Witness Vietnam’s spectacular natural beauty.
At a glance
|DAY||SUMMARY OF ACTIVITY||LOCATION|
|1||Arrival in Hanoi and evening streetfood tour||Hanoi|
|2||City tour including the Old Quarter, the Mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh and the Temple of Literature||Hanoi|
|3||Mai Chau Valley Escape package, visiting local ethnic minority villages and sampling local delicacies in the picturesque mountain valley||Mai Chau|
|4||Bicycle tour among the rice paddies and countryside, then returning to Hanoi||Hanoi|
|5||Drive through the Red River Delta to board cruise ship, then sail into Halong Bay to explore lagoons by rowing boat or kayak||Halong Bay|
|6||Discovering more of Halong Bay, including Cat Ba island, Three Peach beach and Vung Vieng fishing village||Halong Bay|
|7||Visit to Surprise Cave, cruise to shore and transfer to Hanoi Noi Bai Airport|
ARRIVAL INTO HANOI NOI BAI AIRPORT (flight details tbc).
Meet you outside of the arrivals hall and private transfer to Hanoi city, which takes around 45 minutes.
DINING THE HANOI WAY!
Our evening walk and streetfood tour will introduce you to some of Hanoi’s finest local cuisine – Beef spring rolls – Pho cuon or Hotpot – Lau. The area around Yen Phu street is a popular street for dinner and late night eating out.
You will have the opportunity to see many other kinds of street foods that are only served after dark. Continuing our walk along one side of West lake seeing more and more people sitting on the grass mats by the lake eating Lau (Hot pot soup).
If you like we can stop to join them or we can continuing heading to a village that popular for Pho Cuon and Banh Pho, a fresh rice pancake, to roll beef and herbs in serve with tasty Hanoi style fish sauce and some pickled vegetables.
A delightful and very different Hanoi dinner!
Included: transport, street food and snacks, bedroom and breakfast
HANOI CITY DISCOVERY
This day will take in the highlight sites and sights including: Streets of the Old Quarter, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum complex, One-pillar Pagoda, Temple of Literature and museums of interest.
Originally the streets of the Old Quarter teemed with many artisans manufacturing and selling their wares. The street names nowadays still reflect these specializations. We will explore this dynamic view of everyday street life on foot in the morning light – it is a photographer’s paradise… all kinds of portraiture, architecture and people at work – along with many street sellers and their wares.
The Mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh is located in the centre of Ba Dinh Square, which is the place where Ho read the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945, establishing the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh’s body is preserved in the cooled, central hall of the mausoleum, which is protected by a military honour guard. (inside mausoleum open Tue – Thur only). We continue to stroll through the beautiful gardens surrounding the mausoleum which have nearly 250 different species of plants and flowers, all from different regions of Vietnam. Also visit the simple ‘stilt house’ which Ho lived in and the unique ‘One-Pillar Pagoda‘.
The Temple of Literature was first constructed in 1070 and is dedicated to Confucius, sages and scholars. Also here is The Imperial Academy – constructed in 1076, which was the first national university of Vietnam, it has preserved its ancient architectural style of many dynasties.
Depending on time available, some museums may also be visited – notable are: Hoa Lo (Hanoi Hilton), Museum of Ethnology and the Vietnamese Women’s Museum.
This is a flexible full day of touring and you can discuss specific sites / sights and locations with your guide, depending on your own personal interests and pace.
Included: tour guide, entrance fees, bottled drinking water and fresh-up tissues, transport, bedroom and breakfast
MAI CHAU VALLEY ESCAPE (2 days 1 night)
Package operated by Mai Chau Lodge
At around 8.00am we’ll meet you at your hotel in Hanoi and take approximately 3.5 hours drive south-west from Hanoi city in the lodge shared transportation. The road weaves through mountains, fertile valleys and traditional villages. By late morning, we’ll arrive in the picturesque Mai Chau Valley, which is surrounded by spectacular karst rock formations and rice paddies.
Late morning arrive at Mai Chau Lodge, your comfortable hotel in the valley. A welcome drink and cold/hot towel will be served, followed by an appetizing lunch. The fresh, tasty dishes on offer include local vegetables and flavors such as green bean, black mushroom, fish and chicken cooked in Muong or Thai ethnic minority style.
15.30: Start your journey to discover the interesting surroundings and ethnic minority tribes with a relaxing walk to Thái villages of Pom Coong and Lac and explore Mo Luong cave on the other side of the hotel.
19.00: Complement your experience by sampling delicacies from the local region during dinner time and enjoy the performance by local troupe of ethnic minority Muong and Thai people. It is so relaxing to watch
the exotic dances featuring the flower, land-scape and daily agriculture cultivating activities and sweet dating songs in the fresh mountain air.
Included: tour leader, entrance fees, transport, lunch, dinner, bottled drinking water and fresh-up tissues
MAI CHAU VALLEY ESCAPE
08.00: Enjoy a tasty international breakfast buffet in Bo Luong Restaurant with views overlooking the lake, the paddy fields and the swimming pool.
09.00: Start the Valley biking tour. The ride passes through many villages, across lush rice paddies and into the countryside to get to know the local hill tribes people and their culture better. Then free time.
13.30: Leave Mai Chau. You will arrive in Hanoi at around 17.00
Included: tour leader, entrance fees, transport, bedroom and breakfast
HALONG BAY CRUISE
Begin departure from Hanoi. The cruise company representative will meet you at your hotel approximately 08.00 (tbc) and you join the cruise company shared shuttle transport for your transfer to Halong Bay. The drive through the Red River Delta will take approximately 3.5 hours with a refreshment stop along the way.
12:00 Arrive at Bhaya Cafe at Tuan Chau Island.
12:45 Board Bhaya Classic to start your journey. Enjoy welcome drinks and briefing about itinerary and safety from Cruise Manager.
13:00 Let the vacation begin with a lunch buffet as the boat cruises toward South East Halong Bay passing by Chicken Crock, Tiptop Island.
15:30 Arrive to Dark and Bright Lagoon to visit by rowing boat or kayak. Kayak could be booked in advance at reception with extra cost. Anticipate the chance to see Cat Ba Langur, one of the rarest langurs left.
16:30 Return to the boat for swimming around the anchor area, relaxing on sundeck or indulging yourself with a massage.
17:00 Bar opens for the Happy Hour “Buy one get one free”.
17:30 Traditional food cooking demonstration on sundeck (or in the restaurant if weather does not allow).
19:00 Dinner with set-menu is served in restaurant.
21:00 Free time to be spent watching movies in the restaurant, squid fishing at reception, or enjoying a 30% discount on all drinks.
Included: dinner (no drinks), lunch
HALONG BAY CRUISE Day 2
06:15 Start off your day with a Tai Chi lesson on the sundeck with complimentary tea and coffee.
07:00 Buffet breakfast is served in dining room.
08:30 Arrive in Cat Ba Island then cycle to Viet Hai village and explore the tropical jungle with a local guide. Optional electric cart service is available (at an extra cost).
11:00 Swimming and kayaking in Three Peach beach.
12:30 Buffet lunch served while the boat cruises toward Bai Tu Long Bay.
15:00 Transfer to Vung Vieng Fishing village. Discover the fascinating area while sitting on rowing boats with the local people.
16:00 Kayak around the Dark & Bright Cave (Kayak can be booked in advance at reception).
17:00 Back to the boat for relaxation onboard. Bar opens for Happy Hour “Buy one, get one free”.
19:00 Dinner with set menu is served in the restaurant.
21:00 More free time to be spent watching movies in the restaurant, squid fishing at the reception, or enjoying a 30% discount on all drinks.
Included: breakfast buffet, lunch, dinner
HALONG BAY CRUISE Day 3
06:15 Start off your day with a Tai Chi lesson on the sundeck with complimentary tea and coffee.
07:00 Light breakfast will be served in the restaurant.
07:45 Discover Surprise Cave, one of the biggest caves in Halong Bay with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites.
09:00 Back to the boat for check-out. Passengers’ bags must be put in the corridor. Please settle bills at reception.
09:30 Buffet brunch is served in restaurant while the boat heads back to harbor.
10:30 Disembark to Tuan Chau Marina.
After you disembark, we have arranged private transportation to take you direct to Hanoi Noi Bai Airport for your onward flight.
Sights you’ll see
Need to know
Locations for this tour
Costs for this tour vary depending on season, duration, hotel preferences and how many people are in your party.
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We have no wish to add to your disappointment and will do whatever is possible to help you.
The refunds we make are listed below and are based on our administration costs and the reasonable expectation of a booking replacement.
Cancel more than 30 Days days in advance - 85% refund.
Cancel between 30 and 8 days before departure - 50% refund.
Cancel between 7 days and 48 hours before departure - 25% refund.
Cancel less than 48 hours before departure - no refund.