Backpacking in Vietnam

Backpacking in Vietnam is something that has to be on any backpackers bucket list, as the beauty about Vietnam is that it is a country open to travellers with every kind of budget. An abundance of hostels and a cheap yet efficient transportation system ensures you have it easy. Vietnam is also incredibly safe for female backpackers.

Additionally, the country’s best cuisine is their street-food, which is healthy, delicious, and unbelievably cheap. Read on to get your head around backpacking in Vietnam.

backpacking in vietnam Vietnam is one of the most popular destinations among backpackers. Having cheap accommodation, transport and food, its the ideal destination for every backpacker.

Food and Accommodation in VIetnam

There is no dearth when it comes to hostels in Vietnam, as there are plenty dotted all around. There are enough in the big metropolis cities as well as in the smaller towns and countryside. Additionally, the high levels of competition have resulted in good standards for low prices.

There’s also the option of staying in cheap guesthouses, but we wouldn’t recommend these as the standards and service will not be up to mark. Dormitories on the other hand charge from $7 to $15, and offer fairly good accommodation. 

Backpacking in Vietnam is made so much better due to its delicious, cheap food. You can spend anywhere between $2 (a meal and beverage) to $50 for a meal in Vietnam. But rest assured- even though it is super cheap ($0.50- $5 for a meal), street food in Vietnam is delicious and healthy, and prepared each day using the freshest ingredients. Famous Vietnamese coffee costs $1, while juices and smoothies are for $1.50. Though available all across Vietnam, the Bia Hoi Junction in Hanoi is a must to experience the interesting Vietnamese microbrew bia hoi, that only costs – wait for it-  $0.25 a cup! Cans of local beer are also available, costing $1. 

food in vietnam - hostels in vietnam Vietnam has a number of hostels available at low prices and street food that’s cheap, healthy and delicious.

Transportation in vietnam

Vietnam is crawling with an efficient transportation system catering to all budgets. It definitely benefits backpackers, namely their buses and trains. Buses are the ideal mode of transportation for backpackers, as it is the cheapest way to travel. And, the bus routes run all across the country. Vietnam has many bus services differing in quality, meaning backpackers with slightly higher budgets can travel cheap yet in relative comfort.

Overnight trains in Vietnam are also fairly comfortable, with easily available tickets. They save up on accommodation bills as you travel through the night. Additionally, they save you cab fares to and from the airports, as the trains get you right from one city centre to the next. You can book train and bus tickets online or in Vietnam itself. If you’d like the ease of confirmed seats, click on ‘Plan Your Trip’ and let us do the bookings for you. 

The streets of Vietnam are always crawling with motorbikes, and it is possible to rent them. However, we advise against this, as traffic is unpredictable with constant overtaking irrespective of rules. This is a safety tip you must keep in mind. The Vietnamese are seasoned drivers, and you will be able to enjoy Vietnam riding pillion, without the responsibility of having to drive. Nonetheless, if you do still want to give it a shot, we’d recommend hiring a guide who will come along with you. Additionally keep a lookout for bicycles on hire, especially in Hoi An, where you can rent them for free. Backpacking in Vietnam is so much more enjoyable on a cycle.

backpacking in vietnam Vietnam has a strong network of cheap and comfortable buses and trains that run across the country, making internal travel easy for the backpackers.

Monuments and Party Hotspots in vietnam

Activities in Vietnam don’t come cheap but monuments and museums are quite affordable to visit. Due to this, you may have to pick and choose between activities, like visiting the national parks, or dropping in to Halong Bay. The multi-day cruise and island trip at Halong Bay are an expensive affair, and will definitely impact your budget.

You can substitute them for a one-day tour, or skip out on Halong Bay altogether unless it is something you cannot miss out on. Similarly, the trek to the biggest cave in the world in Phong Nha-Ke Bang is an exclusive and expensive affair. However, there are several other treks ranging from 1 to 3 days you can go on. These let you explore the smaller but equally impressive caves.

A good experience for backpackers we would recommend checking out is Castaway Islands at Halong bay; a 3 day/2 night stay on a gorgeous island at USD $229. All accommodation, meals and select activities are included in the costs, and it is offered by Vietnam Backpacker Hostels, a fairly reliable organisation. 

Backpacking in Vietnam has one drawback- no nightlife. Nightlife is not something Vietnam is known for. Certain places like Hoi An have strict local authorities that clamp down on the post-sunset scenes. However, hit the previously mentioned Bia Hoi junction in Hanoi. Here you can sip on the local brew and get a taste of the party scene in Vietnam. Apart from this, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City are two other destinations that boast a decent nightlife scene.

backpacking in vietnam Some overnight activities in Vietnam like the Halong Bay cruise are an expensive affair & not ideal for backpackers. However, visiting monuments and museums is quite reasonable.

If you use the transportation smartly enough, your cost of travel in Vietnam can be kept to a minimum, saving up on your cash. Backpacking in Vietnam can be memorable and amazing if done right, and is definitely doable. Click on ‘Plan Your Trip’ to plan your Vietnam adventure today.

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