In Vietnam, you’ll see it all. Bustling cities? Check. Beautiful landscapes? Double check. One motorbike for every two people? Of course. This is cultural immersion in a place unlike any other, so get yourself to Southeast Asia asap—’cus all this pho isn’t going to slurp itself.
Trekking through the highland’s lush patty fields
Snapping photos of island-bespeckled Ha Long Bay
Eating the best pho in the world for every meal
Casting a fish net from aboard a traditional wooden boat
Gazing at the French-inspired architecture of Ho Chi Minh City
What you'll get
Round-trip flights and airport transfers
10 nights in handpicked accommodations
3 lunches and 3 dinners
Expert Tour Director
24/7 support from our travel gurus
3 insider city tours with local guides
Overnight cruise on Ha Long Bay
- Day 1: Overnight flight
Hop on your overnight flight to Vietnam, recline that seat, and start dreaming about mountain views, mountaintop temples, and mountains of noodles.
This tour requires a visa for U.S. citizens. Check entry requirements or call us with questions at 800-766-2645.
- Day 2: Arrive in Hanoi
Welcome to Hanoi. The capital city of Vietnam has seen a lot over the years, and is now a lively metropolis full of historic monuments, friendly locals, and crosswalks where you’ve got to look both ways. Twice.
- Meet an EF representative at the airport and head to your accommodations.
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
- Get to know the other travelers as they arrive—tomorrow we have a DAY.
- Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Hanoi + Welcome Dinner
Walking around Hanoi, you’ll pass by traditional Chinese and Japanese architecture, find locals practicing the ancient martial art of tai chi, and see tons of street vendors slinging local goods.
Please note: Even if you purchased a single-room upgrade, you may have to share your cabin with another traveler from your group for this night due to capacity restrictions on the train.
- Join your local guide to walk by sites like Hoan Kiem Lake and the 36 winding streets of the Old Quarter.
- Introduce your taste buds to pho, an authentic (and delicious) noodle soup.
- Enjoy a Welcome Dinner of local cuisine and drinks with your group at an authentic local spot.
- Travel northwest to Sapa on an overnight train.
- Day 4: Explore Sapa
Say so long to bustling Hanoi and hello to the terraced hills and quaint villages of Sapa. And what better introduction than an easy hike between a couple of said villages with your Tour Director?
- Discover the ins and outs of local life in the Lao Chai & Ta Van Village.
- Day 5: Trek to Cat Cat Village
Known by many as the most beautiful village in Vietnam (NBD), Cat Cat is known for its picturesque views, famous bridges, and cascading waterfalls. AKA this is an IG dream. Then, it’s back to Hanoi for a good night’s sleep.
- Snap photos of the famous Si and A Lu Bridges that span the town.
- Walk through the breathtakingly-green terraced paddy fields.
- Wander the village and its small shops on your way to Tien Sa waterfall.
- Day 6: Cruise through Ha Long Bay
Head to the coast, to Ha Long, a city whose bay is considered by some to be the 8th wonder of the world. Here, you’ll hop on an overnight cruise for a spectacular look at Vietnam’s natural beauty.
- Set your sights on the 2,000 tiny islands and dozens of caves that speckle the bay.
- Swim your way through the breathtaking turquoise water.
- Grab your phone for the best photo ops of the trip (and maybe your life).
- Day 7: Travel to Hoi An
After breakfast on board and some last-minute pics of Ha Long Bay, you’ll head to Hanoi for a flight south. Your next stop is Hoi An, the bahn mi capital of Vietnam. But this place is so much more than sandwiches.
- Day 8: Tour Hoi An + optional Vietnamese cooking class
Fun fact, the Old Town in Hoi An is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which means that a special agency attached to the United Nations has labeled it as having “outstanding universal value.” TL;DR: it’s legit.
- Follow a guide through streets and farmland on a bike tour of Hoi An.
- Meet a local farmer in Tra Que and sip on a locally-grown, herbal green tea.
- Look out for the wooden Chinese shops and temples, the Japanese-covered bridges, and Vietnamese lanterns that adorn the streets.
Vietnamese Cooking Class & Market (extra cost)
Shop for ingredients at a local market before boarding a boat to prepare and eat a Vietnamese meal.
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
- Day 9: Go fishing with locals
It’s time to spend a morning on the water with local fishermen to learn how they fish and paddle boats along the river. After today, consider yourself the next [insert famous fisherman here].
- Ride in a Vietnamese-style coracle boat.
- Head to Da Nang and get ready for your flight to Ho Chi Minh City.
- Day 10: Visit the Mekong River Delta
Today, you’ll get familiar with the energetic rhythm of Vietnamese life as you mingle with the people and explore the culture found on the banks of the Mekong River.
- Visit a home in the river town of Cai Be for a traditional Vietnamese lunch.
- Sample the fare and grab some souvenirs as you shop the market.
- Take a rowboat through the winding canals that snake around Tan Phong Island.
- Day 11: Sightseeing in Ho Chi Minh City + Farewell Dinner
Welcome to the largest city in Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) is 9 million people strong, with seemingly a billion things happening at once—all of them worth seeing.
- Channel your boujee side at the high-end boutiques of Dong Khoi Street.
- Visit Independence Palace, the former presidential palace of South Vietnam.
- Stop at the Notre Dame cathedral and a hotel shaped like a wedding cake (yup).
- Share some laughs at a Farewell Dinner with the group.
- Day 12-13: Fly home
Tạm biệt bạn
Translation: Goodbye, friends. Before you head to the airport, make sure to take one more group photo and grab that final drink. But remember, this isn’t goodbye—because you can always get the gang back together for another trip soon.
Please note that return flights from Asia are long, and that depending on your flight itinerary, you could land in your home airport on either Day 12 or Day 13.
Traveling with us helps the EF community plant trees, at no extra cost to you.