Vibrant Vietnam Experience

Vietnam
Travel now, pay later
0% 12 months interest free†
Weekly
$56^^
Monthly
$241^
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Inclusions

Return economy international airfares.
11 nights 4-star (self-rated) hotel accommodation.
1 night onboard a 4-star Halong Bay Cruise Ship.
18 Meals Including Breakfast Daily.
Air-Conditioned Transportation.
All Group Transfers.
All Sightseeing Admissions.
English-Speaking Tour Leader and Local Guide(s).
BONUS Locally Guided 'Behind the Scenes' Hanoi City Tour.
BONUS Evening Food Market Walking Tour and Dinner.
BONUS Included Cooking Demonstration and Tai Chi while Cruising Halong Bay.
BONUS Guided Tour of Hue's Historic Citadel.
BONUS Locally Guided Street Food Walking Tour of Hoi An markets.
BONUS Visit to Independence (Reunification) Palace, site of the Fall of Saigon.
BONUS Walking Tour of Ho Chi Minh.
Low Deposit from $299^

Highlights

Highlights - Spend 13 unforgettable days travelling from north to south through the lush riverways and charming historic cities of Vietnam. Sail gently between Halong Bay's towering karst cliffs on an overnight cruise and experience Vietnam's finest regional dishes from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh. Wander between brightly coloured oriental and colonial buildings in the cobbled streets of Hue and Hoi An. Experience Vietnam's fascinating street culture with your expert local guide. This guided tour includes international and connecting flights, daily breakfast and bonus unique included activities throughout.

Day 1 Fly from Australia to Hanoi

Depart from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane or Perth, to Hanoi, Vietnam. Travel with Thai Airways, Malaysian Airlines, Qantas, Vietnam Airways, Cathay Pacific or other full service airline. Xin chao Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam. Hanoi is full of culture, history and the engaging contradictions of a rapidly developing and deeply traditional society. You are greeted by your guide and driver at Noi Bai International Airport and transferred to the hotel. Rooms are available from 14.00. Check-in, make yourself comfortable and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. Note that some passengers may depart Australia on Day 0.

Day 2 Hanoi

After breakfast at the hotel, meet your guide for a tour of iconic cultural sites and offbeat districts to sample local life in Hanoi. Wander through narrow alleys, try Vietnam's famous coffee, then visit the Temple of Literature. Lunch on delicious local street food. In the afternoon, continue to the garden of the Presidential Palace and see the one-pillar pagoda and Ho Chi Minh's house on stilts. Complete the afternoon with a icon of Hanoi popular culture; bia hoi, the refreshing street side service of light beer directly from keg to glass. Tonight, dinner is included during a visit to Hanoi's old quarter and the old colonial administration district. Be guided between some of the city's finest local food stalls and shops. Try a delicious range of noodle-based dishes while soaking up the wonderful sights and aromas of Hanoi life.

Day 3 Hanoi at Leisure

Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore Hanoi on your own or take an optional private tour and unveil the 'Inland Halong Bay' on a fun-packed adventure

Optional Barge and bike in Ninh Binh (lunch included): Depart at 7am for a two-hour drive to Trang An, the most scenic waterway in the region. Arriving early avoids the crowds, ensuring a peaceful excursion aboard a rowing sampan. Then, head to the valley of Tam Coc for lunch in a garden setting.

In the afternoon, visit Bich Dong pagoda. Then take a leisurely bicycle ride on the flat backroads, winding between limestone rocks and rice fields to Hoa Lu. Then visit Dinh and Le temples before transferring back to Hanoi in the late afternoon, end of the day at leisure.

Day 4 Hanoi - Halong Bay

Depending on group size, be transferred by the Cruise shuttle or a private vehicle at 9.00am and drive through the Red River delta to Halong, to meet your joined-group cruise. Embark a beautifully crafted wooden junk for an overnight cruise in the legendary seascape of Halong. Be served delicious lunch while sailing to a less travelled area for relaxation, sunbathing, and a cave visit. The program varies based on tides, time of the year and weather. Some activities may be changed or cancelled if conditions are unfavourable. End the day on deck at sunset, with time for an aperitif or to attend a cooking demonstration before dinner. Overnight in a comfortable private cabin with attached bathroom.

Day 5 Halong Bay - Hanoi - Flight to Hue

At dawn, an early Tai Chi session is offered on deck, with coffee and tea served early for the magical Halong Bay sunrise. Check out and hop on a rowed sampan to visit a secluded floating village, one of the last communities still living on the bay. Return to the boat for brunch served as you cruise back to dock. Then be driven to Hanoi airport and fly to Hue. Upon arrival in Hue, be met and transferred to the hotel, the rest of the day at leisure.

Day 6 Hue

After breakfast today, start your guided exploration of Hue's Imperial Heritage by visiting Tu Duc's vast tomb complex. In the late morning, be driven across the Perfume River and enter Kim Long ancient village. Located just by the walls of the citadel, Kim Long was a residential area for the Mandarins of the kings. Meet a friendly family who have preserved the art of banh, a delicacy of Hue's gastronomic heritage. Sample great food and share a slice of life with the owners of the shop. In the afternoon, visit the main site of Hue, its huge citadel. Dive into Vietnam's feudal past and learn about the last Dynasty. Be driven back to the hotel for free time this evening, a chance to explore Hue's atmospheric street life at night.

Day 7 Hue - Hoi An

Enjoy a morning at leisure in Hue or choose to take a half-day tour to the city's unknown lagoon and secluded pristine coast

Optional Bike and barge to Hue's unknown lagoon (lunch included): Departing with your guide by bicycle from the hotel, ride out of town to a nearby village on the shores of Chuon Lagoon. Stop at a tiny market to buy fresh seafood from the morning's catch, then cooked into local pancakes right on the spot. Continue riding on small roads across a fishing village surrounded by wetlands and dotted with huts on stilts. Jump on a fishing boat and journey onto the lagoon to discover local's ancestral fishing techniques. On the other side complete the gentle adventure, cycling on a coastal road to a hidden restaurant behind a pristine stretch of beach. Sit back and relax while delicious light lunch is prepared. Enjoy a dip and lazy time at the beach before the transfer to Hoi An. In the afternoon, continue by road south to Hoi An. The scenery is remarkable, as the route hugs the coastline of the East Sea before winding up the spectacular Hai Van Pass. Here, admire the stunning views: north over Lang Co Beach and south over Da Nang. Then continue driving along My Khe Beach to Hoi An. Check-in at the hotel for an evening at leisure.

Day 8 Hoi An Walking Orientation and Food Tasting

This morning, the day starts with a guided walk through the enchanting ancient town of Hoi An. Meander through beautiful streets and narrow alleys, bordered by ancient yellow-walled houses. Reach a market and explore the colourful stalls. Try local delicacies before venturing further into town. The guide will point out places of interest and arrange some spontaneous food tastings as you walk. The afternoon and evening is at leisure.

Day 9 Hoi An at Leisure

advantage of a full day at leisure to relax, enjoy shopping in Hoi An, or to go to a nearby beach. Or, take the special joined-group hands-on culinary experience

Optional Cooking class by Red Bridge restaurant (lunch included / joined-group): In the morning, be collected from the hotel and follow the chef on an exciting cookery experience. First, visit the market for ingredients while the chef points out different herbs and spices that define Vietnamese cuisine. Then transfer by boat to a beautiful villa on the banks on Thu Bon River to enjoy a hands-on cooking lesson and culinary experience. Dine on the courses you've prepared. Then, be driven back your hotel for the rest of the day.

Day 10 Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City

Enjoy leisure time this morning. In the afternoon, be met by a driver and transferred to Danang Airport for the flight to Ho Chi Minh. On arrival in Ho Chi Minh, be driven to your hotel. Enjoy rest of day of free time.

Day 11 The Essentials of Ho Chi Minh - Half Day

Depart the hotel after breakfast. Tour District 1 on a gentle orientation walk to discover some of the major colonial landmarks that give historical character to Ho Chi Minh's modern metropolis. See the post office, cathedral and have a cup of excellent Vietnamese coffee at a local shop. Then visit Independence Palace, former residence of the President of South Vietnam with a "War Room", where South Vietnamese forces were controlled and the North Vietnamese army finally took control in the Fall of Ho Chi Minh on in 1975. Enjoy rest of time at leisure.

Optional tour # 5 - Visit Cu Chi tunnel half day (no meals): Depart Ho Chi Minh after the morning tour and head to Cu Chi Tunnels. First stop and visit a family producing rice paper, learn how this essential ingredient of Vietnamese gastronomy is made and exchange a few stories with locals. Continue to Cu Chi Tunnels. After an introductory video, viewing various mantraps, the remains of an American tank and numerous bomb craters, spend the next hour exploring a maze of tunnels. See how the Viet Cong survived in this underground network. Return to Ho Chi Minh afterwards.

Day 12 Ho Chi Minh at Leisure Full Day

Spend the day exploring Ho Chi Minh on your own, its large avenues, cafes, museums and colonial landmarks.

Optional Explore the coconut land in the Mekong Delta (lunch included): From Ho Chi Minh head South to Ben Tre in the Mekong Delta, a region famous for its coconut production. Upon arrival, set out on a boat trip on narrow channels winding through coconut forests. Stop at brick and coconut processing workshops to see locals make bricks by hand and learn how to make different products from coconuts. Then jump onto a bike and cycle on village roads through local hamlets, rice fields and coconut groves. Feel free to stop along the way for closer looks at local life and culture of this region. You'll then arrive at Mr. Sau Khanh's house, whose ambition is to collect many antiques. Chat with him and try out the local skill of climbing coconut trees. Return to the pier and drive to Ho Chi Minh city.

Day 13 Ho Chi Minh Departure

Today is at leisure until transferred to the airport. Rooms are available until 12.00.

Travel now, pay later
0% 12 months interest free†
Weekly
$56^^
Monthly
$241^
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