Cycling Vietnam

14 days
from
1 645 €
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4.8 / 5 from 181 reviews >
Moderate
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Trip code: 
MOV
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Cycling
Min age:
16
Group size:
5–18

Enjoy the best of Vietnam on two wheels

This superb trip combines some of the best cycling routes in Vietnam with time to explore this beautiful country with its long coastline of broad, sandy beaches, shimmering paddy fields and mountains cloaked in forests. Our route takes us from the vibrant streets of Saigon northwards to the more conservative capital Hanoi. There is time to relax on a small tropical island as well as enjoy laid-back Hoi An with its wooden merchant houses, pagodas and bustling market. Finally, we take a cruise around the incredible seascape of Halong Bay with its limestone spires rising directly from the sea.

Highlights

  • Enjoy the best of Vietnam on two wheels
  • Eat mouth-watering cuisine
  • Crawl through the Cu Chi war tunnels
  • Relax in charming Hoi An
  • Cruise among the limestone formations of Halong Bay
  • Overnight on a tropical island

Key information

  • 11 nights comfortable hotels, 1 night boat, 1 night sleeper train
  • 9 days cycling (including 1 optional ride) with 90% vehicle support
  • Surfaces are nearly all good tarmac
  • The route is flat with the exception of Dalat and the Hai Van Pass
  • Group normally 5 to 18, plus local leaders

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 10 lunches, 1 dinner
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival & departure transfers
  • Local bike hire

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request - hotel nights only)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
+45 (0)70 12 03 03
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

8

Days of Cycling
Pace:

Moderate: 13-16km/8-10miles an hour

Terrain:

Low altitude; 100% tarmac

Day by day breakdown
Day 230.0km/18.0miles
Day 350.0km/31.0miles
Day 460.0km/37.0miles
Day 5100.0km/62.0miles
Day 790.0km/55.0miles
Day 850.0km/31.0miles
Day 1080.0km/49.0miles
Day 1125.0km/15.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Saigon
to
Hanoi
  • Day 1

    Start Saigon.

    Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), formerly known as Saigon, is an exciting and absorbing city where bicycles battle with lorries and temples stand defiantly alongside modern developments. Devastated by the Vietnam War, Saigon is now a bustling free market city where anything goes. The Ben Thanh Market and Notre Dame Cathedral are within easy walking distance from our hotel and are highly recommended.
    Comfortable Hotel

  • Day 2

    Transfer out of the city; cycle to the Cu Chi tunnels.

    This morning we drive out of the city, before riding to the Cu Chi Tunnels. This offers a great introduction to cycling in Vietnam and a chance to fine-tune the bikes. The tunnels were Viet Cong sanctuaries, used by the guerrillas as living quarters and escape routes, the network covers 3 levels and approximately 240kms of tunnels. Although originally very narrow some parts have been widened for tourists, but even so it is still necessary to crawl on hands and knees. Claustrophobes may prefer to stay outside in the sunshine! If you prefer not to visit the tunnels you can have an unguided free day in Saigon. Places of interest include: the Emperor of Jade and Giac Lam pagodas, the former Presidential Palace (now the Reunification Hall), Ben Thanh market and the War Remnants Museum. Cycle approx. 30km.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 3

    Drive towards the coast and cycle to Mui Ne.

    After an early breakfast we head out of Saigon by bus and start cycling towards Mui Ne on the coast. We spend approx 4-5 hours on the bus today. We hit the backroads and head through tropical fruit and rubber plantations also passing some small fishing villages as we make our way closer to the coast. We finish the ride in Mui Ne, a tranquil white sand beach where we can witness our first sunset over the South China Sea. Cycle approx. 50km.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 4

    Cycle to Dalat in the Central Highlands.

    We cycle towards Dalat; the route is undulating with occasional climbs. Along the way we pass coffee and tea plantations as well as flower gardens and pine forests as we reach higher altitude. We rejoin the bus before the road climbs steeply to the mountain town of Dalat. We spend approx 3.5 hours on the bus today. Dalat is a pleasant hill station, formerly known as Le Petit Paris, and has been described as the most beautiful town in Vietnam. It was favoured by the French for its climate, and is now a popular honeymoon resort for the Vietnamese. Cycle approx. 60km.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 5

    Cycle through Bidoup N.P.; to the coast and boat transfer to Whale Island.

    Today's ride is predominantly downhill through pine forests and paddy fields as we descend nearly 1,500m travelling through the Bidoup Ba National Park. This area is home to rare pine forests as well as small villages inhabited by the ethnic minority people of the central highlands. Once we arrive at the coast, we head by bus (approx. 1.5 hours) to the coast near Nha Trang before boarding a boat to our tropical island retreat of Whale Island for the next two nights. Cycle up to 100km according to preference.
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 6

    Cruise around islands with seafood lunch and snorkelling.

    Having a rest from the bikes today we get the opportunity to really relax and unwind. We will join a boat trip in the morning for a spot of snorkelling and swimming in the turquoise sea before a seafood lunch is served. In the afternoon there is the option to visit a local fishing village, see the Whale temple or walk around the island to the viewpoint for a 360 degree view of the stunning mountainous coastline and the surrounding coves and white sand beaches.
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 7

    Drive to beautiful Dai Lanh Beach; coastal ride to Quy Nhon.

    We set off early in the morning and ride to the beautiful fishing village of Dai Lanh. A short transfer out of town past the Po Nagar Cham towers brings us to a high point and from here today's ride is predominantly flat. The beautiful beach at Dai Lanh is a perfect place to stop for a swim (if road conditions and time permit) and lunch before continuing by bus around the spectacular coastal cliff road towards the town of Tuy Hoa and on to Quy Nhon. (Approx 4 hours in the bus today).Cycle up to 90km. according to preference.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 8

    Further coastal ride stopping en route at sand dunes; then transfer to Hoi An.

    Leaving Quy Nhon we travel through a new economic zone over the Thi Nai Peninsula and Nhon Hoi Bridge, the longest sea bridge in Vietnam. Getting off our bikes we will visit a market, where its not unusual to be pulled aside for a photo as this part of the country does not see many western tourists. The coast line features secluded bays, sand dunes and beaches with colourful fishing boats bobbing on the South China Sea. We will cycle until we arrive at Phu Ly and then drive to Hoi An. If time permits, we will cycle the last 12 km once we turn off Highway 1 into Hoi An.

    Hoi An, the original European trading port in Vietnam dating back to the mid-sixteenth Century is now a living museum, with attractive wooden merchant's houses and pagoda-style temples with Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and European architectural influences. It is also a marvellous place to wander around and enjoy the thriving riverside market. We spend two nights in Hoi An which is also a fantastic place to buy local art or have some clothes tailor-made for you. Its best to bring a picture or a sample of what you want made. Approx 6 hour in the bus today. Cycle approx. 50km.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 9

    Sightseeing in Hoi An; free afternoon.

    This morning we take a guided walking tour of Hoi An to explore some of the structures of historical significance in the Old Town, including bridges, temples, wells and houses. Those less interested in architecture can cycle the 5km to the lovely Cua Dai beach or cycle to the Marble Mountains, which are 19km from town. These five marble hills, formerly islands, contain many caves, some of which were used as Buddhist (and Vietcong) sanctuaries. Also nearby is China beach, a famous US R & R spot in the war, and Danang where there is a Cham Museum, which despite being in poor condition, is very interesting. It is also possible to visit My Son, one of the most important Cham temple sites in Vietnam where Cham kings were buried as early as the fourth century. Although wartime bombing has destroyed much of the site, there are a number of interesting stone towers and sanctuaries.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 10

    Ride over the spectacular Hai Van Pass; cycle and drive on to Hue.

    Today we turn north again for the drive/cycle to Hue. The route passes over the spectacular Hai Van Pass - the 'Pass of the Ocean Clouds'. The views are stunning though those who prefer to avoid the 580m climb can always take a lift in the support vehicle. Once at the top it will all seem worth it as you plummet back to the ocean, then continue through small villages and timeless rural scenes to the outskirts of Hue, from where we transfer to our city centre hotel. Approx 2.5 hours in the bus today. Cycle approx. 80km.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 11

    Explore Hue and surroundings by bike and boat; overnight train to Hanoi.

    Hue is often claimed to be the cultural and historic centre of Vietnam and there is plenty to see. We take a guided tour of the city and surrounding tombs. The most memorable site is the citadel, with walls six miles in length: inside are the palaces and halls of the Mandarins, and the remains of the Forbidden Purple City, where only the emperor and his eunuchs and concubines were allowed. Then we take a boat along the Perfume River to the elaborate tombs of the Nguyen emperors, who ruled Vietnam from Hue. Tu Duc's Tomb is very elaborate and set in beautiful gardens, along the way we will visit the famous Thien Mu Pagoda. The pagoda was a centre for anti-government protest in the early 1960s and it houses the Austin car that transported a monk, Thich Quang Duc, to Saigon in 1963 where he burned himself as a protest against the president. The photograph of his self-immolation was printed in newspapers all around the world. In the afternoon we will board the Reunification Express for the overnight ride to Hanoi, 600km to the north. Cycle approx. 25km.
    Overnight Train

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Arrive Hanoi; drive to Halong Bay; board boat and cruise/kayak among spectacular limestone formations.

    We usually arrive in Hanoi in the early morning and stop for a local breakfast and a stretch of the legs, before we are met by our bus for an approximately 4 hour drive to Halong Bay. This is one of the most stunningly beautiful sights in South East Asia with around 3000 limestone peaks rising directly from the clear emerald sea. We cruise amongst this amazing karst scenery, stopping to kayak in the sea allowing us to get to places inaccessible by boat (weather permitting) and enjoy a seafood lunch on board.
    Overnight Boat

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 13

    Return to Hanoi; city tour including the Temple of Literature, Hoa Lo Prison and the Old Quarter.

    We continue to cruise around Halong Bay this morning before returning to port. We then drive back to Hanoi, and take a sightseeing tour of the city: this will include visits to the Temple of Literature, Hoa Lo Prison and the Old Quarter of the city. This charming city contains many beautiful old buildings and the atmosphere is completely different from that in Saigon in the south, mainly due to the much more conservative nature of the North Vietnamese. Also, unlike its industrial counterpart, the centre of Hanoi has a faded charm with broad tree-lined avenues dating from the French period as well as some attractive lakes and pagodas. In the evening there is the option to enjoy a performance of Hanoi's famous water puppets.

    2018 itinerary

    Visit Me Cung cave and enjoy further time to cruise the many islands of Halong Bay. Return to Hanoi late afternoon. This charming city contains many beautiful old buildings and the atmosphere is completely different from that in Saigon in the south, mainly due to the much more conservative nature of the North Vietnamese. Also, unlike its industrial counterpart, the centre of Hanoi has a faded charm with broad tree-lined avenues dating from the French period as well as some attractive lakes and pagodas. In the evening there is the option to enjoy a performance of Hanoi's famous water puppets.

    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 14

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Extend Your Trip

Angkor Wat Extension (from Siem Reap)

Code: XOV

'Discovered' enmeshed in jungle in 1860, Angkor, the ancient capital of the powerful Khmer empire, is one of the finest archaeological sites in the world, and not one to be missed. Built between the 9th and 13th centuries, the wonderfully preserved sprawling complex of temples and palaces is on a par with any great monument of the world with magnificent towers, sculptures and bas‐reliefs. During this four-night extension you will also see all the key sites of Phnom Penh, a fascinating city undergoing a huge amount of change. You will travel between the sites in a private car or minibus, depending on how many people take part in the extension, accompanied by an English‐speaking local guide. In the evenings, you will be free to enjoy the town. This trip extension is offered before the start of the MOV trip so you can do it at the beginning and then fly to Vietnam to start the cycling trip. The detailed itinerary can be found here

Please ask your sales consultant for more details.

 

Essential Info

Visas

Vietnam

A visa is no longer needed for British, German, French, Spanish and Italian citizens travelling to Vietnam (for all purposes) for a period of up to 15 days, and on the basis of meeting all conditions prescribed by Vietnamese laws. The visa exemption period will end on 30 June 2018. All other nationalities require a visa to enter Vietnam and this must be obtained prior to departure. For further information see http://www.exodus.co.uk/assets/travelink/Vietnam.pdf or the FCO site and check under Vietnam / 'Entry Requirements'.

Vaccinations

Vietnam

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Polio, Typhoid, Hepatitis A and Diphtheria.
The risk of malaria is slight, but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 10 lunches and 1 dinner are included.

 

Thanks to Vietnams tropical climate, the long coast and the gigantic range of mountain, Vietnam is blessed with numerous varieties of culinary offerings and consequently maintains its reputation as one of the healthiest cuisines in the world that still packs a punch with delicious fresh and fiery flavours. Vietnamese food relies on fresh fish, vegetables, rice and a whole myriad of verdant herbs and spices; lemongrass, ginger, basil and lime all play an important role in the cuisine. The Chinese and French influence is felt throughout the country where you are just as likely to be offered a Banh Mi (stuffed baguette) as you are a hot steaming bowl of Pho (noodle soup). Each dish is prepared with the Asian principle of Wu Xing in mind (the five elements) meaning that the perfect combination of spicy, sour, bitter, salty and sweet is the ultimate aim. Be sure to also seek out the national beverages; Vietnamese coffee is served iced and sweet with condensed milk, a real sugar and caffeine hit, and beer hoi (local beer, brewed daily) is served on most street corners in the North out of large plastic jugs that are perfect for sharing.

Food is cheap in Vietnam and you can generally avoid the spicier food if you wish. Western food is readily available almost everywhere. Vegetarians are well catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests. Please note that in SE Asia the availability of certain specialised products for restricted diets, e.g. gluten-free or dairy-free, is minimal or non-existent and we strongly recommend you bring these specialized dietary items from home. You may find it beneficial to bring some 'cycling snacks' with you from home if you have high energy bars or gels that you like to use during a ride. For those who wish to contribute a kitty is normally arranged (see extra expenses) - fresh fruit, nuts, biscuits and local snacks are all provided from the snacking kitty along with soft drinks and even homemade lemonade if the season is right!

Weather

The weather will be hot and humid throughout with temperatures during the day usually between 28ºC and 34ºC. It is only a little cooler at night throughout most of the country.


There is quite a range of seasons between the north and the south: the south up to Hue has a distinct dry season between December to April and then a rainy season from May to November when it tends to come in short heavy bursts with bright sunshine in between.
Hanoi is cool in Autumn, and even gets chilly between November and February (with potential for drizzly rain). There is no ideal time to visit Vietnam; it is quite pleasant at any time of year, though due to the shape of the country it is unlikely that the weather will ever be perfect for the entire duration of any trip.

If you go to Cambodia for the Angkor Wat extension, the weather will be hot and humid all year round. The dry season is late October to May and the monsoon is normally between May and October; though there is an obvious transitional time between those settled periods. The dry season is as it sounds, with hot days and generally clear skies, though you can expect the odd shower.

The monsoon is characterised by short, sharp bursts of rain and is generally overcast all day though this does not detract from the enjoyment of the place; you just need to take an umbrella or buy a cheap local poncho!

Hanoi

Saigon

Is this trip for you?

This trip is classified Road.
Activity Level: 3 (Moderate).
9 days cycling (including 1 optional ride) average 70km/day (43 miles), 90% vehicle support.

Terrain and Route:
Surfaces are nearly all good tarmac. The route is flat with the exception of Dalat and the Hai Van Pass. Vietnam can be hot and humid, but rests and water are on hand. You should be comfortable riding in traffic on occasions. This is a busy trip but anyone not wanting to cycle all day can use the support vehicle.

Call for general departures:
+45 (0)70 12 03 03
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels, Boat & Sleeper Train

11 nights comfortable hotels, 1 night boat with twin share cabins, 1 night sleeper train, soft-bed berths. The accommodation on this trip is mostly in good quality hotels (mostly 3-4 star), all nights are en-suite except the train.
During this trip we spend one night on the sleeper train this being the best way to travel long distances with the locals; the journey between Hue and Hanoi is quite comfortable although despite being first class, it is still quite basic. You will be in a 4 man cabin, (occasionally 6 depending on season) and bedding is provided, although some travellers prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet. On occasion, passengers of different genders will be required to share a compartment and there will be occasions where you'll be sharing with local people who are not part of your group. Most trains have a dining carriage but people generally stock up on snacks before the journey.
In Halong Bay on the boat we stay in en-suite twin cabins (with bedding) but many prefer to sleep on deck under the stars.

Our overnight spot on Whale Island is regarded as an absolute highlight for many however it is basic. You will stay in bamboo thatched bungalows each with mosquito nets, fans and en-suite bathrooms. The simplicity of island life and this overnight spot really makes it idyllic but you should be prepared for it to be a bit different to the hotels used for the rest of the trip. 

Tet Holiday Period (Vietnamese New Year)
During the Tet holiday period, 28 January-2 February 2017, and two weeks either side of Tet our itinerary is subject to minor change as despite booking hotels and trains in advance, rooms and seats are difficult to obtain during this busy festive period when people are travelling home to celebrate with their families. It is unlikely that changes will occur and if they do it is likely we will just need to use alternative accommodation.

Call for general departures:
+45 (0)70 12 03 03
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
+45 (0)70 12 03 03
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed December 2017
    Pamela Woodward

    cycling vietnam

    We were "blown away" over and over again on the trip. Our guide Lam and the support team were beyond excellent. They seemed to know what we needed before we did. Everything was done with a smile and a positive attitude. Over and over again they were checking our bikes and gear. I am so very very impressed with them!!! The weather was hot hot hot in some places and torrential rains in other places. Luckily, no wind. I am coming off from a previous biking injury (broken back and sacrum) and am also taking medication that inhibits my physical ability so I usually finished towards or at the end of the group. I also was not able to finish the Pass however, the guides made every effort to help me out and let me ride in the bus when needed--with no frowns given. The bike rides down the two passes were amazing and had me shouting with joy. The food--excellent. The places Lam had chosen for us to eat were safe for our foreign stomachs as well as being traditional Vietnamese food and good as well. The mid ride refreshments perfect--and often. I have such a positive feel for this trip and the excellent guides. I have been fortunate to have been on several trips with 3 extended biking trips and this trip with the guides, scenery, cycling route... was one of the best.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The day I completed the 95 KM day. I have some physical deterrents so I was super excited that in spite of them, I was able to do it. Also, the descent from the two passes. Wow, what a ride! Also, the almost comical riding in the torrential rains with a smile on our faces. The continual "Hello" from the children. We, being from the US did not know how we would be received and the positive attitude and embracing by the Vietnamese was a lesson as well as a humbling experience.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Lam, our leader---oh my gosh! Excellent. Like I mentioned, I have been on several guided trips and Lam was one of the best I have experienced. Lam was accompanied by 3 others--Tang, Long, and Y. They anticipated what we would need before we even knew we needed things. They worked so well together. What a team.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The weather can be extremely hot as well as humid. I don't think, unless you live in similar weather systems, that you can fully prepare for that. Train and do what you can to prepare but even if you cannot do the hills and passes, you can still be a part of the adventure. If having to ride in the bus once or twice gets you to experience this adventure, then "just do it". As I get older, I realize that I do not have to be first but to be part of it is so fulfilling.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The only hesitation I had with the trip was that there seemed to be several on the trip that were in extremely good cycling condition. They seemed to want to push the pace and wanted to be first or near it. Since this was my first time in Vietnam, I wanted to experience the countryside and it's people and stop to take photos, or marvel at something I saw or stop and go back to take a photo when I passed a school with young students and everyone of them called out "Hello" to me. Lam, our main guide kept stressing that this was a holiday but I felt that if I stopped to take the photos I wanted, I would keep the others back. This was a frustration. This was not Lam's doing but more the pressure from many of the other cyclists. I can do the push push push here at home with just concentrating on the road in front of me and seeing how hard I can cycle but in a new country, I want to experience that country--not the push. I don't know what to suggest to change this... one of the extremely fit cyclists would turn around and redo some of it. Perhaps this could be something suggested in situations like this. ???
  • Reviewed December 2017
    Gudrun Meisl

    Highlights of vietnam

    A fun way to see a lot of vietnam

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Some great downhill, giggling children wherever you say hello

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Danh was great fun and worked very hard to make this an enjoyable trip. I would have never tried egg coffee otherwise

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It's a very busy itinerary. There is hardly any time to see Saigon. If you can, book an extra day or too before and after the trip. The bikes are good but bringing your own saddle is worth considering. The traffic can look scary but drivers are very respectful. Don't hesitate or break and everything will flow around you.
  • Reviewed December 2017
    Tony Glaser

    A great trip

    A great trip overall, which I would recommend. The itinerary was good, the hotels (with 1 exception) were really good, the trip leader (Le Long) was fantastic, the bikes and support team were good, the food was good, and Vietnam is very interesting. However the itinerary is very busy - although some down time is built in, there were lots of early mornings, and a lot of cycling time (good) and bus time (not so good), so there was not as much time for sightseeing and soaking up culture etc. as I would have liked - we rode past a few places I would love to have stopped an spent time exploring. There would be no solution to this other than making the trip a couple of days longer - so I am not complaining at all, just noting the reality - this is the only reason I give it 4 rather than 5 stars - 4½ would be more appropriate

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The long downhill ride on the 5th day. I loved riding through the markets and town of Dalat

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Absolutely fantastic - simultaneously very efficient and the life and soul of the party!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You might need a few days off after all this activity - especially if you are prone to jet lag problems if you are traveling from the UK or the US. I would also suggest getting to Ho Chi Minh City a day or two before the trip starts, to get over jet lag and also to explore the town a bit (there is no time for this in the trip itself) - I would recommend a back-of-the-motorbike city tour, the War Remnants Museum, the cocktail bar at the top of Bitexco Tower, among other. Vietnamese city traffic (mainly motorbikes) looks absolutely scary, but is not at all - all the motorbikes just flow around you like a school of fish, and the (relatively few) cars and trucks are very aware of 2-wheeled traffic and respectful. Everyone is friendly

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    One of our overnight destinations was destroyed by the typhoon that came 2 weeks before our trip - Exodus handled this very well and the alternative accommodation was great
  • Reviewed November 2017
    jill baker

    Fabulous cycle tour and bus, train, boat journeys across Vietnam from S to N.

    Overall, the trip deserves 10/10. Everything was great: the country, the scenery, the people, the weather, the group, the organisation, the guide and the support team. Danh, our guide, gets a special mention for his excellent and informative leadership.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Highlights - Cu Chi tunnels, Hoi An, Halong Bay and cycling through some of the rural landscapes - rice fields, dense vegetation, water buffalo, and the villages with local markets. The war museums in HCMC & Hanoi were poignant and at times disturbing, they were also heartening, and to me were an essential part of a visit of Vietnam.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Danh, the Happy Buddha, was an excellent guide/leader. On some trips the guide just steers the ship and perhaps does so quietly in the background, only there when needed. Not on this trip. This was very much Danh's tour. He was very informative in history and culture. He provided lots of advice for places to eat and his recommendations never disappointed. They were not the cheapest but they were good. He ran a kitty his way, which being a generous kitty, was able to supply some nice surprises (no spoilers). He explained everything we needed to know, daily. However, we were a large group of 18no, and sometimes it was difficult to hear in the bus with his rapid delivery, his accent and the background noise. Danh and the support team (total 4no) looked after us as cyclists very well indeed, by seeing us safely across junctions, servicing the bikes, and providing frequent drink & snack stops. Danh really did improve my overall Vietnam experience.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The cycling was mainly flat with only a couple of days with ascents. I wondered how I would cope cycling in the heat (max 37deg) and high humidity but I'm pleased to say that whilst you're moving on the bike it is very pleasant. As soon as you stop, you're seeking the shade. The animals, often found meandering on the road...cows, water buffalo, dogs...all seemed very content and chilled. I didn't have the rabies jab before travelling and this was never a worry. If you like fresh seafood, spicy food, fruit and veg, strong smooth coffee, you'll love the local restaurants, cafes and street food. Freshly prepared eggs for breakfast. Every meal was a joy. It is generally a very cheap country to eat and drink...though as anywhere that depends where you go. We paid up to 120,000Dong (£4) for a can of beer in HCMC and we also paid 4,000Dong (8p) for a glass of fresh beer in Hoi An. And the fresh beer was the nicest! Oh yes, the overnight train is an experience, and more comfortable than you might imagine. MOV - get it booked, you'll love it.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Very minor things which could be improved. The private bus was designed for local people, not the larger westerner, so many of us found the seats a little uncomfortable. A whole day was spent in Hue before the overnight train and whilst the visit to the temple/citadel was interesting it was tough going. An option to cycle in Hue would have been good or less time in Hue if the programme could be rejigged. I would have happily spent longer in Hoi An, a magical place. There is little time in either city at the start/finish of the trip but it would be difficult to cram any more into the already fast paced agenda. I added a couple of extra days at each end to explore the cities (HCMC & Hanoi) and I'm glad I did. I also managed a Mekong Delta tour before the Exodus tour started, which I'd recommend.
  • Reviewed October 2017
    Hugh Price

    What an amazing holiday

    Brilliantly lead, excellent fellow travellers and a very full and varied itinary. Probably the best of many great Exodus holidays...so far.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The fact there were so many speaks volumes, nbut the 34km downhill definitely was one of the best

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Extraordinarily good. Nothing was too much and he never faltered. Without doubt the best of many good leaders.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Its hot and it is humid so nothing dries. The humidity can really limit your physical ability, certainly around mid day, but there is always the support vehicle to jump into.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This holiday was a lot of fun and passed in a flash. We all had an absolute ball and acted as one big family. A real joy.
  • Reviewed September 2017
    Tricia Arbon

    Great fun, great memories

    I booked this trip after reading positive reviews on the Exodus website. From booking and right through this trip I have nothing but positive things to say. Our guide Chi and his team were first class. Nothing was too much trouble. We were a small group of 13 and I can say that we all became friends along the way. Accomodation was good, food was excellent and our guide gave us some great evening meal recommendations. I was a solo female traveller and never felt alone the whole trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We all made it up Hai Van Pass and great effort by 2 who thought they might not make it. Dancing at a petrol station. [You had to be there] Halong Bay. Amazing

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Chi was excellent. Nothing was too much trouble.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is a busy trip so be prepared.
  • Reviewed June 2017
    Tammy Grey

    Ms

    The customer service before departure was excellent, the organisation from start to finish was excellent, the accommodation was better than expected, the group leader was excellent, the itinerary was excellent. As a solo female traveller I felt completely comfortable with the rest of the group whether they were traveling alone, with friends or with partners. The mix of activities, geographical locations, sights, sounds, terrain and communities left you feeling like you had experienced and encountered Vietnam, its history, its people and its landscape.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    For me there were many inspirational moments on this trip. these centred around the group members coxing, motivating, encouraging and supporting others to achieve their goals, this was particularly evident when two members became slightly unwell but were determined to continue with the cycling.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The Group leader was excellent. His passion for his job was evident in everything he did. He created an environment which allowed everyone to participate according to their own skill, ability and desire. No one was left behind or left feeling like they were moving too fast or too slowly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    For a trip like this it is important to accept that other cultures have a very different relationship with their environment, each other, their food and how they view health and safety. If you are someone that embraces difference, loves cycling, and desires authenticity when traveling, then this holiday could be for you.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I am looking forward to being able to book my next holiday with Exodus. In the meantime I am recommending Exodus to all my friends.
  • Reviewed May 2017
    Roy Firth

    Best Way to See Vietnam!!!

    We had an absolute blast on our recent cycling tour of Vietnam! We had a great group with diverse and interesting backgrounds with a common love of cycling and touring. Great weather (albeit a tad on the warm side), great food, enjoyable cycling, an excellent leader and team..... and a lot of good laughs! An absolutely fantastic way to see Vietnam, both the scenery as well as how the people live.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    To me the Vietnamese people were a wonder. Industrious, friendly, enthusiastic! They have overcome many obstacles over the past 50 years or so and are moving forward rapidly! The country is incredibly beautiful and lush and a pleasure to cycle through.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Long was and excellent leader for the group. A font of information about his country! Very knowledgeable about agriculture, industry, history, cuisine and just about any other topic we raised. His organizational skills were great and he looked after all of the details and requests made of him! And a great sense of humour too! Bravo all in!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    A few long stretches on the bus but nicely broken up and still a great way to see the country. Don't get sun burned! Be prepared for the heat. But don't be hesitant to book! Great food, great people.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is an excellent program from just about every angle.
  • Reviewed May 2017
    S Nunn

    Cycling Vietnam

    What a fantastic trip. Cycling Vietnam was a great way to see an amazing country with its stunning scenery and really friendly people. Our tour leader Long was superb throughout with excellent organisation and support from this team.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Every day brought new experiences and sights from the busy streets of Ho Chi Min to the quite backwaters and fishing villages we cycled through. Hoi An was a great location for a stop over.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Long was a great tour leader. His organisation was excellent and he was very knowledgeable about Vietnam and the areas we travelled through. Great sense of humour and worked well with his support team ensuring that during the cycling days we were frequently fed and watered.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is a great way to see Vietnam. Accommodation was good throughout and no safety concerns at all. The cycling was rated as moderate, but in reality was verging on easy and the only challenging part (if you wanted it to be) was Hoi Van Pass. Be prepared for some long stints in the coach though......

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    An amazing must do trip, made even better by a great group of fellow travellers and the leadership of Long.
  • Reviewed April 2017
    John Bannister

    Cycling Vietnam April 2017

    One of the best holidays I have had, although very hot at times for cycling, best when we were on the move. The scenery is wonderful and great to see it from the bike. Bikes were of a good standard, but take your own saddle and pedals if you can.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The descent from the stop after Dalat, scenery was awesome, the climb and descent on Hai Van Quan was impresive, very hot and most of the group made it - impressive.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Thang was excellent, worked hard to ensure everyone got a lot out of the holiday.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take your own saddle and pedals. Do not get sun burn snorkling on Whale Island. The insects were not nearlr as bad as we expected.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Brilliant, Thank you.

Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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