Vietnam is a holiday destination for me and I am more intrigued by the north rather than the central or the south. Basically going to Vietnam is exploratory and through searches on some popular Vietnamese tourism websites landed myself at these 3 highly recommended places to go. First to Hanoi city. Although it has more than a thousand years of history, marked by destruction, wars and pure calamities, Hanoi still preserves a lot of historic architectural works including the Old Quarter known as 36 business streets and over 600 pagodas and temples. And I can expect life slower and perhaps more nostalgic reminiscent of what I experienced in the 1960s.
Then the world renown Halong Bay which been recognized as world natural heritage by UNESCO not once but twice. The first was in 1994 for its beautiful landscapes. The second was in 2000 for Halong Bay’s geological formation. To enjoy this natural beauty a cruise is a must, if time permits, an overnight stay on the junk to take home a memory of a lifetime. And I shall plan for that memory.
Finally, a visit to northern Vietnam would be incomplete without taking to the hills. Sapa is close to the Chinese border and about 340 km north west of Hanoi. By train it is some 10 hours away. Sapa town is located at the altitude of about 1600m. There visitors can enjoy the spectacular scenery of Sapa and its terraced paddy fields formed by multi minority groups close to a thousand years. Here visitors can also discover totally different cultures of 7 colorful ethnic groups living there.
Yesterday I bought air tickets for a 7 days holiday to the above 3 destinations with my wife. It will be during October when Vietnam enters the autumn season, recommended to be a good time to travel there. Although it is more than 4 months away I have decided to purchase this 3 Flavor Vietnamese cuisine. In my heart I know my wife and I will enjoy it, to the city, on the sea and to the hills. Details of the holiday after it is done.