Hanoi Free Local Tours Reviews on Tripadvisor

Hanoi Free Local Tours Tripadvisor

1. Nelson From London

I wish every city offered something like Hanoi Free Local Tours

For all the insider tips, local secrets and travel hacks the internet has been able to reveal to the average internet-savvy traveler, there really is nothing quite as powerful as spending time with an actual local to get a real foothold on a new city. Hanoi Free Local Tours is a fantastic organization which provides this very opportunity with any visitor to Hanoi willing to take a chance. Of course, I understand that it’s easy to jump to paranoid conclusions at the word ‘free’ in this context but before you make assumptions let me explain, because this is actually the real deal. I came to Hanoi travelling solo, so I was eager to plug into the local culture. When I found this organization, I was skeptical as well, but willing to take a chance. Here’s how it works, as my tourguide explained it to me:

Free Local Tours is able to operate completely free as a mutually beneficial service. All of the tourguides are volunteer students and locals looking to enhance their english by engaging with foreign visitors through the tour service. The benefit for us is that we get to see a unique, LOCAL side of Hanoi with our very own guide, from city landmarks, to the hidden away street food hotspots you definitely wont find in Lonely Planet or Trip Advisor.
My guide was May, who was splendid company: knowledgeable, passionate and a genuine soul. We spent the entire day together, and as it turned out I was the only visitor on the tour, so it was just the two of us. We visited a historical site, a Buddhist temple, tried some amazing local food, all of which she was able to supplement with her insights as a Hanoi local. May and I became fast friends. We got to learn a tremendous amount about each other’s cultures. And at one point she even let me do a lap around sword lake on her electric bike (don’t worry I volunteered to drive, this is by no means a requirement of the tour 🙂 ) At night, we took a taxi outside of town to her brother’s restaurant where we talked, laughed, and enjoyed more great food. At the end of the night we were two good friends from different parts of the world parting ways in an amazing city. If you can be open minded to trying new things, meeting new people, and really GOING WITH THE FLOW, Hanoi Free Local Tours is a perfect option for acclimating to the hustle and bustle of this fantastic city.

I also want to mention that May was explicit about the tour as a ‘pay what you want’ type of itinerary (with nothing going to the tourguide, if you try to tip they WILL refuse the money as is the policy of the organization.) If you want to hit the museums and temples that cost money, you’re welcome to. If you want to stick to a truly no-money kind of experience and just walk around the city, you can do that too. There is truly no pressure, and you only do what you’re comfortable with.

Visited September 2016

2. Oakland 
I was traveling solo to Vietnam for the first time, and although I like exploring on my own, I also like to meet the locals and learn things about places that I wouldn’t find out on my own. I booked a tour for Sunday afternoon, and Khai, one of the member of Hanoi Free Local Tours, my awesome tour guide, took me around the city and we ate some delicious bun cha and nem ran. We visited St. Joseph’s Cathedral and Hoa Lo Prison. Khai was super resourceful, and because she is a college student was able to convince Hoa Loa staff to let her in for free. I had such a good time, we hung out again a few days later and she took me around on her moto. It was definitely a great decision. The tour is free, but I was happy to pay for any entrance fees or food for both of us, and it was well worth it!
Visited August 2016

3. Oamaru, New Zealand
Local adventure

Another traveller recommended these tours and although we booked at short notice we were lucky enough to get a willing guide. We weren’t sure where we wanted to walk to but our free local student guide Thao sorted places that suited us both – the Hoam Kiem lake, Hoa Lo prison, trying egg coffee (delicious) plus other stops gave us a very interesting look at Hanoi. Thao was very friendly, lovely and intelligent and her English was excellent. She also made us feel safer crossing the roads – no mean feat in Hanoi! It was a great experience and we would highly recommend these tours for cultural understanding and good local company.

Visited August 2016
4. Wassana
Nga Nguyen was my city tour guide in Hanoi she is such a smart and friendly girl. She do a city tour guide as a volunteer but she did it as profestional. 4-5 hours walk in the city she always willing to share knowledge and information and do her best as a tourguide. You can get in to local better than buy a day trip from the tour company. She is just a teen 19 years old girl but mature enough. She said she like to practice herself so she did it for free but for my opinion she could get some money from things she loves to do so I give a tip for her even she refuesd becouse she deserved. If you visit Hanoi don’t miss a chance to meet up with her ask her about local food if u are foodie like me ^^
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5. our videos

We easily booked the free tour online and were greeted by Nga and Khoai punctually at our hotel lobby. They were all smiles and explained our itinerary for the day. We were immediately impressed with their level of English and their approachable demeanor made it easy for us to interact openly with them. They were very knowledgeable and were ever ready to share their wealth of knowledge with us. We very quickly warmed up to them and they effectively became our ‘family members’. Anyone who needs a tour around Hanoi, I think you should just engage Hanoi Free Local Tours.

Visited December 2016

My wife and I booked for a full day tour via email. We received tour confirmation the very next day. On the appointed day, we met our guide Thanh at the hotel lobby. Thanh, a local university civil engineering undergraduate gave us a run down of the day’s itinerary before we set out.

Our verdict: We were extremely satisfied with the level of service. Its amazing that its free! I must admit that Thanh was a wonderful guide and ensured that we were comfortable.

Visited December 2016
5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 weeks ago

One of the highlights of our recent trip to Hanoi with my wife was the Hanoi Free Local Tour conducted by the friendly and lovely guide Hong Dao Nguyen. Though nursing a sore throat with a scheduled course presentation later in the afternoon, she was superb in guiding us through the Women museum where we learned about the history of Vietnam and the roles of women played during the different era of the country’s transformation and development. Despite her busy schedule, Dao also brought us to taste some of the local favourite food in the evening after her course. My wife and myself were impressed by Dao’s determination in learning English while showing us the sights enthusiastically. We strongly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Hanoi.
Thank you Dao for an awesome and lovely day !

Visited November 2016