Tour code:
VN18D
Duration
18 days 17 nights
Start in
Hanoi
Finish in
Ho Chi Minh City
Places to visit
Hanoi - Halong Bay - Surprise cave - Ninh Binh (Tam Coc - Thung Nham - Bai Dinh Pagoda) - Sapa - Trekking in the villages - Hanoi - Da Nang - Hoi An - Hue - Saigon (HCM city) - Ben Tre - Can Tho (Mekong Delta) - Phu Quoc island Beach - Ho Chi Minh city
Starts
Ends
Hanoi, Vietnam Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Highlights

Experience Vietnam's rich history, vibrant culture, stunning landscapes, and delicious cuisine on the "Vietnam Vacation 18 days." With 32 UNESCO World Heritage sites, Vietnam showcases impressive architecture, ancient artifacts, and revered landmarks. Engage with friendly locals who eagerly share their traditions and customs. Indulge in the vibrant flavors of Vietnamese gastronomy, renowned throughout Asia.

  • Explore Hanoi, a bustling metropolis filled with historical and cultural treasures.
  • Sail through the breathtaking Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Enjoy a sampan cruise in Thung Nham (Ninh Binh) and visit Southeast Asia's largest Bai Dinh Pagoda.
  • Discover the diverse ethnic communities of foggy Sapa.
  • Be enchanted by the timeless beauty of Hoi An's ancient town.
  • Immerse yourself in the simplicity of Hue.
  • Experience the rustic allure of the Mekong Delta with a stay in a community-owned lodge.
  • Finally, relax on the stunning beaches of Phu Quoc island. This captivating tour through Vietnam promises a realm of wonders.

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

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 - Halong Bay - Surprise Cave (B; L; D)
Car Cruise

We will start your day with a 8am pick-up from your hotel to transfer you to Halong Bay. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a popular travel destination located in Quảng Ninh Province, Vietnam. In Vietnamese, "Hạ Long" means "descending dragon."

We will arrive at Tuan Chau Port around 11:45am to 12:00pm, where you will board our boat. You will receive a welcome drink and a cruise briefing with safety instructions. A delicious deluxe Vietnamese Set Menu Lunch will also be served. If you wish, you may book a massage service in advance with your Cruise Manager and enjoy it throughout the cruise.

As we cruise through Halong Bay, we will pass by the most beautiful and serene areas, including Incense Burner, Dog Stone Islet, Fighting Cock, and Finger Islet. Our next destination 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 grotto, we will climb approximately a hundred stone steps.

After exploring the Surprise Cave, we will depart and sail for about 30 minutes to anchor overnight. During this time, guests can attend 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.

Dinner, featuring fresh seafood, will be served in the evening, followed by various 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.

Day 4: Halong - Ninh Binh - Tam Coc (B; L) (190km – 4h30)
Car Cruise Kayak

After enjoying a good night's sleep, guests can opt to wake up at 6:30 am for a breakfast of coffee, tea, and pastries in the dining room. However, it's not compulsory, and those who prefer to sleep in can do so. For early risers who are interested, a 30-minute Tai Chi lesson will be held at 6:45 am on the sundeck.

Next, guests will be taken to Titov Island by tender boat, where they can spend approximately an hour climbing to the peak to enjoy a stunning 360-degree view of the bay. For those who don't wish to climb, there's an expansive viewing deck halfway up the island. After the climb, guests can relax on the beach and take a swim.

Once guests return to the boat, they will have 30 minutes to freshen up and pack their belongings. All heavy luggage should be left outside the cabins, as staff will transfer it directly to the pier. Guests can enjoy a full breakfast in the dining room and settle their bills afterward. As the boat approaches the pier, guests can relax on the sundeck or in the dining room, taking in the beautiful scenery.

We are scheduled to arrive at Tuan Chau port by 11:00 am, where guests can relax inside the pier building while waiting for return transportation. Please note that the itinerary is subject to change due to weather and tide conditions.

At 12:00 pm, the cruise experience comes to an end, and guests will be transferred to Ninh Binh, stopping along the way to sample the delicious local delicacy, green cake. Upon arrival in Ninh Binh, guests will check in at their hotel and have leisure time to relax and unwind before dinner on their own.

Overnight in Tam Coc (12km from Ninh Binh city).

Day 5: Tam Coc - Thung Nham - Bai Dinh Pagoda - Hanoi - Sapa By Night Train (B; L)
Car Sampan Cruise Train

After breakfast, take a small sampan for a spectacular two-hour cruise through numerous waterways. You will be able to admire a beautiful rural landscape of limestone cliffs and rice fields before reaching Thung Nham, which is located 05 km from Tam Coc.

Lunch will be served at a local restaurant.

In the afternoon, the discovery of Bai Dinh Pagoda. The Bai Dinh Pagoda is not only the largest pagoda in Vietnam, but it is also considered to be the largest pagoda in Southeast Asia. The pagoda leans back on the hill in the rear and overlooks the river in the front. This prime location has made Bai Dinh Pagoda one of the most impressive attractions in Ninh Binh.

Go back to Hanoi. It's dinner on your own.

Later, at 8:10 PM, you will be transferred to the railway station to catch the night train to Sapa.

Overnight on train (A/C soft sleeper - 4 persons/ cabin)

Day 6: Lao Cai - Sapa - Cat Cat Village - Y Linh Ho Village - Lao Chai Village - Ta Van Village - Sapa (B; L)
Car Hiking Trekking

Upon your arrival at Lao Cai railway station at approximately 6:00 AM, a comfortable transfer will take you to the magnificent town of Sapa. Nestled in the mountains, Sapa boasts a diverse and vibrant community of over 30 ethnic minority tribes, including the Black H'mong, Flower H'mong, and Red Dzao. The town is also home to Fansipan Mount, the highest peak in Vietnam. Upon arrival in Sapa, you may choose to enjoy breakfast at your hotel or one of the nearby restaurants.

After breakfast, you will set out on a trekking adventure to Cat Cat village. This charming village is located on the picturesque Muong Hoa Valley and is inhabited by the H'Mong hill tribe. The village is situated about 3 km away from Sapa Town and can be reached by an easy 45-minute walk. During your trek, you will be surrounded by rice fields and corn plantations.

Next, you will proceed towards Lao Chai village via Y Linh Ho village. As you traverse through the region's stunning landscape, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and explore the scenic beauty of the area.

At lunchtime, you will savor a delectable meal at a local restaurant, which may be located in Lao Chai village.

After lunch, your trek will take you to Ta Van village, where you can leisurely stroll and observe the traditional lifestyle of the friendly locals. The village's serene and picturesque rural surroundings, complete with rice paddies, wooden bridges, and rivers, offer the perfect setting to relax and unwind.

Return to Sapa Town by car, then check-in your hotel.

Dinner on your own.

Overnight at the hotel in Sapa Town

Day 7: Sapa - Hanoi By Express Bus (B)
Bus

Following breakfast, you will have some spare time to spend in the village before being picked up by the driver to return to Sapa town. From there, you will take a VIP bus to Hanoi, which covers a distance of 330km and takes approximately 5 hours and 30 minutes.

Upon arrival at your hotel in Hanoi in the afternoon, you will have some spare time to explore the city on your own.

You may choose to enjoy a meal at a restaurant of your choice.

Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 8: Hanoi - Da Nang | By Plane - Hoi An (B)
Car Air plane

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

Next, you will continue your journey to the ancient town of Hoi An. This town was once an important trading port during the 17th and 18th centuries, and has been officially listed as a World Heritage site. After arriving, you will check into your hotel and have leisure time to explore the ancient town.

Meals on your own.

Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 9: Hoi An Ancient Town Tour & Ecotour (B; L; D)
Sampan Cruise Bicycle Walking

After enjoying a delicious breakfast, embark on a scenic walk through the Hoi An ancient town to discover its hidden gems. Begin by visiting the Quan Cong temple, a shrine dedicated to the brave and loyal Chinese General. Next, explore the Phuc Kien pagoda, the most famous assembly hall in the ancient town. The pagoda was built by Fukjianese, who were Chinese traders that settled in Hoi An during the XVII century. Here, various gods are worshiped, as it serves as a place of worship for the traders.

Continue your exploration by visiting the Japanese Bridge, an iconic landmark of Hoi An that is widely used as an emblem of the town. Built by Japanese merchants in the 16th century, the bridge is a testament to the town's history and cultural diversity. Next, visit the Tan Ky ancient house, the most popular of Hoi An's old houses. The house is an excellent example of traditional Vietnamese architecture and showcases the town's cultural heritage.

Before lunch, take a moment to admire the beauty of Hoi An port, a World Heritage site listed by UNESCO.

Enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant before beginning the afternoon activities.

Spend a leisurely day cycling through the picturesque countryside of Vietnam, far away from the hustle and bustle of the city. After cycling through the town, pass through the villages of rice fields on quiet roads, culminating in the Van Lang fisherman village and Bay Mau water coconut forest. Covering an area of seven hectares, the forest comprises mangroves, canals, and houses covered in water coconut leaf. This place served as a refuge for people and local soldiers during the Vietnam War and is now renowned for its abundance of seafood.

On the way to the village, stop at Ba Le market, rice fields, cemeteries, and schools. Upon arrival in the village, you will be greeted with a warm cup of green tea by Mr. Han and his family, the third generation of his family to live in the village. Take some free time to stroll through the village before joining the locals in a basket boat to learn their traditional fishing techniques in the water coconut forest.

After returning to Mr. Han and his family, enjoy a traditional therapeutic foot bath with medicinal herbs before preparing dinner with a local family. Dinner will feature a range of local dishes, including Tam Huu spring rolls, Banh Xeo local pancakes, and grilled fish in banana leaf, among other Vietnamese delicacies.

After dinner, take some free time to rest and enjoy the tranquility of the region before returning to your hotel.

Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 10: 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, 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 11: 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 12: Hue - Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) | By Plane (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 13: Ho Chi Minh City - Ben Tre - Can Tho (B; L) (180 Km – 4h30)
Car Sampan Cruise Tuk-Tuk -Xe Loi

Begin your day early, departing from Ho Chi Minh City at 8:30 am, and make your way to Ben Tre. Upon arrival at Hàm Luông Pier, which is located in Ben Tre town and situated opposite a hotel with the same name, take a scenic boat ride along the Ben Tre river, one of the Mekong river's tributaries. You'll be able to observe the lively activities taking place on the river, such as fishing and water transfers, while you cruise along the waterway.

During the boat ride, make a stop to witness traditional brick-making techniques that involve printing and baking. After that, visit a coconut processing workshop situated along the canal, where you can learn about the production of coconut products. From there, take a short walk to a family workshop where locals make sleeping mats and enjoy some refreshing fruit and tea.

Afterward, hop on a motor cart (xe lôi) or a bicycle to experience life under the shade of trees, pass by verdant rice fields and vegetable plains, and gain insights into tropical culture from the local peasants. The scenic journey will provide an opportunity to appreciate the serene countryside and traditional ways of life.

Conclude your adventure by savoring a delightful lunch at the Hai Hồ family's residence.

To get to the pier, take a rowing boat before transferring by car to Can Tho city, where you can check-in at your hotel. In the evening, enjoy dinner on your own.

Overnight at hotel in Can Tho city.

Day 14: Can Tho - Cai Rang Market - Phu Quoc Island | By Plane (B)
Car Sampan Cruise Air plane

Start your day by enjoying a delicious breakfast before embarking on a boat to visit the famous Cai Rang floating market and a family-owned noodle-making factory. The market, which is one of the largest in the Mekong Delta, is home to numerous boats and stalls selling a variety of goods, ranging from fruits like mangoes, bananas, papayas, and pineapples to illicit products such as cigarettes. The market offers a unique opportunity to witness the hustle and bustle of the region's waterway activity and explore the labyrinth of boats.

After the market visit, indulge in some fresh fruit at Ba Cong garden and take a tour of the noodle-making factory to learn about the local noodle craft.

Later, head to the airport for your flight to Phu Quoc island, and upon arrival, you'll be transferred to your hotel. For the rest of the day, you are free to choose your own meals and explore the beautiful island at your leisure.

Overnight in Phu Quoc.

Day 15: Phu Quoc Island - Free Time In The Beach (B)

Take advantage of the full day ahead to explore the stunning beaches of Phu Quoc Island at your own pace. Known for its immaculate beaches with clear waters and breathtaking sunsets, Phu Quoc Island offers a plethora of options to spend your day. You can indulge in sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling, or simply relaxing on the sandy shores.

For those seeking adventure, rent a motorbike or take a taxi to explore the island and visit nearby attractions such as the Phu Quoc National Park, Cua Can River, Ham Ninh Fishing Village, or the Suoi Tranh Waterfall. Alternatively, you can explore some of the island's historical sites, such as the Coconut Tree Prison or the Dinh Cau Night Market to sample some local street food.

In the evening, find a beachside restaurant to watch the stunning sunset while savoring freshly caught seafood from local fishermen.

Please note that meals are not included and are at your own expense. Make the most of your free day on Phu Quoc Island!

Overnight in Phu Quoc.

Day 16: Phu Quoc Island - Free Time In The Beach (B)

Enjoy a free day to unwind and relax on the beautiful beaches of Phu Quoc Island. Spend your time lounging on the sandy shores, swimming in the crystal-clear waters, or indulging in some water sports activities. Take a stroll along the coastline and witness the stunning sunsets that the island is renowned for.

You are free to choose your own dining options throughout the day, as meals are not included. Take this opportunity to sample some of the local cuisine or savor some freshly caught seafood from the local fishermen.

Spend the night in Phu Quoc, and get ready to depart the following day for your next adventure.

Day 17: Phu Quoc Island - Saigon | By Plane (B)
Car Air plane

Relish your last breakfast at the hotel in Phu Quoc before bidding adieu to this serene tropical paradise and heading to the airport for your flight back to Saigon.

Upon arrival in Saigon, a driver will be waiting to welcome you and transfer you to your hotel in the city center. Take some time to unwind and rest after your flight and cherish your last night in Vietnam.

Please note that meals are not included, and you are free to choose your own dining options throughout the day.

Overnight in Saigon.

Day 18: Saigon - Airport Tay Son Nhat - Departure (B)
Car

After breakfast, free time for shopping before your transfer to the airport for your flight back home.

End of Trip (Vietnam tour 18 days)

  • 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.
    • Night train (A/C soft sleeper - 4 persons/ cabin) to Sapa.
    • Express Bus from Sapa to Hanoi.
    • 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 Thung Nham, Hoi An, Hue, Mekong Delta.
    • Bicycle for all tours.
    • Ecotour in Hoi An.
    • 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.

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  • Roland

    Roland

    Jul 12, 2023
    5.0 Excellent

    Unique experiences in Vietnam Vacation 18 days

    During our 18-day Vietnam vacation, we had the pleasure of visiting Sapa's iconic landmarks and exploring Thung Nham in Ninh Binh. These destinations were included in our carefully planned itinerary and provided unique experiences. The following day, we embarked on an unforgettable overnight Paradise Cruise in the enchanting Halong Bay. The combination of stunning scenery and the exceptional cruise experience made for a truly fantastic journey.
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