8 Must-See Islands

8 Must-See Islands

Vietnam is a popular tourist's destination with heavenly beauty. This country is a preferred destination for many people who frequently go out for vacations and holidays. Vietnam is a home of paradise islands. The most popular islands include the names of Cat Ba, Phu Quoc, and others. However, there are several hidden gems that require attention. Discover the beauty of nature in Vietnam by visiting following islands.

Phu Quoc Island (in photo):

Talking of attractive islands in Vietnam, tourists never forget to take the name of Phu Quoc Island. This is a beautiful island with fresh air, cool atmosphere, pleasing breeze and peaceful environment. It is more attractive because of crystal clear water, beautiful sunshine, white sand and lush green trees of coconut. These things will keep you romantic at the Phu Quoc Island.

Nam Du Island:

Nam Du Island (KienGiang) is a promising place for tourists. Those who love to have a hot place surrounded by cold blue water must visit this island. It has the advantage of green shady trees of coconuts and shady shores. The cost of this trip would be around 2 million VND if you are starting the trip from Saigon. Also, visit the KienGiang Discovery Voyage in order to capture stunning images.

Con Dao:

It is a popular island at a distance of 230 km from Ho Chi Minh, 179 km from the Vung Tau and only 165 km from the Can Tho. This is among the most preferred islands in Vietnam. It is famous for blue water, white sand and green mountain peaks. The collection of these beautiful features makes Con Dao peaceful scenery.

Binh Ba Island:

Binh Ba has become a hot name for the tourists after the revival of tourism policies in Vietnam. This island is famous for its beautiful landscape. It has culinary richness which captivates the visitors. The beaches around this island are among the top seven places in this country. The most famous beaches include the names of Chuong Beach, Nha Cu Beach and Nom Beach. Also visit the famous Binh Ba Market to enjoy morning shopping such as cakes, noodles, vermicelli, and other seafood.

Binh Hung Island:

This is close to Binh Ba Island. Those who visit this beach should also consider Binh Hung. It is very famous for trekking activities. It is the only island that offers the best terrain for running. This island is little empty as it is under development.

Hang Rai Island:

This is located on the south of VinhHy Bay. It is only 35 km from the famous Phan Rang. This island is an attractive place for tourists who love to see coral reefs, and sea caves. It is also popular because of its unspoiled beauty. You will feel lost in the adventure and fairyland. The sea water color frequently changes according to the movement of sun.

Ly Son Island:

The island is famous for To Vo Gate. It must be a wonderland as it has emerald waters, white caves and beautiful lighthouse flashes. Enjoy watching sunrise at Ly Son Island.

Cu Lao Cham:

This famous island is attractive and beautiful. It has admirable beauty, lush forests, wide beaches, cool climate, and amazing scenery. Diving is the most attractive activity on this island. People visiting Vietnam must experience the jungle picnic at Cu Lao Cham.

Alternative Ways to Spend the Festive Period

Alternative Ways to Spend the Festive Period

A festive season is not limited to trimmings and turkey. It is the most suitable time to visit beautiful places by hitting the roads. Ignore the traditional Christmas Party, New Year's Celebrations and more. Find valuable alternatives instead. We are going to give some ideas on alternatives. Focus on the following ideas.

Surfing in Hawaii:

Wasting time on the roads or surfing on the huge waves. What would you like? I would love to surf on high waves in Hawaii. This US state is open for tourists and surfers throughout the year. The Oahu's North Shore becomes the most attractive place for national and international surfers in December. Water tides go up to 30 feet making an enjoyable situation for the surfers. Native Hawaiians always celebrate this time as Makahiki Festival. This festival continues for four months. Also, enjoy the famous event of Honolulu's Annual City Lights.

Antarctic Cruise:

Rather than celebrating New Year and Christmas at home, you must try an Antarctic Cruise. In this season, the Antarctic region becomes warm and cool. Enjoy the South Shetland Islands and Peninsula on this continent. This will be an amazing chance for your kids to see the penguins. Yes, this continent is famous for its penguins and other animals. It hosts different amazing animals but Albatross and Humpback Whales are more famous.

Consider Safari in Namibia:

After the completion of rains in November, the parched lands in Namibia turn lush green. It creates water holes, green meadows and fresh air. Enjoy the scenic beauty of wildlife. The daytime remains dry in December so it is the most perfect time for visitors. Don't forget to visit the Etosha National Park. It is in North of Namibia and it is famous for Africa Elephants. Also view the Etosha Salt Pan, Ethereal Red Desert and Wintry Walks.

Christmas Lights and Fake but warm Snow in Hanoi:

Life in Vietnam continues even in Christmas season. However, it doesn't mean that residents of this country don't go out for enjoyment. Find the amazing Hang Ma Street to discover tacky decorations. Do you love bargain hunts? Consider the big shopping malls offering sales, discounts and knockdown prices in this season.

Tango in Buenos Aires:

Argentina is famous for the Catholic Heritage. The festivals start on 8 December with Immaculate Conception Feast. The people celebrate Christmas Eve in the town. Take a hefty steak and a special glass of Malbec. Also, visit the stalls set in markets. El Viejo Almacen and La Ventana are the top picks for people in Buenos Aires.

Festive party in Fiji:

Make it little different by choosing a Four Week Festival in Fiji. It is a small festival people enjoy in groups. People gather together and enjoy spear dance with their ritual fans. They also decorate the villages for candles and lamps. Traditional ovens Lovo are prepared using stones. They cook delicious dishes such as palusami, cassava and coconut ice cream.

Beach vibes, Sydney:

Forget the traditional Christmas and New Year's celebrations. It is time to focus on the alternative festive. Focus on the beautiful beaches in Sydney. The beach vibe is an attractive opportunity for people especially teens. Enjoy surfing at Tamarama and Bronte Beaches. Also, visit the popular Opera House and Harbor Bridge. These are some exciting activities to refill the memories with enjoyment.

Top 7 Best Places To Visit in Vietnam

Top 7 Best Places To Visit in Vietnam

Vietnam is full of stunning sights. Tourists feel sad when they leave the country even after spending several months. From beautiful tribal villages to rice terraces in north, to modern Ho Chi Minh in South, this country has numerous opportunities and things to do for travelers. You are choosing the right place if you want to see the most beautiful islands, mountains, cultures and foods in the world. The "S" shaped country covers an area of 1000 miles from north to south. Let's see the top 7 best places to visit in Vietnam.

1. Hanoi: This is the capital city of Vietnam. It has a modern structure and state of the art civil work. Hanoi is a cool city because of the pleasant temperature. It has an old town area which resembles to any magical town. Don't forget to enjoy the Ca Phe Trung at Café Giang in Hanoi.

2. Tribal Villages in Sapa: There are several tribal villages in the mountain range of Hoang Lien Son. This mountain range is present in the northwest of country. Sapa is a considerable tourist destination which is 1500 meters above the sea level. This city hosts 4 ethnic tribes living in the mountains. Sapa is considered the best place for people who love trekking.

3. Ha Long Bay: This is also called Descending Dragon Bay. It is present in Gulf of Tonkin. This bay is in the list of UNESCO World Heritage. You will find the amazing beauty of limestone isles (in various shapes and sizes) created by evolutionary process in 20 million years. Tourists can think about Ha Long Bay Cruise to enjoy the scenic beauty of this world heritage.

4. Phong Na: This is another UNESCO World Heritage site. The Ke Bang National Park is closest attraction in Phong Na. It hosts the 5 famous caves in Vietnam. Take a motorbike to visit all the caves in this national park. Riding a bike is cheap and easy. Visit the Chay River, Dark Cave if you are little adventurous. It is a 400 meters deep cave so always bring special equipment such as headlamps.

5. Hue: Hue is the home of imperials. It has several imperial tombs of Nguyen Dynasty. The Nguyen Dynasty ruled over the country from 1802 to 1945. We strongly suggest exploring the Perfume River which has several tombs around. Also, visit the Forbidden Purple City. This city is present in central Hue. Unfortunately, this city is present in a poor condition because of heavy bombing during Tet Offensive of January 1968.

6. Hoi An (photo): This is a famous place for people who want to see the gorgeous coastal town. It is dotted with tailor shops, cafes, restaurants, seafood markets and more. The city becomes a magical scene when hundreds of tantalizing lanterns light up in the evening.

7. Saigon: This is the main Ho Chi Minh City. This is a Southern end of country where tourists can find beautiful sights, sounds, foods and drinks. Want to mix up with locals? Visit Ben Thanh Market where locals frequently come to buy and eat cheap. The city also hosts state of the art French Colonial Buildings such as Old Post Office and Notre Dame Cathedral. Today, this city has modern shopping malls, skyscrapers such as Bitexco Building Sky Deck.

What to do and see in Saigon

What to do and see in Saigon

(photo by Tu Art)

Ho Chi Minh might be a very cosmopolitan city, but it is still a great portal into Vietnamese life. This is not a city for peace-seekers. You need to immerse yourself in the hustle and bustle, get hypnotised by the tornado of orbiting motorbikes,and find the fast pace of the city thrilling; otherwise, it gets to be too much and your experience in Saigon might turn out to be somewhat suffocating.

Although you might overwhelmed at first by the waves of people coming from every direction, once you get used to the chaos, you start appreciating the magic of the commotion. Only then, when you dive in, you'll be able to soak in the culture, indulge in delicious food, enjoy a vibrant nightlife and get a glimpse into a very interesting history.

Saigon is also a city of contrasts where alleys steeped in history and ancient temples stand next to chic malls and glitzy skyscrapers. The old and new world blend harmoniously to give shape to an intrinsic and stunning urban collage. While the city breathes in modernity, the country's past lives through colonial villas and ornate religious sites.

From Vietnam War sites to temples, a vibrant nightlife, varied cuisine and lively markets, there's no shortage of things to do and see in Ho Chi Minh City.

Reunification Palace (Independence Palace)

When you step into this building, you travel back in time to the sixties. Home and workplace of the President of South Vietnam during the Vietnam War, the Reunification Palace is a landmark in Ho Chi Minh City. This building witnessed the end of the Vietnam War during the Fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975, after a North Vietnamese Army tank charged through its gates.

War Remnants Museum

Saigon is famous for its wealth of Vietnam War sites, and as such, it is also home to one of the most important war museums - War Remnants Museum. Previously named the Museum of Chinese and American War Crimes, the museum is home to photos and items which illustrate the atrocious and inhumane nature of the war. This is one of the most shocking collections depicting the gruesome reality of the war in Vietnam. Most of the disturbing photos documenting the mass slaughters carried out by US forces come from US sources, and they particularly illustrate the disreputable My Lai Massacre. The best way to access the museum - located in District Three - is by cyclo or taxi.

Botanic Gardens

Founded by the French after establishing Cochinchina as a colony, these lush and superb botanic gardens stand out as one of the finest in Asia. Take a stroll beneath tropical trees, such as Tung and So Khi trees. From here you can easily visit the History Museum, which is one of the major attractions in Ho Chi Minh City.

History Museum

Founded by the Societe des Etudes Indochinoises, this notable Sino-French museum dates back to 1929. Here you will get to admire a collection of artefacts that illustrate the evolution of the cultures of Vietnam all the back to the Bronze Age Dong Son civilisation and the Funan civilisation. This fascinating display of objects will guide you all the way from the remote past of Vietnam to the Cham, Khmer and Vietnamese civilisation.

If you are a history lover, you might also want to visit the Museum of Vietnamese History, which houses an interesting collection of artefacts that document 2000 years of Vietnamese history. After visiting the museum, you can escape the hustle and bustle of the city by enjoying a tranquil moment in the surrounding gardens. Conveniently located in the compact District One, the museum is not far from the main attractions.

Notre Dame Cathedral

Built between 1877 and 1883, the twin towers is an iconic symbol of the city. This neo-Romanesque church boasts 40m-high square towers tipped with iron spires. The Catholic cathedral is named after the Virgin Mary, and thus, it houses a statue of Her, which is believed to have shed a tear once. Also located in District One, the cathedral is just across the Reunification Palace.

Thien Hau Pagoda

Dating back to the 19th century, this beautiful temple is dedicated to the goddess Thien Hau, protector of the sea, and it stands out for its ornate design and statuary. According to local beliefs, Thien Hau can travel across the seas on a mat to rescue people in trouble on the high seas.