My fiance and I are currently planning our honeymoon for March next year, to spend about four weeks travelling around Northern Laos and Vietnam. We are planning on spending 10 days in Laos, before flying to HCM and slowly making our way to Hanoi . We are planning to visit the Mekong delta when we get to Vietnam, and later spend 5 days in Hanoi at the end of our trip, including a trip to Halong Bay. We have time to visit 2 other places in between, and are trying to choose between Phu Quoc, Nha Trang and Hoi An. We don't want to rush, and prefer to spend 4-5 nights in each place.
Suggestions would be most welcome, as to which of these places we should visit, and which we could afford to miss. We are both 27, and enjoy the beach however don't like to relax all day everyday. An ideal day would include time spent at the beach or a pool, before going sightseeing, visiting local markets, waterfalls, etc. We also enjoy snorkelling, which I believe could be done at Nha Trang or Phu Quoc, however this is not essential.
Thanks in advance!
#1 honeymooner33 has been a member since 24/8/2011. Posts: 4
Hoi An is then the best place to spend your time.
It has some nice beaches and plenty of things to do. The old town, shopping, cooking courses, great food and scenic surroundings make it the ideal place for you.
Since you're young you might like Nha Trang as well (I don't). More of a party/social place rather than a romantic beach getaway. But it could be that you're looking for some interaction with others by that time.
Phu Quoc has the least to do for you but certainly has the best beaches. It can be romantic but really not much in the way of things to do apart from visiting unspoilt beaches on your rental bike. When the local tourist office advertises a visit to the fish sauce factory as one of the main attractions you get a pretty good idea of the activities.
Phu Quoc isn't really Vietnam, and not just because it's really Cambodian, but because it's totally different to the rest of the country. Beautiful beaches yes, anything else to do, not really! Snorkel tour is ok for a day but then what? Lie on the beach. Accommodation is generally exponentially more expensive and you get less for your buck than on the mainland. IMHO the accommodation is about the only positive thing I can say about Vietnam, generally HW AC as standard and not too expensive for a couple. Phu Quoc breaks that rule, making it hardly worth the effort of going. Certainly long beach is er,... well, long. And sandy. Not much shade. Nha Trang I can't comment on, so that leaves Hoi An. That's the Viet Namese disneyland, right? Oh so cute, very pretty, town centre one big tourist attraction? Yeah, I'd go there. Seriously it's the best of the choices. Other than HLB I'd like to revisit Ha Noi and Da Lat in Viet Nam. Other than that, up to you.
I concur with eastwest.
I've made 4 trips to Vietnam, and have been least impressed with Nha Trang, but it does have a nice beach. NT sort of reminds me of a Vietnamese Atlantic City! Hoi An has it all, the best food in Vietnam, no cars allowed in the Old City, and good shopping, but it is overrun with tourists. Hoi An's beach is very nice and clean and I advise staying in town (you can cycle out to the beach very easily - bicycles are the way to get around the area and it's safe). One place you might also consider is Sapa - the single most beautiful place in the country. Do prepare yourselves for Vietnam - I mean to research the current scams so you won't be surprised when it happens to you. I love Vietnam and will be back for a 5th time soon.
Be sure to see Luang Prabang when in Laos - that waterfall is a real gem! (beware that Northern Laos has a bad/heavy smoke problem in March) March is excellent for Vietnam.
#6 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,093
Thanks for all of your suggestions guys!
In Vietnam we now plan on going to the Mekong Delta, Saigon (only 1 night transit), Hoi An with the possibility of Hue if we feel like it, Hanoi and Halong Bay. Elsewhere we will be visiting Siem Reap, PP, Luang Prabang, VV and Vientiane. I plan on doing a LOT of research before going (as I always do) so I hopefully will be prepared.
Daawgon, nowhere else have I read about a smoke problem in Laos in March, could you please tell me more about this?
#8 honeymooner33 has been a member since 24/8/2011. Posts: 4
My wife and I'll be in Vietnam/ Cambodia for 34 days commencing Dec 20th -Jan 23rd.
We plan on visiting all three of the aformentioned including Hoi An, Nha Trang and Phu Quoc.
If I remember I will post up after we've been there.
Other than Hoi An, Nha Trang, Phenom Penh and Siam Reap, which are all central locations, the bulk of our vacation will be spent on the south coast because of the favorable weather trends for the time of the year we are going there.
I'm not sure of the weather trends for those three locations in March,however, you might want to check that out when making your desicion.
Whenever I go to a country,its my primary goal to chase the sunshine and try to be in the right part of the country at the right time.
#9 KevandJho has been a member since 15/9/2011. Posts: 65