Whether overflowing with sprawling green mountains, cascading paddy-fields, or enchanting riverside caves, Vietnam exudes ethereal beauty. Exchange stories with fisherman and explore the country’s vibrant farming communities as you travel through the charming northern countryside. Try on an Ao Dai, float down the tranquil Ngo Dong River, or kayak past Ha Long Bay’s limestone pillars: there are endless opportunities to explore the country’s scenic coastline and sample traditional Vietnamese cuisine. Join us on Vietnam: Ban Than as we delight in the magical floating villages and forge once-in-a-lifetime connections with communities across Ha Long Bay, Sapa, Cat Ba, and more!
YOUR WORLD AWAITS
Learn more about The Road Less Traveled teen service and cultural immersion trip VIETNAM: BAN THAN
Partnering with a local organization, we spend five days at Friendship Village, a residental health and education center for children living with the effects of the dioxin "Agent Orange." During our time there, we focus on international solidarity, reconciliation, and efforts to heal the pains of war. Assisting students in special education classes, playing sports and games with children and veterans, and helping in the center’s vegetable garden are some of the ways our group lends a hand. Bookending our time here, we share in a cultural exchange night full of music, dancing, and recognition.
After our time in Friendship Village, we board an overnight train to Sapa. Whirling past velvety green mountains, colorful rice terraces, and charming alpine towns, we set out on foot for an epic day hike and spend the night exchanging stories with the hill tribes such as the Hmong, Tay, and Dao.
Designated as a UNESCO Heritage Site in 1994, Ha Long Bay swims in ethereal beauty. Home to striking emerald waters, towering limestone pillars and islets, Ha Long Bay is the perfect place to enjoy Vietnam's natural beauty. While there, we celebrate our time in Vietnam with a kayak past the floating houses of fishermen and board a boat to the dreamy private islet, Freedom Island.
Nicole loved interacting with the Vietnamese people she met on the trip. The program section at Friendship Village was eye-opening for her - it's a part of American history that wasn't really discussed in her American history class, so to see the effects of Agent Orange first-hand definitely made an impact. She wants to start a club at school raising awareness and funds for Friendship Village, so we are thrilled that this trip has provided a push towards thinking about philanthropy and taking an active role in educating others. She really enjoyed talking to her fellow group members, and loved the international feel of the group and how everyone brought so many interesting stories from their background experiences. She's always loved to travel, but now she really would like to do it more and actively seek out opportunities to experience more long-term stays abroad. And of course - she raved about the food,” - Eileen T., mother of Ban Than Alum
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To float down the Ngo Dong River and explore the three ancient caves of Tam Coc
To catch the first rays of sun over the scenic green mountains near Sapa
To forge friendships, play games, and share songs in Hao Binh
To kayak in the emerald waters at Ha Long Bay
To visit hill tribes such as the Hmong, Tay, and Dao as you trek across the green mountains
To witness a traditional water puppet show in the Old Quarter district of Hanoi, Vietnam’s capital
Make once-in-a-lifetime connections alongside the community of children affected by Agent Orange at Friendship village
Experience the beautiful, busy Vietnamese street markets
Indulge in a refreshing swim on Freedom Island’s sandy beaches