Discover the beauty and unique heritage of Vietnam with this incredible tour across some of its most famous sites and stunning landscapes including a cruise along Halong Bay and the UNESCO site of Hoi An.
- Departs: london
- Arrives: ho chi minh city, Vietnam
- Departs: hanoi, Vietnam
- Arrives: london
Highlights of Vietnam - Deluxe Tour
- As Per Itinerary
- As Per Itinerary
- Guides, internal flights and all mentioned sightseeing included
- Discover the ancient town of Hoi An
- Take a cruise along Halong Bay
Discover Vietnam on this amazing deluxe tour, with air-conditioned rooms and an English speaking guide to show you some of the stunning sites in Hanoi, the amazing Halong Bay as well as the iconic Saigon (Ho Chi Mihn City). You'll also visit the UNESCO world heritage listed royal tomb of Emperor Minh Mang, making this a once in a lifetime adventure through Vietnam.
Day 1: Fly overnight to Saigon
Depart the UK on your overnight flight to Saigon
Day 2: Saigon arrival
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.
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
Day 3: Saigon - City Tour
This morning we head to 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!
The remainder of the day is at your leisure.
Overnight in Saigon
Day 4: Saigon - Ben Tre - Can Tho
This morning you will be met at your Saigon Hotel and transferred to Ben Tre, a southern province located in the Mekong Delta. You will pass lush rice paddies and fruit farms emerging alongside the highway as you leave the city behind.
On arrival in HÃ¹ng vÆ°Æ¡ng Pier (Báº¿n Tre town).Take a boat on Báº¿n Tre river - one of tributaries of Mekong river, Sight-seeing lively activities along river as fishing, water transferring. Stop at brickwork to see how to make bricks in handy traditional style by printing and baking. Visit one of plenty of coconut processing workshops located along canal. Turn on natural scissors creeks where they look smaller and smaller to go to village. Take a walk to family workshop making sleep mats and enjoying some fruits.
Take a motocart on shady paths, pass by green rice fields and vegetable plains to be able to touch on realy life and find out about tropical culture from Peasants. Lunch at restaurant riverside.
Afternoon, take rowing-boat along water palm creek. and boat back to HÃ¹ng VÆ°Æ¡ng and have transfer back to Saigon
Later we continue by road to our hotel in Can Tho city located deep in the Mekong Delta for an overnight stay.
Day 5: Can Tho - Back to 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. The rest day is free at leisure by clients' own arrangement.
Overnight in Saigon
Day 6: Saigon - Fly to Da Nang/ 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, we will 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.
Overnight in Hoi An
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.
The rest of the day is free at your leisure or to further explore this ancient town.
Overnight in Hoi An
Day 8: Hoi An Free at leisure
Take the full day is free at leisure by your own arrangement: relax at the pool or discover the Ancient Town by your own.
Overnight in Hoi An
Day 9: Hoi An transfer to 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.
Overnight in Hue
Day 10: Hue fly to 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.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 11: Hanoi
Without question, Ho Chi Minh is one of the great figures of 20th-century history. 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 afternoon is free at leisure for client to enjoy the city by your own.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 12: Hanoi - Halong Bay (overnight on junk)
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.
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.
Day 13: Halong Bay - Hanoi
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 brunch on board before arriving at the wharf around midday and travelling back to Hanoi.
The rest of day is free at leisure by your own arrangement.
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 your hotel.