Hoi An Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF SOUTHEAST ASIA 586

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Women practising Tai Chi by Hoan Kiem Lake

Day 1: Hanoi

Good morning Vietnam! Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport you will be met and transferred to your city centre hotel. Known as the ‘Paris of the Orient’, Hanoi is the charming capital and cultural heart of Vietnam. Spend the remains of the day at leisure. Overnight - Hanoi

A street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi

Day 2: Hanoi - Sapa

Vietnamese food is healthy, simple to cook and downright delicious. This half day cooking tour in Hanoi will provide you with a hands-on lesson on how to shop for and cook authentic Vietnamese food. Begin with a quick walk to the famous Chau Long market, where you learn about the various ingredients that go into a Vietnamese dish. Sit down and enjoy your own Vietnamese creations. This afternoon, enjoy a guided city tour of Hanoi. Sightseeing includes the Museum of Ethnology (closed Mondays), the Temple of Literature - Vietnam’s first university dating back to 1070. This evening at approx 9pm, board an overnight express sleeper train from Hanoi to the border town of Lao Cai. Overnight - Sleeper Train (4 berth shared cabin)

A lady from one of the hill tribes near Sapa

Day 3: Sapa

The train pulls into Lao Cai at approximately 06:00am this morning, transfer to Sapa for breakfast. Located 1500m above sea level, Sapa is a former French hill station, nestled in the rugged Tonkinese Alps and surrounded by lush valleys and verdant rice paddy fields. This morning take a light trek to the hill tribe villages of Cat Cat, Ta Van and Cau May. Walking to the villages nestled in the valley below Sapa, you meet some of the local ethnic minority people on their way to and from Sapa. These minority people, including the Red Zao, Hmong and Tay people, walk to Sapa to trade at the markets. Tonight you spend the night at the hotel in Sapa town. Overnight - Sapa

A local child in Sapa

Day 4: Sapa - Hanoi

Sapa - Hanoi. Start your morning with a hike to a beautiful waterfall before continuing on to a picturesque Red Dao village. Red Dao women wear giant red scarves around their heads and their clothing is embellished with colourful red embroidery and coins. Spend the afternoon at leisure in Sapa before returning to Lao Cai to board the overnight train back to Hanoi. Overnight - Sleeper Train (4 berth shared cabin) (B, L)

The Huc Bridge

Day 5: Hanoi - Halong Bay

Upon arrival in Hanoi, freshen up before driving to Halong City (approx 4 hours), stopping for refreshments en route. At UNESCO Listed Halong Bay limestone peaks and forest clad islets, hidden coves and beautiful beaches await discovery! Board your Junk boat and cruise to the famous islands of Halong Bay and onto Bai Tu Long Bay, stopping to visit a cave and swim in the warm waters. There is a chance to explore more this stunning area by sea kayak. Return to the Junk boat for a tasty dinner and a memorable night in beautiful surrounds. Overnight - Halong Bay - Junk boat (B, L, D)

A junk sailing past a limestone peak in Halong Bay

Day 6: Halong Bay - Hue

Halong Bay - Hue. Wake up to see a spectacular sunrise over the bay! This morning cruise through Bai Tu Long and visit the floating fishing village of Vong Vieng - where you'll gain a fascinating insight into local life. Cruising back to the dock arrive into Halong City around noon then transfer back to Hanoi airport for your flight to Hue. Upon arrival in Hue, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Overnight - Hue (B)

The Perfume River in Hue

Day 7: Hue

Hue was the Vietnamese capital during the Nguyen Dynasty and ruins of the city’s regal past can still be seen inside the Citadel and the Imperial City. Created in the 19th century, the Imperial City was modelled on the Forbidden City in Beijing. Many of the buildings were damaged by French aerial bombing and the Tet Offensive in 1968. Your tour begins after breakfast with the ancient walled Citadel containing the former Imperial Palace. Spend the morning wandering through the enclosure before lunch and a trip into the surrounding countryside to see the final resting place of the Emperors at two of the most impressive Royal Tombs. This evening, take a scenic boat cruise along the Perfume River. Overnight - Hue

Women trading at Dong Ba Market by Tormod Sandtorv

Day 8: Hue - Hoi An

This morning, continue south to the riverside town of Hoi An. The trip hugs the coastline along the South China Sea with breathtaking views particularly as the road winds its way up Hai Van Pass (“Pass of the Clouds”). Today, Hoi An is a quaint riverside town, renowned for its silk and popular with tourists for its eclectic architecture, tailors shops and numerous cafes. Some of the buildings in the narrow streets have remained unchanged for more than a century. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided walking tour through the narrow winding streets of the Ancient Quarter visiting Chua Ong Pagoda, Assembly Hall, 200-year-old Tam Ky house and the Japanese Covered Bridge. Overnight - Hoi An

Men sitting on the street in Hoi An in conical hats

Day 9: Hoi An

On a bicycle ride to the local village of Tra Que we discover age old farming practises and learn about traditional medicine. It’s a hands on experience today where we’ll assist with tending the fields and gardens and cooking lunch. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight Hoi An (b)

A bridge in Hoi An

Day 10: Hoi An

Spend today at leisure on the beach or having clothes made by one of the expert, inexpensive tailors that Hoi An is famous for. In the evening, you might want to stroll Hoi An's romantic, silk latern lit streets and dine in one of its fantastic riverside restaurants. Overnight - Hoi An (B)

A local man in front of an ancient building in Hoi An

Day 11: Hoi An - Saigon

Hoi An - Saigon. In the morning on day 11, transfer to the airport and fly to Saigon. Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Spend the remains of the day at leisure in this lively and cosmopolitan metropolis with its gleaming sky scrapers, expensive restaurants, bars and designer shops, which stand in stark contrast to the ancient pagodas, colonial era landmarks and ramshackle markets. Overnight - Saigon

Ho Chi Minh's Notre Dame Basilica Cathedral at night

Day 12: Saigon

A morning excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels, north west of the city. This immense network of connecting underground tunnels, were used by the Viet Cong and one of the famous battle grounds in the Vietnam War. Watch a short introductory video on the construction of the tunnels before exploring the maze of tunnels, accompanied by the guide. Also on display are various mantraps and the remains of an American tank as well as numerous bomb craters made by 500-pound bombs from B52 bombers. Returning to Saigon at around 2pm, stop for lunch before visiting some of the city's major attractions including the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral and the War Remnants Museum. Overnight - Saigon

A street trader in Saigon

Day 13: Saigon

Today enjoy a full day cruise excursion on the beautiful Mekong Delta known as the ‘rice bowl of Vietnam’ is one of the world's greatest river systems. Early morning transfer to Cai Be - Phu An where you board the Cai Be Princess at around 10:00am. First stop is the colourful floating market at Cai Be. Then visit some local home factories to discover traditional rice paste making, rice pop corn, coco candies, and longans drying processing. The cruise continues along the Mekong canals to Dong Hoa Hiep Island where you can observe the typical Mekong delta rural life. Lunch awaits you at a local restaurant before disembarking mid-afternoon and returning to Saigon. Overnight - Saigon

The Peoples Committee Building at night in Ho Chi Minh

Day 14: Saigon

After breakfast and hotel check out, included transfer to Saigon airport for your onward flight. (B)


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