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Vietnam travel guide

Bursting with history and culture, Vietnam will leave you awestruck. From the bustling Ho Chi Minh City (also known as Saigon), to the mysterious Vietnam War relics, the underground Cu Chi Tunnel system, to the beautiful beaches of Mui Ne and the lofty heights of Sapa's insane rice paddies, this country is one of extremes: extreme landscapes, extreme culture, and extreme color.
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Official language: Vietnamese
English is widely spoken
blue stacked coins icon Currency
Name: Vietnamese Dong
Code: VND
Symbol: ₫
blue clock icon Time Zone
Indochina Time Zone
(UTC +7:00)
Floating paper lanterns with candles at night at the Hoi An Lantern Festival

Top places to visit in Vietnam

Vietnam's travel highlights

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Ha Long Bay
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Sapa
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The Mekong Delta
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Vietnam adventure tours

Junk boats in front of dramatic tree-covered cliffs in Ha Long Bay

Vietnam on a Shoestring | 12 days

From the buzzing streets of Ho Chi Minh City to charming Hoi An, the imperial capital of Hue, chaotic Hanoi and the stunning natural beauty of Ha Long Bay, this trip is perfect for everyone. Travel up the beautiful coast and you will be sure not to miss a single highlight this country has to offer. Party through the night and explore through the day.
A male and female overlooking the edige of a boat in Ha Long bay

Vietnam Experience | 12 days

Vietnam is a cultural explosion of color, with golden temples, jade green waters, yellow rice paddy fields and colored silks. Explore coconut palms, sugar plantations & the smiling locals in their conical hats floating amongst the Mekong. Cruise the river delta, cycle through Hoi An, soak up some rays on the beach Nha Trang & relax on the waters of Ha Long Bay. This is truly a country where East meets West and this tour is the ultimate way to experience Vietnam.
a bicyclist riding on a water-lined trail

Cycle Vietnam's Backroads | 14 days

This is an adventure and a challenge combined in one trip. Ride from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City over a 14-day cycling trip. This journey will give you a unique viewpoint of the countryside. Cross thousands of kilometers of stunning beaches and beautiful coastal roads, as well you will get to feast on some of the freshest seafood around. Prepare to have your cycling legs challenged.

What's the best way of getting around Vietnam?

Vietnam is a long, thin country, so we recommend you start in either Hanoi (in the north, near China and Laos) or Ho Chi Minh City (in the south, near Cambodia and the Mekong Delta) and traverse the length of it from north to south or vice versa, stopping at highlights such as Hue and Hoi an along the way. Highway 1 runs the length of Vietnam making air-conditioned coaches the best option for most budget travelers. Long distance ones are fitted with sleeper berths, and prices are reasonable.

There is also a railway that runs the length of Vietnam. The trains tend to be comfortable and offer great views. Fares from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City start from $40 for a seat and go up to $60 for a comfortably air-conditioned sleeper.

If you're short on time in the country and want to cover large distances, we can help you book domestic flights when you plan your trip, or you can check out one of our tours!

How long do I need to travel Vietnam?

There's no easy answer to how long you should spend in Vietnam. Your visa will allow you a month in the country and you should try to use as many days as possible of it, to soak the amazing culture and history up. Most travelers spend two to three weeks in the country, with three weeks being the optimum amount of time to get from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh or vice versa, stopping a few days in places like Sapa, Ha Long Bay, Ninh Binh, Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park, Hue, Hoi An, Nha Trang, Dalat, Mui Ne and the Mekong Delta. 

Getting your Vietnamese travel visa

As a citizen of United States, you are required Visa to visit Vietnam. This will allow you to stay in the country for one month. Since 1996 all US citizens coming to Vietnam can pick up a visa at selected international airports. You must submit an application form via the Vietnam embassy and once you have received an approval letter you will be able to get a visa stamp when arriving into Vietnam via one of the following airports; Ha Noi/ Da Nang/ Ho Chi Minh city/ Nha Trang. *Visa and entry requirements are subject to change at any time. Please always check the current status with your applicable embassy prior to travel.

Want more travel inspiration? Rifle through our Asia travel blogs!

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