Come, let us introduce you to the lovely country of Vietnam. Though riddled with war wounds from the Vietnam War, this country is scenic and breath-taking with its beaches, museums, rivers, historical landmarks, Buddhist pagodas coupled with its dizzying busy cities and vibrant culture with palatable food. One after another, we are going to take you to the must-see destinations of Vietnam.
1. The Ha Long Bay
Blue turquoise waters dotted with massive limestone standing structures, and small docks summarise the Halong Bay. This bay is an absolute treat to the eyes with the soft green coat which drapes the tall standing limestone structures with a backdrop of the sea below and blue skies above. This being a typical tourist destination, with hundreds of tourists who visit by boat and may seem crowded despite its vast landscape..
2. Bai Tu Long Bay
Bai Tu Long Bay is just set a few miles away from Halong Bay by boat cruises. Comparatively less crowded, but equal in its jaw-dropping scenery. You can encounter uncrowded beaches and caves and come to dig your toes on the beach while feasting on super fresh and delicious seafood.
3. Mekong Delta
The pride of Vietnam, river Mekong trickles down at a voracious pace from the Tibetan Himalayas to a serene soft pace amidst stilted villages and rice paddy field islands. You can take a cargo boat ride and gaze out at the sight as the boat trudges through the chocolaty brown flow of the river.
4. Hang Son Doong
The province of Quang Binh is lined with majestic caves throughout its cover of barely penetrable jungles. One of the deepest caves of Hang Son Doong is a huge cavernous structure in which you could fit any NY skyscraper. You can descend into or trek around the cave by hiring a guide from the nearby town of Phong Nha.
5. Buon Ma Thuot – weasel coffee
Set in the central highlands of Vietnam, it’s a coffee aficionado’s paradise. Buon Ma Thuot is Vietnam’s huge coffee industry and home to Trung Nguyen who is the country’s biggest coffee maker. The must coffee is the weasel coffee which is Kopi Luwak’s counterpart, where the weasel eats the coffee berries, passes them because of which the beans bear a bitter unique taste.
6. Ho Chi Minh Museum
The Ho Chi Minh city museum stands witness to the bloody Vietnam war. The country has moved on from the past but this stands as a reminder to both sides of Vietnam, the blood feud that ensued. The museum though complete with photographs, artefacts and detailed history, is sensitive and kind in its approach.
7. Hoi An
This quaint little town consists of Japanese bridges, colonial-style houses, old canals and Chinese temples. It’s a sight for sore eyes on the New Years Eve when this town transforms into a colourful canvas for lanterns that line the river. It is a must experience for start of a new year.
8. Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum
The most famous and controversial figure at the same time is Ho Chi Minh. The mausoleum is home to a glass case in which his body is preserved. Opened in 1973, the departed leader who was lovingly called “Uncle Ho” welcomes visitors throughout the day free of charge.
9. Hue Imperial City
This UNESCO world heritage city is along the Perfume River is a collection of relics which dates back to the 19th century. It has a library, museum, temples, pagodas and a royal temple too. The site hosts hundreds of visitors, and it charges a premium price to them as well. It also plays host to traditional performances at different times during the day.
10. Cu Chi Tunnels
Cu Chi Tunnels are a huge war relic which gives you an insight on the Viet-Cong Era. The tunnels are 120kms long and were initiated when French were being fought to by the Viet Cong, Visitors can chamber through the claustrophobic tunnels, check out ammunition and see the meals soldiers ate.
The above said attractions are just a tip of the iceberg as far as Vietnam’s vast geography and the heritage that can be explored is concerned. It is a destination that deserves to make the list of every student backpacker, trekker and couples who might enjoy a good getaway.
Written by Lysha
You can catch-up with Lysha at Lalco Residency in Mumbai (Hotels in Mumbai Suburbs)