Into the Thieves Market: Authentic Hanoi Street Photography Tour
Vietnam In Focus
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Photography Day Tours


Into the Thieves Market

Venture deep into Hanoi’s most photogenic street market

No-one knows exactly how long the ‘Sky Market’ or ‘Thieves Market’ has been in existence, but it has an immortal feel to it. Tiny stalls cram next to each other, selling everything under the sky, from motor parts to timber, spices to vintage electronics. That’s the reason for the first name. But traditionally, people also stop here first if looking for anything that’s gone ‘walkies’, giving it the second title.

All of this makes it a great place to get lost with your camera – a shadowy bazaar full of faces and strange offerings, afternoon sunlight streaming through the make- shift roof.

The myriad stalls and alleyways provide readymade frames for decisive moments, and we’ll even wander into a century-old colonial HQ, now converted into a pensioners’ ping pong club. Along the way, you’ll put together a stunning photographic story of life in one of Hanoi’s most fascinating markets.

What to Expect from Hanoi's Thieves Market

Expect many street photography opportunities, with the market’s shopfronts, stalls and narrow alleyways providing a constant selection of frames. The friendly traders and other locals also make for willing portrait subjects, and this is a great opportunity to work on your approach to people photography.

Deep in the bazaar, sunlight filters through the overhead awnings, giving your pictures a unique atmosphere. Changing light conditions both environmental and artificial, and objects moving through the cramped alleys, make exploring ISO, aperture and frame speeds a priority. 

Image Gallery


An authentic photo experience
A Tripadvisor Reviewer, Jul 2023
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I got to go to the explore the Thieves market as the last part of a custom tour which included the lychee harvest and night markets. My guide for this part, Tung has a lot of knowledge about the area and knows how to interact with the locals. He also brought a lot of photography experience and helped me find new compositions in places I found difficult to work in. Even though I have lived and explored Hanoi for a few months, he could still show me some more hidden corners that I wouldn't have found by myself. I have been on multiple tours with ViF now and have yet to be disappointed by them.

Tour Information

Recommended Equipment

  • DSLR Camera or Film Camera
  • Memory Card
  • Fully Charged Battery
  • Wide angle or Zoom lens

What's included

  • Hotel Pick up and Drop-Off
  • Professional Photographer Guide

What's not included

  • Food or Drinks
  • Tips

Tour Length

4hrs ( 8:30 – to 12:30 am)
Hotel pickups commence approximately 30 minutes prior to this time

Level of Difficulty

Moderate Physical activity (Walking)

Tour HIghlights

  • Urban Housing
  • Flea Market
  • Wet Market
  • Ping Pong Club
  • Motorbike Parts Street

Photography Highlights

  • People photography
  • Street photography
  • Documentary photography
  • Visual storytelling
  • Camera settings
  • Lens options

Photography teaching

On a photo tour with us, your experience, images and development as a photographer are the priority. Tips to improve your pictures will be provided by our professional photographer guides throughout the tour, and we’ll have regular reviews. While enjoying a rich variety of photographic opportunities on tour, you’ll gain valuable insights on how to get the best out of your images, and how to take your skills to the next level.

Further Reading


Per person


Per Person


Per Person
3-5 People


Tour FAQ's

In the event of forecasted heavy rain, we’ll contact you to reschedule or cancel the tour and give you a full refund.  If it’s early morning and raining heavily, our guide will call you on the phone number you gave us to discuss options for postponement or cancellation.  In the event of cancellation we’ll issue a full refund.

Yes, you can.  We have a Nikon DSLR available to rent for $30 per tour including free memory card.  Please enquire on booking.

Yes, you do.  Vietnam in Focus is not liable to pay any costs associated with injury etc on our tours.

Yes, they can.  Costs (or free joining) depend on each tour, so please enquire on booking.

Yes, you can.  People often join our tours using film cameras.  You may not be able to edit in camera, but the composition tips are still basically the same.

Yes, you can.  Smartphone cameras are pretty amazing nowadays.

Training or guidance will be provided by our photographers throughout the tour. Our guides will tailor your learning experience depending on your interest, style and experience from amateurs to professionals we can provide simple techniques to improve your photography, gain further knowledge of your camera and lenses, as well as develop your photographic eye to capture that amazing shot.

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Our unparalleled knowledge of travel and culture in Vietnam, and where and when to get the best shots, mean we are experts in designing tailormade photo tours.  We have planned and run tours for everyone from professional photographers on a mission to amateurs who want to get to know their cameras better on an adventure.  Each person and group is different, so once you’ve completed the few questions below, expect to answer a few more before we can create your ideal photographic adventure.

Into the Thieves Market


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