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Essence of Vietnam Tour – 14 Days

Essence of Vietnam Tour - 14 Days take you from North to South to visiting Vietnam with highlights: Hanoi, Ha Long Bay, Hue, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh and Mekong delta. This tour will provide a variety of color and beauty of Vietnam diversity.

Duration: 14 Days 13 Nights
Tour route: Hanoi - Sapa - Ha Long Bay - Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City - Can Tho - Chau Doc - Ho Chi Minh City.
Dates: No fixed departure dates. You may go whenever you wish.
Starts/Ends: Hanoi / Ho Chi Minh City
Tour Type: Adventure, Landscape, Nature, Culture and History
Activity Level: Regular itinerary, moderate walking
Tour Customizable: Absolutely! (Tell us your specific requirements in the inquiry form)

Day 01: Hanoi (D)
Day 02: Hanoi city tour – night train to Lao Cai (B, L)
Day 03: Lao Cai – Sapa – Cat Cat – Y Linh Ho (B, L)
Day 04: Sapa – Lao Chai – Ta van – night train to Hanoi (B, L)
Day 05: Hanoi – Halong Bay (B, L, D)
Day 06: Halong – Hanoi – Flight to Hue (B, Brunch)
Day 07: Hue – Hoi An (B, L)
Day 08: Half - day Hoi An Walking Tour (B)
Day 09: Hoi An – Da Nang - Ho Chi Minh city (B)
Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City (B, L)
Day 11: Ho Chi Minh – Cu Chi Tunnels (B, L)
Day 12: Ho Chi Minh – My Tho - Can Tho (B, L)
Day 13: Can Tho – floating market- Ho Chi Minh (B)
Day 14: Ho Chi Minh city (B)

Day 01: Hanoi (D)
After a warm welcome on arrival, transfer to the hotel in Hanoi. Welcome dinner will be reserved at one of the best restaurant in the city. Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 02: Hanoi city tour – night train to Lao Cai (B, L)
This morning, you will visit famous Ho Chi Minh complex comprising his Mausoleum, former residence, the impressive house on stilts and view the One Pillar Pagoda. The One Pillar Pagoda, formally Dien Huu is a historic Buddhist temple. It is regarded alongside the Perfume Pagoda, as one of Vietnam's two most iconic temples. In the next step, you will learn more about the historical and cultural events at the peaceful Temple of Literature, known as the Vietnam’s first university since the 11th century. In the afternoon, you will visit Ethnology museum, a museum that focuses on the 54 officially recognized. Back to the city central, you continue walking around Hoan Kiem Lake and visiting Ngoc Son Temple which to be the heart of Vietnam. Enjoy a water puppet show for a look at traditional performance art in Vietnam before heading back to your hotel.
In the evening, we will catch the overnight train soft sleeper with AC to Lao Cai. The train leaves at 22:00 from Hanoi railway station. Overnight on train.

Hoan Kiem Lake - Hanoi
Temple of literature in Hanoi

Day 03: Lao Cai – Sapa – Cat Cat – Y Linh Ho (B, L)
The train arrives at the Lao Cai train station at approximately 06:00. There will be a vehicle waiting to transfer us to Sapa. Driving to Sapa is only 38 km but it takes around one hour to make our way up the mountains. Once at Sapa, freshening up and having breakfast we are ready to explore Sapa town. We will go downhill to Cat Cat village. Enjoy beautiful landscape and scenery along the road. Upon reaching a waterfall and a hydroelectric station, we will take a short rest before continuing our trek on a dirt trail through rice paddy terraced fields. The area is still covered by rain forest under the protection of Hoang Lien National Park. We will arrive in Y Linh Ho village inhabited by Black Hmong people where we will have one more rest before climbing toward the main road. Our vehicle will pick us up there and drive us back to Sapa. Overnight in Sapa.

Day 04: Sapa – Lao Chai – Ta van – night train to Hanoi (B, L)
Breakfast in the hotel we then, embark on a lovely trek that will take us along buffalo paths and trails and through several hills tribe villages Lao Chai & Ta Van, home to Black H'mong, and Dzay people. This is an absolutely spectacular walk through stunning scenery inhabited by some of the friendliest people you can meet. Once on the valley floor you can really appreciate the wonderful scenery that surrounds you. The walls of the valley are covered with multi-layered rice terraced fields and scattered villages. Return to Sapa and then to Lao Cai railway station by car. The guide sees you off there and takes you on the train. Overnight on train.

Sapa Vietnam
sapa tour

Day 05: Hanoi – Halong Bay (B, L, D)
Arrival at Hanoi railway station in the early morning, meet our guide then transfer to a mini hotel for breakfast and shower before departure to Halong Bay, listed as a World Heritage Area of outstanding natural beauty. “Dragon descending to the sea“ as it is known in Vietnamese, picturesque Halong bay has more than 1.000 limestone islets rising from the sea, many of them containing beautiful grottoes.
Upon arrival at Ha Long Bay we embark on a boat trip to cruise discovering this magnificent UNESCO World Wonder. This is a great journey among surreal islands rising from a tranquil emerald sea. You will visit several key locations.
– One of the most stunning caves of Halong Bay
– Stop at a beautiful beach and take a refreshing swim or sunbathe on the sundeck; take a short trek to the nearby summit for a panoramic view of the bay.
Back onboard the junk, you will watch the sunset and be served a sumptuous dinner, with cocktails available for purchase from the bar. You will spend the night onboard the junk, in a cabin with an ensuite bathroom.
Notes: The program may differ slightly based on the junk cruise’s itinerary.

Day 06: Halong – Hanoi – Flight to Hue (B, Brunch)
Early morning coffee and tea will be served on the sundeck followed by a Tai Chi class. After breakfast we take a Sampan boat to explore Luon Cave. We may have a chance to see the wild monkeys that gather around waiting for food from the tourists. After that we continue to cruise around the bay. Lunch is served on the boat on our way back to the docks then we transfer to Nga Trai village in Bac Giang Province to enjoy a cooking class.
Arrive a local’s family and warmly, welcomed by a host. You’re invited to enjoy welcome drink with local sweeties. Here you will get the chance to see the house architecture and their daily life. Our guide will tell you about family’s tradition, ancestor worship of Vietnam.
15h15: You will learn how to make Troi cake. Troi cake - It is BÁNH TRÔI NƯỚC (made of bits of brown sugar wrapped in glutinous rice paste and cooked by scalding in boiling water). The locals often cook this cake for family in a special event. After enjoying the cake, we learn to paint the mask by watercolor. Keep this mask for a souvenir.
16h30: While putting your feet into herbal medicine water, you will be taught Vietnamese with the locals.
17.00: You’ll say goodbye to the host then transfer to the airport for your flight to Hue.
Overnight in Hue.

Halong Bay Kayak

Day 07: Hue – Hoi An (B, L)
Breakfast at the hotel.
We board a dragon boat on the Perfume River to visit Thien Mu Pagoda. Continue on, visit the Forbidden Citadel before processing to Hoi An via the Hai Van Pass (Pass of the Ocean Clouds). Stop on the way to visit Cham Museum, Lang Co Beach, Marble Mountain. Arrival Hoi An, check in to the hotel then free time at the leisure.
Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 08: Half day - Hoi An Walking Tour (B)
This morning we take a walking tour of the old town Hoi An. Hoi An nestled on the banks of the Thu Bon River. Before the river silted up, Hoi An was one of the most important trading ports in Southeast Asia, and a center for East-West exchange and trade. From the 2nd until the 10th century, Hoi An was one of the principal Cham cities. Over the years, Indian, Dutch, Portuguese, French, Thai, Indonesian, Spanish, American, Japanese, Filipino and Chinese ships docked in Hoi An. In the 19th century, as the result of warfare and environmental changes, Hoi An was replaced by Da Nang as a major port. Reflecting the diversity of the traders and missionaries that settled in the port (including Alexander of Rhodes), the ancient architecture is a fascinating mix of Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese. The rooftops of Hoi An retain a magical old world Oriental feel and are a favorite subject for Vietnamese artists. In the early 1980s Hoi An’s ancient quarters and historical monuments came under the protection and restoration efforts of UNESCO and the Polish government. Visit the Japanese covered bridge, Phuc Kien assemble hall, Phung Hung old house, Hoi An museum and Quan Cong temple.
The rest of time is fee to walk in the old town, feel the atmosphere of its original culture, enjoy shopping for tailor clothing, lanterns, shoes and food, or simply relaxing on the beach.
Overnight in Hoi An.

Hoi An

Day 09: Hoi An – Da Nang - Ho Chi Minh city (B)
Free at your leisure until transfer to the airport for onward flight to Ho Chi Minh City, the former Saigon. Arrive at the airport, you are welcomed by our tour guide and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh.

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City (B, L)
Today, you will literally feel the excitement of Ho Chi Minh City.
First, we visit the Reunification Palace, the former palace of President Thieu and his predecessors. Today this building is a museum and venue for official receptions. Inside you can visit the private rooms of the president, the “War Room” from where the South Vietnamese forces were controlled, and, most poignantly, the room where the North Vietnamese army finally took control in 1975. Next, we visit the War Remnants Museum, Historically, the war museum as part of the Vietnam and World Peace museums system was born on Sep 4 1975 at 28 Vo Van Tan street, district 3, HCMC. Since its 30-year inception, the museum has attracted over 10millions arrivals of domestic and foreign tourists, especially, student delegations from provinces and cities nationwide. It helps reappear the then-wars, helping students well realize on the values of patriotism, struggle for peace and national liberation from forefathers. This museum includes 8 specific exhibitions and various collections of the truth of history (conspiracy and process from hostile forces for the war in Vietnam); crime evidences and war consequences; kinds of weapon and tools serving for the wars; prison (prison house system, concentration camp, torture, maltreatment, corporal mutilation and spiritual oppression against political prisoners).
We also stop at the Notre Dame Cathedral and Old Post Office. The post office, built between 1877 and 1883, is an excellent example of classic French colonial architecture. In deference to the Chinese heritage, you will also visit Thien Hau Pagoda, built in 1863 by the ethnic Chinese of Saigon and dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea, and Cho Lon market.
The rest of time is free at the leisure. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh.

Day 11: Ho Chi Minh – Cu Chi Tunnels (B, L)
In the morning; start at 8:00AM with our tour guide & driver pick you up right at the hotel; we will leave Saigon for the Cu Chi tunnels, otherwise known as the "Iron Triangle" or "Iron Land". On our way there we will drive through pleasant countryside; rubber plantations and rice paddies. Before entering the tunnels, we will see a short introductory video showing how they were constructed, followed by an exploration of the maze of tunnels, some of which have been widened to allow tourist access. Also on display are various mantraps and the remains of an American tank as well as numerous bomb craters made by 500lb bombs dropped by B52 bombers. After that we transfer back to Ho Chi Minh City in the afternoon at around 13:30 and drop back at the hotel.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh city
Cu Chi Tunnels

Day 12: Ho Chi Minh – My Tho - Can Tho (B, L)
At 08.00 our tour guide will meet you at the lobby of the hotel then we leave Ho Chi Minh City behind and head to Vietnam's rice basket, the Mekong Delta. We will pass through idyllic, rural scenes until we arrive at My Tho, a peaceful town on the bank of the Mekong River, where we will visit Vinh Trang Pagoda. Next we will have a boat ride on the Mekong, visit local homes and orchards, a coconut candy workshop, a honeybee farm, take a sampan ride on palm-shaded creeks, try a taste of season fruit and honey tea and enjoy a performance of traditional Southern singing. Keep going to Can Tho.
Overnight in Can Tho.

Day 13: Can Tho – floating market- Ho Chi Minh( B)
Early morning today, we will take the boat trip to visit the famous Cai Rang floating market with the busy sense right at the time. This is a biggest floating market in Mekong Delta where we can see the daily life and local people selling their products on boats. After that, we are back to hotel for breakfast then heading back to Ho Chi Minh.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh.

Mekong delta

Day 14: Ho Chi Minh City (B)
Free at your leisure till transfer you to the airport for your flight.
End of all service!

What is included?

  • All accommodation on twin share with daily breakfast
  • All transfer & transports by private A/C coaches or cars
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary: B - Breakfast, L - Lunch, D - Dinner
  • English speaking guide in each city (Other languages upon request)
  • 1 unique cultural performance – Water Puppet Show
  • Entrance fees to all scenic spots listed in the itinerary
  • Boat trip and Junk Cruise as dedicated in the itinerary
  • Gov’t tax and service charge
  • Visa approval letter (Excluded visa stamping fee at the airport)
  • Souvenir gift and mineral water

What is excluded?

  • Visa to Vietnam(Get in advance)
  • Meals and drinks, except those mentioned
  • International flights and domestic flights
  • Insurance, Tipping and other personal expenses
  • Domestic flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Early check-in and late check-out
  • Other services not mentioned in the itinerary
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Customer Reviews

Good afternoon Diu, We are back in Madrid again and we are very very happy with the trip!!! It's been very well organised, great variety and very complete. The hotels have been awesome and ...
Thank you very much!!! We really appreciate your effort. I'll recommend this agency to my friends, in fact, I've already done!
We would like to know to which other countries you could organice us trips. Maybe, next year we can visit other one.
Kind regards,

Alejandra Breva detail...

Good morning from US, Diu. We were back to US last night after a long visit in Saigon and Taiwan. Just want to drop a thank you note to your service and those beautiful gifts from your travel company. We definitively contact you or refer your service to friends and relatives in US in future. Please say hi to Phong as well.

Ken Dang detail...

Dear Giang, Thank you for all. It was a good job and you have a good team.
We will recommend you in Spain(friends an family).
The organization, the different cars and drivers, Ms. Mi, the hotel and the places that we visited and where we ate were fantastics. I hope the best to your company.
Best regards and thanks a lot,

Sergio Sieiro detail...