- Contemplate the beauty of nature in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia
- Discover beautiful temples in Luang Prabang and Angkor
- Variety of activities during the trip for a total immersion in contemporary life
- Visits and warm encounters with local populations
- Visit and meet with colorful minority ethnic groups
- Unforgettable cruise in 24 hours in Ha Long Bay with overnight stay on board
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The spirit of travel:
Start with the Southwest where the glorious Angkor temples, Tonle Sap lake,… of Cambodia are located, this part of the stay will lead you to its eternal treasures of nature and a splendid history. The trip continues then with not only the most beautiful landscapes but also to better understand the way of life and the ancestral customs of the inhabitants’ lives in Laos. From there, the wonderful destinations such as Hanoi, Ha Long bay which is the 7th wonders of the world heritage, Hue, Hoi An,… will be waiting for you to discover in Vietnam.
Program in brief
Day 01: Siem Reap – Arrival
Day 02: Siem Reap – Angkor Temples
Day 03: Siem Reap – Angkor Temples
Day 04: Siem Reap – Tonle Sap lake – Luang Prabang (by flight)
Day 05: Luang Prabang – City discovery
Day 06: Luang Prabang – Khouang Si waterfall – Baci Ceremony
Day 07: Luang Prabang – Pak Ou cave – Hanoi (by flight)
Day 08: Hanoi – City discovery
Day 09: Hanoi – Ninh Binh – Trang An
Day 10: Ninh Binh – Halong Bay
Day 11: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Quang Binh (by flight)
Day 12: Quang Binh – Phong Nha cave
Day13: Quang Binh – Hue
Day 14: Hue – City discovery
Day 15: Hue – Hoi An – City discovery
Day 16: Hoi An – My Son Holy land
Day 17: Hoi An – Danang – Departure
Day 01: Siem Reap - Arrival
Upon your arrival in Siem Reap, you will be welcomed by your local English speaking guide and transferred to your hotel.
Siem Reap is a charming provincial town that attracts travel photographer by a cluster of villages, Chinese-style shop houses, and French-colonial architecture. As a gateway to the ancient temple ruins of Angkor, Siem Reap is a wonderful destination to explore and yet numerous photo opportunities.
Free time for your first glimpse of town.
Overnight in Siem reap
Day 02: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor Temples (B)
Today, set off to encounter the beautiful temples which are considered as Angkor’s jewel.
The day starts with the visit to Ta Prohm, perhaps most popularly known as The Tomb Raider temple. This beautiful temple is overgrown with fig trees, giving it a haunting yet exotic atmosphere.
Get inside the reinforced city of Angkor Thom to admire the mysterious Bayon temple, crowned with the large number of serene faces sculpted on its towers. Also, take this chance to learn more about the intricate carvings of the Terrace of the Elephants and the Terrace of the Leper King.
Wind your way to 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.
Optional 1 : Khmer Food tasting by tuk tuk
This evening, be picked up at the hotel at 18:00 for a Cambodian Street Food Discovery. Transfer by local tuk-tuk to the local night market to enjoy the tantalizing sights smells and flavors of local specialties. Stroll through the alleys and side streets around Psar Chas area (Old Market) area to savor real Cambodian snacks, carefully selected for cleanliness and standards as the local people do, including pancakes, fruit shakes grasshoppers, spiders, cockroaches, or crickets. Followed by a local beer if you so wish to wash all the tasty morsels down. Then, head to a local restaurant to sample some traditional Cambodia dishes that are created based on your allergy restriction.
Day 03: Siem Reap – Full day Angkor Temples (B)
Spend this memorable full-day tour, starting early at 04.30 to catch the magical sunrise at Angkor, 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.
Return to hotel for breakfast then depart to visit Golden Silk Pheach Preservation Center which is a Cambodian N.G.O established in 2002 in Siem Reap. “Golden Silk Pheach Preservation Center is one of the rare remaining fully integrated silk producers in the world.
Then drive through Preah Dark Village to Banteay Srey Temple. This intricately carved temple despite the lack in size is still a jewel in the crown of Angkor-era sculpture. The architecture style features a mixture of the archaic concept and the innovative materials since Banteay Srey Temple was largely built from sandstone in pinkish hue, with brick and laterite used for the enclosure walls and some structural elements. We stroll around this beautiful landmark and admire the marvelous sculpture at every step.
Upon leaving Banteay Srey Temple, we continue our drive towards the Kbal Spean River, where water and sculpture intertwine to make for the secret treasure of “ River of a Thousand Lingas”. This mysterious site has been largely reclaimed by the jungle of Kulein Mountains; however, it involves a walk through the luxuriant forest to catch a view of numerous lingas covering the surface of a sandstone riverbed rock. The carving motifs are mainly myriads of lingams and yoni.
Overnight in Siem Reap
Day 04: Siem Reap – Tonle Sap lake – Fly to Luang Prabang (B)
Situated 18 kilometers away from downtown Siem Reap, Kampong Phluk is one of the most impressive and untouched permanent settlements on the Tonle Sap Lake. Today, visit the floating village of Kampong Phluk, a village a bit further away but which receives very fewer tourists. Thus, this stilted village is the best place to see the authentic life of the local fisherman and their families who live amongst the flooded mangrove forest. Along the way enjoy the views as the local community goes about its daily life. Then being transferred to airport for flight to Luang prabang.
Upon arrival, you are met our guide and drive to hotel. Overnight I Luang Prabang
Day 05: Luang Prabang – City Discovery (B)
Today, we spend a full day exploring the key highlights that make the elegant tranquility of the charming town of Luang Prabang. Visit the Royal Palace featuring the combination of the French beaux-arts styles and traditional Laos architecture. The palace is now turned to a National Museum (close every Tuesday) boating the precious collections of the Royal artifacts.
Drive or enjoy a leisurely walk on through the peaceful tree-lined streets to admire some of Luang Prabang’s famous temples including Wat Xieng Thong, a great masterpiece of mosaics and carved wood featuring traditional Lao style; Wat Vitsoun, the most ancient temple of Luang Prabang, was built with simple architecture and housed the Prabang Buddhas ancient statues and steles.
In the afternoon, visit Wat Mai, one of the town's most sumptuous monasteries, famed for its classic Laos architectural style.
Climb up to the top of Mount Phousi to explore the sacred, gilded stupa and admire the panoramic sunset view of the Mekong and Khan rivers as well as the mountain range. At the end of the day, opt to stroll around the Street Night Bazaar where you can find the various handicraft collections.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 06: Luang Prabang – Alm giving - Kuang Si waterfall – Baci ceremony (B)
For early risers, there is a very special dawn visit to watch the monks collecting alms. As the sun begins to rise, long lines of orange-robed monks leave their pagodas and walk barefoot down the streets collecting offerings from Luang Prabang residents.
Return to hotel for breakfast and depart to Kuang Si Waterfalls. Upon reaching Kuang Si Waterfall, enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings or explore the surrounding dense jungle on foot. For the adventurous, it is possible to walk to the top of the falls via a steep track where beautiful views await.
Late afternoon, travel by tuk-tuk to a local house. You will be warmly welcomed by your host before taking part in a Baci ceremony where you will have white cotton strings ties around your wrist for good luck! Baci is a ceremony to celebrate a special event, whether a marriage, a homecoming, a welcome, a birth, or one of the annual festivals. The Baci ceremony can take place any day of the week and all year long, preferably before noon or before sunset. The term more commonly used is su kwan, which means “calling of the soul”. After that, enjoy the authentic home cooked Laos cuisines, chat with the locals and then return to your hotel.
Overnight in Luang prabang
Day 07: Luang Prabang – Pakou cave – Fly to Hanoi (B)
Having breakfast at the hotel, we then get onboard a traditional long-tail boat for cruising gently on Mekong River to the famous Pak Ou Caves. Upon arrival, start exploring the magical cave systems: the lower cave houses a photogenic group of Buddha statues, silhouetted against the stunning riverine backdrop, the upper cave is a 7-minute climb up steps surrounded by lush trees.
On the way back to Luang Prabang, stop at Ban Xang Khong and Ban Xieng Lek which specializes in silk weaving and Saa Paper (paper made from the bark of the Saa Tree).
Free time in the afternoon till being transferred to airport for flight to Hanoi
On arrival at Ha Noi Airport, you are greeted by our guide and taken to your hotel by private transfer.
Overnight in Ha Noi.
Day 08: Ha Noi - City 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.
Then, sip a cup of coffee at the trendy railway coffee, where you has an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness a massive train passing through tiny residence of local people.
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
Day 09: Hanoi – Ninh Binh - Trang An (B/L)
Leaving Hanoi behind, we drive for head out for 2.5-hours drive through rural northern Vietnam to Ninh Binh Province, famous for amazing karst mountains, misty caves and historical relics. The beautiful rice fields and the area have earned the nickname of ‘Ha Long Bay on land’.
Upon arrival, visit to Hoa Lu ancient capital, the heart of the first three centralized feudal states of Vietnam: the Dinh, Le, and Ly dynasties. Then take a walk to the hidden valley Am Tien, surrounded by high mountains, to find out more about Vietnam history and capture nice photos of the karst landscape and beautiful lake.
In the afternoon, continue the journey with a boat excursion in Trang An. Consisting of 12 caves and 3 temples, Trang An becomes a must for travellers to Ninh Binh. A rowing boat carries you through caves and picturesque green channels; here you are close to nature.
After the boat landed, driven to the hotel for checking in. Free time on your own exploration of the town.
Overnight in Tam Coc
Day 10: Ninh Binh - Ha Long Bay – Cruise (B/L/D)
After breakfast, depart 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 to a quiet area to dock for an overnight stay.
Lunch and 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 the situation.
Day 11: Ha Long Bay - Ha Noi – Fly to Dong Hoi - Quang Binh(Brunch)
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.
After disembarkation, travel back to Ha Noi city. Then going straight to airport for flight to Dong Hoi. Upon arrival, you are welcomed and driven to hotel in Quang Binh.
Free time after checking in hotel.
Overnight in Quang Binh
Day 12: Quang Binh – Phong Nha cave (B/L)
After breakfast, depart to Phong Nha cave which is considered as the longest we cave or river cave in the world. Take a boat on Son river, you will immerse yourself into charming view of the river and mountain. Impressive nature with numerous interesting images will awaken your imagination.
After visiting Phong Nha cave, transfer to the Paradise Cave area to enjoy lunch at local restaurant. After lunch, we have time to visit the Paradise Cave - one of the larger and most impressive accessible caves in the entire area. Paradise Cave is one of the most famous caves in Phong Nha as well and only opened to the public in 2010.
Return to town and enjoy your free time.
Overnight in Quang Binh
Day 13: Dong Hoi – Vinh Moc tunnel – Hue (B/L)
Depart early morning, heading south to go to Hue. On the way, the first stop located approximately 1 hour from Dong Hoi is the childhood house of the General Vo Nguyen Giap. He was born in this village in 1911. He started to participate in revolutionary activities from the age of 14 and became one of the most excellent students of Ho Chi Minh, fighting during both French and American wars. He is famous for his leadership which led to the victory of the battle of Dien Bien Phu in 1946 against the French army. The house was actually burned by French soldiers but restored in 1977. It is a beautiful traditional wooden house located in a charming garden.
Back to the car for a transfer of 1 hour to Vinh Moc Tunnels. The route is scenic after leaving the main highway passing through quaint villages and skirting along Cua Tung Beach. The Vinh Moc village story is a feat of humanity and resistance. In order to escape heavy bombardment during the war, the villagers constructed approximately 2.8 km of underground tunnels which they used as a refuge to survive the bombings. Three hundred people lived intermittently in the tunnels from 1966 to 1971.
In the afternoon, drive around 30 min to the 500-year-old village of Phuoc Tich. Once famous and prosperous because of its pottery, the village has dozens of homes that are from 100 to 200 years old and several old temples, pagodas, worship halls and communal houses still remain. The religious culture of the village is seen via families, which have their own ancestor worship halls, each worshiping five direct generations.
Following the visit, take a one-hour drive to Hue and arrive in the late afternoon.
Overnight in Hue
Day 14: 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 15: Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An (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 the 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 16: Hoi An - My Son Holy land (B)
Pick up at your hotel and transfer to My Son Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage site, 40 km southwest of Hoi An. Located in a lush valley, My Son once was a capital and religious center of the Cham people. With its impressive red brick towers and sanctuaries, My Son is considered to be in the same league as some of Southeast Asia's greatest archaeological sites, including Angkor Wat in Cambodia, Bagan in Myanmar, Ayutthaya in Thailand and Borobudur in Indonesia. The remaining towers and sanctuaries were built from the 7th to 13th centuries.
Return to Hoi An in the early afternoon and enjoy your free time afterward.
Overnight in Hoi An
Day 17: Hoi An – Danang - Departure (B)
Enjoy the morning free at leisure until transport is provided 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.