Multi-Day Tour | Group, Independent, Private

Vietnamese Cultural Heritage Through The Arts (11 days)

Trails of Indochina - Vietnam

Hanoi, Vietnam To Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Valid for Departures Now Through: 23 Feb 2019


Day 1
Hanoi, Vietnam
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The capital city of Hanoi, known for its scenic lakes and French colonial buildings, is home to a flourishing contemporary art community. Visit established galleries and art museums with a local curator who will offer insight on how today’s contemporary artists are taking an innovative approach to creative expressions. Gain a different perspective with a visit to an art studio of an American art director who is recognised as a leading authority on contemporary art in Vietnam. View her private collection and learn about the artists and the stories behind the paintings.

Day 2
Hanoi, Vietnam
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The Old Quarter, known for its ‘36 streets of 36 wares,’ is also home to a number of passionate artisans who continue to practice their age-old crafts. Meet with a water puppet craftsman in his home, where you will learn about water puppetry and hear his stories of travelling the world to promote this unique Vietnamese folklore performance. Continue to the home of an artisan specialising in the ancient folk art of ‘Hang Trong’ paintings, originating in the 17th century. Spend a fascinating few hours learning about this ancient craft and watch him create a folk painting using the same woodblocks used by previous generations of craftsmen.

Day 3
Hanoi, Vietnam
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Enjoy a scenic drive through the peaceful countryside to Dong Ho Village, known for its 300-year-old woodblock folk paintings produced on ‘dzo’ paper, which is made of tree bark. In its prime days, the entire village was devoted to this art. However, today there are only a handful of families keeping the tradition alive. Visit a home of an elder craftsman and his family to learn about their efforts in maintaining the soulful art.

Day 4
Hue, Vietnam
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The former imperial capital of Hue was home to thirteen Nguyen emperors from 1802 to 1945. During this period, elaborate tombs and palaces were built using sophisticated art forms such as ‘Phap Lam,’ or enamel art. Phap Lam is unique for its copper base, which is layered with colourful enamel paint. The art vanished for a couple hundred years and has only recently been revived. Visit the workshop and try your hand at creating your own piece of Phap Lam under the instruction of the artists.

Day 5
Hue, Vietnam
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Explore craft villages outside of Hue where passionate artisans continue to produce legendary folk art. Meet an artisan who specialises in a 400-year tradition of folk painting that uses natural materials such as red earth, seashells and ashes of bamboo leaves. Afterwards, take a scenic bike ride to Thanh Tien Village to learn about the 300-year-old craft of paper flower making, which is mainly used to decorate altars for ancestor worship and as offerings in religious rituals. Try creating your own paper lotus flower under the guidance of one of the artisans.

Day 6
Hue, Vietnam
Hoi An, Vietnam
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Drive via Hai Van Pass, one of the most beautiful coastline routes in the world, to the former merchant town of Hoi An. During your walk through the ancient town, you will notice the beautiful silk lanterns that decorate the streets and storefronts, which have become emblematic of this ancient city. Visit a family who has carried on the tradition of lantern making from generation to generation. Under their guidance, choose your lantern design and fabric to create your own signature lantern to take back with you.

Day 7
Hoi An, Vietnam
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Situated on the maritime Silk Road, the thriving port of Hoi An attracted its fair share of skilled artisans from the 15th to 19th centuries. Some of these traditions have survived in small single-craft villages, like the pottery village of Thanh Ha, known for producing bricks, tiles and floor slabs for buildings. You will notice the abundance of bamboo trees while journeying through the countryside to meet with an artisan specialising in how bamboo can be used in everyday life.

Day 8
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
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Dynamic Ho Chi Minh City is home to a burgeoning contemporary art scene with young emerging artists introducing new concepts while challenging old ideologies. A modern art scholar will join you, providing insight into the current art trend as you visit the Fine Arts Museum, an artist’s studio, and the newly opened Saigon Salon.

Day 9
Mekong Delta, Vietnam
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Making our way down to the Mekong Delta, we stop in Long An to visit the ‘Binh An’ Drum Village where twenty families specialise in producing this unique drum made from buffalo skin. Visit a family-run workshop to see how this 200-year-old craft is made. On the way to Can Tho, we also stop at a mat-weaving village to observe the meticulous process that goes into handweaving the mats.

Day 10
Can Tho, Vietnam
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Wake up early to visit the colourful floating market where wholesalers converge on the Mekong River to sell their goods. After breakfast, visit Binh Thuy Ancient House, an outstanding example of Western and Oriental architectural elements. The house was famously used in the movie ‘The Lover,’ the love story of young Marguerite Duras, set during the Indochine period. Afterwards, visit the Pitu Khosa Rangsay Pagoda, one of the most beautiful Khmer temples in the Mekong Delta, before continuing to Ho Chi Minh City.

Day 11
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
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Today marks the end of your journey through Vietnam. Bid farewell and transfer to the airport for your onward departure.

Tour Features


  • Cruises & Water Tours
  • Culture, History & Arts
  • Sightseeing


Gain a deeper understanding of Vietnam’s history and culture through the perspective of arts and crafts. Meet with artisans who are passionate about preserving their craft and learn how cultural traditions are expressed through their work. Discover the vibrant contemporary art scene by exploring new art spaces and meeting with gallery curators as well as up-and-coming artists.

About Us

Trails of Indochina had its humble beginnings in 1999 as a boutique inbound tour operator. Headquartered in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), and now with more than 250 employees throughout the region, Trails of Indochina has grown to be a full-service Destination Management Company and tour operation across Indochina. At Trails of Indochina, our personal relationships can make anything possible. We invite you to experience our part of the world where you will uncover the hidden gems and see a different perspectives of Southeast Asia.

Insider Tip

Vietnam is a top destination for foodies with its cuisine differing greatly from north to south. We suggest a combination offood experiences including food tours, cooking classes and craft beer tours.

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