Discover Vietnam through a series of posts in this travel blog. This is a country that definitely deserves a place on a travel bucket-list. We were swept away by its authenticity. Then, the friendliness of the locals topped with delicious food added to the overall impression.
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Why We Loved the Country
We crossed Vietnam by public transportation and have a lot to say about its convenient sleeper buses and other ways to travel on a budget. We visited some of the most tourist spots, such as Hanoi and Hoian. But we also managed to pay a visit to some of the locations that started accepting tourists fairly recently. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park was among such destinations.
This last destination will always live in our hearts due to one friendly local. When she learned that our bus to the next destination was leaving early in the morning, she brought us some fruits from her kitchen. “Locally-grown and very good, – she whispered. – You won’t find passion fruits as good as these anywhere else”.
We drove across cities by bikes and bicycles. Among our accommodations were both the hotels and friendly small homestays. We did not miss a day without having some delicious Vietnamese coffee. And though the trip is over, one thing we are always looking for (hopelessly) back home is those small family cafes. The ones where you can pull out a small plastic chair and have a bowl of delicious Pho.
Things to Know Before Visiting Vietnam
Best time to visit: It depends on where in the country you want to go. North of Vietnam is warmer in spring. Although, we were there in January, and enjoyed the comfortable cool weather. We did, however, have to skip Sapa as it was too cold and foggy. If you would like to travel through the entire country without missing any important landmarks, then spring and early fall are the most convenient seasons.
Currency: Vietnamese dong
Visa: Vietnam asks for travelers from most of the countries to have a visa. You can have it on arrival, but prior to that, you will need to file for an invitation with one of the local travel agencies.
Daily Budget: On average, get ready to spend from a minimum of 27 USD per day, with the cost of accommodations, meals, and basic attractions included.