Vietnam’s Best 10 Holidays Listed By Global Traveler Magazine
WHERE’S your next holiday?
If you’re following the experts’ recommendations, the answer will likely be Vietnam.
Viet Nam is a cultural wonderland with a vast history influenced by the Chinese, French, and Americans. The country has 2000 miles of spectacular coastline, with topography ranging from mountainous jungles to white sand beaches, and rice paddies to rainforests.
Hanoi is arguably Asia’s most charming capital city. Hanoi, meaning ‘where the river bends’ is a city of broad, tree-lined boulevards, elegant French villas and colonial-era buildings painted in muted hues of yellow and orange. It is also one of Asia’s greenest cities with an abundance of parks and lakes as well as a host of cafes and art galleries and an Old Quarter steeped in history. The city’s most interesting places for tourists are all relatively close to each other, which makes it easy to enjoy the best parts of the city on foot or by cyclo. You could probably explore well-known landscape in Hanoi such as Ho Chi Minh complex, Literature Temple, One Pillar Pagoda, Sword Lake, West Lake, History Museum, Flag Pole, Ancient city, …
2, Ha Long Bay
Halong Bay is the most popular tourist destination and one of the most beautiful places in Vietnam because of its unusual rock formations, islands and caves such as the famous Thien Canh Son cave, Kissing Rocks, Sung Sot Grotto (Surprises cave), Hoang Tan Island, Hon Trong Mai, Bai Tho Mountain, Thien Cung grotto (Heavenly Cave) and Cat Hai Island. The most beautiful landscape is Bai Tu Long Bay and Lan Ha Bay.
Halong Bay has twice been recognized by UNESCO as a World Natural Heritage Area for its exceptional scenic beauty and outstanding geological and geomorphic values. In 2012, the New 7 Wonders Foundation officially named Halong Bay as one of new seven natural wonders of the world. Halong Bay is also a member of the Club of the Most Beautiful Bays of the World.
3, Sapa moutain
Sapa is one of the most breathtaking hill stations in Vietnam which reflects the signature of French architecture and colorful hill tribal cultures. This is home to stunning mountain landscapes, verdant rice terraces, unique stilt villages and Indochina peak, the Fansipan mountain.
The scenery of the Sapa region in large part reflects the relationship between the ethnic minority people and nature. This is seen especially in the paddy fields carpeting the rolling lower slopes of the Hoang Lien Mountains. The impressive physical landscape, which underlies this, has resulted from the work of the elements over thousands of years, wearing away the underlying rock.
Sapa is such as Ham Rong Mountain, Silver Waterfall, Rattan Bridge, Bamboo Forest and Ta Phin Cave.
On approaching the town, the very first thing tourists may find is the detached wooden mansions and villas perched on top or side of the hills, behind thick pine forests, hided by fog in the morning. Old and new villas with red roofs now appear and then disappear in the green rows of pomu trees, bringing in the beauty of European towns.
4, Ba Be Lake and national park
Ba Be Lake lies in the middle of the vast limestone mountain range of Ba Be National Park, surrounded by cliffs with very original and attractive forms and shapes. Be Lake itself is actually three small lakes joined together – Pe Lam, Pe Lu and Pe Leng. The area was established as a national preserved forest and tourist center in 1978 and last year UNESCO recognized Ba Be Lake as the third Ramsar site in Vietnam – an important wetland of the world.
How many times did you heard about, read about and looked at hundreds of photos about the site in newspapers, magazines, television, forums and blogs, but you will be suprised by the intoxicating landscapes. Though influenced by the three rivers discharging water into the lake, the water remains clear blue which complements the green forests all around. The limestone mountain in varied shapes emerging amidst the immense lake made you feel like you are lost in a wonderland with many riddles of nature to be discovered. Sometimes, a couple of egrets hovered on the sky and or perched on trees’ peaks to complete the romantic and stunning scenery.
The still surface was roused by motorboats and the tranquility broken by laughs and voice of visitors, giving a breath of life to the ambiance. There were yells of travelers such as “Oh My God, where we are, in a fairyland or paradise?” or “Is it the real lake, how beautiful it is.”
5, Son Dong caves – Phong Nha caves – Paradise cave
Son Dong cave is the world’s largest cave, located in Quang Binh province. It is found by a local man named Ho Khanh in 1991 and was recently discovered in 2009 by British cavers, led by Howard Limbert. The name “Son Doong” cave means “mountain river cave“, It was created 2-5 million years ago by river water eroding away the limestone underneath the mountain Where the limestone was weak, the ceiling collapsed creating huge skylights…
Phong Nha cave is the second world’s largest cave, located in Quang Binh province. After almost 20 years of tourism development in Phong Nha, tourists now have the opportunity to experience all seven outstanding features of Phong Nha Cave, as listed by the British Royal Cave Explorers’ Society. These include:
– Cave with a high and wide door
– Cave with the most beautiful sand and reefs
– Cave with the most beautiful underground river
– Cave with the most magnificent system of stalactites
– Cave with dry, high and wide chambers
– Cave with a beautiful, deep and wide lake
– The longest wet cave.
Paradise Cave discovered by scientists of the British Caving Research Association in 2005, has the length of 31km, the longest dry cave in Asia. With naturally primitive features, Paradise Cave looks like a landscape painting, making it very attractive to visitors. According to spelunkers, the deeper one journeys into the cave, the more one feels the wells of heavenly clarity all around. There are a series of white crystal stalactites resembling glass pillars and many other spectacular formations.
6, Hue citadel
Hue has been chosen to be the capital city of the Southern Kingdom by all Nguyen Lords and officially became the capital under Tay Son’reign. For approximately 400 years, Hue has become a great landscape and architectural site. Hue’ royal complex has been officially recognized by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site (1993).
Situated on the Northern bank of the Perfume River, with an area of 500 ha and a system of three circles of ramparts, namely from outside to inside: Kinh Thanh (Capital Citadel), Hoang Thanh (Royal Citadel) and Tu Cam Thanh (Forbidden Citadel).
The Ngu Binh Mountain in the South is used as a front screening elevation. The Con Hen and Con Da Vien (both are sand dunes) on the Perfume River are chosen as geomancy condition “dragon on the left, tiger on the right” to protect the capital city.
7, Hoi An Ancient Town
Hoi An is an old town down the Thu Bon River, on the coastal plain of Quang Nam Province, about 30 km south of Danang City.The architecture of Hoi An, which is almost entirely of wood, is of considerable interest. It combines traditional Vietnamese designs and techniques with those from other countries, above all China and Japan, whose citizens settled there to trade and built houses and community centres to their own designs.
Hoi An is also known as a shopping paradise that attracts tourists towards its wonderful souvenirs, handicrafts, antique pieces, silk materials and art paintings, and so on. Hoi An old town with colorful lanterned nights, with cristinely old plain houses and special mysterious cultural elements, and with the etiquette & culturally hospitable and friendly people are warmly welcoming you.
8, Nha Trang
Nha Trang is Vietnam’s most famous seaside resort-town and its most prominent scuba diving destination. Nha Trang is also known for the best weather in Vietnam. The city is bordered by beautiful mountains and an amazing, long beach along a bay impressively dotted with many scenic islands. It offers plenty to tourists – from island-hopping boat trips, scuba diving and many other water sports, trekking, mudbaths, historic sites to golf.
Nha Trang is famous for its culinary specialties like fresh seafood and barbecued pork rolled in rice paper, which are available in many restaurants in Nha Trang. In addition, the swallow’s nest soup – with bird’s nests collected from the wild, is regarded as the best in Vietnam.
9, Phu Quoc Island
Phu Quoc is an almost unknown destination in Vietnam. This peaceful tropical paradise, floats in the warm turquoise waters in the Gulf of Thailand, 50kms from the Vietnamese mainland and a 50 minute flight from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).
Nowadays, Phu Quoc is becoming well known for stunning beaches, untouched natural environment, the easy going and relaxed atmosphere, friendly locals, and fantastic scuba diving and snorkelling.
Phu Quoc is blessed with favourable natural environment like the virgin forest of over 37,000 hectares, white sandy beaches, coral gardens offshore, varieties of wildlife species, so it is not hard Long Beach, Phu Quocto see why the island has great tourist potential.
10, Ho Chi Minh city (Saigon)
The flagship city of Vietnam in terms of economic development and international exposure, Ho Chi Minh City is a truly happening city. The central area of District 1 is imposing with its high-rise buildings, shopping centers as well as other entertainments such as restaurants, café shops, and bars. China Town in District 5 is a contrasting destination with colorful lanterns and exotic Chinese shop-houses that date back at least 40 years ago. Historical heritages such as Reunification Palace and War Remnants museum will let you step into the epic history of Gia Dinh or Sai Gon. Furthermore, Ho Chi Minh City boasts its diversely flavorful cuisine as good foods from all regions concentrate here. In the menu, some of the must-try are Banh Xeo Nam Bo, Bun Bo Hue, snails and seafood…
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