Discover the spirit of Vietnam with a North to South trip. Starting from the charismatic city of Hanoi, you’ll visit the charms of Halong Bay on-board a traditional wooden junk, then work your way up South, visiting priceless UNESCO Heritage Sites, the bustle of Saigon, and the green pastures of the Mekong Delta.
* The Spirit of Vietnam tour can be reversed starting from Ho Chi Minh City and ending in Hanoi depending on your flight schedule.
SPIRIT OF VIETNAM ITINERARY
DAY 1: HANOI ARRIVAL (D)
Arriving in Hanoi (Noi Bai airport), you will be welcomed by your guide and transferred to your hotel for check-in (hotel rooms are available for mid-afternoon check-in).
In the afternoon, we start the tour with Hanoi sightseeing. Visit the Temple of Literature. In 1076, Vietnam’s first university 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.
Wander the streets of Hanoi’s Old Quarter, also known as the ‘36 streets’. Take a walking tour through charming Hang Be Market and around Hoan Kiem Lake. This bustling area of narrow streets and alleys is home to literally thousands of small businesses and shopkeepers. It’s a great place to explore with plenty of photo opportunities all around.
Finish the day with one hour water puppet show – a famous traditional Vietnamese art with more than 800 years of history. It’s a unique heritage from the Red River (Sông Hồng) region in northern Vietnam. Enjoy welcome dinner at restaurant.
Stay overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 2: HANOI – HALONG BAY, THE WORLD HERITAGE – OVERNIGHT ON BOARD (B, L, D)
Following breakfast leave Hanoi for a 3hr30mins drive to Halong Bay including a 20-minutes stop on the way. Arrive at your jetty in Halong City towards noon and proceed with check-in formalities. After your welcome onboard, a lunch will be served while cruising towards the bay itself.
In the afternoon, enjoy some visits and/or 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.
Stay overnight on board.
DAY 3: HALONG BAY CRUISE – HANOI (B, L)
Rising to the sound of lapping bay waters, we have time for an early morning dip followed by breakfast. Sitting on the upper deck, you can relax while taking in the breath-taking beauty of the rocky islands rising from the emerald water of the bay.
On your return to Halong City enjoy a wholesome brunch as your boat wends through strange-shaped limestone rock formations. Upon disembarkation your driver will meet you for the transfer back to Hanoi.
16h30 Arrive in Hanoi. Trip ends at your hotel around 17h00.
Stay overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 4: HANOI – FLIGHT TO DANANG – HOI AN, THE ANCIENT TOWN (B, L)
This day, you are moving to the central part of Vietnam. Our driver will pick you up at your hotel and transfer to Noi Bai Airport for flight to Danang. On arrival at Danang airport, you are transferred to Hoi An, which was originally one of major trading centers of Southeast Asia in the 16th century. Stop on the way to visit the Marble Mountains and Cham Museum (rich collection of Cham sculptures from in 14-15 century back with Indian influences).
Check in hotel and lunch will be served in the local restaurant.
In the afternoon take a walking tour around this enchanting port town. Follow the narrow lanes lined with centuries-old houses influenced by Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures and visit its numerous places of interest: the 400-year old Japanese Covered Bridge, the Phuc Kien Assembly Halls, the local fish market … Around the town we can see a numerous art galleries and tailor shops, get some made-to-order clothes if you like. Return to your hotel where the full day trip ends.
Stay overnight in Hoi An.
DAY 5: HOI AN – DANANG – FLIGHT TO HO CHI MINH CITY – CU CHI TUNNELS (B, L)
Today, fly to Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), formerly known as Saigon. You will be transfered to the airport and picked up on arrival at HCMC airport.
In the afternoon depart Ho Chi Minh City for the drive to Cu Chi district. Leaving the city behind, the scenery changes to views of rice paddies, villagers drying noodles by the side of the road and other scenes typical to southern Vietnam.
Arrive and start the visit of the famous Cu Chi Tunnels which consist of an incredible underground tunnel network constructed by Vietnamese resistance fighters (Viet Cong) during both the French and American wars. Start the visit with the Ben Dinh or Ben Duocsections of the tunnel. Here you can imagine what it was like to be a guerrilla complete with Russian Carbine rifles and AK 47’s on display.
In the late afternoon journey back to Ho Chi Minh City.
Stay overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 6: HO CHI MINH CITY – MEKONG DELTA, CAI BE FLOATING MARKET (B, L)
This morning, leave bustling Ho Chi Minh for the 2 hour drive to the delta town of Cai Be. The local traditional wooden boats, vast emerald rice fields and lush back waterways; these are the things that make Cai Be such a desired destination.
On arrival board your boat for a cruise of Cai Be floating market. Traders work the river and some have been living on these waters for generations. Produce at the market are hung on a pole in front of boats to attract customers and make it easier for people to see from afar what is on offer. Immerse yourself in a world of lush vegetation from the Mekong Delta as you pick through the fascinating and lively market, watching buyers bargaining for produce.
After visiting the market continue to a cottage factory where ‘pop-rice’, rice paper and coconut candies are made. Return to the boat for the cruise to Tan Phong Island. Next, take a rowing boat along the maze of shady canals. Head for a local orchard to enjoy the local tropical fruits, and visit artisan workshops to see the handicraft producers of the village at work.
Break for lunch at an orchard garden. Lunch will be local Mekong style serving specialties of the area. Afterwards, you will ride bicycles to villages, sightseeing and soaking up the rural ambiance or enjoy cooking class. If you prefer to relax, you can laze in a hammock.
Following your cruise drive back to Ho Chi Minh City. Arrive at your hotel around 17h30.
Stay overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 7: HO CHI MINH CITY DEPARTURE (B)
The day is at your leisure for last minute sight-seeing or shopping until your transfer to Tan Son Nhat Airport for your onward flight.
The Spirit of Vietnam tour ends.
If hotel and other travel arrangements are required, please contact us.
TOUR PRICES: Available upon Request
Rates vary frequently. Please contact us to get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs.
Our services include:
– Full transportation by private air conditioned vehicle as tour program indicated (shared bus of 2 day Halong tour).
– All entrance fees as mentioned in the program.
– Boat trips as stated in above sights (shared boat of 2 day Halong tour).
– All excursion trips and activities as tour program indicated.
– Local English-speaking guides (for other languages supplements apply).
– Meals as stated in the program (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner).
– Accommodation in shared twin or double bedded room with air-condition and private bathroom.
– Mineral water and chilled tissue served on trip.
– The written approval letter for a visa on arrival (single entry).
Our services exclude:
– Visa stamping fee on arrival (45 US$ per person).
– All air tickets not mentioned in the program and above quotation.
– Optional tours.
– Surcharges for other language guides.
– Personal travel insurance.
– Personal expenditure, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc…
– Meals and services other than mentioned in the program.
– Drinks with meals.
– Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the program.
– Prices may vary according to your travel time and are higher in the high season, e.g. Christmas period (Dec 24-26), New Year period (Dec 31-Jan 02).
– For additional hotel night cost to the packages, please contact us for the rates.
– Domestic flights of Hanoi-Danang and Danang-Saigon can be arranged upon request (subject to availability at the time of final confirmation).
– This private escorted tour is customized for you, your family or your friends exclusively. No other travelers will join in your group.
– This tour package can be fully customizable to fit your travel plan. You can also disregard full package tours and choose whatever travel items you need or a mix of private and group tours to minimize the cost. We can quote the tours you really want. Usually travel insurance is not covered in our quotations.
– Child definition: from age of 3 to 9 Years (usually enjoying 10%-20% discount. Contact us for the actual discount for your case). 10 Years old and above will be charged as Adult Price.
– All tours & transfers are all based in English Speaking local guides. For other languages, please contact us for new quotations.
– Itinerary Change to the confirmed itinerary may happen because of traffic, weather, or any other conditions not under our control such as war, strike, fire, acts of government, riot, etc. We will do our best to make sure that all the travel will be similar. Go Viet Travel can substitute the itinerary upon your agreement.
– Transportation and Restaurants: The cars, vans or coaches for the land transportation should be in good shape with air conditioner. All restaurants should be tidy and clean.