3 days Perfume Pagoda to Pu Luong Nature Reserve

Hanoi, Perfume Pagoda, Van Long, Yen Mo, Bich Dong, Thung Nang, Pu Luong, Mai Chau, Hanoi

This remarkable trip takes us through three distinct regions of North Vietnam, offering a wonderful balance of adventure and cultural insights. We begin with the sheer beauty of Perfume Pagoda, move on to Van Long and Bich Dong, traverse the serene village of Yen Mo, and finally experience the delights of Pu Luong. Along the way, we engage in hiking, boating, and homestays, and even learn to cook authentic Vietnamese food. It’s a brilliant experience that promises unforgettable memories!

Day 1 Hanoi / Perfume Pagoda / Yen Mo

Perfume Pagoda holds great religious significance for the local people, being considered one of the most sacred sites in Vietnam. Departing from Hanoi, we travel through diverse countryside until we reach the pier of Duc. Here, we board a local riverboat and travel upstream along the Yen stream, which winds its way through dramatic limestone karsts and lush farmlands.

Next, we take a cable car journey up to Perfume Pagoda, which is hidden in a cave and surrounded by stunning forests and towering mountains. Located on top of the Huong Son mountain range, Perfume Pagoda is renowned for its spectacular views over the entire area. We continue to admire the breathtaking scenery as we hike back to our waiting boat.

We then proceed to the small village of Yen Mo, a traditional village in the Red River delta, which serves as our base for gastronomic demonstrations. Here, we settle in with a friendly local family to experience their way of life and have a wonderful opportunity to learn about the local cuisine, including dishes such as fresh rice noodles and spring rolls. The night is spent in a comfortable local lodge. (Lunch and dinner are included)

Day 2 Yen Mo / Bich Dong / Thung Nang / Pu Luong Nature Reserve

We depart our lodge for our journey to the pagoda of Bich Dong. Located in Ninh Binh, the Bich Dong Pagoda is a scenic site with its serene beauty and historical significance. Perched amidst stunning natural surroundings, this ancient pagoda complex comprises three levels: Lower, Middle, and Upper.

As we ascend the stone steps leading to the pagoda, they are greeted by lush greenery and scenic views of the surrounding landscape. The Lower Pagoda, nestled at the base of a limestone cliff, features intricately carved statues and altars dedicated to Buddha and other deities.

Continuing upward, visitors reach the Middle Pagoda, which offers panoramic views of the picturesque countryside below. Here, they can admire ancient Buddhist sculptures and architectural details dating back centuries.

Finally, at the Upper Pagoda, visitors are rewarded with breathtaking views of the entire area, including nearby karst formations and winding rivers. The tranquil atmosphere and spiritual ambiance make it a perfect place for hikers.

Leaving Bich Dong behind we embark on a serene rowing boat ride along the Nang River, surrounded by lush greenery and towering limestone cliffs. The two-hour boat excursion weaves along this enchanting river and through the Thung Nang cave system, featuring several caverns adorned with stalactites.

Our final destination is the beautiful valley of Hang Village in Pu Luong Nature Reserve, home to a Black Thai Thai community, surrounded by limestone forests and stunning sculpted rice terraces. There is free time to explore the nearby villages. Tonight, we will be guests of a local Black Thai family, enjoying their warm hospitality over dinner and staying overnight in a traditional wooden stilt-house. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 3 Pu Luong Nature Reserve / Hanoi

The day begins with a morning hike along a footpath used by the local people, amidst splendid rice terraces, verdant hills, through tiny villages and along towerning mountains. Along the way, we meet the local people at work as they plough their paddy fields behind water buffaloes, tend to their seasonal crops, or fish in the river.

After enjoying a bamboo boat raft along the Ma River, which is a significant waterway in Vietnam flowing through provinces like Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, and Son La, known for its scenic beauty, we board our vehicle and journey back to Hanoi, arriving around 6 pm. (Breakfast and lunch are included)

The facts…

Physical activities: 

Hiking and boating with: 

  • A 2-hour boat trip and a 2-3 km hike on Day 1
  • A 6-8 km hike on Day 2
  • A 8-12 km hike on Day 3

From July to September, the climate is usually humid and hot. From October to June brings cooler and more pleasant weather.


  • Boat
  • Air-conditioned Vehicle (Car or Bus)

Tour Guide(s): Our experienced and friendly tour guide speaks good English. He is knowledgeable about local cultures, history and the environment.


  • Local family (2 nights)

Clean and comfortable homestays with mosquito nets provided. 


  • 2 breakfasts
  • 3 lunches
  • 2 dinners

We choose local ingredients, typical of the way people eat in the area, at local restaurants, markets or homes. We cater for Vegetarians but please request this at time of booking.

Trip cost: 

  • $225USD per person for a group of 1 to 7 people
  • $189USD per person for a group of 8 to 10 people

The cost of the trip includes: 

  • Accommodation
  • Tour guide
  • Meals
  • Purified drinking water
  • Entrance fees

The cost of the trip does not include: 

  • Travel insurance
  • Drinks (soft drinks, alcohol)
  • Other personal expenses

What to Bring: Pack essentials for 3 days away from Hanoi, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, comfortable hiking shoes. Take a small day pack for cycling, walking and hiking. It is essential to bring your passport on this trip. We also recommend packing: insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat and sun hat...

Have a great journey!!!