Last updated on April 3, 2024 by Stefano Ferro, founder of MEL365, following extensive travelling in Vietnam

Where to stay in Vietnam – TOP 10 Areas with itineraries

This guide will assist you in answering the important question of where to stay in Vietnam.

The best part?

It covers not just the beach and Halong Bay but also the best places to stay in Vietnam to enjoy amazing attractions such as trekking, motorbiking through incredible mountains and valleys, snorkelling and diving, street and travel photography and so much more.

I will also mention where over-tourism has had an impact and how to work around that.

And if you are planning to travel through a few places I will show you also a Vietnam itinerary in 2 weeks, 10 days and for just 7 days.

And you know the best? It’s all updated to this year (no old stuff)

But let’s start with it.

Great start of the day in a fishing village in Vietnam
Great start of the day in Hoi An

Best area to stay in Vietnam with a map

As you can guess, there is no best area to stay in Vietnam. It’s really up to your interests. Are you after the historical sites? Are you more into a week of sunbathing with occasional snorkelling? Or are you into some action? 

You may also consider dividing your stay between places. There is a great bus network that will take you literally everywhere you want. Moreover, the train, especially between Da Nang and Hanoi, has an amazing view (considered to be one of the best routes in the world).

Best areas to stay in Vietnam
Best areas to stay in Vietnam

From North to South (check the map for approx location)

  • Hanoi: this is the capital city of Vietnam and, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful cities in the world for travel and city photography. Not visiting Hanoi is like staying in Italy without visiting Rome. It can be done but you are going to miss something. Try to book one of the two flights (arriving, departing) from there.
  • Sapa (or Sa Pa): this area of Vietnam, right in the north-west of the country, can be really outstanding, with unique rice fields to spend a few days trekking and meeting people from the local villages. I said it could be because tourism has now arrived on mass and you need to be selective about your activities (more on this later).
  • Ha Giang: a still “unknown” destination. In my opinion, the best area to stay in Vietnam to experience real local life. It can be visited with local buses, cars or motorbikes. I personally suggest renting a scooter (with or without a driver). It was one of my best experiences in life. I will let the photos/video talk about the Ha Giang Province. Keep reading.
  • Ha Long Bay: one of the most scenic regions in the world. Sadly now also one of the most tourist parts of our planet. Try to book an extended visit, at least 2 nights, so that you can explore areas away from the huge mass of day trippers.
  • Ninh Binh: just 2 hours by train south of Hanoi. Such an easy destination. Expect beautiful valleys with rivers winding through the limestone mountains. It’s quite often described as the Ha Long Bay without the sea.
  • Phong Nha Ke Bang: a great place to stop along the north to south route. This place is an amazing valley with some of the widest caves in the world. Just remember to book your entrance to the main cave well in advance as tickets are very well limited.
  • Hue: the salty coffee was one of my highlights there (a must-try). The city itself is nothing to write home about. There are two main attractions, the Imperial City (over 200 years old) and access to the DMZ area (day tour of the demilitarized zone in the Vietnam-American war) and the underground town made of tunnels built during the war
  • Da Nang: it’s a city with a big population (1.2M) right in the middle of Vietnam. This is one of the top spots in the country for surfing, very easygoing too. You can rent all your gear at the beach. From Da Nang, you can organise day trips to a few attractions of which Hoi An is the most popular one.
  • Hoi An: also called the Ancient City of Lanterns. The town is lovely, and it has everything you would ask for, amazing old streets, hidden tiny alleys and lanes, fantastic cafes, lovely street food, a great morning market, and a beach not too far from it. There is however a drawback, mass tourism, but you can work around it.
  • Nha Trang: personally, I do not see Nha Trang as a destination, a place to stay in Vietnam for the entire vacation unless you are only after a nightlife scene with beach access (but still). It’s a place you may want to stop along the Hoi An to Saigon route, just to have a day break.
  • Dalat: if you need some days at a cooler temperature then Dalat is the place to go. Set high in the mountain it offers a perennial spring season with a nice coffee scene and access to a few coffee plantations too. This is a destination more popular with Vietnamese tourists than foreigners.
  • Ho Chi Minh City: the widely known city of Saigon is the financial capital of the country, with the largest population too. It can be a bit overwhelming and it does not have the character of Hanoi, however, it’s a great base to explore also the Mekong Delta and the Cu Chi Tunnels
  • Phu Quoc: described as a paradise by most Vietnamese, Phu Quoc is suffering a bit these days. The island itself has some beautiful beaches and if you are in a resort you will enjoy it. Otherwise, get ready to clean up the plastic, all around. A real pity, especially considering the heaven it used to be.

You may have noticed I have listed 10 areas/towns/cities, actually 13 of them. That’s because, with any new trip, I discover amazing gems I love to share, like the Ha Giang Province.

You can also check the interactive Google map of the best areas to stay in Vietnam here.

Isolated beaches of Vietnam
Isolated beaches of Vietnam

The weather in Vietnam is very different in the north and the south. There is actually a real winter in the north with snow in the mountains. You can visit the National Bureau for more up-to-date information.

Keep in mind that December to February can be quite cold in Hanoi and around, freezing cold if you decide to visit Sapa. It is however a great time to explore the south, not as humid. 

My preference goes to the shoulder seasons, especially September with the harvesting in the rice fields, still good weather everywhere and not too humid.

April/May can be also another great time overall however the rice fields will not be that green.

Hard not to stop every few hundred meters for landscape photography
Hard not to stop every few hundred meters for landscape photography in the Ha Giang Province

Where to stay in Vietnam in the North

The north, in my opinion, deserves a trip by itself, especially if you are looking for amazing scenery or neverending valleys.

And then the world-famous Ha Long Bay, even more popular since 1997 when “007 Tomorrow Never Dies” was partially filmed there.

Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, is one of the most amazing cities in Asia, especially if you like photography, and more specifically street photography.

Hanoi, Best city to stay in the North of Vietnam

I have already written extensively about the capital in this post that covers all the areas to stay in Hanoi.

I have also organised a video where you can see more of the city with the best areas to stay

Here I may add just a few quick tips, however, I really suggest going deeper if you are planning to stay a few days:

  • The Old Quarter is my favourite place to stay in Hanoi, together with the French Quarter
Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in the Old Quarter
Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in the Old Quarter
  • The Old Quarter is dominated by Vietnamese architecture, it is more characteristic
  • During the weekend it is closed to car and motorbike traffic and a huge party starts at 6pm to finish…whenever it finishes(officially at midnight)
  • There are plenty of accommodations however the Old Quarter can be really noisy, and you may need earplugs to sleep
  • A few back lanes, alleys and a tiny number of streets are not that chaotic and noisy, however, you really need to know where to book otherwise you may end up without any sleep at all (check my post on Hanoi for more info)
  • The French Quarter has most of the luxurious accommodation in the centre of the city
  • You may think that you are in Europe sometimes and that’s because during the French empire, it was decided to bulldoze this part of the city to rebuild it in a French style
  • West Lake is another area I suggest for your accommodation, especially for families

About the hotel, if you do not have the time to read my guide to Hanoi then I suggest checking out the Impressive Hotel, my favourite in the Old Quarter. It’s in a quiet street, almost facing the cathedral, with large bedrooms and a gorgeous breakfast. And such a great value for money too.

Check price at the Impressive Hotel

Impressive Hotel - Room facing the Cathedral
Impressive Hotel – Room facing the Cathedral

Best organised experiences

Check availability at the Street Food Tour   City Tour by a local   Hand-on Cooking Class

Must-try food and drink places in Hanoi are :

You can find more info on food and drinks in my post on Hanoi.

Ha Long Bay, stay or cruise it

Ha Long Bay can be visited in many ways. Literally, everyone in Vietnam can sell you a trip to Ha Long Bay, even agencies on the other side of the country.

In Hanoi, they even offer Ha Long Bay on a day trip. Considering that the bus trip alone is at least 6-7 hours (return) then you soon realize how you need really to have more days for it.

This Bay is one of the most popular destinations in the world. Lots of people visit it on a day trip, others on a 2-day and one-night trip and a few on a 3 or more days cruise. 

The more days you book the more isolated and secret islands you will reach.

A quiet time in Ha Long Bay
A quiet time in Ha Long Bay

I would personally suggest at least a 2-night (3 days) trip. Be sure you will not get bored.

Another tip I can give is to book your experience with a good agency or a well-known website. There are so many tours around with a few very dodgy where you will spend more time on buses and visiting shops than actually on the boat.

These are three that I would recommend for a 1-day trip, 2-days trip and finally 3-days trip.

Check price 1-day trip   2-days trip   3-days trip

There is not much point in staying in Ha Long City, it is uninspiring.

If you are more on a budget you may investigate Cat Ba Island. Besides being an interesting place to visit you can also organise cheaper trips in Ha Long Bay and you can start your independent kayak excursions.

Here you can book your stay at CatBa Central Hotel. It’s in a great location, close to the action but still in a quiet street for a good night’s sleeping. You can book here all your trips if you want, they provide great prices.

Check availability at CatBa Hotel

CatBa Hotel
CatBa Hotel

Sa Pa, trekking in the rice fields

Sa Pa was an amazing destination till a few years ago, a real traditional experience. Unfortunately, it has all changed in the last few years.

If you google recent photos of Sa Pa you soon realize how this little town has expanded to one of the capitals of mass tourism. To put it in perspective, the station is bigger than the one in Melbourne, which is not the smallest I have ever seen. Without going into the huge hotel blocks subject.

On any walk starting from Sa Pa, you have to cope with people and kids asking money, trying to sell you everything they have in their hands. Once you move far away from the city (I don’t call it anymore town) then you start enjoying the beautiful trekking.

Walking in the rice fields
Walking in the rice fields

My tip here is to take a train to Sa Pa but don’t stay there. Go north to Ta Phin or south to Hau Thao. That is where you can still experience the local traditions and the beautiful countryside.

In Ta Phin, you can go to the Heavenly Homestay. This is a family-run homestay where you will get your own room (rare in the countryside). Very clean and well-organised. The best is that Dat, the owner, can organise the trekking in the mountains with the gear you need as well. Such a genuine experience.

Check availability at Heavenly

Heavenly Homestay
Heavenly Homestay

Of course, if you are looking for a 4-star hotel then Sa Pa is the place to be. 

Ha Giang, exploring the province with a motorbike or a scooter

This is heaven on earth.

I guess a few towns in the Ha Giang province are now like Sa Pa in the 70s or 80s, almost untouched. 

Amazing valleys, incredible canyons, unbelievable mountains and the road winding through a million rice fields and expanses of vegetation.

I don’t think I have ever seen any scenery as beautiful, ever in my life. And I am not talking about one or two viewpoints here.

Every few hundred meters I had to stop to make a new photo, different from the previous one. That’s for four days.

So many amazing valleys
So many amazing valleys

Is this place going to be another mass tourism destination?

Personally, I do not think it will change that much in future, and that’s for a few reasons:

  • it’s a difficult area of Vietnam to reach (6-7 hours one-way bus trip from Hanoi)
  • there is no train nearby and the roads to Ha Giang are not very wide, which slows down big buses
  • once in Ha Giang, you have two means of transportation to visit the province, car or motorbike/scooter, with or without a driver
  • roads in the province are very winding and narrow. It’s rare to find a parking area on the viewpoints. If you are in a car, you can watch but you can’t stop.
  • On a bus, it’s even harder. I have not seen any buses, except for the ones used for local transportation, which are smaller than the ones used for tourism
  • motorbikes/scooters are the best way of transportation. You can stop everywhere you want. If unsure about your skills then take a driver.

In such an environment it is impossible to start a mass tourism business, I may add luckily.

This is a video I have organised on how to plan your trip there with a motorbike, a great 4D/3N loop that you will remember forever (WARNING: the scenery in this video can be addicting)

Here below I attach a well-used map of the loop I did

Ha Giang Province - Map of the motorbike loop
Ha Giang Province – Map of the motorbike loop

If you feel not very safe on a motorbike then you can consider this 2-days trip into the Ha Giang Region by a small bus.

Bus trip in Ha Giang

Ninh Binh, between milestone mountains

Ninh Binh is often described as the Halong Bay without the sea. And it is probably a good description.

Expect a never-ending landscape of milestone mountains with rivers winding through them.

Also, in this case, I would not do a day trip but I would plan a stay of 1 night at least.

Ninh Binh is just 2 hours south of Hanoi by train, therefore an easy trip. This is the same train going/coming to/from Hue and the south of the country. You can organise your excursion in the area once there

My tip: organise your excursion from Hanoi and then ask to be left in Ninh Binh. In this way, you will save the train ticket Hanoi-Ninh Binh.

This Ninh Binh Daily is a great tour that runs every day from Hanoi, with pickup from the hotel. Loan, the guide, is absolutely a gem.

Check availability in the tour

Ninh Binh Daily Tour
Ninh Binh Daily Tour

On the second day, you can rent a scooter and visit independently the area, that’s the best way to experience the local life.

In Ninh Binh, you can stay at Ngoc Anh 1 Hotel, probably the best value for money in town. Expect a super clean place with plenty of space and you are quite close to the station too, very practical.

Check amazing price at Ngoc Anh

Ngoc Anh 1 Hotel
Ngoc Anh 1 Hotel

North Vietnam itinerary in 10 days (2 possible plans)

A North Vietnam itinerary in 10 days can be doable. With 7 days or less, you will have to make a decision on what to leave out.

It's always hard to describe the beauty of this region
It’s always hard to describe the beauty of this region

In 10 days you could follow Plan A:

  • Day 1: Arrival to Hanoi
  • Day 2: Transfer to Ha Giang with a limousine bus in the early morning (book it the night before). You should reach your destination at around 1pm. Rent a motorbike and start the loop of the province
  • Day 3-5: Drive around the Ha-Giang province. Give back the motorbike in the late afternoon of day 5 and grab a bus back to Hanoi.
  • Day 6: Arrival in Hanoi in the late night. Spend the day in Hanoi and organise your Ha Long Bay 3D2N tour (I suggest to plan it in advance on the web)
  • Day 7: Start your cruise in the Ha Long Bay
  • Day 8: Ha Long Bay
  • Day 9: Halong Bay and back to Hanoi late at night
  • Day 10: Enjoy Hanoi and get your flight back home

If you do not feel the energy for the Ha Giang trip than try Plan B instead:

  • Day 1: Arrival to Hanoi
  • Day 2: Train to Sa Pa and start of the trekking
  • Day 3: Trekking through the Sa Pa rice fields
  • Day 4: Return to Sa Pa and train back to Hanoi
  • Day 5: Take an organised trip to Ninh Binh and ask to be left in town for an overnight there. 
  • Day 6: Rent a scooter and experience the area independently. Late train to Hanoi where you will spend the night.
  • Day 7: Start your cruise in the Ha Long Bay
  • Day 8: Ha Long Bay
  • Day 9: Halong Bay and back to Hanoi late at night
  • Day 10: Enjoy Hanoi and get your flight back home

It is tight I know, but there are so many things to see and experience.

North Vietnam itinerary in 7 days (2 choices)

With 7 days I would not go to Ha Giang, leave it for the next trip.

Follow 10-days Plan B but leave out Sa Pa.

  • Day 1: Arrival to Hanoi
  • Day 2: Take an organised trip to Ninh Binh and ask to be left in town for an overnight there. 
  • Day 3: Rent a scooter and experience the area independently. Late train to Hanoi where you will spend the night.
  • Day 4: start your cruise in the Ha Long Bay
  • Day 5: Ha Long Bay
  • Day 6: Halong Bay and back to Hanoi late at night
  • Day 7: Enjoy Hanoi and get your flight back home
Sunrise on the fishing village
Sunrise on the fishing village

Alternatively, you could experience Ninh Binh on a day trip, only 2D1N in Ha Long Bay and Sa Pa. It is going to be a bit of a rush though.

  • Day 1: Arrival to Hanoi
  • Day 2: train to Sa Pa and start of the trekking
  • Day 3: Return to Sa Pa and train back to Hanoi
  • Day 4: join a day trip of Ninh Binh from Hanoi
  • Day 5: start your cruise in the Ha Long Bay
  • Day 6: Halong Bay and back to Hanoi late at night
  • Day 7: Enjoy Hanoi and get your flight back home

Unique places to stay in Vietnam

There are a few unique places to stay in Vietnam that absolutely stand out. I am not here talking about resorts or hotels, but areas or towns where you will find unique attractions.

I have nailed them down to just 5, but this list may be extended with my next trips. 

  • Ha Giang Province (we already talked extensively about it)
  • Phong Nha Ke Bang caves, in the centre-north of Vietnam
  • Hue, for the history enthusiasts
  • Hoi An, as beautiful as crowded
  • Dalat, the alpine town of Vietnam

Phong Nha Ke Bang, the valley of the caves

You can read more about this area in our Guide to Phong Nha here.

In short, it’s a really unique destination with some of the widest caves on earth.

The valley itself can be the reason for your trip, immersed in a real natural tropical garden

You can book your trip in advance to visit Paradise and Phong Nha Cave without wasting time once on site.

Check availability in the tour

Be aware that the biggest cave has limited access and the tickets should be booked well in advance.

The Phong Nha Farmstay, is a great spot to be based with a fantastic pool too. From there you can enjoy the local tours of the caves. The rooms are spacious and clean and you have the possibility to rent your own bicycle

Check the latest deal at the Farmstay

Phong Nha Farmstay
Phong Nha Farmstay

Hue, for a history break

Let me be honest with you.

I visited Hue 20 years ago and I did not like the city very much. I was back just a few months ago and I sort of like it, surely more than 20 years ago.

The train with the spectacular view, from Da Nang to Hue
The train with a spectacular view, from Da Nang to Hue

So what is the reason for a stay in Hue?

Hue is famous for its Imperial City, built over 200 years ago and inspired by the Forbidden City of Beijing. And honestly, it is really an impressive place to visit.

Hue is a great base for a day trip in the DMZ. This is the demilitarized zone in the Vietnam-American war, right in the centre of the country. It was considered the dividing line between the South and the North. You can read more on this Wiki page.

The usual tour explores also the Vinh Moc Tunnels, basically an underground village where people used to live during the war. Absolutely an incredible experience, even more impressive than the DMZ itself, in my opinion.

From Hue try to book one or both of these two trips to fully enjoy your time: the 6-Hour City Tour by Motorbike and the Full-Day DMZ Tour

Check City Tour by Motorbike    DMZ Tour

And, if you are in Hue, you have to taste the salted coffee, an absolutely gorgeous mix of salty and sweet (from the condensed milk).

I actually met the owner of the cafe (see map here) and he explained to me how his original idea is being copied by others not only in Vietnam but also in Australia….no wonder, so delicious.

In Hue, you can book your stay at Hue Garden Villa Hotel. It’s in a great area next to the river and plenty of restaurants. Walk out of your room and you are straight in the old town. Very clean rooms and plenty of space. The best? The swimming pool which is absolutely great after a hot day of site visits.

Check availability at the Hue Garden

Swimming Pool at the Hue Garden
Swimming Pool at the Hue Garden

Hoi An, the ancient city of lanterns

20 years ago, on my first trip to Vietnam, I couldn’t stop myself from describing this town as one of the most beautiful destinations I have visited in my life.

It was hard to find accommodation back then. It was mostly a fishing village with a few places offering street food and local artists working in their own studios/houses in the old streets.

I was recently back and, admittedly, it has all changed. But that’s not to complain about it.

Now the town is under a mass tourism attack.

But that’s only between 4pm and 9:30pm. That’s the time when the buses with thousands of tourists arrive from the big hotels in Da Nang for a late evening tour. You can hardly walk in the ancient town.

Trying street photography in Hoi An with the massive amount of tourists around
Trying street photography in Hoi An with the massive amount of tourists around

My suggestion here is still to visit Hoi An, however, plan to wake up very early in the morning to enjoy the sunrise on the almost empty streets.

Head down to the market, and you will experience the local life as it used to be 20 years ago. 

Till 4pm you will have other travellers around but not on mass. Take a break at your hotel or for a beer in the late afternoon and have dinner in a restaurant or just some street food. 

Then explore again Hoi An after 9:30-10pm, with the beautiful lights of the street, just magical.

I wrote much more about where to stay in Hoi An here. It’s important to select the right area, to experience the best out of this magical place.

This is also a video I made about the best areas to stay in Hoi An (Old Town, beach or rice fields?)

The Quynh Chau Homestay is one of the best value for money in town, right on the main island, close to the night market and the restaurants on the riverfront. Still, it is far enough to have a quiet night’s sleep.

Check the latest deal at Quynh Chau

Quynh Chau Homestay

Best organised experiences in Hoi An

  • the Da Nang Airport to Hoi An shuttle service. This is not an experience by itself, but definitely a great way to start your trip (unfortunately there are no buses from the airport to Hoi An and you should avoid fighting with the taxi driver on price transportation, he will win LOL)
  • a half-day city tour with a local guide that takes you on an eco-food trip, from the market to the cooking class, using also a basket boat, such a fun time
  • Day Tour of My Son Temples and Marble Mountain, the spiritual centre of the former Champa Kingdom

Check availability for Airport Shuttle   City Tour by a local   My Son and Marble Mountain

Where to Stay in South Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh (Saigon), the Vibrant Urban Jungle

Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as it used to be known, is a blend of old and new. You will find a mix of modern architecture, with skyscraperd scattered around the city, and European architecture, mostly French Colonial.

And then of course local pagodas and Vietnamese houses. A great blend of styles that describes the past and present history of the city.

The thing that scares me the most (in a good way) is the local cuisine, to good to be true. I always gain weight with the never ending street food like pho and banh mi, besides the high-end international cuisine, more expensive but what an amazing service!

One thing that will impress you is the cahotic traffic dominated by an unlimited number of motorbikes and scotters. I always wonder how it all works, but somehow it does.

Of course this is a big and extensive city, therefore no wonder it’s hard to choose the best place to stay in Ho Chi Minh.

Here I would like to quickly focus on the areas and the type of accommodation. You can then take a decision based on your budget too.

  • Pham Ngu Lao: this is the area with plenty of accommodations for backpackers. There are also lots of bars, restaurants and cafes. Just be aware that it can be quite noisy, therefore you need to be very selective in the hotel you choose if you want to get a nice night’s sleep. It’s quite central and perfect to access most of the attractions of the city

The Town House 373 Saigon is a nice, simple and clean place to stay at a great price, perfect if you are on a budget but still, you want a safe place to sleep.

Check price at the Town House

Town House 373 Saigon
Town House 373 Saigon
  • Along the river (commercial area): around the Bach Dang Harbor Garden and following the Song Sai Gon river. This is where you will find the most beautiful, and usually expensive, hotels. It’s the perfect area for a stay in style, in most case with a lovely river view too.
  • Ben Thanh: this is the area between, location wise and costs wise too. There are plenty of accommodations for flashpackers and midrange. It can be again quite noisy in the streets, mostly because of the traffic. Be selective also in this case about the hotel location. You will find yourself next to the great Ben Thanh Market

The City Hotel 2 next to the market is also a great value place, hard to beat especially considering the great location. Spacious rooms, very clean too.

Check deal at Hotel 2

City Hotel 2
City Hotel 2

The three areas above are all in District 1, the most central one.

Best organised experiences in Ho Chi Minh (Saigon)

  • The Mekong Delta with Rowing Boat. This is a great tour especially because organise with small groups. The delta of the Mekong river is absolutely a must experience
  • The Cu Chi Tunnels tour will give you an idea of how hard was the time during the Vietnam war. An experience to add to your bucket list
  • Insider’s Saigon: Motorbike Tour, great tour run by local students. I love the fact that they take you to cool spots, included hidden gems, with almost no tourists around

Check availability for Mekong Delta    Cu Chi Tunnels   Insider’s Saigon

To save some money you may decide to stay a bit further away from the centre, however, keep in mind that you will have to deal with the somehow complicated bus network. Alternatively, you can take a Grab (similar to Uber)

Chaotic traffic of the city
Chaotic traffic of the city

Dalat, for a”cool” stay

Dalat is a town with a village feeling located in the highlands of Central-South Vietnam with a great refreshing and cool climate, very unusual and different from most of the humid destinations typical of Asia.

Interestingly, you’ll find that the majority of tourists here are actually locals, not foreigners. 

So, why do the Vietnamese love Dalat so much? The answer is simple: the climate. Dalat is a refreshing change with its cool, crisp air, a stark contrast to the sweltering heat you’ll encounter in places closer to Saigon.

As you wander through the town, you’ll notice a distinct French influence that’s hard to miss. The town is dotted with charming buildings that showcase French architectural designs, a lasting imprint from the French Colonial Empire of the 19th century.

But that’s not all Dalat has to offer. The town is also renowned for its lush landscapes, featuring an eternal spring-like climate that nurtures blooming flower fields all year round.

Whether you’re a nature lover or a photography enthusiast, the vibrant flora provides an idyllic backdrop for your adventures.

So, should Dalat be on your Vietnam itinerary? If you’re planning a trip that spans three weeks or more, I’d say absolutely add it to your bucket list.

It’s not just a place to escape the heat; it’s a destination that offers a rich cultural experience, stunning natural beauty, and a chance to see a different side of Vietnam. Plus, it serves as a convenient stopover if you’re travelling from Saigon to Hoi An.

However, if you’re on a tight schedule, you might consider giving it a miss. But trust me, skipping Dalat would mean missing out on a unique and refreshing Vietnamese experience.

Best beaches to stay in Vietnam

I was personally not impressed by the beaches in any of my trips in Vietnam. Thailand, for example, has so many great options. Not to talk about Indonesia.

Cam An beach, off Hoi An and close to Da Nang
Cam An Beach, off Hoi An and close to Da Nang

I am just saying that you should not go to Vietnam mainly for the beach. It shouldn’t be the main focus of the holiday.

Of course, I suggest everyone have a few days in one of the places below

  • Ha Long Bay and Cat Ba Island (we already talked about them)
  • Da Nang, a great place to stay if you are into surfing and are planning a day trip to Hoi An
  • Nha Trang, one of the top spots for nightlife
  • Phu Quoc, an easy flight from Saigon. The resorts have some amazing private beaches. The public beaches, however, are not that clean

Travel Photography in Vietnam

I always like to finish these posts with tips on travel photography in the country or the city.

In this case, I have written extensively on this subject. You can read the full post on Travel Photography in Vietnam here.

I have also in this case organised a video that you can use as a reference.

You will be surprised by the photos, the many opportunities and sites and hopefully also the tips I added 🙂

The train truck between the apartment blocks of Hanoi
The train truck between the apartment blocks of Hanoi

Read more about Vietnam

Stefano Ferro - Founder and Editor

About the Author

Stefano is a seasoned travel expert and the visionary founder of, a leading travel website with traffic across 6 continents. With a rich background in the travel industry, Stefano spent four pivotal years at Amadeus Travel Distribution System, gaining invaluable insights into travel technologies and distribution.

Leave a Comment