Vietnam Zen and Spa - 11 days



OVERVIEW

Vietnam is a country that is constantly on the move but you can enjoy the calmer side of life with Vietnam Zen and Spa. This trip will take you through many of Vietnam´s premier tourist destinations but will focus on refreshing the body, mind and soul. Explore the various forms of Vietnamese Buddhism, savor the taste of the traditional vegetarian cuisine, and relax with traditional massage, Yoga and Tai Chi.

HIGHT LIGHTS


- Different experiences of Meditation & Yoga Retreat
- Practise your favourite wellness activities with friendly local experts
- Have yourselves pampered with amazing Vietnamese traditional health treatments 
- Visit the most highlights of Vietnam, and meet with friendly people along the country
- Experience excellent cuisine of Vietnam
 

 

DETAILED ITINERARY
 
DAY 1: HANOI – ARRIVAL

Upon arrival at Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi, you are welcomed by our guide and transferred to the city (45 minutes). Transfer to your hotel for check-in. Overnight in Hanoi.
 
DAY 2: HANOI – CITY TOUR (B/L)

For early risers: Practice Meditation at an ancient temple. The session is daily scheduled in the late afternoon as a part of local living and instructed by a Vietnamese Yoga master. Morning Yoga Session can be arranged upon request. After the morning class, stroll downtown and join in locals who gather for Tai Chi every morning around the lakesides in the city. It is magnificent city sight to witness and an even more magical experience to participate in this graceful practice. Back to your hotel for breakfast or try one of our typical breakfasts at a street-stall.
After breakfast, stroll down to a fresh and wet market where a huge variety of fresh products are bought and sold every day- a fundamental part of Vietnamese culture. Next, we visit the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology which successfully presents the recognition of Vietnam as a multi-ethnic country and promotes socio-cultural diversity. Continue to the Temple of Literature back to the center. It was constructed in 1070 under Ly Thanh Tong’s dynasty, first to honor Confucius and now to celebrate the doctorates and high-ranking scholars of Vietnam.

Lunch at KOTO (refer to Know One Teach One philosophy) to support street and disadvantaged youth in Vietnam.
 
In the afternoon, indulge yourself with a 120 minutes Health care & massage package at Sen Garden Health Care Center. 
Local therapeutic massages at Sen Garden is a signature product that combines Vietnamese unmatched methodology of natural (medicine-free) healthcare, which is crystallized from 25 years of experience, with our unique initiative in delivering a true experience of Hanoi’s traditional culture to clients.
The package inclusive of:
Step 1: Take a warm shower
Step 2: Soak body in herbal wooden basin
Step 3: Private Jacuzzi with herbal water
Step 4: Traditional Sauna and steam bath
Step 5: Make body warm up with herbal water
Step 6: Relax and enjoy amazing Body massage treatment by professional therapist (90minutes).
Step 7: Enjoy a healthy light meal at La Sen Restaurant.
Note: All treatments in Private VIP room.
Overnight in Hanoi
 

 
DAY 3: HA NOI – HA LONG BAY (B/L/D)

Take a 3.5-hour drive to Ha Long Bay, a World Wonder of nature. You will go through the provinces of Bac Ninh and Hai Duong before reaching Quang Ninh Province where Ha Long Bay is located.
Spending a night aboard a junk is the ideal way to see Ha Long Bay, a World Natural Wonder and UNESCO site. From the comfort of the cruise, the mystical scenery of Ha Long Bay, with thousands of limestone islands jutting out from the emerald waters and colorful floating villages, can be truly enjoyed.
In the evening enjoy dinner on board.
 
DAY 4:  HA LONG – BAT TRANG –  HANOI – FLY TO HUE (B/L)

Awake early and join the Tai Chi session on the sundeck or enjoy the breath-taking views of the bay while the boat cruises leisurely in Halong Bay.
Cave excursion after breakfast. Then go back to your cabin for freshen up and check out of your room. Enjoy brunch on board while cruising toward the pier, and disembarking around noon. Your guide and driver await to bring you back to airport in Ha Noi.
One the back, take a stop at Bat Trang pottery village. Upon arrival, visit a local pagoda in the tranquil area the village. Met up with the master monk who will bless you with a Buddha Blessing Ceremony, and you will get to know about the daily life of the monks in Vietnam as such their stories.
You can also take this chance to practice meditation with the monk to relax your mind. Praying for our good luck then you are invited to join a simple vegan meal at the pagoda.
Next, we walk around this village, stop to visit some workshops or individual factories to know how the local people produce the pottery products by traditional way in the old time and how it’s developed as nowadays.
Following, the last visit is to the Ceramic market where plenty of pottery products are selling.
Continue transferring to Noi Bai Airport for flight to Hue.
 
Located on the bank of Song Huong- Perfume River, Hue, the capital of Thua Thien Hue province in Central Vietnam, is 700 km south of Hanoi, 1100km north of Ho Chi Minh City, and only a few miles from the sea. Until 1945 Hue was the national capital, the political, cultural and religious center of Vietnam under the control of Nguyen Dynasty. Most well-known for its historic values, Hue had been recognized as one of the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.
Be met by our guide at airport and go to your hotel for overnight.
DAY 5: HUE – SPIRITUAL RETREAT IN THE ZEN HOUSE (B/L)

The day gives you three unforgettable experiences at a very special place in Hue Ancient City. Please prepare yourself in good mood to enjoy every moment. 
Section 1: Morning Spiritual Retreat
Meditation is a special method for familiarizing our mind with positivity, or virtue. Get your mind peace, calm and free from stress.
In the early morning, our driver takes you to the Zen House, have 15 minutes discussing about meditation with the founder of the Zen House. Take 45 minutes medication practice. Then, cool up your body with a cup of tea and ginger-jam, and relax.

Section 2: Explore Vegetarian Cuisine of the Zen House
Take a stroll around and listening about “Nha Ruong”, a typical architectural house in Hue city and of the spiritual meaning of the Zen House complex. To honor Vietnamese cultural and historical values at this architectural house of Hue, experiencing the traditional living environment, way of life and spiritually connected cuisine of Hue.
Your host will guide you to make 2 vegetarian dishes from the set menu of 6.  You will learn how to fold the napkin and set up the table, Vietnamese’s style.
Enjoy a short guidance in how to meditate before, during and after the vegetarian meal (10mins).
Enjoy healthy vegetarian lunch, then keep your body and soul relaxed.
 

Section 3: Taichi Practice
After relaxing for a while, Tai Chi class with the lesson of “12 lotus flowers” started under the Zen House demonstrator.
Enjoy “Gao Lut” tea and dried Ginger, Hue style before bidding farewell to the lovely people at the Zen House.
Overnight stay in Hue.
 
DAY 6: HUE – IMPERIAL CITADEL (B)
 
In the morning, explore the most known of Hue, the Imperial Citadel where Kings of Vietnam’s last feudal dynasty ruled from 1802 to 1945, including Flag Tower, Nine Holy Cannons, Ngo Mon Gate, Thai Hoa Palace, Nine Dynastic Urns, Forbidden Purple City.
The Cultural tour today also includes a boat trip along the peaceful Perfume River, to visit Thien Mu Pagoda which is also home to many young people who want to try out and learn from life as a monk. History of the Pagoda dating back from the year 1601.
Your free time for leisure at hotel or spa service (not included)
Overnight stay in Hue.
 
DAY 7: HUE – HOI AN (B)

Leisure time until transfer to Hoi An through the breathtaking Hai Van pass and Lang Co beach.
Upon arrival in Hoi An, check in your hotel for overnight stay.
 
Optional Yoga session on the Rice Field with Sunset view
75 minutes Ashtanga Yoga session at Sunset on the rice field to get you energized while building strength & flexibility.
Inclusions: Private transfer by car with driver only, private yoga session with English speaking Yoga Guru, Yoga mat
Recommend times:
Feb-Apr: 16:45-18:00
May-Sept: 17:00-18:15
Oct-Jan: 16:30-17:45
 
DAY 8: HOI AN (B)

Free day at leisure.
Overnight stay in Hoi An
 
Optional Yoga session on the beach with Sunrise view
Early get up and transfer to An Bang Beach for 75 minutes Hatha Yoga session at Sunrise on the beach. It is a perfect start for your day.
Inclusions: Private transfer by car with driver only, private yoga session with English speaking Yoga Guru, Yoga mat
Recommend times:
Feb-Apr:  06:00-07:15 
May-Sept: 05:30-06:45 
Oct-Jan: 06:30-07:15 
 
Day 9: HOI AN – DANANG  –  FLY TO HO CHI MINH CITY (B)

Have breakfast at your hotel, then check out and go to Da Nang airport for short flight to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
Upon arrival, be welcomed by your guide and go to your hotel in the city center.  Explore the bustling city with quick view of the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral and Central Post Office before going to your hotel to check-in.
In the midafternoon, visit the Vietnam Meditation Center for a 3 hours’ private session to learn how to meditate with the amazing subtraction method. The subtraction method allows you to let go of the sources of the obstacles and burdens that are in your mind. As you empty your mind of the accumulated thoughts you will start noticing yourself being more open and aware of the world that surrounds you. You will then find yourself able to live a life at your highest potential, full of energy, creativity and wisdom to face your life challenges.  Rest of the day is for you to relax at hotel with free use of Sauna, Steam bath, Jacuzzi (spa/massage not included)
Overnight stay in Ho Chi Minh City
 
Day 10: HO CHI MINH CITY – RUSTIC CHARM OF MEKONG DELTA  (B/L)

The “rice bowl” of Vietnam, Mekong delta is carpeted with rice paddies, floating markets, crisscross rivers and canals. Ben Tre, popular known for coconut, attracts visitors to its fresh-aired environment of large green coconut & fruits gardens. Join us, experience the slow pace delta life, meet very friendly local, feel the generous hospitality and blow away the stresses of modern life.

After around 2.5-hours-drive from busting Saigon, we arrive Ben Tre. You then board on Apricot cruise, a new boat with design open on all sides to allow the river breezes to flow freely. As meandering down the Mekong, you'll have a chance to observe from the comfort of your Apricot cruise as it plays out on the riverbanks: the people, the stunning landscapes while your attentive crew serves cold drink and seasonal fruit.

Your first visit is at coconut-shell-charcoal processing on a small islet. Observe the whole procedure and find out that the locals utilize every bit of the coconut. Back to Apricot Cruise and a short boating will drive you to the next attractions. Hop on the mainland, drop a visit to see how local peel off coconut husk by simple tools. Next is a tuk-tuk ride taking you to a local family making coconut-leaves-swobs. Meet our friendly host, gain an insight into local traditional methods to make a swob. Hands-on and have fun experiences.

Continue with a relaxing bike ride on the lush and ever green rural road. Cycle through peaceful villages, meet friendly & smiling locals saying hello and feel the tranquil scenes of rural life. Next is a rowing boat through the crisscross canals. Be relaxed while observing the slow pace of Mekong Delta life. You then have a short walk on the narrow village lane to Mr. Ba’s family. His hospitable greetings and tasty local cake will make you feel that being at home. His family member is happy to share you the local cake making procedure. Join them, try to make one local cake on your own under their enthusiastic instruction. Enjoy tea with honey and dried coconut while chatting with them about their daily routine, the local culture, custom and why you don’t let a local fortune-teller tell you what is supposed to happen in the future.
Lunch is served with Mekong specialties at Apricot riverside restaurant. Relax, enjoy the tranquil atmosphere before transferring to the pier where the waiting driver will take you back to Ho Chi Minh City.
Overnight stay in Ho Chi Minh City
 
Day 11: HO CHI MINH CITY – DEPARTURE (Breakfast)

After breakfast, you will be free at your resort until transferred to the airport for your departure flight.
 
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