An 18-day small group tour with Travel Indochina taking in the best of Vietnam
Activity adventure | City | Escorted tour | History & culture | Natural world
This 18-day small group tour with Travel Indochina takes in the very best of Vietnam's highlights, including Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, Hoi An, Nha Trang, Dalat, Saigon and the Mekong Delta, while also revealing a side to this remarkable country that many tourists miss. Along the way you'll experience the life of a local fisherman and learn to paddle your own basket boat, visit the Street Café project in Hanoi, which trains disadvantaged young people in the restaurant industry, and sit with the children of the Spiral Foundation in Hue, where you'll learn how to make your very own souvenir to take home.
Day by day itinerary
Hanoi & Halong Bay
Arrive in Hanoi and transfer to your hotel where you'll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers. In the evening you'll enjoy a welcome drink and tour briefing. The following morning you'll be collected from your hotel for the drive to beautiful Halong Bay. On arrival you'll board your overnight cruise, which takes you deep amongst the bay's thousands of limestone islands. Back in Hanoi, join a backstreets walking tour with the chance to see and try some local Vietnamese snacks. Explore the Ho Chi Minh Quarter the next day and visit the ancient Temple of Literature and infamous 'Hanoi Hilton' prison.
Stay: Anise Hotel and overnight cruise
Meals: B L D
Fly south to the town of Hue, the former imperial capital of Vietnam. Here, you'll unearth an array of historical treasures including the impressive Citadel, the emperor's tombs and the Thien Mu Pagoda. You'll also visit the Spiral Foundation where deaf and mute workers teach you to make local handicrafts.
Stay: Moonlight Hotel
Catch a train to Danang, and visit Cham Museum before transferring to Hoi An. Amble through charming streets passing historical houses and temples and the iconic Japanese Bridge. Take a morning tour of the local markets with workers from the nearby Streets Foundation, before free time gives you the opportunity to cycle to the inviting beach nearby, or frequent the many tailor shops in town. Try your hand at traditional fishing techniques on the 'Local Fisherman for a Day', offering a real insight into Vietnamese life, and learn how to navigate a basket boat through the narrow waterways.
Stay: Ancient House Resort
Quy Nhon & Nha Trang
Leave Hoi An behind as you head to the moving My Lai memorial, a lasting memory of one of the most horrific incidents of the American War, when several hundred villagers were killed by US forces. From there you'll continue your journey south to the charming port town of Quy Nhon where you'll enjoy beautiful views across the sparkling waters of the South China Sea. Next your journey takes you to the country's pre-eminent beach resort, Nha Trang. Here you'll enjoy an island boat cruise, giving you the chance to relax, feast on wonderful seafood and swim and snorkel in the clear ocean.
Stay: Saigon Quy Nhon Hotel (Quy Nhon) and Michelia (Nha Trang)
A change of scene sees you arrive in the rustic villages and tea plantations of Vietnam's Central Highlands and the former French hill station of Dalat. Here, amidst the winding streets, colourful markets and abandoned French mansions, you'll enjoy stunning mountain views, from a cable car ride and have the chance to admire the faded art deco charm of the last emperor's summer residence.
Stay: Saigon Dalat Hotel
Saigon & the Mekong Delta
Travel overland to Saigon, Vietnam's largest city and visit the amazing Cu Chi tunnels before wandering along historic Dong Khoi Streets, visiting the former Rue Catinat, stopping at sites such as the Notre Dame Cathedral and the War Remnants Museum. You'll also spend a day cruising the canals and wondering the shady lanes of the Mekong Delta. Then, spend your last night in Saigon enjoying a farewell dinner with fellow travellers.
Stay: Palace Hotel
Meals: B D
Depart for UK
After breakfast, enjoy free time until your departure transfer and overnight flight back to the UK, arriving on day 19.
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