Vietnam Odyssey: From Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City 14 Days

Embark on a captivating 14-day journey through the diverse landscapes and rich cultural tapestry of Vietnam. From the historical streets of Hanoi to the dynamic buzz of Ho Chi Minh City, this tour offers a comprehensive exploration of Vietnam’s most iconic destinations, coupled with unique local experiences that delve deep into the heart of the country’s heritage and traditions.

Your adventure begins in the capital city of Hanoi, where ancient history and modernity fuse together to form a lively urban tapestry. Here, you’ll be introduced to Vietnam’s unique cultural elements through a traditional Water Puppetry performance and visit significant landmarks such as the Temple of Literature and Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum.

From Hanoi, travel to the stunning landscapes of Lan Ha Bay, where you will cruise amidst towering limestone karsts and enjoy serene moments on the emerald waters. As you head south, the historic charm of Hue awaits, offering a glimpse into Vietnam’s imperial past with visits to the grandiose tombs of Vietnamese emperors and tranquil garden houses.

The journey continues to Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its well-preserved Ancient Town. Here, time seems to stand still among the lantern-lit streets and faded ochre buildings. Venture further into the past with a day trip to the My Son Sanctuary, an ancient Cham religious center where mystical ruins speak of a civilization long vanished.

Concluding in the south, Ho Chi Minh City offers a stark contrast with its vibrant street life and bustling markets. A scooter tour through its bustling streets will offer you an authentic taste of city life. The tour rounds off with a serene escape to the Mekong Delta, where river markets, lush orchards, and local crafts provide a peaceful end to your journey.

This comprehensive tour not only showcases Vietnam’s stunning scenery and historical sites but also connects you with its people and traditions, offering a deep and enriching travel experience.


Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi (D, GP)

Upon landing at Noi Bai Airport, a warm welcome awaits you from your guide who will escort you to your hotel in the heart of Hanoi. After settling in, the evening begins with a sumptuous welcome dinner at a restaurant housed within a restored colonial building, offering a blend of Vietnamese culinary delights.

Post-dinner, you’ll experience the enchanting art of water puppetry, a traditional performance unique to Northern Vietnam that depicts rural folktales and legends. Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 2: Hanoi Orientation (B, L, G)

Today is dedicated to exploring the rich tapestry of Hanoi’s history and culture. Starting with the historic Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university, you’ll delve into centuries of learning and architecture.

Next, visit the iconic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum complex, including Uncle Ho’s stilt house and the dedicated museum. Post-lunch, enjoy the tranquility of Tran Quoc Pagoda, the oldest Buddhist temple in Hanoi, located beside the peaceful West Lake.

The day ends with a stroll through the bustling Old Quarter, a vibrant maze of streets where modern life and historical charm fuse seamlessly. Overnight in Hanoi.

Alternative Day 2: Cycling and Village Exploration (B, L, G)

Opt for an alternative experience with a morning drive to Bat Trang pottery village. Here, observe artisans crafting exquisite ceramics. Next, cycle approximately 7km along the scenic banks of the Red River, exploring more rural landscapes and traditional villages.

Visit Dong Ho village, known for its folk paintings, followed by a musical performance of Quan Ho folk songs in Tam Tao village. Return to Hanoi for the evening.

Day 3: Hanoi to Hai Phong, Lan Ha Bay Cruise (L, D, G)

Morning departure to Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its spectacular seascape of limestone pillars. Board the Orchid Trendy Cruise at Tuan Chau Marina and set sail through the bay, enjoying lunch with views.

Visit the expansive Trung Trang Cave in Cat Ba National Park, and later, relax in the tranquil waters at Tra Bau. Enjoy an onboard cooking demonstration followed by dinner, and perhaps try squid fishing. Overnight on the cruise.

For your Ha Long excursion, you’ll board the Orchid Trendy cruise. The boat has totally 20 stunning cabins organised and crafted according to contemporary design trends. Almost cabins have personal balconies offering your own private outside space in Halong Bay. 

All cabins are air-conditioned and have windows overlooking the bay. The cabins are furnished with two twin beds or a double queen/king size bed. All meals, usually based on fresh seafood, will be provided on board.

Day 4: Lan Ha Bay to Hanoi (Brunch, G)

Wake up early to partake in a Tai Chi session on the sundeck, greeting the day with serene movements in the fresh air, followed by breakfast while cruising.

Mid-morning activities include kayaking around the Ao Ech area, exploring secluded lagoons and water tunnels. After kayaking, return to the cruise for brunch as you sail back to Tuan Chau Marina.

Disembark midday and travel back to Hanoi, where you’ll have the evening free to explore more of the city or relax at your hotel.

Day 5: Hanoi to Hue (B, G)

Enjoy some free time in the morning before your flight to Hue. Upon arrival, explore the Imperial Citadel, a vast complex of palaces, temples, walls, and gates. End the day with a visit to the bustling Dong Ba market. Overnight in Hue.

Day 6: Royal Tombs and River Cruise (B, L, D, G)

A day exploring Hue’s rich imperial history, starting with a boat trip on the Perfume River to Thien Mu Pagoda. Visit the tombs of Emperors Minh Mang and Khai Dinh, showcasing contrasting architectural styles and epochs. Enjoy dinner at one of Hue’s serene garden houses, reflecting the unique fusion of nature, architecture, and history. Overnight in Hue.

Each Royal mausoleum in Hue tells a unique story, reflecting the Emperor it honors. Minh Mang’s opulent mausoleum mirrors his lavish lifestyle, while Khai Dinh’s humble tomb blends Vietnamese and European influences. Hue’s garden houses, steeped in history, offer a tranquil escape, where time slows amidst lush surroundings.

Day 7: Hue to Hoi An via Danang (B, L, G)

Drive across the scenic Hai Van Pass to Danang, with a stop at the Cham Museum, then continue to Hoi An. After lunch, a guided tour of Hoi An Ancient Town reveals its well-preserved merchant houses, vibrant markets, and bustling streets. Overnight in Hoi An.

Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage site, embodies the rich legacy of an ancient trading port, once bustling with cultures from across the globe. Its wooden buildings tell stories of bygone eras, where ships waited for favorable winds at the historic quay. Today, amidst the charming streets, you’ll find a treasure trove of culinary delights and silk shopping opportunities. And don’t miss the chance to have bespoke clothing crafted in just days, adding a touch of timeless elegance to your visit.

Day 8: My Son Sanctuary (B, G)

Travel to My Son Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage site that was the spiritual center of the Champa Kingdom. Explore ancient ruins and learn about their historical and cultural significance. Return to Hoi An with the afternoon free to enjoy at your leisure. Overnight in Hoi An.

This detailed itinerary is designed to provide a deep dive into the history, culture, and natural beauty of Vietnam, ensuring a memorable experience of learning and discovery.

Day 9: Hoi An to Ho Chi Minh City & Evening Foodie Tour (B, G)

Enjoy a leisurely morning in Hoi An before your transfer to Danang for a flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Upon arrival, check into your hotel and settle in.

As dusk falls, embark on an exciting culinary adventure on the back of a scooter. Zip through the bustling streets and alleys of Saigon for an exciting adventure on the back of a scooter, discovering hidden gems and popular local spots.

We’ll start by exploring an evening local market, immersing ourselves in the vibrant atmosphere and sampling local delights. Next, we’ll head to the Ho Thi Ky wholesale flower market, where you’ll have the opportunity to take a leisurely stroll and even learn how to make Crispy Banana Crackers.

Then, it’s back on the scooter for a thrilling ride through the bustling alleyways. Along the way, we’ll pass by cloth shops on fashion streets, tempting food vendors offering delicious treats, and catch a glimpse of locals enjoying their evening exercise in the walking park.

Sample iconic dishes like Pho and Banh Mi at a street food stand, and explore diverse culinary and cultural offerings in the Nguyen Thien Thuat area.

End the evening in a local café, enjoying Vietnamese coffee or a cold beer while discussing the day’s adventures. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City Cultural and Historical Tour (B, L, G)

Wake up to a vibrant day in Ho Chi Minh City, where your guide awaits to unveil its hidden gems. Begin your journey at the History Museum, where a special exhibition unravels the mysteries of the ancient ‘Oc Eo’ civilization from the 5th century. Alternatively, dive into the rich tapestry of Vietnamese medicine at the Fito Museum, a treasure trove of relics chronicling centuries of healing practices.

Next, brace yourself for a poignant visit to the Museum of War Remnants, offering a gripping yet partial perspective of the ‘American War’. Then, immerse yourself in the bustling energy of Binh Tay market, nestled in the heart of Chinatown, the largest of its kind in the city.

Your adventure continues with a visit to the Jade Emperor Temple, a Taoist marvel adorned with intricate effigies and awe-inspiring carved panels depicting the descent to Hell. Amidst the temple’s serene ambiance, discover unexpected sanctuaries for terrapins and tortoises, adding a touch of whimsy to its ancient allure.

Afterward, return to your hotel for a quick refreshment or lose yourself in the labyrinthine lanes of Ben Thanh market, a pulsating hub where every imaginable treasure awaits. The evening is yours to enjoy the nightlife in Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 11: Mekong Delta Exploration – Cai Be and Tan Phong Island (B, L, D, G)

Escape the urban hustle and bustle as you journey to Cai Be, a tranquil haven in the heart of the Mekong Delta. Upon arrival at Cai Be pier, embark on a mesmerizing boat trip to explore the Cai Be floating market, where locals trade goods from their vibrant vessels.

Continue your voyage to Tan Phong Island, where you’ll wander through lush fruit orchards and savor the flavors of seasonal delights. Discover the rich cultural heritage of the Mekong Delta with a traditional folk song performance by local artists.

Next, immerse yourself in a hands-on cooking class at Mekong Ecolodge, where you’ll learn to prepare local delicacies using fresh ingredients. Take a leisurely bike ride through the picturesque countryside, engaging in activities with local villagers such as crafting water hyacinth and making rice paper cakes.

Bid farewell to the tranquil village life as you journey to Can Tho, the bustling capital of the Mekong Delta. Spend the night in this vibrant riverside city.

Day 12: Can Tho to Ho Chi Minh City (B, L, G)

Start the day with a visit to the bustling Cai Rang floating market, then return to Ho Chi Minh City. On the way, visit the Vinh Trang Pagoda, a beautiful blend of Chinese and Vietnamese architectural styles and home to many precious statues. Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City for an evening at leisure. Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 13: Tay Ninh and Cu Chi Tunnels (B, L, G)

Drive to Tay Ninh to visit the colorful Cao Dai Temple and witness the midday prayer session. After lunch, explore the Cu Chi Tunnels, an extensive underground network that played a crucial role during the Vietnam War. Learn about the ingenuity and resilience of the Viet Cong. Return to Ho Chi Minh City for the night.

Day 14: Departure from Ho Chi Minh City (B, GP)

Enjoy free time until your transfer to Tan Son Nhat Airport for your departure flight. Reflect on the rich experiences and memories made during your comprehensive exploration of Vietnam.

This itinerary offers a deep dive into the cultural, historical, and natural wonders of Vietnam, ensuring a comprehensive understanding and appreciation of this vibrant country.


B = Breakfast

L = Lunch

D = Dinner

G = Guide

GP = Guide pick-up

DP = Driver pick-up


The prices for this sample tour are per person in US dollars:

These prices are valid until November 30, 2024. Please note that bank transfer fees are not included.

Number in group 2 3 – 4 5 – 8 9 – 12 Supplement for single hotel room occupancy*

(three stars)

2,074 1,798 1,533 1,426 599

(four stars)

2,218 1,940 1,680 1,570 770

(five stars)

3,525 3,250 2,986 2,879 2,014
First Class

(exclusive top five stars)

5,146 4,870 4,606 4,499 3,650

Price is not valid for the Peak season, please contact us again for price checking and availability

Peak season: Dec 20th, 2024- Jan 07, 2025, and TET (Feb 05 – 18, 2025)

* ‘Single room occupancy’ refers to the accommodation element of the programme only, and applies to someone who is travelling with others but requires an additional room for him or herself. Single traveller prices are available on request.


  • Breakfast and accommodation sharing a twin or double room.
  • Pick-ups and transfers by private air-conditioned vehicle as specified in the itinerary above (Please note: pick-ups will be by a guide and driver or, where a guide is not necessary, a driver only. All unaccompanied drivers will be briefed in advance, and will carry a mobile phone to ensure smooth transfer arrangements)
  • Domestic flight tickets: Hanoi – Hue and Danang – Ho Chi Minh City, including domestic airport taxes.
  • Boat cruises as specified in the programme. All Ha Long Bay boats will be fully licensed and comply with current safety regulations.
  • Travel in an appropriate private air-conditioned vehicle with an experienced safe driver.
  • The services of experienced English-speaking guides as indicated in the itinerary (please note: guides will be on hand from pick-up until guests’ return to their hotel or reaching their destination). Free days or part days will not include the services of a guide unless requested and included in the final itinerary.
  • Where necessary, entry fees for all visits as mentioned in the programme.
  • Lunches and dinners (as specified in the itinerary) in the best local restaurants, or picnics where no suitable restaurant is available, and full board on the boat in Ha Long Bay.
  • VAT and other taxes


  • International flight tickets and airport tax.
  • Visas
  • Lunches and dinners, except as specified above.
  • Drinks, gratuities and personal expenses.
  • Insurance
  • Alternatives in blue
  • Surcharges for Peak seasons (if any)
  • Compulsory meal (if any)

Hotel List

Hotel list for Mid-range standard:

  • Hanoi: Bendecir Hotel & Spa (a boutique style hotel, located in the Center of Hanoi Old quarter – Premier Double room)
  • Ha Long Bay: Poeny Cruises (is a well-mixed between a charming of Vietnamese traditional culture and a charming of European break – through stylish – Premium Deluxe Balcony)
  • Hue: Mondial Hotel (**** medium-rise buildings in the city centre – Deluxe room
  • Hoi An: Phu Thinh Boutique Resort [ is centrally located with a ten-minute walk to the center of Hoi An Ancient Town, fifteen-minute bicycle to beautiful Cua Dai beach)
  • Ho Chi Minh City: Sanouva Saigon Hotel (***, very good location, next to Ben Thanh Market – Deluxe room)
  • Tan Phong Island: Mekong Ecologde (***Mekong EcoLodge is the good place for you to relax – Superior Room)

Hotel list for Superior standard:

  • Hanoi: MK Premier Boutique Hotel (a vietnamese style hotel, located in the Hanoi Old quarter – Luxury City View room)
  • Lan Ha Bay: Orchid Trendy Cruise (**** Deluxe quality boat with elegant design – Deluxe Balcony cabin)
  • Hue: Eldora hotel (****Located  in the heart of the city within walking distance to many tourist attractions, exquisite style, spacious room – Deluxe Premium View)
  • Hoi An: La Pavillion Hoi An Paradise hotel (traditional Vietnamese style with Hoi An architecture design – Deluxe Balcony)
  • Ho Chi Minh City: Eden Star Saigon hotel (city centre location, nice rooftop swimming pool – Premium Deluxe room)
  • Tan Phong Island: Mekong Ecologde (***Mekong EcoLodge is the good place for you to relax – Superior Room)

Hotel list for Deluxe standard:

  • Hanoi: Pan Pacific Hotel (***** modern tower block overlooking the West Lake, outdoor swimming pool with a retractable roof – Premium Lake view)
  • Ha Long Bay: Indochine Sails Premium (a luxury cruise sails through turquoise waters past hundreds of towering limestone islands – Suite Balcony cabin)
  • Hue: Silk Path Grand Hue (**** offers an exceptional location: Wrapped by tree-lined streets and rivers with easy access to temples, tombs – Classic room)
  • Hoi An: Anantara Hoi An resort [Featured Hotel] (**** low-rise colonial-style architecture on the riverbank, shuttle boat to beach, good spa and ‘wellness’ facilities, etc. – Deluxe Garden View Suite)
  • Ho Chi Minh City: Caravelle Hotel (*****large high-rise building famous as the chosen hotel of international correspondents during the war, good city and river views, well-located in the heart of the city overlooking the Opera House – Signature room)
  • Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho Resort (**** beside the Mekong river, good garden setting – Deluxe room)

Hotel list for First Class standard

  • Hanoi: Sofitel Metropole Hotel (*****historic colonial building in a city centre location – Luxury Room Historic Wing)
  • Ha Long Bay: Indochina Sails Premium (Traditional Junk, Deluxe quality wooden junks modelled on Imperial Court vessels – Suite Balcony cabin)
  • Hue: La Residence Hotel & Spa (****deluxe boutique hotel, on the bank of the Perfume River – Colonial Suite)
  • Hoi An: Anantara Hoi An Resort [Featured Hotel] (**** low-rise colonial-style architecture on the riverbank, shuttle boat to beach, good spa and ‘wellness’ facilities, etc. – Deluxe River view Suite)
  • Ho Chi Minh City: Caravelle Hotel (*****large high-rise building famous as the chosen hotel of international correspondents during the war, good city and river views, well-located in the heart of the city overlooking the Opera House – Signature Premium room)
  • Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho Resort (**** best hotel in Can Tho, colonial-style architecture on the bank of Hau river – Suite)
Please note that Vietnam hotels do not recognise provisional reservations, so specific hotels cannot be guaranteed until you have booked your chosen tour. As many of the better hotels are often full during the October to April peak season, early booking is advisable.

Tour FAQ's

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) for the “Vietnam Odyssey: From Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City 14 Days” tour, covering essential details to help you prepare for this extensive journey across Vietnam:

1. What is the best time of year to take this tour?

Vietnam can be visited year-round, but the optimal time depends on the region:

  • Northern Vietnam (Hanoi, Lan Ha Bay): Spring (March and April) and Autumn (October and November) offer mild temperatures and less rain.
  • Central Vietnam (Hue, Hoi An): Avoid the rainy season from October to December. February to May usually offers the best weather conditions.
  • Southern Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City): December to April is dry and warm, ideal for visiting.

2. What type of accommodations can I expect?

Accommodations are selected to provide comfort and local flavor. They range from boutique hotels in cities to charming guesthouses in rural areas, and a luxurious night aboard a cruise in Lan Ha Bay.

3. How much physical activity does the tour involve?

The tour includes various activities that require moderate physical effort, such as walking tours in cities, cycling around Hanoi, and kayaking in Lan Ha Bay. It’s suitable for anyone in good health. Optional activities offer more or less exertion, depending on your interests and fitness level.

4. Will meals be included?

Most meals are included, providing a taste of authentic Vietnamese cuisine. This includes local dishes at reputable restaurants and some meals on the cruise. Please inform us in advance if you have dietary restrictions or allergies.

5. What should I pack for the trip?

Pack light and consider the varied climates:

  • Clothing: Light, breathable clothes, a waterproof jacket, and a warmer layer for cooler evenings.
  • Footwear: Comfortable walking shoes for city tours and sandals or flip-flops for the beach.
  • Other essentials: Sunscreen, insect repellent, medications, sunglasses, and a hat. Don’t forget your camera and a suitable adapter for Vietnam’s electrical outlets.

6. Is there a tour guide?

Yes, you will have an English-speaking Vietnamese guide throughout the tour. The guide will provide insights into the local culture, history, and assist with any requests you have during your trip.

7. What is the group size?

The group size varies but typically ranges from 6 to 15 people to ensure a more personalized and enjoyable experience.

8. Are there any additional costs I should anticipate?

While the tour is comprehensive, additional costs may include personal expenditures such as souvenirs, extra drinks, tips for the guide and driver, and optional activities not included in the itinerary.

9. How are transportation arrangements handled?

Transportation includes private vehicles, internal flights (from Hanoi to Hue, Hoi An to Ho Chi Minh City), and a cruise ship in Lan Ha Bay. All transportation is designed to maximize comfort and efficiency.

10. What are the emergency contact procedures?

You will be provided with emergency contacts, including the tour operator’s local office and your guide’s mobile number. It’s also recommended to have a working cell phone in case you need to contact someone during your free time.

This tour is designed to be a comprehensive and hassle-free way to experience the rich cultural tapestry and breathtaking landscapes of Vietnam, from the northern capital of Hanoi to the vibrant streets of Ho Chi Minh City in the south.

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