Tours & River Cruises

Tours in Vietnam

Extensive Tour of Vietnam

Extensive Tour of Vietnam

20 Days / 19 Nights

from Ho Chi Minh City / to Hanoi

Tour Highlights
• 20 days and 19 nights
• Explore the sights of Ho Chi Minh City
• Visit the Cao Dai Temple
• Explore the famous Cu Chi network of tunnels
• Take a cruise of the Cai Be floating market
• Visit the ancient sites of Dalat
• Enjoy the cultural highlights of Nha Trang
• Relax and enjoy the warm waters of Nha Trang Bay
• Explore the ancient sites of My Son
• Visit ancient tombs and mausoleums at Hue
• Take a glimpse of the Temple of Literature
• Learn about Vietnam’s history at Ethnology Museum
• Drop by the temples at Hoa Lu
• Explore the charming village of Duong Lam
• Participate in a Vietnamese cooking class
• Take a walking tour of Sapa
• Visit local homes of hill tribe villagers
• Enjoy the scenery of Halong Bay
20 days and 19 nights of exciting exploration of Vietnam. Visit different memorable places of the country that feature its ancient and colonial past. Get to meet its people, learn their stories, and immerse yourself in their daily lives.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Ho Chi Minh City Arrival

Upon arrival, your guide will greet you and transfer you to your hotel for check-in. Visit the Chinatown district of Cholon. Peruse markets, shops and the Cantonese Thien Hau Pagoda. Visit the FITO Museum to learn about the history of Vietnam’s traditional medicines. Then, travel to Ben Thanh Market and browse the many stalls selling fresh produce and other goods. Than choose between a visit to the War Remnants or History Museum. Then, visit the former Presidential Palace. Finally, take a walking tour of the major sights of colonial Ho Chi Minh City including the Old Saigon Post Office, Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat), Continental Hotel, Opera House and City Hall. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.

Note: History Museum is closed on Mondays.

Day 2: Ho Chi Minh City – Tay Ninh – Cu Chi Tunnels – Ho Chi Minh City (B)

After breakfast, depart for Tay Ninh. Upon arrival, visit the Cao Dai Temple. Best known for its elaborate architecture, you will find many world faiths mixed together to create a one of a kind religious mosaic. In the afternoon visit the famous underground network of tunnels, Cu Chi Tunnels,  Constructed by Vietnamese resistance fighters during both the French and American wars. In the late afternoon journey back to Ho Chi Minh City.  Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 3: Ho Chi Minh City – Mekong Delta (B, L, D)

This morning, leave the hustle and bustle of the big city behind as the scenery is gradually replaced with rice paddies and rural villages on your drive to Cai Be. As you board ‘The Bassac’ and depart towards Cho Lach on the Tien Giang River, enjoy a delectable lunch on the boat’s upper deck.  Along the way, visit a local village, fruit orchard, and rice field where you can learn more about the way of life here in the Delta. As the sun sets, sit back, watch the scenery, and enjoy a cocktail before dinner. Overnight on Bassac.

Day 4: Mekong Delta – Ho Chi Minh City (B)

An early breakfast will be served while the boat cruises the Tra On floating market on the way to Can Tho. Here, you will disembark and travel by a small local boat to explore the Cai Rang floating market.  The waterway becomes a maze of hundreds of boats packed with mango, bananas, papaya, pineapple, and even floating pho vendors. After cruising back to Ho Chi Minh City for overnight.

Day 5: Ho Chi Minh City – Dalat (B)

Transfer to airport for flight to Da Lat. Upon arrival in Lien Khuong airport, greeted by our guide and transfer to hotel for leaving your baggage. Then, explore the city of Dalat with a visit to Van Thanh flower garden hamlet, a family-run silk factory and Elephant Waterfall. After lunch, visit the former railway station and take an open-air train ride to Trai Mat Hamlet. End the day by the peaceful Xuan Huong Lake, which is in the shape of a crescent moon. Overnight in Dalat.

Day 6: Dalat  – Nha Trang (B)

After breakfast, travel to the coastal city of Nha Trang. The drive takes you through highland crops of coffee, tea and vegetables and into lowland crops of tobacco, grapes and rice. Nha Trang offers beautiful beaches, crystal clear waters and many secluded islands. During your visit you may enjoy a snorkeling or scuba diving adventure. Upon arrival this afternoon, take a tour of Nha Trang to visit the cultural highlights including Po Nagar Cham Towers, the Alexander Yersin Museum, the ‘XQ’ workshop, Long Son Pagoda and Dam Market. Overnight in Nha Trang.

Day 7: Nha Trang (B)

This morning, embark upon a boat trip on Nha Trang Bay to swim, snorkel and relax in the warm waters of the nearby islands. where you can swim and snorkel in the clear warm waters.  Along the way, visit nearby villages or simply relax on the deck. After a fresh seafood lunch on Bamboo Island, return to Nha Trang. This afternoon, explore Nha Trang at your leisure. Overnight in Nha Trang.

Day 8: Nha Trang – Hoi An (B)

Transfer to Nha Trang domestic airport for the 50-minute flight to Danang and then a 40-minute drive to Hoi An. Upon arrival, take a walking tour of the town centre, down narrow streets and past former merchant houses, craft shops, the 400 year-old covered bridge, a Chinese communal hall and the vibrant market. Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 9: Hoi An – My Son –Tra Kieu – Hoi An (B)

Today you will take a half day trip to visit the capital and religious centre of the former Champa Kingdom, My Son, to enjoy the architecture of dozens of red brick towers and sanctuaries dating from the 7th and 13th centuries. On the return trip, visit Tra Kieu, the capital of Champa during the 4th and 8th centuries. Some of the finest sculptures in Danang’s Cham Museum originated from here. This afternoon is at your leisure. Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 10: Hoi An – Danang – Hue (B)

After breakfast, travel to the former imperial capital of Vietnam, Hue where you will visit ancient tombs and mausoleums of the last emperors of Vietnam. Tour the Royal Citadel, severely damaged during war but retaining its majesty. Along the way, visit the sculptures of the Cham Museum and the fishing village of Lang Co. Overnight in Hue.

Day 11: Hue (B)

After breakfast, begin your day at the Imperial Citadel, ruled by the Nguyen Dynasty between 1802 and 1945. Take a cyclo through dai noi ‘Old City’ to Tinh Tam Lake,  full of lotus flowers in summer. Enjoy the views at one of the many local coffee shops around the lake. Continue to the Thien Mu (Celestial Lady) Pagoda. The large tower represents seven reincarnations of Buddha. The famous Austin car driven by a resident monk drove to Saigon in 1963 to protest against the southern regime can also be viewed on the grounds. Next, visit emperor Minh Mang’s tomb and Khai Dinh’s tomb. Peruse the Dong Ba Market and take time to interact with the locals. Overnight in Hue.

Day 12: Hue – Hanoi (B)

This morning you will take a short flight to Hanoi for a full day of sightseeing. Visit the Temple of Literature where university students were educated for 700 years. The gardens and well-preserved architecture offer a fascinating glimpse into Vietnam’s past. Next, visit One Pillar Pagoda, one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples. Then, continue to the home and mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh. (viewed from outside; closed Mon and Fri and from Oct-Nov) Continue to the sixth century Tran Quoc Buddhist Pagoda and Quan Thanh temple, dedicated to Tran Vu, one of the principal deities in Taoism. This afternoon, visit the Ethnology Museum or the Vietnam Women’s Museum. (both closed on Mondays) to learn about the history, culture and traditions of the Vietnamese people. Take a walking tour of Hanoi’s Old Quarter also known as the ‘36 streets’. Explore the city’s narrow streets bustling with shops, peruse Hang Be Market and enjoy a stroll around Hoan Kiem Lake. This evening, enjoy water puppet show. This is a uniquely northern Vietnamese art form depicting scenes from rural life and episodes of national history. Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 13: Hanoi – Hoa Lu – Tam Coc – Hanoi (B, L)

After breakfast, you will embark upon a 2 hour drive Vietnam’s first capital, Hoa Lu. Visit the temples dedicated to Emperor Dinh Tien Hoang and Emperor Le Dai Hanh. Then, travel to Tam Coc Town for a Vietnamese lunch. After lunch, board your private sampan (see options for Tam Coc sampan trip below).

Trang An Boat Option (in replace of Tam Coc): Trang An is an undisturbed nature reserve. Limestone hills surround a peaceful river which passes through a series of caves. Enjoy a paddle through these stunning caves.

Thung Nang Boat Option (in replace of Tam Coc): Pass through a cave and fields of lotus (in summer) before reaching a pagoda. Return on the same route.,/p>

You may chose to climb to Bich Dong Pagoda on nearby Ngu Nhac Mountain, dating to 1428 and comprised of three structures: Ha, Trung, and Thuong Pagodas. Return by sampan to Tam Coc town before returning to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi.

Note: Please be aware that some women on boats may try to sell local products to tourists. Guests should refer to their guide if this situation makes them uncomfortable.

Day 14: Hanoi – Duong Lam – Hanoi (B, L)

After breakfast, depart your hotel for Duong Lam village where you will be steeped in ancient Vietnamese culture. Visit Mong Phu temple in Mong Phu commune and the hundreds of years old laterite houses which make up this charming village. Enjoy an authentic lunch in a 100-year old house. After lunch, travel to Mia Pagoda, built in the 15th century, to view the 287 statues. Then, visit Ngo Quyen temple and Phung Hung temple, places dedicated to these national heroes. This afternoon, return to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 15: Hanoi – Lao Cai – Sapa (B, L)

This morning you will participate in a cooking class. Shop with the chef at the local market where you will learn about Vietnamese ingredients and cuisine. After your ingredients have been collected you will assist in preparing your very own lunch. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at your leisure. This evening transfer to Hanoi train station for the overnight train to Lao Cai, the gateway to Sapa. Overnight on the train in a soft sleeper compartment.

Day 16: Sapa (B, L)

Upon arrival, take a walking tour of Sapa. Visit the vibrant market where Red Dao, Black H’Mong, Tay and other ethnic minority people come to sell their silverware and handicrafts, and to buy provisions. Then, trek through the hills to Sapa’s hill tribe villages set against Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range. Enjoy a picnic lunch along the way. The rest of the afternoon and evening is at your leisure. Overnight in Sapa.

Note: Appropriate footwear must be worn on treks in Sapa. Note that if conditions are wet, programs may be diverted.

Day 17: Sapa – Lao Cai – Hanoi (B, L)

After breakfast, take a visit one of the local markets (Ban Cam on Tuesday/ Cao Son on Wednesday/ Lung Khau Nhin on Thursday / Can Cau on Saturday/ Bac Ha on Sunday. Note: The market visit may be on your arrival day depending on the market day). Here you’ll see mostly Flower Hmong, however Phu La, Black Dao, Tay, and Nung hill tribe groups also gather. Continue your tour with a short walk to a hill-tribe village to visit some local homes and learn more about their daily life. In the late afternoon transfer back to Lao Cai before taking the night train back to Hanoi. Overnight on the train in a soft sleeper compartment.

Day 18: Hanoi – Halong Bay (B, L, D)

Arrive early in Hanoi where a hotel will be available to freshen up before heading to Halong Bay by road. After breakfast, leave Hanoi for a 3.5 hour drive to Halong Bay where you will be welcomed aboard and served lunch. In the afternoon, enjoy some visits and/or activities (depending on each boat’s itinerary) or just spend some time relaxing on board. Towards the end of the day the boat sets anchor for the night among the karst formations. Dinner is served on board. Overnight on Halong Bay.

Day 19: Halong Bay – Hanoi (B)

Enjoy breakfast and the beautiful scenery as your boat returns. Disembark and transfer back to Hanoi. This afternoon free at leisure. Overnight in Hanoi.

Note: This tour may be subject to change depending on weather conditions.

Day 20: Farewell Hanoi (B)

Today is departure day. Enjoy some free time before your transfer to Hanoi’s Noi Bai Airport for your onward flight.


Rates & Services

Rates: 01.05. 2015 – 30.09.2016

Price per person in USD (private tour) 2 persons in double room 1 person in single room(single traveller) Single room supplement
Hotel Category Standard 3.006 5.260 845
Hotel Category Superior 3.544 6.276 1.297
Hotel Category First Class 4.573 8.026 2.113
Supplement for domestic flights in Vietnam: 378  USD per person *
Note: During certain dates seasonal surcharges may apply, especially during Christmas, New Year and the Tet Festival (February 2016). Please inquire with us to find out whether this applies for your tour.
* Price-Tip: If you buy the long-haul flights with Vietnam Airlines about us, we can offer the domestic flights in Vietnam in combination with long-haul routes to a less expensive price than above mentioned offer. Should you opt for a different airline or booking flights on their own, the costs listed for the domestic flights are in addition to the prices indicated in the table for the round trip.

Would you like to book this tour or request changes to the itinerary?

Please fill out our form for tailor-made changes to an itinerary here.

For rates for 3 or more travellers in one booking, please inquire with our team.

Services included in our rates:
• accommodation inc. breakfast (B)
• other meals as detailed in the itinerary (L=lunch, D=dinner)
• local specialized tour guide (English-speaking, other languages available on request)
• all transfers
• boat tours and air-conditioned car/van transportation as detailed in the itinerary
• overnight train from Hanoi to Lao Cai and back in booked compartment
• sightseeing as detailed in the itinerary inc. entrance fees
• one high-quality guidebook per room
Services NOT included in our rates:
• international flights from and to your country of origin
• domestic flights (Ho Chi Minh City / Dalat, Nha Trang / Danang & Hue / Hanoi)
• travel insurance • meals other than those explicitly mentioned, drinks, tips and personal expenses
• visa fees
Travel dates [&] minimum no. of travellers:
• any day departure
• no minimum number of travellers
• this tour is a private tour and you will not be travelling with people other than those you booked with
As this is a private tour, you can depart on the day of your choosing and alter the daily sightseeing program to suit your interests. Inquire with our team to extend this tour or to combine it with our other programmes.

Our Selection of Hotels for You

Hotel Category Standard:
Ho Chi Minh City: Signature Saigon *** (Deluxe Room)
Can Tho: Bassac Cruise (Cabin)
Dalat: Ngoc Lan Hotel *** (Superior Room)
Nha Trang: Asia Paradise *** (Superior Room)
Hoi An: Vinh Hung Emeralda Resort *** (Superior Room)
Hue: Eldora Boutique Hotel ***(*) (Deluxe Room)
Hanoi: Golden Rice Hotel *** (Deluxe Room)
Overnight train: Fansipan Express ** (shared 4 bed compartment / private compartment on request)
Sapa: Chau Long **(*)  (Superior Room)
Halong Bay: Bhai Tho Dchunke (Deluxe Cabin)
Hotel Category Superior:
Ho Chi Minh City: Grand Hotel Saigon**** (Premium Deluxe Room)
Can Tho: Bassac Cruise (Cabin)
Dalat: Dalat Du Parc Hotel **** (Superior Room)
Nha Trang: Michelia Hotel **** (Deluxe Room)
Hoi An: Boutique Hoi An **** (Superior Room)
Hue: Saigon Morin **** (Premium City Deluxe Room)
Hanoi: Golden Silk Hotel **** (Deluxe Room)
Overnight train: Victoria Express ***  (shared 4 bed compartment / private compartment on request)
Sapa: Victoria Sapa **** (Superior Room)
Halong Bay: Indochina Sails (Superior Cabin)
Hotel Category First Class:
Ho Chi Minh City: Renaissance ***** (Deluxe River View Room)
Can Tho: Bassac Cruise (Cabin)
Dalat: Anamandara Dalat ***** (Bellevue Room)
Nha Trang: Intercontinental Nha Trang ***** (Deluxe Room)
Hoi An: Victoria Beach Resort ****(*) (Deluxe Room)
Hue: La Residence ***** (Superior River View Room)
Hanoi: Intercontinental West Lake ***** (Superior Room)
Overnight train: Victoria Express *** (private 2 bed compartment)
Sapa: Victoria Sapa **** (Deluxe Room)
Halong Bay: Paradise Cruise (Deluxe Cabin)

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