Last Out 50th ANNIVERSARY TOUR
Commemorating the 1972 return home from Viet Nam of the last Australian combat troops
This tour commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the last Australian troops leaving Viet Nam in December 1972 after more than 10 years of involvement in the war. Our aim is to give our guests a thorough overview of the war from before 1945 to the conclusion in 1975 by visiting significant historical sites and places often overlooked by more superficial tours.
In the north-west we visit Dien Bien Phu where the French War ended and opened the way for the start of the American War. This is a beautiful region populated by enchanting Thai Ethnic Minorities and redolent with historic significance. There, our guests will see all the French strongpoints and the Headquarters of Vietnamese General, Vo Nguyen Giap. At night we will sing, dance, and drink in a local Thai village.
In Ha Noi, we focus on the Air War with visits to The Air Defence and Air Force Museum, the Hoa Lo (Hanoi Hilton) Prison, and the Bunker 67 where the Central Military Committee took strategic decisions under bombing from the Americans. Anmd of course, we’ll see the Old Quarter.
In the south we will visit three significant areas - Ho Chi Minh City, Military Region 7, and deep in the Mekong Delta.
Ho Chi Minh City
In the old capitol of the south, the infamous Sai Gon City, we venture away from downtown for a day exploring often unknown and rarely visited historical sites, to map out the story of Viet Nam’s war of independence from 1945 to 1975.
Deep In The Delta
Over two days in the expansive Mekong Delta we will see the site of the famous 1963 Battle of Ap Bac presaged the end of the regime of Ngo Dinh Diem and began a two year campaign that would draw American ground forces to fight in South Viet Nam. Then we will go to the environmentally stunning Plain of Reeds to see where the roots of the 2000 year old Fu Nam civilisation and visit the tomb of a General who led a force against the French in 1860s setting in train a resistance against foreigners that would last for more than a century.
Military Region 7
In MR7 we will visit some of the most important sites in the history of Australia’s involvement and to the war more broadly. This will include, a fast boat along the Sai Gon River to the real Cu Chi Tunnels, Nui Dat, Long Tan, Coral and Balmoral, War Zone D, and the Rung Sat Base area. There will also be a fascinating visit to the Cambodian border area to see the secret base where the NLF ran the final campaign to take Sai Gon and the very spot where the four-party negotiations to implement the Paris Peace accords took place.
WALTER PEARSON TOUR LEADER: - on the last plane out 1972
Two tour Vietnam Veteran, linguist, history and philosophy expert, fought in the Battle of Binh Ba in 1969, and was among those veterans who attended the first comemmorative gathering in 1989 at the replica Cross in Long Tan Cross. Walter was central to the search for Australia’s MIAs.
A former journalist, he wrote and produced the documentary Vietnam Minefield and has advised and assisted various TV programs including Australian Story, In Their Footsteps, Foreign Correspondent, Who Do You Think You Are and the makers of The Team.
He has taken ships’ crews, Staff College groups and international VIPs around Viet Nam.
Walter is married to a Vietnamese and lived an authentic Vietnamese lifestyle for almost five years, in Binh Long, formerly An Loc, about 100 kms from Ho Chi Minh City. Since 2000, Walter has led tours by car, bus, train, plane and motorbike throughout Vietnam.
13 - 30 November 2022
Price includes accommodation, transfers, ground transport, permissions and entrance fees, and all meals, internal flights. International airfares not included.
You'll enjoy quality three and four-star hotels.
You'll be visiting when the weather is very comfortable after the end of the rainy season in the south.
The scenery at this time of year is rich and abundundant.
This tour is contingent on the lifting of international flight bans.