Hoi An is a picturesque riverside town 30 km south of Danang. Most visitors agree it is the most enchanting place on the coast and is one city worth lingering in.
Known as 'Faifo' to early Western traders, it was one of South-East Asia's major international ports during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.
In its heyday, Hoi An, a contemporary of Macau and Melaka, was an important port of call for Dutch, Portuguese, Chinese, Japanese and other trading vessels. Vietnamese ships and sailors based in Hoi An sailed to all sections of Vietnam, as well as Thailand and Indonesia.
Perhaps, more than any other place in Vietnam, Hoi An retains a sense of history that grows on you the more you explore it.
In 1999, the old town was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO as a well-preserved example of a Southeast Asian trading port of the 15th to 19th centuries, with buildings that display a unique blend of local and foreign influences.
'Hoi An legendary Night' takes places on the 14th day of every lunar month (fullmoon) from 5:30 to 10 pm. This colourful monthly event features tradditional food, song and dance, and games along the lantern-lit streets in the town centre.
Today, the town is a tourist attraction because of its history, traditional architecture and crafts (such as textiles, custom made clothes, hand made lanterns and ceramics). Many bars, hotels, and resorts have been constructed both in Hoi An and the surrounding area. The port and boats are still used for both fishing and tourism.
1Japanese Covered BridgeThe Japanese covered bridge was built over a small canal in 1593 to link the Japanese quarter to the Chinese quarter. Designed and built by the Japanese community, the wooden structure has remained intact. On one side of the bridge are carvings of dogs, and on the other, carvings of monkeys. This is because construction began during a year of the dog, and ended during a year of the monkey. On the northern side of the bridge there is a Japanese pagoda dedicated to protecting sailors.
2Tan Ky HouseThis well preserved 18th century house blends Vietnamese, Chinese, and Japanese architectural styles. Chinese poems written in mother-of-pearl are inscribed on the house's columns, the roof is shaped in a distinctive Japanese, crab-shell shape and the outer structure is Vietnamese in design.
Nha Trang is one of Vietnam's most pleasant beach resorts.
Nha Trang is renowned for its pristine palm tree-lined beachfront.
The gentle waters of Nha Trang Bay make for enjoyable swimming, and numerous islands nearby are ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving
The valleys surrounding Sapa are home to several of Vietnam’s 54 ethnic minority groups, each with their own distinctive dress, customs and dialects.
These tribes can all be seen at the weekend market in Sapa town to trade with one another.
Visitors will enjoy the group of five or six islands situated close to each other. The largest of the islands is Hon Tre, which is located 3 km from Nha Trang. Nha Trang is not only famous for its natural landscapes but also for its heritage of the Cham culture.
1Po Nagar TempleThe Po Nagar Temple complex is a well-preserved example of Cham architecture from the 7th to 12th centuries. The largest tower is 23-metres high and was built in 817 AD. Originally consisting of eight towers, four still remain. The towers are surrounded flowers and trees and sit on a small hill overlooking the picturesque Nha Trang harbor.
2Bao Dai VillaThis complex of five villas offers a panoramic view of Nha Trang Bay and is a former residence of Vietnam's last emperor.
Located on Langbian high lands, part of the greater Central high lands of Vietnam, Dalat is 1500 m above sea level and is 305 km from Saigon.
The name Da Lat originates from the hill tribe people in this region.
Dalat city is probably one of Vietnam's most well known vacation destination.
1Dalat CathedralA French Romanesque-style cathedral set in the middle of Vietnam's central highlands. With its distinctive red brick, stained glass windows, and soaring 47-metre high spire, Dalat Cathedral is the city's most distinctive landmark
2Prenn WaterfallThis 10 meter high waterfall roars through the forest 13 km south of Dalat. Bridges near the falls allow for close up views and the chance to feel the mist spraying up from the falls. It’s even possible to walk underneath them.
Located 200 km from Saigon along Vietnam's southeastern coast, Phan Thiet is home to one of the best stretches of beach in the country.
Phan Thiet is the classic example of a resort which has retained its fishing village culture.
The town itself has remained untouched by tourism, whilst a collection of excellent resorts have opened up along the coast on the Mui Ne Peninsula.
Well spaced and sensitively constructed, these resorts offer everything that a visitor could want from a beach destination.
1Relic of Duc Thanh SchoolDuc Thanh School, cultural and historical relic: #39 on Trung Nhi Street, Phan Thiet City, was built in 1907.
2The Lying BuddhaThe Buddhist statue "Buddha joins into Nirvana", or "The lying Buddha", 49 meters long, was sculptured in 1962 on Ta Cu Mountain. It is in the cultural complex including Linh Son Truong Tho and Linh Son Long Doan Pagodas (built in the late 19th century).