TOUR FULL Journey along the Mekong: A Dental Tour and Cruise in Vietnam and Cambodia (FULL)

18 - 29 Jan 2024
  • Medical & Professional Tours

About the tour

Journey by land and water through the languid and beautiful lands of the Mekong in southern Vietnam and Cambodia. Travel from dynamic Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as it is still often referred to by its inhabitants, to the Mekong Delta. Cruise for three nights on the stylish Pandaw Indochina along the Mekong River past mangroves, bamboo forests, floating markets and villages to Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. Explore the city which retains its old French colonial architecture in leafy riverside streets alongside royal palaces and temples. Drive through lush landscapes visiting Oudong, the former capital city of Cambodia en route to Siem Reap. Spend the final three nights in Siem Reap, exploring the great archaeological sites of Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm and the Bayon.

The professional visits and talks provide historical and contemporary insight into dentistry in Indochina. There are also a range of visits and talks delving into the region’s history, both ancient and more recent along with a look at contemporary culture and society in Vietnam and Cambodia today. At the end of the tour there is an optional beach extension.

Your tour leader

Picture of JBT tour leader, Kevin Esplin

Kevin Esplin

Kevin Esplin has been a specialist in prosthodontics for many years. He trained at King’s College Hospital, London and then embarked on a two-year postgraduate program at the University of Connecticut, followed by a stint at the Eastman Dental Institute, London. For the past 35 years he has been in private practice in Cambridge, where he specialises in restorative dentistry and dental implants. His practice won the award of ’The Best Dental Practice in Britain" in 2015. He has lectured in the USA and England and has been running dental education programs in his practice for the past 10 years.

Need more information?

  • Tel: (Toll Free) 1-8777-398-764
  • Mon-Fri: 9am-5pm
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Itinerary at a glance

  • Day 1: Saigon (Thurs, 18 Jan) Arrive and transfer to the hotel. Dinner at Vietnam House.
  • Day 2: Saigon (Fri, 19 Jan) Take an orientation tour of the city, visiting the French-era Notre Dame Cathedral and the palatial Central Post Office. Visit the Reunification Palace and take part in a tour of this impressive and kitsch building and landmark. See the former CIA building and visit the War Remnants Museum, which includes an excellent photographic exhibition. Drinks at the rooftop bar of the Rex Hotel, where the media briefings known as the ‘Five O’Clock Follies’ took place during the conflict. Dinner at Quan Ngon.
  • Day 3: Saigon (Sat, 20 Jan) Take a tour of the famed Binh Tay market in the company of your cooking instructor, before participating in a cookery class. Enjoy your cooked lunch. Visit a modern dental clinic and learn of the practice and changes in dentistry in Vietnam. Dinner at Indochine.
  • Day 4: Saigon / My Tho (Sun, 21 Jan) Transfer to the river port and embark on the RV Indochina. After settling in, take a tour by sampan (a flat wooden boat) through mangroves and bamboo forests to the fruit orchards of Bến Tre. Explore this birdlife-rich area by local rowboat, making your leisurely way through canals before arriving at a village specialising in local crafts.
  • Day 5: Gao Giong (Mon, 22 Jan) Cruise upriver and visit the green oasis of Gáo Giồng, a 1,000-acre eucalyptus forest and wildlife sanctuary where a diverse selection of water birds and egrets gather in their tens of thousands across the ‘Plain of Reeds’. Take rowboats across the canals to view the principal nesting areas. Continue cruising up the Mekong towards the Cambodian border.
  • Day 6: Chau Doc Vietnam / Cambodian Border (Tues, 23 Jan) Cruise to the picturesque border town of Châu Đốc and visit the floating markets by sampan. Visit Cham village before traveling to Sam Mountain to climb the 400 steps to the Hang Pagoda. Return to ship and cruise through a web of canals before dropping anchor on the Vietnam/Cambodia border to undergo immigration formalities.
  • Day 7: Phnom Penh (Wed, 24 Jan) Arrive in Phnom Penh and disembark from the RV Indochina. Visit the Phnom Penh Dental School and learn about dental education and training in Cambodia. Transfer to the hotel and settle in before an orientation tour along Sisowath Quay and the riverside park.
  • Day 8: Phnom Penh (Thurs, 25 Jan) Visit the Royal Palace, the Silver Pagoda and National Museum. At leisure with options to visit the Central Market, Cambodian Living Arts (an NGO that specialises in performing arts) or the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. After-dinner drink at Sora Skybar with stunning views of the city skyline.
  • Day 9: Phnom Penh / Siem Reap (Fri, 26 Jan) Visit a local dental clinic and learn about dentistry in Cambodia, or at leisure at the hotel. Drive to Siem Reap via Oudong, the magnificent former capital of Cambodia between 1618 and 1866, and learn about the city’s trading history with China, Japan and Europe. Continue to Siem Reap.
  • Day 10: Siem Reap (Sat, 27 Jan) Start early to visit the atmospheric Bayon Temple and Ta Prohm, intertwined with enormous tree roots that are hundreds of years old. Continue to Angkor Wat, part of the city of Angkor built by the Khmer civilisation between 802 and 1220 AD. At its peak, Angkor is thought to have contained upwards of a million people, making it the largest city in the world at that time. Rest of day at leisure with the option to visit the Angkor National Museum. Dinner at the Foreign Correspondents Club.
  • Day 11: Siem Reap (Sun, 28 Jan) Visit a local dental charity project and learn about their work. Continue to the Cambodia Landmine Museum. At leisure in the afternoon. Farewell dinner at Viroth’s restaurant.
  • Day 12: Siem Reap (Mon, 29 Jan) Depart for the airport or take the beach extension.

Tour cost

The cost of the tour is USD $4,225 per person sharing. The cost of the tour with a room to yourself is USD $4,963.