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Vietnam Trek & Cruises: From Pu Luong to Ha Long Bay Vacation in 10 Days

Trek and cruise the remote sites of north Vietnam. Beginning at Pu Luong National Park, trek through hidden villages with basic homestay experiences. Then take a boat trip in Tam Coc to discover spectacular caves before completing this adventure on an overnight cruise on Halong Bay.


Various activities on sites

  • Exploring the city of Hanoi learn about its history and culture
  • Trekking to the remote villages in Pu Luong & Ninh Binh
  • Experiencing the local life of hill tribe people and enjoying the local cuisine
  • Cruise along the beautiful Ha Long Bay and exploring and surrounding area

Unforgettable moments

  • Strolling around Hanoi old quarter, admiring local life whilst the sea of motorbike running around
  • Admiring the rural life of the countryside in Pu Luong & Ninh Binh
  • Seeing various ethnic people and admire their way of life
  • Admire the sunrise and sunset on Ha Long Bay

Nature exploration

  • The amazing nature of the countryside in Pu Luong & Ninh Binh
  • The pure nature of Ha Long Bay with open scenic view

Culture experience

  • Learn about the never-fading culture of Hanoi and its magnanimous history
  • The colorful culture of various hill tribe people in the northern Vietnam


Detailed schedule

Day 1 - Welcome to Hanoi

Upon arrival at Noi Bai International Airport, Sonasia’s guide & driver will pick you up and transfer directly to the hotel in the old quarter of Hanoi.

Vietnam's capital races to make up for time lost to the ravages of war and a government that as recently as the 1990s kept the outside world at bay. Its streets surge with scooters vying for right of way amid the din of constantly blaring horns, and all-around layers of history reveal periods of French and Chinese occupation – offering a glimpse into the resilience of ambitious, proud Hanoians.


Check out the Hanoi travel guide

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Day 2 - Hanoi - Pu Luong Nature Reserve

Depart in the morning towards the west, to the Hoa Binh Mountains and the Pu Luong Nature Reserve 22km from Mai Chau Valley.

Arrive in the late morning and lunch at the village of Lac.  In the afternoon, take a short hike through the rice terraces and bamboo forests. Arrive late afternoon in Hang Village. Dinner and night at a house on stilts of the Thai ethnic group.

All homestays are equipped with a clean bathroom, a shower (save water please), simple mattresses, mosquito net and blanket.


From Hanoi to Pu Luong: 200km Transfer time: 4h Trek about 2.5 - 3 hours (8km)

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Day 3 - Hang Village - Kho Muong Village

For those who do not mind the early wake up, take part in the local morning activities or take a stroll around Hang Village before breakfast.

Then, embark on a more difficult day of hiking where there will be 50% village paths and 50% on an old, disused, unpaved French road. There are some steep climbs throughout the day, as well as some stream crossings. When the trek gets more remote, one is never far from a villager tending fields or walking back from the early morning market (subject to availability).   

While lunch is being prepared, relax from the heat of the day in a local home inside the village. After lunch, continue along the old jeep road to a village nestled between steep karst mountains. Arrive early with spare energy to hike a two-hour return trip to a newly discovered and incredibly large cave.

Hidden on high ground surrounded by thickets and hanging vegetation, the cave is now protected by forest rangers due to the delicate ecosystem and bat species inside.
Overnight at homestay in Kho Muong Village.


Trekking: 4 hrs or 12km Difficulty: Medium

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Day 4 - Kho Muong - Lan Village - Hin Village - Nua Village

This morning, hike through the forest and the peaceful villages of the ethnic Thai people. Beginning at Ban Uoi, hike through rice terraces, Ban Lan Trong and Lan Ngoai with beautiful houses on stilts preserving the traditional architecture of Thai.

Continue walking through villages Cao, Trinh. and Hin. The path of hiking goes uphill and downhill through the forest with scenes of rice terraces and pretty ethnic villages.

Spend the night with an ethnic Thai family in the village of Nua.


Trekking: 5 hrs (14km) Difficulty: medium

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Day 5 - Nua Village - Hieu Village

Wake up early to the sound of chickens and ducks, and village children preparing to go to school. Take an early morning walk through the village to experience morning life in a farming community. Hike approximately 4-5 hours to reach the village of Hieu located at the east end of the reserve. Nice walk in easy terrain with a picnic en route. On arrival at the village, visit a beautiful waterfall near the village.
Overnight in a house on stilts with a Thai ethnic group.


Trek about 4-5 hours ( or 12km) Difficulty: medium

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Day 6 - Hieu Village - Pho Doan - Tam Coc

Take a morning walk around the village of Hieu to observe daily life of local people then  trek towards Ma River Pho Doan. The trek is quite a gentle descend to a wide open valley. Arrive at Pho Doan Town.

If this day falls on a Sunday, pay a visit to the busy Pho Doan Market.

Lunch at Pho Doan before heading back to Tam Coc / Hoa Lu, which is known as Halong Bay on land.
Spend some time at leisure or choose to walk to Thai Vy Temple which is in a beautiful corner in the middle of the green rice fields.

Overnight at the hotel.

  • About 2.5 hours walk, 5 hours on transfer.
  • Transfer: 4 hours Trekking: 2.5 hrs Difficulty: easy
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Day 7 - Tam Coc - Galaxy Cave

After breakfast, begin a leisure 5 to 15 km (according to preference) cycling trip around Tho Ha Village passing by peaceful villages and enjoying the rustic countryside landscapes. Continue to Dong Tam Hamlet to join in some engaging agricultural activities such as catching crabs, fishing and transplanting, watering vegetables and more.

Enjoy lunch before cruising on a 2-hour boat trip through small canals among the paddy fields (rice fields seen between March and early June), then stroll along the winding rocky path of the foot for 200m and go up 20 steps to reach the Galaxy Cave Gate. Get inside the cave and admire the spectacular stalactites above the cave ceiling.

Continue to discover But Hien Cave and be attracted by many natural sparkling stalactites with shapes and figures before returning to the pier and transfer to the hotel.


Transfer: 1 hrs Cycling: 5-15km Difficulty: easy

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Day 8 - Tam Coc - Ha Long Bay

After breakfast, leave Tam Coc for an overnight boat trip on Halong Bay. The journey out runs through the rich farmlands of the Red River Delta, where it’s possible to observe the everyday life of Vietnamese villagers as they work the rice fields.

Arrive in Halong City late in the morning and board the traditional wooden junk for the overnight journey into the Bay (with lunch served enroute.)

After sailing along the idyllic rock formations, end the day by setting anchor in the middle of the Bay. As the sun sets over the water, dinner is served on board, consisting of fresh seafood, salads, and fruits.
Overnight on shared cruise in Halong Bay


Transfer: 3.5 hrs

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Day 9 - Ha Long Bay - Hanoi

Spend the morning returning to Halong City, enjoy a wholesome brunch as the boat weaves through strange-shaped limestone rock formations. Upon reaching the port, the driver will be waiting to provide transport back to Hanoi.

Overnight in Hanoi.


Transfer: 3.5 hrs

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Day 10 - Hanoi - Departure

You are free to stroll around the town for your own exploration before taking the departure flight


45-minute transfer from Hanoi Center to Noi Bai International Airport

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We believe you have the right to arm yourselves with as much information as possible before making any decision.

Check below our detailed tips & guide for every places to visit in Vietnam, recommendation regarding the inclusion in each theme you prefer, and what you can do based on the time frame you have.

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Ha Long Bay
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Hoi An
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Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
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Check out all the must-see places and things to do & see

Luxury Holiday
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Unique experience combined with top-notch services

Honeymoon Vacation
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Easy excursions combined with unique experience making the long-lasting romantic memories

Wellness & Leisure
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Easy excursion combined with week-long beach break

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The combination of some must-see experience and the cruise tour along the mighty rivers

Family Vacation
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The combination of fun and educational activities

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Reveal off-the-beatentrack routes, least explored destinations, and unknown tribe groups

Cycling & Biking
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Explore every corners of the destination on two wheels

Trek & Hike
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Explore the least visited destinations and unknown experience on foot

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WHAT MORE? Choose the country you plan to visit, then search for your nationality below to see our special travel tips & advice for your country. CONTACT US if you cannot find yours.

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Taking a cruise on the fascinating Mekong River offers a unique and memorable travel experience. The Mekong River, one of the longest rivers in Asia, flows through several countries, including China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Each destination along the river offers its own distinct cultural, historical, and natural attractions. In this article, we will go over what you can expect when cruising the Mekong River. 


Before being awarded a one-star rating by Michelin Guide for the first time, four Vietnamese restaurants - one in HCMC and three in Hanoi - were honored by international media and received applause from foreign diners.


"Should I visit Thailand or Vietnam?" is some of the most frequently asked questions that we have from our travelers

Well, Vietnam and Thailand are the most popular holiday destinations in Southeast Asia. They are similar in climate and food, though obviously different in culture, lifestyle and travel experience.

Below we list 13 major differences between the two countries, to give you a quick overview and help you decide which to visit first. These are based on our own travel experiences, investigations, and partnerships with local operators.


How long to spend in Vietnam may seem like a ridiculous question to address, but if you have plenty of time and aren’t sure how much to dedicate, this blog will definitely help you out.

You can find here and there that you should spend 10 days, 2 weeks, 20 days, or 1 month to best explore Vietnam. So what is the best Vietnam tour duration for you?

Well, as long as you like! From 10 days to a month, there are various ways you can travel across Vietnam and uncover its secrets. Advising an ideal trip length for Vietnam is a bit of a complex challenge, as it depends on several factors such as the places you wish to visit, the activities you plan to join, or if you want to combine Vietnam with its neighbor countries. 

Stay tuned! We are going to sort all these things out including the step-by-step guide to create the best itinerary in Vietnam.


Vietnam would scrap the Covid-19 testing requirement for all arrivals starting Sunday, May 15th 2022, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has directed.

In a document issued Friday, the Prime Minister requested the Ministry of Health to closely follow the coronavirus situation and provide proper guidance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should direct Vietnamese authorities outside the country to inform people who wish to enter Vietnam to follow appropriate disease prevention measures, he said.

The latest decision has been made as the number of Covid-19 infections and deaths drops both in Vietnam and around the world. Several countries have been taking steps to relax coronavirus restrictions, including scrapping testing before entry.

Current policies issued by the health ministry require entrants to have negative results from PCR tests done within the previous 72 hours, or a negative result from a rapid test done within the last 24 hours.

Those who don’t have a negative test result must refrain from making contact with others during the first 24 hours after entry. They will be able to move freely once they test negative after arrival.

Children under two don’t need to be tested.

Vietnam stopped requiring medical declarations from those arriving from abroad starting April 27, and for domestic travel starting April 30.


The “Colorful Hanoi” hot air balloon festival is one of the attractive activities within the framework of the program “Hanoi tourism welcomes 2022” taking place from March 25-27, 2022.

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Friendly and food-obsessed, hedonistic and historic, cultured and curious, Thailand tempts visitors with a smile as golden as the country's glittering temples and tropical beaches.
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There's a magic about this charming yet confounding kingdom that casts a spell on visitors. In Cambodia, ancient and modern worlds collide to create an authentic adventure.
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It's a new era for this extraordinary and complex land, where the landscape is scattered with gilded pagodas and the traditional ways of Asia endure.
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Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.
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