A table set in the style of the Nguyen Dynasty. Photo by Aaron Joel Santos
Vietnam inherited its cultural wealth from thousands of years of history, sprinkled with a handful of outside influences. Taosim and Confucianism still play a strong role in Vietnamese values. Chinese philosophy and customs are frequently found. And French-inspired ingredients have been adapted across the country. Nonetheless, the Vietnamese have a strong sense of pride in their traditions and way of life. The central cities of Hue and Hoi An are treasure troves for culture lovers, as is Hanoi, the country’s graceful capital. Outside the cities, many elements of Vietnamese culture trace back to cycles of wet rice cultivation. These encompass everything from harvest festivals to table manners. There are countless ways to immerse yourself in the fabric of Vietnamese life, including cooking classes, craft workshops, temple tours, musical performances, rice-planting excursions, museums visits and much more.
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