This unique tour of Vietnam will appeal if your adventurous side demands that you really connect with the country, and ensures you get to touch, feel and taste this land of sublime beauty and culture.
Explore the bustling streets of Hanoi and old Saigon like the locals do – on the back of a Vespa. Practice the ancient art of Tai Chi on your sundeck whilst cruising Halong Bay, and visit the Cu Chi Tunnels by speedboat. There is time for relaxation and pampering too, with an indulgent beach stay in Nha Trang and the architecturally stunning An Lam Retreat at Ninh Van Bay.
This is a tour of contrast and luxury - and is available for adults only.
- There are 36 streets in Hanoi's Old Quarter - perfect for souvenir shopping
- Try the local coffee - Vietnamese blends can be potent, eye-popping cups of dark black goodness.
- Hoi An has the highest concentration of tailors in the world - make sure you take advantage and treat yourself to a custom fit piece of clothing.
Start your Journey
You will be welcomed at the airport by your guide and transferred to your hotel to leave your luggage.*
Enjoy a one-hour cyclo tour of Hanoi’s Old Quarter which allows you to catch a glimpse of ancient Hanoi and learn about traditional Vietnamese architecture. The tour includes a stop at an ancient Vietnamese "long house".
The rest of your day is at leisure to relax and settle in.
*Your room will be available from 2:00 pm
An 8:00 am start sees you continue your Vietnam adventure with a tour around Hanoi.
Visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum* and his unassuming former residence*, you will also have the opportunity to visit One-Pillar Pagoda, and the Temple of Literature which was build over 1,000 years ago and is known as the first university of Vietnam.
You will also have the chance to visit one of the following museums** during your city tour: Fine Arts Museum, Vietnam National Museum of History, War Museum, Museum of Ethnology and Hoa Lo Prison Museum.
After you have enjoyed lunch on your own enjoy a leisurely one-hour cyclo tour through Hanoi. Spend some time at one of the most beautiful lakes in Hanoi, Hoan Kiem Lake, where you will also find Ngoc Son Temple. Built on an island within the lake during the 19th century, the temple was dedicated to Saint Van Xuong, considered to be one of the brightest stars in Vietnam's literary and intellectual circles.
After returning to your hotel in the afternoon you will have plenty of time to enjoy your evening in Hanoi at leisure.
*please note the mausoleum is closed on Mondays and Fridays and during the months of September and October and Ho's residence is closed on Mondays and Fridays.
** Hanoi's museums are closed on Mondays
Start your morning with a welcome drink as your enjoy one of the most spectacular views of the famous Long Bien Bridge, spanning the Red River.
Leaving your Vespa for a while, take a walk to visit the lush green islet, locally known as Bananas Island, where you will have the change to witness the unique lifestyle of the floating village.
Back on your Vespa, you will continue riding to explore the railway tracks cutting through the heart of the city and meet families living and working mere centimetres away in tall narrow houses.
Next up is a visit to the open market, where you can test your shopping skills as you explore the bustling and vibrant market place.
After zooming through narrow alleyways, you will reach the crash site of an American B-52 bomber in a city lake. This US bomber was shot down during the 1972 bombing raids of Ha Noi, a poignant reminder of recent history. Learn of the city's recent history, before visiting a peaceful Buddhist temple set in the most beautiful gardens.
At the last stop, immerse yourself in a tranquil green oasis at a miniature Kumquat Farm (seasonal). These little trees are traditional gifts at Tet, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, and adorn every family home, symbolising luck, health, wealth, fertility and peace. Or learn about the ancient tradition of tea making at the home of a Vietnamese Tea Master before riding back to your hotel around 12 noon, with the afternoon at leisure.
Hanoi to Halong
Your guide will pick you up around 09:30hrs for your three hour transfer to Halong Bay.
Arrive at Tuan Chau Marina around noon, transfer by tender to The Jasmine for check in.
Once on board, enjoy a welcome drink, receive your cruise briefing and safety instructions before tucking into a delicious Vietnamese lunch.
Cruise through Halong Bay, passing the most beautiful and quiet areas including Incense Burner, Dog Stone Islet, Fighting Cock, and Finger Islet. Arrive at Cua Van floating village where you can visit Tien Ong Cave. The voyage continues to the fishing village with a small bamboo boat rowed by local people. Gain a unique insight into local life as you move around the calm sea of this secluded area.
Return to the main boat and cruise to your overnight mooring area. In the late afternoon a cooking demonstration will be performed by the Chef and you are welcome to join in and practice yourself.
Dinner is served in the restaurant either a la carte or buffet style.
Afterwards the night is yours to unwind and enjoy the surreal landscape.
Please note your tour guide will not accompany you on board.
Wake up a dawn to the lapping of the waves and the smell of freshly brewed coffee which is available with pastries in the dining room.
Join the Tai Chi morning class on the sun deck - following the moves of the ship's instructor as you merge with the surrounding scenery. An experience not to be missed.
Transfer by tender to the day boat named Sunset - breakfast will be served as the boat sets sail for the Surprise Cave.
Visit the cave before cruising further into the bay. You will have the chance to have another close encounter with the fairy-like Ha Long Bay this time via kayak as you float through this bizarre water landscape.
The next step will be the Pearl Farm where you can visit the small pearl factory to see how pearls are harvested and processed, then rejoin the main boat.
Dinner is served in the restaurant around 7:00 pm, before you retire to your cabin, there is the option to have some fun with squid fishing together with the crew, or simply lean back on one of the loungers and listen to the serenity of Ha Long Bay.
Halong - Hoi An
For early risers, tea, coffee and pastries are served in the restaurant and a Tai Chi Class will take place on the sundeck around 6:30 am.
Then it is time for an early morning swim. A tender boat will take you to Titov Island. You will have around an hour on the island, giving you the chance to climb to the peak for a breathtaking 360-degree view of the Bay. With 400 stone steps it will take around 20 minutes to reach the top, or if you don't fancy the trek all the way to the top you can stop at the viewing platform half way up.
Return to the boat around 8:45 am - as you cruise slowly back to the pier, a full breakfast is served in the dining room.
Relax on the sundeck or dine in the restaurant while savouring the last cruise moments of the iconic site before arriving back on shore.
Disembark at Taun Chau Marina around 11:00 am, where you will be welcomed by your guide and driver for your journey back to Hanoi airport for your flight to Da Nang.
Once you arrive in Da Nang you will be transferred to your hotel in Hoi An, and the rest of the evening is at leisure.
After an early breakfast, meet your guide for the day and embark on an exciting jeep tour through the countryside.
Stop at the busy fish market on the outskirts of town for some great photo opportunities, then continue your drive to My Son, passing breath taking scenery, rural villages and a bustling town and markets. Stop at an ancient Banyan Tree in Nam Phuoc and enjoy a real Vietnamese coffee.
Upon arrival in My Son you will notice the haunting sound of Cham music, stop to take in the vibrantly dressed dancers enjoying a traditional dance performance.
Next is a gentle walking tour to the Cham ruins begins with a short ascent along a track bordered by jungle. As you reach the top, the fascinating ruins appear. While you explore the area your guide will explain the history of the religious site which served as a burial place for the Cham monarchs many centuries ago.
Return to Hoi An by car to start your boat trip.
Your boat is a traditional Vietnamese fishing vessel which has been refurbished with fittings of the highest standard while preserving its traditional charm.
Before boarding the boat, make a quick to the Thanh Ha pottery village. The village is famous for its earthen wear and thrived in the 16th and 17th centuries. It continues to make the bricks and tiles and other earthen wear for the buildings in the Old Town.
After your tour, continue to Thanh Ha Pier to board your private boat and take a cruise through the Hoi An countryside along the picturesque Thu Bon river.
Relax and enjoy a Vietnamese cooking demonstration on board the boat.
You will stop to enjoy the sights and sounds of Tra Nhieu fishing village, the Duy Hai fishing market and stunning coconut forest of Bay Mau.
You will also have the chance to experience a range of optional activities as part of your tour. Kayaks and bicycles are stored on board so you can enjoy a kayak trip or paddle in a bamboo basket boat on the river, or a bicycle trip to Dong Binh Village and enjoy a closer look at the daily lives of the local people.
Return to either Nguyen Hong or Thuan Tinh dock around 3:00 pm, and after a short stroll to your vehicle you will return to your hotel where the remainder of the day is at leisure.
Drive to Hai Scout Cafe in Hoi An town for welcome drink this morning before you visit Hoi An’s colourful market and experience the amazing sights, sounds and aromas of this busy market. Take the opportunity to interact with the local sellers and learn about all the ingredients to be used in your cooking lesson later.
Board the Red Bridge boat for a leisurely cruise along Hoi An River to the Red Bridge Cooking School. This is a chance to view local river life, so make sure your camera is ready.
On arrival, explore the cooking school’s herb garden, before learning about some of Hoi An’s and Vietnam’s well-known dishes. The cooking lesson runs for about two hours. The Red Bridge chefs first demonstrate each dish before you prepare the same dish yourself. Included in the class is a brief introduction to Vietnamese food carving. After the lesson, you may indulge in your cooking results.
Return to your hotel around 1:00 pm for some well deserved pool time, or a visit to the spa with it huge range of treatments and therapies include Swedish therapy, hot stones, Himalayan salt stone and herbal massages. A range of foot care and facial treatments. Body wraps incorporating a number of natural ingredients such as coffee, seaweed, olive oil, and fresh milk.
Hoi An - Nha Trang
After breakfast, your guide and driver will meet you to transfer you to Da Nang airport for your flight to Nha Trang.
This is the part of your trip where you can relax and unwind at the beach.
An Lam Retreats Ninh Van Bay is the first and only adult only resort in Vietnam. The resort is exclusive for adults and families with children above 16 years old. Located on a secluded jungle island where stunning surroundings, a natural stream and the beach create absolute privacy and tranquillity.
It is the perfect destination for personal comfort, relaxation and rejuvenation from the bustling life, ideally for those seeking a genuine retreat.
Nha Trang - Ho Chi Minh City
After breakfast, return to Da nang airport for your flight to Ho Chi Minh City.
Upon arrival, you will be met by your guide and driver and transferred to your hotel.
This evening get ready for a street food adventure with a difference - on the back of a Vespa.
Your first stop is at Café Zoom to watch the world go by whilst enjoying a cocktail and nibbles, before adventuring onto favorite local eating spots. You will experience the nightlife of Ho Chi Ming City the way locals do, all from the back of a vintage Vespa scooter.
The tour will start with a ride to part Chinatown and then heading to District 4 through busy streets and alleys to see the nightlife of locals and enjoy street sea-food and cold drinks, places that foreigners would rarely get to see.
Leave district 4 for district 3 through downtown district 1 to a famous Banh Xeo shop to enjoy the speciality of Ho Chi Minh City and southern food with the locals. Then continue to a hidden Vietnamese-style coffee shop to have a taste of Vietnamese music. Afterwards, venture to a lively bar to enjoy drinks along with live music.
Saigon -Cu Chi - Ho Chi Minh City
After an early breakfast meet your guide and transfer to the pier in District 1 for a half-day tour by speed boat to Cu Chi Tunnels, an amazing complex of underground tunnels used during the Vietnam War. There are more than 200 km of tunnels, comprising a main axis system with many branches connecting to underground hideouts, shelters, and other tunnels. You have the chance to crawl through this amazing system of tunnels.
Please note this part of the itinerary is shared with other clients.
Return to your hotel for some time to refresh, and then be picked up once again at to start your afternoon city tour of Ho Chi Minh City.
Formerly known as Saigon, today’s Ho Chi Minh City is the bustling and vibrating economic centre of the South. Over the past few centuries, Saigon was called the “Pearl of the Far East” and was an important trading centre for Chinese, Japanese and Western merchants who travelled along the Saigon River.
Your sightseeing tour includes visiting bustling Cholon (Chinatown), Thien Hau pagoda, one of the oldest pagodas of the Chinese in the area and colourful Ben Than Market, the Post office designed by Gustav Eiffel resembling a grand railway station and Notre Dame Cathedral inaugurated in 1880 as the spiritual and cultural crucible of the French presence in the Orient. Please be aware that The Cathedral is undergoing a major renovation and the inside of the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral is closed to tourists until further notice.
Have a Photo stop at the former Presidential Palace, renowned for its symbolic role in the fall of Saigon in 1975 and continue to visit the War Remnants Museum. Afterwards, proceed to Dong Khoi Street to visit the photo gallery Couleurs d’Asie by Rehahn – the famous French photographer. On the show are two different sides of the artist’s works: images of Vietnam and his works from other countries as well as fine art photography.
Enjoy the evening at leisure.
Ho Chi Minh City - departure
After an exciting Vietnam adventure, you will be met by your guide and driver and transferred to Ho Chi Minh City airport for your onward flight.
- Accommodation as detailed with private facilities. In case of early transfer breakfast cannot be guaranteed. Hotels are subject to change.
- Meals included as detailed. Breakfast is usually a Western-style buffet in your hotel, while most other meals are taken in local restaurants.
- Services of an English-speaking guide, transfers and tours on a seat-in-coach basis.
- All entrance fees and government taxes as appropriate.
- International and domestic flights.
- Beverages during meals.
- Optional excursions.
- Tips for the guide and driver.
- Any departure taxes.
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