Discover the ancient history, rich culture and authentic food of Vietnam on this fantastic 12 day 11 night tour of some of the most popular regions and attractions of Vietnam. From the famous One Pillar Pagoda of Hanoi to the incredible beauty of Halong Bay, it’s sensory overload around every corner. Marvel at the ancient town of Hoi An and discover the unique farming practices of Tra Que ‘vegetable’ village. Relax and process all you’ve seen and experienced so far with a 3 day beach stay with no guide and no schedule to stick to. Uncover the rare Cu Chi Tunnels of Saigon before a memorable cruise along the Mekong Delta.
• Hanoi – Conifer Boutique Hotel
• Halong – Non-private Aphrodite Cruise
• Hoi An – Ancient House Resort
• Ho Chi Minh – Asian Ruby
• Hanoi – Sunway Hanoi
• Halong – Non-private Indochina Sails
• Hoi An – Boutique Hoi An Resort
• Ho Chi Minh – Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel
• Hanoi – Hotel de L Opera Hanoi
• Halong – Non-private Jasmine Cruise
• Hoi An – Palm Garden Resort
• Ho Chi Minh – Renaissance Riverside
*Accommodation subject to change*
Day 1 Hanoi: Arrival
Enjoy plenty of time to arrive at your leisure and be welcomed by your English-speaking guide at Hanoi Airport before being transferred by private car to your hotel for check in anytime from 2pm. The afternoon is yours to relax, enjoy free time exploring and dinner at your own leisure before returning to the hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 2 Hanoi Sightseeing: Includes Breakfast
Your first full day of the tour explores the capital city of Vietnam including Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the traditional stilt house and the famous One Pillar Pagoda as well as the thousand year old Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university. In the afternoon visit the Ethnology Museum (closed on Mondays) to discover the many ethnic groups of Vietnam. The day ends with the uniquely northern Vietnamese art form of a Water Puppet Show which depicts episodes of national history and scenes from rural life. Return to the hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 3 Hanoi – Halong Bay: Includes Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
There’s time for breakfast at the hotel before being picked up by a driver for the trip to Halong City, a 4 hour journey through Red River Delta with time to stop along the way to meet the locals and enjoy some refreshments. Arriving in Halong City around noon you’ll board a traditional wooden ‘junk’ boat to begin your exploration of magical UNESCO World Heritage Halong Bay. One of Southeast Asia’s premier tourist destinations, Halong Bay is renowned for its spectacular scattered limestone isles and karsts. A delicious fresh seafood lunch and dinner will be served on board the boat. You’ll also spend the night on the charming and comfortable ‘junk’ boat.
Day 4 Halong – Hanoi – Danang – Hoi An: Includes Breakfast
After breakfast on board the boat you’ll continue cruising Halong Bay, disembarking later in the morning. Returning to Hanoi Airport, you will stop enroute to visit a pottery village (if time permits), before your brief flight to Danang. Upon arrival in Danang you will be greeted by your local guide and transferred to your hotel in Hoi An Town (approximately 30-45 minutes away) for check in. Dinner will be at your leisure before returning to the hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 5 Cam Thanh – Hoi An Town: Includes Breakfast & Lunch
An early start will see you riding your bicycle for an hour into the Cam Thanh countryside beside rice paddies and farm houses. Once you reach the boat pier and board the boat, a short trip will take you to the seaport of Cua Dai at the mouth of the Thu Bon River. Using traditional basket boats you can experience local fishing techniques and join a local family for lunch consisting of local dishes prepared by the fishermen.
The afternoon is yours to explore Hoi An town, recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its incredibly well-preserved ancient homes and streets. The quaint cobblestones offer 200 year old Chinese houses, Phung Hung Chinese trading house, Japanese Bridge and Chinese Temple. Dinner is at your leisure before returning to the hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 6 – 8 Hoi An Beach Stay: Includes Breakfast
These next few days leave you free to enjoy the beautiful beach at your own leisure. With no car or guide on these days and meals on your own, you’re free to relax with no schedule of things to do, just a lovely hotel to enjoy each night.
Day 9 Hoi An – Danang – Ho Chi Minh City: Includes Breakfast
The morning is free for you to explore Hoi An on your own before being transferred to Danang Airport in the afternoon for your flight to Ho Chi Minh City. On arrival you will be welcomed by your local guide and transferred to your hotel for check-in. Dinner is at your own leisure this evening and you will return to your hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 10 Ho Chi Minh City – Saigon: Includes Breakfast & Dinner
Today you will discover Ho Chi Minh City, including must see historical sites such as the Gustave Eiffel-designed metal structure of the large central post office, the red brick Notre-Dame Cathedral resembling its namesake in Paris, the Palace of Reunification, Dong Khoi Street, Binh Tay Market and Thien Hau Pagoda. In the afternoon, your guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel and transfer you by car to Ho Chi Minh City central pier at District 1.
Departing Saigon by boat, cruise the river and watch sprawling city give way to lush jungle before arriving at the site of the Cu Chi Tunnels. The amazing 250km network of Cu Chi tunnels were originally used for shelter against French air and ground sweeps but went on to serve as living quarters for Vietnamese fighters during the American war. Explore weapon and booby trap exhibitions, visit underground bunkers, a firing range and much more. You’ll also have the opportunity to try the local cassava root which sustained Viet Cong fighters for years.
Dinner is traditional Vietnamese with local specialties such as caramelised clay pot pork and lemongrass chicken. Transfer back to Saigon’s central pier where a car will return you to your hotel by 6.30pm and the rest of the night at your leisure. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 11 Ho Chi Minh City – Mekong Delta: Includes Breakfast & Lunch
This morning you will be driven 2 hours from Saigon to Phong Nam in Ben Tre District where you’ll begin your expedition deep into the Mekong Delta. Boarding the boat at Phong Nam pier you’ll cruise along the Chet Say River, a branch of the Mekong, and stop at various local workplaces including a coconut activated charcoal factory and coconut processing factory to see how the local economy works. The boat will continue on through a small canal, exploring the local wildlife before stopping at a quiet village where you can enjoy a short walk to experience real Delta village life. Visit a mat weaving house and try your hand at making one before boarding a xe loi motorised rickshaw or biking into the village where you’ll see farms, rice fields and vegetable crops. Enjoy a delicious lunch of local specialties such as river shrimp and elephant-ear fish washed down with beer or a cold drink at a local house before a relaxing sampan trip along narrow canals. You’ll then take the boat back to the pier and transfer back to Saigon. Dinner is at your own leisure before returning to the hotel for your overnight stay.
Day 12 Ho Chi Minh Depart: Includes Breakfast
After breakfast at hotel, you will be transferred to the airport for the connecting flight to your next destination or for your return journey back to your home country. Your hotel room is at your disposal until 12 noon only.
Concludes: Ho Chi Minh
Children: A child rate is available for children 0-11 years of age
What to bring: Clothing adequate for duration of tour and appropriate to weather conditions, good quality insect repellent, sweat-resistant sunscreen, personal first aid kit and any required medication.
Fitness requirement: Low level of fitness required for this leisurely paced tour.
Note: This tour does not include the express visa (US$80pp) upon arrival to Hanoi Airport.
Operated By: Exotic Voyages