Discover Vietnam’s delightful melange of culture and history on a compact, insightful journey. Explore Ho Chi Minh City’s historic monuments then glide across the waters of the Mekong Delta. After a stop in sleepy Hoi An, travel to bustling Hanoi and cap off the adventure with a Halong Bay cruise.
Experience Code : 10628
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Day 1: Ho Chi Minh city arrival
Upon arrival at Ho Chi Minh City, our guide and driver will be waiting to provide transport to the hotel for check-in. The remainder of the day will be free at leisure.
Day 2: Ho Chi Minh city exploration (Lunch)
Depart from the hotel for a full day of touring Ho Chi Minh City. Head to Cholon, the Chinatown district, to discover the area’s markets, shops, and Thien Hau Pagoda. Next pay a visit to Vietnam's first traditional medicine museum, the FITO Museum, with an amazing collection of 3,000 items relevant to the development of traditional Vietnamese medicine. Implements used to prepare indigenous herbs and objects commonly found in traditional pharmacies can be seen in the galleries as well as ancient books and documents on traditional Vietnamese medicine. Head back to the city center to visit Ben Thanh Market where an incredible display of fresh produce is offered. Enjoy a guided stroll through the market exploring the variety of goods for sale. This afternoon pays a visit to either the War Remnants Museum, Reunification Palace. Afterward, stroll through the major sights of colonial Ho Chi Minh City: the Old Saigon Post Office, Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat), Continental Hotel, Opera House and City Hall. At the end of the afternoon head back to the hotel.
Day 3: Ho Chi Minh City - Authentic Mekong Delta - Ho Chi Minh City (Lunch)
Depart from your hotel in the morning and drive approximately two hours to Ben Tre, and the gateway to the delta. Here, you will board a small boat to start your sightseeing around the waterways of Mekong Delta. Known also like the rice bowl of Vietnam because of its large rice production, the area has also diversified into activities related to aquaculture, rearing of animals, cash crops and fruit trees. Visit a brick factory and board a small boat to meander through the canals and waterways in the area. Then, stop at a small homemade coconut processing plant to see how coconuts have been turned into oil, candy and woven mats that are later sold in the market. After the boat trip, you will have a short walk to a local village to see mat weavers at work, before jumping on the Delta’s version of a tuk-tuk ( xe lôi ) and traveling down country roads to reach a nice local riverside restaurant for lunch. After lunch, take a short cycling tour to explore the surrounding fields before boarding a sampan for a tranquil trip along the picturesque canals. Come back to the port and continue to visit Ben Tre Local Market before heading back to Ho Chi Minh City, arriving late in the afternoon.
Day 4: Ho Chi Minh - Da Nang - Hoi An (Lunch)
After breakfast, transport will be provided to Tan Son Nhat Airport for the short flight to the central port city of Danang. Upon arrival to Da Nang, there will be a 30-minute transfer to Hoi An, the stopping en-route to visit the interesting Cham Museum. Upon arrival at Hoi An, enjoy a walking tour through this major Asian trading port of the 17th and 18th centuries, soaking in an atmosphere that has changed little over the years. During the walk, explore the former merchants’ homes, the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge and the colorful market. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.
Day 5: Hoi An - Da Nang - Hanoi (Lunch)
After breakfast at the hotel, transport will be provided to Danang Airport for a short flight to Hanoi. Upon arrival at Hanoi, our guide and driver will be waiting to provide transport to the hotel for check-in. This afternoon, pay a visit to the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university. Founded in 1076, Quoc Tu Giam was established within a temple to educate Vietnam's royalty, mandarins and members of the elite. The university functioned for an incredible 700 years and its gardens and well-preserved architecture offer a fascinating glimpse into Vietnam’s past. Next, pay a visit to the One Pillar Pagoda, one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples. Just nearby the pagoda is the mausoleum of the historic father figure of modern Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh, and his modest house on stilts. (Mausoleum viewed from outside; closed Mon and Fri and from Oct-Nov) Continue with a wander through the streets of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Take a walking tour through charming Hang Be Market and around Hoan Kiem Lake, a bustling area home to thousands of small businesses and shops. Wrap up the day with a Water Puppet show, a uniquely North Vietnamese art form depicting scenes from rural life and episodes of national history.
Day 6: Hanoi – Halong Bay (Lunch/Dinner)
Following breakfast, depart Hanoi for the 4-hour drive to Halong Bay. Arrive at the Halong City around noon and proceed with check-in formalities. After a welcome onboard, lunch will be served while cruising into the heart of the bay. In the afternoon, enjoy sightseeing, onboard activities (depending on each boat’s itinerary) or just spend some time relaxing on board. Towards the end of the day, the boat sets anchor for the night among the karst formations. Dinner is served on board.
Day 7: Halong Bay - Hanoi (Lunch)
Enjoy a tranquil morning in the midst of the bay. Early risers can enjoy a memorable sunrise amongst the brilliant karst formations. Breakfast will be served (brunch on some boats) while the vessel cruises slowly through the magnificent rock formations and back towards port. Disembark and transfer to Hanoi. As an optional extra, visit one of the oldest pagodas in Vietnam ‘But Thap’ on the way back to Hanoi. Transport will be provided to Noi Bai Airport for the departing flight*. (An extra night may be needed in Hanoi depending on departing flight time.)
Note: This tour may be subject to change depending on weather conditions.
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