Northern Vietnam Discovery Tour – 14 Days
This tour is designed for the discerning travelers who wish to explore the true beauty and hidden charms of the North of Vietnam. Joining this tour, you will discover the diverse beauty of Vietnam including ancient Hanoi Capital, Cat Ba Island & Lan Ha Bay, Cuc Phuong National park, The Dong Van Rocky Plateau Geopark, and charming Sapa with friendly locals, stunning limestone mountains, picturesque villages and avoid the touristy area.
Duration: 14 days / 13 nights
Dates: No fixed departure dates. You may go whenever you wish. The best time to book this tour is between August to October.
Starts/Ends: Hanoi / Hanoi
Tour Type: Landscape, nature, and beach.
Activity Level: Regular itinerary
Tour Customizable: Absolutely! (Tell us your specific requirements in the inquiry form)
Day 01 : Hanoi arrival (Dinner)
Day 02 : Hanoi - Ninh Binh (B/ L)
Day 03 : Ninh Binh - Cuc Phuong (B/L)
Day 04 : Ninh Binh - Hai Phong - Cat Ba Island overnight on Cruise (B/L/D)
Day 05 : Cat Ba Island overnight at Hotel in Cat Ba (B/L)
Day 06 : Cat Ba Island - Hai Phong - Hanoi (B/L)
Day 07 : Hanoi - Ha Giang (B/L/D)
Day 08 : Ha Giang - Quang Ba - Yen Minh - The Dong Van Rocky Plateau Geopark (B/L/D)
Day 09 : Dong Van - Meo Vac - Ha Giang (B/ L/D)
Day 10 : Ha Giang - Sapa (B/ L)
Day 11: Sapa - Ma Tra - Taphin - Sapa (B/L)
Day 12: Cat Cat - Ham Rong (B/L)
Day 13 : Sapa Market Visit - Hanoi (B/L)
Day 14 : Hanoi – Departure (B)
DAY 01 : HANOI ARRIVAL (D)
Upon arrival, welcome by our Tour Guide and transferred to your hotel. In the late afternoon, we will take an hour Cyclo - tour viewing the charming French colonial architecture to the bustling Old Quarter. Welcome dinner will be reserved at local restaurant.
Overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 02 : HANOI - NINH BINH (B/ L)
In the morning, depart from Hanoi to Ninh Binh (100km - 2.5 hours), transfer directly to the port; get into a rowing boat (around 2.5 hours) to explore the picturesque waterways in Trang An ecological tourist site. Forested limestone mounts contrasting in emerald water, caves, lowland and rivers create a mysterious fairytale-like scene. We then visit a network of 11 caves with beautiful stalactites of all shapes and colors. Disembark and then have lunch at the local restaurant. After having short breaking, transfer to Hoa Lu, one of the oldest capitals in Vietnam dated to 968 – 1009. The remaining vestiges include two temples dedicated to Dinh and Le Kings. These temples are surrounded by beautiful hibiscus gardens, ponds with lotus blossoms and frangipani spreading a delicate perfume.
Overnight in Ninh Binh or in Tam Coc.
DAY 03 : NINH BINH - CUC PHUONG (B/L)
Get up early this morning for exercise and to enjoy the fresh air of tropical forest.
After breakfast, you will take a visit to Endangered Primate Rescue Center before jumping up back on your saddle for the ride of 20 km to the National Park’s center. On the way, you will have a stop to visit the Cave of historic men that houses relics of ancient people dated back thousands of years ago.
At the Centre of the National park, you will have a trekking loop of around 6 km through the core of tropical forest. Visit thousand years old tree and learn about the bio-system of this stunning tropical land.
After lunch, take another ride back to the Park’s entrance.
Overnight at Cuc Phuong resort.
DAY 04 : NINH BINH - HAI PHONG - CAT BA ISLAND - Overnight on cruise (B/L/D)
Have early breakfast and drive to Hai Phong – the sea port city.
After 3 hours driving from Hanoi to Hai Phong, you take hydrofoil (speed boat) from Hai Phong to Cat Ba Island (45 minutes).
Welcome to get on board. The junk will cruise to take you to pass by the floating village. You will learn how the local people there make their livings.
Enjoy fresh seafood lunch on Lan Ha bay.
Keep cruising to the most scenic areas of the bay with hundreds of beautiful islands.
Start kayaking to get closer to the islands, pass through tunnel cave (Hang Luon) and get to secluded beaches or kayak at Ba Ham tunnel caves it is low tide.
Visit the floating fish farm
Free for swimming and relax to enjoy the sunset on the bay.
Anchor at a calm water area for dinner and experience the peaceful night on the junk among beautiful mountains. Overnight on Cruise.
DAY 05 : CAT BA ISLAND - Overnight at Hotel in Cat Ba (B/L)
Wake up to see the dawn on the bay and then have breakfast.
Continue cruising further to see the unique Ha Long bay.
Kayak some more through the narrow lagoons and tunnel caves called Hang Ca (the Bat Cave).
Have lunch and check in hotel/resort (if the boat is not busy taking new group, lunch is served on boat; if the boat is busy, lunch will be served at a restaurant).
In the afternoon, visit Trung Trang cave. Trung trang cave has 300 meters length through mountains, which is a natural cave created by heaven over two thousand years of history. Having hundreds of natural stalactites with the unique shape, the cave makes people associated with the image of the fairy.
Enjoy Cat Ba by night and have dinner in a floating restaurant or in a local one by your own expense. Overnight at hotel in Cat Ba.
DAY 06 : CAT BA ISLAND - HAI PHONG - HANOI (B/L)
Enjoy breakfast at hotel
Take motorbike/car to go around Cat Ba Island and Cat Ba National Park. Stop to visit the famous Hospital cave.
Continue the trip to Cat Ba National Park center.
Do trekking through jungle & forest and go up to the view point (it is about 2.5 hours trekking but can be more or less depending on your speed)
Drive back to hotel by a different way for shower then check out.
Have lunch in a local restaurant.
Take hydrofoil from Cat Ba to Hai Phong and drive back to Hanoi
Arrival Hanoi around 17.30 - 17.45. Overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 07 : HANOI - HA GIANG (B/L/D)
Our guide wills pick-up you at your hotel in Hanoi then departs for Ha Giang. On the way to Ha Giang we will visit Ethnology Museum in Thai Nguyen province.
We drive to various walking trails surrounded by magical hills and beautiful villages. Around sunset, we arrive at the township of Ha Giang. Here, we have some free time to capture the tranquil pace of life before our dinner is prepared in a local restaurant.
After dessert we retire to our homestay for the night in a traditional wooden stilt house or hotel.
Approx: 315 km – 8 hours driving/ 1- 1,5 hour walking. Overnight in Ha Giang.
DAY 08 : HA GIANG - QUANG BA - YEN MINH - THE DONG VAN ROCKY PLATEAU GEOPARK (B/L/D)
After breakfast get on car to Dong Van, on the way visit Lung Tam handicraft village of H'Mong hill tribe. Have some stops for taking photo and contemplate breath taking landscape of the area. Have lunch en route.
Afternoon visit some villages on the way: Vuong Chi Sinh's house, a land lord of H'Mong hill tribe in the past. Sung La village, became a popular tourist destination after it was featured in the 2006 film Chuyen Cua Pao (Pao's Story).
Arrive Dong Van; check in guest house, free time to visit the small town.
Approx: 145 km – 5 hours walking – Start from hotel at 08.00 – Arriving Dong Van at about 7.00pm.
Overnight in Dong Van.
DAY 09 : DONG VAN - MEO VAC - HA GIANG (B/ L/D)
Have breakfast and visit Dong Van Market (market day on Sunday). Depart to Meo Vac on Ma Pi Leng Pass. On the way you can visit Meo Vac or Lung Phinh market (if on market day). Have lunch in Yen Minh town.
On the way to Ha Giang visit a Dzao village of Na Khe, Lo Lo village. Have dinner and stay at a hotel in Ha Giang.
Approx: 25 km – 10 hours (included driving & walking). Overnight in Ha Giang.
DAY 10 : HA GIANG - SAPA (B/ L)
Have breakfast and drive to Sapa. On the route from Ha Giang to Sapa, stopover for visiting Chang village, Pa Then village, inhabited by Tay minority people. Enjoy beautiful scenery of the mountainous area, featured with palm tree hills. Overnight in Sapa.
Approx: 250 km – 8 hours driving/ 2 hours walking
DAY 11: SAPA - MA TRA - TA PHIN – SAPA (B/L)
Met up by local guide at your hotel. The walk commences from Sapa on a trail running through the beautiful gardens and lush pine forests. You will then pass through the Black Hmong ethnic minority village of Matra, a very small village hiding way from the civilisation. The walk continues through rice paddy fields and spectacular scenery. During the day you will also be able to visit a local school. You will enjoy your lunch before arriving at the Taphin village. Here you can hear about the unmixed cultural life of Black Hmong and Red Dao minorities, 2 largest ethnic groups in the area. You can already recognise them by dressing while they are both very famous of handicraft. You will enjoy walking among local people. The trip also offers you the opportunity to visit the local houses as well as visit the local caves. You will return Sapa by car.
Approx: 0,5 hour driving/ 4 hours walking/ 1 hour lunch.
DAY 12: CAT CAT - HAM RONG (B/L)
After breakfast, we embark on a lovely walking tour to the hill tribe village of Cat Cat, home of the H'Mong hill tribe minority people. As we walk to the villages nestled in the valley below Sapa we will meet some of the local minority people on their way to and from Sapa. Here we have the opportunity to share cultural experiences with families that live in the area.
In the afternoon, visit Ham Rong Mountain, Orchid Garden and enjoy traditional music show then free time at the leisure.
Overnight in Sa Pa.
DAY 13 : SAPA MARKET VISIT - HANOI (B/L)
Breakfast at the hotel before driving to overland to a market of the hill tribal people. Depending on the day of the week, Bac Ha, home to the flower H’mong hill tribe minority people is open on Sunday; Can Cau on Saturday or Coc Ly on Tuesday.
In all these markets, we can meet hundreds of beautiful women from Flower Hmong tribe, who are famous for their wonderful craft and hand-made flowering clothes and textile fabrics, or intermingle with people from Black Hmong, Dzay, Dzao and other ethnic groups coming to the market not for purchasing stuffs, but for meeting and chatting – just once a week - like in a real cultural center.
Before reaching Lao Cai, we take a short walk to Trung Do village inhabited by Tay people. Tay villages are always set up at the foot of a mountain or along a stream and are named after a mountain, a field, or a river. Each village contains about 15-20 households. A large village is divided into many small hamlets. The houses are built on stilts or level with the ground. Stop by a traditional Tay house for a cup of tea before taking a boat cruise upstream the Chay River. The scenery is very beautiful on both sides of the river. The boat trip will end at Bao Nhai bridge where your vehicle will be waiting for you for the journey back to
Back to your hotel and having a shower at a mini hotel then transfer back to Hanoi.
Overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 14 : HANOI – DEPARTURE (B)
After breakfast, free at your leisure until transfer to the airport for your departure flight. End of the trip.
What is included?
- 12 night hotel accommodation in twin shared as noted or similar
- 01 night on the junk in Lan Ha bay (Cat Ba island)
- Transportation in private air-conditioned vehicle
- Local Russian Speaking guide
- Admission fee to indicated sights.
- Meals as stated in the itinerary (B-breakfast, L-lunch, D-dinner)
- Admission fee to indicated sights
- Souvenir gift and mineral water.
What is excluded?
- Visa to Vietnam and Cambodia
- Int’l air tickets to / from Vietnam.
- Travel insurance in all kinds.
- Meals is not mentioned.
- Tip, drinks and personal expenses.
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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.
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...