Flavors of Vietnam, a Culinary Journey

10 Days / 9 Nights

Flavors of Vietnam, a Culinary JourneyFlavors of Vietnam, a Culinary Journey

The Flavors of Vietnam tour blends cooking classes and culinary-focused tours with visits to Vietnam’s most enthralling attractions. Experience the awe-evoking beauty of Halong Bay, the ancient streets of Hue and the enticing chaos of Ho Chi Minh City – all within the context of this country’s remarkable cuisine.

Daily arrival in Hanoi, year-round

A Journey by Private Car and private local guides, featuring Hanoi, Hanoi-Halong Bay, Danang, Hoi An, Hue and Ho Chi Minh City.

Journey's Highlights »

Imagine yourself sharing sticky rice with a Vietnamese farming family. Or making a steaming pot of aromatic Pho with the help of a legendary local chef.

By exploring the Vietnamese culture through its incredible food, you are able to gain a more intimate connection with the local people. And that means your trip will be unlike anything else you’ve experienced.

• Experience the Chi Minh Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda and other Hanoi attractions
• Cruise the turquoise waters of Halong Bay
• Wander the ancient streets of Hoi An
• Take cooking classes taught by master chefs
• Visit historical buildings in Hue
• Meet a farming family and learn how they grow rice
• Explore the attractions, cafes and restaurants of Ho Chi Minh City.


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  • Day 1 - Arrive in Hanoi

    Upon arrival in Hanoi, meet your guide and then relax at the hotel.
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    When you arrive at the airport, look for the guide holding a sign with your name on it. After introductions, you’ll be taken to your hotel room in Hanoi where you can relax after your long flight. Too excited to sleep? Then head outside and explore the city.

  • Day 2 - Hanoi

    Explore top Hanoi attractions, such as the Temple of Literature, One Pillar Pagoda and Chi Minh Mausoleum. The day finishes with a cooking class taught by an expert chef. (B,L,D)
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    Today is all about culture and history. Gain insight about Vietnamese society while touring the Vietnam Women’s Institute and then explore the stunning Temple of Literature – the country’s first university, which dates back to 1076.

    Lunch is at the Koto Restaurant, a non-profit that helps underprivileged young people gain valuable work skills. Wander over to the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, where you can view the preserved body of ‘Uncle Ho’ – one of Vietnam’s legendary leaders. After a visit to Hanoi’s iconic One Pillar pagoda, return to your hotel room for a quick break.

    Once rested, learn how to craft authentic Vietnamese cuisine. Our staff will help you pick out the perfect ingredients at a local market in the city’s enchanting Old Quarter before meeting an acclaimed Hanoian chef, who teaches you the secrets of creating enticing northern Vietnamese cuisine – skills you cannot pick up anywhere else. After enjoying the meal you have prepared, our staff drives you back to your hotel for the night. (B, L, D)

  • Day 3 - Hanoi-Halong Bay

    Drive to Halong Bay and board an authentic Vietnamese Junk (Ancient Chinese sailing vessel) before cruising the awe-evoking waters of the bay. (B,L,D)
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    After breakfast, hit the road for the spectacular Halong Bay. The drive takes about three and a half hours, but there are a few stops along the way so you can stretch your legs.
    Arrive at Halong City around noon, providing plenty of time to enjoy lunch before you cruise toward the legendary Halong Bay. Different junks offer different activities on board, but there’s always something fun to do. As the sun sets, your vessel anchors amid the remarkable karst formations scattered throughout the bay.
    (B, L, D)

  • Day 4 - Halong Bay – Hanoi- Danang

    Soak up the dream-like beauty of Halong Bay as you cruise back to port. The day ends with a flight to Danang and a drive to Hoi An. (B, Brunch)
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    Enjoy breakfast as the rising sun bathes surrounding rock formations and jungle-covered cliffs in a warm glow. This is a rare chance to experience views of mammoth caves and golden beaches as you slowly drift back to port.
    Depart the ship and then travel to the Hanoi airport to fly to Danang. From there, our staff drives you to your hotel in Hoi An. (B, Brunch)

  • Day 5 - Hoi An

    Cycle through the countryside and experience life on a traditional rice farm. (B,L)
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    Enjoy a short bicycle ride (a vehicle can be arranged if you prefer) past emerald rice paddies and lush, rolling countryside before arriving at a local farm. After meeting the warm and friendly owners, experience life as a traditional Vietnamese farmer.
    Ride a water buffalo and discover how to plough the field and plant rice. Come inside and clean up before cooking pancakes and traditional Vietnamese rice. After chatting with your hosts over lunch, cycle back to the hotel. Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring Hoi An on your own. (B, L)

  • Day 6 - Hoi An – Hue

    Explore the ancient streets of Hoi An before visiting a quaint fishing village and enjoying dinner with a local family. (B,D)
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    Your morning begins with a walking tour that takes you through the twisting streets and enchanting Old World homes of Hoi An. Explore former historic merchant houses, a bustling market and then cross a legendary 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge.

    The afternoon brings a drive through Danang, which includes a trip through the amazing Pass of Ocean Clouds and then down into the quaint fishing village of Lang Co. Visit the Cham Museum, which is home to the finest Cham sculptures in the world, before experiencing a private dinner with a local family at the Tha Om garden house. Spend the night in a hotel in Hue. (B, D)

  • Day 7 - Hue

    Learn how to craft a multi-course Vietnamese meal before touring the Old City, Tinh Tam Lake and a bustling local market. (B,L)
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    Learn more about the secrets of Vietnamese cooking by preparing a 4 or 5-course meal during a cooking class with a talented local chef. This two-hour course teaches you not only about local food, but local culture and history as well. After savoring the meal you created, tour some of Hue’s most enthralling sights. Wander through the Imperial Citadel, an imposing ancient structure with a sordid past, and then hop on a cyclo to venture past charming heritage buildings in the Old City before arriving at the tranquil Tinh Tam Lake – once a popular relaxation area for emperors. View the uniquely ornate architecture at the tomb of Emperor Khai Dinh before browsing the colorful Dong Ba Market, which offers an incredible opportunity to immerse yourself in the daily lives of the locals. (B, L)

  • Day 8 - Hue - Ho Chi Minh City

    Fly from Hue to Ho Chi Minh City. Experience the city’s must-see attractions during the day and then feast on local cuisine and music at night. (B,D)
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    After breakfast, our staff drives you to the airport for a quick flight to Ho Chi Minh City. Once there, settle into your hotel room before experiencing the chaotic energy of this vibrant city during an afternoon tour.

    First on the itinerary is Reunification Hall, which was seized by North Vietnamese tanks back in 1975 as Saigon fell. Then experience an array of other must-see sights: the Old Saigon Post Office, Dong Khoi Street (formerly Rue Catinat), Continental Hotel, Opera House, City Hall and the War Remnants Museum. Your final stop is the serene Jade Emperor Pagoda, crafted 100 years ago by Cantonese Buddhists.

    The tour starts up again in the evening at about 6:30 p.m. Visit a public park and mingle with the locals, fill up on street food near Tan Dinh Market and then savor something sweet with dessert at a Vietnamese café. The evening ends with live music at a local establishment. (B, D)

  • Day 9 - Ho Chi Minh City

    Browse a traditional market before learning about Vietnamese cuisine from a talented chef. Then explore the city on your own. (B,L,D)
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    Visit a local market, which is tucked away from the typical touristy area, to shop for ingredients needed to create your lunch. Afterwards, receive a final lesson in the fine art of Vietnamese cuisine from a talented chef. Simply select what type of dish you would like to create.
    After lunch, explore the buzzing streets of Ho Chi Minh City on your own. Drop by the charming Mandarin Restaurant for dinner and you may get a chance to meet the chef and see a rare cooking demonstration.
    (B, L, D)

  • Day 10 - Ho Chi Minh City - Departure

    Our staff drives you to the airport for your departing flight. (B)
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    All good things must come to an end. If you have a later flight, this is your chance to do all the things you weren't able to get to during the tour – shopping, extra sightseeing or just chatting with locals. (B)

    Did we miss something?
    Would you like to experience an attraction or activity not listed in this itinerary? Please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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