This tour combines the cultural heritage of Hanoi with the scenic mountains of Sapa..
From Hanoi, take the deluxe overnight Victoria Express train to Sapa; the train has made this area of Vietnam more accessible than ever – and getting there is part of the fun. Sapa is one of Vietnam’s most intriguing destinations, set high in the mountains near the China border; it is most famous for its terraced rice paddies and colorful local markets. Home to numerous ethnic tribes and boasting the highest mountain in Indochina, visitors to the region will understand why the area was a favourite with French colonialists as far back as 1920.
Back in Hanoi enjoy the deservedly world famous charms of the Sofitel Metropole before heading home or continuing your journey in Vietnam or one of our other enticing destination.
Tour Code : VLT 03
Dates: No fixed departure dates. You may go whenever you wish.
Day 1: Hanoi – Arrival (D)
Transfer via: International flight – your arrangement
Accommodation: Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel
Up on arrival at Hanoi airport, we will be welcome by Viet Sapa Travel tour guide then transfer to Hanoi. It takes us around 1 hour driving and we will be short present about Vietnam with history, country and people…. Arrive at hotel, we check in and relax in the rest of the day. In the evening, we will be met again for our welcome dinner at Press Club restaurant – a nice restaurant in central Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi.
Day 2: Hanoi – Lao Cai (B,L)
Accommodation: Victoria Train Express
0830 depart your hotel for the Temple of Literature. In 1076 Quoc Tu Giam -Vietnam’s first university, also referred to as Van Mieu, was established within a temple to educate Vietnam’s royalty, mandarins and members of the elite. The university functioned for an incredible 700 years and its gardens and well-preserved architecture offer a fascinating glimpse into Vietnam’s past.
The One Pillar Pagoda, founded by King Ly Thai To in 1049 will be visited next. This structure is one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples. Close by is the mausoleum of the historic figure and father of modern Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh (viewed from outside; closed Mon and Fri and from Oct-Nov) and the former presidents house on stilts where he lived from 1958 to 1969, his former home illustrates the modesty of this Vietnamese revolutionary.
Continue to picturesque West Lake and the sixth century Tran Quoc Buddhist Pagoda. From here transfer (or stroll along the lakeside) 700meters to the nearby Taoist temple of Quan Thanh which is dedicated to Tran Vu, one of the principal deities in Taoism.
In the afternoon visit the fascinating Ethnology Museum, which is both a research centre and a public museum exhibiting the ethnic groups ofVietnam. As an alternative to the Ethnology Museum, visit the highly acclaimed Vietnam Women’s Museum (closed on Mondays). The museum is located near Hoan Kiem Lake and offers wonderful insight into the lives of Vietnamese women. Displays highlight Vietnam’s vast cultural diversity and educate on the significant role Vietnamese women play in Vietnamese society. Learn historic and modern-day traditions centered around births, weddings, motherhood, spirituality and more.
At the end of the afternoon visit Hanoi’s Old Quarter also known as the ‘36 streets’. Take a walking tour through charming Hang Be Market and around Hoan Kiem Lake. This bustling area of narrow streets and alleys is home to literally thousands of small businesses and shopkeepers. It’s a great place to explore with plenty of photo opportunities all around you.
Mid evening proceed to Hanoi Train Station for the night train to Lao Cai.
Day 3: Lao Cai – Sapa (B,L,D)
Accommodation: Victoria Spa& Resort
On arrival in the border town of Lao Cai transfer to the former hill station of Sapa.
In the terraced hills and mountains of this area, the expansive green landscape is enlivened by the colors of its hill tribe population – flashes of shining silver jewellery from the necks and wrists of indigo-clad H’mong and the scarlet hues of the turbans worn by the Red Dao can be seen. It is here you will find hands stained with color from fabric dyes and shades of blue, red and green intricately embroidered and stitched into jackets, waistcoats, pants, skirts, caps, purses and leggings. Take a morning walking tour of Sapa for a visit to the busy market where Red Dao, Black H’Mong, Tay and other ethnic minority people converge from the surrounding countryside to sell their silverware and handicrafts, and to buy provisions. Following take a light trek to discover Sapa’s quaint hill tribe villages set against the stunning Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range and Indochina’s highest peak, Mt. Fansipan, a picnic lunch will be had en-route.
Rest of the afternoon and evening at leisure.
Day 4: Sapa – LaoCai – Hanoi (B,L,D)
Accommodation: Victoria Train Express
Have breakfast before driving to visit a local market (Coc Ly on Tuesday/ Cao Son on Wednesday/ Lung Khau Nhin on Thursday / Can Cau on Saturday/ Bac Ha on Sunday. Note: The market visit may be on your arrival day depending on the market day). Here you’ll see mostly Flower Hmong however Phu La, Black Dao, Tay, Nung hill tribe groups also gather here. The market offers a variety of local products, which could not be found in others areas such as an interesting animal market where pot-bellied pigs, cows and buffalos can be seen.
Continue your tour to have a short walk a hill-tribe village. Here you’ll have the opportunity to visit some local homes to understand more on the daily life of these tribes as well as their culture and traditions. Following head back to Lao Cai.
In the late afternoon transfer back to Lao Cai before the night train back to Hanoi. In Lao Cai you’ll have day use of a hotel room so you can freshen up before the overnight train trip.
Overnight on the train in a soft sleeper compartment.
Day 5: Hanoi – Ha Long Bay (B,L,D)
Accommodation: Paradise Luxury Cruise
An early arrival in Hanoi followed by breakfast in a local restaurant before heading to Halong Bay by road. Depart for the 3.5-hour drive to Halong Bay. Journey there through the rich farmlands of the Red River Delta, observe everyday life of Vietnamese villagers as they work the rice fields, take pigs to the market on motorbikes and plough the fields with their water buffaloes. Arrive from Hanoi late morning and welcome at the pier of your boat.
Check-in and transfer to your boat for the overnight journey into the Bay. Lunch is served on board as you cruise into Halong Bay. Cruise by rock formations with such names as Sail, Dog and Dinh Huong (incense pot). Towards the end of the day set anchor for the night as the sun sets followed by dinner.
Day 6: Ha Long Bay – Ha Noi (B,L)
Accommodation: Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel
On your return to Halong City enjoy a wholesome brunch as your boat weaves through strange-shaped limestone rock formations. Upon disembarkation your driver will meet you for the transfer back to Hanoi.
This afternoon your guide and driver will be at your disposal. Enjoy the many charms that this city has to offer from the many stunning tree lined boulevards to simply taking a coffee at one of the charming street side coffee shop and watching the world go by.
Tonight finish the day with a Water Puppet show. This is a uniquely northern Vietnamese art form depicting scenes from rural life and episodes of national history.
Day 7: Hanoi Departure day
Free at leisure until your transfer by private car to Hanoi Airport for international flight or domestic extension.
Since this is a private tour, the price per person varies and depends on many aspects, such as your group size, the hotel ratings and your departure date. If you want to get a custom price quote for this tour, please fill out the online inquiry form and give us as much information as possible about your trip. Your online travel consultants will be at your service and help you make the most of your travel time and dollars!
Our services include:
Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room with daily breakfast
2D1N Cruise Halong
Victoria night train Hanoi – Lao Cai – Hanoi (superior ticket, sharing 4 berth cabin)
Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
English or French speaking guide (for other languages and a national guide supplements apply)
Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle
Entrance fees for mentioned visits
Water and tissue during tour
Our services do not include:
Other meals than mentioned
Other services than mentioned
International and Domestic Flights
Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature
Tips, Travel insurance