Get away to two of Vietnam's most alluring cities - Hue and Hoi An

Get set for an imperial odyssey through the centre of enchanting Vietnam. The heart of this diverse country boasts several World Heritage sites; from the romantic ancient town of Hoi An, packed full of artisans and tailors, to the walled citadel and decadent emperor tombs of Hue. Become lost in the allure of rich aromas, divine food, vibrant market places and welcoming locals. Along with a variety of fun inclusions, including walking and cycling adventures and a hands-on Vietnamese cooking lesson, this all-encompassing short break covers the highlights of central Vietnam in style and promises to be a memorable journey.

Start
Hue, Vietnam
Finish
Hoi An, Vietnam
Countries
Vietnam
Themes
Short Breaks
Code
TVAZ
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 5
Group size
Min 1 Max 12
Carbon offset
81kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • See the ornate pagodas of the Forbidden Purple City
  • Share a meal with local Buddhist nuns
  • Help in a local community garden before dining on its bounty
  • Take a sampan cruise on Tam Giang Lagoon
  • Marvel at the lantern-lit streets of Hoi An
  • Cycle the country lanes around beautiful Hoi An

Itinerary

Xin chao! Welcome to Vietnam.

Your Short Break Adventure starts at 8.00 - 8.30am on Day 1, or from your alternate hotel (advised prior to departure), between 7.30am - 8.30 am.

A welcome pack containing a welcome letter, your trip itinerary, relevant tickets, a feedback card and general information on the country will be waiting for you at your hotel. Please ask your hotel's receptionist for the Intrepid welcome pack upon arrival.

Packed with temples, tombs, palaces and pagodas, Hue is the gateway to the treasures of Vietnam's royal past and a must-stop on any itinerary. And the best way to explore it is on the back of a motorbike with experienced motorbike drivers!

Start the day with a visit the Citadel. It’s within these 2m-thick and 10km-long walls that you’ll find several of the city’s best sights, from the many ornate pagodas to the Forbidden Purple City. We’ll continue our ride to Thanh Toan Bridge, an ornate covered bridge hard to find without local knowledge. From there, we'll soak up everyday Vietnamese life at a nearby local market and visit an agricultural museum, to understand how locals trade and maintain their traditional daily lives.

Further immerse yourself in the best of Hue countryside with a ride through stunning surroundings, past rice paddies, to a small village that specializes in making incense sticks. We’ll drop by a local pagoda/monastery for a traditional vegetarian lunch and a chance to chat with the monks/nuns to learn more about Buddhism and gain an insight into their daily lives.

Stop for lunch in a local nunnery. Enjoy a traditional meal and grab the chance to chat with the nuns to learn more about Buddhism and gain an insight into their daily lives.
With full tummies, our Hue tour continues with the visit to one of the most impressive emperor’s tombs to take in its astonishing architectural beauty. From there, we’ll head to Tiger Arena, where duels between elephants and tigers were arranged for the entertainment of the Emperors right up until 1904.

After a day taking in the many sights of Hue, we’ll enjoy a relaxing boat trip along Perfume River to Thien Mu Pagoda, the most sacred temple in the area. Take in the magic of Hue’s most sacred temple before our tour ends with a short motorbike ride back to the centre of the city.
This morning is free to explore Hue. You will be picked up from your hotel between 1.00-1.30 pm by your experienced local motorbike driver. We recommend you take your swimwear today for our stop at the wild beach.
Escape the hustle of Hue on a journey to Quang Dien, a peaceful village known for its beautiful architecture, stunning surrounds and friendly locals. On the way you can take in the sea air from the back of the bike, as you wind through quaint towns en route to the majestic Tam Giang Lagoon.

First off, we’ll call in to a farming family to witness their traditional lifestyle. Roll up your sleeves to lend a hand with the garden tasks, from watering the vegetables to helping harvest crops. We’ll reward you with a taste of Hue’s most famous specialty snacks and honey tea.

Our Hue motorbike tour continues to a so-called Ghost City, where hundreds of tombs have been built and beautifully decorated. Here you’ll learn its secrets and the beliefs and history of the local people. Back on our motorbikes, we continue this Hue tour to Quang Dien wild beach to relax on a white sandy beach next to the translucent water. This is a quiet escape from the crowds and a perfect place for an ocean dip.
Before the sun sets, we’ll take you to Tam Giang Lagoon where a sampan is waiting to take you out for a fishing harvest. We’ll stop by a fish and prawn farm to help the fisherman haul up their catch ready to sell at market. Get a lesson in how to throw a fish net, then try your luck to catch a fish in the lagoon.

After a day of farming and fishing, our day in the Hue countryside ends with fresh fruits and tea prepared by our local host as we bid farewell to the last rays of sunshine and ride back to our hotel in Hue.
You will be picked up from your Hue hotel at 8.00 am. Travelling by bus, head south through coastal rice paddies before traversing the spectacularly mountainous Hai Van Pass. After a brief visit to the beautiful China Beach (known officially as My Khe Beach), arrive at Hoi An (approx. 4 hours).

Drop your bags and freshen up before making your way to the Intrepid Travel Vietnam - Hoi An Office for our 3.00 pm bike tour departure. The office is located 24 Nguyen Duy Hieu Street (near the crossroad for Nguyen Duy Hieu & Pham Hong Thai Streets). Phone: +84 (0) 9 3428 6988.

This afternoon our adventure continues taking to the streets and the waterways on a unique boat and bike tour, weaving through the back streets to reach the country lanes that lie outside Hoi An’s borders.

Start your Hoi An tour with the bike portion, and follow country laneways to reach some of the villages that are dotted throughout the region, stopping to talk to the locals and learn more about life in this part of Vietnam. Pass emerald rice paddies, snaking waterways and plenty of waving children as you discover some of the beautiful landscapes found in this region.

Next up, your Hoi An boat tour! Follow your guide to the banks of the Thu Bon River to take to the waterways and discover even more of the area. Cruise the river, heading out to one of the river’s small islands where a barbecue feast awaits. Feast on local specialties and watch as the sun sets over the river, with bobbing local fishing boats adding to the atmosphere.

Jump back in the boat to cruise along the river, watching the last of the sun’s rays disappear behind the rice paddies before heading back to Hoi An. Watch the twinkling lights of the city appear as you approach the dock, before heading through the bustling waterfront crowds to head back into town. This unique Hoi An bike and boat tour comes to end back in the heart of the town.
Please reconvene at 8.00 am at our meeting point, Intrepid Travel Vietnam - Hoi An Office, 24 Nguyen Duy Hieu Street, to continue your exploration of Hoi An.

Discover the history and flavours of Vietnam during a walking and cooking tour of Hoi An. This is a place oozing with charm and, having largely escaped the destruction of successive wars, its streets and architecture are a delight to explore. Your local guide will walk with you to the Old Town ready to explore its ancient streets.
Now a UNESCO World Heritage site the Old Town is packed with buildings of historical and cultural significance and boasts a number of streets that are off-limits to cars. Stroll past the many Chinese Assembly Halls - from the Cantonese Chinese Congregation with its impressive main altar to the Hainan Chinese Congregation which serves as a memorial to 107 merchants from Hainan Island who were mistaken for pirates and killed during the reign of Emperor Tu Duc. Stop by the Japanese Covered Bridge which was constructed in the 1590s by the town’s Japanese community to link them with the Chinese quarters across the stream.

At the end of the walking tour head to a family run restaurant for a cooking class. The chef will run through the range of delicious dishes that you will recreate, then it’s time to hit the local market to stock up on all the fresh produce needed to create the feast. Learn how to choose the best supplies and discover some of the less-familiar ingredients, then head back to the restaurant ready to cook

Pick up recipes that are sure to wow your family and friends and discover the tricks to making some of the legendary Vietnamese dishes at home. End the day by sitting down to feast on all the delicious dishes you’ve created.

Your trip finishes at approximately 1.00 pm. No accommodation is included tonight.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
3 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner
Accommodation
Hotel (3 nights)
Included activities
  • Hue - Imperial citadel
  • Hue - Royal tomb
  • Hue - Perfume river cruise and Thien Mu Pagoda
  • Hue - Half day motorbike tour to Tam Giang Lagoon
  • Hoi An - Ancient town guided walk and entrance ticket
  • Hoi An - Cooking Class

Dates

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Important notes

1. This Short Break Adventure starts at 8.30am on Day 1, and finishes at 6pm on Day 4.
2. You will be picked up on Day 1 from the Joining Point Hotel listed in the Essential Trip Information for this itinerary. Pick-up will take place between 8.00 - 8.30am in the hotel foyer.
3. If you require pick up from another centrally-located hotel in Hue, please inform your booking agent at least 14 days prior to departure.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes