A holiday to Vietnam is not complete without a trip to Halong Bay, one of the most beautiful landscapes of Vietnam, and the world-famous symbol of the country. Located in the Gulf of Tonkin, Halong Bay includes consists of some 1900 islands and islets which create a spectacular seascape of limestone pillars, earning it a UNESCO World Heritage status in 1994. Legend says that the karst islets were born from the flapping of the tail of a dragon to defend the region from invaders in the days of the Jade Emperor. Since then, the rocky peaks of the bay have offered one of the most emblematic and majestic landscapes in Asia. The best way to admire these mountains rising from the sea is to cruise on a traditional junk and sail in the midst of this mythical and mysterious landscape.
Ninh Binh, or Tam Coc, is one of the most beautiful and surprising natural sites to see in Vietnam. Exploring this region aboard a small traditional boat propelled by the legs of the rowers along a river surrounded by lush vegetation is a truly amazing experience. A magnificent site that showcases some of the most beautiful landscapes of Vietnam, Ninh Binh can also be discovered by cycling through the surrounding rice fields to reach superb viewpoints and sites of cultural and historical heritage including Hoa Lu, the former royal capital.
This immense fertile plain, irrigated by the nine feeder arms of the Mekong River, forms a labyrinthine grid of lush rice fields and orchards, green canals with peaceful islands and villages. Boat and bicycle are the best means of transportation in this region in order to take full advantage of these natural spaces inhabited by a smiling and welcoming local population. One of the most unique landscapes of Vietnam!
Located in the Gulf of Tonkin, Cat Ba is the largest island in an archipelago that consists of more than 300 islands, most of which are national parks. An island that is a paradise for lovers of green spaces, walking around gives the opportunity to observe many endemic plant and animal species. Cat Ba also offers a spectacular culinary experience – visit the fish market and be amazed by the diversity of seafood and its effervescence. Cat Ba also boasts numerous climbing routes for sporty visitors to set off in search of sensations among beautiful white sand beaches. Furthermore, it is the starting point for enchanted cruises in a traditional junk through the limestone fairyland of Lan Ha Bay, one of the most extraordinary landscapes of Vietnam where isolated coves alternate with the authentic villages and floating markets.
North Vietnam offers some of the most spectacular landscapes of Vietnam. Lakes, dense forests, breathtaking rice terraces, karst landscapes, green valleys and dizzying mountains appeal to the most demanding travellers. One of the most beautiful destinations for culture-lovers on a trip to Vietnam, this superb region is home to an incredible ethnic diversity which you can meet during the overnight hikes with the locals or in the shimmering ethnic markets. Take one of the many superb hiking trails and walk among the rice terraces and forests. Between two stops, you will probably have the chance to meet ethnic mountain tribes like the Hmong or the Red Dao. The latter will share with you their passion artisanal know-how in the world of traditional jewellery and cotton weaving.
Off the Mekong Delta in southern Vietnam, the Con Dao Archipelago consists of 16 mountainous islands covered in dense vegetation and bordered by underwater coral reefs. Despite this archipelago having everything to make it worthy of being a true island sanctuary, during the French colonial regime it was turned into a penal colony called Poulo Condor. Today, Con Dao has once again become a paradise to the delight of travellers, in search of paradise islands still well-preserved from mass tourism.
This fabulous archipelago is classified as a national marine park in order to protect the 144 animal species and more than 1,300 marine species that inhabit this archipelago. Among all its ecological riches, the Con Dao Archipelago is proud to host rare animals, such as Green turtles, Hawksbill turtles and dugongs. Con Dao also has a handful of exclusive addresses for travellers who want to experience a Robinson Crusoe-style holiday. Establishments articulating luxury around space, light and a return to nature. This is an ideal seaside excursion to escape the madness of the big Vietnamese cities and experience one of the most beautiful landscapes of Vietnam.