How to travel Vietnam in 2 weeks

22nd Apr 2018

Vietnam is a long country and most people travel north (from Hanoi) to south (Ho Chi Minh or Saigon) or vice versa. We started from Hanoi and going down towards Saigon. Vietnam visa for Indians is easy to get. Just take along an approval letter which you can get online for $10-15 and get visa on arrival at the airport for 30 days stay for $25 per head.

Photo of How to travel Vietnam in 2 weeks 1/1 by Sneha Thakare

Hanoi is the capital city and 3-4 days are enough in Hanoi. Just as most travellers we stayed in the Old quarter area near the old city gate for 1200 rs per night(breakfast included), you can also stay in hostels at much cheaper rate. Cafes, restaurants and markets are all in the vicinity and you can just walk and explore.I felt the restaurants in old quarter are slightly on the expensive side. You can buy sim cards and get all kinds of tours to Halong Bay from here. Best place to try Vietnamese coffee is in Hanoi. Also Hoan Kiem lake is just around old quarter so don't miss going there specially in the evening to get the vibe of the city. For a day we rented a bike from old quarter and visited main tourist spots which were a little further from where we stayed. We managed to cover Ho Chi Minh memorial , French quarters area , temple of literature etc. Check out details in my Hanoi video here. Also don't miss the weekend night market.

visit to the "Surprise cave" during Halong bay boat tour

Photo of Hanoi, Hoàn Kiếm, Hanoi, Vietnam by Sneha Thakare

Halong Bay tour is something that is a must do in Vietnam, however touristy it is. Tours range from $25 to $300 with different packages and activities.We booked our tour from the hotel at $200 for two people for 2 days 1 night on Seasun Cruise boat.Everything was very well managed including transfers from hotel and the best part was the food. Check the view and all the activities that we did on the boat in my video here to get a better visual idea.


Photo of Hạ Long Bay, Thành phố Hạ Long, Quảng Ninh, Vietnam by Sneha Thakare

We then decided to move to central part of Vietnam, so took an overnight train to Hue. Trains in Vietnam are great but remember to book seats in cabin for 4 people and not for 6. Also carry your own food and water in the train. 2 days are enough in Hue, the tombs and Citadel are main attraction here. We then moved to Da nang by bus which was pretty comfortable ride. We absolutely loved Da Nang. It is a great city to stay in. We rented a bike and roamed around also did a day tour on bike to Hoi An. Hoi An is must visit and you can do it in a day from Da Nang . I would suggest you to stay in Da Nang and not Hoi An. More on the places that we visited in Central Vietnam in my video here.

view from Marble mountains in Da Nang

Photo of Da Nang, Vietnam by Sneha Thakare

Final stop was Saigon or Ho Chi Minh city. Here all there is to see is in District 1. No bike or any transport needed. Walk around the city and explore it. We stayed in City Bagpackers hostel right at the District 1 square. And we managed to do a walking tour to cover all touristy spots here. Do visit the Ben Thanh market for all shopping to take back home.

Few tips if are going to Vietnam:

1. Do install Grab taxi app , so even if you don't book it through the app you will get a fair idea about the prices to your destination to negotiate with the driver.

2. Avoid buying from the ladies or guys carrying the basket on their shoulder, they charge you for a photo and sell you anything at a high price. Also they are quite persuasive so try to avoid them.

3. Do not rent a bike if you are not confident because Vietnam is full of crazy drivers with no rules. Directions or signals are not followed. Also be very very careful while crossing roads.

If you like my blog do tell me or feel free to ask me in comments for any more info and check out our Youtube Channel where we post all our travel videos !

Cheers !!!

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