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Essential Vietnam: Saigon to Hanoi - Superior Tour

4.0 stars

saigon (ho chi minh city), vietnam

Exotic and compelling, Vietnam is one of the most remarkable travel destinations in the world. The Essential Vietnam Tour takes in all the classic sights of Vietnam's most iconic destinations including a once-in-a-lifetime cruise on Halong Bay and time to relax on the beach.

  1. Arrival
    Day 1

    Flight

    Fly from Heathrow to Tan Son Nhat International Airport on Turkish Airlines

  2. essential vietnam - saigon to hanoi - superior tour
    Day 1-10

    essential vietnam - saigon to hanoi - superior tour

    1. Day 1

      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 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 until the end of the American War in Vietnam in 1975, when it 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 2

      Saigon–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. Afterwards, you will be transferred to Ben Thanh Market where you can enjoy some bargain hunting! Breakfast included Overnight in Saigon.

    3. Day 3

      Hoi An–This morning you will be transferred to Saigon airport to catch your short 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 transfer to the charming town of Hoi An, located 30km south of Danang. En route we will stop at Marble Mountains, five mountainous outcrops made from 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 in Hoi An

    4. Day 4

      Hoi An–Spend the morning walking the ancient streets of Hoi An, lined with Chinese traders' homes and wooden houses reincarnated as restaurants, cafes, and outlets for local artists, craftsmen and tailors. Explore the beautiful 16th century Japanese Bridge. Hoi An's unique fusion of Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture is well displayed here, in what is arguably Vietnam's most tourist-friendly town. Enjoy a free afternoon to explore the town, shop for souvenirs or relax on the beach Breakfast included Overnight in Hoi An

    5. Day 5

      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 Optional tour: Day trip to Hue This morning, we will leave Hoi An early 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. We will visit 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. Visit Dong Ba local market and see the local life of small sellers here. We continue by road to Thien Mu Pagoda, Hue's oldest and most beautiful pagoda, built on a hill overlooking the Perfume River. It is outside this pagoda that the car, driven by a monk called Thich Quang Duc, sits as a reminder of a change in the regime, which was made after the Vietnamese Buddhist crisis. Thich Quang Duc committed self-immolation in 1963 to protest against the government. From the pagoda we take a cruise on the Perfume River before taking the transfer back to Hoi An. Arrive back in Hoi An late in the evening. Inclusion: Private transportation with air-conditioned, Local English speaking guide, sightseeing fees, Mineral water and towels. Ask your travel consultants for details and costs

    6. Day 6

      Hanoi–Transfer to Danang Airport for your short flight to Hanoi Upon arrival, your guide will meet and greet you for your transfer to the 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

    7. Day 7

      Hanoi–This morning we will visit the 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. The Mausoleum 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, the Ho Chi Minh Museum and the One Pillar Pagoda. We will then 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. Later this afternoon, enjoy a walking tour of Hanoi's Old Quarter. This area of crowded market alleys is still laid out as it was 300 years ago and is also known as the '36 Streets'. Traditionally in Vietnam, all the shops on a single street were devoted to selling one product. We can see rope, button, copper and herbal medicine streets. Breakfast included Overnight in Hanoi

    8. Day 8

      Hanoi–Early 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 but is dramatic and covers a larger area than either. Upon arrival in Halong Bay, we will 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 enchanting, timeless world; the sails of the junk boats and sampans add further to the scenic beauty. We will enjoy a seafood lunch on board our junk boat before returning to the wharf. We will then travel back to Hanoi, arriving later this evening. Breakfast and lunch included Overnight in Hanoi

    9. Day 9

      Hanoi–Today is at leisure, enabling you the chance to grab that last bargain in the Old Quarter or stroll around the lakes and boulevards to soak up the colonial and romantic atmosphere of Hanoi. Later meet your driver for your transfer to the airport for your flight home Breakfast included

  3. Departure
    Day 10

    Flight

    Fly from Noi Bai International Airport to Heathrow on Turkish Airlines

£1449 per person

Price for 9 nights, 2 Adults flying 28 September 2019 from Heathrow with Turkish Airlines
Your holidays include:
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Departing 28 September 2019
Staying for 9 nights
Passengers 2 adults

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Price for 9 nights, 2 Adults flying 28 September 2019 from Heathrow with Turkish Airlines