A group guided backpacking adventure taking in the main highlights of The North of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Four very diverse Southeast Asia countries, fully guided. If you want to meet people and have fun with a group of like-minded adventurers, this is the way to do it. From big cities like Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi to temples, waterfalls and the most incredible scenery this is a great way to spend two months travelling Southeast Asia after Thailand. All transport and loads of activities included but no accommodation or meals.

 South East Asia Xplorer

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A fully guided hop on hop off tour of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.

For travellers who have the time, The South East Asia Explorer is a comprehensive trip through Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, starting in Bangkok and finishing in Hanoi.
Discover the sights, sounds and smells of Bangkok, travel north via amazing Ayutthaya and Chiang Mai, before meeting the Xtreme Bus at the Huay Xai border crossing in Laos.
Experience mountains and vibrant cultures in Northern Laos and the amazing wilderness and wildlife in the South; follow narrow mountain roads to scenic rivers and waterfalls, hidden archaeological sites, communist caves and friendly remote villages.
Head into Cambodia to explore ancient temples, pagodas, and palaces, snack on fried spider or enjoy a Khmer BBQ. Chill out in the beach sanctuary of Koh Tunsay, see the rare Irrawady Dolphins and visit the infamous Khmer Rouge S21 prison and Killing Fields. Cycle or trek the Bokor National Parks and get to know the locals in a remote village homestay.
Explore Vietnam’s buzzing cities, travel through stunning mountain scenery, experience Vietnamese hospitality and stay in an local ethnic homestay; explore newly discovered caves, cycle through rice paddies, visit National Parks, swim in secret swimming spots, traverse tunnels from the Secret War; and relax on some of Asia’s finest beaches.

Thailand

  • Ayutthaya Temples
  • Free Day to explore Chiang Mai
  • Visit the famous and intriguing White Temple

Cambodia

  • Preah Vihear Temple
  • S21 Prison & Killing Fields
  • Udong Historical Site
  • Bamboo train ride

Laos

  • Tham Jang Cave
  • Kong Lor National Park
  • Mahaxai Cave
  • Turtle Lake
  • Hotay Pitok Library
  • Tad Ngeuang Waterfall
  • Wat Phu UNESCO Temple

Vietnam

  • Datania Falls
  • My Lai Memorial
  • Marble Mountains
  • Vinh Moc Tunnels
  • Thien Duong (Paradise) Cave

Photos

 

Thailand

 

Bangkok to Chiang Mai (Via Ayutthaya)

Best is to arrive one day Early. The trips sets off on Tuesday and Saturday. If you arrive one day early we would love to meet you at 6 pm in our Xtreme Bangkok shop where you meet your Xtreme guide and group and you can ask all your last minutes questions. Usually the groups wonders off after the intro for a few drinks and hit the sack early for the next day.

At 09:30 am on the departure day we depart for the UNESCO World Heritage site of Ayutthaya. We arrive mid-morning, giving you plenty of time to explore the fascinating historical park by bike or enjoy a boat journey through the Venice of the East. We leave late evening to Chiang Mai.

If you would like us to arrange one night in the luxury hotel (located right next door to the departure point and the office) this can be arranged for an additional £95. This also includes airport pick up.

Overnight train or bus (price included)

Non Travel Day: Chiang Mai
You have a full day to enjoy this historically rich city, or partake in one of the many adventure activities on offer. We suggest spending time to take in the ancient sights, including the old walled-city and the Tapae Gate, and some of the magnificent 300 Buddhist Temples.
Guesthouse located near the historic, old quarter USD12-20

Chiang Mai to Chiang Khong

After a chilled out morning, we depart after lunch and visit the famous and intriguing White Temple (Wat Rong Khun), then continue on to the border town of Chiang Khong to enjoy our last night in Thailand.
Guesthouse with views across the Mekong River USD20

Laos

Chiang Khong to Pakbeng

A short boat ride across the Mekong River whisks us away towards Huay Xai, Laos. This is where we clear customs before boarding the boat to Pakbeng. Sit back and soak up the incredible journey as the river winds through lush farmland, rugged mountains and jungle. You will spot water buffalo, mountain-side rice paddies, local fishermen, and kids splashing in the shallows. We arrive in the remote village of Pakbeng late afternoon and stay overnight by the river.
Guesthouse near boat ramp USD8-15

Pakbeng to Ban Lad Khammune

Leaving Pakbeng early, we continue our journey down the Mekong to the secluded village of Ban Lad Khammune. Here you will experience traditional village life by staying with a local family in their home. Attend a Baci (welcoming) Ceremony and have a chance to wander around the village, watch the women weaving or try your luck in a friendly game of petanque in the square!
Homestay including accommodation, traditional Baci ceremony and meals USD17

Ban Lad Khammune to Luang Prabang

We wave goodbye to the village and jump back aboard our private boat downriver to the famous Pak Ou Caves. Here you will see thousands of Buddha images that were placed throughout the caves over a period of hundreds of years. A short trip takes us into the stunningly beautiful Luang Prabang, a UNESCO World Heritage town with a fusion of French colonial architecture and traditional Lao buildings. This is home to the famous Kuang Si waterfalls, a bear sanctuary, ancient Buddhist temples and many sacred sites.
Guesthouse with fan or AC private rooms close to night market USD12-40

Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng

It´s an early start as we head south through mountainous terrain, taking in the breathtaking views. Upon arrival into Vang Vieng there is plenty of time to go tubing, cycling, kayaking, rock climbing, hot air ballooning, start partying or even kick back and watch re-runs of old TV shows playing at the bars around town!
Family run guesthouse in the centre of the action USD8-30

Vang Vieng to Vientiane

Today we cruise through to the capital of Laos and take a tour of the city´s main attractions: Putaxai, Pha That Luang, That Dam, the Presidential Palace, and the COPE centre a non-profit organisation that educates visitors and raises awareness for victims of UXO (Unexploded Ordinance) and the Secret War. After check in at our centrally located accommodation, you are free to get a massage, go shopping at the night market, or watch the action from one of the local restaurants by the river.
Hotel with modern facilities including WIFI and breakfast USD20

Vientiane to Kong Lor

An early escape this morning takes us away from the crowds and south to Kong Lor, and the Phu Hin Bun National Park. About an hour into the journey we visit Wat Prabat Phonsone, the Buddha´s Footprint  temple, which has become an important pilgrimage site for local communities. There is time before sunset to explore the Kong Lor village and take in the stunning scenery of the surrounding rice paddies and limestone Karst Mountains.
Comfortable guesthouse with spectacular views and just a short 10 minute walk from the cave USD10

Non-Travel Day: Kong Lor

This morning you´re free to head down to the Cave (or Tham Kong Lor to the locals) and venture deep into the 7km abyss! Ride in a traditional motorised canoe and take in the amazing rock formations, swim in the cool waters of the cave entrance. You also have the chance to travel to Ban Tabak village and take a ride in a ‘bomb boat’! These are made from the metal fuel casings of B52 bombers, dumped on Laos during the Secret War
Comfortable guesthouse with spectacular views of the Karst Mountains and just a short 10 minute walk from the cave USD10

Kong Lor to Tha Kek

Today is a short travel day, which includes a stop to view the Great Wall of Tha Kek before heading onto Pha Tam Kam, home of some of Southeast Asia´s best rock climbing and amazing lush, jungle scenery. For the adventurous crowd, there is the option to try out slack-lining or rock climbing, before heading back into town.
Mekong riverside Guesthouse USD12

Tha Kek to Xe Champhone

This is what Xtreme is all about, getting totally off the beaten track! We head into Xe Champhone wetlands – an area so remote that occasionally our Xtreme buses can’t access it, so we have to jump on board an off-road truck! Along the way we visit Old Wat Taleow, a beautiful temple bombed in 1969, then onto Turtle Lake where you might spot soft-shell turtles. Our last stop for the day is the 200-year-old Hotay Pidok Buddhist library. Once here we spend the night with the friendly locals in the Monkey forest, a sacred place and home to hundreds of wild Rhesus Macaque monkeys.
Basic village stay including accommodation and meals USD17

Xe Champhone to Pakse

Driving south this morning we head for the bright lights of Pakse. From here, you can check out the Bolaven Plateau with its cool climate, coffee and tea plantations, and spectacular waterfalls.
Guesthouse with fan or air-conditioned rooms in the centre of town surrounded by everything you need USD8-10

Pakse to Don Det (4000 Islands)

An early start takes us to the World Heritage site of Wat Phou, an ancient Khmer temple. We´ll explore the site and climb to the mountain top temple, before heading south to the 4000 Islands area to experience its laid back lifestyle and natural beauty. We arrive around lunchtime giving you time to cycle across to the neighbouring Don Khone Island and visit Li Phi waterfall or take a boat trip for a chance to see the rare Irrawaddy dolphins.
Rustic style guesthouse USD5-15

Cambodia

Don Det to Phnom Penh

Saying goodbye to Laos, we make an early start to join the public bus for the journey to Cambodia. A short drive will bring you to the Don Kralor Border where you will complete immigration procedures, then continue the journey into Cambodia, once again following the mighty Mekong River. We arrive in the majestic capital of Phnom Penh late evening, and you´ll get a chance to freshen up before meeting your new tour leader for dinner and drinks along the iconic waterfront.
Guesthouse near the main tourist area USD20

Phnom Penh to Koh Tunsay Island

After a tour of the infamous Khmer Rouge S21 Prison and Killing Fields we head for the Cambodian coast, passing through the river town of Kampot. Kampot is famous for its pepper and salt farms and delicious seafood – your local guide will show you the best spot to taste some! From Kampot we head to the old French resort town of Kep where we board traditional Khmer wooden fishing boats for a 30 minute voyage to the island sanctuary of Koh Tunsay. Once on shore you can check out the island or just relax on the beach, and watch the sun go down.
Bungalows on the beach (sleep 4 people) USD25 per bungalow

Koh Tunsay Island to Kampot

Tearing ourselves away from the beach, a short drive takes us back to the town of Kampot where you will have a free afternoon to visit the pepper and salt Farms, do some cycling or trekking in Bokor National Park or take a sunset cruise up the river.
Highly Recommended: Hop off here to head to Sihanoukville to enjoy the beach; local seafood and nightlife!

Guesthouse with dorm beds or private rooms USD6-15

Kampot to Battambang (homestay)

A full day today will take us to our village homestay near the provincial town of Battambang. En-route we will visit the 18th Century Khmer stronghold of Udong, where you can hike to the mountain top pagoda or relax in a hammock and enjoy a local Khmer BBQ! We pass through Kompong Chhnang (pronounced kom-pong-ch-nang) with its bustling local market and floating villages along the river and delta area. Our homestay tonight will give you a taste of local family and community life in the village with its seasonal farming, fishing, temple gatherings and festivals.
Homestay in local village including meals USD18

Battambang to Siem Reap

After breakfast with our homestay family we drive into Battambang where we will take a ride on the Bamboo Train before an early lunch and drive to Siem Reap, home of the incredible Angkor Temples.
Guesthouse with dorm beds or private rooms USD8-20

Non-Travel Day: Siem Reap

Today is a free day for you to explore the magnificent Angkor Temples and take in some of Siem Reap´s vibrant markets and nightlife. Your guide will show you the best ones to head to first!
Guesthouse with dorm beds or private rooms USD8-20

Siem Reap – Preah Vihear – Kompong Thom

Today we have an early start on our journey to the northern border region of Cambodia where we visit Preah Vihear, a sacred site and source of ongoing controversy for Thailand and Cambodia. On arrival at Preah Vihear Information Centre we pick up motorbikes for the drive to the top of the mountain, with amazing views over the Cambodia and Thailand. After lunch we continue to our overnight stopping point, the town of Kompong Thom.
Guesthouse in the center of town USD8-16

Kompong Thom to Phnom Pehn

This morning we visit a silk farm where we have breakfast and learn about the silk making process. From here we head for the bustling Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh. Along the way you will get the chance to sample a crunchy Cambodian favourite, fried spider! This local snack is found in the town of Skon where spiders are bred for human consumption. Once we settle into our guesthouse, you have free time to visit the Royal Palace & Silver Pagoda, Wat Phnom and the Russian Market or mix with the locals as the sunsets over the Mekong River.
Guesthouse near the main tourist area USD20

Non-Travel Day: Phnom Penh

A free day today gives you the chance to explore this energizing capital city and visit the many markets selling silk, silver, gems and antiques.

Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Mihn City

This morning you´ll board a public bus and head to Moc Bai on the Vietnamese border, where you will be processed through immigration (you will need to organise your Visa in advance) and then driven on to Ho Chi Minh City arriving mid-afternoon.
Centrally located hotel or guesthouse USD15-20

Vietnam

Non-Travel Day: Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is home to the War Remnant Museum which houses remnants from the American and Vietnamese war, the Saigon Opera House which is surrounded by shopping plazas, and even its own Notre Dame Cathedral – said to be a connection between the physical and spiritual life of Ho Chi Minh people. We recommend a guided tour of this historically rich city.
Centrally located hotel or guesthouse USD15-20

Ho Chi Minh City to Dalat

Leaving behind the chaos and heat of Ho Chi Minh City, we head for the refreshingly cool climate of Dalat. Known as the honeymoon capital of Vietnam, this could be a good opportunity to pop the question! The journey today is through fertile farmlands that specialise in rubber, coffee & tea; all crops imported by the French. The cool climate here is perfect for growing Vietnam´s only locally produced wine, as well as vegetables and flowers, which are transported daily to Ho Chi Minh City and beyond. We can check out the large market near the guesthouse, or one of many friendly cafes selling excellent coffee on every corner.
Local guesthouse USD10-12

Non-Travel day: Dalat

Dalat vaguely resembles a French town with sprawling old villas and towering pine trees. It is not on the main tourist trail so locals are curious and very friendly to western visitors. There are plenty of adventurous activities here, including a mountain bike ride to Datania Waterfall, or the last Emperor´s art deco-style summer palace, and the never-ending local coffee plantations.
Local guesthouse USD10-12

Dalat to Buon Ma Thout

Driving through stunning mountain scenery we reach the provincial town of Buon Ma Thuot. We stock up on supplies before making our way out to the nearby rural area, and our homestay in an M´Nong ethnic village. Staying right on the shores of the beautiful Lak Lake, we can see local fishermen and farmers working, and even get the chance to take a boat ride across to the other side and return by elephant!
Ethnic Homestay in Jun Longhouses USD15

Buon Ma Thout to Qui Nhon

This morning we head for the coast and the seaside town of Quy Nhon – a popular holiday destination for Vietnamese, but off the beaten track for western tourists! Local hospitality is what makes this town well worth the visit. Jump straight into the warm ocean waters, to wash off the mountain dust from the day.
Local guesthouse USD10-12

Qui Nhon to Hoi An

A coastal drive takes us to this popular tourist spot, and UNESCO World Heritage town, with its beautifully restored and preserved French Colonial architecture. Hoi An is teeming with tailor shops, funky bars, outstanding restaurants, art galleries and souvenir shops. With glorious beaches nearby, this is close to paradise! A great spot to hop off enjoy the local nightlife; try great local delicacies (and beers), then meander home safely through the motorbike free streets.
Local guesthouse or hotel USD15-30

Non-Travel Day: Hoi An

Today is free for you to explore this charming town, get some tailoring done, join a motorbike tour through the countryside, try scuba diving, cycle to the beach, do a cooking class or just enjoy the tasty local coffee at one of the many restaurants in town.
Local guesthouse or hotel USD15-30

Hoi An to Hue

Located on the Perfume River, Hue is regarded as the cultural and spiritual centre of Vietnam and is the former home to the Vietnamese Emperors. We see many elaborately decorated temples and beautiful pagodas throughout the area, the centrepiece of which is the Citadel and Forbidden Purple City.
We highly recommend a countryside motorbike tour through quaint, rural villages and rice paddies to experience something of the ´real´ Vietnam.
Local guesthouse USD10-12

Hue to Dong Hoi

A short drive up the coast this morning takes us through the old DMZ (De Militarized Zone), the border between North and South Vietnam during the Vietnam War, and to the provincial town of Dong Hoi. Dong Hoi is home to the Blind Massage Therapy Centre, and the quiet Nhat Le beach. Here you have the choice to cruise the river front by bicycle, get to know the local fishermen or just chill out at one of the evening street bars, with great views of the large bridge that is lit up with disco lights!
Basic hotel near the river USD12-15+

Non-Travel Day: Dong Hoi

Today we recommend visiting the spectacular rural area of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, 45km from Dong Hoi. This area has pristine rivers (perfect for a refreshing dip or kayak) and also boasts a number of impressive caves, including the recently discovered Thien Duong Cave that is the largest cave in the world!
Basic hotel near the river USD12-15+

Dong Hoi to Cam Lo to Ninh Binh

Our journey toward the national park takes us through beautiful countryside with its stunning limestone kyrst mountains, stopping along the way at the ´real´ Vietnam beach-side town of Cam Lo. This chilled out spot is definitely not on the tourist trail:..yet! We try out the local seafood and have a swim before continuing our express journey on to Ninh Binh.
Locally run hotel with excellent restaurants nearby USD10-12

Ninh Binh to Mai Chau

This morning we head to the Cuc Phoung National Park and Primate Centre, which is home to the many endangered and rescued primates including monkeys, gibbons and other interesting species native to the area. From here, we stop for a swim at the local hot pools, and then continue on to Mai Chau, an isolated, minority hill-tribe haven set amongst towering cliffs. There is plenty of time this afternoon to go exploring in this rural valley of lush greenery and terraced fields of rice paddies.
Local guesthouse USD10-12

Mai Chau to Hanoi

We get the legs moving with an early bike ride through the nearby countryside and villages, before jumping on the bus, bound for the chaotic streets of Vietnam´s capital. Hanoi is an exotic Asian city full of excitement and energy, and thousands of motorcycles making the simple task of crossing the road seem like a real achievement!
This is where your Xtreme adventure ends, but there is plenty to do and see in and around Hanoi if you have some extra days to spend here.
Local guesthouse or hotel USD15-30 or backpacker style dorm USD7-9if

Frequently Asked Questions

Your driver/guide provides you with a wealth of knowledge about history, culture, and trivia as well as recommending and booking activities and accommodation for you around Asia. They are walking guidebooks, always there to help and entertain!
The average age of passengers is about 22 – 26. The majority of people are between the age of 20 and 40 (but we also have older). No matter what the age we find we attract on-to-it people who want to meet other travellers, and get out there and further off the beaten track.
Our buses range from 14 seaters to 45 seaters with an average group of about 20. We keep them smaller so you can see and do more, and because we find that that groups of this size simply work better.
Its perfect for people travelling by themselves. Asia is relatively safe and our smaller group sizes means you can meet more people and your driver is always there for any questions you may have.
Backpacks are recommended but suitcases are fine you don´t need to walk great distances with them (just between the accommodation and the bus). The majority of the time while you´re doing activities they will be stored away (on the bus or at your accommodation). We recommend you bring a good day pack (small backpack) or bag you can carry easily for water bottles, towels, cameras, sunblock etc.
You´ll need to bring a decent pair of sneakers/trainers that you can walk in comfortably. Hiking boots are good but not essential. In summer you´ll find flip flops/thongs are the favoured option!
We includes free days (non-travel days) in key locations, so even if you´re completing your trip in the minimum days required you´ll have time to do activities and explore each of these areas.   We also have free mornings or afternoons in most places for you to do local activities, just relax or and do some necessary laundry!
Most accommodations and activities accept debit and credit cards, so you don´t have to carry too much cash with you. Some cash on the other hand is advisable, because some accommodations may require a cash key deposit.
Your travel pass includes all land transport, guidance, free activities such as walks and the city orientations. Your driver will book accommodation for you if you like but the cost is not included in your pass (you´ll just need to pay as you go).
The bus guide helps you reserve accommodation in all our overnight stops. You´ll be guaranteed a bed with a range of accommodation levels, from hostel dorms to made up private rooms; our driver/guides will help you with this. You are free to book your own accommodation if you wish. You will need to book your own accommodation for the night before you start your trip and let us know where you are staying so we know where to pick you up from. We can recommend places for you to stay if you need help.

 

Duration Option Price  
56 (Days)Flash sale: Book before the 20th NovGBP 1379Book Now
56 (Days)Recommended 56 DaysGBP 1799Book Now

Included

  • All transport by private vehicles and public transport
  • Activities listed below
  • Services of Xtreme Gap Year guide and driver
  • Detailed predeparture pack

Included activities are as follows

  • Ayutthaya Temples
  • Tham Jang Cave
  • Kong Lor National Park
  • Mahaxai Cave
  • Turtle Lake
  • Hotay Pitok Library
  • Tad Ngeuang Waterfall
  • Wat Phu UNESCO Temple
  • Preah Vihear Temple
  • S21 Prison & Killing Fields
  • Udong Historical Site
  • Bamboo train ride
  • Datania Falls
  • My Lai Memorial
  • Marble Mountains
  • Vinh Moc Tunnels
  • Thien Duong (Paradise) Cave

 

Excluded

  • Accommodation (budget five pounds per night)
  • Meals
  • Airport pick up
  • Travel insurance

Dates

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