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VIETNAM TOUR

4 – 14 April 2025

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TOUR DESCRIPTION

The Adventurous Ewe small group, all-women tours invites you to come with us to explore the vibrant culture, cuisine, coastline and landscapes of Vietnam. Our 11-day, 10-night tour departs in early April 2025, to coincide with colourful festivals and a full moon event.

Prepare to be captivated by Vietnam’s warm friendly people and a fusion of timeless traditions and vibrant modernity. You’ll be greeted by intoxicating aromas of street food, chiming motorbike bells, bucolic landscapes and tropical coast. We get up to all sorts of adventures; sitting astride a Vespa to explore cities, old towns and villages.

We travel along the coast and up the river, and dress the part for a lantern festival. All this, shared with like-minded solo women travellers having an adventure together in exotic south-east Asia.

WOMEN ONLY

R10 000 non-refundable deposit to book your place

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VIEW OUR BROCHURE

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Our Tour

ITINERARY

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DAY 1

Hanoi

Chào mừng – Welcome!

Arrive at Hanoi Airport (HAN). On arrival fast-track airport assistance. Meet your guide and driver. Private transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Accommodation: 4* superior hotel
Meals: None

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DAY 2

Hanoi

Journey through Vietnam’s historical and cultural heart. Visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, stroll through the serene gardens of the Presidential Palace and admire the traditional architecture of the One Pillar Pagoda. Continue to the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university, a testament to its scholarly heritage. 

In the afternoon, sitting on the back of a Soviet era Minsk motorbike/Jeep car, you will travel via backstreets to some virtually unknown parts of Hanoi.  You become part of the whirlwind of sights, sounds, and smells that is the Vietnamese street food scene. 

Meals: Breakfast, afternoon snacks

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DAY 3

Hanoi/Mai Chau

Morning private guided road transfer to Mai Chau (4 hrs drive). This morning, head out of bustling Hanoi to the mountainous area of Mai Chau. En route, the road ascends gradually until you find yourself in the middle of a landscape of mountains set at a medium altitude. Check-in at your hotel.

Afternoon 2 hrs jeep tour in the countryside, where you will see the beautiful rice fields and rice terraces (2 time slots), cross some small rivers and bridges and witness the beauty of the countryside.

Accommodation: 5* retreat
Meals: Breakfast

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DAY 4

Mai Chau

In the morning, we have a 3 hours soft-moderate hike from Avana Retreat through the scenic countryside of rice fields, corn fields and mountains to a local village.  Visit a house and meet with local people to learn about traditional life and customs.  We finish with a BBQ picnic lunch tasting authentic cuisine curated by the local’s spices.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch

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DAY 5

Mai Chau/Hanoi

Private guided road transfer back to Hanoi (4 hrs drive). Evening private dinner by the river in a Vietnamese house. You will head to a small village to enjoy dinner in a classic Vietnamese house. This peaceful home, facing the river, is surrounded by a tropical garden and is an ideal place to taste and discover the elements of Hanoian cuisine, specially prepared by your host. Enjoy the last light of the day while dining with a view of the river, before heading back to your hotel.

Accommodation: 4* superior hotel
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

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DAY 6

Hanoi/Ha Long Bay

Travel to Ha Long Bay (around 2:30 hrs drive). Embark on a 1-night cruise. Enjoy included activities and meals on the cruise. This world-famous bay is one of the most beautiful landscapes in Vietnam, with its giant rock islets covered in luxuriant vegetation overlooking the waters.

Halong Bay includes some 1,900 islands and islets of rocky peaks, often uninhabited and unvisited. This scene creates a spectacular marine landscape, which earned it UNESCO World Heritage status in 1994. You will be served lunch and dinner aboard with excellent and freshly caught seafood from the bay. At the end of the day, you will have the chance to enjoy a night fishing session on the boat.

Accommodations: Luxury cruise
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

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DAY 7

Ha Long Bay/Hoi An

Midday we depart for the airport to Hoi An.  On arrival we will visit a 24 hour tailor, perhaps an outfit to celebrate the full moon lantern festival (optional activity).  

Accommodation: 4* hotel
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

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DAY 8
Hoi An

Morning private guided visit to Hoi An Ancient Town, with a stop at the Reaching Out Teahouse (tasting included). In the afternoon, you will visit Hoi An Ancient Town. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it offers you a glimpse into what a Southeast Asian trade center looked like hundreds of years ago. Meander down narrow lanes framed by many old houses and see local people trading at the market, visit the famous Japanese Bridge, the Chinese Temple, and Tan Ky Trading House.

Later an Aromatherapy workshop where you create your own blend.  In the evening a delicious BBQ dinner at the Rum Distillery and after dinner we board a traditional wooden boat and witness the ancient town of Hoi Ann shimmer to life with colourful lanterns casting a warm glow on the water.

Meals: Breakfast, dinner

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DAY 9

Hoi An/Ho Chi Minh

We depart for our flight for Ho Chi Minh.  Early evening our vespa driver whisks us away for a cocktail with a panoramic view of Ho Chi Minh city.  We continue  along the crowded streets experiencing downtown at night, stopping at a well-hidden Vietnamese café with some live music.  Our evening ends at a lively bar where you can enjoy a dance!

Accommodation: 4* hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

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DAY 10

Ho Chi Minh

Full day tour including the Mekong Delta.  Cruise along the Chet Say River stopping at a small village to visit a workshop specialising in carpet weaving.  Hop onto a xe loi (motorised rickshaw) to wander around the village.  Lunch will be at a local restaurant in the village.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch

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DAY 11

Departure

Time to say “Farewell”. Transfer to the airport to check-in for your flight home.

Meals: Breakfast

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOUR
  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Some meals – see itinerary
  • All personal drinks including any alcoholic beverages
  • Optional activities not part of the itinerary – 24 hour tailor service
  • Gratuities and tips
TRAVELLER'S TIPS

Download the App Airalo for affordable local SIM cards www.airalo.com

WEATHER

In North and Central Vietnam, April typically marks the beginning of the transition from the dry season to the rainy season.

North Vietnam (Hanoi and Surrounding Areas):

  • Temperature: Daytime temperatures can range from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F), making it warm and comfortable.
  • Rainfall: While April is generally drier than the upcoming months, there can still be occasional rain showers or light drizzles.
  • Humidity: Humidity levels are relatively low in April.

 

Central Vietnam (Da Nang, Hoi An, Hue):

  • Temperature: Daytime temperatures typically range from 25°C to 35°C (77°F to 95°F).
  • Rainfall: April marks the beginning of the rainy season in Central Vietnam. You can expect occasional showers and short bursts of heavy rain.
  • Humidity: Humidity levels can be relatively high in coastal areas.

South Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh and Mekong Delta)

  • Hot and dry with daytime temperatures ranging from 28°C to 36°C (82°F to 97°F)
MONEY
  • The currency used in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong, abbreviated as VND. 1 Rand is approximately the equivalent of 1,370 VND.  It is essential to have cash. Credit cards like Visa and Mastercard are accepted at many hotels, restaurants, and larger shops in urban areas, however, in more remote or rural locations, cash is the primary form of payment .

  • ATMs are widely available in cities and tourist areas in Vietnam. Don’t forget to notify your bank about your travel plans to avoid any issues with your card.

DRESS CODE

It is important to consider the local culture and climate. Vietnam has a tropical climate with distinct wet and dry seasons, and the cultural norms can vary from place to place.

 

Here are some tips on how to dress appropriately in Vietnam:
  • Modesty is Key: Vietnamese culture places a high value on modesty, especially in more rural or conservative areas. Avoid wearing revealing clothing like short shorts, low-cut tops, or clothing that exposes too much skin.
  • Light and Breathable Fabrics: Given the hot and humid climate, lightweight and breathable fabrics like cotton and linen are your best choice. Loose-fitting clothing will help you stay comfortable.
  • Cover Shoulders and Knees: When visiting temples, pagodas, or other religious sites, it’s important to cover your shoulders and knees as a sign of respect. Carry a scarf with you to use as a cover-up when needed.
  • Footwear: In many places, especially homes and temples, it’s customary to remove your shoes. Easy-to-remove footwear like sandals or flip-flops can be convenient.
  • Rain Gear: Pack a compact rain jacket or an umbrella.
  • Dress for the Occasion: If you’re going out for a fancy dinner or to a high-end nightclub in cities like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, smart casual attire is appropriate. In rural areas, casual clothing is generally acceptable.
  • Swimwear: It is fine to wear swimwear at the beach or pool.
  • Local Fashion: Try out some local clothing, such as the traditional “ao dai” for women. These outfits are not only culturally appropriate but can also be a unique and stylish souvenir.
OTHER ITEMS TO REMEMBER
  • Forex in cash to exchange at the airport and bank card
  • Pen and notebook
  • Cell phone chargers and powerbank
  • Plugs – type A (two flat vertical pins), type C and type F (two round pins) fit most Vietnam electrical outlets.
  • Universal plug converter
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Earplugs
  • Medication
  • Sunscreen
  • Wide brimmed hat or buy a Nón lá, the conical hat in Vietnam.
  • Sunglasses and/or reading glasses
  • Handbag/backpack/shoulder sling bag
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