Plunge into local Vietnamese life at Ninh Binh and Vuon Thi

This hands-on experience will give you a hearty taste of rural living in Vietnam. You’ll pedal amongst rich green rice fields and ornate pagodas, and spend the afternoon with a welcoming local family. The countryside around Ninh Binh is known as ‘Ha Long on land’ - and for good reason. A sea of rice terraces and small lakes peppered with towering karst mountains, it’s one of Vietnam’s most scenic spots. 

What to expect in Ninh Binh and Vuon Thi...

Authentic local living in a spectacular setting, this experience is active and involved, so you'll need to rise to the challenge but this makes it all the more rewarding, as you meet a welcoming local family and find yourself submerged into day-to-day village life. 

First, you’ll cycle from Ninh Binh into the surrounding countryside, its essential, picturesque paddy fields dotted with colourful pagodas. Along the way, you’ll pass through small villages and stop at a morning market for a quick haggle. Out here, far from the chaos of the cities, you’ll find a sleepy pace of life and an array of easy smiles. 

Arriving at the the tiny village of Vuon Thi, you’ll meet your hosts for the remainder of the day. This friendly family, assisted by your translator and guide, will show you how to participate in their normal daily activities. The atmosphere is open, kind and altogether pretty enchanting.

Expect to be thrown right into the thick of regular rural life, helping to prepare a typical lunch and dining as guests of the family. In the afternoon, you’ll get out into the fields and gardens, where you’ll learn about traditional rice-growing techniques and try your hand at the local art of fishing. It’s a unique, rustic and really quite magical experience. 

Watch our video of rural life at Vuon Thi:

Once your time with your hosts comes to an end, you can either cycle back to your hotel or explore the surrounding countryside on your own two wheels. There’s also a river nearby, where you can board a small boat to drift between limestone karsts and shadowy grottos, far from the tourist flocks of better-known Tam Coc. The itinerary is flexible, allowing you to discover the area at your own personal pace. 

Location: Vuon Thi village and the countryside surrounding Ninh Binh

Duration: one full day or stay overnight

Accommodation: your choice of north Vietnam hotel

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Our client said...

'Absolutely beautiful - really enjoyed the chance to experience local life, even just for a short while.'

Important to note...

This is normally done as a day trip from Hanoi, or with a stay overnight in Ninh Binh. It’s possible to take this trip directly from a Halong Bay cruise, with an approximately three hour drive to Ninh Binh. You can also travel from Hanoi, although please be aware that this makes for an even longer and potentially tiring day. If you’re a lover of rural life, try combining this trip with a stay in Mai Chau, which will show you two different sides of the Vietnamese countryside.

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