DUE TO THE PRIVATE NATURE AND SPECIAL EXPERIENCE OF THIS JOURNEY, SOME ACTIVITIES AND ELEMENTS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE BUT WILL ALWAYS BE OF EQUAL OR GREATER SIGNIFICANCE IN THE EVENT THAT WE MUST MAKE ADJUSTMENTS.
Day 1: Hanoi Arrival
Our driver and local travel guide will greet members of the group at the airport this evening and drive us to our hotel. Evening at leisure.
Day 2: Hanoi City Exploration
Today, after breakfast at the hotel, we get to see Hanoi as very few others do. This day offers the perfect blend of iconic cultural sites of Hanoi and offbeat districts to sample some genuine local life. Gather in the hotel lobby and off we go on a culinary adventure led by Chef B and a local expert food guide. Our first stop will be the best Vietnamese egg coffee shop where we learn how to make the famous drink and then sip this delicious drink on a terrace overlooking the Hoan Kiem Lake. We wind through alleyways and bustling markets of Hanoi’s charming old quarter to learn more about Hanoi’s unique food culture. We will try local specialties with influences from French and Chinese cuisine. We discover the 36 ancient Streets of Hanoi Old Quarter with its ancient buildings and temples, transparent lakes and old cultural features. We will meet local street food vendors, chefs and see some of the most authentic markets in Hanoi. Lunch will be at Chef B's favorite Bun Cha . We will visit a traditional Bia Hoi (Vietnamese beer pub). Dinner is then led by Chef B at one of her favorite restaurants nearby our hotel. Overnight in Hanoi
Hanoi, Countryside Exploration
After breakfast at our hotel we hit the road and exit the city to the West to reach a beautiful ancient village located about 1-hour from Hanoi right at the heart of the Red River delta. We are welcomed by the local community and start with a cooking class as an introduction to some special dishes of this region.
After lunch, we enjoy a traditional hand spa and foot bath, and also take a walk around this well-preserved village and its red-brick ancient houses.
We return to Hanoi in the late afternoon. Time at leisure at the hotel before we go out for dinner.
Tonight, we take you to a “nhau” restaurant. A place where groups of friends gather to have some nice time and celebrate. It is noisy, it is bubbling, certainly the most typical type of festive dinner in Vietnam. Enjoy the experience, sample simple but delicious food.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 4: Hanoi – Halong Bay
morning we drive to the area that is regarded as the ‘Jewel in the
Crown of Vietnam’, Halong Bay. We drive across the Red River delta and
coast a little before noon. We embark on a beautifully crafted wooden
junk for a 1-night cruise in the legendary seascape of Halong bay. The
boat is private, just for our group. Once on board, we are served a
delicious seafood lunch, while the limestone
rocks and caves pass us by through this UNESCO World Heritage site. In the afternoon, we reach a less
traveled area and explore Tien Ong cave, an archaeological site covering
an area of 1,000m2 with stunning stalactites and stalagmites. We end
the day on the sundeck while the sun sets. The day
will also include a cooking session on board with Chef B and the ship's chef
. Overnight on our private ship Please note:
itinerary and schedule are subject to change due to weather, tide
levels and operating conditions. Swimming or kayaking excursions may be
cancelled due to poor weather. Unused
services are not subject to a refund. Day
5: Halong bay – Hanoi – Hoi An
One of the most special experiences for travelers in Vietnam is to watch the sunrise over Halong Bay. Rise early to watch this spectacular and peaceful scene. After breakfast we continue cruising through the bay. We enjoy brunch on board before we arrive at the wharf in the late morning. We disembark and transfer to Hanoi’s airport to catch a flight to Danang. Upon arrival, we are transferred to the mangrove of Cam Thanh, where we embark on a sunset cruise with drinks and snacks. We journey around the mangrove and then along the Thu Bon River directly to our resort.
Check-in, refresh and then we are off to dinner at one of Chef B's favorite restaurants in Hoi An. Overnight in Hoi An
6: Hoi An City and Countryside
In the morning, we take a walk to an enchanting ancient house. We explore the market and the narrow pathways bordered by yellow-walled houses. Our private guide takes us to the various places of interest and we experience some spontaneous food tastings as we walk. Sample the famous Cao Lau soup and learn about the legend of the Cham well, try some fried wontons, the special Quang Nam gio springrolls and the My Quang noodles.
In the afternoon we hop on the back of vintage Vespa scooters for a ride of a lifetime. Sit back and enjoy the view while your driver takes you off the grid to the lesser traveled countryside around Hoi An. Meet local farmers and craftsmen, sample some more food and have fun!
We return to the hotel to refresh before we head for dinner in a unique garden setting. Overnight in Hoi An
Day 7: Hoi An – Saigon (B/L/D)
We dedicate our morning to learning the secrets of the perfect banh mi sandwich. This icon of Vietnamese food finds its roots here in Quang Nam. From purchasing ingredients at the market, to eating our delicious creations, enjoy a step-by-step discovery of the Vietnamese baguette. After lunch, we transfer to Danang and take a flight to Saigon. Take time to rest at the hotel before we enjoy a talk about Vietnamese fusion cuisine and then dinner of fusion street food at a special restaurant. Overnight in Saigon.
Day 8: Saigon (B/L/D)
This morning we go explore the bubbling Ho Thi Ky district. We get an immersion into a maze of narrow streets with their colorful stalls and busy food shops. The rest of our morning will take place at Grain cooking school for a session about the famous Nuoc Cham sauce, a pillar of Vietnamese gastronomy.
In the afternoon, we go meet some coffee experts, young guys passionate about this beverage from its western form to the purest Vietnamese way it can be served. They will introduce us the different blends and aromas of coffee before getting into a practical workshop.
end our afternoon with a walking tour around the colonial building of
central Saigon. We will have a fresh fruit juice break, aspecialty of
sidewalks, before we return to the hotel to relax. Dinner is at the very special Xu Restaurant where we will meet the chefs and have a personalized tasting menu. Overnight in Saigon