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Foreign tourists coming to Vietnam have many exciting experiences. One of them is how to cross road with traffic. Many visitors said: crossing road in vietnam is called the “art” and like an adventure games, but interesting. Below are the top 5 tips for helping foreign visitors to cross road. Indochina travel Vietnam

how to cross the road in Vietnam

how to cross the road in Vietnam

Forget the rules when crossing

If you have plans to travel to Vietnam, be prepared to forget everything taught about the crossing,such as: waiting as stopped vehicles, road markings for pedestrian and traffic light signals. In Vietnam, people cross the road by going straight ahead and create their own path while the vehicle is running.

Do not be afraid

In the eyes of foreign tourists the drivers were working careful, they moved slowly. So you should go straight to the road, slow down but not stop, and especially do not be scared.

note the vehicle was heading towards you

note the vehicle was heading towards you

Note the vehicle was heading towards you

The street was always full vehicles but pedestrians are crossing easily. You just need note to the direction of the vehicle, looking for spaces and slowly crossed. “There is no better way to cross the road, because the traffic is a nightmare in the big cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City.

Do not stand in front of a bus

The bus is a public transportation in Vietnam. Bus ride safe and very cheap price. Therefore the number of people in each bus are larg.
Standing in front of the bus is extremely dangerous. Because the bus stop is very difficult, unlike motorcycles.

do not stand in front of a bus

do not stand in front of a bus

Ask help from the traffic police

The traffic police officer in Vietnam was not scary. They are always smiling, just dedicated to you. So you need to do it is to smile and ask help from them.

ask help from the traffic police

ask help from the traffic police

With hundreds of festivals held each year, Vietnam is such the country of so many interesting festivals. In addition to the Tet Holiday, the Mid-Autumn festival, which is a traditional celebration for Vietnamese children, is thought to be one of the most famous festivals. Indochina travel Vietnam

Everyone joins in the Mid-Autumn celebration, which is a great opportunity for all the members of family to gather together and share everything in their year. So, it is such a good example of the traditional culture of the Vietnamese. At that time, the children express their gratitude to their parents and the parents show their love for their children as well as give gifts to them as the autumn is also the time of the beginning of the new school year.

How to celebrate Full Moon Festival in Vietnam

How to celebrate Full Moon Festival in Vietnam-source: internet

Where to join this event in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City?

Go to Van Ho Exhibition Center, Ho Tay Water Park or Giang Vo Exhibition Center to enjoy amazing musical performances with your children in these two days if you are in Hanoi.

If you are spending your time in Ho Chi Minh City, do not miss a chance to enjoy “Full Moon Festival” parties for children held by Ho Chi Minh City government between the 10th and the 15th of August. If you are interested in the disadvantage children, this occasion is for you since the city often arranges for about 5,000 children to take part in stunning lantern processions along the main streets.

What to do to celebrate Full Moon Festival?

Both Vietnamese people and foreign travelers are excited to join in this special festival. It is no doubt that you will have so much fun when joining the crowds, watching the lion dance parade as well as eating cakes and receiving gifts of celebration during the Full Moon Festival!

Worshiping the God of Earth

Worshipping the God of Earth

Worshipping the God of Earth-source: dacsanbamien.vn

Vietnamese people usually set up a worshiping platform in the yard during the night of the Mid-Autumn Festival, on which they lay snacks, fruits and Moon cakes. Later, while appreciating the moon, all family members will sit together and eat the food. Almost families set up a lovely platform where their children can enjoy food at anytime during the evening.

Watching the Lion Dance Parade

Lion Dance

Lion Dance-source: http://www.alotrip.com

At the 15th night, you can see some groups of children parade through the streets, going from door to door to ask for the permission of the owners to perform the lion dance. The children will put on a show, which is thought to bring luck and fortune if the owner agrees. After that, they will receive the ‘lucky’ money for their gratitude from the owners.

A huge amount of children, ranging from little kids to teenagers are attracted to participate in these fascinating lion dance. All the streets of the cities echo with the sound of drums, as dozens of lions roam about because of so many groups of children marching around.

Offering Moon cakes

Moon cakes

Moon cakes-source: internet

Arrive in Hanoi, you are now considering where to chill out in several days here. You are often recommended by family and friends to the most popular attractions like Ho Chi Minh Complex, Temple of Literature, Museum of Ethnology and do not miss the Old Quarter with Sword Lake inside it… However, if you need a new way of exploring Hanoi and its local life, a tour to craft village nearby Hanoi is not a bad choice. Let me introduce some to you, here are list of top 3 craft villages without entrance fee that you will regret not knowing earlier. Tours of Indochina

Bat Trang ceramic village

 

“I wish I could marry you/ I will buy Bat Trang bricks to build our house” is a nice folk song showing the great honor to Bat Trang ceramic and pottery quality. For people who are familiar with this famous product, they are not surprised to know these high quality ceramic and pottery products are exported worldwide including dishes, vases, bowls, cups and many other kinds of ceramic.

The village was documented to be established since the 14th and 15th century at the bank of Red river, however, local people state that this may appear earlier. Its own history was told in two different ways. The first one tells that under the reign of Ly dynasty in 1100, when the nation was in peace and development, there were 3 scholars who returned from their mission trip to China, brought along the ceramic craft industry learnt there and taught this job to Bat Trang people. In the second story, when King Ly Cong Uan relocated the capital city in Hanoi in the 10th century because of its good location for trading and commercial. There are many businessmen, crafters from nationwide coming to settle down in Bat Trang village for their business. In this area, there was a lot of white clay so many potters came and built the kilns here. Gradually, Bat Trang has changed from a normal ceramic and pottery village into a famous one until now.

If you are curious to know the way workers make these ceramic by hand, let’s come and join them for only 13 kilometers south east of the Old Quarter.To get there, you cross the Chuong Duong Bridge, turn right at the end of the bridge and go straight ahead until you see the sign leading to Bat Trang village. The other way which is quite interesting is to take a bus no. 47A from bus stop close to Dong Xuan Market. Right at the stop for your car or motorbikes, you will be greeted by many women who offer you a short class in their houses of making the pottery and paint the ready-made products after that. The price for 1 person is from 40 000 VND for making a stuff with the help of the owner and pay 20 000 VND more for a painted product to bring home. Be aware that this is a manual job with clay and colors so you should wear casual clothes for your comfort. If you find it too difficult to complete your creative product, do not hesitate to ask for their help. After you finish making your ceramic stuff, it’s time to shop around in the porcelain ceramic market nearby while waiting for your product to be dried.

This market is a paradise of ceramic including ceramic tile painting, flower vases, tea pots and cups, bowls, plates, spoons, even ceramic animals like dogs, cats, ducks. The price is very reasonable comparing to exported products from the same brand name. Do bargaining for some great deals while shopping. I guess you do not need to leave without any souvenirs.

One other choice for someone who love peace and tradition, go deeper into the village, you can meet many big ancient houses making ceramic and their more unique products than stores in the market. You also have chance to see the procedure of making the ceramic in which the potter must follow these stages: selection, land preparation and processing, create designs, create patterns, enameled and finally calcined product.  Experience traditional village life of Bat Trang is “Best bones, second skin, third “dac lo”. It means, the clay chosen must be of great quality to make the sustain product, then the technique to make the color must be skillful and last but not least, “dac lo” refers to the burning skill to release the best product after all. On the way out the market, you can see many nice cuisine with great flavor such as banh troi, banh chay, banh te (all are different taste of rice flour) or refresh yourself with sugar cane or coconut. Do not forget to come back to the first house to paint your ceramic and collect them home. I hope you can get your most creative hand-made gift after all.

Van Phuc silk village

 

Van Phuc Silk village or Ha Dong silk village is situated at the bank of Nhue River, 10 kilometers southwest of the centre of Hanoi, which is renowned for its traditional weaving and premium quality silk products since the ancient time. Van Phuc village has reputation for being the most ancient silk village providing the best silk in Vietnam for the past 1200 years. To reach this ancient village, you can travel on your own car/motorbike following Nguyen Trai road until reach the border of Ha Dong district then turn right for 3 kilometers or catch the public bus 02, 21 then walk 500m to the village.

For first-time tourists, you may feel surprised at its typical manner of an ancient village in the North of Vietnam with banyan tree, well, communal house, and the sound of power-looms everywhere. Walking on the main road in Van Phuc, tourists will be lost in the world of silk with various products like shirts, ties, crafts, dresses… made of silk available in the village. Vietnam travel packages

According to the history, there was a woman named A La Thi Nuong from Cao Bang who was skillful at weaving of Van Phuc village. She then brought the secret weaving technique from China to teach the villagers there. She was honored as tutelary deity of the village when she passed away.

Van Phuc Silk village became famous since the Ly dynasty. Until the reign of Nguyen, it was brought to Hue imperial citadel for royal costumes and became extremely precious handwork for a long period of time. From 1990, Van Phuc silk product was exported to many countries in the world for its high value. The special beauty of Van Phuc Silk stems from its smooth, light weight, and elegant appearance. Especially, one type of Van Phuc silk can make the wearer feel cooler in the hot weather and warmer in cold weather. Nowadays, to satisfy the various demands of customers, the producers have expanded their silk and garment goods like embroidered silk, wrinkled silk, double layers and more colors for silk products.

Walking along the “town of silk” which is so eye-catching and hustling, you may find yourself and friends the most suitable high quality silk products after the trip to Van Phuc village.

Dao Thuc Water puppet village

 

Water puppetry is one of the typical stage arts of Vietnam culture showing the intelligence, creativeness of farmers; being specialty of Vietnam wet-rice civilization. Water puppetry includes two basic components: Puppets and water.

Water puppets are seemed to be simple and rough sculpture-works, solid lines, poor colour, and zigzag movements; they evoke the general conception of human beings and other things to the audiences… However, the liquid feature and reflection of water creates the fickle. On water stage mirrors, everything becomes sparkle, flexible, changeable in front of the audiences’ eyes.

The water puppetry guild in Dao Thuc village, 10 kilometer from Dong Anh (Hanoi) is well-known for its water puppet performance both in Vietnam and abroad.

From Hanoi to Dong Anh, take highway no.3 then turn right for 10 kilometer, you arrive at Thuy Dinh – the name of water puppet stage in Dao Thuc village. This one includes 3 parts: Water pavilion – locating in the middle of the pond where the artists stay behind the scene to control the puppet; Stage – where the puppet characters perform whose shape is a square water stage of 4x4m and the space for audience is at the edge of pond.

According to history, the ancestor of the career was Nguyen Dang Vinh, under the reign of Le Y Tong (1735-1740). He was an artist performing art puppetry to serve the King. He came to the village and taught the Dao Thuc villagers how to perform water puppetry
and process to organize a show. A team often includes about 20 people: actor puppeteers, musicians playing flute, drums and vocalists.

When coming here, you will have a chance to be a real actor/ actress who have to stand under waist-deep water, be hidden behind bamboo screen blinds to perform. At first it seems a bit difficult and tiring, but you will certainly feel happy after experiencing that moment. While performing with the wooden puppet characters, singing is also important during a water puppet performance. The artist must understand a lot of the traditional folk tunes such as “cheo”, “tuong”,.. These puppets on the water are very versatile and lively. Melodies from the traditional folk bring a unique feature to national music. As usual, each show includes 10 – 15 skits such as fire crackers, flag raising, dragon dances, frog catching, swimming competitions and more in festivals.

If you can spend more time here, you should go to the village and see the artists make their wooden puppets which accounts for much of their time besides the farmwork and performance. These character are often carved to resemble famous figures in Vietnam legend stories and then lacquered to be water proof.

After the show, I believe that lovely melody, colorful puppets and skillful artisans will leave you the great impression of the traditional puppetry art of Vietnam.

Enjoy your trip !

 

Travel to the central provinces from Thua Thien Hue to Ninh Thuan, beside enjoying the beautiful scenery, eating the rich seafood dishes, you can find and taste Banh Dap – an unique food here. Vietnam travel packages

Literally translated as cracked/smashed rice pancakes, Banh Dap is perhaps one of the simplest foods in central region cuisine, but its contradictory textures easily make the biggest impression on foreigners.

foody mobil -banh trang dap Hoi An

foody mobil -banh trang dap Hoi An

Banh Dap is famous in many areas in the center of Vietnam. Visitors can easily find this pancake in Cam Nam village where is regarded as “Banh Dap village” in Hoian town. But if you want to go further to understand well of local people’s lifestyle, you can come to the other small village in Quang Nam such as Ma Chau silk village.

The over 400 – year – old village located in Nam Phuoc town is well – known of silk weaving. It provides domestic and international markets millions of meters of fabric every year. Travel to Ma Chau village, you can not only know how to weave fabrics but also have opportunity to enjoy some special foods here such as Banh Dap.

Located in the winding alley, Mis Lan’ small restaurant is a place many people gather in every morning and give tourist memorable experiences.

IMG_5325

Mis Lan with her Banh Dap small restaurant

Banh Dap’s main material is rice. Rice is soaked for half a day and then taken out a blanket blooms, ground into powder. The next step is keeping powder with salts for about 3 hours in water. This is one of important tips to make a savoury pancake. Then, make the pancake on a very tight piece of clothes over steaming foot and steamed them. So the processes that they spread evenly pancake cover it. It is ready in one minute and they chop sticks too many few wave with a pancake. When you make it at home, you can do them on a pen like a regular pancake but you use it and do not turn them.

The sauce for this dish is also very special thing deciding success of making Banh Dap. It is made from fish sauce, peanut oil, chopped pineapple, garlic, chili and fried shallots. To enjoy this sauce, you should add a little sugar. To local people, they like eating this sauce with many chili, garlic and whole salted anchovies. And to tourists or people who cannot state spicy, it is suitable to use Mam Nem with easier flavor.

IMG_5321

Banh Dap is made of flyers of rice crackers and steamed rice pancakes 

These steamed rice pancakes served as a group between rice crackers which are roasted rice papers and what you do before anything is that you crashed them. This is the reason why this pancakes are called as Banh Dap.

IMG_5303

In peaceful village, enjoy simple and unique Banh Dap, talk to local people is your best memory in your trip

It is great in the morning for you to both enjoy this special food and talk to outgoing restaurant owner in the peaceful village. When break each rice paper, dip in special sauce, taste the simple pancakes, hear to famers’ story of daily life, you can feel well the flavor ofrural area and the warmth of friendly people here.

Whether traveling or away dust, items such as identification, toothpaste, pain medication belly … always have in your backpack. Below, there are experiences to travel Vietnam. Indochina travel Vietnam

1. Prepare identification to travel Vietnam

Whether traveling domestically or overseas, you ever have to carry identification . If you are traveling abroad, they must prepare passports and identity cards, check fares and hotel bookings papers or other services . In case of any accompanying children must bring a birth certificate for the baby. As for domestic travel, you must bring ID card / driving license, car train tickets, booking documents and other services for hotel registration procedures .

Idenfication to travel Vietnam

Idenfication to travel Vietnam

2.  Money,  ATM card

Traveling will have to carry money, but you still have to prepare thoroughly for the time on the road with the sole forgotten. You should prepare an emergency fund, and if traveling abroad, the indispensable is to go before the country’s currency exchange days off.

Do not forget to bring your ATM card to run out of money in case of emergency can call for support by relatives .

3. Cosmetic Bag

Proactively prepare yourself a cosmetic bag includes: lotion, sunscreen, cleanser, shampoo …

Cosmetic Bag

Cosmetic Bag

Especially toothbrushes and toothpaste are indispensable in your travels. A small tube of toothpaste, do not take up much space will be more convenient to move and travel. Thanks to it, you will feel confident and comfortable .

4. Casual shoes

When traveling you have to move frequently and walk a lot. So if the hard shoes or high heels would be a big mistake because it will make your legs become swollen.

You should prepare canvas shoes, sports soft, flat base for easy walking, climbing . If sailing is you should be prepared to add a pair of sandals to walk on the beach.

5. Camera , charger and backup battery

Camera indispensable for you to record the moments and the beauty of the places you will go on a trip, you can later để “show off” with People and keeping family memories .

Bring Camera to traveling

Bring Camera to traveling

Do not forget to prepare extra battery charger and a pair of backup battery to the battery at the end of mà there is so much beauty, you would have missed it.

I am sure if you have thorough preparation before traveling then you have moments of relaxation wonderful but annoying yet.

Dong Da Hillock Festival takes place annually on the 5th of the Lunar New Year in Hanoi. This festival is organized in memory of the King Quang Trung’s great merit – the national hero in the history of anti – Invaders. Travel Indochina Vietnam

QuangTrung-Custom

The statue of King Quang Trung in Dong Da Hillock

Dong Da festival in Hanoi

Dong Da now is also the name of the biggest district of Hanoi capital. Two centuries ago, Dong Da was a bloody battlefield where a farmer-Nguyen Hue with his brothers defeated 200,000 soldiers of the Qing coal invading army. Dong Da Hill became a glorious historical site of the Vietnamese nation. After, Nguyen Hue became King Quang Trung and one of the most famous national heroes in our history.

In the early morning of the 5th day, a historical event for the Procession commences at Khuong Thuong’s celebration and ends at Dong Da Hill. The Procession includes flags, a processional parasol, palanquins with a variety of colors, and the sounds of gongs and drums. In the festival there are a lot of games representing martial spirit. Among them, the Procession of ‘Thang Long fire dragon’ is the most interesting activities.

cac-le-hoi-dau-nam-noi-tieng-mien-Bac-2

Colorful Performances of dragon dance in Dong Da Hillock Festival

The main activity of this festival is the performance of young man recounting a part of the whole period of the war. the victory of King Quang Trung. The young man living at Khuong Thuong village and Dong Quang village will braid straw into shape the big dragon and decorated with areca sheath and paper mache. After that, a group of man with colorful traditional dress will perform martial arts with nunchakus and wooden sticks. This group will go around the fire dragon and show their martial skills. The mixture of heavy sound of big drums and the voice of young man performing martial arts make the atmosphere of festival be more excited and raise the patriotism.

dongda1

Young men in colorful dress are performing around “Thang Long Fire Dragon” – A symbol of victory

After the solemn ceremony, you can see traditional games and folk art performances such as lion dancing, dragon dancing, wrestling, human chess, and cock fighting. These traditional games are the most popular in Vietnamese festival. They are always attractive for many both of local people and tourists. You can find them not only on Dong Da Hillock Festival bus also on other big festival in our country. However, on Dong Da Hillock Festival these games will be performed with more colorful decorations and traditional dress. One more very unique thing of this festival which makes it be different from others is that there are many local women join in traditional games such as wrestling or human chess. These games are usually played by men on the other festival.

tro_choi_dan_gian_tet_ngay_xua._anh4

Human chess in this festival is more colorful than others and there are many young women join in

Nowadays, this festival is not only for local people who living in Dong Da District but also for tourist from all over the world. Vietnamese government has recognized this festival as a national festival since 1954. Annually, senior officials of government will visit this festival and pray for a new year of country with well-being and the stable development.

Today, for Hanoi people, visiting Dong Da Hillock Festival is indispensable in the first days of the Lunar New Year. If you travel to Hanoi in our Lunar New Year, you should visit this festival to see another side of Hanoi which is more cultural and historical. Moreover, Dong Da Hillock is not far away from Old Quarter and you can visit it by yourself easily.

Yangon is the capital city of Myanma. This place is well-known for charming beauty with many heritages such as Botataung Pagoda, Shwedagon Pagoda and Convocation Hall. Being cultural and commercial heart of Myanmar, Yangon is really worth visiting. If you have an ideal of travelling to this pretty city, the first thing you should do is choosing the best time to start your trip to make sure that you will have wonderful days there with nice weather. Indochina tours Myanmar

Pagoda, Shwedagon Pagoda and Convocation Hall. Being cultural and commercial heart of Myanmar, Yangon is really worth visiting. If you have an ideal of travelling to this pretty city, the first thing you should do is choosing the best time to start your trip to make sure that you will have wonderful days there with nice weather.

Yangon – a beautiful and charming city of Myanmar

Yangon – a beautiful and charming city of Myanmar

Yangon has a tropical monsoon climate with a monsoon season and a dry season. The average temperature is above 25 degrees Celsius with the peak at approximately 40 degrees. There are big differences between 2 seasons in terms of temperature and rainfall.

Yangon in dry season

Dry season lasts for about 8 months (starts in October and ends in the next following May). During the dry months, there is a little rain. The temperature varies from 20 to 37 degrees so it is quite hot. The peak of hot weather is April with the temperature is rarely under 35 degrees and sometimes reaches to nearly 40 degrees Celsius. Travelling to Yangon in this time can avoid terrible rain that may spoil your vacation. Without rain, it would be so great because you have a chance to take the view of the Golden Sule Pagoda from downtown Yangon at night with the clear sky and billions bright stars. However, sometimes burning days can make you feel uncomfortable and tired.

Golden Sule Pagoda at night

Golden Sule Pagoda at night

Yangon in monsoon season

Monsoon season runs from June to September. In these months, it becomes cooler with the average temperature fluctuating around 27 degrees. Rainfall totals are much more higher than that in dry season. Sometimes, it is rainy and wet all day, especially in July and August.

Yangon looks more beautiful and attractive in monsoon months

Yangon looks more beautiful and attractive in monsoon months

Although rain may prevent you from going out when you are enjoying your vacation here, that does not mean that travelling to Yangon in rainy season is a bad idea. First of all, the cool weather at least makes you feel better than having to walk under the boiling sun with burning sensation.  You will enjoy feelings of refreshing during these cool days. An other advantage is that you may acquire knowlegde of Buddhist Lent (Vaasa) that begins in Waso month ( usually falling in June or July). Moreover, a lot of tourists is affraid to visit Yangon in these monsoon months so there is no croud of tourists, you don’t have to worry about the shortage of decent rooms or waiting for a long time at restaurants. Therefore, costs of visiting, booking hotel, transportation are certainly much cheaper. You see, there are also some advantages of going to Yangon this season.

Refresh beauty of Yangon in rainy season

Refresh beauty of Yangon in rainy season

In general, many people say that the months from November to February are the best time to visit Yangon; however, it means that you will not have a comfortable space due to too many tourists. Personally, I’d like to go there in June, the weather is cool and it does not rain too much. You should think carefully before deciding when is the most suitable time for you.