1 week in Vietnam

There are times when we want to travel, but we simply don’t have enough time to. If you only have a limited time in Vietnam, you will have to choose carefully which part you would like to see and explore. If you only have 1 week in Vietnam it’s smart to only go either go to the north or the south.

Before you leave to Vietnam, make sure that you know about the visa requirements for the country you are from. You can usually apply for a Vietnam visa on arrival or go to the closest Vietnam Embassy or Consulate in order to apply for your visa. Some countries can also apply for an E-visa. If you are unsure if you can apply for an E-visa, have a look at the website.

If you choose to go to the south, start with the biggest city in Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City. It may seem very chaotic in the beginning – after all, the city has more than 7,4 million scooters! But once you have gotten used to it, you can start enjoying the rhythm of the city. There are day trips that go to the “Cu Chi Tunnels” if you want to learn more about the Vietnam war. Otherwise, stay in the city and wander around the city. Try one of many, many restaurants and cafés, and if you want to try the nightlife, go to “Bui Vien”.

Bui Vien Street-in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Bui Vien Street-in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

If you are longing for a place where you can go for a swim and lay on the beach, take the ferry over to Phu Quoc, an island outside of Ho Chi Minh City. Recently, tourism has increased in Phu Quoc, so there will be new developments and hotels where you can enjoy your vacation.

If the northern parts excite you more, you should visit the capital city of Vietnam – Hanoi. An ever charming city that has captivated both internationals and locals. Wander around the old quarter and look into the many colorful souvenir boutiques. You will always discover something new walking around in Hanoi. Just like Ho Chi Minh City, there are a lot of cafés and restaurants here to try – some even with a Unicorn theme! During the evenings there is also a night market where you can find everything from fake Nikes, clothes, jewelry, food and desserts. The longer time you spend in Hanoi, the more you will love it and discover the local gems.

But if you only have one week in Vietnam, head over to Halong Bay and spend a few days there. It is arguably one of the most popular sights in Vietnam and when you visit it, you will know why. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where you can see thousands of limestone islands and islets that were formed several thousand years ago. You can choose to either do an overnight cruise, or take a cruise which lasts for around 4 hours. It is highly recommended to do an overnight cruise because otherwise you might miss out on some of the most amazing sights during the trip. It is also good to relax on your trip and what better way than to do it on an overnight cruise along one of Vietnam’s most beautiful landscapes?

Tourist junks in amazing Ha Long bay on a sunny day
tourist junks in amazing Ha Long bay on a sunny day, UNESCO world heritage sight, Vietnam

There are many other places to visit in Vietnam, but if you only have one week, this is what I would recommend you doing. Of course you can squeeze in other cities and places in one week, but sometimes it’s worth staying in one place and truly explore that place instead of just trying to see as much as possible.

Although it is relatively easy to travel around in Vietnam, traffic can be messy and may delay your journey. And there are so much to do and see in the big cities of Vietnam that you could easily spend one whole week in each city without seeing a big chunk of it. But whatever you decide to do, you can be sure that you will have the time of your life. There has to be a reason why Vietnam is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Asia, and when you go there, you will see it for yourself. The diversity of the country, the affordability, the beautiful landscape, the delicious food and much more is what makes this a very attractive tourist destination.

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