From: 21 August – 1 September 2017
Fully Inclusive Land package at: $2,880* per person
Single Supplement at $850
Escorted by Australian military history expert and battlefield guide, Rod Margetts.
The Road Less Travelled tour is part of Boronia Battlefield Tour’s total Vietnam experience. It offers the opportunity to travel, overland, from Hoi An to Hanoi, providing an opportunity to immerse yourself in the daily life of the country; an experience which you don’t get flying between locations.
Vietnam is a country of incredible heritage and delightfully simple pleasures. See historic Hoi An; the former Imperial Capital of Hue; chat with friends over a glass of bia hoi; or soak up the street scenes in Hanoi’s Old Quarter.
There’s the sublime: the majestic marble mountain with stunning panoramic views. The ridiculous: taking 10 minutes just to cross the street through a tsunami of motorbikes in Hanoi. The inspirational: exploring the spectacular river cave systems in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. The comical: watching a moped loaded with honking pigs weave a wobbly route along a country lane. And the contemplative: visiting ancient ruins and temples constructed many centuries ago.
If that’s not enough to whet your appetite, then you will certainly enjoy Vietnamese food which has outstanding diversity and is full of deliciously subtle flavours. Vietnam really is a culinary superpower that attracts travellers for this very reason alone, and there will be plenty of opportunity to immerse yourself in the world of mouth-watering Asian cuisine on this tour.
The tour may be combined with the pre-tour of Dien Bien Phu, and follows directly on from the 51st Anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan Tour, continuing the military history story of Vietnam. Hear of the battle to recapture the Citadel in Hue during Tet 1968. Visit the original DMZ, dividing the country at the 17 Parallel after the French defeat. The former US Marine Corps base at Khe Sanh provides an interesting comparison with the siege of Dien Bien Phu; two similar battles, with very different outcomes.Enquire Now
- Walking tour through the UNESCO World Heritage listed old town of Hoi An to see traditional crafts, the Sa Huynh Museum, or get a suit or dress made to measure from one of the boutique tailor shops.
- The ancient ruins of My Son from the Kingdom of Champa.
- Enjoy a commanding view across the countryside from the Marble Mountains – a cluster of 5 limestone and marble hills each named after the five elements.
- Tour the former Imperial Capital of Hue and see the remarkable Citadel, with its temples, towers and residences.
- Visit the former US Marine Corps combat base at Khe Sanh, site of the famous 77 day siege in 1968.
- Visit the crossing point on the Ben Hai River, at the 17th Parallel, marking the original Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) between North and South Vietnam.
- Visit the UNESCO World Heritage designated Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, containing the oldest karst mountain formations in Asia and famous for its stunning cave systems.
- Visit Ho Chi Minh’s childhood village at Kim Lien, where we will see his former home and browse the memorabilia at the museum and the nearby store.
- Pass through Thanh Hoa to Ninh Binh, an area some describe as Ha Long Bay on land due to the dramatic limestone karsts looming out of the rice fields.
- Absorb the colour and beauty of Hanoi, with an electric cart ride through the chaotic streets of the Old Quarter.
- Visit Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and his former home, the One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature and Hoa Lo prison (the “Hanoi Hilton”).
- Evening performance of the Water Puppets, a tradition that dates back as far as the 11th century when it originated in the villages of the Red River Delta area of northern Vietnam.
Your Vietnam Northern Extension Tour Includes:
- All meals as listed on the itinerary, which have been specially selected to enable you to experience the best local cuisine.
- All excursions, scenic drives and sightseeing as described in the itinerary.
- Plenty of Free Time. We understand that you might want to have a break occasionally.
- Accommodation is in 5 Star Luxury Hotels, or the best available 4 Star accommodation in the towns we visit.
- Services of an english speaking guide throughout your tour.
- Ground transport.
- All entrance fees as per the itinerary.
- Boronia Travel cap, ticket wallet and luggage tags.
- Single Supplement available at $850.
- *Prices are listed as per person. Prices are based on current costs and exchange rates, and are subject to change.
- Boronia Travel Centre uses Singapore Airlines for their Vietnam Tours, and will have access to the most competitive discounted airfares available from Australia.
- Upgrade airfares to business and first class available upon request.
- In conjunction with the Vietnam Northern Extension Tour, we will also be operating our Long Tan 50th Anniversary Tour as an optional extension of this tour, and the pre-tour of Dien Bien Phu.
Meals Included: B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
Day 1, 21 August – This we morning transfer to Ho Chi Minh airport for our flight to Da Nang. We then travel south to Hoi An, a major trading centre in the 16th and 17th centuries. After check in and lunch at the hotel, we take a walking tour through the UNESCO World Heritage listed old town of Hoi An. We will see traditional crafts, the Sa Huynh Museum with exhibitions from the early history of the town, and the famous Japanese covered bridge dating back to 1593. Perhaps you might like to take the opportunity to visit one of the many tailor shops to be measured for a suit or dress, or have shoes made by a cobbler. B
Overnight: HOI AN
Day 2, 22 August – Today we travel west of Hoi An to the ancient ruins of My Son from the Kingdom of Champa. The temples were constructed between the 4th and 14th centuries by the kings of Champa and are dedicated to the worship of the god Shiva. The Viet Cong used My Son as a key base, which forced US bombing of the site leaving about 20 of the 70 structures intact. A major restoration project is underway. In 1999 it was named a UNESCO World Heritage site. Spend this morning in My Son discovering the peaceful beauty of curious structures of the Cham minority. Return to Hoi An for lunch in a local restaurant, before a free afternoon for personal sightseeing or shopping. B L
Overnight: HOI AN
Day 3, 23 August – Located between Da Nang and Hoi An, overlooking the Eastern Sea, Marble Mountain is a cluster of 5 limestone and marble hills. Each is named after one of the five elements; metal, water, fire, wood and earth. The main Mountain of Water (Thuy Son) has many caves and pagodas dating from the early 17th century. From here you can enjoy a commanding view down the length of the beach and across the countryside. Leaving the mountain we drive to Hue, via the spectacular Hai Van Pass. After arrival and check in we will have an orientation drive around the city. B L
Day 4, 24 August – Today we tour the former Imperial Capital of Hue. Visit the remarkable Citadel, with its temples, towers and residences. Severely damaged in fighting during the Tet Offensive in 1968, much restoration has been completed and the site makes a striking impression. Later visit the Imperial Museum, the Minh Mang Tomb and the vibrant Dong Ba riverside market. Lunch will be a traditional Buddhist banquet at a pagoda. B L
Day 5, 25 August – This morning drive north to Dong Ha, capital of Quang Tri Province. From there, we travel west on Route 9 to visit the former US Marine Corps combat base at Khe Sanh, site of the famous seventy-seven day siege in 1968. Return to Dong Ha for lunch, before visiting the Vinh Moc tunnel complex, where a whole community moved underground for refuge from the heavy bombing during the war. We return to Dong Ha via the crossing point on the Ben Hai River, at the 17th Parallel, marking the original Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) between North and South Vietnam. B L
Overnight: DONG HA
Day 6, 26 August – Today we move north, travelling on part of the Ho Chi Minh Highway. The journey leads into the UNESCO World Heritage listed Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, containing the oldest karst mountain formations in Asia. The area is famous for its stunning river cave systems, which we will explore after lunch. Tonight we stay at a comfortable lodge within the park. B L D
Overnight: PHONG NHA
Day 7, 27 August – This morning continue north to Vinh, with lunch enroute. On arrival, we will visit Ho Chi Minh’s childhood village at Kim Lien, where we will see his family home and browse the memorabilia at the museum and the nearby store. We then check into our hotel in Vinh. B L
Day 8, 28 August – After breakfast travel the main coastal highway north, to Ninh Binh Province, an area often described as Ha Long Bay on land because of the dramatic limestone karsts looming out of the rice fields. Passing through Thanh Hoa, we make our way to Phat Diem where we visit the architecturally significant cathedral and bell tower featured in Graham Greene’s novel The Quiet American. Nearby is a 19th Century covered bridge and the Dong Huong Pagoda, which serves the minority Muong community. The region is famous for goat meat dishes and we will sample this delicacy at a local restaurant. B L
Overnight: NINH BINH
Day 9, 29 August – This morning we drive to Hanoi and check in to the hotel. After lunch, absorb some of the colour of the city with an electric cart ride through the chaotic streets of the Old Quarter. This is a great introduction to Vietnam’s capital city, which is teeming with motorbikes and fascinating sights of daily life. B L
Day 10, 30 August – Today we visit Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and his former home, the One Pillar Pagoda, the Temple of Literature and Hoa Lo prison (the “Hanoi Hilton” during the war). Lunch will be served at KOTO restaurant, one of the enterprises operated by the KOTO (Know One, Teach One) Foundation, set up by a Vietnamese-Australian chef. This evening we attend a performance of the Water Puppets, before dinner at a local restaurant concludes the day. B L D
Day 11, 31 August – Today is free at your leisure to explore the sights of Hanoi. B
Day 12, 01 September – After Breakfast, Departure Airport Transfer for your onward flight. B
Please note: Itinerary subject to change according to prevailing circumstances.Enquire Now
Essence Hoi An Hotel & Spa
Overlooking rice paddies at the edge of Hoi An town, this relaxed hotel with Asian-inspired decor is a 3-minute walk from the banks of the Thu Bon River and 7 km from An Bang Beach. Casual rooms have free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and minibars, as well as desks and armchairs. Suites provide sitting areas and laptops. Room service is available. An open-air restaurant serving local and western dishes has an adjoining sunken bar. There’s also a spa, an outdoor pool, a cafe and an exercise room, plus gardens. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
Imperial Hue Hotel
The first 5-star hotel, Imperial Hotel is superbly located in Hue. The style building is a perfect confluence of “Imperial City Palace” charm and modern day conveniences. All rooms are well equipped with modern facilities and have classic and polished wooden floors, natural fabric, as well as classy furnishing. The luxury hotel facilities comprise of the Prince Club Casino, Royal Spa, Yoshihara Restaurant, Imperial Restaurant, Piano Bar and Cafe and Panorama Bar. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
Sai Gon – Dong Ha Hotel
Sai Gon Dong Ha is a quietly sophisticated hotel offering understated elegance and unparalleled service in an intimate, home-away-from-home atmosphere. This deluxe hotel, provides sophistication and comfort through every amenity with modern and contemporary design, 3 restaurants and bars, a modern and sophisticated health club and spa. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
Farm Stay, Phong Nha
This region of northern Central Vietnam is newly discovered by tourism, mainly due to the discovery of spectacular caves in the area. The Farmstay’s French Colonial style accommodation is set in the idyllic surroundings of rice paddy fields on the edge of the famous Phong Nha–Ke Bang National Park, just off the Ho Chi Minh Trail. It is the ideal base for wild adventures that you have only dreamed about… or simply take time to experience local village life or chill out in a hammock by the pool. And all of this at an affordable price. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
Ninh Binh Legend Hotel
In an imposing tower block with French-colonial styling and views of surrounding mountains, this upscale hotel features wood floors and furniture, stylish rooms come with mountain views, free Wi-Fi and cable TV. Suites with 1 or 2 bedrooms add flat-screen TVs, marble bathrooms and access to a lounge providing complimentary breakfast and refreshments. There are 2 restaurants and a pub-style bar, as well as a bar by an outdoor pool. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
Golden Silk Hotel
Set on a street lined with silk and boutique shops, this polished hotel is an 8-minute walk from the Temple of the Jade Mountain on Hoàn Kiếm Lake and 2 km from the Ho Chi Minh Museum. The warmly decorated rooms feature free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and marble bathrooms, as well as minibars, safes, and tea and coffeemakers. Room service is available 24/7. The use of a spa’s steam room, sauna and hot tub are complimentary. There’s also a laid-back restaurant serving international meals. Highly recommended on TripAdvisor.Enquire Now
Our tour members depend on us to provide a once in a lifetime battlefield experience combined with exceptional customer service. We do our best to meet and exceed their high standards, which is what you’d expect from Australia’s leading battlefield tour company. Here’s what our past passengers say about our efforts…
“What a great tour it was! It’s taken me a while but just wanted to says thanks, and to let you know how fantastic the tour to Vietnam was. The organisation was incredible, everything ran like clockwork. We got to see amazing sights, enjoy amazing company, and at the same time we were able to get an insight into the Vietnam war, Ho Chi Minh, and the Vietnamese culture. The hotels were all great, and the food was sensational.
Rod did an amazing job, and even though he wasn’t well for a few days, didn’t miss a beat. The Vietnamese guides were great, especially Chi who took us to a rooftop bar on the last day to try the most amazing Vietnamese coffee. Once again thanks to the team.”
Kay and John Woolnough
“It is extraordinary to find someone who is so experienced, helpful and willing to offer assistance…”
C Kelly, Aspley
“Our battlefield trip was wonderful and will stay in our minds forever.”
A Griffiths, Farrer
“We had a wonderful time with lots of interesting and enjoyable stories to tell…”
G Hickingbotham, Gisborne
“It was everything I had hoped for and more.”
I Surplice, Middle Dural
“Thank you for your organisation of the best, and I do mean the best tour I’ve ever been on.”
R Thompson, Stradbroke Island
“Thanks so much for making it such a memorable trip for my mum. She was ecstatic about all the lengths you went to for her to celebrate her father’s life.”
K Holz, Melbourne
“…a profound experience and unforgettable tour.”
A Kirkjian, Rose Bay
To view all of our testimonials please click here.Enquire Now