VIETNAM’S HEALING ARTS 14 DAYS
This fourteen-day tour is designed to introduce Vietnam’s extensive compass of ancient medicines and therapies by Luxury Travel Agency Vietnam. Based upon old Chinese wisdom, Vietnamese healers have modified and extended the principles of maintaining well-being and health.
Buddhist meditation, Vietnamese herbal and processes, ancient village, ‘garden houses’, Imperial Mausoleum, cycling (bicycle provided), Imperial Citadel, Dong Ba market, Cham Museum, five days in a resort highly regarded spa resort, Traditional Vietnamese Medicine Museum, Mekong River cruise, ancient Khmer pagoda, floating market
However, as you’re travelling tailor-made, you can make as many changes to the itinerary as you wish. If you prefer to enter Vietnam at Ho Chi Minh City – no problem! We’ll just reorganise the programme accordingly to fit your arrangements.
Day 1: Hanoi arrival (GP)
Arriving at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi, you’ll be met and driven to your hotel. You’ll have time to relax after your journey.
Day 2: Mindfulness in Van Tri Pagoda (B, L, G)
Today, you’ll join the ‘Mindfulness’ class in an old pagoda located some eight miles (13km) from Hanoi.
‘Mindfulness’ is the practice of being aware of your mind, heart, body and the outside world. The principle is anchored upon stimulating these centres thus enabling disciples to function more effectively. Sister Thich Hanh Chau will introduce each of the activities.
The activity will take a full day and offer basic instructions for beginners, different kinds of meditation practice (such as sitting and walking meditation, eating meditation) and a ‘question and answer’ discussion.
The Pagoda was built well away from the city, but is now part of Hanoi’s suburbs. However, its expansive gardens and an adjacent twenty acres (80,000sq.m) of ponds and fruit gardens ensures peace and quiet, ideal for Oriental meditation
Day 3: Hanoi/Ky Son/Moon Garden Homestay (L, G)
This morning, you will be picked up and transferred to Moon Garden Homestay in Ky Son Village. Moon Garden Homestay (50km from Hanoi) was originally a summer home for the family of a Hanoi-based architect, offering visitors a peaceful escape from bustling Hanoi. Upon arrival, you will have some free time to explore the grounds of Moon Garden and the village, before participating in a cooking class to learn more about Vietnamese cuisine and having lunch.
This afternoon, you will enjoy a hand spa treatment with traditional herbs, take a bicycle ride to discover the paths of Thang Thac Village and follow a local guide to explore Duong Lam ancient village and Mia Pagoda. Returning to Moon Garden, you will be treated to a traditional foot bath and can participate in a Vietnamese prayer ceremony. You will be transferred back to Hanoi in the late afternoon for overnight.
Day 4: Lan Ong, ‘herbal medicine street’ and the surrounding area (B, G)
Your morning will begin with a visit to an Old Café overlooking Hoan Kiem Lake. You’ll then walk through the narrow streets and alleys of Hanoi to Lan Ong Street for your main visit today to the city’s traditional herbalists. The remainder of the day will be your own.
Day 5: Hanoi/Hue (B, D, G)
Your morning will be free until your car and driver arrives to take you to the airport for your noon flight to Hue. When you arrive, you’ll be met by our guide and driven to your hotel to check in.
You’ll then take a ‘dragon boat’ to visit one of city’s ‘garden houses’. Your afternoon will continue with the Emperor Minh Mang’s Mausoleum. You’ll then return to your hotel to freshen-up. In the evening, you’ll sit down for dinner in the pleasant surroundings and a comfortable atmosphere of another of the garden houses.
Each Royal Mausoleum reflects the personality of the Emperor it commemorates. The most majestic is that of Emperor Minh Mang, a staunch follower of Confucianism with many wives, concubines and a small army of children. Planned by the Emperor and built shortly after his death in formal Chinese style, it’s opulent and exotic, and a good example of classic Sino-Vietnamese architecture.
The garden houses are a unique feature of Hue. The houses are traditional, privately owned, and set in attractive formal gardens. Some have connections with the old Royal Imperial Court. Hue traditional architecture has long had close associations with the natural environment.
The garden houses reflect this association. Each is highly individual – house and garden, people and scenery, plants, clouds and water co-exist and blend with each other in a harmonious context. Today, you’ll enter the underlying Feng Shui philosophy of the design of the garden houses.
Day 6: Cycling to understands Hue’s lifestyle (B, L, G)
In the morning, bicycles await you to ride through Hue’s rural villages to Thanh Toan, a bridge roofed in Chinese style. Nearby, a local market offers an excellent example of Hue’s daily life and local products. You’ll then return to Hue’s city centre for lunch.
After returning to Hue for lunch, you’ll head for the Imperial Citadel and Dong Ba market before looping back to your hotel for overnight accommodation.
Often referred to as ‘ancient’, Hue’s Citadel is comparatively modern in European terms. Built over thirty years in the early part of the 19th century, the Citadel encompasses three ‘courts’ covering a total area of 1,284 acres (520ha). The outer court within the massive brick walls, ten metres thick in places, is mainly open space and gardens.
Day 7: Hue/Danang/Quy Nhon (B, G)
In the morning, your car will arrive to drive you to Danang. On the way, you’ll cross the high mountain pass of Hai Van. The views from the top are excellent – you should be able to see Lang Co Beach and village, the lagoon far below and Danang spread out before you to the south.
Upon arriving in Danang, a visit to the Cham Museum introduces the fascinating Hindu statuary of the long gone kingdom.
The Cham ethnic group, drawing cultural inspiration from India, spread across what is now central and southern Vietnam more than a millennium ago, eventually creating a rich and powerful empire. As part of their practice of Hinduism, they built tall brick towers, exquisitely incised. Within and around the buildings were a multitude of richly carved effigies and statues depicting people, nature, demons and so on. Later, the power of the kingdom declined, and after many wars and Vietnamese expansion, the kingdom was defeated. Most Cham that remain in Vietnam today live in coastal south-central provinces and practice a form of Hinduism, while a small community in An Giang Province practice Islam, along with most of the Cham in Cambodia.
From there, you’ll be driven to Danang Railway Station a train journey to Quy Nhon. When you disembark, you’ll be met and chauffeured to the Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa, ten miles (16km) from the city where you’ll receive a warm welcome.
Quy Nhon City and its environs is a sleepy place well off the regular tourist track. Beyond the suburbs are several important historical sites, notably a group of Cham towers about fifteen miles (25km) from the city: another group further away is considered the best preserved Cham tower complex in Vietnam. During the 18th century in Quy Nhon, the Tay brothers led a peasant revolt that eventually overturned the previous dynasty and reunited the country.
Day 8 to Day 10: Quy Nhon (B)
Your time will be at Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa.
The four star resort is located upon a thirty-three acres (13.5ha) site overlooking a wide sweep of pale soft sand (usually empty) set on an extensive bay with two uninhabited islands also belong to the resort. The surrounding landscape is dramatic, with rocky promontories and mountains. To the north of the resort behind a craggy cape, there’s a small fishing village. The accommodation is in a string of three three-storey blocks linked with walkways and stairs to the rear. All sixty-three rooms have folding glazed doors extending across most of the width of large balconies with excellent sea views. All building materials were sourced locally where feasible. There is extensive use of sustainable natural materials and an obvious concern for environmental husbandry.
The Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa ‘s spa is a 3,000 square metre garden oasis overlooking the ocean, with facilities for both relaxation and invigoration. Five outdoor treatment bungalows and three indoor treatment suites are designed for individual and couple experiences. The spa menu ranges from luxurious facial, healing massage and replenishing body therapy to manicure, pedicure and hair treatments. Indulge in the beauty treatment room, steam baths and Vichy showers, as well as the Japanese dry sand and salt sauna, a soothing outdoor setting by the pond.
Our package includes:
- One 60 minute spa treatment, selected from the menu: Cucumber & Honey Facial (60 min), Green Tea and Salt Body Scrub (30 min), Sun Shooter Aloe Body Mask (45 min), Aromatic Bliss Massage (60 min)
- One RENEW ME 2 hours SPA Package experience
- One Private Session of Meditation, yoga or initiation to therapeutic massage
- One half day Kayak Tour with picnic lunch: Paddle by kayak to a secluded beach and spend the day snorkelling or fishing on our private island. A picnic basket, mats, towels, fishing rods and snorkelling gear are included for your convenience and pleasure
Therapy programmes can be individually tailored to your own needs or preferences. Please consult with your personal tour designer for the full range of possible treatments available when enquiring about this type of holiday.
Day 11: Quy Nhon/Ho Chi Minh City (B, G)
In the morning, you’ll be free until your car arrives to take you to the airport for a flight to Ho Chi Minh City. After transferring to your central hotel and checking-in, you’ll be free for a preliminary wander around District 1, the city’s hub.
In the afternoon, you’ll visit the FITO Museum of Traditional Vietnamese Medicine which hosts a large collection of relics including traditional Vietnamese medicinal implements, illustrative paintings and an extensive library of books and texts relating to techniques and medicines from ancient times to the present.
The Fito Museum building is itself of interest, which, although modern, reflects carefully chosen traditional architectural themes which complement and reinforce the historic periods described within.
Day 12: Ho Chi Minh City/Vinh Long/Can Tho (B, L, G)
After escaping from Ho Chi Minh City’s urban sprawl, you’ll travel to Vinh Long where a Mekong River cruise will take you to visit the fruit orchards, a traditional family-run brick kiln, and some long established cottage industries. You’ll drive further into the Mekong Delta to Can Tho. Upon arrival you’ll call in at the Munir Ansay – an ancient Khmer style pagoda renowned for its unique structural decorations. You’ll then drive to your hotel in Can Tho where you’ll spend the night.
Constructed in 1948 and modelled on Cambodia’s famous Angkor Wat complex, the’ Three Treasures’ tower, the Munir Ansay pagoda has many intricate statues and pillars. Today, approximately a million Khmer people live in Vietnam, mostly in the Mekong Delta provinces.
Day 13: Can Tho/Ho Chi Minh City (B, L, G)
After breakfast and a boat cruise, you’ll arrive at Cai Rang floating market on the Mekong Delta. Both the journey and the market provide insights into the rural Mekong Delta lifestyle. After this you will be transferred back to Ho Chi Minh City. Along the way you’ll stop by the Vinh Trang Pagoda a couple of miles (3km) from the centre of My Tho, and arrive in Ho Chi Minh City and check in to your hotel in good time.
Vinh Trang Pagoda is renowned for its architectural mixture of Chinese, Vietnamese and Angkor styles. It’s located on a five acre (2 hectare) block with five buildings, two ornamental courtyards, 178 pillars and many valuable statues (especially the statues of 18 arahants [literally the ‘worthy one’ revered in Jainism Buddhism] carved from wood in 1907). The experience should leave you with a clearer understanding of the relationship between Vietnamese art and Buddhist beliefs.
Day 14: Ho Chi Minh City Departure (B, GP)
Your time will be your own until your private car and driver arrives to take you to Tan Son Nhat Airport for your departure flight.
The prices for this sample tour are per person in US dollars:
These prices are valid until September 30, 2018. Please note that bank transfer fees are not included.
|Number in group||2||3 – 4||5 – 8||9 – 12||13 – 16||Supplement for single hotel room occupancy*|
Our prices include:
- Breakfast and accommodation sharing a twin or double room.
- Pick-ups and transfers by private air-conditioned vehicle as specified in the itinerary above (Please note: pick-ups will be by a guide and driver or, where a guide is not necessary, a driver only. All unaccompanied drivers will be briefed in advance, and will carry a mobile phone to ensure smooth transfer arrangements)
- Train ticket: Danang – Quy Nhon (private 4 berth cabin)
- Domestic flight tickets: Hanoi – Hue and Quy Nhon – Ho Chi Minh City, including domestic airport taxes.
- Boat cruises as specified in the programme.
- Travel in an appropriate private air-conditioned vehicle with an experienced safe driver.
- The services of experienced English-speaking guides as indicated in the itinerary (please note: guides will be on hand from pick-up until guests’ return to their hotel or reaching their destination). Free days or part days will not include the services of a guide unless requested and included in the final itinerary.
- Where necessary, entry fees for all visits as mentioned in the programme.
- Lunches and dinners (as specified in the itinerary) in the best local restaurants, or picnics where no suitable restaurant is available.
- Spa retreat package at Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa
- VAT and other taxes
Our prices do not include:
- International flight tickets and airport tax.
- Lunches and dinners, except as specified above.
- Drinks, gratuities and personal expenses.
- Alternatives in blue
- Surcharges for peak season (if any)
- Compulsory Christmas Eve’s dinner and Gala dinner (if any)
Hotel list for First Class standard
- Hanoi: Sofitel Metropole Hotel ( historic colonial building in a city centre location – Luxury Room Historic Wing)
- Hue: La Residence Hotel & Spa ( deluxe boutique hotel, on the bank of the Perfume River – Colonial Suite)
- Quy Nhon: Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa ( featured resort located on a secluded bay about a 20-minute drive from the town centre – an eco-friendly Vietnam hotel/resort – Junior Suite)
- Ho Chi Minh City: Caravelle Hotel ( large high-rise building famous as the chosen hotel of international correspondents during the war, good city and river views, well-located in the heart of the city overlooking the Opera House – Signature Deluxe room)
- Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho Resort ( best hotel in Can Tho, colonial-style architecture on the bank of Hau river – Suite)
Hotel list for Deluxe standard:
- Hanoi: Hotel de l’Opera Hanoi (Conveniently located in the city centre, just a step away from Hanoi’s OperaHouse, the Old Quarter and Hoan Kiem Lake – L’Opera Grand Deluxe)
- Hue: Best Western Premier Indochine Palace Hotel [former Celadon Palace hotel]( high-rise building hotel in the heart of Hue – Palace Studio)
- Quy Nhon: Avani Quy Nhon Resort & Spa ( featured resort located on a secluded bay about a 20-minute drive from the town centre – an eco-friendly Vietnam hotel/resort – Deluxe room)
- Ho Chi Minh City: Lotte Legend Hotel ( high-rise building facing the Saigon River, a short walk from Dong Khoi Street – Deluxe River front room)
- Can Tho: Victoria Can Tho Resort ( beside the Mekong river, good garden setting – Deluxe room)
BOOK THIS TOUR
Vietnam Tour Guide:
“An was the best Trip Leader we have ever had on all of our Luxury Travel Agency Vietnam. trips. He was caring, concerned, and his wonderful personality radiated. Every day was a new adventure, and he went above and beyond the itinerary to provide memorable experiences.”
Mr. Phuoc Happy
Vietnam Tour Guide:
“Phuoc Happy was warm, enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and candid regarding his country, and he provided us with countless learning and discovery opportunities in addition to the ones on the itinerary. He even provided us with a personal copy of the excellent video of our trip which he made for Luxury Travel Agency Vietnam”
Mr. Thai Khin Po
Cambodia Tour Guide:
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Laos Tour Guide:
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“Overall trip was wonderful. You planned a great itinerary. Accommodations we fine. The best of the group where the Hyatt in Saigon, Metropole in Hanoi and Victory in Hoi An…”
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“Mr Phuoc was outstanding. His command of global events and being able to put Vietnam into international context was impressive. Very personable, knowledgable, flexible and enthusiastic. A real ambassador for his country while also recognising the shortcomings and opportunities facing Vietnam. He didn’t just repeat history about sights, but he actively sought our own views and then worked out what would be of interest and why. If we were to revisit Vietnam, or recommend a top guide, it would be Mr Phuoc”
“Thanks to Luxury Travel Agency Vietnam Team”
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