Sabbatical & Experiential Travel to Vietnam
Holidays & Sabbaticals to Vietnam – In a Nutshell
Travelling in Vietnam is an exhilarating blend of cultural experiences, from authentic floating markets and simple villages in the Mekong Delta to the high-energy cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh in the north and south. In-between, the charming town of Hoi An, with its traditional silk lanterns and world-class tailoring, and Hue’s mighty pagodas. The natural landscapes are just as diverse: tropical golden beaches, emerald-green rice terraces, the limestone karsts of Halong Bay and the soaring mountains around Sapa. And at the heart of it all, deliciously fragrant food and friendly locals in conical straw hats, riding water buffalo in the rural fields or 4-on-1 moto in the cities. You’ll never forget your time here.
How to Get to Vietnam
You can travel overland from neighbouring countries Cambodia, Laos and China. If you jet in from overseas, you’ll arrive at one of 3 international airports: Hanoi in the north, Da Nang on the coast, or Saigon (Ho Chi Minh) in the south. From here, you can easily hop around by air. But we’d really encourage some overland travel too. The trains here are good fun, chugging along the pretty coast and up into the mountains; take a sleeper train if you can. Once you’re feeling like a local, jump in and out of tuk tuks or cyclos.
When & Weather – Vietnam
The unique geography of the country means a range of micro climates too, spanning tropical, temperate and beach climates. March to May is seen as the best time to visit overall, but each region has its own high season, and there’s a southwest monsoon during May to October and a northeast monsoon from October to December.
The best times to visit each region are:
Hanoi and Halong Bay: April to June, September to December. June to August is rainy season.
Hue and Hoi An: March to August.
Nha Trang: January to August.
Ho Chi Minh and Mekong Delta: December to April.
Temperature range wildly too, between 5°C (11°F) and 34 °C (75°F).
Who will Vietnam Appeal To?
Culture lovers, thanks to the fascinating history, blend of ethnicities, authentic villages and Westernised cities. Beach lovers will be in heaven too: though the coast isn’t as idyllic as Thailand’s it’s far emptier as a result.
- Culture lovers
- Solo travellers
- Active travellers
We work with a range of accommodation providers, spanning luxury beach and mountain resorts, elegant city hotels, boutique B&Bs, friendly guesthouses, homestays and beachside cabanas.
Off The Beaten Path
- Kayak around the limestone karsts of Bai Tu Long Bay at sunrise; far less touristy than Halong Bay
- Eat local delicacies in Bong Lai Valley’s farm restaurants: pork slowly roasted in bamboo canes and peanut dumplings
- The minority villages around Kon Tum offer rustic homestays
- Venture to the wild far north: remote Ha Giang and the emerald valleys of Mù Cang Chải, punctuated by rice terraces
- Côn Đảo National Park is an archipelago of pristine islands, with white-sand beaches and rainbow reefs to snorkel
- Admire the colourful authentic Sunday market at Bac Ha
- Surf down the white sand dunes outside the pretty fishing village of Mui Ne
- Common species to see here include water buffalo, monkeys, crocodiles and sun bears
- Tigers, leopards and snow leopards slink through the deep forests
- Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park – a natural UNESCO site – has an array of habitats, which are home to threatened species like tigers, Asiatic black bears, Asian elephants, Asian wild dogs and the giant muntjac
- The endemic gray-shanked douc is an endangered primate, living in the central highlands’ canopies
- A coastal reserve on the Red River delta acts as a stopover for birds migrating from Siberia to Australia
- Green and hawksbill turtles lay their eggs on Côn Đảo’s beaches between May and October
Vietnam Experiences you shouldn’t miss:
- Hanoi’s picturesque Old Quarter, with its 36 iconic streets and infamous red bridge
- Getting bespoke clothes tailored in Hoi An
- The War Remnants Museum in Saigon and crouching your way through the Cu Chi tunnels of the Viet Cong
- Touring the Mekong Delta by longtail boat
- Trekking in the green hills around Sapa
- Gliding across Halong Bay’s emerald waters in a traditional junk boat
- Visiting Hue’s imperial tombs
Our experienced team will guide you through a number of ideas based on how you would like to experience Vietnam.
Consider visiting Vietnam in combination with Laos, Cambodia and Thailand as part of a longer South-East Asian itinerary.
Browse our gallery for inspiration and read the sample itinerary below to whet your appetite.
No matter how long you wish to travel, we’ll guide you through the planning process to ensure a trip is carefully pieced together to suit your interests, pace of travel and budget.
Contact us to start planning a holiday or sabbatical to Vietnam.