A joyful exploration of Vietnam's beauty and history, complete with a relaxing sojourn at a wellness retreat.
From the vibrant streets of Hanoi to the serene rice paddies of Mai Chau, this meticulously crafted experience promises an immersion into Vietnam's rich history, culinary wonders, and natural splendours.
Begin your sojourn at the luxurious Capella Hanoi, nestled in the heart of the capital, before retreating to the Avana Retreat in Mai Chau, an oasis surrounded by lush jungles and cascading valleys. Traverse the enchanting landscapes of Ninh Binh, where ancient temples and emerald rice fields await, and indulge in the opulence of Emperor Cruise as you navigate the world-renowned Halong Bay.
Tia Wellness Resort in Hoi An offers not just relaxation but a culinary adventure in Tra Que Village, while Hotel Des Arts Saigon introduces you to the vibrant streets of Ho Chi Minh City. Conclude your expedition at the pristine shores of Six Senses Con Dao, where pristine beaches and luxury converge.
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Day 1: International departure
Board your international flight, ready for an exciting immersion in Vietnamese culture
Day 2: Welcome to Vietnam!
Upon arrival at Noi Bai airport, take a private transfer to your hotel Capella Hanoi in Premier room in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, where you will stay for two nights. The rest of the day is free for leisure to recover after the flight.
Day 3: Hanoi's Cultural Journey
Discover Hanoi's rich history and architecture, beginning at the 1911 Opera House, a French masterpiece. Dive into traditional neighbourhoods, visit Quan Thanh Temple and Cua Bac Church, where French and Vietnamese styles blend seamlessly. Follow historic Phan Dinh Phung Street, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant, and explore the Old Quarter's northern section. Join a tour of the Old Quarter. Wrap up the evening at a hidden café with lake views, sampling egg coffee or enjoying a cold beer before a restful night at Capella Hanoi Hotel.
Day 4: Hanoi to Mai Chau
After breakfast, transfer by car to Mai Chau. Stop along the way to visit the Muong tribe and then at Thung Khe Pass for a spectacular view of Mai Chau Valley. After lunch, trek through terraced rice paddies and small villages, discovering the natural beauty of the valley. Nestled amid the natural beauty of Mai Chau’s jungles and leafy valleys arriving at AVANA Retreat, a luxury mountain resort that has been designed to represent a genuine love for the natural environment. Avana means “A Beautiful Wildflower”, nurtured by nature. Stay here for two nights.
Day 5: Mai Chau
After breakfast visit the village of Muong, where a mountain trail awaits. Return late afternoon and as the sun sets, follow a fairy light trail into the rainforest for a enchanting dinner. A secret waterfall transforms into a fairy tale setting, adorned with candles, music, and flowers.
Day 6: Scenic Wonders
Depart for Ninh Binh after breakfast, enjoying a journey through picturesque rural villages. Following lunch, embark on a 3-hour rowing boat trip along the Boi River, exploring Tam Coc caves, ancient temples, and lush rice fields—often dubbed 'Halong Bay on Land.' Visit Bich Dong with its three pagodas on the mountainside. Continue to the historic Hoa Lu citadel, the former national capital. For the adventurous, climb around 200 steps for panoramic views and explore temples. Check into the Nham Village hotel, where you will stay for two nights.
Day 7: Rural Adventure and nature escape
Indulge in a relaxed breakfast before setting out on a cycling adventure. Pedal through the serene rural landscape. Upon reaching the village, engage in agricultural activities such as crabbing, fishing, rice picking, or 'slapping water' for about 1 hour. Participate in preparing lunch with a local family in a stilt house, gaining insights into their daily lives. After lunch, cycle to the boat and enjoy a peaceful sampan ride away from the crowds, exploring the captivating Van Long Natural Reserve. This preserved nature area provides breath-taking views of landscapes and rural life. Witness the rich flora and fauna of Vietnam's most biodiverse wetland.
Day 8: A day of discovery
After breakfast travel to Halong Bay, passing through charming rural landscapes. Arrive midday to board the cruise, enjoy a delightful Vietnamese set lunch at the Panorama Restaurant enjoying panoramic bay views. Explore the intriguing Me Cung Cave in the Nha Lat Area, showcasing historical and archaeological significance dating back 10,000 years. Venture to Tung Sau Area for leisurely kayaking amidst the stunning Halong Bay landscape. Enjoy afternoon tea on the sundeck, followed by an A La Carte dinner. Enjoy a night's rest aboard the Emperor Cruise, your floating home for the next two nights.
Day 9: Wellness in Lan Ha Bay
An early start with an invigorating Vovinam exercise on the sundeck, basking in the morning sunshine and a delightful breakfast. Take the traditional house in this national park village and enjoy lunch. Cruise through Cai Beo floating village, head to Ba Trai Dao beaches, and visit secret caves and beaches surrounded by vertical cliffs. Dive into the crystal-clear waters for swimming and kayaking in the Tra Bau area. Cruise throughout the afternoon, indulging in a massage. Enjoy afternoon tea with music and canapes on the sundeck. Savour dinner at the main restaurant, watching nightfall over Halong - Lan Ha Bay from the balcony on the top deck.
Day 10: Lan Ha Bay
Start your day with a light breakfast before venturing to Luon Cave on a bamboo boat to admire a variety of plants. Enjoy brunch on the cruise, then head to Tuan Chau International Marina. Return to Hanoi by private car for a late afternoon flight to Da Nang. Upon arrival, a private transfer will take you to Tia Wellness Resort's for a relaxing day, and where you will spend the next three nights.
Day 11: Culinary adventure
After breakfast set off for Tra Que Village. This charming settlement on the outskirts of Hoi An is famous for its organic gardens bursting with fresh herbs, spices, and vegetables, adding vibrant flavours to local cuisine. Pick fresh ingredients for our upcoming cooking session, gaining insights into the Vietnamese farming lifestyle. Hop on bicycles and pedal through shaded neighbourhoods, continue to a local market purchase ingredients, and discover the secrets of Vietnamese fresh produce. Take a leisurely cruise along the Thu Bon River en-route to the cooking school. Hoi An's culinary excellence takes centre stage in today's cooking class. The class concludes with a delicious lunch and the rest of the day is yours to enjoy.
Day 12: Hoi An
Start your day with a stroll through Hoi An's UNESCO World Heritage Old Town. Explore iconic streets and hidden gems, beginning at the 400-year-old Japanese Bridge. Enjoy a delightful lunch showcasing Hoi An's unique flavours. The afternoon is free to explore Hoi An's shopping paradise, offering paintings, silk fabric, ceramics, lanterns, chopsticks and embroidered items. Enjoy the golden light of the late afternoon along the riverside. Experience a short basketboat ride, witness the sunset, and end the day with dinner featuring the day's catch at your private floating table.
Day 13: Fly to Ho Chi Minh City
Your journey continues with a transfer to Da Nang airport for a mid-morning flight to Saigon. Explore Phu Nhuan district, a bustling area with Vinh Nghiem pagoda, the largest Mahayana pagoda blending Japanese influence. Journey through fashionable District 3, passing villas and art galleries, walk through a flower market and visit Chua Van Phat (10,000 Buddha) Pagoda. Take a break for lunch at a hidden café, then check into Hotel Des Arts Saigon, where you will stay two nights.
Day 14: Ho Chi Minh City
After breakfast, take a thrilling motorbike ride through the bustling streets of Saigon. Cruise through the busy streets, making a coffee stop at a small café in a picturesque local park, where bird enthusiasts gather each morning with their caged companions. Continue your journey through fashionable District 3, with its fancy villas and art galleries. Visit a stylish gallery showcasing the work of up-and-coming young local talent. Your adventure takes you through the bustling Chinese quarter of Cho Lon, known for its fierce commerce and activity. Take a break from the bikes and stroll through a flower market, filled with the colours and scents of flowers from all over the country.
Day 15: Fly to Con Dao
Enjoy free time until your mid-day flight to Phu Quoc. Enjoy a smooth transfer to Six Senses Con Dao Resort, where you will stay for three nights. Savour the day at leisure on the Con Dao Islands, known for pristine beaches, coral reefs, and scenic bays surrounded by lush forests.
Day 16-17: Enjoy your luxury location.
Relax for a couple of days in paradise. Indulge in unparalleled luxury at Six Senses Con Dao Resort, where the pristine beauty of Con Dao archipelago meets exquisite hospitality. Indulge your senses at the spa with holistic wellness treatments, savour delectable cuisine crafted from locally sourced ingredients, and embark on guided adventures to explore the rich marine life or hike through the captivating landscapes.
Day 18: Ho Chi Minh City Departure
After breakfast transfer to Con Dao Airport for your flight to Saigon, where you'll connect to your international departure.
Day 19: Arrive home
Arrive back into your home country with amazing memories of the trip of a lifetime.
Duration: 18 nights
Location: Vietnam holidays, Southeast Asia
From £7,215pp based on two people sharing, excluding international flights.
The trip includes all accommodations and activities specified above. Rooms and meals as below:
- 2 nights at Capella Hanoi - premier room.
- 2 nights at Avana Retreat - Bauhinia Mountain Suite, breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- 2 nights Nham Village - Rom House, breakfast and lunch included.
- 2 nights Emperor Cruise - Signature Suite, all-inclusive, including massage.
- 3 nights Tia Wellness Resort - One Bedroom Pool Villa (Wellness Inclusive Package), breakfast and lunch included.
- 2 nights Hotel Des Arts Saigon - Deluxe Room, breakfast and lunch included.
- 3 nights Six Senses Con Dao - Ocean View Duplex Pool Villa, breakfast included.
- Internal flights and all transfers.
- Activities mentioned.
This trip excludes:
- Single Supplements.
- International flights to/from your home country
- Any activities, meals or drinks not mentioned as included.
- Anything else e.g. park fees not mentioned as included.
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