Top 5 must-see destinations in North Vietnam at its finest

Northern Vietnam, thanks to its geographic location, covers a wide range of sensational experiences, from majestic mountain ranges to peaceful villages and gorgeous rice fields. Explore this region to see the subtle influence of Chinese culture on the local cuisine, lifestyle, and architect. Here we put together 5 destinations that will fit perfectly into your North Vietnam tours.

Why choose Northern Vietnam during your holiday?

Recognized as one of the cradles of rice cultivation, Northern Vietnam is a crucial part of Southwest Asia’s culture. Its ethnicity tapestry is reflected in its architect, artwork, cultural scenes, and lifestyle. The region is home to a diverse group of people, it is abundantly affordable, accessible, and authentic. So pack your bag and get ready to be inspired by charismatic conical hats, colorful food carts, an enchanting brew of tea and bamboo chopsticks. Let’s explore the top 5 destinations you should see in Northern Vietnam.


Art and history can be found on every corner of Hanoi
Art and history can be seen in every corner of Hanoi

The heart of Vietnam, the city of peace, the 1000-year-old capital. However you name it, it is sure that Hanoi will leave you impressed. Located only 45 kilometers away from Noi Bai international airport, the city should be your first destination for 7 days in Northern Vietnam.

Just minutes from your hotel, visitors can immerse themselves in vibrant vibes of local life. A stroll around the dynamic downtown of Hoan Kiem district will help to find traces to Hanoi’s rich heritage. You can see cross-generation businesses and food carts. Hanoi also has sacred pagodas and stunning age-old French buildings. The list does not end here. In Hanoi, you can enjoy water puppet shows at theaters, visit handicraft villages, and war museums. This city never disappoints any art and history lover.

Make sure that you grab a signature cup of egg coffee, sit back in an artsy café, and watch the world goes by. By that way, you have already had an amazing chance to experience Hanoi the locals’ way.


Can Cau market in Sapa
Can Cau market in Sapa

Curious about the cultural diversity of North Vietnam in one week? Pack your bag and head to Sapa. Apart from the iconic trek to Fansipan (commonly known as “The rooftop of Indochina”), a visit to Sapa is more than just sightseeing.

In Sapa, you will have a chance to savor the beauty of cloud-capped mountaintops soaring out of ever-green valleys. It also offers you opportunities to experience the local life of Sapa’s 24 ethnic minorities. Each has its own language, cuisine, and lifestyle. You can drop by a small village, for example, the Ta Phin or the Lao Chai, to enjoy the warmth of Sapa hospitality.

The legends and myths here are interesting to learn about. You will know how the people have conquered tough climate and steep mountains to form neat rice terrace and build stunning villages. Be prepared for an entertaining performance of music and dance or a cooking lesson that provides deeper insight about the culture during your 3 days in Sapa.

Halong Bay

amazing view from Thien Canh Son in Halong Bay.jpg
Amazing view from Thien Canh Son in Halong Bay

Recognized by UNESCO as a world’s natural wonder, Halong Bay – among the top 5 Vietnam holidays deals – has become an icon for Vietnam’s tourism. Halong Bay offers plenty of choices for travelers.  Hence, you can have a full schedule with activities or a more relaxing trip plan as you wish.

A heavenly setting of gorgeous mountains scattering across the seas, Halong Bay’s gifted beauty is what you don’t want to rush by. The most recommended option is to board a cruise trip that takes you to multiple unique karsts and isles. There are great opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts. Swimming, kayaking, scuba diving, squid fishing, and cycling are readily available.

Still, need to unwind? Then simply chill on top of a cruise ship or by a sandy beach and get your generous dose of vitamin D while a tasty, locally-sourced meal is being prepared. It is absolute heaven for any sun-worshipper.

Perfume pagoda complex

Huong pagoda
Visiting Huong pagoda

It is a perfect destination for those who seek out to explore spiritual practice in Vietnam. The Perfume Pagoda Complex, known as “Chùa Hương”,  comprises of multiple pagodas and temples. While pagodas are where Buddism is worshipped, temples are where an important person is worshipped. All are gorgeously put in place in the scenic limestone mountains of Huong Tich.

Spending one day exploring the complex, you would come home with an insider look into the intangle factors that shape Vietnamese people’s way of living for thousands of years.  Get in a small boat and admire the skills of the boatmen while indulging in the stunning landscape of lush rice field and spectacular mountain background. This destination is perfect for a lesson of mindset and a change of scenery.

Ha Giang

Local people in Ha Giang
Local people in Ha Giang

As the Northern-most province of the country, Ha Giang proudly serves as a gateway to explore Northern Vietnam’s culture in its finest and most authentic state. This is where the Chinese element is pronounced through its cuisine, language, and architect. This place preserves some of the traditions that almost go obsolete in modern-day Vietnam like tooth-blackening. Men making corn-brewed wine, mothers with babies balanced on their backs harvesting rice, children carrying goods in heavy bamboo baskets making their ways to a weekly market, all dressed in distinctive colorful clothes. There is a lot to observe and to appreciate along with your journey in Ha Giang.

This untouched destination is also an adventure junkies’ paradise overflowing with pristine jungles and expansive mountain ranges. Ha Giang is home to one of the most iconic ( and dangerous) biking routes of the country. A bike ride along the steep and windy roads to win a feel of mastering the mountains is a pretty valid claim!

Remember to have your cameras fully charged ahead of time, because you will want to take lots of photos!

So you have it, the top 5 destinations you should visit during your 7-day trip in Northern Vietnam. It is the land of the magnificent landscape, culture, and history. Northern Vietnam can boast that it is a safe and cheap place to holiday in. Also there are fantastic choices catering to your every need. You can challenge it, live in it, enjoy it slowly and create memories that will last for a lifetime.


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