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Vietnam, Hanoi to Hoi An to Halong Bay to Saigon radiates warmth and joy in welcoming Americans.  These generous citizens have moved on and they invite their guests to do the same.

Begin with the legendary Metropole in the middle of modern Hanoi’s Old French Quarter. Find your way to Manzi for an afternoon of coffee and art, but be sure to find time for Pots n Pans for unforgettable Vietnamese fusion cuisine. Visit the outstanding the War Remnants museum. You will be stirred beyond your imagination.

Head south through Danang for Vietnam’s most beautiful beaches and the village of Hoi An for a step back in time to 600 AD, not to mention the best tailors in all of Vietnam! Next, Halong Bay for an overnight junk boat cruise past floating villages and colorful fishing boats navigating serene limestone monoliths.  You might even dangle your own rod to try your luck at catching squid!

Head south past innumerable ceramics villages fringing acres and acres of rice fields, or keep west to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park for days of hiking in Vietnam’s third largest cave, Hang En Cave.  Guides and proper gear required. End in Saigon where heart stopping traffic, art, culture, shopping and culinary experiences abound. My favorite? A trip to Ban an Toan market with a renowned Saigon Culinary Arts Center chef followed by a hands-on cooking session. Did anyone say rat ngon’?



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