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This tour takes you to the riverside craft villages, once flourished around Bao Vinh old quarter in 17th century. Retrace the charm of Minh Huong Chinese merchant houses, lively market, peculiar workshops dotted along surviving craft villages. Take some hands-on practice with Sinh woodblock printing, Thanh Tien colorful paper flowers. Follow the artisans to master age-old techniques and appreciate native spiritual expression related to these crafts.
Resembling the fate of Bao Vinh trading port, the craft villages in the vicinity of Huế flourished during the 17th century but are now struggling to survive. This tour takes you to explore the lesser-known old quarter downstream the Perfume River and lend a helping hand to revive Hue’s typical arts and crafts.
Unlike the atmospheric and well promoted Hoi An town, Bao Vinh receives less attention. Nevertheless, its charm, daily activities are still very much interesting to explore. You can opt to start the tour from the center by bike or take a direct transfer to Bao Vinh and shorten 3-5km of cycling. After a lively stroll, you traverse the river shortly on a local ferry and cycle 5km to reach various craft villages. Alternatively, riding the motorbike is a good alternative.
In folk culture and belief, these crafts are made for burning and worshipping. Today, they are also used for decoration. Normally, the activities are in bloom a month before Tết holidays, however we make the experience available as an effort to support dedicated artisans. Your participation is helping to nurture the craftsmanship.
This immersion offers various rural experiences thus timing will be flexible for your best enjoyments. The tour orders, cycling are subject to adjustment, depending on departure time, seasons, and guests preferences.
Child rates are applied for children 6 to 11 years old. Children below 6 years are free, please make a note in the booking. For families with many children, we recommend using the Enquiry Form to request the most favorable Family Offer.
Bao Vinh, Thanh Tien, Sinh villages
8:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
Cycling or driving to Bao Vinh old quarter, 5km north-eastern of Hue. After an informative introduction about merchant town history and the craft villages, stroll the quaint alleys with ancient wooden houses, heritage temples. Bao Vinh looks like Hoi An heritage old town without tourist crowds. After browsing some workshops like blacksmith, mother of pearl inlay, it’s time to sight smell, taste some local products, and snack at the central market.
Before Tết holidays, there are some other active productions such as making earthenware itchen gods amulets in nearby Dia Linh village that will be interesting to explore. If you feel like, continue along the riverside villages of Trieu Son Nam, Thanh Phuoc to grasp some more authentic life scenes before taking a local ferry to reach Sinh, Thanh Tien, Tien Non villages on the other side.
Nestled along bucolic rice field, flower farms, these three neighbouring villages are famous for traditional woodblock printing, five-colour paper flowers and lacquered wood carving. More than a rural job, their arts paid tribute to the Emperors, manifested Confucian core values (i.g Filial piety, humaneness, and ritual) and served as worshipping for family wellbeing.
With the artisan sharing, you will learn unique colours and its natural origins. The motifs in Sinh painting depict daily life, folk cultures and beliefs. In Thanh Tien, try your skillful hands to craft a delicate paper flower branch or a lotus. With a storytelling guide and artisan, be inspired by native legends through diverse shape and disposition.
Complete your creative tour and journey in Hue spirituality by visiting the ancient village pagoda. Admire the master craftsmanship of lacquered wood carving. A dragon boat is waiting to take you back to the city. The boat rides for about half an hour, passing by peaceful Con Hen Island and Vi Da old town.
Guide sympathique qui nous a fait passer un bon moment, très intéressant et beaucoup d’humour
We love it all. Very happy to support artisans at local village. Well paced, unique experience. Right amount, not too much. Very special experiences we would have able to experience on our own. Thank you for giving us option of boat instead of bicycle. No weak points! Very friend ! Fantastic experience!