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Tips for finding a reliable Vietnamese travel agency

In addition to the astonishing landscapes and the rich cultural history, Vietnam is also amongst the safest travel destinations in Southeast Asia, along with Singapore. Nowadays, more and more tourists are determined to add Vietnam to their bucket lists.

Along with the rise of travel demands, we have also witnessed a surge in supply of Vietnamese tour operators with 200 newly registered agencies every year, vying for your business. That got you thinking: Which tour operator to choose out of those 3,000 existing ones? That’s when a reliable Vietnamese Travel Agency comes on the scene!

Why should you choose a local travel agency

Choosing a Vietnamese travel agency, if done right, will save you tons of time, energy, and money when sorting through the vast array of Vietnamese tour operators.

Knowledgeable

It’s common sense that no one knows Vietnam better than better than the locals, especially if you’re looking to discover off-the-beaten-track places. Local travel agencies know what they’re doing and get paid for that. Just tell them your wish and they’ll have everything covered.

Homestay in Vietnam

Living in a homestay in Vietnam (Source: Internet)

For example, accommodation is one of the biggest expenses for tourists, followed by transportation. Finding a nice, clean, and reasonable place to stay can be overwhelming for someone who has little to no experience and knowledge about the place. Even though it’s easy to book a room online, but images and reviews can be deceiving.

In terms of transportation, they know which ways are the most convenient and cost-effective to move around cities and which ways are to avoid. Not to mention they know all the delicious delicacies everywhere you turn.

Convenient

Choosing a travel agency means you leave the task of managing the endless booking process in someone else’s hands. All you need to do is give them all the criteria and the agency will arrange your vacation accordingly.

Vietnam travel agencies

Using Internet to search important information (Source: Internet)

Thanks to the development of the Internet, tourists who are interested in Vietnam no longer have to personally pay a visit to the travel agencies in their own countries. Most travel agencies now have an online presence where they provide a wide range of destinations and other criteria that help you narrow down a package that suits your individual needs the most. You can always find specific information such as itineraries and prices as well as insight information, which facilitates the comparison process by a ton!

Helpful

One of the best things about hiring travel agencies is that, aside from finding you the most suitable Vietnamese tour operator, you can always get free consultation from knowledgeable people. They would be more than glad to keep you updated on news and services that they assume you might be interested in.

Travel with a local guide

Explore Vietnamese cuisine with a local guide (Source: Internet)

You can also ask them to arrange a tailor-made package according to your own expectations: English speaking local tour guides, extra nights or people, etc.

Our advice is to always keep their contact information just in case you’re going to need someone to turn to later on.

Cost-effective

Travel agencies, not only in Vietnam but also anywhere else in the world, have quite a bad reputation as far as this matter is concerned. But the rule of thumb is, there are two kinds of prices in the tourism industry: Agency prices and tourist prices.

As bigger buyers, agencies have more bargaining power compared to individual buyers, hence, they’re more capable of securing a better deal. Also, they have a wide business network with suppliers in various industries: logistics, hotels, and all the other travel services like trekking, kayaking, canyoning, boating, hiking, etc…

Also, many Vietnamese travel agencies are negotiable so I highly suggest that you do some negotiating before paying up.

Where to find Vietnamese travel agencies?

Well, first thing first, the most reliable source to find accredited Vietnamese travel agencies is via Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, a Government-attached agency. And of course, the one and only TripAdvisor too, preferably both. There are also Airbnb, Booking, Lonely Planet, Expedia, Price Line, etc.

These websites are loaded with helpful Vietnam travel guides and experiences from the perspectives of both local communities and visitors that can help you make the best out of your stay here.

However, watch out for touts (there are a lot of them, sadly) when looking through travel forums as these are ideal places for self-promoters and touters.

How to know if the travel agency is reliable?

  • The first step to validating the agency’s trustworthiness and be sure it’s not a copycat is to do a background check: address, registration number, phone numbers, etc. The more information it’s willing to provide, the better.
  • Check if they provide all sorts of information that you need. Don’t settle for anything less than specific. You need everything to be ready before sealing the deal: prices, inclusions, exclusions, cancellation policies, itineraries, etc. In case they don’t have it available on the website, don’t hesitate to ask. You have no idea how much the hidden fees can bump up the overall price of the travel package.
  • Cross-check the information published on their websites using various prestigious travel websites.
  • Is their customer service effective? Do they respond in a timely manner? Do they equip you with the information that you need?

Tips when choosing a travel agency

Skip the middleman: We all know that many hotels offer tour services. It’s obviously more convenient and possibly comes with better services to book through the hotel but is it advisable? The more parties involved, the higher the cost, and the more you will end up paying.

Customize your travel package: Not only does it give you lots of flexibility and control over your trip, but also a chance to avoid unnecessary travel expenses.

No one likes the idea of getting ripped off, but it’s a thousand times worse when traveling to a completely foreign country. So make a wise choice, choose the most reliable Vietnamese travel agency within your power. Travel with explorevietnam.net to get more information about Vietnam

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Complete travel guide for your perfect trip to Vietnam

Feeling overwhelming about your upcoming trip to Vietnam? You’re not alone on this. explorevietnam.net is here to help: A complete guide for travelers who wish to go to Vietnam.

1. Visa to Vietnam

One of the boring works but very essential of traveling is the paperwork and formalities like passport or visa. There are some basic ground regulations that you should take note. Your passport must be valid for six months upon arrival in Vietnam. Tourists might need to arrange their visas in advance from their local embassy, with one-month fees of $25 for single entry and transit visas. And if you want to extend it, a $10 extra fee will be charged. The standard length of stay for tourist visas is 30 days and for visa-exempt nationalities, it is 15 days. However, the visa situation has recently changed for many nationalities. Remember to always check the latest regulations. All of this sometimes might be quite complicated. That’s why we have the Online Visa Agents which is a way chosen by many tourists. You will have to pay an extra fee of around 20$ and all the work is done for you.

2. Weather in Vietnam

Vietnam’s weather has typical features a tropical climate, hot and humid in summer while cold and dry in winter. The best time to go to Vietnam is from March to April when the weather is favorable for sightseeing. However, Vietnam in each time of the year has its own charm so don’t worry if it doesn’t fit your schedule.

Sapa in winter

Sapa in winter (Source: Internet)

3. Spending money in Vietnam

The currency rate right now is about 1 USD = 22.000 VND. Some places do take foreign currency like dollar, while others only take Vietnam’s currency, which is dong. ATMs can be found throughout Vietnam. In general, cash is preferable, especially in small towns, though credit and debit cards can be used in many hotels and restaurants.

A $2 bowl of Pho

A $2 bowl of Pho (Source: Internet)

Here is a general picture showing how it would be like to live in Vietnam. A typical breakfast, which can be noodle or bread, would be around 1- 2$. A night in a middle-class hotel would be 20 – 30 $ while it could be up to 100$ for a night in a luxury one. A domestic flight varies from 30 – 100 $ depending on the destination. A train ticket is more affordable, which is about 20% less than a flight ticket of the same place, though the traveling time could be so much longer. A glass of draught and a bus ticket cost the same amount of 0.5$ while the taxi fee is about 1$ per mile.

4. Getting around in Vietnam

The transportation in Vietnam is quite convenient. There are several ways to travel in Vietnam: taxi, bus, train, coach, cyclo, and motorbike, for both traveling in the city or further distance. Hiring a motorbike is a quite popular choice. Remember that if you want to ride a motorbike in Vietnam, you will have to own an International Driving License and wear helmets.

Motorbike in Vietnam

Motorbikes in Vietnam (Source: Internet)

Those are just some small tips that you could totally use in your trip to Vietnam. There are much more things to know about this beautiful country and you can always find out something new on your journey.

 

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A complete travel guide to Vietnam alone

Many tourists love to travel alone. You might be fascinated by the freedom of doing what you want and the thrilling coming from the fact of not knowing where you will go next or what you will do.

Vietnam is one of the safest countries in the world and you can totally discover this beautiful country without any worries. However, a little preparation in advance will serve you well. You can look through some special guides from popular sources like Lonely Planet Vietnam travel guide. Bear in mind some of these tips from explorevietnam.net to make the best of your own journey when you travel alone in Vietnam.

1. Remember to check the weather before you go

Weather in Vietnam is various and quite unpredictable. For example, July in Hue is usually the rainy season with heavy rain for a very long time, sometimes for all day. You need to be aware of that before planning your trip. The weather here is typical for a tropical region. Some foreigners can’t stand the heat and the humidity, especially on mid-summer days. This type of weather can easily make you feel tired. Even though you might be fascinating about the whole tan idea, you still have to wear sun cream. The sunlight here is quite intense so it’s not a good time for a natural tan. And also always keep yourself hydrated if you don’t want to get too tired to move around.

Saigon in summer afternoon

Saigon in summer afternoon (Source: Internet)

2. Always book your hotel in advance

Hotels and other types of accommodation are quite packed during peak season. Always stick to the general rule of first come first served. If you want the best thing you should make your move first. Nothing worse than wandering the streets and looking for a place to crash after long flights, especially when you’re alone.

3. Take good care of yourself

You might not want to get sick when you’re in a totally strange country while you’re on your own. That’s not a really nice experience. If you have to take some daily medications, bring them from home. It could be really a troublesome to get unprescribed pills in Vietnam when you cannot speak the language. Bring a letter from your doctor describing your medical conditions and medications. If carrying syringes or needles, you have to have physician’s letter documenting for their medical necessity. Another useful tip is to bring extra supplies of any regular medication in case of lost.

4. Clothes

Even though the weather here is quite hot, bring some spare long sleeve shirts or a jacket. When you go to the north in the winter, which is around November and January, it could be really cold. In some mountainous regions, like Sapa, the temperature could be negative and there would be snow. Even in late summer or autumn, the weather there is not suitable for a short T-shirt. When visiting holy places and national monuments, you should avoid wearing shorts and tank-tops, even on hot days.

Sapa in winter

Sapa in winter (Source: Internet)

5. Accommodation

You can stay at the hotel if you want. However, if you’re traveling alone, homestay is not a bad choice. Basically, you share a house with another person and you got your own room. You could also stay with a local family. It is a nice way to understand the local life of people here and Vietnamese culture and also a cheaper type of accommodation.

A homestay in Dalat

A homestay in Dalat (Source: Internet)

Either you travel with your friend or travel alone, do some research is never useless. Remember some of the best Vietnam travel guide above for a wonderful and safe trip.

See more with this article "Complete travel guide for your perfect trip to Vietnam" to get a perfect journey.

 

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The best places to go in Vietnam in 4 seasons

Vietnam has so many wonderful things to offer. Either you are an adventurous person or someone longing for a comfortable vacation, Vietnam has it all covered for you. Some travel guides to Vietnam might point out the fact that the weather here is various and it changes all over the year.

However, in each time of the year, Vietnam has its own charm that you don’t want to miss out. Here are some top places to visit in Vietnam according to seasons

1. Spring

To many people, the spring is the most beautiful season of the year. The weather in this season is very favorable with a little sunshine and the cool temperature. Spring is most famous as the season of flower blossom. That’s why it’s the best time to go to Highland, where there are many beautiful and rare types of flower. Vietnam is famous for gorgeous northern mountains. Each land has it owns particular type. For example, the plum and peach flower in Moc Chau, snowy flower or Ban flower in Dien Bien, they only appear in the first 2 months of the year. That means you can only enjoy this beautiful scene once in a year. Don’t miss that chance.

Moc Chau in Spring

Moc Chau in Spring (Source: Internet)

Spring is also the time when Tet holiday takes places. You can visit big cities like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City and feel the festive ambiance. It’s totally different from what you used to see.

2. Summer

Summer calls for beaches. This is the best time to make a splash. However, in this time of the year, beaches are often packed, so you should plan your trip in advance. Remember that July in Vietnam is usually known as storm season, so be careful and choose wisely when to start your trip.

flyboard-in-Nha-Trang

Flyboard in Nha Trang (Source: Internet)

If you are traveling with the ultimate goal of enjoying local cuisine, do not forget to schedule your trip to the West in June – the largest fruit-growing region in the country. At this time of the year, many types of fruit are in season, which means you will only enjoy the best of the best!

3. Autumn

Autumn in Vietnam is quite short and usually lasts for 2 months, from August to September. However, these are two months of precious. It’s basically suitable for traveling everywhere.

Hanoi in Autumn

Hanoi in Autumn (Source: Internet)

The weather is cool, windy but not too strong, tree leaves starting to turn yellow. Everything seems to look better in autumn. However, as the most beautiful cities in this season, Hanoi would be at the top of the list. The famous expression “autumn in Hanoi” might come from this fact. Even people from other parts of Vietnam, especially from the south, want to visit Hanoi in the autumn. If you have already been to Hanoi, try to visit it in autumn to see a whole different aspect of it. You won’t regret.

4. Winter

Winter in Vietnam is quite cold and dry. Some might think this is not the time for traveling. In opposition to that idea, Vietnam in winter has its own charm. Sapa is one of the must-try places to visit in winter in Vietnam. As a popular mountainous town in Northern Vietnam, there are so many reasons to visit this beautiful, lovely town. Sapa is also a fairy home of ethnic minorities. While the iconic rice terraces are not as vibrant at this time of year, this region still offers fantastic views. In the winter, the weather in Sapa becomes very cold, especially at night. However, in return, visitors will have the opportunity to watch the sunrise over the valley in the morning. Sapa is well-known for its wonderful snowfall scene. If you have a chance to travel to this picturesque town on this occasion, you will definitely see a romantic scene. No matter what the season is, Sapa is a beautiful place to visit.

Sapa in winter

Sapa in winter (Source: Internet)

Those are the best places to go in Vietnam in 4 seasons that explorevietnam.net have introduced you. Don’t worry if you miss the chance to visit Vietnam this summer, Vietnam still has so much to offer and is waiting for you to discover. 

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How to travel to Vietnam from the UK

Vietnam is a country of breathtaking natural beauty that has always been a destination for your dream vacation. With the modern transportation system, travel to Vietnam has never been so easy, even if you’re from a far-away European country like the UK. Travel to Vietnam from the UK would be a fascinating experience that you will never forget.

Entry requirements to Vietnam

As of 1 July 2015, British passport holders traveling to Vietnam will be able to enter this country for up to 15 days without a visa. If you are staying for longer than 15 days or trying to enter twice within 30 days, you have to apply for a visa in advance. There are 2 options for you to get a Vietnamese visa. You can do all the paperwork directly with the embassy by submitting the paper application in person, by post or by email and collect visa after 5 working days. This is the safest and formal way to do it. However, it often takes time and can cost you a lot. The second option is to get a so-called "pre-arranged visa on arrival”. You basically pre-arrange a visa approval online through a travel agent and use it to get actual visa later on arrival. This is more convenient than the traditional way. However, it’s only available at certain airports and you have to go through some additional procedure after arriving.

Noi Bai International Airport

Noi Bai International Airport (Source: Internet)

How to travel to Vietnam

There are 3 major international airports which are located in 3 big cities of Vietnam: Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi and Danang International Airport. They spread across the country from the North to the Central and the South of Vietnam. Flights from another country usually land on one of these airports. From here, you can travel to another city by different means: bus, coach, domestic flight, etc.

A fight from the United Kingdom to Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam, takes about 15 to 33 hours and costs around 600 to 700 pounds. Meanwhile, if you take a flight to Ho Chi Minh, the biggest city in Vietnam, you can save up to 8 – 9 hours and the ticket is also cheaper, about 100 – 200 pounds less than the first way.

Tan Son Nhat International Airport

Jet lag

The time difference between the UK and Vietnam is 7 hours. So be careful to choose your flight schedule if you don’t want to be around on the street at midnight. The easiest way is to add 7 hours more to your total flight time, you will get the time of your arrival. For example, if you travel from the UK at 2 p.m and the flight takes 20 hours to get to Vietnam, you will add 27 hours to 2 p.m to know what time you will get there which is 5 p.m of the next day. It’s possible for you to get jet lag. Here are some tips that could make you through the day:

– Wear sunglasses. Sunglasses may reduce the effects of jet lag, according to a study

– Building a napping strategy: The best time to nap (during or after the flight) is at nighttime in the time zone being traveled to. "Power naps" of around 20 minutes may help to reduce daytime sleepiness.

– Be careful to use caffeine: if it is consumed during the morning it may help the body to hit the correct rhythm. However, taking caffeinated products in the late afternoon may interfere with getting to sleep at the correct time for the new time zone.

– Drinking plenty of liquids during the flight – preferably water and definitely not alcohol or caffeinated drinks – will help reduce symptoms.

When to travel to Vietnam

Vietnam in each time of the year has its own special features that are worth discovering. Most tourists choose to travel to Vietnam in summer for the sunshine and warm weather which is quite rare in the Western country. Travel to Vietnam in winter might bring you a different experience when there are not many tourists around.

The weather in Vietnam is typical for the tropical region. It’s hot and humid. It’s quite different from the cold and dry weather in the UK. The temperature on a hot summer day could be up to 100°F. This type of weather could easily make you feel tired, so remember to wear sun cream and keep yourself hydrated.

Hanoi in summer days

Hanoi in summer days (Source: Internet)

With all those small tips from explorevietnam.net, your travel to Vietnam would be much easier and you can have a chance to enjoy the beauty of Vietnam without any worries.

 

 

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Vietnam Group Tour (Part 2)

Join in Vietnam Group Tours – a fantastic way to see the country and learn about the history and culture of Vietnam while meeting like-minded people and indulging in several fantastic cuisines.

Ly Son Island

Ly Son is the only island of Quang Ngai, is located in the Northeast, about 15 nautical miles from the mainland and known as Maldives of Vietnam. In which you could immerse in the blue clean sea water, soak in romantic scenes and explore interesting places on island.

You go from Quang Ngai city along 24B Route to Sa Ky port then approaching to the island by speedboat. Ly Son has two islands, Big Island has 2 villages, East village and West village; other Ly Son’s island is Small Island or another name is An Binh. The best time visiting Ly Son is in April and May, beautiful weather and favorable for diving coral, other ideal period time is in the summer (from June to September) the weather is quite nice and sunny.

There are diverse accommodations in there ranges from homestay to 4 stars hotel, the first day in Ly Son, you should visit breathtaking landscapes on Big Island

Duc Pagoda

Sitting in the halfway of Gieng Tien mountain, the volcano has slept for thousands year in Island, you and your group have to climb more than 100 steps along the ridge to reach the Pagoda. In a lobby of Duc Pagoda is Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva statue 27 m in height leading up to the ancient and mossy shrines that were deeply located inside the mountain. Towards the statue’s direction, you could see the whole view of the island is as pretty as a picture. The most interesting thing is that when climbing in the Liem Tu peak, you will see now crater is a green pasture landscape was shaped basins.

Cave Pagoda

As its name, Pagoda located in the largest cave in the cave systems in Ly Son, generated from Thoi Loi mountain, lava-color is about 20 m in height. The front yard overlooking the sea, the midfield has a lotus pond, Buddha statues and around the yard is ancient Terminalia buceras (black olive) that are hundreds year. The Cave is 24 m in length, 3.2 m in height and 480 m2 area.

Cave Pagoda

Cave Pagoda (Source: Internet)

Cau Cave

Cau Cave is placed in East village, in a foot of Thoi Loi mountain, there is a huge cave. It is magnificent scene, between sea and mountain, Cau Cave was erosive by innumerous waves and wind, “deep cut” into the mountain and formed thousands year. The landscape is wild but poetic and engaging beauty. It takes less than 15 minutes from the center of the District, along an asphalted road in Thoi Loi foothill to the Northeast, both sides of the route is green onions and garlic small square fields and beach. The air is extremely fresh, windy and huge waves lap to rocks-formed from lava is hundreds in height, lead to poetic and majestic.

The national flag on the Thoi Loi summit

The national flag was constructed in Thoi Loi Peak- the highest mountain in Island, in which you could see the spacious and blue sea as well as spectacular escarpment.

After visiting several well-known landscapes, in the evening you could swim or go to To Vo Gate to see romantic sunset then you and your group can enjoy fresh and abundant seafood in seafood market with reasonable price. In the next day morning, you should wake up and go to Thoi Loi summit or Mu Cu Isle to greet the dawn.

Mu Cu Island

The Dawn in Mu Cu (Source: Internet)

Small Island

It takes about 10 minutes from Big Island, in which has 80 households, roughly 400 people.

Although Small Island is tiny area and insufficient fresh water and electricity, it has a breathtaking beach for white sand, surrounded by high cliffs, including swimming to see coral service. You should by fresh seafood in the port in Big Island in the morning then bring food to Small Island to prepare campfire and see sunset, at that time, most visitors come back to mainland or Big Island, Small Island is extremely tranquil and poetic, you and your group freely swim and enjoy stunning scenes in there.

There are some Vietnam group tours tips you should know.

– Choose a reasonable operator

– Get the needful information of other members in your group.

– Discuss the agreement in everything in your group.

– Learn to share with other members

Choose group tours to discover Vietnam is a perfect idea. helloVietnam is one of them. They not only provide many amazing tours, help you save your expenditure but also join several interesting group’s activities and completely enjoy this nation. 

 

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All you need to know about Bac Son Valley trekking tours

Vietnam has always been one of the world’s best places for trekking tours. Across the north region of this S-shaped country, there are plenty of breathtaking trekking routes with terrace fields and majestic mountains serving as the backdrop.

As one of the most beautiful trekking routes in Vietnam, Bac Son valley trekking tours stay firmly on the travel list of any trekking lovers. Here is a guideline from insiders and local expert to help you get the best experience.

Bac Son Valley

Bac Son Valley (Source: Internet)

Location

Bac Son Valley belongs to Bac Son District, Lang Son Province, northeast of Vietnam.

The valley is about 160 km away from Hanoi – capital city of Vietnam.

It is a mountainous area with high mountain ranges which has an altitude of 500 to 1,200 m.

Surrounded by limestone mountains, rivers and paddy fields, Bac Son valley offers a scenic landscape.

How to get there

Car and motorbike are the best way to come here. If you have time, a motorbike is a better choice. The scenery along the way is beautiful, and you can be much more flexible.

Two routes from Hanoi to Bac Son valley:

  • Hanoi -> Nhat Tan bridge -> 18B highway -> Thai Nguyen (a neighboring province of Bac Son) -> Bac Son
  • Hanoi -> Thang Long bridge -> Noi Bai Airport -> Soc Son district -> Thai Nguyen -> Bac Son

Where to stay

More and more tourists know about the unique charm of this stunning valley and tourism starts to grow. Therefore, it is not hard to find a reasonable hostel or budget hotel around the valley.

A homestay is a favorite option that many tourists prefer. You can stay in a stilt-house of local ethnic people and live the way they live here. An exciting experience that worth a try.

The average cost of accommodation in Bac Son valley is around 200,000vnd (9USD)/night.

Where to go

Bac Son offers some of the best places to visit in Vietnam. Here are the marvelous sites that explorevietnam want you to see during your Bac Son valley trekking tours.

Na Lay peak

With the height of 600m, you will have panoramic of the whole valley. The paddy field, the green mountain, and the river runs crossing the field, all together make a picture-perfect scenery. Harvest time for rice fields here is not the same leaving a mix of green and yellow fields. This is a signature and the most stunning landscape of Bac Son valley.

Sunset over Nalay peak

Sunset over Na Lay peak (Source: Internet)

Dang Mo waterfall

Dang Mo waterfall is located in the middle of a jungle. The water from two streams merge into one and drop from 100 m high cliff through three level. Around the waterfall, there are beautiful natural “bathtubs” where you can freely to take a shower. Dang Mo waterfall remains pristine and less affected by tourism activities which make an ideal place for your hiking tour.

Dang Mo waterfall

Dang Mo waterfall (Source: Internet)

Quynh Son village

This is a village of Tay people – a minority ethnic group inhabit the Bac Son for centuries. Villagers still live a traditional lifestyle with houses on stilts, specialties like sticky rice wine, black “Chung” cake….

After a day conquering the majestic mountain ranges, what’s better than taking a rest and enjoy local food in the village.

Quynh Son Village

Quynh Son Village (Source: Internet)

Weather and best time to visit

Average temperature: 21.50C

Covered with high mountains and green forest year-round help the area maintain a pleasant temperature. It is much cooler than the big city like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh city.

Average annual rainfall: 1538 mm

The best time to visit Bac Son valley is the period from August to November. This is the harvest season when rice field turns to yellow. The weather during this time is also dry, less humid and less rain. August to November is considered as the best time to travel Vietnam too. It is the end of summer and harsh sunlight creating favourable weather for traveling.

Rice field in Bac Son Valley

Rice field in Bac Son Valley (Source: Internet)

Tips

  • Bring necessities for a trekking tour: insect repellent, comfortable shoes, jacket….
  • Take some snack and personal belongs such as toothbrush, toothpaste, razor…. with you, you cannot find any shop for that kind of thing here.
  • Medicine is important. It is very far to reach any drugstore or hospital.
  • You’d better have a local guide. GPS and regular map is not of much help
  • Make sure to charge your phone and camera as well as take backup batteries. It is painful to stand in such an alluring scenery without taking a photo.
Hoi-An-ancient-town1511497518

Vietnam travel guide for your first Vietnam trip

With beautiful natural scenery and timeless charm of rich culture, Vietnam is a favorite destination of tourists from around the world and is a destination of the new millennium.

Check out our ultimate Vietnam travel guide to find out best tips when traveling in Vietnam and things to do to make the most of your Vietnam trip.

Accommodation

Price of hostels with bed & breakfast may start from 100,000VND/night. The nicer and nearer to the center the place gets, the more you have to pay. Private double room with basic facilities located near tourist sites will cost at least 400,000VND/night. Most of the hostels and hotels in Vietnam offer free Wifi. Some hostels and hotels do not provide breakfast as eating out in Vietnam is cheap.

Transportation

Vietnam travel guide suggests that you should rent a motorbike to get around the city when traveling to Vietnam. You can hire a motorbike (100,000VND – 150,000VND/day) to get around to anywhere in Vietnam. Other getting around options are by bus or by taxi. While the public bus costs from 5,000VND – 10,000VND per ride, taxi fare is based on meters and is about 12,000VND/km.

To travel to different cities in Vietnam, you can choose the bus, train or by airplane. Overnight buses cost from 100,000VND to 500,000VND depending on the distance. The train is also another cheap way to travel. Traveling by airplane is the most convenient and time-saving. There are 3 main airline carriers in Vietnam. While Vietnam Airlines is the national airline of Vietnam, Vietjet Air and Jetstar are low-cost airlines providing flight routes to main tourism destination for budget travelers.

Things to do in Vietnam

Let’s our Vietnam travel guide recommends you some of the most exciting things to do in Vietnam:

Wander around Hanoi

Ta Hien Street

Ta Hien Street in Old Quarter, Hanoi (Source: Internet)

Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam and is a must-visit city in Vietnam. In Hanoi, you can wander around the narrow streets of the Old Quarter, experience the best street food and enjoy the bustling atmosphere of this city at night. Don’t miss the pagodas, temples, the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and museums to explore the artifacts from Vietnam’s thousand-year history.

Get adventurous in Sapa

Trekking in Sapa

Trekking in Sapa (Source: Internet)

Sapa is definitely one of the best places to visit in Vietnam. Located in the mountainous Northern Vietnam, Sapa is famous for its beautiful trekking trails, hill tribes, and magnificent rice terraced fields. Travel to Sapa, admire the natural beauty of Sapa through ranges of adventures activities and you will have unforgettable experiences here.

Cruise on Ha Long Bay

Cruising on Halong Bay

Cruising on Halong Bay (Source: Internet)

With thousands of stone islands emerging in the deep emerald water, Ha Long Bay is on the list of World’s New 7 Wonders of Nature. Taking on a cruise in Ha Long Bay is definitely one of the best things to do in Vietnam. On the cruise, you will have the chance to admire the stunning scenery dainty beauty of Ha Long Bay. You can also stop by hidden caves, visit fishing villages on the bay, take part in exciting activities such as kayaking, scuba diving, and mountain climbing, etc.

Get lost in Hoi An

Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An Ancient Town (Source: Internet)

The best things to do in Hoi An is getting lost in the Hoi An Ancient Town. Strolling along the narrow streets stretching out to Thu Bon River, along the Hoai River to the Hoi An Market, you will bump into a lot of small coffee house corners and beautiful souvenir shops. As the sun gets low, you can enjoy the old town filled with shimmering lanterns lights of all shapes and colors.

Relax in Da Lat

Xuan Huong Lake

Xuan Huong Lake, Da Lat (Source: Internet)

Nested in the Central Highlands, Da Lat is nicknamed “the city of love”. This is an ideal destination for tourists to relax in the mountain air. Nothing can be more peaceful than strolling around the poetic lakes around and seeing the colorful flower gardens of the city while enjoying “4 seasons in a day” kind of weather.

Dive in Nha Trang

Nha Trang City

Nha Trang (Source: Internet)

This city is full of beautiful beaches with white sand and crystal clear water. Nothing can be more enjoyable than diving in the sea, watching the coral reef underwater or just simply lying on the beach and getting sunbathe. For beach-lovers, as you travel to Nha Trang, you can also visit nearby islands such as Hon Mun, Hon Tam, etc.

explorevietnam hope that our ultimate Vietnam travel guide will help you on your upcoming Vietnam trip!

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The best Vietnam holiday package tours

A holiday package is a tour that meets all of your special traveling purposes and covers transport, accommodation, rental vehicle and a lot of come-along services. The holiday packages to Vietnam are nowadays very various. Here are the best Vietnam holiday package tours for international travelers.

Vietnam classic tour

Hoan Kiem Lake

Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi (Source: Internet)

There are a lot of names for this kind of tour. It is commonly called ‘classic’ because the tour will take you to the most popular and visitors’ favorite destinations throughout Vietnam. During a certain time (from 10 to 20 days) of this Vietnam package tour, you will enjoy the most beautiful sceneries across the country, explore the best cultural features and try the most delicious food.

Normally, this tour can offer you the most special and well-known feature of Vietnam. You can wander in Hanoi Old Square and enjoy street food as well as visit cultural and historical sites here. You can have one amazing night on the Halong Bay cruise. And then, the tour will take you to visit the Imperial City in Hue to learn about the feudal period in Vietnam. Next, you can experience the vibrant and stunning city of Danang and a peaceful ancient town of Hoi An. You end up exploring the nightlight of Ho Chi Minh City and visiting attractive Mekong Delta as well as famous floating markets in the South.

Highlights of the tour: Hanoi street food and cultures, the World’s Nature Wonder – Halong Bay, historical values in Hue ancient capital, stunning beaches and landscapes in Danang, beautiful Hoi An, vibrant Ho Chi Minh city with amazing food and cultures, typical lifestyle of people on Mekong River Delta.

Vietnam historical tour

You can choose to have your best Vietnam holiday package tour by visiting all historical sites of Vietnam. Vietnam has a long-standing history of thousand years so that you have many things to explore. With this tour, you can have a chance to visit a lot of museums, temples, and pagodas in Hanoi with a lot of historical values such as Hanoi Museum of Ethnology, Temple of Literature, Hoan Kiem Lake, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, etc. In Hanoi, you can also visit some ancient villages or handicraft villages to understand Vietnam’s countryside.

Imperial Citadel

Imperial Citadel in Hue (Source: Internet)

And then, from Hanoi with so many relics of Nguyen Dynasty and Le Dynasty as well as French Colonial time, you will fly to the ancient capital of Hue to explore the last feudal dynasty of Vietnam with a lot of intact sites including the Imperial Citadel – the world’s heritage site, various temples, king’s tombs and also enjoy the amazing local cuisine.

In this tour, you can also visit Quang Tri with a lot of relics of Vietnam War. Ho Chi Minh City with Cu Chi Tunnel is another well-known name to understand the War.

Khmer and Champa culture is very worthy to experience, too. You can visit My Son Sanctuary in Quang Nam, other Champa temples, and relics in Tay Ninh, Binh Dinh, and also the Museum of Cham Sculpture in Danang.

There are other valuable historical sites you can consider in your Vietnam package tour including Dien Bien Phu, Ninh Binh, Da Lat, etc.

Vietnam Beach tour

Vietnam is well-known for stunning beaches and having a beach tour is perfect for your holiday package. In the North, we have the white sandy beaches on Halong Bay, Cat Ba Island. The South Central Coast is a paradise for beach lovers when you can enjoy Lang Co Bay (Hue), Da Nang beaches, Nha Trang, Mui Ne, Ninh Thuan, Binh Thuan. And to the South, the beaches and the islands are so beautiful and refreshing such as Phu Quoc Island, Con Dao Island, Vung Tau Beach, Nam Du Beach, etc.

Beautiful beach in Vietnam

Beautiful beach in Vietnam (Source: Internet)

On the beach tour, you can enjoy various activities which bring you great relaxing moments. You can swim in turquoise clean water, sun-bath and rest on the smooth sand, snorkel to explore the undersea and play beach sports such as skydiving, surfing, canoeing, kayaking, etc. as well as try fish catching, enjoy seafood and stay onboard an overnight cruise.

Moreover, your beach tour is usually not only about beaches. You can also visit other landscapes, historical and cultural sites as well as other interesting attractions in the city.

Highlights of the tour: Halong Bay, Cat Ba Island, Lang Co beach, Nha Trang, Mui Ne beaches, Phu Quoc Island

Vietnam adventurous tour

If you are an adventurous traveler, this is the best holiday package tour for you. You will start your tour by landing the southern mountainous areas to trek or riding motorbike to explore the magnificent mountains, jungles, immense terrace fields, and local ethnic tribes. Sapa, Moc Chau, Mu Cang Chai and Ha Giang are the best places for your adventure. In here, you can have a chance to hike to Hoang Lien Son range and especially Fansipan Mount – the highest peak of South East Asia. Trekking or hiking is also ideal for group tour packages.

Your adventurous journey can continue to Phong Nha National Park where locating the most majestic caves such as Phong Nha – Ke Bang, Son Doong, Tu Lan and Thien Duong. In Chay River-Toi Cave area, you can try zip lining, kayaking, mud bathing, etc.

The Central Highland is another region for adventurous tours. You can visit the beautiful Da Lat city and discover some of the amazing waterfalls in here. You can visit Buon Ma Thuot, Pleiku, Kontum to explore ethnic villages and see Vietnamese elephants in Don Village.

Elephant in Don Village

Elephant in Don Village (Source: Internet)

explorevietnam think that you can also consider Vietnam family tour, Vietnam luxury tour, Vietnam couple tour, Indochina package tour (traveling to Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia), etc. You will get the best highlights of Vietnam’s beauty.

Highlights of the tour: Sapa, Phong Nha National Park, Dalat, Don Village.

 

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Vietnam family travel Tips and Guides

As a small country lying on the east coast of Pacific Ocean and possessing naturally favorable conditions, Vietnam is a perfect choice for a family adventure holiday.

When traveling to Vietnam, visitors will have a chance to experience many different kinds of attractions and tours. This is really a great chance to strengthen the family’s bond or just simply spend quality time enjoying a new place together away from the bustle and hustle of modern life. 

And now let explorevietnam give you some handy tips and information to create some of the most memorable moments in your Vietnam family travel.  

Travel agency advice

When you travel to Vietnam during the holiday, especially for the first time, it is better to have a travel agency or tour guide help you prepare everything and guide you on what to do and where to visit. There are too many travel agencies vying for your business, hence, you need to consider carefully to avoid scams and disappointment. As someone who suffered from some awful travel agencies, I highly recommend my favorite Vietnamese travel agency, helloVietnam tour operator, due to its handpicked hotels, world-class service, and best price guarantee.

Where to spend for Vietnam family tours

Hanoi 

It is such a big pity if you come to a country and ignore its heart – Hanoi – with a convergence of the political, cultural, historical, and social-economic quintessence built up over a thousand years. Here, we can admire some symbols of Vietnam such as Turtle Tower, Hanoi Post Office, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Hoan Kiem Lake, Ngoc Son Temple, The Old Quarter, and The Temple of Literature.

In addition to the image of an ancient city, Hanoi impresses tourists as a new Asian cosmopolitan center with its thriving development and a growing concentration of shopping malls, entertainment centers, and many others. And do not forget its heavenly food scene; enjoying Hanoi’s street food is one of the most favorite activities in this beautiful city.

Hanoi

Hanoi (Source: Internet)

Ho Chi Minh City

The cosmopolitan Ho Chi Minh City is the most dynamic city of Vietnam with a huge concentration and development of economic, cultural and political centers as well as entertainment spots. Top must-see destinations are People’s Committee Building, Dong Tam Snake Farm, Vam sat ecological Tourist Center, Dam Sen Water Park, Suoi Tien, Lac Canh Dai Nam, etc.

Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh (Source: Internet)

Nha Trang 

If you are looking for a beach to spend your family holiday at, do not miss Nha Trang Beach – A heaven of a beach with a long coastline, white sand, and blue water, which gives tourists an amazing and relaxing feeling at first sight. 

The main attraction will be Vinpearl Land, the pearl of the ocean queen’s crown, offering a marvelous scene and excellent services where the whole family can take part in many different exciting water sports together.

Another ideal destination is Po Naga Cham towers, which represent the Cham ethic, are older than 1200 years, perfect for taking photos. Other interesting places are Po Nagar Cham Towers, Oceanographic Museum of Vietnam and the list goes on. When coming here, children can learn something about the culture and history of Vietnam, which can enlarge their knowledge and help them gain a deeper understanding about another culture.

Nha Trang

Vinpearl (Source: Internet)

Sapa

If you wish for a more adventurous trip, do not miss Sapa. But you should not worry, because it is not dangerous, just simply amazing and fun. As one of the highlights of North Vietnam, Sapa impresses visitors with its stunningly beautiful landscapes, lush green valleys as well as diversified hill tribes such as the Black H’Mong, the Red Dao, and the Giay. So I am sure that when coming to this lovely land, not only will your family have great photos, but also the chance to challenge yourselves a bit by climbing to the top of Fansipan Mountain (the summit of Indochina).

Sapa

Sapa (Source: Internet)

With a comfortable climate, visitors can travel to Sapa all year-round and trek to some of the most beautiful mountains in the country. However, it is great to escape the summer heat of North Vietnam by traveling to Sapa during this harsh time as you can enjoy a cool or even cold weather.

It is a great idea to encourage children to step out of their comfort zone, let them be closer to nature and have authentic rural experience. Particularly, they will have a closer look and understanding about how hill tribe people live – about their costume, their tradition, and their culture. 

These above are some tips and advice about picking an accredited Vietnam travel agency and some of the top must-see and most appropriate destinations for your Vietnam family travel. I do hope that they can be helpful and wish you a great time in Vietnam – a country of outstanding landscapes and hospitable locals.

Author: LacLac