Springboard Vietnam Community Service Challenge 2018

Springboard's challenge trekking through the small local villages of Northern Vietnam while raising vital funds and awareness for your favorite charity as well as helping rebuild a school in the poor province of Ham Yen

Challenge Highlights

  • Raise funds and awareness for your favourite charity by taking part in the challenge
  • Experience the culture, history and the colourful Old Quarter in Hanoi
  • Find 'true' cultural immertsion by staying with the ethnic minority villages in their homes
  • Sample the world renowned food of Vietnam - arguably the best in Asia
  • Witness the peaceful vibe of the Hoa Binh people
  • Put huge smiles on the faces of the Ham Yem community by offering them funding and support to help build schools for thier children
  • Stunning landscapes providing endless photo opportunities

Overview

This challenge starts in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam which is known for its centuries-old architecture and a rich culture with Southeast Asian, Chinese and French influences. At its heart is the chaotic Old Quarter when the narrow streets are roughly arranged by trade. There are many little temples, markets, handicrafts and some of the finest examples of Vietnamese street food. The trek will take us away from all the hustle and bustle past scenic landscapes and deep into the Hoa Binh Province to help us gain a deeper appreciation of the regions people, culture and natural wilderness by hiking through scenic valleys, pretty rice paddies, bamboo forests and mountains whilst having a true immersion by spending time and staying with the locals in their homes. Our journey will take us to a very poor community in Ham Yen where the average monthly wage is a mere $15USD per month! Here we will get ready to roll up our sleeves and help rebuild a school alongside the locals. The combination of stunning scenery, back roads and engagement with local culture makes this an ideal challenge for anyone looking to have a true immersion into Vietnamese culture.

Challenge Grade

On trek days this trip involves trekking for up to 4-6 hours (16km on average). While we maintain a slow and steady pace, this should not be misinterpreted to mean it is an easy trip. You will need a reasonable level of fitness and good health.

* Suggested preparation: 30 minutes of aerobic type exercise, (either cycling or jogging) three times a week for three months leading up to your trip. In addition, hill walking with a daypack in variable weather conditions is also recommended.

Itinerary

After all the excitement, packing, fund raising and of course all that training! The day has finally arrived when we are flying off towards Eastern Suns! So time to sit back, relax and enjoy the on-board entertainment and when you wake up it will Good morning Vietnam! Overnight on the aircraft with food service

Meals:  Nil

Xin chao! Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam. You are greeted by your guide and driver at Noi Bai International airport for your transfer to the hotel. Please look for the WORLD EXPEDITIONS welcome sign in the arrivals hall. Hanoi, one of Asia’s most enchanting cities, full of culture, history and the engaging contradictions of a rapidly developing and deeply traditional society. After a rest and freshen up (quick power snooze perhaps) we will re-convene in the late afternoon where your tour guide will host a trip briefing in the lobby before we all head out to enjoy some famous Vietnamese food at a warm welcome dinner. Overnight in hotel in Hanoi.

Meals:  D

After breakfast, we will take a drive to the Hoa Binh province. En route we will visit the “Cultural Space of the Muong, which is a private museum dedicated to the Muong ethnic group, the biggest minority group in the Hoa Binh province. Mr.Vu Duc Hieu, from Hanoi, fell in love with the diverse culture of the Muong people and has spent years of his life and provided significant funding as well as collecting thousands of items from the Muong culture to assemble this museum and preserve their traditions. We will then Continue to Xa Linh Village and have a picnic lunch. Here we will bid farewell to our driver and the group transport as we start trekking from Xa Linh Village of the Hmong ethnic minority by walking through lush trees, tea hills and passing by passing local villages with the opportunity to interact with friendly local Hmong people. We will continue through corn fields surrounded by numerous hills then gradually climbing uphill’s to the main road down to Hang Kia. Located in a valley, Hang Kia is a beautiful village of Hmong ethnic minority with hundreds of houses embraced by peach and plum trees. Overnight at a homestay in Hang Kia. Trek to Hang Kai. Approx. 6.5km Duration: approx. 2.5-3hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, we will bid farewell to our hosts as we continue to walk further through the Hang Kia Village before entering the unpaved road leading to Thung Mai. You'll then turn to small dirt trails through the jungle. Most of this morning's route is going downhill to the land of Thai ethnic minority tribes. As we are drawing closer to Cun Pheo you will see rice fields and typical local houses that sit on stilts. After enjoying a picnic lunch we will continue to trek on relatively flat trails through the villages and fields and beyond to Buoc Village. Overnight at homestay in Buoc Village. Hiking distance: approx. 19km Duration approx.6hrs Note: The route can be muddy and slippery on rainy days.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we will set off for a beautiful trek from Buoc Village through the rice fields of Muoi Village where you can see Thai farmers on their daily works. Continue walking through the villages of Sun, Ngoa and Den where you will have plenty of opportunities to meet with friendly local people and enjoy scenic landscapes of fields and mountains. We will continue to Mai Hich and after lunch we will follow the road along the mountains and fields through Cum, Mai Ha to the Chieng Chau Village. Here we will meet with our driver and car and take a short drive to Van Village. Overnight at homestay in Van Village. Hiking distance: approx. 17km Duration approx.6 hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we will bid farewell to our hosts and transfer to Hang Village located inside the Pu Luong Nature Reserve. We will follow a track through the forest and climb up to Eo Ken Village for a beautiful view of the valleys terraced rice fields sitting under the majestic limestone peaks. We will take the time to enjoy a picnic lunch in this superb spot before we continue through several Thai villages and down to the Kho Muong Village with an approximate arrival of mid-afternoon. In this environment you will get a true immersion into the daily lives of villagers, among streams running past rice fields under scenic karst mountains. In the evening we will be treated to a traditional musical & cultural performance by the local people. Overnight at homestay in Kho Muong Village. Hiking distance: approx. 15km Duration approx.6hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we will begin to climb uphill and follow the tracks to Uoi Village where we will finally reach Pho Doan. Here we will be picked up and driven back to Hanoi. If today is Thursday or Sunday you can walk around the Pho Doan market which takes place 2 times a week. Hiking distance: approx. 8km Duration approx.2.5/3hrs Overnight in a hotel in Hanoi

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, we will depart from Hanoi and head for the community project in the Tuyen Quang province and the township of Tuyen Quang. Tuyen Quang is a very mountainous region with large rivers, pristine forests and some of the country’s most diverse flora and fauna. The sites main source of income for the residents is agriculture and the average monthly income is US$15. Tuyen Quang is home to the Red Yao, Tay, Nung and Mong minorities. Tourism is still very new and subsequently the hotel facilities are basic, yet clean and practical. This scenic drive takes around four hours. Along the way we pass fields of tapioca and sugar cane as well as rice paddies. Around noontime, we will arrive at our accommodation where lunch will be served. After lunch, head out to the community project site to familiarize with the site and get your work assigned. There will be professional builder’s onsite to ensure that the project is completed correctly and on time. We will divide the group into sub groups to work on different components of the project. There will be a good deal of flexibility in the hours that you work each day, but it is anticipated that you will be involved in labour work for up to 6 hours a day. Note: project details to be confirmed (2-3 months prior to arrival) Overnight in Ham Yen town. Note: There’s no international standard hotel in Ham Yen and we’ll stay at a best possible option of accommodation.

Meals:  B,L,D

Full day to do the project works. Details to be confirmed later. On Day 10: Complete the project works in the afternoon and attend the handover ceremony. Overnight in Ham Yen town.

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, we leave Ham Yen for Hanoi. On arrival, you are free to relax and recover. Celebration dinner Overnight in a hotel in Hanoi

Meals:  B,L,D

The morning is free in Hanoi where our journey concludes. If you are flying home today you will be transferred to the airport in time for your departure. Approx. 9-10pm. Overnight on board the aircraft.

Meals:  B

Sadly our little Vietnamese adventure has come to an end...until next years challenge that is! where will the next challenge take us?...

Meals:  Nil

What's Included

  • Direct International flights with Vietnam Airlines to Hanoi
  • Accommodation on twin (hotels) and multi-share basis (homestays)
  • 9 breakfasts, 8 lunches and 9 dinners (with snacks, fruit and water on trekking & project days included)
  • Private transportation throughout
  • Bi-lingual Experienced local guides who are all first aid trained
  • 2 bottles of mineral water per person per day
  • Medical kit
  • Project manager at the community service project to help with preparations before, during and after your visit
  • Porters to carry the main luggage on trekking days
  • Government taxes and service charges
  • Treks as detailed in the itinearary
  • World Expeditions will pledge £2000 to help with the community service project
  • Banner, project plaque and handover ceremony at the project site
  • 24 hour support services from World Expeditions
  • Risk assessments / pre- departure information & expedition launch assistance / info nights

What's Not Included

  • Meals and beverages not indicated in the itinerary
  • Pre or post tour accommodation in Hanoi (please contact Jenny@worldexpeditions.co.uk on 0208 875 5063 to arrange this)
  • Personal expenses such as bar, telephone and laundry bills
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Visa costs (if applicable) https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/vietnam/entry-requirements
  • Travel Insurance (compulsory)
  • Single Supplements (limited availability - contact World Expeditions)
  • Aerated and alcoholic drinks
  • Vaccinations (if applicable) http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations/asia-(east)/vietnam.aspx
  • Additional transport or accommodation required due to any emergency situation (this would be covered by adequate travel insurance)
  • Community service project (costs TBC) building school classrooms in Ham Yen Province

What You Carry

  • In your daypack you will need to carry extra warm clothing (depending on location and weather), a rainjacket, water bottle, camera gear, valuables and personal items such as sunscreen, lip-eze etc.

Fundraising Impact

The key is to tap into your different networks, friends, family and the broader community and to try different ways of fundraising. From running a BBQ day, to hosting a movie night in local cinema, or an afternoon tea or fun dinner event. We also have a facebook group just for our team members. Here, people share ideas and feedback on their fundraising. Plus our fundraising booklet with many fundraising ideas and how to make these super duper effective

Travel Dates

Fast Facts

Trip Dates: DepartReturn
 1 Nov 201813 Nov 2018
Duration:13 Days
Activities:Trekking
Trip Code:SOG4759

The key is to tap into your different networks, friends, family and the broader community and to try different ways of fundraising. From running a BBQ day, to hosting a movie night in local cinema, or an afternoon tea or fun dinner event. We also have a Facebook group just for our team members. Here, people share ideas and feedback on their fundraising. Plus our fundraising booklet with many fundraising ideas and how to make these super duper effective