Day 01: Arrival at Hanoi (_/_/D)
Arrive at Noi Bai International Airport. Visa arrangements. Welcome by your local tour guide and driver. Transfer to your hotel in the city center. Welcome dinner at the infamous Cha Ca La Vong Restaurant. Overnight at your proposed hotel in Hanoi (Executive room at Hilton Hanoi Opera Hotel).
Day 02: Hanoi City Tour (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Visit Ho Chi Minh Complex containing Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, the Presidential Palace, Ho Chi Minh's house on stilts, One Pillar Pagoda and Ho Chi Minh Museum. Lunch at local restaurant. Afternoon, we will visit the Temple of Literature, Vietnam's first national university; stroll around Hoan Kiem Lake, check out Ngoc Son Temple, Tran Quoc Pagoda, and Quan Thanh Buddhist Temple. Sum up the day with private cyclo-ride around the Old Quarter streets from Hang Dau to Hang Gai. Have dinner at the restaurant. Transfer to train station for departure to Sapa with the night train (schedule: 21:00 - 05:00). Overnight at the A/C first class soft sleeper cabin (Victoria or King Express Train).
Day 03: Lao Cai - Sapa (B/L/D)
Arrive at Lao Cai station at 05:00 in the morning. Pick-up at Lao Cai Station then transfer to Sapa. Have breakfast and shower in hotel before the trip starts. Walking tour to visit busy market where Red Dzao, Black H’mong and other minority peoples from surrounding countryside converge to sell their embroidery, silver jewelry and handicrafts. Trek down to Lao Chai village to visit the Tay and Day tribes. Have a picnic lunch on the way then keep going along the bottom of the Sapa valley to get to Ta Van village, which is supposed to be the most beautiful one in the area. Return to Sapa. Have dinner at the restaurant. Overnight at your proposed hotel in Sapa (Deluxe room at Victoria Sapa Resort).
Day 04: Sapa - Lao Cai - Hanoi (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. We start the trip after breakfast, heading up to Giang Ta Chai village of the Red Dzao tribe where you will have a picnic lunch. After lunch we head down to Cat Cat and Sin Chai villages of Black H'mong tribe. Enjoy the Silver Waterfall in Cat Cat, the Rattan Bridge and beautiful scenery along the way. Enjoy a much needed relaxing massage after two days of hiking. Have dinner at the restaurant. Transfer to Lao Cai for overnight train back to Hanoi. Overnight at the A/C first class soft sleeper cabin.
Day 05: Hanoi – Ha Long Bay (B/L/D)
Arrive Hanoi around 05:00 in the morning. Pick up at the train by your private driver. Transfer to the restaurant for breakfast before leaving for Ha Long Bay. Spend 3 hours sightseeing the coastal country Vietnam on the way to Ha Long city. Some shopping opportunity for lacquer ware and embroidery silk painting. Arrive at Emeraude Pier just before 12:00 PM. Welcome by Emeraude staff and embarks with the shuttle boat for short transfer (approximately 5 minutes) to the Emeraude cruise ship. Welcome cocktail and check-in on board the Emeraude. Cruise on the Emeraude on Ha Long Bay passing by some of the most scenic locations including Yen Ngua, Con Coc mountains and a floating village. Lunch buffet is served in the Emeraude restaurant. Followed by an excursion to Sung Sot Grotto (Grotto of Surprise). En-route, enjoy the view from the sundeck, or relax for professional massage (optional). Continue cruising on Ha Long Bay. Anchor near breathtaking Trinh Nu and Hang Trong caves. Swimming and kayaking (optional), if weather permitted. Seafood buffet dinner is served in the Emeraude restaurant. Enjoy squid fishing at night (seasonal). Accommodation and overnight on board.
Day 06: Ha Long Bay - Hanoi (B/L/D)
07:00: Attend a Tai Chi class to relax yourself in the early morning of the Orient or wake up early to see the sunrise. The Emeraude sails once again through the breathtaking scenery of Ha Long Bay heading for Ha Long city, it is your time to take breakfast with European buffet breakfast at the Emeraude restaurant. Checkout of cabin. Transfer by shuttle boat to Emeraude Pier. Return to Hanoi and stop via ceramic-making village for some shopping opportunity. Enjoy the water puppet show in the evening. Have dinner at the restaurant. Overnight at your proposed hotel in Hanoi.
Day 07: Hanoi - Hue (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Free at leisure until transfer to Noi Bai International Airport for boarding to Hue on flight VN 245 (10:10 - 11:20). Pick-up and transfer to hotel. Lunch served at the hotel. Afternoon, visit Dong Ba market, tomb of the Nguyen Emperor and the Citadel, a “great enclosure’ that housed the Capital City, Imperial City, and the ruins of the Forbidden Purple City from where the Nguyen Dynasty ruled between 1802 and 1945. Enjoy a private dinner cruise aboard the dragon boat on the romantic Perfume River and enjoys private Hue singers’ folk songs. Overnight at your proposed hotel in Hue (Superior Riverview at La Residence Hotel & Spa).
Day 08: Hue (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Take a morning cruise on the Perfume River to visit well-known religious sites: the elegant architecture and seven-story octagonal tower of Thien Mu Pagoda, royal tomb of Emperor Tu Duc, and the mausoleum of Emperor Minh Mang set in a tranquil setting of gardens and lakes. Lunch at a local restaurant. If you had not enough of tombstones, we can visit the tombs of Duc Duc, Dong Khanh, Thien Tri, Khai Dinh or Gia Long (leave it for our guide to pick and surprise you!). Enjoy a much deserving relaxing and pampering massage at the spa in the late afternoon. Dinner at the hotel. Overnight at your proposed hotel in Hue.
Day 09: Hue – HCMC (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Free at leisure until transfer to Phu Bai Airport for boarding to HCMC on flight VN 251 (9:15 – 10:35). Pick-up and transfer to hotel. Free at leisure in the afternoon. Enjoy another deserving body massage at the Qi Spa. Lunch and dinner at the restaurant or hotel. Overnight at your proposed hotel in HCMC (Signature room at Caravelle Hotel).
Day 10: HCMC - Tay Ninh – Cu Chi - HCMC (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Driving west to Tay Ninh province, we first visit the Cao Dai Holy See religion. On arrival, we attend the fantastic midday temple service when the followers fill the hall wearing colored robes, a symbol of the curious combination of Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism. Lunch at a local restaurant. On the way back we stop for a visit to Cu Chi Tunnels, an underground tunnels network constructed by Vietnamese fighters during the struggle for independence. The tunnels contained hospitals, accommodation, etc. and were used as a military base for the Viet Cong in the American war. Drive back to HCMC. Dinner at the market. Overnight at your proposed hotel in HCMC.
Day 11: HCMC City Tour (B/L/D)
Breakfast at hotel. Start the sightseeing tour at the Reunification Palace, which was the former residence of the President of South Vietnam, visit the Notre Dame cathedral, the Old Central Post Office, and the War Remnants Museum (opened first time to public in 1975 to systematically study, collect, preserve and display exhibits on war crimes and aftermaths foreign aggressive forces caused to Vietnamese people. Lunch at a local restaurant before heading outside city limits to Cholon’s colorful Chinatown evoking images of China. Also, we visit the Thien Hau and Quan Am Pagodas, and the Emperor Jade Pagoda. We end the city tour with huge Cho Ben Thanh Central Market, which symbolizes today’s emerging economy where anything and everything is for sale. Dinner at the market. Overnight at your proposed hotel in HCMC.
Day 12: HCMC and departure (B/_/_)
Breakfast at hotel. Free for shopping until transfer to Tan San Nhat International Airport for departure.
Tour price includes:
- A/C private VIP car for pick-up, transfers and sightseeing as per program
- Domestic flights: Ha Noi – Hue, Hue - HCMC (Business class)
- A/C soft sleeper train ticket: Hanoi – Lao Cai – Hanoi (Victoria Express Train - Private Deluxe Cabin)
- Private boat trip in Hue
- Massage therapy at Sapa, Hue and HCMC
- Luxury boat cruise on Ha Long Bay
- Bilingual speaking tour guide (English)
- All activities and venues fees unless indicated exceptions
- 5-star hotel or better accommodation
- Full meals indicated as: B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner
- 1 soft drink, mineral water, or local beer included in every meal
- Approved invitation letter for Vietnamese visa
Tour price excludes:
- Travel Insurance and Protection plan
- International flight to/from Vietnam
- Entry and exit visa stamping fees
- Drinks and other meals not mentioned in the program
- Laundry and telephone fee at hotels