Vietnam: A Journey of Learning and Reconciliation
 with the Sage Colleges
May 24 June 8, 2001
Second Annual Trip

      A travel program led by Steven A. Leibo Ph.D. (International History)
      and Edward Tick Ph.D. (writer and specialist on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)

who is Dr. Leibo?
Who is Dr. Tick


When we Americans first went to war in Vietnam, we knew little of its historical heritage or its people's national aspirations. Years later,  after tens of thousands of Americans had served and died there we had still learned little.

Now that the war is a quarter of a century behind us, Vietnam still remains a mystery to most of us.  Yet Vietnam is a country not a  war and one with an impressive history, culture and spirituality that  Americans should know about.

No matter how old you are or what your background, as an American you  have a relationship to the land and people, culture and country of  Vietnam.  The war we had within that country has married our histories and destinies forever.

Today, the beauty and complexity of Vietnam is available as the country has opened itself up for tourism. We now have the opportunity to heal our rift with that country and within ourselves. All members of the Vietnam generation, veterans and non veterans alike are especially welcome on this journey in which we will explore this ancient land as well as sites important to the Vietnam War itself.   Younger and older Americans  are also encouraged to accompany us in this effort to learn the lessons of our war, discover the richness and beauty of Vietnam, and learn more about ourselves.

We will visit Vietnam's two major cities, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) and Hanoi, as well as numerous small villages and country sites.  Our journey will juxtapose sites important to the war with sites representing Vietnam's beauty and ancient civilization.  We will immerse equally in our own personal and American histories and the Vietnamese culture itself. Not content merely to visit Vietnam as outsiders we intend to make a lasting impact for our trip by taking part as a group in a very  meaningful program that supplies sampans (small boat) to Vietnamese villagers in the Mekong Delta.

This journey is led by distinguished facilitators who have made the study of Asia and the Vietnam War a major part of their life's work. It will provide you with a full immersion in both the Vietnam of the Vietnamese people and the Vietnam that we experienced during the war. Join us on this unique and unforgettable journey of exploration and education, healing and reconciliation to Vietnam.

Steven A. Leibo Ph.D. is the Director of the International Studies Program at the Sage Colleges, former International Affairs analyst for WTEN television and currently an International affairs commentator for WAMC Northeast Public Radio. He is the author of the annual _East, Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific. 2000_. Dr. Edward Tick is a psychotherapist who specializes in treating Vietnam era veterans and a prolific author who has published many books on Vietnam including Sacred Mountain: Encounters with the Vietnam Beast_ (Moon Bear Press, 1989) and _Healing a Generation: The Vietnam Experience_ (Guilford Publications, 1991) The tour itself was organized through Global Spectrum a travel agency that specializes in Vietnam.

Day 1/ 24 May
Depart from New York

Day 2/ 25May
In transit

Day 3/ 26 May
Morning arrival at Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC).  After transferring to our hotel and lunch, we begin our city tour including a visit to the Reunification Hall (former Presidential Palace), grounds of the former US Embassy compound now site of the new American Consulate, Ho Chi Minh Museum, and Ben Than Market. Welcome dinner.  Overnight Bong Sen Hotel, HCMC (LD)

Day 4/ 27 May
Early morning excursion to Cu Chi  to explore the manmade tunnels used by the VC during the war, we then travel to Tay Ninh for the noontime service at the unique Cao Dai Temple. Following lunch we visit Nui Ba Den (Black Lady Mountain) and a cable car trip   to witness this majestic vista of the former III Corps area. Return to HCMC for dinner. Overnight Bong Sen Hotel (BL) OPTIONAL EVENING SEMINAR: Geopolitics: Viet Nam and the World, Dr. Leibo

Day 5/ 28 May
Morning city  tour including the War Relics Museum and the Animal Market. Remainder of the day free to explore HCMC.  Overnight Bong Sen Hotel  (B)
EVENING SEMINAR: The Psychology of the War Experience, Dr. Tick

Day 6/ 29 May
Depart in the morning by road with a stop in the Chinese District of Cholon
to visit the Giac Lam Pagoda before continuing our journey to Vinh Long and the Mekong Delta. Visit an outdoor aircraft museum before beginning our cruise along the tributaries of the Great Mekong River.  Stops along the way include a local craft village to observe craftsmen plying their trades, a local school, and a bonsai farm before reaching the House on Stilts where we overnight. Tonight we are invited to participate in a cooking lesson as part of our traditional Vietnamese meal.  Overnight at the “House on Stilts” (BLD)

Day 7/ 30 May
Waking to the sounds of roosters the next morning, we enjoy a family style breakfast followed by a trip to the floating market and the riverside village of Cai Be. Return to HCMC after stopping for lunch in My Tho.  The evening is on your own to explore the many restaurants in the city. Overnight Bong Sen Hotel (BL)

Day 8/ 31 May
This morning an early start for the flight to Danang. Upon arrival we'll visit the Cham Museum with its unique artifacts of the civilization that once ruled much of Viet Nam. We'll have a chance to ascend Marble Mountain with its scenic pagodas and grotto at the top, which was used as a hospital by the VC during the Tet offensive. We'll have lunch at China Beach, the fabled R&R Center during the Vietnam war before traveling to Hoi An, our destination for the night.  Overnight Hoi An Hotel (BL) OPTIONAL EVENING SEMINAR: History and Atrocity, Dr. Leibo

Day 9/ 1 June
This morning we begin with a visit to the My Lai Memorial and museum, site of the infamous massacre in 1968. After lunch and returning to Hoi An, remainder of the afternoon free to explore the historic town of Hoi An, the beach, or to “veg” out at the pool.  Overnight Hoi An Hotel (BL)  OPTIONAL EVENING SEMINAR: The Psychology of Atrocity Producing Events, Dr. Tick

Day 10/ 2 June
Today we'll drive to My Son and its unique groupings of Cham temples. This city was once the Cham equivalent of Angkor, but saw much destruction during the recent war. However, the temple complex provides a unique concentration of the Cham architecture and decorative style. Following the tour of My Son, return to Hoi An for some free time. Overnight Hoi An Hotel (BL)

Day 11/ 3 June
This morning we'll begin by driving by Red Beach, site of the first Marine landing in 1965, before climbing the Hai Van Pass, “the pass above the clouds” en route to the historic city of Hue. After we check into our hotel, we take a bicycle or optional cyclo ride to the the historic Citadel  and picturesque Thien Mu Pagoda, with a boat ride back to our hotel. This evening we have a cruise on the Perfume River to listen to classical Vietnamese musicians. Overnight Huong Giang Hotel (BL) Optional Seminar The Strategies of War" by Prof. Leibo

Day 12/ 4 June
Today we take a tour of the former DMZ area including the “Rockpile” and former Marine area known as “Leatherneck Square”, we continue on to the Ben Hai River Bridge on the 17th Parallel, the former dividing line between North and South Viet Nam.  We return to Hue, passing Rte 555, known as the “street without joy” and make a brief stop at Camp Evans. Overnight Houng Giang Hotel, Hue (BL) Optional Seminar "Trauma: The Individual and Cultural Legacies of War" by Dr. Tick

Day 13/ 5 June
Transfer to airport for flight on Viet Nam Airlines to Hanoi.  Today’s city orientation includes the Army Museum and the former “Hanoi Hilton”. This evening, we enjoy a performance of Hanoi’s unique water puppets. Overnight Chains First Eden Hotel, Hanoi (BLD)

Day 14/ 6 June
Today we have an early departure by vehicle for Ha Long Bay, where we pick up our boat for an afternoon cruise among the 3000 limestone islands with their exotic grottos and beaches. We return to Hanoi this evening, with dinner on your own tonight. Overnight Chains Eden Hotel  (BL)

Day 15/ 7 June
This morning continue sightseeing in Hanoi, including Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, his house and museum, including the One Pillar Pagoda, followed by a visit to the Air Force Museum. We visit the old quarter with its “36 streets of 36 wares” for some final shopping. This evening we conclude our visit with a farewell dinner in one of Hanoi’s finest restaurants.  Overnight Chains  First Eden Hotel (BLD)

Day 16/ 8 June
Transfer to airport for return flight to the USA or optional extension within Vietnam's far north.  (B)
                                $2,199 Complete Land Package
                                $1,250 estimated airfare (more or less depending on group airfares at time of ticket purchase-it was $1,250 JFK-Vietnam r.t. for last year's trip)
                                $ 3,449  total

Included: The trip includes air travel from New York City,  Hotels in twin accommodations, in-country air and ground transport including transfers, full-time English-speaking guides, necessary permits,  most meals.  (indicated on the itinerary as B, L,or D )-- emergency medical/repatriation insurance.

Not Included: drinks, items of a personal nature, health inoculations, trip cancellation insurance,  (people signing on through Sage itself are required to purchase extra trip insurance)  domestic and international departure taxes / possible additional expenses would be for  tuition if academic credit is desired. College credits should be available from either SUNY, Albany or the Sage Colleges. See Professor Leibo if you are interested in getting academic credit for the trip. There is an additional fee for a single room.


Day 16/ 8 June
Free time in Hanoi before boarding the quaint Victoria Express overnight train to Lao Cai, the gateway to the hill country in northern Viet Nam. The train, equipped with sleeper compartments and a club car, offers a stylish and relaxing way to travel to Sa Pa, one of the most appealing locations in Viet Nam.  Overnight on the Victoria Express (B)

Day 17/ 9 June
Morning arrival in Lao Cai where, following breakfast, you'll be picked up for the drive into the hill country and Sa Pa. After checking into the hotel, spend the day hiking through the magnificent hill country and visiting the minority villages and their local markets. Here it is possible to observe the various hill tribes, each with their distinctive clothing patterns. Return to the hotel, with dinner on your own tonight. Overnight Victoria Sa Pa Hotel (B)

Day 18/ 10 June
Today you're free to relax at the hotel, explore on your own, or drive to the Bac Ha market, a three hour drive from Sa Pa. From Bac Ha, you'll go directly back to Lao Cai to join the group for the overnight train ride back to Hanoi. Spend a relaxing evening on the train, with a chance to review your exotic experience in the comfortable confines of the club car.  Overnight on the Victoria Express (B)

Day 19/ 11 June
Morning arrival in Hanoi and transfer to your hotel. You'll have time to rest up before last minute shopping or sightseeing. This evening, a farewell dinner in one of Hanoi’s fine restaurants.  Overnight Chains First Eden Hotel (BD)

Day 20/ 12 June
Transfer to the airport for your return flight to the USA. (B)

                                             $425 SaPa extension  price
                                                (double accommodations-single $50. extra)

                                               to send mail to Prof. Leibo

to send mail to Dr. Tick

 Links for the Study and Teaching of the Vietnam War

 Albany Times Union -"1970: The Vietnam War:  Days of  Protest, Days of Fire" By Steven A. Leibo and Edward Tick