Halong Bay (L,D)
Transfer from Hanoi International Airport or meeting point to Halong Bay to embark on your Pandaw ship with a stop for lunch en route....
Cast off the late afternoon with a welcome cocktail for an evening sail, dropping anchor in a sheltered bay amidst the beautiful island scenery..
Halong Bay (B,L,D)
Morning sail around Halong Bay and beyond with its 1,500 dramatic limestone islands and extraordinary rock formations, dating back 20 million years.
Stop at Viet Hai Village and explore on a mountain bike or electric buggy, visiting the village’s vegetable farm and typical village houses. It is a breath-taking trip along a small road winding its way through the limestone rocks.
In the afternoon continue cruising towards Lan Ha Bay for a visit to a floating fishing house.
Weather dependent, end the day with cocktails at a beautiful beach in Halong Bay - bring your swimwear!
Halong Bay (B,L,D)
Exploration of Halong Bay continues with a visit to the so called “Dark and Bright Cave”. Take a kayak or a local basket boat rowed by fishermen and enter this remarkable cave into an enclosed area similar to a crater. Bats can be heard in the cave and massive stalagmites hang from the ceiling.
Depart Halong Bay and enter the river to drop anchor near Hai Phong.
In the afternoon, our chef will share his skills in fruit carving and demonstrate how to create Vietnamese spring rolls.
The Kinh Thay River (B,L,D)
Observe the lively and interesting life of the KinhThay river, a key commercial waterway.
Meet your guide in the dining room for a lecture on Vietnam, its history, geography, and the boat people.
Afternoon excursion to Thanh Ha Commune with a village walk and a private water puppet show set under the shade by a beautiful pond of lotus and lilies.
Return to ship and continue cruising until late evening, dropping anchor midstream.
Bat Trang Village (B,L,D)
The day is spent cruising towards Hanoi. Enroute, stop at Bat Trang in the afternoon, a ceramic village. On the way back to the ship watch a traditional unicorn and lion dance at the jetty.
This dance originated in China and spread over Southeast Asia.
Drop anchor in the capital and bustling city of Hanoi to visit some highlights of this Asian metropolis. Must-sees include the notorious Vietnam War prison known as the Hanoi Hilton, Temple of literature where Confucius did his thinking, and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum.
Afternoon walking tour of Hanoi’s old quarter, including a visit to a coffee shop to learn about Vietnam’s famous coffee-making industry.
The lower Red River (B,L,D)
Morning sail through the day from Hanoi up the Red River to Viet Tri - not the most picturesque of towns, but an excellent base for going deeper into Highland Vietnam.
Go ashore to visit a timeless Arcadian Vietnam with emerald green rice paddies punctuated by limestone rock formations. Of particular interest are the Thay and Tay Phuong Pagodas.
Afternoon excursion to a carpenter village famous for exquisite carvings and woodwork techniques.
Evening arrival in Viet Tri
Lo River (B,L,D)
In the morning cruising to Tien Du ferry station to the village of Gia Thanh, makers of the conical hats (known as ‘non la’). Take in the sights and sounds of the bustling river with all kinds of craft and activity.
The ‘non la’ are handmade with palm leaves and bamboo. There is no machinery available to create this work of art. Their origin dates approximately 3,000 years back.
By bus continue to Hung Lo Temple.
Black River (B,L,D)
Day sailing downstream while admiring the unspoiled beauty of the Da River. Pass through the Ba Vi National Park with its rich and diverse tropical and sub-tropical flora and fauna before arriving at Hoa Binh then visit the UNESCO-praised village of Duong Lam.
In the afternoon, take a tour of the ship including the galley, crew area, and engine room.
Hoa Binh (B,L,D)
Hoa Binh was the site of a major battle with the French in 1951 & 1952 and is home to the Muong ethnic group.
The Hoa Binh Dam at the Black River is the largest hydroelectric dam in Vietnam and Southeast Asia. Take a morning boat ride on the reservoir of Hoa Binh power station and visit a local village. A traditional performance by local hill tribe people is given in the evening.
Hoa Binh - Ha Noi (B,L)
Disembark after breakfast (08.30am) and visit a museum and local village where villagers still wear traditional dress.
Lunch will be served at a local restaurant, followed by a transfer to Hanoi airport or drop off point Pan Pacific Hotel Hanoi.