Vietnam boasts a wealth of attractions that offer a wide array of exciting activities throughout the year. In every corner of this country, you’ll discover an abundance of enjoyable activities, ranging from beachside relaxation and water sports to mountain exploration, immersing yourself in local history and culture, savoring delectable regional cuisine, and much more. When planning your Vietnam tour, be sure to include these top-notch activities that are not to be missed.

Sample Delicious Vietnamese Food

While Vietnamese cuisine often conjures images of Pho, Bun Cha, or Banh Mi, the truth is there’s an abundance of other delectable specialties waiting for you to savor during your visit to Vietnam.

Pho - most delicious sai gon food


Indulge in the finest of culinary delights, including Pho noodles, the unique egg coffee, and regional Bia in Hanoi; Banh mi sandwiches, Mot drink, and Quang noodles in Hoian; and relish the flavors of broken rice and Hu Tieu Nam Vang in Ho Chi Minh City. Your journey here presents a golden opportunity to partake in Vietnam’s splendid and budget-friendly gastronomic treasures, so don’t miss out.

Enjoy a Hanoi Cyclo Tour

Cyclo Taxi in Hanoi

Cyclo Taxi in Hanoi

The cyclo once held a significant role in the daily lives of Hanoians, serving as a common mode of transportation. Opting for a Hanoi Cyclo tour is one of the must-try things to do in Hanoi if you wish to explore this city in a distinctive and memorable manner.

Finding a cyclo tour in Hanoi is quite straightforward: you can easily spot cyclists on weekend afternoons near the fountain at Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square, along Hang Ngang and Hang Dao Streets, or in front of the Thuy Ta ice cream shop. These friendly cyclists can communicate in basic English and are known for their politeness and amiable demeanor.

Typically, Hanoi cyclo tours last about an hour and cost approximately US$ 5-5.5 per cyclo. The exact price may vary based on the chosen route and your negotiation skills.

Wander at Night Markets

Ben Thanh Night Market's street food

Street food in Ben Thanh Night Market

In Vietnam, exploring the night markets comes highly recommended, as they offer a diverse array of goods, spanning clothing, culinary delights, and souvenirs. Weekend night markets are a prominent feature in the tourist hubs of major cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hoian, and Hue.

Most items at these markets are affordably priced, but it’s advisable to engage in the age-old tradition of bargaining for a better deal. While you peruse the night market, consider picking up a few Vietnamese phrases and relish the experience of bargaining – a delightful art form in itself.

Experience an Overnight Cruise on Ha Long Bay

Halong Bay Cruise

Halong Bay Cruise

Halong Bay, adorned with its 1,600 limestone pillars emerging from its pristine blue waters, has earned its place among the seven natural wonders of the world. A visit to Vietnam would be incomplete without experiencing the sheer beauty of Halong Bay from the deck of a boat. You can readily find a multitude of vessels offering daily cruises to Halong Bay.

Embarking on an overnight Halong Bay cruise opens up a world of possibilities, allowing you to marvel at the breathtaking scenery and engage in a wide range of activities both indoors and outdoors. From culinary classes and taichi sessions to kayaking, swimming, and cave exploration, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Halong Bay cruises cater to diverse travelers, including honeymooning couples, families with young children, and solo adventurers.

Discover the Imperial Citadel of Hue

The Imperial City of Hue

The Imperial City of Hue

Once the capital of Vietnam, Hue has now achieved the prestigious status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Within Hue, you’ll discover a plethora of pagodas, tombs, and palaces that are cherished by tourists, with the Imperial Citadel standing out as the most renowned.

This majestic fortress served as the royal residence for Vietnam’s final dynasty, the Nguyen Royal Family. It is encircled by a picturesque moat adorned with water lilies, adding to its enchantment. As you explore the citadel’s grounds, you’ll encounter a variety of structures, some impeccably preserved, others meticulously restored, and a few bearing the marks of time. Among these architectural gems are intricately carved gates, regal pavilions, the iconic Flag Tower, and museums showcasing Royal Antiquities.

Ride a Bike in Hoi An Ancient Town

Ride a bike in Hoi An Ancient Town

Ride a bike in Hoi An Ancient Town

Cycling has long been a favored leisure activity and presents one of the best things to do in Vietnam. Bicycles are readily available for rent across the nation, enabling you to embark on a journey of exploration. While the initial stages of cycling may prove challenging, especially amid the bustling traffic of crowded cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, both novices and seasoned cyclists can delight in this pursuit in the historically rich town of Hoi An.

Hoi An not only serves as a perfect base for cycling within the town’s historical confines but also offers opportunities to venture further afield. You can pedal your way through picturesque rice fields, and lush gardens, or head to the beaches for a refreshing swim or sightseeing.

Explore Cu Chi Tunnels

Cu Chi Tunnels

Cu Chi Tunnels

One of the most beloved tourist destinations in Ho Chi Minh City and an essential site to visit in Vietnam is the Cu Chi Tunnels. This intricate network spans 120 kilometers and features underground tunnels equipped with trapdoors, living quarters, kitchens, storage rooms, educational facilities, medical centers, and command posts. These tunnels played a pivotal role in the Vietnamese army’s victory during the war, underscoring their historical significance.

Exploring the Cu Chi Tunnels offers a unique opportunity to appreciate their distinctive architecture and construction while gaining insight into their immense importance in Vietnam’s history. It’s worth noting that the Cu Chi tunnel may not be suitable for individuals with mild claustrophobia or those who are easily disheartened by confined spaces.

Watch Cultural Shows in Vietnam

To gain a deeper understanding of Vietnamese culture, consider attending a cultural performance at a theater in cities like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hoi An, or other major urban centers.

Boat Racing Water Puppetry Show

Boat Racing Water Puppetry Show

Among these performances, the water puppet show stands out as a globally acclaimed favorite. These shows artfully depict the daily routines of Vietnamese farmers (such as farming, tending to buffalo, and fishing), communal festivities (including swimming contests and dragon dancing), historical legends (like the return of the priceless sword by Le Loi), and ancient tales of deities.

A ticket to a Vietnam Water Puppet Show typically costs less than USD $5, making it an affordable and enriching experience. Furthermore, these theaters offer a variety of additional performances, such as My Village, A O Show, Palao, Teh Dar, and The Mist, to further immerse yourself in Vietnamese culture.

Join Water Activities in Phu Quoc Island

Snorkeling in Phu Quoc

Snorkeling in Phu Quoc

Phu Quoc, also known as the Pearl Island, is the largest island in Vietnam. It is celebrated for its pristine beaches, luxurious resorts, and serene ambiance. Phu Quoc is not just a haven for relaxation but also a paradise for water sports enthusiasts, catering to a wide range of activities, whether fast-paced or leisurely, on or under the water’s surface.

One exhilarating option is kayaking along the coastline and venturing into the serene rivers amidst the forest. For those seeking a dose of excitement, jet skiing at Sao Beach or Long Beach promises to be one of the best things to do in Vietnam. Furthermore, the island offers a plethora of adventurous activities, including snorkeling, diving, parasailing, and trying your hand at a hoverboard, ensuring there’s something for every water sports enthusiast to enjoy.

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