• Vietnam: Undiscovered Vietnam Private Adventure

    Hiking, sea kayaking, & cultural adventures

    Visit the the lesser-known regions of Vietnam, exploring hill tribe villages, sea kayaking in the far reaches of Halong Bay, and interacting with the locals while experiencing their unique culture.

    best times to go: March - April, October - November

    departures: Private departures are available on the dates of your choice, pending availability. Call us for details.

    pricing: from $3,295 see detailed pricing

    Southeast Asia

    Moderate
Avaliable as a private trip. Call for details

Hiking, sea kayaking, & cultural adventures

This incredible cross-cultural adventure combines our love of sea kayaking with enriching encounters with tribal ethnic minorities in the region of Ba Be National Park, one of Vietnam's undiscovered jewels. Surrounded by precipitous limestone mountains and rich tangled forests, Ba Be ("three lakes") has not yet been discovered by the crowds, so now is the time to see this area! Besides enjoying the rich natural heritage of the park-thunderous waterfalls, rivers, and serene lakes (where you'll paddle inflatable kayaks and go for a swim)-you'll hike to Tay and Dao hill tribe villages, visit markets where tourists have rarely been seen, and experience a village home stay where you'll have a chance to interact with these warm and hospitable people.

Then you'll head to legend-bound Halong Bay, where strange and fanciful legends abound. Strewn about its sheltered waters are some 2,000 rocky islets, created by dragons that descended from heaven to scatter gems across the water and save the people from invasion (or so the legend goes). Even today, the local fishermen claim to encounter sea creatures and attempt to placate them with offerings. The bay has the surreal quality of ancient Chinese and Vietnamese paintings-sheer limestone islets rise from aqua depths, dwarfing sampans and junks gliding silently past. Here sea and land come together to form one of the natural wonders of the world. Despite the threat of "here be dragons," the waters of Halong Bay are ideally suited for sea kayaking, the best way to explore this World Heritage Site. This is also a wonderful place for beginners to be introduced to this easy sport (expert guides will teach you all the requisite skills-it's easier than you think!). Silently and unobtrusively, you'll thread the maze of jagged isles to discover secret passages to hidden lagoons and magnificent sea caves (dragons' lairs?), some only accessible by kayak.

Sea kayakers of all skill levels, including beginners, are welcome, but bring along an expeditionary spirit and flexible attitude. A support boat accompanies us with a friendly crew (our Vietnamese cook is blessed with the ability to conjure up the most exquisite seafood meals) so you'll be well taken care of.

Activities

5 days moderate hiking; 2 days easy sea kayaking (no previous experience required); Moderate road travel

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Explore hill tribe villages, hike, and kayak in undiscovered Ba Be National Park - far from the crowds!
  • 4 days sea kayaking in the far reaches of Halong Bay that tourists don't see
  • Fantastic mix of culture, activity, interactions with locals, and overall immersion in Vietnam

Duration: 12 days Start Location: Hanoi End Location: Hanoi

Download Detailed Itinerary
Itinerary
  • 6uv_day_hanoi
    Day 1 : Hanoi

    Arrive in Hanoi in the afternoon.

  • Day 2 : Hanoi

    Hanoi city tour.

  • 6uv_day_lotus
    Day 3 : Hanoi - Vu Linh

    Drive to Thac Ba Lake and Lavievulinh.  Take an afternoon walk through villages and rice fields.

  • Day 4 : Vu Linh Trekking to Cau Buc Waterfalls

    Full day's trekking in a remote jungle area.

  • 6uv_day_marketladies
    Day 5 : Vu Linh - Ba Be National Park

    Travel to Ba Be National Park and begin your exploration of this unique eco-system and local ethnic groups.

  • 6uv_day_highlands
    Day 6 : Ba Be - Dau Dang Waterfall

    Take a boat trip to Dau Dang Waterfall and Puong Cave, then trek in a scenic valley.

  • Day 7 : Ba Be - Hanoi

    Further explore the lake, villages and surrounding area before your transfer back to Hanoi.

  • 6uv_day_marketboat
    Day 8 : Hanoi - Halong Bay

    Drive to Halong Bay and overnight aboard a traditional wooden boat near Ba Men Temple.

  • 6uv_day_halongpaddlers
    Days 9 - 10 : Halong Bay

    Kayak in Halong Bay.

  • Day 11 : Halong Bay - Hanoi

    Return to Hanoi.

  • Day 12 : Depart for home

    Depart for home.

Download Detailed Itinerary

DATES: Best time to go: March - April, October - November Departures: Private departures are available on the dates of your choice, pending availability. Call us for details.

PRICING:

2014/2015 Prices

$3,295 per person (4 or more passengers)
$4,095 per person (2-3 passengers)
$850 single supplement
$5,895 solo traveler

Rates quoted are per person, based on sharing double accommodations (except "solo traveler" cost).

If you prefer single accommodations, you must pay the Single Supplement Fee.

  • Boat accommodation

Properties shown are representative of the accommodations we use on this trip, may not be inclusive of all accommodations we use, and are subject to change.

Expert leadership is the key to an exciting, unforgettable experience. Our trips feature gifted leaders for whom leading trips is a true vocation. Besides showing you wonders you’d never find on your own, they make sure everything runs smoothly and safely without a hitch. They are knowledgeable about all aspects of your trip, and take great pleasure in sharing their insights with you. More than just guides, they positively elevate your experience by being teachers, companions, and the best of friends. You’ll be in good hands with them every step of the way.

photo credits: ©MTS Photo File



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Activity Ratings

Easy

Many activities are optional and involve fairly easy travel. Trips may include short hikes of two to three hours or optional walks at low elevations. Includes less demanding sea kayaking and river rafting trips with Class I-II rapids.

Moderate

More active trips involving hiking over moderate terrain, usually - but not always - with vehicle support and at elevations less than 10,000 feet, or trips with long hiking days, multiple sea kayaking days, wilderness camping, or other invigorating activity. On many trips, you can elect to skip a day's activity, depending on logistics. Includes more demanding sea kayaking trips and river rafting trips with Class III rapids.

Strenuous

Hiking and trekking over steeper or more rugged terrain or where elevations may exceed 10,000 feet - often several days in a row. Includes more demanding sea kayaking trips (4-5 hours paddling a day) and river rafting trips with Class IV-V rapids.

Ultimate Challenge!

Our most demanding trips: trekking over steep, rugged terrain at high elevations (no vehicle support) or with substantial altitude gains and losses; trips to remote, extreme wilderness; mountaineering trips. Includes our most demanding sea kayaking (5-7 hours paddling a day) and river rafting trips with Class IV-V rapids.

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1266 66th Street, Suite 4

Emeryville, California 94608

Toll Free:1-888-831-7526