Small-Group Cultural Tour: Bat Trang, Dong Ky and Do Temple.
Discover the traditions and culture of Vietnam through local artisans on this small-group day trip from Hanoi. Meet local artisans and witness the age-old methods behind the intricate process of lacquerware, wood carving, ceramics and furniture making as you wander through the villages with your guide. Get a glimpse into local culture with a visit to one of the last remaining community houses and gain insight into Vietnamese history with a visit to Do Temple.
Escape the morning rush hour as you depart Hanoi and travel approximately one hour through the local countryside to Bat Trang, a village world renowned for its ceramics. Wander through the village with your local guide and see the artisans at work. Witness the process of molding and carving clay pots, dishes and vases, before they are glazed and fired in a kiln, ready for sale.
Afterward, travel to a ‘community house’ to get a glimpse into a former way of life. Community houses were an integral part of traditional life in Vietnam and served as a meeting place to discuss village-related matters – a tradition that has been phased out due to modernization.
Next, visit a local family who specialize in making lacquerware. This ancient tradition of decorating wooden or bamboo objects takes skilled hands and patience, as many layers of lacquer are applied and sanded over and over to achieve a smooth, high-gloss surface.
Then, visit Do Temple, which honors the eight Ly emperors of the Ly Dynasty, who brought an era of prosperity and independence to Vietnam. The temple has been restored several times and in 1989 was restored to its original architecture from the 17th century.
Following lunch at a local Hanoi restaurant, travel to Van Phuc silk village where the local artisans have been weaving the finest quality silk for centuries. Your guide will take you through the village to meet the people and learn about their craft and lifestyles. Return to Hanoi where your tour ends.