A Mix of Culture, Nature, Adventure and Relaxation - 18 Days

vietnam culture tour

Vietnam is a land of adventure, with a rich culture, diverse & friendly people, and spectacular landscapes. These have all helped propel Vietnam to its current status as one of the most fashionable destinations in Southeast Asia. The culture and adventure tour allows you to stay in the best hotels, take a ride on a deluxe train, trek through the forests and still come back to comfortable surroundings at night. Not only that, but you are free to request cycling tours, scuba diving, snorkeling, restaurant reservations, meetings with artists, cooking classes, special-interest lecturers, and exclusive access to local activities and cultural events. The tour can be booked at the last minute and can be customized to suit individual interests and schedules.

Outline Itinerary

Day 1: Hanoi – Arrival (D)

Day 2: Hanoi City Tour (B)

Day 3: Hanoi – Night train to Lao Cai (B)

Day 4: Lao Cai – Sapa Trekking (B/L)

Day 5: Sapa – Back to Hanoi (B/L)

Day 6: Hanoi – Halong Bay (B/L)

Day 7: Halong Bay – Hanoi (B/L)

Day 8: Hanoi – Hue (B/L)

Day 9: Hue City Tour (B/L)

Day 10: Hue free at leisure (B/L)

Day 11: Hue – Ho Chi Minh City (B/L)

Day 12: Cu Chi Tunnels and Cao Dai Temples (B/L)

Day 13: Mekong Delta Day trip (B/L)

Day 14: Mekong Delta – Con Dao Islands (B)

Day 15+16+17: Con Dao Islands free at leisure (B)

Day 18: Con Dao – Ho Chi Minh Departure (B)

Highlights

  • Discover beautiful natural landscapes
  • Explore the local life of people in Mekong Delta
  • Discover the Northwest Highlight of Vietnam: Lao Cai - Sapa
  • Discover Hanoi famous sites and enjoy Hanoi cuisine
  • Explore a breath-taking Halong Bay World Natural Heritages by ocean junk
  • Visit the Old capital Hue of Vietnam
  • Free and Easy in Con Dao Island

Itinerary

Day 1
HANOI - ARRIVAL (D)

After arrival in Hanoi airport, you will meet our representative who will handle your transfer to your hotel for check-in. You’ll enjoy a welcome dinner at the Wild Rice Restaurant and stay overnight in Hanoi

Day 2
HANOI CITY TOUR (B)

Starting your trip to Hanoi by visiting the famous sightseeing: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, Hoan Kiem Lake, Ngoc Son Temple, and other museums. Then have lunch at a local restaurant. Afternoon, you’ll enjoy a one-hour cyclo ride around the Hanoi Old Quarter and a traditional Vietnamese water puppet show. Overnight in Hanoi

Day 3
HANOI – NIGHT TRAIN TO LAO CAI (B)

You will be able to enjoy a free day of leisure in the colonial city of Hanoi. You can visit the bustling, narrow streets of the Old Quarter, or perhaps opt for viewing some of Hanoi ‘s many museums, in particular the Museum of Ethnology, which is dedicated to Vietnam ‘s 54 ethnic minority peoples. After that, you may want to visit Hoa Lo prison, formerly known by its inmates as ‘The Hanoi Hilton’. You can then stroll around the French quarter, where many of the Embassies are located. Your trip to Sapa will then start with an overnight train journey to the border town of Lao Cai on the Victoria Express departure at 22:00.

Day 4
LAO CAI - SAPA TREKKING (B/L)

The train will arrive at the Lao Cai train station at approximately 06:00. There will be a vehicle waiting to transfer you to Sapa. The drive to Sapa is 33 km and takes roughly 1.5 hours. Once at Sapa, we will check into the Victoria Hotel in order to freshen up, have breakfast at TaVan Restaurant and then enjoy a free morning to explore the town. After a 10 a.m. pickup from the hotel, there will be a walking tour of the hill tribe villages of Cat Cat, home to the Black H’mong minority peoples. As we walk to the villages nestled in the valley below Sapa, we will meet some of the local people on their way to and from Sapa. Here you will have the opportunity to share cultural experiences with the families that live in the area, followed by an overnight in Sapa

Day 5
SAPA – BACK TO HANOI (B/L)

Following breakfast, you’ll explore the Sapa Sunday market and then set out on a 3-4 hour trek that will take us along buffalo paths and trails. You also pass through the hill tribe villages of Lao Chai and Ta Van, home to the H’mong and Dzay people. This is an absolutely spectacular walk through stunning scenery, inhabited by some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Stop for lunch on the way to Ta Van village. From the willage you will transfer back to Lao Cai for the Victoria Express train journey back to Hanoi. The train departs at 21:15 and is an overnight journey.

Day 6
HANOI - HALONG BAY (B/L)

After arriving in Hanoi at around 5 am in the morning, you will be picked up and transferred to a local restaurant for breakfast and morning coffee. Next up, will be a visit to Halong Bay, which offers out-of-this-world kayaking experiences, suitable for both first-time paddlers and the serious marine explorer. Unique and remote limestone islands sprout from the sea, making for some fascinating exploring the inlets. Many of these isolated islands feature dramatic sea caves and sheltered, pristine beaches, which are best enjoyed by travelling aboard a private junk and sea kayak, off the more common tourist beaten path. There will be an overnight stay on the boat.

Day 7
HALONG BAY – HANOI (B/L)

Upon rising to the sound of waves lapping against the boat, you’ll start your day with complimentary tea & coffee, followed by more boating or kayaking. After a buffet brunch on board, we’ll cruise back to the harbor, disembarking at Halong City. Your car will be waiting to take you back to Hanoi, where you’ll enjoy a one-hour massage, followed by unscheduled leisure time. You’ll then spend the night in Hanoi.

Day 8
HANOI – HUE (B/L)

You will take a flight to Hue, arriving at Phu Bai Airport, where you will be guided directly to your hotel. The afternoon will include a tour of Hue City, where you will visit the Citadel, the Forbidden Purple City, the Imperial Museum and Dong Ba market. The evening ends with dinner at a local Hue restaurant and an overnight stay.

Day 9
HUE CITY TOUR (B/L)

Following breakfast in the hotel, you will board a private traditional boat for a cruise on the romantic Perfume River. You may disembark for a bike tour of Hue. Being the ancient capital, Hue is surrounded by ancient tombs of past emperors, some of which will be on the itinerary for the day. The charming Lady Pagoda (Thien Mu Pagoda) will be the first stop of the day and is located at the convergence of rivers, which makes it an ideal place for a great view of the Perfume River and surrounding area. From here you will cruise further to the ornate Minh Mang’s tomb. You will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before driving to visit King Tu Duc’s tomb and an overnight stay in Hue.

Day 10
HUE FREE AT LEISURE (B/L)

After 9 days busy, today will be your chance to do absolutely nothing or you may take an option for an excursion to Hoian Ancient town. From the 16th to 18th centuries, Hoi An was a thriving international commercial port for Chinese, Dutch, French, Japanese, Portuguese and Arab traders. Trading was primarily for high grade silk, which is still produced in the area, as well as ceramics. Today, Hoi An is a quaint riverside town, popular with tourists for its eclectic architecture, tailors shops, and numerous cafes. You will enjoy a half-day walking tour through the narrow winding streets of the Ancient Quarter, visiting Chua Ong Pagoda, the Chinese Assembly Halls, the 200-year old Tam Ky ancestral house, and the Japanese Bridge. Following the tour, there will be free time for shopping, including visits to local tailors who can do custom made clothing very quickly. You may return to Hue for an overnight stay, or if you prefer (and with prior notice) you can stay the night in Hoian or Danang.

Day 11
HUE – HO CHI MINH CITY (B/L)

Next up will be a flight to Ho Minh City (formerly Saigon), where you’ll be taken to your hotel and stay for two evenings. Ho Chi Minh City is the largest and busiest city in Vietnam, with a population of 7 million people. In the afternoon, you will visit the Reunification Palace and the Opera House and Hotel de Ville. If you desire, you can also visit the powerful War Remnants Museum. Following that, you can explore colorful outdoor markets and Dong Khoi Street. This is the city’s main shopping boulevard, with shops selling clothes and accessories by new Vietnamese designers and hill tribe craftsmen. High quality linens and housewares are also an available treat. Then, spoil yourself with some of Saigon ‘s strong iced coffee and a banh mi (baguette sandwich), followed by a night out and overnight stay in HCMC

Day 12
CU CHI TUNNELS AND CAO DAI TEMPLES (B/L)

In the morning you will be driven to to Cao Dai Temple in Tay Ninh. Tay Ninh, near the Cambodian border, is home to the unique Cao Dai sect, whose patron saints include Joan of Arc, Victor Hugo and Winston Churchill, to name a few. The religion is a hybrid of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism and Christianity. The Cao Dai Temple has been described as the Disneyland of the East.
The trip to Tay Ninh is combined with a visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels. At its height, the tunnel system stretched over 250km going from Saigon to the Cambodian border, it was three levels deep, including a network of innumerable trap doors, specially constructed living areas, storage facilities, weapons factories, field hospitals, command centers and kitchens. Today, the remaining tunnels have become a major tourist attraction, giving you a unique experience and a feel of what underground life during the U.S.-Vietnam war must have been like. You return to HCMC at approximately 6 p.m

Day 13
MEKONG DELTA DAY TRIP (B/L)

You will Leave HCMC on your way to lush My Tho. You’ll take a private cruise and witness the amazing vegetation of the canals on your way to an orchard, where you’ll have lunch in a bonsai garden in the heart of the Mekong Delta.
You will also visit the snake farm in Dong Tam that breeds snakes for wine, among other things. Then you’ll visit Vinh Trang Pagoda, a combination of Asian and European styling, before heading to Can Tho city for an overnight stay

Day 14
MEKONG DELTA – CON DAO ISLANDS (B)

Waking up to the sounds of the Mekong River, you‘ll take a boat trip to join the Cai Rang floating market. It is one of the most bustling floating markets in the Mekong Delta, with hundreds of small boats jostling for space to sell their goods. After sampling local fruits, your guide will escort you back to the hotel through the myriad canals. Then it’s off to the airport, where you will bid farewell to your guide and driver before flying to Con Dao Islands to relax.

Day 15
CON DAO ISLANDS FREE AT LEISURE (B)

Upon being welcomed to the island, you’ll be transferred to the to Six Senses Con Dao, where you can enjoy some leisure time. Con Dao Island is an untouched and breath takingly beautiful area, protected for decades as a national and marine park. Six Senses Con Dao (sixsenses.com) is the first 5 star luxury resort on the island, having just opened in December 2010. This secluded island hideaway in the East Sea is a hedonist’s dream of 50 luxury villas on a truly idyllic stretch of white sand beach, each with its own private infinity pool, open-air bathroom, living area and un-obstructed views of the sea.

Day 16
CON DAO ISLANDS FREE AT LEISURE (B)

You are free to lounge at the resort or take an optional tour – a bicycle tour to visit the Con Dao National Park, Con Dao Museum, French and American prisons, beautiful beaches, forests and the sunset. Unlike some other concept hotels, Six Senses Con Dao truly embraces its surroundings, with each villa built from materials from sustainable sources (mirroring the ethos of the brand), while providing the most breath-taking view of the island. From catamaran sailing to cookery, from diving to dining, Six Senses Con Dao is a cool hideaway for all ages, tastes and sensibilities.

Day 17
CON DAO ISLANDS (B)

You’ll be offered an outstanding range of spa treatments and wellness activities, before enjoying a moonlit dinner for two at the water’s edge. The days is yours to take a private cookery class in your own villa, hike in search of the local wildlife, stay up late to watch turtles nesting on the beach… or simply lie back, relax and draw breath amidst the natural beauty of this Vietnamese paradise.

Day 18
CON DAO – HO CHI MINH DEPARTURE (B)

You’ll probably be both refreshed and wanting to wind down your trip, so there are no activities planned for this day. Enjoy your free time and the last page of your travel until you are escorted to the airport for your flight to Saigon on your way home

Tour price includes

  • Private door-to-door pick-up & drop-off services.
  • Private Tour
  • Shared accommodations in Double
  • Experienced English-speaking guide.
  • Halong Bay cruise program guide on board
  • Train ticket Hanoi-Lao Cai-Hanoi, shared in 4-berth cabin
  • Meals in the itinerary (B=Breakfast; L=Lunch; = Dinner)
  • All sightseeing tickets.
  • Tissues and water on coach.
  • Service charges and government tax.
  • Guarantee 24/7 hotline support

Tour price excludes

  • International flights & departure taxes
  • Personal expenses, tips and gratuities
  • Travel insurance
  • Beverages
  • Peak season surcharge if any
  • Gala dinner on Christmas & New Year’s if applicable
  • Vietnam visa fee
  • Other services not mentioned above.

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

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