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Jeep tour

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As well as bike tours, Cuong’s Motorbike Adventures offers a range of tours by US Army Jeep to destinations within and outside Hanoi such as Mai Chau and Duong Lam village. While slightly on the pricey side, they are an unusual and fun option if you want to set your own agenda for a tour of Hanoi or are keen to explore further afield.

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We tried a bia hoi tour, which began one sunny winter’s afternoon with a home pick up. The tour first zipped us around West Lake, along lively Hoang Hoa Tam Street — the plant shop and bird cage epicentre of Hanoi — and into Old Quarter, where we stopped at bia hoi international corner for some drinks and street snacks as the sun went down.

Feels safer than a motorbike.

Feels safer than a motorbike.

Next we drove south for dinner at a bia hoi place in Hai Ba Trung district — next to microbrewery Hoa Vien Brauhaus — and then headed back to Old Quarter for a nightcap overlooking Hoan Kiem Lake.

Watching others dealing with the traffic.

Watching others dealing with the traffic.

While the tour did not really fit within what our definition of a “bia hoi” tour would be — we only visited two places — it was thoroughly enjoyable. Sitting in the back of an open-top jeep — thankfully it was a mild and dry day — was a lot of fun, and who doesn’t like to be stared at from time to time? The open jeep and the route taken gave us a good perspective on the hectic buzz of life in Hanoi and our guide, Hai, was chatty and engaging. Of course, these are US Army M151 MUTT Jeeps from the war so, although they have been somewhat modified, you can expect a bumpy ride.

Bia Hoi corner.

Bia Hoi corner.

Cuong’s advertises the jeep tours through its website but only lists details of a three-day, two-night tour to Mai Chau, which in our opinion would be a great way to travel to and explore this area. Other tours can however be arranged to suit your requirements, whether you want to visit the sights of Hanoi or venture out to some of the nearby villages and temples. Prices start from $100 per person for a half-day customised tour.

Another well rated operator is Vietnam Jeep Tours, which offers a wide range of organised tours around Vietnam.

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 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Hanoi.
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