Vietnam is a country where no two days are the same. One day you could be relaxing on a dazzling white sand beach and the next, immersed in years and years of fascinating history. Whatever your reasons for wanting to explore Vietnam, we’ve picked out five of our favourite destinations that you won’t want to miss.
Formerly known as Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City pulses with energy day and night. Once you step onto the streets, it’s easy to get swept up in the whirl of motorbike horns, traffic and towering skyscrapers which jostle with French colonial architecture as the city transforms into a cutting-edge commerce hub.
But despite its rapid modernisation, HCMC has hidden depths with ancient temples and a quirky café culture that only presents itself to those who seek it out. Visiting Ho Chi Minh City is an experience that everybody should enjoy once in their life.
Arguably one of Vietnam’s most beautiful towns, Hoi An provides a slice of old town heritage that makes the popular tourist town feel calm in spite of the crowds. The streets are lined with brightly coloured buildings and overhead lanterns light up the bustling alleyways when the sun goes down.
Foodies out there won’t want to miss the opportunity to try Cao L?u, a local speciality made with the water from an ancient well, while beach lovers can easily cycle to An Bang beach. If you’re looking for a break from high energy city living, Hoi An is the perfect place to recharge your batteries.
While Hue may no longer be Vietnam’s capital city, its royal heritage and deep historical roots have not been forgotten. The Imperial City was recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993 and the Citadel attracts tourists from all over the world each year.
Visiting the ancient monuments, tombs and pagodas is a rewarding day out for history buffs and it’s easy to relax after a long day of sightseeing by floating down the Perfume River on a dragon boat. Whether you choose to kick back in the city’s vibrant cafes or remember the Vietnam War with a DMZ tour, a visit to Hue is guaranteed to be unforgettable.
If you’re looking for adventure in a more under the radar destination, Phan Thiet could the perfect place to visit. Despite being a popular tourist destination since the mid-1990s, Phan Thiet feels much more laid back than other cities in Vietnam with quieter traffic and stunning beach.
As the capital of the Binh Thuan province, the port city is famous for its abundance of cheap, delicious food including seafood, fish sauce - found in many Vietnamese dishes – and vibrant dragon fruit.
Vietnam’s capital city is a delight that visitors won’t want to miss. With so much to see and the constant blaring of motorbike horns, Hanoi can be overwhelming but a simple evening stroll around Hoan Kiem Lake can truly help you to appreciate the beauty of the city.
Don’t miss visiting the Old Quarter, filled with freshly made beer and vendors selling fruit and delicious Banh Mi on every corner. And if you’re in need of some beautiful scenery, take a few days out to enjoy a tour of Halong Bay’s stunning islands and towering limestone pillars.