10 Non-Tourist Areas In Vietnam Worth Exploring

Many people planning to travel to Vietnam know of common destinations such as Nha Trang, Hoi An, Mekong Delta, Ho Chu Minh City, Hanoi and Saigon among other renowned beaches. However, did you know there are quite some non-touristy areas in Vietnam worth exploring? This article examines ten nontourist areas that are worth a visit next time you travel to Vietnam.

1. Mu Cang Chai, Yen Bai 

During the autumn Mu Cang Chai is well known for the golden rice terraced fields. Your eyes will get fed with a picturesque landscape, exciting activities like traditional food festivals, gliding competitions, music festivals and performances from the locals.

You could visit Mu Cang Chai when the terraced rice fields are golden during the harvest season. It happens at the end of September to the beginning of October. You’ll also find a range of activities during the annual Mu Cang Chai Festival such as gliding and playing traditional games.

2. Ban Gioc Waterfall, Cao Bang

Ban Gioc Waterfall is where you’ll sail to reach for the falls. Being one of the most famous places in Cao Bang, the landscape is full of limestone hills providing a spectacular view you’ll desire.

You’ll find a tiger cave known as Nguom Ngao Cave, near the waterfall. This cave has lots of beautiful stalactites and stalagmites making it a spectacular cave in Vietnam.

History lovers can continue exploring the west of Cao Bang to get to learn President Ho Chi Minh’s life since 1941.

3. Ly Son Island, Quang Ngai 

Ly Son Island, located in the Northeast district of Quang Ngai. It’s known for the white sandy beaches, the sky blue waters with gorgeous coral reefs. During the summer travelers enjoy the beautiful green trees and blue sea that appeals them.

You could have many cuisines for travelers staying on Ly Son Island such as the seafood dishes, seaweed mixes, garlic salad specialties, and salted anchovies.

4. Hon Gom Peninsula


Hon Gom Peninsula in Van Phong Bay (Van Ninh district) lies north of Nha Trang. A look into the map of this area will show you how undiscovered the region is. You can’t miss Tuy Hoa’s southern approach as gawking stops at Vung Ro Bay, and Da Bia’s Mountain top will get you mesmerized.

Looking into the south, you’ll see Hon Gom Peninsula. Taking a keen look, you’ll discover that the island is connected to the mainland by a sand bar that runs two-story high.

There are stunning, deserted beaches here, most of them unnamed and unexplored. Navigating through this island is quite a task, and you may need an independent transport for a proper view of the area.

5. Bai Tu Long Bay

Having the same geographical conditions as Ha Long Bay, savvy travelers prefer taking a trip to Bai Tu Long Bay. They prefer this destination because it’s relatively free from tourists.

If you hate cramming with a group of people, vendors are dogging you in boats and queuing to walk in caves; this might be the ticket you need. You can take trips to islands like Quan Lan and Van Don that includes an overnight stay.

6. Cham Island

Cham Island is a cluster of spectacular clusters of granite islands boasting of 135 species of soft and hard coral reefs, perfect for scuba diving and snorkeling. It’s off the coast of Hoi An. An hour-long boat ride will take you there. You’ll enjoy the marine protected water while soaking in the underwater world.

Additionally, you’ll enjoy collecting bird nests for soup as a critical industry there.

7. Ta Xua, Son La

Ta Xua is famous for cloud hunters who visit Vietnam from December to March. Located in Son La Province, Ta Xua will provide you with a range of breathtaking mountains to view.

During winter, you’ll see an ocean of fluffy clouds on top of the mountains. High humidity and sunny condition will also increase your chances of seeing clouds too. Ta Xua mountains are surreal, and a visit to this place won’t be disappointing.

8. Quy Nhon

Quy Nhon is a coastal town that has everything a holiday destination would need such as beautiful mountainous landscapes, tranquil fishing villages, pristine beaches, and affordable and fresh seafood, a variety of cultural landmarks among others. And the best part is, it’s not well known among foreign tourists which to some extent is a good thing.

Quy Nhon is easily accessible through the daily flights from Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Also, you’ll find buses and trains from nearby places such as Da Nang, Nha Trang, etc. You’ll find hotel accommodations and local homestays that’ll provide you with sea views.

You’ll find tasty fresh seafood cooked with a local recipe. The food is half priced when compared to what you would have paid in main towns

9. Pu Luong, Thanh Hoa

Pu Luong has one of the most amazing landscapes that’ll make one wonder how fortunately it’s unheard of by local and foreign travelers. Locally, Pu Long means ‘’the highest mountain’ The whole place is a nature’s reserve with many landscapes, ethnic cultures, flora, and fauna.

You could trek Pu Long’s steep paths, swimming in the channels, attending the ethnic minority traditional markets, or relaxing in a mountain top. Walking through Pu Long, you’ll see big water wheels by the riverside and large terraced rice fields.

You can stay at Pu Luong resort, a small eco-resort having a swimming pool that overlooks Pu Luong’s picturesque landscape.

10. Ha Giang

Ha Giang is one of the most stunning mountainous landscapes located in North Vietnam. A 3-day trip to Ha Giang from Hanoi is most suitable to experience it entirely.

Within these beautiful mountains, small minority communities live and try maintaining their own culture. It’s an authentic nontourist area because commercialization of the ethnic minorities hasn’t taken place yet unlike other sites like Sapa. A homestay in Ha Giang will enable you to explore local cultures while enjoying the breath-taking landscapes on offer.

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