Touring islands around Vietnam

Vietnam - Best Tours & Trips

For those whose impressions of Vietnam were formed in the wartime 1960's, a visit to this beautiful Southeast Asian country may yield some real surprises. With the vast majority of Vietnamese born after the war, it's largely ancient history here, and visitors (certainly including Americans) are warmly welcomed. There's much to explore, too, from stately Hanoi to bustling Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), gorgeous Halong Bay, the Mekong River (best seen by river boat), deep green rice paddies, golden sandy beaches, and some of Asia's best cuisine. Once you come to Vietnam, your impressions of it will never be the same.

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Top Vietnam Experiences and Attractions


Top Vietnam Experiences

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Top Vietnam Attractions

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Vietnam Trip Reviews


1,282
Vietnam Tour Reviews - Summary
100% Recommend

4.8 out of 5
Excellent 1,018 Great 242 Average 16 Disappointing 4 Terrible 2
Value
4.8 Guide
4.8 Activities
4.8 Lodging
4.8 Transportation
4.8 Meals
4.8

A

Recommends

Well organised, with excellent guides October 2018

4.0

Classic Vietnam & Angkor

  • Value 4.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 4.0
  • Meals 4.0
The trip was efficiently organised and the guides - especially Trung - did
all they could to make the tour a well-informed and smoothly-run experience.
The hotels were comfortable and a couple were positively luxurious, though
taxis in the evening in Hoi An were difficult to obtain. We were not overly
impressed with Saigon and would have preferred, instead, to have spent more
time in Hoi An or Can Tho. Cambodia was wonderful..
The temples in Cambodia. We visited five and Ta Prohm - still covered in
vegetation - was mind-blowing, even before we arrived at Angkor Wat. Visits
do not always live up to expectations but dawn over Angkor Wat was everything
we could have hoped for and more.


Excellent. Trung went far beyond what could be reasonably expected. He was
full of energy, well informed and quickly established a warm relationship
with the group. He certainly earned his crust.


Bring dollars. Essential in Cambodia and welcome in Vietnam, where they are
easy to exchange for local currency in hotels. Bring plenty of changes of
light clothing; it can get very muggy. Our guide organised a group kitty for
tips, which made life easier for all.


Halong Bay is beautiful but is clearly suffering from the high number of
visitors.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

An excellent adventure October 2018

4.0

Classic Vietnam & Angkor

  • Value 4.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 4.0
  • Meals 4.0
My husband and I enjoyed the whole trip. We were with a group of 16 and we
all got on fabulously. The Vietnamese people are very resilient and hard
working.
This trip is well suited for active seniors and it does have a lot of free
time if you want to explore on your own .
The War remnants museum is a very sombre experience but it teaches you a lot
about the whole war experience from the Vietnamese point of view . Ha Long
Bay is a must see but be prepared for the plastic garbage floating around.
The cave system was something else. Hoi An was my favourite place to
stay....it is a smaller town but lots to see and buy! We did a cooking class
here which was a lot of fun.


Cong was our guide in Vietnam. He was very amiable and very
knowledgeable...he kept us on track and went at our leisurely pace. He
recommended where to eat and except for 1 meal in HCMC , all food was good.
He took good care of us especially when crossing the very congested roads!
Our guide in Cambodia , can't remember his name, was also very knowledgeable
and obviously loves his job.


Don't be afraid to go out of your comfort zone when eating and drinking.


Hotel we stayed in in the Mekong Delta, can't remember the name, accused one
of our group of stealing a towel...make sure you count the towels when you
enter the room! ... Fortunately, the towel was miscounted by the staff, but
it wasnt fair for our fellow traveller to be accused. Cong was with her all
the time while this was sorted!


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Broad sweep through Vietnam ending in the highlight of Angkor Wat October 2018

5.0

Classic Vietnam & Angkor

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Broad introduction to Vietnam with extension to Angkor, which was perfect
climax to trip.
Angkor Wat lives up to the hype though it can get over-run with large groups
who only seem interested in taking selfies with the temples as a backdrop.
However, it is easy to find quieter temples. Siem Reip caters to the western
traveller, but has a fine selection of bars and restaurants.


Katie in Vietnam was charm personified. I think we all appreciated her
concern for each and every member of the group. She was young, but her
youthful enthusiasm carried us all along. I think the tour would have
benefitted from wider use of local professional guides ie in Hoi An and Ho
Chi Minh to really bring the cultural and political context alive.
Jonny in Cambodia was excellent. Amusing, personable and nothing was too much
trouble. He was pretty good on the temples too. He had a knack of finding us
the quietest corners for viewing and the best places for photos.


I was dreading the early starts and the last half post-Hoi An can seem
relentless. However, I quickly followed the local pattern of rising with the
sun and breakfasting at 6am and this made the whole experience much more
enjoyable.
The group was varied, but eveyone rubbed along together very well so no fears
here.
Do read up on both countries before leaving as there is just too much to see
and take in en route.


Hotels were good and hotel staff invariably amazing and helpful to a fault.
Food was excellent and there were really good Western options almost
everywhere for those tiring of pho and spring rolls.
Some of the sites in Vietnam can feel like a tourist sausage factory and we
seemed to do more or less what every other tour party did in Vietnam. I
expect that this is what the Vietnamese government wants tourists to
do-perhaps the trip would be better with a few more off piste things? The
cruise is really just a chug for an hour and then settling down for the night
with around 50 other similar vessels before chugging back in the
morning.However, food on board was excellent.
Flights to Vietnam can involve long layovers in Hong Kong etc, including the
group flight in Kuala Lumpur. I would urge people to consider the direct
flights with Vietnam Airways which, apparently, were very good.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Leisurely Vietnam adventure October 2018

5.0

Classic Vietnam & Angkor

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Excellent trip. Well organized and interesting. Good quality accommodations.
Many good moments. Hard to select one.


Nhi Pham in Vietnam was excellent. I nominated her for leader award.
Leader in Cambodia was very knowledgeable, but not very experienced in
interpersonal skills.


Recommend the trip for educational and general informative content.
Except for short Angkor leg, it was also not very exhausting.


It would be better if Angkor leg was less intense and maybe could take longer
to accommodate higher temperatures.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Classic Vietnam & Angklor-- a tremendous travel experience! October 2018

5.0

Classic Vietnam & Angkor

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Traveling with Exodus was indeed a tremendous experience and far surpassed
any group travel I have previously encountered. Hotels selected were of very
high quality with excellent locations, allowing for easy access during free
time to various opportunities. Activities scheduled were both educational
and enjoyable, reflective of meaningful experiences in the history of each
country visited. The tour was perfectly paced for active seniors, with enough
activity without being overload, interspersing in enough free time to add in
those activities which we might wish to choose for our personal enjoyment.
Most importantly, the other 14 members in our group were totally enjoyable,
warm & friendly, thereby creating an unanticipated group experience for
sharing in these foreign turfs. Excellent tour which is highly recommended
for anyone with an interest in both history and culture in the countries of
both Vietnam & Cambodia
There were many inspirational moments in our trip but if one need be selected
perhaps it might be our visit to Halong Bay, where we stayed overnight on a
boat while cruising among the islands. Visits to Mekong Delta as well our
kayaking experience were also very special experiences, as well as the visit
to Hoi An, a lovely town in central Vietnam where we were able to mingle more
with the local culture. The most emotionally challenging experience of the
trip was a visit to the Vietnam War Museum wherein via photos of effects of
Agent Orange, we were exposed to the tremendous devastation which the USA
inflicted upon these countries. The trip was both experiential on multiple
levels and allowed one to pursue history and culture to whatever degree
chosen.


Our group leader, Nye, in Vietnam was beyond excellent. Her knowledge and
presentation of information in both a casual yet educational manner was
tremendous. Her capacity to keep organization in a group of 16 people while
retaining a warm & cooperative spirit greatly encouraged a group experience
and enable the schedule to run in an organized manner. Her flexibility to
allow for individual deviation when desired as well as her capacity to show
personal interest in each group member's activities was remarkable & would
inspire me to nominate her as a best group leader ever experienced on a tour.

Our group leader in Cambodia was also very knowledgable and presented
educational material beyond expectations on Angkor. His presentation was less
personally influenced and casual than our previous leader and somewhat more
difficult to focus upon due to his tendency to present infinite tangential
information. The heat in Cambodia also exacerbated the difficulty of this
part of the tour, which may also reflect a wish for less detail in this
experience.


I would highly recommend Exodus travel after researching numerous companies
as an excellent tour company and suggest this tour for anyone with interest
in these countries from an educational and cultural perspective. We chose
February as the month least prone to monsoons and weather was quite
accommodating during our Vietnam portion of the trip. Heat is Cambodia was
more than anticipated and did have some effect on our willingness to explore
further on our second day, but fortunately, the group was in consensus
regarding this concept.


While not a major problem, due to the high quality of all other hotels, we
were slightly less than satisfied with our hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, the
Millennium Boutique Hotel, which was not only a considerably smaller space
than the others, but also had a cooler which did not cool, a necessity for
keeping cool water, and was less effective in maintaining toiletries in the
bath area unless requested. Staff in the hotel was very cooperative so it was
not unsatisfactory, simply less pleasant than other places we stayed,
especially after such an excellent stay in Hoi An.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

Vietnam Tours and Travel Guide


Vietnam Attractions & Landmarks Guide

For those whose impressions of Vietnam were formed in the wartime 1960's, a visit to this beautiful Southeast Asian country may yield some real surprises. With the vast majority of Vietnamese born after the war, it's largely ancient history here, and visitors (certainly including Americans) are warmly welcomed. There's much to explore, too, from stately Hanoi to bustling Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), gorgeous Halong Bay, the Mekong River (best seen by river boat), deep green rice paddies, golden sandy beaches, and some of Asia's best cuisine. Once you come to Vietnam, your impressions of it will never be the same. 

From South to North (or opposite)

Perhaps the best way to tour Vietnam is to start at either the southern hub of Ho Chi Minh, aka Saigon, or the northern capital city of Hanoi. If starting in HCMC, the first thing you might notice is the buzz of motorbikes all around you. To cross the street, just be brave and go against everything you were ever taught - slowly but purposefully, walk out into the street and maintain a steady pace. Amazingly, the motor bikes will swerve around you until you find yourself, harried but unscathed, on the other side of the street. Once you’ve mastered that, be sure to check out Ben Thanh market. At first, what looks like a glorified flea market opens up to reveal all sorts of Vietnamese culinary stalwarts like Pho. Go in the morning to escape the crowds (and the heat!).

Other highlights in HCMC include the War Remnants Museum, the exhibits of which might be offputting to many American travelers, Cu Chi tunnel system, and the various historic hotels in the city center.

Heading north, visit Nha Trang, which is a typical beach destination for tourists and locals alike. Enjoy a day-cruise where snorkeling and scuba diving are among the options for activities. Fresh seafood is the specialty in this city by the sea.

Next stop, Hoi An, and its labyrinth of ancient buildings and pathways. Historically rich, the city was influenced by the French, Japanese, and Chinese, which is apparent in the architecture and cuisine. Go in search of the famous Hoi An noodles, Cao Lau, which can only be authentically enjoyed in this town. Many different galleries and craft shops offer everything from custom-made shoes to vibrant oil paintings.

A short drive brings you to Hue, or the ‘imperial city’ as it was here that the Nguyen dynasty ruled from before ceding power to the French in 1945. Explore the old, walled citadel and also book a tour to visit the demilitarized zone (DMZ) for a bit of war history.

Last stop is the capital of Hanoi. With its beautiful urban lakes and government seat, Hanoi is calmer relative to HCMC, but still quite the urban center in its own right. For history buffs, a visit to the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a must, where one can see the body of the former Vietnamese ruler lying in state. Also of interest is the Temple of Literature and One Pillar Pagoda.

Culinary Delights

If culinary travel is your thing, then Vietnam should be high on your list! From pho, to Cao Lau, to french baguettes that rival Parisian boulangeries, Vietnam has a plethora of spicy samples to tempt the foodie traveler. Street food is quite good and cheap, and can be found in night markets throughout the country. Or, just pull up a (short) stool at almost any roadside restaurant for an authentic taste of Vietnam. Specialities include Banh xeo, a crunchy shell containing bean sprouts, soy bean, prawns and pork, Banh bo - sweet rice cakes usually found in white, red and green, and of course, pho. For the more daring, sit down at a corner ‘bar’ to sample bia hoi, the local brew of choice. This unpasteurized but fresh beer is served on the street for basically a few cents per glass. You’ve been warned!  

Trips Farther Afield

Other guided tour options in Vietnam include Phu Quoc island, an idyllic spit of land off the coast of southern Vietnam. Also consider the mountainous Sapa region in the northeast or a River boat cruise along the Mekong River.

 

Related Trips & Tours


Top Vietnam Travel Companies


All Vietnam tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.8 for all Vietnam trips.

671 trips from 82 tour companies with 1,282 reviews

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