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Day 1: Ha Noi
On your arrival, you are met local guide and driver who will take you around Ha Noi and Ha Long for couple of days. If time is permitted, you will take an orientation tour of Ha Noi and take a cyclo ride (pedicab) around the ancient quarter of Ha Noi. It absolutely is a fascinating way to get the first look of this peaceful and beautiful city. Evening we enjoy the Water Puppet Show, a unique northern Vietnamese art performance that we cannot be missed on our schedule for today. We will l have a chance to learn more about the rural life of Vietnamese peasants and national heroes via a series of history story which were beautifully demonstrated by the artists.
Day 2: Ha Noi – Ha Long (B,L,D)
A new exciting day waiting us to discover, we depart for Ha Long, a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site. Hạ Long Bay has an area of around 1,553 km2, including 1,960–2,000 islets, most of which are limestone. The core of the bay has an area of 334 km2 with a high density of 775 islands and islets in all sides reflecting on turquoise water. The limestone in this bay has gone through 500 million years of formation in different conditions and environments.
There are a lot of photo opportunities on our way to Ha Long as we drive through the rural area, street markets, paddy fields, vegetable farms, poultry farms and lotus farms. We take a rest stop after 2 hour drive for a coffee break then continue to Ha Long Bay. At midday we board the overnight junk for the cruise. A welcome drink is well prepared for us as we get on board then check in and enjoy a pleasant cruise on the bay. Seafood lunch is served on board while the junk is slowly going among the islands and islets. There are some activities for us to join in in this afternoon; visiting to the cave, swimming at Ti Top beach, climbing up the top of Ti Top Island for panoramic view of the bay, kayaking in late afternoon or joining squids finishing at night. The junk is anchored in a quiet bay for overnight. Dinner and overnight on board.
Day 3: Ha Long – Ha Noi (B)
Morning just join the Tai Chi Class on sundeck for half an hour and then we will have breakfast. We keep on our excursion and visit to Sung Sot cave, fantastic stalactites and stalagmites in all different sides with beautiful natural color. Return to our junk and check out. Enjoy a pleasant cruise back to the pier for disembarkation then drive back Ha Noi
Day 4: Ha Noi – Ho Chi Minh (B)
Start our day with a visit to Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, this is a very special place for all Vietnamese and also famous for foreigners around the world to see the whole complex, Uncle Ho’s house on stilt where he lived and worked from 1958 -1969, his fishing pond and his garden. Then we head to One Pillar Buddhist Pagoda built in 1049 by King Ly Thai Tong who ruled from 1028 to 1054. Further on our excursion, we visit to Van Mieu, Temple of Literature to dedicate to Confucius and his four best disciples. This was also the first national university of Vietnam built in 1076 within the temple to educate Vietnamese bureaucrats, nobles, royalty and other members of the elite. After visiting this wonderful place, we will have lunch at local restaurant and refresh. Later in the day we visit to Ethnology Museum which is very rich culture collection of 54 ethnic groups living in Vietnam. The simple agriculture stools, fish traps, hand weaving cloths, crafts, festivals, folk arts, traditional houses, and lively activities of each tribe are all here for us to discover. Finish our day at History Museum, we not only see the exhibits from stone age, bronze ages and rehistoric era to prove that there were the ancient Vietnamese living in Ha Noi but also the modern artifacts to show how the Vietnamese has been strugling for independence, freedom, peace and love.
Transfer to Noi Bai Airport for the flight to Ho Chi Minh City or so called Saigon. Upon the arrival we are met the guide and driver then we together go to hotel for check in.
Day 5: Ho Chi Minh City – Cu Chi (B)
Today we drive out to Cu Chi tunnel which is the most complicated underground system in Vietnam built in early 1948 and completed its 250km long around 1960. This is an amazing place where we are absolutely admired the way of the guerrillas’ living and fighting for their mission. Before examining this historic site such as a private entrance of the tunnel, Commander Bunker, Fighting Bunker, Meeting Bunker and Health Care Bunker, we will watch a short documentary film about this special place to have an idea why it was named as an “Iron Land”. After that we walk to see the site. The smokeless Hoang Cam kitchen where we will have a chance to taste the guerrilla’s food, the steamed cassava associated with peanut, salt and sugar is an incredible bunker to visit. Mr. Hoang Cam designed this special kitchen during the French–Vietnam War in Dien Bien Phu battle field and it became very popular as its smokeless chimney system in a later War. After finishing our visit to this site, we drive back Saigon for an afternoon city tour. The War Remnant Museum is a must for us to see and to learn more about the sorrow of this war that left unpleasant after-effect to the people and environment for years.
We finish our day with a visit to Thien Hau temple in China town and Binh Tay Market.
Return our hotel then free at leisure.
Day 6: Ho Chi Minh City – Cai Be (B,L)
Today we will enjoy the beautiful scenery in Mekong Delta area with hundreds of canal and river system and the most productive farm in Vietnam. On arrival Cai Be town, we take a boat cruise to visit to Cai Be floating market which is very interesting and popular in Mekong region. There are hundreds of trading boats anchoring on both sides of the river and these boats as the floating shops selling all different agriculture produce being hanged on the bamboo pole placing at the front of each boat as the sale signal. This floating market is usually very busy early morning before sun rise and its function is as the whole market on the river. After visiting this market, we continue our boat trip to local village nearby to view how local people making coconut candy, rice-paper, pop-corn, and local souvenirs. Return to our boat then relax while we are cruising across the Mekong River to the island where we take a short walk through the fruit garden and visit the farm. Then we enjoy our lunch at the farm, talk to the host, walk around fruit garden and bonsai garden and just take a little nap on the hammock before boarding the boat again heading to Vinh Long town. We disembark at Vinh Long then drive back to Ho Chi Minh City.
Day 7: Ho Chi Minh City – Departure (B)
There is activity for today. Just pack up and relax until your departure flight. The guide and driver will pick you up then transfer you to Tan Son Nhat Airport.
Suggestion for extension trips
4- day Phu Quoc Island tour
3-day Con Dao Island tour
4-day Mui Ne Beach tour
5-day Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An tour
4-day Siem Reap tour
All accommodation basing on double/twin room with daily breakfast
Private transportation as specified in itinerary
English speaking guide for day tour
All entrance fees for sightseeing
All boat trips as specified in itinerary
Meals as specified in itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Drinking water on coach
International air ticket to/from Vietnam
Visa fee to Vietnam
Domestic air tickets
Things are not indicated in itinerary