Vietnam is a long country north to south with a variety of towns, cities and places to visit. It boasts both beautiful coastal beaches and rolling forests and mountains. From the capital in the north, Hanoi, to Vietnam’s largest city in the south, Ho Chi Minh City, there’s a whole of great opportunities for vacation destinations.
Cities, Towns and Provinces in Vietnam
Guide to Places to Visit in Vietnam
Vietnam is a beautiful country with a rich cultural heritage and stunning natural landscapes. Its many historic cities will captivate you on your visit.
The South China Sea and mountains mark Vietnam’s picturesque western border. The Red River deltas cap the north end, while the Mekong deltas are to the south. From gorgeous beaches and vibrant forests, to inviting cities and alluring rice paddies.
Da Nang – The fourth largest city in Vietnam, Da Nang is located in the central coast region. Hue lies north and Hoi An just south, combining to make a trifecta of travel.
Ha Long Bay – Two hours east of Hanoi (or four by bus) lies the mysterious Halong Bay (Ha Long Bay). It’s unique limestone islands captivate visitors, as do its caves, beaches and water sports. It’s best to spend at least one overnight on boat cruise.
Hoi An – Less than an hour south of Da Nang is one of Vietnam’s most sought after tourist destinations. It’s growing rapidly, as evidenced by the staggering number of luxury hotels and condominiums rising on the coast between Hoi An and Da Nang.
Hue – The city of Hue itself doesn’t have any beaches, but it’s nearby some excellent resort beaches, which tend to be clean and quiet. Plan about 45 minutes from Hue to hit a good beach. The city itself is full of history, centered around the Imperial City.
La Gi – An off-the-radar costal town in southern Vietnam, La Gi has a few good beaches on offer. South of it you can hit the famed Co Co Beach Resort and stay and play the night away.
Nha Trang – One of the top beach destinations in the country is Nha Trang. It boasts more than 535,000 residents, white sandy beaches and a happening nightlife scene.
Phan Thiet – It’s dubbed as the “resort capital” of Vietnam because of Mui Ne beach. The city has several luxury hotels, resorts and restaurants and has often been one of the top picks of foreign travelers.
Phu Quoc – Island off the coast of southern Vietnam, Phu Quoc is a paradise. Put this destination on your bucket list if you’d rather escape the busier beach spots Nha Trang or Hoi An.
Vung Tau – Probably the closest beach city to Saigon at around 3 hours, Vung Tau boasts a year round population of over 527,000 residents. It has a few spots to enjoy the beaches, and is especially popular weekend spot from the biggest city in Vietnam.
Qui Nhon – Located in Binh Dinh Province, this coastal city in Central Vietnam has around 650,000 residents, with a lot of fishing and farming as its primary economy. Because of its lovely beaches, it’s shifting more towards tourism as well.
Rach Gia – With little more than 200,000 people, Rach Gia is a small rice processing town located on the southeast coast. While there aren’t notable beaches here, it’s used as a transfer point to nearby Phu Quoc Island and its beautiful beaches.
Da Lat – More than 400,000 locals call the mountain town of Da Lat home. It’s located at 1500 meters (4,921 feet) with beautiful views, fresh air and charming residents.
Sapa – Exactly like Da Lat, Sapa sits at 1,500 meters (4,921 feet). Except the views are even more mountainous as Sapa sits in the shadows of Fansipan. This is Vietnam’s largest peak at over 10,000 feet.
Ho Chi Minh City – Formerly Saigon, this is Vietnam’s largest city, located in the south, with an estimated 8.993 million residents in 2019. Ho Chi Minh City is a fascinating city that never sleeps.
Hanoi – Vietnam’s capital city, located in the north has the second highest number of people, at 8.054 million in 2019. Hanoi is full of historic tourist attractions and makes a great basecamp for exploring the north.
Hai Phong – It’s the third largest city in terms of urban population located at the northern part of Vietnam. Hai Phong is known as “The City of Flame Flowers”.
Can Tho – The riverside city of Can Tho is famed for its floating markets and canals. It’s located a 4 hour drive southwest of Ho Chi Minh City. It’s the 4th largest city in VN.
Bien Hoa – The 5th largest city by population in Vietnam lies just 30 kilometers northeast of Ho Chi Minh City. Although overshadowed by HCMC, Bien Hoa has its fair share of tourist attractions.
Da Nang – The largest city in Central Vietnam at 1.231 million is a favorite of tourists and natives alike. Da Nang is the 6th biggest city by population, and close in proxmity to Hoi An and Hue.
Buôn Ma Thuột – Located in Central Vietnam, Buon Ma Thuot is the country’s 8th largest city by population. It’s known as the “capital of coffee”. And is also the provincial capital of Dak Lak province.
Vinh – Nghe An’s largest city, Vinh sits on the coast in northern Vietnam. Thanks to the province’s natural beauty, tourism is growing steadily in town.