Monday, 22 April 2013

Country in review: Vietnam

Image source: Flickr

Vietnam is rich in natural beauty, culture and heritage. There’s no arguing that the country has had a difficult past but in recent years it has sought to move on from historical events and establish itself as a country and tourism destination in its own right.
Thanks to the cost of living, lively culture and rapidly improving infrastructure Vietnam is also attracting expats in their droves. As a result, big cities such as Hanoi, are increasingly catering for foreign visitors with international bars and a wide range of international cuisine.

Picture source: Wikicommons

One of the most popular spots for tourists, expats and locals alike is the Ben Thanh market in Ho Chi Minh City -  a 17th Century market by the Saigon River where street vendors still ply their trade. Make sure you are good at bartering as there is no such thing as “final price”!

Picture source: Wikicommons

Like in many cities the best way to travel is on two wheels. This includes navigating your way around the twists and turns of a Vietnamese market! Motorbikes or mopeds will also give you the freedom to explore the surrounding areas and visit villages that aren’t within walking distance.

Source: Wikicommons

In the south, away from the noise and chaos of Vietnam’s cities, sits the world’s 12th longest river: the Mekong. Taking a boat trip along its course will allow you to witness people at work on floating markets and fisheries.

Source: Wikicommons

We can’t possible write about Vietnam without acknowledging the food. Vietnamese cuisine is some of the healthiest in the world, thanks to the use of fresh fruit and vegetables and little oil or fats. Take advantage of street vendors and tiny stalls to give you a true taste of Vietnam.

Have you been an expat in, or visited Vietnam? Where are your favourite places to visit?

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