6 Days 5 Nights Ho Chi Minh City/Hanoi/Halong Bay (PTV6D-2)
Ho Chi Minh City, formerly named Saigon is the largest city in Vietnam. It was once known as Prey Nokor, an important Khmer sea port prior to annexation by the Vietnamese in the 17th century. Under the name Saigon, it was the capital of the French colony of Cochinchina and later of the independent state of South Vietnam from 1955 to 1975. In 1976, Saigon merged with the surrounding Gia Dinh Province and was officially renamed Ho Chi Minh City after Ho Chi Minh. The city center is situated on the banks of the Saigon River, 60 kilometers (37 mi) from the South China Sea and 1,760 kilometers (1,094 mi) south of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam.
Hanoi, estimated population nearly 6.5 million (2009), the capital and second-largest city of Vietnam. From 1010 until 1802, it was the most important political centre of Vietnam. It was eclipsed by Hue during the Nguyen Dynasty as the capital of Vietnam, but Hanoi served as the capital of French Indochina from 1902 to 1954. From 1954 to 1976, it was the capital of North Vietnam. The city is located on the right bank of the Red River. Hanoi is located at 1,760 km (1,090 mi) north of Ho Chi Minh City. October 2010 officially marked 1000 years since the establishment of the city.
Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a popular travel destination, located in Quang Ninh province, Vietnam. Administratively, the bay belongs to Halong City, Cam Pha town, and part of Van Don district. The bay features thousands of limestone karsts and isles in various sizes and shapes. Halong Bay has an area of around 1,553 km2, including 1,960 islets, most of which are limestone. The core of the bay has an area of 334 km2 with a high density of 775 islets. The limestone in this bay has gone through 500 million years of formation in different conditions and environments. The evolution of the karst in this bay has taken 20 million years under the impact of the tropical wet climate. The geo-diversity of the environment in the area has created biodiversity, including a tropical evergreen biosystem, oceanic and sea shore biosystem. Halong Bay is home to 14 endemic floral species and 60 endemic faunal species.
|1||Arrive in Saigon On arrival in Tan Son Nhat airport in Saigon, you will be picked up by our tour guide . Look for your name sign at Arrival Hall and follow our tour guide. Private car transfer to the city. Afternoon , we will take you around Ho Chi Minh City to get a general view of it as well as its history and culture with stops at Reunification Palace (Ex-Presidential Palace) that was built in 1963 and is well-known as an outstanding example of 1960′s architecture, the Jade Emperor Pagoda, passing by Notre Dame Cathedral (built in 1877), the General Post Office. Overnight in Saigon.|
|2||SAIGON – CITY – CU CHI TUNNEL (B/L/D) Ho Chi Minh City formerly known as Saigon is one of the most important commercial and tourist centers in Vietnam. It is 1,730km by land from Hanoi capital and 50 km from the East Sea. Saigon was once praised as the “Pearl of the Far East”. Morning , we will take you around Ho Chi Minh City to get a general view of it as well as its history and culture with stops at Reunification Palace (Ex-Presidential Palace) that was built in 1963 and is well-known as an outstanding example of 1960′s architecture, the Jade Emperor Pagoda, passing by Notre Dame Cathedral (built in 1877), the General Post Office. After lunch, you will go to the Cu Chi tunnels which underground network now considered a heroic district for its role in the anti – American war in Vietnam. It is legendary for its tunnels system of over 220km and is a popular spot for both Vietnamese and foreign visitors. Return to Saigon in the afternoon at 6.00pm. Overnight in Saigon.|
|3||SAIGON – MEKONG DELTA (B/L/D) The Mekong delta area is the southernmost region of Vietnam. It is often referred to as the rice bowl of Vietnam as it produces three harvests per year. The fertile Mekong Delta is also famous for its tropical fruits and flowers. The Delta area marks the end of a 4,500km journey made by the Mekong River after having traveled through six countries. Traditional transportation in the Delta is by boat along a vast network of canals and channels. Boating along these canals and visiting the floating markets always proves to be a fascinating and rewarding experience for all visitors… Start early in the morning for our drive to Cai Be, where we board our private boat for a cruise through the busy Cai Be floating market. A one day excursion will begin after boarding a luxury wooden boat, the Mekong Queen, with a visit of the colorful Cai Be floating market, where you can witness all of trading activities of local traders with several kinds of agricultural product from one boat to another. The Cai Be floating market is one of the many well-known and the biggest wholesale markets in the western region of Southern Vietnam, which was formed during the Nguyen Dynasty in the 19th century. The market is always busy, bearing all the characteristics of the Southern local’s life in the Mekong region. All the goods are transported to the market by boats. The floating market lies in the Tien (Upper) river, and is divided into two parts: buying and selling places. Boats are anchored along the two sides of the river for kilometers. From the floating market, goods are shifted for selling at inland markets or small boats take them for delivery along canals in the Plain of Reeds. Approximately 400 to 500 boats filled with fruits, vegetables, and other products are anchored here and make it very busy from 05:00 am in the morning until late in the afternoon. Traders live on the river and some link their lives with boats like their mobile houses for generations. The products are hung on a pole in front of the boats to attract customers and it is also easier for customers to see the products they want to buy from a far and no need to go from one boat to another to save their time. You then continue the cruise to a local factory to visit and learn how pop rice, pop corn, rice paper and coconut candies are made. You also have an opportunity to taste these products served with hot green tea. Returning to the boat to take a 50 minute excursion to Dong Hoa Hiep Island and discover the beautiful and peaceful sceneries together with the typical life of the region along the Mekong River. Stops and visits can be made during the excursion. A 10 minute walk through a local village and fruit gardens, you will be able to stop to visit the local family scaled Longan process factory, where you have another opportunity to take photo of and interact with several friendly and hard working local people before coming to an old Mandarin house, built hundred years ago and it is where at least four generations of this family have been living. A delicious Vietnamese lunch will be served by the owner of the family, Mrs. Kiet and you will listen to traditional music, performed by the locals when you are enjoying lunch. One of the highlights after lunch is to walk around the orchard to get to know how the main contribution to the economy of the family is based on. Walking or taking a small rowing Sampan back to the boat for a half an hour cruise on the Dong Hoa Hiep canal back to the pier. Stop on the way to visit Mr.Ba Duc family if time permitted or as requested .The excursion will end around 14:30 pm for a drive back to Saigon. Overnight in Saigon.|
|4||SAIGON – HANOI (B/L/D) Morning, transfer to the airport for the flight to Hanoi. Birthplace to so much of Vietnam’s traditional culture, Hanoi, more than any other city in Vietnam, is a unique fusion of old and new. It personifies the spirit of historic Vietnam in the temples, monuments and pockets of ancient culture along the narrow streets of the Old Quarter, yet perfectly reflects the rapid changes sweeping the country as Hanoian yuppies sip cappuccinos in roadside cafes and compare cell phones. On arrival at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi, you will be picked up by our tour guide and car and be transferred to the city. City tour in Hanoi to visit Temple of Literature – the first college of Viet Nam and the place dedicating to Confucian. Have lunch at a restaurant. PM: After having lunch, drive to visit Tran Quoc Pagoda, Which is on the shore of West Lake. Quan Thanh Temple and the Museum of Ethnology – where you can look at the cultural mosaic of 54 Vietnamese ethnic groups. The last place of city tour is Hoan Kiem Lake (Restored Sword Lake) with Ngoc Son Temple. End at your hotel in the late afternoon. Overnight in Hanoi.|
|5||HANOI – HALONG TOUR (B/L/D) Breakfast and 8.30am, get on the car for Ha Long bay. Halong Bay covers an area of 1,553 square km with over 3000 limestone islands that rise from the clear, emerald waters of the gulf of Tonkin near the Chinese border. Halong Bay is one of the natural marvels of Vietnam. Due to its typical terrain of sea depression dotted with limestone islands, 300 square km, it was recognized as the world natural heritage by UNESCO in 1994. Halong Bay is a truly remarkable destination, Come and see what the Vietnamese call -the descending dragon’ Enjoy 5 hours boat cruise in Halong Bay passing the islands of Fighting Cocks, Turtle Islet, Stone Dog, Surprising Cave and Titop Beach. Kayak around for 30 minutes. Stop for swimming and visiting caves. Have seafood lunch on board. Return to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi.|
|6||HANOI – DEPARTURE (B) At leisure until car and guide transfer your group to the airport for departure flight.|
The price includes
- Hotel Accommodation in 4 & 5 star hotels or equivalent
- Option 1: 4 star Saigon : Grand Hotel Hanoi : Silk Path Hotel
- Option 2: 5 star Saigon : Caravelle Hotel Hanoi : Sheraton Hotel
- Entrance fees
- Airport transfers and ground transportation as stated in the itinerary
- Meals as stated in the itinerary
- B = Breakfast in hotel
- L = Lunch outside of hotel at designated local restaurant
- D = Dinner outside of hotel at designated local restaurant
- Local English speaking guide
- Transfers and tours by private vehicle (4-seater car: Toyota Vios/Altis for group 1 or 2 pax, 16-seater minivan Mercedes Benz Sprinter for group 3 - 4 pax)
- Domestic air tickets Saigon - Hanoi ( Vietnam airline - Economy)
- Private boat trip in Halong Bay
- Private boat trip in Mekong Delta on Mekong Queen
The price excludes
- International air tickets to/from Vietnam
- Meals that are not mentioned
- Vietnamese visa arrangement
- Personal insurance
- Tip for driver, tour guide
- Expenditure of a personal nature such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, tipping, etc
- Any services that are not mentioned.