Heart & Soul of Hanoi's Old Quarter

– Personal Hanoi Food Tour For Discerning Travelers – 


Suggested 9h00, 16h00


3,5 Hours

Tour Type

Private tour

Tour Cost

$60 Per Person

Group Size

Maximum 8 travelers


Walking distance is about 2 to 3 miles (3-5km)


Vegans & Allergies are accommodated


Tour runs shine or rain

Heart & Soul of Hanoi's Old Quarter DESCRIPTION


This tour features a circular walk around the heart of Hanoi’s Old Quarter, exploring the entire old quarter’s history and its people through your taste buds. Hidden alleys and typical tasting places are mindfully curated and explained with the “why” and “how”, so we won’t only eat along the way but also get the story behind each eatery. It’s ideal for curious travelers wanting to learn in depth about the old town.


From Cau Go Street in the southern end of the Old Quarter, where there’re tasting choices of Hanoi’s famous egg coffee, green papaya salad, and steamed sticky rice cake, we walk towards the northeast. Passing along a backstreet to Hang Chinh, there comes a chance to sample a mixed broth soften water celery and brown flat noodles.

Traverse a narrow path, which is privately shared among a community within a block, then walk through another community’s “dark tunnel” to reach Nguyen Sieu Street. Therein comes choices of tasting a freshwater crab noodle soup and chicken noodle dish. Visit a traditional Vietnamese house nested behind the busy shops on the main street, and during the conversation with our host, learn about the Old Quarter through the eyes of an 80-year-old Hanoian.

Visit Thanh Ha traditional street market to get a view of most common foods and ingredients purchased by locals, watch how they sell and buy food for daily meals. Walk through an unseen passage to reach the northern end of the quarter, there comes a chance to sample carp fish noodle soup.

Start heading south of the old town, passing through Dong Xuan wholesale market and its busy food alley with more tastings, then visit a state-owned shop on medicinal Lan Ong Street and sample the traditional medicinal herbs rice liquor – which is considered as the soul of the Old Quarter.

See how rice noodles are made with an exclusive visit to a place supplying rice noodles to the whole area, and on Bat Dan Street, we may enjoy one of the most loved beef noodle soups in town (available for breakfast & dinner only). Pass through a hidden alley with a chance to sample grilled pork with home-mixed fish sauce, then we end our circular walk where we started.

Hanoi Old Quarter Food Tour


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

Bird Cage on Thuoc Bac Street

A Bird Cage on Thuoc Bac Street

The Street That Was Selling Traditional Chinese Medicine

Alley on Thuoc Bac Street

An Unseen Alley on Ngo Gach Street

The Narrow Alley is The Only Sharing Passage to 22 Families

A Lady on Hang Chieu Street

Ms. Huong At Her Door Steps

Her Traditional House is Hidden Behind Shops on Hang Chieu Street

Chicken Noodle Soups & Vietnamese Donuts

The Soups Are Topped With Slices of Boiled Chicken, Scallions, and Thinly Sliced Lime 

Chicken Noodle Soups

A Young Craftsman Steaming The Rice Batter

At A Family That Supplies Fresh Pho Noodles For Restaurants in the Old Quarter

Rice Noodle Making

Brown Rice Vermicelli Salad

A Mixture Of Vermicelli, Water Celery, Bean Sprout, Fish Cake, and Rice Field Crab Broth

A Mixed Brown Noodle Salad


Hanoi Kim Ngan Temple
* * *
This food tour primarily focuses on the Hanoi’s Old Quarter, showing travelers the best features of the area. The Old Quarter is the oldest trading area in the city, which is about 2 square kilometers with 100.000 people. It’s the area which is often referred to as the “36 streets”, though it has up to 76 different streets today.

Since the economic reform in 1986, when the country slowly opened up, the people living inside alleys between the shops begun to serve tea and food on the sidewalk to earn a living, strived to compete with traditional eateries with generations of cooking experiences. That competition contributed to the culture of eating on the sidewalk in Hanoi, where only ones with the best dishes survive.

Old House with Window
* * *
The history of the Old Quarter dates back to the 12th century, when the king started to build his palace, and craftsmen from all over the country were required to travel to the capital to do the work. In the capital, the craftsmen lived together in their own artisan guilds in the swamp between the royal city and the Red River.

Beside the work for the king, the craftsmen began to make and sell their traditional products on their door steps. To make it easier for the customers to find what they want, the craftsmen named the guilds after the product it sells, such as the Silk Street sells silk. So, we love to share the rest history of the Old Quarter on this Hanoi food tour.

Hang Quat Street
* * *

Here are 3 traditional restaurants in Hanoi's Old Quarter  

Pho Gia Truyen
One of the most popular beef noodle soup restaurants
49 Bat Dan, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Cha Ca Thang Long Restaurant
Grilling marinated fish, topped with fresh dill, green onion served with rice noodles.
19 - 21 – 31 Duong Thanh Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Café Giang
Café Giang is most famous for its special drink, the egg coffee.
39 Nguyen Huu Huan Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi