• Sail pass floating villages on a luxury cruise of Ha Long Bay
  • Bring it all to life with expert-led guided oturs
  • Join a cooking class to see first-hand why the country's cuisine is renowned
  • Cruise the waterways and farmlands of the Mekong Delta
  • Explore the infamous Cu Chi Tunnels

Vietnam is a country that compels and wows in equal measure. Begin in historic, lively Hanoi, before making for the Halong Bay's lesser-visited Lan Ha Bay – its karst beauty only seems real once you’ve been there. As you head down the coast, you’ll experience the coastal towns of Hoi An and Danang, where fishermen ply their gentle trade while peaceful rivers are filled with lanterns for evenings that exude tranquillity. Refreshed, compare and contrast the pulsating cities and fascinating histories of Hue and Ho Chi Minh City against the unhurried pace of life on the Mekong Delta. All the while, you’ll learn how to make lanterns, take cooking lessons, ride a speedboat, enjoy a cyclo tour and cruise past floating villages on a traditional junk ship.

Day 1

Depart the UK

Premium airport lounge access will serve as a perfect way to relax ahead of your overnight flight. You’ll arrive in Hanoi and begin your luxury holiday on day two.

Days 2 – 3

Good morning, Vietnam

Arriving into Hanoi, a private transfer will bring you to the colonial splendour of your French Quarter hotel. The city's endearing bustle will give you an early feel for life in the capital, while a deeper discernment will come from your private tour of the city. Absorb the history of the ‘Hanoi Hilton’ where the French imprisoned Vietnamese, before being used to imprison American POWs.

Your experience of Hanoi will cross-cross a thousand-year period as you explore the Temple of Confucius, Ho Chi Minh’s stilted house and splendid Beaux-Arts architecture. To complete the Hanoi immersion, hop on a cyclo and take a thrilling ride through the Old Quarter to become a part of Vietnam’s beating heart itself.

Breakfast & Lunch included

Ho Chi Minh Mauseoleum, Hanoi, Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

Fruit sellers in Hanoi, Vietnam

Fruit sellers in Hanoi

Day 4

Serenity and beauty at Ha Long Bay

After an included private transfer, you’ll be greeted aboard your luxury junk ship by welcome drinks, polished-timber elegance and your marbled suite’s private balcony. Taking in the views from the pool deck, you’ll set off among the spectacular islands of Ha Long Bay, heading towards Lan Ha – a lesser-visited part where few ships are granted permits. Along the way, you’ll stop off at century-old French lighthouses and remote villages, which you’ll explore on cycle rides and school visits.

In among it all there are spa treatments along with the superb included full-board fine dining, served up from an open kitchen. You’ll even be treated to a cooking class and a spot of squid fishing.

Stay: Ginger boat (Signature Suite cabin)

Ginger, Lan Ha Bay

Ginger, Lan Ha Bay

Regent Suite White Crane, Ginger, Lan Ha Bay

Regent Suite White Crane, Ginger

Days 5 – 7

Laid-back living in Hoi An

You’ll awake to gorgeous sunrise views, freshly baked pastries and a Tai Chi session, held on the sun deck. Then, among the bay’s tree-topped islands, you’ll have some time to explore under your own steam, with a swim or kayak paddle, before your flight down to Hoi An. Bookended by private transfers, you'll arrive at one of the country's finest hotels – a French-colonial jewel complete with private-balcony river views, spa treatments and yoga classes.

You'll have plenty of time to explore Hoi An's UNESCO-listed charms, with everything from its Japanese bridges and Chinese temples to its century-old warren of merchant houses showcased on an included private walking tour. The visit to a silk lantern workshop is a special highlight. You may also decide to venture out on an optional, half-day Vespa tour through the nearby countryside, in which you'll zig-zag between rice paddies, learn about the art of local coffee roasting and enjoy a delicious lunch while gaining a fascinating insight into rural life in this part of Vietnam. 

Breakfast & Lunch included

Spoil yourself: Explore the surrounding rural idyll on an optional Vespa tour

Japanese Bridge, Hoi An, Vietnam

Japanese Bridge, Hoi An

Anantara Hoi An

Anantara Hoi An

Lanterns, Hoi An, Vietnam

Lanterns, Hoi An

Day 8

Vietnamese cookery and sweeping landscapes

Vietnamese food has become an established part of the restaurant scene in the UK in recent years and for a very good reason. Fragrant, tender and healthy, the cuisine is influenced by French, Chinese, Angkor and Champa cooking philosophies, and there’s no better way to understand than to take a cookery class.

Afterwards, an ideal reward comes in the form of the arresting coastal scenery on your private transfer to Hue. Here, you've got the option of joining an evening food tour by cyclo, visiting street stalls, restaurants and bars showcasing the best and most authentic local delicacies, while also learning some handy Vietnamese phrases as you go.

Breakfast & Lunch included

Vietnamese Cookery Class

Vietnamese Cookery Class

Hai Van Pass, Vietnam

Hai Van Pass: Hoi An to Hue

Day 9

Imperial architecture and Buddhist roots

A private transfer brings you the short distance to Hue, whose former status as imperial capital of Vietnam has left behind a majestic moat-ringed palace and fortress complex. Exploring this imposing site on a private tour is a pleasure, as is the even-older Thien Mu Pagoda: one of the key icons of Vietnam and a beautiful example of the country’s Buddhist heritage. From here, embark on a leisurely cyclo ride to Kim Long village to immerse into the greenery of a so-called 'Garden City'.

Then, a short flight and a private transfer will see you to your luxury hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, more commonly known by its former name, Saigon.

Stay: Park Hyatt Saigon

Breakfast included

La Residence Hotel & Spa, Hue

La Residence Hotel & Spa, Hue

Hue, Vietnam

Hue, Vietnam

Day 10

City tour and the Cu Chi Tunnels by private speedboat

Following an included guided transfer, a private speedboat will see you out of the city to the infamous Cu Chi Tunnels – used by the Viet Cong in the Tet offensive. After a full guided exploration of this underground labyrinth, you'll be treated to an included lunch on the riverside before your return speedboat leg back to Ho Chi Minh City. Here, a private guide will bring its rich history to life, taking in the poignant War Remnants Museum and the majestic Reunification Palace, a Beaux-Arts jewel once besieged by tanks and kamikaze planes.

You'll also marvel at the city's French-colonial architecture and the chic boutiques of Dong Khoi Street.

Stay: Park Hyatt Saigon

Breakfast & Lunch included

Reunification Palace, Ho Chi Minh City

Reunification Palace

Day 11

Mekong Delta Cruise

If cities are the heartbeat of Vietnam, the Mekong is the lifeblood on which it depends. Life along the river is gentle-paced, and we’ve included a cruise on board a traditional sampan boat for a unique insight into the culture along its banks. You'll also pause to cycle among the delta's narrow village lanes, local cottage industries and fruit orchards, stopping for tastings and the chance to meet the local residents.

It's all bookended by private transfers, seeing you back to your luxury hotel.

Stay: Park Hyatt Saigon

Breakfast & Lunch included

Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Days 12 – 13

Depart for home

On your last day in Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll be picked up by private transfer and taken to the airport for your flight home. 

Breakfast included

About the itinerary

"With cruises on Ha Long Bay and the Mekong Delta along with luxury stays in both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, this is the perfect introduction for the first-time visitor. I paced this itinerary so there's enough time in each place to get a real feel for it, but also with some hands-on experiences. Making a silk lantern in a traditional Hoi An workshop to float in the river at nightfall is both informative and rewarding – as is the cooking class!"

Katrin Rummer

Destination Specialist

Pricing information

Guide price from £4,885 pp incl. flights

Low Season from: £4,885 pp
High Season from: £5,960 pp

  • Complimentary UK airport lounge access
  • Return flights between London, Hanoi & Ho Chi Minh, including domestic flights as per itinerary
  • Private transfers through-out
  • 9 nights accommodation staying in 5* (Deluxe) hotels on a B&B basis
  • Overnight Cruise on Lan Ha Bay (Part of Halong Bay) including all meals
  • Private touring with local guides including some meals as per itinerary, highlights include:
  • City & Cyclo tour of Hanoi, walking tour of Hoi An plus a visit to a local market and the chance to test your cooking skills, explore the historical sites of Hue and historical landmarks of Ho Chi Minh and Cu Chi Tunnels tour