Vietnam, a country where the pulse of ancient history beats in rhythm with the modern world, offers an enchanting escape into landscapes that defy imagination and cities that buzz with energy. From the misty peaks of Sapa to the limestone karsts of Ha Long Bay, the country unfolds like a storybook, each page turned revealing another facet of its rich cultural tapestry and vibrant daily life. The genesis of Vietnam’s allure isn’t just in its visual appeal but in the stories embedded within its soil—tales of emperors, colonial powers, and the resilient spirit of its people. Check here the list of best tourist places to visit in Vietnam in 2024 for Vietnam tourist spots including their opening timings, photos, How to Reach, Best time to Visit, Nearest Restaurant, Tips to visit, reviews, Nearest Tourist Attractions, and location information.

Tips While Visiting Places in Vietnam in 2024

1. For All Travellers:

  • Engage with Local Stories: Vietnam’s heart beats in its legends. Dive into the local lore for a richer experience.\
  • Accessibility Details: Some treasures are tucked away. Know how to reach them, be it by boat, trek, or a winding road.
  • Cultural Sensitivities: Embrace the local customs. Your respect opens doors to deeper connections.
  • Seasonal Highlights: Each season dresses Vietnam differently. Choose your palette wisely.
  • Local Flavours: Vietnamese cuisine is a universe. Each region offers a galaxy of tastes. Don’t leave without trying Pho where it was born.
  • Sustainable Practices: Travel with care. Vietnam embraces those who tread lightly and respectfully.

2. For First-Time Visitors:

  • Early Booking: Vietnam’s wonders aren’t a secret. Book rides, stays, and experiences well in advance, especially in peak seasons.
  • Guided Tours: Consider guided tours for complex destinations like the Mekong Delta or Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. They offer insights no book can.

3. For Special Occasions:

  • Romantic Retreats: Places like Hoi An or Da Lat are perfect for couples. Book a private cruise in Ha Long Bay or a cozy villa for two.
  • Special Experiences: For honeymoons or anniversaries, consider bespoke experiences. A private dinner in a cave in Ha Long Bay or a hot air balloon ride in Hoi An can make your occasion unforgettable.

List of Best Places to Visit in Vietnam

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Northern Vietnam

1. Sapa & the Tonkinese Alps

Sapa & the Tonkinese Alps

Sapa is where green is more than a colour—it’s an experience. The terraced fields, set against a backdrop of needle-sharp peaks, tell tales of a land shaped by rice and rain. The local Hmong and Dao communities add layers of cultural richness to the landscape.

  • How to Reach: About 320 km from Hanoi, accessible by bus, train, or car.
  • Location: Lào Cai Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: March-May and September-November.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Fansipan Peak, Muong Hoa Valley.
  • Tips to Visit: Wear comfortable shoes and be prepared for the weather to change. Respect the local communities and their lands.
  • Best For: Cultural explorations, trekking.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Sapa O’Chau Café for authentic local dishes.

2. Ha Long Bay

Ha Long Bay

Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a surreal landscape of limestone karsts rising from emerald waters. According to legend, the bay was formed by dragons who descended from the heavens, scattering jewels that turned into islands. This majestic seascape offers not just breathtaking views but also a glimpse into the area’s rich biodiversity.

  • How to Reach: Approximately 170 km from Hanoi, accessible by bus, shuttle van, or cruise from Tuan Chau Island.
  • Location: Quang Ninh Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: March to June, avoiding peak tourist seasons and extreme weather.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Sung Sot Cave, Ti Top Island.
  • Tips to Visit: Choose an eco-friendly cruise, respect the natural environment, and explore the lesser-known areas of the bay.
  • Best For: Nature lovers, adventure seekers, honeymooners.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Cua Vang Restaurant for exquisite seafood with a view.

3. Detian Waterfall

Detian Waterfall

Though more off the beaten path, the Detian Waterfall is a cross-border marvel between Vietnam and China. It’s Asia’s fourth-largest waterfall, offering a spectacular view of water cascading over three tiers amidst lush vegetation. The local folklore surrounding the waterfall adds to its mystique, with tales of ancient battles and hidden treasures.

  • How to Reach: It’s best visited from Hanoi or Nanning in China, with organized tours usually providing the most direct access.
  • Location: On the border of Daxin County, Guangxi (China) and Trung Khanh District, Cao Bang Province (Vietnam).
  • Best Time to Visit: May to October, when the water volume is highest.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Ban Gioc Waterfall, Nguom Ngao Cave.
  • Tips to Visit: Bring waterproof gear, and respect the natural beauty without leaving a trace.
  • Best For: Nature enthusiasts, photographers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Local eateries in nearby towns offer authentic regional cuisine.

4. Ninh Binh Province

Ninh Binh Province

Often referred to as “Ha Long Bay on land,” Ninh Binh Province enchants with its dramatic landscape of limestone karsts and winding rivers. The area is steeped in history, with the ancient capital of Hoa Lu and the stunning Tam Coc-Bich Dong river system. Local legends of heroic kings and celestial interventions are woven into the fabric of Ninh Binh’s culture.

  • How to Reach: About 100 km from Hanoi, accessible by bus, train, or car.
  • Location: Ninh Binh Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: Late May to early July, for the golden rice harvest.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex, Bai Dinh Pagoda.
  • Tips to Visit: Rent a bicycle to explore the countryside, and don’t miss a boat tour through Tam Coc.
  • Best For: History buffs, eco-tourists.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Trung Tuyet Restaurant for local specialties.

5. Ha Giang Province

Ha Giang Province

For those who seek the road less traveled, Ha Giang offers an unrivaled journey through Vietnam’s most remote and breathtaking landscapes. The province is known for its terraced rice fields, ethnic diversity, and the epic Ma Pi Leng Pass. Legends of the area’s indigenous people speak to the harmony and struggle with nature over centuries.

  • How to Reach: Over 300 km from Hanoi, best accessed by motorbike or car for the freedom to explore.
  • Location: Ha Giang Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: October to November for the bloom of the buckwheat flowers.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark, Lung Cu Flag Tower.
  • Tips to Visit: Prepare for changing weather conditions and respect the local cultures you encounter.
  • Best For: Adventure travelers, cultural explorers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Thon Tha Village homestays for authentic local meals.

Central Vietnam

6. Hoi An

Hoi An

Hoi An, once a bustling trade port, now stands as a testament to historical preservation and cultural fusion. The city’s lantern-lit streets and ancient architecture offer a glimpse into a past where East met West harmoniously.

  • How to Reach: 30 km from Da Nang Airport.
  • Location: Quang Nam Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: February-April.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: My Son Sanctuary, An Bang Beach.
  • Tips to Visit: Explore by foot or bike, enjoy the night markets, and don’t miss the lantern festival if you’re there during a full moon.
  • Best For: Romantic getaways, history buffs.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Morning Glory Restaurant, known for its traditional and innovative dishes.

Southern Vietnam

7. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park

Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park

A UNESCO World Heritage site, this park is celebrated for its ancient limestone karsts, vast cave systems, including Son Doong, the world’s largest cave, and rich biodiversity. Local lore is rife with tales of spirits and hidden worlds within these cavernous wonders.

  • How to Reach: Approximately 500 km south of Hanoi, accessible by bus, train to Dong Hoi, then a short taxi or bus ride.
  • Location: Quang Binh Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: February to August for optimal weather.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Paradise Cave, Dark Cave.
  • Tips to Visit: Wear comfortable trekking shoes and bring waterproof gear. Book cave tours in advance.
  • Best For: Adventurers, nature lovers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Capture Vietnam Café for a quick, delicious meal between adventures.

8. Da Nang

Da Nang

Da Nang strikes a perfect balance between urban energy and natural beauty. Home to the iconic Dragon Bridge, pristine beaches, and the Marble Mountains, Da Nang’s story is one of rapid transformation from a sleepy coastal town to a bustling metropolitan hub.

  • How to Reach: Da Nang International Airport serves as a central hub, with easy access by road from Hoi An.
  • Location: Central Vietnam.
  • Best Time to Visit: May to July for sunny beach weather.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: My Khe Beach, Hai Van Pass.
  • Tips to Visit: Explore the Marble Mountains early to avoid crowds. Enjoy the vibrant nightlife along the Han River.
  • Best For: Beach-goers, families, culture enthusiasts.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Nén Restaurant for a modern take on local cuisine.

Southern Vietnam

9. Phu Quoc Island

Phu Quoc Island

Known as the Pearl Island, Phu Quoc is famed for its soft, white sandy beaches, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and dense tropical jungles. Legend has it that the island was formed from a giant pearl, dropped by a mermaid fleeing human capture.

  • How to Reach: Direct flights to Phu Quoc International Airport or ferries from Ha Tien or Rach Gia.
  • Location: Kien Giang Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: November to March for dry season splendor.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Sao Beach, Phu Quoc National Park.
  • Tips to Visit: Rent a scooter to explore remote beaches. Try snorkeling or diving to see vibrant coral reefs.
  • Best For: Beach lovers, honeymooners.
  • Nearest Restaurant: The Spice House at Cassia Cottage for fresh, local flavors.

10. Quy Nhon

Quy Nhon

A hidden gem along Vietnam’s central coast, Quy Nhon offers serene beaches, Cham temples, and a relaxed vibe. It’s said that the area was a thriving port of the Champa Kingdom, and local legends speak of lost treasures and ancient gods.

  • How to Reach: Accessible by flight to Phu Cat Airport, then a short bus or taxi ride.
  • Location: Binh Dinh Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September for the best beach weather.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Thap Doi (Twin Towers), Ky Co Beach.
  • Tips to Visit: Explore the Cham ruins early morning. Enjoy seafood by the coast.
  • Best For: History enthusiasts, beach lovers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Bun Thit Nuong Anh Tuyet for a taste of local cuisine.

11. Mekong Delta

Mekong Delta

The Mekong Delta, known as the “Rice Bowl” of Vietnam, is a maze of rivers, swamps, and islands, home to floating markets, Khmer pagodas, and villages surrounded by rice paddies. Legends abound of river spirits and life centered around the water’s ebb and flow.

  • How to Reach: Easily reached by bus or tour from Ho Chi Minh City.
  • Location: Southern Vietnam.
  • Best Time to Visit: November to January for cooler temperatures and less rain.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Cai Rang Floating Market, Tram Chim National Park.
  • Tips to Visit: Take a guided tour for an in-depth experience. Try local specialties like elephant ear fish.
  • Best For: Cultural explorers, food enthusiasts.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Local eateries on the water offer authentic Mekong Delta dishes.

12. Cat Tien National Park

Cat Tien National Park

Cat Tien National Park is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts, boasting one of the largest areas of lowland tropical rainforests in Vietnam. It’s home to an array of biodiversity including rare species like the Javan rhinoceros. Local myths speak of ancient spirits guarding the forest and its creatures.

  • How to Reach: Approximately 150 km from Ho Chi Minh City, accessible by bus or private transfer.
  • Location: Dong Nai, Lam Dong, and Binh Phuoc provinces.
  • Best Time to Visit: The dry season, from December to May, offers the best wildlife viewing opportunities.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Ta Lai Longhouse, Crocodile Lake.
  • Tips to Visit: Book guided treks for night safaris and early morning bird watching. Pack insect repellent and wear long sleeves.
  • Best For: Wildlife enthusiasts, adventure seekers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Options are limited within the park, but local lodges offer traditional meals.

13. Da Lat

Da Lat

Known as the “City of Eternal Spring” for its distinctive mild climate, Da Lat captivates with its valley of postcard-perfect flowers, French colonial architecture, and serene lakes. Legends of star-crossed lovers and eternal flowers add a romantic aura to this highland retreat.

  • How to Reach: Da Lat is accessible by flight to Lien Khuong Airport, or by bus from Ho Chi Minh City and other major cities.
  • Location: Lam Dong Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: December to March, when flowers are in full bloom and the weather is most stable.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Valley of Love, Truc Lam Zen Monastery.
  • Tips to Visit: Explore the city on a motorbike to discover hidden cafes and viewpoints. Dress in layers, as evenings can be cool.
  • Best For: Couples, nature lovers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Bich Dao Villa Restaurant offers a romantic setting with traditional Vietnamese cuisine.

14. Nha Trang

Nha Trang

Nha Trang is renowned for its miles of white sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and vibrant nightlife. The area is steeped in history, with the Po Nagar Cham towers hinting at a time when the region was part of the powerful Champa Kingdom. Local lore is rich with tales of the sea and its gods.

  • How to Reach: Direct flights to Cam Ranh International Airport, with the city center just a short drive away.
  • Location: Khanh Hoa Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: February to May, avoiding the rainy season and peak tourist times.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Vinpearl Land, Po Nagar Cham Towers.
  • Tips to Visit: Try scuba diving or snorkeling to explore the nearby coral reefs. Enjoy the seafood at beachfront restaurants.
  • Best For: Beach enthusiasts, families, party-goers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Lanterns Vietnamese Restaurant, known for its authentic local dishes and charitable initiatives.

15. Mui Ne Sand Dunes

Mui Ne Sand Dunes

Mui Ne is most famous for its vast red and white sand dunes, offering a desert-like landscape unusual for Vietnam. The local legend tells of a fairy who created the dunes to comfort a young boy waiting for his seafaring parents. Today, it’s a place where visitors can sandboard, watch spectacular sunsets, and explore nearby fishing villages.

  • How to Reach: Around 200 km from Ho Chi Minh City, accessible by bus or train to Phan Thiet, then a short taxi ride to Mui Ne.
  • Location: Binh Thuan Province.
  • Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit is from December to April, when the weather is dry and the winds are calm.
  • Nearest Tourist Attractions: Fairy Stream, Fishing Village.
  • Tips to Visit: Visit the dunes early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the heat. Be prepared for a bit of a hike to get the best views.
  • Best For: Adventure seekers, photographers.
  • Nearest Restaurant: Sindbad, a local favorite for kebabs and Vietnamese cuisine, perfect after a day of exploration.

Vietnam in 2024 is a mosaic of breathtaking landscapes, profound history, and captivating culture. It’s a destination that invites exploration and offers warmth, adventure, and tranquility in equal measure. Whether you’re trekking the mountains of Sapa, wandering the ancient streets of Hoi An, or basking on the beaches of Phu Quoc, Vietnam holds a story waiting to be a part of yours. So pack your bags, embrace the journey, and discover the magic that is Vietnam.