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Highlights of Vietnam

Upon arrival at Noi Bai Airport, either Domestic or International arrival, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it, if you cannot locate your guide, please go to the Airport information counter situated in the middle of Domestic and International arrival lobby (inside the terminal) and call the emergency numbers (+84) 9 1323 7040 for assistance. Your guide will come to meet you up and transfer you to hotel.

The regular check-in time is at 1400; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability

Meals: None

HANOI HALF-DAY CITY TOUR

Tour the city of Hanoi, with its ochre-coloured colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards and scenic lakes.Stop at the old cofffee shop in the Old Quarter to get sharing from your tour guide about daily life of Hanoian. Then visit the historic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, an imposing monument of marble and granite built to house the preserved body of beloved revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh, affectionately known to the Vietnamese as “Uncle Ho”. Tour the One Pillar Pagoda, a Buddhist temple built in 1049 of wood in the shape of a lotus blossom and set on a single stone pillar, considered by many to be one of Vietnam’s most iconic pagodas. Visit Ho Chi Minh’s House nearby, a simple wooden house in a tranquil setting where Ho Chi Minh lived and worked. Some of his belongings are on display and visitors can walk up the steps to see his bedroom. Continue on to the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first national university built in the late 11th century. The picturesque temple is an example of well-preserved traditional Vietnamese architecture and is featured on the back of the 100,000 Vietnamese dong banknote.

NOTES:

  • Availability: Morning only.
  • Suggested departure time: 08:30.
  • Tour duration: 3.5 hours.
  • The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is closed every Monday & Friday, all afternoons and from September until December).

 

 AFTERNOON STREET FOOD TOUR

Eating on the street is a very typical activity for Hanoians and makes up an important part of the city’s unique culture. Depart at 15:30 for a leisurely walk with our tour guide to the Old Quarter. Make your way through streets lined with food vendors tending steaming vats of Pho Ga (Vietnamese noodle soup with chicken) and line up with the other hungry customers to try this tasty cuisine. Pho Ga is practically Vietnam’s national dish, consumed almost religiously throughout the day. After experiencing Hanoi’s insatiable demand for Pho, head to a nearby street market, alive with the sights and sounds of Hanoi – it is the essence of Vietnamese street culture. Sit down at a tiny shop to try a bit of Banh Duc – cooked rice powder with Vietnamese spices, served cool or hot depending on weather. Your next stop is another little shop selling many different types of traditional Northern cakes, such as Com cake (young rice), considered to be a part of every Hanoians’ childhood. Follow your guide into a small alley to get an idea of a typical “tube house” in Hanoi and then stop for a tasty banh mi at Banh My Lan Ongand try their famous bread with Pâté.  Your savory appetite sated, enjoy some che – a Vietnamese sweet soup. Cap off your trip by tasting a cup of Vietnamese egg coffee before returning back to your hotel.

NOTES

  • Suggested time: 15:30
  • Duration: approx. 4 hours
  • Total walking distance: 4 km

 

Meals: Breakfast, Street food

BICYCLE TOUR OF THE ANCIENT VILLAGE OF DUONG LAM (5KM/3MI)

Depart Hanoi for a 1.5hr drive to Duong Lam, a typical agricultural village in the northern Red River Delta. Duong Lam has the honour of being the birthplace to two Vietnamese kings and is the first village in Vietnam to be recognised by UNESCO for its Cultural Heritage Conservation. Take a 5km (3mi) bicycle tour along Duong Lam’s narrow alleyways showcasing rural life and ancient Vietnamese architecture dating back 400 years. Visit Mong Phu Temple in Mong Phu hamlet, the only hamlet whose original village entrance gate remains intact, dedicated to national heroes. Continue cycling around the village to observe the daily life of the villagers. A home-hosted lunch is served in a historic 300-year-old home while chatting with the friendly owners about the way of life in Duong Lam. Continue biking to visit the Ngo Quyen Temple and Phung Hung Temple dedicated to two national heroes, and the 15th century Mia Pagoda known for its 287 ancient statues. The tour concludes at the old Catholic Church. Drive back to Hanoi in the late afternoon.

NOTES:
•  Suggested departure time: 09:00.
•  Tour duration: 05 hours

Meals: Breakfast

This morning, drive to Halong Bay. On arrival in Halong Bay, let the vacation begin with a lunch as the boat cruises towards South East Halong Bay.Then discover the mysterious Tien Ong Cave which is not only a beauty spot but also an archaeological site. Covering an area of 1,000 m2 with stunning stalactites and stalagmites, the cave is one of the finest caves in Halong Bay. And then back cruise to join bar opens for the Happy Hour “Buy one get one free”. Take the chance to get more delicious drinks and fun. Joining exciting “Master-Chef Competition” and fruit carving demonstration, learn and try your hands with authentic Vietnamese food. The winner or the Master-Chef of Bhaya Cruise would be awarded surprising gifts. It’s also time to admire the sunset over enchanting Halong Bay while the boat anchors for an overnight stay. And Enjoy set-menu dinner on board while your Cruise Manager introduces the following day program. Retire to your cabin or join our staffs for squid fishing

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

Wake up early and partake in a Tai Chi demonstration which is held on the upper deck. And then enjoy light breakfast is served onboard. The boat weighs anchor to sail to Cua Van floating village. Take your time to visit the village which is voted as one of the 11 insanely beautiful small towns around the world by huffingtonpost.com. You can choose either kayak or traditional rowing boat to go around discovering local life on the waters. Return to your boat and relax. Enjoy the brunch before checking out. Arrive at the jetty late morning and transfer back to Hanoi. Drive back to Hanoi airport for flight to Danang.

Upon arrival at Danang Airport, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it, if you cannot locate your guide, please go to the nearest Information counter and have them call the emergency number (+84) 9 1349 3398 for assistance. Your guide will come to meet you up and transfer you to hotel in Hoi An.

The regular check-in time is at 1400; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability

Meals: Breakfast

HALF DAY HOI AN WALKING TOUR

Between the 15th and 19th centuries, Hoi An known then as ‘Faifo’, was a prosperous trading port, attracting Chinese, Japanese, Dutch, Portuguese and Spanish ships amongst others. Today, this World Heritage ancient town is recognised for its well-preserved architecture, pedestrian-only streets and distinctive local cuisine, allowing visitors a glimpse of its illustrious past. Hoi An’s narrow lanes are ideal for a guided walking tour of its many atmospheric sights including: the old merchant houses with influences from Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture; the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, first built in the 1590s by the Japanese community to link them with the Chinese quarters across the stream; the Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation with its intricate woodcarvings; and the colourful market with stalls brimming with local specialties including silk, which can be turned into fashionable garments within a day or two.

NOTES:
•  Availability: Morning, Afternoon.
•  Suggested departure time: 09:00, 14:00.
•  Tour duration: 02 hours.
•  The Hoi An entrance ticket is valid for entry to 5 sightseeing spots in Hoi An including merchant houses, the Japanese Covered Bridge, museums, pagodas and assembly halls for 24 hours. It also provides entry into Hoi An Ancient Town for as long as you are in Hoi An. Please keep the entrance ticket with you at all times should you independently visit Hoi An later in the evening or on another day.

PVT- RED BRIDGE COOKING SCHOOL EXPERIENCE

Set in three acres of lush tropical gardens, Red Bridge cooking school is one of the highlights of the culinary scene in Hoi An. Meet up with your chef at Hai Café in the old town for a brief introduction and a welcome drink. Meander through Hoi An’s central market with your chef to enjoy the sights, sounds and aromas. This is your chance to learn about how to select fresh produce and ingredients essential for Vietnamese cuisine. Embark on a 20 minutes boat trip to the school. Get your camera ready as the cruise offers glimpses of local river life. Upon arrival visit the school’s herb garden before enjoying a private hands-on cooking class. After the lesson, sit down and eat what you have created in the lovely restaurant overlooking the river.

NOTES:
•  Availability: Afternoon only.
•  Suggested time: 14:30, 15:30.
•  Duration: 4 hours.

Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Free at leisure.

Meals: Breakfast

In the morning, transfer from your Hoi An hotel to a Hue hotel (with guide). In the afternoon, free at leisure.

The regular check-in time is at 1400; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability

Meals: Breakfast

CITY TOUR-CYCLO CITADEL TO THIEN MU

Hue served as an imperial capital to the Nguyen Lords, a feudal dynasty which reigned from the 17th to the 19th century. With splendid emperors’ tombs, ancient pagodas and the remains of the Citadel, the city retains its royal charm. Start your cyclo trip by crossing the Perfume River on the Trang Tien Bridge. Then ride along the famous Dong Ba Market and follow a branch of the Perfume River to an area surrounding the Citadel where local people have lived for generations in their old style houses. While sitting on the cyclo, all of the activities on the street, in the shops and in the houses, just happen around you, and you can feel like you are a part of it. After the cyclo ride, walking to the Imperial Citadel from the Noon Gate will provide great balance and you will appreciate the magnificent architecture and gardens while your guide explains about the events and the intrigue of the former royal court. Despite being bombed heavily, there are some incredibly well preserved sections still intact and others which are being lovingly restored. After leaving the citadel, there’s time for a short visit to the Royal Antique Museum. From there, driver will pick you up and drive to visit Thien Mu pagoda, Hue’s best-preserved religious monument. Standing on the riverbank with its seven-story tower, the pagoda is a sight to behold.

NOTES

  • Availability: Morning, Afternoon
  • Suggested time: 09:00, 14:00
  • Duration: 3.5 hours

 

TRUC LAM VILLAGE CYCLING (25km / 16mi)

Depart Hue on a 15min drive to Long Ho Bridge, the starting point for cycling through lovely local villages. Stop by a local house to meet the family and help make Vietnamese steamed rice flour crepes (‘banh cuon’), a breakfast favourite amongst the locals. The light crepes are made by pouring batter on top of a piece of fabric that covers a steaming pot of water. Use a flat, flexible bamboo stick to lift the delicate, paper-thin rice crepe. Afterwards, continue cycling to 500-year-old Truc Lam Village, one of the oldest villages in Hue. The name translates to “bamboo” pointing to the many clumps of bamboo and other types of lush foliage surrounding the village. Visit a local pagoda, a village temple and cycle past corn and rice fields on your way to a local market to observe the busy trading before returning to your hotel.

NOTES:
•  Availability: Morning, Afternoon
•  Suggested departure time: 08:00, 13:00
•  Tour duration: 04 hours
•  Biking distance: 25 km (16mi).

Meals: Breakfast

FOOD TOUR WITH MS. NHU HUY

Step out and explore the delicious world of Hue food with the celebrated gastronomy artisan, Ms. Nhu Huy. She is a professor, author of cookbooks, food television presenter in Vietnam and Europe and the recipient of several prestigious Talent awards in Vietnam. Start off with a visit to the local market to see the sights and sounds of daily life. Ms. Nhu Huy will share some advice of how to select the freshest produce and ingredients necessary for Hue food. Later, visit several villages which each specialize in a different popular dish. During the day, sample many wonderful foods including com hen (mussel rice), banh beo, banh nam banh loc (varieties of soft rice cakes), Hue sweet soups. These dishes are not merely considered local food, but an indispensable culinary trait of Hue. Continue to the local restaurant Huyen Anh that serves Hue specialty of banh uot and grilled pork. End the trip at Nhu Huy’s house to taste more local food then return your hotel.

NOTES:
•  Availability: Morning only.
•  Suggested time: 08:00.
•  Duration: 4 hours.
•  Capacity: Max. 10 pax.

HUE HALF DAY CITY TOUR

Once the imperial capital of the Nguyen Lords from the 17th to the 19th centuries, Hue’s splendid emperors’ tombs, ancient pagodas and the remains of the Citadel contribute to its undeniable royal charm. Drive to the Tu Duc Royal Tomb, the most impressive of all the royal mausoleums, built by Emperor Tu Duc between 1864 and 1867. Interestingly, Tu Duc had 104 wives and countless concubines but left no heirs to the throne. While the complex does include a tomb, together with pavilions and temples, no one knows exactly where Tu Duc was buried as all 200 servants who buried the king were beheaded to keep his final resting place a secret from grave robbers. Continue to the elaborate Khai Dinh Royal Tomb whose architecture showcases elements of Eastern art and Western design. While smaller than many of the other tombs, the Khai Dinh Royal Tomb is more flamboyant, with the largest dragons in the country forming the side walls leading up to the tomb. Notice the tomb’s blackened concrete exterior and colourful mosaic interior in the spacious main building decorated with murals of the Four Seasons, Eight Precious Objects and Eight Fairies. After exploring the tomb, return to your hotel.

NOTES:
Availability: Morning, Afternoon

Suggested departure time: 09:00, 14:00

Tour duration: 3.5 hours

Meals: Breakfast

Transfer from your accommodation to the airport (with guide) for flight to Saigon.

Upon arrival Tan Son Nhat airport, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it. If you cannot locate your guide, please come to the closest Information booth and have them call the emergency number (+84) 9 1871 3456. Your guide will come to meet you and transfer you to hotel.

The regular check-in time is at 1400; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability

Meals: Breakfast

VISIT CU CHI TUNNELS (BY ROAD)

From Saigon, take a 2hr drive northwest to the famous Cu Chi Tunnels, an immense network of connecting underground tunnels started in 1948 to protect the Viet Cong guerrillas from the French air and ground sweeps. The tunnels also served as living quarters, communication and supply routes, and housed hospitals, food and weapons caches. Touring the underground compounds will provide a better understanding of the history of the tunnels, the hardship of life in the tunnels and the Vietnamese resilience during combat. Return to Saigon.

NOTES:
•  Availability: Morning, Afternoon
•  Suggested departure time: 08:30
•  Tour duration: 05 hours

CITY HIGHLIGHTS TOUR

With over eight million inhabitants and four million motorbikes, Saigon is truly a city that never sleeps. Despite its modernity, Saigon maintains a strong link to the past and our city tour takes in some of Saigon’s most historic landmarks including the Notre Dame Cathedral, a red brick edifice with twin spires constructed from materials imported from France (entrance is only permitted when no services are being performed). Then head across the square to the Central Post Office, completed in 1891. A short drive away is the former Presidential Palace, the headquarters of the Saigon Government during the American War. Continue to the War Remnants Museum for a vivid perspective of the American War through the eyes of the Vietnamese. (Please note that some of the displays are very graphic.) Experience Saigon’s famed street coffee culture while your guide provides a brief language lesson as well as insights into daily life of a Saigonese before returning to your hotel.

NOTES:
Availability: Morning, Afternoon
Suggested departure time: 08:30, 13:00
Tour duration: 04 hours
Outside visit only due the renovation at Notre Dame Cathedral until late 2019

Meals: Breakfast

BEN TRE CLASSIC

Depart from Saigon for the 1.5hr drive to Ben Tre, situated in the Mekong River Delta, exchanging city scenes for lush rice paddies and fruit farms. At the pier, embark on a fascinating motorboat excursion past stilt houses, fish farms and scenes of countryside living. Arrive at Turtle Island, and sample freshly picked fruit and coconut milk while interacting with a local farming family. Visit a family-run coconut candy workshop, utilising Ben Tre’s famous coconuts. Explore more of the Delta from a rowing sampan through a network of small canals. Enjoy country hospitality as you sip a cup of honey tea while taking in a traditional folk song performance. A local lunch of local specialties will be served at the town of My Tho before returning to Saigon in mid-afternoon.

NOTES:
•  Suggested departure time: 08:30
•  Tour duration: 8.5 hours

Meals: Breakfast, lunch

Transfer from your accommodation to the airport (with guide).

Meals: Breakfast

Overnight:

Highlights

  • Highlights of Vietnam

Important facts

Country:
Vietnam

Start destination:
Hanoi

Final destination:
Saigon

Duration:
14 days 13 nights

Number of participants:
2 - 8 persons


Included:
  • Overnight accommodation is inclusive of hotel tax, hotel service charges and includes daily breakfast
  • 2D1N Bhaya Classic junk (Shared cruise/private cabin)
  • Private transfers and transportation on tour
  • Sightseeing with Local English speaking guides (one guide in each city)
  • Entrance fees
  • Meals as specified (meals only, no drinks/ water)
  • Airfares: HAN – DAD – SGN (Economy class with airport tax)
  • Cold towels and water on sightseeing days

Not included:
  • Airport Assistance Service
  • Separate luggage truck
  • Vietnam visa
  • Other meals where not mentioned in the program
  • Drinks/water at included lunches and dinners
  • Other flights & airport taxes
  • Hotel early check in/ Late check-out
  • Overweight luggage
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance
  • Tips & gratuities

Other services not listed in inclusive column

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