A Photographic, Culinary, Art and Travel Workshop.


When: 22 days and 20 nights, from Feb 27th, 2017 to Mar 20th, 2017.

Where: Travel from North to Central to South VietNam: Hanoi, Ha Long Bay, Sapa, Hue, Hoi An, Nha Trang, Mekong Delta, Saigon.

Travel in VietNam with a tour guide who speaks the language and learn how to take better pictures from an Artist/Professional Photographer: Vi Bottaro. We will photograph the People, the Culture and the Landscapes. We will be visiting all 5 UNESCO World Heritage sites in VietNam, and more. In the North, we will visit and photograph Old Town Hanoi – a city of food and culture; Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site where over 2,000 limestone karsts rising from the ocean to the sky; Sapa, another UNESCO World Heritage site where the terraced rice fields are of epic proportions. Sapa is also the land of the original 5 ethnic tribes. In central VietNam, we will visit Hue, a UNESCO World Heritage site, home of the Old Citadel; and historic Hoi An, an exceptionally well preserved example of a South East Asian trading port dating back to the 16th century. Hoi An is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. Heading South, we will visit the famous pristine beaches of Nha Trang and some islands in the bay. Further South, we will visit Can Tho and Cai Rang floating market in the Mekong Delta. We will end our trip in the modern and energetic  Ho Chi Minh City, one  of the fastest growing cities in Southeast Asia. We will stay at family owned lodgings as well as 4 and 5 star resorts and historical hotels. We will hike and bike to different villages. We will dine on authentic VietNamese foods of different regions, and we will learn how to cook VietNamese dishes.  

VietNamese Contemporary Art is getting much attention from collectors around the world. We will be visiting Art galleries in Hanoi and in Saigon.

Total cost: $3,950. Air fare to VietNam is not included. All breakfasts, most lunches and most dinners are included. Private ground transportation and air transportation within the country is included. Please add $500 for single occupancy. $500 to hold a spot, non-refundable after Dec 1st, 2016. Balance is due by Jan 1st, 2017. This workshop is limited to only 5 people.

After Dec 1st, I will start the photography training. All levels of photography are welcomed. The goal is to come back a better photographer. At this time, I will send out materials online to read about the history and the culture of VietNam. Detailed information as to how many days we will stay at each location as well as hotel names will be sent out about this time. Before the trip, there will be at least one gathering of participants in my home so everyone can get acquainted. More information will be sent out by emails about visas, clothes, cameras, etc….

I was born and raised in VietNam, came to the US for a college scholarship. I have done several workshops in VietNam. I am bilingual, English and VietNamese.

I live and work in Napa Valley. I do commercial work as well as fine art photography. For more of my work, please take a look at my website here.

My VietNam images can be seen on my website under “Galleries, VietNam”.

Email:      Phone: 707-312-0776.


  • I cannot imagine a better, or more memorable, way to explore the fascinating culture of Vietnam than to do so under the guidance of Vi Bottaro. With the advantages of a small group size, a native speaker, who additionally shares her love and knowledge of culinary and other cultural arts, and a palate of territory and ethnicities in which to immerse oneself…from urban and seaside to the high mountains of indigenous territory, I found no end to the unfolding sense of discovery around me. There was ample diversity in the itinerary to satisfy the interests of each and every one of us, due to Vi’s meticulous attention to quality, and details, in arranging a well-researched balance of activities. I was deeply moved and returned home very inspired to visit Vietnam again someday.  Parry Murray.
  • I can say the trip ranks as one of the best in my life.  I enjoyed it on many different levels.  I was very happy with your itinerary, choice of hotels, people, eating arrangements, transfers, etc.  It all seemed to work out very smooth.  Our small group, with experienced travelers probably helped to make it work well too.  I think the diversity of areas, weather, food, your enthusiasm all helped to make it very interesting. 

I am forever grateful for your fabulous hosting of the trip, the great photography classes and coaching, and of course the introduction to many of the fine Vietnamese food dishes I was not familiar with.  Debra Kloote.

  • I had a great trip and am thankful I had such wonderful travel companions. I loved the food, the people, and all the experiences. There was great variety from the North to Central to South, the mountains to the sea, from cold to hot and high end to home stay. Honestly I enjoyed the home stay in Hoi An, where of course I had the best room in the house on the fourth floor. As I recall we had dinner at a food court in Hoi An where I happily got to try silk worm salad, pigs ear salad, and jellyfish salad among other delicious dishes. Watching traffic and crossing the street was fascinating. I enjoyed the boat trip in Hoi An where you rented the boat and we got to go out and we photographed the fisherman throwing the net from his boat, or in Mui Ne where we taxied to a fishing village and photographed villagers, fisherman, boats, etc. All in all, I had a great time and am really glad I got to see all that we saw. Thank you, Vi.    Rick De Bernardi.
  • In the Autumn of 2013, I visited Vi’s Art exhibit during the annual Napa Valley Open Studios event because I love her haunting, beautiful art photography. Her work was special as always….then what caught my eye was a flyer announcing she was conducting a 16 day photographic travel workshop to VietNam in 2014. I know immediately this was once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see a part of the world I’d never visited in the best way to travel….with Vi, a native of VietNam and professional photographer who would not only guide just a few of us but also teach us how to improve our own photography.

Our trip was extraordinary. VietNam is a stunningly beautiful country with a rich culture, friendly people and some of the best and most delicious cuisine I’ve ever tasted. We visited            spectacular mountain landscapes, met ethnic tribal folks, sailed in breathtaking bays and waterways, and wandered through ancient temples, historic sites, and wondrous markets in this unique and lovely land. Expect to be enchanted!     Linda Bancke.