From the islands of Ha Long Bay, to the caves of Phong Nha, cascading rice terraces of Sapa, the maze of rivers and rice paddies of the Mekong Delta, and mountains of Da Lat… Vietnam is really attractive for low budget or backpacking tours. I have now picked out the best places in Vietnam and will introduce them now. Have fun to create your own perfect backpacker trip.
Vietnam Fast Facts
Currency: Vietnamese dong
Population: 96.5 million
Religion: Buddhist is the majority
Hanoi (2 days)
The chaotic capital of Vietnam is a great place to start your journey, or end it. The city has many attractions to see, most of which are lakes, pagodas and museums, and of course, the Old Quarter. What makes Hanoi great is that, as a central hub, you can easily catch transport to the rest of the region.
Recommendation to stay: Central Hanoi Backpackers Hostel (dorms, 5 $/night)
Sapa (2-3 days)
Sapa is one of the best places to see in Vietnam. And it is the place in Vietnam for trekking through the rice terraces, lush valleys and endless karst peaks of the region. Include Heavens Gate, Mount Fansipan (the highest peak of Indochina) and Muong Hoa Valley. You can either book a 2-3 day tour through a company that will include your buses to Sapa and back to Hanoi that includes your trek leaders, homestay, and food. Or you can rent a Motorbike ($10/day), cheap for the freedom to explore some of the incredible sights around Sapa at your own pace.
Recommendation to stay: spend the night in a village homestay with a tribal family
Ha Long Bay (2-3 days)
Ha Long Bay, crowned one of the new seven natural wonders of the world, is the epitome of Vietnamese coastline, with its thousands of limestone karst peaks jutting out of its emerald waters and the hundreds of uninhabited islands topped with dense jungle, scattered around the bay. Check out Cat Ba National Park, explore Dau Go cave, and make sure you go kayaking!
Hue (2 days)
This is a beautiful small town offering a great break in the journey from Hanoi to Hoi An. One of Vietnams most royal cities, Hue is littered with impressive historic sights, delighting the inner nerd in us all!
Check out the impressive Citadel on the other side of the perfume river. This impressive piece of history is made up of four separate citadel’s and will take a full day to explore, you can hire a bike to get around! Check out the Thien Mu Pagoda; standing at 21 metres high and decorated with mind-blowing architecture this pagoda is a pretty spectacular eyeful.
Recommended place to stay: Hue Happy Homestay