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Vietnam forum

Please help with Vietnam itinerary :)

Posted by ag555 on 1/9/2017 at 09:12

Hi all! So happy I found this site and I've been getting great ideas from the itineraries and the forum - so thank you!

My boyfriend and I will arrive Dec 30 to Hanoi we plan to spend ~ 10 days there (as part of a bigger SE Asia trip). Right now this is my rough draft itinerary:

Hanoi (2 nights)
Ha Long Bay (1 night) - was looking at the article here on which tour to use, haven't decided yet. A lot of people also talk about going straight to Cat Ba, staying there, and doing a day cruise to Ha Long... can anyone suggest one over the other?

After that, I'm looking at Ninh Binh, Phong Nha and Hoi An . We're going to Laos after so I was thinking Hoi An would be ideal to leave from so we don't have to back track, but I think it's too much.
Ninh Binh sounds great with the Trang An Complex but so do the caves and park in Phong Nha !

If anyone can help steer me in a direction, that would be amazing!
We're both 30, fit and like active things (experiences over looking at things), and anywhere that has less tourists :)

#1 ag555 has been a member since 1/9/2017. Posts: 2

Posted by muzzaf on 3/9/2017 at 09:01

Your ideas are great.Suited us. Your hotel in Hanoi will sell you tickets to CatBa (Bus/Ferry/Bus) very well organised, all inclusive. You bus arrives mid afternoon. I stayed at the hostel up the hill and the owner (good prices and advice) there sold us a one day ticket about HaLong Bay, a boat with a top deck. It included a walk about an Island, A good all day tour about the bay, Lunch, A swim, A canoe ride and back by 5pm. The next day we biked it about the island.The island is a nice place to stay
The next day he sold us a ticket to Nihn Bihn (You may change busses after you arrive on the mainland)DO NOT STAY IN NIHN BIHN, instead the bus or get another to take you on to Tam Coc. You will be dumped outside the Tam Coc hostel, a good place to stay. Book in for three nights and spend two days on you bikes exploring this beautiful area and include the caves, really this place is HaLong Bay on land!! Your choice is good. The rest of your trip will unfold. We are still happy about not sleeping on the boat.
Learn to ride a motor bike if you cant already, makes SE Asia more enjoyable, another thing Prices vary lots n lots. Murray

#2 muzzaf has been a member since 22/3/2007. Posts: 13

Posted by flijten on 3/9/2017 at 19:54

I just want to remark that I loved Hanoi and stayed for 5 to 7 days, 2 might be short. Then again, your trip is not without a time limit so maybe it fits well.

#3 flijten has been a member since 19/12/2016. Location: Netherlands. Posts: 80

Posted by ag555 on 6/9/2017 at 08:50

muzzaf - thanks! which island did you stay in? Cat Ba?

#4 ag555 has been a member since 1/9/2017. Posts: 2

Posted by muzzaf on 6/9/2017 at 10:24

The other comment is correct, Hanoi is a favourite and well worth time there. One bad point, Pick pockets are rife, very slick!!

Your hotel or another will sell you a ticket all inclusive to CatBa town on CatBa island, takes 5-6 hours .

1/ Bus to Port Building, 2/ Bus to Ferry, 3/ Ferry to Catba Island, 4/ Bus to CatBa town. Leaves about 8.00, collects other travelers and drops you about 2 or 3. Not much to do on the island but it is pleasant enough.

The Hostel (where you dont have to stay) but gives good advice and tickets and got me onto a good boat is the CatBa Hostel, and the bus to Nihn Bihn. Prices vary.(Plenty to choose from)

The hotel on the corner of this street and the beach road is reasonable

Good times,


#5 muzzaf has been a member since 22/3/2007. Posts: 13

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