RECOMMENDED VIETNAM TOURS

North & South One Month In Vietnam!

There's a lot to see in Vietnam, and a full month will give you time to not only see the major cities, but also one or two areas further afield:

  • 4 Nights in Saigon: Three and a half days in Ho Chi Minh City will give you time to adjust to your jet lag, explore the city, and see the major sites. Car or bus to Can Tho on the fifth day.

  • 2 Nights in Can Tho: With two nights in Can Tho you've got one full day to see the floating markets and smaller canals. Car or bus back to Saigon for one night, or all the way to Dalat if you like driving for 12 hours or more!

  • 3 Nights in Dalat: Three nights in Dalat will give you two full days to explore the city and relax by the lake. Fly or drive (two full days with a stop in Quy Nhon) to Hoi An.

  • 3 Nights in Hoi An: You've got 2 and a half days in Hoi An. These can eaily be spent exploring the old town, with an optional trip to the coast. Travel by bus, car, or train to Hue on the fourth day.

  • 2 Nights in Hue: Leave Hoi An early to spend a day in Hue exploring the Citadel, then spend your next full day with a trip down the Perfume River to see the spectacular tombs and river life. Fly or take the overnight train to Hanoi on day 3.

  • 4 Nights in Hanoi: With three and a half days in Hanoi you can liesurly explore the old town and sites, and optionally take a day trip to the Perfume Pagoda or Halong Bay.

  • 5 Nights in Sapa and Bac Ha: 5 nights on this trip will give you time to see the hill tribes and markets of Sapa, Bac Ha, and Can Cau. One night on the train to Lao Cai, 2 nights in Sapa (leaving very early on Saturday for the Can Cau market), 1 night in Bac Ha to see the Sunday morning market, and another overnight train ride back to Hanoi.

Option 1:

  • GO TO THE BEACH!: Spend a few days relaxing on the beautiful beaches of Nha Trang and/or Phu Quoc Island. You can drive from Dalat to Nha Trang en route to Hoi An, and fly to Phu Quoc Island from Ho Chi Minh City.

Option 2:

  • 6 Nights Around Buon Ma Thuot and Kon Tum: From Dalat, drive to Buon Ma Thuot spending 2 nights and exploring Lak Lake, Ban Don Village, and Yok Don National Park. From Yok Don National Park, continue on to Kon Tum for 2 nights to explore the sites in the area. Drive back with another night in BMT and Dalat.

Option 3:

  • More Time in Saigon and Hanoi: Add 5 or six days to your time in Saigon and Hanoi. This will allow you to really relax and get comfortable with these cities, try more local food, and enjoy the atmosphere without feeling rushed.

Three Weeks in Vietnam

Three weeks in Vietnam is plenty of time to see a great deal. Follow the above 1 month recommendations but skip one of the three options, and possibly remove a day trip from Hanoi.


Gems of Vietnam

With two weeks in Vietnam you can comfortably visit the major cities and sites in the south, center, and north:

  • 4 Nights in Saigon: Three and a half days in Ho Chi Minh City will give you time to adjust to your jet lag, explore the city, and see the major sites. Fly to Hoi An on the fifth day.

  • 3 Nights in Hoi An: You've got 2 and a half days in Hoi An. These can eaily be spent exploring the old town, with an optional trip to the coast. Travel by bus, car, or train to Hue on the fourth day.

  • 2 Nights in Hue: Leave Hoi An early to spend a day in Hue exploring the Citadel, then spend your next full day with a trip down the Perfume River to see the spectacular tombs and river life. Fly to Hanoi early on day 3.

  • 4 Nights in Hanoi: With three and a half days in Hanoi you can liesurly explore the old town and sites, and optionally take a day trip to the Perfume Pagoda. Fly out on the fifth day.

11 Day City Tour

If you want to see the major cities in Vietnam but don't have much time, this itinerary is for you:

  • 3 Nights in Saigon: This gives you two full days to see the major sites and get a feel for the city. Fly to Hoi An on the fouth day.

  • 2 Nights in Hoi An: Explore the old town of Hoi An for a day and a half. Travel by bus, car, or train to Hue on the third day.

  • 2 Nights in Hue: Leave Hoi An early to spend a day in Hue exploring the Citadel, then spend your next full day with a trip down the Perfume River to see the spectacular tombs and river life. Fly to Hanoi early on day 3.

  • 3 Nights in Hanoi: You'll have two and a half days to explore the old town and some of the major sites. Enjoy it! Fly out on the fourth day.

This trip can be shorted to 9 days by removing Hoi An or Hue, and 7 days by removing both Hoi An and Hue.


Off the Beaten Path!

Here are two excellent options that can be done alone or combined with any of the above trips:

Central Highlands: Old Ho Chi Minh Trail Highway 14

Although Dalat doesn't see near the number of tourists that cities like Saigon and Hanoi do, it's still a well traveled destination. But as you travel far up Highway 14 on the old Ho Chi Minh Trail you'll see less and less foreigners, more beautiful surroundings, scenic hill tribe villages, and very friendly locals interested to meet you. From Dalat, drive to Buon Ma Thuot for a couple of days and visit Lak Lake, Ban Don Village, and Yok Don National Park. Continue on to Kon Tum for a night or two and check out the tribal villages along the way. After Kon Tum it really gets interesting. Spend a night in Phuoc Son and Aluoi, driving along the spectacuar Truon Son Mountain range and passing fascinating hill tribe villages. From Aluoi you can go east to Hue on the coast, or continue north to Route 9 passing Khe Sanh on the way to Lao Bao (on the Laotion border) or Dong Ha on the coast.

For more information, see our Central Highlands Video.


Northern Adventures

Most people traveling outside of Hanoi in the north visit Halong Bay or Sapa, with a small few making it to Bacha and Can Cau. In addition to these attractions, loops can be made taking in sites far off the beaten path. The Northeastern Loop would involve driving to Cao Bang to see the spectacular waterfalls on the Chinese border and Ba Be National Park, beginning with Halong Bay and passing scenic hill tribe villages during most of the northern drive. Overnight village stays and treks can easily be arranged from tour companies in Hanoi.

For the Northwestern Loop, in addition to visiting the amazing markets in Bac Ha and Can Cau, stop in Son La, Dien Bien Phu, Lai Chau, and Tam Duong. There is also the possibility to hike up Mt. Fansipan (Vietnam's highest mountain) on this loop.


To book hotels for any of these trips, see our recommended hotels in Vietnam.