- Tour Styles
The review for 5day/4night Vietnam tours from Sydney - Australia
From: Katie - XXXXXXXXX@gmail.com>
To: Thai Ta - firstname.lastname@example.org
Bcc: Tony - email@example.com
Subject: 5d4n Vietnam tours from Sydney - Australia
We had such a lovely time with Thai, our tour guide from Deluxe Vietnam Tours Hanoi. 5 of us took part in this tour to Vietnam from Sydney for my friends birthday and Thai was excellent at welcoming us to Hanoi, as well as trying to make sure my friend's birthday was special.
He met us and took us to the Hanoi and Tam Coc, Halong bay which was very fun! He then took us back his home and we enjoyed some tea before cooking a delicious meal together. The food was amazing and there was so much of it to enjoy! The best part of the tour was the friendless of Thai's family and the authenticity of cooking in a Vietnamese home. Thai's little daughters were also lovely and we had lots of fun playing with them.
I would definitely recommend doing this Vietnam tour, worth the money! Strongly recommend your Deluxe Vietnam Tour company to our friends for their Vietnam tour packages from Sydney - Australia.
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Navi from Canada
We had an amazing time with Tandy and her family. She showed us around the village, a festival that was going on and the farms. It was really neat to meet local people and learn about the local culture. Afterwards Tandy showed us how to make a few dishes. The spring rolls were amazing. We also got to meet some of her family. Everyone was so welcoming and kind. If you are thinking of taking a regular cooking class I would recommend this one instead as it has the added value of seeing how the locals live. Mandy was an amazing host!
Nadiana from Switzerland
We had a wonderful day with Tandy!! She's such a sweet lady! She gave us a great insight into the real culture of Vietnam and it was honestly the perfect ending for our trip to Vietnam. We have learned so much about the Vietnamese people and typical Vietnamese food in 1 day. I can highly recommend you to book a cooking class/ experience with Tandy- it's so so worth it! And if you do- please encourage Tandy to open her own cooking school so that more guests can experience this! :D THANK YOU!
Kuyngnam from Korea
“During looking around the local farm, I could know about many fruit trees. We had very comfortable and tasty lunch with her lovely family. Everything was peaceful. Thank you very much. tip: I went to her home by Uber taxi from Hoan kiem lake. I costs only 163,000đồng for 40minutes.”
Corin from USA
“Hi Tony, We thank you for a wonderful day visiting the market, the family farms, and your home. The lunch was delicious, especially the spring rolls with lettuce and herbs. When I get home I will put a recommendation online. I will definitely recommend you to anyone traveling to Vietnam. We wish you health and happiness for your family. It was a big pleasure to meet you. Corin”
Chanell from Australia
“What an amazing day! Traditional farming village, market & Tandy is the star of the day. We interacted with the vendors at the market (with Mandy's help), walked around the farm gardens learning lots about traditions & community farming. Tandy even covered us in ponchos when the rain started. After tasting local foods fresh from the gardens, Tandy had us in our home for tea & lunch. Having a great chat while helping make spring rolls, floating cake, beef & wintermelon soup, and lemongrass chicken. We loved every minute of our day. Could not recommend highly enough, had the best day immersed in the community. Mandy is a terrific host, so friendly, knowledgable, warm & kind hearted. We loved Tandy & will be back for a visit next time. If tossing up between a cyclo tour & this... Tandy wins hands down. Great value for money, wonderful experience! A must for food lovers! Thank you Tandy, we will be back!”
Jack from USA
“Tandy is a most gracious host while sharing her family and customs with us. We were allowed to assist in the preparations and cooking of a Vietnamese feast. My son and I highly recommend this exceptional experience”
John from The US
“Hello Tandy Our afternoon and evening with you and your lovely family were the highlight of our trip to Hanoi. You made us feel so special and helpful too. Good luck as "Tandy's" is a must do while in Hanoi. Thank you again”
Mikael from Colombia
The cooking class with Manh was a dellightfull experience! It is a very complete cooking class where you have the opportunity to learn about Vietnamese flavors but also about traditional ways of farming and living. Manh is a very good teacher and cook and have a beautiful family! Is for sure the best cooking class that we could have found.
Lee Choong from Malaysia
Me and my girlfriend had a very wonderful tour with Tandy. Friendly Host ! High recommend for those whom interested in vietnamese food =)
Stace from Australia
This was one of our favorite tours in Vietnam. Manh was so friendly and knowledgeable. Her English was fantastic. We enjoyed a tour of the market and farms then went back to Tanh's lovely house and helped her prepare our lunch. It was my favorite meal in Vietnam and the spring rolls were the best we ever had. Thank you!!!
Seor from Korea
Highly recommended She is so kind. and tried to let us know the Vietnamese culture. We talked a lot. Food was so good. Escape the complex and crowed Hanoi !!
Danniel from London
Tanh - family, farmland and food :) I contacted Manh last minute (either the night before or in the morning) she got back to me very quickly and arranged a trip. I was the only one attending but she was more than happy to accommodate me. She showed me around some of the farmland in Song Phoung, describing how veggies and fruits grow and what times of year different produce can be grown. We tried some different varieties of herb too that we were destined to cook with that night. We chatted along the way about lifestyle, local history of the region a little and any other topics that I could think of. It was very interesting learning about the local markets and what happens day vs night. Manh showed me to her home and garden, where we spent the rest of the evening prepping food, generally chatting, meeting her lovely family and of course eating. I would recommend this trip to anyone looking to escape frenetic Hanoi for an afternoon in exchange for local insight, great produce, agriculture & good people.
Andrew from Germany
It was such a fantastic (food) experience with Mandy! She's the best host, you can imagine. She is such a kind and smart woman and we've learned many facts about the Vietnamese culture and the daily life, the farming and the Vietnamese people. For me, I can say it was a fabulous exchange. I recommend this experience to everyone, join Mandy! You will not regret! :)
Kiate from Taiwan
it was a really nice tour. Tandy is a friendly host who explained patiently the culture differences between Taiwan and Vietnam to us. my friend and i had a really great time at Tandy's house. thanks a lot!:)
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There is also an opportunity to see the various vegetable plots growing lettuce, beans and onions. We return to our bus and get back onto Highway 20. We note that the price of fuel is 24,730 dong per litre ($1.26 AUD). Our driver stops at Bao Loc for toilets and a drink. Further along we see a motorbike and truck collision. There is a very high traffic death toll in Vietnam, with an average of 33 fatalities reported per day and 11,000 deaths per year. These figures are known to be far less than the actual true toll, with a recent report finding that over the last two months a total of 5,600 traffic accidents occurred, resulting in 2,000 deaths and 5,800 injuries. This is all despite efforts to improve safety on the roads, including the introduction of helmet laws and a legal blood alcohol limit of 0.08. The next stop is for lunch.
Before long we see our first rubber trees in plantations on both sides of the highway. The driver pulls off the very busy road and we walk through the trees. The rubber tree industry dates back to 1897 when the French first introduced the rubber tree and until 1920 rubber trees were grown in some surrounding areas. Now trees are grown in 25 provinces, mainly in the North Central and Southern Provinces.
Today Vietnam is the third largest exporter of rubber. It costs roughly 130 million dong ($6,620 AUD) to plant 1 hectare of rubber plantation. On that one hectare it is possible to plant between 450 – 500 rubber trees, depending on the quality of the land. Ideally the soil should be 1 metre deep with good underground water to the same depth in order to penetrate the root system. The trees are planted in rows 6 metres apart with a distance of 3 metres between each tree. The land is carefully prepared before planting, with cultivation to a depth of 70 centimetres and application of organic fertilizer(NPK) at the rate of 1 kilogram per hole. The trees do not start yielding rubber until they are 5 years old. ~ 57 ~ Australian Farmers Travel Vietnam & Cambodia Trees between 11-25 years of age are at eak roduction so the “ ots” have to be emptied once or even twice per day. The pots from the younger trees can be collected two or three times weekly.
At the end of 2012 Vietnam had approximately 910,000 hectares of rubber trees which is 7% of the total global rubber area. Last year the rubber output increased to over 1 million tonnes which was an increase of 23.8% from 2011. The earnings from this were $2.85 billion USD ($3.14 billion AUD) despite a drop in the value of rubber. The capacity of Vietnamese rubber trees now stands at 1.7 tonnes per hectare which also ranks them as the third highest producer worldwide. A total of 65,272 tonnes of rubber were exported to India last year. The value of those exports was $187.7 million. Australian Farmers Travel Vietnam & Cambodia
The government has approved plans to develop the rubber industry with the view to using 30% of the rubber for the domestic processing industry and the remainder for export. ~ 58 ~ The average rubber export price is $2,829 per tonne. After stretching our legs around the plantation we return to the bus to continue on our way to Ho Chi Minh City.
Thai gives us some information on tea production. Tea production has endured a troubled history disrupted by war and conflict, but since the 1980s production has increased dramatically and Vietnam now ranks fifth in the world for tea production. Tea is mainly grown in the northern mountainous area (which is noted for high grown tea and wild tea trees), the North West area (specializing in aromatic oolong), the northern midlands, and south central highlands (which has a longer growing season); however tea is grown in 35 provinces throughout Vietnam. Vietnamese green tea is popular amongst the locals. It has a lower caffeine content compared to Chinese green tea, but it has more caffeine than Japanese green tea. They also produce varieties such as Lotus tea, Jasmine tea, Artichoke tea, Chrysanthemum tea, and Kudingcha tea. The main difference between the types of tea produced is dependent on the amount of oxidation or fermentation. The longer the oxidation, the darker the tea. Hence green teas are subject to minimal oxidation. We are passed by a speeding Public Bus, being driven at a ridiculous speed. Thai comments in frustration that these buses are the biggest cause of road accidents.
Our driver stops briefly for toilets on the edge of Saigon since we still have some hours to reach our restaurant and hotel. The traffic is very heavy as we drive through the industrial area. Not an easy task for our very cautious driver. It is very slow progress, with some areas in grid lock. The traffic increases even more and it is now completely dark. We eventually arrive at our restaurant, thanks to some skilful and tricky manoeuvring from our esteemed driver. After dinner we go directly to our hotel for check-in and bed! ~ 59 ~
After a very nice breakfast we head off on a city tour Saigon. We all have high expectations for this renowned cosmopolitan city and everyone is impressed by, and drawn into, the buzz and excitement of the largest city in Vietnam. Our first stop is to the General Post Office in the very upmarket and vibrant Dong Khoi district. The Post Office was designed by French architect Gustave Eiffel between 1886 and 1891. The very impressive building features a coral coloured facade, with cream trim and carvings of famous philosophers. The interior is similar to that of a railway station with intricate floor tiles, wooden benches, antique maps, world clocks and a large portrait of Ho Chi Minh. There is also a shop in the Post Office selling good quality Vietnamese products and souvenirs.
It is only a short stroll to the Notre Dame Cathedral; however it takes a little longer than Thai planned as this is a popular location for wedding photos and there are numerous brides and grooms here today. A great photo opportunity for us too. The cathedral was completed in 1880 and is made from red tiles brought from Marseilles in France. The tiles are attached to granite walls. The twin towers or spires are 40 metres high. Originally there were stained glass windows from Chartres in France but when they were destroyed, they were replaced with plain glass. A statue of the Virgin Mary, made in Rome, stands on the lawn in front of the building and was erected in the hope that she should bring peace to the war torn country in 1959.
Our next stop is to the Reunification Hall which is set on well maintained and rounds. The building is a symbol of the ountry’s olitical history. During the 19th century the Reunification Hall was the site of the Norondom Palace, the former residence of the French governor general. It was later o u ied y South Vietnam’s President Ngo Dinh Diem and alled the Presidential Palace.
In 1962 much of the structure was destroyed when Diem’s own air force bombed it in a failed assassination attempt. Although the building was rebuilt, Diem was killed in the interim and could not take advantage of the reconstruction works. President Van Thieu, the succeeding President, boarded a helicopter from the rooftop and fled before North Vietnamese troops took over Saigon. In 1975 the South surrendered to the North and the palace gates were knocked down by a North Vietnamese Army Tank. We enjoy a tour of the building, admiring the reception rooms, living quarters and the lavish furniture. However the most educational and interesting part of our tour is to the basement and bunker area to see the military operation centre with the maps, radio communications etc, and the exhibition room with many photos, replicas and exhibits etc. At the completion of our tour which is very educational and moving we walk back to re-join our bus. Our next visit is to Minh Phuong Art, a lacquer ware processing place. Vietnamese lacquer art is very labour intensive and takes a lot of time to produce, with each piece going through 20 stages regardless of the size or type of product. This process can take 100 days. There are three kinds of lacquer ware: mother of pearl, eggshell, painting, or a combination of the three. The lacquer is a resin of the lacquer tree mainly planted in Northern Vietnam. When it is first extracted from the tree it is white, it then turns brown in the air, and black when dried. Once hardened the lacquer forms a lustrous durable surface which is then impervious to moisture, insects and oxidization, making it ideal for preserving materials such as wood and bamboo. After inspecting the production line and observing the various processes from wrapping to painting, lining, inlaying, filling, varnishing and polishing, we proceed to the showroom and retail area. It is then time for lunch in the very pleasant Co Ngu Restaurant. After lunch we proceed to Binh Tay Market whiCh is located in Saigon’s Chinatown. It is the largest market. The many stalls fill the two storey complex and are covered with pagoda like roofs. The market is primarily wholesale and other stall holders come here to purchase their supplies. Unlike some other markets we have visited, it is very organized and clean, with all goods and produce sorted into sections. The variety and quantity of goods is staggering.
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