Water Puppet Tours

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With its numerous national parks, white sand beaches, colourful villages, pagodas and ancient monuments, forests and islands, Vietnam is a land of often surprising beauty, offering cultural depth and history, increasingly combined with tourism-friendly areas offering all the facilities a modern traveller could wish for.

Vietnam’s people are its greatest asset: gregarious, friendly and eager to meet visitors. In the bustling cities, the often chaotic streets contrast ox carts with limousines, ancient rituals with sophisticated technology, and are ruled by the ubiquitous moped.

Our strength is in translating these opportunities into detailed, practical itineraries. We do luxury travel and event planning, as well as a wide range of beach, family, honeymoon, adventure, golf, veteran and cultural tours.

There is no better way to experience a destination than through the perspective of the local people. At Water Puppet Tours, this key element of local insight drives every step of our process of tour design and delivery. We provide tailor-made tours individually crafted for each client, achieving this by emphasizing the direct working relationship between the client and the tour designer and operator.


Travel Style

Travel Destination

Cycling From Delta to the Sea 15 Days

This trip will bring you to the best destinations for adventure sports in Southern Vietnam. From bustling Saigon to vibrant Mekong Delta, the colorful floating market, from lush Cat Tien National Park to beautiful the sea city of Nha Trang. You will have a best experience!

Day 1: Ho Chi Minh City arrival (Dinner, Guide)

Arriving at Tan Son Nhat airport in Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll be met and driven to your hotel. You’ll have time to relax after your journey before a Welcome dinner. In the evening, you’ll have tickets for a performance of traditional Water Puppetry (an art form unique to northern Vietnam, and a good, light-hearted introduction to its rural culture). You’ll spend the night in Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 2: Cycling to Cu Chi Tunnels and Cai Be (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Biking distance: 30-40 km (Can be adjusted to your fitness)

After breakfast, your guide will take you out of the crowded area. You’ll then mount your bike and start a 30 km ride through the countryside to see how rural people live and work. You’ll have opportunity to view occupations such as cashew nut farming, duck breeding, rice farming and production of rice paper, a key ingredient in Vietnamese cuisine. you will enjoy a scenic drive through idyllic paddy flatlands and countryside. Arrive to Cu Chi tunnels for a fascinating guided tour of this amazing three-floor labyrinth of underground passages stretching a staggering 250kilometres from Saigon to the Cambodian border. The network included innumerable trap doors, specially constructed living areas, storage facilities, weapons factories, field hospitals, command centers and kitchens. Today the remaining tunnels have become a major tourist attraction giving the visitor a unique experience and a feel of what underground life in war was like. After the visit Cu Chi tunnels, you will head to Cai Be by going through the countryside areas. On arrival to Cai Be, you will be riding a boat trip to cross the mighty Mekong River to a village in a tiny island where you will have a memorable homestay at night. You will spend the night in Cai Be.

Day 3: Cai Be - Vinh Long - Can Tho (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Biking distance: Approx 60 km (Can be adjusted to your fitness)

After breakfast at homestay, you will then embark a sampan to visit busting Cai Be floating market and then you will stop at local factories where you will watch the local people making candies, rice paper. You boat will disembark in Vinh Long and then you will head for Can Tho by our support vehicle. You will spend the night in Can Tho.

Day 4: Can Tho – Ho Chi Minh City (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

Biking distance: ~ 20 km (Can be adjusted to your fitness)

Depart from the Hotel jetty on a traditional boat with bicycles. You will then cross the Hau River, cruising on Cai Von canal and stop over for the visit of an incense making community. Continuing by boat you will arrive at a tiny village. Finally, you will start biking through the lush countryside. It's really a big challenge on the rough trails and dikes along immense rice fields. This trip brings you a great experience with a lot of rustic charms and the simplicity of farmers' life such as funny monkey bridges, water buffalos, duck keepers, fishermen and more. Then you will be back to Ho Chi Minh City by car where you will spend the night.

Day 6: Ho Chi Minh City – Nam Cat Tien National Park (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Guide)

After breakfast, your guide and driver will take you to Cat Tien National Park, about 150 kilometers or a 3 ½ hour drive. Then you will check into the park and have lunch at Cat Tien National Park Restaurant. In the afternoon, you will take a jungle trek (8 kilometers) to see the abundant fauna and flora in the Park or bird watching option if you’re a professional birder. The best bird watching guide in Southern Vietnam works at Cat Tien.

After dinner, an hour jeep night cruise into the forest for the wild life spotting. You’ll be equipped a good pair of binoculars to see monkeys, deer and other small mammals. You’ll stay overnight in the guesthouse in the centre of the park.

About 150km from Ho Chi Minh City, Nam Cat Tien is one of Vietnam’s largest protected areas – a complicated network of wetlands and tropical forest nearly 74,000 hectares in two sections bisected by a river, the larger about fifty or sixty kilometres across in both directions. Its bio-diversity is considerable with over fifty endangered species listed in the ‘Red Book’ including the Javan Rhinoceros, the Siamese Crocodile and the Indochina Tiger. Of particular interest is its large bird population – well over three hundred species have been identified so far.

There are several trails through the forest. Although they avoid the deeper areas that are the habitat of the rarer species, they are well designed and offer good opportunities to see a wide range of flora and fauna. The best time to visit Nam Cat Tien National Park is the dry season from December to late May.

Day 7: Nam Cat Tien - Dalat (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

After breakfast, you will take the morning jungle trek out to Bau Sau (Crocodile Lake) and back (10 kilometers). You will have lunch in the park before departure to Dalat. You will enjoy the breathtaking scenery along the way with coffee and tea plantations, jungle blanketed valleys and pine forested hills (250 km or 4 hr drive).You will then check in to hotel and dinner at one of the great Dalat cafes and back to hotel for a good night's rest before next day's adventure.

Day 8: Trekking around Dalat (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

After a sustaining breakfast and a drive from Dalat to Tiger Falls, you’ll begin hiking down a succession of waterfalls. The first section of the trail takes you through steep-sided pine forest heading downhill to Lang Bian River. By the time you arrive, you’ll probably be ready for a rest break beside of the falls and if you wish, a cooling splash in the water. A further 1½ hour mainly following the river reveals human activities in the form of coffee plantations and suspension bridges. The land is farmed by the K’oho and their sub-groups, the Lat and the Chil people. Together, they make up the largest ethnic minority population in the area

From there, we hike uphill to a viewpoint offering a panorama of the valley below with lunch and a rest on the mountaintop. Then it’s downwards for a while before climbing upwards to the neighbouring peaks to a remote village accessible only by foot. It’s a good example of the privations and benefits of the lives of isolated rural minority peoples, their homes, work and culture.

After a hike through the rolling hills, another waterfall and several small market gardens you’ll see Tiger Falls in the distance. Then it’s a well-earned rest in the car as you return to Dalat!

Please note that this is a six-hour trek along a rugged trail demanding plenty of physical strength and stamina. However, the exceptional alpine scenery makes the trek well worth the effort. The area was first documented in 1893 by Dr. Alexander Yersin, a student of Louis Pasteur and a revered figure in Vietnam. His wanderings in the area and his love for the area led him to establish the hill-station that is now Dalat

Alternative for Day 8: Dalat City tour from the back of a motorbike (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

Today will be devoted to Dalat and its surroundings. The city is quite compact, but its hinterland extends well beyond, so we suggest a tour on the back of a motorbike. You’ll visit the Linh Phuoc Pagoda and an embroidery workshop in an attractive garden setting. Alternatively, you could visit Dalat’s railway station instead of the embroidery workshop. After lunch, Emperor Bao Dai’s Summer Palace, the Crazy House and Dalat market are on the itinerary. The day will end at a café at about 4.00 p.m.

Day 9: Dalat - Lak Lake (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Guide)

After breakfast, you will leave Dalat for Lak Lake. On the way, you will visit a silk worm farm, chop stick maker, and a coffee farm then you will have lunch at a local restaurant next to Krongno Bridge. Arrive in Jun village, a M'nong ethnic minority village next to Lak Lake by 2 pm then you cross Lak Lake by dugout canoe (pirogues), trek through area villages on the far side of the lake before returning by pirogues. You will sleep in long house.

Day 10: Lak Lake - Yok Don National Park – Buon Ma Thuot (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Guide)

You will leave Lak Lake for Yok Don National Park in the morning after breakfast then stop at Drayling - the confluence of seven rivers - for sightseeing. In Yok Don Park, you will visit the old house of the elephant hunting king. You will have a change to ride on an Elephant in Yok Don. You will then drive to Buon Me Thuot in the afternoon and enjoy dinner. You will stay overnight in Buon Me Thuot.

Day 11: Buon Ma Thuot (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

Today, there are some interesting things to do this morning. You will visit the Ethnology Museum where you can see many things come from the daily life of ethnic minorities in Vietnam such as: clothes, cultivated tools, musical instruments… After that, you will continue on to Khai Doan Pagoda, the last one of Nguyen Dynasty in the Central Highlands. The architecture of this pagoda is mixed between long house-on-stilts of Ede group and traditional house in Hue. Visit Buon Ma Thuot’s bustling regional market where you can buy some souvenirs before coming back to your hotel to stay overnight.

Day 12: Buon Ma Thuot - Nha Trang (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

Biking distance: Approx 80km of 190 km

After having breakfast at hotel, you will start cycling from the hotel down to the coastal city of Nha Trang. The ride is mixed of ups and downs throughout the day. Stop on the way to break and relax before heading downhill to Ninh Hoa where you will be transferred by your support vehicle to Nha Trang. You will check-in hotel and rest of the day at your own leisure. You will spend the night in Nha Trang.

Day 13: Full day private boat trip in Nha Trang (B, L, G)

After breakfast, a car will take you to board a boat for a whole-day cruise to some of the small islands in the bay. You’ll anchor off Mun Island for snorkelling and a glass bottom basket boat ride to see colourful corals and the various marine life. You’ll then head to Mieu Island to enjoy a local basket boat ride and explore the life of fishermen at Mieu fishing village. If you wish, you can join other tourists for the ‘music entertainment’ with a wine and fruit party, followed by a seafood lunch on Tre Island. In late afternoon, you’ll return to the mainland and be driven to your hotel. You’ll spend the night in Nha Trang.

You’ll cruise on a private boat with Vietnamese crew members who will highlight the beauty of Nha Trang Bay. En route, plenty of wine and tropical fruits are available. The coral around Mun Island is good, provided you swim away from the area where the boats tie up.

Day 14: Cycling through rural villages around Nha Trang (Breakfast, Lunch, Guide)

After breakfast, you’ll mount a mountain bike to cycle across the countryside around Nha Trang City stopping off at several villages, a working brick kiln and a good example of typical 19th century Vietnamese architecture, en-route. You’ll meet the local people and gain an insight into their rural lifestyle and how they earn a living. Your journey will take you through rice fields worked by farmers and water buffalos, as well as visiting hamlets producing rice paper, conical hats, woven rice-stalk mats and charcoal stoves. Lunch will be at a riverside restaurant. You will spend the night in Nha Trang.

Day 15: Nha Trang - Ho Chi Minh City. (Breakfast, Guide)

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 in good time to connect with your international departure flight.

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.
  • Domestic flight tickets: Nha Trang – Ho Chi Minh City, including domestic airport taxes.
  • Road travel in an appropriate private vehicle for transfer and back up when cycling as itinerary (supplement luggage van to carry bike and baggage).
  • The services of experienced English-speaking guides as indicated in the itinerary.
  • Where necessary, entry fees for all visits as mentioned in the programme.
  • Lunches and dinners, as specified, in the best local restaurants, picnics where suitable restaurants are not available.
  • Good quality touring cycles for all cycling days in the programme.
  • Drinking water for cycling days as itinerary.
  • Snack, soft drink and local fruits for cycling days.
  • Simple first aid kit.
  • VAT and other taxes.

Our prices exclude:

  • International flight tickets and airport tax.
  • Lunches and dinners, except as specified above.
  • Drinks, gratuities and personal expenses.
  • Insurance
  • Surcharges for peak season (if any)
  • Compulsory meals (if any)

 

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