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Things to do in

Northern Vietnam

Our most recommended things to do in Northern Vietnam

Hanoi: 3-Day Lan Ha Bay 5 Star Cruise & Private Balcony Room

1. Hanoi: 3-Day Lan Ha Bay 5 Star Cruise & Private Balcony Room

Day 1 09:00 Pick up at hotel in Hanoi old quarter. Transfer to Tuan Chau marina, welcome aboard to cruise. Refresh with welcome drink. Meet the captain, crew cruise and join briefing and learn safety instruction. Lunch in the luxury dining room with indoor. Continue cruising through Con Vit islet, Thumb islet and Gia Luan harbor where belonged to Cat Ba area. Discover lagoon natural area belong to Lan Ha bay. Kayaking or swimming or just simply sunbathe on cruise. Enjoy Sunset party with complimentary cocktails demonstration. It’s ideal time to make acquaintance with new friends, just relax in the seasonal swimming pool, or enjoy in golf course or do the exercise at fitness area. Join for a short class of cooking demonstration. BBQ dinner is served with fresh food menu outside of swimming pool area. After dinner, reward yourself with a large selection of cocktails at panoramic bar with seasonal pool view, at wine and cigars cellar, or take one of onboard activities: board games, movies, and squid fishing… or relaxing with massage services. Day 2 Join us for a Tai Chi session for the early risers on the sun deck. Light breakfast in a panorama view of the world heritage site. After breakfast, enjoy time for relaxing in amazing view of the Lan Ha bay while the boat continues cruising further for sightseeing. Lunch is served before getting on the speedboat to explore some unique area where the main boat cannot go through. Transferred by the speedboat heading to Viet Hai Village. Take the bicycle ride to enjoy gorgeous sceneries along village roads and go through rain forests. We also visit a local family’s house to see the daily life of local people. Back to the speedboat to continue cruising further in Lan Ha Bay. Arrive to a natural beach area for swimming, guest will pass through fish farm at the typical Lan Ha bay floating village. Back to cruise, take time to refresh or play some short game in golf course or relax with massage services as we cruise to sleeping area. Dinner is served with different menu. After dinner reward yourself with a large selection of cocktails at bar, swimming pool, wine and cigars cellar or enjoy the landscape of the bay at night. Relax with massage services. Take one of our on-board activities like squid fishing, watching movies in the restaurant. Day 3 Join us for a Tai Chi session on the sundeck for early riser. Local light breakfast is served. Mingling yourself in the stunning views of the Bay and it’s dramatic limestone islets as we sail through the calm emerald waters heading to Dark & Bright Cave. Take option either exploring the cave by yourself on kayak or comfortably on local boat rowed by the locals. Check-out the room. Vietnamese cuisine is served. Disembark from the cruise as our crew say farewell. Transferred by ultra-luxurious limousine. Arrival back at your hotel approximately 15:00

From Hanoi: Ha Long Bay Full-Day Guided Tour with Lunch

2. From Hanoi: Ha Long Bay Full-Day Guided Tour with Lunch

Enjoy a full-day trip to Ha Long Bay and get immersed in the beauty of the stone mountains, caves, sandy beach, and more. Board a vehicle from the hotel and enjoy a scenic drive through the green fields. Arrive at the Tuan Chau Habour and cruise through the turquoise waters and amazing rock formations. Soak in the beauty of the surroundings while enjoying a traditional Vietnamese lunch on board. Next, you will continue to explore the beautiful Sung Sot cave. Admire the shimmering stalactites embodying countless strange and unique shapes. Take a kayak or bamboo boat to spend some time in the water and discover the stunning Luon Cave. Feel the warmth of the sunshine as you pass by Titop island. Take a refreshing dip in the water or trek to the Titop peak for photos with a panoramic view of the bay. Relax for a while before going back to the boat to enjoy a sunset party with red wine, french fries, cakes, and fruits. After reaching Ha Long harbor, the driver will transfer you back to Hanoi. 

From Hanoi: 2-Day Luxury 5-Star Lan Ha Bay Cruise

3. From Hanoi: 2-Day Luxury 5-Star Lan Ha Bay Cruise

Day 1: Start with pickup from your hotel in Hanoi. Arrive at Tuan Chau pier and board the boat. Enjoy the buffet lunch while the boat is cruising towards North East of Ha Long Bay. Cruise next to the Dark and Bright Caves, the ideal place for you to get up close to Ha Long Bay by bamboo boat or kayak. Then enter a less populated area at Tra Bau - Lan Ha Bay. Enjoy a refreshing swim in the green emerald water. Onboard you may join a cooking demonstration as you learn about Vietnamese dining culture. The chef and staff will instruct you in making a traditional dish of Vietnam. Enjoy happy hour at the at the bar while watching the view of the bay at sunset. Sit for a deluxe dinner made with the freshest ingredients in a sophisticated space with elegant French neoclassical style and traditional oriental touches. Admire the beauty of the bay at night. You may want to try your luck with squid fishing or watch a movie in the restaurant. Day 2: Rise early in the morning for a Tai Chi session on the sundeck. Enjoy breakfast at the restaurant while continuing the cruise. Take part in a kayaking tour in the Ao Ech area, before checking out of your cabin. Brunch will be served at the restaurant on the 2nd deck. Return to Tuan Chau Marina for your transfer back to Hanoi.

Lan Ha Bay: 2 Days 1 Night Luxury Cruise, Swimming, kayaking

4. Lan Ha Bay: 2 Days 1 Night Luxury Cruise, Swimming, kayaking

Experience the natural beauty of Ha Long Bay on this 2-day luxury cruise through a lesser-traveled section of the bay.  Day 1 Get picked up from your hotel in Hanoi in a shuttle bus and enjoy a 2.5-hour journey to Ha Long Bay, admiring stunning views of the surrounding countryside as you drive. Upon arrival at the ferry terminal, transfer to the cruise ship and receive a welcome drink as you listen to a quick cruise safety briefing. Afterward, check in to your private balcony cabin before setting sail and admiring the magical landscapes of Ha Long Bay as you go, including a 100-year-old French lighthouse.  In the afternoon, enjoy a delicious Vietnamese lunch consisting of fresh seafood and an assortment of appetizers. Continue your cruise to Lan Ha Bay, a quieter section of Ha Long where you can take part in activities such as kayaking or swimming in the crystal-clear waters. Once back on board, the ship will drop the anchor for the night.  Celebrate your first night on board with a sunset party on the sundeck with local wine and fresh fruits before dinner is served. At the end of the evening, retire to your cabin or join the squid fishing excursion, watch a movie, have a drink at the bar, make use of the onboard wifi access or play exciting games.  Day 2 Today, rise early to watch the sunrise over the miraculous scenery of the bay. Gently energize your body with an invigorating Tai Chi session on the sundeck before breakfast. After breakfast, enjoy a rowing boat excursion to the dark and bright caves. Once back on the ship, join a cooking demonstration and learn how to make spring rolls, a Vietnamese specialty. Enjoy lunch on board before beginning the journey back to the ferry terminal where you will board the shuttle bus that will drop you off back at your hotel in Hanoi in the afternoon.

Hanoi: 2-Day Ha Long Bay 5-Star Cruise Tour with Activities

5. Hanoi: 2-Day Ha Long Bay 5-Star Cruise Tour with Activities

Day 1: Ha Long Bay and Kayaking Start with pickup from your hotel in Hanoi. From there you will drive through the green fields on the Red River Delta to Ha Long City. Once having arrived at the harbor, you will check in for your cruise on the Ha Long, which will begin with a welcome drink and cruise briefing. Enjoy lunch while cruising to Ha Long Bay. Explore the Eo Ech area where you can do some kayaking around limestone islets or some swimming in the sea. Enjoy a picturesque sunset on the sundeck for watching the sunset. Enjoy Happy Hour on board with some cakes and fruit. Watch a cooking demonstration, and have the chef help you prepare Vietnamese spring rolls. Enjoy a seafood set menu onboard. Then make your way to the bar with a large selection of cocktails. Or choose to take part in some onboard activities: squid fishing, a spa treatment service, or simply relax in your cabin for the night. Day 2: Dark Cave and Bright Cave Watch the sunrise with a Tai Chi session on the sundeck. Enjoy a Light breakfast before setting off exploring. Visit the beautiful Dark Cave and Bright Cave on a local bamboo boat or by kayaking to the caves. Arrive at the picturesque lagoon, surrounded by magnificent mountains. Upon return to the boat, tuck into a buffet brunch. Return to shore, and be transferred back to Hanoi.

From Hanoi: 2-Day Sapa Trekking Tour with Limousine Transfer

6. From Hanoi: 2-Day Sapa Trekking Tour with Limousine Transfer

Day 1: Hanoi – Sapa (Lunch) Start with pickup from your hotel in the Old Quarter of Hanoi and depart for Sapa. Follow the highway to Lao Cai city where you will make your first stop for breakfast by yourself. Stop off at Lao Cai city before arriving in Sapa, where you'll see the colorful traditional costumes of H’mong, Dzao, and Tay People. Here enjoy a lunch of local Vietnamese dishes at the hotel. Take a short trek to the gate of Cat Cat village, home of the Black H’mong ethnic people and located near the bottom of a deep valley at the foot of Fansipan Peak. A local guide will give you insight into the daily life of the locals. Trek down to the bottom of the valley to the waterfall, where the French built a hydraulic power station. Stop to take photos before walking back uphill to meet the bus. The trek is approximately 2.5 kilometers and lasts for 2 hours. In the evening, return to Sapa Town, where you can enjoy your evening at your leisure. Stay overnight in Sapa Lodge/Charm Sapa Hotel or similar. Day 2: Sapa – Hanoi (Breakfast/Lunch) Have breakfast at your hotel and prepare a light pack for trekking. You can keep your luggage in storage at the reception. Take a Trek to Lao Chai Village through the rice terraces and along Muong Hoa Streams to the Black Hmong village of Lao Chai.  See the spectacular landscape of Hoang Lien Son Mountain before heading to Ta Van village, home of the Dzay People. The trek takes around 3.5 hours and covers about 9-12 kilometers. The tour guide will make the best itinerary for the trek depending on your ability of trekking. The bus will pick you up at Ta Van Bridge to take you back to the center of Sapa. Take a break at the hotel and have lunch, before enjoying some time to explore at your own leisure. After some free time, meet the rest of your group at the hotel to prepare for your return to Hanoi. Get back on the bus around 2:30 PM to go back to Hanoi. During the journey, stop for a break. Arrive back at your accommodation in Hanoi in the late evening at about 9:00 PM.

Ha Long - Bai Tu Long Bay 2-day Cruise & Activities

7. Ha Long - Bai Tu Long Bay 2-day Cruise & Activities

Day 1: You'll be picked up from your hotel in Hanoi at 8:00-8:30 AM Drive to Ha Long City through the green fields of the Red River Delta. Stopover on the way for a refreshment break. You'll embark at Ha Long wharf and there will be some time for a break and photography. Enjoy a welcoming drink on board as well as a cruise briefing. Have some lunch while cruising to Bai Tu Long Bay, admiring the fascinating rock formations along the way. Transfer to Thien Canh Son Cave. The tour guide will take you to a huge cave with many interesting stalactite and stalagmite formations. After about half an hour visiting, you will go back to the boat by tender. Then, return to the cruise vessel for some leisure time. You'll also have half an hour for kayaking to discover the Bai Tu Long Bay landscape. After you return to the boat, join a cooking class with the onboard chef. A Vietnamese style set dinner is served on board. Take some time to enjoy chatting at the bar or enjoy some night fishing. Stay overnight on the boat. Day 2: Have some breakfast at around 7:30 AM and enjoy the sunrise on the bay. Visit the ancient Vung Vieng Floating Village. You'll not only be immersed in the quiet and peaceful atmosphere of the village, but, on your way, also be surrounded by the rocky mountains in a small bamboo boat as you go to and from the village. When it's time to check out, pack your luggage and check out and enjoy a fantastic cruise on the bay. Have lunch while cruising back through Ha Long Bay to the pier. Disembark at Ha Long wharf and say goodbye to the crew. Return from Ha Long to Hanoi with a short stopover on the way for a refreshment break before you arrive.

Bai Tu Long Bay: 3-Day & 2-Night Swan Cruises

8. Bai Tu Long Bay: 3-Day & 2-Night Swan Cruises

On the first day, you will be picked up from your hotel and head to the northeast of Vietnam. On arrival at 12:30 PM, you will be transferred to the cruise. Then, enjoy a welcome drink, and listen to a safety briefing before checking into your cabin. At 1:30 PM, enjoy a delicious Vietnamese set menu while leisurely cruising to the core of Bai Tu Long Bay. Arrive at Cap La Island, the beautiful area in Bai Tu Long Bay, at 3:00 PM. Enjoy swimming, relaxing, or kayaking through the karst and the breathtaking nature. At 5:30, arrive back to the boat and enjoy a sunset party while sailing to the overnight anchorage. At 7:00 PM, indulge in a sumptuous set-dinner onboard. Then, at 8:30 PM, enjoy free time and join in with games, or try your luck at squid fishing.  Your second day will start at 6:30 AM with Tai Chi on the Sundeck. At 7:00 AM, a Western-style breakfast will be served with traditional Vietnamese food. At 8:30 AM, explore the well-hidden Thien Canh Son Cave. Your tour guide will explain the history of Ha Long Bay and this cave, made by Mother Nature. At 9:30 AM, you'll cruise past several floating hamlets including Cap La and Vung Ha, and enter the center of the pristine Bai Tu Long Geology Park. On arrival, enjoy a whole day of fun and relaxation with more kayaking, swimming, and sandy beaches. Be back to the boat for a delicious hot lunch at noon. At 2:00 PM, spend more time relaxing, kayaking, cave visiting, and swimming. Then, return to the main boat at 4:30 PM and enjoy a sunset party. Again, dinner will be served at 7:00 PM and then you can enjoy free time at 8:30 PM to join in with games, or try your luck at squid fishing.  On the third day, start at 6:30 AM with a Tai Chi demonstration on the sundeck. At 7:00 AM, a Western-style breakfast will be served with traditional Vietnamese food. At 9:30 AM, finish packing and check out of your cabin. At 10:30 AM, a Vietnamese cooking demonstration will take place on the boat. Enjoy a traditional Vietnamese brunch at 11:00 AM before disembarking at 12:00 PM. At 12:30 PM, it is time to say farewell to Halong Bay and then return to Hanoi. You will be dropped back to your hotel at around 5:30 PM. 

Halong Bay: 2-Day Luxury Cruise

9. Halong Bay: 2-Day Luxury Cruise

Check in an set sail between 11:30 am and 12 pm on your first day. After setting sail, head to the Tonkin Restaurant for a delicious set menu lunch. In the afternoon, board kayaks or traditional bamboo boats rowed by locals to reach the Dark and Light Caves. Explore these half-submerged limestone caves that are only accessible by water, spotting the abundant marine life and making your way through an unlit rocky tunnel to an airy, light-filled grotto. Head back to the ship and take the opportunity to swim in the emerald green waters of the bay. Around sunset, enjoy happy hour deals and sip a cocktail on the deck. Take part in a cooking class and lear to make a deep-fried spring roll. Then sit down for dinner and enjoy the cozy ambiance of the dining room. Take time after dinner to relax or take part in activities, including films, playing chess, reading, listening to music, or trying your luck with squid fishing. The boat will head to the quietest part of Lan Ha Bay overnight to ensure you get a restful sleep. Wake up bright and early on the morning of your second day for a tai chi session on the sundeck. Greet the dawn while engaging you body and waking up slowly. Enjoy a light and nutritious breakfast before going on a tour of a typical floating house. The local host will welcome you as guests and tell you about the traditional way of life on the bay. When you return check out and take time for a delicious farewell brunch. Return to Tuan Chau Marina and disembark around 3:30 pm.

From Sapa: Waterfalls, Trekking and Tribal Villages Tour

10. From Sapa: Waterfalls, Trekking and Tribal Villages Tour

After meeting your local guide and driver, head about 30 minutes out of Sapa Town to visit the Silver Waterfall, Love Waterfall and Tram Ton Pass. Explore the area before leaving for the traditional village of Ban Khoan. From there, begin your trek. The trek, about 4 hours and 15 kilometers (9.3 miles), takes you along mountain trails and through remote tribal villages. Enjoy amazing views of the surrounding rice paddies, and take plenty of photos as you learn about the unique cultures of the Hmong and Red Dzao people. Take a break for a picnic lunch before continuing the trek to the home of the Red Dzao tribe in Ta Phin Village. In the afternoon, meet your driver to begin the 30-minute transfer back to Sapa.

Other Sightseeing Options in Northern Vietnam

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What people are saying about Northern Vietnam

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 183 reviews

The car drive from Hanoi to Ha along Bay was quite lengthy, but definitely worth it!! As soon as we arrived, we boarded the boat and had a generous lunch with a vegetarian option. It was very delicious! Then we took off and drove about one hour to get to our first attraction: a cave with stalagmites and stalactites. Ha Long Bau is as stunning as the pictures in the internet and I would make sure to see it if you can. During our second activity we had the chance to paddle a Kajak through a cave and past a few beautiful islands. This was our favourite part of the tour. Afterwards we we offered a few snacks, such as fruit and biscuits. It was an amazing day overall! Before you go, you should know though, that only a very small water bottle is included in the price. There is the option to pay for drinks on the boat, but you can also bring your one. However, single use plastic bottles are not allowed.

This was a wonderful experience! Would definitely recommend this trip to anyone going to Hanoi. Even though our cruise was cancelled due to last minute bad weather, we were booked in for the next day very easily. The staff were exceptional and the kayaking to the cave was very fun. We did the Tai Chi class in the morning and it was lovely to watch the sun come up. The food was good, something for everyone. We would have loved to stay another night!

The Black Hmong guide 'ppang' is an amazing woman. Kind and bright. She is good at English. Her guide career is 10 years and she is very good at explaining. After the tour of Love Falls and Silver Falls, we trekking them to valley of Ma Tra and Ta Phin Village. The restaurant was delicious, too. Thank you to the 'ppang' guide. Safa is a really beautiful place. I recommend this trekking.

We recommend! It is true that the bus takes 2.5 hours there and back, but it is an unforgettable result! Also great travel companion!

Lala our guide was really fantastic, very beautiful views of Vietnam and a real immersion in Vietnamese families.