13 Best Restaurants in Tam Coc and Ninh Binh: Where to Eat
Although Ninh Binh province isn’t thought of as a foodie destination in Vietnam, you can still find great food, as well as local specialties, here. When figuring out where to eat in Tam Coc or Ninh Binh, you’ve got plenty of options for Vietnamese, Asian, Western, and even Indian food here. This list compiles some of the best restaurants in Tam Coc and Ninh Binh, along with cafés and specific recommendations on what to order.
I’ve also included a color-coded map of all the restaurants and cafés below. Restaurants that serve Vietnamese and Asian food are in red, restaurants serving Western food are in blue, and cafés are in purple.
- Vietnamese and Asian food
- Western food
- More resources for traveling Vietnam
Vietnamese and Asian food
Ngoc Linh Restaurant
When I asked the owner of my homestay where to grab dinner, he recommended the tofu dishes at Ngoc Linh Restaurant. His recommendation was spot-on, as Ngoc Linh serves up what I consider to be life-changing tofu. I got their fried tofu with tomato sauce and rice, and it is some of the best tofu I have ever had. It was perfectly crispy on the outside and silky soft on the inside, and the tomato sauce was acidic and savory.
The other travelers I was with ordered the fried tofu stuffed with ground pork and fried tofu with vegetables. Every dish was incredible, and we devoured it all.
Ngoc Linh has a huge menu with many other Vietnamese dishes. While I highly suggest getting their fried tofu, if the quality of their tofu dishes indicate how the rest of their food is like, then you can’t go wrong with getting anything else on the menu.
An Phong Restaurant
Admittedly I wasn’t too sure about An Phong Restaurant when I entered. The restaurant was empty, but I put my trust in the enormous number of positive reviews that I had seen online. I’m glad I ended up here on a particularly cold day in Tam Coc, as I had an incredibly delicious bowl of rice noodles, grilled pork, and spring rolls. The grilled pork was nicely charred and juicy, while the spring rolls had a satisfying crunch to them.
While I can’t speak to the rest of their menu, An Phong’s nearly 5-star rating on Google should result in a great meal no matter what you get.
Banh mi Hanoi
There are very few places in Tam Coc that specialize in banh mis, but Banh mi Hanoi is one of them. Come for the best banh mis in Tam Coc, and stay for the friendly service, amazing drinks, and outdoor seating. I had their special banh mi, which had mixed pate, BBQ pork, and grilled chicken, and a mango and passionfruit smoothie.
Banh mi Hanoi is open from the morning to nighttime, so you can get your banh mi fix at any time.
Saffron Indian Restaurant
Looking for a different type of Asian cuisine? Saffron Indian Restaurant is one of a few Indian restaurants in Tam Coc. From the curries to the rice, everything on the menu is full of flavor. Prices are also very reasonable, ranging from 30,000 to 100,000+ VND ($1.22 – $4.07+ USD).
DA/Kadhai Indian Restaurant & Bar
Another great spot for Indian food is DA Indian Restaurant & Bar or Kadhai Indian Restaurant & Bar. While Saffron Indian Restaurant feels nicer with its white tablecloths, high-backed chairs, and royal blue cloth napkins, DA/Kadhai Indian Restaurant is completely casual. You’ll find wooden chairs and tables, a backlit wall of liquor, and outdoor seating.
The humble interior and friendly owner create a welcoming atmosphere that lets the food shine. With many dishes to choose from and mouthwatering spices, you might find yourself coming back multiple times during your time in Ninh Binh.
At Xanh Coffee, you come for the food but stay for the gorgeous garden. It’s overflowing with plants and seating, along with a pond. The two-story restaurant is a lovely place for breakfast, coffee, or a long lunch, and the service is very friendly.
Like many other Vietnamese restaurants in Tam Coc, Xanh Coffee has a large menu filled with a variety of Vietnamese and Asian dishes. The real standouts though are the crepes, egg coffee, and coconut coffee.
Viet Food Coffee
Viet Food Coffee is right off the main street in Tam Coc. Their coconut coffee is a must – it’s creamy, refreshingly cold on a hot day, and topped with toasted coconut flakes. The rest of Viet Food Coffee’s menu is solid and offers a wide range of choices, including pho, banh mi, fried noodles and rice, and spring rolls.
Whether you visit in the day or night, the atmosphere at Viet Food Coffee is delightful. Colorful lanterns hang above and the benches and reclined chairs invite you to sit back and relax. There’s even a small, artificial river filled with fish that runs through the restaurant.
NGON Vegan Restaurant
NGON Vegan Restaurant has carved out a niche in Tam Coc by serving vegan Asian and Western food. For lunch and dinner, its menu is heavily Asian, with a number of tofu and vegetable dishes – usually either braised, stir-fried, or in a curry. It’s all-day breakfast menu is Western though, filled with granola bowls, toasts, and smoothie bowls.
I found NGON Vegan Restaurant to be particularly special due to its rice. Instead of using white rice, they serve a slightly sticky purple rice that I hadn’t seen before.
Monalisa Bar & Restaurant
Monalisa Bar & Restaurant sits between Tam Coc’s town center and Trang An. It’s one of many restaurants that line the road leading up to Hang Mua viewpoint, which makes it an ideal place for a bite to eat before or after.
Monalisa is best known for its wood-fired pizzas, including a pizza with goat meat and goat cheese. Although their pizzas fall short when compared to New York pizza, they’re good enough to satisfy your pizza craving. I had their vegetarian pizza, which had pieces of bell pepper, onion, and mushrooms.
If you’re not feeling like having pizza, Monalisa also has many other Western dishes, like burgers, sandwiches, and pasta.
Lang’s Salad Tam Coc
Lang’s Salad Tam Coc is the place to go for fresh and light food that’s bursting with color. Their smoothie bowls, poke bowls, salads, and other dishes are beautifully presented and feature nearly every color in the rainbow. Lang’s Salad not only serves tasty food, but also a visual feast.
They also have a relaxing garden so you can have breakfast, lunch, or dinner while enjoying Ninh Binh’s warm weather.
Brick Coffee Shop
Brick Coffee Shop lives up to its name, as it’s housed in a two-story brick building on the road that leads in to the center of Tam Coc. The adorable café is cozy yet industrial, with wood and steel furniture and bright pops of red. Brick Coffee serves a variety of coffee and tea drinks, juice, smoothies, and cakes. It also has wifi – convenient for doing a bit of work.
Coco.A Cafe is a cute place to grab a drink, whether that’s coffee, tea, juice, or a smoothie. The light, airy vibes and large patio make it the perfect place to hang out on a beautiful day and sip on something refreshing.
There’s both coffee and cats (and even dogs) at Coffee Cat. Plus, a view of the lake and surrounding limestone mountains. Although Coffee Cat also serves food, it’s best for a drink with a view and some furry friends.
More resources for traveling Vietnam
- 10 Best Foods in Ninh Binh and Tam Coc You Have to Try
- The Best Time to Visit Ninh Binh and Tam Coc
- Ninh Binh 1 Day Itinerary: Top Sights and Activities
- How to Get to Ninh Binh From Hanoi, Sapa, Hue, and More
- 5 Best Hostels and Homestays I Stayed at in Vietnam