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Vietnam to Cambodia Cycle

Ho Chi Minh to Angkor Wat. Cycle through beautiful rural landscapes dotted with ruins of ancient civilisations and small towns where Buddhist temples nestle amongst graceful French colonial buildings and ramshackle houses. 

This challenge takes us from Vietnamese Saigon, now Ho Chi Minh City, through rice-paddies and waterways of the beautiful Mekong Delta into Cambodia. Pedal through this friendly country towards one of the most impressive sights in Southeast Asia, the Royal Temples of Angkor Wat. The fascinating insight into the region's cultures, ancient and modern, are a real highlight of the trip. 

Want to give the gift of adventure?

This registration fee of this challenge is available to purchase (in part or in full) as a gift voucher so that you can pop a once in a lifetime experience under someone's tree this Christmas. For more information contact Sarah Phillips on 01206 931 468 or email sphillips@sthelena.org.uk


Trip Itinerary

Day 1: Depart London

Day 2: Arrive Ho Chi Minh City

On arrival we transfer to our night hotel and have a trip briefing before getting a good night's sleep, ready for the start of our challenge! Night hotel. 

Day 3: Ho Chi Minh City - Tra Vinh

After an early breakfast we drive (approx 1.5 hours) out of the bustling city of Ho Chi Minh to the famous Cu Chi Tunnels. A sanctuary for the Vietcong at the height of the Vietnam War, they give us a good insight into the country's relatively recent history. We then drive south towards the Mekong Delta (approx 2.5 hours). We stop near Ben Tre, the gateway to the Meong Delta, and after lunch and ensuring our bikes are comfortable, we set off! It's a wonderful place to start our ride. We cycle on narrow lanes and tracks through the heart of this rural area, passing banana plantations, sugar cane fields and the lush rural landscape of the Delta. We have a short ferry crossing before reaching Tra Vinh. Night hotel.

Drive approx 1.5 & 2.5 hours; cycle approx 42-50km

Day 4: Tra Vinh - Cau Ke - Can Tho

Our first full day's cycle takes us along quiet backroads to Can Tho, the largest city in the Mekong Delta, known for its picturesque canals full of scenes of everyday life. En route we pass numerous Khmer temples and pagodas, and cross several waterways - some by footbridges, some on ferry crossings. We will start to get a great feel for the friendly Vietnamese culture, and the traditional rural scenes we see are fascinating. We ride today on a mix of roads and tracks; most of it is very quiet, but the last section gets busier as we approach Can Tho. Night hotel. 

Cycle approx 90-95km

Day 5: Can Tho - Long Xuyen

After an early breakfast we set off by boat through the Can Tho floating market, seeing a multitude of boats trading livestock, fruits, rice and fish. We then get back on our bikes and cycle along the banks of the busy river continuing towards Sa Dec. After lunch we cycle upstream alongside the river towards Long Xuyen. This is a beautiful day, with some wonderful photo opportunities. We end our ride at a bird sanctuary, home to thousands of storks – we can have a quick visit to see them before loading up into the vehicles for a short transfer (approx. 45 mins) into Long Xuyen. Night hotel.

Cycle approx. 75km

Day 6: Long Xuyen - Tri Tron - Chau Doc

Our last day of cycling in Vietnam! A short transfer (30 mins) allows us to avoid the traffic, and we set off. Our route starts to undulate a little as we near the hills near Chau Doc; although these climbs are fairly gentle, our leg muscles have become used to flat terrain so they often feel harder than they really are! The heat, moreover, makes them feel tougher. We cycle via the Killing Fields at Ba Chuc, where Pol Pot’s regime massacred over 3000 Vietnamese people in 1978; harrowing history. We continue our ride to the busy town of Chau Doc. Night hotel (near border).

Cycle approx. 90-100km

Day 7: Chau Doc - Takeo - Phnom Penh

Today we set off early, heading north towards Phnom Penh. After around 20km we reach the border with Cambodia and meet our new guides who will be waiting for us. We then head off through the lovely rural landscapes of Cambodia. At the small town of Takeo we load up into the buses, which take us the remaining distance to Phnom Penh, stopping en route to visit the infamous Killing Fields, which are harrowing but compelling at the same time. We then arrive at our hotel in Phnom Penh; once considered one of the most beautiful cities in the Orient and which, despite its turbulent recent history, retains a colonial charm. Night hotel.

Cycle approx. 50km

Day 8: Phnom Penh - Kampong Chhnang

We start our day with a visit to the Tuol Sleung Museum, or School 21, a former school which was turned into the notorious Khmer Rouge interrogation camp during the Pol Pot regime. Although it tells a tragic story, it is a fascinating place to visit and essential to understanding present-day Cambodia. We then leave Phnom Penh by bus (approx. 1 hour) to avoid the city traffic before we start our ride. As we head to Udong we see the rice paddies stretching out for miles, busy with workers in the fields. The roads in the region tend to be a rich red which is very striking against the dazzling green paddy-fields – be prepared to take lots of photos! We ride through Udong, once the ancient capital, and pass by a hill temple with stunning views of the fertile region and many of the old Royal Palaces. Continuing on, we cycle towards Kampong Chhnang and the enormous Tonlé Sap Lake. Night hotel.

Cycle approx. 75km

Day 9: Kampong Chhnag - Siem Reap

A beautiful boat ride awaits us this morning, as we cross the immense Tonlé Sap. The largest freshwater lake in South-East Asia, it features an incredible biodiversity and has UNESCO biosphere status. We enjoy a rest from our bikes as we soak up the views of fishing communities and calm waters. Leaving the boat at Kampong Khlaeng, we ride on small roads through beautiful landscapes and villages, heading towards Siem Reap. This area is unspoilt and very traditional, and it’s a lovely quiet ride to savour before reaching the main tourist draw of Angkor. Meeting our vehicles, we load up before reaching the busy streets and drive (approx 30 mins) into Siem Reap, the closest town to the temples. Night hotel.

Boat ride approx. 5 hours; cycle approx. 30-40km

Day 10: Angkor Wat Cycle

Today we ride to the famous World Heritage site of Angkor Wat. The area is dotted with many ancient buildings and temples amidst dense forest; the sheer scale of the complex will astound you. We ride a circuit around some of the temples, including Ta Prohm, the best-known of the temples overgrown by trees and reminiscent of scenes from Tomb Raider. Our ride also takes in the Bayon in Angkor Thom, the old city central to the area. It is a fascinating ruin, featuring many mysterious giant carved faces and some incredible wall carvings, and is one of the most remarkable sights in the area. Our ride ends at Angkor Wat itself, one of the most impressive and best-preserved temples of the complex. If there’s time, it is worth climbing the remarkably steep and narrow steps of the central spire for the view over the whole temple surrounded by jungle. It’s a wonderful place to finish our challenge after 500 hot kilometres across two countries! After the obligatory group photos we transfer back to our hotel (approx. 30 mins) and should have some free time this afternoon to spend as you wish – relax at the hotel, or explore Siem Reap’s markets for last-minute shopping opportunities, or visit more of the temples. We meet again in the evening to celebrate our achievements. Night hotel.

Cycle approx. 30km

Day 11: Free time; flight departs

We will have some time free for further exploration of the incredible temples and ruins that make up the Angkor complex; or simply relax or haggle in the markets if you prefer. How much time we have free depends on our flight schedules. We meet again at the hotel, say a fond farewell to Cambodia and transfer to the airport for our flight. 

Day 12: Arrive UK 

Click here to download an information pack for this Challenge

There is a £399 registration fee for this challenge and then a minimum sponsorship target of £3,650. This includes the tour cost which we are invoiced for from Discover Adventure. We have lots of ideas, hints and tips to help you reach your target and enjoy fundraising for your challenge.

For more information please email challenges@sthelena.org.uk with your full name, phone number and address




Contact Information
Fundraising

To contact the St Helena Fundraising team, please telephone 01206 931 468 or email fundraising@sthelena.org.uk , Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm.

SinglePoint

24 hour advice: SinglePoint 01206 890 360 

SinglePoint is a 24/7 advice and support helpline which helps to coordinate an individual’s care with the hospice. SinglePoint also works alongside other healthcare services such as GPs, Community Nurses or Specialists. 

The Hospice

To contact a patient at The Hospice please find the address and telephone number below. Phone calls can be made to patients at any time of the day or week. You can contact Inpatient Services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The Hospice, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, C04 9JU

Telephone: 01206 845 566

Hospice in the Home

You can contact The Hospice in the Home Team Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

Colchester/Halstead team
Telephone: 01206 845 566

Tendring community team
Telephone: 01255 221 222

Day Therapies

You can contact the Joan Tomkins Centre (Colchester) Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

Telephone: 01206 848 163

Fax: 01206 752 245

You can contact the St Helena Tendring Centre (Clacton) Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01255 221 222

Tendring Centre Postcode for Sat Navs: CO15 1EU

Human Resources

The HR Team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

Finance Team

To contact the St Helena Finance Team please telephone 01206 931 450 Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

Volunteer Services Team

The Volunteer Services team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

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For all media enquiries between 9.00am and 5.00pm, Monday to Friday, please phone the Marketing and Communications team directly on 01206 931 464

Patient Referrals

If you, or a member of your family has a life-limiting illness and would like to discuss whether St Helena care services can help, you can contact the SinglePoint telephone service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 01206 890 360

Bereavement Support

To contact the St Helena Bereavement Support team please telephone the bereavement helpline: 01206 984 274, Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

Learning and Development Centre

The Learning and Development Centre is open Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm and can be contacted on 01206 851 560

Service User Group

For more information on the St Helena Service User Group please contact Chair, Ken Aldred on 01206 751 397

Facilities Hire Enquiries

01206 851560

Lottery

To contact the Lottery team please call 0800 285 1390 or visit the website here, Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

If you would like to write to or visit the Lottery team, the address is: Your Hospice Lottery Office Unit 6 The Atrium, Phoenix Square, Wyncolls Road, Colchester CO4 9AS.

Comment, compliment or complaint

Feedback, comments and complaints about St Helena care and support services may be made verbally or in writing to: Director of Care, St Helena, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, CO4 9JU. To speak to a member of our team, call 01206 845 566