Longing for sun and beaches? Seeking fun-filled nightlife activities? Enriching cuisine experiences? You will get them all at once when coming to Vietnam. Even if you are someone who follows perfectionism, there are many reasons to make you fall in love with Vietnam over and over again.
Vietnam is known for its amazing landscapes and seascapes, friendly people and exquisite cuisine. Visit this fantastic country and you won’t stand but blown away by so many things to discover. Vietnam has much to offer that sets it apart from the rest of Southeast Asia. If you love traveling and want to have a journey of a lifetime, you definitely need to visit Vietnam right away.
Reasons to fall in love with Vietnam
Here are 10 common reasons why visitors fall in love with Vietnam and travel to this country more than once – and also what you can look forward to when traveling there.
1. Amazing street food
You have to put your diet on hold when visiting Vietnam. Instead of greeting with “How do you do?”, Vietnamese people prefer asking “Have you eaten?”. In a country where people love food that much, you will know their cuisine is out of this world. When you travel to any part of the country, dining options for you are not only in restaurants but also right off the street.
Street food has become a crucial part of the food scene in Vietnam. Thus, if you’re looking for must-have experiences in Vietnam then it must be street food walking tours. You will be treated with fresh ingredients that rock your taste buds. Local people sell street food as a way to promote their national culture. That’s how you can get the best street treats in the world right here, from ‘Banh mi‘, ‘Hu tieu‘, ‘Com tam‘ to ‘Goi cuon’. Each of them has a story to tell you about Vietnam’s authentic cuisine.
2. Lively markets
Markets in Vietnam are not really a fixed term as you can see markets anywhere, on land or on the river. Even the Vietnamese humorously refer markets to somewhere filled with crowds and noises. In competition with air-conditioned shopping malls, traditional markets prevail in terms of vibrant atmosphere. Local sellers can offer you just about everything you can think of, from handicrafts to local souvenirs, and fashion.
While big markets in Ho Chi Minh City such as Binh Tay Market catch your sight with colorful shop signs and tables and plastic chairs, floating markets in the Mekong Delta are busy in their own styles. You can get a ‘floating experience’ when sitting right on a boat and seeing how people make their trading from boats to boats day by day. Markets, in the city or in the countryside, at daytime or nighttime, give tourists an opportunity to truly experience the culture of Vietnam.
3. Beautiful beaches
A relaxing holiday with white sand, clear turquoise waters, waving palm trees — That’s a dream to be true when you make your next getaway at marvelous beaches in Vietnam. Whether you are into sunbathing, snorkeling and watching coral reefs, trying adventurous watersports, you can do all at different beach destinations in Vietnam, from Nha Trang, Phan Thiet to Vung Tau or Phu Quoc.
Vietnam’s tropical beaches get their fame around the world for crystal clear waters and intriguing scenery at sunrise and sunset. And if you’re still finding something else to complete your wonderful beach escape, world-class villas and resorts nearby will ensure an oasis of your own, for your best private moments filled with fun.
4. Friendly people
It is common that tourists choose to visit a country for beautiful landscapes but it must be local people that leave them good impressions for long and make them want to visit that country again. Vietnamese people are a bit shy yet always friendly and helpful to all foreigners. You don’t have to worry about whether or not they speak English, they always come up with something that makes you understand, such as their body language.
Most foreigners share the same opinion that Vietnamese people are extremely grateful. They often say thank you for coming to the country and looking forward to your return. They may not speak fluent English, but from their smiles you will know how much they appreciate every visitor. Whether you are at a busy market in Ho Chi Minh City or on a remote highland in Sa Pa, you can meet fantastic people with their amazing culture.
Are you LGTBT+ or travelers with limited mobility? You will find some more reasons to fall in love with Vietnam. Check out LGBT+ Travel in Vietnam: What You Need To Know or Accessible Tours in Vietnam
5. Breathtaking natural wonders
Many tourists say Vietnam is a country of unforgettable memories for fascinating nature, plenty of wildlife, mighty seas, gigantic mountains, mysterious caves and many more. Even the most jaded traveler would have trouble resisting the country’s natural wonders that never stop beautifying the image of Vietnam.
It is Ninh Binh’s paddy fields, Phong Nha’s caves, Nha Trang ‘s spectacular sea coasts, Mekong Delta’s canals that capture both your heart and your soul. Vietnam’s natural landscapes reduce your stress and release your mind out of negative thoughts. You just need to do nothing but relax and find yourself surrounded by the smell of nature. That is a tranquil Vietnam, if you are looking for something truly peaceful and relaxing.
6. Lovely chaos
Vietnam is exactly a place where you have to redefine many traditional concepts. Sidewalks here are not actually for pedestrians only. In Vietnam, it’s not unusual to see many street vendors and motorbike taxi drivers who occupy the space for their parking. So, visitors have to walk in the street instead of on the sidewalk. But that’s still easy compared to the feeling when you cross the street in the crazy traffic. That’s quite challenging but fun too.
And if you plan to visit some pagodas in Ho Chi Minh City, be prepared to be sandwiched in the crowd, especially on the first and the fifteenth day in the lunar calendar. You may have a similar experience when visiting local markets at both day and night. People seem to rush at any time, but that is like the breath of big cities. You find it overwhelmed at first and then really fall into all lovely chaos the country has to offer.
7. Budget-friendly services
It’s easy to become a millionaire in Vietnam and that is literally true. 50 USD is already over 1 million VND. So, you can stretch your dollars far and enjoy the best budget-friendly services in this country. With the same amount of money, you get 5-star facilities from a top-notch resort in Vietnam instead of a 3-star accommodation in New York. And don’t surprise when someone says that they just spend under 20 USD a day in Vietnam. That’s just how more and more tourists fall in love with Vietnam.
Even in big cities like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, you can save a lot if you know where to eat. However, that does not mean you end up with something at low quality. The food is still good and if you master the art of bargaining, you can get your favorite items at the price you want. Everything in Vietnam is flexible and adaptable to your taste and your budget.
8. Where tradition meets modernity
Vietnam is a place where the old meets the new, and each moment leaves you in awe. Hoi An’s ancient architecture for vintage lovers, Hue’s majestic imperial tombs for history enthusiasts, Hanoi’s thousand years of civilization for culture vulture — The old Vietnam is a true treasure trove. Ho Chi Minh’s soaring skyscrapers, Danang’s stylish bridges, Nha Trang’s world-class resorts — The new Vietnam is changing day by day.
Well, you don’t have to travel across Vietnam to experience the mix of tradition and modernity. Even a city itself embraces both history, custom and the innovative. You can get all with a Hanoi full day city tour or Ho Chi Minh full day city tour. That’s a rare opportunity to learn about culture, history and experience locals’ way of life if you have short of time.
9. Vibrant nightlife
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💁🏻♀️Bui Vien Street is the main street of the so called ‘backpackers area’ of Ho Chi Minh City. Here you find a wide variety of inexpensive restaurants, bars, souvenir shops and hotels/hostels. While being seated at one of the places you can soak up the local lifestyle and culture. You can shop, dine and party on Bui Vien Street. 📸 by @masa_zip 📷 Check link in bio to get more information! 📍 http://sdisco.net/ 📌 https://www.instagram.com/sdisco.vietnam/ #sdiscovietnam #vietnam #discovervietnam #vietnamtravel #visitvietnam #vietnamtrip #asia #southeastasia #street #streetstyle #travel #travelling #hochiminhcity #hanoi #walkingstreet #buivien #danang #nhatrang #sapa #nightlife
Saigon nightlife experiences around Bui Vien Street are some of the main reasons why so many people make the trip to Vietnam year after year. But it’s not only in Saigon that you can get unforgettable memories when night comes. If you look for something wild and crazy, soak up the night at Ta Hien Street in Hanoi. If you are more into something laid-back, let your soul float along the Hoai River in Hoi An Ancient Town with lantern festivals.
When you are not surrounded by the city’s electric lights, you can light up the night with relaxing activities somewhere else. An overnight cruise at Halong Bay to experience the bay after the sunset or a night squid fishing should be included in your Vietnam bucket list. You may be confused to find a reason to fall in love with Vietnam at day or at night. That’s gonna be tough.
10. Coffee culture
Coffee in Vietnam is more than a traditional beverage, it’s a crucial part of locals’ daily life. Vietnamese people drink coffee to appreciate the coffee culture that has rooted in the nation a long time ago. They enjoy coffee differently than the rest of the world. Only in Vietnam and nowhere else can you see how traditional “ca phe phin” (filter coffee) and “ca phe trung” (egg coffee) are made.
If you want to experience something authentic then sit on plastic stools, sipping iced coffee and watching people walk by the dusty streets. That’s also a great idea to drink coffee in style in a country that every drip of coffee is treasured. In such a fast pace life that waiting for the coffee to drip slowly down into the cup sounds annoying, you will find it worth your time when you enjoy it.
Vietnam is a country full of energy with an intoxicating blend of the old and the new. Of course, it can be also frustrating at times as you may get stuck in some chaos, but that is a part of the charm that makes you fall in love with Vietnam. While every country certainly has its faults, you can trust that the amazing Vietnam’s good points outweigh the demerits and you will have a journey to remember for good.
Trinh Tran written for Maika Tours
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