Vietnam in depth - Culture and People

Vietnam in depth - Culture and People
  • Vietnam in depth - Culture and People

13 days

No doubt, Vietnam is the most culturally diverse country in Southeast Asia, with more than 50 different ethnic groups, each with its own language and special mix of cultures. Vietnam is now a fascinating destination for most travelers who want to discover the mix of cultures and history of Vietnam. This tour combines the rural idyll with the best urban and small town experiences.

From

US$ 1,073

per person

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  • Trip highlights

    Discover the diversity of Vietnam cultures and historical background.

    Brief itinerary

    Day 1.: Arrival in Hanoi (Dinner) Day 2.: Hanoi - Halong Eco Friendly Cruise (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) Day 3.: Halong - Hanoi (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 4.: Hanoi Cooking Class - Train to Sapa (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) Day 5.: Sapa Hill Tribes discovery (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 6.: Sapa - Hanoi by train (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 7.: Hanoi - Hue (1 hour flight) (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 8.: Hue - Da Nang - Hoi An (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 9.: Hoi An Biking to Tra Que herb village (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 10.: Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City (1 hour flight) (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 11.: Ho Chi Minh - Mekong Homestay in Vinh Long (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) Day 12.: Cai Be floating market - Ho Chi Minh city (Breakfast, Lunch) Day 13.: HCMC - Cu Chi tunnels - Departure (Breakfast, Lunch)

    Detailed Itinerary

    Day 1. Arrival in Hanoi

    On arrival at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi, meet our tour guide and drive to your hotel. In the evening, enjoy a performance of traditional Water Puppetry, an art form unique to northern Vietnam, and an interesting, light-hearted introduction to its rural culture. Overnight in Hanoi

    Meal: Dinner

    Day 2. Hanoi - Halong Eco Friendly Cruise

    6.15am Leave Hanoi for Hai Phong – the sea port city (100km away). After 2 hours driving, arriving in Hai Phong, you'll take hydrofoil (speed boat) from Hai Phong to Cat Ba Island (45 minutes).

    11am Welcome to get on board the private Eco Friendly junk, starting your 2-day cruising on Halong Bay. Enjoy fresh seafood lunch on the junk while it takes you to pass by the floating village. Keep cruising to the most scenic areas of the bay with hundreds of beautiful islands. Continue cruising further to see the unique Halong bay. Go kayaking some more through the narrow lanes and tunnel caves called Hang Ca. Get off the boat and climb up to visit the natural cave called Tien Ong where the thickest deposits of fresh water shells found in Vietnam from pre-historic times around 4000 years ago. The volume of shells runs to hundreds of cubic meters.

    Free for swimming and relax to enjoy the sunset on the bay. Have dinner and experience the peaceful night on the junk among beautiful mountains.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Accommodation: onboard Eco Friendly cruise

    Day 3. Halong - Hanoi

    Early wake up to see the dawn on the bay and then have breakfast. Visit the floating fish farm. You will learn how the local people there make their livings. Continue cruising further to see the unique Halong bay. Enjoy the last swimming on the bay.

    11am get off the boat to Cat Ba island. Have lunch at a local restaurant and then take hydrofoil from Cat Ba to Hai Phong and drive back to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 4. Hanoi Cooking Class - Train to Sapa

    In the morning, you spend time to explore Vietnam's capital city. Your guide will take you to the Temple of Literature, the first university in Vietnam dating back to the 11th century, and a popular attraction, as is Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum. Continue to downtown for refreshment by Hoan Kiem Lake, visit Hoan Kiem Lake (Restored Sword Lake) with Ngoc Son Temple then walk through the Old Quarter, also known as the 36 streets or French Quarter, this bustling area of narrow streets is home to literally thousands of small businesses and shopkeepers. It’s a great place to explore with plenty of photo opportunities.

    Afternoon, you will join our cooking class at a restaurant where you will learn to cook some typical Vietnamese dishes which represent the north of Vietnam. First, visit a traditional market, accompanied by the Chef and have a chance to buy or bargain as a local people at the market which brings you very close to the simple life. Then come back the restaurant, together with the Chef you will prepare and cook your own dinner. After the class, you learnt the way to cook authentic Vietnamese cuisine and our foodie cultures.

    After dinner, transfer to railway station for an overnight train to Lao Cai. Enjoy the experience the romance of overnight train travel.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 5. Sapa Hill Tribes discovery

    Arrive at Lao Cai station early morning, transfer to Sapa and have breakfast at restaurant. Take time to relax, enjoy Sapa pure atmosphere. Then, in the afternoon, soak your body, feel ready for a great trek down to the picturesque valley of Muong Hoa. We will walk on small paths and trails to reach Lao Chai and Ta Van village to visit the Tay and Dzay tribes, learn about their original cultures and way of life. Our car will take you back to Sapa for your overnight stay.

    (You might also choose to spend the night with the local on our homestay in Ta Van village)

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 6. Sapa - Hanoi by train

    Breakfast and get ready for our last trek. You first sneak through the market and leave the busy town behind. After a couple of minutes, you will follow a road going down hill to Cat Cat village, stop by a waterfall and a hydroelectric station. Take a rest here before you trek downhill to get to Sin Chai village.

    Get on car and drive back to Sapa town for lunch. Free time in the afternoon to discover the town by yourself. 17.00 transfer to Lao Cai station for overnight train back to Hanoi. Dinner is for your choice before boarding the train for the night.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 7. Hanoi - Hue (1 hour flight)

    Arrive at Hanoi Station early morning, you will be transferred to hotel for freshen up and breakfast. Free time for last-minute shopping in the bustling Old Quarter of Hanoi or at your own leisure before transferring to the airport for a flight to Hue. Upon arriving in Hue, meet your guide and drive to check in your hotel, have lunch at restaurant. Afternoon, visit Imperial Citadel of Hue and Dong Ba market. Enjoy Royal traditional music on Perfume River (Hue royal music also recognized as Cultural World Heritage). Overnight in Hue

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 8. Hue - Da Nang - Hoi An

    The morning you board a boat for a cruise on the Perfume River giving you a taste of the scenic countryside, as well as an enjoyable visit to the beautiful Pagoda of Thien Mu with its impressive 'Heavenly Lady' seven-story tower. You then continue on to visit the Tomb of Emperor Minh Mang, in a tranquil setting of gardens and lakes. Return to Hue for lunch and visit one of city's Garden Houses and then head out for Hoi An via Da Nang. Check-in your hotel in Hoi An, free to explore the city at night, overnight in Hoi An.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 9. Hoi An Biking to Tra Que herb village

    Morning ride a bicycle to a local farm in Tra Que village, take a trip around the vegetable garden and join the farmers in preparing the land and fertilizing it with seaweed from the local lake. Continuing doing some next steps such as: raking the ground, sowing, watering greens, picking greens and many more gardening activities.

    Back to Tra Que’s family house, you will be enjoyed with "food massage" before working together with our family chef to learn the traditional ways of preparing and cooking Vietnamese food. Then, we sit down and a chance to savour the dishes we have prepared.

    Ride back to Hoi An and continue on to the ancient town of Hoi An for a walking tour around the old sections (charming and wonderfully preserved, combining Chinese, Japanese and European influences). Visit to the former merchants' homes, the 400 year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, Phuc Kien Pagoda and the colourful riverside market. You also see a numerous art galleries and tailor shops, get some made-to-order clothes if you like. Overnight in Hoi An

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 10. Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City (1 hour flight)

    Take a short flight to Ho Chi Minh City and spend the afternoon on a guided tour of the highlights of this bustling, cosmopolitan city. In the evening, you may like to enjoy a fun cooking class or take a cruise down the Saigon River, complete with local entertainment and a fantastic traditional and international buffet dinner by your own

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 11. Ho Chi Minh - Mekong Homestay in Vinh Long

    Morning 2-hour drive ahead to My Tho get you away from Ho Chi Minh bustling city. Get on a small boat and then start sailing around four beautiful islets of Mekong delta region. See coconut collection set and how the local make handicrafts from coconut trunk and shell. Visit a coconut candy workshop, taste coconut candy. Take the horse-cart on village path and stop at Ben Truc orchard, taste honey with tea or wine, enjoy seasonal fruits and listening to traditional music. An adventurous sampan ride in palm shading creeks will be the next experience of the riverside region. Lunch to be served with the Mekong Delta specialty

    After lunch, continue the drive to Vinh Long, check-in homestay on an island. One more thing to do this day is biking. It will be so amazing to bike on village paths to see the local farms, houses, real life and the ancestral ways to pick up fruits in Mekong Delta.

    Good chance to take part in the local way of life, cooking some dishes with the host, enjoying dinner and having cup of tea or rice wine while talking and exchanging cultures with the host family. Overnight at home stay in private room.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 12. Cai Be floating market - Ho Chi Minh city

    Enjoy a relaxing morning with home breakfast. Transfer to a local boat to visit coloring Cai Be floating market. Then, an optional stop can be made at local workshops where you can see how rices paste, coconut candy and pop-rice, pop-corn are made. Our boat will take you deeper into the countryside on smaller canals and to enjoy the peaceful time before heading to Vinh Long town, visit the local market. Have lunch at a local restaurant and drive back to Ho Chi Minh City.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 13. HCMC - Cu Chi tunnels - Departure

    Breakfast at hotel, head out to the famous Cu Chi tunnels which were an incredible underground network constructed by Vietnamese fighters during the long struggle for independence, one of the very few remaining monuments to the Vietnam War. We then spend the next hour exploring the maze of tunnels to see the first hand how the Vietcong communists were able to survive in this underground network. You also have a chance to be a guerrilla/soldier practising your shooting skill before driving back to Ho Chi Minh City.

    Have lunch at restaurant before transferring to the airport for your flight home. End of services.

    Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

    The itinerary above could be customized to suit your desire, feel free to get in touch with us for the ideas and best quotation

  • Tour prices quoted in USD per person in private group

    Tour class 2 pax 3-5 pax 6-8 pax 9 pax up
    3 star hotel $1622 $1405 $1128 $1073
    4 star hotel $1793 $1580 $1306 $1252
    5 star hotel $2279 $2066 $1792 $1738

    *Special rate applied for period from 1 May till 30 September, contact us to plan this trip and get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs

    Not fit your requirement? Feel free to contact us to plan this trip and get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs

    Inclusion

    • Hotel accommodation in twin or double sharing basic with daily breakfast,
    • Domestic airfare: Hanoi – Hue; Da Nang – Ho Chi Minh City with Vietnam airlines,
    • Train tickets Hanoi – Lao Cai – Hanoi (sleeping cabin, sharing 4 berths/cabin),
    • All transportation by private air-conditioned vehicle,
    • Private boat cruise Halong bay (Eco Friendly Cruise boat),
    • English speaking guide,
    • Entry fees for all visits as mentioned in the program,
    • Meals specified in the itinerary (B: breakfast, L: lunch, D: dinner),
    • Complementary drink water

    Exclusion

    • International airfares,
    • Drinks, other meals not specified, personal expenses and tips,
    • Travel insurance.
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The difference

We are locals. Experienced personnel, local experts who are always delightful, enthusiastic, devoted to service excellence

Our tours are made private. Your own personal tour guide with private vehicle is exclusively for your party only.

Travel at your own pace. See as much as you can or slow things down. You decide how your time should be spent and the pace in which your tour is conducted

Every tour is customizable. Your complete trip is designed around your interests and budget, so you can explore at your own pace. See things you want, try the food you crave, learn about what interests you the most.

Have questions? Talk to our experts Our consultants are always delightful to help, and show up whenever you need.
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