Vietnam endured a lot of difficult moments in the 20th century, ranging from bloody civil wars to foreign invasions, among other atrocities. While some may not know it, Vietnam has since recovered and prospered in more areas than one. From the magnificent branding of cities (for example, the renaming of Saigon to Ho Chi Minh City), to the rapid growth in population the country has witnessed to become the 13th most populous country in the world, Vietnam has come a long way.
While the country isn’t often seen in the mainstream media, it has spectacular travel destinations every hobbyist traveler needs to know about. This article details the top 5 travel destinations in Vietnam, in no particular order.
This is the capital city of Vietnam. It is the center of nearly everything in this communist republic. From a visitor’s point of view, Hanoi is a spectacular place with the amenities and features that befit a mega-city destination. The city is a clear union of the old Asia to the new Asia; where ancient and modern cultures coexist seamlessly. With the mass motorbikes in the streets, hawkers in omnipresent conical hats selling their wares, and expansive museums and historical sites around the city, Hanoi is, without a doubt, a travel destination to behold.
Ho Chi Minh City
For those who love travelling to a metropolitan destination, visiting Ho Chi Minh City is a must. Formerly known as Saigon, this city is the largest city in Vietnam and thus, the center of everything, especially commerce and culture. For a travel destination, Saigon is a mix of different cultures. It’s appropriate for almost everyone with a mix of both high class hotels and affordable ones. The city is also rich with history - old silk shops, temples, GI hotels, ancient pagodas. With all these things existing in one place, Ho Chi Minh City stands alone as a travel destination with more than enough to keep travelers and visitors interested.
The Mekong Delta is situated towards the southwestern side of the communist republic of Vietnam. While not illustrious as Saigon or Hanoi, the Mekong Delta is the best place to be for organic travelers. Recently christened as the “biological treasure love”, this delta is home to over 10000 new species discoveries hence its importance on this list. Because of its richness, the Mekong Delta has attracted all and sundry as far as travel is concerned. It has also been a filming location for a number of popular Hollywood movie titles, including the “The Buffalo Boy” and “The Floating Lives,” among others.
Of all the Vietnamese cities, Hoi An is one of the oldest ones still standing today. This city is over 600 years old and situated in a great location next to the coastline - which makes it a favored travel destination. If you want to see a city that has changed over time but still remains richly beautiful, then Hoi An is the right destination for you. While Hoi An is full of ancient architecture and real life museums, the city is vibrant and full of attractions, businesses and amenities that are tailor-made for tourists.
Vietnam has come a long way to be where it is today. Of the numerous rich heritage points to ponder about, Hoa Lu stands as a rich heritage travel destination of this communist republic. From its great beginnings as the capital city of the Ly Dynasty which ruled Vietnam between 968 and 1010 AD, the city is a remnant of the rich Vietnamese history. Apart from the breath taking architecture, and the legendary temple of Dinh Tien Hoang, Hoa Lu is the perfect place to tour to savor the rich heritage of the Vietnam history. It’s the perfect place to travel for the history, and the massive limestone caves for camping, of course.
Overall, Vietnam is home to some of the most dynamic travel destinations in Asia. Its span goes beyond just history. Vietnam travel destinations vary from pre-historic to recent to modern. From the finest capital of Hanoi, to the history-laden largest city of Ho Chi Minh, to the great Mekong Delta, Vietnam has perfect destinations for almost anyone.