Challenge level: 3 out of 5
|8 March - 18 March 2019||On Sale|
Gear up for a 450 km cycle through the stunning countries of Vietnam and Cambodia, alongside vibrant rivers and villages and exploring some of the world's most famous and magnificent temples.
This challenge will take you on a rewarding ride through two of South East Asia's most fascinating countries. The cycle is open to all who dare to test their strength and spirit, while exploring this incredible part of the world.
Our adventure starts in Vietnam's bustling Ho Chi Minh City and will follow a route through the beautiful and banana-ridden Mekong Delta, all the way to the ancient World Heritage Site of Angkor Wat in Cambodia, where we can discover the stupendous ruins.
Along the way, you'll experience wonderful scenery, ancient temples, an enthralling loating market and the warmth of the local people. You'll also make strong new friendships with a group of overwhelmingly inspiring people.
After an overnight flight from London to Vietnam, we’re greeted by our support team at Ho Chi Minh City airport. We hop onto our awaiting transfer buses to our hotel in Ho Chi Minh, where we settle down for refreshments. After fitting our bikes and receiving a briefing about the exciting challenge ahead, we have the rest of the day free to rest or explore the unique city. You may want to visit the War Remnants Museum, a truly sobering but eye-opening experience. We finish the day with a delicious welcome dinner of authentic Vietnamese cuisine.
Today is a warm-up day, with smooth cycling. We transfer out of Ho Chi Minh City to My Tho, the gateway to the Mekong Delta. After a ferry journey across the Tien Giang River, we follow a traffic free route through villages to catch a glimpse of Vietnamese rural life. Here, the tracks are lined with banana trees and palms, a world apart from the English countryside. We stop for lunch at a restaurant in Ben Tre. After crossing many tributaries and canals, our ride ends with a ferry trip across Co Chien River to Tra Vinh, a pretty, tree-lined town with a large population of Khmer. Here, we check into our hotel and finish the day with dinner at a local restaurant.
The cycling today is fairly flat and takes us through rural communities and several small towns. It’s almost like cycling through a postcard, passing colourful pagodas and ethnic homes with contrasting architectural style. We also cross small, wooden bridges that offer gorgeous views of the river. There’s an opportunity to visit Ba Om Pond and local Khmer Temples and schools – feel free to bring gifts for the children! We rest tonight at a hotel in the town of Can Tho, where we have dinner at a local restaurant.
This morning, we visit the vibrant floating markets in Cai Rang and Phong Dien. This is a perfect start to the day, cycling along the river bank, watching merchants passing their goods from boat to boat. We’ll see endless cottage industries, including timber merchants, coconut shredders and small docks, where tradesmen load massive amounts of rice to and from boats. We carry on cycling along a narrow lane to the main road, where we stop for lunch. In the afternoon, we ride along a tiny road leading upstream towards Long Xuyen. We then transfer to Chau Doc, where we find our hotel.
We enjoy a morning off the bikes and a scenic boat ride from Vietnam to Cambodia. We have a short transfer to the harbour, where we board boats to take us to the famous city of Phnom Penh. We have lunch in a restaurant overlooking the busy harbour. In the afternoon, we ride to the famous Tuol Sleng Museum and the infamous Killing Fields of Cambodia.
Our first day of cycling in Cambodia begins with a short transfer across the Japanese bridge to the surrounding countryside, where quiet roads await. Cycling along the Mekong River on both dirt and tarmac roads through orchards and villages, we pass many friendly locals. We stop for a hearty lunch and then continue to Totoeng village, where we jump on the bus to our hotel in Kampong Thom.
After breakfast, we’re transferred to today's starting point at Damdek village. We then cycle through the back roads of the village. We stop for lunch in a local restaurant and then continue to our finish line, cycling directly to our hotel in Siem Reap. Once checked in, we have some time to enjoy a shower and relax, before going out for dinner.
Following breakfast, we spend the day exploring the incredible Angkor ruins by bike, either as a group or individually. We can marvel at the wonderful Angkor Wat, with its sprawling grounds and ancient sandstone carvings, the Bayon with its multitude of serene stone faces, the 350 m long Terrace of the Elephants and Ta Prohm, (aka. the Tomb Raider temple), which is entwined with fig tree roots and gigantic creepers. We end today with a celebratory dinner in Siem Reap.
We hope to have some free time this morning for last minute shopping, before we catch our overnight flights from Siem Reap airport back to the UK.
Pay the challenge costs yourself and choose to fundraise or donate as much as you can for your chosen charity.
Pay the balance
Pay a non-refundable registration fee and then commit to fundraising a minimum sponsorship amount for your chosen charity.
Minimum sponsorship target
Please don't be! The majority of people will sign up on their own. Once the event is fully booked, we'll send you a contact list of everyone registered for the challenge, as often there will be someone in your local area you can meet up to train or fundraise with.
Absolutely not! One of the amazing things about the challenge is that people of all ages will come together to do something very special. The age range is likely to be from 18 to 75.
How you fund your challenge is completely up to you. Some people will decide to pay their own tour costs so they can tell their donors that the donation they are making is going directly to support the work of the charities. Others will fundraise the full amount.
A cycling helmet is essential. Cycling shorts are also recommended and everyone will need their own water bottles or a camel back-type hydration system. Apart from that no specialist equipment is required. We will supply you with a list of everything you will need to take before you go. Cyclists will have the use of 18 or 21-gear bikes and it is suggested that you bring the saddle or gel cover you are used to riding on.
We will stay in tourist class hotels, lodges and guest houses in shared rooms throughout.
If you don't reach your fundraising target you a can either top up the additional funds yourself or simply forfeit your place on the challenge and lose your registration fee.
Yes of course! If you wish to extend your stay you will need to come out of our group flights (and of course we would deduct the cost from your balance).
In addition to paying your registration fee you will need to budget for your airport taxes and the fuel surcharge (currently £350 but subject to change), personal travel insurance and tourist visa for Cambodia (currently £40), gratuities, optional tours and personal expenses including travel to and from the departure airport in London
You will need to take out your own personal travel insurance covering health, accident, loss and repatriation. Dream Challenges has a recommended policy, which we will send you details of. You can however take out your own insurance providing it covers you for a charity cycle ride in Vietnam and Cambodia. British passport holders require a tourist visa for Cambodia. We will send you information and an application form to apply for your visa.
The Dream Challenges team are here to help you achieve your challenge and will support you all the way. We are on hand from the minute you sign up to answer any questions that you may have about your training or the challenge itself. Once you have registered we will send you a realistic training programme to help you get fit for the event. The programme builds up gradually as the event gets closer.