Indochina is the collective name for Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, the former French territories in the region. Despite huge changes in the last decade, the French influence still remains in majestic colonial buildings, the art scene and of course the food.
Vietnam in particular is a baguettes and noodles country, and at times you seem to sense the entire history of the country in the bowl of food in front of you. Vietnam is also the country that is developing fast with many new hotels and resorts, most attractive, others not quite – but it still remains a totally enthralling place to visit. Cambodia is home to Siem Reap, where you find the incredible ruins of Angkor, an absolute must of any tour of this region. Laos is the least developed of the three, with Luang Prabang being one of the most charming towns, with its hundreds of monks emerging through the mist every morning. Absolutely magical.
The Mekong River Cruise is one of the incredible and exciting river journeys, cruising on the Mekong river from Saigon up to Siem Reap, an 8 day historical voyage of colonial Indochina, much of which is relatively untouched. Departing from either Saigon going north, or from Siem Reap heading south, travellers will experience the full spectrum of culture and life on the Mekong Delta, as well as excursions to cultural and historical sites throughout Vietnam and Cambodia. Whilst there are many cruise options for the Mekong, we at Chic Locations are delighted to be partners with RV La Marguerite, a 46 cabin vessel that has raised the standard of river travel along the Mekong Delta. Elegant, with old world charm.
Vietnam is a fantastic country to explore, with so much rich culture, fascinating ancient and more modern history, and scenic contrasts. Weather wise it is split into three sections, each with their own climate pattern. The north, essentially Hanoi/ Halong Bay can be cold and misty particularly in the months of November to early February, so you need to pack accordingly. It starets to warm up from mid February onwards, and the spring months are generally very pleasant, as is September. July & August can be hot and humid.
On this page we detail just a few of the Vietnam Touring Options, either totally within the country or as a combination with neighbouring countries. All are arranged on a private basis, with driver and guide (different guides will be used throughout the country), so can be easily modified to suit your personal requirements.
As there are no direct flights to Vietnam from the UK, we suggest Bangkok as the most convenient gateway, although Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur can also be used.
Anantara Mui Ne Resort is a delightful first class resort with attractive tropical gardens leading down to a sandy beach. The design style is French Colonial influenced, with contemporary flourishes.
The Apricot Hotel is a delightful boutique hotel, with the emphasis on personalised style and attention. French Colonial façade and interior, with grand sweeping staircases and chandeliers. Vietnamese art is displayed throughout the property.
Centrally located overlooking Hoan Kiem Lake, with the French and Old Quarters easily accessible. The airport is 50 minutes.
The Continental Hotel Saigon is a heritage style boutique hotel. Opened in 1880, a wonderful sense of history, the hotel has of course been enhanced several times, but the grand old colonial sense of occasion remains. Located in the very heart of Saigon, adjacent to the famous opera house and literally surrounded by the upmarket shops and restaurants.
The Fusion Maia Pool and Spa is a new luxurious spa focused resort, located on a fine stretch of beach between Hoi An (20 minutes) and Danang (15 minutes). The International airport at Danang is just over 10 minutes away.
Grand Hotel Saigon is one of the oldest hotels in the city. Built in a flamboyant French colonial design style in 1930, the original building still encases the lobby and 30 of the original rooms, whilst in the new wing you have a further 190 rooms and suites.
Hotel De L’Opera Hanoi is a trendy stylish boutique hotel, centrally located close to the famous Hanoi Opera building. Set within the elegant French quarter and just a few minutes’ walk to the old quarter lanes and shopping.
Hotel Des Arts Sai Gon is a relatively new hotel, opened in 2014. A member of the Accor M Gallery collection. A modern exterior, with a classic elegance and simplicity interior , combining traditional Indochine elements with timeless French chic elegance. Centrally located in the popular District Three, a few minutes’ walk from the iconic Notre Dam Cathedral. The airport is about 55 minutes. We would describe the hotel as being extremely good first class on the cusp of moving into deluxe.
A new luxury resort, opened in February 2013. The Intercontinental Danang Resort Son Tra is located on a secluded totally tropical extensive private cove beach, with the majority of rooms perched on a cliff with dramatic elevated sea facing views. Danang Town and Airport is 20 minutes drive away, and atmospheric Hoi An 40 minutes. Son Tra is the Vietnamese for Monkey Mountain, the name the American gave the area. The mountain forms a dramatic backdrop to the resort, and you still see small monkeys swinging through the trees.