A guide to Vietnam itinerary

We loved our trip to Vietnam. Every second of our stay was so memorable. We treasure the memories of the food, the nature, the culture, the people and the food (yes, again because it was so awesome).

We had researched a lot for the trip. We had explored different regions of the country and made many permutations/combinations to add them to our trip. So we have brought that learning blended with our own experience and compressed it in a guide which we believe is easy to follow. You can pick and create your itinerary based on the time you have and your interests. Here it goes:


Duration of stay: 1 or 2 day

Areas of interest: Temples, Market, History

To dos:

  • Visit the Old Quarters for shopping and on weekends, stay late in evening for night market.
  • Get a download of Vietnamese history at Ho-Chi-Minh museum and mausoleum complex which also houses the one-pillar pagoda.
  • Attend a graduation ceremony at temple of literature.
  • Take a stroll around Sword Lake.
  • Drink the local beer at a street corner.
  • Attend the Water puppet show near Sword Lake

Location to stay: Stay at Old Quarters to be close to the action.

Travel options: Hanoi is hub for international arrival/departure and well connected domestically as well

Hoi An

Duration of stay: Minimum 2 days

Areas of interest: Food, fusion culture, colorful lanterns, beach

To dos:

  • Taste the delicious cuisine
  • Stroll through the old town
  • Get lost in the surreal beauty of colorful lanterns in the evening
  • Visit the old houses and temples to feel the fusion of Chinese, Japanese, French and Vietnamese architecture
  • Shop for handicrafts and souvenirs at the local shops. Remember to bargain to the limit
  • Cycle in the countryside and feel get close to the local life
  • Relax on the beaches
  • Attend a cooking class to take away a piece of taste with you

Location to stay: Stay close to old town for easy access or opt for a resort between town and the beach.

Travel options: Da Nang (about 1 hr. drive from Hoi An) is well connected with the major cities via cheap flights.

Halong Bay

Duration of stay: 3 days are preferred

Areas of interest: Natural beauty, kayaking, trekking on islets, cruise

To dos:

  • Kayak through the water caves and to secluded lagoons. Prepare to be swept away by the natural beauty
  • Visit pearl farm and unique fishing village
  • Attend morning Tai-chi sessions on the cruise to let go of any tension
  • Sit on sun deck taking in the view
  • Enjoy the junk as it cruises through the bay
  • Trek to top of islets for jaw-dropping panoramic view

Location to stay: Stay on a junk cruise

Travel options: Halong Bay can be reached by road (3-4 hrs. drive) from Hanoi


Duration of stay: 2 or 3 days

Areas of interest: Terraced rice plantations, trekking, tribal villages

To dos:

  • Enjoy multiple treks through the tribal villages with your own guide
  • Visit the beautiful silver waterfall
  • Get up close to the tribal life at the weekly tribal markets

Location to stay: Stay in a homestay in your choice of village

Travel options: Overnight trains run between Hanoi and Sapa

Ho-Chi-Minh city

Duration of stay: 2 days

Areas of interest: History and culture, street food, river boat ride

To dos:

  • Visit the Vietnam war memorials: Cu Chi tunnels and War remnants museum
  • Absorb the culture and history of Saigon at Saigon Opera house, Independent palace, Central post office, Notre Dame cathedral
  • Feel the vibe of city in the street markets and taste the street food
  • Take a short retreat from the hustle bustle of the city at Tao Dan Park
  • Go for a day trip to Mekong delta to experience the mighty Mekong River

Location to stay: Major hotels are around Ben Thanh area

Travel options: Ho-Chi-Minh is hub for international arrival/departure and is well connected with domestic flights as well

Nha Trang / Mui Ne / Phu Quoc

Duration of stay: 2 days

Areas of interest: Beach, Water activities

To dos:

  • Relax on the pristine white beaches
  • Enjoy the water activities

Location to stay: Stay in a resort close to the beach

Travel options: Domestic flights connect these cities to Hanoi or Ho-Chi-Minh city


When visiting Vietnam, you can also add another south-east Asian country to the trip

  • Stop over at Cambodia to visit the majestic Ankor Wat
  • Take a detour to Laos for a nature trek or explore Luang Prabang

Do you have any question regarding your trip to Vietnam? Drop in a comment or send us a mail


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