Trip Overview

Experience Vietnam’s vibrant past and present with AdventureWomen in 2021 by foot, bike, and boat. Explore some of the country’s most evocative locales and get off the beaten path to meet locals and learn about the Vietnamese way of life today.

Begin your exploration of Vietnam the AdventureWomen way in Hanoi, where you’ll explore the narrow vibrant streets of the historic French quarter on foot and stroll past Ho Chi Minh’s imposing mausoleum with your guide. You’re sure to be impressed by Ms. Cúc, the founder of a project that helps Thai immigrant women earn a living wage. This evening, begin your culinary exploration by sampling some of the best local dishes and cocktails as you get to know your fellow Adventure Women.

Your expert Vietnamese guide joins you throughout your trip, offering in-depth and colorful information about the cities and towns you’ll visit, teaching you a few words of Vietnamese and some local secrets along the way. You are also accompanied by an AdventureWomen Ambassador, committed to helping make your experience a fun and personally rewarding adventure, and cheering you on as you reach beyond your comfort zone to take on new challenges in your own unique way.

Meet up with your biking guide, who will fit you to a bike and helmet and lead you on narrow paved paths as you pedal through local neighborhoods, markets, and homes, learning about the small communities on the outskirts of Hanoi. Your ride will end at your guide’s home for lunch – grab a cushion and chat with your new AdventureWomen friends as you taste some home-cooked dishes! Afterwards, you’ll have an afternoon to explore more or to kick your feet up, take in a water puppet show, a traditional Vietnamese art form.

Next, head to the water in Ha Long Bay for two nights of private boat cruising. After getting to know your home for the next two nights, hop in kayaks and paddle around a traditional fishing village and islands with sheer rock faces dropping into the ocean. If you’re up early enough, Tai Chi on the upper deck is a serene way to see the Bay as the sun rises over the coastline of the mainland. Savor breakfast as you float along, soaking in the scenery before kayaking and swimming at Cong Dam, a pristine section of the bay that boasts small coves and tiny secluded beaches.

After one more early morning floating Tai Chi session, fly to Hue, where you’ll visit the Imperial City, a colorful traditional walled estate with quarters for the Empress, the Emperor’s mother, and the Emperor’s concubines. One of the highlights of the trip is your dinner with a local family, who will regale you with stories of growing up during Vietnam’s rebuilding period. Take time to ask questions and share stories and laughs over the many traditional dishes of Hue that were originally developed to entice the Emperor.

In Hoi An, get your taste buds ready as your group works together to create your own three-course Vietnamese meal! While you’re in Hoi An, explore the welcoming city, test a local restaurant, or even visit a local tailor to get custom articles of clothing made. A sunset boat cruise in the water palms is a perfect time to unwind with your AdventureWomen friends.

Finish your journey in glorious Saigon, where you’ll visit the stately Reunification Palace and the soaring spires of the Notre-Dame Basilica. A private chauffeured motorbike tour through the city will give you a taste of its lively life, literally. You’ll enjoy a variety of street food along the way and see which of your travel companions has the most adventurous palate! Wrap up your trip with a boat trip in the Mekong Delta, where you’ll marvel at the mangrove thronging the shoreline and taste tropical fruit freshly picked from an island in the river. Take one last easy bike ride on a small island, stopping at local farms and homes along the way. Your last dinner as a group will be filled with laughter and stories from this remarkable in-depth adventure which brings you in touch with authentic Vietnam today.

If you want to spend more time in Southeast Asia, why not extend your trip to the temples at Angkor Wat? For those who opt to head to Cambodia, fly from Saigon to Siem Reap, where you’ll meet your Cambodian guide, who will help you understand the history behind each ancient temple. Spend two days exploring the temples, starting with a tuk tuk ride to Ta Prohm (made famous in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider), and then hop on a mountain bike to ride to Bayon, the temple of over 200 faces. Spend the afternoon wandering through Siem Reap’s markets, shops, galleries, and restaurants.

The next morning, drive out to Banteay Srei, the temple nicknamed “the Art Gallery of Angkor.” This smaller pink sandstone temple is one of the most ornately carved in the area. Explore a floating village by boat and on your way back to town, stop at a school that trains local students in traditional Khmer arts. Enjoy a pre-dinner tasting of infused rice wine called Sombai, which literally means “more rice, please” before heading to dinner at a delicious local restaurant!

Wake up early to visit Angkor Wat at sunrise – the crown jewel of the temples around Siem Reap. This one last temple is sure to take your breath away and is an image you’ll keep in your mind (and photo album!) for many years to come.

Main Attractions

  • Pedal your bike along the narrow streets of Hanoi and enjoy lunch in a local home
  • Visit the Cúc Handmade project, a local organization helping Thai women earn a living wage in Vietnam
  • Two nights on a private boat in Ha Long Bay, exploring the islands and coves by kayak
  • Dive into the flavors of Vietnam during a morning cooking class
  • Discover the biodiversity of the Mekong Delta in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
  • Optional extension to visit the Angkor Wat temple complex in Cambodia

What You'll See and Do

  • Bicycling
  • Cooking Class
  • Cultural Exploration
  • Historical Sites
  • Kayaking
  • Local Delicacies
  • Private Cruise
  • Spa Element
  • Swimming
  • UNESCO Site
  • Women-To-Women Exchanges

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Hanoi
Welcome to Vietnam! Discover the enchanting landscapes, colorful traditions, enticing cuisine, and genuinely friendly people of a remarkable country at the crossroads of past and future.

During your adventure you’ll get to know your expert Vietnamese guide, who offers in-depth and colorful information about the cities and towns you’ll visit, teaching you a few words of Vietnamese and some local secrets along the way. You are also accompanied by an AdventureWomen Ambassador, committed to helping make your experience a fun and personally rewarding adventure, and cheering you on as you reach beyond your comfort zone to take on new challenges in your own unique way!

Arrive at the Hanoi Airport today. There is one group transfer from the airport for flights that arrive before 12:00pm. Private transfers are available at additional cost for those arriving early.

Meet your guide, Ambassador, and fellow Adventure Women in the lobby of your hotel at 2:00pm. Stretch your legs on a walking tour of Hanoi, exploring the past and present of the city. Pass Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum and wander the French Quarter learning about the history of the city along the way.

Spend some time with Ms. Cúc this afternoon, founder of the Cúc Handmade project, which helps Thai women earn a living wage.

This evening, enjoy an official welcome dinner where you will get to know your group, your guide, and your Ambassador. Toast the adventures to come!
Dinner

Overnight: Hotel de L’Opera

Day 2

Hanoi
Pedal a bike on the small paths through a neighborhood on the outskirts of Hanoi and along the Red River. This is not a difficult ride, but you’ll take it slowly (14 miles over about three hours) – when you explore by bike you can see areas that you can’t get to by car.

Have lunch in your host’s home. While at the house, you will get to taste a delicious selection of Vietnamese food.

Explore on your own this afternoon. You could explore the local galleries near your hotel or simply just enjoy a coffee while watching the whirlwind of life around you.

Take in a late afternoon water puppet show at the Thang Long theater. This is a unique Vietnamese art form that depicts scenes from rural life. Enjoy dinner as a group this evening.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel de L’Opera

Day 3

Hanoi to Ha Long Bay
Leave Hanoi this morning and drive about three and a half hours to Ha Long Bay. Enjoy seeing scenes of Vietnamese daily life along the way. Arrive at the Bay and board your privately chartered boat – just for AdventureWomen – in time for lunch! Relax and explore the boat as you soak in the views of the Bay.

Paddle around Vung Vieng fishing village in tandem kayaks. Vung Vieng is a small community 12 miles from the mainland, and some families have been here for generations.

Have a cooking demonstration on the boat, where you’ll learn to prepare some of the mouth-watering dishes for which Vietnam is famous. Enjoy the sunset on the deck of your boat before enjoying dinner on board.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Chartered Boat

Day 4

Ha Long Bay
If you’re up for sunrise, participate in early morning Tai Chi on the upper deck and watch the scenery as you float along.

Cruise to Cong Dam this morning, a small old village. Explore the geology of Bai Tu Long Bay on your way. Explore the small coves, tiny beaches, and estuaries by kayak, on foot, and swimming! Enjoy lunch on board your boat.

Take one last opportunity to kayak in this remarkable waterscape around Cong Dam. Relax on the boat with your new friends and enjoy dinner as a group this evening.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Chartered Boat

Day 5

Ha Long Bay to Hue
Enjoy a light breakfast before exploring the Thien Canh Son Caves. The pathway into the cave is set below the forest canopy and a stone cliff. Once you get inside the cave, you’ll feel like you’ve entered an ethereal wonderland. The ceiling of the cave is covered with a shiny “gem carpet” and numerous sparkling stalactites hang from the ceiling.

Cruise back into the harbor and enjoy brunch as you return to the pier. Once you dock, drive about two and a half hours to the Hanoi airport for your flight to Hue, which is just over one hour.

You’ll be picked up at the Hue airport and driven about 30 minutes to your hotel. Relax and have dinner as a group this evening.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Pilgrimage Hotel

Day 6

Hue
Visit Khai Dinh’s Tomb, considered the last emperor to reign in Vietnam. He loved French and Vietnamese art. The tomb itself is a blend of Vietnamese traditions and the modern world.

Focus on women’s culture in imperial life as you explore the citadel. As a walled Imperial estate, there were strictly enforced codes of conduct for women, including when and where they could be seen. Visit the Tue Hieu Pagoda, built in a pine forest known for its feng shui and paths designed for meditation. You’ll have an opportunity to sit down and have a conversation with one of the monks and learn from his experience.

After enjoying lunch as a group, you’ll have a chance to relax and enjoy the spa and the grounds of your beautiful hotel.

Head out for dinner in a local home this evening. You’ll meet a local woman whose father lived in Hue during the Vietnam War. He rebuilt his home and garden in the style of Hue upper class families of the past. You’ll have the chance to talk to her about what it was like to grow up during the rebuilding period of Vietnam, after the war.

His wife is an outstanding cook. She will treat you to some of the traditional dishes developed in Hue originally to entice the Emperor. Make sure you peek into the kitchen – it’s amazing what she can do in the space!
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Pilgrimage Hotel

Day 7

Hue to Hoi An
Leave Hue and head for Hoi An. After about three hours, you’ll stop and have lunch at a beach-side restaurant in Danang on the way. Dip your toes in the water before driving another 30 minutes to Hoi An.

Once you arrive in Hoi An, go for a walking tour to learn about this 500-year-old port town with blended architecture and traditions.

Dinner is up to you tonight. This is a great night to visit a tailor if you’d like to have any clothing made, or head out to one of the many local, fusion, or western restaurant options.
Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight: Allegro Hotel

Day 8

Hoi An
Learn about local flavors in your Vietnamese cooking class. Together, you will visit the market and buy the ingredients for your lunch; the menu is based on the best and freshest produce available that day. While you’re at the market, visit a few restaurants and street food kitchens to taste some local delicacies. Head to the kitchen where you’ll make a three-course meal for lunch. Your group will have a great time preparing this feast!

This afternoon is on your own – explore the city of Hoi An, enjoy the pool, or book a massage. The choice is yours!

Hop on a local boat chartered just for your group to explore the palm delta area by sunset. Head back to town for dinner!
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Allegro Hotel

Day 9

Hoi An to Ho Chi Minh City
Drive to Danang and hop on your flight to Ho Chi Minh City. You’ll land and have a late lunch today.

Explore Ho Chi Minh City this afternoon. Visit the Reunification Palace, the site of the end of the Vietnam War. See the other major sights of Saigon, or Ho Chi Minh City, including the post office and the exterior of the Notre Dame Cathedral (the interior is closed for renovations).

Hop on the back of a motorbike and hang on to your driver as you take off on a street food tour of Ho Chi Minh City. Sample multiple different delicacies for your dinner and watch your AdventureWomen friends on other motorbikes as you weave through the city! This is an experience you will never forget.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Pullman Hotel

Day 10

Ho Chi Minh City
Leave the bustling city and drive two hours to the Mekong Delta. Cruise the mighty Mekong River by boat. Visit an island with lush tropical gardens and sample fruit picked fresh from the tree. Next, on Ben Tre Island, take an easy 30-minute bike ride, stopping at farms and a local home along the way to learn about the traditional ways of life. Enjoy lunch in a garden, and then explore the mangroves in the meandering canals of the Delta. Drive back to Ho Chi Minh City late this afternoon.

Enjoy a farewell dinner with your group, toasting the end of a fantastic adventure in Vietnam!
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Pullman Hotel

Day 11

Depart Ho Chi Minh City

Enjoy one last morning in Vietnam before departing for the airport for your flights home. Note that you need to leave your hotel three hours prior to your flight time, so you may not want to choose an early morning flight.
Breakfast

If you’d like to continue your adventure, ask us about our Cambodia extension!

Please note: AdventureWomen will attempt to adhere to the itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, and cultural) may necessitate changes in the itinerary. AdventureWomen reserves the right to alter any itinerary at any time, if necessary. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participants. 

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to Vietnam



Arrival and Departure Information

January 9th Departure:

Arrive in Hanoi, Vietnam (HAN) on January 9, 2021 before 12:00pm.

Depart Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (SGN) on January 19, 2021. Note that you need to leave your hotel three hours prior to your flight time, so you may not want to choose an early morning flight.

December 4th Departure:

Arrive in Hanoi, Vietnam (HAN) on December 4, 2021 before 12:00pm.

Depart Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (SGN) on December 14, 2021. Note that you need to leave your hotel three hours prior to your flight time, so you may not want to choose an early morning flight.

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.

Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

US Passport holders will need a visa to visit Vietnam. We will provide detailed information before your departure on how to obtain your visa.

Activity Level

We rate this trip as Active. Our Active adventures get you on your feet. You should be in good physical condition and be prepared to hike for up to five hours, multiple days in a row, on uneven surfaces with some steep ascents and descents. Please note that this is a general description of what you might encounter; for specific details about your trip, please consult the itinerary.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more on the FitForTrips website.

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic. There are no immunization requirements for travel to Vietnam, however your local travel clinic may have recommendations for you based on your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to www.cdc.gov/travel
and navigate to the page about Vietnam.

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Preparation and Packing

Once you register for your adventure, we will send you a comprehensive preparation guide including weather information, gratuity suggestions, and a packing list.

As a reference, AdventureWomen typically suggests $200-250 for gratuities on most trips. Detailed information will be provided to you prior to departure.

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (Photo Page)

Final payment is due to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

January 9th Departure Final Payment Due Date: October 11, 2020

December 4th Departure Final Payment Due Date: September 5, 2021

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included

Included

  • Accommodations as per itinerary based on double occupancy
  • All meals as listed in the itinerary
  • All transportation as listed in the itinerary
  • Domestic airfare (priced separately from the main trip)
  • Fully-guided sightseeing and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • English-speaking guide throughout the trip
  • One group transfer on arrival and departure
  • Drinking water available in large jugs to refill personal bottles
  • Entrance Fees
  • Gratuities for drivers, hotel staff, boat staff, and wait staff

Not Included

  • International airfare to and from Vietnam
  • Optional activities
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages (unless otherwise specified)
  • Fees for passport, visas, immunizations, or travel insurance
  • Cost of hospitalization or evacuation
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities for your guide

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Accommodations

Hotel de L'Opera

Located in the center of Hanoi, Hotel de L’Opera is near Hanoi’s Opera House and the Old Quarter. A balance of French and Vietnamese architecture and design, each of the 107 rooms is equipped with complimentary Wi-Fi, TV, air conditioning, and stylish furnishings.

Amenities:
Soap, shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer; electricity; Wifi

Private Chartered Boat

The boat we have chartered exclusively for AdventureWomen features comfortable cabins and both indoor and outdoor dining areas. Each cabin is equipped with modern amenities to make your stay comfortable. Enjoy sunset with your group from the sun deck on the top of the boat.

Amenities:
Coming soon

Pilgrimage Hotel

Pilgrimage Village is ideally located in the quiet countryside in a rustic village setting. Surrounded by lush tranquil gardens, you will have the feeling of being out in the country while being close to the famous sites of Hue. Your room combines modern comfort with traditional architectural features with views over the garden or the lily lake.

Amenities:
Soap, shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer; electricity; Wifi

Allegro Hotel

Allegro is a boutique hotel conveniently located in the heart of Hoi An’s ancient town. Enjoy the pool, book a massage, or walk into town and explore.

Amenities: Soap, shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer; electricity; Wifi

Pullman Hotel

Located centrally within Ho Chi Minh City, close to Ben Thanh market, Pham Ngu Lao area, the rooms at the Pullman Saigon Centre combine design and comfort. Enjoy panoramic views of the city, as well as free Wi-Fi, a swimming pool, and a spa.

Amenities: Soap, shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer; electricity; Wifi

Please note that all amenities were current when written and are subject to change at any time.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What to Bring

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686