Vietnam in Depth 2020-21

  • days: 20
  • from $5,795

Flights Included

Types of travel:

Countries Visited:

  • Vietnam

Description

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Vietnam - a country brimming with culture and breathtaking natural beauty.  Take an in depth journey from lively Hanoi to the peaceful hills of Sapa. Take to the water, cruising along beautiful Halong Bay. Explore the cobblestoned streets of Hoi An and learn more about the Vietnam War in Vung Tau. 

Historic Hanoi

From the moment you arrive in the historic Vietnamese city of Hanoi, you’re truly immersed into traditions and culture. See both sides to Vietnamese life, as we explore the bustling city of Hanoi.

Hills of Sapa & Halong Bay

Travel north through rural Vietnam to the hills of Sapa. Meet the people of the Red Dao ethnic group in Ta Phin Village and admire the incredible terraces of rice paddies. Absolutely breathtaking, Halong Bay is a feast for the eyes, dotted with hundreds of rocky islands and outcrops. Sit back and relax while cruising around this natural wonder!

Imperial Hue

Tour the former capital and seat of the Nguyen Dynasty’s emperors, Hue. Discover the imperial tombs of Tu Duc and Khai Dinh and enjoy a dragonboat cruise to Thien Mu Pagoda.

Traditional Experiences

Hoi An will beguile you with its charm. Wander the quaint streets, visit a traditional home and take an aromatic cooking class. We juxtapose this against the lively city of Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), the largest in Vietnam. Explore the Ben Tre province in the Mekong region, observing daily life along the banks and stopping at a family-owned coconut processing business. The journey concludes in Vung Tau, home to the Australian Army during the Vietnam War. Visit the former Nui Dat Task Force Base, Long Tan Cross Memorial and the Long Phuoc Tunnels. 

Itinerary

Abbreviation: [B,L,D] Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 1. Depart Australia

Day 2. Arrive Hanoi

Welcome to Vietnam and bustling Hanoi! Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure before this evening’s group welcome dinner in the Old Quarter. [D]

Day 3. Hanoi

We'll enjoy a half day 'traditional craft & ancient beauty' tour in Long Thuong Village, home to a community of bronze casters since the 13th century. We'll learn the history behind this traditional craft before visiting the 200-year-old Nom Village. Explore the narrow brick roads and enjoy a cup of tea with a local villager in their home. This evening, we'll experience the amazing 'Quintessence of Tonkin' cultural production. This outdoor spectacle showcases elements of Vietnamese culture in a traditional and innovative way. [B,D]

Day 4. Hanoi

An early start this morning to discover Hanoi as the city awakens. We’ll visit the flower market, the Old Quarter and Hoan Kiem Lake. This afternoon, we'll see Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda and the Temple of Literature. Other highlights include Hoa Lo Prison, Huc Bridge (Rising Sun Bridge) and St Joseph's Cathedral. [B,L]

Day 5. Hanoi - Sapa

This morning, we take a scenic journey through some of northern Vietnam’s breathtaking scenery to the hills of Sapa. 

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: Take a short drive to Ta Phin Village, inhabited by the Red Dao ethnic group. Here we'll learn the touching story of the abandoned monastery. Meet the locals who will inform us about a local successful enterprise connecting them with the Hanoi University of Medicine. 

Tonight we'll enjoy a home cooked meal with a local family and learn about corn alcohol and the culture of the Ly Man family. [B,D]

Day 6. Sapa 

Walking Man

We begin today with a soft trek through Muong Valley, where we'll learn the secrets  of rice farming, local health and schooling in Laos Chai Village. We'll also discover 'batik', a traditional Black Hmong textile dyeing technique, during a hands-on class. [B,L]

Day 7. Sapa - Hanoi 

Today we'll return to Hanoi, where the rest of the evening is free for you to relax or explore at your own pace. [B,L,D]

Day 8. Hanoi - Halong Bay

Today we travel to the breathtaking Halong Bay, through the picturesque farming lands and rice paddies of the Red River Delta. 

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Embark Cruise: Here we’ll board our cruise boat and enjoy lunch, while witnessing the incredible views.

We'll disembark at Viet Hai Village and take a bicycle or electric car tour. Return to the boat and relax with dinner on the deck this evening. [B,L,D]  

Day 9. Halong Bay - Hanoi - Hue  

This morning you may like to take part in a yoga lesson on the sundeck or just sit back and relax as we cruise the waters and islets of this UNESCO World Heritage-listed site. After breakfast we’ll cruise to Cua Van floating village and then visit Hang Sang - Toi (Dark and Bright Cave), known for its stunning limestone structure.  

Cruise-Icon3

Disembark Cruise: After enjoying brunch back on board, we'll disembark and return to Hanoi for our flight to Hue, Vietnam’s former capital and the seat of the Nguyen Dynasty’s emperors. [B,Brunch]

Day 10. Hue

Today is dedicated to discovering Hue. This morning we'll enjoy a dragonboat cruise to Thien Mu Pagoda and visit the Imperial Citadel. This afternoon we’ll visit the royal tombs of emperors Tu Duc and Khai Dinh before enjoying an evening at leisure. [B]

Day 11. Hue - Danang - Hoi An

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: Discover 'truc chi' a traditional paper art. Learn about its history from local artists and enjoy a hands on experience. The finished product is yours to keep! 

In the afternoon we’ll depart for Hoi An via the scenic Hai Van Pass. [B]

Day 12. Hoi An

We begin the day with a walking tour of charming Hoi An. Highlights include the Culture & History Museum, the famous Japanese covered bridge and a historic, UNESCO World Heritage-listed house.  

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: Visit the colourful local market before taking a short cruise along the Hoi An River to the secluded Red Bridge Cooking School for an aromatic and informative cooking class (cruise portion subject to prevailing water levels). [B,D]

Day 13. Hoi An

Hoi An's centre is a UNESCO World Heritage-listed site, free from cars and a lovely area to explore on foot. Today is at leisure for you to enjoy this picturesque town at your own pace. [B]

Day 14. Hoi An - Saigon

This morning we fly to Saigon, also known as Ho Chi Minh City. 

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: Go off the beaten track to discover Saigon’s best food spots. Touring by vespa, we'll taste authentic Vietnamese cuisine as the locals do. [B,D]

Day 15. Mekong Delta Excursion 

We explore the Ben Tre province in the Mekong region today, travelling along the tributaries and narrow canals in a traditional-style cruise boat. Observe daily life along the banks. We’ll stop at a family-owned coconut processing business and a brick making factory. We'll then cycle to a local rice noodle factory before enjoying lunch. Our cycling excursion then continues, as we visit Mr Sau Tuong, a former Viet Cong soldier who spent two years fighting the Khmer Rouge in Phnom Penh. [B,L]

Day 16. Saigon - Vung Tau 

Today we'll enjoy a half day tour of Saigon. We'll visit the moving War Remnants Museum and the Reunification Palace, which encapsulates a 1975 vibe. The palace has lush gardens, secret rooms and is filled with antique furniture. We'll then visit the Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office and Opera House by foot. This afternoon we'll drive to the port city of Vung Tau, which became home to the Australian Army during the Vietnam War. [B,L]

Day 17. Vung Tau 

We'll learn more about the Vietnam War today with visits to the former Nui Dat Task Force Base, Long Tan Cross Memorial and the Long Phuoc Tunnels. [B,L]

Day 18. Vung Tau - Saigon

Saigon is our destination again today, where we will enjoy a group farewell dinner tonight. [B,D]

Day 19. Depart Saigon 

Today we begin our journey home. [B]

Day 20. Arrive Australia

 

Walking Man

Level of fitness: This tour features 2+ hours of walking, often across uneven ground and in areas of high altitude or heat and humidity on 1 or more days.

Inclusions

Travel

  • Return economy-class flights from Australia to Vietnam. Taxes included
  • 2 economy-class flights within Vietnam
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour
  • All touring in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Tipping Made Easy, $140pp pre-paid

Accommodation & Meals

  • 16 nights in 4-5 star hotels
  • 1 night on board a Vietnamese cruise boat on Halong Bay
  • 17 breakfasts, 1 brunch, 6 lunches and 7 dinners, including group welcome and farewell dinners

Tour Guides

  • English-speaking locally based guides
  • English-speaking locally based national guide

Porterage

  • Porterage included where available 

Sightseeing

Hanoi, Halong Bay and the hills of Sapa       

  • "Traditional Craft & Ancient Beauty" Visit Long Thuong Village , home of a community of bronze casters since the 13th century.
  • Visit 200 year-old Nom Village, explore the narrow brick roads and engage in a conversation over a cup of tea with a local from the village in their house.
  • See the new open air "Quintessence of Tonkin" show, a stunning setting in the rice fields with the Thay Mountain as a backdrop while all being performed on water. A true spectacle!
  • Discover the city of Hanoi as it awakens, visiting the flower market, old quarter and Hoan Kiem Lake before a Vietnamese breakfast and coffee.
  • Tour stately Hanoi including the Ho Chi Minh Memorial, One Pillar Pagoda, Temple of Literature, Ngoc Son Temple, Huc Bridge (Rising Sun Bridge), Tortoise Pagoda, Hoan Kiem Lake and Old Quarter on foot.
  • Visit the Hoa Lo Prison, used by the French colonists for political prisoners and later by the North Vietnamese for U.S Prisoners of war during the Vietnam War. It was nicknamed the Hanoi Hilton by the American POWs.
  • Discover the scenic rice terraces and undulating landscape of Sapa Hills and meet the local hill tribes.
  • Take a soft trek through Muong Valley and learn secrets of rice farming, local health and schooling in Laos Chai Village. Participate in a 2-hour hands-on class about batik, a traditional Black Hmong textile dyeing technique using wax and indigo.
  • Spend 1 night on a Vietnamese cruise boat exploring beautiful Halong Bay.

Heritage-listed Hoi An and Hue           

  • Explore ancient Vietnam's capital Hue including the vast 19th century Citadel.
  • Board a 'Dragon Boat' for a 40 minute cruise on the Perfume River to Thien Mu Pagoda.
  • Half Day truc chi art experience. Learn about the history of a particular style of art by local artists and enjoy a hands on experience where the end result can be taken as a souvenir.
  • Spend 3 nights in World Heritage-listed Hoi An and explore the town on foot, including the Japanese Covered Bridge Pagoda, Culture & History Museum, the Chinese Assembly Hall of Fujien Chinese Community and an old historic house (UNESCO Site).
  • Cruise down Hoi An River to the secluded Red Bridge Cooking School and learn how to cook traditional Vietnamese dishes.

Saigon, the lively Mekong Delta and Vung Tau       

  • Saigon after dark vespa tour - part night excursion, part street food adventure. Enjoy a welcome drink and appertiser before venturing into the favourite local eating spots of Saigon. See the nightlife of locals, busy streets and alleys where tourists are not seen.
  • Explore the Ben Tre province in the Mekong region today, travelling along the tributaries and narrow canals in a traditional-style cruise boat.
  • Cycle to My Long and meet a former Vietcong soldier who spent two years fighting the Khmer Rouge in Phnom Penh.
  • Half day sightseeing of Saigon including the War Remnants Museum, Presidential Palace and continue by foot to the Cathedral of Notre-dame, Empire-style Post Office and The Opera House.
  • Travel to the port city of Vung Tau and learn of its trading history while in more recent times how it became home to the Australian Army and American support units during the Vietnam War or American War as the locals put it.
  • Delve more into the Vietnam War and visit the former Nui Dat Task Force Base, Long Tan Memorial and Long Phuoc Tunnels.

Dates & Prices

Dates & Prices

Starts Ends Save Total Cost* Status Book
05/04/20 24/04/20   $5,895 Guaranteed Departure book now
03/05/20 22/05/20   $5,795 Available book now
17/05/20 05/06/20   $5,795 Available book now
31/05/20 19/06/20   $5,795 Available book now
14/06/20 03/07/20   $5,795 Available book now
28/06/20 17/07/20   $5,795 Available book now
12/07/20 31/07/20   $5,795 Available book now
26/07/20 14/08/20   $5,795 Available book now
09/08/20 28/08/20   $5,795 Available book now
23/08/20 11/09/20   $5,795 Available book now
06/09/20 25/09/20   $5,795 Available book now
20/09/20 09/10/20   $5,795 Available book now
04/10/20 23/10/20   $5,895 Available book now
18/10/20 06/11/20   $5,895 Guaranteed Departure book now
01/11/20 20/11/20   $5,895 Available book now
15/11/20 04/12/20   $6,195 Available book now
29/11/20 18/12/20   $6,195 Available book now
13/12/20 01/01/21   $6,195 Available book now
21/02/21 12/03/21   $5,895 Available book now
07/03/21 26/03/21   $5,895 Available book now
21/03/21 09/04/21   $5,895 Available book now
Valid From: Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane & Perth
Other departure cities: Please contact our office for applicable pricing
Tips: Total cost includes - Tipping Made Easy, $140pp pre-paid
Taxes: Total cost includes - air taxes, $270pp
Single supplement: from $1,525
  • Day/Date Variations: Due to airline flight schedules day of arrival and day of departure may vary depending on your city of departure
  • Taxes & Fuel Costs: Total cost includes air taxes. Taxes and fuel surcharges change regularly so above levies shown as a guide only
  • T&C: All prices shown are per person based on twin share and include airfares, all taxes and tips. Prices and itineraries correct at current time but are subject to change. Please call for more details. View our full terms & conditions here.

Fitness to Travel

Let's Talk Fitness

Levels-of-Fitness-sml

At Bunnik Tours we don’t put specific age limits on our tours, but we also recognise some travellers may find our itineraries challenging.
We have a duty of care to all tour participants and the tour guides, so we do impose a firm policy on the level of fitness required by all our clients to attempt to ensure your safety and the safety of other travellers on our tours.
At Bunnik Tours our goal is for all our travellers to enjoy their tour, not struggle through it! Which is why we want to work with you to ensure you are on the best possible trip for your fitness level. We do reserve the right to refuse bookings if we feel that the requirements of the tour are too demanding.
Bunnik Tours are for independently minded travellers with good levels of mobility.

Our tours include:
1. Generous amounts of free time
2. Lots of walking
3. Local and authentic experiences including various modes of transport and accommodation

In some regions travellers can also expect:
1. Long days of travelling, at times on dirt and gravel roads in Africa
2. Extended periods at high altitude (3,000-4,000 metres) in Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Ethiopia
3. Extended periods of walking/hiking through humid forest areas in Rwanda
4. Limited medical facilities in remote areas

Bunnik Tours travellers are required to at least:
1. Be able to walk 2-3 hours on uneven surfaces without the use of any walking aid, on any given day
2. Walk up multiple flights of stairs and short, steep hills
3. Stand for 20 minutes without needing to sit down, often in hot/humid climates
4. Carry their own luggage
5. Get on and off various modes of transport without assistance, including small boats

Accommodation

Accommodation

Accommodation listed is subject to change and should be used as a guide only. Every effort is made to avoid changes, however should it be necessary then accommodation of a similar standard will be confirmed.

Silk Path Hotel, Hanoi

Centrally located near the Old Quarter of Hanoi, the Silk Path Hotel is within walking distance to Hang Da Market, Hoan Kiem Lake and the Temple of Literature. The property offers contemporary guestrooms and modern facilities including a restaurant, terrace café, piano bar and premium bar, as well as a sauna and fitness centre.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities

Silk Path Grand Resort & Spa, Sapa

Nestled on its own picturesque hill, the 5-star Silk Path Grand Resort & Spa Sapa offers amazing panoramic views of the Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range and unparalleled experiences in a unique, secluded destination. Guests can enjoy a dip in the indoor heated pool or relax with pampering massage at the spa.

Facilities: air-conditioning; wifi; safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities; swimming pool; fitness centre; spa

Scarlet Pearl Cruises

Scarlet Pearl Cruises offers the best luxury cruise experience in Halong Bay. Scarlet Pearl provides 23 cabins and a range of 5-star services. The cruise ship is committed to sustainable, environmentally-sound and luxury travel. 

Facilities: 23 cabins; restaurant; spa; gym; museum; pool 

Eldora Hotel, Hue

Featuring an indoor swimming pool, a restaurant and a fitness centre, Eldora Hotel is located in the town of Hue, just 500 metres away from the Huong River. Rooms feature stylish decor with elegant furnishings. Guests staying at the Hotel can indulge in a relaxing massage or spa treatment. Other services offered include bicycle rentals and currency exchange services.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; indoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Hoi An Trails Resort & Spa, Hoi An

The stunning 4-star Hoi An Trails Resort & Spa is centrally located between Cua Dai beach and the famous historic district of Hoi An. Immerse yourself in the authentic Vietnamese culture, gaze out over iconic rice fields or dine in one of the two delicious on-site restaurants.

Facilities: air-conditioning; wifi; safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities; swimming pool; fitness centre; spa

Hotel Equatorial, Ho Chi Minh City

This five star hotel is located in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, where the borders of the city’s four main district intersect. The city’s major commercial and entertainment area is only a mere 8-minute drive away. The hotel provides world-class facilities and services is the ideal choice while visiting Vietnam’s most vibrant and exciting city.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar;safe deposit box; tea & coffee making facilities; outdoor swimming pool. 

Imperial Hotel, Vung Tau

Imperial Hotel is a 5-star hotel located on its own private beach in town of Vung Tau. Inspired by Victorian England, the hotel features handcrafted furnishings and period-inspired artwork as well as onsite restaurants, a swimming pool and spa centre.

Facilities: free wifi; safe deposit box; restaurant; swimming pool; air-conditioning; private beach area 

Weather

Weather

Hanoi

Dry Season: November to February

Wet Season: March to September

Hanoi

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

19

19

23

26

31

32

32

32

31

28

24

21

Ave Min C

15

15

18

21

24

25

26

26

25

22

19

15

Rainy Days

7

13

15

14

15

14

15

16

14

9

7

7

Hoi An

Dry Season: January to April

Wet Season: September to January

Hoi An

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

24

26

28

31

33

35

34

33

31

29

27

25

Ave Min C

19

20

22

24

25

26

26

25

24

23

20

20

Rainy Days

5

 

5

8

7

10

8

10

13

18

21

20

21

Saigon

Dry Season: December to March

Wet Season: May to October

Saigon

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

33

35

36

37

35

34

33

33

32

32

32

31

Ave Min C

20

23

25

26

26

25

25

25

24

24

22

20

Rainy Days

1

2

4

8

17

20

22

19

21

21

10

3

Currency

Currency

Vietnamese Dong

The official currency of Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (VND; ₫).

  • 1 Vietnamese Dong = 100 Hào
  • Notes are in denominations of ₫500000, 20000, 10000, 5000, 2000, 1000, 500, 200 and 100
  • Coins are in denominations of ₫5,000, 2,000, 1,000, 500 and 200

Please Note: USD is widely accepted throughout Vietnam. 

Visa Information

Visa Requirements

Passport-AU2

Please note, Australian passport holders need to obtain a visa for this tour. Please check with your travel agent for further details.

  • Australian passport holders
  • Non-Australian passport holders
    • Please check with your travel agent on visa requirements.

The following government websites are also a handy source of general information.

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Special Experiences!

  • Take a short drive to Ta Phin Village, inhabited by the Red Dao ethnic group. Here we'll learn the touching story of the abandoned monastery. Meet the locals who will inform us about a local and successful enterprise connecting them with the Hanoi University of Medicine. 
  • Discover 'truc chi', a traditional paper art. Learn about its history from local artists and enjoy a hands on experience. The finished product is yours to keep! 
  • Visit the colourful local market before taking a short cruise along the Hoi An River to the secluded Red Bridge Cooking School for an aromatic and informative cooking class (cruise portion subject to prevailing water levels). 
  • Go off the beaten track to discover Saigon’s best food spots. Touring by vespa, we'll taste authentic Vietnamese cuisine as the locals do.  

Trip Info

Group Size

Min: 4 | Max: 20

Transportation

Coach, plane, cruise boat, bicycle, longboat, sampan, riverboat, vespa (scooter) & motorised tuk tuk

Tips

Total cost includes - Tipping Made Easy, $140pp pre-paid

Tour Highlights

• Discover Hanoi as the city awakens • Explore the undulating rice terraces of Sapa Hills • Spend 1 night cruising breathtaking Halong Bay • Discover the ancient imperial capital of Hue • Tour the charming streets of heritage-listed Hoi An • Go off the beaten track to discover Saigon’s best food spots • Learn more about the Vietnam War in Vung Tau

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