Explorient Travel and other tour groups offer half-day and one-day biking trips to what they call the "countryside." We decided to book with Explorient Travel because their website described a "drive" to the countryside, which we interpreted as a van trip to the location of the bikes. But no. We were given (fairly old) bikes right in the city (no helmets) and, with our guide, set out for a death-defying (we were lucky) ride through Hanoi traffic and across a long bridge over the Red River. Anyone who has ever tried to cross a street in Hanoi will know what a terrible idea this is. We persisted through the insane and terrifying traffic, thinking we would eventually come to the "spectacular views" promised by the website. Instead, we met still more insane traffic, dusty dirt roads, smoke from fields burning, and ugly industrial areas. When we finally reached the pottery village, which was our first destination, we were all traumatized and one of us near tears. We ended the trip and got a cab back to our hotels. By the way, I am a very fit and adventurous traveler.
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