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  • North Vietnam Family Holiday (10D)

    Bask in the natural beauty and adventurous landscapes of Northern Vietnam with an itinerary full of family fun, cultural interaction, rural exploration and plenty of leisure time.From Hanoi you will experience the picturesque villages and scenic mountains that typify the area, with opportunities to meet locals and partake in traditional customs at Ky Son Village and Mai Chau before concluding at the spectacular limestone scenery of Halong Bay.


    HIGHLIGHTS & INCLUDE

    • Discover the charms of colonial Hanoi.
    • Cruise along the boat then admire the beauty of Halong Bay.
    • Soft trek in Mai Chau.
    • Discover beautiful and unique architecture, from grand pagodas to humble temples in Ninh Binh.

    DETAILED PROGRAM

    Day 1

    Hanoi Arrival

    Welcome to Hanoi city. Meet and greet upon arrival and enjoy a private transfer to the city to check in. Additional activities can be arranged on this day subject to your arrival time.

    If time permits, we will take you around the bustling Hanoi Old Quarters, you will wander through the streets where you will discover so many different things - ranging from hectic markets, kitschy toys, tranquil backstreet pagodas and numerous street vendors to smoky meats. Overnight in Hanoi city.

    Recommended Hanoi Hotels:

    - Essence d’Orient Hotel & Spa
    - Essence Hotel & Spa


    Day 2

    Hanoi

    Start the day with a visit to Bat Trang pottery village located east of Hanoi. Famous for its blue and white pottery, much of Bat Trang’s pottery is made in moulds and handpainted in family style businesses which consume the entire village. Ride through the village by buffalo cart to a workshop where pottery can be handpainted with any design and taken home. Children love this creativity activity that includes a souvenir to be taken home at the end. (If shipped, costs are extra and can take several days.)

    After lunch in Hanoi center, take a tour of the city’s Ethnology Museum (closed on Mondays). Observe Vietnam’s diverse culture through the museum’s unique presentation of articles, houses and dress used in daily life. At the back of the museum, explore houses highlighting the 54 different ethnic groups of Vietnam. Wander freely into long houses, stilt houses and traditional Vietnamese houses, amongst others, learning how different ethnic groups live. End the afternoon with a “swan” paddle boat on Truc Bach Lake which is a loved Hanoian pastime. Afterwards, taste some to Hanoi’s best ice cream – the legacy of the French in Vietnam.

    This evening watch a traditional water puppet show, a uniquely northern Vietnamese art form especially designed for depicting scenes from rural life and episodes of national history. Marvel as the puppets are made to leap on water, light tiny fireworks and even have a swimming race. Overnight in Hanoi.

    Bat Trang Pottery village, Museum of Ethnology, Water Puppet Show


    Day 3

    Hanoi - Ky Son Village

    After breakfast, drive 1 hour northwest of Hanoi for a two night stay in a unique home stay reconstructed from authentic Thai Binh and Mai Chau province buildings set in the fertile Tonkinese valley next to the village of Ky Son. En route, visit the iconic Thay pagoda, and two interesting non-tourisy handicraft villages, to learn how Bhuddhist statuary and vermicelli noodles are made (optional). Upon arrival, enjoy exploring the traditional structures and bucolic land that comprise this lovely property before rolling up your sleeves in the spacious, bright kitchen for a cooking class learning from the proprietress how to make sumptuous Vietnamese food served as lunch!

    After lunch, relax or take a leisurely bicycle ride or casual walk to discover the Ky Son, Tam Son and Van Minh farming communities. Stop at any home for a cup of tea. Chat with local people about their daily life and farming. Help with plowing, making rice beds, transplanting seedlings or harvesting rice, cassava, corn, or sweet potatoes depending on the harvest season. Collect tea and medicinal herbs to use back at the home stay.

    Return to the home stay for happy hour trying local tisane and a traditional steam bath with the fragrant herbs gathered before dinner. Over night in Ky Son Village.

    Ky Son village, Thay Pagoda


    Day 4

    Duong Lam Ancient Village

    Wake up early to join in Yijinjing exercises and traditional Vietnamese worship customs honoring ancestors with morning rituals. After breakfast, drive or cycle 4 km to Duong Lam Ancient village to explore an intact traditional ancient village and have lunch in an authentic local house. After lunch, continue on to Mia Pagoda, explore small hamlets and slowly wend back to Ky Son.

    In the late afternoon, enjoy free time to luxuriate in stunning natural surroundings. Relax in a garden hammock, take pictures in traditional Vietnamese garb, or fish until dinner!

    *Plowing ricefields with a Water Buffalo learning an ancient tradition of working with the animal using Vietnamese commands can be arranged prior in certain seasons.*

    Duong Lam Ancient village, Mia Pagoda


    Day 5

    Ky Son Village - Mai Chau

    Vietnam’s northwest is still relatively untouched. Beautiful scenery and idyllic villages make travel through these fertile valleys and snaking mountain passes memorable. After breakfast, say goodbye to your gracious hostess and travel approximately 2 hours to the lush Mai Chau valley.

    Arrive in the picturesque Mai Chau Valley surrounded by spectacular karst rock formations and rice paddies. Upon arrival, check into your hotel. Enjoy lunch, depending on the time of day. Spend the afternoon exploring the idyllic natural surroundings including the extraordinary, old Mo Luong (Soldier) cave across from the lodge, or thread your way through a maize of handicraft shops set amongst intriguing Mai Chau stilt houses in Poom Coong.

    Enjoy dinner and a performance of ethnic Thai music and dance at a local home. The Thai ethnic group has inhabited this area for centuries and much of their lifestyle and traditions have remained untouched over the years. Overnight in Mai Chau.

    Recommended Hotels in Mai Chau Valley:

    - Mai Chau Lodge
    - Sol Bungalow Mai Chau


    Day 6

    Mai Chau

    Start this morning with a light trek through the Mai Chau Valley to interact with the local tribes people. Have lunch in the home of a Thai family to learn about their lifestyle. Choose to return to Mai Chau lodge by foot or a vehicle.

    This afternoon, explore the valley floor by bicycle, kayak on a nearby peaceful lake taking in the magnificent scenery, visit a handicraft co-operative supporting local livelihoods, learn how to use a loom to make beautiful woven scarves, or try a rock climbing class.

    Ethnic villages, stream kayaking


    Day 7

    Mai Chau - Ninh Binh

    After a leisurely breakfast, depart Mai Chau for a countryside drive through Ninh Binh province where fascinating limestone karsts jut forth skywards between verdant rice paddies and lazy rivers. Stop along the way for photographs.

    Visit the Buddha Sanctuary place of Bai Dinh Pagoda, the biggest one in Vietnam with 500 Arhan statues. You can see a biggest bronze Buddha statue in Vietnam with 10 meters in height, 100 tons in weight. Our guide also gives you an introduction of beliefs and religions in Vietnam. Leave for Trang An eco-tourism area. You will be amazed by neglected area while having boat trip through cave chains: Sang Cave, Toi Cave, Ba Giot Cave, Sinh Cave.

    Recommended Ninh Binh Hotels:

    - Ninh Binh Legend Hotel
    - Cuc Phuong Resort & Villa

    Bai Dinh Pagoda, Trang An eco-tourism erea


    Day 8

    Ninh Binh - Halong Bay

    Depart Ninh Binh for Halong Bay, a designated world heritage site known for its limestone rock formations, is home to about 2,000 islets and breathtaking scenery. Caves, grottoes, floating villages, emerald waters and welcoming locals make it a must see on any Vietnam itinerary.

    Arrive Tuan Chau pier mid-morning to check in for your cruise. This 3D/2N voyage is exceptional as there is no dayboat needed for 2nd night guests and deep exploration in less-traveled bays is a compelling reason to take the time to “do Halong right”. Today, experience the amazing scenery of Halong Bay and southern Lan Ha Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin. Tranquility and nature abound as you quietly sail past famous spots such as Me Cung cave, Titov island, and Ho Ba Ham islet. Once anchored take a refreshing swim in emerald waters or a guided kayak tour to learn about your surrounds up close and personal. Overnight on board.

    Suggested Halong Bay Cruises

    - Valentine Premium Cruise
    - Dragon Legend Cruise


    Day 9

    Halong Bay

    Cat Ba Island is famous for its national park and endangered langurs. The island is the largest in the Gulf of Tonkin and is covered by a dense rainforest home to numerous indigenous species of flora and fauna. Spend time walking or cycling exploring this natural paradise. Visit an organic farm responsible for the majority of produce onboard.

    Reboard and sail to Bai Tu Long Bay, east of Halong, and the most remote area of the voyage. Geological rock formations create an impressive “other world” atmosphere. A relaxing rowboat tour through the village of Vung Vieng and into the bay’s geological park will provide enviable photo’s to be shown back home.

    Bai Tu Long Bay


    Day 10

    Halong Bay - Departure

    After disembarking, head for Hanoi or Hai Phong for an afternoon flight onwards.

     

     

       MORE TOURS HERE


    NOTES:

    • Prices are in USD, per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. At Vietnam Senses Travel, we carefully select all hotels to ensure that your accommodations match our standards of trip and service excellence.
    • Prices include the following:
      . All hotel accommodation including all taxes and breakfast
      . Internal economy flights as stated with airport taxes
      . All transfers & sightseeing transportation in private vehicle
      . Private services of local guides
      . All special events & private tours, guest experts
      . All entrance fees into historical sights & museums
      . Drinking water and refreshing towels for touring
      . 24/7 support from the Vietnam Senses Travel Team

     

    Location
    Accommodation

    HANOI
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    Essence d’Orient Hotel & Spa

    • Accommodation is contemporary in style with dark wood furniture and white walls complemented with a ‘natural’ colour scheme of brown and greens, in-keeping with the hotels' eco-friendly philosophy.
    • Interconnecting rooms are available for families and some of the rooms feature a private balcony with city views.
    • Despite being a first class hotel, service levels are more akin to an upgraded property and there are appealing extra touches such as a laptop with free wifi in each room for guests to use and, for Suite guests, a complimentary minibar and laundry service.

     

    KY SON
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    Moon Garden Homestay Ky Son

    • A truly authentic Vietnam.
    • House on stilt is traditional architecture style of ethic groups in Vietnam.
    • Moon Garden homestay has a hall that was a traditional cathedral before.

     MAI CHAU
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    Mai Chau Lodge

    • The lodge offers a good standard of facilities, including a pool and sauna (very welcome after a day’s walking or cycling!) as well as a lakeside restaurant serving up some excellent Vietnamese food.
    • Guest rooms are a very good size, most with lake or rice paddy views, and are furnished using local fabrics.
    • The lodge offers a number of activities to fill your day if the view isn’t captivating enough.

    NINH BINH
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    Ninh Binh Legend Hotel

    • The hotel has a good range of facilities, with the welcoming pool and terrace and a social restaurant amongst the most essential.
    • What the guest rooms perhaps lack in modern chic, they more than make up for in size - they are simply massive.
    • Amenities are of a suitable standard and many rooms offer superb views of the nearby paddy and limestone karsts. All are decorated in a light colour scheme with plenty of comfortable furnishings and pleasant touches.

     

    HALONG BAY
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    Valentine Premium Cruise


      • logo-indochina-sails

    • Style: Luxury + Classic.
    • Bring a private place for visitor.
    • The food is so diverse, suitable for many customers.
    • Perfect option for small group, family, honeymooners.
    • Focus on explore floating village’s life, which is very concerned by the guests who love discovering the peaceful life of local people.

    Dragon Legend Cruise


    • logo-prince-1-cruise

    • Style: Traditionally decorated.
    • Newly born.
    • Unique itinerary.
    • Dinner in Thien Canh Son Cave makes visitors have a wonderful experience.
    • A cruise with a high quality service.
    • Traditional decoration, suitable for visitor who love traditional culture.
    • Very Special & Unique Swimming Pool on board.