(BEGODI) – Rich in culture, food and history, Vietnam truly offers something to entice the spirit of every traveller. Boasting magnificent heritage sites and exquisite expanses of nature, it is a delectable feast for all of the senses. Here are the main reasons to make Vietnam your next travel destination.

North VN local girls
Local scenes in the North of Vietnam (Source: Vu Huy)

History

From the eras of occupation by the French and Chinese to the devastations of the American invasions, Vietnam has undergone a great deal of historical damage. The country is thus a marvel for history buffs that seek to understand and observe the remnants of these times still present under Vietnam’s skin.

The land also holds 4000 years of traceable history, and the traditions of the Vietnamese people are tangibly showcased in the fibre of the country as well as the spirit of its people.

Museums, monuments, war tunnels, ancient wonders and temple buildings are thus in abundance.

There is always more to see, experience and learn about in this fascinating and underrepresented nation.

Hoi An Japanese Bridge
Hoi An Ancient Town’s Japanese Covered Bridge (Source: Vu Huy)

Food

Street food is perhaps one of the greatest selling points for most travellers venturing into Vietnam. It is also what many claim to miss the most upon leaving.

There is such a range of different delicacies to try, all so readily available and affordable. Boasting fresh, simple and hearty flavours, each region has their own specialities and culinary secrets.

More than just a meal, street food vendors and customers line virtually every alley in the city.  Perched on tiny stools with piping hot bowls in hand, the locals create an essence of home that is shared by all.

hanoi vendors
Fresh produce being prepared and sold in the alley (Source: Vu Huy)

Café culture

Unbeknown to most, Vietnam is the second largest coffee producer in the world. It is no surprise then that cafés are sprawled throughout the cities.

You can find anything from traditional low-stool coffee shops to hip and trendy café spaces. What they all guarantee is a selection of the strongest and richest coffee beans to set your senses ablaze.

Ice coffee at Manzi
Ice coffee at Manzi Café and Art Space (Source: Kirstyn Liang)

Ancient wonders

7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites are scattered throughout Vietnam, making it a treasure chest of ancient wonders.

Halong Bay, Hoi An Ancient Town and Hue’s Imperial City are the most frequently visited spots by tourists. However, the sites of Phong Nha Ke Bang, My Son Sanctuary, as well as the Citadels of Thang Long and the Ho Dynasty are well worth a stop too.

Majestic Halong Bay
Majestic Halong Bay (Source: Vu Huy)
Hoi An Ancient Town
Enchanted Hoi An Ancient Town (Source: Vu Huy)
Hue Imperial City
Regal Hue’s Imperial City (Source: Vu Huy)

Beaches and islands

White sand beaches and untouched islands are features of Vietnam that are often overlooked. Overshadowed by their beach destination neighbours of Thailand and the Philippines, many of the islands and coasts of Vietnam are just as beautiful.

Phu Quoc and Nha Trang, although popular with domestic tourists, are still rather unknown on an international scale. It is a good idea for beach lovers to get to these destinations before they become commercialised hotspots.

Nha Trang beach
Picture perfect Nha Trang beach (Source: Vu Huy)
Quy Nhon sunset
Sunset over Quy Nhon’s beach, another under-visited destination (Source: Vu Huy)

Mountains and rice paddies

Nature seekers need look no further than the endless landscapes of mountainous areas that are clustered all through Vietnam.

A trekker’s dream, the country is home to the highest mountain in the former Indochina region. Fanispan is 3,143 metres high, and can be found in the Lao Cai Province, 9 km from Sa Pa Valley.

Picturesque rows of undulating rice terraces can be seen from these mountainous viewpoints; enough to catch your breath (even if you took the cable car up to Fanispan).

Ha Giang mountains
Vast mountains of Ha Giang (Source: Vu Huy)
Sapa Valley rice fields
Sapa Valley’s endless rice fields (Source: Vu Huy)

Adventure activities

Watersports, diving and caving are possible in many spots in Vietnam. The various terrains of oceans, rivers, mountains and limestone caves allow for an array of exciting sports and activities to try.

Biking through the cities and countryside is also an adventure in itself!

Halong (2)
Kayaking and caving are popular activites in Halong Bay (Source: Vu Huy)

Shopping

Clothing stores are everywhere in the city, from local brands to international labels at very affordable prices. But what sets the country apart is the considerable presence of highly skilled tailors. Hoi An is renowned for its seamstresses that are able to recreate anything you own, and custom make items in record time.

Welcoming people

Vietnamese people are hospitable by nature. The way to truly experience this warmth is through staying in a homestay for a night in a local village. It is a wonderful way to connect on an authentic level, and to support sustainable and responsible tourism efforts.

Sapa women smiling
Sapa is one of the most popular places to stay in a homestay after trekking with local guides (Source: Vu Huy)
Ha Giang smiling boys
Ha Giang is another homestay location that hosts with open warmth (Source: Vu Huy)

Additional perks

Affordability

The cost of living in Vietnam is incredibly low. A local meal will only set you back 1 or 2 USD, and transport using Uber or Grab bikes are also inexpensive.

Ease of movement

Many people who travel through Vietnam do it on the back of a motorbike or scooter. Since hiring a moped is effortless, it is very doable to bike from north to south (or vice verse) and stop off at each of the country’s gems.

You will want to give yourself enough time to enjoy these destinations, but the travel time between them is not long as you’d expect. Being able to travel an entire country on your own two wheels is an experience that other destinations can only dream of offering its guests.

Underrated

Vietnam is not typically at the top of a traveller’s list, although it may feature. Since the culture and sights are rather underrepresented it is incredibly fascinating and rewarding to discover. It also remains authentic, with opportunities to stumble upon expanses of untouched scenery and life.

Fisherman silhouette
Fisherman in Phan Thiet (Source: Vu Huy)

To kickstart your Vietnam adventure, be sure to get in touch with Begodi for all of your accommodation and travel needs.

Source: news.begodi.com

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