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12-day cultural tour of Vietnam featuring the most famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites at a sensational RSD Travel customer rate!

Hanoi – Imperial Citadel (World Heritage) – Temple of Literature (World Heritage) – Hoan Kiem Lake – Halong Bay (World Heritage) – Hoi An (World Heritage) – My Son (World Heritage) – Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) – Mekong Delta

Your itinerary

Based on our own experience and the many tips we have received from enthusiastic holidaymakers, we have compiled the most famous highlights of Vietnam for you!

Day 1-2: Journey with EMIRATES to Hanoi & the Imperial Citadel (UNESCO World Heritage)

UK_Karte_Vietnam

Comfortable EMIRATES flight to Hanoi and arrival on day 2. Our friendly, English-speaking tour guide will meet us at the airport. Together we will travel by modern coach to our comfortable hotel in the Hanoi area. We will spend our first 3 nights here. The Imperial City of Thang Long (the historical name of Hanoi) was built in the 11th century by Emperor Thang Long as a symbol of independent Vietnam. Depending on the time of arrival, we will visit the imposing Imperial Citadel (UNESCO World Heritage Site, admission included) – the impressive imperial court of several ruling dynasties.

Day 3: Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Van Mieu Temple of Literature (UNESCO World Heritage), Ethnography Museum & Hoan Kiem Lake

Van Mieu Temple of Literature (World Heritage)

After a leisurely breakfast, our tour of the breathtaking capital begins. First we visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (admission included) – a homage to the architecture of the Lenin Mausoleum in Moscow. We also marvel at the ancient single-column pagoda rising out of a small lake. Afterwards we visit the Van Mieu Temple of Literature with its wonderful old courtyards, altars and pavilions. The collection of 82 commemorative stelae for graduates of imperial examinations was included in the World Documentary Heritage by UNESCO. In the afternoon we visit the Ethnography Museum (admission included), where 54 ethnic groups from all over Vietnam are presented. Then it is on to the Old Town, which is well worth seeing, and to the picturesque Hoan Kiem Lake with its charming Turtle Tower. In the evening, you can optionally experience a traditional water puppet theatre – a poignant art thousands of years old.

Day 4: Explorer day: Halong Bay (UNESCO World Heritage)

Halong Bay (World Heritage)

In the morning we set off on an unforgettable optional full-day excursion to the breathtaking Halong Bay. Once there, we board a boat and head out into this magical labyrinth of tropical, towering rocky islands – world famous and one of Vietnam‘s most spectacular landscapes. It is also a UNESCO Natural World Heritage site in a class of its own. On board we enjoy lunch with freshly caught seafood. During the tour of the mysterious caves we listen to the legendary stories of the locals. You will collect memories that will stay with you forever.

Day 5: Coastal town of Hoi An (UNESCO World Heritage)

Hoi An (World Heritage)

We head to the airport and fly to Danang. Upon arrival, we check into our modern hotel near Hoi An, where we spend the next 4 nights. Then our eventful walk through the picturesque old town of Hoi An on the South China Sea begins. Situated on the banks of the Thu Bon River, a magnificent ensemble of Vietnamese, Japanese, Chinese and French architecture awaits us, such as the temples, the Japanese bridge, the Tan Ky House or the Chinese Assembly Hall – rightly a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.

Day 6: Explorer day: Imperial City of Hue

Tu Duc Mausoleum, Imperial City of Hue

Today, the enchanting imperial city of Hue awaits us – as part of an exciting, optional full-day excursion. The imperial palace complex is surrounded by a huge fortress wall (admission included). Within the huge complex, there are three distinct areas: the capital (Kinh Thanh), the imperial city (Hoang Thanh) and the Forbidden City (Cam Thanh) – modelled on the imperial complexes in Beijing (UNESCO World Heritage). Afterwards we reach the Tu Duc Mausoleum, a masterpiece of traditional Vietnamese art.

Day 7: Herb village of Tra Que & meeting locals

Herb cultivation in Tra Que

The beautiful landscape of Hoi An with its herbal village of Tra Que awaits us. We walk through this picturesque place, famous for its great variety of cultivated vegetables. And especially for its numerous aromatic herbs such as lemongrass, mint and Thai basil. We visit a local family, admire their herb garden and learn a lot about the cultivation and use of the plants. We get to watch cooking – and enjoy a deliciously prepared meal together.

Day 8: Explorer day: Street Food Tour in Hoi An

Vietnamese cook

Taste delicious Vietnamese food and join us on this eventful optional epicurean excursion. We walk through the small alleys of Hoi An and try a variety of exotic specialities, such as stuffed dumplings. A gourmet day for all the senses!

Day 9: Temple City of My Son (UNESCO World Heritage)

Temple City of My Son (World Heritage)

After breakfast we visit My Son, the most important archaeological site of the Cham culture in central Vietnam (UNESCO World Heritage). The magical temple city in the rainforest consists of 70 buildings and was built between the 4th and 13th centuries (admission included). The remains of the buildings constructed of burnt bricks with their Hindu reliefs rise out of the forest like a miraculous mirage. Via Hoi An, we then drive to Danang airport for our flight to Ho Chi Minh City, the former Saigon. There we arrive comfortably at our beautiful hotel, where we spend the next two nights.

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) with cathedral, Ben Tre, Mekong Delta boat trip, meeting Vietnamese families & tuk-tuk ride

Mekong Delta boat trip

In Ho Chi Minh City, the former capital of the Republic of Vietnam Saigon, we admire the magnificent main post office – a splendid relic from the French colonial era. And Notre Dame Cathedral – built for the colonialists of the time. Afterwards we drive to Ben Tre. Our adventurous boat trip begins here: we explore the fascinating, tropical Mekong Delta. We stop at an old brick kiln, at a coconut processing factory and at Vietnamese families who make sleeping mats by hand. We enjoy green tea and fresh fruit while relaxing comfortably with locals. The journey continues on motorised tricycles, the traditional tuk-tuks, past colourful vegetable gardens. For lunch we enjoy Asian specialities.

Day 11 – 12: Homeward journey

Homeward journey

In the morning you can explore Saigon. Then we say farewell. Our relaxed flight back to the UK takes off. Arrival on day 12.

Homeward journeyHalong Bay (World Heritage)Hoi An (World Heritage)

Package includes:

  • Scheduled flights with EMIRATES, one of the best airlines in the world!¹
    • UK to Hanoi
    • Ho Chi Minh City to UK
  • Domestic flights with reputable airline
    • Hanoi to Danang
    • Danang to Ho Chi Minh City
    incl. hotel transfers
  • 9 nights in a double room in selected comfort hotels
    – 9x tasty breakfast
  • Fascinating cultural tour with the most significant highlights of Vietnam!
    – Look forward to a spectacular range of excursions + admissions (as per itinerary) including:
    • Imperial Citadel (World Heritage)
    • Van Mieu Temple of Literature (World Heritage)
    • Coastal town of Hoi An (World Heritage)
    • Temple City of My Son (World Heritage)
    • Visit to Vietnamese families
    • Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum
    • Hanoi
    • One Pillar Pagoda
    • Ethnography Museum
    • Hoan Kiem Lake
    • Japanese bridge
    • Tan Ky House
    • Herbal village of Tra Que
    • Rainforest
    • Ho Chi Minh City
    • Ben Tre
    • Mekong Delta boat trip
    • Tuk-tuk ride
  • Qualified, English-speaking cultural tour guide



³ Scheduled flights with Emirates (one of the best airlines in the world) with overstop in Dubai to Hanoi and from Ho Chi Minh City.


On request, you can book our additional services at special prices:

Imperial City of Hue

Explorer package:

The package includes the traditional water puppet theatre in Hanoi, the 2 full-day excursions to Halong Bay including boat trip & to the imperial city of Hue and the Street Food Tour in Hoi An: only £229 per person.

Hotel

Single room surcharge: £ 449 per person (subject to availability)

Including a spectacular programme of excursions + admissions featuring 4 World Heritage Sites !

Comparison of temperatures

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Hanoi323334353332313131313131
London68911152021201915107

General note:

Below is an information overview. The conditions of entry, as well as the political and health situation, can change anywhere in the world at any time. We therefore recommend checking before your trip. Please check the website of the Foreign Office (www.gov.uk) before your departure.

Geography:

Vietnam is an elongated coastal state in the east of the mainland of South-East Asia.

Form of government:

One-party system

Capital:

Hanoi

Religion:

74 % are atheist or belong to different popular religions. Buddhists, Catholics and Protestants, among others, are also represented.

Language:

The national language is Vietnamese.

Climate:

The climate is influenced by the monsoon. Northern Vietnam is subtropical with warm summers and mild winters. South Vietnam is tropical with a distinct rainy season in summer. Central Vietnam is dominated by a subtropical transitional climate with lots of rain in autumn.

Electricity:

The mains voltage is 110 / 220 V AC, 50 Hz. An adapter will be required. In some regions, the local mains voltage may be 110 V, for which a voltage converter is required.

Local time:

The time difference to England is plus 6 hours in the summer months and plus 7 hours in the winter months.

Making telephone calls:

The country code for Vietnam is 0084 (+84) and before the area code there is no zero. If you are calling the UK, dial 0044 (+44) and then the area code, again without the first zero.

Country and people:

Throughout the South-East Asian region, mutual respect is a valuable and important virtue. Friendliness and openness are therefore also expected from travellers. Skirts, shorts and revealing tops are forbidden in religious places. It is recommended to cover the shoulders and generally dress conservatively and casually. Shoes should be removed when entering the homes of local people.

Entry requirements for British citizens:

If you are visiting Vietnam, your passport should be valid for 6 months from the date you arrive. A number of British nationals have been refused entry and exit due to their passport being damaged. Make sure your passport is in good condition before arriving in Vietnam. Being refused entry can result in significant cost and a long stay at the airport. British Nationals can enter Vietnam for up to 45 days for tourism without needing to apply for a visa. Legal information and/or information outside the scope of these notes regarding entry requirements can only be obtained directly from the embassy or one of your destination country‘s general consulates. Citizens of other countries are advised to enquire about the applicable entry requirements from their respective embassy. You are solely responsible for applying for, and presenting, any visa that may be required.
Whilst we endeavour to provide guidance where necessary, we can not be responsible for any problems encountered (whether at any point of entry or elsewhere) in the event that passport and visa requirements are not satisfied.

Tour guides:

Your expert tour guides will be able to provide you with detailed information about the country, people, history, culture, etc., and offer advice and assistance for organising your trip. They can also help with room allocation and look forward to welcoming you with initial information. Here you will find out all you need to know and useful information about the trip. We have put together a varied programme including numerous highlights, enabling you to experience the culture and diversity of landscape that Vietnam has to offer, and learn all about the country and its people.

Additional packages:

Although your trip already includes a comprehensive package, you also have the option of choosing added extras. We recommend booking the following packages:
Half board: The package includes 9x dinner as 3-course menu in local restaurantsl: only £199* per person.
Explorer package: The package includes the traditional water puppet theatre in Hanoi, the 2 full-day excursions to Halong Bay including boat trip & to the imperial city of Hue and the Street Food Tour in Hoi An: only £229* per person.
* Package prices may vary when booking on site.

Currency/Banks/Credit cards:

The unit of currency is the Vietnamese dong (VND). 1 VND = 10 Hao and 100 Xu. Exchange rate (september 2023): 1 GBP = 30,464 VND, 1 VND = 0.000033 GBP.
Cash may only be exchanged at official exchange offices with clear signs identifying them as such. Credit cards are accepted in many places and ATMs can also be found, but outside larger cities cash is still often the only accepted means of payment.

Customs regulations:

Private individuals can import cash in foreign currencies worth USD 5,000 and cash of the Vietnamese currency dong worth VND 15 million duty-free. Furthermore, 200 cigarettes, 100 cigarillos, 50 cigars, 250 gr tobacco or 200 electronic cigarettes. Personal effects can be imported duty-free. Such items shall be deemed to be required in a reasonable number and quantity, taking into account the purpose and duration of the trip. Items in excess of this are subject to duty if they exceed a value of VND 10 million.
Important: f you’re travelling to Great Britain from outside the UK, your personal allowances mean you can bring in a certain amount of goods without paying tax or duty. If you go over your allowances you must declare all your goods and pay tax and duty on all the goods in that category. Please inform yourself about the current customs regulations: www.gov.uk/bringing-goods-intouk-personal-use/arriving-in-Great-Britain.

Safety information specific to Vietnam:

Avoid demonstrations and large gatherings of people. Follow the instructions of local security forces. Be aware that statements made in the UK on social media will be noticed in Vietnam and may lead to consequences when travelling there.
Crime: Pickpocketing is common, especially in the tourist centres. Travellers should therefore always look after their personal belongings and documents in shops, restaurants and railway stations. A photocopy of an ID card can be helpful if the ID card is lost.

Special criminal provisions:

Narcotics offences such as the acquisition, distribution, importation and exportation of narcotics of all kinds are prosecuted severely under criminal law and face severe penalties. Possession of small amounts of drugs leads to heavy prison sentences. Court proceedings do not meet German constitutional standards.

Medical information:

At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest countryspecific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website (https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries).
Each countryspecific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad.

Medical care:

Medical care in the country cannot be compared to that in Europe. In many cases, it is problematic in terms of technology, equipment and hygiene. There is also no emergency medical care. The hospital staff and the doctors in provincial hospitals often only speak Vietnamese. There are several hospitals in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City that have better standards. Some international clinics are often the first port of call for tourists who fall ill. Here, communication can take place in English. It is strongly recommended that you take out health insurance cover for the duration of your stay abroad. This should cover the risks that are not covered by statutory health insurance (such as repatriation to the UK in the event of illness, treatment by a private doctor or in a private hospital).
The customer must establish for himself that his physical and mental state is compatible with the selected journey. He is obliged to obtain information about the degrees of physical mobility and mental autonomy required for this journey.

All information is subject to change/Last updated: September 2023