I was in Vietnam a few years ago as part of a RTW trip, spent 3 weeks there and did the usual trail for newcomers â€“ Sapa, Hanoi, HB, Hoi An, Saigon, Mekong Delta and into Cambodia.
After seeing the Top Gear programme recently in Vietnam, I have got a serious urge to go back and do some of the more non-touristy stuff/routes!!
To this end, anybody have a feasible itinerary for 2.5 weeks (probably the max I could blag off work this year given other commitments) that would incorporate some of the more off the beaten track areas?
Iâ€™m thinking maybe to focus on the Central and/or South area given that I spent roughly 11 days up North the last time (I know there is more up there than the Holy Triumvirate, but still I think Iâ€™d like to go a bit further down on this trip). Potentially this could include Dalat and the surrounding area. Not sure I want to go to Hue.
Thanks in advance for any advice.
#1 chinarocks has been a member since 17/6/2011. Posts: 740
On my last trip to Vietnam, I discovered Laos too. I like Laos because it's less developed, cheaper, easier in many ways and less aggressive. I still love Vietnam, but it's changing quite fast in it's goal to become "Thailand East".
#2 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,112
Look into a trip to the Northeast, the Hai Giang province of Vietnam. This area was opened to tourists only about two years ago, so its currently off the tourist path (although that will change). It offers amazing scenery and several ethnic minority groups, far more spectacular than Sapa/Lao Cai. The New York Times travel section had a nice piece on it about a year back.
The other area in the north thats very nice is Ninh Binh. Most tourists go there as part of a day trip from Hanoi (Tam Coc, Hoa Lu), but it has far more to offer if you spend some time there. Cuc Phong National Park has wonderful hiking and mountain biking.
There are still tons of off the tourist path places in Vietnam. After living there off an on over the past 11 years, I'm still discovering new places to go.
#3 Tecalli has been a member since 1/2/2012. Posts: 5
Beaten track in Vietnam you can spend 10 days in Northern of Vietnam like: Ha Noi - Ha Giang - Bac Ha - Sapa by mortorbike or car 4 wheels. And then take flight to Hue and continue trip: Hue - A Luoi District - Hoi An - Kontum - Pleiku - Buon me Thuot - Da Lat on Ho Chi Minh trail. Take flight to Ho Chi Minh and departure. Any more help you can ask me. Nice to share experiences.
#4 essentialtravel has been a member since 28/1/2012. Posts: 5