The 12-day trip is set to explore the iconic sites one-by-one making it one of the best and classic tours that one can ever travel to at this magical land so come with us for the best of this luxury…
DAY 01: HANOI ARRIVAL
Upon arrival, our guide will be holding a sign with your name and welcome you at Noi Bai International Airport, transfer to Hanoi’s Old Quarter and check in at the hotel. The rest of the day you can stroll around the Old Town to get used to the city or just relax and recover from the jet lag or enjoy the half day tour by cyclo (three-wheel bicycle taxi) to discover the chaotic streets of the Old Quarter. Overnight stay in Hanoi.
DAY 02: HANOI CITY (B/L/D)
Our guide and driver will meet you in the hotel lobby at 08:00 AM after breakfast for the full day to explore Vietnam’s charming capital. With its wide tree-lined boulevards, French colonial architecture, peaceful lakes and ancient oriental pagodas, Hanoi is an eclectic mix that offers something for everyone. Your city tour will take you to Hanoi’s key sites: the Ho Chi Minh Complex (Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and stilt house); the Presidential Palace; the nearby One Pillar Pagoda; the Temple of Literature; West Lake; the sedate Tran Quoc Pagoda & Quan Thanh Temple; and one of the city’s museums (a choice between the History Museum and the Ethnology Museum). End of the day you can enjoy a traditional Water Puppet Performance – a unique Vietnamese art form hailing from Southeast Asia’s wet-rice culture. Afterwards, you are free until 20:00 PM and be transferred to Hanoi Railway Station for the night train to Sapa. Overnight on a shared 4 berths cabin with air conditioning.
(If you don’t want to share the cabin with the other passengers, please let us know to book a whole four berths cabin or a cabin with two berths. Surcharge is applicable.)
DAY 03: LAO CAI – LAO CHAI – TA VAN VILLAGE (B/L/D)
Arrival to Lao Cai Station at 06:00 AM to be picked up and transferred to Sapa. Have breakfast before the trip starts. Drive to Y Linh Ho and start trekking downhill to Muong Hoa Valley through rice paddies and small hamlets to learn about life of the hill tribes here. Communicate and interact with the local people in Lao Chai Village. Cook & have lunch with a local family, continuing trekking through villages and rice terraced fields to Ta Van Village settled by Dzay ethnic people, which is supposed to be the most beautiful one in the area. Dinner and overnight stay in hotel.
DAY 04: CAT CAT VILLAGE – NIGHT TRAIN HANOI (B/L/D)
Breakfast at the hotel first, then we embark on a lovely walking tour to the hill tribe villages of Cat Cat, home to the H’mong Hill Tribes Minority People. As we walk to the villages nestled in the valley below Sapa, we will meet some of the local minority people on their way and share cultural experiences with the families that live in the area. Take a jeep drive back to Sapa to check out the hotel. Proceed with lunch at the local restaurant. The afternoon is free to explore Sapa and go shopping. Dinner on guests account. Transfer to Lao Cai for overnight train back to Hanoi. Overnight stay in an air-conditioned soft sleeper cabin.
DAY 05: HANOI – HALONG BAY (B/L/D)
Arrival at Hanoi early in the morning so our driver can pick you up at the station and bring you back to the hotel (early hotel check in). Our shuttle bus will pick up from the hotel lobby at 08:00 AM, take 3.5 hours and drive to Halong Bay, a World Heritage area of outstanding natural beauty. Spend 24 hours on a traditional junk cruise in the amazing bay: a natural wonderland composed of jutting limestone islands and sparkling turquoise waters. Arrive at the dock around noon and board your junk. Savor a gourmet lunch of fresh seafood on board as we sail out into the mystical bay. In the afternoon, cruise around some of Halong’s many islands, including Dinh Huong and Ga Choi. Along the way visit one of the bay’s 3 largest caves (Thien Cung, Dau Go or Sung Sot). Stop at an island cove with sheltered white-sand beach and take a dip in the warm waters of the Tonkin Gulf (weather permitting). Pass the night on your junk, lulled to sleep by the gentle rocking of calm waters. Overnight stay aboard cruise.
DAY 06: HALONG BAY – HANOI – FLY TO DANANG (B/L)
Rise early for a lesson in tai chi or just to enjoy a hearty breakfast. The boat will make its way back to the port stopping at the Cave of Surprises, full of stalagmites and stalactites. From here, it’s clear sailing back to the main harbour and then the return drive to Hanoi including the transfer to Noi Bai Airport for a jump flight to Danang City. Subject to flight time we offer optional stops in Bac Ninh, for visiting a special place and the cradle of Vietnamese folklore music in the Red River Delta or Thanh Chuong Viet Palace (with additional charge). Overnight stay in Hoi An.
DAY 07: COOKING CLASS HOI AN (B/L)
In the morning, you will visit the ancient town of Hoi An. The visit includes the Japanese covered bridge, some Chinese Assembly Halls, and some typical Vietnamese houses of the 18th Century. Continue to Hoi An’s colourful market and experience the amazing sights, sounds and aromas of this busy market. We will have the opportunity to interact with the local sellers and purchase some of the ingredients used in the cooking lesson later. We board the Red Bridge boat for a leisurely cruise (25 minutes) along the Hoi An River to the cooking school. This is a chance to view local river life, so make sure your camera is handy. On arrival, we explore the cooking school’s herb and vegetable garden, before learning about some of Hoi An and Vietnam’s well-known dishes. The cooking lesson runs for about 2 hours – each dish is first demonstrated by the Red Bridge chef, before we prepare the same dish ourselves. Included in the class is a brief introduction to Vietnamese food carving (plate decoration). Use your free time after for shopping or relaxation at a café, for example. Overnight stay in Hoi An.
DAY 08: HOI AN (B)
Today is free for you to enjoy sightseeing in this ancient town with numerous interesting places. It is time for you to explore art and handicraft galleries, try on clothes tailor-made, relax at the riverside restaurants or take the short journey to the nearby beach. Overnight stay in Hoi An.
DAY 09: FLY TO HO CHI MINH CITY – HALF DAY CITY TOUR (B/L)
In the morning, our car (no tour guide) will pick you up at the hotel lobby and be transferred to Da Nang International Airport for flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Our driver and tour guide will hold a sign with your name and welcome you. Transfer directly to hotel in Ho Chi Minh City. After check in, take the half day city tour seeing the War Museum, Reunification Palace and Notre Dame Cathedral. Visit the bustling city at Chinatown hosting Thien Hau Pagoda. Overnight stay in Saigon.
DAY 10: MEKONG DELTA (B/L)
Travel about two hours south of Ho Chi Minh City to Ben Tre, the gateway to the Mekong Delta. Hop aboard a small boat and explore the waterways stopping at a small home-based factory where workers process coconuts to be used in products like matting and candy. Then transfer to Le Jarai, a converted rice barge and continue your cruise along the Mekong River. Join in a demonstration of Vietnamese cooking and watch the river go by as you enjoy a sumptuous three-course lunch of Mekong specialties! Then late in the afternoon arrive into Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 11: HALF DAY AT CU CHI TUNNELS (B/L)
Half Day Cu Chi Tunnels Tour will bring you to a network of tunnels stretching over 250 km, proven to be one of the most famous and historical aspects of the Vietnam War. The tunnel system was created in 1948 to assist the Viet Minh as they fought the French for independence. Digging and building tunnels continued over the next 25 years until it was an underground city with living areas, kitchens, storage, weapons factories, field hospitals and command centers. The tunnels could house thousands of people who lived almost entirely underground for years. There, people led relatively normal lives, which included getting married and raising children. During the American War, the entire area of Cu Chi was designated as a free fire zone; and was therefore, heavily attacked and bombed. In 1988, two sections of tunnels were opened up for visitors. Now you have the chance to enjoy this wonderful and informative experience. Created with “moving parts” these structures were designed to be livable for long periods of time.
And for those who are interested, there is an opportunity for you to fire off rounds from a war era M16 rifle or AK-47 rifle at the nearby firing range. (This activity is optional; Fees for firing range are not included). Overnight stay in Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 12: HO CHI MINH CITY DEPARTURE (B)
After breakfast, free at leisure until our driver (no tour guide) picks you up at hotel lobby in Ho Chi Minh City and transfer to Tan Son Nhat International Airport for flight back home.
What are included ?
- 11 nights hotel accommodation with daily breakfast
- Meals as stated B – L – D
- Transport services by private vehicle
- Admission fees
- English speaking guide
What are not included ?
- International and domestic airline ticket
- Visa stamping fee
- International Departure Tax
- Insurance services
- Tips and personal plans