Here at B&R, we’ve long prided ourselves on bringing our travellers in deep and up close in all the myriad corners of the globe we travel. And after 50 years, we’ve come to realize that the best way to get in deep is not just by befriending the locals, but becoming one ourselves.
And with the possible exception of our home base in Burgundy, there’s no place where this is more true than in Vietnam, where our local guide Tam Dinh has been immersing B&R travellers in his homeland for more than a decade. In addition to having all the curiosity, enthusiasm and character of our B&R Guides around the globe, Tam has the distinct advantage of being born and raised in Vietnam—and he absolutely loves introducing people to his home.
We caught up with Tam to discuss his philosophy on travel, his favourite things to reveal about his home land and how he managed to turn a flooded highway into a Hollywood miracle.
Vital stats: Married*
Years in Travel Business: 16 years
Years working with B&R: 12
Place of Birth: Chu Lai, Quang Nam
Current hometown: Da Nang
Trips guided: 40
Q&A with Tam:
Everyone at B&R has their fair share of wanderlust. When/how did you first get bit with the travel bug?
When I was a little kid, my father took me with him to most of the places he went to and often told me that “he who travels far, knows much.” Since then I have had a passion for travelling and thanks to the open door policy of the Vietnam government I am having more opportunities to show my passion to travellers.
You’ve been guiding for more than a decade. What stands out as one of the most memorable on-trip moments?
I was accompanying travellers to the airport in Hue so they could catch the flight to Saigon and then back to the US, when our car got stuck in flooded water. I looked out of the window and saw a big bus coming. Right at that moment, I got out and stopped the big bus in the pouring rain and took the luggage of my travellers from the car, loading the bags and moving my travellers to the bus.
We arrived at the airport at the very minute the check-in counter closed. My travellers said that it was like in a Hollywood movie! I did not know the bus driver and everyone stared at me at the airport. I was soaked, freezing, but I made it!
What are people most surprised about when they visit your region for the first time?
The friendly people, scenic landscape and good food.