Sunset on Halong Bay

8 Day Escorted Tour Itinerary

Classic Vietnam Tour

History, culture and natural beauty

One of our signature journeys, designed for travellers keen to experience the diversity of Vietnam, but with less time to spare. Contrast the bustle of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City with an overnight cruise at the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site of Halong Bay, and enjoy the historical and cultural depths of Hoi An and Hue in Central Vietnam. This is Asia at its best.

Our Experts Recommend:
  • The cultural centre of Vietnam, Hanoi
  • Cruise through picturesque Halong Bay
  • Water puppetry at Thang Long Theatre
  • Enchanting Hoi An
  • The former Imperial City of Hue
  • Ho Chi Minh city, The Pearl of the Far East

Sample Itinerary Summary

We can tailor any part of this itinerary or create a new one just for you.

Duration
8 days
Guide Price
£1,889 per person
Price based on
Based on 29 August 19 departure from London Heathrow flying with Vietnam Airlines, meal basis as per itinerary (2 adults sharing).
Our guide price gives you an idea of pricing which will vary depending on exchange rates, accommodation, duration, dates, airline and cabin class.
Destination Breakdown
Options
Private or Group basis, Escorted
Included
  • International and domestic flights as detailed.
  • Accommodation as detailed in double or twin room with private facilities (alternative but similar hotels may be used at certain times of the year).
  • Hotels featured for departures from November 2018 are subject to confirmation at time of booking.
  • Air-conditioned transportation.
  • Services of an English-speaking local driver/guide.
  • All entrance fees during sightseeing as detailed.
  • Meals included as stated. Please note: breakfast is usually a Western-style buffet in your hotel. Most other meals are taken at local restaurants.
Not included
  • Until June 2021, British Nationals can stay in Vietnam for upto 15 days without a visa. For stays of 15-30 days, an e-visa is required. For stays over 30 days, you should contact your nearest embassy.
  • Beverages during meals.
  • Tips for the driver/guide.
  • Optional excursions.

Itinerary Breakdown

On arrival in Hanoi, transfer to your hotel for one night. As the capital of Vietnam for almost a thousand years, Hanoi is considered to be the cultural centre of Vietnam, where every dynasty has left behind their imprint. Even though some relics have not survived through wars and time, the city still has many interesting cultural and historic monuments for visitors and residents alike.

Optional tours: (payable locally)
One hour cyclo tour
Walking tour through Old Quarter
Dinner with a Hanoi family.

Points of Interest

Overnight Accommodation

  • Thien Thai Hotel or similar.

After an early breakfast, depart your hotel for Halong City. After boarding the boat, you will start a relaxing overnight cruise passing impressive rock formations. Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site of outstanding natural beauty, known in Vietnamese as 'dragon descending to the sea'. After lunch, enjoy a guided excursion to Sung Sot Caves, floating village or swimming in the bay. Once the sun has set your boat will drop anchor for the night. A cooking demonstration may take place before dinner is served.

After dinner, you may choose to enjoy fresh air on the sundeck, play board games, or retire to your cabin for a comfortable night's sleep after a long day.

Note: our tour guide will not accompany you on-board, however each boat has their own knowledgeable guides. Itineraries vary depending on the boat's programme.

Points of Interest

Overnight Accommodation

  • Emeraude Classic Cruise or similar

You are welcome to join in an early morning Tai Chi session on the sundeck (depending on your boats programme), and watch the sunrise in the bay. Enjoy breakfast on board before disembarking the boat, and heading back to Hanoi for an orientation tour visiting the old quarter which is known as the city’s historical centre.

You have the choice to stay in Hanoi for another night, or experience rail tracks of Vietnam overnight aboard the SE3 Reunification Express from Hanoi to Hue. For the overnight train you will stay in a private four-berth compartment (two upper and two lower berths), with air-conditioning and shared restrooms. Dinner will be enjoyed at a restaurant before transferring to Hanoi railway station.

If you are staying another night in Hanoi dinner is not included.

Notes for when taking the overnight train from Hanoi to Hue:
• Tour guide will not accompany those taking the overnight train option
• Train schedule is subject to change (ETD: 22:00 hrs)
• Shared restrooms only available at either end of the carriages

Points of Interest

  • The Old Quarter

Overnight Accommodation

  • Thien Thai Hotel or similar

Spend the morning at leisure before checking out of your hotel and transferring to the airport for your flight to Hue. For those that have taken the overnight train option will arrive in Hue around 10.35am, and picked up to join the rest of the group for lunch. Enjoy a half day tour of Hue and visit the Imperial Citadel, this royal complex has been officially recognized by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Continue by road to visit Thien Mu Pagoda or Heavenly Lady pagoda an active Buddhist monastery originating from 1601, and afterwards take a scenic boat trip on the Perfume River to the city pier.

Overnight Accommodation

  • Moonlight Hotel or similar

In the morning, visit Tu Duc Royal Tomb. Construction of the tomb was meticulously carried out, starting while the king was still alive in order to ensure his comfort in the next life. Your journey continues southbound to Danang over the famous Hai Van Pass with a green view of the stretch of Truong Son mountain range on one side, and a spectacular sea view on the other, followed by lunch in a local restaurant. This afternoon visit Cham Museum and en route take a photo stop at Marble Mountains, before driving the short distance south past the famous Non Nuoc Beach, and onto the enchanting town of Hoi An, listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site. Upon arrival in Hoi An, check in the hotel and rest of the day will be at leisure.

Overnight Accommodation

  • Hoi An Trails Resort or similar

In the morning, your guide will take you on a stroll through the exceptionally well-preserved ancient town of Hoi An. Most of the buildings still have their original wooden frames, including historical monuments and the fusion of indigenous and foreign cultures. Hoi An Silk Village is just one kilometre away from the centre of Hoi An ancient town - this is your next stop and where you will enjoy lunch. Drive to Danang airport for the flight to Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon. Today's Ho Chi Minh City is the bustling and vibrant economic centre of the south. Check in your hotel and have free time in the evening to explore the city.

Points of Interest

Overnight Accommodation

  • ARISTO Hotel or similar

Drive to Cu Chi district this morning to visit the amazing complex of underground tunnels at Cu Chi. 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 before returning to Ho Chi Minh City for lunch. Your afternoon walking tour will take you past some magnificent sights from the French colonial period such as the Opera House, Notre Dame Cathedral and the old Post Office. Spend some time shopping for souvenirs at the famous Ben Thanh Market, before indulging in a well-earned foot massage. The evening is at leisure, or an optional dinner cruise on the Saigon River is available charged locally.

Overnight Accommodation

  • ARISTO Hotel or similar

Transfer to Ho Chi Minh City airport for your onward journey, or alternatively extend your stay in Vietnam.

Optional excursions:
Good morning Saigon Tour (payable locally)

Points of Interest

  • Hanoi

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Interesting cultural and historic monuments
    • Visit The Ho Chi Minh Museum
  • Halong Bay

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site of outstanding natural beauty
    • Explore the Sung Sot Caves
    • Tai Chi on the sundeck
  • Hue

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Visit the Imperial Citadel
    • Take a scenic boat trip on the Perfume River
    • Explore the Heavenly Lady pagoda, an active Buddhist monastery
  • Hoi An

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Visit Tu Duc Royal Tomb
    • Take a photo stop at Marble Mountains
    • UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site
  • Ho Chi Minh City

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Visit the amazing complex of underground tunnels at Cu Chi
    • Explore the French Colonial district
    • Shop for souvenirs at the famous Ben Thanh Market