Stunning Vietnam Destinations for First Timers

Stunning Vietnam Destinations for First Timers

Vietnam is a beguiling, characterful destination in Southeast Asia. The country boasts a big contrast from north to south with rugged mountains, sun-drenched beaches, and exotic Mekong Waterways.

To explore the highlights of the country, this travel bucket list is a sort of inspiration you should take:

Hanoi

The vibrant city of Hanoi is famous for its thriving culture, appetizing streets and importantly the wealthy history. Colorful markets, fascinating Temple of literature, busy Old Quarter, amazing war museum and numerous French colonial heritages are simply part of its charm. Whether you are looking for some authentic Vietnamese hospitality or just want to soak up the Vietnamese metropolitan atmosphere, Hanoi is the first destination you should visit.

Stunning Vietnam Destinations for First Timers

Halong Bay

Undoubtedly, Halong Bay is the compulsory stop for any Vietnam Tour whether it is for family fun or simply a leisure trip. The bay is home to some 1,600 sublime islands and islets studded outstanding in the Gulf of Tonkin.

The highlights of any trip to Halong include sailing through crystal waters of Pacific Ocean, kayaking in the hidden lagoon, encountering friendly floating villages and bath by the secret beaches.

Hoi An

Listed in the Unesco Heritage sites, Hoi An is an open museum that allows its visitors to travel back to the past through the timeless town. From Japanese Bridge to the Chinese temple, from traditional workshops to unique lantern factory, each corner of Hoi An is different.

Not to mention the fact that Hoi An has some of the finest beaches in the country like An Bang.

Hue

If you are after the idea of seeing Vietnamese last royal city then make sure to put Hue into your Vietnam itinerary.
Ideally, you should spend 3 days and be ready for a little adventure on 2 wheels either motorcycle or bike. There is no better way to explore the area than getting face to face with Forbidden Purple city, Royal Tombs, Thien Mu pagoda then head west for a local beach called Thuan An.

Stunning Vietnam Destinations for First Timers

Phong Nha National Park

Phong Nha has taken the spotlight in all travel magazine when the locals discovered the World’s largest cave – the Soon Doong. It is understandable why people wait for 3 years to enjoy such an adventure.

Beside the otherworldly landscapes inside Soon Dong, Hang En or Thien Duong cave, Phong Nha park isn’t short of the potential to make a lifetime trip. Active travelers can opt for kayaking along Son river, cycling in the rural striking areas.

Con Dao Archipelago

For those who seek for the last tropical paradise without tourist footsteps, Con Dao is simply one of the best choices. With a direct flight from Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh city, it is much easier to access these hidden gems than years before.
Once in Con Dao, you will be quickly tempted by its powdery beaches, fascinating French colonial relics. Do not forget to treat yourself the freshest Vietnamese seafood which is cheap there!

Trekking in Ha Giang

The far north province of Ha Giang is filled with awe-inspiring mountains, thundering waterfalls and importantly picturesque rice terraces.

While the famous hill station of Sapa becomes very touristic, Ha Giang is the best answer for trekkers who seek for ultimate mountain challenge. There are various trekking trails to choose from ranging from a light adventure with little mountain ascend, to the strenuous paths that cross the beautiful valleys and remote hill tribe villages.

Set sail in Phu Quoc island

Officially named as an island but Phu Quoc has many satellite islands which are totally out of the tourist radar and can only be reached by boat. The lack of tourism facilities makes these islands ideal spots to delve into the marine life.
One of the most unique things I have experienced in Phu Quoc is to follow some local fishermen to one such island, fishing and doing BBQ.

Tan

This is a guest post written by Tan, the main writer at Travel To Work. He is passionate to exploring more and more off the beaten track experience in each country he visits.

Book your trip now

Are you ready to book your trip?  To help you get the best deals and service here are the companies that I personally use to book all of my travel online. I always shop around before booking anything, but these are my tried and tested starting places.

  • Skyscanner – I’m a bit fan of Skyscanner, it is who I use to book all of my flights. I often will check other like Google Flights or Momodo, but I always go here first and it is who I book 99% of my flights with. 
  • Booking.com – I LOVE booking.com especially when I can book and cancel free up until a certain point, mostly because my plans are forever changing. It’s easy to use and has one of the widest selections. 
  • Airbnb – I’m not a huge user of Airbnb, but sometimes I do like to use it, and I ALWAYS check it before I book anything else. You can get some really cool places to stay here, and it is especially good in places like Cuba. If you don’t have an account and you click on this link then you will get $36 off your first booking.
  • Hostelworld – If you are looking for hostels then this is a great place to check first. They often have additional places that you won’t find on Bookin.com.
  • Agoda – Although I don’t use it as much as booking.com, Agonda is especially good if you are traveling in Asia as they really do dominate there. 
  • Worldpackers – If you want to travel on the cheap and save money on accommodation then you need Worldpackers in your life. You can read more about it here. If you click this link to sign up and use the code CLAIRESITCHYFEET then you can get a 40% discount on your membership! 
  • Book a Way – If you are traveling in Asia and want to pre-book your transportation then bookaway.com is a fantastic site to do so. They have buses, trains, and cars.
  • RentalCars – Looking to rent a. car while you are away? I always book through Rental Cars as they do a search of all of the big sites and find the best deals. 
  • Welcome Pickups – Very occasionally getting from the airport to my accommodation is a total pain in the butt, or I’m traveling in a group and it makes sense to arrange a pickup. When I do I use Welcome pickups.
  • World Nomads – If you are looking for flexible travel insurance then it’s World Nomads all the way. I wrote all about insurance here if you want a more thorough review. 
  • SafetyWing – AsI’m a Digital Nomad and not moving around quite so much anymore I personally use SafetyWing now for my health insurance. I wrote a full review here
  • Viatour – Sometimes it can be a little expensive, but I like Viatour for somethings, especially if you can get a discount code! It’s also great for inspiration. 
  • Klook – If you are traveling in Asia, then Klook is great! You can book all kinds of tours, activities, and train tickets, plus they even have sim cards and WiFi.

Claire Summers

Dancer, producer, traveller, photographer, cake maker, dog lover and knitter of Christmas scarfs.

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