If you are looking for a jewel in Vietnam’s crown, look no further than Halong Bay, says Helen Wong’s Tours’ Kathleen Chan.Board the traditional junk for a cruise of this scenic bay and you soon realise why it is an important part of a Vietnam tour, whether it is the 12-day Glimpse of Vietnam or the 14-day Halong to Mekong itinerary.

If you are looking for a jewel in Vietnam’s crown, look no further than Halong Bay, says Helen Wong’s Tours’ Kathleen Chan.

Board the traditional junk for a cruise of this scenic bay and you soon realise why it is an important part of a Vietnam tour, whether it is the 12-day Glimpse of Vietnam or the 14-day Halong to Mekong itinerary. The magical waters, the imagery of tiny limestone isles piercing these often emerald-coloured waters – they all make for a memorable, much-photographed day’s outing. And now you can stay overnight on the junk.

Then there’s the seafood, and the many other tasty Vietnamese delicacies we dined on during our Helen Wong’s Tours guided journey. Book a Glimpse of Vietnam tour and before you reach Halong Bay you can expect to be treated to a relaxing dinner cruise in Saigon and a fun-filled cyclo tour of UNESCO World Heritage listed Hoi An. You can also experience the many characteristics of the old imperial capital of Hue as well as explore the infamous Cu Chi Tunnels near Saigon.

Of course, it’s the dining pleasures which make this trip most enjoyable, especially at the exclusive Press Club in Hanoi. Another restaurant included in the program is KOTO (Know One, Teach One), also in Hanoi. It’s a non-profit restaurant which was created by Jimmy Pham, an Australian Vietnamese, to teach young disadvantaged locals how to advance in the hospitality industry. It is hard to pass up a guided tour when you realise how much there is to see and do in such a fascinating country as Vietnam.