8 Days

Home > Cultural Vietnam with VTM

Trip Overview

Bring the whole family along with this exclusive 8-day package designed for Vietnam Trail Marathon runners and their supporters. Warm up your muscles with a morning jog through Hanoi and expand your mind with cultural tours of Thanh Chuong Viet Palace and a Do-Paper workshop. Then, race across the plateaus, tea plantations, and ethnic minority villages of Moc Chau before relaxing on an overnight cruise in Lan Ha Bay.


  • Running a marathon in Moc Chau, home to tea plantations, ethnic minorities, and peach blossom forests
  • A private tour of Thang Chuong Palace
  • Interacting with locals over family meals and traditional workshops
  • Exploring Lan Ha Bay by overnight cruise

This Tour is Perfect for

  • Loved ones joining a Vietnam Trail Marathon runner
  • First- or second-time visitors to Vietnam
  • Combining exciting city life with pristine nature and natural beauty
  • Experiencing the culture and traditions of Hanoi

Detailed Itinerary

Topas Travel creates tailor-made tours for our guests according to their specific requests. This itinerary has been designed to show you just one of many options

Day 1: Hanoi arrival

Day 2: Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi – Thanh Cuong Palace – Hanoi

Day 4: Hanoi – Moc Chau

Day 5: Moc Chau  (Race Day)

Day 6: Moc Chau   – Hanoi

Day 7: Hanoi –Hai Phong – Lan Ha Bay

Day 8: Lan Ha Bay –Hai Phong – Hanoi Departure

Xin Chao and welcome to Vietnam! Upon arrival to Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport, a Topas representative will welcome you to the land of the ascending dragon before heading straight to your hotel in the heart of the city. The day is at leisure to discover Hanoi on your own, wandering the crooked alleys of the iconic Old Quarter and the promenade around Hoan Kiem Lake until an evening dinner date with a local family.

When you want to get to know a culture, there’s nothing quite like breaking bread (or spooning rice) with a local family. Expect to fill up on spring rolls, hearty soups, light stir fries and plenty of hot white rice. Get to know the family without worrying about the language barrier, as English-speaking students from the local university will accompany you throughout, teaching you about local etiquette and making sure you avoid making any social faux pas.

                                                                                                                   Included meals: Dinner

                                                                                                     Distance and Activities: 45’ drive

Lace up and take on the capital in this guided morning run,  getting a fresh perspective on Hanoi’s highlights while the crowds are still sleeping with loops around Hanoi’s illustrious lakes, leafy parks, and tree-lined boulevards. Delve into the bustling backstreets of the Old Quarter, hop along the revived train tracks, and reenergize with a halfway coffee stop. Finish the run with a steaming bowl of pho, Hanoi’s favourite breakfast.

Once you’ve had enough to eat, head to the Citadel, a true testament of Vietnam’s strength, resilience, and beauty. Marvel at the ancient architecture while strolling past leafy gardens and learning about the Citadel’s central position of power, of which it maintains even to this day. Then, head over to the superb Vietnamese Women’s Museum, an essential stop on any visit to Hanoi. Explore the heroines of Vietnamese society, especially in regards to ethnic minorities, war, and modern exhibitions before heading back to the Old Quarter for a tasty lunch on one of the most famous food streets in Southeast Asia.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Distance and activities: 9km jog – 4h sightseeing tour 

Depart Hanoi after breakfast and travel through northern Vietnam’s Red River Delta, the cradle of Vietnamese civilization for thousands of years. Spend the morning at Thanh Chuong Viet Palace, 35 km outside of Hanoi and one of its most important cultural spaces with an extraordinary collection of antiques and historical artifacts.

Return to Hanoi in time for lunch and class at Zo Workshop to learn the ancient process (100 steps) of creating Do paper, a traditional type of material from the 18th century used for paintings, royal decrees, calligraphy, and historical records.

Once the class is complete, the rest of the afternoon and evening is free at leisure.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch 
Distance and activities: 1h drive – 2h curated museum tour – 2h workshop

Set off for the windy roads and highlands of Moc Chau after breakfast. After collecting your bib package from the VTM EXPO at the hotel, you can join the carb-load party from 18:00-20:00.

The opening ceremony for the Vietnam Trail Marathon will run from 19:00-21:00, with music, dancing, and a bonfire, as well as a race briefing, giving you more opportunities to meet your fellow runners.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance and activities: 5h drive

Depending on what race you choose to complete, your day will begin anywhere from 3:00 to 8:30 in order to catch the bus to the starting line. Make sure to bring a small bag with a towel, clean clothes, and money, which you can hand in before the start and receive at the finish line. At 9:45, your supporters will be transferred to the finish line at the heart-shaped tea-hill to cheer you on!

Enjoy the run through tea plantations, flowering peach blossoms, pine trees, and ethnic minority villages on your 10k, 21k, 42k, or 70k run.

The Winners’ and Farewell ceremony will take place between 13:00-17:30 depending on the race you’ve run. Head back to your Moc Chau accommodation to rest your muscles after such an eventful day.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Distance and activities: Depends on race distance

Hanoi Traffic

Depart Moc Chau after breakfast and make the journey back to Hanoi, arriving in the early afternoon.

Check-in to your Old Quarter Hotel and enjoy the city at leisure.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, 
Distance and activities: 5h transfer

The sea calls this morning with a 9am departure from Hanoi to Hai Phong, about a 2-hour ride away. Upon arrival, board your new “home” for the next 2 days and check-in to your spacious cabin with large windows perfect for gazing out at the beauty around you. Enjoy lunch in the dining room while the ship cruises to Cat Ba Island, the largest island of some 367 islands in Lan Ha Bay.

Spend the afternoon deep within Cat Ba National Park, hiking through Trung Trang Valley to Trung Trang cave, a 2000-year-old cavern filled with stalactites and stalagmites. Then, have some downtime to swim and kayak in the isolated Tra Bau area.

Return to the ship for some downtime, enjoying a traditional Vietnamese cooking class and a delicious dinner onboard before retiring for the night in your comfy cabin.

Included meals: Breakfast
Distance and activities: 2h drive – 2h sightseeing

Spend your final morning in Lan Ha Bay with a cup of coffee or tea as you watch the sun rise. Participate in another session of Vovinam or lounge in you room until the morning’s activity, a tour to Hoa Cuong Cave, begins. Admire the glittering stalactites and stalagmites and learn about the cave’s history during the Second Indochina War as a shelter for the locals during bomb raids.

Brunch is served as the ship begins its return to port. Upon disembarkation in Hai Phong, return to Noi Bai International Airport for onward booked transportation.

Included meals: Breakfast
Distance and activities: 1h kayaking – 2h drive

Tour Inclusions

  • 2-way private A/C airport transfer
  • 2D/1N join-in cruise (led by English-speaking cruise manager on board)
  • All accommodation indicated as twin-shared room
  • Join-in transfers between Hanoi and Hai Phong
  • All meals, activities, and workshops as indicated in the program
  • All entrance tickets to Lan Ha Bay and Cat Ba Island
  • Refillable water in vans (Please check with your guide or driver)
  • 1 x English speaking local tour guide on days with activities
  • 3D/2N join-in VTM race package
  • Government VAT

Important Notes

  • Prices are quoted in Vietnamese Dong and valid until 31st October 2020
  • Exchange rate applied at VND 23,200. to USD 1
  • Prices calculated with Value Added Tax
  • Surcharge may be applicable during peak season and public holidays

Tour Exclusions

  • Drinks and alcohol
  • Vietnam visa (On request with additional charge)
  • Travel insurance (Compulsory with Topas Travel programs)
  • Upgrades to higher standard rooms or single supplements
  • Personal travel items (Please visit our Vietnam weather page for more information)

Essential Information

This program utilizes comfortable accommodation in the form of carefully curated hotels, lodges, and homestays. Hotels and lodges have been selected with the active traveler in mind, offering standard services and located as close to nature and local engagement as possible. Homestays are simple and equipped with western toilets and amenities such as fans and mattresses. If you have a specific property in mind you wish to stay at, please let your travel designer know so they can work it into your program.

All bookings are made with and through Topas Travel. By booking a trip with Topas Travel, you agree to the terms and conditions set forth here.

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