Vietnam’s Most Delicious Dishes: A Culinary Adventure from Hanoi to Saigon - Atlas Obscura Trips
Photo Credit: Tinh Khuong
Photo Credit: Chris Slupski

Vietnam’s Most Delicious Dishes: A Culinary Adventure from Hanoi to Saigon

from $3,635 USD per person for 9 days, 8 nights
See Dates
  • 12 People Maximum
  • Moderate Activity Level
  • Overland Adventure
See Dates
Trip Overview

From the colorful dragon boats that glide across the Perfume River to the sparkling skyscrapers that tower over Saigon, Vietnam is home to a breathtaking assortment of architectural and natural wonders. But what you see is only half the story—there’s a world of history, culture, and tradition that’s best experienced through taste, not to mention what’s arguably the best street food on the planet. On this nine-day journey, we’ll explore Vietnam through its unique cuisine, tasting our way across North, Central, and South Vietnam by way of steaming pork belly meatballs in Hanoi’s Old Quarter and the white rose dumplings of Hoi An. Along the way, we’ll learn from local chefs, sample street eats, and savor freshly caught seafood. Between bites, we’ll meet with artists, authors, veterans, and friends to learn about the history of these different regions. Come with an eager palette, an empty stomach, and, possibly, a flexible return ticket—once you’ve had a taste of this place, it’s difficult to say goodbye.

  • Distinct flavors of north, central, and south Vietnam
  • Street eats, soup stalls, and outdoor markets
  • Hands-on cooking classes with local chefs
  • Conversations with local artists, journalists, veterans, and more


Itineraries and daily schedules are subject to change. We expect to do everything listed in the itinerary, though the order may be rearranged based on weather or other local conditions.

Trip Leaders

Cahn Nguyen
Born in Hanoi, Cahn has led culinary trips in his hometown and throughout Vietnam for over 15 years. Growing up, he wanted to be a chef, but the open road won him over. An expert on street food and skilled cook, Cahn knows not only the best places for pho, but the finest details about ingredients, preparation, and regional styles. A notorious joker, Cahn is always up for a good laugh and while passing soup shops can be heard saying, “What the pho?,” which also is a helpful reminder how to pronounce pho.
Duc Can Do
A Hanoian by birth, Duc has guided trips in North Vietnam for over 20 years, specializing in cuisine. His particular interest is wet markets, where Duc—or “Duke”—says one can discover the most authentic sights and sounds of Vietnam. He's also a passionate explorer of Vietnam's fabulous “street buffets,” where one can learn the most about regional herbs and cooking styles, rather than in more formal restaurants. When not hosting travelers, Duc likes to imitate his hero, Lionel Messi, on the local fields in Hanoi.

Additional Info

Pricing & Single Accommodations

The total cost of this trip is $3,635 (or $4,885 if taking the Angkor Wat extension.) For those traveling by themselves, single accommodations can be provided, subject to availability, at an additional cost of $675 (or $950 if taking the extension). Please contact us to request a single room. 

Arrival & Departure

When planning your travel, we recommend that you arrive in Hanoi by 3 p.m. on Day 1 and depart from Ho Chi Minh City anytime on Day 9 (or, if taking the extension, depart from Siem Reap, Cambodia, anytime after 5 p.m. on Day 12). If you'd like assistance booking flights, let us know and we'll connect you to our flight specialists.

Activity Level

This tour is fairly active; travelers should feel comfortable walking three to five miles each day, and remaining on their feet for long periods of time. Several parts of the tour involve some longer walks, including up and down stairs and on uneven ground. There will also be an optional cycling opportunity in the countryside.

  • Eight nights of accommodation in modern, well-equipped hotels.
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary.
  • The company of experienced, bilingual guides throughout the trip.
  • Transport throughout, in comfortable minibuses.
  • Admission to all proposed activities and experiences.
  • International flights, including airport transfers; note that the trip begins in Hanoi and ends in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), or Siem Reap if taking the Angkor Wat Extension.
  • Travel insurance (recommended).
  • Additional meals and drinks outside of Atlas Obscura offerings.
  • If applicable, applying for a Vietnam visa. 
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Trip FAQs

February is an ideal time of year to travel: not too hot or too cold, ranging in the mid-70s to low 80s (°F). The north will be slightly more brisk, especially in the evenings which will dip to the mid-60s; however, as we move progressively southward, it will grow warmer as we go. 

June will be warmer, with highs in the upper 80s and evenings in the mid-70s. Sometimes there are brief showers in the later afternoon, which then quickly go away. There's nothing like freshly washed streets after a light sprinkle.

Upcoming Departures

  • Feb 10–Feb 18, 2020
    from $3,635 per person
  • Jun 27–Jul 5, 2020
    from $3,635 per person
Booking and payment processing partners may vary with departure date.
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