Vietnam is a country known for its bustling cities, incredible beaches, and cheap shopping. Millions of travellers flock there each year to experience everything it has to offer. But perhaps its most exciting prospect is the delicious food native to the country. It is simply impossible to get Vietnamese food of such quality anywhere else in the world. The same is true of wonderful Cambodian cuisine. So if you’re planning your trip to Vietnam and Cambodia, why not visit the locations where you’ll find the most varied foods?
Food tours are ideal not only for those of us who love experiencing cuisines of other cultures, but even for people who simply don’t know where to start and end.
Here is how you can plan your food tour through Vietnam and Cambodia.
Get cheap tickets
Vietnam is best recognised for Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, while Cambodia is best known for Phnom Penh. But there is far more to both countries. When touring, you want to get to see – and taste – as much as possible. After all, different regions craft cuisines as different as they are delicious.
The good news is that getting around the region can be very cheap. Book tickets from Ho Chi Minh to Siem Reap or anywhere else, for a fraction of the price you’d expect. Getting from one place to another should not break the budget. On the contrary, it should only facilitate your ability to experience more.
Hit the streets and try everything
You’ll find many recommendations of where and what you “need” to eat in Cambodia and Vietnam. And, of course, there are certain dishes you will have more than once (think Pho and Fish Amok). However, the best strategy is to go straight to street food vendors. This way, you get to try small portions of just about everything. You’ll get pho in a bag, cups of egg coffee, small tubs of mango salad. You’ll move from one delicious vendor to the next. If you don’t like something, you won’t go back for more, but you’ll quickly discover what it is you love.
Best of all, this won’t cost you very much at all. Rather than overspending during your travels, you’ll end up spending less on food than you would back home!
Go to local restaurants
Once you have a good idea of what it is that tantalises your tastebuds, you may be tempted to get a nice big portion at the nearest restaurant. However, you should be careful to choose restaurants that locals eat at, rather than those frequented by tourists. Tourist-focused restaurants tend to provide a more generic version of the dish, which is ideal for picky foreigners, but not for those who want a real taste of the region.
The restaurants that cater for locals are also much cheaper and provide a more nuanced experience. You’ll be able to order with more specification, rather than just the combination deemed appropriate for (usually Western) tourists.
Vietnam and Cambodia have some of the most exciting cuisines in the world, and you’d be hard-pressed to find its quality anywhere else. Make sure you are ready to fall in love with foods that really pack a punch.