Hello! My name is Ilona and I am an avid traveller from Northern Germany. While I have always loved travelling, I soon realised that my annual leave did not grant me enough freedom to see all the places I wanted to see. That is why I quit my job in May 2017 and took, Read More
Even though Saigon was renamed Ho Chi Min City in 1976, many people still call it by its old name. With a population of 10 million people, it is Vietnam’s largest city and most travellers to the country will come here sooner or later.
From colonial architecture to war reminders and bustling markets, the city has a lot to offer. Don’t rush but leave yourself enough time to take it all in.
To give you an idea of how to spend your time, here are some suggestions:
Hoi An is and will probably always be my favourite city in Vietnam. This is where I celebrated my 26th birthday in 2011, sharing a passionfruit cheese cake with my fellow travellers. This is also where, this year in 2017, I started my blog. Hoi An holds nothing but good memories for me.
And how could anyone not love Hoi An? Lit up with hundreds of lanterns by night, it is one of the most beautiful towns in the country. During the day, you get a chance to explore all those historic houses, walking through courtyards and enjoying the view from balconies. And to make things even better, the ruins of a jungle temple are within reach and make up for an easy day trip.
But let me start from the beginning.
Hue was my first Vietnamnese city during this trip. Even though I had already been here in 2011, I was looking forward to coming back. Last time, I’d only had half a day to explore everything. It had been too short to see the city properly and at the same time long enough to realise there was a lot out there that I was missing out on.
And indeed, as I realised during my most recent stay, Hue is a city in which you can easily keep yourself occupied for a couple of days. These are some of the highlights you should not miss:
I first visited Vientiane in 2011. Back then, we only stayed for one night. “It’s a very sleepy city,” other travelers explained to me. “Nothing to do there, so you better move on quickly.”
When I came back this year, in 2017, I could not recognise Laos‘ capital anymore. What had happened to those empty streets? Where did all the bars, restaurants and hotels come from? Was the Scandinavian bakery, that I had loved so much on my previous visit, still there?
While Vientiane isn’t Laos’ most attractive city, it has come a long way and is well worth a visit. And yes, the Scandinavian bakery is still there, ready to supply you with original Swedish pastries.
It’s hard to choose favourites, but Luang Prabang might be my favourite city in Laos. With a city centre that is easily walkable, a temple at every corner, monks walking through the streets and a huge night market, what is not to love about Luang Prabang?
Prepare to spend at least a couple of days here so you have time to take in the city and its surroundings.