Vietnam nature

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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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Start planning your Vietnam nature tour

Vietnam is a diverse country, with forests, a long, craggy coastline dotted with islands, towering mountain ranges, and vast plateaus. Take a nature tour in Vietnam and you’ll get to interact with nature at its finest while visiting the country’s many protected reserves and national parks, from the Red River delta at Cúc Phương to the idyllic waterfalls at Bạch Mã National Park. 

What makes Vietnam's nature unique? 

The sheer variety of nature experiences available in Vietnam makes this country truly special. Shimmering rice paddies and terraces are the most common landscape you’ll spot, as the country exports over $2 billion of rice each year. Plus, with so many long and winding rivers, there are some fascinating waterways to explore, such as the world-famous Mekong Delta. Nature tours in Vietnam are likely to take in valleys, mountain peaks, and some unusual geological formations, such as natural wonder that is Halong Bay.

The best national parks and natural sites in Vietnam 

There’s a wide range of places to visit on a nature tour in Vietnam, and so we’ve chosen five of our favorite spots. 

Enjoy peace and quiet at Cúc Phương National Park 

In the Ninh Binh province, Cúc Phương National Park is great for cycling tours and birdwatching. It’s so remote, wildlife and fascinating plants thrive here, and it makes a fantastic place to get away from the hubbub of Vietnam’s cities. Explore the scenic limestone karst mountains, and get uninterrupted views of glistening rice paddies.

Uncover the secrets of Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park 

Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Vietnam's best-kept secrets. Expect to see miles of unexplored Karst formations, and the world's largest natural cave, Son Doong. Take the relaxing boat tour, during which you’ll enjoy some of the most striking scenery and fantastic rock formations in Vietnam. 

Get up high at Tam Dao National Park 

Getting its name from Chinese etymology, Tam Dao means “three islands,” a reference to the three peaks of Tam Dao Mountain, which can often be seen floating in the mist beyond the main town. Here, you can take a 30-minute hike to a waterfall, or spend even longer trekking through bamboo forests. Keep an eye out for langur monkeys on your route. 

See rare animals at Bạch Mã National Park 

If you have a love for wildlife, you must visit Bạch Mã—one of the best national parks in Vietnam. Here you will see unique species such as the giant muntjac deer, and a wide variety of plants amid fantastic scenery. The peace and tranquility here is truly wonderful, so come to switch off from the chaotic world beyond. 

Take a cooling dip at Cat Ba National Park 

This unusual national park sits on an island off the coast of northern Vietnam. Covered in tropical rainforest, it has a warren of trails and paths to explore on foot, with one of the extensive ranges of wildlife and plants in the world. Plan your visit for spring or autumn so that you can take a dip in the warm waters along the coast. 

What is the best time of the year to experience Vietnam's nature? 

The best time to experience Vietnam is in spring, which falls between February and April. Fall (from August to November) is also a great time to visit Vietnam. Both have moderate temperatures and some rainfall but it’s the perfect weather to experience Vietnam’s tropical habitats.

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