City tours in Vietnam

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What to do in Vietnam?

Someone talks about Vietnam and you automatically think of spring rolls, pointed hats or shoulder yokes, those large sections of bamboo and their two suspended woven baskets. Our collective imagination has been flooded with these images... But do they correspond to the current reality of Vietnam? Even if they are not all representative of life in the cities, they still subsist in the countryside... However, Vietnam cannot be summarized by these few clichés. Its people have come far with a particularly turbulent 21st century. The country is now decidedly turned towards the future: Vietnam changes and evolves. The former children of the “boat-people” are returning to Saigon to fulfil their dreams and seek success. Hanoi has opened superb art galleries... For many, Vietnam consists of mountains and plateaus, Vietnam is marked by two major waterways, the Red River to the north, and the mother of all rivers, the Mekong to the south. Between equatorial plains, temperate plateaus and high summits, you will be awestruck by the tender green rice paddies, the canyons of Red River and the superb Mekong Delta.... And if beyond its people and nature you still need a reason to visit Vietnam, let’s mention gastronomy! Vietnamese cooking is one of the most renowned worldwide, light and refined by the same token: spring rolls of course, but also Pho, Cha cà, Oc nhoi and other delicious meals...

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When to go in Vietnam?

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The best cities to visit in Vietnam

Vietnam’s varied cities have lots to offer travelers, from street food vendors to brilliant beaches, and excellent nightlife. If you want to really get to know Vietnam, its cities are a great place to start. 

What makes Vietnam’s cities unique?

Vietnam is a diverse country, and its cities reflect this. From thriving Ho Chi Minh City in the tropical south, a region known for its prosperity, to the capital Hanoi in the north, which has long been the center of power in this country, there are fascinating and thrilling experiences to be had throughout Vietnam. Throughout central Vietnam, a number of smaller cities have their own unique characteristics, such as the historic capital of Hue, with its extensive palaces, and the enchanting old silk port of Hoi An.

The top cities in Vietnam to include in your trip itinerary

If you’re planning to explore Vietnam, don’t miss a visit to a few of these top cities, known for their historic attractions, fabulous street food and dynamic nightlife. 

Experience the thriving metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City

The largest of all Vietnamese cities, Ho Chi Minh City is a thriving metropolis of nearly nine million people. Historically known as Saigon, this is now the center for commerce and business in the country. Its scooter-packed streets, busy markets, and street vendors all come together to create an intoxicating and thrilling atmosphere.

Encounter history and nature in Hanoi

If you want to see some of Vietnam's heritage as a former French colony, with influences from China, head to Hanoi's Old Quarter. The nation's capital features many historical buildings and temples, as well as being a great base from which to visit Halong Bay, considered one of the world's greatest natural sights.

Explore palaces and temples in Hue

Hue was once the capital of Vietnam. Although its lofty status has long since passed, many of the royal palaces and temples remain. Visit the semi-ruined Imperial City, as well as several historic pagodas and tombs.

Enjoy the quaint city of Hoi An

The city of Hoi An has a beautiful historic center with cobbled streets lined by fabric shops and tailors, reflecting its legacy as an important and prosperous silk port. The historic, sandstone buildings and elegant bridges are lit with bright paper lanterns for the monthly lantern festival.

Switch between the mountains and the beach in Da Nang

Da Nang is a bustling coastal city in central Vietnam, but it’s also a great place to enjoy nature. Here visitors will find beautiful sandy beaches, the stunning Marble Mountains and hiking routes along the Hai Van Pass.

Tips for planning a city break in Vietnam

There are good buses and trains between all major cities in Vietnam, but taking domestic flights to cover some of the ground is recommended if you’re short on time. Book excursions or multi-day trips with an English-speaking guide to really make the most of your time here.

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