The mighty Mekong, flowing for over 4,000 kilometres through China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, is the world's twelfth longest river. This river has witnessed thousands of years of history unfolding on its banks, as well as boasting an incredibly diverse natural history. For visitors, a trip along the Mekong River, the lifeblood of Vietnam, will leave a lasting impression.
In common with other expanding Asian nations, Vietnam is undergoing considerable economic development. However, Vietnam remains proud of its unique cultural heritage and environment, and large tracts of the Mekong remain well-preserved. This means the Mekong provides the perfect backdrop for anyone wishing to experience natural beauty. Along the way you can view charming ancient citadels, explore romantic highland villages, or savour the unforgettable hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City.
How you choose to travel along Vietnam's celebrated river is down to personal choice. One popular method is to book a voyage on The Jahan, a stylishly appointed cruiser. Commencing at Saigon, in the south of the country, you'll quickly leave behind the bustling streets to enter the lush green surrounds. Sailing on into the Mekong delta you'll experience verdant valleys, rich with the cries of exotic birdlife, before coming across magnificent riverside temples.
This is undoubtedly one of the best ways to get a true taste of Vietnam – its scents, its cultural secrets, its unique sights and sounds. The vessel itself is from a new breed of cruiser, one that offers luxury and faultless service, with modern facilities that will enhance the cruising experience. You can watch the Mekong banks unfolding before you from your own personal balcony, refreshments to hand.
Travelling on to Hanoi, Vietnam's ancient capital city, will offer glimpses of its rich architectural past, together with a hint of what makes it such an exciting and cosmopolitan modern city. And no river trip would be complete without an excursion to Halong Bay to the north-east of the country, the location of some of the most renowned natural landscapes anywhere in the world.
Another way to enjoy Vietnam's unparalleled scenery is by traditional junk boat. Voyages through the UNESCO World heritage-listed Halong Bay offers a range of opportunities. Taking a two-day cruise will give you the chance to experience the area's renowned limestone Cave of Surprises, as well as some leisure time when you can take the chance to sunbathe or swim in the jade-green waters, or explore the many lagoons by kayak.
Accomodation is superb, in fully air-conditioned cabins, with transport to and from your hotel factored into the deal.