Local woman weaving traditional silk cloth in Myanmar

Arts & Crafts

Arts and crafts are a colourful representation of the diversity of the peoples and cultures of Southeast Asia. From traditional crafts to modern art, we connect our guests to artists and artisans for a first-hand look into how the art is brought to life.

Our Sample Itineraries

Ancient royal-palaces, the Forbidden City in Beijing

Ancient & Modern Wonders of Beijing & Tokyo

Beijing – Japan

Journey through China and Japan’s two historic capitals and present-day megacities, Beijing and Tokyo, experiencing magnificent ancient wonders, exciting modern attractions and memorable cultural activities

Discover Thai Artistic Heritage

Bangkok – Chiang Mai

Gain a deeper understanding of Thailand’s rich artistic heritage in the fascinating cities of Chiang Mai and Bangkok, with hands-on experiences and in-depth expert guidance from prolific artisans, artists and art historians.

Balinese Ancient Art Traditions

Ubud – Gianyar - Canggu

Immerse in Bali’s thriving and exceptional heritage of traditional arts, crafts and performance arts, with hands-on encounters in Ubud, the islands’ artistic and cultural capital.

Woman Preparing Silk For Weaving Cloth In Myanmar

Art Treasures of Myanmar

Yangon – Mandalay – Inle Lake – Pindaya – Bagan

Discover the handicraft traditions of Myanmar and learn about crafts unique to the country. Gain insight into ‘Pan Sel Myo’, the ten religious traditional arts, and meet with contemporary artists for a personal perspective of the thriving art scene.

A traditional Vietnamese artist paints in his art studio, Hanoi, Vietnam

Vietnamese Art Heritage

Hanoi - Hue - Hoi An - Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta

Gain a deeper understanding of Vietnam’s history and culture through the perspective of arts and crafts. Meet with artisans who are passionate about preserving their craft and learn how cultural traditions are expressed through their work.



Our Tailored Experiences

  • Hue Heritage Villages on Two Wheels

    Hue, Vietnam

    Hue, nestled in the heart of Vietnam, is a mesmerizing blend of heritage and history Celebrated for its UNESCO-listed Imperial City, this ancient realm unfolds with a tapestry of time-honored temples, royal palaces, and heritage villages.

    On a 10km adventure, step back in time through Hue’s hidden gems as you pedal along idyllic lanes, passing rice paddies and quaint villages. Discover the tradition intertwined with the village’s wetlands in the intricate art of mats, handbags and hats weaving with sedge plants. Explore the wood carving legacy passed down from Nguyen dynasty artisans. Next, delve into Phuoc Tich’s ancient village, a treasure trove of cultural heritage that boasts well-preserved traditional “ruong” and garden houses, evoking the charm of bygone eras. Visit a private museum which houses a remarkable collection of ancient pottery. Then, wrap up this unforgettable journey at a local residence with a home-hosted lunch and delectable lotus seed cake making.

    Duration: Full day biking ; 6.5hrs

  • Learn the Secrets of Traditional Knife-making in Sakai

    Sakai (Outside Osaka), Japan

    Located on Osaka’s outskirts, Sakai has played a pivotal role in shaping Japan’s history. During the Sengoku-era (1467 to 1603), this old industrial city was a thriving port hub with trading ties to both Asia and Europe. Although famed for its Japanese tea ceremony origins and ancient burial mounds, Sakai is best known for its premium quality, carbon steel kitchen knives. Japanese knife-smith craftsmanship is acclaimed worldwide, but Sakai is regarded as its home, producing around 90 percent of Japan’s uniquely hand-made kitchen knives. Sakai is where Japanese and foreign professional chefs source their premium kitchen knives.

    For over 600 years, this knife-making skill has been passed down generations of master craftsmen. Today, learn how Sakai’s knives are still hand-forged the age-old way, finished with a level of quality that sets the benchmark globally for kitchen knives.

    We visit the studio of a local knife-smith, who traditionally hand-forges these carbon steel knives in a slow and meticulous multi-step process. Observe how the craftsman forms a simple steel piece, deposit it in an open furnace heated to over 900 degrees Celsius, weld and then repeatedly hammer. The knife is then allowed to slowly cool down, before passed on to the sharpener, handle-maker and assembler craftsmen.

    Duration: 1 hr

  • Exclusive Soho Art Gallery Tour  

    Hong Kong Island

    Hong Kong boasts some of Asia’s finest independent and international galleries, besides a thriving local art scene. For an insider’s guide to Hong Kong’s prestigious art gallery world, head to stylish Soho, where art and business collide. This upscale neighbourhood is the address to some of the city’s premier galleries. Take an exclusive guided tour through the latest exhibitions of five contemporary art galleries in Soho, hand-selected for their diversity. Accompanied by art experts, admire the broad range of mediums and styles exhibited, from sculptures and traditional paintings to modern installations. These are mainly the works of artists from Hong Kong and the Greater China region. Beyond the art exhibits, delve into the stories behind the curators and the history and vision of these prolific galleries.  

    Duration: 3 hrs

  • Living Legacy of Jim Thompson’s Weavers

    Bangkok, Thailand

    The mysterious disappearance of Jim Thompson in 1967 continues to captivate the imagination of many. While much is known about the American businessman who helped revitalise the Thai silk industry in the 1950s on the way to becoming a global silk brand today, very few know about the other half of his legacy.

    Upon discovering a community of skilled weavers of Cham descent living across the canal from his Bangkok home, Jim Thompson decided to build his company right next to the community and hired the weavers to produce his prized silk. Visit the last of his original weavers who still produce silk and listen to their fascinating childhood stories of when they watched Jim Thompson cross over to their homes every morning to visit his weavers and their families.

    Duration: 6hrs

  • Conversations with a Local Artist

    Yangon, Myanmar

    Recent democratic reforms in Myanmar have spurred the growth of its contemporary art scene, particularly in Yangon where private galleries represent a diverse range of artists experimenting with different subjects and art forms.

    Visit the home gallery of a Yangon resident artist, considered one of Myanmar’s masters of watercolour paintings, well-known for depicting Buddhist monastic life and the detailed temple architecture of Bagan. View his latest paintings in progress and listen as the soft-spoken artist shares stories of his humble beginnings and how the country’s fascinating political events as well as his own personal experiences have influenced his work. Afterwards, the artist will accompany you to visit a couple of his favorite art galleries.

    Duration: 2-3hrs

  • Bagan Lacquerware Workshop

    Bagan, Myanmar

    Bagan was once home to royal artisans and craftsmen, creating exquisite pottery, wood carvings, stone sculptures and lacquerware. Today, Bagan still produces some of the finest lacquerware in Myanmar.

    Visit a lacquerware workshop and meet with the owner who will tell you about the history of Burmese lacquerware, a time- and labour-intensive process involving up to 12 layers of lacquer followed by intricate designs engraved completely freehand and coloured with fine stone powder. Participate in a hands-on lacquerware-making session, trying your hand at some of the easier steps of lacquerware-making and bring home the piece you make as a personal souvenir of Bagan.

    Duration: 2.5hrs

  • H’mong Textiles Workshop with an Artisan

    Luang Prabang, Laos

    Since 2006, Luang Prabang’s Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre has been devoted to helping people gain insight into the diversity and richness of Laos’ ethnic cultures. Spend an enjoyable half day at the centre, engaging with some of its excellent exhibitions showcasing traditional handmade clothing and textiles, reconstructions of domestic scenes, as well as ritual and religious artefacts.

    Also participate in a workshop on H’mong embroidery and H’mong appliqué (ornamental needlework) led by an ethnic artisan. The H’mong are unique in that they still make their own clothes independently, typically weaving and embellishing the fabric themselves. Also enjoy a tasty lunch of ethnic foods at the centre’s own cafe.

    Duration: 3.5hrs

  • Learn the Art of Traditional Lao Weaving

    Luang Prabang, Laos

    Meaning “East Meets West” in Lao, Ock Pop Tok pairs social business with ethical fashion. The social enterprise aims to create economic value for hand-loomed textiles by providing competitive wages, opportunities for continued learning and professional development for the village weavers as well as educating visitors about the cultural and artistic value of the textiles through its store and workshop.

    Spend a hands-on half day with a guide and weaver. Sitting at your own loom, apply basic techniques of Lao weaving to create a placemat-sized textile with a Lao motif which can be taken home as a souvenir.

    Duration: 3hrs


  • Reviving the Lost Art of Khmer Ceramics

    Siem Reap, Cambodia

    Ceramics have been produced in Cambodia since prehistoric times with glazed wares gaining popularity in Angkor between the 9th and 13th centuries. Founded in 2006 as the National Centre for Khmer Ceramic Revival, the Khmer Ceramic Centre is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation with a mission to revive the ancient art of Khmer pottery.

    The centre provides free vocational training to disadvantaged youths while renewing broader interest in this ancestral art. Spend a half day with a craftsman who will breathe life into the history of ancient Khmer pottery, including how bricks for the Angkor temples were thought to have been made. Then under his careful instruction, take your turn at the potter’s wheel using up to 5 lumps of fresh clay to create your very own piece of pottery.

    Duration: 3.5hrs

  • Afternoon With A Kite-Making Master

    Hue, Vietnam

    Vietnam has a long, storied kite-making and -flying tradition stretching back more than a thousand years. Northern Vietnam is famous for making musical kites with bamboo flutes attached while kites in the South are more aerodynamic. In the past, farmers believed kites carried their wishes for a good harvest to the gods. About 300 years ago, kites found their way into the Hue Royal Court, leading to Hue’s tradition of creating colourful and elaborate kites. Spend the afternoon with a kite artisan who’s been crafting kites for more than 45 years. Listen as he shares his passion for Vietnamese kites while learning how to create a kite yourself, possibly with the opportunity to let it take flight in the skies over the Citadel.

    Duration: 2.5hrs

  • Creating Art from Bamboo Paper

    Hue, Vietnam

    “Truc Chi” (bamboo paper) is a recent innovation originating in the Central Vietnamese city of Hue. Used in a variety of decorative pieces including lantern shades, conical hats, umbrellas, and fans, this finely textured paper is crafted from bamboo fibres, known for their resilience and wide availability throughout Vietnam. More impressively, artisans can deftly embed designs right into the paper as it is being made. Visit the Truc Chi art studio and be amazed by the creativity and ingenuity of the art pieces on display. Under the guidance of a local expert, individuals of all ages can participate in the enjoyable process of creating their own piece of Truc Chi art to take back as a souvenir of their memorable time in Hue.

    Duration: 4hrs

  • Behind the Scenes of Saigon’s Contemporary Art (Exclusive)

    Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

    Much more than made-for-tourists lacquerware and kitschy reproduction paintings, Saigon’s true art scene reveals much about the country’s complicated past and its vibrant future. Spend an insightful half day in the company of artists and scholars for an overview into Vietnamese art, both traditional and contemporary. Explore the Fine Arts Museum, housed in a stunning 1929 colonial-era building, accompanied by a contemporary visual artist and scholar. Listen as she points out highlights of the extensive collection mixing traditional Vietnamese techniques with the plastic arts and compares Vietnam’s dynamic art scene with the more established one of her native Europe. Meet two acclaimed local artists who work with mixed media to learn how they draw inspiration from modern-day Vietnam. Also visit Saigon Salon, a private museum in a beautifully restored heritage building, which showcases contemporary Vietnamese art while nurturing local talent.

    Duration: 4-5hrs

  • Beauty of Hang Trong Paintings

    Hanoi, Vietnam

    Down an obscure alley in Hanoi’s Old Quarter lives a 66-year-old man who happens to be the last remaining master of Hang Trong folk paintings. Originating in the 17th century under the Le Dynasty, this ancient art form involves a combination of woodblock printing and colourful painting on special handmade paper. Spend a fascinating few hours visiting this talented artisan in his home, witnessing him create folk paintings using the same woodblock used by previous generations of craftsmen and come to understand his desire to preserve this ancient craft. Though this folk painting tradition has nearly disappeared, the paintings themselves continue to be prized by Hanoians, especially during the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, when the paintings are placed on family altars, valued for their spiritual and cultural symbolism.

    Duration: 3hrs