Luang Prabang

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Tour Nearby Essence of The North Vietnam & Luang Prabang 11 Days

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Tour type: Daily Tour
Duration: 11 days
Maximum number of people: 2
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Discover North Vietnam’s cultural diversity and breathtaking scenery. From Hanoi’s colonial charm to Sapa’s the mist-entwined mountains and finally the turquoise, island dotted, Halong Bay. Say good bye to Vietnam, you'll explore Luang Prabang, a UNESCO World Heritage-listed town along the Mekong River in northern Laos. Experience the best of the town and the surrounding region, explore streets lined with a unique blend of traditional Lao and French colonial architecture. Visit cultural attractions to learn about Buddhism and its central role in Lao culture. You'll then explore markets, visit hill tribe villages, meet silk weavers and contemporary textile designers, and take a memorable cruise on the Mekong.

Tour's Program

Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam’s bustling colonial capital. Your driver and guide will meet you outside the baggage claim of Noi Bai Airport and take you to your hotel in the city center. In the afternoon, enjoy an orientation walk, visiting some of Hanoi’s main attractions: the Opera House, Old Quarter, Hoan Kiem Lake and Ngoc Son Temple. Tonight your guide will take you on a culinary adventure, sampling street food in the Old Quarter. Overnight at the hotel in Hanoi.
Today you have a full day to explore Vietnam’s charming capital. Your city tour will take you to Hanoi’s key sites: the Ho Chi Minh Complex (Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum and stilt house), the nearby One Pillar Pagoda; the Presidential Palace; the Temple of Literature; the Quan Thanh Temple, the sedate Tran Quoc Pagoda & West Lake. In the evening enjoy a traditional Water Puppet Performance – a unique Vietnamese Art form hailing from Southeast Asia’s wet-rice culture – before heading to the train station to catch your night train to Lao Cai. Overnight on the train.
The train arrives at the Laocai railway station in the early morning. Your guide and driver will meet you there and take you on the 40km drive to Sapa – Northwest Vietnam’s premier travel destination. Enjoy breakfast before s short drive to Y Linh Ho then trek through the rice terraces and along Muong Hoa Stream to the Black Hmong village of Lao Chai to see the spectacular landscape of Hoang Lien Son Mountain. You approach Ta Van village where Zay Ethnic People inhabits.
Spend time to enjoy the mountain life on Sunset. You may attend cooking local dishes with the family and enjoy dinner in peace. In the evening, you can join the local bar nearby with music and socialize with other tourists then overnight at homestay.
Have breakfast prepared by the family and start a new day with more interesting trek. Keep walking to the rice paddies where you have a nice photo session of the amazing surrounding landscapes. A trek through the bamboo forest and stop to have a panorama view of Giang Ta Chai village – home of red Dzao People. Enjoy lunch with a view at a local village restaurant then drive back to Lao Cai to catch your return night train to Hanoi. Overnight on the train.

Arrive in Hanoi in the early morning. Your guide and driver will meet you at the railways station and take you to a local hotel for refresh and breakfastt, before setting out on a 3 to 4 hour drive to Halong Bay. Called “Bay of Descending Dragons” in Vietnamese, the archipelago of Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site composed of almost 2,000 islands and jungle clad limestone pillars. Hop onboard a traditional junk and over lunch cruise to a secluded corner of the marine park. Spend the next few hours visiting ancient limestone caves and paddling around on sea kayaks. Overnight on the boat.
Awake early and participate in Tai Chi on the top deck or just to enjoy a hearty breakfast. You will have an opportunity to view the sunrise over the bay. The boat will then make its way back to the port stopping at the Cave of Surprises, full of stalagmites and stalactites. From here, it’s clear sailing back to the main harbour and the return drive to Hanoi. Overnight at the hotel in Hanoi.

You can enjoy your free time souvenir shopping until transfer to the airport for your flight to Luang Prabang. Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Luang Prabang is perhaps the best-preserved traditional city in Southeast Asia. The tranquility and charm of this town with its splendid natural scenery and cultural sights make it one of the most delightful places to visit in Laos. Today is free at your leisure to explore the city. Overnight in Luang Prabang
After breakfast, we enjoy a short-guided tour seeing the city’s oldest temple of Wat Sene and the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. During our time here, we visit the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrine of Wat Aham, Wat Mai, we then climb up to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa as well as a panoramic view of the city at sunset and the Mekong River. From there, we explore the Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textile made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Today, We then embark on a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, which also gives us a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside as well as explore the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims. Along the way, we stop at the village of Ban Xanghai, where they make the local rice wine. On return, we disembark traditional villages, visiting Ban Xienglek and Ban Xangkong, the villages of handmade jute paper making and continue taking a short drive to Ban Phanom, a village well known for its hand weaving. Overnight in Luang Prabang
An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the procession. From there you will visit the morning Phosi Market, where you will see such diverse offerings as dried buffalo skin, local tea and saltpeter among the chickens, vegetables and hill-tribe weavings. Laos is also known for its traditional crafts, and today you will visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Hmong Village and Ban Thapene, Khmu Village, then drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the turqoise pools or walk along the forest trails. We return to the city by late evening to observe the sunset at Wat Siphouthabath. Overnight in Luang Prabang
After breakfast, we visit The National Museum (close Tuesday) at the former Royal Palace, which displays a lovely collection of the artefacts reflecting the richness of Lao culture dating from the days of the early kings right through to the last sovereign. Also the Central Market is not to be missed. After visiting these sights in the morning, you have free time to explore the town and stroll around the shopping area. We continue to Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for its silk weavings and for its Saa (jute) Papermaking. The tour ends after your transfer to the airport for departure.
Private tours with local English speaking guide
Accommodation as mentioned
A/C transport throughout the tours
Return train tickets: Hanoi - Lao Cai - Hanoi
Entrance fee to any applicable tourist sites
Meals as indicated
Boat cruise as mentioned
Cold water and towel during the trip
Government tax & Service charge
International flight ticket
Visa stamps upon arrival
Other meals not mentioned
Tips & personal expenses
Laundry
Other not stated above
Travel insurance

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