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Vietnam and Cambodia: Useful Information for First-time Visitors

January 19, 2022 - 547 views

Vietnam and Cambodia is two attractive Indochina countries for many tourists from all over the world. From Halong Bay – The World Heritage in Vietnam to Angkor Wat temple – The Wonder of the World in Cambodia. A trip to these two countries will bring you a lot of wonderful experience and photos. Let's learn detail information about 2 countries Vietnam and Cambodia for the first-time visitor in our article below.

Vietnam and Cambodia

An overview of Vietnam and Cambodia

Vietnam with 54 ethnic groups will surprise you with its massive culture! Every custom and habit of the wedding, funeral and ritual all have the participation of the villagers, relatives, friends, etc. as much as possible. As a multi-culture country, Vietnam has 6 main religions, such as Buddhism; Catholic; Protestantism; Muslim; Caodaism; and Hoa Hao Buddhism. Besides these religions, Vietnamese also worship their ancestors at home on the 1st and 15th each lunar month and other special days.

In contrast, about 80% population of Cambodia are Buddhists. Buddhism plays an important role in the lifestyle and development of Cambodian culture for thousands of years up until now. It is a fact that Cambodian culture was created and has been developing followed Buddhism doctrine. In addition, Buddhism in Cambodia also affects the culture of other countries, especially those sharing the same borders with this country and Vietnam is not an exception with a part of Buddhism from the South Central of Vietnam has the same characteristics and doctrine as Cambodian Buddhism. 

Vietnam Cambodia Maps

Vietnam Cambodia Maps


When to visit Vietnam & Cambodia?

Cambodia and Vietnam climates are quite similar to each other, there are also two distinct seasons: the rainy and dry seasons. However, Cambodia is drier and hotter than Vietnam, temperatures range from 21oC - 35oC, sometimes up to 40oC, both have hot and humid climate all year round. The warmest time is May and June while December and January are the coldest. The period from November to March is of the most rain due to the influence of the northeast monsoon. From June to September, there are also very heavy rains due to the influence of the southwest monsoon, but it often happens in a very short time.

Therefore, the best time to travel to Cambodia and Vietnam is from November to April, when the weather is more pleasant, less hot and less rainy. If you go in April, you have the opportunity to participate in the traditional New Year Festival of Cambodia with the extremely exciting Bom Chaul Chnam Water Fall Festival, held from the 13th to the 15th in the fourth month of the Gregorian calendar every year.

Tourist should avoid going in July and August because this time is the rainy season in Cambodia and Vietnam, making it difficult to visit your favourite destinations.

Best time to visit Vietnam and Cambodia


How to travel from Vietnam to Cambodia

Airline Way

Flights from Vietnam to Cambodia are mostly coming from Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Currently, there are 2 airlines opening routes to Cambodia: Vietnam Airlines and Cambodia Angkor Air. The ticket price from Ho Chi Minh City is between $275 and $454 and from Hanoi is between $320 and $545.


From Ho Chi Minh city, tourist can catch a bus to Phnompenh or Siem Reap. It will take you about 6 hours to reach Phnompenh and 10-11 hours to Siem Reap. The price is much more saving, it is only $10 to go to Phnompenh and $20 to go Siem Reap.


From Chau Doc, you can go to Cambodia by cruisers with the price is range on $17 to $35. Joining in this trip, tourist will be able to enjoy the lifestyle in both sides of Mekong River and the peaceful scenery.


Top-recommended Vietnam and Cambodia places to visit

Hoi An ancient town: Hoi An in Central Vietnam, it has 1360 relics including 1068 old houses, 11 ancient wells, 38 churches, 19 temples, 43 shrine, 23 ancient gates, 44 special ancient tombs and 1 bridge. As time passed, Hoi An ancient town still retains the most ancient beauty. Every Hoi An relics have been preserved almost intact, which make Hoi An become a unique place in modern life.

Halong Bay: Ha Long Bay is a famous tourist destination of Vietnam, located in the western part of the Gulf of Tonkin in the northeastern region of Vietnam. With thousands of magnificent islands, Ha Long Bay has been recognized by UNESCO as a natural heritage of the world. Ha Long Bay has the advantage of beautiful landscapes, attractive to domestic and international visitors.

Angkor Wat temple complex: This is the most famous tourist attraction in Cambodia. It is also one of the seven world wonders recognized by UNESCO. It can be said that this is the greatest legacy that the Khmer left. Located about 6 km north of Siem Reap, Angkor Wat was built by King Suryavarman II in the 12th century. The area of the whole complex extends over 248 square miles (400 km2), running around the temple is a deep and wide moat.

Wat Phnom: Wat Phnom is considered the origin of the name “Phnom Penh”. It is located on a high hill north of the city, "Wat" in Cambodian means temple, "Phnom" means hill. This temple was built by the legendary Lady Penh in 1373. Wat Phnom is considered to be the most sacred and attracts a huge number of domestic and foreign tourists coming to visit and worship. It is an important place not to be missed when coming to Phnom Penh, Cambodia.


Travel Tips to visit Vietnam and Cambodia


Vietnam: Vietnamese dong (VND) is Vietnam’s official currency, you should exchange money in your home country because they will provide you the rate better than the exchange in Vietnam. Each period has a different exchange rate, the rate is about: 23,000 VND = 1 USD.

Cambodia: USD is quite popular here but you should prepare more low-value USD for convenient. Besides that, you can exchange to Cambodian currency: Riel (called “Ria”) with the rate is 4000 Riel = 1 USD.

What to do?

  • Save important phone numbers: Airlines or bank phone numbers, credit card companies, and hotels are essential numbers you need to keep in mind. If you are careful, you can keep these numbers in a log if your phone is stolen.
  • Buy travel insurance: When you buy travel insurance, you will benefit from a mishap. Besides, travel insurance pays you a lot of money such as medical bills, compensation for loss, compensation for lost luggage.
  • Check the weather where you plan to go: You should check the weather where you plan to go for a few days to arrange your luggage properly. An umbrella, waterproof jacket, and shoes are always must-have items in your suitcase.
  • Book tickets to visit famous places: Before travelling abroad, you should book tickets to famous tourist destinations in advance to get discounts and avoid wasting time. In addition to entrance tickets, some countries also allow tourists to buy bus and train tickets in advance.
  • Register information for embassies: You can register personal information with the embassy or consulate where you plan to travel so they can assist you in emergencies.
  • Learn some local phrases: You can learn some important words in the local language, so it's easy to ask others for help. It would be best to learn some customs, especially to dress, not to be surprised by culture shock.
  • Charge electronic devices: To prevent long transit time at the airport or delayed flights, so you should fully charge your electronic device.
  • Have a plan: Ideally, it would help if you planned ready for the first day to know how to move from the airport to the hotel, where to visit. It will save you time instead of where you think you need to go.
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