Experience all the bests that northern Vietnam offers

Northern Vietnam's Highlights Tour

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10 day tour with cruise, kayak, trek and homestay
Grade: Introductory. View grading definition here
Places to visit: Hanoi - city tour Hanoi - Kayak Halong bay - trek Sapa - Hanoi

Northern Vietnam is a captivating blend of stunning landscapes, enchanting people and dynamic cities. Capture the spirit of the north in this quick-paced adventure from the delightful city of Hanoi to the amazing World Heritage Site of Halong Bay and to the hill station of Sapa. The tour offers a great opportunity to explore the unique culture and beautiful nature of northern Vietnam in an active way.

Tour Highlights
  • City tour of Hanoi
  • Kayaking in the amazing Halong Bay
  • Trek & homestay in Sapa

Northern Vietnam's Highlights Tour route map


Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi
Day 2: City tour of Hanoi
Day 3: Hanoi - Halong Bay
Day 4: Kayaking Halong Bay
Day 5: Cruise/drive back to Hanoi. Overnight train to Lao Cai
Day 6: Trek in Sapa
Day 7: Trek and home stay in Sapa
Day 8: Overnight train back to Hanoi
Day 9: Free time
Day 10: Departure.

TOUR PRICE (Per person)
(Valid to 31st December 2017)

Group of 1 person: US$ 2030
Group of 2 persons: US$ 1120
Group of 3 -4 persons: US$ 986
Group of 5-6 persons: US$ 854
Group of 7 persons upon request
Single Supplement: US$ 399 


- AC support vehicle along the tour
- Friendly English speaking guide
- Meals as indicated
- Homestay permission
- Twin shared rooms at 3 star standards
- Twin shared cabin on cruise
- Boat expenses if any
- Kayaking equipment
- First-aid kit
- Water & Snacks
- Entrance & Sightseeing fees
- Service charges and taxes


- Travel insurance
- Visa process and stamp fee
- Tips and gratitude
- Personal expenses
- Others not mentioned



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Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi

Our Vietnam adventure tour guide greets you at the airport and transfer you downtown to check into your hotel. Depending on your arrival time, you may have time to explore a little of downtown and enjoy a stroll around Hoan Kiem Lake.
In the evening, enjoy a special Water Puppet show and have welcome dinner with local delights. Overnight Hanoi.  
Transfer:  45 mins 
Transportation: AC vehicle
Activities:  Water puppet show
Meal:    Welcome Dinner
Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

Day 2: City tour of Hanoi

After breakfast in the hotel, you will take an interesting guided city tour of Hanoi including Ho Chi Minh complex (the mausoleum, the house & garden, and the museum) and One Pillar Pagoda, a unique ancient architecture. After here we move to Temple of Literature, the site of Vietnam’s first university, dates back to 1070. It's peaceful gardens and pavilions offer a relaxing respite from Hanoi’s busy streets. Lunch in local restaurant. 
In the afternoon, we visit the most beautiful museum in Hanoi - Ethnology museum then enjoys unique water puppet show in the center of Hanoi. Walking down some small and lively street to see busy local market then join locals for green tea or coffee in local café. Free time for shopping. Overnight in Hanoi 
Activities:  Full-day city tour
Transportation: AC vehicle
Meals:    Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Hotel in Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi -  Halong Bay

Leave Hanoi for Halong Bay at 8.30am. On the way, we will have a short break for refreshment at a handicraft center. Upon arrival in Halong City, we board a wooden boat for a fine seafood lunch and a short cruise to Thien Cung Cave. After a short exploration of the cave, we board the junk again for a great cruise through an amazing area of limestone islets. We will pass a floating village to reach Luon Cave, which is a tunnel thrusting through a mountain. Dinner and overnight on the junk. 
Transfer Hanoi – Halong:  3.5 hrs
Transportation:   AC vehicle
Activities:   Cruising
Meals:     Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 
Accommodation:   Twin shared cabin

Day 4: Kayaking Halong Bay

After breakfast, we start paddling to Van Chai Floating village and then continue paddling to Dark Cave. Tide permitting, we explore this amazing cave by kayak. The cave is a 200m long, dark tunnel thrusting through a limestone mountain. The tunnel is the only entry to a secluded and beautiful lagoon. Lunch on support boat in front of the cave. After lunch, we paddle to Ba Trai Dao Lagoon, along a stunning and fairly rough sea channel, to explore its beautiful beaches. Continue paddling to Lan Ha Bay, which is smaller than Halong bay but much more interesting with lots of secluded beaches. Cruise back to Halong Bay for dinner and overnight on mother boat.
Activities:   5 hr kayaking 
Transportation: Boat, Kayak
Meals:    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation:  Twin shared cabin

Day 5: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Take overnight train to Lao Cai

Breakfast on the junk and enjoy the sundeck of the junk while she navigates amazing rock formations of Bai Tu Long Bay to get back to Halong City. Lunch on the junk before reaching Halong Harbor for a drive back to Hanoi. On the way back to Hanoi we will have a stop in Dong Trieu Town for refreshment and visiting a ceramic factory. 
Arrive in Hanoi we then have time to shop around the Old Quarter and have dinner before being transferred to Hanoi Railway station to catch the night train to Lao Cai (9.30pm – 5.30am). Overnight on train.
Transfer Halong – Hanoi:  3.5 hrs 
Transportation:  AC vehicle, Junk, Overnight train
Activities:    Sightseeing
Meals:     Breakfast, Lunch 
Accommodation:  AC, soft sleeper cabin on train

Day 6: Trekking Sapa 

Arrival in Lao Cai and take a 1.5-hour drive up the stunning mountain range sculpted with tiered rice terraces to the charming little town of Sa Pa, which nestles at 1632 meters. Lots of sightseeing en route. After checking into your hotel you'll have free time to explore the town and its great market.
After a lunch of Vietnamese food in a local restaurant you’ll take a 3-hour trek down the valley to visit an H’mong hill tribe village. Return to Sapa and overnight in hotel.  
Transfer Lao Cai – Sapa:  1.5 hrs 
Transportation:  Bus (or van), On foot
Activities:    3-hr easy trek
Meals:     Breakfast, Lunch 
Accommodation:  Hotel

Day 7: Trekking & home-stay

After breakfast, you begin your trek around 9 am. You first descend the valley on tarmac then hit a beautiful dirt path which runs through rice terraces and minority villages. You will have a break in Lao Chai Village to visit the local H'mong minority group. You’ll stop beside a stream and enjoy a picnic lunch.  After lunch, you continue trekking to Ta Van village, home of the Dzay hill tribe. You will spend tonight with a Dzay family. Your dinner will be cooked by your local guide and the hosts.
Transportation:  On foot
Activities:    5-hr intermediate trek
Meals:     Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 
Accommodation:  Home-stay

Day 8: Sapa – Lao Cai – Overnight train to Hanoi 

Breakfast at the home-stay. We say goodbye to the hosts and head to the main road where you will be transferred back to Sapa town. Lunch in a local restaurant and then spend the rest of the day for shopping or walking the beautiful Ham Rong Park. In the late afternoon, you will be transferred to Lao Cai for overnight train back to Hanoi.
Transfer village – Sapa:  35 mins 
Transfer Sapa – Lao Cai:  1.5 hrs 
Transportation:  Bus (or van)
Activities:    Sightseeing
Meals:     Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation:  AC, soft sleeper cabin on train

Day 9:  Free day in Hanoi

Arrive in Ha Noi 4.30 am. Check into your hotel. You’ll welcome this free day to relax and recover from you journey north. Lots of time to explore more of Ha Noi and pick up some of those last minute souvenirs. Overnight in hotel.
Activities:    Free time
Meals:     Breakfast
Accommodation:  Hotel

Day 10: Hanoi Departure 

Breakfast at your hotel. Our guide and driver are at your disposal until we transfer you to the airport for your flight home or connect to another adventure in Cambodia, Laos or Myanmar with ActiveTravel.Asia.
Transfer Hanoi – Airport: 45 mins
Transportation:  AC vehicle
Meals:     Breakfast

Note on client safety
- The maximum weight per kayak is 125kg (275lb) for single and 250kg (550lb) for double. Passengers are requested to inform your weight upon confirmation.
- We reserve the right to deviate from this itinerary for any reasons, including road and weather conditions, the frequency of visits to a village, or for any other factor which may influence client safety.