Embark on an extraordinary adventure that will immerse you in the enchanting allure of Vietnam. This meticulous itinerary takes you on a mesmerising journey, revealing the country's rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and vibrant culture.
Embark on an extraordinary adventure that will immerse you in the enchanting allure of Vietnam. Our meticulously crafted 16-day itinerary takes you on a mesmerising journey, revealing the country's rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and vibrant culture.
Begin your exploration in Hanoi, where the ancient and modern coexist harmoniously. Traverse the bustling streets, discover hidden gems, and delve into the intriguing history of Hoa Lo Prison. Experience the captivating beauty of Halong Bay on a serene cruise, basking in the awe-inspiring scenery and indulging in Tai Chi sessions at dawn.
Venture into the captivating Mai Chau valley, where verdant rice fields and quaint villages await. Engage with local farmers, immerse yourself in their traditions, and relish the warm hospitality of the villagers. Journey to Ninh Binh, where ancient ruins and scenic landscapes captivate your senses. Sail on a sampan through the mesmerizing Tam Coc, and conquer the Mua Caves for panoramic vistas.
In Sapa, embark on exhilarating hikes, encounter ethnic minority communities, and be captivated by cascading waterfalls and mist-covered mountains. Conclude your adventure in the ancient town of Hoi An, with its ornate architecture, vibrant markets, and tantalizing cuisine. Delve into Vietnamese culinary secrets and explore the hidden corners of this UNESCO World Heritage site.
Unveil the mystical beauty of Vietnam on this unforgettable journey, where every step reveals a new chapter in this captivating tale. Book now and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Hanoi: Welcome to Vietnam
Xin chao! Welcome to Vietnam. You will be transferred from the airport to your hotel. We'll be collecting insurance details and next of kin information, so please ensure you bring these details to provide to your guide.
Room is at your disposal from 02:00pm.
Take a short rest before enjoying the city tour in the afternoon. We will visit Hoa La Prison, the infamous “Hanoi Hilton” where captured American soldiers and airmen were incarcerated during the Vietnam War.
Then, enjoy 1-hour cycle trip around Old Quarter to enjoy the local life before getting back to the hotel. Meals on your own account.
Hanoi – Halong Bay:
After breakfast at the hotel, you will be taken by our car to another fascinating land – the gem in the north of Vietnam – Halong Bay. Visiting the bay, you will experience the magic of the wonderful wonder of the world.
From the harbor, board our boat for a cruise among the numerous limestone karst rising from the emerald water. Make a stop en route to visit a grotto of spectacular stalactites and stalagmites. Meals will be served on the cruise.
Overnight on the cruise.
- Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Adela Cruise – Junior Suite - https://adelacruises.com/ (or similar)
Halong Bay – Hanoi
Enjoy a Tai Chi session on the sundeck in the morning with a light breakfast of tea, coffee and pastries. After breakfast, enjoy your time to sunbathe and relax in the fascinating background of the bay.
After brunch on board – around 11.30am, transfer back to Hanoi to check in the hotel.
Dinner on your own.
Hanoi – Mai Chau:
Leave behind the hectic pace of life in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi and journey to the clean air of the mountainous Mai Chau valley (approximately 3 hours). There are great photo opportunities along the way – stop at a vantage point to take in the view of Mai Chau, home to a variety of minority groups with their own unique culture and languages.
Along the way, there's also the opportunity to help local farmers plant rice seeds into the fields. Arrive in Mai Chau and head to the village of Pom Coong to enjoy a local lunch. This is a great opportunity to experience the local area, chat with the local people, and gain a real insight into life in this fascinating and picturesque region. Check in the hotel.
After lunch, take some time to relax before walking to nearby villages. This breath-taking view takes you on small footpaths through the rice paddies of the spectacular Mai Chau Valley, where rising mountains form a ring around you. Riding through this majestic scenery, there are great photos to be taken and lots of chances to interact with the locals. Back at the hotel, relax while watching the sun set over the peaceful mountains.
Enjoy Gala Dinner at the hotel.
Today is a free day to explore the city by yourself. Lunch & Dinner on your own account.
Mai Chau – Ninh Binh:
Free at your leisure until the check out time (12:00). Then we will head to Ninh Binh (4 hours).
Once arrive in Ninh Binh, check in the hotel. Lunch & Dinner on your own account.
Ninh Binh – Hanoi:
This morning, check out of the hotel, then, we will visit Hoa Lu Ancient Capital, the ancient capital of Vietnam dating back to the 11th century. Visitors can see temples built in honor of the emperors Dinh Tien Hoang and Le Dai Hanh their sons, and Queen Duong Van Nga, who was married first to Dinh Tien Hoang and then to Le Dai Hanh.
Then, set off your cruise on the beautiful sampan to explore Tam Coc (three caves) - which is also known as "The Halong Bay on land”. You will be enchanted by the breathtaking views of rice paddies, majestic caves and rock formations.
Have lunch at a local restaurant.
In the afternoon, you will climb 486 steps to Mua Caves for panoramic views and photo opportunities.
Back to Hanoi to check in the hotel (2.5 hours).
Hanoi - Sapa
This morning, drive to Sapa (6 hours by car).
Once arrive, check in the hotel and have a short rest before driving uphill offers most spectacular scenery of Fansipan Mount. Just a kilometer out of the town, rose flower farms and later chayote grows on bamboo frames covered a vast area. We’ll stop at the magnificent Silver Waterfall before continuing the road trip for some kilometers further to Heaven Gate and Tram Ton Pass.
At 2047m above sea level, the Heaven Gate & Tram Ton Pass is the highest mountain pass in Vietnam. From here enjoy walking around for half an hour for beautiful scenery of both two side of Hoang Lien Son Mountain range. The wind blows stronger to force the clouds moving constantly. It is the best point here to enjoy breathtaking scenery of the two side of Fansipan Mountain Range. Amazingly that the weather is very different by the side: In many days It is foggy and cloudy on Sa Pa side and sunny brightly the other side.
Leaving the Heaven Gate for the way back downhill 7 km, where you may stop to taking pictures of some lush farm in O Quy Ho where different kind of vegetable, flower, fruit trees and even medicinal plants are grown for years which makes this part of Sapa ever green.
Back to the hotel in Sapa.
The day is devoted to a beautiful hike through the breathtaking scenery of Sa Pa valley. Start by road that descends in the wake of the street Cau May (6 km) En route, admire the rice terraces hidden behind mist of the morning, a truly awe-inspiring sight.
Follow a small track and cross Muong Hoa River and pass well-tended rice terraces on your way to the Black Hmong village of Lao Chai. Continuing through the colorful rice terraces you will reach the village of Ta Van Giay. As you continue your trek along the Muong Hoa River you will cross a small suspension bridge, roughly 2km from the settlement. Here you can discover a fascinating collection of rock carvings. These engravings depict some beautiful images of man, stilt houses and some beautiful decorative patterns. We lunch in a home in the village.
After lunch the walk continues through a bamboo forest to Giang Ta Chai, a Red Dao ethnic minority village. After taking a rest nearby a waterfall to refresh, you start climbing uphill to a road where the car is ready for your journey back to Sapa.
Sapa – Hanoi
Check out of the hotel after breakfast, then, we will visit Ta Phin commune, 14km southeast of Sapa town. Located in a large valley, surrounded by high mountains, which covered by pine trees and forest, Ta Phin commune is home to the Red Dzao and Black H’mong ethnics. Although living closed to each other for decades, these two ethnic people are very different: The H’mong are cheerful and open minded while the Red Dzao are economical and reserved.
Taking a short drive to the center of the valley, you will enjoy an easy walk following village path around the valley, paying visit to H’mong hamlets scattering from the bottom of the valley to higher mountain slopes. From high elevation, great view of the valley stretching under your feet. Continue your walk to the Red Dzao village in which you will meet groups of women making handicrafts includes embroidered clothes, handbags…After that transferring back to Hanoi. It will take around 5.5 – 6 hours by car.
Arrive in Hanoi in the evening. Check in the hotel. Rest of the day is at your leisure.
Hanoi - Da Nang – Hoi An:
This morning, take a short domestic flight to Da Nang. When arrive, you will be picked up to transfer to the hotel in Hoi An to check in.
After a short rest, take a walk around the ancient town. As the national trading center in the 16th century, Hoi An is home to the diversity of ancient streets and homes. Stroll around the unusual cobblestone streets to admire the hundred century old Chinese houses.
The leisurely trip offers you a great chance to see the ancient houses built in Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures. There are some incredible places that you should not miss when visiting Hoi An including the hundred- year – old Japanese Bridge, the Phuc Kien Hall. You also have a chance to stop at a tailor-made shop to get your favorite clothes.
Rest of the day is at your leisure.
We will pick you up from your hotel and spend 20 - 30 minutes exploring the local materials at Ba Le market. You will learn how the locals prepare shellfish, meat, and vegetables. Look at how Vietnamese people use herbs in their cooking.
Learn how to tell the difference between different types of rice papers (which one will be used for rolling, grill or mix). Discover how to prepare pineapple and taste it right away at the market.
Then, take a quick break with a sweet soup or Palate Cleanser before joining the cooking class (do not forget to wash your hands).
Don't forget to try a Cu Lao Cham specialty tea. The cooking class will last approximately 2 hours, after which you will be able to enjoy your own special dishes.
Return to the hotel by electric buggy. Rest of the day is at your leisure.
We will leave our hotel at 8:00 am and set off on our cycling ride towards the peaceful countryside of Cam Kim Island. The route will lead us through lush sceneries, rice paddies and farmlands. We will be free to stop along the way as many times as we wish or just keep on riding eagerly, if that is the way we prefer.
Stunning rural scenes, rice paddies, villages and quiet roads are the big draws of Cam Kim. Cycling in Vietnam usually involves some nervous encounters, but Cam Kim’s roads are traffic free, flat and relatively safe. There will be plenty of opportunities for taking photographs and simply absorbing the wonderful scenery.
There will be time to visit a local family and learn about the curious ancestral technique that they use to make traditional sedge mats and noodle.
Back to the hotel for the rest of the day is at your leisure.
Today is a free day to explore the town by yourself.
Optional activities include: Hoi An Memories show, My Son Sanctuary, Street Food walking Tour.
Hoi An – Da Nang – Departures
There are no activities planned for the final day and you will free at leisure until appoint time for transfer to Da Nang airport for your flight home!
Room is at your disposal until 12:00 only.
- Private Guide & Tour Leader
- Private Driver
- All Meals Mentioned in Itinerary
- VAT & Taxes
- Hoa Lo Prison
- Cycle tour around Old Quarter
- 2-day / 1night Halong Bay Cruise
- Mai Chau local villages walking tour
- Hao Lu, Tam Coc and Mua Cave in Ninh Binh
- Silver Waterfall & Heaven Gate Sapa
- Full day hiking with visits to Lao Chai, Ta Van Giay
- Bamboo forest trek
- Hoi An walking tour
- Hands on cooking class with local chef
- Cycling through local villages
- International Flights
- Travel Insurance
- Tips for Guides
- Any visas required (Please bring one photo-passport)
- Services not mentioned in the itinerary
- Late check out at hotels
- Expenditure of personal nature
- Optional activities
If entering Vietnam by air, most nationalities will be granted a 30-day stay on arrival without needing a visa.
If you have a UK or US passport, you do not need a visa to enter Vietnam. You can stay for up to 30 days if arriving by air or up to 15 days if arriving by land.
This is referred to as a visa exemption. Upon arrival, you may be required to present your return ticket and complete a landing card.
If you plan to stay longer than 30 days, you must apply for a visa before traveling to Vietnam. It's important to avoid overstaying, as doing so may result in fines or detention. Double-check your departure date to ensure compliance. Please note that visa extensions can be obtained in Vietnam at any immigration office for a fee. We recommend verifying the latest entry requirements by consulting your national foreign travel office. For UK citizens, this information can be found in the Foreign Travel Advice section of https://www.gov.uk.
If you intend to enter Vietnam multiple times via land borders during your travels, it is advisable to obtain a multiple entry visa from your embassy or consulate before you travel. This is preferable to attempting to obtain a visa at the border on multiple occasions, as it may lead to being denied re-entry into the country.
For the most up-to-date information on visa requirements, we suggest contacting the Vietnamese embassy in your country. You can find more information at https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/vietnam.
Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate in any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your Tour leader/ local representative, who will take note of your insurance details and emergency contact number. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability of luggage, cancellation, curtailment and loss and personal effects, alongside covid-19 cover.
If you would like to obtain cover for your trip please feel free to contact specialist Insurance Brokers, Campbell Irvine Direct for a quote. GoKo Travels is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Campbell Irvine Ltd who are Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority .
Please click here to learn more about what we do to keep you safe while on a GoKo run tour.
- For more up to date information regarding the current travel restrictions within Cambodia, please click here
Addtionally, you can email: email@example.com and a GoKo Travel Manager will get back to you as soon possible with all the relevant information.
Travel With Confidence:
Due to the ongoing impact of COVID-19, the safety and wellbeing of all of our travellers, leaders, suppliers and staff remains our top priority. Not only have we updated our booking policies so you can flexibly amend booking arrangements before departure and get the most out of your holidays while away, we have also introduced new measures and safety guidelines so you can travel with GoKo Travels safely and securely.
What does this new booking policy mean for me?:
Fully Flexible bookings for peace of mind - We understand that sometimes plans change. That’s why GoKo Travels have updated our booking policies, so you now have full flexibility to change your travel plans if needed.
Our flexible booking policy includes:
(a) Free date changes up to 45days prior to departure - with no interest or added fees
(b) Full refund giving if you have to cancel the trip due to any COVID-19 related issues or international restrictions.
(c) You can now lock in your trip with a small refundable deposit and then pay the rest in instalments whenever you like, with no interest or fees.
Book with Confidence
Free date changes and cancellations up to 45-days before departure on the majority of our holidays
Your Money is Safe
Full financial Protection on all of our bookings so you can travel with piece of mind.
Full refund given if you have to cancel the trip due to any COVID-19 related issues or international restrictions.
When you travel with us you can be confident that all of our holidays meet COVID-19 safety regulations.
As part of our commitment to preserving planet earth, we donate 3% of our profits to GoKo Travel's registered non-for-profit, "The GoKo Earth Preservation".
The GoKo Earth Preservation has been set up to protect and preserve the natural habitats of our planet and to conserve and enhance the biodiversity of threatened environments and endangered species around the globe. This is achieved through rewilding, reforestation and marine conservation projects, alongside local community support.
Securing A Rainforest Reserve
Support the purchase of our very own GoKo Rainforest reserve - preserving biodiversity and protecting endangered species in the world's most important habitat.
Assisting Marine Conservation
With your help, we can buy boats to support marine conservation; securing the future for our fragile oceans and the wonderful beings that inhabit them.
Creating New National Parks
By helping with the creation of new parks, we can support local economies, empower native communities and put healthy landscapes into permanent protection.
Looking to Carbon Offset?
Although all of our GoKo holidays promise to warm your hearts, we don’t want it to contribute to warming the planet.
Upon request, we can help you go Carbon Neutral. Thanks for our contacts, we can support a 3-step carbon offset scheme to calculate and neutralise your holiday footprint, allowing you to travel conscious free. This covers every step of the journey where you travel with us, from international flights to hotel heating, transport, food and more.
If requested, the GoKo Carbon Offsetting scheme does not focus on just planting trees, but rather the purchasing, persevering and protecting standing forests from deforestation and degradation - helping revive forests back to full health and avoiding the release of stored carbon. This also enables the regeneration of degraded habitats, which gradually re-absorb atmospheric CO2.
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