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: WTO Member With Fast-Rising Prices

Posted by CatBa on 5/3/2008 at 04:23

WTO membership coupled with general world-wide price increases are felt here in VietNam as well as in your home country. Visitors who have expectations of a low cost vacation are being met with sticker shock. Hotels are not only increasing prices but also making breakfast an EXTRA. And watch those VAT (tax) and Service Charge surcharges - ensure they are INCLUDED. Credit card usage can attract surcharges ranging from 0% to 10% (four hotels in HCMC). Restaurant menu prices are now often ...

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Weather late Feb? (central and south Vietnam)

Posted by spy on 27/2/2008 at 07:57

Is it unseasonally wet at the moment? I have been checking the bbc web-site and it seems like there is/has been lots of rain in south and mid Vietnam? Are the views dusty or green? thanks ...

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Viewed 2,273 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 1/3/2008 at 05:35

The North West Loop in North Vietnam

Posted by Harry05 on 27/2/2008 at 11:35

Saw on the ET Pumpkin website info about The North West Loop Adventure, Hanoi - Mai Chau - Son La - Tuan Giao - Dien Bien Phu - Lai Chau - Tam Duong - SaPa - Trek - SaPa market - Return Hanoi - total 6 days by 4WD). Asked about that but that was a private tour, also Sinh Cafe seems to have such tours (in their brochure but not on their website?). But I would like to do such a tour by group, because I am travelling by myself and then it's nicer to join a group but also because a tour by group ...

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Cam Nam island, Hoi An, worth a walk!!

Posted by aslocran on 21/2/2008 at 13:22

I have noticed that most of the guide books seem to stop at the end of the Cam Nam bridge. This is a shame because Cam Nam is a delightful area of Hoi An. The streets are small and its kind of like walking through Hobbiton. Little kids chase you down the streets shouting, "hello" and "Where you from?" It's very cool and really nice to get away from the hectic pace of central Old Town. The island extends about 4 kilometers with the road jogging to the right a half a dozen times to compensate f ...

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Viewed 6,888 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by spy on 27/2/2008 at 07:53

What is the best transport for the Dien Bien circuit?

Posted by joeh on 25/2/2008 at 18:36

I will be in Vietnam in April, looking to travel the circuit Hanoi-Dien Bien Phu-Sapa-Hanoi. Does anyone have a suggestion for the best form of transport? ...

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Viewed 3,336 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 26/2/2008 at 10:28


Posted by redgum on 25/2/2008 at 08:51

Does anyone know if vietnam is a good place to buy underwear? Thailand is great but wondered if vietnam is the same? Also anyone recommend a good tailor in Hoian? thanks ...

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Viewed 1,716 times, with 7 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 26/2/2008 at 10:11

Beijing - Hanoi train

Posted by eirie on 24/2/2008 at 06:09

Hi travellers! Can anybody give me information on the train from Beijing to Hanoi? I know that there is a twice weekly connection, I'd just like to find out if it is an interesting journey (landscape-wise or otherwise) and worth doing it. Thanx! ...

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Viewed 4,354 times, with 3 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 25/2/2008 at 02:14

Sapa Guide

Posted by Unknownsu on 23/10/2007 at 12:27

Hi everyone, I'm making a trip to Sapa during late January and to budget better, I searched the internet for prices of guides on arrival but couldn't find any. I know what to expect with everything else. I'm thinking of getting there and hiring a guide from an agency or hotel. Can anyone tell me what the average cost of a guide is on a day basis? Also, do you have any recommendations for a guide? Thanks in advance. ...

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Viewed 6,554 times, with 9 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 22/2/2008 at 00:14

Whale Island Dilema

Posted by jzar on 14/1/2008 at 01:32

Hi, I catered for 2 nights on whale island for my itinerary as well as 1 night in Nha Trang afterwards(travelling from Hoi An) i have read so many websites that really say "avoid" whale island as places there are very expensive for what they offer.Should I not go to whale island? i was thinking of spending maybe an extra night in Hoi An and maybe 2 nights (instead of one) in Nha Trang as I believe you can do day trips from there?(or maybe 3 nights in nha trang as I will be staying no less ...

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Viewed 3,920 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by jzar on 22/2/2008 at 00:13

Express bus HA TIEN to RACH GIA

Posted by ron67 on 15/1/2008 at 04:48

wanted to know how many express buss's leave from Ha Tien to Rach Gia a day ? and what times ?it will be on a monday,any information much appreciated. Ron. ...

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Viewed 6,660 times, with 4 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 22/2/2008 at 00:08

laundry soap!

Posted by fishtails04 on 18/1/2008 at 16:38

thismay seem like a strange request... but i've never travelled anywhere that doesn't sell bars of laundry soap (much more efficient and less messy than powder/liquid). i can't find it here in cambodia but am headed for vietnam soon - is it available there or should i get a friend to bring a stash when she visits? cheers fishtails ...

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Viewed 1,972 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 22/2/2008 at 00:06

train Hanoi to Hoi An/DaNang on Feb 3

Posted by aodily on 29/1/2008 at 19:12

hello all. we'll arrive to Hanoi on Feb 2 and would like to take the train to Hoi An the following day or so. i contacted several travel agencies. only 1 replied suggesting that everything is sold out in that period. anyone out there with good ideas/better info? thanks! aodily ...

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Viewed 2,768 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 22/2/2008 at 00:04

Language Schools in Hanoi

Posted by stuartheth on 5/2/2008 at 16:34

G'day, Does anyone have a reccomendation for Vietnamese Language Schools in Hanoi? I'm after a two week intensive or something like this. Thanks in advance, Love the site Stu. Stu. ...

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Viewed 2,109 times, with 6 replies. Last reply by stuartheth on 22/2/2008 at 00:00

Full moon festival in Hoi An

Posted by steiny on 11/2/2008 at 02:39

We're going to be in Hoi An in March, and can't work out when the full moon festival will be. If it's on the 'fourteenth day of the lunar calendar' then that must be the full moon, right? Here in Scotland that's the 21st March. This may be a stupid question, but will it be the same in Vietnam? It's difficult to find a list of dates for the festival in 2008. For those of you that have been there, does Hoi An get busy and would you say it's essential to book accommodation in advance around the ...

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Viewed 7,278 times, with 4 replies. Last reply by steiny on 21/2/2008 at 23:57

Hoi An closures Life Resort and The Lounge Bar

Posted by aslocran on 21/2/2008 at 13:01

The Lounge bar in central old town has closed its doors for good. Gypsy, (phillip) has sold the business and moved on. It does not appear that the business will ever surface in its same guise. The life resort has closed for three months starting on Feb. 15th. They took significant damage during the floods and their insurance has kicked in. So... they are doing a complete remodel. its already one of the nicest hotels in down town. I am sure that it will come back better than ever! ...

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Viewed 1,727 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 21/2/2008 at 23:54

Halong Bay Alternatives

Posted by millerhd on 19/2/2008 at 14:49

I would really like to see the famous Halong Bay, but it sounds so difficult and overly touristed that I am afraid I wouldn't end up enjoying it. I understand that Halong bay is just part of the greater bay. Is there some Halong bay alternative, which is equally beautiful, or at least nearly as beautiful, that doesn't have the extensive tourism and all of the ills that go with it? Also, my budget is quite tight so expensive luxury options aren't really options for me. Thanks for the help. ...

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Viewed 4,883 times, with 3 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 20/2/2008 at 21:25

HEATED accomodation: Hanoi, Sapa, Halong Bay

Posted by suecatwoman on 18/2/2008 at 23:04

Not too sure why the term "heated" is so absurd here..I hear it's the coldest winter in 30 years but surely heat can't be this hard to come by. Does anyone know any HEATED places to stay in Hanoi or companies that do treks to Sapa & Halong bay with HEATED accommodation? As inexpensive as possible... Thanks. ...

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Viewed 2,753 times, with 1 reply. Last reply by CatBa on 20/2/2008 at 21:21

Visiting Ho Chi Minh City? Go Spoil Yourself!

Posted by CatBa on 3/2/2008 at 22:11

Most visitors to HCMC/SaiGon spend only a few days before either departing the country - or heading north. As a result many miss the night markets ... and the nightly dining opportunities instead frequently haunting the tourist feeding holes that offer the same old choice. Break out and taste the difference! Within walking distance of the Backpacker area and the upscale area around Dong Khoi and Hai Ba Trung Streets you could be hard pressed to discover fresh food cooked perfectly than the ...

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Viewed 4,484 times, with 3 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 13/2/2008 at 23:06

halong bay with tropical sails

Posted by fishtails04 on 12/2/2008 at 15:57

has anyone any experience of the company tropical sails for junk trips in halong bay? want to book something classier than the backpacker trips for thisso would appreciate advice. thanks ...

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Viewed 4,806 times, with 2 replies. Last reply by CatBa on 13/2/2008 at 23:02

shoemakers in hanoi?

Posted by fishtails04 on 12/2/2008 at 15:54

missed the chance to get boots made in hoi an and just wondering if there are similar opportunities in hanoi? if so, can anyone recommend a good english speaking shoe maker, who will make to order? thanks ...

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