World Heritages in Vietnam (14D/13N Program) Hanoi – Halong – Ninh Binh – Thanh Hoa – Vinh – Dong Hoi – Phong Nha – Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An – My Son – Da Nang – Buon Ma Thuot – Ho Chi Minh city
DAY 1: Arrival in Hanoi (-, -, -)
Lac Hong Voyages representative will greet and pick you up at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi. Transfer to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy an evening water puppet show, a theatrical genre reflecting the agricultural civilization of thousands of years ago. Stay overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 2: Hanoi- Bat Trang- Halong (B, -, -)
Enjoy a morning sightseeing tour which features Hanoi’s cultural and historical highlights, including Historical Museum, Uncle Ho’s Stilt House, One-Pillared Pagoda, Temple of Literature and Tran Quoc Pagoda. Afternoon visit the Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long, then drive to the famous Bat Trang pottery village with a history of 500 years. Observe the artisans forming, painting and glazing their products, which are then baked for several days in huge kilns. Proceed to Ha Long. Stay overnight in Halong.
DAY 3: Halong – Ninh Binh (B, L, -)
Embark a traditional-style wooden boat at a nearby wharf for a 5-hour cruise around the wondrous Halong Bay, a World Natural Heritage site listed by UNESCO in 1994. Visit some magical grottoes, marvel at odd-shaped islands and relax in the best scenic beauty of Vietnam. Lunch of fresh seafood is served on board. In the afternoon leave Halong for Ninh Binh, famous for the Trang An complex, the Vietnam’s 8th cultural and natural heritage site Trang An complex. Stay overnight in Ninh Binh.
DAY 4: Ninh Binh (B, -, -)
Pay morning visit to the Dinh & Le dynasty temples in Hoa Lu, an ancient capital of Vietnam (968 – 1009). Then take a sampan ride to Tam Coc and paddle through three enormous caves and view local fisher folk, village life along the river and, of course, the striking limestone karst formations. Move onwards to the Bich Dong cave pagodas dating from the 17th century. Have an afternoon visit to Bai Dinh pagoda with a biggest bronze statue of Buddha in Viet Nam, weighing 100 tons, three bronze statues featuring three tenses – past, present and future – weighing 50 tons each, a largest bronze 36-ton bell and 500 white-stone Arhat statues. Stay overnight in Ninh Binh.
DAY 5: Ninh Binh – Thanh Hoa – Vinh (B, -, -)
Transfer to Vinh Loc (about 50km) and visit the Ho Dynasty Citadel, a World Cultural Heritage site listed by UNESCO in 2012. Then travel to Vinh. Arrive in Vinh and pay visit to President Ho Chi Minh’s birth home in Kim Lien Village, where farm houses made of bamboo and palm leaves over 100 years ago are restored. Then travel to Cua Lo, a seaside town with stunning sandy beach. Stay overnight in Cua Lo.
Relax on the beach this morning. In the afternoon travel 200km to Dong Hoi leaving behind paddy fields, wild sand dunes and stunning passes. Stay overnight in Dong Hoi.
DAY 7: Dong Hoi – Hue (B, -, -)
Before leaving for Phong Nha cavern, wander about the Nhat Le Fish Market, with sellers and buyers invariably wearing the ubiquitous conical hat. Transfer 45km to the Xuan Son ferry landing, and take a boat trip on the Son River to spectacular Phong Nha Cavern recognized as World Natural Heritage site. In the afternoon travel 220km southwards to Hue. Stay overnight in Hue.
DAY 8: Hue (B, -, -)
Enjoy a full day tour of Hue, a former imperial city of Vietnam ruled by 13 Nguyen dynasties. Explore the Royal Citadel, built in 1804 on a site chosen in accordance with geomancy. The tour of Imperial City features Flag Tower, Noon Gate, Nine Dynastic Urns, Nine Holy Cannons, Thai Hoa Palace (Palace of Supreme Harmony), and Forbidden Purple City. Enjoy Hue court music at Duyet Thi Duong Theatre. Then transfer to the lively Dong Ba Market by cyclo. In the afternoon, take a boat along Perfume River. Visit Thien Mu Pagoda and Hon Chen Temple. The last stop is Minh Mang’s Mausoleum. Stay overnight in Hue.
DAY 9: Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An (B, -, -)
Depart for Da Nang by a scenic drive via the scenic fishing village of Lang Co and the Pass of Ocean Clouds. On arrival in Da Nang, pay visits to the Museum of Cham Sculpture (closed on Monday) with the World’s finest collection of some 300 Cham sculpture exhibits dating from the 7th to the 15th centuries, the Linh Ung Bai But Pagoda, located on the hill at Son Tra peninsula and considered as the biggest pagoda in Da Nang, which boasts the East Sea facing Statue of Goddess of Mercy, the highest statue in Vietnam (67 meters height approximately 30 stories), the Marble Mountains (or Ngu Hanh Son) of the five sacred elements (metal, wood, water, fire and soil) with numerous caves and Buddhist shrines and the stone-carving village of Non Nuoc. Proceed to Hoi An ancient town, a major Asian trading port in the 17th and 18th centuries. Relax on the beach or enjoy hotel facilities. Stay overnight in Hoi An.
DAY 10: Hoi An-My Son-Hoi An (B, L, -)
Enjoy a whole day to explore two World Cultural Heritage sites recognized by UNESCO in 1999. Depart a scenic drive of 55 km for My Son Sanctuary, located in a lush green valley, where the architectural treasures and sculptures of Cham culture dating from the 7th to the 13th century can be discovered. Lunch with local specialties served. Have a walking tour of the ancient town centre. Stroll around the Hoi An Ancient Quarter Area to visit a number of temples, pagodas, communal houses, traditional shops, local markets and other places of interest and watch local daily activities, handicraftsmen at work and a lively show of traditional dancing and music. Stay overnight in Hoi An.
DAY 11: Hoi An – Da Nang – Buon Ma Thuot (B, -, -)
Transfer to Da Nang airport for a morning flight to Buon Ma Thuot. Pick up on arrival at Buon Ma Thuot Airport and transfer to Lak Lake. On arrival, enjoy a dugout canoe ride on the lake and an elephant ride through the M’nong villages of Yun and M’lieng. Enjoy the Gong cultural show. Come back Buon Ma Thuot. Stay overnight in Buon Ma Thuot.
DAY 12: Buon Ma Thuot – Ho Chi Minh City (B, -, -)
Visit to Ethnographic Museum, the Ede village of Tur. Transfer to Buon Ma Thuot airport for flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Pick up on arrival at Tan Son Nhat Airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day is at your leisure. In the evening, optionally enjoy an evening Á Ố Show Saigon, a unique and immensely enjoyable experience, full with mesmerizing sounds, enchanting live music, charming dance and dynamic acrobatics in a vibrant and light-hearted series of sketches about Vietnam’s rural and urban lives. Stay overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 13: Ho Chi Minh City – Cu Chi – Ho Chi Minh City (B, -, -)
Drive 70 km to Cu Chi, famed for its elaborate network of over 200 km of three-story underground tunnels hand-dug by local people during the Vietnam War. Crawl down a tunnel to feel the underground life, and then test your marksmanship with an AK rifle at a local rifle range (optional with surcharge). Have an afternoon sightseeing tour of Ho Chi Minh City. Visit Jade Emperor Pagoda and Reunification Palace, followed by the Central Post Office; then have a short walk along the shopping Dong Khoi Street from Notre Dame Cathedral to the Municipal Theatre. Experience the Saigon River Cruise “Along the Saigon East-West Highway”, which departs from Thu Thiem Inland Waterway Pier and goes along Ben Nghe & Tau Hu Canals parallel to the Vo Van Kiet Avenue, passing by such the well-known sites as Bach Dang Wharf, Nha Rong Wharf, Khanh Hoi Bridge, Mong Bridge, Ong Lanh Bridge, Chu Y Bridge, Cha Va Bridge and Binh Dong Wharf. Drive through the bustling Cho Lon (District 5) with stops over at the lively Binh Tay wholesale market and Thien Hau Temple, dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea. Drop by a lacquer workshop on the way back to your hotel. Stay overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
DAY 14: Departure from Ho Chi Minh City (B, -, -)
Spend last minutes shopping (ceramics, silver-carvings, silk, etc.) before check-out. Transfer to the airport for departure flight.
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