Tour code:
VN12D-1
Duration
12 days 11 nights
Start in
Hanoi
Finish in
Ho Chi Minh City
Places to visit
Hanoi - Ninh Binh - Trang An - Bai Dinh Pagoda - Halong Bay - Surprise cave - Titov Island - Hanoi - Da Nang - Hoi An - Hue - Saigon (HCM city) - Ben Tre - Ho Chi Minh city
Starts
Ends
Hanoi, Vietnam Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Highlights

The "Enchanting Vietnam Holidays 12 Days 11 Nights" is an all-inclusive expedition across Vietnam, encompassing its highlights and showcasing its past, natural splendor, and cultural legacy:

  • Alluring Hanoi: Uncover the ancient city's affluent history, lively culture, and bustling Old Quarter.
  • Embark on a sampan excursion in Tam Coc and explore Bai Dinh Pagoda, the largest in Southeast Asia.
  • Sublime Halong Bay: Visit the breathtaking natural marvel of limestone karsts emerging from verdant waters.
  • Delightful Hoi An: Explore the impeccably preserved town renowned for its architecture, traditional culture, and lantern-lit streets.
  • Historical Hue: Investigate the former capital with its imperial history, grand Imperial Citadel, and serene ambiance.
  • Lively Ho Chi Minh City: Conclude the voyage in the thriving metropolis, discovering historical landmarks and relishing diverse culinary pleasures.
  • Mekong Delta Expedition: Immerse yourself in the Mekong River lifestyle with a trip to Ben Tre, recognized as the birthplace of coconuts.

Itinerary Expand All

Day 1: Hanoi Arrival – First Visit (D)
Car
Upon your arrival at Hanoi Airport, our driver will be delighted to welcome you and drive you to your hotel, which is approximately 35 km away, roughly a 45-minute drive. After a long flight, it's crucial to take some time to rest and adjust to the time difference.

At 5:00 PM, embark on a combo: a 60-minute full Vietnamese body massage with dinner included. This revitalizing massage incorporates ancient techniques that target pressure points and invigorating movements, accompanied by aromatherapy massage oils to warm the muscles, relax the body, and enhance your overall well-being and physical flexibility.
Afterward, return to your hotel following a light dinner.

Overnight in Hanoi.

Best things to do in Hanoi

Day 2: Hanoi - City Tour (B; L)
Car Walking

After breakfast, your day kicks off with a visit to the square in front of the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, honoring the nation's founder. Your guide will narrate the country's independence history before you capture memories in photos.
Next, head to the Defense Pagoda by West Lake, ending your morning with an insightful trip to the Hanoi Ethnography Museum, showcasing Vietnam's diverse ethnic cultures.
Lunch awaits at a local eatery.
In the afternoon, a fascinating stroll through the Hanoi Old Quarter awaits you. Start with the Long Bien Bridge - Paul Doumer Bridge (Trần Nhật Duật Street side) and continue to Cao Thắng Street, famous for its traditional spices. Then, explore the Đồng Xuân Market, the largest market in Hanoi, and soak in the lively atmosphere of Hàng Mã Street, known for its decorative items, Chinese toys, and colorful lanterns.
Continue your exploration through Lương Văn Can, Lãn Ông, and Hang Buồm streets, taking the time to visit the Bạch Mã Temple (76 Hang Buồm Street), the oldest temple in Hanoi. Take a well-deserved break at Café Market (Hanoi Coffee Station, 44 Hang Bè Street or another café boutique) to enjoy a complimentary coffee.
Capture the vibrant atmosphere by Hoan Kiem Lake before attending a mesmerizing Hanoi water puppet show in the evening.
Dinner is on your own, followed by an overnight stay at the hotel in Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi - Ninh Binh - Trang An - Bai Dinh Pagoda (B; L)
Car Sampan Cruise

Your day will begin with an 8am hotel pick-up and transfer to the picturesque area of Ninh Binh, which boasts a stunning landscape of hundreds of limestone mountains nestled among lush rice fields and gentle rivers that have carved out spectacular and enchanting caves over millions of years.

Upon arrival in Trang An, you will embark on a delightful two-hour sampan cruise through various waterways, where you can marvel at the stunning rural scenery of limestone cliffs. Trang An Grottoes is similar to Tam Coc, but with many more caves to explore. Unfortunately, some of the caves have been widened to allow boats to pass through, compromising their natural beauty.

After the cruise, enjoy a delicious lunch at a nearby local restaurant before continuing on to explore the majestic Bai Dinh Pagoda. Not only is this the largest pagoda in Vietnam, but it is also the largest in Southeast Asia. Situated on a hill at the back, with views overlooking a river at the front, its prime location has made it one of Ninh Binh's most impressive tourist attractions.

Finally, you will be transported to your hotel for the evening, with dinner on your own.

Overnight in Ninh Binh (or in a resort near Bai Dinh Pagoda).

Things to do in Ninh Binh

Day 4: Ninh Binh - Halong Bay - Surprise Cave (B; L; D)
Car Cruise

Your day will begin with an 8am hotel pick-up and transfer to Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Quảng Ninh Province, Vietnam. Translating to "descending dragon" in Vietnamese, this stunning destination is a popular travel spot.

Upon arrival at Tuan Chau Port around 11:45am to 12:00pm, you will board our boat and receive a welcome drink and safety instructions during a cruise briefing. You will also be treated to a delicious deluxe Vietnamese Set Menu Lunch, with the option to book a massage service in advance to enjoy throughout the cruise.

As we cruise through the bay, you will have the opportunity to take in the most beautiful and peaceful areas, such as the Incense Burner, Dog Stone Islet, Fighting Cock, and Finger Islet. Our next stop is the breathtaking Surprise Cave (Hang Sửng Sốt), one of the largest and most stunning grottoes in Halong Bay. To reach the mouth of the cave, we will climb approximately a hundred stone steps.

After exploring the Surprise Cave, we will sail for about 30 minutes to anchor overnight. During this time, guests can participate in a Fruit and Vegetable Carving Lesson led by our Head Chef. Our chef will demonstrate fruit and vegetable carving and teach guests how to decorate and make some traditional Vietnamese food.

A dinner of fresh seafood will be served in the evening, followed by a range of activities. Board games like cards or Parcheesi will be available, as well as massage services throughout the cruise. Everyone can also try their luck at squid fishing on the boat with the help of the crew.

Overnight on boat.

Things to do in Halong Bay

Day 5: Halong Bay - Hanoi (B; L) (160km – 4h00)
Car Cruise Kayak

Should guests choose to wake up early at 6:30 am, they can enjoy a light breakfast and hot drinks in the dining room. However, it is not mandatory, and guests who prefer to sleep in can do so. For those interested, a 30-minute Tai Chi session will be held on the sundeck at 6:45 am.

After the session, guests will be taken by tender to Titov Island. There, they can choose to hike for approximately one hour to the peak to get a breathtaking 360-degree view of the Bay. An expansive viewing deck is also available halfway up the island for guests who do not wish to climb. After the climb, guests can unwind on the beach or take a swim.

Once guests return to the boat, they will have 30 minutes to freshen up and pack their belongings. All guests are requested to collect their belongings from the cabins and leave their heavy luggage outside. Our staff will transfer the luggage directly to the pier. A full breakfast will be served in the dining room, and guests can settle their bills after breakfast. As the boat approaches the pier, guests can relax on the sundeck or in the dining room and enjoy the beautiful bay scenery.

Please note that the itinerary is subject to change due to weather conditions, tide levels, and operational conditions, and the times provided are approximate and may vary.

At 12:00 PM, the cruise experience will end, and guests will be transferred to Ninh Binh. On the way, a stop will be made to savor the mouth-watering green cake, a popular local delicacy.

In the afternoon, guests will arrive in Hanoi and proceed to check-in at their hotel.

Dinner will be on their own.

Overnight in Hanoi.

Best restaurant in Hanoi

Day 6: Hanoi - Da Nang | By Plane - Hoi An (B)
Car Air plane

After enjoying breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport to catch your morning flight to Da Nang city. Upon arrival, a driver will be waiting to pick you up at the airport and take you to Hoi An. Along the way, you will stop at Non Nuoc Marble village, located around 8km southeast of Da Nang City, which is also known as "Mountain and Water" in Vietnamese.

Afterward, you will continue your journey to the ancient town of Hoi An. This town was a crucial trading port during the 17th and 18th centuries and has been officially listed as a World Heritage site. Upon arrival, you will check into your hotel and prepare to explore the town.

Walking through the ancient town is an excellent way to start the day, and you will visit some of the most significant historical and cultural sites. The Quan Cong temple and Phuc Kien pagoda will offer insight into the Chinese influence in Hoi An, while the Japanese Bridge and Tan Ky ancient house will showcase the town's diverse heritage.

Meals will be on your own.

Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 7: Hoi An - Hue (B; L) (100km - 2h30 By Car)
Car Sampan Cruise

After enjoying breakfast, you will be driven to Danang to visit the Cham Museum, a fascinating museum that showcases the art and artifacts of the Cham civilization. Afterward, you will continue your journey to Hue, which was the capital of Đàng Trong (meaning South region of Vietnam) from 1738 to 1775 and the capital of Vietnam during the Nguyễn dynasty from 1802 to 1945.

Upon arrival, you will check into your hotel and have lunch at a local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will take a boat cruise on the serene Huong River, passing by the bustling Dong Ba market and visiting the Thien Mu pagoda on the riverbank. You will also explore Emperor Minh Mang's tomb, which is reminiscent of the Ming tombs in China with its pavilions, ponds, and gardens, and is known for its perfect harmony between architecture and its natural environment. The tomb was built during his reign (1820-1841) and completed in 1843, two years after his death by his successor Thieu Tri.

You will have dinner on your own tonight.

Overnight in Hue.

Day 8: Hue City Tour (B; L)
Car

After breakfast, you will visit the Imperial Citadel, which was the seat of power for the Nguyen Dynasty from 1804-1945. You will have the opportunity to visit some of the most highly revered sites in this World Heritage area, including the Flag Tower, South Door, Edict Pavilion, Supreme Harmony Palace, and the Forbidden Purple City.

Next, you will discover Emperor Khai Dinh's mausoleum, which is unique among the royal tombs in Hue. While other royal tombs are expansive and invite respectful reflection, Khai Dinh built his final resting place to be monumental in style and bombastic in execution.

You will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before visiting Dong Ba market, a vibrant market that offers a wide range of goods, from fresh produce to souvenirs. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Diem Phung Thi exhibition of sculptures. Diem Phung Thi was a renowned artist who began studying sculpture in 1959. Her work became famous and in 1991, her name was listed in the Larousse Dictionary: The Arts of the Twentieth Century; Dictionary of Statues and Paintings. She became an Academician of the European Academy of Sciences, Literature, and Arts in 1992. In 1992, she returned to Vietnam and opened an exhibition room at the Vietnamese-French Culture Exchange Institute in HCMC.

You will have dinner on your own tonight.

Overnight in Hue.

Day 9: Hue - Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) (B; L)
Car Air plane

After an early breakfast, you will be transferred to Hue Airport for your morning flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Formerly known as Saigon, it served as the capital of the French colony of Cochin-china and later the independent republic of South Vietnam from 1955-75. On 2 July 1976, Saigon was officially renamed Ho Chi Minh City, after the Vietnamese communist revolutionary leader who was prime minister (1945-1955) and president (1945-1969) of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam).

Upon arrival, you will discover the bustling city of Saigon. You will visit the Opera House, which was built in 1900 and inspired by the architecture of the Opera Garnier in Paris. The facade of the opera is a replica of the Petit Palais in Paris. You will also visit Notre-Dame Cathedral, a famous central Saigon Cathedral built in 1877 with materials imported from France, and the Post Office signed by Gustave Eiffel.

After lunch at a restaurant, you will explore the Chinese quarter "Cho Lon" and its impressive Binh Tay market. You will end the day with a visit to a lacquer ware factory, where you will have the opportunity to witness the creation of traditional Vietnamese lacquer ware.

At the end of the day, you will return to your hotel for some leisure time.

Dinner on your own.

Overnight in Saigon.

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City - Ben Tre (Mekong) (B; L; D) (110 Km – 2h30)
Car Sampan Cruise Tuk-Tuk -Xe Loi

Begin your immersive experience of traditional Vietnamese life with a pick-up from your hotel in Ben Tre, a charming town situated in the Mekong Delta renowned for its scenic natural landscapes and distinct local culture

At 10:30 am, you'll arrive at Hàm Luông pier in Ben Tre town, where you'll board a boat for a picturesque cruise on the Ben Tre River, one of the Mekong Delta's tributaries. During the journey, you'll observe the vibrant activities taking place along the river, such as fishing and water transfer, which form an essential part of the daily routine of the local people.

Witness the traditional brick-making process by visiting the masonry and observing how bricks are printed and fired. Then, explore a coconut processing workshop located along the canal and visit a workshop where mats are made and tea and fruit are enjoyed.

Experience the tropical culture of the peasants by taking a motor cart (xe lôi) or a bicycle through the green plains or green rice fields.

Enjoy lunch at the Hai Hồ family and then take a rowing boat to reach the pier, where you'll continue your journey by car to the house where you'll be spending the night. Check-in with the locals and take some time to rest or explore the village to learn more about the daily life of the locals.

Savor the flavors of traditional Vietnamese cuisine at the homestay dinner, prepared using fresh, local ingredients.

After dinner, unwind with a foot bath program that includes precious medicinal herbs from the garden and Sa Huynh salt, which is made using coconut shells for an authentic relaxation and healing experience.

Overnight homestay in Ben Tre.

Day 11: Ben Tre - HCM City (B; L) (110 Km – 2h30)
Car Bicycle Walking

Commence your day with a revitalizing bike ride to explore a coconut garden after your morning meal. Savor the taste of freshly picked coconuts while listening to the tale of the abode with two wings and three compartments.

Following that, you will have the opportunity to taste delectable cocoa and learn about the methods of cultivating and producing cocoa in the vicinity. This unparalleled experience will enable you to discover the conventional techniques of cocoa collection.

Cycle through a beautiful region that showcases typical southern landscapes, and appreciate the extensive rice fields, orchards, gardens, and canals that stretch out for miles.

After a busy morning, take a breather and enjoy the local cuisine. Collect your belongings and embark on the journey to Ho Chi Minh City.

Your full-day adventure and exploration of Vietnamese rural life will conclude when you arrive in Ho Chi Minh City around 5:00 p.m.

Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.

Day 12: Ho Chi Minh City - Departure (B)
Car Air plane

Following your breakfast, you will have some leisure time before your scheduled airport transfer for your flight back home. Please note that meals during this time will be at your own discretion.

End of Trip (12 day Holidays in Vietnam).

  • What’s Inclusion

    • Accommodation in a double or twin room with daily breakfast
    • Overnight cruise on board a shared good-quality boat in Halong Bay (private boat upon request).
    • Private air-conditioned vehicle during all tours and transfers.
    • English-speaking guide during all tours.
    • Entrance fees for all visits as mentioned in the itinerary
    • Water puppet show in Hanoi.
    • Lunch or dinner as specified in the itinerary
    • Local private sampan cruise in Trang An, Hoi An, Hue, Mekong Delta.
    • Bicycle in Hoi An & Mekong Delta.
    • Water & cool towels
    • Government taxes & service charge.
  • What’s Excluded

    • International airfare and departure taxes
    • Drinks and meals not mentioned
    • Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone, drinks, tips… etc.
    • Personal travel insurance.
    • Vietnam Visa (If you are not exempt from the visa).
  • Notes

    • Domestic flights: We quote separately and can book for you without fees.
    • Surcharged for Gala dinner on 24th and 31st December if any
    • Surcharged for Public holidays (30/4-1/5, Lunar New Year)
    • The timing of check-in and check-out at the hotels: Check-in at 14:00, check-out at 12:00. (Early check-in/
    • late check-out is upon your request).
    • A single supplement is required if you are traveling alone.
    • The triple room is possible upon your request.

Customer Reviews

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  • Sergio

    Sergio

    Jul 12, 2023
    5.0 Excellent

    Fantastic experience holidays Vietnam

    I highly recommend Autour Asia and Mr. Tran based on the fantastic experience I had during my trip to Vietnam 12 days. Their services exceeded my expectations, and I am eagerly looking forward to visiting Vietnam again in the future. Thank you for providing me with such a wonderful and memorable experience.
  • Stanley

    Stanley

    Jul 12, 2023
    5.0 Excellent

    All of our inquiries were promptly satisfied

    Our Vietnam Tour 12 days was a complete package that included a knowledgeable tour guide, transportation for the Halong Bay cruise, comfortable accommodations, delicious food, and even an airport pick-up. All of our inquiries were promptly attended to, and the level of service provided left us extremely satisfied. Autour Asia, as a local company, demonstrated a strong commitment to ensuring customer satisfaction. We wholeheartedly recommend this tour agency to anyone seeking a fantastic travel experience in Vietnam.
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