Indochina is a land of captivating beauty and highly refined cultures whose people have, over the last thirty years, transformed their war-torn countries into one of the most dynamic regions in Asia. But the history and culture of Indochina goes back much further; at its height towards the end of the first Millenium the Khmer and Cham civilizations produced some of the world’s most beautiful art and architecture.
The journey begins in Vietnam, a country of stirring beauty and sublimely cultured people whose transformation over the last thirty years from bomb-scarred war zone to one of Asia’s fastest growing economies is mesmerizing. In Hanoi admire the chic elegance of this great city with its buzzing art scene, once one of the jewels in the French empire. Enjoy a one night cruise on a private junk through the ‘out of this world’ seascape of Halong Bay. Travel to Hue, the old imperial capital, now a sleepy backwater gracefully situated on the banks of the shimmering Perfume River. Visit Ho Chi Minh city, formerly Saigon and see one of the most intensely living cities imaginable.
Continue on by boat through the heart of the Mekong Delta to Phnom Penh, the distinctive capital of Cambodia where crumbling orche villas remain as the legacy of the French. The journey ends with three days at Angkor, the spiritual and political centre of the Khmer Empire which at its height extended over most of Indochina and produced some of Asia’s most exquisite art and architecture. Explore this magnificent capital with its hundreds of monuments covering an area of 120 square miles. For those who wish the journey can be extended with a journey up the mighty Mekong River to Laos whose rural beauty, slow paced serenity and spiritual richness inspire the mind and soul like no other place in Asia.
Trip Leader: Ms Miranda Bruce-Mitford
Miranda specialises in social anthropology, literature, Buddhist Art & Architecture of South and Southeast Asia, and Oriental religious studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London University.
For years she has been a tutor for the Post-Graduate Diploma in Asian Arts at SOAS. She has lectured and given gallery talks at the British Museum, Sothebys, and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and has escorted numerous parties to Southeast Asia.