Hanoi Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF SOUTHEAST ASIA 354

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Women practising Tai Chi by Hoan Kiem Lake

Day 1: Hanoi

Welcome to Hanoi! Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel. The afternoon can be spent exploring the wide, tree-lined streets of Hanoi, resplendent with French colonial architecture and the scenic Hoan Kiem Lake. This evening we know you will enjoy attending a traditional Vietnamese water puppet performance. Truly very entertaining!

Vietnamese Water Puppets

Day 2: Hanoi

Enjoy a full day tour of this charming city, including a visit to Ba Dinh Square, Presidential Palace, French colonial Old Quarter, West Lake, Hoan Kiem Lake, Ho Chi Minh humble house of stilts and the famous One Pillar Pagoda and Temple of Literature.

A street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi - Halong Bay

Early this morning journey north to Halong Bay (approx 4 hours drive), stopping for refreshments en route. UNESCO Listed Halong Bay is undoubtedly one of Vietnam's most spectacular regions. Thousands of karst limestone and jungle covered peaks and isles, rise dramatically out of the emerald waters of the bay. Spend the day cruising around the islands on board a traditional Junk boat. Stopping to explore caves and coves and to swim in the emerald waters. You can also take a rowboat to visit the floating fishing village of Vung Vieng - where you'll gain a fascinating insight into the daily life of the local people. Enjoy a scrumptious buffet lunch and set dinner whilst onboard.

A junk sailing past a limestone peak in Halong Bay

Day 4: Halong Bay - Saigon

Enjoy fresh air and the gentle breeze of the bay this morning as you relax on board the Junk. There will be more opportunities to swim and explore hidden caves before returning to port. Later, transfer back to Hanoi and straight to the airport for your flight to Saigon.

Ho Chi Minh's Notre Dame Basilica Cathedral at night

Day 5: Saigon

This morning discover that nowhere else is the tenacious spirit of the Vietnamese more evident than in the underground tunnels of Cu Chi. Giving a unique insight into the dark times of the Vietnam War when an under supplied army of guerrillas defeated one of the most well armed military powers in the world, the US. After, we visit the Cao Dai Temple in Tay Ninh, which is referred to a “Walt Disney fantasia of the East”. Back in the city we visit the Saigon colonial Post Office, and the Notre Dame Cathedral (Reunification Palace closes by the time you return not possible to visit on this day)

A street trader in Saigon

Day 6: Saigon

Explore the beautiful Mekong Delta today! Early this morning drive to Cai Be and board a traditional Sampan boat at around 10:00am. First stop on your scenic Mekong Delta cruise, is the colourful floating market of Cai Be, where traders in barges full of fruits and vegetables sell their goods. Continue cruising along the scenic Mekong canals to Binh Hoa Phuoc Island. After lunch on the island we witness the rural lifestyle and daily activities of the delta inhabitants. Then return to dry land for your transfer back to the city but not without stopping on the way to visit the Thien Hau Pagoda.

Day 7: Saigon - Siem Reap

Spend time at leisure this morning before your flight to Siem Reap. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. This afternoon, ride a Tuk Tuk to visit the 12th century Angkor Thom, the last capital of the Khmer Empire.

Day 8: Siem Reap

Time to explore more of the Angkor Temple Complex. Rise early this morning to avoid the crowds and travel by Tuk Tuk to visit the incredible jungle enveloped temple of Ta Prohm, which featured in the film 'Tomb Raider'. Next, visit the spectacular Angkor Wat temple. Enjoy a guided tour around this huge structure and learn about the glories of the Kingdom of Angkor before returning to the hotel for a late breakfast and a rest. Continue sightseeing this afternoon with a visit to the temple of Banteay Srei or ‘Citadel of the Women’. On your way back to Siem Reap, enjoy the sunset from the top of the pyramid-shaped temple of Pre Rup.

Day 9: Siem Reap

This morning take a Tuk Tuk to the edge of Siem Reap and enjoy a fun buffalo cart ride through the countryside until you reach the Cambodia’s largest freshwater lake; the Tonle Sap. Board a boat and spend the rest of the morning at one of the largest floating villages on the lake which is called Kompong Phluk. In the village you will witness the fascinating daily lives of the local people who live on the water. The boat service is provided by local people, and the profit goes directly back to the community. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Day 10: Siem Reap

Today you’re exciting Asian adventure comes to an end after breakfast, hotel check out and a transfer to the airport for your flight home.