- Day 1: Landing in Hanoi – Airport Transfer
- Day 2: Discover Hanoian Food Cultures
- Day 3: AM: Drive to Halong Bay – PM: Explore the Bay & Overnight onboard
- Day 4: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Fly to Danang/ Hoi An
- Day 5: AM: Farming & Cooking Class – PM: Hoi An Walking Tour
- Day 6: Free Day in Hoi An
- Day 7: Drive to Hue: Hue Cuisine – Culture & Art – Evening Royal Banquet
- Day 8: Hue Ancient Citadel & Fly to Ho Chi Minh City
- Day 9: Ho Chi Minh City Tour – Evening Foodie Tour with Moto-riders
- Day 10: Mekong Delta: Biking, Boating, Tasting wines & Fruits
- Day 11: See the Lively Bartering at Cai Rang Floating Market
- Day 12: Ho Chi Minh City – Departure
- This itinerary is a privately guided tour, designed just to show you what is possible.
- We can tailor this trip, it's inclusions and the accommodations, to meet your requirements, budget, and interests.
Landing in Hanoi – Airport TransferDay 1
A warm greeting awaits at Noi Bai International airport; your private guide and driver will meet you in the arrivals lounge and transfer you to your hotel in downtown Hanoi. While every effort is made to have your room available upon arrival, check in time is at 02:00 pm; your room may or may not be ready before this time. Your tour guide will provide additional details regarding your stay, and you will be able to ask any questions you may have. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Overnight in Hanoi
Discover Hanoian Food CulturesDay 2
Dive into the sights, sounds, and smells of Hanoi. Your guide and driver will collect you from the hotel lobby to start your trip with a visit to the Ho Chi Minh complex on the site where he declared Vietnam’s independence in 1945, and see the reverence with which Vietnamese people treat their “Uncle Ho”. Other sites that we will visit with our local guide include House 54, Stilt House, Presidential Palace, and the One Pillar Pagoda.
You then visit the Temple of Literature. Originally built in honor of Confucius by Emperor Ly Thanh Tong in 1070, a university was added to the grounds six years later. The university provided education to the royal family and children of the aristocracy or “mandarins”. The University remained here until Emperor Gia Long moved the countries administrative capital from Hanoi to Hue in the 18th century.
After a morning visit, you will have Pho for lunch at Pho Huyen, a Vietnamese Noodle shop. Some of the local people call this world-famous Noodle soup “Mac-Noodles” since it is as popular here as MacDonalds is in other parts of the world! At the restaurant, your tour guide will explain the routine during Vietnamese meal times, and also tell you which special ingredients are needed for you
Tasting Vietnamese Tea in a local shop. Tea plays a major role in Vietnamese culinary culture, and the locals tend to favor light, flower-infused varieties. A shop owner is a person who has a strong passion for Vietnam’s ancient tea culture. Meeting him & chatting to learn how to make flower-teas, & learn more about one of the beauties in Vietnamese Cuisine.
Return your hotel for some rest before starting the evening local food discovery.
We start our walking tour at Hanoi’s largest covered market, Dong Xuan. Along the perimeter of the market, dozens of street hawkers sell a staggering variety of produce from live seafood to exotic fruits and spices. Your expert English-speaking local guide will give you an insight into the intricacies and traditions of Vietnamese food culture including details on ingredients and historical backgrounds of popular northern dishes.
Walking through the maze of bustling streets that make up Hanoi’s Old Quarter, we tempt our taste buds with the famed Hanoi dish Banh Cuon at a local eatery. Watch in awe as the skilled chefs demonstrate for you how this tasty dish is put together. Continuing into the atmospheric heart of the Old Quarter, we wander past street stalls and quiet residential lanes where you can observe local life that has changed little since Hanoi was founded over 1000 years ago.
Our next stop is Banh My 25 shop “French Baguette”, a little food stall with a few typical tiny Vietnamese chairs on the sidewalk where we enjoy the delicious and fresh baguettes while observing the neighborhood.
Move on to Hanoi Food Culture at Phat Loc Street, where we sample some Bun Cha consisting of vermicelli, herbs and grilled pork. At this Hanoi’s best-kept secrets, a hidden café we will watch the demonstration and then try some egg coffee, a scrumptious local delicacy.
Continue to other food stalls in Hang Bo and Ho Hoan Kiem Street where we try some dishes such Che “Vietnamese style pudding” and Nom “papaya salad with beef”.
It’s the time for dessert as we venture down a small alley to join in the local tradition of feasting on fresh fruit served in a cup and smothered with crushed iced – this specialty is one not to be missed!
Overnight in Hanoi
AM: Drive to Halong Bay – PM: Explore the Bay & Overnight onboardDay 3
After breakfast and check out, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you through the rich farmlands of the Red River Delta to the legendary Halong Bay (travel time approximately 4 hours).
You will arrive at the docks around midday, and you will board a traditional wooden junk boat for a relaxing and unforgettable cruise around the breathtaking and unique limestone mountain islands. A sumptuous local seafood lunch will be served as you cruise this spectacular bay.
You will visit one of the famous caves of Halong Bay, and there will be a stop at Ti Top Mountain, where you will climb to the top for a stunning panoramic view of Halong Bay.
Take part in a cooking demonstration on board. It is then followed by a scrumptious dinner. For the night activities, you can try some squid fishing, unwind on the top deck and enjoy a glass of cocktail. Then return to your cabin for a good night sleep.
(Note: Program may differ slightly base on cruise ships)
Overnight on board
Halong Bay – Hanoi – Fly to Danang/ Hoi AnDay 4
In the morning, enjoy breakfast on board your junk boat as you take in the scenic treasures of the bay. There will be an opportunity for you to kayak on the bay’s placid waters to access some of the sites inaccessible by the larger boats, including a cave.
Lunch will be provided onboard before arrival back at the dock, where you will be picked up by your private driver and taken back to Hanoi. In the early evening, you take a short flight to Da Nang. Upon arrival, you are driven to the hotel in Hoi An.
Overnight in Hoi An
AM: Farming & Cooking Class – PM: Hoi An Walking TourDay 5
After being collected from your hotel, a short bicycle competency test will be given. For those uncomfortable with a pushbike, then the private car can be arranged. The tour starts by cycling along level ground to the Thu Bon River to visit a local fishing village.
Ride along country lanes at a peaceful pace viewing local life and pause to see farmers toiling in their rice fields using centuries of farming practices. Peddle your way through palm forests, across bridges, fields of water buffalo…
Take a short break in a local family at Cam Thanh Village before enjoying a fun ride on the traditional Basket Boat (round boat) in the Water Coconut Palm Forest. Learn how to sail the basket boat and spend your time to catch fishes and “purple crabs” in the Canal.
Continue to ride our bike to Tra Que Organic Vegetable Village where a large variety of vegetable is produced for the local community. At the village, you will be shown the environmentally sustainable practices which the local villagers have used for centuries and is still being used extensively today.
After some farming practices, we head a family at the local village to do a private cooking class www.kumquathoian.com. Then, enjoy a foot massage and the traditional herbal foot dip. We will then ride back to the hotel to rest during the day.
In the afternoon, you will start your exploration in the ancient town of Hoi An, a beautiful place that once was an important commercial port to where Chinese, Japanese and European merchants used to come to trade their goods. This makes Hoi An a town that clusters a cultural legacy similar to much bigger and populated cities. After some time being forgotten, this town has come back as an important tourist destination and in 1999 it was listed as a World Heritage Site. Fortunately, its architecture and lifestyle haven’t really changed from those in the past.
This is a fact you will be able to verify the moment you are taking a pleasant stroll through the narrow streets of Hoi An’s old quarter and visiting the traditional merchants’ homes. Of course, you will get the chance of seeing the iconic Japanese Covered Bridge, built at the end of the sixteenth century by the Japanese community living in Hoi An, so they could communicate with the Chinese neighborhoods located on the other side of the river, and the colorful town’s market.
Later, you back in the hotel, you will have the rest of the day free so you can discover this fascinating place at your own pace. You can rest or go to the beach maybe.
Overnight in Hoi An
Meals: (Breakfast/ Lunch/_)
Free Day in Hoi AnDay 6
Spend the whole day in Hoi An. Sunbathe on the beach, go shopping, or become familiar with the quaint streets of Hoi An. Hoi An is a paradise for a family holiday. Lunch will be on your own.
We recommend you hire a bicycle to ride to the beautiful Cua Dai Beach or take part in a cooking class. For the cooking class, your cooking instructor will take you through Hoi An’s riverside market, always a hive of activity, to purchase the ingredients before returning to the restaurant to learn how to prepare a Vietnamese meal, which you will get to enjoy afterward!
Overnight in Hoi An
Drive to Hue: Hue Cuisine – Culture & Art – Evening Royal BanquetDay 7
We will drive north to Hue – a romantic town in the central of Vietnam. Our 4.5-hour trip, hugging the coastline along the Eastern Sea, provides breathtaking views that grow ever more spectacular as we wind our way up Hai Van Pass (“Pass of the Clouds”). On the way, you will stop to visit some sites such as Non-Nuoc Stone Carving Village, Marble Mountain, Lang Co Beach & Hai Van Pass.
Arrive at the hotel in Hue at mid-noon. You are served a light lunch with some specialties of Hue:
– Com Hen (Clam Rice)
– Nem Lui (Hue Lemongrass Skewers)
– Banh Beo (Steamed Rice Cakes) …
– Bun Thit Nuong (Vermicelli Noodles With Grilled Pork) …
– Banh It Ram (Fried Sticky Rice Dumplings)
The afternoon is time for visiting the Hue’s most impressive tombs Tu Duc Tomb to learn more about Royal’s life, and visit the Incense and Conical Hat making villages. Return to the city center and if time and weather permit, we could admire the glorious sunset. Drive back to the hotel.
***For a group from 4 pax: Enjoy Emperor’s Royal Banquet – a special dinner in your trip.
Upon arrival at the traditional restaurant, you will be given colorful imperial costumes so you can dress up as Emperors, Queens, Mandarins, and Concubines.
You will be entertained by traditional Hue Imperial Court music and served a multiple course meal in the royal tradition of the Imperial Court.
Each dish is exquisitely prepared to symbolize the dragon, the phoenix, and the peacock. A truly unique experience
Overnight in Hue
Meals: (Breakfast/Light Lunch/_)
Hue Ancient Citadel & Fly to Ho Chi Minh CityDay 8
You are picked up at your centrally located hotel in Hue for exploration of Dong Ba market, an exciting market filled with colorful sights, sounds, and smells. You will be introduced to local vendors and traditional foods.
Then, you are doing a leisure boat trip along the Perfume River to visit the towering Thien Mu Pagoda, one of the most famous Vietnamese landmarks.
Continue your journey to discover the UNESCO World Heritage-listed wonder of the Citadel including the Forbidden Purple City then make your way to the Hue Royal Antiques Museum to see a collection of ornaments, where preserves royal treasures has a history with many changes
Satisfy your hunger with a popular dish called bún bò Huế which contains rice vermicelli (bún) and beef (bò). This is a signature of the city. You are transferred to Phu Bai Airport. In the afternoon, you fly to Ho Chi Minh City
Upon arrival, you are welcomed by our local driver. From Tan Son Nhat airport, we are transferred to the hotel and check-in. The remaining of the day is free at leisure.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City
Meals: (Breakfast/Light Lunch/_)
Ho Chi Minh City Tour – Evening Foodie Tour with Moto-ridersDay 9
Let’s start the morning tour in the most dynamic city in Vietnam. You start the city tour to explore great architectures in one of our largest cities in Vietnam.
The architecture of Ho Chi Minh City is a splendid mix of Vietnam’s historical heritage, from French colonial villas to modern steel and glass monuments.
The top architectural sights for tourists date back to the time when Saigon, the “Pearl of Indochina” was the capital of French Indochina. More has been added to the cultural heritage since then and we see interesting times ahead in terms of modern architecture.
Based on the Hotel de Ville in Paris (Paris City Hall), Saigon’s City Hall was finished in 1908. It proudly sits at the beginning of Nguyen Hue Street, showing off a beautiful building style. Nowadays it harbors the main office of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee and is closed to the public.
The Central Post Office is a popular tourist spot and THE place in HCMC to send postcards from. And of course, a famous monument among travelers for its beautiful paintings and architecture, finished 1891 by Gustave Eiffel, a splendid French engineer who also built the Eiffel Tower.
The Reunification Palace is an important historical landmark and a popular tourist attraction because the day the building’s main gate was broken in 1975 marks the end of the American War. The palace was designed by Ngo Viet Thu for South Vietnam’s former President.
The Saigon Opera House is also a famous landmark and popular site for tourists in Ho Chi Minh City. It was built in 1897 by the French architect Eugene Ferret and is open to visitors during events.
The architecture in Ho Chi Minh City evolved from the colonial time, over the period of South Vietnam and the reunification until today. More skyscrapers and other interesting, modern monuments are in the planning and in the making, so you witness the development of an interesting skyline.
Return your hotel in downtown at noon. The whole afternoon is free at leisure.
In the evening, you do a Foodie tour with XO tours (joining in a group)
Sample the most amazing dishes that Vietnam has the offer! Taste your way through cuisine from North Vietnam, Hue and the South. The Foodie is the most acclaimed Vietnam Food tour, and is designed to introduce you to the dishes and desserts that most food blogs and other tours don’t really touch upon!
We will take you to the most popular street stalls and hidden alleyways in the city and show you where the locals really love to eat! So save your appetite, delight your palate and let us fill your tummy with delicious and authentic Vietnamese Food!
Our foodie tour focuses on street food dishes that most people outside of Vietnam have never had a chance to experience. Unlike most other Vietnam food tours, we won’t serve you Pho, Spring Rolls, Vietnamese Pancakes, or Banh Mi Sandwiches. We also won’t make you eat dog meat, bugs, organs, raw food or anything too weird.
The foodie tour is only available in the evenings when most of the street vendors open for business. All food & drinks are included in the price! You get at least 10 entrees (including lots of seafood), dessert and drinks (beer, soft drinks, water & tea) on this tour. The portions are generous, and we will keep on ordering food as long as you keep eating!
The food is not just a gastronomic tour, but a great way to see parts of the city that the majority of tourists do not get to see. Most visitors to Ho Chi Minh City are stuck in District 1; on this tour, we will take you to 5 other popular districts and show you how real Vietnamese people live, work and eat! The Foodie combines our Saigon By Night Tour with stops for amazing food and lasts about 4.5 hours. We will give you plenty of time in between each stop in order for you to rest your stomach.
By far our most popular tour, the foodie is great fun and the perfect way to discover some of the lesser known dishes that the locals love to eat. But do not take our word for it, read a reviews if our Foodie tour by 1010 “Chopped” winner and New York Chef, Mario Tolentino, and another great write -up by beautiful Aussie expat Dani Moger, who despite having lived in Ho Chi Minh City for 18 months, said she was bowled over by the food and parts of the city that she never even knew existed.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City
Mekong Delta: Biking, Boating, Tasting wines & FruitsDay 10
Start your day with a pick-up from your centrally located hotel in Ho Chi Minh City. Then head to the city of My Tho by bus. During the 1.5-hour bus drive to My Tho, learn about the cultures of the local people and enjoy the nice scenery of green rice fields. Visit Vinh Trang pagoda, the biggest pagoda in Mekong Delta. Continue to My Tho and take a boat trip along Mekong River. During the cruise, see fish cages and floating houses on the river. The boat will take you to a small canal, where you can escape the busy town. The cruise through the coconut trees lined canal will take you to a coconut island in Ben Tre. Disembark, walk around the village and visit a local family to enjoy tropical fruit, taste honey tea, honey wine and listen to Vietnamese traditional music, performed by the villagers.
Continue walking on the village’s road to a coconut candy shop to learn how to make candy and see some handicrafts made from coconut trees. Take a walk through the village and discover many kinds of fruits, flowers, trees, and local houses. Take your time and take nice photos while enjoying the natural scenery. Then, head to a local restaurant and enjoy a local Vietnamese lunch under the tree shade. After lunch, have free time to walk or bike around the village, then travel by ferry and bus to Can Tho, the heart of Mekong Delta. Stay overnight in the hotel.
Overnight in Can Tho
See the Lively Bartering at Cai Rang Floating MarketDay 11
Enjoy breakfast and then take a leisurely boat trip to explore the picturesque tributaries of the Lower Mekong River.
After, proceed to visit the Cai Răng floating market, which is the liveliest in the whole region. Take in the beautiful scenery and the daily activities of the locals who live along the Mekong canals.
Next, you will roam through the village, see fruit gardens and visit a rice husking mill and rice noodles making the shop.
Then, head back to the riverside for lunch before traveling back to Ho Chi Minh City where you will arrive at around 4:00 PM with unforgettable memories.
Overnight in Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh City – DepartureDay 12
After breakfast and a leisurely morning on your own, you will check out by midday as this mark the end of your 12 day trip to Vietnam. Your private driver will pick you up and take you back to Tan Son Nhat International airport for your departure flight home.
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Special Promotional Prices (valid: February 13 – February 27, 2019). This deal is applied to all trip starting from NOW until 30 April 2019. The quotation currency is USD.
|Group Size||1pax||2pax||3pax||4pax||5pax||6pax||Single Sup|
Hanoi: The Hanoian Hotel/ Deluxe room www.thehanoianhotel.com
Halong bay: Swan Halong Cruise/ Deluxe cabin swancruiseshalong.com
Hoi An: Atlas Hotel & Spa/ Superior City View atlashoian.com
Hue: Cherish Hue Hotel/ Deluxe City View cherishhotel.com
Ho Chi Minh City: Sanouva Saigon Hotel/ Premier Deluxe room www.sanouvahotel.com
Can Tho: Iris Can Tho Hotel/ Premium Superior www.irishotelcantho.vn
Hanoi: Hanoi Pearl Hotel & Spa/ Deluxe Window www.hanoipearlhotel.com
Halong Bay: Huong Hai Sealife Cruise/ Suite balcony huonghaisealifecruise.com
Hoi An: Silk Village Hoi An Resort & Spa/ Deluxe Garden www.hoiansilkvillage.com
Hue: Eldora Hue Hotel/ Deluxe room www.eldorahotel.com
Ho Chi Minh City: Alagon D’Antique Hotel& Spa/ Deluxe window www.alagonhotels.com
Can Tho: Vinpearl Can Tho Hotel/ Deluxe City View www.vinpearl.com
Hanoi: Apricot Hanoi Hotel/ Sketch room apricothotels.com
Halong: Huong Hai Sealife Legend Cruise/ Suite balcony www.sealifegroup.com
Hoi An: Palm Garden Beach Resort/ Superior Garden View palmgardenresort.com.vn
Hue: Best Western Premier Hotel/ Deluxe room www.indochinepalace.com
Ho Chi Minh City: Majestic Saigon Hotel/ Colonial City Deluxe majesticsaigon.com
Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho Resort/ Superior room www.victoriahotels.asia
Special Benefits Added:
- Free visa approval letter
- One free local sim card
- Special secret souvenir created by Indochina Pioneer
- Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels
- Private Vehicles and Drivers
- Private English Speaking Guides (Other languages if available, upon request)
- 2 domestic flights in Vietnam with Vietnam Airlines
- Airport Taxes and Fuel charges
- Entrance fees for all mentioned sights visited
- Service Charge & Government Taxes
- Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
What’s Not Included?
- Your International Flights from and to Vietnam
- Vietnam entry Visa Fees (contact us for further information)
- Any bank fees or charges at your end
- Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary
- Tips for guides and drivers
- Personal Expenses (such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.)
How to Plan a successful Trip to Vietnam, Step-by-Step
Why to visit Vietnam
Where to Go
When to Go
Obtain a Vietnam Visa
How to Book a Tour
Packing and Luggage Allowance
Why to visit Vietnam
Vietnam, the S-shaped country, also commonly likened to the shape of a dragon, is located to the west of the South China Sea. The perfect combination of colonial elegance and rustic charm, it guarantees to satisfy all types of travelers with its rich experiences made all the more special by its charming people.
With cities to explore, temples to admire, and green countrysides to roam, there is plenty to see and do in Vietnam. Known as a colorful and diverse country from the wild mountainous north, with its myriad of ethnic communities, to the sleepless city of Ho Chi Minh City (previously known as Saigon) on the edge of the Mekong Delta, it is difficult to pick just one region to visit when coming to Vietnam.
The charming capital of Hanoi is a fascinating mix of fading colonial buildings and national monuments; the scenery of Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is bound to leave you speechless; Hue, home to the old Kings of Vietnam, appears to have been frozen in time for several hundred years with its ancient atmosphere and architecture.
With a 3260km coastline, Vietnam is home to many top-tier beaches; the country’s most unsung beauties. My Khe beach – “one of the most attractive beaches on the planet” as described by Forbes – offers blue skies, smooth white sand, clear & warm water year-round. Phu Quoc island, boasting several luxury resorts, is also a favorite escape for the rich and famous. The abundance of mountains, rainforests, and natural lakes also makes Vietnam a great destination for trekking, hiking, mountain biking, sea and river kayaking, and classic overland tours.
Where to Go
Most popular sites of Vietnam
• Sapa & Mai Chau – visit the hill tribe villages and plantations
• Hanoi – the capital of Vietnam
• Halong Bay – a UNESCO World Heritage site
• Hue – the ancient capital of Vietnam
• Hoi An – the kitchen of Vietnam and paradise on Earth
• Ho Chi Minh City (previously Saigon) – the economic heart of Vietnam
• The Cu Chi Tunnels – walk through the history of the Vietnam War
• Mekong Delta – see the floating markets
When to Go
Even though Vietnam lies entirely in the tropic zone, its climate varies surprisingly from region to region. Therefore this charming land is well-known as an “all-year-around” available destination for travelers.
In the north, from Sapa to Hanoi, there are 4 seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter.
In the central region, from Nha Trang to Hue, sunshine lasts throughout the year, except for the months of November and December when heavy rainfalls occur. Dalat, at an altitude of 1500m, is cooler than the coastal area, particularly from November to March. Da Nang and Hue both experience typhoon activity from mid-October to mid-December when the climate becomes cooler, more overcast and wet.
In the south, from Ho Chi Minh City to Phan Thiet, there are two main seasons: wet and dry. The wet season falls between April and September, with sudden heavy showers that don’t last very long. The dry season spans the months of October to March, with higher temperatures and long days of sunshine, followed by cooler nights.
Obtain a Vietnam Visa
Almost all visitors to Vietnam need a visa to enter the country, although some exemptions apply for citizens of countries with reciprocal agreements with Vietnam. Depending upon the nationality and passport of the applicant, a tourist visa can be obtained at the Vietnamese diplomatic office or consulates in foreign countries. Visas can also be obtained with the help of a licensed Vietnamese Travel Company, known as a “Visa on Arrival”. Visas may be either single-entry or multiple-entry, as requested at the time of application.
Visa on Arrival (VOA)
The easiest way is to get your visa through a licensed Vietnamese Travel Company, such as Indochina Pioneer. We can quickly and efficiently organize your pre-arranged VOA if you wish. Our visa processing fee is a reasonable rate of USD$10 / person only. Except for American citizens who are required to pay a stamping fee of USD$135 to get a 1-year, multiple-entry tourist visa, other nationalities need to pay just USD$25 / person for a single entry and USD$50 / person for multiple entries.
- To apply for your VOA please email us the following information:
- Arrival and departure dates
- Full passport details:
- Passport number
- Issuing date
- Expiry date
Note: your passport must be valid for 6 months beyond your travel date, and there must be several blank pages left on your passport.
- Once we have received your information, we will secure a Visa Approval Letter for you. This usually takes about 2 – 4 working days (ie. excluding weekends). We will then send you the letter via email or fax. You must present this letter upon boarding your flight. Also, you will need to prepare two photos (6 cm high x 4 cm wide – white background, no glasses, no smiling).
- On arrival at the airport (in Hanoi, Da Nang or Ho Chi Minh City) please find the Visa on Arrival window/counter where you will hand over your passport and photos, and be given a simple form to fill out. Pay the stamping fee of USD$25 for the single entry and USD$50 for multiple entries. The staff at the airport will shortly return your passport with your visa, after which you will be allowed to exit the airport.
The citizens of the following countries do not need a visa to enter Vietnam for a certain amount of time:
- Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, Indonesia (maximum stay of up to 30 days)
- Philippines (maximum stay of up to 21 days)
- Japan, South Korea (maximum stay of up to 15 days)
- Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Norway, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and United Kingdom (maximum stay of up to 15 days)
Unfortunately, citizens of the following countries are ineligible for a VOA and will have to apply at their nearest Vietnamese embassy/consulate :
South Asia – Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka
Africa – Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa
Starting from February 1st, 2017, the Vietnamese government officially launched the electronic visa plan for foreign tourists of certain countries visiting Vietnam. To apply for an e-visa, please visit http://www.xuatnhapcanh.gov.vn or http://www.immigration.gov.vn. For the list of
countries whose citizens are eligible to apply for an e-visa to Vietnam, click here.
How to Book a Tour
Booking your holiday with Indochina Pioneer cannot be easier! Follow our 3 simple steps:
Step 1: Browse our website www.indochinapioneer.com for tours, cruises and other destination information.
Should you find something that matches your interest, fill in the REQUEST A FREE QUOTE forms. Can’t find something that fits your needs? Then fill the BUILD YOUR OWN TRIP or CONTACT US form and click SUBMIT.
Then sit back! One of our travel experts will get back to you shortly with our customized package and most favorable offer!
In a hurry? Don’t like filling forms? Then call +84 982 116 630 (MR. LAM) or +84 983 145 799 (MR. Quyen). We’re available 24/7 and would be more than happy to talk! Certainly, your request will be carefully noted and a nicely crafted package with a pleasant price will follow!
Step 2: Reviewing/ Customizing our offer!
It’s your holiday so everything should be exactly what you want! We encourage your careful review of what we offer, letting us know what changes you would like to make. We’ll be more than happy to fine-tune the tour to fit best your interests, budget and time! This step may require several emails/call exchanges until perfect!
Step 3: Confirming/Paying/ Packing for the trip!
Once you’re satisfied with the customized tour, please let us know and Indochina Pioneer will need a few working hours to place reservations for all of the tour services. As soon as the availability and reservations of the services are confirmed, we will request a deposit. Please refer our Payment Guide for more details.
Once your deposit is received by Indochina Pioneer, we will send you the service voucher which confirms all the services of the tour and provides ground contact details and a guide for the final payment schedule.
And then you start counting down the day for your most fabulous trip!
Booking Amendment & Cancellations:
Booking Amendment: Flexibility is our strongest point. You can amend your booking even after it is made. Just contact your salesperson or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your booking number. Our reservations team is glad to amend your booking with your preferable alternatives. Please kindly note that you will be responsible for any change of the final price caused by your amendment requests.
Travel smart with Indochina Pioneer!
Packing and Luggage Allowance
Packing Checklist – Be sure to check them all 😉
- Travel documents (passport, visas, travel insurance certificate, air tickets, tour voucher)
- Money (cash, credit card, debit card, traveler’s cheques and money pouch)
- Day pack for your personal needs during the day
- Camera and extra memory cards and batteries
- Cell phone and cell phone charger
- Laptop charger (if you are bringing your laptop)
- Travel plug/international adapter
- Medication (including a doctor’s letter if you are carrying a large amount of medication)
- Prescription glasses / contacts and if necessary, contact lens solution
Best to bring along
- First aid kit
- Insect repellent
- Refillable water bottle with filter
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Comfortable clothing, either light or heavy options, depending on the season you are travelling
- Clothes suitable for visiting temples (long pants / skirts, long sleeved tops)
- Waterproof jacket / raincoat / umbrella
- Hat & sunglasses
- Bathing suit
- Ear plugs & eye mask
- Sleep sheet for home stays / trains
- Lightweight travel towel
- Local language phrasebook
"2nd Time….just as great"
This is the second time I have used Indochina Pioneer. They excelled again. This time, we had 5 Rotarians who had completed a project in Cambodia, and needed some holiday time afterwards. We booked an 8 night Hanoi/Sapa/Halong Bay tour.
Again, the Indochina Pioneer Team performed beyond my expectations. On time, knowledgeable and flexible at all times.
We had a small problem with our van after the 5 hour drive to Sapa. By breakfast the next day, we had a new van and driver to look after us for the rest of our journey.
We got a great upgrade on the Halong Bay cruise.
I can’t commend Indochina Pioneer highly enough. If you want further details, please PM me directly, if I go again in Indochina, it will only be with Indochina Pioneer.
"First trip to Vietnam"
As this was our first trip to Vietnam we decided to us Indochina Pioneer-and Mr Lam provided us with a 17 day itinerary. Thank you for arranging a most relaxing holiday, and we enjoyed every minute with our guides, Mr Dong (Hanoi), Mr Thoung and driver Mr Hai (Hoi An-Hue) Mrs Yen from Ho Chi Minh City and Mr Tom from the Dragon Peal No 1. Their warmth, friendliness and good humour has made our trip most memorable. The guides all did an excellent job with their knowledge on places visited as well as the history of Vietnam. Our visit to Halong Bay was unfortunately very cold, but was still made enjoyable, and guests still participated in canoeing and visiting the floating fishing village. Although there were many highlights with the sounds, smells and overall busy day to day life especially in the markets, my favourite highlight was in Ho Chi Minh City with a park becoming one enormous flower market and the boats on the river covered in flowers ready to sell, all for the Tet festival. We wished we stayed a few extra nights to enjoy the Tet festivities. Yes I would definitely recommend Indochina Pioneer to anyone wishing to travel to Vietnam, and will use this company again.
keith mUnited Kingdom
"Cycling Mekong Delta and sight seeing in Saigon"
Perhaps the best way to explore the Mekong Delta area. Can Tho is a lively overnight stop with well situated lovely hotel. All hotels selected by Indo China Pioneer are well situated but don’t expect western standards in hotels beyond Can Tho. Good combination of cycling and site seeing including boat and ferry trips, workshop visits with good choice of restaurant and roadside stops for fresh fruit.
However the route rarely left normal roads and didn’t appear to be as described in the brochure. Some quiet rural roads followed but others were quite busy, particularly in the vicinity of the small towns we cycled through.
We were concerned that we were not measured for our bikes on the first day which just arrived in the back of the minibus that collected us from our hotel. The frame size for my partner’s bike was much too large for her and it was fitted with a male shaped saddle which caused her considerable discomfort on the first day. The saddle was changed on Day 2 after she refused to continue the holiday with that particular bike at the end of day 1.
The guide did not appear to be completely clear of the route at times and we needed to complete an ‘about turn’ 3 times during the trek which may be why our route didn’t appear to be as described in the brochure. Indo China guides are very knowledgeable and helpful and know many local secret gems to visit but their spoken english can be difficult to follow at times even for me as a native English speaker. Indo China Pioneer specialise in providing tailor made tours for small groups down to 2 in number and flexibility in preparing a holiday programe to suit individual customers requests including the selection of the most suitable hotel using their wealth of local knowledge. Moderately priced boutique hotels are typically chosen.
"12 days in Myanmar"
Kata Tran has organised many holidays for me – in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. All excellent. She organised a 12 day trip to Myanmar in January 2016 with a few days each in Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay and Inle. Great guides and drivers. Lovely hotels. Terrific boat trip from Mandalay to Bagan. Day trip to old colonial Maymyo. Highly recommended. Kata always listens carefully to what you want and is very flexible.
goodtravelfort lee, nj
"Fantastic 17 days in Vietnam and Cambodia"
The best thing about Duong Dai Lam (Lam) from Indochina Pioneer is that he listens. We are interested in history, architecture and food, and really appreciate good views.
Our trip provided these things and more:
– In every city we had gorgeous hotels with fabulous views, with a number of upgrades. Hotels appreciated Indochina Pioneer business.
– Halong Bay cruise was one of the highlights – small, comfortable boat with great food and most incredible landscapes. How did they get such a good chef for a 10 cabin boat?
– Lam suggested many off the beaten track attractions that helped us to understand and appreciate the country.
– Our tour guides in every place were knowledgeable about history and architecture, forthcoming with cultural and lifestyle information
– They were very flexible both in planning, and trip changes when the weather did not cooperate. For example – we don’t ride bicycles, so we ended up doing one day tour on the back of 2 scooters. Fun!!!
– Street food tour with Luu in Hanoi was fun, delicious and educational. We kept eating on the street throughout the trip. No food poisoning, just delicious food.
– Private cars were medium size SUVs immaculately maintained and drivers were safe.
I infrequently gush – see my other reviews. But this was one of our best trips, and the private tour ended up costing less than a comparable group tour booked from US.
It was great to have a relaxing vacation and indochina took
Care of everything. Loved Hanoi and Halong Bay!
"Fantastic trip amazing service"
Fantastic trip from start to finish. All our expectations were met and exceeded from the moment we booked the trip with Mr Lam to our last day.
We had one minor problem during our stay and it was sorted immediately with profession
And made our trip the most memorable holiday ever.
Mr Lam customised our trip to suit us and we loved all of our guides and drivers.
We were even lucky enough to be invited to the companies end of year party and got to meet everyone who made our holiday so special. I can’t recommend this company enough and that’s something coming from someone in the tourist industry. Well done indoctrination pioneer.
"Indochina Pioneer – Great Tour Organizer"
I arranged a 28 day customized tour of Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar and Thailand in January, 2016 the assistance of Indochina Pioneer. Lam, the principal of the company, was fabulous to deal with. He made many suggestions, booked all of our drivers and local tour guides, hotels, admission tickets, and even some restaurants. All of his choices were excellent, and when there was a need to make a last minute change, he was readily available. His tour included many extras that other tour organizers did not include, and he made sure that we visited off the beaten track places, took local tours that the big groups do not see, and that our hotels were carefully chosen to be very central and more of a local boutique nature. Lam never hesitated to make sure that our trip was going well as we travelled, and even made a point of meeting us at our stop in Hanoi and sent flowers to me on my birthday. The tour was priced very favorably compared to 3 others I contacted, and all of our guides were excellent. I would highly recommend this company and Lam in particular to anyone wanting to arrange a local tour or a detailed itinerary of Indochina.
Roger CAustralia, Adelaide
"Excellent 20 day tour of Myanmar with Indochina Pioneer"
This was our first trip to Myanmar . We have traveled to Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos with Lam Duong from Indochina Pioneer in the past and having had such a great trip chose Lam to organise our Myanmar trip.
Lam chose and booked great hotels in Yangon, Kyaing Tong, Kalaw, Inle Lake , Bagan and Mandalay as well as organise excellent tour guides and drivers at those places. We wanted to do a short cruise on the Irrawaddy from Bagan to Mandalay and Lam selected Amara River Cruises which operate small extremely well founded wooden vessels. Our boat Amara 1 was excellent, comfortable and with friendly attentive staff who took us on excursions and provided us with superb food and service.
We also did a memorable balloon flight in Bagan with Balloons over Bagan which Lam organised.
Our tour organised by Lam in Myanmar was superb, we could not fault the guides and the overall balance of the itinerary.
Full marks Indochina Pioneer!
"An amazing trip"
In my younger years I spent months backpacking on the cheap around Asia. I now have more money, less time and a family. I found Indochina Pioneer on-line and contacted Mr Lam for our recent trip to Cambodia. He was full of information, answered all of my many questions, suggested great ideas, incorporated my changes and organised all smoothly.
I wanted airport transfers and to organise hotels before we left. Mr Lam suggested a range of hotels to choose from all of which were good. Internal transfers and flights were also organised. We only wanted tours for Angkor Wat and The Killing Fields which Mr Lam arranged. Our other days were left free for us to choose what we wanted. The tour consisted of myself, my husband and twin sons which was perfect. The tour guides were knowledgeable and helpful, as were the drivers.
Mr Lam suggested we get a speed boat from Chau Doc, Vietnam to Phnom Penh up the Mekong River which was a great way to travel. The crocodile farm on the way was well worth the lunch stop.
I would recommend Indochina Pioneer as a great tour company for families. My in-laws are travelling with them later in the year. I am currently planning another trip to Laos using Indochina Pioneer again.
For someone who doesn’t like or do package tours having a private tour for my family was just perfect.