Northern Culture and Adventure

  • icon-date7 DAYS
  • icon-date16 Meals

The Northern Culture and Adventure tour ticks off all the travel highlights on this in-depth beautiful landscapes and exotic cultures of the North via visiting the mountainous Mai Chau and Pu Luong Nature Reserve, trekking through rolling countryside, and immersing yourself in the wonders of Tam Coc, Trang An, and the legendary Ha Long Bay.

Day 1:

Welcome to Hanoi (D)

Upon arriving at Hanoi airport, our guide and driver will be there to pick you up and transfer you to your hotel to drop off luggage and get some rest. After that, visit the Temple of Literature, and Quoc Tu Giam which are the most iconic places in Hanoi. Then, we will make our way to Ho Chi Minh Complex to check out Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum where preserved Uncle Ho’s corpse for people all over the country and international visitors to visit their beloved old father, and Ba Dinh Square where President Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945. Another signature place in the complex is One Pillar Pagoda- a unique architectural style pagoda built-in 1049. After that, we will visit the Presidential Palace and Ho Chi Minh’s Residence which was used as his workplace and home back in the old time respectively, and Ho Chi Minh Museum. The day ends beautifully with 1 hour on the cyclo to discover the alive Hanoi 36 streets in the Old Town and a delicious welcome dinner.

Day 2:

Hanoi- Mai Chau- Tribe’s Villages (B)

We begin our day with a 3.5-hour drive from Hanoi to Mai Chau. The short journey offers many beautiful passes and some panoramic views down to the valley. Arrive at Mai Chau around midday and head to a traditional stilt house where your lunch is served by local people. In the afternoon, we will cycle around the town, and visit small stilt houses of the Thai minority to learn about their cultures, customs, and lifestyles. There will be a workshop at the local handicraft house for you to observe and make one for yourself. Dinner will be served with “Ruou Can” which is made of fermented glutinous rice mixed with several kinds of herbs from local forests. We don’t drink Ruou Can with a glass or cup, we use slim bamboo tubes! How exciting! Learn more: Ha Giang Loop Tour

Day 3:

Mai Chau- Pu Luong (B, L, D)

Enjoy a complimentary breakfast at the hotel to fuel up for another exciting day of cultural and natural immersion. From Mai Chau, we visit Pu Luong Nature Reserve- a mountainous area with terrace fields, wild forests, and the homes of the Thai minority. After arriving in Pu Luong and having lunch at Ban Hang village, we go cross a suspension bridge over the Cham River and start an easy trekking searching for stunning water wheels, a unique cultural feature of Thai and Muong people living in the nature reserve of Pu Luong. Get close to each wheel and guess how much water is moved from the river to handmade bamboo aqueducts with simple constructions of all sizes.

Day 4:

Pu Luong- Half-day trekking (B, L, D)

It is time to dive into nature! Follow our tour guide for a trek in Pu Luong Nature Reserve- where you can find not only the mysterious land lying furiously on the back of the mountain with rice-terraced paddies tottering horizontally to the sky but also cultural spaces of Black Thai and Muong ethnic culture.

Day 5:

Pu Luong- Ninh Binh (B, L)

Today, we will head to Ninh Binh, first stopping at Hoa Lu- the ancient capital of Vietnam, recognized by UNESCO as one of the four main areas of the Trang An World Heritage Site complex. Visit temples of the two Vietnamese dynasties of Dinh and Le with unique architecture and pick up impressive historical information about the ancient culture of the Royal Palaces’ ground dated the 10th century. After that, we will move to Tam Coc- a World Natural Heritage Site since 2014. The following activities will be hopping on a bamboo boat and rowing along the Ngo Dong river. The boat ride offers an outstanding view of thousands of astonishing limestone cliffs and an exciting experience going under Hang Ca and Hang Ba caves. In the afternoon, we will have a short biking trip around the countryside of Van Long Natural Reserve.

Day 6:

Ninh Binh- Ha Long Bay- Overnight Cruise (B, L, D)

One of the “cannot miss” destinations when visiting Vietnam is Ha Long Bay the wonder of the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Upon arrival, get on a cruise ship to start the journey around Ha Long Bay. It is no need to describe how amazing it is to see the spectacular landscapes with approximately 1600 limestone islands scattering the emerald green water surface and numerous natural caves. You will immerse yourself in nature by floating in the middle of the sea with a kayaking adventure. After kayaking, watch the sunset. I am sure being there at that magical hour will be a memorable experience for your trip. There will be drinks at the desk or interesting activities such as fishing with local people in the evening.

Day 7:

Ha Long Bay- Hanoi (B, Br)

Our breakfast will be served while floating on the sea which would give us another opportunity to capture the beauty of Ha Long Bay before disembarking time. Return to Hanoi, the rest of the day is your free time.

Day 8:

Hanoi- Journey home (B)

You will have some free time to wander on your own or get stuck into some souvenir shopping until we take you to the airport and fly home with wonderful memories (not including late check-out for the hotel).

LocationHotel’s nameRoom category
HanoiHanoi La Siesta Premium Hang Be HotelDeluxe
Mai ChauMau Chau EcologeSuperior
Pu LuongPu Luong RetreatDeluxe
Ninh BinhAravinda Resort Ninh BinhLotus lake Classic
Ha LongHeritage CruiseDelta Cabin
  • Accommodation based on twin sharing occupancy
  • Meals as indicated in program, (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • Private A/C car or van with driver during on tour.
  • English or French speaking guide (any other requested language guide)
  • All entrance fees for sightseeing as indicated in the program
  • Service charges, rooms tax and handling fees
  • International air tickets and airport departure taxes
  • Visa stamping fee
  • Travel insurance
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Personal expenses and other services
  • Meals and drinks not mentioned in the program

NOTES: Tour can be modified, hotels changed to suit your tastes and budget.