Vietnam’s Most Delicious Dishes: A Culinary Adventure from Hanoi to Saigon - February 9, 2020 - 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 and Prices
  • Max Group Size: 12
  • Moderate
  • Overland Adventure

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.

Highlights
  • 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

Itinerary

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 lead 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

Activity Level

This tour is fairly active; travelers should be reasonably fit and 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.

Arrival & Departure

When planning your travel, we recommend that you arrive in Hanoi by 3 p.m. on February 10 and depart from Ho Chi Minh City anytime on February 18, or if taking the extension, depart from Siem Reap, Cambodia anytime after 5 p.m. on February 21. If you'd like assistance booking flights, let us know and we'll connect you to our flight specialists.

Dates and Prices

Feb 10–Feb 18, 2020
Shared Room, Main Trip
$3,635 USD per person
Single Room, Main Trip
$4,310 USD per person
Shared Room with Angkor Wat Extension
$4,885 USD per person
Single Room with Angkor Wat Extension
$5,835 USD per person
The total cost of this trip is $3,635 (or $4,885 if taking the Angkor Wat extension). A $500 deposit is required to hold your space. The deposit is non-refundable after three days. The final payment of $3,135 (or $4,385 with the Angkor Wat extension) will be due by November 12, 2019. All reservations will be final after this date and subject to our cancellation policy. By submitting your deposit, you agree to the trip’s Terms & Conditions. For travelers wishing to have single accommodations during the trip, an additional $675 (or $950 if taking the extension) will be due at the time of the final payment.
Included
  • 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.
Excluded
  • 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.