What better way for globe-trotting connoisseurs to enjoy a destination like a local than savouring its delectable cuisine? Be prepared for some serious taste bud titillation with the spicy, strongly-flavored Central Vietnamese food. We have Hue – the culinary capital of Vietnam that boasts a peaceful yet striking harmony between sophisticated, banquet-style royal dishes (thanks to the legacy of being Vietnam’s imperial capital) and rustic yet equally ingenious street food scene. There is also Hoi An – once a major port in Southeast Asia from the 15th century to the 19th century, featuring a multifaceted food culture influenced by an opulent confluence of indigenous Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, and Mediterranean gastronomy.
Day 1: Hue Arrival
Meal: Dinner- Accommodation: Hotel in Hue
Upon arrival at Phu Bai Airport, you will be picked up and sent to Hue, the ancient capital of Vietnam from 1802 to 1945. In the afternoon, you will pay a visit to the iconic Thien Mu Pagoda, the unofficial symbol of Hue City then take a walk around Kim Long Village where you can visit the original ancient house of a former mandarin, mingle with local people for a true sense and feel of what the local culture is all about. Your first encounter with authentic Central Vietnamese food will be dining like royalty in one of the finest restaurants in Hue.
Day 2: Hue Cooking Class and City tour
Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner- Accommodation: Hotel in Hue
Dong Ba is the biggest wholesale market in Hue with a plethora of food, vegetables, herbs, spices, and fruit. We will visit Dong Ba Market early in the morning, when everything is so fresh. This is the best time and best way to learn about indigenous Central Vietnamese food and get involved in local life. After breakfast, hop on a cyclo from your hotel over to the famed Trang Tien Bridge and past Dong Ba Market. The cyclo trip will take you around the ancient Citadel of Hue, over the streets and local shops, affording an expansive view of the city and authentic daily life. You will be taken to Y Thao Restaurant to participate in one of the best Hue cooking classes, where you will learn how to make spring rolls, pancakes, and grilled beef, banana flower salad, etc., and gain an intimate insight into the regional culture. You will then get to enjoy your own creations along with those specially prepared by the restaurant.
Of cultural and architectural interest are splendid legacies left by former rulers under the Nguyen Dynasty that have cultural vultures captivated. In the afternoon, pay a visit to the Imperial Citadel and Tu Duc Tomb to discover the beautiful and impressive architecture of this unique construction as well as the story of the King there. For dinner, you will dine in a local restaurant that serves all the typical types of Hue cakes such as Banh Beo, Banh Nam, and Banh Loc. Spend the night in Hue.
Day 3: Hue – Danang – Hoi An
Meal: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner- Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An
In the morning, depart to Danang (via Hai Van Pass) to visit the Cham Museum, where a great collection of sand stone artifacts from 4th to 13th century is exhibited. Then, continue your drive to the little quaint town of Hoi An, originally one of major trading centers of Southeast Asia in the 15th century. Lunch with distinct Central Vietnamese food will be served at a local restaurant.
In the afternoon, go for a leisurely stroll through Hoi An’s narrow lanes and alleys imprinted with a distinct cultural and architectural overlay and visit Phuc Kien congressional Assembly Hall, Japanese Cover Bridge, as well as Tan Ky Ancient House. Also, carve out a bit of time to engage in a short Hoi An street food tour. Then, you have free time to acutely examine this ancient town on your own or do some shopping to your heart’s content. As the day winds down, you will have a chance to try some of the most popular local dishes such as Com Ga (Chicken Rice) and Cao Lau, while losing yourself in the whimsical assortment of illuminated lanterns of all sizes sporting different colors and shapes. Stay overnight in Hoi An.
Day 4: Hoi An Cooking Class
Meal: Breakfast, Lunch – Accommodation: Hotel in Hoi An
When it comes to a more locally oriented culinary experience, Hoi An has rightfully secured the number one spot with numerous well-known cooking classes. In the morning, you will visit Tra Que Herb Village in a suburb of Hoian. This village very famous for growing organic herb for supplying to Hoi An. You will interact with local farmer, as well as learn about the different kinds of herbs and the way how they grow them. Pay a visit to a local bakery before going to Vy’s Market Restaurant for joining one of the best Hoi An cooking classes.
Get started with a 1-hour market tour learning about Vietnamese ingredients and how to tell if they are still fresh, followed by a short talk on the art of Vietnamese gastronomy, vegetables, herbs, spices, as well as how to prepare and use them. The hands-on experience involves practising some cooking and cutting techniques, along with learning how to use a Vietnamese vegetable grater and knife. Our menu includes four of the most quintessential Central Vietnamese food:
In the afternoon, embark on a scenic cyclo tour to Cam Nam Village and Cam Nam Bridge. Make an en route stop for photo opportunities to capture the daily activities and scenery around the Thu Bon River. Then, the cyclo will take you along the bank of the Thu Bon River for an expansive panoramic view of Hoi An from other side of the river. Continue to ride along the riverside and through the tranquil villages of Cam Nam. This area is inhabited by very friendly and hospitable locals and remains untouched by mass tourism. You can see their daily life activities or even have a look at the interior of their house and their life through always-open doors. Your cyclo trip will end at a small canal fenced by water coconut trees and characterized by a deep green hue. Embark on a boat and sail along the Thu Bon River. You can watch local life unfurl, such as fishing, farming, catching clam, etc., along the way. Come back to Hoi An around sunset time and stay there for the night.
Day 5: Hoi An – Danang – Departure
Meal: Breakfast – Accommodation: N/A
The morning is free at your leisure until the departure time, and then we will transfer you to the airport for the flight home.
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