Vietnamese cuisine is the product of the country's geographic location and fascinating history. While influenced by its neighbors, China and Thailand, Vietnamese food boasts a wide variety of its own unique dishes.
Those who truly want to explore the tastes and textures Vietnamese food has to offer, will need to step out of the restaurants and onto the streets.
Vietnamese street food is as diverse as it is renowned, and it is easy to track down, simply by finding the iconic pink plastic chairs that surround the food stalls. Be careful when sitting down in these flimsy seats, especially if you are planning on sampling a lot of dishes.
The impact of the country's occupation by China can be seen at every restaurant, as woks flash over fires, and you can still feel the French influence every time you pass a coffee shop or bakery.
Rice and noodles are cornerstones of the diet in Vietnam, as they are in most Southeast Asian countries, but if you are hitting the streets in search of something to eat, be prepared for some exciting fare, not just rice and noodles.
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I have never hear of this company…
I have never hear of this company before , and after reading all these reviews ,I decided to give it a try . The professionalism and communicative skill received by one of the agent , Sharon of Asia Highlights , convince me that She was the right travel agent for my trip in Asia . Very quickly she communicated with me and got all the detail of my desire vacation . Sharon made me a great itinerary with great experiences that I am dreaming to experience and I am looking forward to it . Thanks Sharon for been so great and crafting me a dream vacation with great suggestions.More
orge alvarez, May 2023
Coco Yang worked tirelessly to…
From the moment I landed in Bangkok, Ms Noi Ying was there to welcome me and get me settled into my hotel. We enjoyed several days together touring Bangkok and Kanchanaburi. In Chiang Mai, Mr Ekachai took my son snd I on an amazing trip to the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary and to visit a community Lanna home, gardens and a hands-on cooking class preparing an authentic Thai meal. Lisa arranged a last-minute speedboat tour of 5 breathtaking islands in Phuket. From start to finish, the guides exceeded my expectations!! Thank you, Asia Highlight!! Debbie WoodsMore
Debbie Woods, May 2023
Sharon from Asia highlights has been…
Sharon from Asia highlights has been amazing. She offered her amazing ideas to other tours I wanted. We have planned the perfect 9 day itinerary to Thailand. She worked in my budget and was very flexible when I had to change my flights. Thank you sharon. Can’t wait for the trip.More
Heather Stern Wilensky, Apr 2023
Ms. Ning first review 4-2023
Ms. Albee Ning has been doing a great job accommodating my requests and itinerary changes. Remember the first itinerary is a rough draft and you may modify it to suit your tastes. Remember you can not do it all and see everything in 3 weeks. If the flight wasn't so long I would visit Southeast Asia more often. I will update my review in a few months. We don't leave for 9 more months. Asia Highlights is working well for me so far!More
Chiefray, Apr 2023
Perfect Trip To Thailand…
We had so much fun in Bangkok with Tanni and Tom as they kept laughing at all of our silly jokes. Paul, our guide and Chiang Mai was really thoughtful, fun and full of great information about the temples and sights. Thanks so much! Brian and MichelleMore
Scott Orchard, Mar 2023
I highly recommend Asia Highlights
I highly recommend Asia Highlights. I worked with Alisa and she is fantastic! I was planning my honeymoon trip, and I changed the destination multiple times. Each time, Alisa provided me an updated itinerary with activities that matched my interests. Whether I had a small change to an activity, a question about one of the arrangements, or a change or destination, Alisa was helpful, thoughtful, and knowledgeable, providing me with updated options in an extremely timely manner. In the end, despite the fact that I changed my mind on location multiple times, I ended up booking a 17 day trip to Thailand for this upcoming November. I am extremely excited to experience everything that Alisa planned for us. I recommend Asia Highlights to everyone and look forward to using them again on any other trips to Asia in the future. Thank you Alisa and Asia Highlights!More
Britt Rosen, Mar 2023
Three weeks encompassing Vietnam
A special shoutout to our last guide in Bangkok - Ms. Ka-Noon who spoiled us with her kindness and then got us through check in and security for our flight home in record time at that huge Bangkok airport.More
Deby, Feb 2023
Over the last 5 years we've used Asia…
Over the last 5 years we've used Asia highlights twice. And both times we've had fantastic vacations. Would not want to do it any different when we travel to Asia from now on. Sharon was fantastic. She was a wonderful agent who helped us nail down our trip and make everything go as smooth as possible.More
Todd Atwell, Feb 2023
Family Trip to Thailand
Our trip to Thailand comprised three generations of the family , ten people and an age range of 4 to 70 so a potentially difficult brief.Our itinerary over two weeks involved four locations, and a number of different trips and tours.From out arrival at an extremely busy Bangkok airport Asia Highlights were terrific.In each location we were met by a smiling , knowledgeable and professional guide who simply made everything easy and stress free for everyone.Our transportation was clean and comfortable . Transport was always ready for us at the agreed time and the drivers were excellent.There were so many highlights enjoyed by all the age groups. The floating houses , railway market and elephant sanctuary were particular favourites.We had one minor glitch with the accommodation in Phuket which was immediately dealt with by Tip. I think we would have struggled to resolve the problem by ourselves. So, thank you Asia Highlights , Cathy, Tip and tour guides Tanny, Sam and Lisa. It was a memorable holiday and we will be back.More
Roger Pyle, Feb 2023
Trip of a lifetime from Asia Highlights!
I recommend highly Asia Highlights as a travel company. Our travel consultant Albee took the time to connect with us during the planning process to make sure we were comfortable with our itinerary. When we arrived, we were met by our guide and all the details were attended to. They picked great hotels and tours. I often describe our trip as the trip of a lifetime! Would definitely use them again when we come back to AsiaMore
Nancy Parker, Feb 2023
Asia Highlights and Albee - highly recommended
Asia Highlights is very reliable agency and Albee is an amazing representative of the company. From the moment when we contacted her until our departure, the whole support we received was 6* level. She prepared our trip offer within few hours and afterwards she was extremely flexible to adjust as per our needs. In the period between the offer and the trip, Albee was always available for all our questions and supported us on the best possible way. During the trip she was again flexible to add new activities/transfers and this went on the smoothest possible way. Thank you, Albee and Asia Highlights. Definitely we will approach you again for our next Asian tripMore
AZ, Feb 2023
5 STAR CUSTOMER SERVICE BY MONICA
Monica is a very sweet young lady who speaks excellent English via email/WhatsApp, and knows the importance of excellent customer service.More
Trent, Jan 2023
We had an awesome experience with Asia Highlights
We started our trip in Bangkok, where Mr. Prassert our tour guide, met us. He was on time and the van was clean and well-maintained. Mr. Prassert was our guide for the 4 days we spent in Bangkok. He was helpful, kind, and willing to accommodate our pee and coffee breaks. The driver was safe and punctual. Next, we went to Chiang Mai.Gemma exceeded every expectation we had for our tour of Chiang Mai! She had a great attitude that made exploring the city fun and exciting, as well as an abundance of knowledge and experience. She was always spot on with figuring out logistics and coming up with unique ideas that suited our interests and schedules. Gemma was incredibly generous with her time and even walked us to security at the airport to make sure we could carry all of our luggage. That’s just one example of how far out of her way she went to make our trip easier and more enjoyable. Gemma was sincerely interested in making every minute of our trip count. We’re very grateful to have met her and feel like we have found a friend in Gemma! Our driver in Chiang Mai was also great and very accommodating to our changes in schedules.More
Lois Paskow, Dec 2022
Thailand & Cambodia 2022
Albee went above and beyond to make our trip perfect. She rearranged flights due to a mistake of mine. She made sure we were still picked up and escorted to the airport. I felt comfortable and safe with all our reps. She did an excellent job and I highly recommend her booking your next trip. Thank you, Albee.More
Karen Brooks, Dec 2022
Perfect vacation thanks to Albee we…
I can’t say enough about how much we appreciate all the efforts, attention to details and immediate responses to all questions that Albee and her team provided. The Asia Highlights team deserves more stars than the maximum allowed because of continually going above and beyond all expectations. Thanks Albee for making our vacation through south east Asia absolutely perfect!!!More
Michael Sharp, Dec 2022
2023 Chiang Mai CAD Yipeng Festival
We got early bird ticket and Bella was assisting us through whatsapp. Easy, competitive price, front row tickets. Thanks Bella, for being patient explaining everything to me. Highly recommended.More
lily hartati, Dec 2022
Bella has been an outstanding customer service rep
Bella has been an outstanding customer service rep. She was responsive and knowledgeable. Buying tickets from their website was super easy and the whole process was straightforward. Highly recommended.More
Khai, Nov 2022
I was ever so grateful to have a point…
I was ever so grateful to have a point of contact while in a foreign country for the first time, alone, that helped me through the Ins and outs of getting to and from my destination. Albee was readily available which brought me much comfort and feeling of safety. If in this part of the world again, I will not hesitate to use your services..More
Omega, Nov 2022
I booked tickets to the Chiang Mai Yi Peng Lantern Festival in Nov 2022. Bella was extremely responsive and helpful!!More
Bowen, Nov 2022
It is the attention to detail and what we specifically wanted to see that made the reservation experience so exciting.More
Peter Bongiovanni, Nov 2022
Old Quarter Hanoi
The foods unique to Hanoi tend to reflect the city's proximity to China, distinguishing it from its sister in the south, Ho Chi Minh City.
Northern Vietnamese food features sweet flavors accentuated by lots of herbs such as mint, and occasionally by many spices. For easy access to some of the best street food in the city be sure to head to the Old Quarter.
Breakfast: Che Com
If you are looking for an easy snack to enjoy along with a cup of coffee, look for one of the many stalls selling Che Com. Che Com is made from sticky glutinous rice and filled with caramel, ginger, and cashews or peanuts. It can be recognized from its gingery aroma and resembles a small round muffin.
Lunch: Bun Ca
Locals in Hanoi will tell you that no visit to the wet markets in the Old Quarter is complete without a bowl of Bun Ca. Bun translates as noodles while Ca is fish.
Variations of this dish are many and each vendor will approach it differently, but you can expect a bowl of vermicelli noodles in pork-and-fish-flavored broth. Often seasoned with dill and other herbs, Bun Ca is a staple of the Old Quarter.
Snack: Fried Spring Rolls
When you visit Vietnam, fried spring rolls, an item often found on menus in the United States, are an obligatory snack. Fried Vermicelli noodles, fresh mint, chives, shrimp, and pork lend these tasty treats their distinctive flavor. These can't-miss treats make for a great quick snack between meals.
Dinner: Cao Lau
If you're looking for something more filling for dinner, you can try Cao Lau. This noodle dish is served with pork and crispy crackers on top.
Its rich flavors are uniquely Vietnamese, but the thin noodles and meaty sauce will be a comfort to any traveler who has spent the day sampling more exotic dishes. Find Cao Lau at any large noodle vendor's.
Ho Chi Minh City
Located in the southern part of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) engages in fierce competition with Hanoi, in the contest for the best street food in the country. It was the center of American influence during the Vietnam War.
Southern cuisine offers a different range of flavors and dishes than its northern counterpart, reflecting both western influence and the region's strong commitment to traditional cooking styles.
Breakfast: Banh Xeo
Easily mistaken for a giant omelet, banh xeo is a Ho Chi Minh City delicacy made from turmeric powder, pork, and bean sprouts.
Cooked in a hot wok and made to order, this relative of the crepe can be heard sizzling from stalls far and wide. If you do not feel like pork, try shrimp, or any number of other fillings.
No trip to Vietnam would be complete without a bowl of the iconic Pho noodles. A relatively simple dish with many variations, expect a clear broth full of thick noodles, topped with spices and fresh basil.
Eating a quick bowl of Pho can be a satisfying way to experience local culture; it's easy to find and easy on the stomach.
Snack: Bahn Trang Tron
Unique to Ho Chi Minh City, Bahn Trang Tron has a way of making street food feel sophisticated. Made from strips of rice paper tossed in a bowl along with mango juice, eggs, and spices, this salad-like dish will be one you'll remember.
Dinner: Be Thui
Similar to a spring roll, be thui is a classic dish that features roasted calf meat wrapped in rice paper. Dipped in shrimp paste or chili sauce and filled with coriander and green banana, these are spring rolls of a variety you won't be able to find at home.
Visit Vietnam with Asia Highlights
Asia Highlights welcomes the chance to help you design your perfect trip to Vietnam. Our knowledgeable staff will assist you in selecting destinations, accommodations and activities that best suit your requirements.
Check out the following links to learn more about our tours and get a head start on planning your hassle-free vacation today!
10-Day Best of Vietnam with Mekong Delta
13-Day Vietnam Classic Wonders with Sapa
14-Day Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos Tour
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Hanoi Walking Tour and Street Food Tour
Why Travel with Asia Highlights (98.8% positive customer reviews among 10,000+)
- Unique experiences tailored to your interests: Enjoy a premium trip that goes beyond the typical tourist attractions.
- Hassle-free travel and peace of mind: Every aspect of your trip will be carefully planned and organized by your 1:1 travel consultant.
- Experienced and knowledgeable guides: Your guides will be local and love to work for travelers' smiles.
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