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South East Asia Ethical Adventure Trail – 6 week placement Cambodia and Vietnam

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South East Asia Ethical Adventure Trail – 6 week placement Cambodia and Vietnam

Participate on a conservation or teaching project in Cambodia before travelling with us to Vietnam, discovering lands of unimaginable beauty, taking you from night bazaars to picture perfect vistas.

Prices from US$2,395

Travel with us to the ancient republics of Cambodia and Vietnam in Southeast Asia, famously popular destinations for gap year travellers and it isn't hard to see why.

These countries provide a world of unimaginable beauty offering the perfect setting for an adventure that will take you everywhere – from buzzing night bazaars full of jewel bright lanterns, to pearl white sand beaches and picture perfect vistas; from dazzling temples to formidable sunken Buddha statues hidden by a riot of rainforest vegetation; from refreshing waterfalls in breathtaking landscapes, to the remains of an ancient citadel; you will experience all this and combine your journey with a 28-day conservation or teaching project.

This adventure trail takes in the best sites Vietnam, and will lead you to the highlights of these unmissable destinations. Who could resist swimming in crystalline waters off perfect white sand beaches and exploring lush green rainforest where leopard cats, elephants and other exotic creatures lurk?

Soak up the intense historical ambience in the venerated temples throughout the country, then spend your nights in the vibrant whirlwind of the bars and nightclubs of the cosmopolitan and exotic cities you visit en route, as you enjoy the company of your travel companions and new friends. 

What is so fantastic about this journey is that whilst travelling you will benefit from the leadership of a young, friendly, fun but also sensible and well travelled guide who will take care of all the stress and organisation on the trip, whether it be recovering lost luggage, arranging bus tickets, booking hostels or extra activities, dealing with emergencies or even knowing the best places to go for a great night out! If you want to experience the beauty and adventure of South East Asia, travelling along with a young and friendly group of companions, without the hassle, then joining this Frontier adventure trail is the perfect solution!

livefromsoutheastasia  volunteer




  • Make lifelong friendships
  • Become an intrepid explorer in this wondrous corner of the world
  • Discover a wealth of culture & wildlife


Location Cambodia & Vietnam
Activities Visiting city hotspots
Sightseeing tours
Temples, monasteries, waterfalls, pagodas, white sand beaches or hill villages.
4 week teaching and community development project OR beach conservation project or a mixture of both
Working alongside local communities, chilling on white sand beaches
Transport Transport throughout the trail
Accommodation Varies



Before you go Pre-departure support & documentation
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
free Frontier TEFL certificate depending on choice of project
In-country Welcome dinner, departure dinner, street food experience in Cambodia and Vietnam
Local orientation & training
Ground transfers & in-transit accommodation (extra fee applies for beach conservation or marine conservation transfer and project)
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ backup




A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.


Day 1: Arrive in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Day 2: Siem Reap

This province is a wonderful introduction to Cambodia with expansive lake scenery, an abundance of lavishly decorated elephants, floating villages and of course the spectacular temple complex of Angkor Wat, a visual feast of temples formed of golden filigrees and blood red stone. Visit the Terrace of Elephants or find out what the "Churning of the Sea of Milk" entails in this most significant of historical monuments! A visit to the Siem Reap night market is also something not to be missed!

Following this, you will receive your field briefings and safety tests before travelling to your project site.

Day 3-26: Project Placement

At this stage of the project, you will get the chance to participate in a volunteering project: teaching and community development, beach conservation (extra cost applies) or a combination of both projects if you can't decide between the two (extra cost applies). Volunteers also have the option to take part in a Marine Conservation & Scuba Diving project (extra cost applies)

• Option 1: Teaching (4 weeks) – no additional cost

• Option 2: Beach Conservation placement (4 weeks) – US$782 + US$119 transfer fee 

• Option 3: Teaching and beach conservation (2 weeks on each) – US$391 + US$119 transfer fee

• Option 4: Teaching and marine conservation and diving (2 weeks on each) – US$612 + US$119 transfer fee + dive training costs (if applicable*)

• Option 5: Marine conservation and diving (4 weeks) – US$1,224 + US$119 transfer fee + dive training costs (if applicable*)


*Additional dive training costs will apply if you choose to take part on the Marine Conservation & Diving project and are not yet trained up to PADI Advanced Open Water level. PADI Open Water (US$595), PADI Advanced Open Water (US$561)


Teaching and Community Development (CBT)

You will be teaching in a school for underprivileged children where you will make a vital contribution to their lives. Your work schedule will cover a comprehensive, varied and enjoyable teaching programme which will engage you fully with your pupils and awaken your creativity and initiative. You are sure to gain huge satisfaction from inspiring these underprivileged children, bringing joy and fun to their lives whilst enhancing your own skills and experience significantly. You can also gain a TEFL certificate for FREE if you spend the four weeks conducting the teaching work. On your weekends off you may wish to visit the stunning West Barray Lake, take a boat trip on Tonle Sap or just relax and enjoy the night life and bustling local street markets.

Beach Conservation (CMM)

This project work is conducted on the island of Koh Rong Samloem. Day to day activities may include snorkel surveys to assess coral reef damage and fish population size and structure, patterns and extent of resource use by villagers, environmental awareness campaigns within the local village, community development work including refurbishment to village infrastructure, language teaching in the village community, silt trap monitoring, village clean ups and recycling scheme development and beach clean ups.

Through immersion in local culture and activities with the local village, you will assess how reliant the local villagers are on the coastal ecosystem for their livelihood and may gain an insight into the impact of global warming on the threatened marine and coastal communities. You will discover the rich cultural heritage of the Khmer communities as you work alongside them on environmental education programmes and community development activities. Discover the rich blend of Buddhist and Hindu spiritualism infusing their daily lives as epitomised in the majestic mainland temples and elaborate ceremonies and rituals of this fascinating country. 

Marine Conservation & Diving (CBM)

The project works to safeguard these natural marine resources, working side by side with the local community assisting in the management and sustainable use of the resources within the established community fishing area, as well as providing much needed teaching resources and care work for the community itself.

The project incorporates a number of different elements all of which combine not only to give you an insight into the workings of the local community and economy but also to lend a hand in protecting rapidly diminishing species.

The marine project involves joining a scuba diving research team that monitors the marine ecosystem and collects data on the reef, coastal breeding grounds and the abundance of important species. This data is then used to help maintain a proactive conservation strategy. Volunteers learn about seahorse and invertebrate species as well as collecting valuable data from seahorse surveys. There may also be the opportunity to assist with educational awareness programmes for local children, providing them with workshops on responsibility and enabling them to help in island and beach clean up days.

You may also find yourself teaching English in the island school, providing much needed education and support. With nearly a third of 7-14 year olds unable to attend school, this is a fantastic opportunity to work with the local children and make a real difference to their future prospects. You will dance, sing and play games as well as teach them English. Literacy is crucial to education and in providing them with vital skills, you can give them hope for a future of choice.

To participate in the scuba diving project work you will need to be qualified to Advanced Open Water or equivalent, with dive training available in country at the project site. Please see the extended project cost information for prices for dive training in the warm tropical seas of Cambodia!

Day 27-28: Phnom Penh 

Explore this scintillating, sprawing and cosmopolitan metropolis known as the "pearl of Asia", take in the Royal Palace, Wat Phnom, the S 21 museum and the Killing Fields, an important and intensely moving experience.


Day 29: Travel to Vietnam, visa to be purchased on entry

Day 30-31: Ho Chi Minh

Venture into this vibrant and industrious urban centre with its bubbling and exhilarating vibe. Visit the War Remnants Museum containing eye opening exhibits relating to the American phase of the Vietnam War and Cu Chi Tunnels to discover how the Viet Cong lived during the war and their guerilla warfare. See the pastel hued pagodas and pick up some real bargains from the tiny merchants and traders of the many side streets and alleys. Make a walking tour of the city taking in views of the cathedral, opera house, Reunification Palace and Ben Thanh market. If there is time and you have any energy left you can opt to take a tour of the Mekong Delta, home of rice fields and floating markets (approx. $60).

Day 32-38

En route to Hanoi you will have the chance to encounter several of Vietnam's most diverse towns and villages. Mui Ne offers the chance to see the magnificent sand dunes that expand along the coast where you may be able to try out sand boarding. Visit the local fishing village and watch the fishermen bring in their catch at sunrise and enjoy beautiful vistas from the beach as you relax. If sand boarding isn't sufficient adrenaline addicts can opt to try out quad biking ($25). 

Nha Trang gives you the chance to chill with a day snorkelling, sunbathing and swimming while you enjoy a four island tour. Nha Trang also offers scuba diving (extra cost applies).

Hoi An is a stunning little town bursting with Chinese influences at every corner. World famous for its tailors, you could stroll past a delicate Chinese temple with colourful lanterns lining the streets and drop in to a tailor to get measured up for your new suit or ball gown made from Thai silk!  Hire bikes and cycle along the river to enjoy sunbathing, swimming and general relaxing on the beach.

Visit Hué and see the imperial tombs and the old citadel and enjoy a walk along the Perfume River.

Day 39: Hanoi 

Explore Hanoi by taking a walking tour of this vibrant and colourful city of a million bicycles picking up a last few souvenirs. Visit the night markets and take in one of Vietnam's famous shows at the Water Puppet theatre.

Day 40: Halong Bay  

Explore Halong Bay with a boat trip along this spectacular coast with its enormous limestone caves, dense jungle and monolithic islands.  The area boasts incredible biodiversity with a fantastic array of wildlife including antelopes, monkeys, lizards and bantams living on some of the offshore islands.  

Day 41-42: Return to Hanoi and fly home!

Return to Hanoi to do some more last minute shopping and prepare for your homeward journey the next day.

**This itinerary is very flexible and subject to change. It is intended as a guide. You and your fellow travellers will change the itinerary according to your interests and depending on how you are progressing.**


You will be greeted at Siem Reap airport by your trail leader and escorted to a local hostel where you will spend your first night. If you are arriving before the project start date you will meet at an agreed rendez vous point. You will have time in Siem Reap to explore the many ancient attractions it has to offer, which have fascinated locals and foreigners for centuries. From there you will be taken to your placement to enjoy 4 weeks of teaching or conservation work, so be prepared to throw yourself right into the swing of things!


During the trail you will stay in basic accommodation such as hostels or sleeping in mixed sex communal dorms, shared rooms or homestays which are full of character and local charm to give you a real feel for the countries you are staying in. If you choose the teaching and community part of the trip you will stay in a local hostel in Siem Reap.

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6 weeks US$2,395


Nearest airport(s): Siem Reap (REP), Hanoi (HAN)


  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance

For detailed information on flights, visas and insurance, click here.


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To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.

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