25 top things you should know when planning a trip to Vietnam

25 top things you should know when planning a trip to Vietnam

You are planning a vacation to Vietnam and don't know where to start? Reading this local share on "25 top things to know before travelling to Vietnam" could do you some helpful assistance and good preparation to plan well for your Vietnam trips : from travel procedures to enter Vietnam, travel cost plan, cutural insights, alert scams to mind.........

25 must-noted things you should know when travelling to Vietnam.

Travelling to a new country is an interesting travel experience getting to know that country’s attractions, its history, local people and its cultures.If you are planning to visit Vietnam, do some preparations in mind for your Vietnam hoildays about those 25 essential things you should know when travelling to Vietnam

A.Vietnam’s general travel information.

1.Ideal time to visit Vietnam.

To enjoy the most beautiful hidden charms of Vietnam in your trip, it is right to do it in the ideal time of the year when the weather is good.

Between the November of this year and the April of next year is the best time to visit Vietnam – the period of lowest rainfall in the year.Meanwhile it is a little cool in the north & quite dry in the south. This time is considered as the high season of foreign tourists travelling to Vietnam so you should plan to book the service in advance to make sure about the availabilty.

Ban Luoc village Hoang Su Phi

Stunning landscapes in Hoang Su Phi district- Ha Giang

Another choice is travelling between April & June, it is warmer with more sunshines & clear view so you can expect to get nice photos of Halong bay & Sapa.It is also the time of Vietnam school holidays, Vietnamese families will spend much of their vacations on beaches or high-land resorts for fresh & cool air.

2.Visa to enter Vietnam.

Getting Vietnam visa on arrival is quite convenient now and you can request to get it online.If you are from the ASIAN countries, you are allowed to enter Vietnam for a specific period that does not require visa application.This exception visa policy was also recently applied for the residents of France, Gemany, Italy, Spain, UK for less than 15 days to promote Vietnam tourism industry since 2015. You can read this article more about visa exception & how to get visa on arrival

Vietnam visa to enter Vietnam

Visa form to enter Vietnam

3.Learn some useful Vietnamese phrases.

Although English has been spoken increasingly in big cities in Vietnam, many Vietnamese can't use this foreign language for communication in rural & remote areas of Vietnam.Therefore, learning some simple phrases of Vietnamese languages will be fairly useful to you when travelling to Vietnam, it could give you some advantages- easier to interact with the locals in your journey.

You can keep in mind those simple phrases :

·         Greet & introduce your yourselves : Xin chào, tôi là ( your name)

·         Thank you : Cảm ơn

·         Sorry/ Excuse me : Xin lỗi

·         Bye bye : Tạm biệt.

·         Please, help : Xin hãy giúp tôi

4.Security & alert scams to be noted in Vietnam.

Considered as the safetest country with its political stability, Vietnam has become an attracting destination among travellers in recent years. Visiting Vietnam, you no need to worry about terrorism or demonstration.However, some scams & thefts still happen,especially in touristy areas so be alert about these Vietnam common scams & thefts to protect your belongings & valuable assets well.

Scams with street vendor

Sort of scams selling T-shirt of street vendor

5.Be careful with Vietnam’s crazy traffic.

The traffic in Vietnam is quite crazy with a lot of motorbikes in big cities, but you need to make accustomed to it when tripping to Vietnam.Steps by steps, you will get the skills of crossing the streets and manage your journey well.When crossing the roads, it isn't as bad as you might think of. Firstly,you just follow the traffic lights & pedestrian crossing signs, then when you crossing, go slowly & firmly (not run or in hesitance) with a look and eye contacts, the motorbikes will get your right movement and avoid the space for you.

Street crossing skills

Street crossing in Hanoi

6.Cover up  when visiting worshipping & memorial places.

Vietnam is a country of multi- religions with a number of temples & pagodas.If you're planning to visit one of those religious places, make sure to put on the appropriate clothes or bring an extra shirt along to cover the shoulders.This is also requested when paying a visit to Ho Chi Minh complex dedicated to Ho Chi Minh- the former president of Vietnam.Remember that you are visiting religious & memorial places and therefore you should follow the local regulations to show respect and wear the type of clothing that is expected in the local area.

B.Historical & cultural symbols of Vietnam.

7.National flower - symbolic lotus.

In fact, there has been no flower offically announced as the national flower in Vietnam.However, when being asked about Vietnam’s  national flower, most of Vietnamese  think of lotus flower because lotus has long been recognized as the symbol of purity and beauty, and it has been appeared in almost anywhere in Vietnam from long-lasting architecture, interesting poetry to the logo of modern brand names. That is the reason why majority of Vietnamese take lotus as the national flower.

8.Ao dai & conical hat–the traditional symbols for Vietnamese women’s beauty

As the most beautiful & delicate national costumes of Vietnam, Ao dai has made its fame all over the world.Ao dai has had a long history and changed into many shapes and forms before reaching today’s design.A long traditional dress & a conical hat are typical symbols of Vietnamese woman’s beauty.

Ao Ai & Non La Vietnam

Long traditional dress & conical hat for in Miss Vietnam Contest

9.Water Puppet – unique Vietnamese performance

Unique to Vietnam, water puppet show was created by Vietnamese peasants in Red River delta and become the national folk art nowadays.The art of water puppet lies at the puppet controlling skills, folk musics and the stage decoration.It is a must-see performance on your visit to Vietnam.

10.Historical figures –the nation’s heroes

Mentioning about Vietnam’s key figures, there are some people you should know about in our history.Dynasty of Hung Kings is considered as the first governmental reign of Vietnam, Trung Sisters are the lady Kings fighting against Chinese invaders, while Ngo Quyen, Tran Hung Dao, Ly Thuong Kiet, Nguyen Trai, Quang Trung are famous heroes who led the nation struggling against the northern invations and gained great victories. In modern history, Ho Chi Minh President and Vo Nguyen Giap General were memorized for their great leadership of Vietnamese in the wars with France & the United States.You should get yourselves familiarize with these figures since they are who Vietnamese people pay much of their respect to and we expect tourists doing the same.

C.Travel Expences – good to know about the local currency, shopping culture, tips & travel cost

11.Bring some cashes along your trip & know how to differentiate the notes

Although bank transactions or online payment are growing in Vietnam, the use of cash still dominates the market.Moreover, many small local shops or street vendors donot offer the bank card payment, thus you should always bring with yourselves some cash.The Vietnamese money is quite easy to get confused so you should get used to different note values and differentiate them since some of the notes are of the same color but with a large difference in value.This is one of important things you should know before travelling to Vietnam

Vietnamese Dong - VND

VND - different note values

12.Bargain when shopping in local markets

The prices in local markets or in some shops are not stated so bargain is a must when doing shopping in Vietnam.In many cases, when selling to the foreigners, some sellers say a very high price, especially in Hanoi old quarter, Ben Thanh market or night market areas, shopping skills should be applied well ( shop around a few shops to get the good deals).If you know this thing before travelling to Vietnam, don’t be surprised why Vietnamese bargain all the time

13.Tips for the good service delivered.

Tipping is one of the things you should know when travelling to Vietnam.Depending on the situation & the services, giving a tip will be flexibly applied.If you have a rice noodle in a local restaurant, giving tips is not compulsory, you just need to pay what you order. However, if you are really satisfied with their service, you can tip about 10% of the receipt.We would like to say that “whether you tip or the amount of tips greatly depends on the service that you are delivered”.In the case of staff in the tourism & hospitality industry ( driver, guide, porter, waiter…..), tips are highly appreciated because much of their income depends on your tips.

14.The cost of travelling in Vietnam.

It depends on your trip duration & the service that you use so the cost of travelling will be different drastically from budget to luxury ones. To have a comfortable trip in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh city, you may need to spend around 70 usd- 130 usd/ day including the hotel fee, food, transportation and expences for some sightseeing around.

D.Vietnam’s religions & its ancestor worshipping cultures.

15.Ancestor worshipping – the route of Vietnamese culture

Ancestor worshipping is a popularly cultural aspect in Vietnam.In Vietnam, whether someone follow a religion or not, he always has an altar to worship  his ancestor at home.In special events of family such as wedding, new year celebration…., people in the family often pay a visit to the ancestor’s graves inviting the deads home to celebrate the events with the family.That is among the most interesting culture you should know when travelling to Vietnam

The altar for the ancestor worship

Vietnamese ancestor worshipping culture

16.Buddhism – the biggest religion in Vietnam.

Buddhism is the biggest religion in Vietnam with 80% of population regarding Buddhish belief as their way of life : reincarnation, causal theory, diet eating….. Whether following Buddhism or not, Vietnamese have always had a good attitude toward this religion and most of Vietnamese go temples & pagoda on special occasions

17.The harmorny of all religions.

Besides Buddhism, there are many other religions coexisting in Vietnam such as Christianity, Islam, Caodaism….. Though being different in philosophies & practices, all the religions stay in harmorny, and each of them has their own religious place & practices which are well supported by the government.

E.Vietnam attractions to visit in your Vietnam trip.

18.Beautiful & natural landscapes.

Vietnam is a beautiful country with long coastal lines where are with pristine beaches, bays & geogous islands that you can expect to have relaxed beach vacations in tropical climate : Nha Trang beach & bay, Phu Quoc island, Mui Ne, Halong bay…. Moreover, three fourth of Vietnam are mountains so the landscapes are really spectacular, you can indulge yourselves in nature with trekking, biking funs and homestaying in local villages in Sapa, Ha Giang, Mu Cang Chai, Pu Luong….. You can read more about Vietnam’s highlighted travel destinations from our website.

Vietnam beautiful Landscapes

Sapa beauty in rice harvest time

19.Historical & cultural monuments

The country has undergone so many wars for more than a thousand years, there are many of  museums & monuments in Vietnam.In addition, you can pay a visit to other museums about the arts, ethnology, geology or cultural facts.If you love to hide yourself from the hot sun, you can explore those museums & monuments getting to know more about Vietnam’s history & cultures in details

20.Religious architectures

As we mentioned earlier, Vietnam has many religions and their own religious practice places with asmazing designs.You can find here ancient pagodas, temples, churches, mosques and so on. There are some welknown religious places you can pay a visit to such as Duc Ba Cathedral (Ho Chi Minh city), Big Church, One Pillar pagoda ( Hanoi city) , Thien Mu pagoda (Hue)

Vuong Chi Sinh Palace in Bac Ha

Nice architecture of  Vuong Chi Sinh Palace in Bac Ha region

21.Bars, pubs, coffee shops with live musics.

If you are looking for a place of some music, dancing and drinking, there are many of bars, night clubs available in the big city like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh or Da Nang awaiting for you.Besides, you can take part in local coffee shops with live music performances (Jazz, rock, pop ..)  performed by passionate singers and music bands….

F.Foods & drinks in Vietnam.

23. Food hygiene  to care for the first time visitor to Vietnam.

If you are the first time you do the trip to Vietnam, you should pay attention to the food that you will eat.You may have stomachage and ruin the rest of your trip, especially when your stomach is not in a good condition.It is better to choose the best-rated restaurants ( even street food stalls- highly voted as the good ones) for your dinning.Those ones are not only supplying good dishes but aslo delivering good service.

24.Avoid drinking tap water.

Not the same as Euroupean or American countries, tap water in Vetnam are not ok to drink directly if not being boiled.In your Vietnam journey, you should buy mineral water bottles ( Aquafina or La Vie brand) from the convenient stores and bring along your trip.

Tap Water in VN

The tab water should not be drunk in Vietnam if not boiling

25.Popular foods & drinks to try in Vietnam.

Vietnam foods & drinks are highly rated & loved among international tourists making their trips to Vietnam.

Travelling to Vietnam, Nem (sprill rolls), Pho ( noudle with beef or chicken), Bun Cha (Grilled pork with rice noodle)…. are the dishes you should try in your dining !You can get reference at top dishes to try in Vietnam

Besides the foods, the drinks you should try when making atrip to Vietnam are Vietnamese coffees, Bia Hoi Hanoi ( Hanoi draught beer), Tra Da ( Ice green tea), Fresh Coconut Juise……, which will help to refesh & cool your thirst during your walking tours around the city

Vietnam Vacations with Golden Holiday Travel.

As a local licensed travel company in Vietnam, we always make our efforts to publish the useful travel tips & guides on our blogs with the hope of doing some help to our travelers planning the trips to Vietnam.Above are our local share on 25 essential things you should know when travelling to Vietnam, you can get a good reference of.In need of travel consultancy or travel support with Vietnam travel packages or car rental in Vietnam, please, email us to goldenholidaytravel.vn@gmail.com or contact us at +84.988451530 (viber, whatsapp, sms), our travel specialists will promtly assist you for your memorable trip in Vietnam

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