From the dazzling blue waters and intricate city streets of Vietnam to the exotic traditions of Laos, this adventure promises more than your average saunter through South East Asia. Vietnam, Laos & Thailand on a Shoestring starts in hectic Ho Chi Minh City and finishes in the even more hectic city of Bangkok. Discover Nha Trang’s underwater world, sail the picture perfect Halong Bay and wander the traditional streets in Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Step into Laos, a land that time seems to have forgotten about – full of serene landscapes and ancient customs. A jaunt through northern Thailand and a visit to the charming cultural capital of Chang Mai completes your trip, before bouncing into Bangkok, wide-eyed with wonder.
Arrive at any time.
Welcome to Ho Chi Minh City. Once the capital of South Vietnam, this sprawling metropolis is now the country's commercial centre.
Today is arrival day, so there are no activities planned. Relax, explore the city, and adjust to the frenetic pace and humid heat of Ho Chi Minh City.
Free day to explore. Overnight train to Nha Trang.
Arrive in Nha Trang in the morning with plenty of time to explore local shops and markets, relax on the beach or visit nearby historical sites.
Optional activities in Nha Trang include a boat trip to nearby islands for some snorkelling or, perhaps, a fun-filled all-day beach party.
Free time in Nha Trang. Overnight train to Hoi An.
In the evening, take an overnight train to Da Nang, then transfer to Hoi An.
Enjoy a noodle-making demonstration and local lunch at the G Adventures-supported Oodles of Noodles Project before free time in the afternoon. Go on an evening street food crawl with the group and CEO to get to know more about the delicious local specialties. Opt to take a cooking class, cycle to the beach, visit a tailor, or explore the old town.
From Danang, it is only a short drive to the picturesque port town of Hoi An. Once known as Faifo, it was an important trading town with strong south Chinese influence and connections.
Enjoy free time; opt to take a cooking class, cycle to the beach, visit a tailor, or explore the old town.
Continue the journey north to the city of Hue. Opt to visit the Royal Citadel and tombs, take a Perfume River cruise or tour the countryside by motorbike.
Free time in Hue. Overnight train to Hanoi.
Visit Halong Bay for a seafood lunch cruise and cave visit.
Arrive early morning to bustling Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. Transfer to a private bus and head to the beautiful and famous Halong Bay.
Get to know Hanoi with an orientation walk through the Old Quarter. Opt to see Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, the Temple of Literature, and the Hoa Lo Prison, or shop in the Old Quarter.
Spend time exploring Hanoi.
A short flight brings the group to the capital city of Laos. Opt to visit temples, see the golden stupa of That Luang, or scour the markets.
Explore a bit of Hanoi in the morning before an afternoon flight to Vientiane, the capital of Laos. There is a wealth of cultural delights to discover - on foot, by bicycle or, for the less energetic, by tuk-tuk.
Visit Laos' most important national monument, Phat That Luang, or meander down the dusty riverside tracks to find villages full of friendly children, dogs and chickens. A visit to Vientiane's vibrant, colourful morning market (which incidentally is open all day!) is worthwhile, to find plenty of local treasures. A great way to round off the day is to enjoy a spectacular sunset over the Mekong.
Enjoy the beautiful limestone karsts surrounding Vang Vieng. Free time to hike, bike, swim or go caving.
A picturesque drive north takes us to beautiful Vang Vieng. This quiet town is set along the Nam Song river amidst rice fields and limestone karsts.
Free time to explore Vang Vieng. Opt to explore some of the caves by bicycle or take an invigorating walk.
Why not explore some of the caves by bicycle or take an invigorating walk. In the evening, soak in the natural beauty of Vang Vieng as the sun sets over the river.
This morning travel from Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang. Get your bearings with a CEO-led orientation walk.
Witness the giving of alms to the Buddhist monks and visit the night market. Opt to take a cooking class, visit temples or cool off at Kuang Si Waterfalls.
Traditional Laotian culture is to give daily alms to monks. Monks are only allowed to eat food which has been donated to them before noon. On one of your mornings here, you may decide to rise with the sun, and watch one of the most important religious ceremonies in Laos. This is simply an unforgettable Southeast Asian experience.
Cruise the Mekong on a long houseboat before arriving at a village homestay for the night.
We board our boat for the two-day journey up the mighty Mekong River making our way to Chiang Khong.
Mekong River travel day. Cross into Thailand.
This morning we re-board our boat and continue our leisurely cruise along the river before arriving at the Laos/Thai border and crossing to Chiang Khong in the late afternoon.
Drive to Chiang Mai. Opt to visit Doi Suthep temple, catch a Thai boxing match or grab a bargain at the famous night market.
Departing Chiang Khong after breakfast, we drive to Chiang Mai where you have the afternoon free to explore this fascinating city, once the capital of the Kingdom of Lan.
Free time in Chiang Mai. Overnight train to Bangkok.
Today, why not try your hand at local cuisine with a Thai cooking class? Other options include a visit the magnificent temple of Doi Suthep standing watch over the city from the hills above, taking a bicycle ride in the countryside or embracing the bizarre by getting a massage from the training school at the local woman's prison! Tonight we catch an overnight train to Bangkok.
Opt to visit Wat Pho and the Grand Palace, buy any last minute souvenirs or relax with a Thai massage.
We'll arrive early in the morning to Bangkok, Thailand's capital city. The day is free to explore the many sights of Bangkok. The Grand Palace, Wat Pho, National Museum, and Jim Thompson's House are just a few suggestions. A trip along the Chao Praya river and through the canals (or klongs) gives you a different perspective of daily life in this busy city.
In the evening, we'll say good bye and enjoy a Thai meal and perhaps a beer together to celebrate the end of an amazing journey.
Depart at any time.
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Trip Name: Vietnam, Laos & Thailand on a Shoestring
Duration: 22 Days
From Price: 2149
Supplier Tour ID/Link Tour Code: AVVL/126717
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