Vietnam, Laos & Thailand: Riversides & Railways

18-to-Thirtysomethings, Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok

Image by G Adventures

Tour description provided by G Adventures

Now's the time to explore Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand on your terms with this tour that's affordable for young travellers. Party along the beautiful bay of Vietnam's Nha Trang with new friends, channel the French vibe sipping coffee riverside in Laos, and hunt down treasures in local markets. When it comes to this side of Southeast Asia, the choice is all yours. Feel free to soak up the spirit of this amazing part of the world.

What’s included

  • Your G for Good Moment: Oodles of Noodles Demonstration and Lunch, Hoi An Your G for Good Moment: Mekong River Homestay & Baci Ceremony, Muang Pakbèng Your Welcome Moment: Meet Your CEO and Group Your First Night Out Moment: Connect With New Friends Your Discover Moment: Ho Chi Minh City Your Discover Moment: Luang Prabang Your Discover Moment: Chiang Mai
  • Halong Bay boat cruise with lunch
  • Slow boat on the Mekong
  • Guided hike in Vang Vieng
  • Orientation walk, sunset cruise and waterfall excursion in Luang Prabang
  • Orientation walks in Ho Chi Minh City, Hoi An, and Hanoi
  • Two street food crawls in different cities
  • Internal flight
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Highlights

  • Relax in quaint hoi an
  • Cruise the blue waters of halong bay
  • See phong nha's stunning underground river network
  • Ride the rails to hanoi
  • Shop at the chiang mai night market
  • Marvel at the grand palace in bangkok
  • Explore ho chi minh your way
  • Take a cooking class led by former street kids
  • Sample vietnamese specialities on a street food crawl
  • Explore limestone karsts in vang vieng.

Itinerary

Ho Chi Minh City Arrive at any time. Welcome to the pulsing Ho Chi Minh City, also known as Saigon. For your first night out, wander with your CEO and group through Pham Ngu Lao Street that’s popping with many bars and backpackers. Pick the best looking spot and get to know your fellow travellers and cheers to new adventures.
Ho Chi Minh City/Nha Trang Feel the pulse of Vietnam’s biggest city on a CEO-led orientation walk, with free time after to double back to your favourite spots. Tonight, catch up on sleep on an overnight train to Nha Trang.
Nha Trang You’ve arrived! Take this morning to explore local shops and markets, relax on the beach, or visit nearby historical sites before an evening street food crawl. Optional activities in Nha Trang include a boat trip to nearby islands for some snorkelling or, perhaps, a fun-filled all-day beach party.
Nha Trang/Da Nang It’s not over yet. There’s more free time to explore Nha Trang today. Then, hop on an overnight train to continue to Hoi An. The overnight train is to Da Nang, with the transfer to Hoi An following directly after.
Da Nang/Hoi An Hoi An’s excited to meet you. See why on an orientation walk of the city before more free time in the afternoon. Dig even deeper and choose between a cooking class, cycling to the beach, visiting a tailor, or exploring the old town. From Danang, it is only a short drive to the picturesque port town of Hoi An. Once known as Faifo, it was an important trading town with strong south Chinese influence and connections.
Hoi An Noodles might be fun to eat, but they’re even more fun to make. Find out how during a visit to G Adventures-supported Oodles of Noodles. Later, opt to take a cooking class, cycle to the beach, visit a tailor, or explore the old town with free time.
Hoi An/Huế Head north to the city of Huế. There’s lots to do here, with options to visit the Royal Citadel and tombs, or boarding a cruise along the Perfume River.
Huế/Phong Nha Your second day in Huế comes with more free time to enjoy the city. In the afternoon, cruise through Vietnam's stunning countryside to the green rocky mountains of Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park.
Phong Nha/Hanoi It’s time to head underground with free time to explore the caves of Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park, where the oldest karst mountains in Asia are found. Then it’s an overnight train to Hanoi.
Hanoi/Ha Long After arriving in Hanoi, the bustling capital of Vietnam, take a private bus to the iconic Halong Bay for a seafood lunch cruise and cave exploring. Be sure to charge your camera so you can grab a shot truly worth sharing!
Ha Long Bay/Hanoi Feel like you've gone back in time with an orientation walk through Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Then stop for a drink at Bia Hoi Corner, a spot that serves bia hoi, a local beer made of rice and wheat — and costs a mere $0.25USD per glass! Opt to pre-book the "Hanoi Street Food Walking Tour" activity on the checkout page ahead of time, to include this optional on your tour.
Hanoi/Vientiane After exploring Hanoi in the morning, a short flight brings the group to the capital city of Laos. See the sacred gold-covered monument, Phat That Luang, or stroll down the dusty riverside tracks to see village life as it happens. Stop by Vientiane's vibrant, colourful market to find local treasures. Round off the day with a spectacular sunset over the Mekong. There is a wealth of cultural delights to discover in Vientiane — on foot, by bicycle or, for the less energetic, by tuk-tuk.
Vientiane/Vang Vieng Find a bit of peace partway through your tour with a visit north to Vang Vieng, a small town nestled among striking limestone karsts. Take a guided hike to Pha Ngeun, the town’s highest viewpoint, for incredible views of the valley — no filter necessary. This quiet town is set along the Nam Song river amidst rice fields, mountains, and caves.
Vang Vieng Get more out of Vang Vieng with free time to explore. Opt to see the caves by bicycle or take a countryside stroll.
Vang Vieng/Luang Prabang Continue to colourful Luang Prabang and make your first acquaintance with this ancient city during an afternoon orientation walk. Afterward, embark on a short trek up sacred Mount Phousi, climbing the stone stairs with scaly golden handrails, past the monks quarters and Buddha's footprint cave, to reach the temple at the top - Wat Phousi. Enjoy a 360-degree view of the sun setting upon Luang Prabang and the Mekong River. Descend into the bustling night markets.
Luang Prabang Skip sleeping in to watch the monks walk through town before dawn. Dressed in saffron robes, they receive daily alms from local residents. Then, visit the Kuang Si waterfalls on a guided excursion before free time in the evening. Traditional Laotian culture involves giving daily alms to monks. Monks are only allowed to eat food which has been donated to them before noon. Should you rise early, you’ll get to watch one of the most important religious ceremonies in Laos.
Luang Prabang/Pak Beng The Mekong never looked so welcoming. Board a long houseboat and cruise to a village homestay for the night. The boat will take you on a two-day journey up the Mekong en route to Chiang Khong in Thailand.
Pak Beng/Chiang Khong New day, same magnificent Mekong. Today’s your second travel day, where you’ll cross into Thailand. We arrive in Chiang Khong by the later afternoon.
Chiang Khong/Chiang Mai Let the rolling countryside views relax you as you drive to Chiang Mai. Opt to visit Doi Suthep temple, catch a Thai boxing match, or grab a bargain at the famous night market.
Chiang Mai/Bangkok Make the most of Chiang Mai with more free time. Today, visit the magnificent temple of Doi Suthep as it stands watch over the city from the hills above, take a bicycle ride in the countryside, or relax with a massage from the training school at the local women's prison. Explore the rural lanes of Chiang Mai in a tuk-tuk by pre-booking the Full Day Tuk-Tuk Adventure. Tonight, catch up on sleep during an overnight train to Bangkok.
Bangkok After arriving in Bangkok, Thailand’s capital city, opt to visit Wat Pho and the Grand Palace. Use this time to buy any last-minute souvenirs or treat yourself to a Thai massage. The day is free to explore the many sights of Bangkok, like the Grand Palace, Wat Pho, National Museum, and Jim Thompson's House. A trip along the Chao Phraya River and through the canals (or klongs) gives you a different perspective of daily life in this busy city. In the evening, celebrate the end of this amazing journey together with a night out you won’t soon forget.
Bangkok Today, it’s time to say goodbye to your group of newfound friends. Be sure to sneak in some last-minute photos and cheers before you head on your way.
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