Head for the Hills Vietnam (10 days)

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specialVietnam’s best kept secret may be its many trekking destinations. The areas of Mai Chau and Pu Long are full of great hiking trails, stunning scenery, and local hilltribes which are just waiting to be discovered. From Hanoi you travel southwest toward the Laos border. The change in scenery is dramatic as you leave behind the flat, busy streets of the capital and reach the limestone karsts and rolling green hills of the Mai Chau area and much more. These treks are a mix of walking, village exploration, and local interaction with stays in village homes or eco-lodges. In Head for the Hills Vietnam you explore yet another side of Vietnam.

Day 1 – Arrive Hanoi (D)
Welcome to Hanoi. This evening, meet your trekking guides for a trip briefing before feasting on a delicious Vietnamese meal. Overnight in Hanoi

Day 2 – Hanoi/Mai Chau/Poom Coong (B,L,D)
This morning you leave early and head southwest to Mai Chau, past sweeping vistas of lush hills and limestone karsts. After lunch, stretch your legs with a walk around the village of Pom Coong, inhabited by the Thai people. As you enjoy a barbeque dinner, watch a performance of local dance and music. (Today’s trek is 6km) Overnight in local home in Pom Coong

Day 3 – Mai Chau/Xa Linh/Hang Kia/Cun Pheo (B,L,D)
Transfer to the village of Xa Linh for the start of your trek along a mixture of paths, streambeds, and steep jungle hillsides reaching a H’mong village for a late lunch. This afternoon is mainly downhill, trekking along tracks which wind through hamlets, across small streams, and over suspension bridges. As you approach the village of Cun Pheo, soak in the beautiful scenery of the Mai Chau valley. (Today’s trek is 21km, 9-10hrs) Overnight in homestay, Cun Pheo

Day 4 – Cun Pheo/Van Mai/Hang Tribe village (B,L,D)
Today, experience the diversity of Vietnam as you trek through indigenous villages belonging to the region’s different tribes. After lunch, transfer to Sai village for the trek to Hang Village, an oasis in the middle of Pu Luong Nature Reserve. This path follows a route once used as part of the Ho Chi Minh trail during the Vietnam War to supply the resistance, but now is a tranquil area perfect for a late afternoon trek. (Today’s trek 25km, 8-10 hrs)Overnight in Hang Village

Day 5 – Trekking the hills of Pu Luong (B,L,D)
Today’s trek consists of 50% hiking through village paths and 50% along unpaved French roads. Relax from the heat of the day in a local home at Pak Kha village while lunch is cooked before continuing on along the old jeep road to a village nestled between steep karts mountains. Arrive early with energy to spare to hike a two hour round trip to a newly discovered and incredibly large cave, hidden on high ground surrounded by thickets and hanging vegetation. (Today’s trek 6hrs)
Overnight in ecotourism homestay, Kho Muong

Day 6 – Pu Luong Market Trek/Hin Village (B,L,D)
Today, trek downhill to the Nature Reserve’s only market. Enjoy browsing around before lunch at a local house. The trail after lunch begins in the valley floor for about an hour and then climbs over a small mountain to Hin village and your final home-stay of the trip. The village is is near a small river, perfect for cooling off with a swim. Explore the fascinating architecture and numerous hamlets that dot the valley of the surrounding area or just relax in a hammock and enjoy the serenity of this gorgeous region. (Today’s trek 7hrs) Overnight in eco-tourism homestay

Day 7 – Hin Village/Hanoi (B,L,D)
The last day of trekking takes you out of the valley and back up into the mountains. You will pass small hamlets and farmers tending to the fields, before crossing the river and heading up into the hills. Trek uphill through rice fields and froest covered mountains before emerging in the village of Ban Son where you will stop for lunch. After lunch hike for an hour on a dirt road to the village of Ban Ba. From here you will be picked up and transferred back to Hanoi, arriving late this afternoon. Relax and freshen up before dinner at a delicious Vietnamese restaurant. (Today’s 5hrs) Overnight in Hanoi

Day 8 – Hanoi/Halong (B,L,D)
Travel from Hanoi through the Red River Delta to Halong Bay. Spend the day cruising aboard a wooden junk boat, traveling amongst the limestone karsts and beautiful waters of the bay. Visit a cave and go for a swim before settling in for an evening of relaxation and dining on board your boat of choice. Overnight on Halong Bay

Day 9 – Halong/Hanoi (B,L)
On your return to Halong City enjoy a wholesome brunch as your boat weaves through strange-shaped limestone rock formations. Upon disembarkation your driver will meet you for the transfer back to Hanoi. Overnight in Hanoi

Day 10 – Depart Hanoi (B)
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight.

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Includes:
• English speaking guide throughout
• Local guide for trekking days
• Private air-conditioned car for transfer as itinerary except trekking days.
• Moto-bikes for luggage and back up.
• All transfers airport in Vietnam
• Bai Tho traditional junk in Halong, private boat.
• Sightseeing tickets where require in the itinerary except free days.
• Meals as mentioned in the itinerary ( B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
• Snack, water and local fruits for trekking days.
• Accommodation as itinerary in twin shared room/ Homestay with daily breakfast.

Does not Include:
• International air ticket to/from Vietnam and international airport departure tax.
• Visa to Vietnam. Please ensure to get visa before departure.
• Tips for guide, driver, porter at hotel, waiter in restaurant
• Beverage and alcoholic drinks.
• Personal expenditure (telephone, laundry, camera films)
• Personal travel insurance
• Any other services not clearly mentioned in the itinerary and in the trip inclusive portion.

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