A naturally beautiful country coupled with rich cultural experiences, Vietnam is both exotic and compelling, and a must visit for all travellers. Vietnam has it all – and then some!
Holidays to Vietnam are growing increasingly popular as the country welcomes visitors from all around the globe. The country bordered by China, Laos and Cambodia boasts beautiful scenery and some of Asia’s most welcoming hospitality and experiences.
From the breath-taking green rice fields to cosmopolitan cities, Vietnam will leave you awestruck at every turn. Often described as sensory overload in the most positive of ways! Travelling through the country you will notice that the north and south are like apple and oranges and a trek from north to south of the country is a visual and sensory feast.
Vietnam’s capital Hanoi, boasts the beauty and influence of France including Parisian facades, and cafes – a little taste of France in South-East Asia. Hanoi is a complex city of sights, sounds and flavours, and sums up the charm that is Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, rivals big cities such as Bangkok and Singapore with its energy.
Vietnamese culture is complex, diverse and rich. Influences stemming from indigenous history, as well as Chinese influences in the north to Hindu origins found in the south. And of course, it’s impossible to forget the impact of the French colonial period creating a wonderful melting pot of people, food and experiences.
Often described as a global culinary superpower, anyone that has travelled to Vietnam would not refute the delicious diversity of Vietnamese cuisine. Vietnamese cooking and food experiences are often the main draw card for travellers to visit the country. With the rich influence of surrounding countries and its French history, travellers can experience wonderful food adventures from street food markets, cooking classes and world class restaurant experiences.
Flights to Vietnam from Australia are both frequent and relatively inexpensive, with most of the surrounding countries linked by direct routes. Vietnam is considered a relatively safe destination for Australian tourists, however travel precautions like with any travel are recommended, and all tourists should take out adequate travel insurance. In preparation for travels to Vietnam it’s important to note the possible health risks associated with travelling through the country. There are on-going cases of the transmission of the Zika virus, and the Australian Department of Health advises pregnant women to discuss any travel plans with their doctor and defer non-essential travel.
As with travel in most Asian developing countries, standard precautions with food and drink are recommended, including opting for cooked meals over salads and avoiding tapwater and ice. Diarrhoeal illnesses are the commonest ailments to affect travellers and carrying treatment to manage these is recommended. Immunisation against serious food and water borne diseases such as hepatitis A and typhoid is also a good idea.
Mosquito-borne illnesses such as dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis also occur. A Japanese encephalitis vaccine is registered and available in Australia, and may be recommended for some itineraries. Malaria is also a risk in some remote mountainous areas.
Rabies is also found in Vietnam, and is most commonly transmitted through dog bites. It is a potentially fatal viral disease that can be found in dogs, monkeys, bats and other mammals. If you are bitten or scratched by a dog, monkey or other mammal in Vietnam, seek urgent medical attention.
When travelling Vietnam it’s also important to note that The standard of medical facilities and care varies, especially once you have left the major cities.
When planning your trip to Vietnam, the high season falls between July and August, and you can expect to pay premium pricing for travel. All of the country experiences hot and humid weather during this time, with the summer monsoon bringing regular downpours.
The low Season fall between April and June and then again September to November and can be a great time to tour the entire country. During this time typhoons can affect the central and northern coasts.