Post # 1
Im just chancing my arm here to see if anyone has advice. I’ve found people can be a bit rude on some of the travel forums!! We are going for 12 nights in March. We are both fairly active and adventurous but also want to relax! I know it can get cold enough in the North so want to spend the majority of our time down south (we get enough cold weather at home,thanks very much!). We are prepared to do a couple ofinternal flights to save time. I’m just afraidlog wasting time somewhere/packing too much in!
Thanks a million in advance 🙂
Post # 3
How long do you have?
ho cho ming is not overly exciting.
I would do Hoi Anne for good energy and you can get the best bespoke tailored ANYTHING made there. Danang supposedly is great for beach.
I loved Nha Trang. You can go on a fun boat island day trip which is awesome and there is a mud spa place called Thap Ba hot springs that is simply divine. Sooo luXurious!
also try to To to the north to Hannoi so that you can do a 2 night boat trip in Halong Bay which is fantastic and beautiful and so worth doing.
Hope that helps!
Post # 4
Be very, very careful how you book tours, if you go that route. The IP law in Vietnam is basically non-existant, so that means that dummy companies/hotels/restaurants of the same name/same icon etc pop up as soon as something is successful to try and take business away. The cabs by and large have rigged meters. Make sure you know about how much it should cost (ask at your hotel) and make sure you know where you are/where you are going. There are some good iphone apps that let you track your whereabouts without data usage on local vietnam maps.
Don’t let this scare you, though! It’s a wonderful country with spectacular food and beautiful scenery! My Darling Husband and I backpacked through Asia for almost 8 months last year, and loved Vietnam. The Lonely Planet forums online were an invaluable resource – I really recommend that you check them out!
Post # 5
I was just there in May! Hanoi is, in my opinion, so much more charming than HCMC. I actually liked everywhere we went for different reasons, so it depends on what you’re looking for, but I think for a honeymoon spot, I’d definitely spend time in Hanoi and maybe a couple of days in Halong Bay.
I also really loved Nha Trang, a cute little beach town closer to HCMC.
If you have any specific questions let me know, I might be able to help =)
One thing I’ll say though, is that I much prefered small hotels and hostels to large expensive chain hotels. We stayed at the Parkroyal Saigon and it was expensive and awful. The cheap little hole in the wall places were so charming and the staff was super friendly.
ETA: and on the issues mentioned above – I read every horror story I could find on the internet before we went and I think it was helpful, just because I knew what to be aware of. And we didn’t run into any problems. The only problem I had was with my bank – they wouldn’t let me take any money out of an ATM! I spent $150 on the phone with them trying to get it resolved and they refused to let me have any of my money, despite calling ahead to let them know we’d be in Vietnam. They said it was too risky of a country. ugh.
ETA again: I agree with the above poster – Thap Ba hot springs is fantastic!
Post # 6
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
Halong Bay is supposed to be AMAZING!
I am so jealous! I spent a month in Thailand and Laos a few years ago, but didn’t have time to get to Vietnam. I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews though.
Post # 7
I second Hoi An! I loved it; I remembered buying lots of pretty lanterns. And, Hue was beautiful, too. The food was delicious! I remembered the food in Hue the most. My family and I didn’t do much in Ho Chi Minh/Saigon since our family was there so we just hung out around the house.
Vinh Ha Long/Ha Long Bay is breathtaking so if you’re into nature and want to see some caves, I’d definitely go.
Post # 8
Wow! Thanks so much for all the advice!
@crayfish: Thanks for letting me know. I got caught out in Prague in a sticky situation with a taxi driver after not researhing properly…Really don’t want that to happen again! I have looked on LP forums alright but am afraid to ask a question! Maybe when I’m on them as long as I’m on here!! Did you write another post about your trip? Think I read about it before 🙂 Sounds amazing. Would love to do something like that, but for the moment will be satisfied with a short trip.
@NewYorkLady: Thanks for letting me know re HCMC. I have lots of time there in my itinerary and am trying to rework it now! We are spending 12 days there so don’t want to waste any time with so little time.
@shout4: Funny you should say that re hotels. I was looking them up last night and wasn’t really impressed. Plus, they were a lot more expensive than I would have expected! I found this really cute boutique hotel last night in HCMC and will definitely stay there. Hopefully can find lots more places like that 🙂 Thanks for letting me know, re Hanoi. I am reworking the itinerary so that we have a bit more time there. Is Nha Thrang really worth going to? I had originally got it in the itinerary but took it out because we were thinking of getting flights to Danang and staying around there (Hue, Hoi An).
@mnp: Thanks! Can’t wait to go to Hoi An now…It seems to be highly recommended. I’ll have no room in my case! Great re Hue… I can’t wait to try the food. Had that in the plan so am delighted that you have recommended it 🙂
@lolot: I was in Thailand a long time ago. It is still my favourite trip! The people were just fabulous… I still remember a train being stopped and reversed to let us on and people cheering us on as we ran through the train station to make it!! Quite embarrassing but it was so nice of them. I found the people so friendly and helpful wherever we went (especially in the north). We will definitely include Halong Bay. You will have to plan a trip to Vietnam next. 😉
Does anyone know what the weather is like up in Hanoi at that time of the year (March)? I know that the average temperature is 20 degrees C/68 degrees F, but I couldn’t find info on the night/day average or if it is very damp, cloudy etc. Thanks again everyone for the help/advice
Post # 9
How does this sound?
Arrive in HCMC
1 night in HCMC (fly to Hanoi)
4 nights in Hanoi (inc Halong Bay) (fly to Hue)
2 nights in Hue
3 nights in Hoi An (flight to HCMC)
3 nights in HCMC (inc Mekong Delta, Cu Chi tunnels/Cao Dai temple)
Post # 10
That sounds perfect phoebophoebo
makr sure you do the 2 night Halong bay cruise. Everyone I know (including myself ) regretted only doing 1 night. It is worth doing 2.
Post # 11
@NewYorkLady: Thanks for the advice. I wasn’t sure how long to do Halong Bay cruise for 🙂
Post # 12
@phoebephoebo: Sounds perfect!
March is good weather. It is usually dry. The summers are monsoon season. // I’m glad you picked March to go since Tet/New Year starts Feb. 9-12. My dad always go back around that time to visit family.
Post # 13
@mnp: Thanks for the reassurance. I noticed that it rains a lot less early on in the year alright which I’m sure will make a difference.