Cycling in Vietnam is one of the best ways to explore the country. In Vietnam cycling is possible on roads along the coast, like from Vung Tao to Danang or Nha Trang. In Hanoi, cycle to Ninh Binh and Cuc Phuong National Park and nearby Bat Trang village, famous for producing ceramic vases. Also discover Mai Chau valley, a rare haven, with near lush tribal villages. In Saigon, take cycling tours to Mekong delta and Cat Tien National Park.
This active tour of Vietnam begins in Hanoi. Take a comprehensive tour of the city then transfer to Ha Long Bay. Aboard a luxury cruise to see Karst mountain formations. There will be opportunities for, swimming, diving or kayaking in the clear waters of Halong Bay. Transfer to Hoi An and take a leisurely bicycle ride to Tra Que village. One day visit Champa ruins in My Son, then time permitting cycle along Vietnam’s picturesque country roads.
TRAVEL UNTAMED ON THIS 11-DAY ACTIVE VIETNAM TOUR…
And, experience cycling through flower gardens and alongside lotus lakes.
The largest of the three countries of the Indochina Peninsula, Vietnam is blessed with a ravishing coastline, emerald-green mountains, national parks, dynamic cities and one of the world’s best cuisines.
From the limestone peaks of Halong Bay, the French boulevards of the capital Hanoi, to the charming cultural town of Hoi An, you'll find cultural diversity and natural wonders around each and every corner. This is an outrageously fun country to explore where the locals love a laugh (and a drink) and you’ll have plenty of opportunities to socialise with them and hear their tales.
At the eastern edge of Southeast Asia, Vietnam holds a wealth of cultural attractions and overwhelming natural beauty. With soaring mountains in the west and a beautiful coastline overlooking the South China Sea, rich culture and smiling locals, Vietnam is a perfect destination for any adventure holiday.
Begin your tour in Hanoi, the Paris of the Orient, with city tour and a cyclo tour of the fascinating Old Quarter. Continue to Halong Bay where you will board the luxurious Chinese style junk, Emeraude for 2 nights. Named for a cruising vessel that plied these waters between 1906 and 1937, the Emeraude aspires to the magnificence of the bay itself. Its air-conditioned cabins, en suite bathrooms, award-winning cuisine and spacious deck space set the stage for the voyage of a lifetime. There will be time for cycling Vietnam wide open spaces.
Continue to Central Vietnam and visit the ancient merchant town of Hoi An – a UNESCO world heritage site. Explore an Imperial city of the Champa Empire (4th-12th century), a large complex of over 70 religious architectural remains. Then enjoy pristine beaches, the amazing scenery and traditional Vietnamese cuisine.
This tour is designed for active travellers but can be taken by others as well. This tour combines nicely with touring elsewhere in Southeast Asia e.g. Cambodia, Vietnam or Thailand. Throughout your tour, AwimAway will arrange for you to experience the best the country has to offer. Please let us know your interests and we will be happy to tailor-make your itinerary.
Active Vietnam – Bike & Kayak This tour is designed for active travellers but can be taken by others as well. It combines nicely with touring elsewhere in Southeast Asia e.g. Cambodia, Vietnam or Thailand.
Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hoi An, My Son, Saigon
(11 Days. Travel Any Day)
Day 1 – Arrive
Hanoi Meet and greet on arrival at the Noi Bai International Airport. After a warm reception, our representative will escort you to your hotel for 3 nights stay.
Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel – Premium Room (Nil)
Day 2 & 3 – Tour
Hanoi Full-day private guided tour of Hanoi. First visit Ba Dinh Square, where silent sentries guard the marble and granite mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh. Nearby visit the Ho Chi Minh Museum, an extraordinary tribute in abstract form to the life of the 'father of the country'. See also the One Pillar Pagoda, and hear the legend about how it was constructed as a memorial to the love of an emperor in the 11th century. Continue to the Temple of Literature, built in 1070 and now Vietnam's first university.
Spend the next day biking and/or hiking through rural villages outside the city. Cycling on the banks of the Red River on a quiet dyke road you’ll pass through flower and vegetable gardens, village lanes and alongside lotus lakes to gain a whole new view of Vietnam’s capital city. After lunch at a local restaurant (own account) we will take in lotus gardens (subject to seaons) as we ride along the water’s edge to Tran Quoc, one of the most revered Buddhist pagodas in Vietnam, before returning to our hotel.
Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel – Premium Room (B)
Day 4 – Transfer
Halong Bay Take a private transfer to Halong Bay and check in on board the luxurious M/V “Emeraude” for an overnight cruise. Few places anywhere rival the extreme natural beauty and serenity of Vietnam's Halong Bay. A noted Vietnamese poet and scholar described it as a "rock wonder in the sky". In modern times, it has been a backdrop for countless movies including the Oscar-winning French epic, Indochine. It is now universally acknowledged as an unmissable corner of Vietnam.
The cruise commences with and a lavish buffet lunch. Then weather permitting, visit the Sung Sot Cave (Cave of Surprises). Watch a Vietnamese cuisine demonstration will take place on the sundeck and attend a happy hour with complimentary canapés followed by an evening movie show. A scrumptious International buffet dinner is served at the restaurant.
Onboard M/V Emeraude – Superior Cabin (B, L, D)
Day 5 – Cruise
Halong Bay Wake up in the morning and practice Tai Chi in the morning on the sun deck with one of our instructors. Spend your day, swimming, diving or kayaking in the clear waters of Halong Bay. Discover for yourself the pristine corners of the mythical Dragon Bay, with the option of relaxing walks on the small islands. Participate in kayak expeditions, safely supervised by our professional guides, to explore the lagoons and caves for hidden treasures. There is a lot to do and explore or just experience the beauty of the region and relax.
Onboard M/V Emeraude – Superior Cabin (B, L, D)
Day 6 – Transfer
Hanoi Spend your morning practicing Tai chi or swimming in the clear waters of the Halong Bay. After an energizing western breakfast, check out from M/V Emeraude and transfer to Hanoi. Rest of the day at leisure.
Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel – Premium Room (B)
Day 7 – Transfer
Hoi An Transfer to Saigon airport for your flight to Danang. On arrival meet your private guide and tour the Cham sculpture museum in Danang, which houses the largest and most impressive collection of Cham artefacts anywhere in the world, dating from the 4th to the 14th centuries. The Chams are descendants of the great kingdom of Champa and are known for their beautiful textiles and patterns.
Hoi An is a UNESCO-listed riverfront town with colourful historic homes, charming cafes and bustling silk and fish markets. In the afternoon, take a leisurely bicycle ride to Tra Que village along picturesque country roads to visit a farm and learn about Vietnamese food and ingredients. Alternatively, explore the beautiful back streets and learn about the history of Hoi An. In the evening enjoy a sunset cruise on the river.
The Nam Hai Resort, One-bedroom Villa (B)
Day 8 – Tour
My Son With your private guide, take an early morning drive through rolling countryside, passing through small towns, often journeying alongside the wide reaches of the Han River. The last few kilometres of the journey are rather bumpy and we walk the final 500m through lush hillsides, before emerging into the main site of My Son, which translates literally as "Beautiful Mountain".
My Son is an imperial city of the Champa Empire (4th-12th century). It is a large complex of over 70 religious structures and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your private guide will offer full commentary on the Cham heritage of My Son while you wander around this historic site. Return to Hoi An and take a private guided tour of the ancient city and a boat trip to explore villages famous for making pottery.
The Nam Hai Resort, One-bedroom villa (B)
Day 9 – Transfer
Saigon After breakfast, take a transfer to the airport for your flight to Saigon. On arrival you will meet our representative who will escort you to your hotel.
Park Hyatt Hotel – Park Room (B)
Day 10 – Tour
Saigon Your private tour starts with a drive to Cu Chi (70 km), an amazing complex of underground tunnels built first as a defence against the French and later expanded during the American (Vietnam) war. It’s a thrilling experience to crawl through this amazing system and later to try your shooting skills on original AK47s and other guns from past war times (subject to a surcharge).
Return to Saigon and enjoy an afternoon tour of the city. After lunch (own account), take a tour accompanied by your private guide to visit the former Presidential Palace, which is now preserved as a museum, including the underground communications bunkers, headquarters for the Saigon Government during the Vietnam War. Continue to Notre Dame, an impressive neo-Romanesque cathedral in the centre of city, and Dong Khoi street, formerly the centre of haute couture in Saigon, when it was known as Rue Catinat.
Park Hyatt Hotel – Park Room (B)
Day 11 – Depart
Saigon Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.
The true price is customised based on final choice of hotels, travel dates, and other custom preferences. All prices exclude international flights.
Price Includes: hotels, airport transfers and transportation within the country, unique experiences guided by local experts and 24X7 support during your trip.
Make this your holiday
When to go The high season in Vietnam is from November to March. Prices peak over the Christmas and New Year period, and if you don’t fancy crowds then it is best to avoid this busy time. During this period it is warm and dry in the South but as you travel north of Nha Trang, it begins to get cooler.
From April or May to October, summer monsoon brings hot, humid weather except in the mountains up north. A slight break in monsoon during July and August makes it the second high season in the South but violent and unpredictable typhoons can hit central and northern Vietnam. May, June and September are usually the quietest months.
Getting There There are few direct flights from Europe to Vietnam’s three main international airports – Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang, but these are steadily increasing over the years. The majority of visitors take indirect flights routed through Bangkok, Singapore or Hong Kong. It can be cheaper if you fly to Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur or Singapore or regular international carriers and from there take one of the low cost carriers to Vietnam. Vietnam Airlines and Jetstar are the two main domestic carriers. Fares are very reasonable and the frequencies of flights to main hubs are good.
Getting Around: In the cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, there is a sophisticated local bus network. Taxis and bikes are the easiest way to get around the larger cities – just be sure to agree on a fare before you ride. Slow but scenic, the two-seater pedal powered cyclo, is a fun and cheap way to travel short distances. It is not uncommon to flag down a passing motorbike for a lift. Many people will be happy to give you a lift for a fee a little higher than the equivalent cyclo fare. You can also hire a car with driver at a reasonable cost.
Shopping Shopaholics will discover that of all the places in the world, Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) in Vietnam offers the best-value shopping. This vibrant metropolis is bursting at the seams with bric-a-brac markets, local brands and international design houses. If you’re adventurous, jump on the back of a motorbike to save your dong for shopping. Explore Diamond Plaza on the Le Duan Street or explore local designer boutiques like Cindy’s Workshop that offers bright and funky printed dresses and unique belts for less than £30.
Hanoi is the artistic heart of Vietnam, so you’ll find the best range of art and handicrafts the country has to offer. It is the best place to shop for your home, with a bevvy of stores selling beautiful furniture, linen and home wares. There are galleries throughout Hanoi but if your time is limited, be sure to visit Art Vietnam on Nguyen Khac Nhu street, where you’ll find a wide range of contemporary Vietnamese art and photography.
Tipping Tipping is a personal expense and depends entirely on the quality of services provided to you and your appreciation of those services. Whilst tipping is not mandatory, it is expected at restaurants and by drivers, guides and tour escorts. The following estimated guideline may help you in determining the tip amount, should you wish to tip any service provider. Tipping in restaurants is about 5-10% of the bill, if not included.
Passport/Visa Visas are required to enter, exit or transit through Vietnam territories. The most common is a single entry 30-day visa. Multiple entry, 60-day and 90-day visas are also available. Passports must have a minimum of six months validity. Enquiries should be directed to the nearest Vietnam embassy or consulate.