Ho Chi Minh - Cu Chi - Mekong Delta - Da Nang - Hoi An - Hanoi - Halong Bay
Also known as Saigon – the most dynamic city of Vietnam where modern high-rise buildings sit next to ancient temples. Check-in hotel and free till dinner. A dinner cruise onboard of the Bonsai cruise on the Saigon River is served for you Overnight in Saigon. (D)
Drive 70kms from Ho Chi Minh City, stopping en route to visit a rice paper making village, and you will reach Cu Chi Tunnels. After an introductory video, viewing various mantraps, the remains of an American tank and numerous bomb craters, you will spend the next hour exploring the maze of tunnels to see how the Viet Cong survived in this underground network. Lunch at local restaurant then drive back to the city Start your visit of Saigon and take in remarkable panoramic views of Ho Chi Minh City from its highest building. At 68 floors, the Bitexco Building was opened in 2011and rises 262 meters into the sky. The eye-opening view from the Skydeck gives you a sense of the vibrant city you will be exploring during your stay. Continue with a leisure walking tour, start at the Saigon Post Office, a classic French colonial structure, is still a functioning post office today and features huge ceilings, a giant portrait of Uncle Ho, and many beautiful details. You continue to Notre dame. Built between 1877 and 1883, Saigon's Neo-Romanesque Notre Dame Cathedral is a major centre of Catholicism in modern Vietnam, and one of the city’s major landmarks. View the vibrant pulsing streets of the city centre as you walk along Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat) to Ho Chi Minh City’s Gothic 1901 Opera House. Along Le Loi Boulevard, you will pass the Saigon People's Committee building, the famous Rex Hotel and pause at Bach Dang Ice-cream, an authentic Saigon ice cream shop. Overnight in Saigon. (B / L)
We leave Saigon in the morning then depart to My Tho boat station Cruising on the Mekong river for sightseeing: the view of the river’s banks, fish-floating market and islands of Dragon, Unicorn,Turtle, Phoenix. Landing on Unicorn island, visit an orchard of tropical fruits: Enjoy seasonal fruits and listen to Southern traditional music. Visit coconut candy workshop, taste fresh candy. Get on a horse-cart on the countryside road. Visit a bee- farm and enjoy honey- tea. Discover Vam Chua natural canal (Ben Tre province ) by rowing boat. Back to My Tho then we get on our van to drive to Can Tho. Check-in and free for the evening. Overnight in Can Tho. (B / L)
We spend the early morning discover the floating market named Cai Rang which is one of the most colorful markets in the area. Visit some orchards then back to the hotel to pack the luggage. Lunch to be at a local restaurant before transferring to Tan Son Nhat airport for the flight to Da Nang Up on arrival, met and transferred to Hoi An town Overnight in Hoi An. (B / L)
Walk the ancient streets of Hoi An, lined with Chinese traders’ homes and wooden houses reincarnated as restaurants, cafés, and outlets for local artists, craftsmen and tailors. Explore the beautiful 16th century Japanese Bridge. Hoi An's unique fusion of Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture is well displayed here, in what is arguably Vietnam's most tourist-friendly town. Next you will enjoy a cooking class. After enjoying your welcome drink, you'll be transferred to Tra Que Organic Village to select fresh herbs for your cooking lesson. You'll stop by the local village market for other ingredients, then arrive at Red Bridge Cooking School and begin your class (joining class). Working with the Red Bridge Chef, you'll prepare 4 famous dishes, including ‘Pho’. After the class you'll sit down and savour the dishes you have prepared, then enjoy a leisurely 25 minute cruise along the Hoi An River back to central Hoi An. Bring your swimsuit, after the cooking tour has finished you can enjoy free use of our 20 metre swimming pool. In the late afternoon, you will sit down and learn how to make traditional lantern out of bamboo and silk. Overnight in Hoi An. (B / L)
Take a short flight from Da Nang to Hanoi, one of Asia’s most enchanting cities, full of culture and history. You are met at Noi Bai airport by your local guide and learn a bit about this fascinating city on the way to your hotel. In the afternoon, you will visit the Vietnam History museum. Established in the 1920s as the Musée Louis Finot, the Vietnam History Museum is housed in an ‘Indochinese style’ structure and traces the history of the Vietnamese people from the earliest times to the present day. Then leisurely walk to nearby Hanoi Opera House for photos of the most beautiful French architectural buildings left in Hanoi. Drop by a local coffee and ice cream shop to relax and enjoy the atmosphere while observing the local life. Explore the Old Quarter at a casual pace on golf cart style buggies, so you can enjoy the scenery and take photos. This is a place you must see to experience Hanoi, where you will find shopping and cultural/historical sites all wrapped into one. Overnight in Hanoi. (B / L)
In the morning you will take a walk on the Ba Dinh Square and visit the Ho Chi Minh complex. This complex features the mausoleum of the founder of modern Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh. If it is open, you can walk through the mausoleum to view his body. You can also see the Presidential Palace and Uncle Ho's house on stilts in the park-like complex. Continue with the Temple of Literature, dedicated to Confucius, was built in the 11th century. It was the first university in Vietnam and students still come here to burn incense. You will find a peaceful atmosphere tinged with incense smoke, and sunken lotus ponds populated by fish and turtles. Enjoy lunch at KOTO restaurant. Located on the outskirts of Hanoi by the banks of the Red River, Bat Trang is a traditional handicraft village specializing in ceramics. Discover the small, hidden alleys of this village and visit a local workshop to interact with the craftsmen and observe the complete production cycle, from preparing the clay to shaping the products, painting them and firing them in the kiln. Overnight in Hanoi. (B / L)
Breakfast at hotel before heading out to Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In Ha Long you will board your luxury boat for an overnight cruise amongst the more than 3,000 limestone islands rising majestically out of the turquoise bay. You pass grand rock formations and quaint fishing towns, and sample a delicious lunch of freshly caught fish and seafood. Check in at the cruise center Depart from Tuan Chau – Safety briefing – Presentation of the team . Introduce the 05 elements cuisine. Lunch on board while The Au Co cruises leisurely towards to Sung Sot (Surprise) cave. Visit the wheel house & Engine room.15.45: Guided visit of Sung Sot (Surprise) Cave. Take part in cooking demonstration. Enjoy Happy hour in 1 hour (Buy one get one free). Savour 5 elements signature dinner on board Relish a drink at Lan Ha bar or join our crew and try squid fishing at the reception Overnight on The Au Co Cruise. (B / L / D)
Start the day with a Tai Chi class on the sundeck or enjoy the breath-taking views of the bay while the ship begins cruising quietly. Have breakfast on board while The Au Co cruises in Bai Tu Long Bay. Visit Vung Vieng floating fishing village by traditional bamboo boat. The Au Co cruises towards Lan Ha Bay and Cat Ba Island while lunch is served in Ha Long restaurant. 13.45: Guided biking or hiking excursion through the national park of Cat Ba Island and visit to The Au Co organic farm. Swim & kayak in Viet Hai Lagoon. Happy Hours in 2 hours (Buy one get one free). Have a deluxe dinner Enjoy a drink at Lan Ha bar or join our crew and try squid fishing at the reception Overnight on The Au Co Cruise. (B / L / D)
Start the day with a Tai Chi lesson on the sundeck or enjoy the breath-taking views of the bay while The Au Co cruises leisurely in Ha Long Bay. Have full breakfast. Passenger’s bags must be put in corridor & prepare for check out process. Join the Vietnamese traditional tea ceremony. Disembark in Tuan Chau then transfer to Noi Bai International airport for your onward flight. (B)
- Return economy class airfare with Vietnam Airlines Ex Sydney / Melbourne (Ex Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra at additional $300 per person)
- Domestic connecting with Vietnam Airlines.
- 07 nights shared accommodation in twin/double room with daily breakfast at the below indicated room types (see hotel category list below).
- 3Days/2Nights cruise on boat in Ha Long Bay (shared cabin on shared boat).
- All transfers and transportation with air-con vehicles.
- Local ENGLISH speaking guides.
- All entrance fees as program.
- Private boat trip in Mekong.
- Visa letter to Vietnam (if request).
- Meals (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner) as indicated in the program (Local food)
- Vietnam visas
- Tipping & gratuities Recommend A$5/day/person
- Travel insurance (highly recommended)
- Meals (other than mentioned in the program)
Tour Hotels (or similar)
- Ho Chi Minh City: Grand hotel (Deluxe, Luxury wing)
- Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho (Deluxe)
- Hoi An: Palm Garden Resort (Superior Garden)
- Hanoi: Sheraton Hanoi Hotel (Deluxe)
- Ha Long: Au Co Cruise (Deluxe)
Single supplement: $850p.p.
* Price is based on twin share or double bedded room. Peak season surcharges for DEC 14, JAN 15 at additional $750 per person