(11 Days - Departs Daily on a Private Basis) Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, Hoi An, Saigon
This private culinary tour is an in-depth exploration of Vietnam's most authentic food and cultural experiences.
Begin in Hanoi, Vietnam’s fascinating capital and intellectual center. One day, take a culinary tour with a Vietnamese food expert to learn about typical Vietnamese cooking and ingredients, and to try several Hanoian street food dishes. Another day, enjoy a market tour with a renowned chef, followed by a Vietnamese cooking class. Learn to prepare local dishes such as fish marinated with beer and herbs, lemon chicken, and banana flower salad. Take an in-depth tour of Hanoi’s incredible Old Quarter, where each street was historically dedicated to a specific trade or material, such as bamboo, silk and lacquer. While touring the narrow streets, learn about the history of the Old Quarter and its traditional architecture, and see how it has transformed into a fashionable district with cafes, art galleries and boutiques featuring the finest Vietnamese design and style. Also visit the city’s most important historical attractions, such as the Temple of Literature, One Pillar Pagoda, House on Stilts and Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. Take a cyclo ride around Hoan Kiem Lake andexplore leafy backstreets lined with beautiful French colonial-era buildings, many of which are now upscale restaurants.
Continue to scenic Halong Bay for an overnight cruise on a luxurious, traditional junk-style boat. Sail among beautiful limestone islands, dine on fresh seafood, enjoy on-board activities such as tai chi at sunrise, and perhaps explore local caves, hike to a scenic overlook, go sea kayaking or visit a floating village.
Next, travel to Hue, the former imperial capital of Vietnam. Tour the Imperial Citadel, a large complex that includes the Forbidden Purple City, where the emperor and his family once lived. See the beautiful gardens and traditional architecture at the royal tombs along the Perfume River. Also tour colorful Dong Ba Market, and learn about local ingredients. One day, visit an ancient Buddhist pagoda to enjoy a vegetarian lunch with monks and learn about the monastic lifestyle in Hue. One night, you might like to dine on traditional royal cuisine, which emphasizes refinement, small portions and beautiful presentation.
Spend the next two nights in Hoi An, an atmospheric port town and UNESCO World Heritage Site. Stay at a luxury beachfront resort, and experience the best of this centuries-old town during private touring. Visit the vibrant morning market, where stalls are piled high with fresh produce. Explore the colorful backstreets, and tour well-preserved historic homes, temples, the Japanese Covered Bridge and other interesting attractions. Perhaps visit a local tailor for custom-made silk clothing, a Hoi An specialty. One day, visit a local farming community famous for vegetables, and enjoy a private cooking class focusing on regional specialties such as vegetable spring rolls in a local home. Upon request, we can arrange additional activities in and near Hoi An, such as a visit to a pottery-making village; a silk lantern-making lesson at a Confucian temple; biking through the countryside; and taking a sunset boat ride on the river. There will also be time to relax and enjoy your resort’s beautiful architecture, spa and beach.
Finally, travel to Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam’s most dynamic city. One day, enjoy a private market tour and cooking lesson with a chef in a historic home. Another day, enjoy a street food tour by Vespa in different districts around Saigon. Also learn about the city’s history while touring French colonial-era landmarks, as well as the Reunification Palace and War Remnants Museum. Experience the best of Cholon, Saigon’s Chinatown, including a local market and busy temples. Sample local culinary specialties and see daily life in vibrant markets overflowing with spices, flowers, clothing, housewares and more. Perhaps stop for a refreshing Vietnamese iced coffee, or dine on a typical Vietnamese banh mi (baguette sandwich). Another option is browsing the boutiques of Vietnamese designers and renowned art galleries and museums.
Fast-track airport assistance. Private transfer to hotel for 3 nights. Afternoon private city tour
Full-day private city tour, including culinary touring. Evening water puppet or opera performance
Morning private market tour and cooking lesson
Hanoi - Halong Bay
Private overland transfer to Halong Bay luxury cruise for 1 night
Halong Bay - Hanoi
Sunrise cruise. Private overland transfer to Hanoi hotel for 1 night
Hanoi – Hue
Private transfer to airport for flight to Hue. Private arrival transfer to hotel for 1 night. Afternoon private tour
Hue – Hoi An
Morning private city tour, including market visit. Lunch with monks at a pagoda. Private overland transfer to Hoi An resort for 2 nights
Morning private excursion to farming village and lunch in local restaurant. Afternoon private tour
Hoi An – Saigon
Private transfer to Danang airport and flight to Saigon. Private arrival transfer to hotel for 2 nights. Afternoon private Vespa street food tour
Morning private market tour and cooking lesson. Afternoon private city tour
Depart Saigon Private airport transfer
Halong Violet Cruise
La Residence Resort & Spa
The Nam Hai
Park Hyatt Saigon
Per person (double occupancy)
The Artisans of Leisure Style of Travel:
Private touring with your own personal guides and drivers
Preferred rooms in the very best luxury hotels
Firsthand, sophisticated destination knowledge and recommendations from our travel specialists
Itineraries that are customized according to your interests and schedule
Artisans of Leisure upgrades and amenities
A seamless travel experience, including all logistics, skipping lines during touring whenever possible, restaurant and spa reservations, performance tickets, private airport transfers, internal transportation, VIP and fast-track airport assistance in many destinations
Around-the-clock support in each destination during your trip
Unique, insider travel experiences and access to the Artisans of Leisure network of experts around the world
All Artisans of Leisure tours are private and depart daily.
Please Contact Us for more information regarding the above tour, or to begin customizing your own itinerary.