Cycling from Cambodia to Vietnam. 12 Days

Cycle from Phnom Penh in Cambodia to Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam, whilst being connected to grass-root NGO's that are doing life-changing work in the local community. 12 days.

11 Nights
January, June, July, November

An epic South East Asian cycling adventure taking place in the best of Cambodia and Vietnam. Travel from the hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh, along dirt tracks in the remote Cambodian countryside, meandering through the iconic Mekong Delta and into the bright lights of Ho Chi Minh City.

Your hassle-free adventure includes:

  • 11 nights accommodation
  • 3 NGO social impact engagements
  • 6 dinners, 2 at social enterprises
  • 8 breakfasts
  • Expert local guide, mechanic and driver
  • Support van
  • Bike hire
  • Airport transfers
  • Entry to S-21 Museum
  • Sunrise tour Mekong floating market
  • Cocoa plantation, noodle factory and pepper farm tours

Perfect for: Socially minded adventurers looking to see South East Asia from a new perspective. You need to be fit and healthy and you must be able to ride a bike.

Adventures for Good: Your host’s mission is to offer cycling adventures with a positive impact. Along the way, you will visit NGO’s striving to make a difference, learn about the social issues, challenges and strategies in country, and dine at social enterprise restaurants, all while having a cycling adventure. See all of our ‘Adventures for Good’ here.

Need To Know

The following are not included in your tour price: - Flights - All meals except those specified - Travel insurance - Visa (Where applicable) - NGO donation £110

You need to be fit and healthy and you must be able to ride a bike. As there is a support vehicle on hand there is always the option to hop in and skip a hill or even a complete leg if you feel yourself flagging.

Yes absolutely. It’s a great way to meet likeminded people.

Your local host recommends:

For the cycle

  • Full sleeve sports top (high breathability)
  • Lightweight full-length top and pants
  • Visor/Caps for under your helmet
  • Closed shoes (bikes do not have clip in pedals)
  • Gloves & Helmet
  • Sports water bottle
  • Lightweight backpack (optional)
  • Removable padded seat for your bike (optional)

General Items

  • Cash
  • Passport & passport photo
  • Insurance copy
  • Camera, SD cards & chargers
  • Smartphone & chargers
  • Tropical strength insect repellant
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Gels & hydrolytes to stay hydrated
  • Sunscreen
  • Adequate prescription medication
  • Women’s sanitary needs
  • Hat for sun protection
  • Usual toiletries

There will be an opportunity to wash clothes on days 4, 5 and 8.

Between November and February rainfall is minimal with mild temperatures around the mid 20’s. As with all South East Asian countries conditions can be humid at times so it’s worth having breathable clothing.

Between June and October it is the rainy season. This is still a great time to come and there are far fewer tourists about. Temperatures are still in the mid 20’s but be prepared for a few torrential tropical downpours!

South East Asia is famous for its amazing street food and Cambodia and Vietnam are no exception. Typical cuisine includes creamy coconut curries, spiced BBQ meats and fried noodles.

Of course. Just let us know about your dietary requirements once you have booked your place.

You are free to book any flights that fit with the trip start and end times.

You’ll visit at least 3 NGO’s on this tour featuring:

  • Friends International are leading the charge in the ‘ChildSafe’ movement and the ‘Think Families, Not Orphanages’ campaign. Friends International have an office in Phnom Penh, which makes for a great introduction to Cambodia.

  • In Kampot, you may visit the ethical clothing manufacturer, Dorsu. You will have the chance to learn more about the real story behind the garment factory workers by visiting them directly. Chumkriel Language School is an incredible organization that go so far beyond teaching language.

  • In Vietnam, you may have the chance to visit some of the bigger organisations and see how their system helps the community. Heifer International pioneered the agricultural pay it forward program, adopted by NGOs and communities all over the world. Habitat for Humanity focus on building shelters for the disadvantaged with a help up, not hand out philosophy.

For every tour, all riders are requested to contribute a nominal sum for the purpose of a donation - usually approx £110 per rider. During the course of the tour, you are given the chance to engage with, and learn from, local NGOs. You’ll visit no less than three NGOs during every tour and spend some time learning about their projects, strategies and challenges. At the end of the tour, the riders are then empowered with new found knowledge and have the opportunity to combine the allotted donation money and make an impact towards a project of their choosing.

In addition to building a profile for our NGO partners, your host also reimburses them NGO for their time and resources. You’ll spend 1-2 hours with each NGO who are then remunerated, regardless of whether or not there is a follow up donation from the group.

If at the end of the tour, you do not feel that there is a connection or the money would not be used wisely, then of course you do not have to donate. It’s important you feel a connection to where you money is going.

The two tours are exactly the same, except the 16 day option adds an amazing experience in Siem Reap, includes a ride around the temples of Angkor, a visit to Battambang and a back roads cycle into Phnom Penh. This extended option meets up with the 12 day tour in Phnom Penh.


View map

After a troubled history, there is a real sense of the future in the hustle and bustle of the countries capital Phnom Penh. Even so, Cambodia is not yet as developed as some of it’s other South East Asian neighbours and it still offers travellers the chance to experience real adventure travel.

Vietnam is yet another country looking to the future after a troubled past. The country has changed dramatically since the horrors of the American War and it is now a thriving economy filled with entrepreneurial spirit. Despite its rapid development, Vietnam has not lost its character and charm and it is still a wonderful place to visit.

One thing that is sure to impress on any visitor to Vietnam or Cambodia is the warmth and resilience of the people. Despite their difficult histories, both well within living memory, the people are friendly, welcoming and full of joy. Perhaps nowhere is this spirit more apparent than at the NGOs that you will visit along the way.

Start Point? Your adventure starts in Phnom Penh. You will be collected from the airport and transferred to your hotel. Nothing is planned until 18:00 on arrival day so feel free to arrive any time before then.

Finish point? Your adventure ends at your hotel in Ho Chi Minh City on the morning of your last day. Your local hosts can transfer you to the airport for your onward journey. Cambodia is a colourful collision of old and new.

Getting there and away?

By air: Phnom Penh International Airport (PNH) is a modern airport served by around 30 airline carriers but still to Asian hub destinations.

Tan Son Nhat International Airport (SGN) is a busy international airport with over 40 airline carries offering services to destines around the world.

One option is to book a return flight Tan Son Nhat International Airport (SGN) and then book an individual flight with Air Cambodia, Qatar or Vietnam Airlines to Phnom Penh International Airport (PNH) for the start if your journey.

What to Expect

Day 1: Arrive in Phnom Penh

Your adventure kicks off in the hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh. Your local host will be at the airport ready to whisk you away to your hotel.

There is nothing planned until dinner time so depending on what time you arrive you may have time to get out and explore the city. Your local guides will be on hand to point you in the right direction.

The trip kicks off at the Romdeng restaurant where you will meet all the local hosts and your fellow travellers. Romdeng is a social enterprise restaurant offering skills and training to vulnerable people. For the truly adventurous start your trip jumping of the culinary deep end with a tarantula starter!

Day 2: Friends International NGO and S21 Museum

The day starts with a visit to Friends International. This a superb NGO stepping in to support vulnerable individuals with vital social services. They also go a step further, offering retraining and opportunities – like last night’s Romdeng restaurant!

After that, you’ll visit the Russian Market and then Tuol Sleng, the S-21 Genocide Museum. The museum bears witness to the atrocities of the Khmer Rouge and honours its victims. It is a difficult but incredibly important place to experience.

For the rest of the afternoon, you have some free time, either to explore more of this thriving city or reflect and take in the day’s visits. In the evening you’ll meet back up with the group for a local style Khmer BBQ dinner.

Day 3: Rural Riding and Chisaur Temple

By now you are no doubt itching to start pedalling. Your first day’s cycle is 63km wandering along narrow dirt tracks, through villages and along waterways in rural Cambodia.

The ride ends at Chisaur Mountain Temple – a slight misnomer at just 130m above sea level! The ancient ruins of the temple are 200 years older than Angkor Wat and you will have plenty of time to explore them at your leisure.

When you have had your fill of the temple it’s time to hop in the support van for a ride down to your accommodation in the laid-back riverside city of Kampot.

Day 4: The Bokor Mountain Challenge

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is 40km with 1000m of ascent to the top of Bokor Mountain. Of course, if that doesn’t sound like fun to you there is always the option of a lift to the top and ride down.

The mountain is the site of a former French Colonial hill station with an eerie abandoned casino at its summit. Your efforts are rewarded with a commanding view over the surrounding Preah Monivong National Park.

From the summit, it’s a joyous decent back to town making a total ride of 80km. Dinner is at the Rusty Keyhole, which may or may not serve the best ribs in the world - you be the judge!

Day 5: NGO Visit, Rest and Relaxation

In the morning you will be visiting the Chumkriel Language School. This is a wonderful local school set up by Mr Suthy to serve the children of the salt field community.

The rest of the day is yours to do as you please. It’s a great opportunity to just sit and relax by the pool and give those legs a well-deserved rest. If that’s not your idea of fun, then the local markets are a delight to explore.

One great option is to take a sunset cruise down the river. If you’re lucky you may just get to see the fireflies come to life, dancing through the night sky along the river.

Day 6: Coast, Crabs and Cycling

Today’s cycle is all about the coastal province of Kep. It’s a 62km ride through coastal towns and past salt lakes. Once again, you’ll reap the benefits of your host’s local knowledge and enjoy a quiet backroad route.

Ever wondered where your pepper came from? You can find out on a visit to a local pepper plantation. Kep is also famous for its seafood, especially crab. A visit wouldn’t be complete without a quick taste.

After navigating the outskirts of Kep National Park it’s on to country number two as you enter Vietnam at Ha Tien. From here a welcome lift in the support van gets you to the thriving port of Rach Gia for more great seafood.

Day 7: Cycling the Mekong Delta

Your journey continues with an 82km cycle into the heart of the Mekong Delta. The route makes the most of your guides local knowledge cutting along back roads through a mosaic of paddy fields and farmers huts.

The day’s destination is Can Tho. After the remote countryside of Cambodia, this thriving city is all the more impressive. The city is filled with bustling markets, gleaming temples and peaceful parks.

Can Tho’s night market is a great place to experience the famous street food of South East Asia. The hardest part of your day may well be deciding exactly which delicious looking dish to choose for dinner.

Day 8: Visit the Floating Markets

Its position on the Mekong Delta defines Can Tho and its people. Canals and floating markets are a part of daily life and the locals are as at home on the water as they are on the land.

It’s worth the early start to experience the floating market at its best, at sunrise. From the water, you can enjoy the novel experience of ordering breakfast and having it delivered by boat as you float on by.

Following the market, you’ll visit a noodle farm to try your hand at making your own and visit a local cocoa farm. After lunch, the day is yours to explore the city at your leisure.

Day 9: Cycling the Mekong

Another day of exploring the Mekong is in store with a 95km cycle. If that sounds a little too rich for your taste there is always the option to hop in the support van a little early.

The Mekong Delta is a really important area for Vietnam’s agriculture. A quarter of Vietnam’s agricultural land can be found in these fertile floodplains. The expansive network of paddy fields really is a sight to behold.

The day’s destination is Ben Tre which offers quite a different experience away from the tourist crowds of Can Tho. The area is famous for coconut candy and a visit to the local factories is worthwhile.

Day 10: Cycling into Ho Chi Minh

It’s an early start to make the most of the cooler morning temperatures. Today is your last day on the bike and you will be heading into the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, 86 km away.

Cycling into the city is an experience with thousands of two-wheeled companions to keep you company. You’ll hop aboard the support van to ride the last 12kms to your hotel.

Your boutique hotel is located in the heart of the city. It’s just a short walk away from the local street food market, the ideal place for dinner.

Day 11: Ho Chi Minh, Mekong Plus and KOTO

We’ll visit our third and final NGO of the trip in Mekong Plus. With a presence in Cambodia and Vietnam, this grass roots local NGO focus on a hand up, not hand out policy. The social enterprise part of this NGO trains beneficiaries to make quilts, handicrafts and bamboo bicycles.

The rest of the day is yours to explore Ho Chi Minh. It’s a vibrant city full of busy markets, old colonial architecture, dramatic boulevards and museums. The Chinatown in district 5 is well worth a visit.

In the evening meet up for a final dinner at Koto, with your travelling compadres and local hosts. Share a drink, swap stories and enjoy reliving the last 11 days of epic adventure.

Day 12: Leaving

After many hours in the saddle, hundreds of kilometres and two countries, your journey is now complete.

Enjoy one final breakfast together before you go your separate ways.

Whether you’re heading home or on your way to adventures new, your hosts will see you on your way with an airport transfer.

Note: This itinerary and the duration of the activities are subject to change due to group abilities and preferences, and weather conditions and forecasts.


All of your accommodation is included in your adventure. Accommodation is based in shared twin rooms although a single supplement is available if you would prefer.

After a long day in the saddle, a nice comfortable spot to lay your head is invaluable and your local hosts have carefully chosen a hotel or guesthouse in each of your stop-offs.

All accommodations will meet a good standard of accommodation with private bathrooms, air conditioning and clean, comfortable beds. Accommodation is predominantly boutique hotels with swimming pools available. Being a cycle tour your hosts are also keen to ensure that Thai massage is always available nearby.

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