Author Topic: Vietnam - Anyone been?  (Read 2361 times)

Offline Mistress Vamp

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Vietnam - Anyone been?
« on: Apr 13, 2007, 08:10:38 PM »
I'm thinking of going to Vietnam later this year, has anyone been, when is the best time to go, which parts are the best to visit?

Zen

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #1 on: Apr 13, 2007, 08:18:31 PM »
Mistress Vamp, I haven't been to Vietnam - yet - but my travel book* says there's no particularly bad time to go weather wise, because when it's wet, cold or steaming hot in one region, there is always somewhere else that is sunny and pleasantly warm. It does however warn against going during Tet (the Vietnamese New Year) which falls in late January or early February because flights and accommodation will probably be booked out. 





* I collect Travel Books for places to hope to go to one day.

Offline Mistress Vamp

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #2 on: Apr 13, 2007, 08:31:07 PM »
Thanks  :D Nice to know i'm not the only one who collects travel books in the hope I will go there one day!

Offline Pirate K

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #3 on: Apr 13, 2007, 08:33:30 PM »
I went in October/November - lovely weather although there was the occasional afternoon shower as I think that's just after the monsoon season.

Go everywhere you can - it's all lovely but highlights are Hanoi, Hoi An (great place for getting clothes made), and Dalat (get some dried strawberries - delicious).

Check out http://www.lonelyplanet.com/worldguide/destinations/asia/vietnam/ - there's heaps of good info there.

Enjoy!
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Cheese_Peanuts

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #4 on: Apr 14, 2007, 12:28:01 AM »
my mother and sister went last year. came back with tons of stuff, but they went on a like- backpacking trip around vietnam. they seemed to really enjoy it, but it isnt my kinda thing.

I recommend going to argentina!!! its amazing!

Offline antonial'orso

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #5 on: Apr 14, 2007, 12:32:07 AM »
i went to Vietnam a couple one a half year ago...in october...the weather was nicer at the beginning of octcber and it got quite rainy at the end...but as someone else said it was really warm so i didnt mind...
i loved hoi an...as everyone else i had to urge to have clothes made that i never wore again... ;) but the town itself is lovely...even though i preferred south vietnam in general ( varied food, people a bit more relaxed and friendly) i wasnt too kin on saigon/ hoi chi min but really liked hanoi...i didnt do the northern hill tribe thingy (sapa i think the place is called) because i was coming from laos and did there but it is supposed to be really good...i would also go kayaking in Halon bay (not sure about spelling) if you have time...hope this helps! ;)

Offline Kuifje

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #6 on: Apr 16, 2007, 09:58:25 PM »
I have not been but a girlfriend who has travelled a hell of a lot has, and she hated it. I have heard great things about Myanmar and Laos.

Offline antonial'orso

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #7 on: Apr 17, 2007, 11:34:34 AM »
i think it is because people are not as friendly as in Laos...it just takes longer to get used to it...but yes I preferred Laos but i'd go back to Vietnam any time... ;)

Offline DrHaus

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #8 on: Apr 17, 2007, 12:00:11 PM »
If you are at Bar Wot next tues, I'll be with a friend who has travelled there - I'll introduce you to her. x

Offline hoover

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #9 on: Apr 17, 2007, 12:34:41 PM »
i must admit, out of south east asia it was the place where we came to most grief.  we planned to travel from Ho Chi Minh to Hanoi, but only got as far as about Hue, i think it was, in the end due to being stuck in places waiting for money to come through.  this was because we got stolen from 3 times (once when 2 guys on a motorbike snatched my bag and dragged me behind them for several meters before i managed to untangle myself.  nice grazes)

Hoi An, good for clothes, (go to the more expensive places) but for us they put the payment through twice, so watch out for that.  also watch out for getting cash from a bank, they can try to shortchange you with hundreds of small notes hoping you won't count them all till later.  so make sure you stand in front of them to count it all out - which it wasn't for us, on one occasion)

you should check out the memorials to the war - the My Lai massacre, and the Cu Chi tunnels are definitely worth a visit.

we went in 2002, so maybe things are better out there now for tourists than they were then.

Offline antonial'orso

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #10 on: Apr 17, 2007, 01:03:49 PM »
i didnt have any bad experiences like that in Vietnam but we did in Thailand...i heard of quite a few  peoplein south east asia in general  and i think it is still like that. western person=money, it doesnt matter if we were backpaking and def not looking very smart... :-\  i did feel the most grief in Vietnam  though; i felt ungratefully privileged. I remember walking through paddy rice fields where people were working their a**** off and felt like a guilty voyeur followed by some kid trying to sell you Coke. you can find that anywhere (just for foreigners), as you can find massive billboards promoting "drink coca cola" anywhere. made me sick. but the country itself, i think it is beautiful. ok, the people are not the friendliest, who can blame them, but actually if you make the effort to speak a few words of their language ( no msg is a very valueable one) people really appreciate that.
They dont seem too keen on tatoos on women...my gf has to cover up quite a bit because of that...and we were laughed at a lot (so was in Laos and Thailand) but not in a nasty way...maybe because of the short hair...
i hope i havent put anyone off with this post.... ;)

Offline minke

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #11 on: Apr 26, 2007, 07:52:25 PM »
I went in March a few years ago, and the weather was fine.  But hot weather doesn't really bother me unless it's humid so it might have been too hot and I didn't notice.

The train is a great way to get around, you'll see some spectacular scenery on some of the legs.  I liked Hue and HCMC, Hoi An is ok, and you can take a trip out to My Son (Cham temples) if you're waiting for clothes to be made (or travelling with your mother who is waiting for clothes to be made).  The best parts depend on what kind of things you like to see or do - shopping, scenery, temples and ruins, beaches...

Vietnam is better than Thailand, Cambodia or Laos if you're vegetarian because they're the 'right' kind of Buddhists (though some parts of Laos have heaps of Vietnamese which means you can probably find Vietnamese restaurants).
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Offline DDCO

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Re: Vietnam - Anyone been?
« Reply #12 on: Apr 27, 2007, 06:05:59 PM »
i went in august time and the weather was good. mostly hot and sunny really with occasional downpours.
i travelled the length of it... I agree it wasn't as friendly as say laos or thailand etc, but still well worth a visit.

Brief thoughts on the places we went to, i can tell you more if you want!-
Ho chi minh - unfortunately didn't stay for long but it seemed pretty cool.
Nha Trang bay - lovely beaches and snorkelling
Hoi An - really beautiful town, excellent for tailor shops, nice beach nearby
Hue - some good historical sights but we found it a bit creepy..no idea why
Hanoi - some good places to visit. generally a nice city
halong bay (by boat) - absolutely stunning, but quite touristy
Sapa - gorgeous. some really great treks. town itself quite commercial but not as much as i had feared...

A good tip for budget travelling is you can get a hop on hop off style ticket for the whole country for a very very low price and the buses are fairly comfortable and reliable.