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Top 11 Things To Do in Indochina – A Pocket Guide for First-Time Travelers

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Indochina is a region in Southeast Asia that includes Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia which are usually combined in the first-time holiday in this region.

Not only known for its rich history and vibrant cultures, the Indochina region also attracts and impresses its visitors with its stunning landscapes.

If you are planning a trip to Indochina, but don't know where to start, or what to do in Indochina, then spend around 5 minutes reading all the top 15 things to do in Indochina shared in this travel article.

The Very First Tip: Prepaid data SIM card for Indochina Trip

In any trip abroad, in addition to the visa issue, one important thing that you should well prepare is a data SIM/eSIM card, as it helps you stay connected with your beloved at home, or find your way in a strange country.

In case you have an eSIM-compatible device, buying an Indochina eSIM before the trip is highly recommended, as it keeps you connected right from your first stop in your destination without a physical SIM card, and release you from crazy international roaming charge.

Check out the following links for the best prepaid eSIM plans for your Indochina trip:

You will see that there are so many plans for you to choose. In case you don't know which one to choose, seek advice from the provider.

Wish you a great trip to Indochina!

1. Visit the Angkor Wat ancient city in Cambodia

Angkor Wat is the centerpiece of the Angkor temple complex in Cambodia, and one of the largest religious monuments in the world. It is a fine example of Khmer architecture and is home to dozens of temples and ruins, including the famous Angkor Wat temple.

A visit to the ancient city of Angkor Wat in Cambodia will give you a great opportunity to learn about the history and significance of the temples here.

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2. Explore the Mekong Delta in Vietnam

Once visiting, you will fall in love with this destination, I'm sure about that.

Mekong Delta is a vast network of waterways and rice paddies that covers much of southern Vietnam. This region has many things to offer, including endless paddies for agricultural production, bustling floating markets, traditional villages, unique ecosystems, and stunning landscapes.

Visitors to Mekong Delta in Vietnam can take boat tours through small waterways of the delta, visit local farms and markets, and learn about the traditional way of life in the region.

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3. Take a cruise on Halong Bay in Vietnam

Halong Bay should not be missed in your trip to Indochina as it is one of the most beautiful natural wonders in this region, named in the UNESCO World Heritage List and the world's new Seven Wonders of Nature. This bay is filled with limestone cliffs, emerald waters, and hidden caves.

Here are top 5 experiences that you should not miss on a Halong Bay trip:

  1. Take a fantastic cruise through the crystal-clear waters of this beautiful landscape.
  2. Do kayaking, swimming, or rock climbing.
  3. Discover the local life in the floating villages.
  4. Visit magnificent caves and grottoes.
  5. Be romantic with a luxury cruise, spa, and dining in a cave.

4. Visit Luang Prabang in Laos

Luang Prabang - a picturesque city in northern Laos - is another must-see destination in your trip to Indochina.

Being known for its historic temples, colonial architecture, and laid-back atmosphere. Luang Prabang is popular among travelers who want to experience the traditional culture of Laos. Visitors to this city will have opportunities to explore the temples, wander through the night markets, and participate in traditional ceremonies and festivals.

Like Halong Bay of Vietnam, Luang Prabang, Laos is also named in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list.

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5. Explore the Cu Chi Tunnels in Vietnam

The Cu Chi Tunnels is a very famous attraction - very close to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in Vietnam. It is a network of underground passages used by the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War, offering visitors first-hand experiences inside the massive underground cave and exciting insights into the lives of Vietnamese soldiers during the war.

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6. Visit the Killing Fields and the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Killing Fields and the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum in Phnom Penh are 2 destinations that allow visitors to delve deeper into the darker corners of Cambodian history, under the Khmer Rouge. These sites now serve as a reminder of the importance of human rights and justice.

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7. Take a cooking class in Hoi An, Vietnam

Don't miss a cooking class in Hoi An, Vietnam, if you are on a tour here, as the cooking class will introduce you to Vietnamese cuisine which is renowned around the world for its fresh and flavorful dishes.

Joining a cooking class is not only a fun activity, but also offers great insight into local culinary culture. In addition to learning awesome recipes, you get to make delicious food and memories to last a lifetime.

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8. Go trekking in Sapa, Vietnam

Located in the misty clouds of Northern Vietnam, Sapa is known for its stunning rice terraces and rich cultural heritage and traditions.

Most visitors to this land experience trekking, no matter easy or challenging, to explore the villages and learn about the traditional way of life. This is the best way to experience the natural beauty of this region and to connect with the local people.

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9. Visit the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The Royal Palace in Phnom Penh is the icon of this capital city, and a stunning example of Khmer architecture, and is home to the current king of Cambodia.

Visitors can explore the palace and its grounds and learn about the history of the monarchy in Cambodia. This is a fascinating and unique experience that offers insight into the country's culture and traditions.

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10. Explore the ancient city of Hue in Vietnam

Located on the bank of the Huong River, the Hue Ancient City has been recognized as one of the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since 1993.

Being the former imperial capital in central Vietnam that is known for its historic temples, tombs, and palaces, the Hue Ancient City is a great destination for history buffs and those who want to experience the cultural heritage of Vietnam.

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11. Take a boat ride on the Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia

Located in the Lower Mekong Basin, the Tonle Sap Lake in Siem Reap, Cambodia is Southeast Asia's largest freshwater lake (4,000 square miles), and is home to floating villages and one of the world's most vibrant ecosystems.

The best way to discover the lake is to get on a boat which will take you to explore the villages and learn about the traditional way of life in Cambodia.

Popular villages to visit on a boat ride on Tonle Sap Lake:

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So, we have guided you through the top 11 things to do on your trip to Indochina (Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia). Obviously, the region is rich in history, culture, and natural beauty, and has many things on offer for you to discover, from ancient temples to beautiful landscapes and delicious cuisine. Whether you are interested in history, nature, or culture, there is something for you to join and enjoy in Indochina. So, pack your bags and head to this fascinating region to experience all that it has to offer.

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