- Day 1: Hanoi – Arrival
- Day 2: Hanoi – Full-Day City Tour
- Day 3: Hanoi – Halong Bay
- Day 4: Halong Bay – Yen Duc Village – Hanoi
- Day 5: Hanoi – Flight to Dong Hoi – Phong Nha Cave
- Day 6: Dong Hoi – Day train to Hue
- Day 7: Hue – Full-Day Tour – Imperial Palace
- Day 8: Hue – Hoi An
- Day 9: Hoi An – My Son Sanctuary
- Day 10: Hoi An / Da Nang – Flight to Ho Chi Minh City – Cu Chi Tunnels
- Day 11: HCM City – Full-day Tour
- Day 12: HCM City – Ben Tre (Mekong Delta)
- Day 13: HCM 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.
Hanoi – ArrivalDay 1
Your private tour guide will meet you at Hanoi’s Noi Bai airport and will escort you by private car to your selected hotel in Hanoi (travel time approximately 1 hour). Your knowledgeable guide will be happy to answer any questions about your Vietnam holiday itinerary along the way, and will assist you with check-in and registration at the hotel.
After checking in, if you are interested, your guide will take you on an orientation tour around the French Quarter by a cycle rickshaw. Traveling by cycle rickshaw is the best way to get a real feeling for the town as well as capture great photographs on your first day in Hanoi!
In the evening your guide will pick you up in the evening for a special dinner called Steam Boat (Hot Pot) which is a favorite dish of Hanoi residents.
Note: For the Vietnamese Visa on Arrival, please make sure you have 2 passport sized 4 cm x 6 cm photos and $25 for the stamping fee.
Overnight in Hanoi
Hanoi – Full-Day City Tour– Thang Long Citadel (the 1st UNESCO World Heritage Site)Day 2
After breakfast, your adventure tour in Vietnam begins as your private tour guide picks you up and takes you on a full-day city tour of Hanoi, famed for its tree-lined boulevards, French colonial architecture, and a thousand years of history. Below are the recommended sites, but of course, your guide will be happy to modify the list based on your preferences.
– Thang Long Citadel (the most recent UNESCO World Heritage Site of Vietnam),built in the 11th century by the Ly Viet Dynasty, marking the independence of the Dai Viet (former Vietnam)
– Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and the Presidential Palace
– One Pillar Pagoda, one of the most iconic temples in Vietnam
– Huu Tiep Lake, where you will be able to see the Downed B-52, an interesting slice of history nestled in the day to day life of the residents of Hanoi
– Vietnamese Women’s Museum
Lunch will be served at KOTO (Know One Teach One), sponsored by an NGO (a non-governmental organization) for the disadvantaged children of Hanoi. The staff is former street children being trained in culinary and hospitality skills.
You will continue to visit
– Temple of Literature (a Confucius temple considered the first National University of Vietnam)
– Hoa Lo prison (known as the “Hanoi Hilton” during the American war)
– A stroll around the iconic Hoan Kiem Lake
– Ngoc Son Temple
You will end up your day by taking a walking tour of the Old Quarter. In times past, each street had its own merchants’ guild, specializing in a particular trade, such as silk, jewelry etc. Today the street names still reflect this, although many of the products have long since disappeared.
The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in Hanoi
Hanoi – Halong Bay (the 2nd UNESCO World Heritage site) – On board a junk boatDay 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). En route as you travel the coastline of Vietnam, you will have numerous photo opportunities as well as the chance to meet the locals and discover just how much hard work goes into maintaining the rice fields. You will stop at a road-side rice farm before arriving at Halong Bay around midday. On board your junk boat, a seafood lunch will be served as your junk boat cruises among the limestone cliffs and floating villages.
Sunbathe on the sundeck of your junk boat and enjoy the peaceful tranquility of the bay. You can also opt to swim in the emerald waters, or take a kayak out and explore the bay on your own. Mid-afternoon, you will visit Sung Sot Cave, one of the most stunning limestone caves in Halong Bay. Watch the sun set over this UNESCO World Heritage site before feasting on a sumptuous dinner in an elegant dining-room. A selection of wines and beverages from around the world will be available for purchase. After dinner, try your hand at fishing before returning to your cabin for a good night’s sleep.
(Note: Program may differ slightly based on your selected junk boat’s itinerary. An extra night can be added to the program. If your time is flexible, we highly recommend it!)
Overnight on board
Halong Bay – Yen Duc Village – HanoiDay 4
In the morning, enjoy the magnificent scenery of the bay; if you are an early riser, be sure to take advantage and watch the sun rise over the sea. Engage in an early morning Tai Chi session on the sundeck, followed by breakfast as you continue to cruise around this natural wonder.
Upon returning to the dock, you will be taken back to Hanoi (travel time approximately 4 hours). En route, you will stop at Yen Duc, a beautiful and typical village of Northern Vietnam, where you can stroll around the village, meet the locals, and learn about their daily life. You will also watch a traditional water puppet show performed by the local artists.
Upon arrival in Hanoi, your private tour guide will take you to your hotel in Hanoi to check in. The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in Hanoi
Hanoi – Flight to Dong Hoi – Phong Nha Cave (the 3rd UNESCO World Heritage site)Day 5
After an early morning check out, your private driver will pick you up and take you to the airport for a short flight to Dong Hoi to visit Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park national park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Quang Binh Province in the north central coast region.
Upon arrival in Dong Hoi, you are collected by your private guide and driver who transfer you to a local restaurant for some breakfast before heading directly to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. Here you will see the world’s longest limestone cave and now a UNESCO World Heritage Listed site, Phong Nha Cave, bound to amaze the entire family. You will access the cave by boat along the Son River and once inside, explore the cave’s fine sand beaches, spectacular stalagmites and stalactites.
After lunch, continue to visit Tam Co Temple and the famous Thien Duong Cave, also known as Paradise Cave. Discovered by scientists of the British Caving Research Association in 2005, Paradise Cave is surrounded by a forest of karts peaks and its cave system extends for 31 km, though most people only visit the first kilometer. The scale is breathtaking, as wooden staircases descend into a cathedral-like space with colossal stalagmites and glimmering stalactites.
After the tour transfer to the hotel to check in. The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in Dong Hoi
Dong Hoi – Day train to Hue crossing the former DMZ (demilitarized zone)Day 6
You have the whole morning free at your leisure. Breakfast is served at the hotel and check out of the hotel room at midday.
Your guide and driver will collect you from the hotel and transfer you to Dong Hoi Train station to catch the Reunification Express train (soft seats with Air-condition) to Hue, an Unesco World Heritage site and the former capital of Imperial Vietnam from 1802 to 1945. The three hour train journey will be an interesting experience because it allows you to see the scenery along the way and especially crossing the Vietnam’s former DMZ (Demilitarized Zone). The DMZ was the former border between North and South Vietnam before the reunification. Historically it was a narrow band of terrain extending from the Laos border to the coast, five kilometres on either side of the Ben Hai River, roughly on the 17th parallel north of latitude.
In the evening we arrive in Hue train station where we are picked up by the local guide and driver, then transferred to the hotel to check in. The rest of the evening is yours at leisure. Your guide will recommend a good restaurant nearby the hotel for your dinner.
Overnight in Hue
Hue – Full-Day Tour – Imperial Palace (the 4th UNESCO World Heritage site)Day 7
After breakfast, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you to Thanh Toan Village to discover the Thanh Toan market. People from the surrounding areas gather here every morning to trade and buy their daily food. You will walk around the market stalls, talk and mingle with the locals, as well as visit the small village museum, the ancient Thanh Toan Covered Bridge which dates back to the 1700’s, and the culture museum which displays Vietnamese agricultural life.
Next, you will visit the Imperial City, a listed UNESCO site – Hue was the ancient capital of Vietnam from 1802 to 1945, under the reign of the Nguyen dynasty. The city is considered a living museum with many historical monuments, imperial tombs, pagodas and temples that educate us on the history of the last feudal dynasty in Vietnam.
Leaving the Citadel, you will travel to the surrounding countryside to see the final resting place of the Emperor Tu Duc, and visit one of Vietnam’s most impressive royal tombs.
A vegetarian lunch will be served by the nuns at a Buddhist monastery. Here, you will have the opportunity to interact with them and learn more about Buddhism.
You will embark on the Dragon boat trip cruising down the famous Perfume River. En route we make a quick stop, get off the boat to visit Chua Thien Mu. This iconic seven-storey pagoda is regarded as the unofficial symbol of the city.
We spend some time to explore the city central Dong Ba market. Then walk across the historic Truong Tien to get back to the hotel while watching the sunset over the Perfume River.
Overnight in Hue
Hue – Hoi an (the 5th UNESCO World Heritage site)Day 8
After breakfast and check out, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you to the riverside town of Hoi An. The drive will hug the coastline along the Eastern Sea, providing breathtaking view after another as you wind your way up Hai Van (Ocean Clouds) Pass. There will be stops en route for photos at the quaint fishing village at Lang Co Beach.
Passing through Da Nang, you will also get to visit the Cham Sculpture Museum and climb the Marble Mountain.
After checking into your hotel in Hoi an, your guide will take you to lunch at a local restaurant, where you will sample some of Hoi An’s delicious specialties, and understand how Hoi An earned its reputation as “the kitchen of Vietnam”.
After lunch, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you on a half-day walking tour of Hoi An through the narrow winding streets of the Ancient Quarter. From the 16th to the 18th century, Hoi An was a thriving international commercial port. Today it is a quaint riverside town popular with tourists for its eclectic architecture, tailor shops, and cafes.
– Chua OngTemple
– The Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation
– The 200-year-old Tam Ky house
– The 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, the symbol of Hoi An
– Hoi An Central market
The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure. Hoi An has an abundance of tailors who can produce a custom suit in 24 hours or less, at very reasonable prices.
Overnight in Hoi An
Hoi An – My Son Sanctuary (the 6th and final UNESCO World Heritage site on this tour)Day 9
After breakfast, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you to My Son Sanctuary, an important archaeological site of Hindu temples dating from the 4th to 14th centuries. These temples were constructed by the once mighty Cham Empire, which at its peak, ruled much of central and southern Vietnam. The temples are dedicated to the worship of the Hindu God Shiva. In 1999, My Son was recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage site.
Returning to Hoi An, the rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in Hoi An
Hoi An / Da Nang – Flight to Ho Chi Minh City/ Saigon – Cu Chi TunnelsDay 10
After breakfast and check out, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you to the airport for a short flight to Ho Chi Minh City (HCM City), previously known as Saigon.
Upon arrival in HCM City, your private tour guide will take you on a 2 hour tour to the legendary Cu Chi Tunnels, an incredible underground tunnel network constructed by the Vietnamese resistance fighters during the long struggle for independence. This vast network of tunnels played a huge part in the Viet Cong’s victory over the Americans, allowing them to control a large rural area surrounding HCM City.
At the Cu Chi Tunnels, you will watch a brief introductory video, followed by a walk through the reserve. You can also crawl inside the Cu Chi Tunnels to experience how difficult life must have been, and discover the 3 underground levels.
After the visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels, you will return to HCM City. Lunch will be at a local restaurant en route.
After checking in to your hotel in HCM City, the rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure. We suggest you visit the Ben Thanh night market and do some fun shopping.
Overnight in HCM City
HCM City – Full-day TourDay 11
After breakfast, your private tour guide will take you on a full-day tour and impart another perspective of the familiar and not-so-familiar landmarks in modern-day HCM City. You will discover the city’s culture, architecture, religious practices and fascinating history. Below are the recommended sites, but of course, your guide will be happy to modify the list based on your preferences.
– Tao Dan Park, to catch the bird lovers club who show up only between 6 and 9 am every morning. Enjoy some local coffee while your guide explains the history and practice of keeping birds in Vietnam.
– Thich Quang Duc monument – attribute to a Vietnamese Mahayana Buddhist monk who burned himself to death on June 11, 1963 in protest against the persecution of Buddhists by then South Vietnam’s Ngo Dinh Diem administration
– The colorful Ho Thi Ky flower market
– A drive through Cho Lon to visit Nhi Phu Temple, built at the end of 17thcentury by Chinese immigrants from the Fukkien province in China.
Lunch will be served at a local Vietnamese restaurant.
You will continue to visit:
– General Post Office (GPO), noted for its neoclassical architecture, designed and constructed by the famous architect Gustave Eiffel
– Notre Dame Cathedral considered being one of the most beautiful buildings in all of Vietnam. It was built in the period 1877 – 1880 by the French architect Bourad.
– Reunification Palace (the former Presidential Palace), where the war officially ended on April 30th, 1975 when tank 843 of the North Vietnamese Army crashed through the gates of the home of the President of the Republic of Vietnam
– The previous CIA Office
– A drive down Dong Khoi Street, where, in 1975, during the dying days of the former regime, the iconic photograph was taken of a helicopter lifting people out of Saigon.
– The Opera House (now the Municipal Theatre), built in 1880, was used in the filming of “The Quiet American”.
– HCM City People’s Committee (formerly Hôtel de Ville) built in 1902-1908, one of the most photographed buildings in Vietnam, notable for its gardens, ornate facade and elegant interior lit with crystal chandeliers
– War Remnants Museum, highlighting the suffering of the Vietnamese people during recent conflicts – not entirely unbiased
The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in HCM City
HCM City – Ben Tre (Mekong Delta)Day 12
After breakfast and check out, your private tour guide will pick you up and take you to Ben Tre town, the heart of the Mekong Delta. The Mekong Delta, popularly known as the “rice bowl” of Vietnam, is famous for its vast rice fields, orchard farms, coconut trees, numerous waterways and beautiful landscapes.
At Ben Tre town, you will embark on a motorized boat trip on the scenic Ben Tre River exploring the coconut villages and observe various local industries along the way, enjoying a relaxing day vacationing in Vietnam. You will see how bricks & sleeping mats are made, as well as visit a coconut workshop to see where the local delicacy of coconut candy is produced, and a range skillful crafts made of coconut husk and fiber products.
Back on land, you will sit in the back of a motor cart (xe loi), passing by rice and vegetable orchard farms and meet locals on the way. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant back in Ben Tre town, after which you will be driven back to HCM City (travel time approximately 2 hours).
The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure.
Overnight in HCM City
HCM City – DepartureDay 13
After breakfast and a leisurely morning on your own, you will check out by midday and your private driver will pick you up and take you to HCM City’s Tan Son Nhat airport for your departure flight home.
This World Heritage Sites of Vietnam Tour is tailor-made to present all the Vietnamese UNESCO World Heritages, and upon our firsthand knowledge & experience, offering you the best route and service choices. The price of this trip varies depending on the number of people in your party, dates of departure, and availability of ground services. Please click on REQUEST A FREE QUOTE (above) and supply the required information, enabling us to send you your personalized quote within 24 hours!
Note: Amendments CAN be made to this tour to suite your requirements.
- Discover Hanoi’s best known landmarks, enjoy Hanoi food
- Spend a night for quality time on board an overnight cruise in Ha Long Bay.
- Explore the glamorous Phong Nha Cave, enjoy a day ride train through the DMZ
- Visit Imperial Citadel and Emperor Mausoleums in Hue.
- Climb the Marble Mountain, Walk through charming town of Hoi An and taste the local food.
- Have fun with beach time, cooking class, or get some cloth made in Hoi An.
- Visit Ho Chi Minh City landmarks: War Remnant Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Reunification Palace. Crawls of the Cu Chi Tunnels.
- Enjoy a discovery day in lush green Ben Tre – Home of coconut in Mekong Delta
- 12 hotel buffet breakfasts.
- 2 dinners and 7 lunches at well-selected restaurants (Vegetarian/ Halal food upon request)
- Private Tour Guide in each City of visit (Other languages upon request)
- Private driver with air-conditioned vehicle for daily tours or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
- Hand-picked Restaurants and Hotels. (Specified in each quotation)
- Entrance Fees/ Admission for all sightseeing. Well selected activities with some possible extra supprises.
- All airport transfers
Private English speaking guide, accommodation, private tours and transfer, domestic flights, A/C vehicles, some main meals, all entrance fees, tax and service charge.
What’s Not Included?
Your international flights from and to Vietnam, entry visa to Vietnam, personal expense, tips to guide and driver.
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 email@example.com 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
We are committed to giving our customers unforgettable experiences in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and beyond, not just something staged for tourists. Read reviews written by our customers about their experiences in Indochina after they have returned home. These include the ratings and comments on attractions, guides, activities, hotels and food.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
It was great to have a relaxing vacation and indochina took
Care of everything. Loved Hanoi and Halong Bay!
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.
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!
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.