Walk in the footsteps of more than 50,000 Australians who served during the Vietnam War on this emotional journey to the former battlefields. Our tour takes in all the key Australian sites from the war, plus also many of Vietnam’s cultural treasures, allowing you to experience all aspects of this vibrant country. Your guide on this compelling journey is Gary McKay, who served as a platoon leader in Vietnam and was wounded and awarded the Military Cross during Australia’s last battle of the war. This tour will appeal to both veterans and ordinary Australians who wish to explore this significant chapter in our history.
Day 1: Welcome dinner
Day 2: Saigon City Tour and the renowned Ben Thanh Markets
Day 3: Visit the famous Chu Chi tunnels
Day 4: The Saigon River by hydrofoil and tour of Vung Tau
Day 5: Phuoc Tuy Province and Long Tan Memorial Site
Day 6: Visit the Minh Dam Secret Zone, climb the Long Hai Hills
Day 7: Battle of Binh Ba and Nui Le
Day 8: Day trip to My Tho in the Mekong Delta
Day 9: Depart after breakfast
Full Itinerary (Click here)
DAY 1, ARRIVE HO CHI MINH CITY
Welcome to this special anniversary journey. On arrival in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), we will be met by a Mat McLachlan Battlefield Tours local representative and transferred to our hotel. Tonight we will enjoy a welcome dinner. (D)
DAY 2, SAIGON CITY TOUR
Today we have an orientation tour of the city including visits to the Opera House, Post Office, City Hall and other city landmarks including the Ben Thanh Markets. Visit the former Presidential Palace and the War Remnants Museum. Your Australian guide will deliver a briefing on the Australian headquarters system and liaison with Vietnamese and American headquarters during the war. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner in a local restaurant. (B, L, D)
DAY 3, SAIGON TO CU CHI TUNNELS
Today we travel to Cu Chi to visit the famous Cu Chi tunnels where Australians first operated in the Iron Triangle in 1965. A battlefield brief will be given on the bus enroute to Cu Chi and cover Operation Crimp that involved Australians in 1966. After visiting the Dien Ben Duoc temple at Cu Chi we have lunch at a nearby floating restaurant. (B, L, D)
DAY 4, SAIGON TO VUNG TAU
Today we travel down the Saigon River by hydrofoil to the former site of 1 ALSG in the seaside resort town of Vung Tau. After checking in to our hotel and freshening up we are taken on an orientation of the town including the former 1 ALSG base, the airport, port and former Peter Badcoe Club site. A brief will be delivered on the area and its relevance to Australian operations and the role of 9 and 35 Squadron RAAF and the RAN clearance diver teams.
(B, L, D)
DAY 5, NUI DAT, LONG TAN AND THE HORSESHOE
Today we will travel to the former Phuoc Tuy Province area and area of operations for 1 ATF via Baria and visit the former task force base area. The area is still a military reserve in parts and some areas may be restricted to visitors. We will receive a brief on 1 ATF operations that were conducted from the base and how it was developed and protected. After a picnic lunch we will drive to the battlefield at Long Tan and the Long Tan Cross memorial site, where we will conduct a memorial service. (B, L, D)
DAY 6, LONG HAIS
We will depart our hotel in Vung Tau and travel around the South China Sea coastline to visit the former Minh Dam Secret Zone. We will climb to the apex of the Long Hai Hills and take in spectacular views of the area and visit the local museum in the former Viet Cong sanctuary. Returning to Vung Tau we travel through the former area of operations, and visit the site of the battle of Ap My An near Lang Phuoc Hai that occurred during Operation Bribie in February 1967. (B, L, D)
DAY 7, BINH BA – NUI LE – SAIGON
We will depart our hotel in Vung Tau and head north through the former area of operations and visit the scene of the battle of Binh Ba. We will receive a detailed brief on this battle where the Armoured Corps won a battle honour and after a picnic lunch and leaving Binh Ba we will travel north to the area of the Courtenay rubber plantation and the scene of the last major battle at Nui Le. We will receive a detailed brief where our historical guide fought and was wounded in action. We will return via road through the Hat Dich area to Saigon. On return to Saigon free time is available to return to Saigon’s famous Ben Thanh Markets to allow last minute souvenir gathering and shopping.
(B, L, D)
DAY 8, SAIGON TO MY THO
This morning we will leave Saigon and depart for a day trip to My Tho, located in the Mekong Delta. A former naval base, My Tho is now a bustling port city and the final destination of the Mekong River which runs through Tibet, China, Burma, Laos, Cambodia and finally Vietnam. Tonight we will enjoy a farewell dinner. (B, L, D)
DAY 9, FAREWELL
Those passengers not joining our extension tour to central and northern Vietnam will depart Ho Chi Minh City for Australia after breakfast. Those joining the extension tour will be transferred to the airport for the next leg of this fascinating journey. Please ask our reservations department for further information and pricing for our Vietnam North Extension Tour. (B)
Your Tour Includes (Click here)
- Expert Vietnam War Historian – Gary McKay
- All excursions, scenic drives and sightseeing as described in the itinerary
- Welcome dinner
- Visit the famous Cu Chi Tunnels
- Bottled water for each passenger each day
- All entrance fees are as per the itinerary
- Travel by comfortable air conditioned touring vehicle
- Copy of Gary McKay’s book Australia’s Battlefields in Viet Nam
- Souvenir cap, document wallet and luggage tag
HOW TO BOOK: Contact our reservations team on 1300 880 340 or click enquiry button below and leave your details. Deposit is $1000 per person.
EXTEND YOUR TRIP: Explore the beauty of the North on our 9 day Vietnam Extension Tour. Ask us for details.
Please note that your Historian may alter the order of sites visited on each day to suit local conditions.