Sails from January 2020 - Cruise & Bike the Mekong
Journey from the vibrant southern capital of Saigon, Vietnam, to the ancient kingdom of Angkor, Cambodia, the slow way, by bike and boat on a tour specially made to accomodate both cyclists and non-riding partners.
Spend your mornings pedaling among temple ruins and down red roads through villages full of smiling faces, or for non-riders join daily guided walking tours. In the afternoons cruise the iconic Mekong River in comfort and style. Exploring this rich region with activity and then leisure will give you a full sense of its beauty.
This bike & boat tour departs from Saigon and ends in Siem Reap
Pricing: Standard Cabin - $4,990 | Upper Cabin - $5,690 (p/person)
See our 2019 itinerary and departures here.
2020 - Departures
Jan 20 - 28 - (4 cabins left)
Mar 20 - 28
Aug 23 - 31 - (6 cabins left)
Nov 21 - 29
Dec 21 - 29
2021 - Departures
Jan 5 - 13
Feb 4 - 12
Mar 21 - 29
A truly enjoyable way to journey between Saigon and Siem Reap is by bike and barge. Start out with a walking tour of the lively city of Saigon before boarding the ship, then pedal along the Vietnamese end of the Mekong Delta, through friendly villages and colonial towns. At the end of each day of riding, board the ship, without the need to unpack, and relax on deck with a cold drink as the world of the Mekong goes by.
Once you’ve cruised into Cambodia, enjoy the change of scenery with a day of cycling around Phnom Penh’s Silk Island. Explore Cambodia’s capital city and learn about its history before flying to Siem Reap: the home of Angkor Wat. One of the highlights of this journey will be watching the colors of the day illuminate the sky over the spires of this famous temple and cycling around the grounds of the historical national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Biking or hiking through the backroads and paths of Southeast Asia each morning, you will have the opportunity to meet local people, learn about their lives and traditions, and see first hand the agricultural miracle that is the Mekong Delta, while enjoying delicious local cuisine, and staying in comfort throughout the journey.
We specifically welcome non-cycling partners or friends on this trip and will have special activities planned for them each morning while the riders are cycling.
9 days duration
170-250 km distance
Standard Cabin: $4,990
single room: $1500
Upper Cabin: $5,690
single room: $2000
E-bike option: $330
Trip Features & Tour Inclusions
What makes Grasshopper so special?
Find out how your bike & boat tour goes the extra mile.
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Toum Tiou - Luxury Mekong Riverboat
Grasshopper Adventures’ choice of vessel is the small and intimate Toum Tiou 1, beautifully crafted with only ten cabins. The Toum Tiou and her sister ship Toum Tiou 2 are the only cruise vessels on the Mekong which manage, due their size and shallow draft, to reach the center of Saigon city rather than the ports two hours out of town.
The shallow draft allows us to access remote villages and river arms.The ship is elegant and comfortable, without being stiff or formal. Style and decoration blend with Cambodian and Vietnamese culture.
The Toum Tiou is under private charter to Grasshopper Adventures with our own Grasshopper tour director.
Length: 38m - Width: 7m
Speed: 9 knots
Wifi: in public areas
* Cabin size: 120 sqf / 11 sqm
* 4 main deck cabins (all convertible in either twin or double)
* 6 upper deck cabins (all convertible in either twin or double)
* Large panoramic windows, giving you a clear view of the river
* Ensuite shower/toilet with brass fittings and boutique toiletries
* Complimentary tea, coffee and drinking water
* In-room air-conditioning
* Premium mattresses, quality linens with duvet and two varieties of pillow
* Multi-configuration plugs
* Laundry service in Phnom Penh (against a charge)
Top quality, well maintained Cannondale CX3 mountain bikes in a full range of sizes are included in your tour, fitted with hybrid tyres for touring. Handlebar bags for your personal possessions and a comfortable saddle are also provided, with a women's specific version available.
On this tour, we are welcoming non cycling partners as there will be plenty of exciting tours for you to do. Visit local village and produce markets, meet with Artisans and stop to explore a few historically important locations. These activities will be available to you each morning while the riders are out on the road. Groups will reunite aboard the Toum Tiou for lunch, and will spend the hot afternoons relaxing and cruising up the river together.
l we use in Siem Reap is a top-rated luxury property, which offers incredible service, first-class amenities and a unique personal charm that sets it apart from the many characterless hotels that abound in Siem Reap.
Aboard the boat, you can recharge for another adventurous day in your wood-finished twin or double bed cabin, each fitted with private ensuite, air conditioning and large windows that allow for good views and plenty of natural light. The large vessel contains just ten cabins, specifically designed to give guests the feeling of being on a personalised yacht, not a bland hotel room or mass cruise.
Simple to use and a pleasure to ride the Trek Conduit+ pedal-assist bike expands touring possibilities for all riders, and anything that enables people to explore more of the world by bike is a great thing in our books! Find out more about our E-Bikes here.
Always striving to deliver a premium tour experience Grasshopper Adventures are the first (and currently only) to offer pedal-assist e-bikes as a tour option in our select Southeast Asian destinations. An upgrade can be purchased for this trip, availability is limited and on a first-in basis. Please select the e-bike option when making your online booking our support team will follow-up regarding availability.
Experienced English speaking, local leaders will host you on this trip who are well spoken, very well informed, and charming. Our leaders are often cited as being the main highlight of the tour. We use local leaders who have a passion for their countries and are always well informed on topics ranging from history, politics, cuisine and importantly local customs and cultures. Our leaders will take pride in introducing you to every aspect of their country and will help you to connect with the villagers you meet along the way.
A bike mechanic will join the group an whilst not a master of linguistics, our technical team always make an effort to form a bond with the group and provide not just mechanical support, but additional encouragement to those who may find themselves at the back of the group. Our drivers support the group by ensuring that the freshest fruit and tastiest snacks are picked up along the way.
An air conditioned backup support vehicle is always available for tired riders and to carry your luggage. In the Mekong Delta, we are on narrow bike and pedestrian style paths and trails where the support vehicle cannot follow. It will however, meet us at intervals of 10km or so and can meet us at closer intervals if there is an urgent need.
This is as much a food adventure as it is a bike one. Whilst Cambodian cuisine may not be as famous as Vietnamese, it offers some subtle, understated flavors. There is a strong emphasis on fish and fresh vegetables in the traditional diet, but contemporary Cambodian cuisine offers a wide range of options and surely has something for everyone. Vietnamese food is now known around the world, but what may not be so well known is that there is a great deal of variety within the national menu. In the southern area where we will be, a lot of seafood is available and also freshwater fish. In reality though, the Delta produces such a mind boggling amount of food that the range of choice may endanger any hopes you had of losing weight on this bike tour. Our guides are experts at introducing you to the finest food on both sides of the border. Included meals are listed in the day by day itinerary, and drinking water is always included with meals. Any soft or alcoholic drinks are not included and will be at your own expense.
Energy bars and local snacks are provided to keep your energy levels up for the riding, and clean water and electrolyte drinks are always available to keep you well hydrated.
A beautiful souvenir cycling jersey is yours to wear and take home. We also provide a custom drink bottle as an extra memento.
8 to 20
This tour is guaranteed for a minimum of 8 travellers. And we limit the group size to only 20 travellers so that you get all the attention you want in an intimate group.
There is no surcharge for single travellers - we will match you with another same sex single traveller. If you want a single room there is a an optional upgrade that you can book.
Travel by any means results in some impact to the countries, communities and environments we travel. On this tour we aim to make a positive impact through our Book Donation Program and we seek to minimise our environmental impact through running our Cambodian support vehicles on 100% Bio-Diesel from Naga Biofuels. This is not a crop based product, the fuel is made entirely from recycled cooking oil.
for Mekong Boat & Bike Adventure - New Itinerary
Saigon - All Aboard!
Welcome to Saigon! After meeting in our hotel lobby at 9 am, get acquainted with your fellow adventurers on a walking food tour of this culinary hotspot city. Along the way, we’ll have the opportunity to taste local specialties such as Vietnamese coffee, chocolate, and beer. In the early afternoon, it’s all aboard our ship for the maiden voyage to the top of the canal. We’ll enjoy our first dinner together on board.
Village & Forest Ride, Ship to My Tho
This morning let’s hop on our bikes for our first ride around the top of the canal. The Mekong Delta is the longest river in Southeast Asia and runs through many of its countries, including Vietnam and Cambodia. We’ll have our first look at this lush delta with an explorative pedal through the riverside villages and bamboo forests. Once we’ve cycled up an appetite, we’ll board the ship again for lunch and then sail up the river to My Tho.
Non-cyclists will enjoy a relaxing day on board the barge as they take in the views and soak up the scenes of the Mekong Delta river life.
Explore the Mekong to Cai Be
Today you’ll have the option to choose between a morning ride and afternoon on the ship, or morning on the ship and afternoon ride… unless you want to try both! Our morning ride takes us through the busy floating villages and river commerce of My Tho, and ends at a local home for a traditional Vietnamese lunch.
If you choose to pursue the afternoon ride, we’ll cycle along towards Cai Be: another town built on a mix of land and water. This village is full of friendly children, so be prepared to stop and smile or wave at kids biking to school in their blue and whites. Our ship anchors near Cai Be so we can enjoy a flavorful Vietnamese meal in town.
Another relaxing day awaits the non-riders, with a few activities to make the most of their day while the cyclists are out on the bikes.
Cruise & Cycle to Cao Lanh
Again today you have the option to choose whether or not to ride in the morning, afternoon, or both. The morning cycling route takes us along the riverbanks from Cai Be to the pleasant colonial town of Sa Dec, where we’ll devour lunch before boarding the ship again to rejoin the non-riders.
Should you choose the afternoon ride, you’ll saddle up on your bike and pedal through narrow, shaded paths past locals hard at work weaving mats, building boats, and transporting a wide variety of colorful fruits and veggies to the market. Our ride ends near the busy city of Cao Lanh, then we board the barge again to stop near the Chau Doc canal for the night.
Bike & Boat into Cambodia
This morning’s ride weaves us around the top of the canal for our last glimpse of the Vietnamese part of the Mekong Delta. Then it’s all aboard at 11, and we’ll cross into Cambodia just a few hours later. Once typical border formalities have been carried out, we can enjoy a sail around Phnom Penh for sunset, where we’ll anchor near the city’s Silk Island.
Silk Island Ride
Koh Dac, also known as Silk Island, is a small island close to Phnom Penh that is well-known as the home of silk weaving. Local women practice this traditional activity on looms under their raised houses, and we’ll have a chance to learn about the process of how silk is made as we cycle around this piece of land. We’ll head back to the boat for lunch and have the opportunity to discover more of the Mekong riverside with a ride along its banks in the afternoon.
Phnom Penh Exploration
As the sun rises to its post in the sky, our ship will arrive at Phnom Penh. The capital of Cambodia is an interesting place. Little more than a collection of shacks along the river when the French arrived, it was quickly designed with a grid-style layout and lined with beautiful colonial buildings such as the Central Market which has recently been restored.
The city was forcibly evacuated when it fell to the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s and thus ensued a period of decay that continued through the early years of re-population. In the late nineties and early 2000s as the country started to get back on its feet, the city had a shattered charm to it with many still-vacant buildings and creaking infrastructure.
We’ll have the chance to discover more of this dynamic city with a walking tour in the late morning, followed by lunch in the city. Once we’ve had our fill, it’s off to the airport for our flight to Siem Reap.
Angkor Sunrise Experience
Prepare for an early rising this morning, as we hit the bikes before the sun has peeked out from behind the horizon and the first roosters have started to crow. We’ll transfer to the otherworldly Angkor National Park, where we’ll gather in front of the many imposing towers of the main temple itself. If we get lucky with the weather, we’ll catch a spectacular color show as the sun rises behind the great temple’s spires.
Once the sun is up and the crowds of tourists have dispersed, we will begin our in-depth exploration of this and other ancient temples in the Angkor complex and enjoy breakfast in these peaceful surroundings. Discover the mysteries this jungle has to offer as we cycle down narrow tracks and hidden dirt paths to iconic temples such as Bayon or Ta Phrom, and some of the lesser-known ancient structures.
We’ll enjoy lunch by the Sra Srang Reservoir that surrounds the Angkor Wat temple before we head back to the hotel. The afternoon is free to pursue your own wanderings in town or relax back at the accommodation.
After an early dinner, we’ll head to an enthralling show put on by Phare Circus: the acrobatic troupe comprised of talented Khmer who have attended a professional arts training center run by an NGO.
Our tour concludes this morning in Siem Reap with a few last activities to immerse you fully in Cambodian culture. We’ll start with a visit to the Angkor National Museum, dedicated to the preservation of ancient Angkorian architecture and artifacts, then make our way to the APOPO NGO that uses rats to detect landmines, then finish our morning with some of the best coffee in town at Footprint cafe. You will be transferred to the airport in time for departing flights, or feel free to stay and explore this charming little city on your own.
What's the Riding Like?
Mostly flat terrain
6 days optional riding
The riding is entirely flat. You’ll cycle on a great variety of surfaces, ranging from concrete to hard-packed dirt and even a few forest trails around Angkor. Traffic will almost always be a rarity, allowing you to engage with the locals as you go, stopping for a chat or a photo opp as you wish. Riders will be provided the route on their devices, allowing you to take your time if you wish. We will also have a support team in tow that you can call on if needed.
Coolest time: Nov-Feb
Wettest time: Jun-Oct
Our favourite: Jul-Aug
The coolest time of year is from November to February with temperatures rising to a peak in April and May. With the arrival of the rains in June temperatures drop, with rain falling mainly in the afternoons in short, heavy showers. September and October are the wettest months with a return to dry conditions in November.
A combination of lower numbers of tourists, sharp light and refreshing showers make July and August a great time to cycle in this part of Indochina. Aboard the Toum Tiou, we avoid the harshest heat of the afternoons in style.
Extend Your Stay
Why not add a couple of nights before and after your trip?
Siem Reap is a great place to spend a few days. We offer an exciting range of day tours here that combine very well with the Angkor to Saigon ride. These depart daily and are best booked in advance to avoid disappointment.
If you are planning to stay longer in Siem Reap, we can book you extra nights at our preferred hotel or you can find a huge range of hotels online through our friends at agoda.com:
This is an exciting and vibrant city that deserves at least a day or two of your time. There are various activities, including food tours and tours of the back alleys by motor-scooter. We also offer a one day tour to the Cu Chi Tunnels.
For hotels, Agoda is a great place to start. The range in this city is substantial.
What our guests tell us...
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