North West Vietnam Discovery
Your private guide and transport will pick you up at your hotel to leave the bustling streets of Hanoi to travel past verdant rice paddies and farmland along Highway 32. After a one hour drive, you will reach Duong Lam Ancient village ‐ a rich historical site with fascinating old houses, churches and a temple of the two famous Kings, Phung Hung and Ngo Quyen. Despite the passing of time, these relics have been very well preserved, retaining the original features of our ancient houses. You will then take a walk around this old village, a great photo opportunity; and get to meet the local people and observe their daily life. After that, you will go on a short bicycle ride to the outskirts of this village to allow more picture taking.
You will enjoy a home-cooked lunch here, prepared and served by a local village family.
After lunch, you will continue on to Nghia Lo. Nghia Lo is situated along a beautiful mountain ridge with lush forests, tea plantations, rice terraces, and gum trees, with stunning picturesque valleys. This area is home to Thai, Nung, H’mong, La Ha and Ma ethnic minority tribes. You will arrive in the late afternoon and check into our hotel. The rest of your day will be yours to explore at your leisure. Dinner will be on your own.
Overnight in Nghia Lo
Early this morning, after breakfast, your private tour guide will take you to the local market in Nghia Lo Town, where you can explore and shop for local handicrafts. After this, you will continue on to Mu Cang Chai, known for its terraced fields, which are mainly rice paddies. They create a stunning landscape stretching down the mountainside. Wooden houses and guard boxes can be spotted between the terraced fields. This area is a definite photo opportunity!
You will enjoy a beautiful scenic drive today. While climbing over the mountain pass to Mu Cang Chai you might be able to see the H’mong, La Ha and Dzao minority people along the way. Descending to the valley below, we will arrive in the town of Than Uyen, where you will spend the night in a hotel.
Overnight in Than Uyen
This morning, you will depart Than Uyen after breakfast for a short drive to Quynh Nhai. After arriving in this peaceful town, you will stop for lunch.
After lunch, you will take a 01-hour boat trip around the picturesque reservoir here, dotted with islets. The water from this reservoir supplies the Son La Dam, the largest hydroelectric power station in Southeast Asia.
After the boat trip, you will continue your journey to Mai Son town by a 02-hour drive. After arriving at Mai Son, you will go to the home of a local family where you will be spending the night. Tonight your hosts will cook a delicious local-style dinner for you. They will take you into their garden to pick fresh vegetables and also show you how to select the best chicken for the meal.
You can then sit back and relax with a cold beer while watching them prepare your meal!
Overnight in Son La
After breakfast, you can take some photos with your host family before bidding them farewell. You will then take the 03-hour drive to Moc Chau Highland. Moc Chau Plateau is blessed with the most wonderful natural scenic beauty, with boundless meadows where grazing cows offer an unlimited supply of milk!.
Around noon, we will arrive in Ban Doi, a small black Thai village with a community-based tourism project. Ban Doi is an untouched village nestled in a lush valley. This village is known for its bamboo “stilt houses” which are elevated 10–12 feet off the ground in order to avoid water damage, and also serves to shelter animals from the elements.
After checking into one of the stilt houses you will have lunch.
After a short rest, you can take a gentle walk throughout the village. You will also visit one of the tea plantations and the and Dai Yem waterfall. This evening, you will be served a local style dinner by your Thai hosts and enjoy their company.
Overnight in Moc Chau
After breakfast, you will leave Ban Doi and drive to Phieng Canh, a H’mong tribe hamlet situated in a middle of nowhere. From the main road, you will take a one hour walk along the corn and rice fields to access this remote village. The location is very scenic, and the dwellers are truly hospitable. You will take a trip back in time in this charming village until your private tour guide brings you back down to earth when you return to the main road! Here you will be met by your private driver for the journey back to Hanoi.
On the way back, your private van will stop for lunch at Giang Mo village, home of the Muong minority people. These people have similar houses to the Thai people but a very different lifestyle and culture, further illustrating the rich diversity of Vietnamese ethnic groups.
After lunch you will wind your way back to Hanoi, arriving at your hotel around 4:00 pm. The rest of the day will be yours to explore at your leisure. Dinner will be on your own.
This tour is built upon our firsthand knowledge & experience, offering you the best choices available. The price of this trip varies depending on the number of people in your party, dates of departure, and the availability of ground services. Please click on REQUEST A FREE QUOTE (above) and supply the required information, enabling us to send you your personalized quote within 24 hours!
Note: Amendments CAN be made to this tour to suit your requirements.
- Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels
- Private Vehicles and Drivers
- Private English Speaking Guides (Other languages if available, upon request)
- Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
- Entrance fees for all mentioned sights visited
- Service Charge & Government Taxes
What’s Not Included?
- Your International Flights to and from Vietnam
- Vietnam entry Visa Fees (contact us for further information)
- Personal Expenses (such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.)
- Any bank fees or charges at your end
- Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary
- Personal Travel Insurance
- Tips for guides and drivers
Free service. No credit card required
Reviews on Our Service
We are committed to giving our customers unforgettable experiences in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and beyond, not just something staged for tourists. Read reviews written by our customers about their experiences in Indochina after they have returned home. These include the ratings and comments on attractions, guides, activities, hotels and food.
Vietnam Luxury Vacation Review: Sightseeing, Culture, 12-Day Travel
Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Sightseeing, Rice Fields, Boat Rides, 18-Day Trip
We started searching for our tour for Vietnam / Cambodia back in October 2022 to start the tour in the first week of January 2023. We selected this travel agency, and contact name provided to us was Elly. She was extraordinary with her communication with us. Excellent English speaking language capability & excellent in communication on Whats app and email communication. We went back & forth few times to arrange the tour we wanted. She was very accommodating in arranging our schedule. We requested automobile tour for both countries, just for two of us.
We requested SUV FOR OUR COMFORT AND WE GOT IT!
We requested to get the high end hotel in each city and she gave us choices and not only that but send videos of each hotel for each City and then waited for us to decide which hotel we select. All the Hotels turned out to be one of the best we would expect to be. M/s Elly, personally came to visit with us on the evening of our first day tour. Very respectful and asked if she could do anything for us.I had requested before in our communication, if she would arrange for power converter for us, since my camera chargers are all in 110. So brought two power converters for us! Something, not everyone will do this kind of service. So all the kiddos to her!
as to the drivers in each city were very courteous, very professional and very careful in how and where they have to do driving.
our Guides in each city were so friendly, courteous and knowledgeable in where ever we visited. How ever wish two guides in Hue An and Ho Chi Minh City spoke English more clearly.
We only wish we had one extra day in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, , however, there is so much to see in the world! Perhaps next time will visit Vietnam.
As to Cambodia, same thing to express about site seeing and our Guide and drivers. Guides and drivers really made our travel thro’ the countries where we do not speak that language, made it so comfortable and enjoyable.
Hi Lam…hope you don’t mind me contacting you directly. My wife Barb & I (Paul) have just arrived home after completing a great tour of Vietnam which was organised through your company Asia Pioneer Travel.
We want to tell you personally how impressed were were with the level of service that we received…it was amazing and the best that we have experienced anywhere. After we made initial contact with you, you handed us over to Chloe to arrange the trip which she did in very quick time and the amount of detail that she went to was fantastic. From the moment that we walked out of Hanoi airport on arrival to see our guide waiting, we knew that we were in for a great trip. The drivers & guides were fantastic and Chloe was in contact by email constantly making sure that everything was going to plan & that we were happy. At one stage we need to vary the itinerary by extending accommodation & changing air tickets and Chloe did that without any fuss or bother.
We also met some wonderful Vietnamese people along the way and Ive got to say that they are our kind of people, very generous & friendly.
Enough of my ramblings, thanks for a great visit to Vietnam, and a special thank you to Chloe for looking after us in such a terrific manner…she is a very special caring lady.
Kind regards & I hope that we have the opportunity to use Asia Pioneer Travel again….Paul & Barb Little from Newcastle Australia
Superbly organised and very flexible
We travelled to Vietnam for two weeks, booking the whole trip through Lizzie at Asia Pioneer, including hotels, excursions, trips, guides and internal flights. Lizzie was so helpful and flexible, accommodating changes to our schedule until the last minute, especially as we missed our connecting flight in Dubai and arrived a day later than planned (our fault). Nothing was too much trouble, including getting my wallet back to me after I left it in the car taking us to the airport.
We started in Hanoi in the North and worked our way south to Ho Chi Minh city (Saigon), taking in Ha Long with its amazing sea stacks and sleeping on a boat, then to Sa Pa on the overnight sleeper train from Hanoi, with its wonderful countryside and rice terraces. Afterwards, we went to Hoi An for three days of relaxation. Hoi An probably my favourite place and three days are enough to cover it. Then onto Hue, the original capital, my least favourite place and then finally on to HMC, which was a real contrast to the North.
The 3-star hotels that Lizzie picked were very good and comfortable, and the guides were very knowledgeable. I would definitely use Asia Pioneer again for future Asia trips.