January Newsletter 2019

01

Tet – Vietnamese New Year – Wishes

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Dear customers, partners and friends,

We would like to wish you, your families and all your loved ones a very joyful, peaceful and prosperous Tet holiday! Tet is Vietnam’s traditional New Year season and as we move into the year of the Pig – a symbol of diligence, compassion, and generosity – we look forward to a year full of inspiring journeys.

Many, many thanks for your continued support.

Saffron Travel

02

Meet Saffron Travel At FITUR In Madrid 2019

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Only a few days left until FITUR 2019. Visit us at 6D09 and do not hesitate to contact us to make an appointment in advance at the following addresses:

spain@saffrontravel.net

long@saffrontravel.net

We wish you a successful FITUR!

03

Ylang Cruise To Launch In Lan Ha Bay, Ha Long Bay In August 2019

Ylang plans to start its first journey in August 2019. It offers a 2-night program through Lan Ha Bay – a tranquil part of Halong Bay – with a special focus on Wellness. 10 cabins are designed with a splendid blend of Indochinese concepts.

04

Tips For Travelling To South East Asia During Lunar New Year

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The Lunar New Year – Tet – holiday will begin on February 5th and end on February 11th. During these 7 non-working holidays, the Vietnam Immigration Department and Vietnamese Embassies will close their offices. We therefore suggest that any applications for Vietnamese visas should be submitted as soon as possible to avoid delays. Moreover, many museums, mausoleums, indoor exhibition spaces, galleries and local markets will be closed for at least 4 days, from the 5th to 9th February. Saffron Travel modifies itineraries during the Tet season in Vietnam when and where appropriate.

Our office will close from February 2nd to February 11th. For emergency assistance, please contact us at +84 (0)90 9885 611, or +84 (0)90 5612 771

05

Promotions Of The Month

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Six Senses Con Dao is offering an early bird promotion of 10% off villa rates for any booking reserved at least 7 days prior to arrival. This luxury resort with its contemporary design, relaxing swimming pool, and idyllic, private beach is perfect for honeymooners and travellers who long to spend days relaxing at a hideaway destination.

For travellers who are planning to travel to Siem Reap, home to the world’s magnificent Angkor Temple, Treeline Urban Resort is offering a special promotion of 30% off until 31st March 2019. Treeline Urban Resort is a boutique resort inspired by the interplay of rustic local heritage and contemporary urban style.

06

New Domestic Route Ho Chi Minh City – Van Don (Ha Long Bay, Quang Ninh) From Vietnam Airlines

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The national flag carrier opened a new air route connecting Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City and Van Don Airport in Quang Ninh on December 30th 2018. There is one Airbus A321 flight per day. Flights depart from Tan Son Nhat international airport at 1400 and from the Van Don airport at 1645 with an estimated flight time of two hours and five minutes. With this new route, the distance from Ha Long Bay to the airport is shortened significantly.

The New Year festivities across South East Asia are a special time when people put the past behind them, celebrate together and look forward to a new year full of good fortune. Vietnamese celebrate the

Lunar New Year with many family-based traditions. In early April Lao, Cambodian and Burmese have their own water festivals that bring together large crowds for some of the liveliest street celebrations across South East Asia.

Saffron Travel can organize tours for guests to experience and enjoy the festive atmosphere to the full whilst also developing a deeper understanding of local cultures and traditions.

01

“Tet” With Saffron Travel

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The sanctuary at Prek Toal is at the northwest tip of the great Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia. There are a large number of birds to be seen here including Greater and Lesser Adjutants, Black-headed Ibis, Painted Stork, Milky Stork, Spot-billed Pelican, Grey-Headed Fish Eagle.

Of the three biosphere areas on the Tonle Sap Lake, Prek Toal is the most accessible from Siem Reap and the most popular with birdwatchers as flocks of migratory birds congregate here in the dry season (December-May).

The trip can be combined with a fishing experience on the lake or a visit to Kampong Phluk which is a cluster of three villages of stilted houses built within the floodplain of Tonle Sap.

02

Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary

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The sanctuary at Prek Toal is at the northwest tip of the great Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia. There are a large number of birds to be seen here including Greater and Lesser Adjutants, Black-headed Ibis, Painted Stork, Milky Stork, Spot-billed Pelican, Grey-Headed Fish Eagle.

Of the three biosphere areas on the Tonle Sap Lake, Prek Toal is the most accessible from Siem Reap and the most popular with birdwatchers as flocks of migratory birds congregate here in the dry season (December-May).

The trip can be combined with a fishing experience on the lake or a visit to Kampong Phluk which is a cluster of three villages of stilted houses built within the floodplain of Tonle Sap.


01

Explore The Hidden Charm Of Moc Chau During Tet

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Moc Chau is around 200 km west of Hanoi and at a latitude of over 1000 meters, the surrounding landscape is in bloom throughout the year. However, spring (from January to March) is the best time to witness the stunning beauty of the Moc Chau Plateau as its mountain slopes are covered in beautiful, blossoming peach flowers. The buds create an elegant and fragile beauty across the plateau. Moc Chau is also home to many ethnic minorities, including Green Hmong, Dzao, Thai and Muong. At this time these communities wear colourful clothes and take part in many activities like dancing with trumpets, whistles, and other traditional games…. Don’t be surprised if you receive eager invitations to visit people’s homes during this time, as many believe the more visitors, the wealthier they will become in the New Year. Saffron Travel offers cultural and photographic tours to Moc Chau during Vietnamese Lunar New Year, which will ensure you capture the best shots of this special season. Moc Chau also produces Vietnam’s best tea and exploring the green tea plantations is a great way to experience this unique part of the country.

02

Yandabo Village, A Charming Village Of Burma

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Yandabo is a village on the Ayarwaddy River in central Myanmar. This small rural village has 400 houses, each of which is home from 5 to 10 people. It is specialized in pot making and one person here can make from 30 to 70 pots per day. Every product here is an iconic work of art. One of the most interesting facts here is that each family has their own design which is carved into the wooden paddles and because pottery seems to be the only income of the family, the pots are kept inside the house whilst most of the family members sleep outside. The village still keeps its untouched beauty with a rustic feeling. Travellers can see pots everywhere in the village. Besides potters, visitors can also meet farmers and traders within the village. You are invited to take part in the process of making a pot using a potter’s wheel.

01

Hotel Of The Month: Azerai Can Tho

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Azerai Can Tho is a five star luxury retreat located on its own islet amongst the lakes, waterways and mangroves of the Mekong Delta. Azerai is truly a hidden gem for anyone looking for something different from the usual getaway with the nearby city of  Can Tho home to Vietnam’s biggest floating market.

The resort features 60 rooms with river, lake, or garden views. There are also interconnecting doors to create 2-bedroom accommodation, ideal for families. The architecture presents the grace and artful simplicity of Vietnamese design in neutral tones, using natural materials such as wood and rattan. As it is a retreat on a separate islet, Azerai offers great wellness services and also a fine dining venue serving the catch of the day, fresh from Mekong Delta.

02

Restaurant Of The Month: Hok Noodles Bar And Grill

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Set within a leafy area in Siem Reap, Hok Noodle Bar And Grill is an ideal destination for diners to recharge along the riverside. This lively restaurant specializes in bold and authentic Asian flavours from Asian style tapas for family gatherings to individual noodles broths, delicious fresh salads and stir-fried dishes. The design is contemporary and don’t forget to order Hok’s signature cocktails which are as delicious as they are refreshing.  


Vietnamese Crepes

Banh xeo, Vietnamese for “sizzling cake” – a name derived from the sound these party starters make when cooked on a hot pan.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup water

FILLING:

    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided, or as needed
    • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced, or more to taste
    • 3/4 pound fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
    • 2 tablespoons fish sauce, or more to taste
    • salt to taste
    • 1 pound mung bean sprouts
    • 4 lettuce leaves, or as needed

PREPARATION

  • Mix rice flour, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and turmeric together in a large bowl. Beat in coconut milk to make a thick batter. Slowly beat in water until batter is the consistency of a thin crepe batter.
  • Heat 1 1/2 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot and garlic; cook and stir until fragrant but not browning, 1 to 2 minutes. Add shrimp; saute until cooked through and opaque, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with fish sauce and salt. Transfer filling to a bowl.
  • Preheat oven to 200 degrees F (95 degrees C).
  • Wipe out skillet and reheat over medium heat. Add remaining 1 1/2 teaspoon oil. Stir crepe batter and pour 1/2 cup into the hot skillet, swirling to coat the bottom. Lay 3 or 4 of the cooked shrimp on the bottom half of the crepe. Top with a small handful of bean sprouts. Cook until batter looks set and edges start to brown, about 1 minute. Fold crepe over and slide onto an oven-safe plate.
  • Place crepe in the preheated oven to keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter and filling.
  • Serve lettuce leaves alongside filled crepes. Break off pieces of crepe and roll up in lettuce leaves to eat.

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