Travel from Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City, experiencing the delights of northern Thailand, the laidback river lifestyle of Laos and the cultural richness of Vietnam. From the bright lights of Bangkok to the age-old charms of Luang Prabang and the buzz of Hanoi, join us on a voyage of discovery and relaxation. Travel down the mighty Mekong and become acquainted with the tranquillity of remote villages and friendly locals along the way. Sip coffee by the lake in Hanoi, stroll the pristine shoreline around Halong Bay, take in the charming old-world ambiance of Hue and marvel at the hectic pace of life in Ho Chi Minh City. This is an adventure full of beauty and contrast that will introduce you to the delicious cuisine, friendly people, beautiful landscape and cosmopolitan cities of these fascinating countries.
- Travel adventurously just like the locals – an overnight sleeper train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and then again from Hanoi to Hue, a two day boat journey down the Mekong River - pass incredible rural scenery and spend a night in the remote village of Pakbeng
- Discover the highlights of refined Luang Prabang with a guide, and enjoy free time to make your own explorations and discover why UNESCO rate this city so highly
- There are many chances to do good while you travel, like the Intrepid foundation supported COPE, dedicated to helping those injured by unexploded ordinance
- The bustling markets, tree-lined boulevards and peaceful lakes of Hanoi are a great introduction to modern Vietnam
- Sail among the floating villages, grottos and limestone pillars of magical Halong Bay
- Explore the old imperial capital of Hue in typical Vietnamese fashion - on the back of a motorbike
- Ho Chi Minh City, once known as Saigon, is a dynamic blend of old and new, east and west, commerce and culture
- Often referred to as the ‘rice bowl’ of Vietnam, cruise the waterways of the Mekong Delta in sampan boats and sample exotic fruits and fish
|Cultural||Physical||Max Group Size||16||Duration||22 days|
|Category||Silver||The classic small group tour, with some included activities and staying at reasonably priced accommodation.|
Day 1 - Bangkok
Day 2 - Bangkok
Day 3 - Chiang Mai
Day 4 - Chiang Mai
Day 5 - Chiang Khong
Day 6 - Pakbeng - Mekong River
Notes: Our guesthouse here is very basic -– standard accommodation in this small, remote trading port. It can be quite cool from November to February so make sure you have some warm gear packed for this period. Due to dam construction upstream, water levels aren't as reliable as in previous years, and when the river is at its lowest from February to April, part of the journey may occasionally need to be made by land.
Day 7 - Luang Prabang
Day 8 - Luang Prabang
Day 9 - Luang Prabang
Day 10 - Vang Vieng
Day 11 - Vang Vieng
Day 12 - Vientiane
Day 13 - Hanoi
As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and you're welcome to attend, as this is a great chance to meet your new fellow travellers.
Day 14 - Halong Bay
Your wooden junk-style boat has twin share cabins with air-conditioning and private facilities. There's also a dining room and bar to enjoy lunch, dinner and breakfast.
Day 15 - Hanoi / Overnight Train
Day 16 - Hue
Once the imperial capital of Vietnam, Hue holds the treasures of the country’s royal past. You’ll have free time in the morning to rest or explore. The bustling Dong Ba Market is a great place to sample some of the foods that once graced the Nguyen emperors' tables, such as banh khoai (royal rice cake). Reunite with the group to visit the war-damaged ruins of the Hue Imperial Citadel complex, which once contained temples, state houses and the emperor’s palace.
Day 17 - Hue
Enjoy a short boat cruise down the Perfume River before eating lunch inside a nunnery. Finally, visit the lakeside royal tomb of Emperor Tu Duc before heading back to Hue.
Day 18 - Hoi An
Day 19 - Hoi An
Day 20 - Ho Chi Minh City
Day 21 - Mekong Delta/Ho Chi Minh City
Enjoy a final group dinner at KOTO restaurant, an organisation dedicated to developing the hospitality careers of street kids.