Author Claire Boobbyer of The Times has made 7 recommendations on travel to help foreign tourists fully discover Vietnam’s hidden beauty.
According to Boobbyer, Vietnam – one of her favorite destinations in Southeast Asia – has officially reopened to foreign tourists since mid-March. If you are a tourist who has ever had the chance to set foot in Vietnam, you are sure to miss out on delicious street food such as pho, tender meat rolls or crispy golden pancakes. But if you’ve never set foot in this “S-shaped country”, Vietnam deserves to be the top destination on your list of places to go.
Vietnam appears in Boobbyer’s eyes with immense green rice fields, overlapping mountains or the richness of the Mekong Delta. Moreover, when visitors come here, they can also immerse themselves in the traditional culture of the old towns, but still intertwine the hustle and bustle of new life. Just as the famous chef Anthony Bourdain once said, “Once you fall in love with Vietnam, you will love this country forever”.
Here are 7 tours that, according to The Times, will help visitors fully discover the country and people of Vietnam.
1. Go wild
The 23-day journey through this country is considered to be full of attractions and contains many interesting things. Starting at the ancient capital of Hanoi, where visitors walk on cyclos and watch the bustle of the locals, before moving on to the ancient capital of Ninh Binh to partake in a range of activities. Explore national parks such as Van Long or Cuc Phuong. From here, visitors continue south to enter the beautiful scenery of Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, the largest cave complex in the world.
Midway through the journey, visitors start on motorbikes from Hue to Hoi An to fully enjoy the beautiful roads of Asia. After a short layover in Ho Chi Minh City, the journey continues to the colorful lands of the Mekong Delta and the pristine white sand beaches of Con Dao.
2. Classic Mekong
From Cambodia’s UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor Wat, the world’s largest religious monument complex, visitors board a Mekong River cruise to Vietnam. After sightseeing in vibrant Ho Chi Minh City, visitors can relax a bit with the antiquity of Hoi An or immerse themselves in the architectural works of Hanoi’s French colonial period. The World Heritage Site of Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh will surely be a beautiful ending in the hearts of tourists who join the ‘Classic Mekong’ tour.
3. Real Food Adventure in Vietnam
Author Boobbyer of The Times claimed: “Vietnam is the country with the best food in the world. The dishes are fragrant and full of flavors. From pho with rich stock to fish noodle soup or iced coffee with milk. They are all sold by small families in roadside shops. This will make the exploration of street food in Vietnam even more attractive.” Cooking classes or experiencing a vegetarian meal in a Hue temple are also highly appreciated by the author.
4. Southeast Asia Family Trip
Southeast Asia Family Journey is a journey that takes visitors on a traditional boat across the river to families who still preserve the pottery that ancestors have passed down through generations. In Hue, which still has mausoleums from Vietnam’s feudal period, visitors learn tales of royalty and history. After that, the trip stops in Quang Nam to visit Hoi An, experience Cu Chi tunnels and Ho Chi Minh City before heading to Cambodia.
5. The Northern Soul of Vietnam
Not many tourists know about Vietnam’s northern mountainous regions, where the majestic mountain scenery rivals any other destination in the world. Besides, the terraced fields ripen in September, or the unique features in the life of ethnic minorities such as H’mong, Red Dao and Tay with markets will surely promise many interesting things. The trip ends with a walking tour to discover Hanoi’s street food and floating on a boat to admire the unimaginable beauty of Lan Ha Bay.
6. Cycling in Vietnam
As motorcycles are the most popular mode of transportation in Vietnam, this trip will help slow visitors down by using bicycles. After bustling Ho Chi Minh City, the tour leads you at your leisure through the roads of the peaceful country of Da Lat or explore some fishing villages and beautiful beaches on Whale Island. The roads continue at Hai Van Pass before visitors head north on the Thong Nhat express train to explore Ha Long Bay.
7. Ultimate Vietnam
This is a trip for lovers of luxury resorts in 4-5 star hotels. The driver will take you through Hanoi in antique cars, followed by a food tour with top chefs. Leaving the capital, tourists relax on a cruise in Ha Long Bay and visit the limestone mountains from above by helicopter. Next, stroll through Ho Chi Minh City on an antique vespa, visit a floating market in the Mekong Delta, and finish the experience at one of the luxury resorts in Con Dao.