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Vietnam

‘Chào mừng bạn đến viet nam’, says the people of Vietnam, welcome!

Vietnam Travel Guides

‘Chào mừng bạn đến viet nam’, says the people of Vietnam, welcome!

Formally named the ‘Socialist Republic of Vietnam,’ Vietnam is a Southeast Asian country famous for some of its cities–the bustling city of Hanoi and the ethereal city of Ho Chi Minh cities. 

It also has Instagram-worthy tourist spots like the Ha Long Bay, Da Nang, the Mekong Delta, and Da Nang. Vietnam might be most famous for the Vietnam War, along with some of its historical cities and architecture from the French colonial period.

As it boasts its stunning landscapes – Halong Bay’s karst outcrops, and Sapa spring’s hill-tribe-settled mountains within its vicinity. 

In addition to its luscious beaches, mesmerising colonial towns, lush national parks, and fascinating Mekong Delta villages – Vietnam has a lot in store for you. Let’s explore!

Vietnam 101

With Vietnamese as the primary language spoken by its population of 98.2 million, Vietnam opens up to travellers with its highlighted treasures. 

Improved infrastructures, hitherto-remote areas – explore its Ninh Binh hills, visit Quy Non’s Cham temples, or meet up with the Ba Be National Park tribes. Be prepared to go beyond pages of guidebooks and discover more of Vietnam’s unique gems.

Vietnam’s capital city is Hanoi and has the Vietnamese Dong as its main currency. The country follows GMT +7 time and an international dialling code of + 84. Additionally, Vietnam’s voltage is 110 / 220 V.

When to Visit Vietnam

The climate in Vietnam is quite complicated, having regional variances and its two monsoons. Its northern three-quarters become wet and cool between October to March, while the south gets warm and dry. 

In addition, a summer monsoon contributes and brings hot and humid conditions to most of the country, starting in April and ending in October. 

April to May’s northern spring and early autumn are probably two of the most comfortable times to visit Vietnam, with less crowd contributing to them.

Getting Your Way Around Vietnam

Airports

  • International flights: Noi Bai Airport or HAN is 35kms. north of Hanoi, and SGN or Tan Son Nhat Airport is 7kms. north-west from the city of Ho Chi Minh.
  • Domestic flights: main centres are located in Hanoi, Hue, Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, and Mekong Delta’s Can Tho.

Visa is required before entering Vietnam. It would be best if you handed over your passport when checking into a hotel so that they can register your presence and submit it to the local police.

Buses

Choose from often-packed small minibuses to bigger, more comfortable airconditioned coaches – comprises Vietnam’s extensive network that tours the country with affordable fares.

Railways

Vietnam’s train station line runs along the coast of Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Then, it branches out to some other additional destinations around the northern part of Vietnam. Although hiring a car with a driver or a motorcycle can give you more travel flexibility, be aware of poor road safety.

Itinerary Recommendations

  • Central Highlands Tribes – meet locals belonging to the Vietnamese hill tribes near the border with Cambodia. Discover their rich culture and fascinating stories – including wild-elephant catching tales.
  • Halong Bay – go kayaking among the karst outcrops, experience boat tours northern of Vietnam inundated with images, Vietnam’s most popular and commercialized natural attraction. Visitors get on traditional Chinese boats called junks and race across the bay, often finding much intimacy with the surroundings, like on an August Spanish beach. Try the same experience again but in a kayak, getting closer to Vietnam with every paddle stroke.
  • Viet Cong tunnels – delve into the claustrophobic site located at Cu Chi near Ho Chi Minh City
  • Hanoi’s Old Quarter – stroll, settle in and help yourselves a bit with water puppet shows
  • Old Hue’s Imperial Tombs and Forbidden City – experience and be amazed
  • Mekong Delta’s floating markets – cruise and shop among these famous must-sees
  • Phu Quoc Island – relax with some tropical beach time
  • Fansipan, Vietnam’s highest peak – get into your hiking boots and walk around less-touristed villages, highlands that offer fine trekking, and consider conquering Vietnam’s tallest point of 3,143m

Windsurfing at Mui Ne and roaming Hoi An’s historic streets are other activities that serve as headline acts. Cross the roads with a nerve-shredding experience; bear in mind that other drivers don’t intend to hit you – so be patient, pick up the pace, and stride purposefully, making yourself visible during your stay.

Board and Lodging

Accommodations

Vietnam’s primary forms of the accommodation scene are as follows: hostels, guesthouses, and hotels. Though not primarily, tourists can also consider camping. But one accommodation type that’s gaining a solid fan base is homestays. These resting places are increasingly popular nowadays and offer great living opportunities among the minority groups in the central and northern highlands.

Food and Drinks

Vietnam’s cuisine is diverse and delicious. Best known flavours include pho bo (beef noodle soup), translucent or fried spring rolls, and the ubiquitous nuoc mam, a potent fermented fish sauce. 

The French colonial influence means tasty breakfasts with solid coffee and baguettes. Bia hoi – glasses of beer served on tap from barrels – is the most common hooch, tea the rival to coffee for a most-common daytime drink.

Health and Safety in Vietnam

Before anything else, consult GPs or travel health clinics and check all appropriate vaccinations and malaria prevention. Like malaria, dengue fever has afflicted parts of Vietnam and become a problem in a few rural areas. So, as much as possible, use insect repellent and cover up whenever possible, especially during nighttime.

Although there’s crime risk in most big cities, Vietnam, in general, is a safe and danger-free destination.

TIP: Be aware of the continuing risk from ordnance that remains unexploded from the war.

Some travellers report feelings of hassle or getting ripped off by local drivers, which has become a rampant issue in this increasingly commercial-minded destination.

TIP: During these hassling times, a good sense of humour and utmost patience can become very helpful.

Ask locals for helpful advice about walking trails, and NEVER touch or tamper with any war relics you may accidentally find. Also, be wary of venomous snakes, especially when you’re in remote regions.

Final Thoughts

Indulge into the pristine wonders Vietnam offers future visitors like yourself. Use this travel guide and create your itinerary, or refer to this article whenever you feel lazy designing your own. Explore Vietnam now and say ‘cảm ơn,’ thankful for what you’ve experienced.