An in-depth journey that covers almost all the sites in the Northern land of Vietnam, offers you the truest experiences of local life and Vietnam's most outstanding features during an 11-day adventure.
Once in a blue moon chance to explore from the dreamy ancient atmosphere in Mai Chau and Ninh Binh while mingling with the local people to learn more about an S-shaped country with its remarkable history and rich culture.
Moreover, get yourself indulged in the number one and only Ha Long Bay on a cruise before heading to the exotic Ban Gioc Waterfall in Cao Bang and the peaceful Ba Be National Park which are seen as the rural paradises home to the Tay and Nung ethnic minority for ages.
Tour Code : GED13
Travel Style : Nature & Discovery
Duration : 11 Days - 10 Nights
Route : Hanoi - Mai Chau - Ninh Binh - Ha Long Bay - Ban Gioc Waterfall - Ba Be National Park - Hanoi
Upon arrival in Hanoi, you will be greeted by our guide and taken to your hotel to relax for the rest of the day.
Get picked up again at 4 PM for the amazing Water puppet show to dig deeply into the Vietnamese culture and tradition in form of wooden puppets and folk stories.
Later in the evening, start a 3-hour walk around the dream-like Hanoi Old Quarter for an absolute taste of savory food and drink. Take this as a chance to witness the real life of native Hanoians and enjoy the hectic night life of this 1000-year-old city. If the day falls on weekend (from Friday night to Sunday night), a night market filled with exciting traditional street performances would easily be spotted out.
Get ready before 8 AM to begin your day trip around Hanoi with a visit to the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum.
Next up, pay a visit to the significant One-pillar Pagoda and the Presidential Palace. Afterwards, the 11th century relic - Temple of Literature, built in homage to the Chinese scholar Confucius, will end your morning trip.
In the afternoon, pay a visit to Museum of Ethnology for a deep insight into the diversity of 54 ethnic groups of Vietnam and their culture. After around 1.5 hours there, return to Ngoc Son Temple set on a tiny island in the middle of idyllic Hoan Kiem - Sword Lake. This is where you get to hear the interesting story behind such name derived from a legend of an emperor, a magic sword and a giant turtle!
On this day, leave Hanoi for Bac Bien Village and warmly welcomed by a local family with some snacks and tea.
Later on, join in a cycling tour in the suburban countryside of Hanoi. You will pedal through the small alleys of Bac Bien Village to the poetic bank of Duong River's.
Take a local boat ferry to cross the river to the left bank. You will then live in a totally different atmosphere far away from the busy Hanoi.
Move on and cycle along the serene dike from villages to villages, see the buffalos, typical traditional residential houses, pagodas, temples, a local market and get caught in the scenic rice fields, veggies and corn farms.
Coming off next, it's time to meet the happiest local people on Earth and learn about their lives, traditional custom, bonsai trees tradition in Vietnam alongside the dramatic changes from past to the present.
Continue cycling on the serene roads with rice fields running up to the beautiful dike, then heading back to the first village, either by boat or crossing a new bridge.
After lunch, stop by a local temple located by the romantic Red River where you witness a unique Vietnamese holy ceremony act Len Dong - Going into a trance.
At the end of the trip, meet your driver and head back to Hanoi.
Day four starts at 8 AM with a transfer to Mai Chau on a 4-hour excursion.
In the middle of the trip, take a short break over a local market run by the Muong ethnic minority. This is where to learn about their authentic daily life and customs as well as enjoy the panoramic scenery at the peak of Thung Khe Pass, one of the 10 most beautiful passes in Vietnam.
Reach Mai Chau Valley at lunchtime.
After lunch, visit the local Thai traditional stilt house before cycling to the villages where the Thai ethnic minority settle down for a deeper look at their customs and exotic lifestyle.
Next up is a fun cultural lesson of cloth-weaving technique followed by a journey into the hidden Buoc Village. After check-in at the local lodge in the village, spend some time watching sunset by the swimming pool. Other than that, you can opt for cycling or walking down the paths in the village. Dinner is ready at the lodge with the local host.
Day five begins with a transfer to Cuc Phuong National Park, a special wildlife center in Northern Vietnam with a huge system of flora and fauna species on a 2.5 hour drive.
Over here, start today's interesting biography lesson at the Endangered Primate Rescue Centre.
After lunch, hike through the woods to Prehistoric Man's Cave which contains a wide track of human beings dating back to 7000 years ago. Do not forget to admire the primary forest here with an iconic century-old tree as well as the awesome jungle life.
Get back to Ninh Binh after 1-hour drive for a night over at bungalow or hotel.
The sixth day of the trip is when you get introduced to the Inland Halong Bay" - Trang An formed by a huge collection of karst formations.
On arrival, hop on a 3-hour sampan boat ride along a small poetic river sneaking through numerous tunnel-like caves.
After lunch, it's time to get to know Hoa Lu - Vietnam's former capital built by the side of two famous ancient temples of Le and Dinh Dynasties. Here, take time to learn more about a historical period of Vietnam in the 10th century.
Transfer to Tam Coc afterwards to start an energetic 10-km ride along a tranquil route enclosed by a dream-like picture of mountains & tribal villages. Thung Nham is the next to welcome you. The place is home to a diverse range of birds, storks all gathering in the late afternoon.Â What a spectacular scene of adventure to be rewarded in a countryside like this!
Get ready before 8 AM for a transfer to Halong Bay on a 4-hour drive from Ninh Binh and embark on Hon Gai International Harbor for check-in time on the cruise. There, a fine-dining lunch is arranged for you while cruising around the magnificent Bai Tu Long Bay. This is a great chance to admire the fascinating formations brought by mother nature.
Save the later afternoon for an absolute exploration of the mystic hidden Thien Canh Son Cave and relaxing on a long sandy beach at Hon Co Island. Over here, feel free to go swimming or kayaking at your own leisure.
In the evening, return to your cabin for refreshing before dinner on board and spend the rest of the pleasant night with your friends and families in the middle of romantic bay.
Take time to let your soul captured in the enormous beauty of the bay with a cup of tea in your hands during breakfast time. Vung Vieng fishing village is the very first destination of the day after you take a rustic row-boat. When the activity is over, it's time for checking out and lunch.
Disembark later in the day and move on to Lang Son for four hours.
Hit the road again to Ban Gioc Waterfall cutting through China and Vietnam and get to know about the fourth biggest border waterfall in the world. After a busy time traveling, relax at your leisure by this wonder of nature after a boat ride reaching closer to the waterfall and lunch is served right afterwards.
Pay a visit to the magnificent Nguom Ngao Limestone Cave, formerly known as a Tiger Cave before returning to your homestay in a local village of the Nung people in Quang Uyen.
Take time to enjoy this peaceful village life. Are you hungry for more amazing landscape? If so, feel free to climb up a mountain nearby within only an hour for a rewarding absolute panorama at the summit during sunset.
Begin the day with a transfer toÂ Ba Be National Park on a 3.5 hour drive. On arrival, welcome to your homestay in a local village of the Tay people by the lake. Take a short rest before hopping on a bike ride to Hua Ma Cave, the most fantastic limestone cave in Northeastern Vietnam.
Spend 1 hour on a hiking trip in the cave and admire the attractiveness of stalactites and stalagmites.
On the last day of the journey, save it for a 3-hour boating around the lake after breakfast. Stop for an easy walk around Cam Village to see the day in the life of the Tay ethnic community along the Nang River.
Move on to Puong Cave, a mystic darken home of millions of bats before ending at Buoc Lom Wharf to leave Ba Be for Hanoi.
QUOTATION: This rate is quoted in USD, base on double / twin occupancy. Valid from 01 November 2018 - 30 December 2019. If you have any special request, please contact us to customize your trip.
ACCOMMODATION: Please note that accommodations mentioned in this list are for reference only. Depending on availability and your preference, they can be changed.