Multi-country Tours

Highlights of Northern Vietnam and Laos

access_time 14 Days / 13 Nights
bookmarks Private Tailor Made
location_on Hanoi – Mai Chau – Ninh Binh – Halong – Luang Prabang – Nong Khiaw

Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam’s captivating capital, where the charm of its French colonial history mingles seamlessly with the energetic buzz of modern Asia. In this city, you’ll discover a blend of traditional architecture, serene lakes, and the constant movement of countless motorbikes, alongside a thriving cosmopolitan scene with trendy restaurants and boutiques.

You will be met on arrival at Hanoi International Airport with a welcome signboard with your names on it and a private transfer to your selected hotel, allowing you to settle in and start exploring the city at your own pace, either by enjoying the hotel amenities or venturing out for your initial taste of Hanoi’s unique atmosphere.

Overnight in Hanoi.

 

Hanoi Arrival-0
Hanoi Arrival-1

Today, your private guide and driver will take you on a tour of Hanoi’s top attractions, followed by an exploration of authentic local cuisine away from the usual tourist spots. Begin your day at the Ho Chi Minh Memorial Complex, exploring the Mausoleum and his House on Stilts. Then, stroll through quaint lanes to Huu Tiep Lake and visit a centuries-old temple and the B52 crash site, a historical relic. Explore the Museum of Ethnology before enjoying a traditional Pho noodle soup for lunch and learn about local meal traditions.

In the afternoon, visit the Temple of Literature and Hoa Lo prison, enjoy a captivating cyclo ride through the French colonial precinct, passing historic landmarks. Pause at Pho Co Café for Egg coffee with stunning views. Conclude the day with a walking tour of Hanoi’s Old Quarter, immersing yourself in the vibrant street food scene. Sample delights like green papaya salad, Banh Mi Pa Te, and the iconic Bun Cha, all while seated on tiny plastic stools in charming back alleys.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch
Overnight in Hanoi.

Hanoi Full-day City Tour-0
Hanoi Full-day City Tour-1

After breakfast, meet our private guide and driver at your hotel for a scenic four-hour drive to Mai Chau, a tranquil valley surrounded by picturesque mountains and lush paddy fields, home to many of Vietnam’s 54 indigenous minority tribes. Check-in at the charming Mai Chau Ecolodge, an ideal place to rejuvenate.

In the afternoon, explore Pom Coong and Lac villages on foot or by bike (if you wish), encountering welcoming locals and gaining insight into their way of life. Continue your day to discover the ancient Mo Luong and Chieu caves, known for their breathtaking stalactites and stalagmites. Don’t miss a visit to the Thai ethnographic museum, housing a rich collection of historical artifacts that showcase centuries of Thai culture. Enjoy a delightful home-hosted dinner with a local family, tasting traditional dishes and village-made rice wine.

End your day with a mesmerizing traditional dance performance by the White Thai at Mai Chau Ecolodge—a captivating cultural experience.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch,  Dinner
Overnight in Mai Chau.

Hanoi - Mai Chau-0
Hanoi - Mai Chau-1

After breakfast, let’s experience the invigorating mountain air during a 2-hour trek along picturesque mountain paths, offering insights into local customs and the mesmerizing natural landscape. Depending on the day, you can explore the lively Pa Co Market (available only on Sundays). Afterward, return to Mai Chau Ecolodge for some downtime before leaving the lush fields behind and head to Ninh Binh.

You will arrive Ninh Binh and transfer to the lovely Tam Coc Garden Resort. Surrounded by stunning rice paddies and limestone formations this place is an oasis that lets you escape from the hustle and bustle of city life in the middle of the most incredible landscapes.

Meals included: Breakfast.
Overnight in Ninh Binh.

Mai Chau – Ninh Binh -0
Mai Chau – Ninh Binh -1

Begin your day with a fulfilling breakfast, followed by a 2.5-hour drive to explore the enchanting Ninh Binh region. Your first stop is the historic Hoa Lu Ancient Citadel, where you’ll visit the Dinh King Temple and Le King Temple, immersing yourself in Vietnamese history and culture. Afterward, savor a delectable lunch at a local restaurant with the exquisite flavors of the region’s cuisine.

After lunch, continue to explore Trang An eco-tourism complex (a Unesco World Heritage site), and its staggering karst landscapes, replete with secret grottoes, towering peaks, and tranquil streams. Board a sampan for a journey through Trang An’s spectacular network of caves, archways, and grottoes, including Sang Cave, Toi Cave, Ba Giot Cave, and Sinh Cave.

For those seeking more adventure, consider climbing Ngu Nhac Mountain & Mua Caves. The trail leads to three cave pagodas dating back to 1428 and rewards you with even more breathtaking panoramic views of the picturesque countryside. This day promises an immersive exploration of Ninh Binh’s natural beauty and cultural heritage.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Overnight in Ninh Binh.

Ninh Binh – Ancient Temples, Caves & Rowing boat-0
Ninh Binh – Ancient Temples, Caves & Rowing boat-1

After breakfast at your hotel, you leave Ninh Binh for Halong Bay. The journey is through the rich farmlands where you can observe everyday life of Vietnamese villagers. Arriving in Halong Bay in the late morning and you will board a traditional “junk” boat. You will begin a relaxing and unforgettable cruise around the breathtaking and unique limestone karsts and islets. A delicious fresh seafood lunch will be served as you cruise this spectacular bay, a UNESCO listed site.

Towards the end of the day the boat sets anchor for the night. As the sun sets over the bay, dinner is served with fresh seafood, salad, and fruit. You will spend the night in your private cabin aboard the junk in Halong Bay.

Notes: The program may differ slightly based on the junk cruise’s itinerary.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Overnight on cruise.

Ninh Binh - Halong – Overnight on A Luxury Boutique Boat-0
Ninh Binh - Halong – Overnight on A Luxury Boutique Boat-1

Begin your day with the serene practice of Tai Chi, a local custom that eases you into the morning. Join a ‘Local Specialist’ on the deck of the Junk boat amidst the exquisite natural surroundings. There’s time for an early morning swim at one of Halong Bay’s peaceful beaches, and for the more adventurous, take a kayak and paddle through the Dark and Bright Caves, admiring the glistening stone walls.

Return to the junk boat, check out of your cabin, and savor a sumptuous brunch buffet as you cruise back to port. Disembark around midday for your return journey to Hanoi. Upon arrival in Hanoi, relax at the hotel or start exploring the nightlife city at your own pace.

Meals included: Breakfast, Brunch.
Overnight in Hanoi.

Halong - Hanoi-0
Halong - Hanoi-1

Private transfert to the airport for flight to Laos. On arrival at the Luang Prabang airport, you will be met and transferred to check in the hotel (early check-in upon availability)

Situated in the centre of northern Laos, Luang Prabang is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its outstanding cultural, historic and architectural values and its harmonious relationship between the natural and built environment.

There is no activities planned for today, so you may stroll around for the first impression of this ancient city.

Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Hanoi - Flight to Luang Prabang-0
Hanoi - Flight to Luang Prabang-1

After breakfast, we visit Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts.  Our next stop in the city is the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture.

We then transfer to the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools or walk along the forest trails. You have the rest of the afternoon to refresh at the waterfalls. If you wish, we also see up close Asiatic bears at the Bear Rescue Centre along the jungle walk to the waterfall.

Arriving back in town, we will take a short visit to the Ock Pop Tock Living Craft Center, set serenely close to the Mekong, this beautiful, traditionally styled workshop, where weavers, spinners and batik makers produce top-quality fabrics, offers free tours every half-hour. Transfer back to Luang Prabang, we ascend the 329 steps to the top of Phousi Hill for a beautiful sunset view of the city and its glowing reflection on the Mekong River.

The tour ends after a visit to the famous Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.

Tip: If you are fond of various ethnic cultures, you can visit Traditional Art and Ethnology Center (closed on Monday).

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Ancient City – Kuang Si Waterfall -0
Ancient City – Kuang Si Waterfall -1

Wake up as the sun rises, we will prepare to join the most sacred tradition of Laos, the daily morning alms giving, which dates to the 14th century. More than 200 Buddhist monks depart from various temple to gather their daily meal from the faithful residents sitting quietly on the streets.

We then visit the temporary morning market near the former Royal Palace. Just set on the ground, the local people come here to barter their day’s catch from rice, to vegetable, to fish, or chicken. After breakfast, departing at 8:30 am from your hotel for Nahm Dong park, which locates in Ban Xiengmouk, 10Km from city center. Arriving at the park, we will have a short welcome by the park manager before joining the morning activities here. We will first start with the Zipline flying over the jungle and the waterfalls admiring the amazing evergreen scenery. The zipline will take about 1 hour.

Then we will walk back via the jungle trail crossing some flying bridges, small streams, and clear natural pools, where you can take a refresh splash if you wish so. The picnic lunch will be served at the viewpoint where you can spread your view over the region, including the view of mount Phousi in the city center. You can either spend the rest of the afternoon stroll around the park, relax by one of the huts at the camp, or enjoy the fresh cool clear natural pools.

Free for the rest of the day for your own exploration.

Note: Zipline in 1 hour, trekking min 1 hour – max 3 hours depending on the route that you choose

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Nam Dong Park  - Nature Experience-0
Nam Dong Park  - Nature Experience-1

Today we begin our boat up the Mekong, enjoying the lush green forests and landscape. We will be able to stop off at a few villages and admire the breathtaking limestone karst scenery. Along the way we stop to visit the mysterious caves of Pak Ou, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by devoted pilgrims.

After visiting the caves, we will hop on the car and continue the transfer to Nong Khiaw, the small town along the lazy Nam Ou River.

After lunch (your own account), visit the historical cave of Phathok. The Nong Khiaw villagers used this cave as a war shelter during the “Secret War”, to shelter people from bombs dropped in the region. It is about a 30 minute gentle walk from Nong Khiaw town and takes you through beautiful scenery. Learn more about a secret part of the Lao history and explore the historical caves with your guide. From the cave you will have a beautiful view of rice paddies and the valley. Walk back to Nong Khiaw along a small path through the rice paddies.

Enjoy the sunset over the river. There is a choice of local restaurants within walking distance (your own account).

Meals included: Breakfast.
Overnight in Nong Khiaw.

Mekong River – Pak Ou Cave – Nong Khiaw-0
Mekong River – Pak Ou Cave – Nong Khiaw-1

We begin at 8am and start off by boarding a local long boat and head off upstream through some fantastic landscape before making our first stop of the day at a small riverside village. Here we take some time to look around and if during a weekday pay the local school a visit to see the charming children as they take part in their classes.

After this we continue onwards to Tad Mork which is located close to the ethnic Khmu village of Ban Sop Kong, an hour trek from the river. At the waterfall we shall have time to swim and enjoy a picnic lunch.

After enjoying our time at the waterfall we head back to the river where we will cruise further upstream to visit Muang Ngoy, which sits nestled amongst some amazing scenery! This small town has long been famous amongst backpackers yet remains truly unspoilt! If there is time we can stop for a drink at one of the riverside restaurants before the return journey down the river back to Nong Khiaw.

We will head off down the river through a narrow gorge where we stop at another small but fascinating village. The estimated arrival time in Nong Khiaw is around sunset.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Overnight in Nong Khiaw.

Nam Ou River – Tad Mork – Muong Ngoi-0
Nam Ou River – Tad Mork – Muong Ngoi-1

Start this day of adventure with a peaceful boat ride on the Nam Ou River where you will be able to explore a small Lao village along the riverside. Learn about the villagers and their way of life along this Northern Laos River before beginning the ‘100 Waterfalls Adventure Trail’!

Walking through small streams and rice paddies, you will arrive at the bottom of the 100 Waterfalls which were only first explored in October 2008!  For the next few hours you will see only water and jungle and hear the constant sound of clear waterfall cascades. The pools around you are very inviting for a refreshing splash. Your guide will lead you through the cascades and prepare a local style lunch that you can enjoy on the falls surrounded by amazingly green nature.  A small village trail on the top of the ‘100 Waterfalls’ will lead us on our hike back down into the valley, offering wide views over the expansive Nam Ou valley.

Once back in the village we will have some more time to experience the daily life of the Nam Ou riverside village before continuing the boat downstream the Nam Ou River further to the electricity dam.  From here, we will hop on the waiting car to transfer back to Luang Prabang.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Nam Ou River – 100 Waterfall – Luang Prabang-0
Nam Ou River – 100 Waterfall – Luang Prabang-1

You are free to stroll around the town for your own exploration before taking the departure flight.

Luang Prabang – Departure -0
Luang Prabang – Departure -1

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