VIETNAM TRAVEL GUIDE
Where to Go in Vietnam?
Tourism in Vietnam is well established and most travelers to Vietnam are attracted by the country's wonderful natural beauty: From green rice fields dotted with the conical hats of workers in Vietnam's north stretching to the fascinating bustle of the Mekong Delta in the south. Currently the most popular parts of the country to visit are:
General Summary - Vietnam information:
Vietnam is a beautiful country located in the Southeast Asia. In the North, Vietnam shares a long border with China. In the East, by the Gulf of Tonkin, in the East and South by the South China Sea, in the South West by the Gulf of Thailand, and by Cambodia and Laos. Owning to stretching the length of the Indochinese Peninsula, Vietnam boasts a unique shape of an elongated S and a long coastline of 3,260km with a lot of wonderful places to visit.
Province and town summaries:
Vietnam is a country that is divided into 63 provinces. Of these 63 provinces, there are 5 first-level provinces, which are governed centrally. These are
Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon): largest city, with 8 million people.
Hanoi the capitol: with a population of 7 million inhabitants.
Hai Phong: 2 million people.
Can Tho: more than 1.2 million inhabitants.
Da Nang: around one million.
Accommodation: Accommodation in Vietnam, in all the major centres, offers a huge range from basic hostels to 5-star luxury resorts. The very long coastline means there are many beautiful resorts right on the beach, perfect for special occasions such as weddings and honeymoons.
Food and drink: Vietnam is a culinary paradise.
Eating out in Vietnam ranges from some of the world’s best street food, to fine dining in luxury hotels. Rice is the staple cereal and fish-sauce "nuoc mam" is extensively used. The most popular dish among the local people is the Phở - a noodle soup with meat, beef or chicken. The chicken soup (pho ga) or beef soup (pho bo) is quite spicy and available at all food stalls at around US $0.60 per bowl. Pho Bo Tai is a soup with rare beef fillets. Another specialty is the spring roll, which is found in many versions, with varying ingredients used.
The menu in restaurants is mainly non-vegetarian with dishes made from pork, fish and beef, snake and soft-shell turtle, which is considered a delicacy. Chè is a dessert made from sticky rice, beans, and a seasonal fruit. International cuisine such as French, Chinese, Japanese, Italian and American is also available.
Fruit smoothies made from seasonal fruits are popular. Fruits such as custard apple, sugar apple, banana, avocado, durian, strawberry, jackfruit, passion fruit, dragon fruit, lychee and mango can be found in fruit stalls.
Health: Healthcare is one of the issues that concerns most foreign travelers to Vietnam. Vietnam features a mixed public-private healthcare system, in which the public sector plays the leading role. Since the reform of the healthcare sector in 1989, the private healthcare sector has grown steadily with more and more private hospitals and clinics established. Along with the increase of the quantity, the healthcare quality has also been greatly enhanced not only in public sector, but also in private one.
Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh have the largest number of hospitals and clinics with the most advanced technology as well as quality treatments. If you are planning to travel to either of these destinations, healthcare issue is not a big worry. However, if you are traveling to such remote regions of Vietnam as the northwestern region or the central highlands, it is advisable that you bring some popular medicines. Travel Loop Adventure strongly recommends a good travel insurance policy.
There are some things you can do that are just common sense.
• Cover up from the sun either like the locals with clothing, or high factor sunscreen, and wear a hat.
• Rehydrate as much as possible during the day.
• Mosquito repellents are also recommended if you are prone to being bitten.
• Small cuts and abrasions (especially on feet and legs) are very easily infected in Vietnam and so careful first aid is a must. Keep everything scrupulously clean and bring antiseptic cream.