Best of Vietnam Travel Vacation 12 Days
ABOUT YOUR JOURNEY:
Saigon on arrival
Upon arrival to Tan Son Nhat Airport, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam Backroads's team will meet you and they will transfer you to your hotel in city center. Check-in and spend the rest of the day at leisure
Explore Cu Chi tunnel and Lively Saigon city
Drive to visit Cu Chi tunnel in the morning and explore former capital city of Vietnam in the afternoon. Be met at hotel and travel by car to Cu Chi tunnel, the famous underground tunnel network in Cu Chi located outside Saigon. Watch a documentary film then explore the famous fighting tunnels on foot; traps, bunkers, trenches and experience crawling a piece of the underground tunnels. Enjoy lunch before driving back to Saigon.
In the afternoon, visit the War Remnants Museum, Emperor Jade Pagoda, the former Presidential Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the Old Post Office before a walk down to Opera House and City Halls. Take a foodie tour in the evening.
Saigon – Vinh Long - Pottery village - Home-stay
Depart at 8:00am from the hotel for 2 hours driving on freeway My Thuan Bridge then continue traveling to Vinh Long town. Take a walk to fruit market of Vinh Long, and then enjoy a boat ride cruise on waterways of lively Co Chien River to pottery village. It is considered as a village the homeland of brick and ceramic pottery. Karoline is also using as ceramic to make variety of pottery. This famous pottery craft village has been in operation for 20 years by Co Chien River. Workers have to dig out clay from rice paddy fields and clay is usually 1 meter deep then carries clay to village. Following many processing steps before the artisans make all them perfect. We return to the boat and continue cruising and crossing Co Chien River to An Binh Island where we stay a night with local family.
An Binh – Cai Be – Saigon – fly to Da Nang – transfer to Hoi An
After breakfast at home-stay, it's time to say goodbye to your host, load your suitcases on riverboat for cruising through An Binh Island and continue crossing Mekong River to Cai Be. This is the opportunity witness busy life of locals on waterways along canals and mighty Mekong River. Your boat will pass some kindergartens, primary schools and small markets by canals. By traveling on boat, you can see many small boats carry fruit to markets, water taxi and water trucks going from different ways. It takes about 45 minutes to reach to Cai Be countryside. Watch the busy floating market of Cai Be before visit workplaces of local’s cottage industry; thatch house roofs, coconut leave walls and many products from hyacinth. We will get on our private vehicle for a drive to My Tho for lunch. Then continue heading back to Saigon. Take the afternoon flight to Da Nang with a transfer to Hoi An.
A half day cooking Classic & Walking tour in the afternoon
After you are picked up at hotel, take a tour through the beautiful and scenic countryside of Hoi An to Cam Thanh village. Stop at local market, a boat trip along Thu Bon River, passing fishing village, then a little adventure on bamboo basket boat through water palm on small canals. On arrival the Cooking School and Restaurant, be ready for your cooking class; Green mango salad with shrimp & pork, fresh spring roll, beef noodle soup - Pho Bo, Vietnamese chicken curry - served with steamed rice and sticky rice cake.. After lunch, enjoy walking guided tour; we will start walking tour around the ancient town to visit the Japanese Covered Bridge, the Pottery Museum, Tan Ky old house, the Cantonese congregation, the silk street of Hoi An, the temples and pagodas of Chinese appearance.
Hoi An – Da Nang – fly to Ha Noi
In the morning, we have a transfer back to Da Nang for short flight to Hanoi. Our Ha Noi tour guide will welcome you and transfers you to hotel. You have lunch at a restaurant in the Old Quarter with local Vietnamese traditional cuisines. Free on your own time until a cyclo tour through the bustling Old Quarter of Ha Noi. Admire daily local business; street food stalls, noodle bars and coffee shops, leather shoes stalls, little porcelain or silk shops…etc. Watch the Water Puppet Show in the evening.
Ha Noi – City Tour – night train to Lao Cai
The Imperial Citadel of Thang Long was the ancient capital and a relic of Vietnam’s history and culture. Spend a full day to explore Ha Noi city with beginning at 8.00 am from hotel, we begin with a visit Ho Chi Minh complex, learning a lot about his great life comprising the Mausoleum, the Presidential Palace, and his residential place. We then visit the Temple of Literature – the first University of Vietnam and also the temple of Confucius in Vietnam. In the afternoon city tour including: Museum of Ethnology and it was a prison used by the French colonists in French Indochina for political prisoners, and later by North Vietnam for US Army, following stops are Opera House and Ngoc Son temple by Hoa Kiem Lake. After dinner in downtown, we board on night train, soft sleep air-conditioned cabin.
Lao Cai – Sapa – hike to Cat Cat village
The train arrives at Lao Cai train station at approximately 6:30am. Meet your guide and driver at the train station and have buffet breakfast in town before a transfer takes you up to Sapa on spiral mountain road. It' wonderful time to see rice terraced paddies, beautiful mountains and green valleys all the ways to Sapa town. On arrive in Sapa, check in hotel, after lunch in town, we start our trekking to Cat Cat village. In the early twentieth century, French discovered and made this land become a resort for Frech army officials in Indochina. With a beautiful waterfall on the way to village and the word "waterfall” pronounced “cascade“ in French. Since then the mane of this village called Cat Cat by locals and Vietnam. Cat Cat is a peaceful village with amazing terraced fields, beautiful views and traditional customs of the H’Mong ethnic tribe. We can the old hydro-electric power station which was built by French in the early 20th century. Meet black Hmong people working on farmlands, see buffaloes, cows working on rice paddies when we hiking. Here we have the opportunity to share cultural experiences with families that live in the area. Return to Sapa by car
Sapa – Lao Chai – Ta Van – Lao Cai – Ha Noi
Have a breakfast before we trek in small trail through Muong Hoa and many hill-tribe villages of Lao Chai and Ta Van. This is an absolutely spectacular trekking through stunning scenery of Sapa, View the largest valley of golden rice terraced fields in Sapa. Discover daily life of Black H’mong ethnic group and see how they make traditional clothes, handicraft...etc. Then we continue walk to Ta Van village, the home to the Mong and Red Dao and Giay ethnic groups. We carry on today adventure on narrow dirt roads through rice terraces and return to Sapa town by car. Have a dinner in Lao Cai city and take a shower and transfer down to Lao Cai. Sleep a night on train back to Ha Noi
Ha Noi – Ha Long bay
Our guide and shuttle bus will pick you up at your hotel for Ha Long bay, the spectacular World Heritage Site. Arrive in Halong around 11:30, we board a luxury cruise and spend 2 days and night in Ha Long bay. Enjoy welcome drink, check-in to your cabin and have lunch with fresh seafood is served at 1:30pm. The cruise will start it journey into mystic Ha Long Bay to see the amazing karsts. Stop at floating fishing village then enjoy kayaking through Bright and Dark Caves. Dinner and stay overnight on board.
Ha Long bay – Ha Noi
Enjoy sunrise, coffee and tea on board before breakfast. Get on small Island and walk around one of the biggest and most amazing cave in Ha Long Bay. Return the cruise for lunch when the cruise going back its harbor. Check out for driving back to Ha Noi