The summer months are the prefect time of year to visit central Vietnam, which has a delayed rainy season and does not normally much rain until September. What’s more the centre of Vietnam has so much to offer! From the ancient capital of Hue, home to ancient tombs and the old imperial palace, to Hoi An – a UNESCO heritage town with a beach – many could just spend two weeks in the centre.
Whilst the north and the south of Vietnam are in the green season and have some rain it does not mean that they cannot be visited as they are actually quieter at this time of year and the rain tends to be just for a few hours, so Hanoi and Saigon work very well with this itinerary – many people choose to fly home from Saigon and add a couple of days on there at the end. You could also consider adding in Siem Reap in Cambodia to see the mighty Angkor Wat as it traditionally sees a lower rainfall and again, great to see this with fewer crowds.
We have also included Ninh Binh, which is described as “inland Halong Bay” by many and has similar and stunning karst like scenery. This is a great alternative in the summer months as often cruises of Halong Bay are cancelled if there are storms so Ninh Binh is a “safer bet”. In saying that, many of our customers choose to stick to Halong bay and if the cruise is cancelled we will organise excursions to Ninh Binh instead at the last minute.
Another great itinerary in the summer months is our Avoid the Crowds programme, which includes the caves and rural beauty of Phong Nha in central Vietnam, also great at this time of year!
Day 1 - Welcome to Hanoi!
Your private driver and English-speaking guide will give you a warm welcome when you land in Hanoi. They will then drive you through the bustling capital to your central hotel in the Old Quarter. where you can relax and enjoy the evening at your leisure. The Lapis hotel is one of the best value central hotels with a swimming pool (superior room).Accommodation
Day 2 - Hanoi Like a Local
Today you will explore Hanoi like a local; walk down the capital’s winding streets with a private walking, try local street food and have a local whipped coffee in a hidden coffee shop before exploring Hoa Lo Priosn where American and French POWs were once held and the Temple of Literature built in 1076. Finish your day walking down the city’s railway tracks and then stop for a home brewed beer, the renowned Bia Hoi.
Day 3 - Drive out to Ninh Binh
Known as inland Halong Bay, Ninh Binh is home to dramatic inland karsts, rice paddies, caves and lakes. Cycle through monuments dedicated to both emperors and through paddies fields in Tam Coc and take a sampan ride along a peaceful river. Visit Mua Cave and climb 500 stone steps to the top of the mountain to enjoy a stunning panorama view before checking into your hotel The Emerelda (superior room).Accommodation
Day 4 - Nature Reserve & Flooded Caves
Spend this morning at Van Long nature reserve – meet a local family and take some time to understand their traditions and their daily jobs. You may join them in some of their daily tasks, such as fishing and rice harvest and process. This afternoon, visit caves by a rowing boat and marvel at the Van Long flooded area before returning to the hotel.
Day 5 - Fly to Hue
This morning we will drive you back to Hanoi (3 hour) where you will take an early afternoon flight to Hue in central Vietnam, the ancient Imperial capital. Check into the fittingly imperial-style Eldora Hotel, which is centrally located and explore the town at leisure this evening. Be sure to look at all our restaurant tips in your interactive Fleewinter travel app!
Day 6 - Explore the ancient ruins of Hue
This morning you will explore the ancient capital of Vietnam. The Forbidden Purple City, constructed under the Emperor Gia Long in the early 19th century, suffered during the Vietnam War but remains very significant. Afterwards, board a dragon boat and sail down the Perfume River to visit the striking Thien Mu Pagoda, then visit tombs of the emperors TuDuc and Khai Dinh. If time permits you can enjoy a short cyclo ride to Dong Ba market where you can buy traditional souvenirs.
Day 7 - Scenic roadtrip to Hoi An
Take one of the most scenic journeys down the Vietnam coastline this morning, over a beautiful pass, and along miles of coast as you make your way from Hue to Hoi An by private chauffeur (or motorbike if you prefer!) We’ll make a day of it stopping for fabulous seafood, visit mountain caves and a fresh cool spring, before reaching Hoi An and checking into The Victoria, one of our favourite beach resorts with a beautiful pool, just 3 miles from the town. (river room)Accommodation
Day 8 - 13 - Six full days on the beach!
Take six full days to soak up this glorious beach town. Hoi An has it all; delicious cuisine, fabulous tailors and shopping and a beautiful beach. We haven’t organised anything for you so you can have a lazy breakfast, explore and sunbathe at your own pace (but do ask us about local excursions here including a fun fishing trip in traditional basket boats with local fishermen!)
This itinerary costs from £1,600 per person B&B based on 2 sharing and including all private transfers but not international flights.
You can get flights from as little as £500 per person return and do ask us for advice. Alternatively we can book the flights for you but a booking fee may apply.
- Prices start from £1,600 per person
- Accommodation on B&B basis
- Private transfers (air-conditioned vehicle)
- All entrance fees with service of English speaking guide for excursions
- Lunch on Days 2 & 6
- Internal flights (two)
- Local taxes
- All trips are ATOL protected or ABTA bonded to ensure you are fully covered