If you are visiting Vietnam for the first time, this tour will take you to the highlights of this fascinating country. Many of our past travelers have started with a journey like this and are enticed to return to explore this captivating land more deeply. This 10 day journey introduces you to the beauty and majesty of the north, the historic charm of Central Vietnam and the beauty and the vibrancy of South Vietnam.
Day 1: Arrive Hanoi. Arrive in Hanoi, welcome by your guide and transfer to hotel. The rest of the day is at your leisure. Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 2: Hanoi. Hanoi is a unique city with tree-lined boulevards, French colonial architecture, peaceful lakes and oriental temples. This city tour includes such sights as Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum (closed Mondays and Fridays plus October-November) and his house on stilts, the One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, Quan Thanh Temple and Tran Quoc Pagoda on the edge of West Lake. Take a tour by bicycle, a chauffeur-pedaled tricycle, through Hanoi’s Old Quarter, also known as the "36 streets". Visit the "Lake of the Restored Sword" in the center of Hanoi. End the day with a visit to either the Ethnology, Army, History or National Fine Arts Museum, time will only allow for one museum to be visited so decide which one you would most like to see. Overnight in Hanoi. Includes: (B).
Day 3: Hanoi–Hoa Lu-Hanoi. A 1.5 hour drive through rural northern Vietnam will take you to the site of Vietnam’s first capital, Hoa Lu. After visiting the two remaining sanctuaries of the ancient citadel, take a sampan on a river through the rice paddies to the grottoes of the sacred Tam Coc Caves. Enormous limestone karsts jut out from the green rice fields giving rise to this place’s other name, "Halong on Land". Climb up to the Bich Dong Pagoda, which offers a scenic view of the surrounding countryside. In the afternoon return to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 4: Hanoi–Halong Bay. At 08:00 depart for the 3.5 hour drive to Halong Bay. Journey there through the rich farmlands of the Red River Delta, observe everyday life of Vietnamese villagers as they work the rice fields, take pigs to the market on motorbikes and plough the fields with their water buffaloes. Arrive from Hanoi late morning and welcome at the pier of your chosen boat company. Check-in procedures and transfer to your boat for the overnight journey into the Bay. Lunch is served on board as you cruise into Halong Bay (note: menus vary on each boat). Cruise by rock formations with such names as Sail, Dog and Dinh Huong (incense pot). Towards the end of the day set anchor for the night as the sun sets followed by dinner. Overnight on board. Overnight on Halong Bay. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 5: Halong Bay–Hanoi–Danang–Hoi An. On your return to Halong City enjoy a full breakfast (brunch on some boats) as your boat weaves its way back to the dock. Upon disembarkation your driver will meet you for the transfer back to Hanoi. Drive to Noi Bai Airport before the short flight to Danang, on arrival your private vehicle will be waiting for you for the 40 minute transfer to Hoi An. Overnight in Hoi An. Includes: (B).
Day 6: Hoi An-Hue. Hoi An was a major Asian trading port in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and its architecture and relaxed lifestyle have changed little over the years. Take a walking tour of the ancient town center to visit the former merchants’ homes, the 400 year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, a Chinese communal hall and the colourful market. Leave Hoi An after lunch for Hue, the former imperial capital of Vietnam. In Danang 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. Arrive in Hue late in the afternoon and transfer to hotel. Overnight in Hue. Includes: (B).
Day 7: Hue. Visit the former imperial capital of Vietnam. A boat trip on the romantically named Perfume River visits Hue’s best-known religious site, Thien Mu Pagoda and the Imperial Citadel from where the Nguyen Dynasty ruled between 1802 and 1945. In the afternoon visit the mausoleum of former Emperor Tu Duc with its tranquil setting of gardens and lakes followed by the elaborate European influenced mausoleum of Emperor Khai Dinh. Overnight in Hue. Includes: (B).
Day 8: Hue–Ho Chi Minh City. Transfer to Hue Airport after breakfast for the short flight to dynamic Ho Chi Minh City, still called Saigon by the locals. A full day city tour takes in the city’s bustling Chinatown and begins with a visit to the Thien Hau Temple. Continue to lively Binh Tay Market. See the incredible display of fresh produce that is offered and simply stroll through the market seeing and enjoying the variety of goods for sale. After lunch visit the War Remnants or History Museum (choose which one you would most like to see) and the former Presidential Palace, from there stroll (your vehicle will be available at all times) to the major sights of colonial Ho Chi Minh City: the Notre Dame Cathedral, Old Saigon Post Office, Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat), Continental Hotel, Opera House and City Hall. Overnight in Saigon. Includes: (B).
Day 9: Ho Chi Minh City–Mekong Delta–Ho Chi Minh City. The colorful floating market, vast emerald rice fields and lush back waterways; these are the things that make Cai Be such a desired destination. After driving 2.5 hours from Ho Chi Minh cruise the many tributaries of the Mekong to visit Cai Be floating market, wonder through vibrant tropical fruit gardens as well as visiting home cottage industries making "pop" rice. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City. Includes: (B).
Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City departure. At leisure for shopping until transfer to Tan Son Nhat Airport for onward flight. Includes: (B).
Note: This tour is started every Sunday from Hanoi. Customized itinerary to suit your schedule, budget, and interests is possible.
- Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels
- Tours, transfers and all services as mentioned in the itinerary
- Services of a driver and Private air-conditioned vehicles during all tours and transfers
- Services of an English speaking guide during all tours and transfers
- Entrance fees for all sights visited
- Camera and video cameras fees if applicable
- Lunch or dinner if mentioned in itinerary with (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
- Domestic airport taxes for any domestic flights
- Tips for porters.
The price is a guideline and will vary according to travel dates and room availability. Please contact us to discuss your tailor-made travel requirements.
Also see tour packages in:
Asia Vietnam Local Culture Cultural Journey Multi-activity
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