Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam and an historic city brimming with culture, pavement bazars, French colonial villas, French baguettes, and pho noodle soup all located within a mix of leafy boulevards and a maze of winding alleys in the captivating Old Quarter. Much of the fun in Hanoi is getting lost as one seeks the best ever pho or the noodles at the restaurant where Anthony Bourdain took Barrack Obama on the famous encounter screened worldwide.

The lake in the centre of Hanoi provides some respite from the constant bustle of this relentless city, people exercising, their daily Tai Chi practice or just taking a moment to stroll around the lake.

Don’t leave without seeing a water puppet show, a taste of the old culture of Vietnam.

Hanoi is the take off point for your visit to Halong Bay.


No one should go to Vietnam without a visit to this charming riverside town with its wonderful mix of ethnic influences introduced from its trading port days when then Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese traders based themselves here.

Hoi An is famous for it’s tailors , few leave without getting clothes designed or made to a pattern of their choice by these experts. The town is full of bustling markets and shop houses illuminated by lanterns so at night time when dining at some of the best street restaurants in Vietnam is like being part of a fantasy land . The town is only 3 kms from beautiful white beaches and bordered by the luxury resorts w like to recommend when you are visiting Hoi An. Staying at the beach allows you to get the best of both worlds, sea and sun combined with the bustle of memorable Vietnamese town.



Ho Chi Minh historically known as Saigon is a city of the senses, people are intoxicated by the smells, sights and noise, there are just throngs of people, motorbikes, cars all intermingled with the older style cyclos. The city is still etched with the memories of the Vietnam War for many and for those wishing to view the relics and memories from this era , the War remnants Museum is full of photographic exhibitions, many of the photgraphs are very harrowing but do potray the war as it was.

There is so much to do in this noisy, energetic city with visits to the Ben Thanh market one can visit stalls loaded with seafood, spices, exotic vegetables and other unrecognisable edibles. The French colonial influence is still so strong in many parts of Vietnam especially here in HCM where the baguette is part of the everyday diet and often accompanied by sweet French style treats.

 Day trips from Ho Chi Minh that are a must, are a visit to the Chu Chi tunnels, the network of underground tunnels used by the Viet-Cong during the war. Fascinating to think thousands of people lived and moved through this network for years undetected.

The Mekong Delta is a day trip as well, worth the early start to see the floating markets and the farms and orchards growing exotic fruits and vegetables on river island , while taking a sampan ride on the mighty Mekong river . The area is the food bowl of Vietnam with many of the different food factories located here from noodles to fish sauce, many available to visit.

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The local currency is called the Vietnamese Dong. Currency comes in bank notes in denomination of 500, 2000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, 100,000, 200,000 and 500,000 dong.  10,000 dong equates roughly to NZ .70 cents.US Dollars (USD)

You can use US Dollars as well in most of your transactions, however you will usually have to ask for the US Dollar price. Paying in US Dollars will typically be more expensive, particularly on smaller purchases, due to the exchange rate that vendors use.

Local Time:
5 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

The weather varies considerably from the North to the South of Vietnam and during most months you will experience both glorious sunshine, and rain in varying quantities.

Southern Vietnam has the most constant weather year-round, with only two seasons to contend with – the dry season between November and early May and the wet season from May to November. In the wet season rainfall is short, but heavy. Average daily year-round temperatures range between 25°C and 35°C.
Northern Vietnam (Hanoi, Halong Bay, Cuc Phuong, Mai Chau and Ninh Binh) has a distinct winter and summer season. Winter is cool but dry, and runs November to April with temperatures average 17°C to 22°C.  In summer, from May to October, expect hot and humid weather with high rainfall.  The wettest months are July to September.

Weather in Cambodia is pretty simple – its either the dry season (October to late April), or wet (May to late September), and while the coolest months tend to be October through December, they are still in the 24°C to 26°C range.  For the rest of the year expect rather hot temperatures with May and June at times exceeding 35°C.

Entry requirements:
New Zealand passport holders need a Visa to enter Vietnam.  Your passport will need to be valid for a minimum of 6 months from your expected departure date from Vietnam, and Visas can either be pre-arranged in New Zealand, or more simply upon arrival in Vietnam, for which we can supply you the necessary Visa Approval Letter to take with you (cost applies). Talk to Our Specialists for further information.