Trip reference number: 102433
Journey from north to south on this luxury Vietnam holiday, taking in the bustling streets of Hanoi, the spectacular limestone scenery of Halong Bay and the historic central coast towns of Hue and Hoi An before flying south to Ho Chi Minh City, also known as Saigon. From there you'll head further south to the Mekong Delta where you'll board an overnight river cruise to discover one of Vietnam's most beautiful destinations, full of floating markets and tranquil tributaries.
Day 1: Depart UKFly overnight from London to Hanoi.
Day 2: Arrive in Hanoi
Arrive in Hanoi where you'll be met and transferred to your hotel in the beautiful Old Quarter. Spend the rest of the day relaxing or head out and begin exploring the city.
Stay: La Siesta Hanoi (Superior) and Hotel de'l Opera (Deluxe)
Day 3: Hanoi City Tour
Explore Hanoi on a cyclo tour and travel through the fascinating Old Quarter of the city, comprising 36 ancient streets where you can observe the daily bustle of life around the markets where peddlers continue to trade as they have done for centuries.
Visit the Ho Chi Minh Quarter, dedicated to the father of modern Vietnam, Uncle Ho, and lookout for his Mausoleum, the Presidential Palace, his 'house on stilts', the Ho Chi Minh Museum and the One Pillar Pagoda. Continue your tour with a visit to the Temple of Literature, Vietnam's first university, which has now been dedicated to Confucian worship. Later, visit Tran Quoc and Ngoc Son Temples and then the 'Hanoi Hilton', the nickname given to the place where U.S pilots shot down over North Vietnamese airspace were imprisoned during the Vietnam War, which has since been converted into a museum. Finish your day with a relaxing walk around Hanoi's famous Hoan Kiem Lake, then return to your hotel or continue with your own exploration of this beautiful city.
Lunch today will be served at Wild Lotus restaurant, a stylish venue popular with locals and visitors alike where you can try pho – a traditional soup that's as much a staple of Vietnamese cuisine as it is culture.
Stay: La Siesta Hanoi (Superior) and Hotel de'l Opera (Deluxe)
Day 4: Hanoi – Halong Bay
After breakfast, depart Hanoi by road an drive to Halong City where you'll board an overnight cruise on beautiful Halong Bay. The journey takes around three to four hours and passes through vast paddy fields and small roadside villages where you can see local farmers plying their trade in the fields. Halong Bay is a stunning collection of around 3,000 limestone islets, protruding from the calm waters of the bay and surrounded by secluded beaches and traditional fishing communities.
If you're on the Superior itinerary, you'll board the Halong Jasmine and if you're on the Deluxe itinerary, you'll board the Halong Violet at around noon, and then enjoy a welcome drink before beginning your cruise on the bay. During the cruise a Vietnamese buffet lunch is served on board while you glide through the emerald green waters, taking in the magnificent scenery as you go. After lunch you'll visit a selection of islands and caves and, if weather permits, there's also the chance to enjoy swimming, kayaking or simply relaxing on board while you soak up the views with your fellow passengers. Dinner will be served on board this evening as you watch the sun set across the bay.
Stay: Ha Long Jasmine (Superior) Ha Long Violet (Deluxe)
Day 5: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Danang / Hoi An
After a night on board the boat, you'll wake to see daylight filtering through the early morning mist and spearing between the towering rock formations – an incredible way to begin the day. Continue cruising through the bay, enjoying a light breakfast followed by a hearty brunch, and arrive back at Halong City port at around 10:30am where you'll leave the cruise and begin your journey by road back to Hanoi.
Once you arrive back in the city, you'll travel to Hanoi Airport and board the evening flight south to Danang, before transferring to Hoi An, where you will be able to spend the evening at leisure.
Day 6: Hoi An
In the morning, enjoy a half-day walking tour of historic Hoi An town centre with your local guide. During the walking tour, stop by the home of a craftsman in the old quarter for a silk lantern making workshop. Have a brief introduction to the history, shape and colour of the lanterns, as well as the many stages of making them. Make your own lantern to take home with you as a souvenir. After lunch, enjoy the afternoon at your leisure before taking dinner at a restaurant in Hoi An historic town.
Day 7: Hoi An
Spend the day at your leisure, enjoying the facilities at your resort and the Hoi An Old Town, located a short distance away, or relaxing on the nearby beaches.
Day 8: Hoi An – Danang – Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
Today is spent at your leisure. Take a late afternoon or early evening transfer to Danang Airport for your evening flight to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). Here, you will be met by a local guide, and transferred to your hotel.
Day 9: Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) – City Sightseeing & Speedboat to Cu Chi
In the morning, take a speedboat to visit the amazing Cu Chi Tunnels, which were used by the Viet Cong soldiers during the Tet offensive that turned the war in favour of the North Vietnamese. On arrival, you will be guided through the famous tunnel network, which stretches over 250km, and extends three levels underground, providing you with a remarkable insight into the hardships, courage, determination and terror of a guerrilla war.
Spend the afternoon on a walking tour of Ho Chi Minh City's famous and historic landmarks. The tour will take you through the heart of the city along Dong Khoi street, which is formally known as the Rue Catinat, past the Rex Hotel, the Municipal Theatre and the Notre Dame Cathedral. Stop at the site of the former US Embassy...
This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website
** If you see this next to a price, a specific price in your currency has not been provided, this is an estimated-only price based on a currency conversion, the price you pay may be different to that shown
Sign up to our weekly Trip Finder email and get a selection of the best trips to feed your Wanderlust