We are committed to environmentally friendly practices whilst travelling in Vietnam and Cambodia. We promote the use of small boutique hotels where possible with good energy management and waste disposal practices.
In this itinerary you will travel up or down the coast of Vietnam. The distances are long but a great way to travel between the main cities is by overnight train. This cuts down the the amount of domestic flights and is also a great way of seeing a different aspect of the Vietnamese culture.
Vietnam has an array of hotels situated in buildings of historical importance. Whether that be an old colonial building or a building where an important meeting or influential event took place. We actively encourage our clients to stay in these sorts of hotels in the hope that the income they receive will go in to maintaining these historic buildings. Some of the hotels used in this itinerary, such as the Caravelle in Saigon were around during the American War and were often used as meeting points for journalists and diplomats; there is a wealth of stories in these hotels, that we believe are worth preserving.
Halong bay can be a traveller’s dilemma – its beauty and iconic UNESCO heritage recognition makes it a great attraction but this in turn is spoiling the area in terms of numbers of tourists and in terms of damaging the local environment. We use traditional junk boats in Halong bay that, where possible, travel to less busy areas with the aim of reducing the impact the tour has on local ecosystems. We also have a section specifically addressing issues in the bay that travellers should consider when visiting in our predeparture pack. Ships are repaired by local engineers and to this extent we support the local economy.
We believe in spreading the wealth brought into countries by tourism. Getting involved in local markets is a fantastic way not only to exchange culturally but also to support ordinary local people in their way of life. All the food tours in this itinerary contribute to this aim and we brief clients before departure on cultural norms and bartering expectations.
We encourage visitors to get off the beaten track in this itinerary and experience authentic markets. Hotel boards are usually kept to breakfast only to encourage travellers to support local restaurants for other meals throughout the day, profiting the local economy, and your taste buds!
All our guides are paid a fair wage and we encourage travellers to tip guides appropriate to the levels of the efforts and service. We train our guides to strict guidelines, they are all local to each area of Vietnam and they are all English speaking, and they all aim to try and keep the culture and environment preserved.