New year, new travels– so I’m starting to plan my trips. I’m thinking it’s time to get over to Vietnam, because there are some pretty awesome things I haven’t seen or done there yet. So I’m building my Bucket List for Vietnam. Here’s what I can’t wait for– (And throw some comments on at the end if you have other ideas or recommendations!)
Let’s check out : Best Time to Visit in Vietnam
1. Cruise Halong Bay
Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage site with the double-wammy of having cultural and geographical importance. Thousands of limestone karsts and floating islands, secluded coves and fishing villages. Cruising through the bay for a few days of being pampered, swimming, kayaking, exploring, and partying– a Halong Bay junk cruise is definitely #1 on my Vietnam Bucket List.
Sapa is a lovely hill station town in Northern Vietnam near the Chinese border. The region as also known as “the Tonkinese Alps” and it’s culturally rich with different hilltribe minorities, lush mountain ranges, rice fields and an overall, breathtaking views! Once there, you’ll easily understand what the hype is all about.
Shops selling tobacco, trekking clothes and souvenir crafts from the hill tribes will help you burn your dong, but nothing beats a good massage! The town is completely walkable but if you want to explore outside of town, it’s best to do it by motorbike if you can
Read More: Top Tourist Attractions in Sapa
3. Wander Hoi An Old Town
Hoi An Old Town is said to be a perfectly preserved time capsule to the days of ship trade and exploration. Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, French, and a whole slew of other cultures all left their own mark on Hoi An, so it’s a colorful, diverse, and beautiful look into the past. Plus they have some of the best artisans in Vietnam. They can make you custom shoes or clothes in your own designs. I’m also thinking I need one of those jewel-toned silk lamps.
Read More: Top Tourist Attractions in Hoi An
Ha Giang is the final frontier in northern Vietnam, an amazing landscape of limestone pinnacles and granite outcrops. The far north of the province has some of the most spectacular scenery in the country – if not the region – and the trip between Yen Minh and Dong Van, and then across the Mai Pi Leng Pass to Meo Vac is quite mind-blowing. Ha Giang should be one of the most popular destinations in this region, but its distance from just about everywhere else keeps visitor numbers at a low level.
Read More: Top Tourist Attractions in Ha Giang
5. Explore Son Doong Cave
Son Doong is the world’s largest cave, and it was only discovered a few years ago because it’s located in a remote part of the Vietnamese jungle. Just the trek to the cave is supposed to be a real adventure. Inside the cave is a river, a jungle, stalactites that reach 70 feet into the air and cave pearls the size of baseballs. It’s being described as a Lost World, straight from a Jules Verne novel. It’s the sort of trip I dream up when my mind wanders (which happens a lot), getting to go would be beyond incredible.
6. Relax on Phu Quoc Island
A few days on a white sand beach, drink in hand, working on my non-existent tan… I think tropical paradise sounds pretty good for a little while. Asia’s the best, isn’t it?
Read More: Top Tourist Attractions in Phu Quoc
7. Float Down the Mekong
Floating down the “Mighty Mekong” delta in a flat-bottomed boat while wearing one of those wide-coned hats sounds like that quintessential tourist experience that you can’t NOT do. Dense jungles, local fishing villages, and a day drifting in a boat. YES. Plus you can stop at floating markets and munch on fresh fruit, coconut candies, and honey from the locals… anything that involves that much sweet food sounds like something I’m in for.
- Explore local life in Mekong Delta Tour 3 Days
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8. Eat, Eat, and Eat in Hanoi’s Old Quarter
Actually I want to eat, eat, and eat everywhere in Vietnam. But especially in the Old Quarter of Hanoi. The streets are still named from their past days of selling bamboo goods and herbal medicines and hand-woven silks and glittering jewelry– basically your typical traveling shopper’s dream, because all those goodies are still there (along with more modern electronics and knick-knacks), but I’m interested in the food. The street stalls selling BBQ minced pork, rice and veggies, grilled beef with noodles, to sip on some sugar-cane juice or slurp down a bowl of pho. The food in Vietnam is already calling.
Read More: Top Tourist Attractions in Hanoi
9. Party in Nha Trang
The “boat trip thing” is one of the most talked about parties among backpackers in Vietnam– they take you on a day trip to visit some islands and do some snorkeling, all while plying you with food and drinks and making you do wild karaoke on deck. I’m guessing it’s a love it or hate it experience, but an experience I want in on all the same! Sounds fun and crazy and why-the-hell-not, right? Plus if I’ve got a hangover the next day I could go soak in the Nha Trang mud baths and chill out for awhile.
I. Love. Roadtrips. I’m pretty comfortable on a motorbike after two years driving one in Taiwan, so I’m feeling like I definitely need to rent a bike for a few days and just hit the road. The Northern Loop takes you through the mountains and over some really incredible countryside; the Hanoi to Saigon trip is pretty popular, too, and that would get in a lot of those midlands that I probably wouldn’t otherwise see.
I’m going to be arranging my Vietnam tours all in the next few weeks. Can’t wait to get started and head back to Asia. Seriously if you have any recommendations I’d love to hear them! I’m going to be planning my trip with Asia Tour Advisor, they’re a great company for those Southeast Asia trips, so you should check them out if you’re heading to that corner of the world!