Photo: Canals of Ca Mau, Mekong Delta.

Vietnam forum

If you're a first time visitor to Vietnam, we'll point you to the Ha Long Bay thread for points to keep in mind when selecting the right Ha Long Bay tour for you. If you've questions about a potential itinerary, do take a look at the itinerary section of the site as well. We'll also apologise in advance for the persistent spamming by Vietnam-based travel agents -- we do try to delete them as quickly as they come in. Sorry!

VietNam rolls out new procedures for Australian flights

Posted by CatBa on 16/6/2007 at 23:15

VietNam is about to put in place new processes for flights TO and FROM Australia, HongKong and TaiWan. They intend to segregate passengers on these flights and give them special handling to detect and intercept drugs, etc. They have some cute little dogs and beefed up X-ray machines. The extreme penalty for drugs that frequently amount to 'personal' amounts in some countries is death in VietNam, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. ...

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Viewed 1,469 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 18/6/2007 at 22:38


international doctor needed in saigon

Posted by meerapatel on 14/6/2007 at 17:48

have a strange illness and not returning to the uk for a few weeks - wondering if anyone can recommend a good (inexpensive) english speaking doctor/hospital in HCMC (also address, opening times etc.) thanks ...

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Viewed 2,780 times, with 4 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 18/6/2007 at 22:35

WARNING: It's Festival Time in HUE!

Posted by CatBa on 3/6/2007 at 23:57

The Hue Festival will run for 4 days beginning 2007 JUN 10 so if you haven't booked your accommodation expect things to be TIGHT as the Vietnamese will fill all 260+ hotels and guesthouses in the city. Economy accommodation can be found in an alley (Kiet) running from 66 LE LOI (opposite the Century Riverside) and at some Guesthouses located in the 2-3 block area around the L'Residence (although NOT AT this 4* property). ...

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Viewed 1,222 times, with 4 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 18/6/2007 at 22:22

Avoid Thanh An Hotel at Hanoi

Posted by illummax on 17/6/2007 at 20:02

Warning to all travellers to Hanoi, Avoid Thanh An Hotel along Hang Ga street. The staffs there are all cheaters of tourists' money! My friends and i arrived at hanoi by tour bus. When we alight the bus, there were many tour agencies representatives there. We were approached by Thanh An and we accept their offer as it was the best rate being USD$10 per room and there's free transport to their hotel. When we reached the hotel, we waited for more than an hr as there were no room available fo ...

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Viewed 1,906 times, with no replies.

Things that go buzz in the night can kill you!

Posted by CatBa on 16/6/2007 at 01:54

Saw my doctor this week and he said that I should make sure I take anti-mosquito precautions as DENGUE fever is running wild in the south with 15,000 people infected, 12 of them dead. At this point in 2006 only 8 people had succumbed. Seems that around 85% of the victims are located in the south. Two other curves to his warning: (1) the virus is mutating in reaction to commonly used drugs; (2) it is becoming a year-round problem rather than confined to certain months of the year. Of course ...

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Viewed 2,139 times, with no replies.

Back from hue, hoi an & saigon

Posted by Bello on 15/6/2007 at 21:45

Hi, Im back from a memorable journey! reali enjoyed d days spent in the places i went to. especially HOI AN! was truely an interesting place 2 visit. shopping for tailor, shoes etc, feel d remote surrounding n of course d beautiful scenery ard. amazing!!! HUE will b 2nd favourite but plus point added with its historical places of interest. As for SAIGON area, i onli mananged to visit cu chi tunnel, cao dai temple n oso the ben thanh market area. shopping for cheap 'branded' clothes n trie ...

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Viewed 1,506 times, with no replies.

English speaking opticians needed in Hanoi

Posted by rakhee2108 on 14/6/2007 at 17:54

Hi all, I'm travelling in Vietnam and won't be returning home for some time. I've broken my glasses and heard that Hanoi is the best place to buy new spectacles/get my broken pair fixed. Has anyone had any experience of buying glasses in Hanoi? - I need an English/French-speaking optician. Thanks in advance. ...

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Viewed 2,574 times, with no replies.

Halong to Haiphong - Ninh Bihn

Posted by satch on 12/6/2007 at 12:33

Hi All, We will be traveling through Vietnam in July/August 07. Just wondering if anyone could tell me the best way to get from Halong City to Haiphong by Hydrofoil. Is there a direct service from Halong City or do we have to get to Cat Ba first and then on to Haiphong. Also if anyone knows of the timetable for the Ferries/Hydrofoils and the timetable for the Bus service from Haiphong to Ninh Binh. Thanks Satch ...

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Viewed 2,440 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by satch on 13/6/2007 at 05:39

Travel onward from Phu Quoc- direct to Cambodia?

Posted by simonnz on 9/6/2007 at 14:48

Hi, I am doing some preliminary reading for a trip through Vietnam later in the year. Phu Quoc looks very appealing, nice writeup. For travel onward from Phu Quoc, are there any boats which head directly to Cambodia, either Sihanoukville or Kampot? Thanks for your help Simon ...

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Viewed 2,125 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by simonnz on 9/6/2007 at 18:24

Travelling to Ho Chi Minh? Watch Your Step!

Posted by CatBa on 6/6/2007 at 23:46

There are over 13,000 *reported* traffic fatalities annually in VietNam. These numbers are conservative as they only report deaths known to the police and those that occur in a hospital. Not reported are those 'road kills' that are dealt with summarily at the roadside or where a neurological injury is beyond the capability of a hospital and the victim is sent home to die. Now we learn that over 700 accidents yielded 586 deaths in a period of 6 months - 95 higher than the same period in ...

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Viewed 1,798 times, with no replies.

online booking of hostel or hotel

Posted by Bello on 23/5/2007 at 10:53

hi, is it safe/reliable to book hostels/hotels thru "hostelworld.com". they recommended "orchid hotel" along chu van an(HUE) which cost abt SGD19/nite/pax. Need to be billed for 10% deposit in USD n additonal USD2 service charge. tats is my 1st nite stop in vietnam n i wana secure a room. so is the above a common web for online booking or any recommendation? thanks bello ...

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Viewed 2,614 times, with 11 replies. Last reply by Bello on 5/6/2007 at 21:55

Fake ISIC card in Hanoi? Are there any?

Posted by Lukepattison on 30/5/2007 at 15:23

I'm going up through China and Russia and apparently students get BIG discounts! Unfortunately I couldn't bring myself to treck over to Khao San when I was in Thailand - does anyone know of a place selling fake student cards in Hanoi? Thanks! ...

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Viewed 4,459 times, with 9 replies. Last reply by huevashon on 3/6/2007 at 15:51

Flying from Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok - cheapest way?

Posted by elena123 on 31/5/2007 at 00:38

I'm planning to fly from Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok at the end of a 6 week trip... Any advice on how to get the cheapest fares, whether I need to book before I leave or while I'm out there - and if there are any good websites for this!? Thanks!! Elly ...

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Viewed 3,439 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by ernieh on 1/6/2007 at 15:34

Having a rough time getting connected on the InterNet?

Posted by CatBa on 30/5/2007 at 22:11

As those of us resident in VietNam are discovering, overseas InterNet communications are proving difficult, especially during business hours. The problem is that fishermen have discovered that fishing for fibre optic cable is more profitable than fish and that Chinese crooks are willing buyers. Vietnat has only ONE cable surviving linking it to overseas in working order. The fibre cable support ship from Singapore is working overtime trying to keep up to date with repairs / replacement. ...

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Viewed 1,298 times, with no replies.

Hoi an to Hanoi (via Hue?) - flights in vietnam??

Posted by oisin on 18/5/2007 at 16:13

I fly from HCMC to Da Nang in June and plan to stay 2 nights in Hoi An before travelling onto Hanoi. I was considering getting an early train from Hoi An to Hue and then flying onto Hanoi. Is that more hassle than its worth?? Should I just go back to Da Nang and fly to Hanoi?? Is vietnam airlines the only airline that flies from Hue / Da Nang to Hanoi??? I can't book online with them and can't get through by telephone. Does anyone know how can I book a flight? ...

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Viewed 7,304 times, with 4 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 30/5/2007 at 22:02

Advice needed!! travel from southern laos to hue, vietnam

Posted by elena123 on 29/5/2007 at 21:39

Trying to plan a 'rough' itinerary for 6 weeks backpacking trip in June/July - I'm planning on travelling through Laos = From Vientiane to Tha Khaek, then on to Savannakhet, then on to Pakse Then from Pakse to Champasak And from Champasak to the Si Phan Don area – the Four Thousand Islands Then would like to go from here to central Vietnam - (Hue)... Can anyone offer any advice on how to travel from Champasak in Laos, to Hue in Vietnam, without going back to Savannakhet? Is it ...

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Viewed 4,250 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by somtam2000 on 30/5/2007 at 05:50

Train travel

Posted by LeighA on 22/5/2007 at 17:16

Hi, I did not realise there were trains other than the R/U express when I wrote my last posting. Have visited the Vietnam train site and am not sure which train is which...cleanliness is an issue as am travelling with my parents (I am more incline to "rough it"). Any suggestions, more feedback about the R/U - most seem to think it's pretty grim. Thanks very much in advance. LeighA ...

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Viewed 1,705 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 28/5/2007 at 06:12

Six days in HCMC

Posted by jcampbell3 on 24/5/2007 at 07:18

We will have six and a half days in HCMC, seven nights, in early July, rainy season. Can't change tickets to fly out of Hanoi and go up the coast so are looking at best itineraries in the general area. We've thought of two days or so in the Mekong Delta, two days in the city itself, leaving a day for Chi Chi tunnels and an extra, but wonder if there are better alternatives. We're trying to avoid burning two days travelling to and from somewhere. Suggestions welcome....! ...

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Viewed 2,358 times, with 3 replies. Last reply by innoviet on 26/5/2007 at 19:41

Chilled Out Guest House Close To Beach?

Posted by as400 on 25/5/2007 at 19:43

Can anyone recommend as per title, I like Amsterdam and want some 'smoker friendly' ;-) NO drum and bass, more Cafe Del Mar.... Anyone? ...

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Viewed 2,069 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by somtam2000 on 26/5/2007 at 09:28

1st Time Travel to Vietnam - need advise pls.

Posted by Bello on 16/5/2007 at 16:09

Hi, Im planning a 10 days trip (june) to vietnam with my partner in a backpacking style and I have a sample itinerary as below but kind of stuck in concluding: - sin->hanoi : stay in the old quarter for ard 2days - hanoi->Sapa: stay green valley hotel? for 3days - Sapa->hanoi: 1 day rest - hanoi->haiphong->halong bay-> ??? Pls anyone kindly offer some better suggestion or advise for me on the above? Thankyou... ...

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Viewed 2,647 times, with 23 replies. Last reply by legrand on 23/5/2007 at 11:22


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