Vietnam is one of the most popular places in the world to travel, probably because it has everything: culture, art, delicious food, natural beauty, miles upon miles of beaches, history, welcoming people, hospitality and above all else, affordability. You can live like a king on a moderate budget, every dollar goes super far here, while not sacrificing quality.
When traveling to Vietnam, you’re going to want to traverse the entire country, as there are unique landscapes, disparate culture and people throughout. Even though it’s a smallish country, citizens from each region are very proud of their own distinct communities, from food to style and everything in between. Just don’t get into a debate about who invented pho…there’s no winning with that one (it was the northerners ;).
The south of Vietnam is a great place to start. Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) is the country’s largest city by population. The history of this city is rich, from its origin after Vietnamese conquered Khmer area, to the capital of French colonial rule to the then doomed epicenter of the Republic of Vietnam. Because of the timeline of all sorts of different influences, the city is a mishmash of architectural styles.
Above all else, this is probably the epicenter of the future of Vietnam, with skyscrapers sprouting up everywhere and a population that is projected to be near 15 million in the next few years. Not as cramped as Hanoi, this area is certainly still very crowded with motorbikes and people teeming into the streets every which way…and it’s ever changing.
blink and you’ll miss saigon