Explore the beauty of Vietnam and visit the most famous sights in the country. Start your journey in Saigon the “Pearl of the East”. Spend the rest of the day in Saigon and marvel at the colorful markets and palaces. Continue to Hoi An, the ancient city that still reflects the appearance of a small harbor town from the 15the century, combining local and Chinese architecture. Walk the streets of the imperial city and visit the ruins of the “Purple Forbidden City,” which is a smaller version of Beijing’s Forbidden City. Spend the last two days at Halong Bay, where magnificent limestone islands stretch up into the sky surrounded by amazing blue jade water.
Day 1 Arrive in Hanoi (no meal)
Arrival in Hanoi, a welcoming party will attend to everybody, a moment of courtesy meeting of the tour guide at the meeting point’s Noi Bai Airport.
Hanoi – with a history stretching from its legendary beginning in 1,010 to 15th century and beyond, is the cradle of the Red River Delta civilization with green rice-fields, its Old streets, its colonial Quarter, its calm lakes, the shaded boulevards, its verdant public parks and sunny smiles with truly Far-East Asian faces… Our experienced tour guide will bring you the most lovely aspects of Hanoi – the ancient city of 1,000 years. Transfer to hotel for check in and take your time to rest after a long flight.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 2 Hanoi- Full day tour (breakfast)
After breakfast, enjoy a full day tour of Hanoi, experience the political buildings of Vietnam by a visit to the Chairman Palace area, where you will find the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Ba Dinh National square, Stilt House, One Pillar Pagoda. Continuing to visit Tran Quoc Pagoda & Quan Thanh Temple, which are located on an islet of West Lake, afterward is the Temple of Literature. In the afternoon, you will visit the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, which contains more than 10,000 objects that depict all aspects of life, customs, and habits of the 54 ethnic groups of Vietnam. Afterward, you will venture on a Richshaw adventure throughout the old city, to get a grasp of the local lifestyle. Rickshaws will return back at the Garden of Hoan Kiem Lake – the Return-Sword Lake, to visit Ngoc Son – Heroic Temple.
In the evening it is the time of a water puppet show, a unique art form of Vietnamese, at Thang Long Water Puppet Troupe, and you will also experience more about a specific culture in South-East Asia coming from agriculture of wet rice during the performance.
Drive back to the hotel and free time at night.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 3 Hanoi- Halong Bay (breakfast/lunch/dinner)
After breakfast, check out then depart to Halong Bay,175 km from Hanoi, the highway is smooth and will take 3.5 – 4 hours usually. Landscapes en route are magnificent with immense rice-fields, farmers working in the fields and small, peaceful villages. In 1994 UNESCO classified Halong Bay as a World Natural Heritage and in November 2000, the World Heritage Committee reconfirmed this classification, your excursion to Halong Bay will be nothing else than remarkable and breathtaking.
Halong Bay is nearly a hidden bay with thousands of limestone islands densely rising from the blue jade water in a sea area of over 1500 square kilometers. Its 1969 green islands enfeeble the strong winds blowing from the ocean to leave the transparent water of the bay often calm in the cool and healthy air. The beauty of the bay is not monotone, at different positions of viewing; it will astonish viewers with quite different fascinations. In the caves and grottoes of stone islands, visitors will discover and admire the many impressive stalactites and stalagmites.
12:00 Arrive to Bhaya Cafe at Tuan Chau Island.
12:45 Board: Welcome drinks and a quick briefing of the itinerary and safety information by our Cruise Manager.
13:00 Let the vacation begin with a lunch buffet as the boat cruises towards South East Halong Bay, passing by Chicken Rock, Finger Islet, and Frog Islet.
15:00 Arrive to Dark and Bright Lagoon and visit the area by rowboat or kayak
Kayaks can be booked in advance at reception with extra cost. Anticipate a great chance to see Cat Ba Langur, one of the rarest langurs left.
16:30 Return to main boat for swimming around the area, relaxing on sundeck or indulging you with spa service.
17:00 Bar opens for the Happy Hour “Buy one get one free”.
17:30 Cooking demonstration with traditional Vietnamese food on the sundeck (or in the restaurant if weather does not allow).
19:00 Set menu dinner will be served in the restaurant.
21:00 Free time to be spent watching a movie in the restaurant, squid fishing at reception, or relaxing at the bar.
Overnight on board
Day 4 Halong Bay-Hoian-Hue Royal City (breakfast/lunch)
06:15 Early start for a Tai Chi demonstration on the sundeck; Tea and coffee available.
07:00 Light breakfast will be served in the restaurant.
07:45 Discover surprise cave and one of the biggest caves in Halong Bay with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites.
09:00 Back to main boat for check out: please put your baggage out to the corridor and settle your bill at reception.
09:30 Buffet brunch will be served in the restaurant while the boat heads back to harbor.
10:30 Disembark to Tuan Chau Marina and depart for Hanoi.
15:00 Return to Hanoi. End of service. End the trip.
Our car is waiting for you at the pier and to head straight-up to Noi Bai airport for domestic flight to Hue.
Hue Royal City – the Complex of Monuments, the heart of central Vietnam served as Vietnam’s political capital 1802 to 1945 under the 13 emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty and was recognized as the World Cultural Heritage Site. Hue – has been the Capital of a unified Vietnam, built at about the beginning of the 19th century, it combines the oriental philosophy with the traditions of Vietnam. Intimately mingled with the natural environment, the beauty and special richness of the architecture and decorative art of the building is an original image of the Vietnamese monarchy at its most prosperous period.
Transfer to hotel for check in and time of rest.
Overnight in Hue
Day 5 Hue Royal City-Full days tour (breakfast)
In the Morning you will enjoy the exciting historical tour by a visit to the Royal Tomb of Tu Duc King, its serious sceneries, impressive architectures to remind a splendid monarchy and the circulate widely false news of the real tomb of Tu Duc remains hidden for future generations to discover. Continue to visit the Royal Tomb of Khai Dinh King, is the final resting place of the Emperor of Vietnam from 1916-1925. The tomb represents a fusion of traditional Vietnamese style and modern influence, the tomb is almost entirely made of concrete and includes many European architectural details.
Afternoon, you spend time strolling around the mighty Imperial City, photo-stop at the Royal National high-school and its Royal Stele on the bank of Perfume River, which was the most famous National school in Vietnam, visit The Imperial City – Purple Forbidden City, is the best-preserved remnant of a vast citadel and royal quarters that once existed on the site. To put the ruins into context, it is important to consider how they were originally used, there is a network of palaces, gates, and courtyards that served as The Emperor’s home and the administrative core of the Empire. Visit The Flag Tower – a huge structure of three flat-top pyramids, where nine holy cannons are housed in two buildings beside the The Nhan and Quang Duc Miradors in the Citadel of Hue, Palace of the Supreme Harmony, which was the building for great court’s meetings. It faces the Noontime Gate (Ngo Mon Gate) and lies right on the central axis of the Citadel, The Mieu Temple is situated southwest of the Citadel and facing south, dedicated to ten Emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty, then The Royal Theater – DUYET THI DUONG was the oldest of Vietnamese traditional stage that remained. After that, transfer to visit Hue Art Royal museum on Le Truc Street.
In the late afternoon, transfer to the Royal Marina and continuing boat upstream to visit Thien Mu Pagoda (Pagoda of Heavenly Lady).
While the wind smoothly moves the bamboo branches, one hears the Thiên Mụ bell, and the Thọ-Xuong rooster’s song.
Thien Mu Pagoda located on a sloping pine hill with the front side facing the Perfume River, was firstly built in 1601 which its 21-metre-high tower of seven storeys and the refined bell are always the most beautiful scenery of the ancient pagodas in whole country, and the highest spirit of Vietnamese also. A moment enjoy the beautiful views of sunset, the sun is setting down along the Perfume River and the tinged clouds becoming dim on horizon.
Back to hotel for free leisure at night
Overnight in Hue Royal City
Day 6 Hue Royal City-Danang& Hoian Ancient Town (breakfast)
After breakfast, check out and then depart to Da Nang City, an ancient land closely connected with cultural traditions, mixing the famous beautiful sites, the white sand beaches. The trip passes many spectacular scenarios along the National Highway 1, via the breathing Hai Van Pass, literal meaning is “Sea and Cloud”, is the highest and longest pass in Vietnam with the north-south national highway zigzagging through it for almost 20 km. Reaching a height of 496 m above sea level the pass seems to be lost in the clouds almost all of the time. From the highest point of the pass, you get a bird’s eye view of the rich lowlands encircling the city of Danang with its image reflected on the waters of Han River. To the south and at the foot of the mountain lies the Nam O seashore where there is a fine beach with gentle waves and fishing boats crowding the waterfront. Photo-stop somewhere in the Pass, get your perfect pictures of Lang Co beach, a spectacular landscape & peaceful fishing hamlet.
Arrival Danang, proceeding to Hoi An ancient town, lies on the banks of the Thu Bon River, 30 km south of Danang, has a distinct Chinese atmosphere with low, tile-roofed houses and narrow streets; the original structure of some of these streets still remains almost intact. Occupied by early western traders, Hoi was one of the major trading centers of Southeast Asia in the 16th century. All the houses were made of rare wood, decorated with lacquered boards and panels engraved with Chinese characters. Pillars were also carved with ornamental designs.
Enjoy an interesting town-tour by walking. It is the best way to discover Hoian ancient town, visit The Japanese Covered Bridge where retains a harmony of architectural styles, combining Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese cultural characteristics. Ong Pagoda is one of the typical pagodas in Hoi An’s old quarter, built in 1653 and is dedicated to Quan Thanh De Quan (Quan Van Truong). Fukienese Assembly Hall was built in 1692 by Chinese Phuoc Kien merchants, is architecturally unique with its artistic ornaments and beautiful statues, Chinese architectural style combined with Vietnamese workmanship has enriched it with Hoi An’s cultural character. Tan Ky Ancient House, constructed almost two centuries ago as the house of a Vietnamese merchant. It has always been lovingly preserved and now looks almost exactly as it did in the early 19th century, Hand-made Silk workshop as the last destination. Transfer to hotel for check in and free at leisure.
Overnight in Hoi An
Day 7 Hoian Ancient Town-Danang& Saigon (breakfast)
Morning check out and transfer to the Danang airport for flight to Saigon.
Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City, a young city with the age of more than 300 years, a center of culture, education, commerce and tourism of Vietnam, the biggest city of Vietnam mix with the West and the Orient, and once known as the “Pearl of Far East”. Transfer to hotel for check in and free at leisure.
Overnight in Saigon
Day 8 Saigon (breakfast)
After breakfast, you will visit the Reunification Palace – a symbol of Saigon old Government before 1975, (also called former President Palace) to learn the sorrowful historic of Vietnam Ideology War from 1954-1975. Photo-stop at Neo-Roman Notre Dame Cathedral – one of the most splendid and typical of the beautiful French-built churches in Ho Chi Minh City, next to Municipal Post Office – Saigon’s French-style main post office to admire and take photos of its nice architecture that is one of the Ho Chi Minh City’s symbolizing images. Later, pass by Ho Chi Minh City People Committee (also the old French city hall before 1975), and Municipal Theatre built in 1899. Check-in and a moment of rest. Finally, enjoy shopping at Ben Thanh Market – a most typical market of Vietnam, is a big marketplace in the downtown area of Ho Chi Minh City, with how many things are available for your choice. The market is one of the earliest surviving structures in Saigon and today is considered one of the symbols of Ho Chi Minh City, popular with tourists seeking local handicrafts, textiles, áo dài (traditional long-dress for female Vietnamese), and souvenirs, as well as local cuisine.
Overnight in Saigon
Day 9 Saigon Departure (breakfast)
After breakfast, free at leisure until check out, drive to Tan Son Nhat airport for flight back home.
Duration: 9 days
Activities level: Easy to moderate
Transport: Private air-conditioned vehicle, domestic flight
Meals: 8 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner
Accommodation: First class hotels/Dluxe hotels
Price: CNY 15980 p. double occupancy, CNY 9250 p. single supplement
Size of group: 3-5 persons
• Private-transportation between areas by A/C vehicle, rickshaw, and boat as indicated in the itinerary.
• Accommodation based on twin / double sharing room with daily breakfast.
• Sightseeing and entrance fees as indicated in the itinerary on travelling days.
• Cruising package 2D1N in Halong bay including accommodation, entrance fee, sightseeing, meals as indicated.
• Regional English speaking guide on travelling days, except travelling days.
• Mineral water on travelling days.
• Airfare for the inner flights on Economic Class, Airport Tax included, Hanoi to Hue and Danang to Saigon
What’s not included
• Visa arrangement fees. (Visa on upon arrival is available).
• Personal expense such as telephone calls, fax, laundry, beverages and meals, and highlights or sightseeing which are not indicated in the program.
• Lunches & dinners (see supplements).
• An extra fee for French / German / Italian / Spanish / Russian speaking guides.
• Excess baggage charges.
• Tips to guides & drivers, porters.
Deluxe hotels with 5 stars hotels
Hotel Name: InterContinental Hanoi Westlake, Hanoi
Room type: Superior Room
Information: The luxurious InterContinental sits on the peaceful waters of Hanoi’s Westlake, next to the 800-year-old Kim Lien (Golden Lotus) Pagoda. Spacious air-conditioned rooms feature contemporary Vietnamese decor and flat-screen TVs. Free Wi-Fi is available in public areas.
Location: InterContinental Hanoi Westlake is about 22 km from Noibai International Airport. Attractions like Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre and Vietnam Fine Arts Museum are within 4.7 km from the hotel.
Hotel Name: Bhaya Cruises, Halong Bay
Room type: Deluxe Cabin
Information: Bhaya Cruises feature Oriental-style luxury cruise ships in Halong Bay. It has air-conditioned cabin rooms and a restaurant. Bhaya offers a variety of onboard activities, such as Vietnamese cooking classes.
Location: Shuttle service (surcharge)
Hotel Name: The Nam Hai, Hoi An
Room type: One Bedroom villa
Information: Spacious villas at Nam Hai feature walk-in closets. They offer flat-screen cable TV and BOSE sound systems. Bathrooms come with rain shower. Tea/coffee maker and minibar are available.
Location: The Nam Hai is a 30-minute drive from Danang International Airport. Hoi An Town is a 10-minute drive away.
Hotel Name: Park Hyatt Saigon, Saigon
Room type: Deluxe Room
Information: This French colonial-style hotel enjoys a prime location in central Ho Chi Minh City, overlooking the Opera House on Lam Son Square. Only 100 metres from Dong Khoi Shopping Street, it offers a 20-metre outdoor pool and the pampering Xuan Spa.
Location: Park Hyatt Saigon is within walking distance of Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office and the Reunification Palace. It is a 45-minute drive from Tan Son Nhat International Airport and 2.5 km from Saigon Railway Station.