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Northern Vietnam 2024: 10 amazing destinations to satisfy your wanderlust

08/02/2023 1474 views

The three regions of Vietnam have different landscapes, cultures, and delicacies. Northern Vietnam, with its many amazing things, has taken lots of tourists by surprise. Read on to discover the top 10 favourite destinations in this region.

Northern Vietnam

Vietnam Northern region is a magnet to tourists (Source: Collected)

On the map, Vietnam appears as a letter “S” that stretches 1,650 kilometers from north to south. The Northern Vietnam region has various types of terrain, which results in diverse landscapes and climates. Visitors can find many breathtakingly beautiful places, where different ethnic groups with distinctive cultures reside. Below are ten most striking destinations in the region that you should consider for your Vietnam travel.

1. When is the best time to visit Northern Vietnam?

Northern Vietnam consists of over 20 cities and provinces. The weather in Northern Vietnam is diverse, with four distinct seasons in a year: spring, summer, autumn, and winter.

  • In Spring (March – April), the weather is pleasant. The average temperature is 22 degrees Celsius with some rainfall, which is suitable for plants to grow and flowers to bloom. The landscapes will be full of life and colours, which makes the season ideal for many outdoor activities such as kayaking, trekking, cruising, cycling, rock climbing, etc.
  • In Summer (May – August), the weather is quite hot. The average temperature is around 35 – 38 degrees Celsius. It is humid and rainy as well. This is the appropriate season for people to travel to the sea.
  • In Autumn (September – November), the weather is enjoyable. Leaves fall, making the scenery more romantic. The temperature ranges from 20 to 25 degrees Celsius, which is good for having a picnic, walking, sightseeing, and shopping around.
  • In Winter (December – February), the temperature is lower in higher areas. The average temperature ranges between 17 and 22 degrees Celsius, which may drop to lower than 10 in some mountainous areas.

2. Where to go and things to do in Northern Vietnam?

2.1. Hanoi: Enjoy Northern Vietnam Pho and explore the Old Quarter

Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, is an ideal destination for a one-day trip. The thousand-year-old capital has many distinctive features that cannot be found in any other cities, which put Hanoi on the list of must-see destinations for travel enthusiasts.

Northern Vietnam

The capital has its own charm in every season (Source: Collected)

Here, you can feel the peaceful atmosphere even on the bustling streets. The Old Quarter, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Hoan Kiem Lake, Long Bien Bridge, One Pillar Pagoda, and West Lake are some popular destinations.

In addition, don’t forget to try the authentic pho (beef/chicken noodle) and other delicacies of Vietnamese food, such as cha ca la vong (Vietnamese grilled fish) or bun thang (chicken soup with vermicelli).

When you are in Hanoi, it is recommended that you visit VinKE & Vinpearl Aquarium Times City, especially if you go with your kids. These two sites are both in Vincom Mega Mall Times City, No. 458, Minh Khai street, Vinh Tuy ward, Hai Ba Trung district, which is not far from the city center.

At Vinpearl Aquarium, your kids will have the opportunity to explore a colorful ocean world at one of the most modern aquarium systems in Vietnam. In a total area of ​​​​nearly 4,000 square meters, the aquarium stores nearly 3 million liters of sea water and more than 30,000 sea creatures from around the world.

Northern Vietnam

VinKE & Vinpearl Aquarium is an ideal place for families with kids

On the other hand, VinKE is where the children can experience their dream career, learn more about their favorite field, and become more confident with the world around them. Here, there are many work-simulation games, such as: Fire Department, Traffic Police, Special Forces, Auto Repair Workshop, etc.

>>> Book tickets of VinKE & Vinpearl Aquarium to have lots of fun with your family in Northern Vietnam!

2.2. Ha Long Bay: Go kayaking and explore amazing caves

Ha Long Bay is one of the seven new natural wonders of the world and a World Natural Heritage site. It has nearly 2,000 islands, many of which are popular destinations for tourists, such as Ti Top Island, Ga Choi Islet, Soi Sim Island, and Trong Mai Islet.

In addition, Mother Nature has bestowed the bay with many spectacular caves, such as Sung Sot Cave, Dau Go Cave, Me Cung Cave, etc., where tourists can admire the magnificent stalactites and stalagmites.

Northern Vietnam

A trip to Ha Long Bay is a must in Northern Vietnam travel (Source: Collected)

In Ha Long Bay, you can also go kayaking, explore floating fishing villages, and enjoy a sumptuous seafood feast right on the boat. While you are here, it is recommended that you stay at Vinpearl Resort & Spa Ha Long to experience various luxurious services.

This resort stands entirely on the sea, of which design was inspired by the Opera House of Rennes, France. From here, you can have a good view of the bay and travel to other destinations in the city with ease.

Northern Vietnam

Stay at Vinpearl Resort & Spa Ha Long to have a flawless vacation (Source: Collected)

>>> Book rooms in Vinpearl Resort & Spa Ha Long to have a pleasant stay in Northern Vietnam!

2.3. Sapa: Visit local villages and conquer Fansipan Mount

Sapa is another tourist center in Northern Vietnam, with cool weather all year round and pristine natural landscapes. Here, you can try to conquer Mount Fansipan, the highest peak in Indochina, either on foot or by cable car. Or you can visit Muong Hoa Valley, Ancient Stone Field, Stone Church, or Ham Rong Mountain.

It is also a good idea to come to various villages of the local ethnic groups in Sapa. Cat Cat and Ta Van villages of the Mong group are two of the nearest local villages. You can come here to observe their lifestyle and try many delicious local dishes, such as seven-color sticky rice, grilled pork, grilled chicken, grilled duck, and smoked buffalo meat.

Northern Vietnam

Sa Pa attracts visitors with its magnificent landscape and rich ethnic culture (Source: Collected)

2.4. Ha Giang: Explore winding roads and mountain passes

For mountain lovers, Ha Giang is an ideal destination, having a beautiful natural landscape with mountains, forests, and rivers, and peaks. The highlight of this destination is its winding roads, steep hills, stunning mountain passes and terraced rice fields.

Northern Vietnam

Ha Giang has many mesmerizing winding roads and mountain passes (Source: Collected)

Some of the must-see places in Ha Giang are Quan Ba Heaven’s Gate, Quan Ba Twin Mountains, Dong Van Old Town, and Lung Cu Flag Tower. If you are in Meo Vac District, you should come to Ma Pi Leng Pass, which has a length of 20 kilometres at an altitude of 1,200 metres above sea level. In addition, the terraced rice fields in Hoang Su Phi District are listed as a national heritage site that has been preserved by many generations so far.

Ha Giang also attracts tourists with its local cuisine. With many delicacies of Northern Vietnamese food, such as multi-colour sticky rice, Au Tau porridge, buckwheat cake and thang co (a kind of soup made from animal’s bone, meat and intestines), your appetite will surely be satisfied here.

2.5. Ninh Binh: Take a paddleboat tour for sightseeing

Ninh Binh Province, with diverse landscapes of rivers, mountains, and forest, is an excellent destination for tourists in Northern Vietnam.

Ninh Bình is a go-to place in your Northern Vietnam itinerary

Ninh Bình is a go-to place in your Northern Vietnam itinerary (Source: Collected)

Taking a paddleboat in Tam Coc Bich Dong or Trang An Eco-Tourism Complex will be an unforgettable experience for visitors, as they can relax on the boat, admire the lush surrounding mountains, and enjoy the fresh atmosphere.

On the other hand, nature lovers can go to Cuc Phuong National Park to trek in the forest and see the rich flora and fauna here. A visit to historical sites, such as Hoa Lu Ancient Citadel, King Dinh Temple, King Le Temple, or Phat Diem Pagoda, is also a good choice.

While you are here, don’t forget to try the local delicacies, such as baked rice crust, goat meat, mountain snails, or Nho Quan wine.

2.6. Moc Chau (Son La): Contemplate the beauty of flower seasons

As a mountainous district located in the southeast of Son La Province, Moc Chau has four distinct seasons. In spring, the weather is pleasant, with the average temperature of 20 degrees Celsius. In this season, 1,000 metres above sea level, various flowers together bloom, such as peach blossom, apricot and plum flower. People often flock here at this time to contemplate such beautiful wonder of nature.

Northern Vietnam

Moc Chau is one of the top Northern Vietnam attractions (Source: Collected)

Summer is the fruit-harvest season, which is also a time to visit Dai Yem Waterfall. The water falling from the 70-metre-high cliff will be a magnificent sight to behold. The clear and chilly water will help you cool off the summer heat.

In autumn, the weather is cooler. The fields and valleys are covered with white Brassica napus flowers. In the following months, they will be replaced by yellow sunflowers.

In winter, the weather is cold. Hills full of tea are covered with fog, which creates a mysterious yet beautiful scenery.

2.7. Yen Bai: View spectacular terraced rice fields

Yen Bai, located in the middle of the western and eastern mountainous regions of Northern Vietnam, has diverse terrains. Here, Mu Cang Chai District is most famous for the beautiful terraced rice fields, which attracts a large number of tourists in the harvest season.

Northern Vietnam

You should definitely come see the terraced rice fields in Northern Vietnam (Source: Collected)

Besides seeing the terraced rice fields, you can trek up Ta Xua Peak, with the height of 2,500 metres above sea level. This is a natural wonder on the border of Yen Bai and Son La provinces.

Suoi Giang Commune is another must-go place in Yen Bai, which is home to immense hills of tea. There are also forests hundreds of years old, where visitors can enjoy truly relaxing moments, far away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

2.8. Mai Chau (Hoa Binh): Cycle around villages to feel the fresh air

Mai Chau has a peaceful atmosphere throughout the year. This is often a popular destination for both domestic and foreign tourists who are fond of cycling.

In spring, orchid flowers bloom in the mountains and forests. In summer, yellow rice fields cover the valley. From August to October is considered the best time to visit Mai Chau and enjoy the warm sunshine on the fields. From November to January, apricot and plum flowers will come into full bloom all over the valley.

While you are here, don’t forget to try the local specialities, such as steamed rice in bamboo tubes, various dishes from chicken and freshly-caught fish.

Northern Vietnam

Mai Chau is an ideal place for bicycle riders in Northern Vietnam (Source: Collected)

2.9. Cat Ba (Hai Phong): Try sea sports and explore nature

Cat Ba Archipelago consists of over 360 small and big islands. Therefore, it is a place with a lot of potential to develop sea tourism in Northern Vietnam.

Nicknamed as the “Gem of Tonkin Gulf”, Cat Ba has plenty of interesting things for visitors. Here, there are many pristine Northen Vietnam beaches with white long sand stretches and clear turquoise water. Summer is the best season to visit Cat Ba, ideal for relaxing on the beach and swimming in the sea.

Monkey Island, a prominent attraction here, is home to thousands of monkeys. You can also tour around Lan Ha Bay, another natural wonder with various islets. Visiting Van Gia floating village is also a good option, as this is where visitors can learn about the life of the local people.

Northern Vietnam

Cat Ba has some of the best beaches in Northern Vietnam (Source: Collected)

Kayaking around and exploring the caves are some activities that you should try here. Or you can spend a night on a cruiser, get up early to admire the sunrise, and enjoy a sumptuous seafood buffet right on the sea. You should also try diving to see coral reefs and fishing on your trip to Cat Ba.

2.10. Tam Dao (Vinh Phuc): Visit the famous ancient stone church

Tam Dao District is in Vinh Phuc Province, located some 80 kilometres away from Hanoi. It has cool weather all year round. In summer, Tam Dao is often a place for the people of Hanoi to get away from the heat. Meanwhile, in winter, this place is covered with fog, which makes it all the more romantic.

Northern Vietnam

Tam Dao Stone Church has witnessed many ups and downs of Northern Vietnam (Source: Collected)

Some places for sightseeing here are Silver Waterfall, Television Tower, and Stone Church. The church was built in the early 1900s by the French. It has witnessed many ups and downs of the district. Still standing after the wars, it is now a meeting place for the local parish and a popular destination for tourists.

Northern Vietnam has many favourable conditions to develop tourism. With its diverse terrains, the region offers a lot of amazing landscapes, making it an attractive destination all year round for even the most demanding tourists.

With the guides above, hopefully you will have a flawless trip to this region. Before you come here, don’t forget to book Vinpearl’s hotels and resorts to experience five-star standard facilities and services for your stay in Vietnam.

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