Places Of Interest In Vietnam
If you are planning on visiting Vietnam, these are some random assortment places, not including necessarily the obvious tourist draws, which might be of interest for more research (roughly ordered North to South):
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The tiered rice patties in Mu Cang Chai.
SAPA (AKA SA PA)
Sapa is in the far Northwest of Vietnam. It is home to several tribes (Hmong). Brilliant landscapes due to the tiered rice patties they have built into the landscape. August and early September are the best time to visit due to yellow and green rice are being harvested, as well as in April when the rice is being planted, and fruits are blossoming in the good weather. Besides, Mu Cang Chai is a less popular alternative.
The Season Of White Colza Flowers In Moc Chau Plateau
HA LONG BAY
Ha, Long Bay is a UNESCO site in which coastal ecosystem meets the rainforest, located in Northern of Vietnam. It is around four to five hours from Hanoi by bus. Furthermore, it is frequented and well known for its landscape.
NINH BINH PROVINCE
Ninh Binh province is a great diverse landscape in a relatively concentrated area with rice paddies, coastline, mountains, etc. It is known for its goat cuisine located 2.5 hours (by car) South of Hanoi. Also, it has a relatively new microbrewery called Vissai in Hoa Lu, which has historical significance as Vietnam’s capital in the 10th and 11th centuries.
Hue is known as the former capital. Scenic (even less than optimal weather), some consider it the epicenter of war history (DMZ, Vinh Moc tunnels), traditional Vietnamese food.
Hoi An is located about 30 minutes South of Da Nang (which is your nearest terminal if coming by plane or train). Touristy but clean, easy-to-walk historic district, great people, good beaches, and very chill vibe. Also well saturated by tailors, trinkets, lanterns, and silk; so that it is exciting shopping destination for the value-shopping inclined. The best time for visiting is in January through August.
Nha Trang is a beach town with nightlife, like Mui Ne, there is a large concentration of Russians. This is highly recommended by most the Vietnamese I have encountered. However, note that October and November are the rainy seasons, although most of those non-Nha Trang-based Vietnamese recommending it always dispute this fact.
Dalat, according to Vietnam Online notes: “Dalat looks like a cross between Vietnam and the French Alps. Lots of its hotels and houses were built in a French structure during the French colonization”. This area is well touristed, and one popular stop is Bao Dai’s summer palace. It is one of the few places producing wine as well, despite it is still in its infancy and perhaps not ready for the big time. Lastly, the weather is not hot in Dalat – with temps maxing out in the high 60’s (20C) and averaging in the mid-60’s (18C) in the year. Moreover, much of the Vietnamese coffee (and many flowers) comes out of Dalat (if you love the real coffee epicenter, check out nearby Buon Ma Thuot), however generally it is more expensive to buy in Dalat than an elsewhere. Investigate Vietnamese cocoa in Dalat if interested.
Mui Ne is a booming tourist beach area, apparently popular with Russians, with wind sports popular from October through December (winds continue through April) and a Nick Faldo-designed golf course. It takes approximately 4 hours via train from Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), and 2 hours by bus which is the more popular method. Weekend getaway for people from Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). Someone says laid-back and relaxing. Meanwhile, the others say over-developed although remote, quiet villages a 20-minute drive away. Besides, sand dunes – Doi Cat Vang and Doi Cat Trang seem to be worth a look if there. The nearest express train stop is Muong Man. The closest local train stop from Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) is Phan Thiet. The nearest bus stop is Phan Thiet with daily connections to Mui Ne. Phan Thiet is well known for fish sauce.
Can Tho is well known as a great youthful city in the Mekong Delta. Most tourists seem to show up, take a boat tour of one of the nearby floating markets (like Cai Rang) and then leave. But it feels like a better version of Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) personally. Otherwise, the people are friendly (and do not hassle visitor constantly as they do in downtown HCMC). The market along the waterfront is fantastic; the food is great Meanwhile the prices are reasonable. Personally, if you come here and only see the floating market, you will waste your time and sleep.
Mekong Delta region, (antiquated) French architecture, flower farms, not heavily touristed.
CHAU DOC AND THE TRA SU BIRD SANCTUARY
Chau Doc has located beside Cambodia in Southern Vietnam. It takes about 45 minutes from Tra Su Bird Sanctuary (good August-early November especially due to high water levels) to the South of Chau Doc. The somewhat new floating market, exciting river life (renting a boat and checking it out), good food and fish farms. Tra Su is a bit overblown.
PHU QUOC ISLAND
Phu Quoc is an island which located in the South of Cambodia and West of Southern Vietnam. It has dry season mid-November to April, is warm all the time (30’s C / 80’s F), remotes and resorts beaches line much of the coastline, great fresh seafood. Even though more expensive price than the mainland, several best fish sauce comes from Phu Quoc typically are Red Boat fish sauce and Khai Hoan fish sauce. Also, there are peppercorn farms (great quality peppercorn) and a national park with hiking in the North-eastern corner of this island.
To be honest, the beaches are not really great, and I am only highly recommended Phu Quoc if you want to rip around this island on motorbikes and are interested in the fish sauce or peppercorn industries. In another hand, I think you can get better beaches with less trash on them else place. Furthermore, the Government is pumping tourism including ridiculous waterparks and whatnot.
CON DAO ISLAND
Con Dao is a Marine Nature Reserve, the place to avoid due to poor beaches and lacking infrastructure or a great place to go, due to the diving, history, natural scenery and the fact infrastructure/ development is rapidly advancing, and thus, you must go now. You decide.
The beauty of Vietnam through the beautiful landscapes, the tasteful, delicious and special cuisines through out the whole country plus the diversity of cultures in different parts of Vietnam
have long been the apple of near and far tourist all over the globe.
Check out other tips: Vietnam Travel Guide