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Social Initiatives in Vietnam - 13 Days

Social Initiatives in Vietnam

Vietnam · Private Tour · 13 Days
j
Private Tour
e
culture
|
landscape

Let Vietnam touch your heart on a journey that will bring you closer to its good-natured folk. Discover the country as you take part in sustainable activities and cooperate with life-changing foundations.

Itinerary

Day 1 - Hanoi
Day 2 - Tam Dao National Park
Day 3 - Hoa Binh Day Trip
Day 4 - Ha Long Bay Cruise
Day 5 - Hanoi → Hue
Day 6 - Hue
Day 7 - Lend a Hand at a Children's Center
Day 8 - Hue → Hoi An
Day 9 - Lifestart Foundation Workshop
Day 10 - Hoi An → Saigon
Day 11 - Cu Chi Tunnels
Day 12 - Sampan Boat Donation
Day 13 - Saigon

What is included

  • Private airport transfers in Hanoi, Hue, Danang, Saigon
  • Domestic flights Hanoi - Hue, Da Nang - Saigon (economy class with airport taxes)
  • Transportation on tour in air conditioned vehicle
  • 12 nights accommodation at standard hotels with breakfast
  • Meals mentioned in this itinerary
  • Entrance fees at all visiting sites
  • Private boat trip in Ha Long
  • Sightseeing English speaking guide in each location
  • Cold towels and water on sightseeing days

What is NOT included

  • International flight
  • Beverages at meals
  • Tips and personal expenses
Did you know you can make this trip even better? Customize this tour

day
1
Hanoi

Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel with guide.

Overnight at the the hotel. 

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Skylark Hotel

Deluxe Hanoi

day
2
Tam Dao National Park

After breakfast, meet your guide at the hotel lobby and start your tour. Located northwest of Hanoi, the former French hill station of Tam Dao sits pretty at almost 1,200m above sea level and is surrounded by sheer cliffs and jungle.

Tam Dao trekking

A two-hour journey along Highway 23 will bring you to Tam Dao National Park, where the numerous attractions include the Moon Bear Sanctuary. Here you will see how these creatures are rehabilitated. Enjoy a three-hour trek in the park, where you can take in its diverse flora and fauna ranging from squirrels and deer to langurs.

The trekking ends at the park canteen where you will have lunch with your guide. Return to Hanoi, stop en route at Huong Canh ceramic village known as the cradle of the pottery industry in Vietnam. 

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Hanoi → Tam Dao National Park67 km 1h 45min
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Skylark Hotel

Deluxe Hanoi

day
3
Hoa Binh Day Trip

Hoa Binh day trip

Depart Hanoi early this morning to an ethnic minority community in Hoa Binh province, approximately 70 km west of Hanoi. Upon arrival at the beautiful community, take a short walk around a magnificent lake, nestled between mountains, forests and rice paddies.

We will visit the borrower whom your tour fees will fund a loan for. Thus, you will directly meet the person whose livelihood you are making an active and sustainable contribution towards, just by coming on the micro finance tour! You will have an opportunity to hear the personal story, learn about the family’s plans for the microloan, and find out about their hopes for the future. Following, there is an opportunity to try your hands at a typical rural activity, such as tending to livestock and crops or learning how to make shrimp baskets.

After saying goodbye to our borrower, we will head back to our local host to enjoy an authentic Vietnamese lunch. She has been working as the head of the Women’s Union in the village for over 10 years and will be sharing with us some of the challenges and opportunities faced by rural women in Vietnam. We will then go to the house of the Head of the Commune People’s Committee where you can learn more about the community. Walk to the nearby schools, kindergarten (not on summer holidays & weekends) and clinic and learn about the health and education system in the commune. Drive back to Hanoi by 6:00 pm at the latest. 

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Hanoi → Hoa Binh94 km 2h 15min
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Skylark Hotel

Deluxe Hanoi

day
4
Ha Long Bay Cruise

Ha Long Bay day trip

Early this morning, begin the day with a drive to Ha Long Bay with a quick rest stop at Dai Viet Center - the best place to stop and stretch your legs en route. Upon arrival we board our boat for a cruise around the 3,000 islets that rise from the clear emerald waters of the Gulf of Tonkin.

Bizarre rock sculptures jutting dramatically from the sea and numerous grottoes have created an enchanted, timeless world. Enjoy a seafood lunch on board our junk boat before returning to the wharf. Travel back to Hanoi arriving later this evening. 

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Hanoi → Ha Long Bay182 km 3h 30min
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Skylark Hotel

Deluxe Hanoi

day
5
Hanoi → Hue

Flight to Hue

After breakfast, morning is free at your leisure. After check-out at 12:00, transfer to the airport with guide for your flight to Hue.

Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel with guide. The rest of the day is free at your leisure

Overnight at the hotel.

p
Hanoi → Hue 1h 10min
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Asia Hue Hotel

Executive Deluxe Hue

day
6
Hue

Half day biking around Hue countryside

Thuy Bieu village, located near the famous Perfume river is one of the oldest and a wonderland of pomelo that possesses a very special taste and fragrance. Locals call it Thanh Tra as its flesh is juicily light green. Be shuttled 4 km to see this interesting village, take a bicycle trip, passing by family temples, orchard gardens to a local workshop where you witness how local people make necklaces from aloes wood.

Then cycle through paddy, corn fields to a local home where the family members have been making incense sticks for generations. May have chance to taste Thanh Tra fruit while chat with them to get a glimpse of their everyday daily lives and effort to keep the traditional craft alive. Continue your bicycle trip to traditional silk painting shop to discover the inborn talent of local artists, visit Voi Re Temple and Tiger Arena where your guide will explain how the Emperors in Nguyen dynasty were entertained.

Hue City by cyclo and electric cart

Drive back to Hue Hue served as an imperial capital to the Nguyen Lords, a feudal dynasty which reigned from the 17th to the 19th century. With splendid emperors tombs, ancient pagodas and the remains of the Citadel, the city retains its royal charm. This afternoon, drive to the Imperial Citadel, a UNESCO listed site.

From there, you are picked up by electric cart to enter through the towering main gate where you will see the magnificent architecture and gardens while your guide explains about the events and the intrigue of the former royal court. Despite being bombed heavily, there are some incredibly well preserved sections still intact and others which are being lovingly restored. Then, take a cyclo ride to Thien Mu pagoda, Hue’s best-preserved religious monument. Standing on the riverbank with its seven-story tower, the pagoda is a sight to behold. Returning to your hotel by car. 

Overnight at the hotel.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Asia Hue Hotel

Executive Deluxe Hue

day
7
Lend a Hand at a Children's Center

Participate in social work

After breakfast, drive to the An Tay Children Center - away from Hue downtown. Meet and talk with the center representative for an insight of the daily activities as well as their effort to take care more than 50 orphanage and disable children. Chat with some children to understand their life at school as well as their dreams.

Roll up your sleeves and help them to clean up the garden, water the vegetables and grow some more plants that someday you might come back and see your fruit of labor. Then let’s paint their rooms and give fresher look and new vibe to the kids.

In the afternoon, drive to the rural outskirts for a small act of kindness and help make the world a better place. A gift of just one cow can offer a big change for poor farmers. Participate in a ceremony during which you donate a small cow to a farmer together with the local authority and villagers as your witness. Chat with the family who received the gift to better understand their needs and future plans. 

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Asia Hue Hotel

Executive Deluxe Hue

day
8
Hue → Hoi An

After breakfast, transfer from your Hue hotel to your Hoi An hotel with guide. Between the 17th and 19th centuries, Hoi An was a prosperous trading port. Today, this World Heritage -listed ancient town boasts well-preserved buildings, pedestrianized streets and unique cuisine, allowing visitors a glimpse of its illustrious past.

Hoi An walking tour

In the afternoon, start your walking tour. There is plenty to visit including the old merchant’s houses with influences from Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture; the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge; the Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation with outstanding wood carvings; and the colorful market with stalls brimming with local specialties including silk, which can be turned into fashionable garments within a day or two.

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Hue → Hoi An145 km 3h
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Vinh Hung Emerald Resort

Deluxe Pool View Hoi An

day
9
Lifestart Foundation Workshop

Lifestart foundation visit

Founded in 2000 by an Australian, Karen Leonard and a team of dedicated volunteers, the Foundation applies a holistic approach to helping those in need through proven working programs and initiatives which are designed to effect a generational change. Today, you will meet the Representative of Lifestart, then take part in the Traditional Painting Class. The teacher is a previous Lifestart Foundation recipient, Sinh, who has his own art gallery now. Try drawing a greetings card under his guidance.

Later, return to the Lifestart Foundation Workshop for a traditional Hoi An lantern-making Class. To discover the culture and lifestyle of a country, there is nothing more interesting than visiting a local family. Spend some time sharing cultures, join the family activities and have a meal with the host. Located on the outskirts of ancient Hoi An, there are 3 generations in this family living under the same roof.

Learn from the family how to make and eat traditional rice crackers which are a local specialty. Selling rice crackers is also part of this family’s livelihood. Savor a simple yet tasty lunch of traditional Hoi An specialties prepared by the family members. Later, bid farewell to your new friends. The rest of the day is free at your leisure.

Overnight at the hotel.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Vinh Hung Emerald Resort

Deluxe Pool View Hoi An

day
10
Hoi An → Saigon

Flight to Saigon

After breakfast, transfer to Da Nang airport with guide for your flight to Saigon.

Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel with guide. The rest of the day is free at your leisure

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Hoi An → Da Nang 45min
p
Da Nang → Saigon 1h 20min
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Au Lac 2 Hotel

Deluxe Saigon

day
11
Cu Chi Tunnels

After breakfast, take a drive northwest of Saigon to the famous Cu Chi tunnels area.

Cu Chi Tunnels tour

The tunnels, built during the war years and used for getting around the areas unseen, also served as communication routes, storage facilities for food and weapon caches as well as hospitals and living quarters for guerrilla fighters throughout the American war. A visit to the underground villages will provide a better understanding of the tunnels history, the hardship of life in the tunnels and the Vietnamese resilience during combat.

Lunch with a Viet Cong vet

After the tunnel tour, transfer to a local family home to have a rest and enjoy a home hosted meal. The owner was a Viet Cong soldier. When the war was over, he worked as a farmer to raise his kids and family. Walk with him through his garden, listen to his story of being a VC and now a farmer and get to know how he overcame his experiences from the war years. Later, transfer back to Saigon after lunch.

Visit a local school

Bung Sang (district 5) is a small private home and school for nearly 50 blind children born in poor families from remote provinces. The school was founded by a blind musician - Mr. Dao Khanh Truong. With the love and care for unlucky children, he spent most of his life teaching the children and gathering support from the benefactors. After he passed away few years ago, Bung Sang was given to the Lovers of the Holy Cross Sisters to take care of. This afternoon, visit the school, talk with the manager for a thorough understanding of their lives here, meet the children and listen to them singing, playing music.

Transfer back to Saigon

Afterwards transfer to Noir restaurant for a special culinary journey - dining in the dark. The concept is to imitate the experience of having meals like a blind person, which is a unique mind-altering experience. Leave behind the sight and let your other senses lead your mind to feel the taste of food.

Overnight at the hotel.

Q
Saigon → Cu Chi Tunnels70 km 2h
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Au Lac 2 Hotel

Deluxe Saigon

day
12
Sampan Boat Donation

Sampan donation ceremony

Sampan boats are an important mode of transportation and livelihood in the Mekong Delta, and yet some families for generations could not afford a sampan to improve their lives. Donating one to a needy family will ensure that they have a better future.

The small sampan donation ceremony will take place with local authorities and villagers as witnesses. Speak to the local people about their livelihood and future plans. Then bid the village farewell and good luck as we continue on our way. 

Overnight at the hotel.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
]

Au Lac 2 Hotel

Deluxe Saigon

day
13
Saigon

After breakfast, transfer to the airport with guide for your onward flights. 

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Accommodations

Hanoi
]

Skylark Hotel

Deluxe
Hue
]

Asia Hue Hotel

Executive Deluxe
Hoi An
]

Vinh Hung Emerald Resort

Deluxe Pool View
Saigon
]

Au Lac 2 Hotel

Deluxe

Price for standard experience

Customizable private tour
Prices per person2 pax
Double Sharing
1 Jun 2018 - 31 Dec 2018$2563

Photos

Food Noir Restaurant, Saigon
Lifestart Foundation, Hoi An
Sampan Boat Donation
Japanese Covered Bridge, Hoi An
Hanoi
Hoa Binh Province
Halong Bay
Thien Mu Pagoda, Hue
Forbidden City, Hue
Latern Making Class, Hoi An
Assembly Hall, Hoi An
Cu Chi Tunnel, Saigon

Map

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