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Vietnam

Savor Vietnam's scenic, historical, cultural and culinary delights as you travel the length of the country on this fun-filled 2-week trip. There is so much to discover - from the chaos of Ho Chi Minh City to the charms of Hoi An, the atmospheric imperial capital of Hue, vibrant Ha Noi and the natural beauty of Halong Bay.


Itinerary

July 3 : Hanoi

Arrive in Hanoi at any time.

July 4 : Hanoi (B)

Enjoy the water puppets show. Options to visit Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum and stilt house, Hoa Lo Prison and the Temple of Literature. Overnight train to Sapa.

July 5 to July 7: Sapa (2B,1L,1D)

Hilltribe village visit, trek and homestay. Traditional meals with a local family. On Day 5, take an overnight train to Hanoi.

July 8 to July 9: Halong Bay (1B,2L,1D)

Drive to Halong Bay for an overnight cruise on a junk boat with included seafood meals. Visit caves or an island lookout. Overnight train to Hue on Day 7.

July 10 : Hue

Chance to explore Tien Mu Pagoda and the Royal Tombs. Optional tour of the countryside. Opt for a tour of the Citadel and Forbidden Purple City.

July 11 to July 13: Hoi An (3B)

Travel the scenic Hai Van pass (weather permitting) on the way to Hoi An. Options include a cooking class, shopping at the tailors, riverboat cruise, bike riding, beach time or My Son ruins.

July 14 : Ho Chi Minh City (B)

Fly to Ho Chi Minh City. Option to take a cyclo tour of Ho Chi Minh City, visiting the Reunification Palace, Opera House and Notre Dame.

July 15 : Mekong Delta (B,D)

Mekong Delta visit, boat ride and visit to traditional candy factories. Enjoy a local homestay and dinner with a Vietnamese family.

July 16 : Mekong Delta/Ho Chi Minh City (B)

Option to visit War Remnants Museum, colonial quarter, Ben Thanh market.

July 17 : Ho Chi Minh City (B)

Depart at any time.

Detailed Itinerary

July 3 : Hanoi

Arrive in bustling Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. As passengers will be arriving at various times today, there are no planned activities.

Some suggestions for you free time include: Taking a walk through Hanoi's Old Quarter – a maze of streets, each one traditionally devoted to a different product or industry. Visit Tran Quoc Pagoda, the Temple of Literature (Van Mieu) or Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and Museum. The Mausoleum houses the remains of Ho Chi Minh, the founding father of the unified Vietnam (the mausoleum and museum are closed in October-November).

You will have a scheduled group meeting in the evening around 6pm. Please check at the reception desk or look for a G Adventures notice board with details of the actual meeting time. At this meeting your tour leader will ask to sight your travel insurance, double check your Vietnam visa and complete some other paper work. Please note that most nationalities requires a visa to enter Vietnam, please double check this with your travel agent or local Vietnamese Embassy. After your meeting, you may choose to head out for an optional dinner to further get to know your tour leader and fellow group members.

July 4 : Hanoi (B)

Day 2 you have further opportunity to explore the city. In the evening we will attend a performance at the famous Water Puppet Theatre before boarding our overnight train to Lao Cai, en route to Sapa.

We overnight in the city center of Hanoi. Our hotel is located in the Old Quarter. All rooms are double or twin share with air conditioning and en suite bathroom. Free wifi and a computer are available at the lobby.

Approx Travel Time:
Overnight train from Hanoi to Lao Cai: 9 hours

July 5 to July 7: Sapa (2B,1L,1D)

After arriving in Lao Cai in the morning of day 3, we transfer to Sapa. An afternoon excursion will take us to the village of Ta Phin where we'll have a chance to interact with some of the local ethnic minorities such as H'mong, Dao, and Zai. We will spend an hour or two strolling through the villages before returning to Sapa early evening.

On day 4, we take a trek through the Muong Hoa River valley. We will stop at Lao Chai village for lunch and on to the Ta Vinh village for our homestay. The terrain can be steep at times and slightly challenging. However, passengers with a good fitness level should be fine. The homestay accommodation for the evening is basic, but bedding and mosquito nets are provided. If you don't feel you can handle the hike, please let your tour leader know and for an extra fee they can arrange a vehicle to transfer you to the homestay.

After breakfast on day 5, say goodbye to the host family and walk on to a nearby village where a bus will be waiting to transfer us back to Sapa. Take the afternoon to relax before catching our overnight train back to Hanoi.

Our cozy hotel in Sapa is located in the heart of the town, very near to the market. The rooms are have en suite bathrooms and wifi is available throughout the hotel.

Please Note: During the rainy season (May-November) you should be prepared with rain gear as the availability of such items for sale can be limited.

Approx travel time:
Lao Cai train station to Sapa Hotel: 45 minutes each way
Trek to the Muong Hoa River valley homestay: 5-6 hours.
Trek to depart the Muong Hoa River valley: 2 hours.
Return transfer to Sapa: 15 minutes
Overnight train Lao Cai to Hanoi: 9 hours

July 8 to July 9: Halong Bay (1B,2L,1D)

On day 6, our private bus takes us to Bai Chay harbour, our entry point to Halong Bay. Thousands of islands rise dramatically from the waters of Halong Bay and, to further their beauty, intricate cave systems naturally exist throughout these limestone karst formations. Our sailing junk will take you to visit some of the islands and caves. You could enjoy a pre-dinner swim (depending on the season) and have an evening drink on the deck beneath the stars. Our accommodation tonight is a truly special experience – sleeping on a boat surrounded by high limestone karsts. All cabins are double or twin share with air conditioning and en suite bathroom.

On day 7, after an early lunch on board the boat we head back to Hanoi. You have enough time for shopping or further sightseeing until our overnight train to Hue, the first of 3 sleeper trains you will take in Vietnam.

The sleeper trains throughout Vietnam are quite comfortable. Each cabin sleeps 4 people in 2 bunk beds. You will be able to lock the door from the inside. All bedding is provided. The train is air conditioned and has squat and Western style toilets with a wash basin at the end of each compartment. Bags can be stored in your cabin and accessed at anytime. Food and drinks are available for purchase on board - although the food is not to everyone's taste so we recommend you bring your own. There are multiple options in Hanoi which your tour leader can help you with.

Approx travel time:
Private bus Hanoi to Halong Bay: 4 hours each way
Overnight train Ha Noi to Hue: 13-14 hours

July 10 : Hue

We arrive early on day 8 into Hue, once the imperial capital of Vietnam. After checking in to our hotel, you have the option to visit to the wonderful Tien Mu Pagoda. Built over 400 years ago, and at seven stories high, Tien Mu is still the tallest and perhaps the most elegant pagoda in Vietnam. You could also visit a tomb of one of Vietnam’s former emperors. These tombs are extremely ornate and embrace the concept of Feng Shui.

Afterwards, you may choose to enjoy a vegetarian lunch at a local nunnery and there are various options to head out by bike to explore the local countryside.
Please ask your tour leader for more information. In the evening, take the chance to try some local Hue specialties such as banh khoai (Hue savoury pancakes), and banh bot loc boc tom thit (thin rice paper filled with meat and shrimp). You might want to wash it all down with a Hue beer. Yum!

Our accommodation tonight is centrally located a 10 minute walk from the Perfume River in Hue. All rooms are double or twin share with air conditioning and en suite bathroom. Free wifi is also available.

Approx travel time
Hue train station to the hotel: 10 minutes.

July 11 to July 13: Hoi An (3B)

This morning we’ll start our day touring the wonderful ruins of the Imperial Citadel, from where the whole of Vietnam was once ruled. You’ll enjoy exploring the many palaces and gateways, courtyards and gardens of this beautiful complex and of course hearing the stories of the emperors who once lived here.

In the late morning we begin our drive to Hoi An. After crossing over the Hai Van Pass, with fantastic views in all directions, we will in Hoi An in the afternoon for our three night stay. Once known as Faifo, Hoi An was an important trading town with strong south Chinese influence and connections. You can take a walking tour of this living museum which includes the Museum of History and Culture, the Tan Ky house, the Japanese bridge, the Fujian Assembly Hall and lunch at a riverside restaurant to sample some of the local delicacies. Hoi An is also a shopping mecca for tourists in the region. Tailors can produce virtually anything overnight (If you want to get clothes as gifts, take measurements of your freinds before you depart the US), with clothing, silk lanterns, lacquer ware and many other crafts abound. For sun worshipers, Cua Dai Beach is 4kms from town and makes for a great, flat bike ride.

We overnight three nights in a Hoi An. Our hotel is located very close to the old quarter of Hoi An. All rooms are double or twin share with air conditioning and en suite bathroom. Free wifi and a public computer are available in the lobby.

Approx travel time:
Private bus Hue to Hoi An: 4 hours

July 14 : Ho Chi Minh City (B)

Drive to Danang for the flight to Ho Chi Minh City, the sprawling metropolis that was once the capital of South Vietnam and remains the country’s commercial center.

The afternoon is free time to visit the Thien Hau and Giac Vien pagodas and stroll through the immense Ben Than Market. There is also the Reunification Palace, the residence of the presidents of South Vietnam before 1975, Cholon (literally translated: Big Market),the Chinese quarter and the War Remnants Museum.

We overnight in Ho Chi Minh City. All rooms are double or twin share with air conditioning and en suite bathroom. The hotel is well located near the Benh Than Market, backpackers area, war remnant museum and within walking distance to all the French colonial buildings. Free-Wifi and a computer are available at the lobby.

Approx travel time:
Transfer Hoi An to Danang Airport: 45 min
Flight Danang to Ho Chi Minh City: 1 hour
Transfer to hotel in Ho Chi Minh city: 30 min

July 15 : Mekong Delta (B,D)

This morning we travel by private minivan south to the 'rice basket' of Vietnam, the Mekong Delta where we'll experience a different lifestyle from what we've seen elsewhere in Vietnam. We take a boat to further explore the intricate waterways whilst visiting small cottage industries, such as bee farming. We can stop along the way for you to try a local lunch, such as the local delicacy elephant fish. A short ride in a Xe Lam (tuk tuk) brings us to our local homestay, surrounded by fruit trees. Here you can relax in a hammock while sipping on a coconut and watch life on the river or take a bicycle around the area led by your local guide. Tonight, our hosts will prepare an included traditional southern Vietnamese dinner for you to feast.

Our lodgings at the homestay are basic tonight. Our homestay will provide each person with a mattress, clean linen and mosquito nets.

Approx travel time:
Private bus from Ho Chi Minh City to the Mekong Delta: 2-3 hours.

July 16 : Mekong Delta/Ho Chi Minh City (B)

This morning we enjoy an included breakfast before taking a boat and bus to return to Ho Chi Minh City. We will arrive in this sprawling city by midday for your chance to explore the many sites you did not get the chance to see earlier. Try your hand at bargaining amongst the vendors of the Ben Thanh Market or hit the high end shops around the Opera House.

Tonight we spend our final night as a group reminiscing over our journey through Vietnam, over an optional dinner at a local restaurant. After dinner you may want to enjoy a cocktail whilst viewing the city traffic from above at the iconic Rex Hotel.

Our Saigon hotel is located in the heart of District 1. Free wifi is available. The famous Dong Khoi Street full of restaurants and bars is located within walking distance.

Approx travel time:
Boat from Mekong Delta to our bus: 30 mins.
Private Bus from Mekong Delta to Ho Chi Minh City: 2-3 hours.

July 17 : Ho Chi Minh City (B)

After breakfast on day 15, the tour ends and you are free to depart at any time.

GEEO will give you a discount for booking more than one program in the same summer! Book two or more GEEO programs and receive 10% off on the lesser value program (up to 3 programs). For more details please click here.

Our three different Southeast Asia programs can be combined together if you wish to see more of this amazing region. Our earliest trip is Bangkok to Hanoi which is a program that focuses on Laos. It ends just in time to start our Vietnam program which starts in Hanoi and ends in Ho Chi Minh City. Our Angkor Adventure trip then starts in Ho Chi Minh city. Vietnam and Angkor actually overlap with each other on purpose because they both go to the Mekong Delta. Don’t worry; you can book both trips without having to cover the same ground twice. The Angkor Adventure mostly focuses on Cambodia and ends in Bangkok, Thailand.

If there is a part of the world that you would like to see that we aren't offering this summer, let us know. We may be able to help you arrange such a trip or we will consider offering it as GEEO program next summer.

Stuff You Need to Know

Terms and Conditions

It is very important for you to visit our Terms and Conditions page before signing up for this program.

Trip Notes

This program uses public transportation. This means you will need to have luggage you can easily carry with you up and down stairs and walk with comfortably for 10-30 minutes at a time. We recommend that you pack really lightly and do laundry along the way. Sometimes you can have the hotel do the laundry for you, sometimes you bring it to a laundromat and other times the easiest option is washing clothes in your hotel sink. Please take a look at our packing list for recommended backpacks designed for this type of travel.

This trip has a rapid pace and the heat of the summer can make it quite exhausting. Please know in advance, that you will see a lot, but this isn't a relaxing vacation.

Service Level

Standard:

Step out of the normal tourist mind-set and truly experience the world. Most nights will have you staying in a simple yet clean twin-share hotel or lodge rooms with private facilities, complete with running water and electricity. Occasionally you may have a multi-share night at rustic local guesthouses, with communal bathrooms and the sporadic cold shower. Transportation will be a combination of public transport, private buses and some private vehicles.

Physical Grading

2:

Light walking and hiking that is suitable for most fitness levels.

Minimum/Maximum Group Size

This program is guaranteed to run and will have a maximum of 15 participants.

Group Leader Description

All GEEO/G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of G Adventure's group leaders, which they refer to as Chief Experience Officers (CEO). The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. Our itineraries often have plenty of free time to explore on your own.

While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it’s the best of both worlds.

Packing List

You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. We highly recommend using a large multi-day backpack, plus a small daypack, like a messenger bag or purse, or better yet, something like this. There are lots of different backpacks out there, but in general you want a bag that has a capacity of around 50 to 80 cubic liters. For an example click here. (Please email jesse@geeo.org if that link does not work)

You must be prepared to carry your own bags and be comfortable carrying them between transport and hotels (max. 15-20 mins walking), hopping on and off trains and public buses and up and down stairs. Luggage space on public transport is limited so again, smaller is better.

There may be a weight restriction for the internal flight on this tour. Each passenger is allowed to carry one checked bag with a maximum weight of 15 kg (33lbs). Additional bags or excess weight charges may apply. These charges are the responsibility of the passengers.

Suggested Checklist

•Clothes for temples – long pants or sarongs
• Overnight bag (You will not bring your big backpack to Sapa or Halong Bay as it will be kept at out Hanoi hotel. A normal bookbag is fine for this.)
•Insect repellent
•Small Flashlight
•Credit or debit card (see personal spending money)
•USD cash (small denominations preferred, see personal spending money and FAQ)
•Light windproof/waterproof jacket or umbrella
•Small towel and swimwear
•Sun hat
•Personal clothing for hot weather (We recommend packing 8 or 9 days of outfits so you only have to do laundry once)
•Comfortable walking shoes (You will be walking a lot)
•Sunblock
•Sunglasses
•Toiletries (Your hotels will have soap and shampoo)
•Watch or alarm clock
•Camera
•First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, insect repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)

Optional Checklist

•Travel pillow (This one is great)
•Dramamine
•Money belt
•Water bottle
•Phone/Tablet for internet (Most hotels have WiFi)
•Chargers for electronics as well converters/adaptors if needed (See FAQ)
•Light fleece top (Just for the flight)
•Packing cubes (These are awesome)
•Flip-flops/Sandals
•Ear Plugs (These are a life-saver if you have a snoring roommate)
•Snacks (Packing a few granola bars is a good idea. You can buy snacks when you get there too, so don't go crazy here.)
•Ziplock bags for wet clothing
•Washcloth (Most hotels don’t have them and some people like having a washcloth)
•Reading/writing material
•Cover for backpack or plastic bags to keep clothes dry
•Hand Sanitizer/Baby wipes
•Phrase books

Document Checklist

•Passport (with photocopies)
•Travel insurance (with photocopies)
•Airline tickets (with photocopies)
•Credit and/or debit card (see personal spending money)
•G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information and dossier
•Any entry visas, additional passport photos or vaccination certificates required (Check our FAQ to see if you need them)
•GEEO Classroom action plans for your group (This is sent 10-30 days before departure)

Laundry

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.

Single Travellers

We believe single travelers should not have to pay more to travel so our trips are designed for shared accommodation. Single travelers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Most of our trips have the option for a "My Own Room" which is an extra fee that will allow you to have a room to yourself.

Money

Spending Money

Every traveler is different and therefore spending requirements will vary. Some travelers may drink more than others while other travelers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

We recommend checking www.xe.com for the current exchange rate. There are many ATM machines that accept both Visa and Mastercard but these are limited to major cities.

Medical Forms

GEEO travel programs bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, at minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travelers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage. Travelers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travelers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our tour leaders work hard to ensure that all our travelers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day's activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings above for more information.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at: www.gadventures.com/medical-form.

Optional Activities

Please keep in mind this trip is designed to give you the freedom to do whatever interests you. Make sure you look over all of the optional activities and keep in mind these additional costs when deciding whether you can afford this program. No meals are included in this trip, giving you the opportunity to eat on your own budget. The prices below are in US dollars and are rough estimates so you can budget your trip.

Hanoi

Hoa Lao Prison USD 1
Army Museum USD 1
Taxi to each museum - approx USD 2
Museum of Ethnology- USD 1 plus transport
Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum - free entrance (Please note that Mausoleum is only open in the mornings on Tue-Thu & Sat-Sun. Closed Mondays, Fridays and full months of October & November. Please check ahead as Mausoleum may be periodically closed at other times also.)
Temple of Literature- USD 1
Fine Arts Museum - USD 1
Women’s Museum - USD 1
Army Museum - USD 1
Taxi to each museum - approx USD 2

Halong Bay

Kayak Rental for 1 person USD 10

Hue

Bicycle Hire - USD 1

Hoi An

Cooking Class - USD 20-25
My Son Cham Ruins including car transport - USD 24
Tu Bon River Boat Trip- USD 5

Ho Chi Minh City

Cyclo tour- USD 4
War Crimes museum- USD 1
The Reunification Palace - USD 2
Saigon Water Park- USD 4

Costs

The prices below are in US dollars and are rough estimates so you can budget your trip.

Tour Company Fee

$1,519 USD

Non-Educator Fee

$100 USD(Educators do not have to pay this fee)

Optional Activities

$150 USD

International Airfare from USA

Roughly $1500-$2000 USD
See our FAQ for flight advice.

Insurance

$28- $200 USD
Please note it is mandatory for all of our travellers to have Emergency Medical insurance that covers for both emergency evacuation and repatriation to the sum of $200,000USD. We also strongly recommend purchasing an all inclusive plan that covers cancellation/interruption insurance as well.
See our FAQ for advice on Travel Insurance.

Tipping

We recommend $25-$35 USD for your G Adventures tour leader. Budget another $30-$40 USD to tip local guides and drivers.

Meals Not Listed in the Itinerary

$265-$350 USD

Laundry, Drinks, Phone Calls, etc.

(Make sure you budget for these types of expenses)

Airport and Departure Taxes

Departure Tax is included in all International and Domestic tickets in Vietnam.

Airport Transfers

Hanoi - Pre paid taxi - $17 USD or Vietnam Airlines shuttle bus -45000 Dong (approx 3 USD). From the Vietnam Airline office there are taxis that can take you to your hotel with the meter on about $2-4 USD.

Vaccines

You will need to see your doctor to see if you need any vaccinations)

Visa

Americans need to get a visa, or sign up for a Visa on arrival (See FAQ section of our website) before they depart for Vietnam. The cost for Americans ranges depending on what service you use but we have a link in our FAQ for a service that will cost a total of $65 USD. (Check with your local embassy if you are not American.)

Souvenirs

$0-????

What's Included

Entrance to Halong Bay, Halong Bay boat cruise with seafood lunch and dinner, Water puppet show, Sapa excursion to hilltribe villages, Guide and entrance to Imperial Citadel and tomb, Mekong Delta Homestay
Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
10 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches and 3 Dinners.
Train, Local bus, Aircon bus, Boat, Cyclo, Airplane.
Hotels/Guesthouses (8 nts), Sleeper train (3 nt), Junk boat (1 nt), Basic family homestay (2 nt).

FAQ

What should be my expectations for this GEEO program?

Before you decide on travelling with GEEO it is important that you read all of the information about the program you are considering. To summarize, our programs are quite adventurous.

• We use basic, no frills accommodation. The purpose of the accommodation is to provide a safe place for you to sleep. Sometimes you will be pleasantly surprised, but do not expect luxury. Please note that in some major cities in Vietnam, many hotel rooms do not have windows.

• The same goes for transportation. We use a mix of transportation that gets our guests from location to location safely. Sometimes you will have full days and nights of transportation as our trips tend to cover a lot of ground. The transportation will often be an adventure in itself.

• You must be able to easily carry or roll your luggage, so do not over-pack. We recommend using a large backpack along with a smaller daypack, which is typically the most comfortable way to carry your possessions.

• Many of our programs occur in locations where it is very hot during the day. Please make sure you have thoroughly read the itinerary and can handle the group activities, which sometime include day hikes with your daypacks.

• We recommend always carrying snacks with you because sometimes meals can be far apart.

• Please make sure you understand the role of your tour leader on this trip as they are not the traditional “guide” you may be expecting. While our trips are educational, they aren’t study/lecture trips. We want you to learn through exploring and much of your experience will be based on how active you choose to be in acquiring knowledge and interacting with locals.

• We try to set up anywhere from 1-3 school visits per program, but these sometimes fall through due to complications. Please understand they are not a guaranteed part of the program.

Hopefully this is the kind of adventure you are interested in!

Do I need a Passport? Do I need a visa?

All GEEO trips require that the participant have a valid passport that will not expire within 6 months of trip departure. If you have a U.S. passport, but it has expired, or will expire within 6 months of trip departure, click here for information on how to get it renewed. If you have never been issued a passport or have lost your passport, please click here. Processing time for US Passports is 4-6 weeks so please start this process immediately.

Americans need a visa for travel in Vietnam. There are two ways to get a visa: Traditionally through your local embassy/visa service company where you have the visa in your passport before you depart or instead "a visa on arrival". To be clear the "a visa on arrival" option requires you to go through the application trip before your trip. It also costs less than the traditional visa process.

You can google search "Vietnam visa pre-arranged" or "Vietnam visa on arrival" to find out more. GEEO cannot vouch for any particular company but we have had past participants recommend www.myvietnamvisa.com. The price on their website is currently a $19.99 service fee for a "approval letter". You would then bring this approval letter, 2 passport photos and a filled out Vietnam visa form which can be pre-printed in advance. You would give these documents to the customs official at the Hanoi airport along with $45 USD for the visa. For more information on this process please follow this link to Tripadvisor.

Please visit this website to get instructions on the traditional process through the Vietnamese embassy:
http://vietnamembassy-usa.org/services/visa-application-process.

They say processing time is 5 days, but I recommend applying for the visa 60 day prior to departure to be safe. I honestly think the Vietnamese embassy's website is confusing and found the "Visa on arrival" services less expensive and easier to understand.

If on any forms they ask for the local operators contact details, please use this information:

Wide Eyed Tours
Add: No 48, Lane 76, Yen Phu street , Tay Ho Dis, Hanoi , Vietnam
Tel: 84 4 39262241. Ext 301
Fax: 84 4 3926 2369

G Adventures has told me you do not have to enter a Visa Approval/Reference Number because you you will be in Vietnam for less than 3 months.

Non-American participants should check with their government to find out if they need a visa.

Where do I meet the group? What happens when I arrive at the airport?

Our groups meet at the hotel we use for the first night of the trip. Your tour leader will leave a note for you at the hotel's front desk with the introductory meeting time and location.

When you arrive at the airport you can either take a taxi to the first hotel or book an airport transfer. For an airport transfer you will be greeted at the airport by someone with a sign with your name on it. Some people find this comforting when getting off a long flight in an unfamiliar environment. Typically an airport transfer will cost about twice as much as a taxi would. If we have multiple participants on the same flight we can group those people together to share an airport transfer and save money. We cannot group people together if they are on different flights, even if those flights are scheduled to arrive within minutes of each other.

If you wish to book an airport transfer, just send us a request by email with your flight info at least 30 days before departure.

Is it OK if I am traveling alone? Do I have to have a roommate?

Half of the people that travel with us are traveling by themselves so please don’t worry if you have no one who wants to join you on our trip. Our pricing is based on double occupancy, in other words, two people to a room. If you do not have someone that you are traveling with that you would like to room with GEEO will find you a roommate of the same gender. You never have to pay for a single room unless you want one. If you want to room alone, there is a "My Own Room" fee of $549 USD.

Please note that if you have booked the "My Own Room" option for this tour, you will receive your own single room for all night stops, with the following exceptions: Sleeper train (3 nts), Junk boat (1 nt), Basic family homestay (2 nt).

Will I be eating on my own? With the group? Why aren't all meals included?

Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with GEEO you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your tour leader will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. Included breakfasts will usually be asian style consisting of noodles or congee (rice porridge) or bread and eggs. Vegetarians will be able to find a range of different foods, although in some areas the choice maybe limited. While trekking in remote regions food is included, plentiful and made of fresh local ingredients. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.

What is group travel like?

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all across the US and beyond and are likely to be of a variety of ages too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part.

Who travels with GEEO?

GEEO participants are mostly made up of American K-12 teachers. Each group tends to have a good mix of educators in their 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and 60's. About half of our participants are coming alone and do not know anyone in the group prior to the trip. We group single travelers of the same gender together as roommates, unless a participant prefers to pay an additional fee for their own room. If we have an odd amount of one gender we will rotate the single room for free among the participants.

GEEO trips are open to all Kindergarten to University teachers, school staff, school administrators, and soon-to-be teachers pursuing their teaching certificate. Our programs are also open to retired educators. Non-American educators are welcome on our trips.

Participants in our programs are permitted to bring friends or family members on their trip. You must be at least 18 years old to participate and of adequate fitness level for your chosen trip.

How long have we been running this program?

GEEO was founded in 2007 and our inaugural trips were run to Peru and India in the summer of 2008. We ran the Vietnam program for the first time in 2011. G Adventures, who actually handle the logistics of the trip have been running trips to Vietnam for many years so you can have faith that your trip will be safe and well run.

Is it possible to get references for GEEO?

Over 1000 educators have traveled with GEEO since we ran our first programs in 2008. We have had an overwhelmingly positive response to the quality and value of the life changing experiences that we provide.

To read comments from past travelers, please feel free to visit a website that reviews non-profit organizations called Great Non-profits. Please click here for those reviews.

Please contact us if you would like to communicate with some of our former participants for a reference.

What cities/airports should I book my flight in and out of?

Please double check our itinerary for the date on which you must arrive in Hanoi by, which would usually mean departing the USA on the prior day. You can arrive at anytime you choose.

Your trip ends in Ho Chi Minh City. You should book your return flight from there and can depart anytime you wish on the last day of the trip.

If I wanted to extend my stay in the region, is there any other tour you would recommend?

GEEO will give you a discount for booking more than one program in the same summer! Book two or more GEEO programs and receive 10% off on the lesser value program (up to 3 programs). For more details please click here.

Our three different Southeast Asia programs can be combined together if you wish to see more of this amazing region. Our earliest trip is Bangkok to Hanoi which is a program that focuses on Laos. It ends just in time to start our Vietnam program which starts in Hanoi and ends in Ho Chi Minh City. Our Angkor Adventure trip then starts in Ho Chi Minh city. Vietnam and Angkor actually overlap with each other on purpose because they both go to the Mekong Delta. Don’t worry; you can book both trips without having to cover the same ground twice. The Angkor Adventure mostly focuses on Cambodia and ends in Bangkok, Thailand.

If there is a part of the world that you would like to see that we aren't offering this summer, let us know. We may be able to help you arrange such a trip or we will consider offering it as GEEO program next summer.

Where can I purchase flights?

We recommend using www.kayak.com to see what is out there in terms of flights. G Adventures also has a wonderful air department, which can be reached at 1-800-708-7761.

You may also want to take a look at the prices at www.flyforgood.com or call 1-877-359-4466 to speak to a person. They get humanitarian rates from airlines and GEEO is registered with Fly for Good as a non-profit. If you purchase a humanitarian rate flight, you will need a supporting document from GEEO. Please request this from us after you purchase the tickets. Note that humanitarian rates are not available for all flights to GEEO destinations, and are sometimes higher than tickets found on on kayak, travelocity, orbitz, etc. Often the layovers are long and sometimes impossible to navigate. Look very carefully at the offer before purchasing your ticket.

When should I purchase my flights?

You must wait until this trip is confirmed with the minimum amount of required participants before you book your flights. Typically we reach the minimum amount needed at least 60 days before departure, which often happens to be when you can find the best prices for purchasing flights. GEEO and G Adventures bear no responsibility for any flights purchased before the trip is confirmed.

Where can I purchase travel insurance?

One of the least expensive options is the "International Volunteer Card." They have a $28 card (Single-Trip Travel Protection) that includes the amount of travel medical, evacuation and repatriation insurance you need for our trip, plus other trip insurance benefits.

To sign up for the card you can follow this link:

http://www.volunteercard.com/geeo.html.

We recommend purchasing cancellation insurance too, which the IVC offers as an additional option.

Another option is www.insuremytrip.com. They offer different options from many different companies. You can also get your insurance directly through G Adventures if you wish.

Please note it is mandatory for all of our travelers to have Emergency Medical insurance that covers both emergency evacuation and repatriation to the sum of $200,000USD.

What happens if GEEO doesn't reach the minimum number of participants needed for this trip?

Typically we reach the minimum number for our groups in the month of April. If we do not have the minimum number of participants needed we will re-price the trip for the amount of people signed up, adding on a surcharge. It will be up to each individual whether they still wish to travel with the group at the new rate. If they choose to withdraw from the program at that time they will be issued a full refund. If need be we will cancel a trip and issue the entire group a full refund. It is important that you do not book your flights before a group is confirmed! It is pretty rare for us to have to cancel trips.

What are the emergency contact numbers for this trip?

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) and then the G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel.

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office Bangkok, Thailand
During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time)
From outside Thailand: +66 2 381 5574
From within Thailand: 02 381 5574

After hours emergency number (SE Asia Manager)
From outside Thailand: +66 87 049 6074
From within Thailand: 087 049 6074

G Adventures Local Representative (Vietnam)
Ms.Nhung
Emergency number: +84 91 204 0262

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0844 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 01805 70 90 30 00
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

Is there any safety advice we should know about?

We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

Be aware that petty theft can be an issue in some Vietnamese towns and cities especially late at night. A common tactic is opportunists on motorbikes that drive by and snatch bags. Please always leave valuables and passports etc in your hotel,in safety boxes if available,and only carry with you enough cash to spend for the day. Bags should always be carried over the neck and not left to sit on your shoulder.

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your tour leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your tour leader will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your tour leader will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is G Adventure's policy not to allow our tour leaders to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

Can GEEO book extra hotel nights for me?

You may want to stay longer in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City so feel free to arrive a few days early or depart a few days later.

We can book your extra hotel nights for you if you wish. Just send a request by email to groups@gadventures.com with the dates you would like at least 30 days before departure.

Where can we get a list of hotels for this trip?

Other than the first hotel, our partner G Adventures does not provide hotel lists for any of their trips.

The reason for this is sometimes hotels change at the last minute. G Adventures does not want to give out incorrect information because in an emergency that can only cause more issues. Instead we give you 24-hour emergency phone numbers where you and your family can reach staff in the country that you are travelling to or in Canada at G Adventure's headquarters. This way at anytime your loved ones can call the emergency contact who can immediately put them in touch with your tour leader no matter how plans have changed.

What vaccinations do I need for this trip?

We legally cannot give you any medical advice. It is very important to consult your doctor or a travel clinic about which vaccinations you will need for your trip. GEEO recommends contacting Passport Health, (http://www.passporthealthusa.com/) who have travel clinics throughout the US. Please take this seriously!

Is there clothing that is considered inappropriate that I should not bring?

In Asia the dress standard is more conservative than it is back home. When packing try to pick loose, lightweight, long clothing that will keep you cool in the usually hot and humid climate of Asian summers. In predominately Buddhist countries we ask that you dress respectfully and avoid very short shorts/skirts and singlets/tanktops when visiting temples or mosques or other holy sites.

Is there advice that past participants would like to pass onto you?

Quotes from past participants:

"The hike in Sapa is pretty arduous. It was down a very steep incline, in very hot weather, full sun. "

"Don't have any expectations about ANYTHING. It's Vietnam - it's loud, it's dirty, it's crowded, it's hot. It's got good food, inexpensive gifts, great sites. Keep an open mind!"

"You MUST be able to carry your own luggage on this trip."

"I would recommend a cooking lesson at the 'Little Hanoi' cooking school. It is amazing and the instructor 'Tin' is a culinary artist. Our guide recommend it to us...and it was phenomenal. One of the highlights of the trip and we stumbled into it on the last day. It's run by a small family and 'Tin' is their head chef."

"I would not classify the hike in Sapa as a moderate hike, at least not the hike on the second day. You may want to opt out of that hike if you are not in good shape."

"Make it clear for the Vietnam trip that you should have two bags, one large bag and one backpack big enough for overnight trips. This was not clear those in my group and some people did not feel prepared. "

"Hanoi was a base for a few overnighters. It should be stipulated in the FAQ that big bags will be left at the hotel and an overnight size bag is essential."

"Very few places accept credit cards, make sure you have plenty of money in the ATM"

""Bring $2 bills (Vietnamese people think they're good luck)"

"There are plenty of opportunities to have your laundry done very inexpensively (about 1 USD per kilo) so only bring enough clothes for about a week to save space. "

"Looking back at the website I do see that it says that there are tailors that can make anything overnight in Hoi An but I didn't see this and wasn't as prepared as I could have been to have stuff made (knowing what I wanted, getting measurements from others for gifts etc) maybe this could be highlighted more..."

Do I need plugs and current converters for my electronic devices?

There are two components to provide external power to your device: adapters and transformers. The adapter is the plug, adapting the prongs on a standard U.S. two to three-pronged power cord to match the prongs required by the local outlets. The transformer changes the local voltage to that required by your device.

Most hotels in Vietnam use the same plug design used in America, a type A plug. Their voltage is 220-240 Volts. U.S. outlets are 120V. Most new devices (phones and laptops) can handle the different voltage rates, but some devices only work on the U.S. standard of 120V. Check your device to see what voltage range it handles. Most transformer blocks will have an "Input" line that defines its voltage capacity. For example, "Input: 100 - 240V" means that it will work on voltages from 100V to 240V. If your transformer can't handle the different voltage, you'll need to purchase a voltage converter. You can find world regional voltage converters power packs at various vendors.

What should I expect in terms of school visits?

GEEO tries to include school visits on each of our programs; however these visits are never a guaranteed part of our programming. School visits can be very tricky.

• In many of the countries we visit, schools will be closed for vacation over the summer. In that case we try to arrange an informal meeting with local teachers or a visit to a summer school.

• Some of our shorter programs are so packed with activities and places to see that we feel a school visit would mean the group would have to miss out on something important. In that case a school visit may not be scheduled.

• Many times we spend hours setting up a visit only for the school to cancel on us at the last minute.

• Often arranging school visits is easier if done in person with short notice. Your tour leader will try to schedule ad hoc school visits for your group when possible.

• Each school visit is different. We aim for you to get a tour of the school, sit in on a class and have a Q and A session with some of the staff.

• If we do schedule a school visit it is important that the entire group attend.

• Over time we try to establish long term relationships with schools so we can have more predictable, immersive visits that are rewarding for both our guests and the schools themselves.

Should I bring school supplies with me to donate to a school?

You can if you wish. Please keep in mind it is important for you to pack light for your trip and school supplies can take up a lot of space. Sometimes school visits are at the end of the trip so you may be carrying the supplies for the entire trip. Sometimes we aren't able to arrange a school visit at all so you would then have to figure out a way to give them out yourself.

Our advice is to bring little if any supplies with you and instead buy supplies locally when your tour leader tells you a school visit is planned. They can help the group pool money and purchase supplies such as books, athletic equipment, pencils and paper. This will allow you to give an appropriate gift, save room in your pack and also help the local economy. We encourage you to establish relationships with the schools that we visit. In the past some of our participants have run fundraisers for needy schools and have mailed supplies to the schools.

Is the water safe to drink?

Unless your tour leader tells you differently, only bottled water should be drunk, and this is readily available for purchase. Fruit and vegetables should be peeled, washed in boiled water and in the case of the latter, well cooked. Meat and fish should also be fresh, well-cooked and hot, to avoid possible infection.

Is there Internet access? Should I bring a computer? Mobile phone?

There are Internet cafes in most of the places we visit and many of the hotels also have computers that can be used. Expect to be able to check your email every two to three days. You can also bring along your mobile phone if you choose. Make sure you check with your phone company before you leave to find out the rates for calling back to the US and if they have any special international plans that are worth taking advantage of. International roaming rates can be extremely high, so you don’t want to be surprised. You can bring a laptop/netbook/tablet computer if you wish, but remember, GEEO and G Adventures are not responsible for the damage or theft of you valued items.

What is the weather like?

The North of Vietnam is typically hot and dry during the summer months. The South is hot and wet during the summer months.

What is train travel like in Vietnam?

Train travel in Vietnam is very basic and train cleanliness is often not a priority for train staff. Sleeper trains normally have 4 seats per compartment, which convert into sleeping bunks (two upper and two lower). A sheet, pillow and blanket are provided, although many people prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet. At times, passengers of different genders may be required to share a sleeper train berth and/or share a compartment with people not travelling in your group.

Simple food is available on the train but many people like to stock up on freshly baked bread, cheese and fruit prior to departure. Water should also be bought before the journey.

Train journeys in Vietnam are an experience and allow you to get a real taste of Vietnam.

Is the itinerary exactly as described on this website?

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described on our website, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The information on our website is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Why are some activities included in the price of the trip and others are not?

We have found paying locally for activities allows our participants to save money. Not every activity is appealing to everyone and we don't want you to pay for services you might not use. Perhaps you feel sick one day and would prefer to rest. This allows you to decide on the spot what you want to do each day with your free time and at the same time control your budget.

How much money in US cash should I bring? Should I exchange local currency in advance?

This is entirely up to you, but we think it is critical for you to bring along $200 USD in cash for emergencies. This is what GEEO's executive director Jesse does in regards to money while traveling:

"I do not exchange any money before travelling to a country but instead bring somewhere between $300-500 US in cash. I go to a bank before I leave the US and take out the cash there rather than an ATM. I make sure each bill is in great condition with no rips or tears. I like to have mostly 20's, but in some countries you are better off with 50's and 100's. In some countries it is also good to have about 20 singles for when you have no small bills in local currency. I divide this money between a money belt and my main backpack and my daypack.

I also bring an ATM card and a credit card. Before I leave the country I call the bank and credit card companies to let them know I am traveling abroad so they don't think the foreign transactions are fraudulent and cancel my cards when I am most reliant on them. Having a second bank account and bank card is pretty handy so that just in case one card doesn't work at an ATM or is lost, you always have a back up account. It's also important to check with your credit card to see if there is an international transaction fee. Some cards charge up to 4% extra for any transactions made out of the US. My Capital One visa card doesn't have any international transaction fee. I just use this card for traveling so if it gets stolen and I have to cancel it I won't have to worry about recurring automated payments. I like to split up my cards between my money belt, wallet and one emergency one hidden in my main bag.

When I arrive at the airport I make sure to go to an ATM before leaving the airport and typically take out the equivalent of $150 USD in the local currency. I find that ATMs give the best exchange rate so throughout the trip I will use the ATM card to draw out my spending cash. I will ask our tour leader for an estimate on how much I will need if I am close to leaving a country so this way I do not draw out too much money.

I try not to use the US cash I brought with me so that I can use it in an emergency. Typically I will come back to the US with most of that US cash unspent. On a recent trip I lost my ATM card and was able to get cash by paying for our group dinners with my credit card and having people pay me their share in local currency. I NEVER take cash advances on my credit card as they charge you an arm and a leg.

I also never use travelers checks, but have heard good things about AAA ATM cards that you can load up with money instead of using travelers checks."

Do you have advice on tipping?

It is customary in Asia to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is expected - though not compulsory - and shows an expression of satisfaction with the people who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. You may do this individually, or your tour leader will offer to collect the money and tip as a group. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $1-$2 USD per person per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your tour leader for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture. Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures tour leader did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $10-15 USD per person, per week can be used.

Is there any advice for finding funding for this program?

The first thing we recommend you do is speak to your school's principal and/or professional development coordinator. They may know of grants that your school district or state offers. Often schools reimburse teachers for professional development expenses. You can also try contacting your school's PTA or professional organizations that you belong to.

We also recommend applying for a Fund for Teachers grant, www.fundforteachers.org. These grants can be used on GEEO trips.

What is expected from me from an educational stand point?

Please take a look at the "Sharing your Adventure section of our website by clicking here.

What happens if it becomes unsafe to travel on this trip?

Your safety is our utmost priority and we will cancel a trip if we do not feel our participants will be safe. If GEEO or G Adventures cancels your trip we will issue a full refund of any payments you have made including the deposit. If YOU decide to cancel your trip you will have to abide by the rules of our terms and conditions.

What is the relationship between G Adventures and GEEO? Who is running this trip?

GEEO is an independent non-profit organization that helps teachers travel. GEEO negotiates with tour companies to get great deals for teachers. GEEO customizes these trips for teachers. GEEO provides educational materials to teachers before and after the trip to help bring the participating teacher's experience into the classroom. GEEO markets these programs to convince teachers to explore the world. For more about GEEO, please see our mission statement.

G Adventures is a tour company that GEEO has partnered with to run our trips. For over 20 years G Adventures has been sending hundreds of thousands of people abroad and today they are the largest adventure travel company in the world. They design the trips, provide expert tour leaders, ground logistics and work hard to make sure you have an excellent experience.

What is the GEEO book club and which books have been selected for this program?

GEEO's book club is a way for you and your fellow participants to learn through literature about the places you will be traveling. For each trip we have selected four books, two fiction and two non-fiction. It is completely up to you whether you choose to read them as the GEEO book club is not required for our participants. We hope you will enjoy the books we have selected and they will enhance your experience. We welcome feedback on our selections so we can develop and improve the list for the following summer.

For your convenience we have a hot-linked each of the selected books to amazon.com. If you purchase this book through the link, Amazon will share some of the proceeds from the sale with GEEO, helping to fund our operations. You should hopefully be able to find most of our selections through your library system as well.

For this program we have selected the following books:

Fiction:
A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain by Robert Olen Butler
The Quiet American by Graham Greene

Non-Fiction:
When Heaven and Earth Changed Places by Le Ly Hayslip
Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam by Frances FitzGerald

For those looking for more suggestions, here are some other books you may want to consider:

Vietnam: A History by Stanley Karnow
Catfish and Mandala, A Two Wheeled Voyage through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam, by Andrew X. Pham
The Unwanted, by Kien Nguyen
Shadows and Wind: A View of Modern Vietnam by Robert Templer
The Ugly American, by William Lederer
Last night I Dreamed of Peace, the Diaries of Dang Thuy Tram by Dang Thuy Tram
The Sorrow of War: A Novel of North Vietnam by Bao Ninh


Want more adventure? Save money by also booking of our other Southeast Asia programs, Bangkok to Hanoi and/or Angkor Adventure through our Multi-Trip Discount.

1519.00 USD

*Based on Double Occupancy, International Airfare not included

Availability: 0

This program is guaranteed to run and will have a maximum of 15 participants.

What's Included

  • Water puppet show (Hanoi). Sapa excursion to hilltribe villages with homestay and traditional meals. Halong Bay entrance, Halong Bay boat cruise with seafood lunch and dinner. Imperial Citadel and Tomb guide and entrance. Mekong Delta homestay with traditional meals.

  • G Adventures Tour Leader, local guides.

  • 11 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners. (Allow $265-$350 for meals not included.)

  • In country transportation: Train, Local bus, Aircon bus, Boat, Cyclo, Airplane.

  • Hotels/Guesthouses (8 nts), Sleeper train (3 nt), Junk boat (1 nt), Basic family homestay (2 nt).

What's Not Included

  • International air

  • Incidentals

  • Insurance

  • Applicable visas

  • Airport Taxes

  • Tips or gratuities

  • Beverages

  • Meals not mentioned above

  • Optional Tours or optional admissions