Preface: I have never had difficulty writing a Review and Reflections of a trip before. I have struggled with this one…in a very good way. You see, my AmaWaterways’ AmaLotus Vietnam and Cambodia experience (land and cruise) I had from August 21 through September 4, 2012 was, without question, one of the best overall travel
After returning to the ship from our rather disturbing visit to the Killing Fields and saying goodbye to our truly fantastic Cambodian guide, I thought it was time for a bit of fun and normalcy, so we went to The Stone Grill (the original “Hot Rocks” they now have on Silversea cruise ships) which stood
Today was a very introspective and thought-provoking day.Our day started driving down the roadway running along the Mekong River lined on the other side with shops, restaurants and bars; most of which tried very hard to be Western in appearance and approach, whether it be “$1 DVD” or “Heart Break Club” or the now well-known
We were awakened at about 7:00 a.m. as the anchor was lifted and we set sail downriver to the small island of Chong Koh. There we disembarked on the riverbank for a stroll through a small village that used to weave silk, but with demand for silk waning they now weave cotton. Our guide is
Since the Tonle Sap Lake level was too low, we traveled fairly far south to Prek Kdam in order to find a convergence of road, river and landing facilities. It was a reminder of just how undeveloped and remote Cambodia is. But as we had to travel so far south, we doubled back once aboard
The AmaLotus is a beautiful luxury river cruise ship; the most luxurious on the Mekong River for sure. Our children have a standard veranda cabin, we have a junior suite and our friends have a Sadec Suite (the largest on the ship). My first impression is that AmaWaterways does a lousy job…of letting people
Up, a good breakfast and then on the road to Prek Kdam to board the AmaLotus for our 8 day/7 night cruise down the Mekong River. For our group it was “old hat” as we now know the routine, have bonded with our guide and have been introduced both to Cambodia and the AmaWaterways’ way
We awoke to bright skies and, at least for me, great excitement. I have wanted to visit the Cambodia temples for many years. My anticipation was heightened by a comment made by Anthony Bourdain in his television show, “No Reservations”, when he said that after visiting Angkor Wat he stopped taking photographs of his travels.
Our last night in Hanoi was quiet as our plans to walk to a small café somewhere were literally rained out. It poured. There was thunder and lightning. And then it did it again and again. Hence, the Sofitel Metropole bar was our destination. A nice time, but also a bit of a minor disappointment.
Two days to go and we are off to Vietnam and Cambodia…so finally the Itinerary, maybe. As I write this Typhoon Kai-Tak is pounding Vietnam with winds up to 133 kilometers per hour (83 miles per hour) and very heavy rains. Ha Long Bay is closed to ships, 20,000 Vietnamese solders placed on standby, and there is