In this program, the destinations cover all the must-see in the North (Hanoi with the Old Quarter, World Heritage Site Halong Bay); the Central (with old capital of Hue, ancient town Hoi An) and the South of Vietnam (with Ho Chi Minh bustling city, and green Mekong Delta). More than visiting, dining will be an experience which offers you chances to enjoy food with different tastes from three main regions in Vietnam at well selected restaurants. Besides, cooking classes will offer you chances to learn how to cook some popular dishes to bring home some new tastes.
Learn to do some famous dishes with famous cooks and bring home the recipes
Visit local markets for more local touch with Vietnamese people and for food tasting
Discover why Nuoc Mam is the most important ingredient of Vietnamese cuisine and learn how to mix it into a special sauce to attach to main dishes.
Day 1: Hanoi Arrival
Arrival flight information (own ticket, flight information to be advised)
Upon arrival, when you leave the airport terminal please look for 4U Tours’ guide displaying a welcome signboard with your name on it. Transfer to your hotel.
Hanoi, Vietnam’s capital and the second largest city, is a fascinating blend which combines traditional Sino-Vietnamese motifs with French flair, of the East and West. The fact that it was largely unscathed in the decades of war and is now going through a building boom makes it a rapidly developing city in Southeast Asia.
Dinner is served at Ly Club Restaurant. Set in a French colonial building which was the former residence of the Governor of Indochina in the 19th century, Ly Club is an elegant setting for enjoying delightful Vietnamese cuisine and live traditional Northern folk opera music performance.
Accommodation:Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi (5-star)
Address: 15 Ngo Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
Tel: (+84 4) 3826 6919
Step back into history at Hanoi’s most storied 5-star hotel. A Grand Dame of Southeast Asia Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoï welcomes guests to experience her colonial grandeur and timeless elegance. Located steps from the Opera House in Hanoï's French Quarter, this legendary property brings guests into intimate contact with the opulence of another era. Surround yourself in heritage as you stroll by stately corridors and explore a dramatic past.
Day 2: Hanoi Full Day Sightseeing
After breakfast, start to explore Vietnam’s Capital – Hanoi
This morning, we will drive to Ho Chi Minh’s Complex to visit Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, Ba Dinh Square, Ho Chi Minh’s House-on-Stilts and One Pillar Pagoda.
The next stop will be Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university and the very first stop-over of any foreign tourist in Hanoi. It reveals the Hanoians’ spirit of studying in the past. It is also a famous historical and cultural relic nowadays.
After that, drive to visit Hoa Lo Prison, also known as Maison Centrale, was French built for housing Vietnamese political campaigners for independence and was completed in 1913.
Lunch is served at La Verticale Restaurant, to evolve in a space where the West meets Asia, where the two come together for a cuisine in a perfect balance of tastes and textures.
After lunch, drive back to Hanoi to enjoy a cyclo riding around the Old French Quarters. Then, take a guided walking tour to walk along the 36 antique streets for insights into Hanoian’s ordinary life. Exploring local markets, hundreds of specialty shops selling silk clothing, lacquer ware, embroidered linens, furniture, bamboo…, hundreds of food stalls selling Hanoi specialties and so many more…
Day 3: Hanoi Street Food Tour with Daniel Hoyer
Daniel Hoyer is a seasoned chef and traveler who has lived in Vietnam for more than five years and has devoted extensive time in researching Vietnamese food and culture for his cookbook as well as his tours. He has a profound respect and appreciation towards the people and food of Vietnam. He gives a unique perspective as he is immersed in the day-to-day life in Vietnam and operates several businesses here, yet he is able to relate to the interests and concerns of those from other countries, particularly western travelers.
This morning, you will enjoy the private street food tour with Daniel. He will take you to see some of the markets and establishments that are frequented by the Vietnamese locals. Most of the tour will be outside of the tourist areas that are listed in the guidebooks.
Drive to either the Hom or Chau Long Market to learn about and taste some of the ingredients used in the local cuisine and to watch the buying and selling rituals of a Vietnamese market. Daniel will introduce you to some of the vendors, explain about the ingredients for sale and assist you with purchasing items to take home. Many photo opportunities will be available in this bustling, vibrant and colorful scene.
Lunch will be with Daniel at one of Hanoi’s Bun Cha establishments, to enjoy traditional grilled pork and rice vermicelli noodles with fresh herbs, greens and crispy spring rolls (Nem Ran) like true Hanoians.
After the tour, you will be transferred back to your hotel. In the afternoon, you are free to explore Hanoi on your own.
Day 4: Hanoi - Fly to Hue
This day, you will be transferred to the airport to take the flight to Hue.
Domestic flight Hanoi – Hue is on Vietnam Airlines (economy class)
Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by your guide and transferred to town.
Lunch is served at Y Thao Restaurant. Located near the Imperial Citadel, Y Thao restaurant is a small complex of traditional Hue-style house. The family members offer Hue cuisine – especially Royal dishes with its typical art of food preparation such as spring rolls in a royal peacock shape and lotus steamed rice.
In the afternoon, visit the Citadel Complex of Hue, set up by Nguyen Dynasty from 1805 to 1945, is now one amongst the relics of the Hue Ancient Capital – the World Cultural Heritage, capturing much of tourists’ attention. They are Hue Capital Citadel, Royal Citadel and Forbidden Citadel.
Dinner is served at Ancient Hue Restaurant. This fine restaurant is a collection of original Hue ancient royal houses. The decors evokes authentic ambiance of a Royal Palace. Delicate sweet and spicy flavors and an abundance of fresh produce and seafood characterize Hue cuisine; Ancient Hue showcases the best authentic dishes from the region, as well as a wide range of innovative fusion cuisine.
Accommodation: La Residence Hotel & Spa (5- star)
Deluxe Riverview Room
Address: 5 Le Loi Street, Hue
Tel: (+84 54) 3837 475
Day 5: A Day in Hue
In late morning you will visit the Garden House of Princess Ngoc Son. Princess Ngoc Son was a daughter of Emperor Dong Khanh. When she married, her father granted her the land to build a home. Today, it is one of the best garden houses and has been maintained largely in its original form. The house is a classic structure with three bays and two wings. The highlight is a small artificial rock garden. The present owner also has a fascinating collection of artifacts and mementos from the days of the former Royal Empire.
Your lunch today will be hosted by Mr. Phan Thuan An – the descendant of Princess Ngoc Son as well as the house owner. Mr. An is also a famous researcher on Hue’s culture and people.
In the afternoon, visit King Khai Dinh’s Tomb, the last Mausoleum built during the Nguyen Dynasty. It is perhaps the most beautiful one of all the royal tombs. Situated on one of the Chau Mountains, amidst pine, cassava and sugarcane, King Khai Dinh’s Tomb is surrounded by natural beauty. Its architecture is a blend of East and West.
Free time for shopping opportunities at Dong Ba Market, the biggest market in town.
Dinner is on your own.
Day 6: Hoi An Walking Tour
After lunch, drive 3 hours to Hoi An over the scenic Hai Van Pass – meaning Pass of the Ocean Clouds – which boasts a spectacular panoramic view of the central coastline from the summit.
Upon arrival, you will be transferred to Ancient Faifo Restaurant for lunch. Ancient Faifo Restaurant is set in an ancient house that once inhabited and inspired two generations of prominent Hoi An artisans. The restaurant offers sensational Vietnamese cuisine in a delightful presentation. Combining elements of art, music and history, it is an ideal choice for dining or just sipping a cocktail.
This afternoon, you will enjoy the walking tour through Hoi An Ancient Quarter, visit Phung Hung Ancient House, which used to be a shop-house of the formers merchants as well as a city house of special value built in the middle of the 19th century; Museum of Hoi An, a harmonious cultures combination of Vietnam, Japan & China; Kwan Kung Temple.
Continue to visit Japanese Covered Bridge, which was built in the 16th century, consisting a Japanese pagoda to protect the sailors on the northern side, the statues of two dogs at the western end, and two monkeys at the eastern end; Hoi An Market, and Workshop of Traditional Handicrafts
Hoi An Town is also famous for instant tailor shops for vest, dress, Vietnam Traditional Ao Dai which you can have within 24 hours after the order.
Accommodation: The Nam Hai Hoi An (5- star)
Address: Hamlet 1 Dien Duong Village, Dien Ban District, Hoi An
Tel: (+84 510) 394 0000
Hotel information:The stunning all villa resort located on pristine Hoi An Beach features sixty one-bedroom retreats as well as forty privately owned two-to-five bedroom residences each with a private infinity pool. Resort guests and residence owners at this award winning property enjoy impeccable service amid lush landscaping and unobstructed views of the sea. The unique and gracious culture of Central Vietnam combines with The Nam Hai’s unprecedented splendor to deliver one of the world’s foremost luxury experiences.
Day 7: Cooking Class in Hoi An
After breakfast, enjoy a morning tour of one of the most colorful local marketplaces in all Southeast Asia.
Chef and proprietor Duc Tran from Mango Restaurant creates eclectic and innovative flavors reflective of his worldwide culinary journey. A passionate and extremely talented chef with profound knowledge of Hoi An food scene, Duc will take you on a culinary journey embracing a combination of refreshing flavors, beautiful presentations as well as a visit to Hoi An Market to meet the vendors who supply him daily with some of the finest and freshest ingredients in Vietnam.
In the afternoon, you are free at leisure to enjoy your charming resort and the beautiful beach.
Dinner is on your own.
Day 8: Danang - Fly to Saigon
This day, you will be transferred to Danang airport to take the flight to Saigon.
Domestic flight Danang – Saigon is on Vietnam Airlines (economy class)
Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by your private English speaking guide and transferred to town.
This evening, transfer to Mandarin Restaurant for dinner. Housed in a large restored colonial villa with decoration coming from the former Royal Capital of Hue, this charming eatery is perfect for discerning diners in search of authentic Vietnamese cuisine. Savour dishes such as Mandarin-style roasted duck, sautéed rice pancakes with shrimp mousse, and Ho Doan sautéed fish. If you like, the chef will come and cook your selection right at your table.
Accommodation: Park Hyatt Saigon(5-star)
Address: 02 Lam Son, District 1, Ho Chi Minh city
Tel: (+84 8) 3824 1234
Our grand hotel in Saigon majestically rises nine stories above District 1, steps from the elegant Opera House, Notre Dame Cathedral, Reunification Palace, Ben Thanh Market, and other Saigon main tourist attractions, the exhibition center and business district. Hyatt’s 244 rooms & suites redefine urban luxury, blending sophisticated design and décor with the latest modern comforts as the leading Saigon hotel.
Day 9: Unforgettable Day in Saigon
Saigon is the country’s commercial center and, with over eight million inhabitants and four million motorbikes, a city that never sleeps. Despite the well-documented hustle and bustle, Saigon retains its connections with the past.
This morning, drive to visit Notre Dame Cathedral, General Post Office and the former Presidential Palace.
Notre Dame Cathedral, a red brick edifice with twin spires based on the original construction from Paris.
Central Post Office, designed by the French architect, Gustav Eiffel, before he had risen to fame for the Eiffel Tower.
The former Presidential Palace, the headquarters of the Saigon Government during the American war, is a short drive away and reveals the history of Saigon during its turbulent recent past.
Enjoy your lunch with Pho, Vietnamese beef noodle, at Pho Hoa, the most famous Pho restaurant in town.
This afternoon, drive to visit Chinatown with Binh Tay Market.
Chinatown (Cho Lon) is an interesting place to see classical Chinese architecture reminiscent of years gone by with plenty of Chinese restaurants. It is also a place of historical and cultural importance. Chinese minorities hid here from the Tay Son and subsequently had to rebuild the area twice following attack. Those who survived settled and began selling variety of Chinese products.
Then take a cyclo ride to Thien Hau Temple (the Temple of the Lady Thien Hau), a Chinese style temple located on Nguyen Trai Street in the Chinatown. It is dedicated to Thien Hau, the Lady of the Sea. Thien Hau is worshipped in the seafaring Chinese communities of Fujian, Guangzhou, Taiwan, and Southeast Asia. She is not specifically a deity of Taoism or Buddhism, though she has been brought into connection with figures and themes from Taoism and Buddhism.
With all its hustle & bustle, Saigon is a city on the move! Discover what this thriving and exciting metropolis can offer in terms of street food, all from the back of a vintage Vespa scooter.
Early this evening, meet your vespa driver at the hotel lobby. Then be driven to the local Zoom coffee shop for a welcome drink and briefing about the trip. Start the journey with en-route stops including dinner and drinks at Saigon's best authentic street food stores. Drive to District 4 to taste various snail dishes which are very popular in Saigon. Then it’s back to District 3 to sample a southern Vietnamese specialty – Banh Xeo (rice pancake with pork and prawns).
Finally, head to a local Vietnamese style coffee shop and enjoy a local coffee.
Day 10: Day trip to Mekong Delta
This morning, you will be picked up at your hotel and depart for Cai Be.
Upon arrival, boarding a luxury wooden boat to visit the colorful Cai Be Floating Market, where you can witness all of trading activities of local traders with several kinds of agricultural product from one boat to another.
Then, continue the cruise to a local factory to visit and learn how pop rice, pop corn, rice paper and coconut candies are made. You also have an opportunity to taste these products served with hot green tea. Returning to the boat to take a 50-minute excursion to Dong Hoa Hiep Island and discover the beautiful and peaceful sceneries together with the typical life of the region along the Mekong River. Stops and visits can be made during the excursion.
A 10-minute walk through a local village and fruit gardens, you will be able to stop to visit the local family scaled longan process factory, where you have another opportunity to take photo of and interact with several friendly and hardworking local people before coming to an old Mandarin House, built hundred years ago and it is where at least four generations of this family have been living.
Lunch at a local restaurant with the famous dish in Mekong Delta – Elephant-ear Fish.
After lunch, boarding the wooden boat back to the wharf and transfer back to Ho Chi Minh City.
Dinner today is on your own.
Day 11: Saigon Departure
Today you are free until transfer to the airport for your flight home.
- Tour cost is in US dollars and based on the above suggested hotels & room categories. It is subject to change due to hotel availability and increase in airfare upon confirmation.
- Quoted program prices are per person, based on group of 2 persons, double / twin share.
TOUR PACKAGE INCLUDES:
10 night accommodation as indicated in the program
3 nights at Sofitel Legend Metropole – Luxury Room
2 nights at La Residence Hue – Deluxe Riverview Room
2 nights at The Nam Hai– One-bedroom Villa
3 nights at Park Hyatt Saigon – Park Room
Street food tour with Daniel Hoyer in Hanoi
Cyclo ride in Old Quarters of Hanoi
Cooking class in Hoi An with local chef
Boat trip and biking in Mekong Delta
Street food tour on vespa scooter in Saigon
Meals as indicated in the program
Admission fees as per itinerary
Private air-conditioned transportation
Regional English speaking guides during the program
Bottled water, soft drinks, snacks, wet tissue… during transfers
TOUR PACKAGE EXCLUDES:
Visa to Vietnam
Airport Assistance Service
International flights & Airport tax
Domestic flights & Airport tax
Meals not mentioned in the itinerary and drinks during meals
Drinks / water at included lunches and dinners
Hotel early check-in / Late check-out
Travel & Trip insurance
Other expenses which are not clearly mentioned in inclusive services
Gratuities to guides and drivers (suggested USD 10 / person / day)
Airfare Hanoi – Hue; Danang – Saigon: USD 230 / ticket (on Economy class, inclusive of airport tax)
**Airfare is subject to change by the airlines without prior notice.
Vietnam Culinary Art
Package price: USD 3,893 per person
: USD 7,785