Start Ho Chi Minh City
End Vang Vieng
Indochina is one of the most culturally interesting and diverse areas in the world, with tourists travelling from all four corners of the globe to uncover its secrets. It seems to many that Vietnam and Laos are untouched by the modern era, locked in a timeless state. Each has fascinating cultures and histories waiting to be explored. With so much to see, it’s hard to decide which are the most important sites to cover on one trip to Indochina. Being with us in a 15 day trip to explore all highlights and “Must See” of the region.
Xin chao! Welcome to Ho Chi Minh City - the most dynamic city of Vietnam. Our tour guide will wait for you at arrival hall and then transfer you to the hotel for your check-in.
Free time at your leisure.
Overnight at hotel in Ho Chi Minh.
In the morning, leaving the hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City and start your trip to depart for Ben Tre, the town lies on the left side of the Mekong River,
Chet Say where is well known as the homeland of coconuts. Here, the local mainly lives on coconuts, they process coconuts into products as fibers, coconut flesh, milk, oil… and burn coconut shells to make active charcoal.
Then, stop over at a brick kiln to learn how to make bricks by traditional way. Sampan drives you on Mekong, enjoy the peaceful living with fishing boats or slow cargo boats on the river.
Driving on village path with a which was main means of transportation of decade 60s or biking, visit a local garden with warm honey tea cup while enjoying tropical fruits.
Stop over at a local workshop where you can learn how to make pop rice, coconut candy and fiery rice wine, taste some pop rice, candies, and rice wine XE LAM with the family. Sitting on a rowing boat in a small creek with beautiful water coconut palm trees along two sides. Walking between tropical fruit orchards, stop for few minutes to see the local weaving hats, or sleeping mats, or water coconut palm leaves for making houses…. Lunch can be served at a local family. Sampan drives you back at meeting point then transfer back your group to hotel in Ho Chi Minh.
Overnight at hotel in Ho Chi Minh
Having breakfast at hotel.
In the morning, your tour guide will pick up group at hotel then exploring the great atmosphere around of lively China town. Get into the rhythm of this busiest and colorful scenes of Binh Tay market and Thien Hau Temple. We then visit the War Remnants Museum.
Afternoon sightseeing for visiting Reunification palace which was the residence of the President of South Vietnam until end of the war in April 1975. Continue seeing some impressive French colonial structures including Notre Dame Cathedral and the historic Central Post Office. After visiting XQ embroidery workshop, take a break-time at Ben Thanh market where anything and everything is for sales.
Overnight at the same hotel in Ho Chi Minh City.
Having breakfast at hotel. Then our guide and driver pick you up at your hotel and transfer to Hoc Mon District to visit the Cu Chi Tunnels, which is 70 kilometers North West of down town Ho Chi Minh City.
The Cu Chi Tunnel system had been created long time back, from 1948 to assist Viet Minh in the combat with French. And it was continuing built over 25 years later. It was an underground city with living areas, kitchens, storage, weapons factories, field hospitals, command centers. In places, it was housed up to 10,000 people who virtually lived underground for years…. getting married, giving birth. During the American War the entire area of Cu Chi was designated a free fire zone and was heavily bombarded. From 1988, two sections of tunnels have been open for visitors.
After visiting, our car driver will transfer your group to airport for next flight to Da Nang, Vietnam Airlines, VN7142 (15.05/16.30). Land at Danang airport, meet our car driver (no guide escort) then transfer to hotel in Hoi An.
Overnight at hotel in Hoi An.
Having breakfast at hotel then proceed on a brief Danang city tour followed by a visit to the Cham Museum, formerly the Ecole Francaise d’Extreme Orient. The museum contains exquisite limestone carvings from the vanquished Kingdom of Champa [4th century to 18th century], a Hindu kingdom which inhabited the central coastal littoral prior to the march of the Vietnamese nation south. The carvings contain examples of Hindu altars, lingas, garudas, ganeshas and representations of Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu. Then visit to Marble Mountain which contains numerous temples and pagodas and the marble cutters village nearby the mountain.
Transfer to Hoi An, just south of Danang, and a proposed World UNESCO Heritage Site. You will explore Hoi An narrow lanes lined with centuries-old houses influenced by Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures and stop over Hoi An Museum, Ancient Houses, Art Craft Manufacturing Workshop and Japanese Covered Bridge.
Overnight at hotel in Hoi An.
Breakfast at your hotel.
In the morning, our guide will take you to visit My Son – one of the most stunning sights in the Hoi An area is My Son, Vietnam’s most important Cham site, and as of 2000 a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
During the centuries when Tra Kieu (the known as Simhapura) served as the political capital of Champa, My Son was the site of the most important Cham intellectual and religious centre, and also may has served as burial place for Cham monarchs. My Son is considered to be Champa’s counterpart to the grand city of South-East Asia’s other Indian-influence civilisation: Angkor (Cambodia), Bagan (Myanmar), Ayuthaya (Thailand) and Borobudur (Java).
After visiting, transfer your group to Hue city. It takes about 3 hours on road. Check in hotel. Free time at leisure.
Overnight at hotel in Hue
After having breakfast at hotel, our tour guide will pick up your group at hotel in Hue then we start to have a private boat trip on Perfume river & visit Thien Mu Pagoda - the oldest pagoda in Hue city. Then we head to Imperial Citadel – it’s known as home of the last royal dynasty in Vietnam with imperial city inside the citadel that built in the early of the 19th century, Thai Hoa palace then visit Hue royal antiquities museum collect all the ornaments from the Nguyen dynasty.
In the afternoon, we continue to visit famous tombs under Nguyen dynasty, go firsty to see the Minh Mang tombs – impressed by its majesty in architectural construction. Then, we continue to visit Khai Dinh tombs – a blend of Eastern & Western architecture & Vong Canh hill. Finally, we will stop at Dong Ba market to see the daily life of Hue people.
After visiting, drive back to your hotel. Free time to explore Hue in the evening.
Overnight at hotel in Hue.
Breakfast at hotel.
Free time at leisure till our car driver transfer to airport for your flight to Hanoi in the morning.
Land at Noi Bai Airport, you will be welcomed by our tour guide then visit some attractions of HN capital. Start with the Ho Chi Minh Complex, which includes Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum – the final resting place of the beloved national hero, Uncle Ho – and President Ho Chi Minh’s stilt house where he lived off and on from 1958 to 1969. Enjoy the architectural and historical aspects of Uncle Ho’s final resting-palace. Lying to one side of the Mausoleum is the One Pillar Pagoda, built by King Ly Thai To in 1049 the structure has become an important symbol for the people of Hanoi. Next, you’ll stop at Museum of Ethnology. Located west of the city centre, this museum offer informative and well-documented display on the country’s 54 ethnic groups, include elaborate and colorful hill-tribe costumes, weaving designs, musical instruments, fishing implements, work tools and other functional objects. The display continues on to the garden outside with fascinating examples of minority housing from the King’s to the ones of the ethnic groups in Central Highlands. Last but not least, you will visit Hoan Kiem Lake, the heart and soul of Hanoi & Ngoc Son temple.
(Note: Ethnology Museum opens on Thursday, Saturday, Sunday. If Ethnology Museum close, you will visit alternative destination as Hoa Lo Prison, Woman Museum instead).
After visiting, our guide will take you back to your hotel to do check-in hotel. Free time to explore Hanoi in the evening. Overnight at hotel in Hanoi
Having breakfast at your hotel.
About 08:00: Our guide will meet you at your hotel lobby. The shuttle bus or private car will transfer you to Halong. Enjoy the peaceful scenery as we travel through the countryside, farmlands and Red River delta. Get your camera ready to take photos. Comfort break. The time from Hanoi to Halong bay is approximately 3 ½ hours.
12 – 12.30 approx: arriving Tuan Chau marina.
Welcome aboard the cruise. Refresh with our welcome drink. Meet the captain, crew in the cruise briefing. Check into your cabin. Time to refresh and unwind. Set sail as lunch is served. Join us for a typical local lunch in the dining room or at the outdoor dining area.
In the afternoon, arrive at Surprising Cave (Hang Sửng Sốt), explore the cave and find out how the cave was named a Surprising. Heading to Titop or Soi Sim island area. Drop anchor in the calm water surrounded by beautiful islets.
Visit Titop island for swimming and snorkeling or do the short trek to the top of island to have the overview of Halong bay from here. Heading back toward the sleeping area.
Summit on the sundeck watching the sunset, enjoy Sunset party. It’s ideal time to make acquaintance with new friends, sharing your traveling experience or simply watching the sunset.
An authentic Vietnamese menu is served. After dinner, reward yourself with a large selection of cocktails at our bar, or take for you one of our onboard activities: book reading, games, movies, and squid fishing…
Overnight on cruise
For the early risers join us for a Tai Chi session on the sundeck. Tai chi helps focus the mind and condition the body, joining Tai Chi session to full charge your energy for the day.
Then, local breakfast is served on board
08:00: Mingling yourself in the stunning views of the Bay and it’s dramatic limestone islets as we sail through the calm emerald waters heading to Luon Cave (Hang Luồn). Take your option either exploring the cave yourself on kayak or comfortably on bamboo boat rowed by the locals.
09:00: Check out the cabins, at your leisure while our cruise taking you pass by other beautiful highlights in the bay.
10:00: You will join with our short class of Cooking demonstration, how to make spring rolls before an early lunch is served.
12:00: Return to the shore and disembark from the cruise as our crew say farewell.
Transfer to minibus and return to Hanoi.
Arrival at hotel in Hanoi about 16.30 PM
Overnight at hotel in Hanoi
Our driver will pick up your group at hotel for your departure flight to Vientiane. Upon arrival at Wattay International Airport in Vientiane, transfer to your hotel in town (early check-in upon availability).
From its sleepy tuk-tuk drivers to its location on the right bank of the lumbering, lazy Mekong, this former French trading post is languid to say the least. Indeed, despite being the capital and largest city of the Lao People's Democratic Republic, there's not a whole lot to do in Vientiane. But that is also, quite honestly, its selling point.
There is no activity planned for today, so you can stroll around the town for your own exploration.
Overnight at hotel in Vientiane.
In the morning, we will first visit Wat Si Muang, which is very famous for its supernatural power.
After that drive to Buddha Park which takes around 45 minutes away. Also known as Xieng Khuan, this unusual park is filled with over 200 Buddhist and Hindu statues.
We then visit Lao Disable Women Development Center, which assist disable women to cope with their disability and advocate for their rights. Spend time watching the video and learn about the effort to earn their daily living. You can support them by buying some small handicrafts at the shop.
Start the afternoon with a visit to That Luang, the holiest site in Laos. Constructed by King Setthathirat in the 16th century, the temple is resplendent as the sun is shines upon its towering golden spire.
Then, enjoy a panoramic view over the city as you climb the stairs to the top of Patuxai, Vientiane’s own “Arc de Triomphe”.
Continue down Lane Xang Avenue the serene Wat Sisaket, the only temple left intact after the Siamese (Thai) invasion in 1828.
Continue on to the nearby Wat Phra Keo. Used as a religious museum, Wat Phra Keo displays a collection of both Lao and Khmer works of art.
End your tour of the capital along the banks of the Mekong River as the sun begins to set. Stroll along the river, stop to enjoy a cold drink, or sample a snack from one of the many local food stalls.
Overnight in Vientiane.
+ You can also visit Sinouk Coffee Pavilion to discover the Lao coffee, stroll around the mini coffee gallery, view the in-house coffee roaster and try a cup of delicious and unique coffee or tea. Discuss with our guide about this. Entrance fee and extra coffee/drinks are payable on spot.
+ There is also the chance to visit Ban Hom, where you can visit the farmers working on the field and learn about the rural local life. Just 12Km from the old quarter! Extra mileage: $10/car
We leave the capital early for our journey northbound to Vang Vieng.
We will see some breathtaking scenery enroute as we pass through spectacular countryside towards the mountainous region.
Along the way, we visit the busy and colorful market of KM52 where various hill tribes come to trade goods and buy provisions.
We may also make a short photo stop at Hin Heup bridge, and the fish market in Ban Tha Heua.
We will arrive in Vang Vieng around noon.
The afternoon is free for your own exploration to explore the town of Vang Vieng.
Late afternoon, there is also the option of riding the hot-air balloon over the town of Vang Vieng to admire the panoramic view of the town and the nearby area whilst the sun is setting behind the faraway mountains. (your own account).
Overnight at hotel in Vang Vieng
The limestone cliffs and valleys surrounding the resort complex of Vang Vieng are home to numerous caves and caverns.
The most famous of these caves is Tham Jang, which was used by the local people as a refuge from Chinese invaders 200 years ago.
Your tour continues by crossing the Nam Song River for a short drive to Tham Pou Kham (Golden Crab Cave). After passing through a small entrance hole you descend 100 meters into the ground.
You have ample time to visit Blue Lagoon, which is a great spot to relax and cool off before transferring back to Vang Vieng.
Take a local long tail boat (2 people per boat) to cruise for approximately 30 minutes upstream on the Nam Song River, enjoying the beautiful scenery as you go.
You will then be driven back to your hotel, with the option to stop at local villages and a market along the way.
Relax for the rest of the day and enjoy a beautiful sunset on the Nam Song River from your hotel.
Overnight in Vang Vieng.
After breakfast, transfer back to Vientiane (4 hours on road) to take your departure flight.
Thank you very much for choosing GADT travel's tour. Hope to see you in the next trip
International flights are not included in this trip . If you have difficulty booking the international flight, please contact us for assistance.