Vietnam is one of my top five countries and getting to explore Vietnam was one of my highlights of 2019. It is one of the best budget travel destinations and perfect for female solo trips. And as you will see in these pictures, it is a very picturesque country.
For me, Vietnam is a true gem and there are few things I did not love about it. Admittedly I felt more at peace in the North with its stunning and unique nature, but the entire country is incredibly charming. If given the chance, I can only encourage you to visit Vietnam. There are so many fantastic off-the-beaten-track places in Vietnam and it is incredible to discover them.
Vietnam is a photographer’s dream. And I think I spend way too much time running around with my camera and a giddy smile on my face. The pictures in this post that will make you plan your own vacation in Vietnam, are just a small selection of my personal favorites.
Obviously I fell in love with this country and I sincerely hope that you will feel the same way.
My Vietnam Trip
I spend 15 days there in 2019 and I honestly wish I had stayed longer. I started my trip in Hanoi and spend several days on Cat Ba and cruising Ha Long Bay and Lan Ha Bay. Afterward, I explored Ninh Binh. My destinations in central Vietnam were Hue, Da Nang, and Hoi An. My trip ended in Ho Chi Minh (Saigon). If you want to know how much a trip similar to my own costs, you can read all about it in my Vietnam spending diary.
Explore North Vietnam
Ha Long Bay & Lan Ha Bay
I did a one-day cruise through Ha Long Bay and Lan Ha Bay, and it was one of the most incredible moments in Vietnam. It was incredible to see the limestone formations with my own eyes and to swim and kayak there. If you end up visiting Vietnam, you should add a cruise like this to your itinerary.
You have several options depending on your budget: you can either book a multi-day trip that allows you to spend the night, choose a one-day cruise or take the ferry to Cat Ba. The ferry cruises through a part of Ha Long bay, so it’s the perfect option if you are on a tight budget.
Cat Ba is located in Ha Long Ba and the biggest island there. It offers an incredible peak hike and tracking in addition to other great activities. It is a really cool place and I personally stayed on the island for 3 days.
Ha Long City
I admittedly did not spend a long time in Ha Long City, but climbing Poem Mountain is a must. The view is incredible and climbing up this ‘closed’ path is a lot of fun. Some might tell you that it is no longer possible, but that is not the case. As of late 2019 it has gotten harder, but do not be discouraged. The little struggle and potential wait is worth it.
Some people call the area around Ninh Binh and Tam Coc the inland Ha Long Bay. And after having seen it with my own eyes, I can see where they are coming from. The landscape is really interesting and the area offers several interesting pagodas and buildings.
Watch the sunrise paint the area in golden-pink hues from one of the Hang Mua Caves viewpoints.
And head to Trang An between 2 PM to 3 PM so you can enjoy the boat ride as the sun sets.
Visit Central Vietnam
I honestly cannot wait to return to Vietnam and to explore areas like the Mekong Delta and Sapa. While I do not know, when I will return there, but I do know that I will once again spend a lot of time taking pictures.
Did I convince you to visit Vietnam?
Hopefully, these pictures inspired you to visit Vietnam. The country already looks amazing in pictures, but it is even better to see it with your own eyes.
Let me know if you decide to explore Vietnam and also what you loved the most about it once you have been there.
Further Guides: Vietnam
Overview: Vietnam Travel Guide