by Female Abroad

Vietnam is a stunning nation that has a rich history with lots of culture, temples, palaces, and lush green scenery. It has rapidly developed into a top travel destination, bringing in thousands of tourists each year from all over the world. One of the easiest ways to explore the country is to take a tour as there is always a lot to see and do and you might be interested in exploring the temples or relaxing on the world-class beaches but you are not sure how to arrange it yourself. Here are our top places to visit in Vietnam with what we would do while there.

Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon)

Ho Chi Minh City is a pulsating, bustling, lively business centre as well as a well-liked destination for tourists seeking some much-needed retail, restaurant, or bar therapy. This is also the city that you are most likely to fly into if you are going to be exploring the south of the country.

Top Activity

Golf: Ho Chi Minh is starting to become a quality golfing destination. On the nearby golf courses, top Vietnamese players like Tran Naht and Thai Duong have honed their swings on the top 18-hole stretches may be found in Ho Chi Minh. If you want to play with the best, the more challenging course is Go Vap, you'll need to have strong driving and pitching skills to win.


The second-largest city in Vietnam is Hanoi, which receives the most tourists out of any city in the country. Affordable prices for both accommodation and shopping are a big draw but the best way to immerse yourself in the city's history and culture is to stay in the Old Quarter. One thin to note is that because it is such a busy city, you will need to keep your eyes open for motorbikes that go swerving and zooming through the streets! The city itself features a ton of museums and is also a great jumping off point if you want to explore nature as some of the country's most stunning lakes and authentic culture are easily accessible from here like Halong Bay and Sapa.

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Getting out into Nature: venture outside to discover the region's breathtaking scenery with Cuc Phuong National Park being among the best places to explore due to it being home to a variety of local bird and animal species.

Halong Bay / Ha Long Bay

When you arrive in Halong Bay, the stunning granite rock formations and crystal-clear waters will mesmerize you.

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Boating: If you can, hire a boat for the day and tour the more than 2,000 little islands that encircle the bay if you are fortunate enough to travel to this region.

Snorkeling: Most visitors swim in the crystal-clear waters to take in the marine life and closely examine each rock formation. There are also a number of caves that are perfect for swimming to checkout the colourful underwater life.

Hoi An

If you are interested in history then the UNESCO World Heritage site of Hoi An is the place you need to go! This town is an extremely well preserved port city dates back to the 15th century and has collected a variety of architecture styles along the way like wooden Chinese shophouses to colourful French colonial buildings, to Japanese pagodas, Vietnamese tub houses, and more.

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Sunbathing: Since it is found on the coast it is also home to some gorgeous beaches with crystal clear water and pristine sand.

Looking for Coloured Lanterns along the Canals: Besides the array of architecture, Hoi An is also known for its array of coloured lanterns with each colour representing a different goal / wish.


This historical region, situated on a river in the middle of the nation, is home to a magnificent citadel and is one of the must visit regions for not only just history lovers but architecture lovers too. It is also a great place to also visit Hoi An from.

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Taking in the Architecture: with some of the most breathtaking architecture from a variety of centuries, really makes this purple city worthy of a walk around.

Sa Pa / Sapa

If you are interested in authentic local life then another must-visit location in the country is Sapa, which lies in the northwest. If you have seen of photos of breath-taking landscapes and rice terraces when you google Vietnam, then you are most likely looking at photos of Sapa. While in town you have the chance to take in things like the Sunday Market (Bac Ha market), visiting Love Waterfall, or taking the cable car on Fansipan Mountain.

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Hiking: This traditional market town is surrounded by mountains and rolling green hills which make it a haven for outdoor adventurers as you will be astounded by the breathtaking vistas that greet you after you ascend one of their many mountains, which are particularly popular with hikers and walkers.

Tour Suggestions

Ethical cultural trekking and homestay by ETHOS: Ideal for travelers interested in cultural immersions, this private 2-day trek through the Sapa Valley includes a homestay in a village set among rice paddies. Spend the first day hiking an easy nine miles (14 kilometers) through rice paddies and villages, stopping to cook and share lunch with your host family. Spend the following morning hiking to a destination of your choosing before taking a taxi back to Sapa.

Fansipan Trekking: Hike up to the top of the highest mountain in the region with a professional, English-speaking guide to lead the way. The journey is roughly 7.75 miles (12.5 km) in each direction, and you will have the option to either take a cable car back down (for a fee) or descend via the same route you used to get to the top.

Muong Hoa Valley - Sapa Trekking Villages: Stray from the beaten path and discover a side of northern Vietnam that most first-time visitors miss on a trekking tour of Sapa and the Moa Huong Valley. So that you can hike at a pace that suits you, group numbers are limited to only eight people. Plus, you can choose from three different durations depending on your fitness level and time limits.

Da Lat / Dalat

Da Lat is the last destination I'll talk about in this article. It is another well-liked tourist attraction in Vietnam due to the French Colonial buildings, tall pine trees, and a wealth of natural beauty that can all be found here. Plus the numerous restaurants and a vibrant nightlife also helps.

Top Activity

White Water Rafting: It is extremely popular as Da Lat is one of the few places in the country where you can partake in it. If you are a beginner, the knowledgeable guides will show you the finer points of balanced rowing and urge you to explore the lovely inlets.

White-Water Rafting and Visit Peaceful Countryside: Da Lat is the adventure capital of Vietnam, so there’s no better place to experience high-octane activities than there. Combine adventure with culture during a tour that includes a white-water rafting experience and a tour of agricultural villages. No previous rafting experience is required to enjoy this tour.

Tour Suggestions

Da Lat's Countryside & Waterfalls: Discover the incredible nature and culture around Da Lat on this full-day private motorcycle tour. After meeting your driver-guide at your accommodation, you’ll jump on the back of the motorcycle and zip off on a whirlwind adventure around Da Lat’s stunning countryside, visiting waterfalls and local communities and learning about handicrafts, produce, and daily life in the mountains.

Elephant Falls & Pongour Falls: Experience the natural beauty and fascinating history and culture of Da Lat on this motorcycle adventure tour. A private tour for individuals and groups—each person on the back of a motorcycle with an experienced driver—this full-day trip takes you from the mountain city out into the countryside, where you’ll explore rural villages and temples, visit some stunning waterfalls, and relax by paradise lake.

Canyoning/Snapling/Rappeling: Canyoning tour program in Dalat Vietnam is an activity that includes abseiling, sliding the water, jumping down the waterfalls, hiking and swimming. You’ll need some special skills for abseiling but it isn’t very difficult. Professionally trained guides (Canyoning experts) will show you the ropes and prepare you for the journey down the waterfalls. Canyoning experts will train you on how to set the rope for the descent and how to abseil safely in an easy way. You will learn the basics of knot tying, harness wearing and abseiling techniques.

Things to Note

Getting into the Country

You must have a current passport in order to travel to this lovely nation and most people will require a Visa to enter, most Visa's are valid for 30 days which is more than enough time to take in all that this amazing region has to offer. You may also need to show COVID vaccination status, have a set amount of travel insurance with specific coverages so make sure to check all entry requirements at the time of booking and then keep an eye on them as your trip gets closer since things can change in the blink of an eye.

Extending your Visa

Once visitors enter this lovely nation, many of them don't want to leave but it is crucial to maintain your legal status by avoiding overstaying your visa. The 30-day visa you acquired from the Vietnam embassy only allows you to visit the country for that time frame so if you wish to extend your stay to take advantage of more of what the nation has to offer, you must apply for an extension. To do so, apply for an extension at the embassy as you might be granted another thirty days to carry out your exploration.

Travelling Around the Country

If you prefer to do some self exploration most residents use motorcycles but there are a lot of accidents especially as road speeds increased, making public transportation (aka the bus) or a car the safest way to get around while you're visiting. Using public transportation can help prevent you from spending your holiday in a hospital bed!