Day 1 Bangkok Today is arrival day, so there are no activities planned until an evening welcome meeting. Relax, explore the city, and adjust to the pace of life in Bangkok.
You MUST arrive on tour with your Vietnam visa. There is no way to procure this once the tour has commenced.
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2 Bangkok/Chiang Mai (1B) Enjoy a 1-hr longtail boat tour of Bangkok's famous klongs (canals). The trip finishes at the Royal Temple of Wat Po for a guided tour.
After, there is time for shopping, a visit to Grand Palace or a stroll along Khao San Rd. In the evening, board the overnight train to Chiang Mai.
Note: Due to disruptions of Thai trains in the north during the monsoon season, trips running July through October may use alternative transport.
Klong Riverboat Tour
Wat Po Guided Tour
Basic overnight train (beds) (12.00 hour(s))
Day 3 Chiang Mai Arrive early morning and use some free time to explore. Choose from a range of optional activities or stroll the city independently. Explore the rural lanes of Chiang Mai in a tuk-tuk by pre-booking the Full Day Tuk-Tuk Adventure.
In late afternoon, set off to visit the temple complex, Doi Suthep. If you're lucky, you may witness the chanting of the monks.
Doi Suthep Guided Tour
Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))
Day 4 Chiang Mai/Chiang Khong (1B) Drive to Chiang Khong, a sleepy trading town nestled on the bank of the Mekong River. En route, visit Wat Rong Khun — the dazzling 'White Temple'. Wander the local food market or sit back and enjoy a slower pace of life relaxing in Thailand with river views of Laos.
Wat Rong Khun (White Temple) Visit
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
Day 5 Chiang Khong/Muang Pakbèng Cross the border to the Laos immigration area, then take a songthaew (local bus) to a traditional slow boat.
Travel down the Mekong River and adjust to the relaxed pace of life in Laos. This predominantly mountainous country has unsurpassed views of the riverside villages, the tropical jungle, and the mountains.
Border Crossing (Thailand - Laos)
Mekong River Slow Boat
Day 6 Muang Pakbèng/Luang Prabang (1B) Continue on by slow boat down the mighty Mekong. Before arriving at Luang Prabang, enjoy a visit outside to the Pak Ou caves.
After, re-board the boat and continue to Luang Prabang, arriving in the early evening.
Mekong River Slow Boat
Pak Ou Caves Visit
Day 7 Luang Prabang (1B, 1L) Take a tour of the Ethnology Museum — a great chance to learn more about the dress and customs of local people. Drop into Ock Pop Tok for an introduction to Laos textiles and handicrafts. Then, take a half-day trip out to the stunning Kuang Si waterfalls and be sure to pack a swimsuit.
Ethnology Museum Guided Tour
Ock Pop Tok Living Crafts Centre Visit
Meal with Local Family
Kuang Si Waterfalls Excursion
Day 8 Luang Prabang (1B) Enjoy a free day exploring all Luang Prabang has to offer. Options include cooking classes, temple visits, massages, night market shopping, bike riding, and hiking.
Day 9 Luang Prabang/Vang Vieng (1B, 1D) Drive winding mountain roads through gorgeous scenery to reach Vang Vieng. Experience a local homestay in a nearby village.
Here, enjoy traditional Laotian food while getting to know your host family. Your CEO will provide insight into the way of life of village residents.
Vang Vieng Homestay
Private Vehicle (7.00 hour(s), 190km)
Day 10 Vang Vieng (1B) Enjoy free time in Vang Vieng. Move to a hotel for the night, an ideal location for exploring the countryside by bicycle.
Feel like going on a full-day kayaking and caving adventure instead? Pre-book the Vang Vieng Adrenaline Bundle on the checkout page to include this optional activity on your tour.
Day 11 Vang Vieng/Vientiane (1B) Head out of the mountains to one of Asia's sleepiest capital cities. Opt to visit some of the highlights of Vientiane including Wat Sisaket, one of the city's oldest and most fascinating temples, and Wat Phra That Luang, Lao's national symbol and one of her most sacred sites.
For those who like to shop, don't miss the morning market, which, incidentally, is open all day!
Private Vehicle (5.00-6.00 hours)
Day 12 Vientiane/Hanoi (1B) Take a short flight from quiet Laos into the bustling city of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. Opt for a leisurely walk through the Old Quarter.
After the short flight to Hanoi, a private vehicle will transfer the group 45 mins to the hotel in the city centre.
Plane (2.00 hour(s))
Day 13 Hanoi (1B) Visit Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, the Presidential Palace, and the former president's house on stilts for insight into an important figure in Vietnam's history.
During the afternoon, use some free time to explore this beautiful city. Opt to visit the Tran Quoc Pagoda, the Temple of Literature, the Museum of Ethnology or just sip delicious Vietnamese iced coffee in a café along the lake. In late afternoon or early evening, attend a performance of Vietnam's famous water puppets before sampling one of Hanoi's amazing eating venues.
Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Museum Visit
Thăng Long Water Puppet Theatre Performance
Day 14 Hanoi/Ha Long (1B, 1L, 1D) Drive to Bai Chay harbour, the jumping off point for Ha Long Bay. Thousands of islands with intricate cave systems rise dramatically from the waters. Sail past limestone karst mountains in the junk boat and stop to visit some of the islands and caves.
In the evening, devour a seafood dinner, then opt to enjoy a drink on deck under the stars.
Halong Bay Overnight Cruise
Private Vehicle (3.00 hour(s))
Day 15 Ha Long/Huế (1B, 1L) Enjoy breakfast on board before a morning sail back to the port. Drive back to Hanoi for a little more time to enjoy the city before boarding an overnight train.
Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s))
Drive about 15 mins to the station and then board the southbound train for the overnight journey.
Basic overnight train (beds) (13.00-14.00 hours)
Day 16 Huế Arrive early to Hue, once the imperial capital of Vietnam. Start the day with a visit to the Tien Mu Pagoda followed by a visit to the tomb of one of Vietnam’s former emperors.
After, opt for a vegetarian lunch at a local nunnery.
While in the city, try some local Hue specialties such as banh khoai (Hue savoury pancakes), and banh bot loc boc tom thit (thin rice paper filled with meat and shrimp). Wash it all down with a Hue beer.
Tien Mu Pagoda Visit
Imperial Citadel Tour
Royal Tombs Visit
Day 17 Huế/Hoi An (1B) Cross the Hai Van Pass (weather permitting), with fantastic views in all directions, before arriving to Hoi An in the afternoon.
With three nights here, there's plenty of time to explore all this charming town has to offer.
Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s))
Day 18 Hoi An (1B, 1L) Spend two full days exploring all Hoi An has to offer. Dive into the culture, hang out on the beach or get clothes tailor-made in one of the many shops around town. Enjoy a noodle making demonstration and lunch at Oodles of Noodles, a G Adventures-supported project.
Oodles of Noodles Demonstration and Lunch
Day 19 Hoi An (1B) Spend a free day exploring all Hoi An has to offer.
Day 20 Hoi An/Ho Chi Minh City (1B) Drive to Da Nang for the flight to Ho Chi Minh City, once the capital of South Vietnam and the country’s commercial centre. Start exploring the small alleys and busy streets, keeping an eye out for laquerware shops and delicious local food stalls.
Plane (1.00 hour(s))
Day 21 Ho Chi Minh City (1B) With some free time in the city, opt to visit the Thien Hau and Giac Vien pagodas and stroll through the immense Ben Thanh Market. Also well worth a visit are the Reunification Palace (the residence of South Vietnam presidents before 1975), the city's Chinese quarter of Cholon, and the War Remnants Museum.
Cu Chi Tunnels Guided Tour
Day 22 Ho Chi Minh City (1B) Not ready to leave? Your CEO can help with travel arrangements to extend your adventure.