Fred Bowen

    The overall trip was excellent. Especially pleased by the hotel in Hoian- SUPER! Thank you so much-


    W F Bowen




    "Thanks to you, we enjoyed our trip very much.

    Vangvieng has splendid view and is like an Utopia for us, and the hotel we stayed is very good, too.

    We also enjoyed two days' Mekong cruise in Luang Prabang.

    Anyway, Thank you very much for everything !!"



    N. Tsukahara

    Osaka, Japan




    "We are delighted to recommend Lai Phuong and Vietnam Explorer Travel. She has assisted us with dozens of travel details and travel itineraries for nearly a decade to destinations in Europe, the Middle East, USA, and all around Asia. Phuong provides truly first class service from A to Z. She is also a true expert on travel routes and accommodations throughout Vietnam. We give her our highest recommendation, 5 + stars!"


    Roger H. Ford, Ph. D.

    South China Sea Development Company, Limited (BVI)



    Ann Smith

    Dear Ms Phuong,

    Thank you. 

    We had a wonderful time in Myanmar.

    The hotels were all very good, especially the Governor's residence in Yangon.

    The guides were excellent and had good language skills and very good local knowledge.

    There was so much to see our heads were spinning!!

    We had many flights and airport connections and they all went without a single problem.

    We also had a great time in Vietnam as usual! It almost feels like home. 

    Kind regards,

    Anne & Ian Smith


    Ann Smith
    Sydney, Australia
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      Viet Nam

    [ 5 days] Northern Delights

    From $444 -

      From VND 9,466,000 / per person (group of 2 privately)

      Price can be adjusted without prior notice.

      The North West of Vietnam is a captivating blend of dramatic mountain landscapes & colorful hill tribes. The visit offers chance to learn about hill tribe culture & the stunning scenery of Sapa & the surroundings. From the mountain to the beach, Halong Bay a Unesco World Heritage is waiting. The best way to appreciate this magical scene is from a boat, cruising between these Karst cliffs, which loom like fairy-tale castles, complete with rocky spires and hidden caves.

    Day 1: HANOI- LAOCAI 

    This evening transfer to the Hanoi railway station for your overnight train to Lao Cai. Train leaves Hanoi at 20h30pm, soft sleeping train.

    Day 2: LAOCAI- SAPA

    Arrival Laocai station at 5H00am, private car pick up & breakfast in nearby local restaurant. Then Sapa town transfer ( 2 hrs ride), leave luggage at hotel reception, then half day village trek ( highlights: rice field terraces, ethnic people encounter, stream, valley, textile sample from street vendors..). Picnic lunch en route. Be back to hotel at 14H30PM or so. Check in & relax. Free leisure dinner.

    Day 3: SAPA- LAOCAI

    Morning free at hotel. Lunch at a local restaurant, then ready for Sapa town tour ( highlights: HamRong Mt.panoramic view, Sapa market, 100 year old Sapa Church, ethnic Cat Cat Village). At 16H30pm driver will drop off you at Laocai Railway Station  passing rice paddy fields and spectacular scenery along the way. ( dinner your style at your cost). Train leaves station at 19H00. Night train again!

    Day 4: HANOI- HALONG

    Arrival Hanoi Railway Station at 04H15am. Private car pick up, stop en route for breakfast, before either you join the sharing shuttle bus or keep same car departing at 8am for Halong Bay ( a Unesco’s natural heritage. The ride is 3.5 hours with a break in between. Upon arrival, welcome on board with private cabin and now you really start another discovery on one of our luxurious cruise fleet. Let's rest in your cozy cabin, or enjoy sunbath on the deck top. All included in one price ( cabin, 3 meals, entrance fee, welcome drink, insurance on board). Overnight on cruise.

    Day 5: HALONG- HANOI

    All activities will be arranged either on first day or second day of cruise ( to visit our famous grotto, kayak if nice weather, sampan ride to  fishing village). Check out cruise between 10H30-11H00. Back to the mainland before 12H noon. A 3.5 hours car ride to return Hanoi. Rest & relax.



    Book now


    ( Sapa)

    • Round trip train ticket HAN-LAOCAI-HAN/ sharing cabin/ soft sleeper on tourist train
    • Private round trip transfer car from Laocai station to Sapa / 7 seat car
    • Half day village trekking tour ( with English speaking guide, entrance fees, private car, 1 bottle of water per person, 1 picnic lunch)
    • Set breakfast on arrival date to Laocai
    • 1 night at Chau Long hotel with breakfast/ twin sharing room


    • Private car pick up Hanoi Station & round trip Hanoi –Ha long - Hanoi
    • Welcome drink on Cruise
    • Entrance fee and Sightseeing fee
    • A luxury twin shared cabin with AC and individual Bath room
    • All set meals on boat for 1 night itinerary
    • On board English speaking guide
    • Insurance on boat 


    • Personal Expenses, tips, drinks, extra
    • Any service not clearly mentioned in the program.

    Travel Info


    Please be presented at railway station at least 1 hour in advance. From Hanoi please enter the BACK GATE( terminal B) in TRAN QUY CAP street instead of FRONT GATE ( terminal A). Both terminals are in same railways station.

    On TRAIN: there is NO restaurant, normally people lock the cabin at night time. You should have good dinner before night train yourself. All rates are not inclusive of any meal onboard the train. And bring 1-2 bottles of mineral water + light snack + fruits just in case you wish to take before night sleep. Train departure times & rates are subject to change without prior notice

    EAR PLUG: as the train will stop at least 6-7 times at all station en -route to pick up/ drop off passengers, you may feel difficult sleeping. Even your cabin is locked- you still may hear the noise and sounds people talking. Please take with you pairs of ear plugs if you need to use.



    PRIVATE TRANSFER ( Hanoi-Halong/ return) can be arranged upon request at extra cost. Please inform our staff at time of your request.

    PRE-BOARDING WARNINGS: To ensure about the customers’ safety during their stay on board, Indochina Junk would like to give some pre-boarding warnings to the customers who are not suitable with our itineraries as below:

    1          Customers who have diseases such as: sleepwalking, hallucinations, epilepsy, syndrome detention, sickness which must be treated with drugs stored under special conditions, if not will cause danger to life.

    2          Disabled customers: who are not able to walk by their-selves or blind

    3          Customers who are over 80 years old

    4          Customers who are over 100kg

    5          Customers who are higher than 2 meter

    For the cases 2 and 3, if the customers can be certain about their health and agree not to join Kayaking, cave and fishing village visiting…we  will charge 25USD for 2D1N cruise or 50USD for 3D2N cruise to have their own waiter ( the exact  fee will be informed our guests at time of booking as it may be changed  by cruise company policy)


    If the stated cruises/ hotels are fully booked at time of request: we will arrange our guests similar standard ones.

    Country Info

    Viet Nam
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  • Country Info

    Vietnam stretches south from the Chinese border along the east coast of the Indochina Peninsula. The country has a complex geography with soaring mountains, fertile delta plains, winding rivers and long sandy tropical beaches. In reality Vietnam is a country of outstanding natural beauty; some of the best beaches in Southeast Asia can be found along the coastline of Vietnam.

    Area:331,210 km2 
            128,565 sq mi

    Capital: Hanoi

    Official language: Vietnamese

    Calling code: +84

    National Airlines: Vietnam Airlines ( wwww.vietnamairlines.com)

    National Flowers: Lotus

    National Dress: " Áo Dài"  

    National Flag: red background with yellow star at the center

    National (Main) Religion: Buddhism 

    National Day: 2nd September 

    Ethnic minority Groups: 54

    Country Population: 91,949,482 citizents ( statistic 2014)

    Biggest City: Ho Chi Minh City ( formerly known as Saigon)

    Three biggest telephone service providers: MOBIFONE, VINAPHONE,VIETEL

    International Airports:  TanSonNhatAirport (Ho Chi Minh City), NoiBaiAirport (Hanoi) and DanangAirport( Danang)


    To enter Vietnam you will require a passport (with at least 7 months remaining validity after trip completion) and a tourist visa for most foreigners arrival the country except certain visa exemption cases thanks to state agreements. Obtaining a single entry or multiple entries visa for 30-day validity is easy. (Please inform us at the start if you wish a longer stay and multiple entries.)
    Visa extensions can usually be obtained once in Vietnam. Please scan or show us your original visa page. Rates vary, as does the official policy regarding extensions. Before you travel, check your passport to ensure that there is room for a visa and entry/exit stamps (at least three pages). Please check Service section for visa information.


    It makes sense that the healthier you are, the more you will enjoy your holiday in general. A reasonably good level of fitness is required for almost of our classic packages and you should be in good health. Any physical preparation will always be to your advantage. Please seek advice from a travel clinic at least 6 weeks before departure on your holiday regarding the relevant vaccinations and jabs required.  Anyone with respiratory or cardiac problems, or over the age of 70, should fully consult their medical adviser prior to booking and we may require full medical clearance/insurance plan. There is a sufficient standard of health care in the cities for treating minor injuries but more complicated treatment may require evacuation to another, nearby countries like Thailand or Singapore. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance  and accessible funds to over the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation. 

    It is also important to note that brand names of various medicines vary from country to country and some products, which may be readily available back home, may not be in Vietnam. Please include the basic first aid kit pack: plasters, dressings or bandages, calamine or after-sun lotion, oral dehydration treatment (in case of bouts of diarrhea and dehydration), insect repellent and sting relief, antiseptic cream and antiseptic wet-wipes. Better safe than nothing!


    The currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (VND) which is in notes. Currently, about 21,000 VND is equal to 1 USD. All foreigners can exchange foreign currency into Dong, but not vice versa. Credit cards ( visa, master, amex, JCB…) are accepted in most three star hotels up and some restaurants. Please bear in mind that a surcharge usually applies for credit card purchases. Visa/Master and JCB have same 3% as bank center charge but a higher fee for holders of American Express. Banks are open Monday to Friday and some open on Saturday morning. Most ATMs have an English language version.

    Vietnam can be visited year-round. Average temperatures year round range from 20 to 35 degrees Celsius. In southern Vietnam tropical conditions prevail, and there are two seasons – the wet season lasts from May to November and the dry season from December to April. Central Vietnam is usually dry from May to October and wet from December to February. October and November may experience unstable weather conditions and flooding. Northern Vietnam also experiences two seasons though conditions can change dramatically throughout the day. The winter months from November to April are usually cold and humid. The months of December and January can be particularly cool with temperatures as low as 8 degrees Celsius. Temperatures can drop to 0 degrees Celsius in Sapa (in the highlands near the Chinese border) in winter. Summer, from May to October, can be quite hot and wet with regular downpours and occasional typhoons. The hottest months are June and July in Hanoi. 


    Vietnam is still quite a conservative country. In rural areas and especially temples, overly-revealing clothing may be considered offensive. You should make an effort to dress more conservatively in these situations. Walking around a village in bike shorts is not appropriate so if you wish to cycle in just bike shorts you should have something with you on the bike to put on over the top (long loose shorts or a skirt/sarong). When visiting temples, shorts are acceptable providing they cover the knees. Singlet or sleeveless shirts are not acceptable in temples.


    Vietnam’s network is GSM compatible and will work with most carriers. In the cities, you will be able to access email, phone, fax and post offices. In big cities, most hotels from 2 star category can offer Internet cable service. Elsewhere out in the countryside, there may have Internet limitation access and the main communication will be phone. Cheap sim cards of local mobile  service providers ( Viettel, Vinafone, Mobilefone ) are readily available in the cities and pay-as-you-go recharge cards and call rates are cheap. Plus 3G service is easily available in the metropolitan centers and prepaid data package rates are affordable and reasonable. Ask our staff about getting a local phone card and number. 






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