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  • Vietnam – The Rustic Land

    Duration: 15 Days
    Start: Hanoi | Finish: Saigon
  • Escaping the bustling city with buildings and modern life, this 15-day trip will take you to discover a real Vietnam countryside. It is a great way to know about the culture and different local life style from Northern to Southern of this S-shaped land. There will be many local stories to tell when you are in the trip in addition to have a chance, joining in local activities of friendly local people in each destination. Prepare to ignite all senses with this unforgettable trip!   

    Highlights:

    • You’ll benefit from the knowledge and experience of our expert local guides. Who better than to travel with than a local?
    • Discover the exotic Hanoi - thousands of years of culture
    • Spend a night in an ancient house of an old town of Red River Delta – Nam Dinh
    • Experience Van Long - a legendary land, a beautiful area and the largest natural reserve of wetlands
    • Take a cruise on Halong Bay to explore the breathtaking beauty of this World Heritage Site recognized by UNESCO
    • Discover Imperial city Hue well-known for its temples, tombs, palaces and pagodas and Perfume River
    • Visit ancient houses and experience local life style in Hoian
    • Discover the bustling and dynamic Saigon with its French colonial buildings and modern architecture, variety of local foods
    • Explore the intricate network of canals in the Mekong Delta and visit a floating market
    • Comfortable & spacious vehicle for transfers

    Itinerary in brief:

    Day 1: Hanoi Arrival (-/-/-)
    Day 2: Hanoi - City Tour (B/L/-)
    Day 3: Hanoi - Drive to Nam Dinh - Countryside Journey (B/L/D)
    Day 4: Hai Hau - Xuan Thuy National Park - Drive to Ninh Binh (B/L/-)
    Day 5: Van Long Nature Reserve - Biking to visit surrounding village (B/L/-)
    Day 6: Ninh Binh - Drive to Ha Long - Overnight on cruise (B/L/D)
    Day 7: Ha Long - Hanoi - Fly to Hue Ancient Capital (B/-/-)
    Day 8: Hue – City Tour (B/-/-)
    Day 9: Hue - La Chu Village - Drive to Hoi An Ancient Town (B/L/-)
    Day 10: Hoi An Walking City Tour (B/-/-)
    Day 11: Hoi An - Danang - Fly to Sai Gon - City Tour (B/-/-)
    Day 12: Sai Gon - Drive to An Hóa - Vung Liem (B/-/D)
    Day 13: Biking to surrounding area - Drive to Can Tho (B/-/-)
    Day 14: Cai Rang Floating Market - Drive back Sai Gon (B/-/-)
    Day 15: Sai Gon Departure (B/-/-)

    • Ability to change the direction of the program
    • Possibility of an extension in Laos or Cambodia 

    Notes:

    + If you come with a larger group of more than 10 persons, please contact our travel consultants for the exact price
    + Prices & services are subject to change based on availability upon reservation
    + Accommodation can be amended or exchanged amongst options to fit your needs
    + We specialize in “tailor-made” tours for groups of two or more. We carefully inspect each step of your journey from the accommodation to the perfect guide to suit your needs
    + The itinerary is open to modification to fit your personal travel needs
    + Modifications to the itinerary may increase the price of the package
    + For the price of this trip, just ask for a quote by clicking on "TOUR PRICE" 

    + If you are looking for a trip modified to your requirements, please send us your needs by filling out the form in Customize your trip” 
    + We will contact and send you a quote, excluding holiday period, within 48 hours of receiving your request 

  • Day 1: Hanoi Arrival (-/-/-)

    Hanoi - Airport: 30km, ~40min drive

    Upon arrival at Noi Bai International Airport, meet up with our tour guide & driver who then escort you to the city center. The rest of the day is free at your own leisure.

    Meals Included: None
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

    Day 2: Hanoi City Tour (B/L/-)

    After breakfast at hotel, our tour guide will welcome you at your hotel then start the walking tour to discover Hanoi’s Old Quarter which is famous with “36 guild streets” in the past time.

    We will walk to some streets in the Old Quarter such as “Lo Ren (Blacksmiths), Hang Thiec (Tin), Thuoc Bac (traditional medicine)” streets to witness the local people life style.

    Then we will walk to The Old Quarter section, which is one of two sections you can visit to watch the train pass – this has cafes, homestay and shops along the tracks. You will have a chance to get the best photo.

    We then take a 45 minute cyclo tour to discover the Old Quarter and Hoan Kiem Lake surroundings where you can see streets with century-aged trees and French Colonial buildings. We follow this with the Temple of Literature which is known as the first university of Vietnam.

    Then we will move to visit the impressive Ethnologic Museum (or Hoa Lo Prison if you visit on Monday), dedicated to Vietnam's fifty-four ethnic groups, several of which we will see on our forthcoming trek.

    After visiting, we go back hotel for relaxation.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

    Day 3: Hanoi – Hong Quang water-puppet making village – Pham Phao village (B/L/D)

    08:00 Our driver and tourguide will pick you up at your hotel and transfer to Nam Dinh.

    09:45 start to discover Hong Quang Village – one of the most beautiful of water puppet making village in Vietnam, experience how to do the Puppet and enjoy how to play puppet in water.

    12:00 Have lunch with local food at Ecohost Hai Hau.

    14:00 We will cycle around the village and visit Pham Phao cathedral and traditional brass trumpet making village. On the way, you will also see the Tile-roofed Bridge built in 16th century with unique architecture. Explore of the daily life of local people and understand about the ancestor worship.

    19:00 Enjoy dinner with typical local foods. Overnight in Ecohost Hai Hau – living with enthusiastic of local people.      

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Accommodation: Ecohost Hai Hau
    Optional Traditional Music Show 45 minutes : US$ 80 per group

    Day 4: Hai Trieu village - Co Chat silk-worm village – Drive to Ninh Binh (B/L/-)

    07:00 Have breakfast at Ecohost Hai Hau.

    08:30 Visit Hai Chính Village, where you can experience how to make the mesh in the fishing village. Continue going to Countryside Museum by car explore the traditional daily lifestyle of tools in the Red River Delta.

    12:00 Enjoy the Lunch with traditional food, tast the local food

    14:00 Transfer to visit Co Chat silk-worm village

    After visit, we will head to Ninh Binh for overnight.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Hotel in Ninh Binh

    Day 5: Van Long Wetland Nature Reserve – Biking to surrounding area (B/L/-)

    After breakfast, we to drive to Van Long Nature Reserve. Get on a bamboo boat to explore beautiful natural area and ride a bike to enjoy spectacular scenery and the rural life of the locals. This tranquil reserve comprises a reedy wetland that`s popular with bird-watchers. Among the bird species that have been spotted here are the rare black-faced spoonbill, cotton pygmy goose and white-browed crake. Van Long is also one of the last wild refuges of the endangered Delacour`s langur, partly because the wetlands keep predators and poachers at bay.

    After a tour, the rest of the day is yours.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Hotel in Ninh Binh

    Day 6: Ninh Binh – Drive to Ha Long – Overnight on cruise (B/L/D)

    After breakfast at the hotel, we depart for Halong Bay, passing through endless rice fields and winding rivers typical of the Red River Delta. We will arrive at Halong’s tourist wharf around noon and embark an elegant wooden junk for a cruise through the limestone cliffs and emerald waters of Halong Bay. Here we enjoy a fantastic view of the picturesque scenery blending the sky and some 3,000 limestone of this World Heritage Site. While being on board, we will be served a fresh, local seafood lunch followed by swimming and exploring some of the limestone caves in this area. At dusk, to witness the sunset is truly unforgettable.  Dinner will be served on board and then the captain will anchor for the night nearby a remote island.  In the evening, there will be the option for night fishing or just sit out on the deck and relax under the stars.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Accommodation: Overnight on Junk

    Day 7: Halong – Hanoi – Fly to Hue (B/-/-)

    Hanoi - Hue: 770km, 1h flight

    Waking up surrounded by the tranquil beauty of the bay, we have time for an early morning dip. Enjoy watching the sun rise on the sea followed by a delicious breakfast. The cruise continues to move around the bay for us to discover more secluded areas. We then go kayaking and swimming. The junk will be near us at all times serving as an alternative for those that would prefer to relax on board. Around midday, we will return to the main harbor before transferring to our awaiting vehicle for a 3-hour journey to Noi Bai Airport for our flight to Hue. Upon arrival in Hue, you will be collected and transferred to the hotel for a breezy check in.

    Meals Included: Brunch
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hue

    Day 8: Hue City Tour (B/-/-)

    After breakfast at our hotel, we set out to explore Hue's famous highlights, starting with a boat trip along the Perfume River to reach the picturesque Thien Mu otherwise known as the Heavenly Lady Pagoda. One of the most poignant displays here is the car belonging to a former monk, who in 1963, drove to Saigon and set himself alight to protest against the South Vietnamese regime and its treatment of Buddhists. We then disembark the boat for a visit the elaborate tomb of former emperor Tu Duc, which was built between 1864 and 1867 by 3000 soldiers and workers. It includes fifty monuments surrounded by a 1500m long wall covering. We then head back to Hue for lunch on your own cost.

    In the afternoon, we visit Hue Imperial City, the last royal city of Vietnam with various beautiful structures including the Flag Tower, Ngo Mon Gate, Nine Dynastic Urns, Nine Holy Cannons, Thai Hoa Palace and the Forbidden City. Built in the 19th century by the Nguyen dynasty, the City was home to the former Emperors of Vietnam from 1802 until 1945. 

    We then do some shopping at the Dong Ba Market to enjoy the specialities of Hue city.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hue

    Day 9: Hue – La Chu Village – Drive to Hoi An Ancient Town (B/L/-)

    Hue – Hoi An: 140km, ~2h30m drive

    After breakfast, we will bid farewell Hue and head to the village of La Chu located 9 km north of downtown Hue. This village is known for its market gardening of vegetables and aromatic herbs (onions, chives, coriander, basil, etc ...). We can also see buffaloes eating herbs to their hunger. Plowing the land, the peasants wearing their conical hats curl themselves in the rice fields. Despite the difficulty of the work, they are always smiling and very hospitable.

    See you at the entrance of the village, for a bike ride through the charming countryside of Hue. First stop to discover a family factory of votive offerings paper (a very popular and strong belief among Vietnamese). Pursuit to a small local daily market. Visit the market through the stalls of meat, spices and vegetables and fresh fruits, under the look benevolent and intrigued women unaccustomed to cross tourists. Then discover vegetable fields, where you can meet the villagers, and chat with them. They will be very happy to pose for a photo with you, what a memory! A very pleasant immersion in the Vietnamese countryside! Typical countryside landscapes between fields, rice paddies, banana plants, rivers, lotus ponds and in the background the mountains where we can still see the effects of orange agent shed by the US military more than forty years ago.

    Of course, you can not leave this bucolic setting without greeting the family specializing in the production of "Banh Loc" - a small cake made from rice flour mixed with shrimp. Exchanges with the family and possibility to try to create these different dishes. Arrival in a family restaurant in the middle of the rice fields to enjoy a delicious fresh and typical lunch.

    After lunch, a little relaxation in the beauty of the Vietnamese rice fields, you can relax your feet in a hot bath scented with medicinal plants.

    We then head to Hoi An Ancient Town for relaxation for the rest of the day.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An

    Day 10: Hoi An City Tour (B/-/-)

    13.00pm, our tour guide will meet you at hotel lobby and then we take a walking tour to Hoi An Ancient Town - an exceptionally well-preserved example of a South-East Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century. We start our day with the Japanese Covered Bridge - one of Vietnam’s most iconic attractions. The bridge was created by the Japanese (living in Hoi An) in the 1590s as a way to reach the Chinese quarter, and is a historical piece of Japanese architecture. However, no visit to Hoi An would be complete without a visit to Tan Ky House – one of the many ancient houses that define Hoi An Ancient Town. Built two centuries ago with both Japanese and Chinese influences on the architecture, this house has been preserved through several generations. While walking, we will encounter many lavish houses of former Chinese merchants. Another ‘must-see’ destination is Phuc Kiem Assembly Hall – an excellent work of architecture considered of great historical significance. Built in 1690, this Assembly Hall is in fact a temple dedicated to the sea goddess Thien Hau.

    There will also be visits to colorful riverside markets and workshops where artisans make Hoi An's famous lanterns. Here, you can learn how the lanterns are made and you will then have a chance to create your own lantern.

    After visiting, we go back hotel for your relaxation.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An

    Day 11: Hoi An – Danang – Fly to Sai Gon – City Tour (B/-/-)

    Danang - Saigon: ~850km, 2h flight

    After breakfast at hotel, our driver will meet and transfer you to Airport for flight to Saigon. Upon arrival at Tan Son Nhat Airport, meet your new guide and driver who then escort you to the hotel for check-in. You will then have time for your own lunch and some well-deserved relaxation.

    In the afternoon, we take a half day to visit all famous sites of this bustling city. The first destination is Reunification Palace (outside visit), the former residence of the President of South Vietnam until April 30, 1975 when the North Vietnamese tanks came crashing through the front gates, bringing the U.S.-Vietnam War to a dramatic end. This will be followed by some French colonial structures including the Notre Dame Cathedral. Notre Dame Cathedral was built between 1877 and 1883 where the stones used to create it were exported entirely from France. Apart from the religious meaning, the most captivating point of this Cathedral is its special neo-Romanesque style of architecture. Adjacent to the cathedral stands the Central Post Office, finished in 1891. It is another fine example of French architecture and is Vietnam's largest post office. After visiting the War Remnant Museum, we continue our trip to the bustling Ben Thanh Market, which is a fantastic place for bargains of all kinds. There are a number of vendors and food stalls in the market food section that offers fresh local dishes. You also can find many goods for daily use as well as a variety of eye-catching souvenirs.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    Accommodation: Hotel in Sai Gon

    Day 12: Sai Gon – Drive to An Hóa – Vung Liem (B/-/D)

    Saigon - Ben Tre: 90km, ~2h drive

    After 2 hours driving from city, you will arrive AN HÓA bridge, Ben Tre province. Walk to the workshop to see how the local people peeling-spliting-paring coconut by traditional ways. Then take the boat to visit a local factory to see many kilns to make activated charcal from coconut hard-shell.

    Crossing Mekong river, called Cửa Đại & Cửa Tiểu, 30km far from the Eastern Sea, we arrive Tam Hiêp Island. Next, the rowing boat will take you deeper into the countryside on smaller canals to enjoy the peaceful time. Come to the local family to enjoy some kinds of fruits, honey-tea. You will have option of biking or walking on small village paths through huge orchards to arrive special farm where they are planting the creepers (called LÁ SÂM). We pick up some leaves for making & tasting this special herbal jelly.

    Biking/walking to have the best lunch at Ut Trinh’s home. After lunch, we back to our boat to come to visit Long Thạnh Communial House (the national architectural heritage) before coming back our bus and we head to Vung Liem for overnight

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Accommodation: Local House in Vung Liem

    Day 13: Vung Liem – Drive to Can Tho (B/-/-)

    In the morning, we will visit the orchards while learning about the area’s history and customs. After lunch, we start our biking trip for an interesting exploration on the island through the narrow lanes but should be lots of fun waiting. Visit the neighbor families who are busy on sedge fields, study about their mat production from this special grass, from cutting, drying to slicing and weaving. There are many fascinating stops for photo shoots around this non-touristy landscape. Afterward visit the local school, market, community house and tomb of the land’s ancestor before driving to Can Tho for overnight.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    Accommodation:
    Hotel in Can Tho

    Day 14: Cai Rang Floating Market – Binh Thuy French Style Ancient House - Drive back Sai Gon (B/-/-)

    Rising early to the sounds of the Delta coming to life for another day, we have breakfast and start our day with a boat cruise along the seemingly endless waterway of Mighty Mekong River. We arrive to Cai Rang Floating Market, the biggest and most famous floating market in the Mekong Delta. Viewing hundreds of boats which are packed with mango, bananas, papaya and pineapple,  all for selling, buying and exchanging.

    Then we will visit Binh Thuy Ancient House, which is filled with features that represent rural areas in the Mekong Delta region during the 20th century. This French-style house was built in 1870 by the Duong family on an area of nearly 6,000 sq m. Its base is about one meter higher than the land surface

    After visiting, we head back Sai Gon for overnight.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    Accommodation: Hotel in Sai Gon

    Day 15: Sai Gon Departure (B/-/-)

    We depart this bustling city however time is still yours to relax until it’s time for the flight. You’ll fly back home and we wish you all the best for your future travels.

    We thank you for your choosing Tonkin – Travel!

  • Prices

    This trip is private and therefore can be altered to suit your needs, date of commencement and budget requirements.

    Prices vary due to a number of specifics:

    • Seasonal: during high season (October-April), the prices of services are generally higher when compared to the low season (May-September).
    • The number of participants: the more of you that travel together the less you will pay!
    • The choice of hotels: Fairly obvious one here; a 5-star hotel can cost ten times as much as a 2 star hotel.
    • The activities during the trip: Two trips on the same itinerary and of the same length can have two different prices depending on the number and nature of activities included.
    • The booking date: In some cases, booking your trip late can drastically affect prices due to their low availability.
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