders have no choice!
We tailor-make unique bike trips depend on the specific route and terrain of your tour. Vietnam Backroads is the first cycle tour operator to explore and build up many adventure trips to Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, Ca Mau, Rach Gia, Vi Thanh, Cao Lanh, and Sadec and remote villages. Our top cycle tour operator and the pathfinder are Mr Van, nicknamed "Van the man" Each cycling route has to be meticulously well-scouted, investigated, scouted out, and mapped out beforehand by Mr. Van the man. Our guides are licensed, well trained in bike maintenance and navigation and know all routes as they are on their hands. All bike guides can tailor a custom route suitable to your wish and levels of cycling skills.
How were the backup vehicles support cyclists on the trip?
Most routes are small, narrow, just wide enough for two bicycles OR mopeds. There are vehicles to support riders on the entire trip (van/minibus to take up all cyclists and truck to carry all bikes and spare bikes), but they are too big to drive on, follow riders along through the countryside. Do remember! All support vehicles are permanently closed and not far from the group. Where are the support vehicles during the trip? Depends on routes, vehicles sometimes move along the high roads, second highways, or country roads as close to riders as possible. If one of the riders wants to relax on A/C vehicle, the tour leaders will find the shortest route that leads he/she to the support vehicles that are always on standby. That is very easy and also the way Vietnam Backroads organized.
- The weather in Mekong Delta has two distinct seasons. Rainy season from May to last November, and the dry season from May to last April. The weather will be more relaxed from November to February. In general, the preferred travel time is from August to April in both the dry and wet seasons. It will be more humid, a little bit hot from May to July, and farmers start to make rice crops this time of the year. Travellers can take bicycle tours in the wettest months from the last of May to August because the rains usually come in short, heavy showers, mainly in the afternoon, and only lasts for an hour, then sunshine turns back to normal.
Private Support Vehicles
We organize cycling holidays, cycling adventure trips and mountain biking tours. All are flexible with luxury, fully air-conditioned vehicles to support riders on the entire journey. It depends on how many riders are in the group, and the vehicle support services will be well-arranged to satisfy your travels. There are air-conditioned 16-seat van/minibuses to take up all riders, luggage, and a truck to hold all bikes during the trip.
Every morning, the vehicles will transfer you out of the bustling city, and then you will ride to explore the stunning countryside, and you will back on the vehicles to avoid traffic in town when the daily's ride ends in the late afternoon.
Every 20 - 25 km, the support vehicles will be waiting at the high road if you are tired and really would love to ride on A/C van. Your guide will escort you to vehicles easily because many country back roads are linked to the main roadways where keeping vehicles are on standby.
Then you can relax on a support vehicle when others in the group can continue cycling as long as they wish! You will meet the others at the next point/ destination where you love to re-join the group and continue to ride.
All your luggage/ suitcase and day bags are safe on the vehicles and well kept by the company's drivers and its team.
2 to 4 riders in a group
There is only one A/C 16 seater van to take up all riders, luggage & suitcases, and bikes. There are four rows of seating for passengers on the A/C 16 seater van. Two people sit on each row. The third row is for luggage and suitcases. The last row of seats will be folded up, so all bikes will be uploaded here.
A medium group tour: from 5 to 7 people
There will be two vehicles to support riders on the entire trip. One 16 seater van to take up all riders, luggage & suitcases. Another truck to carry all bikes, spare bikes, tool kits, icebox to keep cold drinks, and so on
A large group tour: 8 to 14 people
One minibus to take up all riders, including luggage & suitcases, and one truck to carry all bikes, spare bikes, water, cold drinks, and snacks...Iceboxes
A group has more than 15 riders and more than 20 people
We provide two vans and one minibus, and one truck to escort large groups of riders and help ensure their safety. Our pro guide will motivate a team with support vehicles to bring the best services to riders.
Giant MTB & Trek Hybrid MTB Bikes & Gears
Trek Hybrid MTB Bikes - Wheelsize 700c x45/1.95 - Gravel tires
Giant MTB Bikes - Wheelsize 27.5 x 1.95
Cycle Vietnam to Cambodia
We very much enjoyed our time in Vietnam cycling through the stunning countryside. We saw places that no other tourists go and this was indeed very special. Cambodia was also very interesting and the guide was very good. He explained the culture and sights very well. However cycling on the main roads in Cambodia did not compare to our wonderful experience in Vietnam. Cycling through Angkor Wat and other temples was however exceptionally nice.
We will definitely recommend going on a trip with you to our friends and family. This was a holiday we will remember for a very long time.
Thank you again for showing us the real Vietnam. 04 - 13 January 2020