Day 1: Arrival - Ho Chi Minh city
Upon arrival at Tan Son Nhat Airport, our guide and driver will pick you up and transfer to hotel for check in. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.
Day 2: Ho Chi Minh city - Cu Chi Tunnels - Cao Dai temples (B, L)
08:00 am. Our guide will pick you up at the hotel. This morning you take a drive to Cao Dai Temple in Tay Ninh to observe the midday service. Following lunch we will drive to the Cu Chi Tunnels and then return to Ho Chi Minh city at approximately. 18:00 pm.
Tay Ninh, near the Cambodian border, is home to the unique Cao Dai sect, whose patron saints include Joan of Arc, Victor Hugo and Winston Churchill to name a few. The religion is a hybrid of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism and Christianity. The Cao Dai Temple at Tay Ninh has been described as a Walt Disney fantasia of the East. The temple's exterior is decorated with multi-colored dragons of all shapes and sizes competing for space with a number of Buddhist symbols. Above the main entrance is the all-seeing holy eye, the symbol of the Cao Dai sect. The interior is just as engaging as statues of Jesus Christ, Buddha and the Hindu god, Brahma, stand side by side. The trip to Tay Ninh is combined with a visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels. At its height, the tunnel system stretched over 250km. from Saigon to the Cambodian border and was three levels deep. The network included innumerable trap doors, specially constructed living areas, storage facilities, weapons factories, field hospitals, command centers and kitchens. Today the remaining tunnels have become a major tourist attraction giving the visitor a unique experience and a feel of what underground life during the U.S.-Vietnam American must have been like. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh city.
Day 3: Ho Chi Minh city - Vinh Long - Can Tho (B, L)
08:00 Our guide will pick you up at the hotel and depart to Cai Be. On the way you can see green rice paddy fields stretching towards the horizon. After arrival in Cai Be, a boat takes you to the floating market with sellers and buyers bargaining and exchanging their goods from their boats. This market nowadays is not as busy as before because after the two huge bridges named My Thuan & Can Tho finished, so almost of things are transferred by road. Then, an optional stop can be made at local workshops where you can see how rice paste, coconut candy and pop-rice, popcorn is made. It is so interesting to visit the handicraft village, where you can see how they make some special products as: Making rice-net for spring rolls, fish sauce & Soya sauce, sewing coconut-leaves for cottage proof...
A delicious lunch will be served at Mr. Kiet an ancient house over 170 years old or under the shade of local orchards on the An Binh Island. After lunch, the rowing boat will take you deeper into the countryside to enjoy the peaceful time on smaller canals. It is so interesting to see traditional houses made of wood and palm tree leaves and see some activities of the local farmers with an opportunity to make contacts with them and see how they catch fish or pick up fruits by ancestral ways in Mekong Delta. Visiting Mr Ba Kiet’s ancient house - landlord’s one in the past, farming tool display, rice planting line- the miniature pictures of the Mekong delta. Enjoy tea with some of the local tropical fruits and listening to the traditional music is the best chance for relaxation if possible (depends on water level on Mekong delta).
Boating to Vinhlong town then transfer by land to the city of Can Tho, the heart of the Mekong Delta. Check in on arrival and relax. Overnight in Can Tho.
Day 4: Can Tho - Ho Chi Minh city - Da Nang - Hoian (B, L) - by flight
Take a leisurely boat trip to explore the picturesque tributaries of the Lower Mekong river ( Bassac River), then proceed to Cai Rang floating markets, which are the liveliest in the whole religion.
Have you ever tasted Vietnamese vermicelli soup? Well, now go and see how it is made. Then wander around the village and meet the friendly local people and experience how to cross a "Monkey bridge" which is built by only one stem of bamboo. Visit Binh Thuy temples. Stop for lunch. Then transfer to the airport for a flight to Da Nang. Pick up and drive to hotel. Check in and Overnight in Hoi An.
Day 5: Hoian city tour (B, L)
In the morning, our guide and car will come to pick you up at your hotel then transfer to Hoi An ancient town. Start our morning by strolling around the Hoi An ancient town to visit: Chua Cau or Japanese Covered Bridge-considered the symbol of Hoi An the finest example of Japanese architecture. Step back in time to discover the Chinese street with stunning Phuc Kien Hall and Phung Hung old house typical of Hoian original architecture. We then visit Hoi An vibrant market and ancient port to explore the rythm of local daily life and savor the true color, flavor and taste of the oriental. Finally, we visit Phuc Thanh Pagoda – the oldest pagoda in Hoi An built in 1454 with Chinese bonze. Have lunch in the local restaurant with specialties of Hoian: the Cao Lau noodle and White Rose dumpling. In the afternoon, take a boat trip on Thu Bon River - the poetic river that shaped the verdant nature and rich cultural heritage of Hoian. Stop en route to visit two handicraft villages nestled on the river banks: Thanh Ha pottery village and Kim Bong carpentry village well known for their nice handicraft products. Transfer back to the hotel afterward. Relax and overnight in Hoi An.
Day 6: Hoian - Hue (B, L)
The next destination is Hue, the Old Royal City in Vietnam in 17th century. Upon leaving Hoi An, we drive north to Hue. The scenic road is hugging the coastline before crossing over the winding Hai Van pass. A view from the top of the pass is one of Vietnam’s most impressive panoramic scenes. We stop en route to visit the Lang Co beach before reaching Hue city. As Vietnam’s last feudal capital, the small and quiet city of Hue is widely known for magnificent architectures, pagodas and royal tombs laid in many small villages and surrounding hills.
Afternoon visits Thien Mu pagoda – the symbol of Hue tourism and Dong Ba local market. Overnight in Hue.
Day 7: Hue - Dong Hoi - Phong Nha Cave (B, L)
Breakfast at the hotel .8:00 Our guide and driver will pick you up and start city tour to cruise on the Perfume River which also gives us a taste of the scenic countryside as well as an enjoyable visit to the mausoleum of Emperor Minh Mang, in a tranquil setting of gardens and lakes. Then drive to Visit Phong Nha Cave First is considered "First wonders". Take a boat approx 5km along the Son River to tour the Phong Nha Cave (river cave). Yacht upstream Son river dreaming, enjoy charming natural scenery either side, you will see pictures of the girls, the children have fun on the waterfront and have the opportunity to experience the daily life of the neighborhood riverside village bearing the Vietnamese country soul.
Conquering the Phong Nha Cave: The longest cave in Southeast Asia, enjoy the scenery spectacular limestone, underground river system and unique stalactite in the world. Caving Fairy & Imperial admire the beautiful stalactites blocks are created by nature over thousands of millennia. Overnight in Dong Hoi.
Day 8: Dong Hoi - Hanoi (B, L) - by flight
Breakfast at hotel. Then take a flight to Hanoi. Pick up and drive to hotel. Check in and relax. Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 9: Hanoi city tour (B, L, D)
You are met at 08:00 am in the hotel lobby. There is a morning and afternoon schedule, as well as an organised lunch.
Ho Chi Minh Complex including the Mausoleum, his former stilt-house residence, the Presidential Palace and the Ho Chi Minh Museum
The Temple of Literature - Vietnam’s first university dating back to 1070
A local Vietnamese lunch
Hanoi Hilton museum (Hoa Lo prison)
Ngoc Son Temple and Hoan Kiem Lake - the Ngoc Son Temple is set on a tiny island on Hoan Kiem Lake, its history dating back to the 13th century
A one-hour cyclo tour through the narrow, chaotic streets of the Old Quarter - a must for any visitor to Hanoi!
A traditional performance of the famous Vietnamese water puppets
18:30 we start Hanoi street food tour. A fun ride to the most popular tourist attractions in old quarter of Hanoi. Learn the history of each famous site from the unique perspective of our guides. Not only will you learn some fun and interesting facts about of each of the places we take you on the tour, our guides will tell you things only a true native of Hanoi knows. For example: Why do so many young people hang out in street at noon & night? why local people like eating street foods in old quarter of Hanoi?
The tour offers a good mix of both famous attractions and lesser known markets and sites that the big tours cannot go to.
Sample the most amazing dishes that Vietnam has to offer! Taste your way through cuisine from North Vietnam, Hue and The South! We will take you to the most popular street stalls and hidden alleyways in the city and show you where the locals really love to eat! So save your appetite, delight your palate and let us fill your tummy with delicious and authentic Vietnamese food! Our Foodie tour focuses on street food; dishes that most people outside of Vietnam have never had a chance to experience.....so no Banh Cuon,Pho,Banh Mi, Bun Cha, Bia Hoi, Egg Coffee! We also won't make you to eat bugs or anything too weird...unless it's a request.
Back to hotel and relax. Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 10: Hanoi - Hoa Lu - Tam Coc (B, L)
08:00 Our guide will pick you up at hotel and leave Hanoi Capital for Ninh Binh, enjoy the beautiful sceneries of the rural areas on the way. About 10:00 arrive Hoa Lu, visit the the two temples of King Dinh and King Le in the 10th century, finding out the heroic histories of this two Kings in Chinese Wars. After that, we go to Tam Coc (10 km far from Hoa Lu). King Dinh Tien Hoang chose this mountain location as the water systems fed from the mountains were perfect for both agriculture and defense. Enjoy the sight of palaces, pagodas, tombs and pavilions built by different dynasties and visit the Dinh and Le Temples, the two remaining architectures of Hoa Lu. Have lunch at local restaurant.
After lunch you will get on bamboo boat – rowed by the local people – in Hoang Long river to visit Tam Coc (three caves) on the way, you also have chance to see the paddy field if you visit Tam Coc in April or September.
Then visit Bich Dong Pagoda comprising three pagodas located at different levels on a green mountain and the setting of the French film ‘Indochina’
16:30 Back to the Harbour for the transfer to Hanoi.
Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 11: Hanoi - Halong Bay (B, L, D)
7.30 – 12.00 Pick up and drive to Halong City through the paddy fields in the Red River Delta by shuttle van. Stopover at Hai Duong province for refreshment about 20 – 30 minutes.
12:30 – 13:00 Embark to Aphrodite vessel welcome drinks on the dining area, follows by Cruise Manager Safety Briefing.
13:30 – 14:30 Lunch served at the dining room.
15:00– 16:00 Visit cave and explore the stalagmite & stalactite formation. (1 Hour Tour).
16:15 – 17:15 Explore Luon cave by bamboo boat
17:30 – 19:00 Enjoy Happy Hour Promo (buy one gift one) (House Wine, Long Drinks, Beers, Soft drinks & Canned Juice).
17:30 – 18:15 Cooking demonstrations with the chef on the sundeck/dining room.
19:30 – 21:00 Dinner served at the dining room.
21:00 – onwards Enjoy squid fishing or watch movie in dining area, relax time..
Day 12: Halong Bay (B, L, D)
6.15-06.30 Begin the day mastering energy flows during a Tai Chi session, while the sun rises.
07.00 Breakfast buffet will be served at the restaurant.
09.00 You will be transferred to a day-boat to Three Tunnel area
11.30 Enjoy kayaking or visit beach
13:30 Have lunch on dayboat
16:30 Come back Aphrodite boat, relax and join with the new passengers.
18:00-23:00 The same programme with the 1st day.
Day 13: Halong Bay - Hanoi (BR)
06:15 – 06:45 Start your day with Tai Chi class on the sundeck (Wake –up Call request is also available at the reception).
06:45 – 07:30 Light breakfast buffet
07:45 – 08:45 Visit Titop island to go swimming or hike to the top of mountain.
09:00 – 09:45 Regular check-out time (if you have any heavy luggage just put outside of your cabins & settle your bills at the reception counter).
09:45 – onwards: Brunch buffet served while cruising back to main port.
10:30 Disembark Aphrodite vessel. Say goodbye to the crew and drive back to Hanoi.
16:00 Arrive in Hanoi.
Check in hotel and relax. Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 14: Hanoi - Departure (B)
Breakfast at hotel. Our driver will pick you up and drive to the airport for your flight. End of services.