Southbound Journey Tour, 13 days

Tour Overview

This adventure takes in the best of Vietnam’s rural and urban attractions, from the bustling cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh, to the tranquil beauty of Ninh Binh, Halong Bay and the Mekong Delta.

This two-week journey launches in Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi, where we will learn about the city’s engaging history and culture by touring it’s most significant sites, and visiting nearby traditional craft-making villages. We will cycle and boat in the beautiful Ninh Binh area, visiting atmospheric pagodas nestled in the mountains and taking in the magnificent scenery. We will glide through the emerald waters of Halong Bay, taking in the dramatic limestone islands and visiting the magical Thien Cung Cave. We will explore the restored ancient royal citadel of Hue and cruise down the Perfume River to see pagodas and mausoleums, as well as try our hand at traditional kite-making. In Hoi An, we will explore the town on foot, taking in the idyllic Japanese Covered Bridge and the ancient Phung Hung House. We will travel on to thriving Ho Chi Minh City, where we will explore the city’s colonial architecture, majestic pagodas and historic monuments, including the notorious Cu Chi Tunnels. En route to the Mekong Delta, we will visit the home of the Cao Dai sect, attending an impressive religious service and exploring the ornate temple. In the Mekong Delta, we will boat down the narrow rivers to Unicorn Island, enjoying the lush scenery and visiting traditional villages.

Tour Information

  • Active
  • No Limit
  • Classic Travel
  • Culture

Tour HighLight

+Tour the historic sites of Hanoi, learning about the city’s culture and heritage

+ Explore the local culture of the White Thai  and Hmong  people while cycling and hiking in in Mai Chau and Xa Linh.

+ Share the local life experience when you are  guest of  a Thai family in Mai Chau. 

+Cycle and boat through Ninh Binh, taking in the dramatic scenery

+Cruise through Halong Bay, enjoying remarkable vistas and a stunning cave

+Explore

+Take in the ancient town of Hue and explore the royal citadel, also visiting nearby pagodas, mausoleums and markets, as well as taking a boat trip down the Perfume River

+ Visit Marble Mountain, the Cham Museum and travel along the infamous Hai Van Pass

+ See the pretty town of Hoi An, taking a walking tour of the most charming sites

+ Tour Ho Chi Minh City’s most fascinating sites, including war memorials, markets, pagodas and colonial architecture

+ Visit the remarkable Cu Chi Tunnels

+ Experience a Cao Dai service, visiting the birthplace of the religion

+ Discover the rural Mekong Delta region, travelling by boat to visit lush islands and traditional villages

+ See craft-making by local villagers in the Mekong Delta

+ Private airport transfers and experienced, knowledgeable local guides ensure that you will get the most out of your trip

Tour Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival – Hanoi

Greeted  at airport by our guide and driven to hotel. Check in hotel and have free time.

OVERNIGHT: Hanoi MEALS: No

On arrival at Hanoi Airport, you are greeted  by our guide and taken to your hotel by private transfer. You will have some time free to relax or explore at your own leisure. The capital city of Vietnam, Hanoi is a fascinating blend of East and West, combining traditional Sino-Vietnamese motifs with French flair. The building boom has made Hanoi a rapidly developing city in Southeast Asia. However, it still retains an old charm brought from a thousand year of history, with many interesting cultural and historic monuments, beautiful lakes, shady parks, bustling street markets, funny shops and open air eating spots jostled in ancient houses, and historic temples adjoining colonial style structures. They offer both local and foreigner visitors an endless exploration. You might like to  stroll through the fascinating old quarter containing many vibrant streets which are named after the specific goods once offered for sale at these places. The lively atmosphere in Hanoi old quarter runs from the early hours until late at night  with many street vendors calling, horns honking, and chaotic traffic with waves of motorbikes you’ve never experienced.

Day 2

Hanoi

Spend a day to explore Hanoi, seeing Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum ( close on Mon. and Fri) and  Ho Chi Minh House , One Pillar Pagoda, Temple of  Literature  and Vietnam Museum of Ethnology.  Take a walk around the old quarter and enjoy a water puppet show.

OVERNIGHT: Hanoi MEALS: Breakfast

Day 3

Hanoi – Hoa Binh – Mai Chau

Take a drive to Hoa Binh, seeing the mountain scenery and many hill tribe groups. Arriving in Mai Chau, enjoy a bike ride through Mai Chau Valley and many White Thai Villages.

OVERNIGHT: Hoa Binh MEALS: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4

Mai Chau – Xa Linh - Ninh Binh – Hoa Lu

Head up north to Xa Linh and spend few hours walking inside the homeland of the Hmong People.  See the local and explore the mountain scenery before driving to Ninh Binh. Visit Hoa Lu with DInh and Le Temples.

OVERNIGHT: Ninh Binh MEALS: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5

Ninh Binh – Halong Bay

Spend this morning to explore the surrounding of Ninh Binh on a bike ride and take a boat trip in Tamm Coc. Continue driving through the Red River Delta to Halong Bay.

OVERNIGHT: Halong Bay MEALS: Breakfast

Day 6

Halong Bay – Hanoi – Hue

Embark a traditional boat and sail out to explore Halong Bay on a four-hour cruise. Have lunch on boat and take a drive back to Hanoi. Leave Hanoi on an overnight  train  to Hue.

OVERNIGHT: Vietnam MEALS: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7

Arrival – Hue

Take a drive back to Hanoi Airport and fly to Hue. Met by our guide and driven to hotel. Spend this afternoon seeing Hue Citadel and Dong Ba Market.

OVERNIGHT: Hue MEALS: Breakfast

Day 8

Hue – Hoi An

Continue seeing Hue with  a boat trip along the Perfume River to  Thien Mu Pagoda.  Visit this site and take a drive to explore Minh Mang and Khai Dinh Mausoleum, Open-Air Arena and Kite making. 

OVERNIGHT: Vietnam MEALS: Breakfast

Day 9

Hoi An

Enjoy a half day guided tour of Hoi An, seeing  Japanese Bridge, Museum of Trade Ceramics, Chua Ong Pagoda, Old Tan Ky House and Phuc Kien Assembly hall. Free afternoon at leisure.

OVERNIGHT: Vietnam MEALS: Breakfast

Day 10

Hoi An - Da Nang – Ho Chi Minh

Transfer to airport for flight to Ho Chi Minh. Met by our guide and driven to city center for a half day city tour. Visit Nguyen Hue Boulevard, Notre Dame Cathedral,  Old Saigon Post Office , War Remnant Exhibit then take a walk in Ben Thanh Market.

OVERNIGHT: Ho Chi Minh MEALS: No

Day 11

Ho Chi Minh - Cu Chi Tunnels – Tay Ninh – Cao Dai Temple

Take a drive west to explore Cu Chi Tunnels. Continue onto Tay Ninh and  visit Cao Dai Temple with mid-day ceremony. Travel by road back to Ho Chi Minh.

OVERNIGHT: Ho Chi Minh MEALS: Breakfast

Day 12

Ho Chi Minh – Mekong Delta

Go overland to Mekong Delta and take a boat trip on the Mekong River to explore  Mekong Delta. Visit Unicorn Island and Ben Tre with cottage industries. Drive back to Ho Chi Minh with stopover at China Town.

OVERNIGHT: Ho Chi Minh MEALS: Breakfast

Day 13

Ho Chi Minh - Departure

Check out hotel and transfer to  airport for departure

OVERNIGHT: No MEALS: Breakfast

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What are Included?

Tour Transport:

Car, minivan or bus, private or joint boat , train,  mentioned  flights ( 20kg luggage allowance )

Tour Accommodation:

11 nights at hotel  on twin sharing room basis and 1 night on train based on cabin for 4 persons.

Included Meals:

12 breakfast (B) , 1 lunch (L) and 1 dinner (D)

Guide/Leader:

English speaking guide. French , Germany , Spanish, Italian, Russian  speaking guide can be arranged with on request.

Tour Activities:

Sightseeing tour of Hanoi with entrance fee

Water puppet show in Hanoi

Biking trip  in Mai Chau

Boat trip in Tam Coc  in Ninh Binh

Biking trip in Ninh Binh

Sightseeing tour of Hue with entrance fee

Boat trip in Perfume River

Sightseeing tour of Da Nang and Hoian with entrance fee

Sightseeing tour of Ho Chi Minh with entrance fee

Sightseeing tour of Cu Chi Tunnels with entrance fee

Boat trip in Mekong Delta

What are Excluded?

 

Transport  to Hanoi/from Ho Chi Minh , Optional services ( extra activities, pre /post night, airport -hotel -airport transfer)

Visa fee to Vietnam and  travel insurance

Tipping for tour guide/ leader, driver and local service

Single room on request and personal expenses

How are Hotels?

NO LISTING

Tour document

To make your trip more convenient, we would like to provide quick facts to ensure that you have the right travel documents.

 

PASSPORT & VISA

The passport must have six-months validity remaining and one blank page for entry stamp. To enter Vietnam, foreigners require a valid visa, except  nationals of certain countries, which may visit Vietnam without visa for a period of time. You are required to contact our sales dep. to get the update visa exemption.

 

VACCINATION

At this time, no vaccination is required, but you should check with your doctor the health  information of Vietnam.

 

CUSTOM REGULATION

Based on the current custom regulation of Vietnam, visitors can get free import : 200 cigarettes, or 20 cigars or 250 grams of tobacco, 1,5 liters liquor at 20% volumes and above or 2 liters liquor below 20% volume or 3 liters of alcoholic beverages (excl. wines) and soft drinks, 5 kilograms of tea in maximum, 3 kilograms of coffe in maximum, a reasonable quantity of perfume and personal belongings, and other goods, total value of which is not exceeding ten million VND.

Import and export of firearms and ammunition is prohibited. Transit transportation of firearms, ammunition, explosives and highly dangerous goods is subject to prior approval from the government of Viet Nam.

No restriction of currency is applied for entry or exit Vietnam. However you must make the declaration if you bring along  Vietnamese Dong in excess of VND 150,000,000 or foreign currency in excess of 5,000 U.S. dollars or equivalent.

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