10 things not to miss in Vietnam
There are so many choices of activities and services in Vietnam that you may become quite confused about what to do and what to leave for another time. Vietnam Spirit Travel would like to list some of the highlight activities that we think you should try while travelling in Vietnam. However, we also understand that everyone has their own ideas, so what we suggest is just that. We look forward to hearing your comments and recommendations to extend this list.
Having Pho - Noodle soup.
Vietnam's most popular breakfast made from rice and different kinds of herbs. This is not o-nly simple food but also our culture of food - art. Where do you go to try this? Everywhere! Ask your tour guide or any local people and they will show you the o-ne that they normally eat at daily. However, the many Pho 24 or Pho 2000 restaurants are famous with travellers.
Bia Hoi - Vietnamese Beer
The French had brought beer to Vietnam so we have beer from can, from bottle. In recent time beer from Germany, Denmark, Czech…are brought to Vietnam. But the most beer Hanoians drink is "bia hoi" that means "steam beer". It is a kind of premature beer. In the summer, after a hard working day or after a short exercise, nothing is more refreshed than a couple glass of "biahoi". The restaurants store the beer barrel in a cellar filled with ice. Important is that the beer stays at a fixed temperature (it is the secret of each restaurant) for a fixed
time, if the temperature is hotter the beer will be bitter. Otherwise it will be sourer. From the barrel beer is poured in 400ml glass and will be brought to customers. People usually order some meat dishes to accompany the beer. Sometimes people (mostly men) can spend more than 6 hours drinking "bia hoi". You can find "bia hoi" almost o-n every street, it is a great idea to sit o-n the sidewalk of a street corner drinking "bia hoi" and chat with your friends.
Riding Xich Lo (Rickshaw) in the Hanoi old quarter
Hanoi 's old quarter itself is interesting but riding by Xich Lo to see it is even better. There are plenty of routes to cruise through the 36 old streets. We recommend a 1.5 hour ride to see that special part of Hanoi . Most of Vietnam Spirit Travel tours include this experience in their itinerary.
Sit back for water puppet show in Hanoi.
The original Water Puppet shows were created by farmers in the 11th century during flood seasons. Plays are very simple representations of daily activities and something o-nly rarely ever seen out of Vietnam . This is another great chance to understand the Vietnamese 'water-rice' culture.
Junk cruise in Halong Bay
Many people travel to Vietnam just because of Halong Bay . This natural world heritage site attracts millions of visitors per year. It is definitely the most popular destination in Vietnam . Let's have a nice junk to enjoy this famous spot.
Visit Sapa homestay
Sapa is in the northwest of Vietnam and is the hometown of many different colorful hilltribe groups. This remote area is highly recommended to adventure travelers especially for trekking and homestay. Quite different from homestay in Mekong Delta, a stay in a local house of o-ne of the people in Sapa is more rustic. Everything seems to be very simple but what you really get from it is the diversity of the local culture, atmostphere, scenery and unique hospitality.
Motorbike cruise in Hue
A great way to get off the beaten track & see Vietnam in close-up. It is also the only way the locals get about as a car is too expensive to purchase! Please note that all guides carry helmets which can be used, and the top speed ever gained is no more than 25km/h. Begin by departing the hotel by 08.00am and the first stop is o-n the Vi Da Bridge for a great view of the river, and photo opportunity. Then head out of the city and through the rice paddies and countryside. There are many things to see including the Old Covered Bridge; the Tiger's Arena (where the elephants & tigers used to fight and the elephants always won!), visit some of the local cottage industries such as incense making and conical hat making, then head up to the military bunker o-n the top of the hill for a great view of the Perfume River. At 11am you may be lucky enough to get to a monastery and hear the monks chanting. Lunch is usually either in a monastery or a convent. The nuns are super friendly at the convent, and the meal - a fully vegetarian buffet - is usually o-ne of the client's trip highlights. After lunch, you will head to o-ne of the Emperor's Tombs and then maybe o-nto the Thien Mu Pagoda before heading back to the hotel. You will usually get back around 4pm or maybe earlier.
Cooking class in Hoi An.
For many visitors to Vietnam the food is, a highlight and eating it a serious activity in itself. Hoi An is Foodie Heaven, and budding gourmets who want to take a step further into Vietnamese cuisine will find ample op portunlty here. Many of the popular eateries offer cooking classes, and the best bit is that you then get to sit down and enjoy the fruits of your labour. One of the best classes is offered by Hai Scout Cafe at its Red Bridge Cooking School (Starting out with a trip to the market, you then cruise down the river to this relaxing retreat about 4km from Hoi An The lesson includes a tour of the herb garden, making rice paper, several local specialities and some decorative nourishes - although it's hard to imagine how your dinner party guests hack home will react to tomatoes morphed into roses and lotus flowers.The class costs 235,000d per person; it starts at 8.45am and finishes at 1 pm. You're given print-outs of the recipes to try at home. More informal classes can be found at Hong Phuc restaurant, Cafe 96 , Green Moss and Cafe des Amis.
Fighting Cu Chi tunnels.
Begun during the French war, CuChi was used widely during the more recent Vietnam war. These were hidden tunnels to protect the village people from bombs and fighting. Most now is closed for security purpose, however enough is maintained so people still have a great opportunity to see how it was built and its various uses. The highlight of Cu Chi is you can actually crawl through it (if you want to). It will be hot down there but this is the way you understand just a bit about how hard it was for people here who had to live in the tunnels during the actions above.
Homestay in the Mekong Delta.
Vietnam Spirit Travel believes the local culture will be best understood if you join local activities. That's why we recommend this action. The best tour is a small private tour and an overnight stay with a small family in Vinh Long or Ben Tre. Stay to understand the lovely locals of the Mekong Delta - always selected as the highlight of a Vietnam trip from our past customers
Please take your time and visit our website www.vietnamspirittravel.com for more information
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