OVERVIEW

Spirit of Vietnam South Bound

Discover Vietnam's highlights including Hanoi, Pu Luong reserve, Ha Long Bay, Hue, Hoi An, Saigon, Mekong delta. In this trip you will visit Hanoi's capital, the mystical Halong Bay, the charming and historical imperial citadel Hue, the ancient town Hoi An and Ho Chi Minh City.

ITINERARY

Hanoi | Pu Luong | Ninh Binh | Ha Long | Hue | Hoi An | Ho Chi Minh | Mekong Delta

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Day 01

Hanoi Arrival

Airport pick up- Free day

Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

Meals: Not included

Upon arriving in Hanoi, your tour guide will personally meet you at the airport and transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is time at leisure.
Day 02

Hanoi

Visit the highlights of the city

Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Visit the Ho Chi Minh Complex, completed in 1975. The complex includes the Presidential Palace, House-on-Stilts, One pilar Pagoda and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. Visit of the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first University dating back to 1070. The temple highlights the importance that Vietnamese society place then and now on education.

Lunch at a local restaurant.
 
Continue your tour to the Museum of Ethnology widely acknowledged as the best in the country and has an extensive display dedicated to Vietnam’s 54 Ethnic minority peoples. Back to the center of Hanoi, visit Ngoc Son Temple and Hoan Kiem Lake. The Ngoc Son temple is set on a tiny island on the Hoan KiemLake, its history dating back to the 13th century. The temple is reached by crossing the The Huc Bridge which literally means the ‘Place Touched by Morning Sunbeams’. The Hoan Kiem Lake is the local point of the city and the source of many legends.

Enjoy a 45 minute Cyclo Tour through the Old Quarter. Also known as the 36 streets, this bustling area of narrow streets is home to literally thousands of small businesses and shopkeepers. Originally each of the street’ was related to the products being sold there. It’s a great place to explore on foot with numerous photo opportunities.
Day 03

Hanoi – Pu Luong

Water wheels walk and rafting 2.5 km. Easy walk – 1.5 hours. 1,3 km rafting – 1 hours

Accommodation: Pu Luong retreat

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Pu Luong offers you a great amount of different beautiful sights. All attainable by car or stunning treks. The region is quite unknown among most tourists, but that does not make it less worth to visit. Pu Luong may attract you thanks to its beautiful nature, breath taking mountain passes and traditional villages of ethnic minorities who still retain their unique cultural heritage and way of living.

In the morning, enter Pu Luong Nature Reserve by road via a breathtaking mountain pass giving you a panoramic view of the whole valley. You arrive at your accommodation in time for a delicious lunch, followed by free time to explore the beautiful retreat, with its captivating panoramic views and tranquil setting.

In the afternoon, transfer to a suspension bridge over the Cham River, where you begin your walk in search of stunning water wheels. Get up close to each wheel and discover how water is moved from river to handmade bamboo aqueducts via simple constructions of all sizes.
Arriving at a local fisherman’s house, you have a short rest to gear up for the bamboo river rafting with Dinh and his team. Float along the calm river and enjoy the views, in between learning how to paddle and steer your handcrafted rafts.
Arriving at scenic Tan Lap bridge, you disembark to be transferred back to Pu Luong Retreat for dinner.
Day 04

Pu Luong Trek

Enthralling trekking routes, 13 km easy trek (6 hours)

Accommodation: Pu Luong retreat

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Start early to descend into the beautiful valley facing the Retreat where you walk around tumbling rice terraces. Trek through small paths shrouded in vegetation to slowly reveal a picturesque village sitting at the base of a towering mountain. Your camera will not be able to sit still!
Continuing to the base of the valley, you weave between roads and farmland, villages and wild fields, ponds and rivers, mountains and open land.

Savour the ever-changing scenery as you trek to a beautiful spot to enjoy a picnic lunch.
 
In the afternoon, free time to explore the refreshing water to the nearby river, before moving to our pick up point to be transferred back to the Retreat.
Day 05

Pu Luong – Ninh Binh – Trang An

Sampan boat visiting Trang An

Accommodation: Hotel in Van Long

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Early morning, leave Pu Luong for Ninh Binh. After 3 hours drive, arrive in Hoa Lu which is the former capital of Vietnam (968 – 1009) under Dinh and Le dynasties. Visit Dinh temple, Le temples and surroundings.
 
Lunch at a restaurant of local food.
 
Take the amazing boat trip to visit Trang An grottoes which is a gathering of 31 valleys, 50 cross-water caves, and home to 600 kinds of flora and over 200 kinds of fauna, many of them in the Red Book of Vietnam. While rowing through Trang An grotto in the quiet, fresh air of the highlands, with only the sound of birds and the oars stirring the clear water and surrounded by magnificent forested mountains upon which graze white goats, visitors enjoy a heaven on earth.
 
Then drive back to your hotel in Van Long for check-in. The rest of the day is free at your leisure.
Day 06

Ninh Binh – Halong Bay

Explore Halong bay on a cruise trip. Stay overnight on boat

Accommodation: Overnight On Boat

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Early morning, pick up at your hotel and transfer to Halong Bay.

Midday, embark on the boat and have a lunch while cruising the magnificent Bai Tu Long Bay sailing among famous Islets (Indochina studio, Am Islet…) of Bai Tu Long Bay, the wildest beauty with the panoramic natural views.

Visit and explore the well-hidden Co Cave (known as  Thien Canh Son Cave) where you can hike to the middle of the mountain to see the wild and mysterious beautiful cave, contemplate numerous sparkling  stalactites appearing like 'hanging lamps’ inside the Cave.
 
Return to the boat. Enjoy kayaking or relaxing on the cruise in Cong Do Area.

In the late afternoon, take part in carving flowers on the sundeck. Then, attend cooking demonstration and try your skills in the art of traditional Vietnamese cooking.
 
Dinner is served in the restaurant. You can enjoy the charm of Bai Tu Long Bay at night.

Enjoy evening activities (Squid Fishing, Movie Night, Board Games, Massage & Spa services) or relax.
Day 07

Halong bay – Hanoi – Hue

Cruising back to the pier. Take a flight from Hanoi to Hue

Accommodation: Hotel in Hue

Meals: Brunch

Early morning, refresh your body and soul with a Tai-chi session on the sundeck.

Catch the morning view of seascape while enjoying the breakfast in the restaurant.
 
Visit Vung Vieng fishing village - the famous fishing farm by bamboo boat and discover life of local people living on the surface of Halong Bay.
 
Enjoy the brunch in the restaurant while cruising back to Vinashin tourist harbor.
 
Late in the morning, disembark and head back to Hanoi for the evening flight to Hue city
 
Upon arrival Hue city, you will be escorted to a local restaurant for dinner before going to your hotel.
Day 08

Hue

Visit the highlights of Hue city

Accommodation: Hotel in Hue

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, take a boat trip along the poetic Perfume River to ancient Thien Mu pagoda, a special cultural - historical site where still preserves a legendary tale about the Heaven Fairy Lady since Nguyen Dynasty. Then, head to Hue Citadel by car. Walk around and take a look into the special feudal relics of immense architectural and cultural values. Visit the major sites including the Imperial Citadel with Forbidden Royal City

Lunch at a local restaurant.
 
After lunch, visit the tomb and monument of King Tu Duc which is located in a very beautiful area. This is an opportunity to learn more about Nguyen Kings and to enjoy the spectacular landscape. Then, visit Dong Ba market to see the local life.
Day 09

Hue – Danang – Hoi An

Cross the mighty Hai Van Pass. Walking tour in Hoi An old Quarter. Boat trip explore Thanh Ha pottery village

Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Drive over the mighty Hai Van Pass and admire a spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean and famous Long Co fishing village.
Upon arrival in Hoi An, enjoy a walking tour around this enchanting port town. Follow the narrow lanes lined with centuries-old houses influenced by Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures, and visit its numerous places of interest: the 400-year old Japanese Covered Bridge, the Phuc Kien Assembly Halls.
 

After a lunch in a local restaurant, enjoy a short boat ride to Thanh Ha pottery village which has a long historical legacy and it used to play an important role in the development of Hoi An ancient town. It’s better to head straight to the narrow lanes behind the village tourist park to find the families busy churning out pots, sculptures, roof tiles and cute handcrafted whistles shaped like animals.
Day 10

Hoi An – Cam Thanh coconut village – Tra Que vegetable village

Explore the countryside of Hoi An

Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

You day tour starts by cycling along level ground to the Thu Bon River to visit a local fishing village. Ride along country lanes at a peaceful pace viewing local life and pause to see farmers toiling in their rice fields using centuries of farming practices. Pedal through palm forests, across bridges, fields of water buffalo.
Take a short break in a local family at Cam Thanh Village before enjoying 1.5 hours ride on Traditional Basket Boat (round boat) in the Water Coconut Palm Forest. Learn how to sail the basket boat and try to catch fishes and “purple crabs” in the Canal.
Continue by car to Tra Que Organic Vegetable Village where a large variety of vegetable are produced for the local community. At the village, you will be shown the environmentally sustainable practices which the local villagers have used for centuries and is still being used extensively today.
 
Meet a local family and after a short, informative and fun cooking lesson, we sit down for a delicious lunch.
 
In the afternoon, ride back to the hotel for relaxing.
Day 11

Hoian – Danang – Ho Chi Minh

Take a flight to Ho Chi Minh city

Accommodation: Hotel in Ho Chi Minh

Meals: Breakfast

You are free at leisure until our guide and driver escort you to Danang airport for the afternoon flight to Ho Chi Minh city.
Upon arrival, you will be transferred to hotel for check-in. The rest of the day is free at your leisure.
Day 12

Ho Chi Minh – Cu Chi tunnels – City tour

Explore the an incredible underground tunnel - A historical site from the US war

Accommodation: Hotel in Ho Chi Minh

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Enjoy a half day tour to Cu Chi, located about 70 km from Saigon, where you will visit the Cu Chi Tunnels, the former stronghold of the Viet Cong with a network of tunnels three levels deep stretching over 200 km. 
Cu Chi tunnels played a vital part in the U.S.-Vietnam War in that they allowed the Viet Cong to control a large rural area only 30 to 40 km from former Saigon .
 
Your lunch will be served at a local restaurant en-route.
 
Your afternoon begins with the exploration of Ho Chi Minh city, including the Reunification Palace that was the former residence of the President of South Vietnam until April 30, 1975. Visit the War Remnants Museum (American War Crimes), a poignant display the futility of war. Close to the museum, go to have a look on the Central Post Office the country’s largest post office was built since 1891. It is another fine example of French architecture and is Vietnam's largest post office.
Day 13

Ho Chi Minh – Ben Tre “The capital of coconut”

Explore the Mekong delta by speedboat

Accommodation: Hotel in Ho Chi Minh

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Your driver will pick you up from your hotel and bring you to the “Capital” of Coconut – Ben Tre.
On arrival in Hùng vương Pier (Bến Tre town). Take a boat on Bến Tre River – one tributary of the Mekong river, Sight-seeing  lively activities along river as fishing,water transfering. Stop at the brickwork to see how to make bricks in handy traditional style by printing and baking. Visit one of plenty of coconut processing workshops located along Cái sơn canal. Turn on natural scissors creeks where they look smaller and smaller to go to Nhơn Thạnh village. Take a walk to a family workshop making sleepmats and enjoying some fruits.
 
Take a tuk tuk or ride on shady paths, pass by green rice fields and vegetable plains to be able to touch on realy life and find out about tropical culture from Peasants.

Lunch at a local restaurant.
 
In the afternoon, take a rowing-boat along water palm creek and  boat along Cái Cối creek back to Hùng Vương Pier. And transfer back to Ho Chi Minh city.
Day 14

Ho Chi Minh departure

Free at leisure. Airport drop off

Accommodation: Not Included

Meals: Breakfast

You are free at your leisure until your driver escorts you to Tan Son Nhat airport for your flight back home.

Note

The best time to visit Pu Luong is from May to September where the rice terraces are beautiful.

Day 6: Sample itinerary of Huong Hai Sealife cruise.
Day 10: For those uncomfortable with a pushbike, then other methods of transport can be arranged. 

TOUR INCLUSIONS

For your peace of mind, our tours are designed to include as much as possible in the price, but also to
give you the freedom to find a special place to eat or to seek out an independent adventure that especially appeals to you.
Trip Inclusions
  • Meals as stated in the itinerary
  • All entrance fee per tour program
  • Private comfortable transportation
  • Hotel accommodations as stated in the program
  • Private English speaking guide 
  • Complementary water during the trip
  • Domestic air ticket Hanoi – Hue, Danang – Ho Chi Minh
Trip Exclusions
  • Visa 
  • Meals not mentioned
  • Tips & personal expenses, drinks
  • Travel insurance
  • International flight tickets
  • Other services not clearly mentioned in the program

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