Duration: 11 days 10 nights

Experience an 11-day adventure that will bring you from the great Northwestern Mountains of Vietnam (Son La, Dien Bien Phu), to the incredible regions of Oudomxay and Luang Prabang in Laos. Get ready for an once-in-a-lifetime travel that will certainly leave you with lasting memories. 


  • A beautiful travel combining the Northern regions of Vietnam and Laos, home to scenic landscapes
  • Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi, the legendary Ha Long Bay, and the treasures of Ninh Binh
  • The spectacular mountainous settings of Son La, Mai Chau, and Dien Bien Phu
  • The incredible beauty of Oudomxay in northern Laos
  • Explore Luang Prabang, go to Kuang Si Falls, and discover Pak Ou Caves


Day 1: Hanoi – City Tour (L)
Day 2: Hanoi – Ha Long Bay (B, L, D)
Day 3: Ha Long Bay – Ninh Binh (B, L)
Day 4: Ninh Binh – Mai Chau (B, L)
Day 5: Mai Chau – Son La (B, L, D)
Day 6: Son La – Pha Din Pass – Dien Bien Phu (B, L, D)
Day 7: Dien Bien Phu – Oudomxay (Laos) (B, L, D)
Day 8: Oudomxay – Pak Ou Caves – Luang Prabang (B, L, D)
Day 9: Luang Prabang – City Tour (B)
Day 10: Luang Prabang – Kuang Si Falls – Luang Prabang (B)
Day 11: Luang Prabang – Departure (B)


Day 1: Hanoi – City Tour (L)

You will kick off this journey with a visit of the millennium city, Hanoi. Thanks to the architecture of its buildings, blending both local and western styles, charming little streets, wide lakes, and large boulevards enhanced by lush vegetation, Hanoi is certainly one of the most beautiful and interesting cities in Vietnam. In the morning, you will visit Ho Chi Minh City Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda, and Temple of Literature (Van Mieu) –1st national university in the history of the country.

After a good lunch at a local restaurant, you will go to West Lake (Ho Tay), the largest in Hanoi, where you will visit Tran Quoc Pagoda, the oldest Buddhist site in the city. Later, you will go to the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, where you will learn about the diversity of the Vietnamese people. After that, you will enjoy a walk around Hoan Kiem Lake and in the Old Quarter, famous for its 36 streets – each one of them being a place where merchants specialize in a particular trade (such as jewelry or silk). You will end the day with the famous water puppet show, a must-do when you are in Hanoi.

Dinner on your own and free time in the evening.

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 2: Hanoi – Ha Long Bay (B, L, D)

After a nice breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven to Ha Long and arrive at the port of embarkation. You will then board a beautiful junk and enjoy a delicious lunch with seafood dishes while your vessel cruises through magnificent landscapes made of thousands of karst islets floating on emerald waters. This unique landscape is classified as a World Natural Heritage by the UNESCO. 

During the afternoon, you will have the opportunity to refresh yourself by swimming in the waters of the bay, explore astonishing caves, or kayak to discover the bay and its hidden treasures. At the end of this unforgettable day, the boat will anchor at a quiet site and you will have lunch onboard.

Overnight on the junk in Ha Long Bay.

Day 3: Ha Long Bay – Ninh Binh (B, L)

Wake up early and enjoy breakfast onboard while observing the sunrise. Then, you will continue cruising and sightseeing in Ha Long Bay before heading back to the port, where our driver is waiting for you.

Hop on the bus – you will be driven through the Red River Delta from Ha Long to Hai Phong, then Thai Binh, Nam Dinh, and Ninh Binh. While on the way, you will make a few stops: you will visit Tran Temple in Nam Dinh and learn about the most successful dynasty in the history of Vietnam; you will also stop to visit traditional villages specializing in lacquer and wood carving.

In Ninh Binh, check-in at your hotel located in the middle of a rural area. You will have free time to enjoy the peaceful countryside.

Dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 4: Ninh Binh – Mai Chau (B, L)

Today, you will visit Ninh Binh Region, and most notably Hoa Lu and Tam Coc, the site where limestone peaks emerge from the middle of rice fields, and often dubbed as “Ha Long Bay on Land”.

Then, you will reach Trang An Caves complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will board a small sampan and cruise on a river to penetrate 9 caves (including those of Ba Giot, Dia Linh, Toi – “Dark Cave” –, Sang – “Bright Cave –, Ao Trai and Seo) and multiple valleys (including those of Tran Temple, May, Khong and Nau Ruou). Later, you will go to Bai Dinh Pagoda, the largest in Vietnam, with its 500 arhats and an architecture similar to the Imperial City in China. At this end of your visit, you will be driven to Mai Chau, a wonderful natural haven.

Overnight in Mai Chau (homestay or lodge).

Day 5: Mai Chau – Son La (B, L, D)

After a nice breakfast, you will visit Cun Pheo, a beautiful ethnic village. Then, you will start a 2-hour trek through amazing rice terraces and charming villages, during which you will observe the life of the locals and be amazed by the surrounding nature. Later, you will stop at a local house to refresh yourself and have lunch.

In the afternoon, you will be driven to Son La. On the way, you will stop several times to visit villages and take nice pictures of tea plantations covered hills.

Overnight at a hotel in Son La.

Day 6: Son La – Pha Din Pass – Dien Bien Phu (B, L, D)

Enjoy a nice breakfast before departing for you final destination of the day, Dien Bien Phu (at 170 km from Son La). You will go through a region inhabited by Thai, Muong, and H’Mong ethnic groups. You will stop by Thuan Chau Market, where Black Thai women gather to trade different agricultural products and hand-made fabrics. Later, you will also stop at Pha Din Pass (altitude: 1,648 m), where you will enjoy an incredible view of the valley and villages. At Pha Din Pass, you will meet Red Pompons H’Mong.

Then, you will take a bus to Muong Phang, where you will start a short 1-km walk in the forest to visit the legendary cave of General Giap. After that, you will return to the car and head to Dien Bien Phu.

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 7: Dien Bien Phu – Oudomxay (Laos) (B, L, D)

This morning, you will be transported to the border between Vietnam and Laos. You will exit Vietnam and cross the Tay Trang / Sop Hun border pass to enter Laos.

Then, you will be driven through Oudomxay province. You will stop at several ethnic villages inhabited by Khmu and H’Mong people. While on this trip, your guide will give you more information about local traditions, culture, and lifestyle of the inhabitants of this region. You will discover the customs of Khmu people at Ban Chom Ong and visit the cave system of Chom Ong. You will also learn more about the different local crafts.

Later, you will continue on the road until reaching Ban Nam Heang, a peaceful village where you will stay overnight. Meet your hosts at the homestay before taking part in a Baci Ceremony to celebrate your visit to the village and welcome you.

Dinner and overnight at the homestay.

Day 8: Oudomxay – Pak Ou Caves – Luang Prabang (B, L, D)

Have a nice breakfast before visiting the surrounding area. Then, you will hop in the car and go to the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, home to thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes deposited there by pilgrims. After that, you will enjoy a boat cruise along a river, until stopping at Ban Xang Hai Village, where a famous local rice whiskey is made.

Later, you will visit Ban Xang Khong and Ban Xieng Lek villages, specialized in weaving, before going to Wat Siphouthabath to admire the sunset.

Finally, you will reach Luang Prabang. Check-in at the hotel.

Dinner and overnight in Luang Prabang. 

Day 9: Luang Prabang – City Tour (B)

You will have free time to visit Luang Prabang on your own. Today this town, the ancient capital of Xang Lane Kingdom, is the religious center of the country. Today, Luang Prabang is listed as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

Interesting sites to discover in Luang Prabang include:

  • Wat Visoun (or Wat Wisunarat): this temple dates from the 16th century and is today acting as a museum where you can find a lot of religious items
  • Wat Aham: dating from the 19th century, this temple is guarded by two tigers and by statues representing Ravana and Hanuman.
  • Wat Xieng Thong: largely recognized as the most elegant temple in the city, this 16th-century edification is remarkable due to its original architecture.
  • National Museum: the old Royal Palace now houses a collection of precious items that include the famous Pha Bang statue, a flamboyant 83-cm gold-alloy Buddha representation. 
  • Phu Si (or Phou Si): you will have to climb 328 steps to get to the top of this hill, from where you can enjoy a panoramic view on Luang Prabang.
In the evening, you will discover the night market, where you will find beautiful artisanal fabrics.

Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Day 10: Luang Prabang – Kuang Si Falls – Luang Prabang (B)

After a nice breakfast at the hotel, you will go for an excursion that will lead you to the amazing Kuang Si Falls, nestled amongst a lush nature. On your way, you will visit Talat Phosy Market and Ban Na Oune Village, where H’Mong people are living. You will also visit the peaceful Ban Tha Baen Village, home to both the Tai Lue and Khmu ethnic groups.

Please make sure to bring your own food for the picnic lunch, or if you wish, you will be able to eat at a local restaurant. Finally, you will reach Kuang Si Falls, where you will relax and refresh by bathing in the water pools or hike on forest trails.

Later, you will be driven back to Luang Prabang.

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 11: Luang Prabang – Departure (B)

Start your final day of the trip with a nice breakfast, before enjoying your free time at your own leisure, until being driven to the airport for your departure flight.

Please contact us for more information about this tour or to customize this itinerary.


  • All transportation
  • Accommodation (hotels: twin room or double room + 1 night on a boat in Ha Long Bay + homestays in Mai Chau and Oudomxay)
  • All entrances fees
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B for breakfast, L for lunch, D for dinner)
  • English-speaking tourist guide
  • One small bottle of water on the bus everyday
  • Services fees

  • Personal expenses
  • Insurance
  • Drinks
  • Flight tickets
  • Visa to enter Vietnam and Laos

Other Tours:
XMCT02: From Vietnam to Laos – 14 days
XMCT03: The Best of Laos & Cambodia – 14 days
XMCT04: Wonderful Expedition in Vietnam & Laos – 15 days