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Highlights of Vietnam - Superior Tour

4 stars

Full Itinerary

  1. Day 2

    Saigon

    Arrive in Saigon and meet your driver to transfer to your hotel Saigon is one of the world's truly cosmopolitan cities with a history, culture and style obtained from colonial France, ancient China and the art deco era. Once the main port of Cambodia's Mekong territory, Saigon became the capital of France's Cochinchina and later the capital of the Republic of Vietnam. It remained the capital of South Vietnam until reunification at the end of the American War in Vietnam in 1975, when the capital was moved to Hanoi. Although the city was renamed Ho Chi Minh City in 1975, the government soon realised that the proud 'Saigonese' would never stop calling it Saigon. Now it's accepted that Ho Chi Minh City refers to the greater metropolitan area, while the older and central suburbs are called Saigon. Overnight in Saigon

  2. Day 3

    Saigon

    This morning head to the Cu Chi Tunnels which are located in an area known during the American War in Vietnam as the 'Iron Triangle', on account of the strength of its Communist insurgency. Cu Chi was also the conclusion to many caravan paths that traced down from the Chinese border, across mountain borders with Laos and into the Mekong Delta, which later became known as the Ho Chi Minh Trail. The network, which is several storeys deep in some parts, includes trapdoors, living areas, storage facilities, weapon factories, field hospitals, command centres and kitchens. In the afternoon, you will begin your sightseeing around Vietnam's largest and busiest city with a visit to the imposing Notre Dame Cathedral, built between 1886 and 1890, and the French-style Central Post Office. You will then continue on to the Reunification Palace. This was the scene for the final stages of the American War when a North Vietnamese tank bulldozed through the gates and the tank commander ran to the fourth floor of the palace to raise a North Vietnamese flag from its rooftop, being directed on the way by the recently appointed new President of South Vietnam. After lunch by your own account you will be transferred to Ben Thanh Market where you can enjoy some bargain hunting! Breakfast included Overnight in Saigon.

  3. Day 4

    Can Tho

    This morning we will drive to Ben Tre, a southern province located in the Mekong Delta. We will pass lush rice paddies and fruit farms emerging alongside the highway as we leave the city behind. Upon arrival in Ben Tre, take a short stroll through a shaded area of coconut gardens before reaching a rest-stop to enjoy freshly picked fruit, a cup of honey tea and a traditional folk song performance. Walk further to the river bank where we continue our journey by sampan. Take time to discover the maze of small palm-lined canals. Directly in front of a small pier we will have the chance to see a family-run business where they make coconut candy. Embark on another motorised boat ride towards Turtle Island. Enjoy a leisurely walk through the village observing fruit orchards along the way. Our lunch will consist of typical Mekong dishes at a local restaurant. After lunch we cruise to Chuong Duong waterfront pier where we can take in the delta scenery of stilt houses and local fish farms. Later we continue by road to our hotel in Can Tho city located deep in the Mekong Delta for an overnight stay. Breakfast and lunch included Overnight in Can Tho

  4. Day 5

    Saigon

    We take a boat trip today from Nink Kieu pier to Cai Rang Floating Markets where everything the local villagers could ever need is on sale. From haircuts and coffins to fruit and vegetables, which make up the lion's share of the wares that are on offer. As we cruise through, each boat we pass has a sample of its produce hanging from a bamboo mast in its bow so that we know what each vendor is selling. After sailing through the markets we visit a local rice husking mill and a factory that produces vermicelli noodles before returning to Saigon. Arrive Saigon in the afternoon. Take the rest of the day at leisure to shop for souvenirs, relax or explore the bustling city. Breakfast included Overnight in Saigon

  5. Day 6

    Hoi an

    This morning we will transfer to the airport for our flight to Danang. Danang is on the western bank of the Han River and is Vietnam's fourth largest and main University city. Upon arrival in Danang, transfer to the charming town of Hoi An, located 30km south of Danang. En route we will stop at Marble Mountains, five mountainous outcrops of marble. Here we will have a view of Danang Beach, where the American Marines had a huge R&R base during the 1960s and 1970s. Perhaps more than any other place in Vietnam, Hoi An retains the feel of centuries past. Once known as Faifo, Hoi An was an influential port along the Silk Road. For over 500 years merchants from China, Japan, France and Portugal settled in the prosperous town resulting in a distinctive blend of culture, cuisine, religion and architecture. In 1999, the town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage listed site for having the most unique architecture in Southeast Asia. It has been restored and protected by both the UNESCO fund and proud locals ever since. The rest day is free in Hoi An Breakfast included Overnight Hoi An

  6. Day 7

    Hoi an

    Today we enjoy a walking tour of the narrow and ancient streets of this charming town. We will visit one of Hoi An's oldest homes, built over 200 years ago and still occupied by the descendants of the merchant family that originally built it. We will also visit the traditional Hoi An Market, the Quan Cong Chinese Temple and the Japanese Covered Bridge. It is local belief that the ancient houses in Hoi An have a soul, which is displayed on the house as an eye, formed from the Chinese yin-yang symbol. Newly built houses are blind, since they do not have eyes. Enjoy a free afternoon to explore the town, shop for souvenirs or relax on the beach. Breakfast included Overnight in Hoi An

  7. Day 8

    Hoi an

    Take a full day to relax and explore this beautiful town. You might choose to get some clothes made at Hoi An's world famous tailors, shop for souvenirs, or head to the gorgeous beach for a day of relaxation Breakfast included Overnight in Hoi An

  8. Day 9

    Hue

    We leave Hoi An this morning and head north to Hue. This drive will take us over the scenic Hai Van Pass, passing the fishing village of Lang Co, as we enjoy panoramic views of the central coastline. Hue was the imperial capital of Vietnam from 1802-1945, when the last emperor abdicated the throne, yet even today it is still regarded as the seat of Vietnam's culture and religion. The Imperial Citadel, which dominates the city, was modelled on China's Forbidden City. The city boasts many significant pagodas and temples, as well as the grand tombs of the Nguyen Emperors. This afternoon we will visit to the Imperial Citadel and the Forbidden Purple City, which was built only for the Imperial family, concubines and eunuchs. The Forbidden Purple City is still being restored many years after the destruction caused by street fighting and bombing during the American War. Breakfast included Overnight in Hue

  9. Day 10

    Hanoi

    This morning we will visit the UNESCO World Heritage listed Royal Tomb of Minh Mang. Emperor Minh Mang reigned in the Nguyen Dynasty, the last of the Vietnamese dynasties, from 1820-1840. The construction of his tomb was completed after his death and is said to have taken approximately 10,000 workers to complete. The complex comprises of almost 40 monuments and is surrounded by gardens and pools, making it one of the more beautiful tombs in Vietnam. Continue by road to Thien Mu Pagoda; the seven-storey tower is built on a hill overlooking the Perfume River and is Hue's oldest and most beautiful pagoda. From the pagoda we take a cruise on the Perfume River before returning to our hotel. You will then transfer to the airport for your flight to Hanoi. Upon arrival in to Hanoi, we will be transferred to our hotel. Hanoi is a charming and richly historic city of lakes, shaded boulevards and verdant public parks, with a population of about four million. The city centre is like an architectural museum, with blocks of ochre buildings retaining the air of a provincial French town from the 1930s. Breakfast included Overnight in Hanoi

  10. Day 11

    Hanoi

    This morning we will explore Ho Chi Minh Quarter for a look at the life of the father of modern Vietnam. First we will visit Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, which sits in Ba Dinh Square and is where Ho Chi Minh first declared independence from French rule in 1945. Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum is closed for entry every Monday and also from September to December each year. During these times we are unable to enter the Mausoleum; however we can view it from the exterior. In the same complex we will see the Humble House on Stilts, from which 'Uncle Ho' ruled Vietnam until his death in 1969, as well as Ho Chi Minh Museum and the One Pillar Pagoda. Next we will drive to the serene Temple of Literature, Hanoi's first university dating back to 1070 and a historical centre of learning, now dedicated to Confucian worship. The rest of the day is free to relax in Hanoi, shop for souvenirs or simply enjoy the local cafe culture and watch the world pass by. Breakfast included Overnight in Hanoi

  11. Day 12

    Halong Bay

    This morning we drive to the area that is regarded as the 'Jewel in the Crown of Vietnam', Halong Bay. Halong Bay has been compared with the landscape of Guilin in China and the limestone islets of Krabi in southern Thailand and is more impressive than either. Upon arrival in Halong Bay, we board our boat for a cruise around the 3,000 islets that rise from the clear emerald waters of the Gulf of Tonkin. This province shares a common border with China in the north and harbours some of the most stunning scenery in Vietnam. Bizarre rock sculptures jutting dramatically from the sea and numerous grottoes have created an enchanted, timeless world; the sails of the junk boats and sampans add further to the scenic beauty. Enjoy a seafood lunch on board before we set sail. We cruise around the bay this afternoon stopping to explore fascinating caves and to enjoy a swim at one of the beaches. Dinner will be served on board while watching the sun set over the bay. The remainder of the night is ours to relax on board the anchored junk boat. Breakfast, lunch and dinner included Overnight Halong Bay Please note that our itinerary in Halong Bay is subject to change due to local conditions.

  12. Day 13

    Halong Bay

    One of the most special experiences for travellers in Vietnam is to watch the sun rise over Halong Bay. If you are up early enough you can watch this spectacular and peaceful scene. After our breakfast we continue cruising through the bay. We enjoy a late lunch on board before arriving at the wharf around midday and travelling back to Hanoi. The rest of day is free at leisure to enjoy the sights and sounds of Hanoi Breakfast and lunch included Overnight Hanoi

  13. Day 14

    Hanoi Departure

    This morning is at leisure enabling us the chance to grab that last bargain in the Old Quarter or take a stroll around the lakes and boulevards to soak up the colonial and romantic atmosphere that is Hanoi. Meet your driver to transfer to the airport. Breakfast included

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