Vietnam is a beautiful country with a lot more area that you would think. It was part of China until 939AD when an independent Vietnamese state was formed. Several royal dynasties were in power until the French colonized in the mid 19th century. They expelled the French in 1954 after the First Indochina War. Vietnam split into North and South Vietnam and conflict between the two started the Vietnam War. Vietnam then unified as communist and stayed that way until 1985 when the government began reforming economically and politically. Since 2000, Vietnam has been diplomatic with all nations and their economic growth rate is among the highest in the world.
It’s a beautiful place to visit with so many places to see. The temple complexes are gorgeous. The It can be a long trip to get from one end to another, but I highlighted places to go around the major cities.
- Spend time in the Old Quarter of Hanoi which is full of tiny bars and amazing street food stalls.
- Go to the Temple of Literature, dedicated to Confucius and built in 1070
- See the Ngoc Soc Temple and Hoan Kiem Lake.
- Visit the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum Complex with the Stilt House and the One Pillar Pagoda.
- See a Water Puppet Show the explains the pillars of Vietnamese cultural beliefs.
- Go to the Perfume Pagoda, a complex of Buddhist temples built into the Huong Tich Mountains.
- Explore the Gulf of Tonkin, an UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Hike the Fansipan Mountain and meet the indigenous Hmong people and learn about their traditional way of life.
- Visit Hoi An, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, the small city is full of historic buildings and temples.
- Get some clothes made by Be Be, the best tailor in Hoi An.
- Tour the rice fields and visit Cam Kim, a peaceful island.
- Go to An Bang beach.
- In Ho Chi Minh, go to Bixteco Financial Tower and the Saigon Skydeck on a clear day.
- Go to the Dong Khoi Area and see the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Central Post Office and the National Theatre.
- Visit the War Remnants Museum.
- Experience the floating markets of Cai Rang.
Something to consider, if you’re going to take a guided tour, pay for it there, do not buy ahead of time because you’ll end up paying much more.
And you have to check out the street food, but if you get the pho, make sure you go to a busy place so you know the food is fresh and yummy.
Have you been to Vietnam? Please let me know what your favorite places were and what I’ve missed in the comments!