Lodged in the southeast of Thailand and northeast of Malaysia, Vietnam is a natural hub known for its ancient history, diverse culture, quintessential natural landscapes, and coffee!
When you think of Vietnam, you are instantly reminded of Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, and Ha Long Bay, right? But what about all those offbeat places in Vietnam that are just as cool, if not cooler?
Vietnam is a country filled with many hidden gems that are just waiting to be discovered. And if you are lucky enough to make it to even one of them, you can witness nature at its absolute finest.
Here are five offbeat spots to get you started in your journey around this amazing Southeast Asian country:
Cat Ba Island
Cat Ba Island is a great place to visit. Cat Ba Island is a beautiful island, and it has a lot of things to do. You can relax on the beach, go swimming in the ocean, go hiking, and explore caves. If you like nature and want to see it up close, then this is a great place for you.
Cat Ba Island is also great if you want to visit with friends or family because there are many places where people can stay together without being too crowded or noisy (like hotels). From March to April, you can visit Cat Ba anytime as that’s when the weather will be warm. In fact, a few real-time weather sites can help you with specific forecasts to get around the country with ease.
Cat Ba Island also offers colorful coral gardens and views of Cat Ba National Park’s limestone peaks covered with dense jungle growth atop steep cliffs.
See more of Vietnam’s amazing islands
Sa Pa is a small town in northwest Vietnam. This area is great if you want to see authentic local culture, trek through the mountains, and see local wildlife. Sa Pa also makes a lovely destination for hiking or motorbike trips.
There are many beautiful landscapes around Sa Pa, including Fansipan Peak, Ta Van Village, and Ta Phin Village). If you’re lucky, you might run into some vibrant traditional festivals by the ethnic groups in the area, or visiting the local day market can also give interesting insights into the local life and customs.
Ba Be Lake
Ba Be Lake is a natural lake located in Northern Vietnam. It’s home to many endangered species, which makes it a popular tourist destination. However, Ba Be Lake is also home to many local communities that have lived there for generations. The lake has a rich history of fishing and farming, and this impact can be seen in its unique ecosystem today.
Mai Chau, which is in the northern region of Vietnam, is a great place to visit in winter. The best time to go is during the dry season (November to April). It’s also one of the few areas that have been preserved and kept untouched by urbanization, so you’ll get a glimpse into what life was like before booming tourism.
The Cham Islands are located in the South China Sea, about 30kms from Nha Trang. The archipelago is made up of sand and coral and is one of Vietnam’s most important marine parks. It’s an ideal place to observe rare fish species, including the endangered sea turtles.
Cham Island resorts have been built on stilts in the ocean so guests can enjoy their stay without harming any marine life or flora.
A Few Other Fascinating Sights in Vietnam
These locations are always among the top must-visit places in Vietnam compared to the lesser-known spots mentioned above, so do expect them to be a bit crowded with tourists. For the best experience, avoid traveling during peak tourist seasons if possible.
- Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), which is Vietnam’s economic epicenter
- Hanoi, Vietnam’s capital city
- Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site made up of thousands of limestone karst islands
- Hue, the former imperial city home to many temples and tombs from the Nguyen Dynasty (1802 – 1945)
- Da Nang, known for its Cham remnants sites, such as My Son Sanctuary, built by King Jaya Harivarman II in the sixth century AD
- Phu Quoc Island, with its stunning beaches
- Mui Ne Beach, where dunes meet blue waters
- Nha Trang Beach, featuring limestone formations rising from emerald waters
Closing Thoughts on 5 Offbeat Spots to Visit in Vietnam
In summary, Vietnam is a great place to see nature, thanks to the country’s varied landscapes ranging from mountains and hills to natural lakes and beaches. Its weather is warm year-round, and there’s lots of sunshine. The food is excellent, and the people are friendly too. All you have to do is pack your bags and get on that next flight!