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Delectable street food, private cooking classes, fascinating culture and dynamic cities

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What's Included

  • Privately guided culinary and city tours
  • Luxury accommodation throughout
  • Private transfers and internal flights
  • Full support from your Travel Designer and Concierge before, during and after your trip
Use this itinerary to inspire your bespoke journey

At a glance

Indulge in the vibrant cuisine of Vietnam and Thailand on this wonderful five-course journey through some of Southeast Asia’s most exciting cities and beautiful landscapes.

As an entrée, begin with two nights in Hanoi in Vietnam’s north. Explore the capital by bicycle before being introduced to city’s famous street food with a local expert and its favourite creation, pho noodle soup.

Next up are the sand beaches and UNESCO World Heritage Centre of Hoi An’s Old Town. Between wandering its charming streets and relaxing by the sea, you’ll be guided around the food market before a private cooking lesson with a chef, visit an organic farm and try fishing in the traditional way.

Continue south to Ho Chi Minh City where you’ll discover the vibrant streets as if you were a local and hop astride a vintage Vespa moped for some more delectable street food.

Then it’s to Thailand and its contrasting capital, Bangkok, where shining skyscrapers tower over ancient temples and neon lit streets. Sample classic dishes from stalls tucked away down hidden alleys and enjoy sweeping river views on a champagne dinner cruise.

End in the green hills of Chiang Mai where you’ll spend a day at a renowned cooking school and afternoon tea by the gilded Doi Suthep temple.

Example Trip Itinerary

Days 1-3

Hanoi

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Hanoi

Accommodation in Hanoi

tran-quoc-pagoda-hanoi
Two nights in Hanoi Two nights in Hanoi

Hanoi is a bustling and fascinating place – a whirlwind of colours, smells and sounds and a wonderful place to get a real flavour of life in Vietnam.

It is unmissable in terms of its pretty pagodas, ancient temples, enchanting French colonial quarter and cultural institutions. Just as fun, however, is darting down its winding lanes and discovering your own favourite hidden corners. The hustle and bustle of Hanoi is contagious and it is also one of the best place to sample the mouthwatering array of streetfood that Vietnam is famous for.

Half-day Hanoi city tour with cyclo Half-day Hanoi city tour with cyclo

With ochre-coloured colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards and scenic lakes, Hanoi is full of charm. Start the tour at the historic Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, an imposing monument lavishly built using marble and granite, where the preserved body of ‘Uncle Ho’ resides. Behind the Mausoleum, you can see Ho Chi Minh’s house where his belongings are on display - you can walk up the steps to see his bedroom. You’ll also visit One Pillar Pagoda which is regarded as one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples.

You’ll then enjoy an hour-long cyclo tour through the old quarter, one of Vietnam’s liveliest areas. It is known for its ‘tunnel’ or ‘tube’ houses which were built to reduce the fees paid when fares were set according to the width of the house. Weaving your way through the maze of back streets, you’ll get a glimpse into everyday life and an insight into the country’s long history.

Hanoi street food tour with a local foodie Hanoi street food tour with a local foodie

Eating on the street is a very typical activity for Hanoians and makes up an important part of the city’s unique culture. Today take a leisurely walk with our foodie expert to the Old Quarter. Make your first stop to taste the national dish of Vietnamese - Pho Ga (chicken noodle soup). Then wander around a local market to enjoy the sights, the sounds and the aroma from hundreds of kinds of food on offer. Then sit down at a tiny Banh Duc shop to try a bit of Banh Duc - cooked rice powder with Vietnamese spices. Banh Duc will be served hot or cool, depending on weather. Your next stop is a little shop selling many different types of traditional cakes such as Com cake (young rice) which is considered to be a part of every Hanoians’ childhood. Follow your foodie to a small alley to try Banh My Lan On's famous bread and some Vietnamese desserts - sweet soups called Che. Then cap off your trip by tasting a cup of Vietnamese egg coffee.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Hanoi Airport

Flight

Flight from Hanoi to Danang

Days 3-6

Hoi An

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer from Danang airport to your hotel in Hoi An

Accommodation in Hoi An

japanese-bridge-hoi-an-vietnam
Three nights in Hoi An Three nights in Hoi An

With its pretty architecture and beguiling riverside setting packed into its neat size, Hoi An is small enough to stroll around and soak up its rich wealth of heritage. Once an important port and trading town, Hoi An is one of Vietnam’s greatest cultural relics and a melting pot of Chinese, Japanese and French influences. Visit the atmospheric Old Town to see the Japanese Merchant Houses, the famed Japanese bridge, the Chinese temples, old tea warehouses, temples and traditional pagodas. Motorised traffic is banned from the town centre which has cemented Hoi An’s status as one of Vietnam’s most prized and pleasant towns.

Private market tour and cooking demonstration with Duc Mango Private market tour and cooking demonstration with Duc Mango

Chef and proprietor Duc Tran from Mango Mango restaurant creates eclectic and innovative tastes reflective of his worldwide culinary journey. A passionate and extremely talented chef with in-depth knowledge on the Hoi An food scene, Duc will take you on a foodie adventure, starting at Hoi An’s colourful market to meet the vendors who supply him daily with some of the finest and freshest ingredients in Vietnam, before a cooking demonstration at his boutique restaurant followed by a wonderful meal at the end. 

Tra Que herbal farm tour Tra Que herbal farm tour

Experience an organic discovery tour with the local farmers in the rural outskirts of Hoi An ancient town. Start your morning with a leisurely 4km (2.5 mile) bike ride through the countryside, heading to Tra Que vegetable village which is named after a sweet scented herb they grow and use to flavour Hoi An specialties like Cao Lau noodles. Upon arrival, walk around the village and learn about its history and custom before getting your hands dirty and venturing into the garden - you may like to borrow the farmers’ clothing provided by the villagers! Join the friendly farmers to learn the traditional gardening methods and how they cultivate vegetables. After a short relaxing with the water wheel or musical instruments, you will learn how to soak and grind rice by your hand, then make rice paper and grill it on charcoal.

Private Hoi An Fishing Trip Private Hoi An Fishing Trip

Set out for a local fishing village and spend some time to learn about the lives of fishermen in this area. Walk through the village and take the time to observe local life and gain an insight into the community then board a local boat and start cruising down the Cua Dai River. When you reach a good spot, hop off the boat along the shore and try your hand at casting the Vietnamese fishing nets, taught by a local with years of experience.

Later, you will also get to navigate the waters in a round basket boat, through the tranquil coconut-palm flanked waterways whilst learning about the area's history.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Danang Airport

Flight

Flight from Danang to Saigon

Days 6-8

Ho Chi Minh City

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Ho Chi Minh City

Accommodation in Ho Chi Minh City

Two nights in Ho Chi Minh Two nights in Ho Chi Minh

A booming economy has given Ho Chi Minh city (often still referred to as Saigon) a new energy and lease of life. Socially the city is flourishing with a sophisticated café culture, an exciting dining scene and burgeoning interest in eclectic art.

Ho Chi Minh also has the largest remaining assortment of French architecture, most famously the Notre Dame cathedral, which lends the city’s sprawl a unique elegance. Wide boulevards turn to narrow streets and timeless alleys are a delight to explore along with its ancient pagodas and thriving street markets.

Bonjour Saigon tour Bonjour Saigon tour

It’s an early start today as you rise with the local Saigonese to see how they begin their day. Zig zag through the streets to reach the city’s largest flower market, Ho Thi Ky. It’s a hive of activity as people buy and sell colourful roses, lotuses, lilies and orchids. You’ll also head to Tao Dan Park where people come to practice the graceful movements of Tai Chi – you are welcome to join in, should you wish. After a break for coffee, at the café where the Saigon Bird Lovers’ Club meets each morning, you’ll wind your way to a family run noodle shop to enjoy a fresh, steaming bowl of pho for breakfast.

Evening Vespa street food tour Evening Vespa street food tour

The darker the night gets, the more vivid Saigon becomes. Get ready for a fascinating ride by vintage Vespa tonight to discover busy Saigon after dark, together with delightful local food tasting in the most authentic local restaurants. It’s such a great chance for you to experience the Southern Vietnam specialties. Then continue to zigzag through the hustle and bustle of the streets. End your night at a cozy speakeasy bar to taste some signature cocktails (or mocktails for your children) and have a chat with people here. Get back to your hotel and call it a night.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Saigon Airport

Flight

Flight from Saigon to Bangkok

Days 8-10

Bangkok

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel

Accommodation in Bangkok

Two nights in Bangkok Two nights in Bangkok

Bustling and energetic, Bangkok has something for everyone. A haven for shoppers, historians, foodies and culture seekers alike, the capital is an integral part of any Thailand itinerary. It has everything from awe-inspiring temples to bustling markets and high-end shopping malls. And, of course there's the food - some of the best in the world!

Old Bangkok Street Food Walking Tour Old Bangkok Street Food Walking Tour

Explore the best tucked away alleys, sampling Bangkok’s famous street food and experiencing the Old Town on foot. Stroll through local food stalls and market to enjoy the diversity of local Thai delicacies and Thai culture. Sample various kinds of local food, old-style Thai coffee and Thai sweet desserts, and learn from the shop owners about their secret recipes. Visit Wat Suthat, as well as the Giant Swing religious monument.

bangkok-river-cruise
Champagne dinner cruise along the Chao Phraya River Champagne dinner cruise along the Chao Phraya River

See Bangkok from a totally different angle on a champagne dinner cruise along the Chao Phraya River. You will be welcomed with a glass of chilled champagne before sitting down to an exquisite six-course dinner. Enjoy wonderful night-time views of the city as you cruise along the river - the boat comes with cosy lounge sofas where you can chill out after the meal.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Bangkok Airport

Flight

Flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai

Days 10-13

Chiang Mai

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Chiang Mai

Accommodation in Chiang Mai

Wat Phra Singh temple and reflection in water. Chiang Mai
Three nights in Chiang Mai Three nights in Chiang Mai

Explore this wonderful city and spend time enjoying the surrounding countryside. Much smaller and more relaxed than Bangkok, it’s steeped in history and you can spend hours wandering around the temples and night markets in the Old Town. If you fancy heading out of town, you’ll be perfectly placed to explore the surrounding national parks and try out a few more adventurous activities.

Cooking class at Pantawan Cooking School Cooking class at Pantawan Cooking School

Start with a visit to the local market where you'll learn about picking out the freshest, tastiest ingredients. Once you're stocked up on produce, head to Pantawan Cooking School, located a short drive from Chiang Mai’s old city. Set amid a beautiful garden and organic farm, you’ll see different kinds of herbs growing that will be used during your class. You’ll learn about Thailand’s culinary history and the mouthwatering blend of sour, spicy and salty that makes Thai food so irresistible. The class takes place in a traditional Thai house kitted out with luxury wooden cooking stations with plenty of space in which to work. You'll cook up a selection of delicious dishes which you can then enjoy in the beautiful surroundings of the garden.

wat-phra-that-doi-suthep-chaing-mai
Afternoon Tea at Doi Suthep Afternoon Tea at Doi Suthep

This afternoon, take a leisurely stroll through the Doi Suthep area just outside Chiang Mai and enjoy serene mountain views mingled with graceful colourful blooms and Lanna umbrellas. After your walk, stop to enjoy an exquisite English afternoon tea including scones, finger sandwiches, cookies and cakes.

thailand-night-market-chiang-mai
Evening Chiang Mai night market tour Evening Chiang Mai night market tour

Every evening, the centre of Chiang Mai comes alive and the colourful markets are ripe for exploring. Together with your guide, you will work your way through the labyrinth of stalls selling all sorts of crafts. Keep your eyes peeled for beautiful silks and jewellery or have a suit measured, ready for collection the following evening. This is the perfect opportunity to practice your bargaining skills and pick up some souvenirs.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Chiang Mai Airport

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A Culinary Adventure through Vietnam and Thailand

13-day example trip
 
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    We create fully personalised trips from start to finish, working with you to pick locations, accommodation and guides that suit you.

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    From in-depth private tours to restaurant reservations, we take care of every detail so you can make the most of your journey.