VIETNAM NATURE & CULTURE 22 DAYS
Hanoi, Pu Luong, Ninh Binh, Halong, Phong Nha national park, Hue, Hoian beach vacation, Mekong Delta, Cat Tien national park
Tour type: Local life, Culture, Nature, Cruise Trip, Soft trekking
Duration: 22 days
Price: From US$1,799 per person (based on group of 4 adults)
Watching Water Puppet Show to get overview of the authentic local life in the rural area
Visiting villages of Hill tribes and the discovery of colorful traditional custom and culture
Participation in Royal Banquet atmosphere in Hue
Experience Easy Rider in Hoian to the less-touristic area
Closer to nature and wildlife in national park as well as night safari in Cat Tien national park
Taste Home hosted dinner at the local house
A O Show - is one of the authentic traditional art performance of circus and drama to create the small version of Vietnamese rustic culture and rural life.
Day 1: Arrive Hanoi (D)
Upon arrival, our representative will welcome you at the airport by hanging out Welcome Signboard with your name and our logo on it. After greeting custom, transfer to city center for hotel check-in. At 18:00, our guide will meet you up at the hotel's lobby and take you to walk around Hanoi Old Quarter to discover how the night life atmosphere here seems to be. Surely, it is totally different with Hanoi on day. Almost bars and pubs here will be closed before midnight but it can not stop you from laughing and experiencing for the craziest things in Hanoi at night.
Crossing some roads and corners from your hotel, we will drop-in one local beer store on the street. You will have a chance to sit on small chairs, taste local Draught beer (called Bia Hoi” in Vietnamese) on big glass and try how to say “Cheer” in Vietnamese style. Beer will be more tasteful if you try it with “Nem Chua” and Peanut. “Nem Chua”is made of pork meat (it will be fried before serving to you so it is safe to eat, very soft and yummy food). Trying “Bia Hoi”, chatting with the local guide and the expats about some local funny stories while watching the crowd of people on the street will be unforgettable memory in Hanoi.
The next is to try “Pho”-noodle soup with beef-famous street food here in hygiene local food store with more original taste than inside tourist restaurants.
Then we will enjoy short walk to get to some bars or pubs inside Hanoi Old Quarter-busiest nightlife area. Our guide will provide some consultant which will help you to find out the suitable bars and pubs. (Drink in bar and pub is on your own cost). Around 22:00, we will be back to hotel for relaxing. Overnight in hotel.
Please expecting some small cultural conflict because of multicultural. Sometimes, it is really fun memory and interesting story inspired by the local guide.
Day 2: Hanoi City Tour (B, L)
At 08:00, enjoy your city tour by visiting: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Ho Chi Minh Houses-on-stilts, which tells the life story of the great leader, as well as serves as his final resting place. One Pillar Pagoda, one of the oldest one, was built from the 11th century. It rises on a one pillar from the middle of a square lotus pond which seems a giant flower on its tall stem. Continue the city tour with the Temple of Literature- the first university in Vietnam.
Having lunch at nice local restaurant for Vietnamese cuisines. In the afternoon, we will visit Ethnology Museum, which gives a deep knowledge of the country's ethnic groups, their customs and the style of local life. The beautiful grounds display original old houses from many different ethnic groups.
After that, back to Hanoi Center, spend time to enjoy Water Puppet Show. Then we will have walking tour around Old Quarters area (or Dong Xuan market) and learn some Vietnamese to bargain tropical fruits with the vendors. That will be most amazing experience you have never had before. Then back to hotel.
On Monday and Friday, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Ethnic museums are closed - Ancient Citadel and Fine Art Museum will be arranged as substitution. Program is subject to change without prior notice due to weather, local holidays and other condition we can not control!
Day 3: Hanoi Handicraft villages in countryside (B/L)
In the past, main economic methods of Vietnam are agriculture and fishing. As the result, this country is the cradle of many traditional handicraft villages such as: Ceramic, Painting, Bamboo & Rattan villages, Pancakes villages, Silk village…Some of the typical handmade products is Lacquer, Ceramic and Carpentry.
At 8:30, you'll start the day trip from Hanoi City to Ha Thai Lacquer village – an unique famous trade village located about 22km from Hanoi. Upon arrival at the village, you'll walk around to see families making lacquer ware and get a firsthand look at how the workers here blow soul in this art lacquer. Then you'll have free time for shopping for special souvenirs as meaningful gifts and memories brought home from Vietnam.
Next up is to visit Bat Trang ceramic village which is well-known for high quality ceramics nearly a thousand years. Enjoy private transfer into the rural area, driving along the Red River and sightseeing the authentic scenery of countryside which contrast with the modern city. Walking around villages and drop-in family factories for practicing how to create it by hand and progression to complete one ceramic product for selling under the guidance of the skillful artisans. Later on, spend time on shopping exhibitions around for mass of distinctive products which are mainly dinnerware and ornamental ware such as: bowls, dishes, pots, cups, wine jars, large vases, and big-bellied jars.
Afterward, heading to the Dong Ky carpentry village, you will be surprised at the beauty, quality and sophistication of the furniture made by “golden hands” of skilled craftsmen. Then enjoy hassle-free drop-off back to your hotel.
• Sightseeing the rural area on the way to the villages
• Witness the art of creating a piece of ceramics and wood carving painting by hand.
• Exhibition for finding unique ceramic items to take home
Day 4: Hanoi – Pu Luong (B/L/D)
At 08:00, you are meet up at the hotel’s lobby then being transferred to Pu Luong for 4 hour drive. On the way, we will come by the stunning landscapes of mountains, valleys, sugarcane farms and paddy fields and have some stops for photo opportunities and free your leg whenever you need. Upon arrival, check-in Pu Luong Retreat and having lunch at inside-local restaurant.
Depart from Hanoi at 08:00, our guide will meet you up at the hotel’s lobby. Your private transfer vehicle takes you to Pu Luong. The drive takes most of the morning with stunning view of mountains, valleys, sugarcane farms and rice paddies. You would have a stop en-route for photo opportunities and stretch out whenever you need. Upon arrival, check in the lodge or homestay. Having lunch at local restaurant.
In the afternoon, start your trekking route to ethnic villages and explore surroundings. Overnight in Pu Luong.
Note: The homestay of Thai ethnic people and home stay is one long room divided into several chambers by the curtained-off sleeping. All mattress and mosquito net are provided by the homestay owner.
Day 5: Pu Luong – Ninh Binh (B/L)
Wake-up early in the morning to breath fresh air before having breakfast.
After short break, come out for short drive to a trekking point and kick off a rustic trek to visit Ban Hang village before driving straight to Ninh Binh where we will witness the marvelous scenery of rural landscapes. It is declared as UNESCO heritage site for Trang An Eco-tourism complex in 2015 and renowned as the complex of limestone mountain, long river stream and dotted green paddy fields.
On arrival, at first, we explore Hoa Lu - ancient capital by visiting its the historical relics such as: Dinh and Le temples which is worshipped to great Kings of Dinh and Le Dynasties in 10th and 11th centuries. Later on, treat yourself with the scenic boat trip along karst formation and pass by three connecting caves before having your restful overnight stay in hotel. Overnight in Ninh Binh.
Day 6: Ninh Binh – Halong (B/L)
Have breakfast at hotel, at 08:30, heading to Halong Bay for 4 hour drive. Upon arrival at noon time, board the cruise for 2 day 1 night through Halong bay - one of 8 UNESCO heritage sites in Vietnam.
On the bay, you will sail your cruise through nearly 2.000 limestone islands and islets emerging in bay and travel by many rock formations with various shapes and sizes. Then savor your delicious seafood lunch while sightseeing the view of the bay.
In the afternoon, you will go by fishing farm, visit cave, enjoy a refreshing swim and kayak to explore other caves/lagoons. At 19:00, enjoy a spectacular dinner. Overnight on board.
Day 7: Halong - Hanoi (Brunch)
Say “hi” with your new day by practising Tai Chi in the perfect quiet atmosphere and fantastic view on the bay in the early morning.
Next up to have breakfast, the cruise is sailing through beautiful spots and passing by the symbol of Halong bay, it is the small islets which shapes like two chickens are kissing in the sweetest way.
Having brunch on board before heading back to the dock, disembark the cruise, get on the bus and return to Hanoi around 17:00. Overnight in Hanoi.
Note: the program will be changed a little bit depending on what type of cruise brand name you choose. It will be updated after confirming your Halong trip.
Day 8: Hanoi free (B)
Free all day to explore this bustling city or just relax in your hotel.
Day 9: Hanoi free - Night train to Dong Hoi
Night train SE3 depart at 22:00 and arrive 07:40 on next day (sharing soft berth-cabin on train)
Overnight on train
Note: If you prefer private cabin on train, kindly mention it when booking, our Travel Specialist will support you with more helpful information. The extra fee will be added for this.
Day 10: Dong Hoi - Phong Nha National Park (B/L)
Upon arrival early morning, transfer to Phong Nha national park. On arrival, take 25 minute boat trip to Phong Nha cave and spend a couple hours to see Wet cave and Dry cave. Both of them are famous for their rock formation which has so many names such as the “Lion”, the “Fairy Caves”, the “Royal Court”, and the “Buddha”.
Later on, exploring Dark cave with various active activities such as: visiting cave, ziplining and kayaking. Afterward, heading to home stay for check-in. Overnight in Chay Lap Rustic homestay.
Day 11: Phong Nha Cave - Hue (200 km) (B/L)
Wake-up early if you prefer to breathe fresher air. After breakfast, start your new day with visiting Paradise cave which is reputed for the longest dry cave in Asia and attracting both international and domestic tourists every year.
Next up to depart to Hue for 4 hour drive, upon on arrival, check-in hotel and overnight in Hue.
Day 12: Hue city tour - Royal Banquet (B)
Located centrally in Vietnam, Hue is much different with the busy cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city. All citizen always move in an energetic and busy manner in contrary to the quite and slow atmosphere in this city.
At 8.00: Our guide will meet you up at your hotel. Kick off your day by visiting the Minh Mang tomb which offers a balance of landscape and ancient royal architecture that is quite unique when comparing with other regular tombs in this place.
Next to pay a visit to the Khai Dinh Tomb, famous for its magnificent concrete structure and that is the perfect fusion of Eastern art elements with Western designs. Later on, drive back to the city center for lunch at a local restaurant.
In the afternoon, after short break, heading to visit Citadel by short drive, founded by Nguyen Dynasty from 1805 to 1945. It was declared as UNESCO cultural heritage site because of its ancient Capital which attract many tourist attention. Afterward, your private car takes you to Thien Mu pagoda, one of the oldest religious relics with its famous seven-story eight-sided tower. Then enjoying the scenic boat trip along the Perfume River before being transferred back to hotel for relaxing. After tour, treat yourself with special Royal Banquet which describe the Banquet ritual for Royal family in the past. Then return to hotel for relaxing.
Cooking class to learn how to cook specialties of Hue city
Watching traditional royal music performance “Nha Nhac Cung Dinh Hue” which was declared as UNESCO cultural heritage.
Day 13: Hue – Hoian (B/L/D)
At 8:00 - You are picked up at your hotel in Hue city and we kick-off your day with scenic scenery on both of road sides.
The first part is the road between Hue and Bach Ma. A very nice countryside lane built on a strip of land between the sea and coastal lagoons among the largest in the country. This is a dive into typical Vietnamese countryside. It is rural and charming.
Upon arrival to Bach Ma National Park, we start our exploration of this area, at the entry of the park we start a drive of 19km father to starting point. Stunning sceneries while we are driving up, there are tons of opportunities to stop, shot photos and get fresh air. Get off from the van, we trek on a single trail to the waterfall and continue on the Five Lakes Cascade trail through the green forest (around 6.5km in total). Enjoy your picnic lunch before heading back to Hue or stop in Hoian. Trip ends at your hotel in Hue around 17:00.
The trip can be conducted with starting point in Hue then ends tour in Hoian or vice versa with same time table. If you have any special request about that, please contact us for more information.
If ending tour in Hoian, we will pass by some beauty spots on the way such as: Hai Van pass, Lang Co beach, My Khe beach and Marble mountain.
Day 14: Hoi An city tour - My Son Sanctuary [B]
In the center, Hoian - Danang - Hue creates the mystical heritage lines of Vietnam which linking the UNESCO Cultural Heritage sites of Hue Forbidden Citadel, Hoian ancient town with the marvelous Danang beach city.
At 08:00, our representative will meet you up at the hotel's lobby then heading to My Son Holy Sanctuary of the Cham people, one of the most typical existing relics of Hindu affection in SE Asia. Upon arrival, you can recognize although almost was destroyed during the war, the remain is still lively with complex of Hindu architecture temples which look similar with Angkor Wat of Cambodia and Ayutthaya Historical Park in Thailand. After hearing brief introduction about the history and colorful culture of Cham Kingdom, we continue visiting the remains of the refine-crafted red brick temples with indoor exhibition for monument and epitaphs also.
Later on, departing to Hoian ancient town for having delicious lunch with Hoian refine cuisines. After short break, walking around charming town which are outlined with Chinese traders' homes and wooden houses renovated and reused as restaurants, coffee stores and outlets for local artists, artisan and outfitters. Explore the iconic symbol of the famous trading port in the past, they are the extraordinary 16th century Japanese Bridge and Unique unification of Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture is exhibited in this peaceful town. If time permits, we will enjoy last minute shopping around for thousands of silk, fashionable outlet and accessories. Overnight in Hoi An.
Day 15 - 17: Hoi An free on beach (B/D)
Free on An Bang beach or walking around to discover this charming city from your side.
Overnight in Hoian.
Day 18: Hoian – fly to Ho Chi Minh city tour - A O Show [B, D]
Take a flight to Saigon – Ho Chi Minh City.
Formerly known as Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City is the largest city and a commercial hub of the country that characterized by a vast array of sights and sounds with people rushing about their life from early morning until midnight. The city contains in it a fascinating blend of old and new, East and West and is home to great local cuisine.
In the afternoon you will glide through busy Saigon streets and catch up interesting moments of local life from the wheels of a cyclo. Explore the War Remnant Museum and admire the gothic style of century-old Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Central Post Office, the Independence Palace (former Presidential Palace of the South of Vietnam) and troll through the Ben Thanh Market.
Enjoy dinner before watching A O Show. Overnight in Saigon
Day 19: Ho Chi Minh city - Mekong Delta – Ho Chi Minh city (B/L)
Start around 2 hour drive to the outskirt of Ho Chi Minh city, leave the bustling city behind, enjoy the scenic countryside in the rural area. On arrival in My Tho, first stop is to visit Vinh Trang pagoda to get first impression about this area's religion. Next stop is at the pier to take a leisurely boat ride along the river. En-route, sightseeing the stilt houses, orchards and fishing villages along the river bank.
After having lunch in local restaurant, start cruising on a sampan under the shadow of the water coconut trees along natural canals or practise to paddle the sampan by yourself. Then enjoying seasonal fruit & honey tea while watching Southern Vietnamese folk music which is performed by the locals. Later on, call-in a small family-run factory which specialize on producing the delicious coconut candies. Come to taste candies & observe the traditional procession to make it and enjoy the local life of Mekong delta as you ramble through the fruit plantation and village. After that, short walk to the venue to get on the bus and heading back to Ho Chi Minh city.
Day 20: Ho Chi Minh city - Cat Tien National park (B/L/D)
Head out from Ho Chi Minh City to visit one of the few forests remaining after the war. Spend 2 days exploring Nam Cat Tien National Park and discovering its native flora and fauna, including its crocodiles!
Depart Ho Chi Minh City for the drive to Nam Cat Tien National Park. Here, check-in at the guest house and have lunch at a restaurant in the forest before enjoying the activities the park has to offer. After lunch you’ll take a boat to visit Fairy Island, where you can enjoy a walk to discover the variety of fauna and flora in the park. You’ll also have the opportunity to see the park’s 400-year-old conifer, and the bang lang tree, which nearly 300 years old. In the evening, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant before venturing out in the evening to spot nocturnal animals.
Day 21: Cat Tien National park – Ho Chi Minh city (B/L)
Have breakfast before taking a drive by jeep followed by a 5-kilometer trek to Crocodile Pond. Learn about the crocodiles, engage in activities in with them, or just spend some time relaxing. After the activities at Crocodile Pond, you’ll backtrack the 5-kilometer walk and then have lunch before heading back to Ho Chi Minh City.
Day 22: Ho Chi Minh city departure (B)
Enjoy your last minute shopping around or simply relax before heading to the airport for flight to next destination.
· All private transfer and transportation
· Accommodation in shared twin/double room with daily breakfast
· Experienced English speaking guide, except the free days as mentioned
· Meals as stated in the itinerary (B: Breakfast ; L: Lunch ; D: Dinner)
· All sightseeing tickets and permits.
· Water on car.
· Services charges and government tax.
· No extra charge after confirmation
· 24/7 hotline support guaranteed
· Bottled mineral water on bus
· All flights in tour
· Other meals and drinks
· Travel insurance
· Personal expenses, tips and gratuities
· Vietnam visa stamp fee
· Others not mentioned above
· Rooms at hotels are available only from 1400 on arrival day till 1200 on departure date. A supplement will be added if early check-in or late check-out is desired.
· Please bring with you some necessary stuffs on tour such as: anti-insect repellents, anti-sun cream, sung-glasses, good shoes and swimsuit