12 days Treasures of Vietnam
Hanoi, Mai Chau, The Red River Delta, Halong Bay, Mekong Delta, Ho Chi Minh City.
Day 1 Arrival
Upon our arrival we have a pick-up. This is followed by our short transfer to our hotel in the Old Quarter. The rest of our time is spent wandering around the Old Quarter and its surroundings.
Day 2 Hanoi
Today we explore Hanoi at a pace and in a manner that bring us closer to the people and the way they live. We experience the charm, complexity and intensity of the many guilded streets that interlace with human activities.
We stroll around the fruit market of Long Bien, which offers us ample opportunities to savour some succulent fruits, such as dragon, rambutan and durian.
Those who relish a glimpse of Vietnam’s ethnic diversity can visit the Museum of Ethnology.
In the evening, we enjoy some of Hanoi’s culinary delights, such as Cha Ca (fried fish fillets marinated in mild spices, spring onions and herbs served with home-made rice noodles, roasted peanuts and fish sauce) or we can sit down to a steaming bowl of traditional Pho (beef rice noodle soup) in a local restaurant in the Old Quarter.
This is one of the best ways to capture the spirit of both Hanoi’s landscape and its people. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 3 Hanoi / Mai Chau
Situated in a scenic valley 160 km northwest of Hanoi, Maichau is home to White Thai and Muong ethnic minority people.
Known for their hospitality and resistance to assimilation, their indigenous and diverse cultures provide an individualism unique to others.
The rolling hills coupled with their sculpted rice terraces make an ideal place for walking around. In the morning we leave Hanoi and drive to Mai Chau.
Here, we hike through open rice fields, pass tiny villages and meet the local farmers at work, as they plough their paddies behind water buffaloes, tend their seasonal crops or fish in the river.
Finally, we descend into a valley, home to White Thai people. We settle in with a hospitable local family in a traditional wooden house for the night. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 4 Mai Chau / The Red River Delta
The day begins by a morning hike along a footpath amid splendid rice terraces and verdant small hills. We enjoy a hike through the rice terraces and several villages.
The next 4 km are rewarding as we walk along the trail used by local people and the view down to either side becomes more and more impressive.
When we have finished our walking we will board our car and drive to The Red River Delta. Here we spend the night in a local lodgel. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 5 The Red River Delta
Today we explore the fertile, lush plains of the intricate waterways. We take a leisurely boat ride across the transquil river of Hoang Long.
As we journey through the scenic landscape, we witness the local activities dependent on both water and land. We stroll along the river front and through a fabulous limestone scenery, then descending in a hidden and verdant valley filled with open-wide rice fields and aquatic farms.
Cycling is also one of the ideal ways to explore miles of vivid green rice fields stretch along the shores of river tributaries and enjoy the intimacy of the countryside.
We cycle along the river front of Hoang Long River, down tiny lanes, through rural villages and beyond. Here, water buffaloes lumber and graze on the grass, the local people tend their crops and kids greet us warmly.
Upon our arrival in the village of Trang An, we combine a short sampan ride along a scenic canal with a delightful walk around a unique area, which is known for its magnificent twisted rock formations caused by earth movement some hundred million years ago.
Following that we return to our local family. Here, we settle in with a local family to make authentic Vietnamese food, such as succulent spring rolls, zesty dipping sauce and betel leaf-wrapped spring rolls and other local delicacies that typify Northern Vietnamese cooking.
We then enjoy the family’s gracious hospitality as they share dinner with us. The night is spent in the same lodge. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 6 The Red River Delta / Halong Bay
Departing The Red River Delta we journey to Ha Long City. We follow its fertile road through flatlands of the Delta flanked by green carpets of rice paddies. We then head north to Ha Long City.
Here, we embark on a boat trip which navigates through some of the spectacular limestone peaks of Ha Long Bay - time to relax and appreciate the sublime beauty of the bay, while enjoying lunch on the boat.
After that we find a beautiful spot for taking a kayaking ride among towering rockformations. Our boat anchors at Hang Trong Bay for an overnight stay. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 7 Halong Bay / Hanoi
We continue exploring some of the Bay’s truly awesome scenery vertical and unusual rocks and islets emerge from the sea. There is an opportunity to swim in the clear waters and paddle our kayaks to among vertical rock formations.
Shortly after lunch on our boat we return to Halong City. From here we board our vehicle and drive back to Hanoi, arriving there at about 4pm. (Breakfast and lunch are included).
Day 8 Hanoi
Today we visit History Museum and the Temple of Literature. We also have plenty of free time for some exploration of Hanoi. In the evening we attend the performance of traditional water puppetry. (Breakfast and lunch are included).
Day 9 Hanoi / Ho Chi Minh City
This morning we take a short flight to Ho Chi Minh City. During our stay in Ho Chi Minh City we visit Ben Thanh Market, the Reunification Palace. There is plenty of time for us to relax and explore the city on our own. (Breakfast and lunch are included).
Day 10 Ho Chi Minh City / Mekong Delta
From Ho Chi Minh City we drive to Vinh Long where we board our boat to venture into the green, watery world of the Mekong Delta.
We visit bonsai gardens, various cottage industries and fruit orchards. The night is spent in a comfortable hotel in the township of Vinh Long. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 11 Mekong Delta / Ho Chi Minh City
This morning we continue boating to explore the tributaries of the Mekong River then to Cai Be, where we observe the floating markets and learn about the way of life in the delta.
Following that we board our vehicle and drive back to Ho Chi Minh City. Here, we have free time for some exploration of the city, before we conclude our trip with a farewell dinner in one of the city’s best restaurants. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included).
Day 12 Ho Chi Minh City
We can depart at any time today. (Breakfast is included).
Our itinerary includes bicycle rides, walks and hikes. They include:
- a 6-9 km hike on Day 3.
- a 9-12 km hike on Day 4.
- a 3-4 km walk and a 9-11 km bicycle ride on Day 5.
- a 1-3 hour kayaking ride on Day 6 and Day 7.
All of our experienced and friendly Tour Guides speak fluent English.
They are flexible and knowledgeable about local cultures, history and the environment.
- hotels (6 nights).
- local homestays (2 nights).
- local lodge (2 nights).
- boat (1 night).
Clean and comfortable homestays with mosquito nets provided.
- 11 breakfasts.
- 10 lunches.
- 7 dinners.
A wide variety of food is commonly available in local restaurants, markets and family homes, using fresh local ingredients, typical of the way people eat in the area.
We also cater for Vegetarians but please request this at time of booking.
- $842USD per person for a group of 2 to 7 people.
- $769USD per person for a group of 8 to 12 people.
The cost of the trip includes:
- meals listed on the itinerary.
- Tour Guides.
- entrance fees.
- permits during guided excursions.
The cost of the trip does not include:
- travel insurance.
- drinks (soft drinks, alcohol and bottled water).
- other personal expenses such as shopping, telephone, laundry and bar bills etc.
- admission fees during free time, tips and gratuities.
What to take:
Pack essentials, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, small day pack for cycling, walking and hiking.
It is essential to bring your passport on this trip.
We also recommend packing: comfortable walking shoes, insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat and sun hat…
Have a great journey!!!