Viet Nam’s Cultural Tapestry

Viet Nam is a multi-ethnic country with many different groups, each with its individual beliefs, practices, customs and languages.

Viet Nam’s cultural tapestry is diverse: the government recognises 54 ethnic groups, many of which have smaller sub-groups. This gives Viet Nam the most complex and interesting ethnic diversity in all of South-East Asia. The majority of these groups live in remote, rural areas, especially in the central and northern highlands. Tai and Khoa from our ICT team caught up with our cultural team and ethnic friends again over the Summer. We have many exciting things in the pipeline to enhance experiential travel and knowledge sharing opportunities.

Viet Nam’s capital city Ha Noi, is a great place to begin a personalised cultural journey through the country. Guests with an interest in culture can build understanding & knowledge on a special day here with one of our experienced guides. We recommend visting the Ha Noi Museum of Ethnology followed by private time with a Vietnamese cultural expert. This can be a great introduction to the ethnic cultural groups for all visitors to Viet Nam. Guests who will visit ethnic group villages in more remote regions will also find it valuable preparation.

Ha Noi’s Museum of Ethnology

The museum was created to recognise Viet Nam’s ethnicity and to promote socio-cultural diversity. It is one of the largest and most comprehensive museums in Viet Nam. The incredible collection displays the history and rich cultural composition of the country. It offers insight into all 54 ethnic groups, with informative displays and easy to understand displays. These include elaborate and colourful hill-tribe costumes, weaving designs, musical instruments, fishing implements, work tools and more. The garden area is very impressive and features fascinating full-size replicas. These show traditional architecture of ethnic minorities from the central and northern highland areas, even the home of a King!

Meeting a Cultural Expert

We’re sure you agree it’s a special opportunity to spend time with an expert in the cultural field. ICT can arrange a visit with a Doctor of Folklore and guest university lecturer with extensive research experience, including published works. Building upon the knowledge gained at the museum, this session provides extra information, plus the chance to share your thoughts and ask all the questions you need. An ICT guide will be on hand to help interpret, facilitate your questions and support your understanding.

Together, the museum visit and expert time provides an opportunity to understand each group’s culture. This understanding is otherwise available only for those who visit the remote areas where most of these ethnic groups reside.

In Country Tours specialises in custom tailored travel experiences to help guests explore, learn, and inspire others. Guests can explore Viet Nam’s cultural tapestry with a museum visit and expert meeting in Ha Noi. Plus they can visit some of Viet Nam’s ethnic groups in their local village areas. ICT can arrange private sessions with a range of cultural experts in Ha Noi, including Artists, Water Puppet artisans and traditional Vietnamese musicians.  To include these special experiences in your Viet Nam travel plan, please contact the In Country Tours office: