Discover Vietnam’s delightful melange of culture and history on a compact, insightful journey. Explore Ho Chi Minh City’s historic monuments then glide across the waters of the Mekong Delta. After a stop in sleepy Hoi An, travel to bustling Hanoi and cap off the adventure with a Halong Bay cruise.
Welcome to Hanoi! Upon arrival, your guide will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel for check in. After freshening up you’ll have free time to explore the town on your own.
This tour starts at 08:30. Drive past the historical Ba Dinh Square where Ho Chi Minh proclaimed the independence of Vietnam in 1945. Next up is the Thang Long Imperial Citadel, built in the 11th century and added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites in 2010. Venture inside and explore the underground war bunker that played an important role in the armed conflict with America.
Continue the Hanoi landmarks tour with a stroll through areas where sewing shops have been in family hands for generations, and people still practice the old ways, or admire the daily life of local people in the alley of Hanoi. Proceed to the millenia-old Temple of Literature and explore its role in the country’s past, as both a university and a temple.
Finally, if you feel interested, make a stop at the last courtyard where Vietnamese traditional instruments contribute to the oriental feel. For travelers who are musicians, opportunities to play some notes will present themselves, all under the guidance of the artists.
In the afternoon, head to the highly-acclaimed Vietnam Women’s Museum, offering wonderful insight into the lives of Vietnamese women. Learn historic and modern-day traditions centred on birth, weddings, motherhood, spirituality and more. Towards the end of the tour, embark on a walk through Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Witness the ancient commercial street names, mirroring the crafts and businesses dating back over a thousand years.
Depart from the hotel early this morning for a 2-hour drive through rural northern Vietnam to the site of Vietnam's first capital, Hoa Lu. Visit the temples dedicated to Emperor Dinh Tien Hoang of the Dinh Dynasty (968-80) and Emperor Le Dai Hanh of the Le Dynasty (980-1009). If time permits after visiting Hoa Lu, take a half-hour walk up one of the surrounding limestone karst hills, boasting spectacular views.
In the late morning, depart for a traditional Vietnamese lunch in Tam Coc. Along the way stop to take photographs of local villages and the stunning landscape.
After lunch, board a private sampan to visit Tam Coc. As the boat gently slices through the water, take note of the enormous limestone karsts jutting out from the green rice fields giving rise to the area’s nickname, 'Halong on Land'.
The adventurous sort can have the option of climbing up Bich Dong Pagoda on nearby Ngu Nhac Mountain. Dating to 1428, it is comprised of three structures: Ha, Trung, and Thuong Pagodas. Return to Tam Coc town before returning to Hanoi.
Overnight in Hanoi.
Depart from Hanoi and travel about four hours to the port of Halong Bay. Take a small tender boat to meet your junk, which will be anchored just offshore. After a short safety briefing, set sail to the outer reaches of Bai Tu Long Bay, passing by stunning limestone karsts jutting out of the jade waters. Explore the well-hidden Thien Canh Son cave before relaxing on a white sandy beach or taking to the water for a spot of kayaking. In the evening join in a cooking demonstration before a pleasant evening on board. Overnight on Halong Bay.
Start a new day with Tai Chi on the sundeck with a beautiful morning view of Bai Tu Long, followed with a cup of tea or coffee. Have breakfast in the fresh air while cruising to the Cong Do area. Explore the well- hidden Thien Canh Son Cave, one of hundreds in the Halong area, before enjoying a final example of Halong hospitality with an early buffet lunch on the way back to the harbour. Drive to Hanoi airport for flight to Hue.
Begin the day’s explorations with an 08:30 departure from the hotel in Hue. Start the tour at the Imperial Citadel where the Nguyen Dynasty ruled between 1802 and 1945. From here take a cyclo through dai noi ‘Old City’ to Tinh Tam Lake where the Emperors used to come to relax. The lake is full of lotus flowers in the summer and there are many local style coffee shops around the lake, perfect for soaking in the local scene. Next, pay a visit to the Thien Mu Pagoda overlooking the Perfume River. Constructed in 1601, the 21-meter tower is the centerpiece of the pagoda and represents seven reincarnations of Buddha. On the pagoda grounds is the famous Austin car a resident monk drove to Saigon in 1963 to protest against the southern regime. The photo of his self immolation is one of the most well known images of the war. Continue to former emperor Minh Mang’s tomb located in a tranquil setting of gardens and ponds. Afterwards, journey on to Khai Dinh’s Tomb, designed in traditional Vietnamese style with a European touch making it unique from the other tombs in Hue. Before heading back to the hotel, take time to stroll around Dong Ba Market with the guide. The market is another of the must see sites in Hue, with stalls teeming with color and life. Overnight in Hue.
Enjoy this morning at leisure before leaving Hue to Hoi An. Drive through Danang and visit the Cham Museum, which contains the finest collection of Cham sculptures in the world before climbing over the Pass of Ocean Clouds and dropping down to the wonderfully photogenic fishing village of Lang Co. Continue one hour to the old town of Hoi An.
Following breakfast at the hotel, take a walking tour of the ancient town centre to visit former merchants’ houses, the 400 year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, a Chinese communal hall and the colorful market. After the tour, enjoy some time at leisure exploring the old town. Overnight in Hoi An.
Enjoy a great day out in a local community farming project just outside of Hoi An. Start with a short bike ride of about 30 minutes along village roads and small paths between the paddy fields. Stop at Tra Que village where the community has come together to create a large vegetable farm. Take a walk around the farm to see the different vegetables that are grown all organically! Learn the traditional methods the farmers use to plant, fertilise and harvest the crop, then try your hand at raking the ground and sowing seeds. After toiling away in the garden, be rewarded with a herbal foot bath and massage. Join in with short cooking demonstration followed by lunch featuring the delicious vegetables straight from the farm to the plate!
You will be transferred to airport for departure flight to Nha Trang. Upon arrival, meet with our driver and transfer to hotel in Nha Trang.
Day at leisure at the beach
Your guide will meet you at your hotel after breakfast and transfer you to Dalat, a scenic drive of about four hours. After arriving at your hotel, head out for a leisurely stroll around the town and discover why it’s known as the “City of Eternal Spring,” or simply relax and enjoy the view from the comfort of your hotel.
In the morning, You can enjoy airy space at RoBin Hill, Dalat Cable Car Station to get the panorama view of the Dalat City and enjoy the marvelous sight of the pine forested valley stretched down to the South. After taking some photos of this, an option to take the cable car descending down 300 meters with the nice view of flower, vegetable fields dotted in the pine forested valley below to visit to Tuyen Lam Lake. Surrounding by pine forest, Tuyen Lam Lake looks like a paradise with the Truc Lam Zen Monastery, at present is the biggest Zen University in Viet Nam. Please dress decently, a very quiet scenery beside it’s beautiful flower garden, which is built on the top of Phoenix Hill. Keep driving southward, you can choose to visit Prenn waterfall where to try elephant riding or Datanla waterfall with magnificent view and can be approached by the roller coaster. On the way back to Dalat City center, we visit the Bao Dai King’s Summer Palace, the last Emperor and unique cultural lifestyle of Vietnamese through Royal decoration, the meaningful place of your Dalat trip. Have your lunch at local restaurant on the way (tour guide will recommend the prestigious restaurant if require) In the afternoon, we continue our trip to Valley of Love is the most romantic place for lovers with many beautiful love-signs, flowers, and pine hills scenery beside the Da Thien lake, well known for its Cowboys, a good place for horse riding. If you love art work, XQ Embroidery village (XQ Historical Village) is a worthy place to see many miraculous hand made embroidery works and find out how they make those fantastic artwork, this is the head and original hand embroidered works of XQ in Vietnam, you will be surprised and admired the charming ladies working here. Keeping on visiting a giant golden statue of Sakyamuni Buddha. Continuously, The Cock Church (The Cathedral of Dalat city), known with a bronze rooster was placed on the top of the tower and the European Gothic architectural style since 1931 and it is the biggest church in Dalat city which was designed and built by Frenchman
Following breakfast at the hotel, your guide will meet you at your hotel and transfer you to the airport for your flight to Ho Chi Minh City – formerly known as Saigon. Upon arrival, your guide will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel for check in. In the evening, taste the culture of Saigon. Set off on a culinary adventure in the heart of the city where locals peoples eat. Walk along small alleys, and see the streets come alive at night time. With the help of our tour guide, try all those weird and wonderful local foods and see how they’re made. Pull up a stool and taste a selection of different Vietnamese favourites local foods. Begin with some banh beo and a unique rice paper pizza, then try some fresh snail dishes, and savour a Vietnamese pancake known as banh xeo – a very famous traditional cake. End the night with dessert from one of Saigon’s little sweet soup places. Afterward, you will head back to your hotel and free time at leisure.
Depart from the hotel for a full day of touring Ho Chi Minh City. Head to Cholon, the Chinatown district, to discover the area’s markets, shops and Thien Hau Pagoda. Next pay a visit to Vietnam's first traditional medicine museum, the FITO Museum, with an amazing collection of 3,000 items relevant to the development of traditional Vietnamese medicine. Implements used to prepare indigenous herbs and objects commonly found in traditional pharmacies can be seen in the galleries as well as ancient books and documents on traditional Vietnamese medicine. Head back to the city center to visit Ben Thanh Market where an incredible display of fresh produce is offered. Enjoy a guided stroll through the market exploring the variety of goods for sale. This afternoon pay a visit to either the War Remnants Museum, History Museum (closed Mondays) or the former Presidential Palace. Afterwards, stroll through the major sights of colonial Ho Chi Minh City: the Old Saigon Post Office, Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat), Continental Hotel, Opera House and City Hall (a vehicle will be available at all times). At the end of the afternoon head back to the hotel. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
Depart in the morning from bustling Ho Chi Minh City for the 2-hour drive to the Delta town of Cai Be. Upon arrival, board a boat for the day’s cruise along the Delta. Start the journey by passing by Cai Be’s floating market, once a busy place to trade fruits and vegetables and nowadays a more quiet market. Continue the cruise to a cottage factory where ‘pop-rice’, rice paper and coconut candies are made. Return to the boat for the cruise to Dong Hoa Hiep Island, admiring the scenery and daily life along the way. Lunch will be served in the local Mekong style offering specialties of the area. Return to Ho Chi Minh City later in the afternoon and enjoy the remainder of the day/night at leisure. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
Your tour guide will meet you at your hotel lobby once you check out the hotel and transfer you to the airport for your departure flight.
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