Day 1: Hanoi Arrival (D)
Pick up upon arrival and transfer to the city for hotel check-in. If time permits, cyclo ride tours around Hanoi old quarters. Enjoy water puppetry show and then transfer to Indochine Restaurant where you will sample Vietnamese cuisines at Indochine Restaurant.
Overnight at hotel in Hanoi.
Day 2: Cooking Class (B, L)
Morning cooking class: The worldwide reputation of Vietnamese and French food of the Sofitel Metropole has led to the opening of the Metropole Cooking School. The food of Vietnam is about to be the hottest cuisine to emerge from Asia. This exquisite cuisine is shaped by Vietnam's long association with Chinese rule, French colonization, Southeast Asian intrusions and her fierce individuality. Today’s class begins with a walk, accompanied by the Chef of the Spices Garden Restaurant, to the local market, where participants get a chance to learn all about Vietnamese ingredients. After that, everyone rolls up their sleeves in the kitchen to prepare a proper Vietnamese meal. After the class lunch will be served in the Spices Garden Vietnamese Restaurant to sample all the different dishes prepared during the class.
This afternoon you will discover Hanoi with an English speaking guide. Part of your tour will include sightseeing by cyclo, a bicycle type taxi, by which you’ll discover the Old Quarter made up of the so called "36 streets," most of which are named after the crafts or merchandise traditionally sold there.
Dinner tonight at another of Hanoi’s fine restaurants. Afterwards enjoy a performance of a traditional water puppet show. This fantastic art form originated in northern Vietnam and is best seen in Hanoi. The Municipal Water Puppet Theater is located on the shore of Hoan Kiem Lake.
Overnight at hotel in Hanoi City.
Day 3: Hanoi - Halong Bay (B, L, D)
Morning depart for Halong Bay, we go through the scenic countryside. The wondrous Halong Bay is truly one of Vietnam’s most impressive scenic sights. Heading out of the town we embark on a boat for an exploration of the legendary Halong Bay. This exciting five hour cruise will provide us a fantastic view of the picturesque scenery blending with the sky and some 3,000 limestone islands rising amazingly from the clear and emerald water. The limestone karsts formations are littered with beaches, grottoes and beautiful caves. Along the way we will anchor for a leisurely swim in a secluded cove and an enjoyable visit to one of the many hidden grottoes beneath towering cliffs.
Stay overnight on the Junk Cruise
Day 4: Halong - Hanoi (B, L)
Waking up and having breakfast served onboard. Continue cruising around the bay. Take sampan to visit Luon Cave and come back to the boat. Having brunch before disembarking and van will pick you up at the pier and transfer back to Hanoi. Visit Dong Trieu ceramic and pottery village on the way. Arrive in Hanoi at 04:00 pm. Free at leisure.
Overnight in Hanoi
Day 5: Hanoi Departure (B)
Free at leisure until transfer to the airport to take flight onward.
End of services. Our staff will give you the warmest goodbye and hope to see you again.