Discover the History & Culture of Central & South Vietnam
Fast Facts
  Duration: 13 DAYS/12 NIGHTS STYLE: Classic Travel

Discover the History & Culture of Central & South Vietnam

Overview
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You begin the tour in the old capital city of Hue where you will visit the Citadel and many glorious temples and pagodas before heading south to the charming town of Hoi An. Both places offer history in abundance as you explore  the modern and ancient culture of this area of Vietnam.

Your trail of discover then takes you into a very different world. You can explore the ancient Hindu ruin of My Son dating to the 4th C AD and part of the Champa dynasty.  Travelling West, you will go into the majestic central highlands. Here you will  meet people from some of the 54 Ethnic minority groups who live in Vietnam and be introduced to the different cultures that the group follow.

The natural beauty of this area is legendary. You will see the beautiful waterfalls  and dramatic vistas. Take a ride on an elephant in the village of Buon Ma Thuot before heading to the romantic French hill town of Da Lat (City of Love).

From Da Lat the tour takes you South of Vietnam, to the bustling city of Ho Chi Minh and the amazing Cu Chi tunnels. This area offers fascinating insights into the more recent history of the Vietnam war with America and the ways in which it impacted the lives of local people. Ho chi Minh city also offers exciting shopping opportunities, the buzz of a large and vibrant city with everything that has to offer. The last leg of this exciting tour travels to the unique area of the Mekong Delta where you will see how people live along and on the magnificent rivers of the area.

'Discover the History & Culture of Central & South Vietnam' is an ideal tour for those who are looking for a mixture of historical sites from different eras, an insight into Ethnic cultures and the means of seeing some of the most beautiful parts of Vietnam.

 

 

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WHY YOU SHOULD BOOK THIS TOUR WITH US?
  • Personal attention to detail by all HGH from the time of your initial enquiry through to the end of your tour
  • 24 hour support available during the tour
  • Enjoy the degree of historical and cultural information throughout your tour from our local and knowledgeable tour hosts to the degree that you and your group are interested.
  • We focus on sustainable tourism by creating the very best experience for you as the tourist while supporting our local environment and local people
Itinerary Highlights
Day 1: Arrival in Hue

Your guide will meet you at Phu Bai Airport in Hue City and take you to your hotel in Hue. After check in, you have the rest of the day at your leisure to explore this adorable town or simply rest.

Hotel in Hue

Day 2: Hue

Hue City was once the political, economic and cultural capital of Vietnam during the Nguyen Dynasty (1802–1945). We begin the day with a boat trip down the romantic Perfume River to the Thien Mu Pagoda, one of the most beautiful and oldest pagodas in Hue. We then go to the Minh Mang Tomb. Minh Mang was emperor of Vietnam from 1820 to 1841.

 

In the afternoon, we drive to the outskirts of Hue to enjoy the peaceful and beautiful environment of the Tu Duc Tomb before heading back to town to see the World Cultural Heritage Siteof the Imperial Citadel. Within the walls of the Citadel are the Imperial City and Forbidden City as well as palaces, ornate halls, libraries, residences and colleges. All of this reflects an era gone by when the Emperor and his entourage lived in luxury and isolation from the ‘ordinary’ people. We have dinner at a local restaurant after which you are free to explore on your own or relax in your hotel room.

Hotel in Hue

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Day 3: Hue – Hoi An

Leaving Hue, we head south to the more modern setting of Da Nang then into the ancient town of Hoi An. On the way, you have the opportunity to stop en route to take panoramic pictures at the summit of Hai Van Pass overlooking Lang Co Beach

In the afternoon, enjoy a relaxed walking tour through the narrow and ancient streets of this charming town. Perhaps more than any other places in Vietnam, Hoi An retains the feel of centuries past. Once known as Faifo, it was an influential port along the Silk Road. For over 500 years, merchants from China, Japan, France and Portugal settled in the prosperous town resulting in a distinctive blend of culture, cuisine, religions and architecture. In 1999, the town became a UNESCO World Heritage Site listed for having the ‘most unique’ architecture in Southeast Asia including the Chinese Assembly Halls, the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge and numerous old family houses. It has been restored and protected by both the UNESCO funding and proud locals.

During the evening, this beautiful town turns into a magical place with the many lanterns that line the river and the bridge. Hoi An caters well to tourists offering many small eateries to enjoy and shops to explore.

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Day 4: Hoi An – My Son – Kon Tum

Day 4 takes us to My Son, formerly the center of the Cham Kingdom. My Son was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. From My Son, we travel along the famous Ho Chi Minh trail through magnificent stretches of mountains to Kon Tum region. En route, we stop at Co Tu village to discover the matriarchal traditions of K’Tu ethnic group before heading out on a hike to the visit the people who live at Konchori and Konkotu. These are two enchanting ethnic minority villages with their typical stilt houses.

Kon Tum is a region inhabited primarily by the Montagnards, which includes many ethnic minorities, mainly of Banhar, but also including Rongao, Jarrai and Xedang. There are 54 Ethnic groups living in Vietnam all with their own language and culture.

Dinner is at a local restaurant.

Overnight stay in Kon Tum.

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Day 5: Kon Tum – Pleiku – Buon Ma Thuot

After breakfast, we visit the pride of the residents in Tay Nguyen, a wooden church built in 1913 by a French priest.  Although the majority of Vietnamese follow a form of Buddhism, about 7% are Christians. After lunch, we go to Buon Ma Thuot, stopping on the way to see the rubber plantations and pepper gardens. Buon Ma Thuot is a mountainous town in the west highlands and is the home of the remaining elephants in Vietnam.

Overnight stay in Buon Ma Thuot

Day 6: Buon Ma Thuot – Buon Don

Today, we meet more of the Ethnic minority groups in Don Village including people from the Ede, M’nong, G’rai, Lao and Thai tribes.  Don village is also very famous for its elephants. We visit the tomb of the King of elephant catchers and take a walk over the suspension bamboo bridge.

Visite de la tombe du roi chasseur d'éléphants. Exploration de la forêt, avec ses rivières et ponts suspendus. Déjeuner en cours de visite. Continuation vers les magnifiques cascades de Dray Sap et de la Vierge (Trinh Nu). Dîner et nuit chez l'habitant dans une maison traditionnelle sur pilotis. Option: spectacle de musique et danse des minorités avec dégustation de l'alcool local.

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Day 7: Buon Don – Jun – Da Lat

After breakfast, we will take you to Lak Lake. Here you can visit Jun village and enjoy a 1 hour ride on a dug-out canoe where you can see the local people fishing. You will also get the chance to ride an elephant for an hour. After that we will continue to Da Lat which is considered the jewel of the Central Highlands. In Da Lat, you can go sightseeing along the hilly roads of Da Lat and to the tranquil Xuan Huong Lake which is in the center of the city. We will take you by car to visit the special Dalat Market. You will spend the night in Dalat.

Day 8: Da Lat

Da Lat is also known as the ‘City of Love’. It is located at an altitude of 1,500m and has a cool climate all year round. The French established Da Lat during their occupation of Vietnam as a retreat to escape the heat and humidity of the summers.

The city tour of Da Lat City begins with visiting the summer palace of King Bao Dai, the last emperor of Vietnam. You also visit the Old Railway Station that was built during the French colonial times, and then on to Tuyen Lam Lake and Truc Lam Zen Monastery. Tuyen Lam Lake is a great place to go for a pleasant stroll with friends, family or that special someone. Relax and enjoy the peace and tranquility of the gentle waters.

Hotel in Da Lat

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Day 9: Da Lat – HCM City

Leaving the peaceful environment of Da Lat, we pass through the tea and coffee plantations on the way to the modern bustling city of Ho Chi Minh City. We stop for lunch on the way to Ho Chi Minh City then after you have checked into your hotel. You are free to explore on your own or relax in your hotel room.

Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City

Day 10: HCM City – Cu Chi – HCM City

The city tour starts with a visit to the imposing Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat) before going to the Notre Dame Cathedral. This is the most famous landmark in Ho Chi Minh as the twin bell towers are visible from a great distance.

In the same square is the famous Saigon Post Office, the largest functioning post office in Vietnam. The Post Office is very special as it was designed and built by Gustave Eiffel, the man who gave his name to the Eiffel Tower in Paris and who also designed and built the Statue of Liberty. It is a building not to be missed!

For a change of pace and energy, our next stop is at the Cho Lon Market in China town where you can just enjoy the atmosphere or purchase some souvenirs to take home.

We then leave the city to visit and experience a more modern piece of Vietnamese history, the famous Cu Chi Tunnels. The Cu Chi Tunnels were built during the American war of independence by the Viet Cong guerillas. The tunnels form a labyrinth virtually underneath the U.S bases and used for surprise raids and to avoid air strikes. You are able to go down a short stretch of the tunnels where a little imagination can help us reflect on the experience that was for people under heavy artillery fire. We will then return to Ho Chi Minh City for dinner.

Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City

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Day 11: HCM City – Vinh Long – Can Tho

Today takes us West through the scenic splendor of the Mekong River Delta, home to the richest agricultural lands in Vietnam. A boat trip takes us to an orchard garden island before continuing the journey to the ancient and amazing Cai Be floating market, where people go about their daily business much as they have done for centuries. Cruising down the Delta allows us an insight into the experiences and daily lives of the local people. We continue through Vinh Long by boat and then take a car to Can Tho where you will spend the night.

Hotel in Can Tho

Day 12: Can Tho – HCM City

The day starts by continuing our journey along the Mekong River to the beautiful Cai Rang floating market. The floating market is a magnificent site, seeing hundreds of small merchant boats float around offering their commodities to locals and tourists alike. It is then time to return to Ho Chi Minh City, check into the hotel and have dinner at a local restaurant. After that, you have the option to explore Ho Chi Minh City on your own or retire for the night in your hotel room.

Hotel in Ho Chi Minh

Day 13: HCM City – Departure

On the day of your departure, you are free to shop, relax and do whatever you would like at your leisure until your transfer time to Tan Son Nhat International Airport.

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