Essential North Vietnam Tour and Safari Holiday 09 Days
Duration: 9 Days / 8 Nights
Depart / Return: Hanoi / Hanoi
Visit: Hanoi, Lao Cai, Sapa, Halong Bay.
A panorama of diverse beauty from Hanoi's lively Old Quarter, to Sapa's mountains, terraced rice paddies and ethnic minorities, to the magic and treasures of Halong Bay.
Day 1: Hanoi
Upon arrival Noi Bai airport, we will meet and take you to your hotel, check-in and today is free at your leisure to rest or explore, discovering your own first impressions of Vietnam.
Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 2: Hanoi City Tour - Night train to Sapa (B/L)
Depart at 08: 00 am, after checking out, from your hotel by car. We will begin our day by visiting Uncle Ho, learning about his great life at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Presidential Palace, and his residential place. Next stop is the nearby Temple of Literature. The site of Vietnam's first University, built in twelfth century, to teach the royals the Confucius theory. Here we will also have a chance to see a traditional music performance. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant. In the afternoon, choose one from the numerous museums or temples around Hanoi (Museum of Ethnology, Women's Museum, History Museum or Quan Thanh Temple).
A late afternoon walk around Hoan Kiem lake and Hanoi's fascinating Old Quarter for some great fun, shopping, and street side traditional food. This is your chance to be part of typical Hanoian style and its traditional Vietnamese culture. We finish our relaxing but informative day by attending a Water Puppet Show, a favorite experience for all visitors to Vietnam. Dinner on your own. At 8: 30 pm transfer from an prearranged meeting spot to the station for your night train to Sapa.
Overnight on train.
Day 3: Sapa - Ta Phin, trekking and home stay (4 hours) (B/L/D)
The train arrives in Lao Cai at about 6: 30 am where your guide will welcome you. Then take a morning drive through the clouds by car/van to Sapa (about 1.5 hours). When you arrive in Sapa you will be taken to a local restaurant for a morning shower and breakfast. Then we will take a short ride from Sapa to our trekking base where we start our trek through terraced rice fields and Hmong villages. Chances to meet and talk with locals working in the fields are plentiful. We will break for a picnic lunch en route then continue trekking to Ta Phin village of the Dao people (4 hours). Your Dao host family will warmly welcome you to their traditional home where we will share in an ethnic style dinner and stay the night.
Day 4: More trekking and back to Sapa (B/L)
At the first of gleam of daylight, you will see and hear the sounds of morning village life. You can join them in some of their activities, like feeding the animals, cleaning the house, gardening or preparing breakfast. After breakfast, we will complete our trek on a valley route to the main road (4 hours) linking Lao Cai and Sapa. Alternatively, for this long trek, you can choose a short morning wander around the village for about 1 hour, resulting in more time spent with the host family and other villagers. For both options, you will be supported by our car/van back to Sapa (30 minutes). When we arrive back in Sapa we will check in to the hotel, shower, and break for lunch. At 2: 30 pm we will visit the gardens of beautiful Ham Rong mountain and take part in a traditional ethnic music performance put on by the ethnic minority people. Then return at your own leisure with free time to discover the secrets of this colorful town. Dinner on guest's account.
Overnight at the hotel in Sapa town.
Day 5: Sapa - Hanoi, via night train (B)
Wake up in Sapa town, breakfast at the hotel then enjoy the morning with some of your new friends that you may have met the afternoon before. You have the entire morning and lunch for free time and visiting the lively markets. At 2 pm travel by car/van to visit the Hmong village of Sin Chai to learn more about the Hmong people in an area close to the tourist path but still untouched. You will return to Sapa in late afternoon and finally depart for the Lao Cai train station at 5: 30 pm. The train leaves Lao Cai at 8: 50 pm and arrives after a pleasant sleep in your first class, shared A/C soft berth to Hanoi by 4: 30 am.
Day 6: Hanoi - Halong Bay (B/L/D)
When you arrive in Hanoi, a very short walk will get you to a prearranged hotel for you to shower and a take a short rest before we start our next day. At 8: 00 am we will pick you up, by private mini-van, at the hotel and begin our journey to Halong city. After 3.5 hours driving and viewing simple, countryside, rice paddy life, we arrive at the at port. Board Glory Cruise and start your amazing cruise through this World Heritage Site. Lunch is served on board, a selection of the freshest seafood. We visit "the amazing cave", followed by a swim in the tranquility of Halong Bay and its emerald water. We will cruise further into a quiet area where we will anchor and stay overnight. Dinner and relax as the sun sets. Then you are free to swim in the phosphorous water, retire to your cabin, or fall asleep under the stars amidst the magic of Halong on the top deck.
Day 7: Halong Bay - Hanoi (B/L)
Wake up early in the morning for a great sunrise and a breath of fresh ocean air. Breakfast served on boat then we do a leisurely cruise through thousands of seemingly never ending islands. These are great opportunities to capture some amazing photographs. We stop to visit a floating fishing village and listen to some legendary stories of the fishermen's daily life. Take one last swim somewhere in the middle of the bay to refresh before cruising back to the Halong city pier. By noon we be ashore and break for lunch at a local restaurant. Then we hit the road back to Hanoi. We arrive and finish our tour at your hotel by 5: 00 pm. Dinner on guest' account.
Day 8: Your free day in Hanoi (B)
Your free day in Hanoi. Today is your free day in the Hanoi capital and all of its fascinating historical charm. Spend your day relaxing or shopping. Some suggestions include waking up early (about 6: 00 am) and joining in some exercise around Hoan Kiem Lake; or taking a cycle tour around the Old Quarter for a different point of view; or visiting the numerous markets, shopping and trying the all of street side traditional foods. Overnight in town.
Day 9: Depart Hanoi (B)
We will pick you up at your hotel and transfer to Noi Bai International airport for your flight to home, your luggage full of a lifetime's worth of memories. We wish you a pleasant journey.
Please contact us for best price!
Land around trip transport AC van
AC soft sleep train to Hanoi
Hotels with twin sharing room
Meals as As indicated;(B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Local English/French speaking guides/leader
All entrance and sightseeing fees in the program
International airfares & airport taxes in/out of Vietnam
Hotel early check-ins and late check-outs
All drinks & other meals not mentioned
Visa to Vietnam (We can arrange both visa approval letter and visa on arrival upon request)
Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, shopping, etc.)
Others not mentioned in details, Tipping and Gratuities are welcome
What to Bring:
Passport, change of clothes, sun-glasses & hat, toiletries, sun-block, insect repellent, flashlights, good shoes, personal first aid kit & medicines, small VND notes for buying drinks. If you feel the need then sleeping bags, cable lock for your bags is recommended.