- Private and tailor-made trip
- Discover the most beautiful sites of Vietnam and Cambodia
- Discover the culture, the tradition and the way of life of Vietnamese and Cambodians
- Warm meeting with local people
- Unforgettable cruise in Ha Long Bay with overnight stay on board
- Visit of the typical floating markets of South Vietnam
- Discovery of the historical, cultural and spiritual vestiges, the beauty of the Angkor temple
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The spirit of travel:
During this wonderful 20 days trip, you will discover Vietnam and Cambodia. Starting with Vietnam, with its exceptional nature and heritage. The enchanting Ha Long Bay, “the descent of the dragon”, the mountainous region of Upper Tonkin, the colorful high markets of Bac Ha village, the ancestral cities of Hoi An and Hue, the romantic landlocked Halong Bay, the hectic city of Sai Gon, the mysterious Mekong Delta … So many authentic sites and beauties, often listed as UNESCO World Heritage, come together in this trip.
Then you will sail on the peaceful water currents of the fabulous Mekong River to the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh with its contrasting face, visiting the must-see sites of Cambodia and finally Siem Reap – the sacred place of the majestic temples of Angkor – remains of the ancient Khmer Empire.
Program in brief
Day 01: Hanoi – Arrival
Day 02: Hanoi – City discovery
Day 3: Hanoi – Halong Bay
Day 4: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Lao Cai (by night train)
Day 5: Lao Cai – Bac Ha Sunday market – Sapa
Day 6: Sapa – Hiking to ethnic village
Day 7: Sapa – Free time – Hanoi (by limousine bus)
Day 8: Hanoi – Free time – Hue (by flight)
Day 9: Hue – City discovery
Day 10: Hue – Hoi an – City discovery
Day 11: Hoi An – Free time
Day 12: Hoi An – Ho Chi Minh city – City discovery
Day 13: Ho Chi Minh city – Mekong Delta
Day 14: Mekong Delta – Cai Rang floating market – Chau Doc
Day 15: Chau Doc – Phnom Penh (by boat)
Day 16: Phnom Penh – City discovery
Day 17: Phnom Penh overland to Siem Reap
Day 18: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor temple
Day 19: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor temple
Day 20: Siem Reap – Tonle Sap – Departure flight
Day 01: Ha Noi - Arrival
On arrival at Ha Noi Airport, you are greeted by our guide and taken to your hotel by private transfer.
Ha Noi – The capital of Vietnam, also known that “The cradle of Vietnam’s culture”. Lies besides modern constructions are many hidden gems that still retain their charm and culture from thousands years ago.
Depending on your arrival flight schedule, you either have the opportunity to rest at your hotel if the room is available (please note the check-in time is at 14.00 pm), or take your own exploration of the town.
Overnight in Ha Noi.
Day 02: Ha Noi - Discovery (B)
Today, we start our exploration of Ha Noi, seeing the most notable landmark of Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (close on Mon. and Fri. and Oct. to Nov). This imposing marble and granite monument was built towards Ba Dinh Square. We follow the footpath to the One Pillar Pagoda rising from the center of a square lotus pond, ascending on a single pillar and resembling a blossoming lotus flower.
The next place will be the fascinating Ethnology Museum (closed Mondays), which is both a research center and a public museum exhibiting the ethnic groups of Vietnam. As an alternative to the Ethnology Museum, visit the highly acclaimed Hoa Lo Prison which was once known as “Ha Noi Hilton”
We continue the trip to the Temple of Literature - Vietnam’s first university, constructed in the 11th century, the gardens and well-preserved architecture offer a relaxing glimpse into Vietnam's past.
After that, visit Ha Noi’s Old Quarter also known as the ‘36 streets’. Take a walking tour through charming Hang Be Market and around Hoan Kiem Lake. This bustling area of narrow streets and alleys is home to literally thousands of small businesses and shopkeepers. It's a great place to explore with plenty of photo opportunities.
The final touch of the day is a Water Puppet show. This is a uniquely northern Vietnamese art form depicting scenes from rural life and episodes of national history
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 03: Ha Noi – Ha Long Bay – Cruise (B/L/D)
After breakfast, take 3.5 hour drive to Ha Long Bay, one of the World Natural Heritages recognized by UNESCO with thousands of spectacular limestone islands rising from the clear, emerald sea in the Gulf of Tonkin.
Upon arrival, welcome aboard. Enjoy a welcome drink before check-in your cabin. While the boat is passing many rocky islets, caves, floating villages and beaches, a tasty lunch will be served on board with fresh seafood. Relax on the sundeck.
Later on, the boat moves a quiet area to dock for overnight stay. Dinner with Vietnamese food is served on board.
Overnight stay on board
Note: The itinerary of boat in Ha Long may change without prior notice depending on situation.
Day 04: Ha Long Bay - Hanoi - Lao Cai - Sapa city (Brunch) (by night train)
The boat cruises around Ha Long Bay, passes by many islets named by their shapes such as Dog, Incense Urn, Fighting Cock, Finger, etc. Breakfast or brunch is served while the boat then continues cruising towards the wharf.
Return to Hanoi and enjoy a massage session to relax before taking a night train to Lao Cai, Sapa,
Overnight on train
Note: Local train is in basic condition, you will be shared with other passengers in 4berths carriage, air conditioned,
Day 05: Lao Cai - Bac Ha Sunday market (B)
Upon arrival at Lao Cai Station, you will meet and transfer to mini hotel for freshening up and breakfast.
Our guide and driver then will welcome you at the hotel and transfer Bac Ha Market. This local trade fair is rather affected by the influx of mass tourism, but it still offers some colorful picture and a unique experience. We see many different ethnic minorities including the Flower Hmong, Dao, Phu La, Nung, La Chi, and Tay, and discover their amazing local trading ways
These hill tribe people come into this conglomeration on every Sunday for not only to trade but also enjoy some entertainment, and are recognisably distinct by their dress. They make for the entirely local affair full of noise, colour and hustle, and the bustle of commerce
Then leave Bac Ha for half an hour road ride downhill to Trung Do village which is beautifully set in a valley on the eastern bank of the mighty Chay River. Take an hour leisure walk to explore this prosperous village of the Tay ethnic people who live in large stilt houses and have maintained their traditional way of life. Walk to the boat pier in mid-afternoon, and boarding a boat for cruising downstream the Chay River for an hour to Bao Nhai. Boat cruise end at Bao Tan Village, near the motorway. Then transfer to hotel in Sapa for your free time.
Overnight in Sapa.
Day 06: Sapa - Y Linh Ho - Lao Chai - Ta Van(B) |Hiking information: Around 8km on paved road
After breakfast, start your hike through the most beautiful landscape of the Muong Hoa Valley, home to magnificent views of mountain terrain with high and steep rice terraces dotted with the houses of H’mong people to Y Linh Ho Village
From the main road, follow the hiking path down to Y Linh Ho Village, alongside Muong Hoa Valley. Capture panoramic views of wonderful rice terraces as far as the eye can see. Then hike along Muong Hoa Stream to Lao Chai Village, home to Black H’mong community, living mainly on rice cultivation in terraced fields. Stop wherever you please to interact with locals or make nice pictures of Muong Hoa Valley. Visit a H’mong family, chat with them about daily life, H’mong culture & lifestyle, while enjoying a local snack with a cup of tea or coffee.
Then the driver will take you back to your hotel in Sa Pa town. In the late afternoon, you will be free at your own exploration of town.
Overnight in Sapa
Day 07: Sapa - Free time - Hanoi (B) (by limousine bus)
After breakfast, you will be free to explore the town on your own. In the afternoon, you will take Limousine Dcar bus to return Hanoi
Arrive Hanoi in the late evening and overnight in Hanoi
Day 08: Hanoi - Hue (B)
After breakfast, enjoy you last shopping in Hanoi before taking a flight to Hue. upon arrival in Hue,
you will be welcomed by our guide and driven to hotel. Free time for your first glimpse of town on your own.
Overnight in Hue
Day 09: Hue - City discovery (B)
The full-day tour today will bring you to the massive Hue Citadel where Kings of Vietnam’s last feudal dynasty ruled from 1802 to 1945, including Flag Tower, Nine Holy Cannons, Ngo Mon Gate, Thai Hoa Palace, Nine Dynastic Urns, and the Forbidden Purple City.
We embark on a traditional boat for a relaxed excursion on the Perfume River. Along the way, we visit the riverside Thien Mu Pagoda, one of the most famous landmarks of Hue.
Continue driving to the tomb of Tu Duc, the ‘poet Emperor’, set in an elegant garden with a magnificent lake and pavilion complex.
Afterward, we will pay a visit to the Dong Ba Market, which sells a wide variety of local goods and handicrafts. We pass by many fantastic eating spots, all of which are ideal places for visitors to sample some local delicacies.
Return to hotel for a rest and overnight in Hue.
Day 10: Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An - City discovery (B)
Today, we set off on our drive along one of Vietnams most scenic highways and yet with several stops en-route such as Hai Van Pass, gives you a great view towards Lang Co Beach; one of the most beautiful peninsulas in Vietnam.
Arrival in the ancient city of Hoi An, known in the past under its name "Faifo", was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999.
We enjoy an afternoon walking tour to explore tiny town of Hoi An with the stops at a 400 year – old Japanese Covered Bridge. This structure was first constructed in 1590s by the Japanese traders to link them with the Chinese quarters. We head towards the typical Phung Hung House, a building with a mixture of Japanese and Chinese architectural elements.
And continue to visit the Phuc Kien Assembly Hall. This colorful building is one of the five well-known halls in Hoi An and dedicated to Thien Hau, the goddess of sea who protects sailors from dangers.
Overnight in Hoi An.
Day 11: Hoi An free time (B)
After breakfast, free time for your own exploration of town or relax on the beach.
Overnight in Hoi An
Optional tour: Danang Golden Bridge
Pick up by our local guide, transfer to Ba Na Hills cable car station. Take the cable car up to the main station. Enjoy time on the Golden Bridge and capture panoramic views of the green mountains of Nui Chua, the Mountain of God.
Enjoy your free time at Ba Na Hills for further activities: European Architecture Villas, in-door game, French Wine Cellar, flower beds and pagodas. Be ready at the meeting point before the cable car journey down and return to your hotel.
Day 12: Hoi An – Da Nang - Ho Chi Minh City (B)
We transfer to Da Nang airport for a short morning flight to Ho Chi Minh City.
Formerly known as “Sai Gon” before 1975, Ho Chi Minh City today is Vietnam’s commercial center that never sleeps. Although the city is a dynamic metropolis undergoing dramatic change, but the architecture, local culture and lifestyle of Ho Chi Minh are still a reconciliation among French, American and Chinese influences.
Upon arrival, you are met by our guide and driven to your hotel in town for rest.
The afternoon city tour will acquaint us with a visit the city highlights including the Presidential Palace, the Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office. Admire the beautiful architecture of the Opera House, City Hall.
Step inside the War Remnants Museum for an insightful, yet somber, look into Vietnam’s military history. See exhibitions displaying imagery from the French and American wars, learning more about the country’s struggle for independence and hearing tales of the resilience of the Vietnamese people.
If time permitted, we will walk around the retail Ben Thanh Market, where vendors display a vast array of goods, handicrafts, etc. before returning to hotel for a break!
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City
Day 13: Sai Gon – Ben tre - Can Tho (Mekong Delta) (B/L)
After breakfast, drive south of the city to the Mekong Delta, a remarkable agricultural area referred to as ‘the rice bowl of Vietnam’.
On arrival in Ben Tre province, we board a private boat to explore the Mekong Delta. Cruise among the river islands which have whimsical names such as Dragon, Unicorn, Turtle and Phoenix Islands. We make some stops at local houses to taste seasonal fruits, listen to traditional music performed by a villager ensemble, and sample honey tea. The interlaced canals are truly a lifeblood of the Mekong Delta; however, many channels can be accessed only by small boats.
We enjoy a short sampan trip rowing under the palm grove to venture into this maze of canals before we continue our motorboat to the coconut kingdom of Ben Tre. We will either take a horse cart or motorbike pulling cart to discover the traditional lifestyles, culture, and history of local people and visit some industry cottages. They may be brick-kiln ceramics, coconut candy and coconut handicrafts, etc.
in the late afternoon, transfer to Can Tho for spending a night
Day 14: Can Tho – Cai Rang – Chau Doc (B)
Early in the morning, pay a visit to Cai Rang Floating Market which is the biggest and most colorful floating market in the Mekong Delta’s region. You will have chance observe the busy commercial site where hundreds of boats packed with fruits, vegetables, plants, foods, etc. Lining along the river and ready for trading.
After that, depart for 3hours to Chau Doc. Arrive to Chau Doc and check in hotel.
In the afternoon, pay a visit to the Sam Mountain, an important pilgrimage site that is frequently visited by pilgrims from all over the Mekong Delta. There are dozens of pagodas and temples around Sam Mountain and reaching the peak is the highlight of the visit. The views from the top are spectacular (weather permitting) and you can easily look out over Cambodia.
Overnight in Chau Doc.
Day 15: Chau Doc – Phnom Penh (by boat)
It’s an early departure for the 4-hour boat ride to Phnom Penh. It’s an hour to the border where you will clear visa formalities (visas must be obtained in advance) before continuing into Cambodia.
Upon arrival in Phnom Penh, you will be welcomed by your local English speaking guide, who will accompany you to your hotel for check in.
From the hotel, we depart on a city tour. First, visit Wat Phnom, which dates back to 1372 and contains some excellent examples of Khmer architecture and statues.
Next pay a visit to the Khmer-style National Museum, which houses the world's foremost collection of ancient Khmer archaeological, religious, and artistic artifacts from the 4th to the 13th centuries.
Continue on foot to the Royal Palace, originally built in 1866s by the grandfather of the current Cambodian King. It includes the official residence of the royal family with parts of the massive palace compound, partially opened to the public.
Overnight in Phnom Penh.
Day 16: Phnom Penh - Full day city tour (B)
Start your day with the visit to the killing fields of Choeung Ek Genocide Center – 9 miles away south of Phnom Penh. The painful bloody rule of the Khmer Rouge still can be seen at the memorial stupa.
Return to Phnom Penh to visit Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (S21), a former high school turned into a centre for interrogation, torture, and death by the Khmer Rouge.
In the afternoon, explore two of Phnom Penh’s most famous temples: Wat Ounalom Temple and Wat Phnom Temple. Founded in 1443s and inclusive of 44 structures, Wat Ounalom Temple is locally known as the headquarters of Cambodian Buddhism. The temple suffered serious damage during the Pol Pot era, but today it has come back to life.
Continue to the hillside temple of Wat Phnom that lent the Cambodian capital its name. The temple was originally built to preserve four statues of the Buddha that had been discovered in the heart of the Mekong River
If time permitted, we round off our day with a walk in the Central Market, a showcase of the local product richness. This flagship trade center of Phnom Penh was built in shape of a dome with four arms branching out into vast hallways crammed with countless stalls of goods.
Overnight in Phnom Penh.
Day 17: Phnom Penh – Siem Reap overland (B)
After breakfast you will drive overland to Siem Reap (6 hours), the gateway to the majestic temples of Angkor and a charming little city.
Today, you head towards the rarely visited Sambor Prei Kuk, the most important pre-Angkorian site in the country that has recently been bestowed UNESCO World Heritage Site honors. Sambor Prei Kuk was built in the Chenla period between the 6th and 7th centuries and there are over 100 well preserved temples scattered in the forest. The three main sites are linked by small and shady tracks. Enjoy a beautiful walk through the jungle with breathtaking views.
The villages around the temple complex still practice the ancient art of craft making, using materials such as bamboo and rattan. Stop at one village to observe the local production. The community runs the Isanborei Craft Hut next to the temples and sells their products there as part of a community-based tourism project. You will have the chance to visit and contribute to the sustainability of the people’s livelihood as the local community will prepare a simple but very tasty lunch for you near the temple.
Continue to Siem Reap.
On arrival into Siem Reap you will check into your hotel and have the remainder of the day at leisure.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 18: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor temples (B)
We start this day tour with Angkor Thom, an epic collection of striking structures encompassed in quadrangle area. The walkway leads us to the Royal Enclosure where remains some mysterious ruins, including the Royal Palace, Phimeanakas Temple, and Royal Terraces. These structures built from perishable materials have long vanished. The memorable climax of our visit is Bayon Temple built in the centre of Angkor Thom. This enigmatic complex contains 54 towers, each topped off with the four faces of Compassion Buddha.
Upon leaving Angkor Thom Area , we take a short drive to the architectural masterpiece of Angkor Wat - one of the modern wonders of the world. Be amazed by the sheer size of the temple and learn how the Khmer Empire prospered between the 9th and 13th Century, around the time when the temple was built.
We round out day tour with a walk up the Pre Rup Temple to enjoy the spectacular sunset over these sandstone monuments.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 19: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor temples (B)
Today, drive out to visit the Banteay Srei that translates to “the Citadel of the Women”. Originally constructed in the 10th Century and dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, this red sand-stone temple is one of Angkor’s most significant structures as its walls are decorated with elaborate carvings which have been remarkably well preserved.
Continue on your exploration of the famous jungle temple of Ta Prohm where several shots of the adventure movie “The Tomb Raider” were filmed. This beautiful Buddhist temple was not restored and looks just as it did when French explorers stumbled it in the 1860s. The magnificent tree roots have merged over the centuries with the temple’s huge stone blocks, emphasizing a ‘forgotten city’ feeling.
Visit the Angkor Silk Farm 15 km west of Siem Reap, where you can witness the entire process of silk creation from the breeding process and life cycle of the silkworm to the spinning of the silk, the dying process and the creation of beautiful silk weavings on wooden hand looms.
Overnight in Siem Reap.
Day 20: Siem Reap – Tonle Sap - Departure (B)
Today, drive 20-25 minutes toward South of Siem Reap along scenic roads to the floating village of Chong Kneas on the great Tonle Sap, the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. Stop along the way to capture the peaceful countryside scenery or interact with the locals to gain insight into the rural lifestyle. Then, embark on a local wooden boat and set out on a relaxing and insightful cruise exploring the floating villages where more than a thousand families live and make their living. Observe the floating schools, markets, police stations, and the traditional way of living.
However, the activities of the boat trip will depend on your scheduled flight. Trip ends after being transferred to the airport for your departure flight.
List of our hotels:
The hotels offered by Horizon Vietnam Travel are classified from 02 to 05 stars at the international standard, and comfortable with all the required services.
+ Standard Category: 2 stars. The rooms are correct, clean, and equipped with a bathroom, satellite television, and air conditioning.
+ Superior category 3 stars. The rooms are generally spacious, and the services and facilities are more numerous.
+ First class category: 4 stars. The rooms are luxurious and spacious and have a wide choice of quality services.
+ Deluxe Category: 4-5 stars. Hotels are of excellent comfort and have a wide range of excellent services. (swimming pool, spa, jacuzzi…).
+ On the other hand, we have developed fair tourism, through contact with the local population, the possibility of sleeping with the locals and sharing their daily life. The conditions of these accommodations that we offer you are well insured and with the best possible conditions.
Our services include:
- Private transportation with air-conditioned vehicle
- Accommodation in the planned hotels or similar in the program with daily breakfast as mentioned
- Meals are provided in local restaurants of typical Vietnamese cuisine (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner included)
- The English-speaking guide for each city.
- All entry fees to tourist sites
- All the permission to enter the tourist areas
- Boat tours as described in the program
- 02 bottles of mineral water of 0,5 (l)/person/day
- Other services as mentioned in the program (bicycle, boat trip, etc...)
- All fees for all other services as clearly described in the program above.
Our services exclude:
- Airfare on all domestic and international flights (quote separately)
- Drinks and surcharge for special requests on foods and meals
- Entrance fees, guide service during free time & other personal expenses
- Surcharge for public holidays (if any)
- Surcharge for other language-speaking tour guides (upon request)
- Travel insurance
- Vietnam visa stamping fees
- All other services are not stated in the program.
Horizon Vietnam Travel gives you an estimated price per person on our website for the group of six people in low season with standard 2 and 3-star hotels.
The price of this trip varies according to the services chosen (category of accommodation, activities during the trip,...), the tourist seasonality of the year (Christmas and end of year holiday, Lunar New Year holiday in Vietnam), the booking delays and especially the number of participants of your group you wish to travel with.
Please note that Horizon Vietnam Travel only organizes private "tailor-made" trips for groups from 2 persons. We generally propose an offer including all the services on the spot from your arrival until your departure.
Depending on your wishes and your budget, this tour can be adapted and modified in terms of duration, content and departure date.
HORIZON VIETNAM TRAVEL calculates its prices as closely as possible in order to guarantee you the best price/quality ratio.
Our advice: the earlier you book, the better your chances of getting good rates, especially for air services, think about it!
Note: The price of international flights is not included in this estimate.
Please note that this tour is only a first draft and you can also customize it according to your wishes. We remain at your disposal to build your trip perfectly to your expectations and your budget
To obtain a detailed and personalized estimate, please contact us to request an estimate.