16 DAYS – INDOCHINA HERITAGES

  • Product Code: ACIND16D-1
  • Availability: 100
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  • Route: Hanoi - Halong – Hue – Phong Nha Cave – Danang – Hoian – Myson – Kim Bong & Thanh Ha Village – Siem Reap – Angkor Wat – Tonle Sap Lake – Luang Prabang – Pak Ou Caves – Ban Xiengmene – Kuang Si Waterfall
  • Travel style: History & Culture
  • Duration: 16 Days/15 Nights
  • Tour Code: AC16DIND-1
  • Start: Hanoi
  • Finish: Luang Prabang

 

OVERVIEW

This tour is the connecting in three astounding country Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia and 6 world heritages sites. The first impression is violet sunsets and golden Buddhas, gentle elephants and peaceful rural life of Laos. Explore Unesco World Heritage on foot or by bicyle to see colonial buildings and the Golden Stupa which is believed to contain a relic of Lord Buddha. Experience the contrast of the ancient beauty of Angkor, Enjoy a traditional overnight cruise while it glides through the limestone karsts and its 2000 idyllic islets, deep caves, fishermens at work and beautiful beaches of Halong Bay. The quaint French colonial styles of Indochina the next and the intricate Hindu and Buddhist architecture will be included in this tour.

 

BRIEF ITINERARY

  • DAY 1: HANOI ARRIVAL
  • DAY 2: HANOI – FULL DAY HANOI CITY TOUR
  • DAY 3: HANOI – HALONG – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE
  • DAY 4: HALONG – HANOI – HUE
  • DAY 5: HUE – CITY TOUR – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE
  • DAY 6: HUE – PHONG NHA CAVE – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE
  • DAY 7: HUE – HOIAN – CITY TOUR
  • DAY 8: HOIAN – MYSON – KIM BONG & THANH HA VILLAGE
  • DAY 9: HOIAN – DANANG – SIEM REAP – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE
  • DAY 10: SIEM REAP – ANGKOR WAT TOURS
  • DAY 11: SIEM REAP – ANGKOR WAT TOURS
  • DAY 12: SIEM REAP – THE TONLE SAP LAKE – LUANG PRABANG
  • DAY 13: LUANG PRABANG – CITY TOUR
  • DAY 14: LUANG PRABANG – PAK OU CAVES – BAN XIENGMENE
  • DAY 15: LUANG PRABANG – KUANG SI WATERFALLS – RICE EXPERIENCE  
  • DAY 16: LUANG PRABANG – DEPARTURE

 

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Join a cyclo tour through the famous Old Quarter in Hanoi
  • Stay overnight on a traditional wooden junk in Halong Bay
  • Admire the royal relics in the ancient capital of Hue
  • Discover the impressive limestone caves in Phong Nha – Ke Bang National park
  • Explore the well-preserved architectures in the peaceful town of Hoi An
  • Visit the ruined Hindu temples in My Son Sanctuary
  • Land on some traditional handicraft villages of carpentry and ceramics
  • Marvel at the wonders of the great Angkor Wat
  • Relax with a leisurely boat around the Tonle Sap Lake
  • Visit the magnificent Wat Xiengthong in Luang Prabang
  • Go shopping in the famous night market
  • Take part in the sacred Alms Giving Ceremony
  • See thousands Buddhist statues in the Pak Ou Caves
  • Try some farming activities with locals in an organic farm

IMPORTANT NOTE:

  • All prices are quoted in USD/ per person, based on Double/Twin occupancy
  • Private services & daily departure
  • Supplement for standard Vietnamese menu meals:
  • Surcharge for Compulsory dinner for Xmas and New Year Eve
  • Surcharge for booking during Peak season: Xmas, New Year, Chinese New Year
  • Surcharge for domestic flight tickets with taxes: (these prices are subjected to be changed without notice)
    • Flight ticket from Hanoi to Hue: US$ 108 per person
    • Flight ticket from Danang to Siem Reap: US$ 175 per person
    • Flight ticket from Siem Reap to Luang Prabang: US$ 220 per person

 

SPECIAL OFFER

  • [Free] Mineral water is available.
  • [Free] Vietnam visa approval letter on arrival
  • [Free] Vietnam Traditional Gift

 

WHAT IS INCLUDED

  • Accommodation in a double or twin room with daily breakfast
  • One night cruise on a wooden junk in Halong Bay
  • Services of a driver and private air-conditioned vehicle during all tours and transfers
  • Experienced English-speaking guide during all tours and transfers
  • Private board for sightseeing in Hue, Phong Nha, Hoian
  • Entrance fees for all visits as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Lunch or dinner as specified in the itinerary 

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED

  • International & Domestic flight tickets
  • Vietnam visa stamping fee at the airport
  • Meals, if not specified in the itinerary
  • Travel insurance (we highly recommend that you purchase adequate insurance)
  • Gratuities for guides and drivers
  • Personal expenses, such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.
  • All other services not specified in the itinerary

 

ITINERARY:

DAY 1: HANOI ARRIVAL

Arrive at Noi Bai International Airport, welcome by our guide and transfer to your hotel. Hanoi or “River-bound City” as its name literally means is Vietnam’s capital with a thousand-year-old history dating back to 1010. The city’s fascinating beauty which is characterized by unique cultural relics, ancient streets of antique houses, elegant French colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards and romantic lakes has made it one of the most charming cities of Asia.

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hanoi

DAY 2: HANOI – FULL DAY HANOI CITY TOUR

Morning, start a full day city tour beginning with Ho Chi Minh Complex which features the life of Ho Chi Minh, the nation’s founder. At the complex, visit Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum where the nation’s founder’s body is preserved (closed on Monday, Friday and through October - November) and the rural style house on stilts where Ho Chi Minh lived and worked. Stop by one of Hanoi’s icons, the One Pillar Pagoda, built in the 11th Century in dedication to Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara or Buddha of Compassion and reminiscent of a lotus blossom rising from a pond. Continue to the Temple of Literature, known as the first university of Vietnam built in 1070 by the Ly Dynasty to honor Confucius, sages and outstanding Vietnamese scholars.

Afternoon, continue the tour to one of the following museums of choice namely the Museum of Fine Arts, the National Museum of Vietnamese, the Museum of Revolution, the Museum of Military History and the Museum of Ethnology. Go to Hoan Kiem Lake, the center point of Hanoi whose name “The Return Sword Lake” originated from a legend of a sacred sword and home to a rare endangered giant turtle species and visit Ngoc Son Temple on the lake. Next, take a one-hour cycle tour of the Old Quarter of Hanoi with its ancient streets representing traditional trades from the past. Finish the tour at the Thang Long Opera Theatre with a traditional Vietnamese water puppet show.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hanoi

DAY 3: HANOI – HALONG – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE

Morning pickup at 8:00 AM from your hotel for transfer to Ha Long Bay, which is about 160 km or 3.5-hour drive away. On the way, you will see some rural areas of the Red River Delta with plenty of chances to take photos of Vietnamese farmers working in paddy fields. Stop half way to visit a handicraft workshop of fine clothes and embroidered paintings. Arrive in Ha Long City at 11:30 AM and check in aboard the booked junk right after the welcome drink is served. Start cruising while having lunch on board and enjoy the mighty bay view. Ha Long Bay meaning Descending Dragon Bay in Vietnamese as legend has it that it was where a holly dragon landed down from sky. The bay, famous as one of the world’s wonders and heritage sites whose formation dates back 500 million years, consists of around 2,000 karst islands and islets scattered over an area of 1,553 km2. The bay cruise will continue with up close sighting of Dinh Huong Island, Ga Choi Island, Dog Island, Sail Island, a visit to Sung Sot Cave and swimming stop at Titov Beach. Relax to enjoy the bay view at sunset, have dinner after, go fishing at 09:00 PM and spend a night on board.

Meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner

Accommodation: Overnight on Junk in Halong

DAY 4: HALONG – HANOI – HUE

Wake up at 06:30 AM and refresh your body and mind with a Tai Chi exercise on the sundeck. Tai Chi is an ancient internal martial art often practiced in soft and gracefully slow moves to enhance internal harmony and vitality. Have tea and coffee onboard before proceeding to Titov Islet or Soi Sim Island to trek and swim. Check out at 09:30, have a buffet brunch while cruising back to shore. Disembark at 11:00 AM to transfer to Airport in Hanoi for flight to Hue.

Arrive in Hue, welcome by our guide and transfer hotel for check-in and time at leisure.

Meals: Brunch

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hue

DAY 5: HUE – CITY TOUR – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE

Morning, welcome by our guide and begin to visit Hue Citadel, a well-known UNESCO-recognized World Heritage Site, which is a 520 ha fortress-like grand complex built in the early 1800s which features three enclosures separated by heavy ramparts namely Kinh Thanh Hue (Civic City) as the outer, Hoang Thanh (Royal City) as the middle and Tu Cam Thanh (Forbidden City) as the inner. Move on to Khai Dinh Tomb, the burial site of Khai Dinh, Vietnam’s second-to-last king, which is the most elaborate compared to other kings’ tombs. The tomb shows a vivid European influence in architecture despite its Asian style. Take an hour cyclo tour around the peaceful city. 

Afternoon, start sightseeing again with a boat cruise along the Perfume River for sightseeing and visiting two prominent historical landmarks namely Minh Mang Tomb, where Minh Mang, the 2nd Emperor of the Nguyen dynasty was buried, and Thien Mu Pagoda, a Buddhist monastery still in use with its origin dating back to 1601.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hue

DAY 6: HUE – PHONG NHA CAVE – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE

Morning, drive about 200km from Hue to the Son River in Quang Binh province, where you take a boat trip to the famed caves at Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park. The Park is one of the world's two largest limestone regions. In comparison with 41 other world heritage sites which have karsts, Phong Nha has dissimilar geomorphic, geologic and biotic conditions. The karsts of Phong Nha can be traced back to Palaeozoic 400 million years ago. This makes Phong Nha is the oldest major karst in Asia. The area has numerous grottoes and caves. Vietnamese and British scientists have so far surveyed a total of 20 caves with a total length of 70 km. Of these surveyed caves, 17 were in the Phong Nha area and three in the Ke Bang area. Following the narrow underground river, you explore the most impressive Phong Nha cave, from which the name to the whole system. The Cave is famous for its rock formation which have been given names such as the "Lion", the "Fairy Caves", the "Royal Court", and the "Buddha". Afterwards, you return to Dong Hoi for lunch before driving back to Hue.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hue

DAY 7: HUE – HOIAN – CITY TOUR

Morning, transfer to Hoi An via the Hai Van Pass (Ocean Cloud Pass). Enjoy a stunning headland-and-bay panoramic view from the pass, which for miles hugs the mountainside along the shoreline and overlooking the Pacific Ocean. On the way, you will stop to visit Museum of Cham Sculpture built in 1915 and housing the world’s most extensive collection of Cham ethnic sculpture artworks.

Afternoon, continue a Hoi An city tour to discover the charm of Hoi An as a renowned World Heritage Site. Once a bustling maritime commercial port of Asia between 15th and 19th centuries, Hoi An is now a peaceful town of exceptionally well-preserved architecture, lifestyles and traditions. The town exemplifies a fascinating fusion of cultures between Vietnam and the outside world including China, Japan, Thailand and the Philippines. Highlights for sightseeing include the town’s iconic 400-year-old Covered Bridge with a small temple attached to one side as a prominent example of Japanese architecture, the Museum of Trade Ceramics which is an elegant Vietnamese style wooden house built in 1858 showcasing antique ceramic artifacts, the 200-year-old Tan Ky House typifying an ancient Chinese merchant residence, the Ong Temple built in 1653 by Chinese settlers to worship Guan Yu, an ancient Chinese general whose character stands for loyalty, bravery and justice and the local market vibrant with colors and activities.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hoian

DAY 8: HOIAN – MYSON – KIM BONG & THANH HA VILLAGE

Morning, meet our guide at your hotel and transfer about 40 km West of Hoi An to visit My Son Sanctuary, another UNESCO-recognized world heritage which was once a religious center of Cham people where royal ceremonies and burials were performed. The site now is a colony of partially ruined Hindu temples from the total of 70 constructed by Cham Kings between the 4th and the 14th Centuries in dedication to god Shiva. It is regarded one of the foremost Hindu temple complexes in Southeast Asia and is often compared with other temple heritages of Southeast Asia such as Angkor in Cambodia, Ayuthaya in Thailand or Borobudur in Java.

Afternoon, take a boat cruise on the Thu Bon River to enjoy the countryside landscapes. Land on Kim Bong village where carpentry has been practiced since the 16th Century as the village’s trademark to visit some old-fashioned boatyards using timber as the main material. Move on to Thanh Ha village to see its traditional ceramic production trade still alive and thriving despite the 500-year passage of time.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Hoian

DAY 9: HOIAN – DANANG – SIEM REAP – UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE

Full day free time for sightseeing and shopping.

Late afternoon, transfer to Airport in Danang for flight to Siem Reap.

Arrival Siem Reap, meet our local guide and transfer to hotel for check in.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Siem Reap

DAY 10: SIEM REAP – ANGKOR WAT TOURS

In the morning, visit to the antique capital of Angkor Thom (12 century) : the South Gate with its huge statues depicting the churning of the ocean of milk, the Bayon Temple, unique for its 54 towers decorated with over 200 smiling faces of Avolokitesvara, the Phimeanakas, the Royal Enclosure, the Elephants Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King. After your rest, visit the most famous of all the temples on the plain of Angkor: Angkor Wat. The temple complex covers 81 hectares and is comparable in size to the Imperial Palace in Beijing. Its distinctive five towers are emblazoned on the Cambodian flag and the 12th century masterpiece is considered by art historians to be the prime example of classical Khmer art and architecture. Angkor Wat’s five towers symbolize Meru’s five peaks - the enclosed wall represents the mountains at the edge of the world and the surrounding moat, the ocean beyond.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Siem Reap

DAY 11: SIEM REAP – BENG MEALEA AND BANTEAY SREI

Morning: (start tour by 8:00AM), visit an ancient Hindu temple at the countryside, BANTEAY SREY (citadel of women, 35Km north of Siem Reap), was built from 968-1001 AD, is dedicated to Shiva God. In Cambodia it is a unique pink sandstone temple which has most beautiful deep carvings. Afternoon:  Beng Mealea (Beng Mealea temple was built in the 12 cetury, the layout and style of Beng Mealea is very similar to Angkor Wat. Its current state, however, is dominated by jungle. Trees have grown out of the towers and vines entangle columns. Lintels and others building blocks lay around in a tumble and require visitors to clime up and down as they approach the completely collapsed central towers. Ancient capital of Khmer Empire of Rolouse group such as Lolei, Bakong and Preah Ko temples.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Siem Reap

DAY 12: SIEM REAP – THE TONLE SAP LAKE – LUANG PRABANG

Morning, pick up from your hotel for excursion to visit the floating village of Chong Khneas, located 10 kilometers south of Siem Reap. Take a traditional wooden boat for a ride on the Tonle Sap Lake, the "Great Lake" of Cambodia, one of the largest in Asia and flows into Tonle Sap River, joining the Mekong in Phnom Penh. We will see a fishermen's "floating village" with floating schools, floating police station, etc. It is same as abig village floating on the lake, and the "village" move from place to place following water levels and current. Next visit the Old Market where you can see the fresh local produce being sold as well as browse the souvenir stalls

Afternoon, free at leisure until transfer to Airport in Siem Reap flight to Luang Prabang.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Luang Prabang

DAY 13: LUANG PRABANG – CITY TOUR

Full day city tour begins with a visit to the Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts.  We then head to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. A visit to Luang Prabang would be incomplete without ascending 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 collection of handmade textiles made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Luang Prabang

DAY 14: LUANG PRABANG – PAK OU CAVES – BAN XIENGMENE  

An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the procession.

Today we embark on a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, firstly stopping at Xiengmene, where we visit Wat Long Khun, and the limestone cave Tham Sakkarin, and a tour around Ban Xiengmene village. Following a picnic lunch, we then continue by boat up the Mekong which also gives us a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside as well time to explore the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims.  Along the way, we stop at the village of Ban Xanghai, where they make the local rice wine. On return, we take a short drive to Ban Phanom, a small village known for its hand weaving.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Luang Prabang

DAY 15: LUANG PRABANG – KUANG SI WATERFALLS – RICE EXPERIENCE                    

Morning, we drive to Living Land Lao Organic farm at Phoung Van village. Your guide and the representative of the farm briefs about the historical and activity of the farm.  Today attending a half day of rice experience including growing ride until stream ride. We also have time to visit the Organic products after rice experience. 

In the afternoon, drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall where you can splash around in the pools or walk along the forest paths. Before coming back to Luang Prabang, we still have time to visit Kuang Si Falls Butterflies Park, newly opened January 2014; it is now one of the must-see spots in Luang Prabang. We return to the city by late evening, for observing the sunset at Wat Siphouthabath.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Overnight at hotel in Luang Prabang

DAY 16: LUANG PRABANG – DEPARTURE

You are free to strolling around this charming town before taking the departure flight

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