Highlights Northwest & Northeast Vietnam

Nga Do
Northwest & Northeast of Vietnam is always an ideal destionation for all tourist because of its mazing landscape of the mountains, colorful markets on the way and many ethnic groups with unique ways of living, customs and habits to experience. 
A region of contrasts from the refined colonial architecture in Hanoi to the dramatic tiered landscapes in the hills around Sapa, the sublime beauty of the karst islands in Halong Bay, the challenging winding streets in Ha Giang and the majestic rice fields in Mu Cang Chai. The north of Vietnam is practically a destination in its own right and offers wonderful opportunities to meet indigenous folk in the mountains as well as live it up in one of Asia’s most exciting cities. As well as the delights within its own boundaries the north of Vietnam shares borders with Laos and China and combinations with both these countries are possible for those wishing to take in more than one destination whilst in the region.

Highlights Northwest & Northeast Vietnam
Source: Andy Kennelly
1. Hanoi

If you only visit one place in Northern Vietnam, it will likely be Hanoi. As the nation’s capital, Hanoi is an exhilarating blend of eastern and western culture. French colonialism is visible through cuisine as well as architecture, particularly in the French Quarter in the Hoàn Kiếm District. Hanoi is packed with incredible temples, and a visit to the 11th century Temple of Literature is a must-do activity. The side-by-side Ho Chi Minh Museum and Mausoleum are also major attractions in Hanoi, and both are striking buildings from the exterior.

2. Sapa

Sapa in the Northwest of Vietnam. The mountainous town of Sapa is known for its culturally diverse population as well as its proximity to incredible scenery. Sapa itself is home to the members of many hill tribes, including the Hmong, the Dao, the Muong and the Tay. The town also overlooks the magnificent Muong Hoa Valley and its terraced rice fields, which are staggering to behold. If you want to get an inside look at the local residents and their cultures, then head to Sapa for an overnight trek or a homestay. You can hike out to the more remote villages and then spend the night, dining and learning from the hill tribe residents.

3. Ha Giang

Ha Giang in the Northeast of Vietnam. One of the most remote provinces in the country is Ha Giang. Close to the border with China, Ha Giang Province is known for its green forests and granite mountains. It is an incredible destination to explore ethnic diversity and to participate in outdoor activities like camping or hiking. As such a scenic province, Ha Giang to home to hundreds of spectacular vantage points. However, few can compare to Ma Pi Leng Pass. Outdoor markets are a regular occurrence in Ha Giang, with residents traveling to attend these weekly or monthly events. One of the most thrilling is the Dong Van Market, which is held on Sundays.

4. Mu Cang Chai

Mu Cang Chai in the Northwest of Vietnam. Not only the majestic and beautiful terraces, but you can also learn the unique and rustic life of H’mong ethnic group, a poor life but warm-hearted, a rare thing in the modern world. The highlights on Mu Cang Chai trip that you must enjoy: majestic riceterraces as high as 9 storeys of cloud, Tu Le sticky rice, Tu Le hot stream and feeling the unique life of H’Mong ethnic. In this article, I will share my experiences, tips and things to do in Mu Cang Chai.

5. Mai Chau valley

The idyllic, rural valley of Mai Chau is just 150km from Hanoi but feels like a completely different world. Fields and rice paddies sprawl out across the vista, and the mountains fade sleepily into the horizon.The only soundtrack here is that of nature, the delicate birdsong, the mumbles of the buffaloes, the squawk of the chickens, and the children playing freely in the fields. Although Mai Chau has become an increasingly popular tourist destination, it has retained its welcoming and laidback ambience.

6. Halong Bay

One of the best-known destinations in the entire country is Halong Bay. Its reputation is well deserved, because it is truly beautiful. Halong means descending dragons, which is indicative of the silhouette of the limestone outcrops that poke out from the water. Day cruises or overnight boat trips are a spectacular way to experience the beauty of Halong Bay and to see as many of the islands as possible. In addition to Cat Ba, Quan Lan is a popular stop that is beginning to develop some tourism infrastructure to accommodate a longer stay. You can go swimming, look for caves to explore or find some of the more remote, uninhabited islands while cruising through Halong Bay.

You do not have to worry about your vacation in the North of Vietnam, with tips on the characteristics as well as information of some of your vacation destinations will be more perfect than you would expect.

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