Top 15 Places in Vietnam You Definitely Need To Include On Your Bucket Listfull disclosure for further information.
When you think travel, you always want to visit some popular location such as Italy or Paris. But, did you know that there are some underrated countries that give their visitors an amazing experience and make them utterly happy?
Among the underrated countries in Southeast Asia, Vietnam is one of the most beautiful countries in the continent. Its beaches are popular destinations for backpackers and other tourist who love to vacation at budget costs.
I traveled to Vietnam in 2002 and 2007. After visiting, I now truly feel that Vietnam is among one of the best destinations to visit. My first impressions of Vietnam were chaotic and humid, with a touch of charm. Vietnam has a lot to offer any traveler who makes a trip to Vietnam, it’s a mixture of chaotic and peaceful, from the contrasts of Ho Chi Minh City, all the way up to the northern highlands, which are surrounded by mountains.
Without any restrictions related to COVID-19, Vietnam has fully reopened to international travelers. You are now free to explore and take pleasure in a variety of wild natural areas, including limestone mountains, green terraced rice fields, and white sandy beaches.
15 Best Places in Vietnam You Shouldn’t Miss
In this post, I’m going to provide you with plenty of options for getting lost in wandering around, discovering all of the best 15 places to visit in Vietnam.
1. Ha Long Bay
Back in 2007 I’ve visited this wonderful bay which is one of my favorite places in Vietnam. Tourists come to Halong Bay to get a close-up view of its beautiful limestone islands, rock formations, and caves. They are breathtaking, having been whittled away by wind and water over centuries. You can either rent a kayak or a boat or go on a tour to discover more about this location.
The Bay is a popular area for cruising, and a boat is the best way to experience the area’s landscape. Halong Bay’s karst seascape is one of the most beautiful sea views in the entire world and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
If you want to see caves, Halong Bay offers tons of them. There are Hang Sung Sot, Hang Dao Go, and more. People who want to experience the iconic, breathtaking views and unforgettable experience should spend a night at Halong Bay!
2. Admire the Golden Hands Bridge in Da Nang
Enjoy the beautiful Golden Bridge in the province of Da Nang. You won’t experience another bridge’s level of thrills until you cross it. You should make a stop there and admire the bridge because it’s so unique and creative. The 150m-long pedestrian walkway sits high above the gorgeous forest of Ba Na Hills. You will have the feeling that two gigantic, stone hands similar to those of God are holding you from above.
The structure was made to attract more tourists to the Da Nang city. Nobody would really resist its beauty, especially given how popular it is on social media. It appears that the location is attracting more and more tourists every year. You can be sure that it will be worthwhile to share on Instagram!
3. Embrace tranquility on Phu Quoc Island
Embrace the sea breeze and relax on Phu Quoc Island. It’s a retreat for travelers who wish to escape the hustle of the city. Phu Quoc is a beautiful isolated island in Vietnam that is filled with natural beauty.
There are soft secluded beaches and the water with thousands of different shades of turquoise. Whether you are a fan of wildlife, nature, or anything else, you will discover stunning landscapes that you want to take photos as a memory. You can also visit Vinpearl Safari Care and Conservation Park to see animals. Phu Quoc National Park and Suoi Tranh Waterfall would be perfect for good hiking and sightseeing. Phu Quoc Island has so more to offer!
4. Natural Wonder at Ban Gioc Waterfall
In the northeast of Vietnam, as you get closer to the Chinese border, you will experience a wall of cascading waterfalls called Ban Gioc Waterfall. They fall down into bright blue pools, surrounded by mountains covered in dense jungle.
The waterfall is the most stunning and impressive in all of Vietnam. The water rumbles down to 3 levels and is 30 meters high and 300 meters wide.
Here, visitors can enjoy the following activities:
5. Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh, previously know as Saigon, is the most dynamic, active, and crowded city of Vietnam, with a blend of the ancient and a bit of European. It plays a vital part in both domestic and international circulation in Vietnam. The economic heart of Vietnam and the principal hub of the south is Ho Chi Minh City.
Discover the beautiful Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. You have to visit this place before leaving Vietnam. Those who enjoy the city will be impressed by its charm and the insane traffic of scooters on the streets.
There are a variety of entertainment options available here for any budget, interest, and group size. From cheap to expensive, for couples or families, day or night, early in the morning or late at night, Ho Chi Minh city has it all. Travelers are welcomed by the city, which offers a variety of exciting nightlife activities, beautiful scenery, delicious food, shopping and much more.
6. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park
Phong Nha is a paradise for adventurers. The place protects one of the world’s two largest karst regions with several hundred grottoes and caves. Its name comes from Phong Nha Cave which means the most beautiful one with Ke Bang Forest and numerous fascinating rock formations. It is one of the finest distinctive examples of a complex karst landform in Southeast Asia.
Travelers are welcome to trek and explore the eye-captivating caves. Aside from that, there are several active populations of flying foxes and monkeys across the area. Also, amazing waterfalls may be seen here. Because there are so many breathtaking scenery around, visits are worthwhile.
7. Hoi An
The ancient town of Hoi An is located on the north bank close to the mouth of the Thu Bon River in central Quang Nam Province of Viet Nam. There are many fascinating and exciting things to do in Hoi An. This beautiful city in Vietnam provides a large number of historic architecture to travelers. The old town is well-preserved with many amazing sights and delicious foods.
The little “yellow town” is filled with history and opportunities to create memorable experience. Hoi An is considered as one of the most beautiful cities in all of Vietnam with its historical buildings and mix of European and Asian architectural styles, cobbled streets, and unique yellow shop fronts decorated with colorful lanterns.
8. Sapa Countryside
Get the best nature experience in the Sapa Countryside in Vietnam! Near the Chinese border in northern Vietnam, in a region known as Sapa, a number of ethnic minorities, including the Muong, H’mong, and Tay, live in a small, traditional villages there. People here live a simple life surrounded by farms, small family-run businesses, and rice fields.
Hiking up the Ham Rong mountain is an opportunity in Sapa, from which travellers can enjoy breathtaking views of the city and the valley as they cross through flower gardens. Sapa Countryside is one of the top hiking destination in Vietnam.
9. Tran Quoc Pagoda, Hanoi
For travelers who are interested in history, local legend, and Buddhism, Tran Quoc Pagoda, is one of Hanoi’s most popular tourist attractions. The Tran Quoc Pagoda’s architecture, which strictly adheres to the Buddhist architectural philosophy with several layers of buildings and three main houses, is what sets it apart from other temples in Vietnam. The Tran Quoc Pagoda, which was built in the 6th century during the reign of Emperor Ly Nam De Dynasty, is the oldest temple in Hanoi. The temple now exceeds 1500 years old!
This unique spiritual place is created by the combination of the elegant landscape and Buddhist architecture of Tran Quoc Pagoda. It is for this reason why this place is growing in popularity and attracts both foreign and local visitors. One of the best things to do in Hanoi is to visit this monument, which is now a symbol of the city.
10. Nha Trang
The southern Vietnamese coastal resort town of Nha Trang is well-known for its beaches, diving sites, and offshore islands. The vibrant coastal town of Nha Trang is known for its daily dose of sun-kissed relaxation. Because of its location, this place experiences the most sunshine days per year. The main beach of the town is Tran Phu, a 7-kilometer stretch of fine sand and crystal-clear water that is surrounded by rustling palms, colourful beachside bars, and seafood restaurants. Aerial cable cars cross over to Hon Tre Island, and coral reefs may be seen in the natural parks of Hon Mun and Hon Tam islands, which are accessible by boat.
Nha Trang is also called the seafood capital of Vietnam for a good reason. The fresh fish and shellfish that are the highlight of many meals in Nha Trang come from the waters off the coast of Khanh Hoa, which are teeming with marine life. There’s no chance of going hungry in Nha Trang with all the large hotels, restaurants, and streetside eateries available. Eat with the locals or splurge on five-star buffets at the hotels along the strip for closer explorations of the city’s fine dining options.
11. Ba Be National Park
Enjoy the breathtaking scenery of Vietnam’s Ba Be National Park. You will be captivated by the incredible blending of amazing biodiversity and outstanding culture from this place. About 240 km from Hanoi, in the province of Bac Can, is Ba Be National Park, also known as the Ba Be Lake. It covers more than 23,000 hectares and is home to beautiful waterfalls, deep rivers, valleys, lakes, and caves that are all surrounded by high mountains. The Ba Be Lake is so well-known due to its three lakes that are connected by wide channels that cover a distance of approximately 8 km. An enjoyable boat trip downstream is possible because the lake’s surface is often calm.
The national park offers one of Vietnam’s most peaceful spots. Travelers enjoy taking relaxing boat or kayak excursions on the lake. Kayaking on one of the three lakes is one of the greatest ways to get a feel of the place.
Another thing is that you can be more active doing trekking and hiking in the hills between ethnic minority villages. One of the greatest hiking locations in Vietnam, according to both locals and tourists, is Ba Be. The 1527m-high Pia Booc mountain range dominates the whole area. Rich vegetation and gorgeous rice fields that cover the mountains add to the amazing variety of the landscape. When you stop for a drink or lunch, this activity is also great for interacting with the locals and learning about their experiences. A tour guide is recommended since they are familiar with the park’s best paths and can take you to the greatest locations.
12. Anantara, Hoi An Resort
Are you looking for a 5-star luxury resort in the heart of Son Phong, Vietnam? You’re going to love Anantara, Hoi An Resort! The resort is worth setting foot for experiencing a convenient and relaxing stay. The Anantara was gold-certified by the Green Growth 2050 Global Standard for its excellence in eco and cultural sustainability.
Anantara Hoi An Resort is located in Hoi An’s Son Phong district, right on the riverwalk. If shopping is on your list, you should check out Hoi An Market and Hoi An Night Market. Riverside Hoi An and Cua Dai Beach are great places to explore the area’s natural beauty. It’s also worthwhile to visit Hoi An Impression Theme Park and Thanh Nam Fishing Village.
A hotel guide is there for all visitors as guidance for their duration in the hotel. You can take an immersive class in local craft traditions like painting, conical hat decoration, and lantern making. Guests can also enjoy a morning meal at the café.
There are also additional dining options the hotel could offer, such as the ArtSpace restaurants, which serve American cuisine and include a bar, lounge, and spacious terrace . There are several outdoor activities available, such as cycling and mountain biking.
13. Hike through Cat Ba Island
Capture a magnificent vista as you trek thru Cat Ba Island. It is full of wonderful viewpoints that you might want to treasure. The Cat Ba island is next to Lan Ha Bay, a bay that attracts traveler’s attention.
The island has a lot to offer travelers, including:
- Many Beautiful Caves and Grottoes
- Viet Hai village
- Home to Lan Ha Bay
- Small But Enjoyable Beaches
- The Biosphere Reserve of the World!
Anyone will enjoy hiking and trekking within the area through the pristine rainforest. The Lookout Tower Trail is a popular and attractive hike. People hike for an hour before emerging at a rusted shelter. From there, you could see how well-preserved Cat BaNgu Lam Peak is and how well it is worth going higher.
14. Cruise the Mekong Delta
Treat yourself to a memorable, unique river cruise over the huge Mekong Delta’s rivers located in southern Vietnam! The Mekong Delta is a true water world, a stunning area of rich forests, villages built on stilts, floating markets, and a variety of native wildlife living peacefully in this beautiful place. The Mekong Delta, which is 39,000 square kilometres long and stretches from Saigon to the Gulf of Thailand, is referred to by locals as the “River of the Nine Dragons” in honour of the nine tributaries flowing into the mighty main river. The Mekong River, which flows through China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam, is the twelfth-largest river in the world. Many tours to the Mekong are available from Vietnam and Cambodia.
Although the Mekong River is a year-round vacation destination, your experience may vary based on when you visit. The dry season, which lasts from November to April, is the perfect time to go on a Mekong river cruise. However, November through January are the best months because the wet season is over and the temperature won’t be too hot.
15. Spot rare primates in Cat Tien National Park
Get a wildlife experience inside the Cat Tien National Park located in southern Vietnam. As one of Vietnam’s largest natural resource reserves, Cat Tien National Park is a haven for researchers, local visitors, and travelers from across the world because to its variety of rare, exotic, and endemic species of plants and animals.
Southern Vietnam’s Cat Tien National Park is a large biosphere reserve and lowland tropical forest. It has botanical gardens, hiking trails, and trees that have been around for centuries. The park also protects a variety of animals, including rare birds, endangered primates, and reptiles in Crocodile Lake.
Now that I’ve listed 15 great places for you to add to your list, it’s time to start planning your trip to Vietnam.
But before traveling, don’t forget to get your travel insurance! I recommend having a travel insurance when travelling to Vietnam, just like everywhere else, because it covers not only medical expenses but also theft and loss of goods. Find out if your credit card offers travel insurance, or you can purchase one from Insured Nomads.
Vietnam is generally safe, especially outside of big cities, but there are a few things to be aware of in big cities, particularly in popular areas like Ho Chi Minh City and Ha Noi.
For information about security and safety when travelling in Vietnam, click HERE.
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