Flavors of Hanoi French Quarter

– A Food Tour Focusing Primarily On The French Quarter –


Suggested 9h00, 16h00


3,5 Hours

Tour Type

Private Tour

Tour Cost

$60 Per Person

Group Size

Maximum 8 travelers


Distance walked: 3-5 km


Vegans & Allergies are accommodated


Tour runs shine or rain

Flavors of Hanoi French Quarter DESCRIPTION


This informative food tour walks travelers through the tree-line boulevards and backstreets of Hanoi French Quarter, passing by iconic French colonial buildings that have become an indispensable part of the city in the last 130 years. We’ll meet and talk to a Cell Secretary of the Communist Party at his house, and sample some of the most typical Vietnamese and French fusion foods on our way.


From the colonial Metropole Hotel, begin our walk toward the St. Joseph’s Cathedral, passing by the Tonkin Palace and Hanoi Post Office. At a bakery in front of the church, wake up your taste buds with acup of coffee and a chocolate croissant. Traverse the garden of the National Library of Vietnam, then walk by the prison Maison Centrale and the Supreme People’s Court on Ly Thuong Kiet Street.

 Under the shade of an Indochina dragonplum tree, enjoy a climbing perch noodle soup and hear how this tasty countryside dish was brought to the city. Then stroll a backstreet through a hidden community, meet and talk to a cell secretary of the Communist Party at his house – which will bring new insights to Hanoi visitors.

 Keep heading south to a quieter neiborhood, and sample the ‘king of street foods’ – the Vietnamese barguette with grilled meat on Quang Trung Street. Then walk through unseen residential areas on hidden passages to reach Hom Market (close at 18h00), learn about the most special things in the market and why.

 Stop by the famous Bun Cha Huong Lien, where the US president Barack Obama ate the grilled pork and rice noodles dish with the former celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain. Then comes one of the most loved beef noodle soups in Hanoi the Pho Thin on Lo Duc Street, here we sample a unique bowl of Vietnamese pho.

Start heading north with stories and explanations shared by our foodie guide on the way, and stop by a former French villa to taste a fresh spring roll and a lotus stem salad. Traverse the yard of a yellow painted university designed by the French architect Ernest Hébrard, walking by the Opera House and the famous Trang Tien Ice Cream on our way back.

Uncle Chin


Prices quoted are on a per person and a private group bases

3 – 5 PAX
6 – 8 PAX




Food tastings vary according to touring time and travelers’ preferences

A corner of Hoa Lo Prison

A Corner of Hoa Lo Prison

The Original Wall Surrounding The Prison, With Yellow Color, Pieces of Broken Bottles, and Open High Voltage Power Wall

Mr Thien

Mr. Thien

A 78 Years Old Cell Secretary of The Communist Party of Vietnam

A French Villa

A Former French Villa

Which is Now A Sharing Space Of 8 Different Families, Each Of Them Owns A Clothesline on The Yard

A French Architecture Influenced Building

Built in The 1950s, The Apartment Building Show The French Style’s Yellow Color and Blue Window

Grilled Meat Balls

Marinated and Grilled Meat Balls, Which Would Be A Part of The Delicious Bun Cha Noodle Lunch in Hanoi

Grilled Meat Balls

A Climbing Perch Noodle

Photo Was Taken In Front Of A Family Serving Climbing Perch Noodle Dish, A Specialty From The Countryside

Noodle on Hai Ba Trung


Hanoi Presidential Palace Roof
* * *
Right after gaining the control of Hanoi in 1882, the French built the Paul Bert Street with spacious paved sidewalks, connecting their barracks on the Red River bank to our Imperial Citadel. Then a line of buildings with European architecture was quickly constructed, highlighted by the Opera House in the east and Presidential Palace in the west.

With the plan to make Hanoi a ‘Paris of the East’, their first landmark - the St. Joseph's Cathedral was built in 1886. Then other colonial buildings, including the Opera House, Tonkin Palace, and Post Office, were formed. Many French villas were also built in the city until the Vietnamese gained the independence in 1945, and that created the French Quarter today.

Hanoi French House
* * *
Though many were destroyed during the first and second Indochina War, most of the historical buildings are still standing with its original architecture. A statistic from the city shows that Hanoi still has more than 1,200 French houses, and 80% of them are currently owned by the State. The majority of those houses are embassies, government agencies, and upscale restaurants.

This food tour offers a closer look to the most typical buildings in the French Quarter, exposing the French influences on our architecture and cuisine. Explanations provided on the way include why the French houses were painted yellow, why we didn’t destroy those colonial houses after defeating them in 1954, and how some of the famous Vietnamese foods were actually initiated by the French.

Hanoi Autumn
* * *

Here are some dining highlights entertaining the many flavors of Hanoi French Quarter.

Le Beaulieu
Opened in 1901, it was the first-ever French restaurant in Hanoi.
15 Ngo Quyen, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi.

Maison Vie Restaurant
A blend of the climax of French haute cuisine with the gentle touch of Vietnamese culinary.
28 Tang Bat Ho, Hai Ba Trung, Hanoi.

French Grill
A high-end French cuisine restaurant in Hanoi.
8 Do Duc Duc, Nam Tu Liem, Hanoi