Day 01: Hanoi arrival - Optional Tour: The Best Of Hanoi Foods
Day 02: Hanoi City tour - Night train to Sapa
Day 03: Lao Cai - Sapa - Trekking to minority villages
Day 04: Sapa - Bus to Hanoi
Day 05: Hanoi - Ha Long Bay - Overnight on Cruise
Day 06: Ha Long Bay - Lan Ha Bay - Overnight on Cruise
Day 07: Ha Long Bay - Hanoi - Flight to Danang - Hoi An
Day 08: Hoi An free at leisure
Day 09: Biking,Fishing & Farming in Cam Thanh Village
Day 10: Hoi An - Flight to Ho Chi Minh - Cu Chi Tunnel
Day 11: Ho Chi Minh - Mekong Delta - Cai Be - Tan Phong Island
Day 12 - 13 - 14 - 15: Ho Chi Minh - Driver to Mui Ne – Relaxing in Mui Ne
Day 16: Ho Chi Minh City - Departure
Day 1: Hanoi arrival - Optional Activites: The Best of Hanoi Foods Tour (Meals: None)
Upon arrival at Noi Bai International airport, our representative will welcome you and transfer to hotel in the center of Old Quarter.
Optional Activites: The Best of Hanoi Foods Tour (Surchagre +45USD/person)
You are a foody and expect to try the best of Hanoi cuisines. How about taking a big fun walking tour around Old Quarter and see its lively daily life as well as tasting all the best foods the city has to offer? Hanoi has long been rated one of the best cities for street food in the world. Let’s explore the city with our guide and give it a go to taste the most amazing dishes Hanoi has to offer. This tour is tailored to give our foreign guests the most unique and authentic experience of Hanoi’s cuisine. We will take you to the most popular eateries for locals, most of which are famous among locals.
Around 05:00 Pm, Our guide will come to pick you up at your hotel and start the The Best of Hanoi Foods Tour. We start walking through the maze of bustling streets that make up Hanoi’s Old Quarter, first visiting the colorful local markets where we meet stall holders and talk about their food and learn about local culinary. Then continue along both high streets and back streets exploring many corners in Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Our guide will introduce to you the most famous locals’ foods stores and taste all of famous Hanoi foods including Hanoi traditional foods like Bun cha, Banh cuon, Cha Ca, to exotic foods like Bun Oc or Bun Rieu Cua or legendary “egg coffee”. Under guidance of our friendly tour guide, you will be introduced to the city with the best foods Hanoi has to offer and unique opportunities to travel like a local. Walk on foot back to your hotel.
Day 2: Hanoi City tour - Night train to Lao Cai (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
After breakfast at hotel, you will start the city tour by visiting Hoa Lo prison or the Hanoi Hilton. The prison was built by the French administration in 1896. During the Vietnam War, Hoa Lo Prison achieved notoriety as a place of incarceration for US pilots, who ironically nick-named it the Hanoi Hilton. The tour to this historical relic gives you a unique sight at Vietnam History and an understanding about Vietnamese people in war. Transfer to Temple of Literature - Vietnam's first university, built in 1076 and at first used for education of royal children only. Throughout its hundreds of years of activity in the feudal, thousands of Vietnamese scholars graduated from this university. Enjoy your lunch at Koto restaurant. The restaurant was built to help street children in Hanoi, offering them accommodation, education and job training. The restaurant nowadays gets great reputation not only for the great charity works but also exquisite foods cooked by top chef.
After lunch, spend the afternoon visiting Museum of Ethnology, voted as one of four the best museum in Asia. In the museum, tourist exploring Vietnam’s diversity culture and life style of 54 ethnic groups, walking in houses on still of ethnic people to experience their life style or traditional rituals. Enjoy a unique performance of Water Puppet Show before transfering back to your hotel, overnight in Hanoi.
Around 09.00 pm, our guide will pick you up at your hotel and transfer by taxi to Tran Quy Cap train Station and catch the night train to Lao Cai. Overnight on train.
Day 3: Lao Cai – Sapa – Lao Chai – Ta Van (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
Arrive in Lao Cai station at 5:00 in the morning. Our driver will welcome you and then transfer by our comfortable private car to Sapa. The ride uphill to Sapa takes a little over an hour, giving you a glimpse of the stunning vistas and impressive rice terraces.
You will have breakfast at hotel before we start our trekking tour to visit Cat Cat Village, the oldest hill tribe village in Sapa. From Cat Cat village, we continue to trek Lao Chai villages of the H’mong minority. Notice that the trekking route from Cat Cat to Lao Chai is off the beaten track that only our professional guide can guide you on this route. This trekking route offers stunning landscapes and sceneries, also with some challenges as you balance on the rice terraces and a small trail on the steep mountainside. The vegetation is dense as the trail leads up to a peaceful village perched on the Hoang Lien mountainside. Head downhill and relax by a local stream for a small picnic lunch. After lunch, depend on your health condition, we can continue trekking to Ta Van village of the Dzay people and explore the lifestyle if Dzay minority. Transfer by car back to hotel in Sapa town. Dinner is on your own. Overnight in Hotel in Sapa.
Day 4: Sapa free at leisure - Bus to Hanoi (Meals: Breakfast)
Today is your free day.
Tips from Mercury Travel:
With your free time, you can go up to Ham Rong peak where you will be able to experience a stunning view over the charming town of Sapa. This is a great chance for some unforgettable photos! This is recommended for good weather days (Entrance fee is not included). You may simply stay relaxed with beautiful view of mountains or shopping for hill tribe souvenirs in town.
Around 04.00 Pm, our bus will pick you up from hotel in Sapa town with comfortable shuttle bus departs to Hanoi. Enjoy beautiful views driving along the Hoang Lien Son mountain range. The bus is equipped with large individual seats, A/C and wifi. 2 stops on the way: one for toilets at about 6.30pm and the other one for dinner at about 8.00pm. The dinner is not included. Around 10.00pm: Arrival in Hanoi center and the bus will drop you off at your hotel in Hanoi Old Quarter.
Day 5: Hanoi - Halong Bay (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Around 8.00AM, our driver will pick you up then starting the 3 and a half hours drive to Halong Bay. Embark on Cruise followed by cruise briefing.
Savor a sumptuous lunch while boat cruising further along the limestone islands of Fighting Cock, Dog Rock and Incense Burner. You'll have chance to visit Amazing Cave, the most beautiful and biggest cave in Halong Bay. Then back to the boat to enjoy drinks on Sundeck, snap photos the view of the Bay, go swimming or just relax as the sun starts to set.
Those who fancy some experience in cooking Vietnamese dishes can join in our brief Vietnamese cooking demonstration on board while having some free drink. Dinner is served with selection of Vietnamese food and seafood. Socialize with other guests or just laze around. Overnight on board in a tranquil area. (Evening activities available: night squid fishing, karaoke, dancing...)
Day 6: Halong Bay – Hanoi - Flight to Danang - Hoi An (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
In the morning, start your day with swimming, exercise or photo hunt and have breakfast at sunrise. Get your hand on some kayaking, visiting Luon cave, swimming. Option: For those who do not fancy kayaking can visit TiTop Island to enjoy the panorama view of Halong Bay or just relax, swim at the beach. Upon arrival to Hanoi, our car will transfer you to Noi bai airport in which you will take your flight to Danang city.
Upon arival in Danang airport, our driver will be waiting for you at lobby and transfer you to your hotel in Hoi An. Free at leisure on the rest of the day. Overnight in Hoi An.
Day 7: Explore Hoi An (Meals: Breakfast)
In the past Hoi An was a busy commercial port where the traders around the world came and traded varying types of goods, from silk to ceramics. Some houses in the narrow streets are unchanged from the day they were built. We will follow the narrow lanes lined with centuries-old houses influenced by Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures and visit its numerous places of interest: the 400-year old Japanese Covered Bridge, the Phuc Kien Assembly Halls, the local fish market … Around the town we can see a numerous art galleries and tailor shops, get some made-to-order clothes if you like. Overnight in Hoi An.
Day 8: Hoi An _ Biking, Fishing & Farming trip in Cam Thanh & Tra Que Village (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
Today trip will take you to Cam thanh villages, located next to Thu Bon river, with a lush Nipa forest spread over an area of several hundred hectares and hundreds of hidden channels tangled beneath the broad leaves, was the refuge for VC the war. Tra Que Village is a small vegetable village that supplys fresh herbs and vegetable for Hoi An Town and nowadays, visitors can not only enjoy the fresh air and beautiful scenery, but also have the opportunity to unite with the warm and peaceful life for these villagers.
Around 08.30 AM, our guide will pick you up at hotel lobby and we will departure by bicycle to Cam Thanh Village. The bicycle ride takes you through the peaceful green palm forest, provides countless opportunities for taking photos. We will arrive at a local house in Cam Thanh Village. We will then get on boat and participate in daily works of local fishermen such as rowing, fishing techniques… Stay relaxed at Mr. Phong house and enjoy a cup of green tea before wandering around the village to observe local lifestyle. We will then continue our trip to Tra Que Village. The ride will go through vast rice fields before our stop at Ba Le market where locals exchange and trade their agriculture products. We arrive Mr. Chinh’s house around noontime. After enjoying a welcome drink, you will have a chance becoming a genuine farmer with Vietnamese traditional clothes, hat and tools. We will head to the farm and participate in different farming works that bring you unique experiences.
We come back to Mr. Chinh’s house and enjoy a traditional foot massage with herbs therapy that help you recover after working time on the field. The host will then prepare you a lunch that you can participate in cooking Vietnamese traditional foods. Enjoy your lunch in a warm atmosphere of a local farmer family. We will then bike back to Hoi An town. On our way we will stop by Chuc Thanh pagoda, the oldest pagoda in Hoi An that was built in 1671 featured many beautiful bronze details and valuable antiques of 17-18 century. We arrive back to Hoi An town around 03.00 PM and tour ends at your hotel.
Day 9: Hoi An – Fly to Ho Chi Minh city - Cu Chi Tunnel (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
Say goodbye to Hoi An and the middle area of the country as well, we will move to the south with the must - visit first stop, Ho Chi Minh City - the most dynamic and exciting city with rapid economic growth rate and quickly become one of the most attractive tourist hub in the South Vietnam.
Upon arrival at Tan Son Nhat airport, our driver will welcome you at airport and from here we will go straight to Cu Chi Tunnel for a short visit.
Cu Chi Tunnels, also called Iron Land, is a huge system of underground tunnels that stretched over 250 km. The network was like a secret city to supported war: storage facilities, weapons factories, field hospitals, also included specially constructed living areas, command centers and innumerable of nightmare trap doors to defend itself. Visit Cu Chi Tunnel you'll be able to get an idea of what it would have been like to live, sleep and eat in the underground passages and bunkers during the fierce battles above and below the surface.
Arrival Cu Chi Tunnels through beauty landscape of country side, we watch a short introductory video showing how Cu Chi Tunnels were constructed before entering, then spend the next hour exploring the maze of tunnels. We drive back to Ho Chi Minh City and end the tour at your hotel. Transfer to hotel in Ho Chi Minh. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.
Day 10: Ho Chi Minh city – Cai Be – Tan Phong – Ancient House Homestay (Meals: Lunch, Dinner)
Around 07.30 Am in early morning, our tour guide and tour bus will pick you up at your hotel and depart early for Cai Be. On arrival in Cai Be, set off by motorboat to visit the Cai Be floating market and watch the locals trading fruit and many other commodities on board their vessels. Visit a small family business to see how coconut candy and crispy rice popcorn are made. We will stop to visit local some workshops including pop-rice, rice-paper, coconut candy producing, honey tea, snake wine… to see how local people here utilize rice, coconut and other agriculture materials and turn them into delicious products. Then wander into the small villages to visit the orchard and fruit plantation, accompanied by traditional southern Vietnamese folk music.
Keep cruising to a series of small canals to experience the charms of the Upper Mekong Delta. Arrive in Tan Phong Island, join to a cooking class. Enjoy your cooking experience and learn how to prepare special Vietnamese dishes. Food cooked by yourself and fresh river food served in the heart of the garden. Relax on the hammocks to get back your energy. In the afternoon, you will cycle around the village path with fruit orchards and bonsai garden. Meet the local islanders to learn more about the local daily life in the Mekong delta.
Meet our local guide and transfer to a beautiful ancient house for your overnight homestay with the local people. The homestay is basic accommodation but well equipped, comfortable. After meeting your home stay hosts, feel free to walk around the house and village to explore the countryside. For the dinner, you will participate in cooking traditional dinner with Vietnamese dishes with help from your host. Overnight at homestay with your hospitable island hosts.
If you are not comfortable with homestay experiences, you can upgrade your stay to Mekong Ecolodge for your stay overnight (With surcharge). The experience of living like locals is lifetime memorable.
Day 11: Cai Be – Cruising on Mekong River - Ho Chi Minh City (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
Enjoy your breakfast at home-stay with beautiful tranquil atmosphere. After breakfast, say good bye to our host and we will hop on the boat and start explore the area. We will be visiting Mr Ba Duc's ancient house, a well preserved house in harmonious combination of two architectural styles: Vietnamese and French. Stop by a rice-husking mill to learn about the procedure for rice production. Stop by a small handcrafted workshop of "Cham La" to see how the local use the coconut leaves and weave them into the roofs of homes.
We continue cruising on beautiful Mekong River with green scenery along the bank and daily life of locals from the cruise. The cruising trip is nearly 2 hour will be a peaceful relaxing time and exciting experiences with scenery along the riverbank. Arrive at Sau Ca local house, enjoy warm welcome from the host and cheer a rice wine cup with the host. Enjoy an exciting walk around the huge fruit garden of the host and learn more about exotic local tropical fruits. Enjoy lunch served at local house; you will head back to HCMC.
Day 12: Ho Chi Minh – Mui Ne (Meals: Breakfast, Lunch)
After breakfast at hotel, you will transfer by car on a ride of 3.5 hour to Mui Ne, the heaven of beach, wind and sunshine. Upon arrival, you will check in your hotel and the rest of the day will be free at your leisure. Overnight in Mui Ne.
Day 13: Mui Ne (Meals: Breakfast)
Today is your absolute free day. Enjoy your day relaxing on the white sand beach or have fun with water sports and swimming. Overnight in Mui Ne.
Fishing Village Tour: Apart from heaven beach, fishing village is also a signature image of Mui Ne. You will take a short trip visiting a fishing village and fish market. The visit will give you a close look at local lifestyle here and chances to communicate with friendly locals.
Day 14: Mui Ne (Meals: Breakfast)
Today is your absolute free day. Enjoy your day relaxing on the white sand beach or have fun with water sports and swimming. Overnight in Mui Ne.
Day 15: Mui Ne – Ho Chi Minh (Meals: Breakfast)
Spend your last morning in Mui Ne for relaxing and we will transfer by car back to Ho Chi Minh city in the afternoon. Free at your leisure on the rest of the day. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh.
Day 16: Ho Chi Minh City - Departure (Meals: Breakfast)
After breakfast at hotel, free at your leisure until our drive come to pick you up and transfer to the airport for your onward flight. End of services.