(Bangkok, Chiang Mai)
(Hanoi, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh City)
Pamper your palate with this exotic gourmet culinary tour of Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. A fascinating blend of diverse cultures, explore the historical highlights and hotspots of Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Hanoi, Hoi An, Hue, Ho Chi Minh City, the Mekong River and Kuala Lumpur with the comfort of expert private guide. Learn about the cultural significance and time-honoured traditions behind the diverse cuisines of each delicious destination. Participate in a variety of cooking lessons, bicycle through rice paddies, fish in Hoi An - then cook your catch, shop South East Asia’s largest weekend market, pilgrimage ancient temples, safari through a coconut forest and much more. This appetizing adventure features tasty cafes, fabulous restaurants, award winning chefs, inspiring art and stunning tropical beaches. Enjoy the city, countryside and all the delicious culinary and cultural highlights of South East Asia – Active and appetizing, this adventure is sure to please!
A private vehicle with English-speaking guide and driver will transfer you between the airport and your hotel. The driving time is roughly 45 minutes.
Conveniently located in the "heart" of Central Bangkok, entering the AriyasomVilla is like stepping back in time to a more leisurely life style. The Villa was built in 1942 and is still in the hands of the original family who built it. With 25 beautifully appointed Rooms and Suites, "Na Aroon" Restaurant, Room Service, Swimming Pool, Spa, Meeting Room, Library and Meditation Hall, you will be well looked after during your stay.
The Blue Elephant Cooking School in Phuket – Newly open in 2010 at site of the well-known Phra Pitak Chinpracha Mansion. This historic Sino-Portuguese style was built in 1903; it is a combination of European and Chinese style. The architecture is European (Sino-Portuguese). And because of its history and the beautiful scenic surrounds of this elegant old mansion, it was used as a location for several movies including “Heaven and Earth”, "the Killing Fields", and TV's "Young Indiana Jones Chronicles". Moreover it is also won a conservation award from the Thai authorities, in the 1990s. The Blue Elephant Phuket has fully equipped facilities offering you the chance to put your hand to practicing Thai Cuisine. The Cooking Class is divided into 2 sessions and all classes are conducted in English as well as all the ingredients are provided to you.
A visit to the Royal Grand Palace, the nation’s landmark and most praised royal monument in Thailand is a must. The former royal residence of the Chakri Kings, the palace is the perfect example of an ancient Siamese court. Built in 1782 by King Rama I, it was the centre of power for more than 150 years. Today, the palace is Bangkok's major landmark and most popular tourist attraction. Wat Phra Kaew, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is located right next to the Grand Palace together form perhaps the greatest spectacle for the visitor to Bangkok. Despite the fact that the whole compound is so full of tourists you spend half the time trying to avoid getting in people’s photos, it’s still pretty amazing place to visit. It consists of over 100 brightly coloured building, golden spires and glittering mosaics, and dates back to 1782, when Bangkok was founded. When you enter the compound, you first of all see Wat Phra Kaew and the nearby attractions, and then move on to the Grand Palace afterwards. Photography is permitted in the Royal Palace Grounds and in the compounds of the Emerald Buddha Temple, but not inside the buildings. The dress code is that participants on this tour should note that the chapel is a national shrine and you will be required to wear proper attire (no bare shoulders, knees or strapless-heel shoes). Shoes must be removed before entering the temple buildings as a matter of respect. The Palace may be closed without prior notice during Royal ceremonies and officials/head of state visits. The inner courts of Grand Palace are frequently closed on Sundays; we recommend not to book this excursion on Sundays to avoid disappointment.
Spend half a day today visiting South East Asia's largest open air market, Chatuchak. Open only on Saturday and Sunday, this market spans many miles, and is the perfect place to barter for souvenirs, eat some truly authentic Thai street food, or simply sit back, grab a drink, and watch the excitement. Your guide will accompany you through the maze of stalls, and help you with your haggling skills.
Fly from Bangkok to Chiang Mai on Bangkok Air.
You will be greeted at the airport by an English speaking guide and transferred by private car between the airport and your hotel.
Tamarind Village is set in the heart of Chiang Mai, just 15 minutes from the airport, and close to the local bus and train links. The world famous night bazaar is a short stroll away, along with various temples and cultural points of interest. This boutique property boasts 42 guest rooms and 3 suites reflecting a range of styles accustomed only to northern Thailand. All rooms are decorated with contemporary elegance. On-site facilities include a spa, travel desk and car rental service.
A private vehicle will pick you up from your hotel and take you on one of the most unique experiences in Thailand, a visit to a Buddhist temple to offer alms to the Buddhist monks. Each morning before dawn (pick-up from your hotel is at 06:00 hrs), the monks put on their distinctive saffron robes and quietly pad in their bare feet along the streets, carrying alms bowls and receiving boiled rice and condiments from the citizens of Thailand In return people receive the monks’ blessings. You can participate in this very special Thai custom by personally presenting alms; a brief exploration at the Sri Soda temple may be made as well, religious festivals permitting, including see the monks pray in the early morning.
The Elephant is Thailand’s working pride and one of this country’s national symbols. Current estimates of wild elephants left in Thailand were between 3000-4000 animals. Although logging is being banned in this Kingdom, they remain a very important mode of jungle transport as it beats any other animal or machine for its ability to move through a forest with minimum damage. For centuries these animals were trained to use their skills by moving lumber and served as a mode of transport within the jungle area. Over the past decade, with the reduction in lumbering, these giants of the forest have been protected in various conservation camps. An interesting journey through the scenic countryside brings you to Chiang Dao Elephant Conservation Camp. Here you to see elephants at work during a half-hour presentation. There is also an opportunity to watch the elephants as they take their morning bath. During your visit to the camp, you’ll have an opportunity to ride on elephant back during a one hour trek into the surrounding forest. After a Thai set lunch at the camp, the afternoon is reserved for a leisurely cruise on board a bamboo raft.
Fly from Chiang Mai to Hanoi via Bangkok.
Welcome to Vietnam! Please be sure that your visa has been pre-arranged, or that your visa-on-arrival letter is in your carry on luggage. These documents will be presented to customs at your first point of entry into the country.
Transfer between downtown Hanoi and the International Airport.
The Silk Path is located in the heart of the charming old quarter of Hanoi, which has countless tourist attractions, government and diplomatic institutions, as well as proximity to the business district of the city. With the hotel's 106 well-appointed exclusively designed rooms and suites, it is no surprise that Silk Hotel is a preference choice of a traveler. The hotel has a 2 level restaurant with private dining rooms, a unique bar, and a fitness center and sauna. Silk Path Hotel guarantees a comfortable stay with all luxury amenities within reach.
You will be taken into the kitchen for your very own cooking class. Start the morning with a delightful wander around a local produce market with your chef. They will help to give you a very "real" shopping experience, providing you with local knowledge of how to select the freshest ingredients. You will then go back to the restaurant with bags full of seasonal vegetables, meat, tropical fruits and all the exotic herbs where the chef will share his or her cooking secrets with you. Try your hands at cooking typical main dishes, desserts and drinks. After finishing, sit down and take pleasure enjoying the meal that you just prepared. A private car with an English speaking guide will be provided to you.
Today, you will take a walking tour that explores the French Quarter through the ideas of its architects and the shape of its stones with your own English speaking guide. It is set in the time from the unraveling of all the threads of civilization, which have left their mark on the area, beginning with recent reminders of Soviet style. Just around the corner, discover a different world altogether as we visit the Buddhist pagoda of Quan Su, the center of Vietnamese Buddhism and Tran Hung Dao streets. You will learn about the French approach to justice and punishment and hear tales of daring Vietnamese resistance to the repressive regime. Enjoy the end of your tour with a nice cup of Vietnamese coffee. Entrance fee, coffee and mineral water is included in this tour. Lunch is not provided.
Fly one way from Hanoi to Danang.
Airport transfer between Danang airport and Hoi An with private vehicle, driver, and English-speaking guide. (40 mins)
Enjoy this private guided tour to CamKim Fishing Village. Here you will see the sights along the river and learn how to fish with the traditional methods of the Mekong. You will be instructed how to row a boat, spread a net, and catch fish. Afterwards head to a local restaurant and prepare your catch. Return to Cua Dai to take photographs and watch the sunset, or to go to the Bay Mau coconut forest in the Thuan Tinh eco- tourism zone.
At Anantara Hoi An Resort experience an idyllic blend of riverside relaxation in Anantara luxury, a UNESCO World Heritage Site on your doorstep, and beautiful beach life just a short bicycle or boat ride away. Scenically positioned on the banks of the Thu Bon River, Anantara Hoi An Resort is a charming boutique retreat in the historic port town of Hoi An. Designed with French, Dutch, Chinese and Japanese influences that reveal Hoi An’s fascinating cultural diversity, split level rooms and suites open onto porches with comfortable daybeds, overlooking the river or a garden courtyard. Delve into Vietnamese culture with language, savour authentic local dishes and popular world flavours in elegant and casual settings beside the river. Meet up at the heritage inspired wine bar for an atmospheric view of Hoi An’s street life or laze by the pool and let the staff bring an exotic cocktail to your sun bed.
You will be picked up by mini-bus today along with other travellers for a trip to a local cooking school. Pick out your ingredients at the local market and take a boat 25-minutes up the river to the school. Watch the fishermen cast their nets on the water and watch the life along the river. We arrive at a small town and walk to the cooking school. The lesson is in an open-air pavilion next to the river. Chef Thanh of the Red Bridge Cooking School will teach you how to cook a traditional Vietnamese meals. After lunch, return to your hotel where you will be picked up by a private guide for a tour of Hoi An. Discover the historic town which used to be a prosperous seaport city during the 16th to 18th centuries. Visit Hoi An's colourful local market, Tan Ky old house, Fukien Assembly Hall, and the 400-year-old Japanese covered bridge.Travelers can also see local residents raise silkworms and produce silk for Hoi An's burgeoning textile industry.
Fly one way from Danang to Ho Chi Minh City.
You will be picked up by a private car with an English-speaking guide and transferred between Ho Chi Minh City airport and your hotel.
The Renaissance Riverside is located in the heart of Saigon's business district, the Renaissance Riverside Hotel Saigon offers first-class hospitality, comfortable rooms and modern amenities. After a long day, relax at the poolside terrace or enjoy a leisurely dinner at Kabin, known as one of the finest Chinese restaurants in the city. Take a dip in the rooftop pool and visit the Health Club for an invigorating workout with the latest gym equipment. Otherwise, simply enjoy the incredible views of the Saigon River and stroll to museums, galleries and other area attractions. You’ll find that the hotel’s central location, panoramic views and impeccable service makes this the ideal place to stay while visiting Ho Chi Minh City.
Today, you will be picked up by private car with an English speaking guide escorted to My Tho. You will be traveling past miles of flat rice fields, along a bustling High Way. On arrival at My Tho, you will board a private Mekong cruise boat to Thoi Son Island where you will be entertained with traditional music. Next, you will change to a paddle boat to cruise through the narrow canals and visit home grown industries like coconut candy and rice-wine making. Travel by motorized boat to another Mekong island to visit a bee farm and try tea with fresh honey from the beehives and enjoy fresh seasonal fruits. On your return to My Tho there will be a visit to the Vinh Trang Pagoda. Enjoy a lovely lunch at a local Vietnamese restaurant. At the end of the tour, you will return back to Ho Chi Minh.
Fly from Ho Chi Minh City To Kuala Lampur.
Transfer between Kuala Lumpur Airport and your hotel with private vehicle and English speaking guide/driver. Please note that in Malaysia your driver is also your guide.
This evening tour takes you to the open air bazaar of Chinatown, a Hindu temple and a sumptuous Malay cuisine accompaied with a cultural show. At the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, enjoy the smell of burning jasmine, incessant chantings of Hindu priests, intricate carved deities and the mystical aura combine to give you lasting impression of this religion. Take a stroll through the Open Air Bazaar of Chinatown night market, where the locals engage in hectic bargaining for merchandises spread across the streets. Later, proceed to a Malay Restaurant for buffet dinner and cultural show. Help yourself to a buffet dinner where a sumptuous variety of local dishes and delicacies await you. Please note that in Malaysia your driver is also your guide.
The Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur is a contemporary city centre hotel that caters to smart business and leisure travellers. We offer 571 stylishly appointed rooms and suites in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, just opposite the Petronas Twin Towers.
This Traditional Cooking Class is conducted in English, and is kept small, roughly between 3 to 10 guests to ensure proper supervision. Guests will be allotted individual fully equipped cooking stations and you will cook your food with lots of assistance. And no washing up!!! Take the rare hands-on experience of cooking in a Malaysian home environment using traditional stone and wooden utensils in a modern kitchen. All the necessities will be provided from the cooking utensils, stove and aprons. You will cook using fresh ingredients bought from the local markets. Importantly, learn to cook a variety of traditional and special festive Malay, Chinese, Indian and some Thai dishes. Pointers will be given on Malaysian cooking etiquette as well as some valuable tips and tricks of authentic Malaysian dishes. Precious family recipes passed down from generation to generation will be shared as well as the finer details of preparing the dishes. You will not only take pleasure in your creations with the others and socialise, but most importantly, you will have fun doing it. Clients will spend some moderate time at the market covering all shops and stores under one roof either related or not to the ingredients used for the cooking session. At each stall, a brief explanation will be given of those items sold especially those which are peculiar to clients. At the end of the visit, clients may visit to try some local breakfast (eg. roti cani, tosei, capati, local cakes, etc - on own account). Total market visit will take approximately 1 hour. Please note that in Malaysia your driver is also your guide.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Malaysia for the most up to date visa information.
VISA/PASSPORTU.S. and Canadian citizens staying for fewer than 30 days do not require a visa, but must possess a valid passport and may be asked to show an onward/return ticket.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Thailand for the most up to date visa information.
HEALTHHealth insurance is required. Medical facilities are not widespread and poor quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/thailand.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Bangkok. Government: Constitutional monarchy. Language: Thai is the official language. English is widely spoken, especially in establishments catering for tourists. Religion: The vast majority adhere to Buddhism (Theravada form), 5% are Muslim and there are Christian and Hindu minorities. Time: GMT + 7. Electricity: 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Two-pin plugs are standard. Telephone: Country code +66. Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with many international mobile phone companies. There is good coverage, especially around main towns. Internet: There are plenty of Internet cafes, some even found in remote areas visited by tourists.
VISA/PASSPORTA valid passport and Vietnamese visa are required prior to arrival for both US and Canadian citizens. A visa must be obtained from a Vietnamese Embassy or Consulate prior to traveling to Vietnam; entry visas are NOT available upon arrival. Processing generelly takes 5 working days along with a visa processing fee of approximately $93. Vietnamese visas are usually valid for only one entry. Persons planning to leave Vietnam and re-enter from another country should be sure to obtain a visa allowing multiple entries prior to arrival.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Vietnam for the most up to date visa information.
HEALTHHealth insurance is required. Medical facilities are not widespread and poor quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/vietnam.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Hanoi. Government: Socialist republic since 1980. Gained independence from France in 1954. Language: Vietnamese is the official language. English, French, Chinese and occasionally Russian and German are spoken. Religion: Buddhist majority. There are also Taoist, Confucian, Hoa Hao, Caodaist and Christian (predominantly Roman Catholic) minorities. Time: GMT + 7. Electricity: 220/110 volts AC, 50Hz; two-pin flat plugs are in use. Telephone: Country code +84. Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with some international mobile phone companies. Coverage is available throughout large parts of the country. Internet: Internet cafes are widely available throughout the country.
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