North Vietnam Adventure

Trip Overview

7 days / 6 nights

Start this 7-day trip around Vietnam’s northern highlights in Ninh Binh, exploring the rich biodiversity of Cuc Phuong National Park and the traditional way of life of rural villages. Next, head to Ha Long Bay to relax on board a Junk as you take in the stunning limestone karst scenery, before finally hitting Hanoi, for an enthralling whistle-stop tour of the capital’s highlights by jeep.  







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  • Staying at the world-renowned Topas Ecolodge high in the hills of Sapa 
  • Hiking through terraced rice fields, mountains and jungles deep in northern Vietnam and seeing minority villages
  • Discovering the capital of Hanoi and beautiful Halong Bay

This Tour is Perfect for

  • Exploring Northern Vietnam’s highlights and lesser visited mountain areas 
  • Relaxing after the travel restrictions due to Covid 19! 
  • Diving into the local culture of the Vietnamese as well as ethnic minorities  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi. Overnight at Moon Garden homestay. 

Day 2: Moon Garden – Ninh Binh 

Day 3: Ninh Binh – Cuc Phuong – Ninh Binh 

Day 4: Ninh Binh – Ha Long Bay 

Day 5: Ha Long Bay – Hanoi

Day 6: Hanoi 

Day 7: Departure from Hanoi. 

Day 1: Arrival in Hanoi – Welcome to the land of the ascending dragon.   


Xin chao and welcome to Vietnam! Upon arrival at Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport, our Topas guide will welcome you to the land of the ascending dragon before heading straight to Ky Son village.  

After a short drive, you will arrive at Moon Garden homestay in Ky Son village in the afternoon. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed with a refreshing cup of herbal tea. After checking into your room, you will have some free time to explore the homestay and Ky Son village. After exploring, you can sample some of the seasonal local products such as maize, sweet potato, cassava and peanuts while waiting for your steam bath to be prepared.

The infusion of ginger, salt and mugwort medicinal herbs in warm water will provide a soothing soak for your feet after a long day of travelling, and will be followed by dinner, before bedtime, when you are sure to sleep deeply. 

Included meals: Dinner 

Distance and activities: 45’ drive 

Overnight at Moon Garden (Shared stilt house) 

Day 2: Moon Garden- cycle to Duong Lam Village- Hanoi 


Today you will have the choice of a short 6 km bike ride or a longer ride of 12 km round trip: 

Short ride: Cycle through Ky Son, Tam Son, Van Minh, and Cham farming communities, stopping at a local home for a cup of tea. You can pay a visit to a local kindergarten if you are passing through during school hours. There are always friendly locals out and about ready to chat about their daily life and farming. Depending on which season your visit falls in, there may be opportunities to help out with farming activities such as plowing or making rice beds, transplanting seedlings, harvesting rice or seasonal crops including cassava, corn or sweet potatoes.  

Long ride: Take a bicycle ride with a local guide to explore Ky Son, Tam Son, Van Minh, and Cham farming communities and Duong Lam ancient village. Along the way you will visit Mia Pagoda and Mong Phu Communal House. Ride back along the ritual paths of Thang Thac village, stopping at Ngo Quyen tomb and Phung Hung temple.  

Back at Moon Garden homestay, you can learn some local culinary techniques before enjoying a delicious lunch. 

After lunch, there’ll be time to relax with a traditional herbal hand massage before taking a three-hour drive to Ninh Binh – known as ‘Ha Long Bay on land’. Here you’ll check into Le Clos du Fils boutique hotel for your stay in Ninh Binh. 

Included meals: Breakfast, lunch 

Distance and activities: 3-hour drive, 6-12km biking  

Overnight at Le Clos du Fils 

Day 3: Ninh Binh – Cuc Phuong National Park – Ninh Binh 


Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before taking a short transfer of 1 hour to Cuc Phuong National Park. One of the most important areas of biodiversity in Vietnam, the densely forested landscape of Cuc Phuong contains a wonderfully rich ecosystem. Spanning two limestone mountain ranges, the park is home to some of Asia’s rarest animal and plant species. We will first visit the Endangered Primate Rescue Center, established in 1993 as a project of the Frankfurt Zoological Society. The rescue center is a non-profit organization dedicated to the rehabilitation, breeding and conservation of endangered primates as well as the protection of their habitats. 

The park also houses an excellent museum and endangered species rescue center, which you will visit next. Continuing deeper into the park, we will visit the Cave of Prehistoric Man, a fascinating historic find that dates back over 7000 years. After lunch in the park’s Bong restaurant, we will hike 3-6km through the forest to learn about the diverse flora and fauna found here. We will also visit Cho Chi – the oldest tree in the forest – as well as picturesque streams and waterfalls along the way.  

After visiting the park, you’ll transfer back to your accommodation in Ninh Binh. 

Included meals: Breakfast, lunch 

Distance and activities: 2-hour drive, NP visitor centers and museum, hiking 

Overnight at Le Clos du Fils 

Day 4: Ninh Binh – Ha Long Bay – Bai Tu Long Bay

After breakfast, we will drive to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Ha Long Bay. 

At midday we will arrive at Sunworld International Harbor in Ha Long City where you will transfer by tender to your Tonkin cruise boat. Enjoy a welcome drink and safety briefing before checking in to your cabin.  

After settling in you will begin cruising through Bai Tu Long Bay while enjoying a delicious set menu lunch. After lunch, you will have the opportunity to kayak to explore some of the picturesque lagoons, swim in the bay and relax at Cap La beach. Back on board, you will have the chance to unwind with happy hour drinks (from 5h30pm- 7h30pm) while taking in the sun setting over the bay, while the boat gently cruises to Cong Dong-Cong Do area where it will anchor overnight. 

At 7pm a BBQ dinner will be served on the sundeck (weather permitting). After dinner you will be free to try your hand at squid fishing or relax with some activities onboard the boat, such as playing board games or guitar, watching a movie or even indulging in some karaoke (please request in advance), or simply enjoy some beverages at the luxury sky bar which stocks a good selection of wines, cocktails, spirits and non-alcoholic beverages. 

Included meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner (extra drinks not included). 

Distance and activities: 3-hour drive, kayaking, swimming, beach visit 

Overnight on Garden Bay cruise 

Day 5: Bai Tu Long Bay – Ha Long Bay – Hanoi 


Wake up early to experience Tai Chi aboard your boat. 

After Tai Chi, you can enjoy a light breakfast before hopping aboard a bamboo boat to visit Vung Vieng fishing village where you will discover the daily life of the fishing communities, before heading back to the main boat. 

Check-out is at 9.30am, after which you can relax on the sundeck enjoying the last scenery of Ha Long Bay over an early lunch while the boat makes its way back to shore. 

Just before midday you will disembark and relax in the cafe lounge before transferring to Hanoi.   

Included meals: Breakfast, lunch 

Distance and activities: 3-hour drive, Tai Chi, fishing village tour 

Overnight at Hong Ngoc Dynastie hotel 

Day 6: Half Day Hanoi Highlights & Hidden Gem tour by Jeep  


You will be greeted by your tour guide and driver at your hotel lobby and then taken to the Ho Chi Minh Complex for a short tour, including the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum – a mecca for Vietnamese people, Ba Dinh square, the Presidential Palace, Ho Chi Minh Residential area and the One Pillar Pagoda. After that, you will move through the city to the Temple of Literature, a 1000-year-old iconic architectural relic of Hanoi to learn more about ancient Vietnamese culture and history. 

Continuing, you will explore the lesser-known parts of the city by driving through the maze of zigzagging backstreets and bustling markets. By being immersed in the river of motorbikes you will truly experience Hanoi, with all your senses heightened. Here you will see people from all different walks of life going about their day and gain a deeper understanding of the city’s vibrant culture. 

Included meals: Breakfast 

Overnight at Hong Ngoc Dynastie hotel 

Day 7: Hanoi- Departure 


Enjoy the morning at your leisure before your transfer to Hanoi International Airport for your onward travel. We hope to welcome you back to Vietnam another time. 

Included meals: Breakfast 

Tour Includes

Tour Excludes

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