Day 1: Arrival Vietnam, Hanoi airport
After arrival to Vietnam you will be given the chance to discover
some of Hanoi's highlights. We start with the Vietnam
museum of Ethnology where you can get an idea about the 54 ethnic groups of
Vietnam and visit some typical rebuilt houses at the outdoor museum.
Next we will visit the Temple of Literature. Then transfer to your hotel
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 2: Hanoi – Hue (B-L)
This morning, we take an early flight to Hue.
We explore Hue by enjoying a morning boat cruise on the Perfume River to
the Thien Mu Pagoda, a symbol of the city. Hue is also very famous for
its historical relics including King’s tomb. Your boat will stop by Minh
Mang tomb, one of the nicest King’s tombs which is set in harmony of
Earth, Heaven, Green trees, Water and monuments. Your driver will pick
up you at Minh Mang for lunch at a garden restaurant of Biet Phu Thao
In the afternoon, you will visit the Forbidden Purple City, the former
home of the Royal family during the Nguyen dynasty from 19th
century to mid 20th century.
Overnight in Hue
Day 3: Hue – Hoi An (B)
In the morning, you will take a 4-hour drive to Hoian, a charming old town which was recognized as a World Natural Heritage
the way, we will stop at Lang Co beach, Hai Van pass, Cham sculpture
museum and Marble mountain. In the afternoon, we take a tour of the historic pagodas, houses and
bridges of Hoi An. This is Vietnam’s most enchanting town, an ancient
trading port of narrow streets, historic buildings, fine food and
abundant shops. The influence of many countries can be seen as you
wander the streets. Great efforts are being made to
preserve the town for new generations and cars have been banned from
the most popular streets. There are
many important sights in compact Hoi An and all can be explored on foot.
The most popular destination include the Japanese covered bridge, dating
from 1593, a number of historic Chinese merchant houses preserved in
their original 19th century state, such as Tan Ky House and
77 Tran Phu, and several important congregation halls.
Overnight in Hoi An
Day 4: Hoi An – Hochiminh City (B)
AM: Morning at your leisure.
PM: Flight to Hochiminh city. Free at your leisure.
Overnight in Hochiminh city.
Day 5: Saigon- Cu Chi (B)
In the morning, we take a drive to visit the Cu Chi- a fabulous tunnel.
These tunnels are a symbol of Vietnam’s continual fight against foreign
oppression and imperialism. The tunnel system covers close to 200 km
including under what was once a US air base. The tunnels once spanned an
area stretching from close to the Cambodian border to the city limits of Hochiminh City. They were originally constructed to fight against the
French in the 1940s, to give a peasant army a means of communication
between villages whilst remaining undetected. In 1960 the Viet Cong
repaired and added to the tunnels to fight against the South Vietnamese
and American forces. The Commander of the American forces in the region
held the opinion that the Viet Cong who were responsible for digging
them were like human moles.
Afternoon at leisure.
Overnight in Hochiminh city .
Day 6: Saigon- Cai Be- Can Tho (B, L)
In the morning we drive south to Cai
Be. Upon arrival, start our private cruise excursion, departing from our
own pier in Phu An hamlet at around 10.00 am. Upon embarkation, you are
welcomed with fresh cotton towels. The tour will begin with the visit of
Cai Be colorful floating market, cruising among local barges full of
fruits and vegetables... Cruising further, your sampan will bring you to
see some local home factories to discover traditional rice paste making,
rice pop corn, coco candies, and longans drying process.
A delicious lunch will await you at a superb Indochinese villa, Le
Longanier, located in a luxuriant garden by the river…
After lunch, your sampan will proceed the cruise to Dong Hoa Hiep. On
the way, you will be able observe the typical Mekong delta rural life.
These evergreen islands among the Mekong River still remain unknown to
many people. Visit an ancient mandarin house dating from the 19th
century where the family will welcome you with a cup a tea.
We will proceed to Vinh Long, passing beautiful landscapes along Dong
Phu canal, Binh Hoa Phuoc and An Binh islands famous for their fruit
orchards. After crossing the Co Chien River, the excursion will end at
Vinh Long pier around 4pm.
Overnight at hotel
Day 7: Can Tho - Hochiminh City – Siem Reap - Cambodia (B, L)
Breakfast at the hotel followed by an early
boat trip to the bustling wholesale Cai Rang & Phong Dien floating
markets where the farmers exchange their products. A walk on a peaceful
country road provides magnificent sceneries of local houses, orchard
gardens and fields. Don’t be surprised if you are invited by a local
family to join them for a cup of tea! We will have lunch at a local
restaurant before driving back directly to the airport for your
flight from Vietnam to Cambodia, to Siem Reap.
You will be welcomed at the airport and transferred to your hotel.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 8: Angkor highlights (B)
We rise early to travel to Ta Prohm. Ta Prohm
has been abandoned to the elements, a reminder that while empires rise
and fall. Left as it was ‘discovered’ by French explorer
Henri Mouhout in 1860, the tentacle-like tree roots here are slowly
strangling the surviving stones.
We we continue to the
giant pyramid of Takeo, one of the highest temples in the Angkor
area. Built at the end of the 10th century, it was never
This morning we also visit the remains of an old Angkorian bridge which
once spanned the Siem Reap river. There is also the option to
visit the smaller temples of Chau Sey Devada and Thommanon
for avid temple enthusiasts.
In the afternoon, we travel through the traditional village of Preah Dak
to the 12th century temple of Banteay Samre. Built by
King Suryavarman II, this temple has been
extensively restored. The temple is unique in that over-quarrying of
sandstone led to the use of laterite for the roofed corridors. The
pediments above the inner doors here include some of the most
accomplished carving from the Angkor period.
We continue to Banteay Srei, Angkor’s ultimate art
gallery. This petite pink temple is the jewel in the crown of Angkor-era
sculpture. The elaborate carvings are the finest in Cambodia
and the name translates as ‘Fortress of the Women’.
Overnight in Siem Reap
Day 9: Angkor Wat exploration. Night flight to Vietnam, Hanoi (B)
Rising early, we journey
to the Mother of all temples, Angkor Wat. Believed to be the
world's largest religious building, this temple is a fusion of
symbolism and symmetry and a source of pride and strength to all Khmers.
Built in the 12th century by King Suryavarman II, this is
the most famous temple at Angkor. We stay at Angkor Wat to enjoy
a picnic breakfast. As the crowds return to their hotels, we venture
into Angkor Wat to enjoy its magnificence in peace and quiet. We begin
by unraveling the mysteries of the bas-reliefs
that tell of tales from Hindu mythology and of the glories of the Khmer
empire. Stretching for almost
one kilometre, these intricate carvings are one of the world’s longest
unbroken pieces of art. The
final steps to the upper terrace of Angkor are the steepest of all.
Finally the pinnacle, the sacred heart of Angkor Watt, a blend of
spirituality and symmetry so perfect that few moments will measure up.
In the afternoon, we visit the immense walled city Angkor Thom
that was the masterpiece of King Jayavarman VII. Following the
occupation of Angkor by the Chams from 1177 to 1181, the new king
decided to build an impregnable fortress at the heart of his empire. The
causeway is lined by an intricate bridge depicting the Churning of the
Ocean of Milk from Hindu mythology in which the devas (gods) and asuras
(devils) play tug of war with a naga (seven-headed serpent) to obtain
the elixir of immortality.
We begin our visit at the Terrace of the Leper King. This
intricately carved platform was the royal crematorium and the statue
that was originally thought to be the leper king is now believed to be
Yama, the god of death. We continue along the Terrace of Elephants,
originally used as a viewing gallery for the king to preside over
parades, performances and traditional sports. At the southern end lies
the Baphuon, once of the most beautiful temples at Angkor, dating
from the reign of Uditayavarman 1 in the 11th century. It has
undergone a massive renovation by the French and is now once again open
We end off at the temple of the Bayon.
Its 54 towers are each topped off with the four faces of Buddha. These
colossal heads stare down from every side, exuding power and control
with a hint of compassion, just the mix required to keep a hold on such
a vast empire.
Then, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Hanoi.
Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 10: Hanoi – Free day (B)
A free day at your leisure.
This evening, we will attend a traditional Water Puppet show, a
uniquely northern Vietnamese art form designed to depict scenes from
rural life and episodes of national history.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 11: Departure (B)
Have more free time in Hanoi until taking a transfer to the airport for
your flight home.
End of services
Optional Halong Bay Extention
Day 11: Hanoi- Halong (B-L-D)
8.00am - Depart Ha Noi for a 3.5 hour drive to Ha
Long City through the Red River Delta with a break stop on the way. We
arrive at Halong City at about 11h30 and you will then be transferred by
tender to the luxury INDOCHINA SAILS Junk and enjoy a welcome
cocktail. We will start cruising at 12h15 while you check in your cabin.
A deluxe Vietnamese Set menu lunch with fresh local seafood will be
served on board (vegetarians catered for) while you embark on a cruise
into the Holy bay to see the incredible karst formations.
We arrive by boat at Bat Cave (Hang Doi) where
you will choose from optional tour programs: visit local fishing village
by tender OR visit cave by rowing sampan or kayak (kayak is at
additional charge) OR relax with beauty services onboard
A luxurious Vietnamese dinner buffet (an alternative
Set menu dinner will be applied for small group) is served on board.
Overnight in your room
***Kayaking is available with extra charge.
Day 12: Halong – Hanoi (B)
06.00 At leisure or practice Meditation and Yoga Session on the Sun Deck
and enjoy the sunrise.
07.00: Depart by boat to Surprise Cave (Sung Sot) to visit this famous
cave. Another option is to go swimming or kayaking (kayak is at
additional charge). An International Breakfast set menu (or buffet) will
be served from 8h30 to 10h00 in the morning. We will then start
cruising in Halong Bay while you relax and take pictures. The cruise
returns to Hon Gai/ Halong at about 10h30.
10h00: Check out from Indochina Sails Junk- farewell until next time.
Depart from Hon Gai/ Halong towards Hanoi. You will arrive at your hotel
at about 15.30pm.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 13: Departure (B)
Have more free time in Hanoi until taking a transfer to the airport for
your flight home. Trip ends.