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Ways to Experience Tours By Locals Vietnam
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13 - 18 of 45 reviews
Reviewed January 19, 2017

Odyssey Tours provided another very competent guide, Van, who led us through the city of Hue with great stories, information and enthusiasm for her city in a nice low key manner. She knew how to get around the crowds and took us to a fabulous garden restaurant Moc Vien for their set menu which we totally enjoyed especially its Fig salad and Hue styled rice.

Date of experience: January 2017
Thank susanne20172017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2016 via mobile

Went to old prison and walked back. Great info and interaction with guide. Booked again for another half day tour.

Date of experience: September 2016
Thank shazza824
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2016 via mobile

Tony was very helpful in every way possible on my business trip and helped massively when it came to negotiation to ensure that everything went as smooth as possible,
Highly recommended thanks again :)

Date of experience: April 2016
Thank jennyalicia12
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 20, 2016

Around 2 months before we actually wantend to start travelling we fired a few Mails to different tour operators asking for a trip around the North of Vietnam directly on or just before Tet 2016 off the beaten track. Tony answered within a couple of days with a rough description of a Tour Itenary without too much details.
Although he was (by about 25 % ) more expensive than the next best offer, we finally decided to go ahead with Tony due to beeing a guaranteed all private tour, good reviews on Tripadvisor and a good first impression during the Mail conversation.
We agreed on pick up and payment details. Usual half before half after the trip.
Due to the Tet holiday everything was a bit more difficult to organize but at the end we agreed on the travel days to return to Hanoi directly on Tet.
We started our Trip without problems with him picking us up in our Hotel and than heading off to Ha Long Bay (which was orignally planned at the end of the trip, but due to Tet would not be available this time).
The Cruise around Ha Long Bay was absolutely faboulous and represented one of the absolute highlights of our trip. A really small, but comfy boat would sail us aorund. We are really into trying foreign food, so (upon our request) we ate what the crew ate. It was absolutly delicous and would set the the mark for the rest of the trip. Don't be afraid of the stuff you'll get, it's clean and great.
After the Ha Long Bay we drove to Ninh Binh for a homestay night. It had gotten a bit late due to the massive Traffic just before Tet, but we had excpected something like that. We were kindly greeted by our homestay family and welcomed to our home for the night. A new modern equipped extra building next to the main house was absolutly fine, clean and comfy. Own bath and proper bedding made for a good nights rest. Once more we had a really great dinner together with the family. We enjoyed a lovely evening and nice conversations.
Next day we went to visit the Bai Dinh Pagode (apperantly one of the biggest in Vietnam) which was nearly deserted just before Tet. After a a trip with a small rowing boat through the "Dry Ha Long Bay" we continued our trip towards Pu Luong National Park. Once more we were in for a homestay. This time with the ethnic minority of the Thai Mountain Tribes. Also there we had a small seperate house and a wonderfull evening with our hosts. Up to this point we had barley seen any other tourists and were clearly off the beaten track. Even getting to the small village we stayed in made for an interesting journey. After some hiking in this faboulous landscape we continued back to civilazation in the form of the Mai Chau Villas. A beautifull drive already, the valley of Mai Chau is really astonishing but also more toursitic than the spots we have been before. Our overnight though was a bit outside the main areas and perfectly nice. Hiking, some nice walk around and a visit of the Mu Loung Cave made for the day and after a nice dinner we continued towards Hanoi on the next day.
So far this trip has been absolutly perfect. Tony always took care of our well beeing, checked out the restaurant (and their kitchens) before he lead us for lunch or dinner. We would not know too much about where we would stay the next evening, but that we perfectly fine for us. Everywhere we had a good bed, clean toilet and superb food.
Car and Drivers were always trained to not scare western tourists too much :)
After our normal Trip, Tony invited us to stay with him and his familiy the first two days after Tet, this was not part of our trip itenary but a real invitation. We settled on a small extra charge for a driver as we would fit on the back of his motorbike and set off for a 2 hour ride to a small village north of Hanoi.
We were greated by his whole family and stayed with him and his familiy on the farm on his father. This was really the highlight of our trip as tourists were absolutly not common in this part of Vietnam. His mother showed us and his son how to make Tet Cake and afterwards we were in for the feast of family dinner and party with friends. Great food and intersting people made for a great evening with far too much rice wine/booze which kind of spoiled the next day.
On the last day we had the honor to participate with Tony's visits to old friends and family. Countless times we enjoyed Tea and homemade Tet Sweets and fruits with different relatives and friends. All very friendly and interested in how we got to their village :)
We even met the father of one of his best friends, who had spent 4 years in former East Germany in the 70's. After 40 years we were the first Germans he could talk to. This was clearly one of the most moving meeting of our trip. Afterwards we had one last great family and friends dinner before we drove back to Hanoi.

Tony as a private tour guide was the perfect choice for us. We really got to know the local Vietnam. He just has a perfect sense how to deal with his customers. I bet we would also have enjoyed this trip as a vegetarian how only eats pizza. In the 2,5 weeks afterwards where we travelled thorugh the rest of vietnam, we never got so far off the beaten track as with Tony. Pricey? Yes but worth every Cent.

Only small drawback would be on the payment side (but we had that problem throughout all of Vietnam). They are not used to Credit Card Payment as we are, as they all expect the customer to pay the CC or paypal charges. We accepted that (we could have paied all in cash) because we don't like to carry around that big ammounts of cash.

Date of experience: February 2016
2  Thank stephanhauhs
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TONY TOURS V, Owner at Tours By Locals Vietnam, responded to this reviewResponded March 23, 2016

Dear stephanhauhs,
Thank you for sharing a nice review about your experience with the Tony Tours Vietnam! I’m glad that all your travel went smoothly, and that you enjoyed very much 5 days off the beaten tack private North Vietnam tour. I will look at your experience to keep moving ahead and share with other fellow travellers who want something extraordinary.
Please do stay in touch with us, by following Tony Tours Vietnam on Facebook or Twitter. We regularly post stories and photos from around Vietnam, and you might find some inspiration for your next journey! Looking forward to seeing you again!
Kind regards
Tony Tours

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 6, 2016

Tony provides the best in private touring. We selected him based on other TripAdvisor reviews and we weren't disappointed. When we were initially selecting a hotel, he took pictures of the needed handicap room for our approved before we booked. I consider this excellent attention to detail. We were two couples in his private van with plenty of room for everyine to be comfortable. Our tour of Hanoi was to visit beautiful and historic places with lunch at a restaurant that served Italian food! We had time to shop, too. A trip to Halong Bay was wonderful with a private boat for sailing the Bay. We had lunch aboard with one in our party saying the seafood lunch was the favorite of the stay in Viet Nam. When you talk with Tony, do be sure to ask about a trip to Halong Bay. The rest stops were at lovely shopping venues with clean restrooms, plenty to shop for and a chance for refreshments. Our experience with tony was excellent, excellent! Tony went beyond expeditions in helping our wheelchair bound visitor easily traverse the terrains of our visit. Well done, Tony.

Date of experience: January 2016
Thank LeitaLuetta
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TONY TOURS V, Owner at Tours By Locals Vietnam, responded to this reviewResponded March 23, 2016

Dear LeitaLuetta
Thank you so much for this lovely review of Tony Tours! It’s great to know that your experience in Hanoi, Halong Bay private tours was such a good one, especially Tony Tours is a part of your choice when traveling to Hanoi. Your feedback will encourage our job inspired in the future.
Please do also stay in touch with us, by finding Tony Tours on Facebook, Twitter. We post stories, photos, and updates from around Vietnam, in the hope that you’ll find some inspiration for a new adventure! We look forward to seeing you again soon, hopefully in the very near future!
Kind regards,
Tony Tours

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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