Robert Louis Stevenson wrote "for to travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive." and more importantly, Martin Buber notes "All journeys have a secret destination of which the traveler is unaware." Nowhere is this more true than in Asia. Exotic, languid, mysterious... No region in the world is as fascinating... or are as challenging and rapidly changing. Which is where we come in. We've been organzing trip in the region for nearly three decades.
All of our trips are private, custom-tailored to your specific interests, Be your interests in French-colonial architecture, contemporary pottery or traditional Lao Ikat textiles, performance arts, or everyone's favorite — cuisine Vietnamienne — we provide the expertise and knowledge, ensuring your trip is uniquely yours—and always from the crowds of course.
Let us saturate you in the real culture of Vietnam and Southeast Asia, not a packaged version, facilitating authentic experiences, with unanticipated pleasures. Isn't this ultimately a more fulfilling and satisfying travel experience? Put us to the test, call and see if we know our stuff.
Travel on your terms
Experience the highest caliber of travel management in Asia that A-List celebrities, Fortune 50 executives, and their agents and friends call on for this region of the world. Let us plan, organize a manage an exceptional private custom-tailored tour with the finest guides and accomplished experts, fabulous accommodations, and what we take very seriously — cuisine. With our advice, you plan where you want go, see and do, not the other way around. Is it wise to travel to Vietnam in September? Is Mount Fuji worth a side-trip. What are unique places in Japan you should not miss? Where can you find the best cao lao soup in Hoi An? What is the weather really like in Sapa or Paro during December? In which places do we need to take anti-malarials? Why aren't the Amans at Angkor or Luang Prabang the top choice? Where is the next Phuket (hint: not in Thailand)? Silk in Hanoi, tailoring in Hoi An or Bangkok? Where and what would teenagers or younger children find interesting? What is the best use of 48 hours in Luang Prabang? What differentiates the national parks in Vietnam? We can also tell you it's the dynamic culture and the people who are the highlight of the country and we'll make sure you meet plenty of them. In homes, not staged cooking lessons. We'll treat you to Cham ruins superior to those at the tourist trap, My Son, that are relatively unknown and easier to get to and a lot more to make your trip truly unique.
Travel to eat? Yes, there are other things but let's admit food tops the list. Although we can arrange specialized experts, we have culinary experts on staff, that's how importantly we take food. We can also arrange private, hands-on demonstrations in each region if you'd like to take it a step further. Interest in the Arts? Artists are re-emerging with a vengeance and in 2003 we organized Vietnam's first tour focused on the emerging arts scene in Vietnam. As Vietnamese artists open up the world, it's a great opportunity to visit them personally in their home studios and simple galleries. Historical interests and personal encounters?
Passion. We share your passion for new places and experiences, but specialize only in Southeast Asia to provide a high degree of current, local knowledge. Test us out — call us up and ask difficult questions. Read what our past travelers say and ask us for references.
Exceptional, experienced managers, staff, and guides. Michael Buckley, Le Van Sinh and Mason Florence write for the top-selling guidebooks on Vietnam. Now find out what's not in the book. Each quarter we post city guides of the latest shopping, eating and sights and our client Web site is rich with behind the scenes information. Enjoy your travels and company, let us worry the details.
Full-time support. With in-country staff, we provide immediate and constant attention. We have local offices in country to provide complete support. Our travelers have mobile numbers of our office managers who can be contacted 24 x 7. Childcare and other personal services can be arranged.
A safe trip. Travel providers wipe their hands somewhere in the fine print. We don't — our guides and staff carry mobile phones and are trained to respond in emergencies in coordination with Western-staffed, in-country SOS International medical clinics or emergency air-evacuation service to Singapore if necessary. Insurance for this service is included automatically with your booking.
Innovative itineraries. Nobody else goes where or knows what we do. Sapa may be overrun with tourists, but we know the other places where few go. Like cooking? We can include a tour with some of the best chefs in the country. Interest in the arts? We arranged the first arts tour of Vietnam. Multi-sport? We know kayaking and cycling in Vietnam, operating more tours than anyone else.
Flexibility. Want to change your day's itinerary, even the morning of? That's not a problem, it's your trip. At minimum, we'll provide your transport and hotel arrangements, everything else is up to you.
Saving something for souvenirs. Our private, custom tours often cost less than that of a group or package tour through A&K. But we provide much more — a tour that has been designed and arranged to suit your desires (and less rushed). And with the money you also save, you can pickup some of the fine art and traditional crafts being produced in Hanoi and Saigon (or splurge on a stopover in Bangkok or Hong Kong). Lower cost does not mean lower quality — we typically cover far more ground (compare itineraries), provide a longer trip with more activities, stay at the same hotels, dine well (for us, the traveling is just an excuse to eat), provide experienced guides, extended support, pre- and post-tour arrangements, and emergency medical and air evacuation insurance. Travelers who have traveled with other luxury tour companies have commented that they preferred the personal focus of their tour, the authentic experiences they had, and the inside knowledge of the region we know and love to share. We would be glad to put you in contact with these travelers.
Indochina Travel on Nha Trang in Inspire Travel & Lifestyle Magazine
Local Knowledge. Compare us with others — being based in-country provides our travelers with an exceptional level of service and support. But we'll send you an extensive pre-tour packet with maps, food and cultural guides, phrase book, along with our fabulous insider guide and client-only Web pages listing current information on the best shopping, dining, activities, and more. Top lacquerware shop? Finest cha gio (spring rolls) and Bahn Xeo (stuffed crepe)? Where to go for the best massage in Saigon? My Son's ruins worth the drive? Most unimpressive, but we know of a wonderful Cham site south not many people see. What should you really be doing on the Vietnamese coast (hint: not lazing in the sun). Creamy, real Belgian chocolate mousse in Siem Reap? What is the only hotel to stay at in Luang Prabang (or Hue, Hoi An and Hanoi for that matter)? Garden dining on the Chao Praya River in Bangkok? Mud bath in the Mekong Delta? Fastrack immigration visas on arrival (no waiting in line)? Honeymoon or anniversary? We've got you covered.
Airlines. Need advice or assistance with airlines? Private regional airline transfers? Private jet arrangements? We can simplify this often complicated issue and advise on preferred carriers, routing, mileage programs to Asia, and exceptional airline agents for booking.
Getting Away. We travel exclusively in Southeast Asia — easily the most dynamic, fascinating regions you'll ever visit. If you're looking to get away from the usual (isn't that what travel is about?), then it doesn't get any more exotic or exciting than this. But not for long, the unprecedented rush of change in Asia means the unusual, traditional cultures of today will become the familiar sooner than later. Listen to your friends who have already been, the time to go is now.
Try Us Out. Call us. Test us — ask the really tough questions — see if we know our stuff and if we can dramatically improve upon your trip ideas. You may also request a custom itinerary based on your preferences and our recommendations by submitting a request form, we'll respond within a day and follow-up with a rough or detailed recommended itinerary for your travels in the region. Please provide as much details as possible and we'll integrate that into your itinerary or make alternative recommendations.