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Food wise, our stay in Hanoi was all about street food: we didn’t eat anywhere fancy, but that didn’t mean we ate badly. Barbecued beef with noodles, herbs and papaya, deep fried dumplings and pasties stuffed with beef, pork or crab and veggies, fried cuttlefish, stir-fried beef and chips in gravy*. All accompanied by lashings of “fresh beer” at 25 cents a glass.

Ambiance consisted of tiny plastic stools and tables in shop fronts and on the pavement, mopeds whipping on by. No meal for more than $4 a head, with a slight additional cost in worrying whether we may have pushed the food hygiene limits too far this time.

* Oddly the place serving this particular dish didn’t seem like total tourist-bait, despite how the dish sounds — it was full of locals, and the steak and gravy was definitely a prime thing to eat.

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