Vietnam Essentials and Sapa Trekking | Yampu Tours

Custom Travel Experiences Since 1998

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Vietnam Essentials and Sapa Trekking

PRIVATE TOUR - 15 DAY SAMPLE ITINERARY

FROM £$ 5006

Private Tour Highlights

  • Get the ultimate Vietnam experience in its most beautiful locales
  • Explore the flora and fauna of Cat Ba National Park
  • Traverse the hills of Sapa to its remote tribal villages
  • Bask in the sun and surf of Halong Bay
  • View a flurry of commerce and activity on the Mekong Delta
  • Gaze at the jagged limestone cliffs on the Halong Bay islands
  • Journey by foot through the rugged and stunning terrain of Sapa
  • Enjoy some of the country’s finest cuisine
  • After a fun trek, soak in a traditional Red Dao herbal bath at Ta Phin
  • Mekong River floating homes, each a self-contained farm where local families raise and sell fish
Interested in this tour?   Let us build you a customized quote based on your budget.

Tour Overview

The ultimate exploration of Vietnam’s most scenic locales, this tour will take you through the islands of Halong Bay, over the hills of Sapa to its remote tribal villages and across the waters of the Mekong Delta. Some of the highlights include exploring Cat Ba National Park, meeting the northern Hill Tribes and visiting the floating markets and villages in the Mekong Delta.

Primarily Vietnamese in character, Sapa comes alive during the weekend market when the local ethnic H’mong and Dao people trek in from nearby villages to sell their wares. Surrounded by the vista of Vietnam’s highest peak, Fansipan (3,142 meters or 10,308 feet), the region holds countless trails and walks for all levels of enthusiasts and provides an introduction into the lives of the isolated communities of the north. This itinerary includes some reasonably long days of hiking to the remote Hill Tribe villages, but can be altered to better suit your ability or fitness level if you desire.

A trip to the Mekong Delta will expose you to the flurry of activity and commerce among its waters, which are interspersed with seemingly endless rice fields, colorful floating markets and isolated villages accessed only by boat. Annexed from Cambodia by the invading Vietnamese in the 17th Century, the Delta remains home to descendants of the former Khmer Empire and the region is scattered with a working collection of temples and resident Buddhists that continue to use the Khmer language as their mother tongue.

Inclusions
Price Includes:
Round trip train fare from Hanoi to Lao Cai, Domestic airfare from Hanoi to Saigon, Hotel accommodation including continental or buffet breakfast, Private transfers between airports and hotels with assistance and baggage handling, Private guided tours in English including all entrance fees, Meals where specified (food only), Bottled water and cool towels provided for transfers and sightseeing, Vietnam government tax and service charge, Local airport taxes that are payable in the country of destination are not included. Taxes and security fees that can be paid at time of ticketing are already included in the quote (if airfare has been included in the quote)

Notes:
*Additional supplements may apply between 19 December – 8 January.

*Additional supplements may apply during the weeks immediately preceding and following the Lunar (Chinese) New Year. The dates vary each year, but fall sometime between January 21st and February 20th:
2016 – Monday, February 8th
2017 – Saturday, January 28th
2018 – Friday, February 16th

*Halong Bay cruise ship operation may be subject to current weather conditions. If your cruise does not operate due to undesirable conditions, an alternate itinerary will be provided; please enquire with your Yampu Tours Travel Consultant for additional details.
Best Time to Travel
JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

Best Good Consult

Pricing Details
  3-Star 4-Star 5-Star Luxury
Double £$4164 £$5006 £$5893 £$6908
Single £$7236 £$8923 £$10510 £$12461

Prices shown above are per person. Hotel categories do not adhere strictly to international ratings; Yampu has evaluated the hotels according to destination and availability. Prices include local airfare (where applicable), hotel accommodation including daily breakfast; all transfers with baggage handling, all guided tours in English and all entrance fees.

Please note that prices are subject to change based on availability and seasonality, especially during the holiday season from December 20th through January 5th each year. Please contact a Yampu Travel Specialist for more information on best times to travel.

Trip Type:

All our trips are operated on a private basis unless specified otherwise. This is only a sample itinerary; your Yampu Tour Consultant will personalize this trip for you according to your available dates, interests and type of hotels. This is your trip and we will work on making it perfect!

Tour Itinerary

Day
1

International Flight to Hanoi

Overnight international flight to Hanoi.

Overnight international flight to Hanoi.

Day
2

Arrival in Hanoi

Upon arrival in Hanoi, airport reception and transfer to the hotel in a private vehicle. Depending on arrival time, spend the remainder of the day at leisure.

Upon arrival in Hanoi, airport reception and transfer to the hotel in a private vehicle. Depending on arrival time, spend the remainder of the day at leisure.

Day
3

Hanoi City Highlights

Morning read more...

Morning tour of the Ho Chi Minh Complex with a private guide. Visit Ba Dinh Square, where silent sentries guard the marble and granite mausoleum where Ho Chi Minh lies in state. See the simple cottage where Uncle Ho lived and worked and visit the nearby Ho Chi Minh Museum - an extraordinary tribute to the life of the "father of the country." Carry on to the Governor's Residence, a fine example of Hanoi's French architecture, followed by a stop at the One Pillar Pagoda to hear the legend of its construction.


Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant followed by a private afternoon tour of the Hanoi City highlights. Marvel at the tree lined streets on the way to the Opera House and pass by Hoan Kiem Lake en route to one of the city's fascinating museums of choice: the Museum of History of Vietnamese Military, Vietnam History Museum, or Vietnam Fine Arts Museum. Continue to the Temple of Literature, built in 1070 and dedicated to Confucius, for a quick escape from the busy streets. Afterwards, enjoy a private guided walking tour of the Ancient Quarter, also known as the 36 Streets District, where a nice mix of ancient homes, temples and small shops will be found.


Note: The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is closed for maintenance on Mondays and Fridays from September to November annually.
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Hanoi-Opera-House-vietnam
Day
4

Hanoi- Halong Bay

Depart Hanoi in the morning for an approximately 3.5 hour drive that winds through the beautiful countryside to Halong Bay. Upon arrival, board the boat to begin the cruise. Enjoy lunch while cruising towards Vung Vieng in Bai Tu Long. Upon arrival at Vung Vieng, visit the floating village by traditional rowing boat. Enjoy a tea ceremony with traditional Vietnamese tea and then eat dinner while the boat is anchored for the night. Enjoy a drink or join the crew and try squid fishing. Overnight on boat.

Depart Hanoi in the morning for an approximately 3.5 hour drive that winds through the beautiful countryside to Halong Bay. Upon arrival, board the boat to begin the cruise. Enjoy lunch while cruising towards Vung Vieng in Bai Tu Long. Upon arrival at Vung Vieng, visit the floating village by traditional rowing boat. Enjoy a tea ceremony with traditional Vietnamese tea and then eat dinner while the boat is anchored for the night. Enjoy a drink or join the crew and try squid fishing. Overnight on boat.

Hanoi-Sunset-on-Halong-Bay
Day
5

Arrival at Cat Bat Island

Earlier read more...

Earlier risers may start the day with a Tai Chi class on the sundeck or enjoy the breathtaking views of the bay as the boat starts cruising. Breakfast will be served on board while the boat cruises in Bai Tu Long Bay. Take a guided kayaking tour in the Vung Ha area before the boat cruises towards Lan Ha Bay and Cat Ba Island. Enjoy lunch en route.


Upon arrival at Cat Bat Island, take a guided biking or walking excursion in Cat Ba National Park and visit an organic farm. Then return to the boat for a cooking demonstration and a barbeque buffet dinner. The remainder of the evening is at leisure. Overnight on boat.
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Mekong-My-Tho-Vendor-Vietnam
Day
6

Visit to Sung Sot Cave

Take early morning Tai Chi lessons on board before visiting Sung Sot (Surprise) Cave. Afterwards, enjoy a farewell brunch and check out. Disembark and transfer back to Hanoi. Enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.

Take early morning Tai Chi lessons on board before visiting Sung Sot (Surprise) Cave. Afterwards, enjoy a farewell brunch and check out. Disembark and transfer back to Hanoi. Enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.

Hanoi-Cave
Day
7

Pagodas of Hanoi

Take a morning excursion outside of Hanoi to the surrounding countryside with a private guide. Rich in Buddhism, the north of Vietnam is home to the country's most colorful and revered pagodas and temples. The Thay Pagoda (Master's Pagoda) is located 40 kilometers (25 miles) southwest of Hanoi. While a temple is a place to worship the dead, a pagoda is a place to worship the Lord Buddha. Thay Pagoda is widely known for its finely carved lacquer and gold statues of Buddha in his past and present form, as well as the colorful Buddhist ceremonies performed here during auspicious dates of the Lunar calendar.


Only 6 kilometers (4 miles) away lies Tay Phuong Pagoda, situated at the top of a small hillock. Built in 1794, the pagoda is famous for its vast display of finely carved wooden statues of former monks from the 18th Century. Afterwards, return to Hanoi to enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. Lunch is included today.


This evening, transfer in a private vehicle to the Hanoi railway station for the overnight train to Lao Cai, which normally departs at 9:15pm.
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Hanoi-Thay-Pagoda-Vietnam-Tour
Day
8

Traversing Sapa Hills

Upon arrival at the Lao Cai Station in the early morning, transfer to the hotel for breakfast. Afterwards, enjoy a privately guided walk through Sapa's colorful market and stroll down into the valley to visit the small community of Cat Cat. The H'mong that have settled here are a shy and private people, but are welcoming to visitors. A short trail leads off to a waterfall nestled in the ravine below.


Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before returning to the hotel with a private guide and transport. En route stop at Ham Rong Mountain. There will be a chance to climb up the San May (Cloud Yard) to enjoy the panorama of the town of Sapa and to visit the beautiful orchid gardens. Additionally, Ham Rong Mountain has numerous caves and stones in extraordinary shapes to explore.
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Sapa-Fields-and-Mountains
Day
9

Journey by foot to Lao Chai

Enjoy a full day privately guided walk with packed lunch to Dao, Giay and H'mong settlements in the Lao Chai and Ta Van Ray districts. The walk is moderate to intermediate and descends into a scenic valley of cascading water crossed by suspension bridges. Lao Chai is a village of the Black H'mong ethnic group. Located 7 km (4 miles) from Sapa, it is quite approachable for travelers coming from Sapa who do not have much time. Once in the village, get welcomed at any of the houses of the hospitable residents. There will be a chance to interact with them and learn about their culture and customs. Next, visit the Giay people of the Ta Van Village to further the experience with the local people.


Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and take the van about 10km (6 miles) to Ban Ho. Take time to enjoy the picturesque scenery along the way, a mountainous area of stunning natural beauty and diverse ethnic minorities. Trek down the hill to enjoy the fantastic open views in Ban Ho, the beautiful valley where the Tay people reside. Return to Sapa in late afternoon and enjoy the evening at leisure.
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Day
10

Visit to the Ta Phin Village

Today visit the Ta Phin Village with a private guide and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. While hiking 15 km (9 miles) to Tha Phin, there will be a chance to see local people working in the terraced paddy fields or traveling back and forth between the market and their homes. After a long day of walking on the windy roads and hills around Sapa, soak in a traditional Red Dao herbal bath at Ta Phin. In the evening, transfer back to the Lao Cai railway station for an overnight train back to Hanoi.


Note: If this trek is too far of a distance, route and length can be adjusted based on guests’ needs. An alternative 2 km (1.2 mile) trek is available. Please ask a Yampu travel consultant for more details.
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Sapa-Native
Day
11

City Tour of Hanoi

Arrive in Hanoi early in the morning (between 4:20am and 6:55am), and transfer to the airport for a flight to Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City). Upon arrival in Saigon, airport reception and transfer to the hotel for check in. Take some time to settle in and relax.


This afternoon, enjoy a tour of China Town with a private guide. Cholon, which literally translates to "big market", is the focus of the Chinese community in Saigon. See the former Presidential Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Saigon Post Office. Continue on to visit the impressive Thien Hau Temple dedicated to the goddess of the seas, who is said to protect fishermen and sailors. Here, huge coils of incense hang from the ornate ceiling, and can burn for up to three months at a time. Visit Binh Tay Market and the surrounding area, which bustles with trading activity. Return to the hotel.
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Hanoi-Temple-of-Lit
Day
12

Hanio – Cai Be – Can Tho

Transfer read more...

Transfer approximately 3 hours in a private vehicle, to the Mekong River town of Cai Be. Board a motorized sampan for an introduction to life on the river with a private guide. Cai Be is known for its large floating market, where displays of food produce are hung from the bamboo poles over the host boat in order to attract customers.


From here, the journey continues across the upper reach of the river to a maze of tributaries and fruit plantations. Barges ply the route, overloaded with rice husks used as fuel for the region's numerous brick kilns. Depending on the season, a sample of local tropical fruit will be served with lunch in a local farmer's home before returning to the boat for the leisurely cruise to Vinh Long. From here, drive and ferry to the Delta's economic hub city of Can Tho. Check into the hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.
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Can-Tho-Vendor-Boats
Day
13

Sampan ride & tour of Cai Rang

Early morning cruise with a private guide to Cai Rang, which is a bustling market town. Enjoy a sampan ride through the colorful congestion of women and children jostling for space and vying to sell their goods. Return to Can Tho town to visit their museum and a Khmer pagoda in Can Tho City. After lunch at a local restaurant, depart the town for a visit to the Bang Lang Stork Garden and the Binh Thuy Ancient House. Return to the hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.

Early morning cruise with a private guide to Cai Rang, which is a bustling market town. Enjoy a sampan ride through the colorful congestion of women and children jostling for space and vying to sell their goods. Return to Can Tho town to visit their museum and a Khmer pagoda in Can Tho City. After lunch at a local restaurant, depart the town for a visit to the Bang Lang Stork Garden and the Binh Thuy Ancient House. Return to the hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.

Hue_Vietnam_cuisine
Day
14

Can Tho – Chau Doc

Private read more...

Private morning transfer to Chau Doc near the Cambodian border. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant en route and in the afternoon visit Sam Mountain, a popular pilgrimage center for many Vietnamese and home to a collection of ornate and colorful temples and pagodas. Climb or drive to the top of the hill for an unparalleled 360 degree vista of nearby Cambodia.


The Mekong River at this point is decorated with hundreds of floating homes, each a self-contained farm where local families raise and sell fish to passing boats. With a private guide, there will be an opportunity to visit some of them before returning to the hotel in Chau Doc for the evening.
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Chau-Doc-Landscape
Day
15

International flight home via Saigon

Private transfer back to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) for a flight home or optional Yampu Tours add-on.

Private transfer back to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) for a flight home or optional Yampu Tours add-on.

Hanoi, Vietnam

Cat Ba Island, Trân Châu, Haiphong, Vietnam

Sapan, Sumbersari, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia

Can Tho, Vietnam

tp. Châu Đốc, An Giang Province, Vietnam

Halong Bay Vietnam, Hàng Bạc, Hanoi, Vietnam

Places You'll See

  • Hanoi_City_View_Vietnam

    Hanoi

    Meaning “embraced by the river”, Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam. Visit the many temples and parks of this beautiful city, such as the Temple of Literature or Hoan Kiem Lake Park. Visit the Army Museum and hear retellings of many battles fought throughout the country’s history. Take the little ones to the Ha Noi circus for some family fun.

  • halong-bay-vietnam284606

    Halong Bay

    Halong Bay is known as one of the most beautiful bays in the world. With roughly 1,600 limestone islands, each covered in thick vegetation, it has extreme aesthetic value. Home to a small fishing community of people living on floating houses. Enjoy “junk boat” tours, or a rent a kayak and explore.

  • lao-cai-Sapa1139585-Vietnam

    Sapa

    The charming little town of Sapa is surrounded by gorgeous mountains and rice terraces. It is also known for its rich cultural diversity. The beautiful church in the center of town, and other colonial buildings are examples of the French missionary influences. Visit the Sapa Culture Museum to learn the history of the town, as well as the traditions of the ethnic groups located there.

  • Can_Tho_Vietnam

    Can Tho

    When the sun goes down, the riverside city of Can Tho comes alive. Take a boat through the city canals to purchase locally made goods and souvenirs at the floating markets. Play a game of billiards with the locals, or relax at the riverside park on Hai Ba Trung Street. Visit the Quang Duc Pagoda, one of the most active Buddhist temples with monks living onsite.

  • An_Giang_Province_Chau_Doc_Vietnam

    Chau Doc

    Learn the art of haggling at the colorful markets of Chau Doc. Visit the Hang Pagoda, an official historic monument of Vietnam. Take a stroll along the charming riverside, and engage in conversation with some of the young locals. Relax with a traditional suction cup massage, or enjoy the quiet of a local coffee shop.

Hotel Options

3 Star Properties

Hanoi : Church Boutique Hotel Hang Gai

Hanoi : La Belle Vie Hotel

Hanoi : Golden Silk Boutique Hotel

Hanoi : Skylark Hotel

Sapa : U Sapa

Can Tho : Nam Bo Boutique Hotel

Chau Doc : Victoria Nui Sam Lodge

Halong City : Bai Tho Victory Boat

Halong : Dragon Pearl Boat

Halong : Image Boat

4 Star Properties

Hanoi : Silk Path Hotel

Hanoi : Sunway Hotel

Hanoi : Mercure Hanoi La Gare

Cat Ba Island : Cat Ba Sunrise Resort

Sapa : Victoria Sapa Resort & Spa (deluxe)

Can Tho : Victoria Can Tho Hotel

Chau Doc : Victoria Chau Doc Hotel (Superior)

Halong : Indochina Sails Boat

Halong : Bai Tho Victory Star Boat

5 Star Properties

Hanoi : Hotel De L’Opera

Hanoi : Melia Hotel

Sapa : Victoria Sapa Resort & Spa (Suite)

Can Tho : Victoria Can Tho Hotel (Suite)

Chau Doc : Victoria Chau Doc Hotel (Suite)

Halong : Paradise Luxury/Privilege Boat

Halong : Violet Boat

Halong : Jasmine Boat

Luxury Properties

Hanoi : Sofitel Legend Metropole

Halong : Paradise Peak Cruise Boat

Halong : Au Co Boat

Testimonials

Pritam D.

Traveled October, 2012

We had a nice visit to Vietnam and Cambodia.

We had a nice visit to Vietnam and Cambodia. We enjoyed it a lot and will recommend to other people.

Traveled To


Traveled October, 2014

So overall great trip and MERCI BEAUCOUP

My congratulations on the organization, very balanced and diverse.Very nice choice of hotels. Guides all very different but very nice, particularly Sinat in Siem Reap. Great boat and team in Ha Long. So overall great trip and MERCI BEAUCOUP!!!!

Gunnar

Traveled December, 2015

We had a wonderful trip to Vietnam

We had a wonderful trip to Vietnam.The guides both in Hanoi and Saigon were very nice and helpful and made the trip very successful. The wonderful sights in Hanoi, Halong Bay, Cu Chi Tunnel and all the museums was very interesting. The relax days at Phu Quoc was beautiful. Once again you and Yampu made our holiday a great experience with a lot of good memories.

Traveled To

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