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Vietnam Calling? Here’s How to Answer

January 11, 2023 by Robert Schrader Leave a Comment

Some travelers believe that visiting Vietnam after Thailand is redundant and repetitive, so allow me to reassure you: It’s not. The only real thing these two countries have in common is their status as tourism powerhouses—apart from that, they couldn’t be more different.

The real determiner, to be sure, is time. After spending several weeks in Thailand, do you really have another 2-3 weeks to spend in Vietnam? Alternatively, are you OK with going there only for a few days, knowing you’ll need to return if you want to see the country in a comprehensive way?

These, of course, are questions for another post. I’m here not so much to persuade you that you should travel from Thailand to Vietnam , but to advise you on how to do so once you’ve already come to that conclusion.

Is Vietnam Worth Visiting?

Vietnam is a huge and fascinating country, with at least as many worthwhile destinations and experiences as you find in Thailand, and a variety of cuisine that is just as compelling. Assuming that you have the time and funds to visit Vietnam, doing so is absolutely worthwhile. The issue, for many travelers, is that a long trip to Thailand is simply as much as they can handle.

Another thing to consider? Traveling to Vietnam usually requires a visa, which you can’t generally receive upon arrival unless you apply in advance. Obviously, if you’re planning now you can take care of this online , but if you leave it until the last minute you may forget. As a result, many travelers push this back and end up skipping out on Vietnam entirely.

thailand to vietnam trip

How to Travel from Thailand to Vietnam

Fly from bangkok to hanoi.

If you want to start your trip to Vietnam in the country’s capital, you can take one of the several daily flights from Bangkok. Depending on which airline you use, you can fly from either Suvarnabhumi or Don Mueang airports to Hanoi.

From from Bangkok to Saigon

Saigon is another popular entry point for travelers heading from Thailand to Vietnam. As is the case with Hanoi flights, those bound for Ho Chi Minh City (as Saigon is sometimes also called) can generally begin their journey at either of Bangkok’s two airports.

Fly from Bangkok to Da Nang or Da Lat

In recent years, airlines have been adding flights to secondary Vietnamese cities as well. Notably, several airlines now fly nonstop from Bangkok to Da Nang , the hub of central Vietnam. Depending on the day, you may also be able to board a direct flight to the mountain town of Da Lat or to Can Tho, in the Mekong Delta.

Fly from Chiang Mai to Hanoi or Saigon

While most flights from Thailand to Vietnam depart one of Bangkok’s two airports, this is not the case for 100% of them. For example, you can fly nonstop from Chiang Mai to both Hanoi and Saigon. While these flights are often more expensive than connecting through Bangkok, they’re also more convenient.

Fly from Phuket to Saigon

Likewise, you can fly directly from Phuket to Saigon, a service that exists mostly to serve the large number of Vietnamese tourists who love Thailand’s largest island. This is an ideal flight to take if you plan to start your trip to Vietnam in the south, or only to explore that part of the country.

What to Do in Vietnam (and How Long to Stay)

Vietnam is a travel treasure trove, from north to south. With just a couple of weeks in the country, you can explore these destinations (in no particular order):

  • Saigon and the Mekong Delta: After getting lost amid the skyscrapers of Vietnam’s largest city, go back in time amid the villages of the Mekong Delta.
  • Da Nang (plus Hoi An and Hue): Central Vietnam is the country’s most underrated tourist region. Follow up a few days in Da Nang with excursions to the Hoi An old town or to the imperial city of Hue.
  • Hanoi and Ha Long Bay: Vietnam’s political capital is also a capital of tourism, thanks to its proximity to the Ha Long Bay UNESCO World Heritage Site.

thailand to vietnam trip

Other FAQ About Thailand to Vietnam Travel

How long does it take to get from thailand to vietnam.

You can fly from Thailand to Vietnam in less than two hours, no matter where in either country your journey begins or ends. If you choose to try and travel overland, your journey will take several days. Obviously, flying is the best way to make this trip.

Is there a train from Thailand to Vietnam?

You can’t travel by train from Thailand all the way to Vietnam. The most you can do is riding the train from Bangkok to Laos or Cambodia, and then traveling by bus or private car from there. It’s unclear if direct train connections between Thailand and Vietnam will ever be built, though hope for a Thailand to Vietnam train springs eternal.

Is it cheaper to visit Thailand or Vietnam?

Vietnam is significantly cheaper than Thailand. Of course, this isn’t without its caveats—namely that Vietnam feels much poorer than Thailand does, with worse infrastructure and a lot more frustrating of a travel experience. As a result, I’d say the travel experiences are pretty congruent: You get what you pay for.

The Bottom Line

It’s easy to get from Thailand to Vietnam , given that an airplane is the only reliable, practical way to travel between the two countries. Originating in Bangkok opens up the most direct destinations in Vietnam—you can fly nonstop to Hanoi, Saigon, Da Nang and Da Lat, as of early 2023. Of course, you may also be able to fly direct to Vietnam from Chiang Mai and Phuket. Need help putting your trip together? Whether for Thailand, Vietnam or the entirety of your Southeast Asia adventure, commission a custom itinerary today!

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“Being there during the rainy season was perfect. I mostly had excursions to myself so the one on one time with the locals was the best.”

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“Everything was good, tour guides were great and helpful.”

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“The activities were all very nice and the transfers were easy. The tour operator was very responsive throughout the tour.”

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“We visited some great temples and other sites which were well run and our tour gides were really knowledgeable.”

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“This is a well organised tour, we had a great time. Hoi An Express is a very efficient and prompt tour company.”

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“The guide in Chiang Mai, Indie, was excellent. She was flexible with us very informative.”

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“The itinerary was interesting, hotels adequate and in most cases clean. We really enjoyed Halong Bay stay.”

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Vietnam and Thailand Itinerary: How to Spend 3 Weeks in Vietnam and Thailand

If you are planning to visit Southeast Asia, this 3 week Thailand and Vietnam itinerary will show you the perfect way to spend 3 weeks in Southeast Asia.

This blog contains occasional affiliate links, where I receive a small commission on sales of the products/hotels that are linked at no additional cost to you. In addition, as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases .

Southeast Asia is a popular travel destination for tourists from all over the world. It’s a region known for its rich history and culture, stunning natural beauty, friendly people and delicious cuisine. It’s a perfect destination for travelers seeking for a unique, fun and unforgettable experience.

There are many countries in Southeast Asia, including Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam, etc. Traveling through Southeast Asia to visit every country would take months or even a year.

From the pristine beaches of Thailand and the Philippines to the lush jungles of Indonesia and Malaysia, the region offers a wide range of natural wonders to explore. For the history buff, the ancient temples of Angkor in Cambodia and the colonial architecture of Hanoi in Vietnam offer plenty of cultural treasures to explore in Southeast Asia.

If you only have 3 weeks in Southeast Asia, you won’t be able to see every country. Therefore I suggest just 2 countries to explore: Vietnam and Thailand. Vietnam and Thailand are popular destinations to visit in Southeast Asia and you will have a great time there.

This 3 week Southeast Asia itinerary will cover the highlights of Thailand and Vietnam so you get a variety of different experiences in both countries.

Why Should You Visit Thailand and Vietnam?

Thailand and Vietnam are two of the most popular destinations in Southeast Asia, and for good reason.

Thailand, known as the “Land of Smiles,” is a country that offers a perfect balance of culture, nature, and relaxation. From the bustling city of Bangkok to the ancient temples in Chiang Mai, you can indulge in delicious street food, and experience the world-famous hospitality of the Thai people.

Vietnam is a country rich in history and culture. From the French colonial architecture of Hanoi to the ancient city of Hue, Vietnam is a country that offers a fascinating glimpse into its past.

Visitors can also explore the country’s stunning natural beauty, from the limestone cliffs of Halong Bay to the rice paddies of the north. Vietnam is also known for its delicious cuisine, with dishes like pho and banh mi that are popular around the world.

Thailand and Vietnam are two destinations that offer a perfect blend of culture, history, nature, and relaxation. From bustling cities to the peaceful countryside, there’s something for everyone in these two amazing countries. Whether you’re looking for a cultural experience, an adventure, or just some time to relax on the beach, Thailand and Vietnam are destinations that are sure to leave a lasting impression.

When is the best time to visit Thailand and Vietnam?

Thailand and Vietnam have a diverse geography and many micro climates within each country. But in general, Southeast Asia has a dry season and a wet season.

Dry season is generally from November to April and rainy season from May to October. It is best to not visit during rainy season as there can be flooding especially in Central Vietnam during that time.

Best months to visit Thailand

The best time to visit Thailand is between November and February, during the cool and dry season. This is also the peak tourist season, so expect higher prices and larger crowds.

Wat Mahathat, Ayutthaya in Thailand | Vietnam and Thailand itinerary

If you’re looking for a quieter time to visit, consider going during the shoulder seasons of September to October, although you may experience some rain.

If you prefer not to travel in the heat, you may choose other months to travel to Thailand rather than March to May. I went in April and it was 40C+ every day.

Best months to visit Vietnam

The best time to visit Vietnam is during the cooler and drier months of December to February. If you are visiting Central and South Vietnam, the winter months can be quite comfortable.

Ba Na hills golden hand bridge | Is the Golden Hand Bridge in Ba Na Hills Vietnam worth it?

Sapa in the North is best visited during July to September when you will see the green rice terraces while you may experience some rain, it won’t be like the coastal flooding in Da Nang.

In addition if you do plan to visit the mountainous regions of Vietnam, the winter months (November to March) can be quite foggy, so summer and fall months may be better.

How Do You Get Around Thailand and Vietnam?

It is very easy to get around Thailand and Vietnam, which is also why these two countries are often first choices for backpackers and foreign tourists. You can easily get around and travel within Thailand and Vietnam by flying, trains, buses, taxis, luxury vans, tours, tuk-tuks and renting motorbikes.

Vietnam sleeper train luxury cabin | Vietnam luxury sleeper train guide

In Southeast Asia, you can easily book trains and buses using 12go , which even includes reviews of the various buses and trains so it’s easier to help you decide which one to take.

If you are thinking about ride sharing services, the best app is Grab , since Uber and Lyft do not operate in Southeast Asia. You can link your foreign credit card to Grab (or you can pay cash after you take the ride).

Specifically within Thailand, metered taxis are a good option in Bangkok and other major cities, while tuk-tuks are a fun and affordable way to get around in smaller towns and shorter distances.

The easiest way to travel within cities and towns in Vietnam is to rent a motorbike. If you cannot ride one, you can also ask your hotel to help you arrange private taxi and luxury van if you are planning to travel from city to city.

What to Pack for Vietnam and Thailand?

Since you will be spending 3 weeks in Southeast Asia, it is important you bring the right things with you to make the trip more enjoyable and easier.

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Summer clothes with layers : Southeast Asia is normally pretty warm so bring summer clothes. However if you are going between December and February and planning to visit mountainous regions, then be sure to bring layers with you as it can get chilly in the mountains.

Comfortable shoes : you will be doing a lot of walking in Vietnam and Thailand, so be sure to bring comfortable shoes (sneakers, sandals). If you are planning to hike, then be sure to bring hiking shoes .

Cash : Vietnam and Thailand are very cash heavy countries. Even though you can pay for hotels and most meals with a credit card, most attractions and vendors still only take cash. If you do not have enough cash, be sure to bring a no fee ATM card as withdrawing from local ATM machines give you the best exchange rate.

Body Wipes : if you are planning to take a sleeper bus or train, you won’t be able to shower until you go to a hotel.

Ear plugs & eye mask : These are super useful if you are trying to sleep on sleeper buses and trains since it could be loud and bright!

Medications : If you have prescription medications you should be sure to bring them. You can buy generic brands in Thailand and Vietnam if necessary.

Plug Adapter : If you are traveling to Southeast Asia from the US or UK, you will need to get a plug converter/ adaptor so you can charge your electronics.

For the most part, you can buy things you need such as toiletries, sunscreen, hats, lotion, and other necessities in Southeast Asia when you travel there. They are generally cheaper than what you get in the US or UK and it helps you to save space in your luggage.

3 Week Vietnam and Thailand Itinerary

Day 1 – 4: Bangkok, Thailand Day 5 – 8: Chiang Mai (or the islands) Day 9 – 13: Central Vietnam Day 14 – 21: Northern Vietnam

Thailand and Vietnam are both large countries, so this 3 week itinerary can only show you parts of both countries that I think are unique and beautiful.

If you want particular experiences within Thailand or Vietnam, you can always customize this itinerary based on your interest.

Day 1 – 4: Bangkok, Thailand

Start your trip in Bangkok, Thailand’s vibrant capital city. You can spend a few days exploring the city’s temples, markets, and street food scene.

Day 1 in Bangkok

Assuming you are landing in Thailand on Day 1, you should take this time to relax and try to adjust jet lag. But if you are feeling up for it, you can visit Wat Paknam , a popular temple among locals and tourists alike due to its unique architecture and spiritual significance.

Wat Paknam in Bangkok Thailand | things to do in Bangkok Thailand

Wat Paknam is famous because of its role in making the Dhammakaya meditation method known in Thailand. It is also easily recognizable because of the seated 69m golden statue that was finished in 2021.

You can also spend some time visiting China Town , getting a Thai massage and checking out the fancy shopping center Icon Siam on your first day in Thailand.

Day 2 in Bangkok

During your 2nd day in Bangkok , start your day by visiting the Grand Palace , one of the most popular tourist attractions in Bangkok. The palace was once the home of the Thai kings and is a great example of traditional Thai architecture.

Bangkok Itinerary - Grand Palace

Within the Grand Palace complex, be sure to not miss the temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew), famous for the seated jade Buddha clothed in gold.

Wat Pho in Bangkok Thailand reclining Buddha

After visiting the palace, slowly walk over to Wat Pho , known for its 46-meter-long reclining Buddha statue.

If there is time, you can also enjoy a river cruise around the city and get off at Wat Arun to enjoy the sunset.

Wat Arun in Bangkok Thailand at night | how to spend a few days in Bangkok

Finish your night by visiting the famous Khao San Road , a vibrant street that is packed with bars, restaurants, shops and street vendors. You can try very interesting and exotic street food on Khao San Road.

Khao San Road in Bangkok Thailand | Best Thailand Bangkok itinerary

Day 3 in Bangkok

Most people who visit Bangkok opt for a couple of day trips not far from Bangkok after exploring the city.

The floating market near Bangkok is a popular tourist attraction where vendors sell their goods from boats on the water. There are several floating markets in and around Bangkok, but the most famous one is Damnoen Saduak Floating Market , which is located about 95km (1.5 hour drive) from Bangkok.

Bangkok-Floating-Market-2

At the floating market, visitors can see vendors selling a variety of goods including fresh produce, local handicrafts, souvenirs, and cooked food from their boats.

You can combine Damnoen Saduak Floating Market with the famous Maeklong Railway Market (where a train comes through the market) with this tour .

At night after you are back from this day trip, be sure to go watch a Muay Thai match , the ancient martial art of Thailand. Unlike wrestling or boxing, Muay Thai involves the use of fists, elbows, knees, and shins to strike opponents.

Muay Thai match in Bangkok Thailand

If Muay Thai is not of interest to you, you can always grab a drink at some of Bangkok’s best rooftop bars such as Sky Bar at Lebua Hotel which was featured in the movie Hangover 2 . Other nice rooftop bars include Moon Bar , Red Sky restaurant, Octave , and SEEN .

Day 4 in Bangkok

During your last day in Bangkok, you can either take a day trip to visit temples in Ayutthaya or explore the Erwan Museum and Ancient City in Samut Prakan, which is near Bangkok.

The city of Ayutthaya was the second capital of the Kingdom of Siam; it was once the largest and most prosperous city in Southeast Asia. However it was destroyed by the Burmese army in 1767.

ayutthaya Buddha head in the tree trunk | How to get to Ayuttaya from Bangkok

Today Ayutthaya is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to many temples and ruins, including the famous Wat Mahathat , known for its iconic Buddha head in the roots of a tree.

The Erawan Museum is a unique 3 story building shaped like a giant elephant and is home to a collection of art and antiques from Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries.

Ancient City Bangkok Thailand | Day trips from Bangkok

The Ancient City is a beautiful outdoor museum that showcases Thailand’s history and culture. You can see the replicas of ancient temples, palaces, and villages, and explore exhibitions showcasing traditional Thai art and culture at the Ancient City. It is also one of the most popular photo spots for Instagrammers because of its beautiful architecture.

If you are on a budget, take an overnight train (12-14 hours) or overnight bus (9-10 hours) to the next destination: Chiang Mai.

You should definitely get a Bangkok Explorer Pass if you are planning to do the day trips and cooking classes. You can save a lot of money with this pass!

Where to stay in Bangkok

Bangkok is a huge city so you can find accommodations that fit your budget, whether it is hostels or 5 star hotels. I have visited Bangkok a few times and stayed at various places ranging from really cheap to moderately expensive.

Lebua Hotel Bangkok

Budget accommodation in Bangkok: Mad Monkey Hostel , the Yard Hostel , NaPpark Hostel , Once Again Hostel

Medium range accommodation in Bangkok: Villa Bangkok , Avani Plus Riverside , SKYVIEW Hotel , Kimpton Maa-Lai

Luxury hotels in Bangkok: Siam Kempinski Hotel , Shangri-La , Lebua , The Peninsula Bangkok

You can also book Airbnbs in Bangkok if you are traveling with a large party and prefer to stay together.

Day 5 – 8: Chiang Mai

If you are not taking the overnight train or bus from Bangkok, you can book an early flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai.

Chiang Mai is the second largest city in Thailand and it is located in the northern region of Thailand. Chiang Mai is known for its rich history, culture, and natural beauty.

The city is surrounded by mountains and lush forests, and is home to many historic temples and landmarks. Chiang Mai also has a laid-back and relaxed vibe, with plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities.

Many people actually like the chill vibe in Chiang Mail more than Bangkok, but I think both cities are unique and are enjoyable in different ways.

Day 5: Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai was founded in 1296 and was the capital of Lanna Kingdom until 1558. As a former capital city, it is not surprising to find a walled old city protected by a moat.

During your first day in Chiang Mai, you can explore this fortified old city and visit the many temples there. Some of the most famous temples to visit in Chiang Mai include Wat Chedi Luang , Wat Phra Singh and Wat Chiang Man .

Wat Chedi Luang Temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand

After spending some time exploring temples and walled city, you can take a half day cooking class . Chiang Mai is actually pretty famous for its cooking classes and you can check out local markets and cook a delicious Thai meal. Taking a cooking class was actually one of my favorite things to do in Chiang Mai.

One of the most popular things to do in Chiangmai among visitors is to visit its night markets, such as Chiang Mai Night Bazaar , Wua Lai Walking Street , or even the Chang Phuak Gate Night Market . At these night markets you can shop for souvenirs and try some delicious street food.

Chiang mai Night Market | how to spend 3 days in Chiang mai

Day 6: Chiang Mai

After spending the entire day yesterday in the city center of Chiang Mai, today you will venture out a little to do some light hiking and visit Doi Suthep-Pui National Park .

Wat Pha Lat is a serene and tranquil Buddhist temple nestled in the lush greenery of the Doi Suthep-Pui National Park. You can visit Wat Pha Lat by car or by foot via Monk’s Trail , which is a unique and rewarding experience.

Wat Pha Lat in Chiang Mai

After Wat Pha Lat, make your way to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep , one of the most popular Buddhist temples in Chiang Mai. It is located on the top of Doi Suthep mountain and can be visited by car or climbing up 309 steps.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Once at the top, you can marvel at the stunning golden pagoda, which is believed to enshrine a relic of the Buddha. You will also have a sweeping panoramic view of the surrounding area from the temple’s terrace.

If you don’t want to have to find your way and transportation to Doi Suthep, you can book this sunrise tour that takes you there.

In the afternoon you can relax at a cafe in Chiang Mai or get a Thai massage (I highly recommend getting a massage everyday while you are in Thailand!).

If you did not get a chance to watch a Thai boxing match in Bangkok, you can watch one in Chiang Mai in Thailand’s first ever Muay Thai stadium.

Day 7 & 8: Day Trips From Chiang Mai

There are a number of fun half day and full day trips you can do from Chiang Mai, which is also why people love visiting Chiang Mai.

Zip lining in Chiangmai Thailand | Best things to do in Thailand

If you seek adrenaline and adventure, then you will love zip lining near Chiang Mai. I screamed my way across the jungle when I went zip lining in Chiang Mai but you are probably more brave than me.

Chiang Rai White Temple in Thailand

A visit to the iconic White Temple in Chiang Rai is a must for anyone in the region. The White Temple, also known as Wat Rong Khun, is a unique Buddhist temple that is designed, rebuilt and owned by a local artist. Besides the White Temple, Blue Temple and Black House are also popular points of interest in Chiang Rai.

Where to stay in Chiang Mai

Budget Accommodation in Chiang Mai: Tanita House , Stamps Backpackers , Family Home Chiang Mai

Medium Range Hotels in Chiang Mai: Cross Chiaing Mai Riverside , U Chiang Mai , El Barrio Lanna

<Alternative Day 5 – 8 in Thailand>

If temples are of no interest to you, don’t worry, you can still enjoy Thailand!

Thailand is famous for its white sand beach and islands, in fact many people fly to Thailand just for its beautiful beaches and water activities.

Phuket boat in Thailand | Is Phuket worth it?

Instead of going up to Chiang Mai, you can fly down south to Phuket from Bangkok.

Phuket is a vibrant beach town with a lot of resorts, restaurants and bars. There are also numerous day trips to the various islands and beaches from Phuket. In fact Phuket is where most first time visitors to Thailand stay.

If you want to get away from the bustling and hustling of Phuket, you can always stay at the more quiet Krabi or Phi Phi Island and still enjoy all the water activities and white sand beach.

Phi Phi Island in Thailand

Day 9 – 13: Central Vietnam

Central Vietnam is a popular region of Vietnam that offers a rich history, interesting culture, delicious cuisine and beautiful scenery.

Central Vietnam is home to some of the country’s most iconic attractions, such as the ancient city of Hue, the UNESCO World Heritage site of Hoi An, the beautiful Marble Mountains, and the fun filled Ba Na Hills.

You will spend the next 4 days exploring Da Nang, Hoi An and Hue.

Before traveling to Vietnam, make sure you have the necessary Vietnam tourist visa and document to enter Vietnam.

Day 9: Da Nang

Catch the first flight out from Chiang Mai (or Phuket) to Da Nang to maximize your day in Da Nang.

Da Nang is the largest city in Central Vietnam, known for its beach, Marble Mountain, religious sites, and its proximity to Ba Na Hills, Hue and Hoi An.

To maximize your day in Da Nang, I would recommend picking either the Marble Mountain area or So’n Tra Mountain to visit. If you have a lot of time you can also try to visit both of these sites.

Marble Mountain is actually 5 limestone peaks in Da Nang; these 5 peaks are known as the five elements in nature: water, fire, earth, wood and metal.

Marble Mountain Danang Vietnam

There are a number of pagodas, caves and towers on Marble Mountain and it is one of the most visited areas in Da Nang.

The most famous attractions on Marble Mountain include the Linh Ung Pagoda and Non Nuoc Pagoda, Tam Thai Pagoda, Huyen Khong Cave, Hoa Nghiem Cave and Non Nuoc Stone Carving Village . You will also get beautiful a view of the coast line from Marble Mountain.

Lady Buddha Da Nang

Son Tra Mountain (Monkey Mountain) is also a famous attraction area in Da Nang, famous for Son Tra Linh Ung Pagoda (not to be confused with the one on Marble Mountain) and its Lady Buddha (the tallest Buddhist statue in Vietnam) and Ban Co Peak .

Where to stay in Da Nang

If you are looking for a luxurious experience, then I would highly recommend Intercontinental Danang on Son Tran Mountain. You can take a cable car from the hotel to the beach and have complete privacy. There is also a very Instagram worthy and delicious restaurant onsite at the hotel.

Other highly popular beach resorts in Da Nang include Sala Danang Beach Hotel , HAIAN Beach Hotel and Monarque Hotel Danang .

Day 10: Ba Na Hills

Ba Na Hills is an amusement park about 40 minute drive from Da Nang city center. Insta-famous for its Golden Bridge, Ba Na Hills is a nice day trip from Da Nang for the entire family.

Ba Na hills cable car

Ba Na Hills also has one of the longest cable cars in Vietnam and the whole ride in itself is an attraction and takes about 20 minutes from the bottom of the hill to the amusement park.

Golden Bridge Ba Na Hills | Is Golden Bridge at Ba Na Hills worth it?

Aside from the famous Golden Bridge , Ba Na Hills also has a indoor amusement park, French village, religious sites such as Linh Ung Pagoda (different from the ones in Da Nang), beautiful French gardens, a wax museum, many different restaurants, and even a Starbucks.

If you want to avoid crowds and get the best photo at Golden Bridge, you should stay one night up in Ba Na Hills at the Mercure French Village hotel so you can have early access to the cable car to Golden Bridge the next morning.

Day 11: Hoi An

After taking your photos at the Golden Bridge and grabbing breakfast, it is time to check out and travel to Hoi An. From Ba Na Hills you can get a taxi or Grab to Hoi An, which is about 1 hour away by car.

Hoi An was an international trading center in Vietnam back in the 16th and 17th centuries. Because of its trading activities, there were many foreign merchants that came to Hoi An and set up their own quarters.

Hoi An yellow wall instagram spots

The Old Town of Hoi An has a number of architectural monuments such as shrines, temples, pagodas, ancient houses and they are preserved intact. It is now an UNESCO World Heritage Site.

While in Hoi An, you can get a tourist ticket (passes to see up to 5 attractions) and visit some of the most famous places in Hoi An, which include:

  • Japanese Covered Bridge
  • Assembly Halls (Phuc Kien, Quant Trieu, Trieu Chau, Hai Nam)
  • Old houses (Tan Ky, Quan Thang, Duc An, etc)
  • Communal Houses

Japanese Covered Bridge in Hoi An

But to be honest, Hoi An is best experienced just by walking around the different streets, admiring the lanterns and architecture , people watch at a cafe, getting custom dresses and shirts made at a tailor, checking out Hoi An night market and taking an evening boat ride on the Hoai River.

Hoi An lanterns | Best places to visit in Hoi An

If you have more time, you can also check out the beach at Hoi An or take a day trip to either Cham Island and My Son (ancient ruins), or take a coconut forest basket boat .

Where to stay in Hoi An

Most visitors stay near the ancient town of Hoi An although you can also stay at a resort near the beach.

If your plan is to spend most of your time exploring the old town of Hoi An, then I would highly recommend these hotels:

Q Villa in Hoi An Vietnam

  • Q Villa Hoi An : We stayed here during our trip. The room was large, bright and clean and it was within walking distance to everything.
  • Serenity Villa : one of the best valued accommodations in Hoi An with a pool and within walking distance to the Hoi An night market and other tourist sites

Read Next : One Day (24 Hours) in Hoi An itinerary and travel guide

Day 12 & 13: Hoi An & Hue

Spend early morning in Hoi An to explore and take some photos while there is no crazy crowd like the previous afternoon. Early morning is actually the best time to explore Hoi An if you want photos since most tours come later in the day.

You can also grab some delicious pho at Phở Tùng , one of the best reviewed Pho restaurants in the old town. Or you can get Bahn Mi (Vietnamese sandwich) from the famous Bánh Mì Phượng , the most popular Bahn Mi places in Hoi An after it was featured in Anthony Bourdain’s – No Reservations .

Banh Mi Phuong restaurant in Hoi An

After a morning in Hoi An, take a bus or private taxi to Hue , the ancient capital of the Nguyen Dynasty in Vietnam.

Hue Imperial Citadel in Vietnam

Hue is a large city and the main attractions include:

  • Imperial Citadel : walled citadel including palaces of the imperial family
  • Thien Mu Pagoda : 7 story Buddhist temple by Perfume River east of Imperial Citadel
  • Ancient tombs : tombs of Emperor Tu Duc, Emperor Khai Dinh, Emperor Ga Liang, Emperor Minh Mang
  • Dong Ba Market : the oldest market in Hue
  • Abandoned Water Park
  • Hue Night Walking Street : a street full of restaurants and bars

Minh Mang Tomb in Hue Vietnam

With about a day and half in Hue, you will be able to see all the main attractions, try some delicious local food before either taking an overnight train to Ninh Binh or taking a short flight to Hanoi.

Where to stay in Hue

Hue is a large city and personally I think the best places to stay in Hue are either close to the imperial citadel or the Night Walking Street.

Budget Accommodation in Hue : Hue Melody Hostel , located right at the lively night walking street area.

Luxury Accommodation in Hue : Melia Vinpearl Hue , we loved staying here! It’s in the tallest building in Hue, with an indoor pool, gym and other luxury amenities but at a moderate price.

Melia Vinpearl Hue

Hue is quite big and the tombs are not in the city itself. The best way to get around Hue is to rent a scooter or hire a private taxi to take you around the different spots. I would not recommend using Grab outside of the city as you may not be able to get cars in the outskirts of town.

Day 14 – 21: Northern Vietnam

Northern Vietnam is a stunning region that is characterized by its beautiful mountain landscapes, diverse ethnic communities, and rich cultural heritage. The region is home to many of Vietnam’s most iconic destinations, including the UNESCO World Heritage site of Halong Bay, the rice paddies of Sapa, the incredible landscape of Ninh Binh, and the stunning waterfall of Cao Bang.

You will spend the next week of your 3 week Thailand and Vietnam trip exploring some of the best spots in Northern Vietnam before flying home from Hanoi.

Day 14 & 15: Ninh Binh & Hanoi

If you flew to Hanoi from Hue, you would need to take an early morning bus or private taxi or luxury van from Hanoi to Tam Coc in Ninh Binh. Or if you took a overnight train from Hue to Ninh Binh, you will need to ask your hotel to book you a taxi from Ninh Binh Train Station to Tam Coc to start your day.

Ninh Binh is a popular region in Northern Vietnam, about 2-3 hours by car from Hanoi. Located southeast of Hanoi, Ninh Binh is often referred to as “Halong Bay on Land” due to its striking karst landscape, which is made up of towering limestone cliffs, lush forests, and meandering rivers.

Trang An Boat ride

Ninh Binh is also home to many ancient temples, pagodas, and other historical sites and view points and it is no wonder it is one of the most popular day trips from Hanoi. With about 2 days in Ninh Binh, you can see some of the best attractions:

  • Mua Caves : beautiful view points of the entire area
  • Bai Dinh Pagoda : one of the largest Buddhist temple complexes in Southeast Asia
  • Hoa Lu Ancient Capital : ancient capital from the 10th to 11th century
  • Bich Dong Pagoda : ancient pagoda nestled at the foot of a towering mountain
  • Tam Coc Boat Ride : a scenic 1.5 hour boat ride in the town of Tam Coc that takes you through the rice paddies and limestone cliffs and caves
  • Trang An Boat Ride : a beautiful 3 hour boat ride that has 3 different routes and lets you see caves and religious sites with the option of getting off at each site

If you have more time in Ninh Binh, you can also check out Van Long Wetland Nature Reserve , caves , Thung Nham Bird Park and Cuc Phuong National Park .

The best way to get around Ninh Binh is to rent a scooter but you can also hire a private taxi to get around or even take tours . If you don’t want to stay in Ninh Binh you can also take tours from Hanoi. If you want to take tours from Hanoi, I highly recommend this tour and this tour which cover all of the best attractions listed above.

If you decide to travel around Ninh Binh by scooter or taxi, then I would recommend visiting Bai Dinh Pagoda , Hoa Lu Ancient Capital and Trang An Boat ride on the first day since they are not too far from each other.

On the second day you can go to Mua Caves , Bich Dong Pagoda and take the Tam Coc boat ride . Mua Caves do get really crowded once all the tours come, so it’s best to visit early in the morning to avoid the crowd. All of these are not too far from Tam Coc so they should be done together.

Where to stay in Ninh Binh

Most people stay in the town of Tam Coc when they visit Ninh Binh because there are a lot of restaurants and bars.

Tam Coc Horizon Bungalow

We personally stayed at Tam Coc Horizon Bungalow and I only have good things to say about them. We had our own bungalow and the staff was extremely accommodating and friendly. They even provided us with a bag of snacks and fruits when we were leaving.

Hanoi in the afternoon on Day 15

Finish your Ninh Binh excursions around noon so you can take a bus or luxury van back to Hanoi to explore this wonderful capital city of Vietnam.

Hanoi Train Street

There is a lot to see, do, drink, and eat in Hanoi. The main attractions in Hanoi near the Old Quarter include:

  • Hanoi Train Street : a street full of cafes famous for its daily train passing
  • Temple of Literature : a stunning example of traditional Vietnamese architecture and a symbol of the country’s dedication to education and scholarship.
  • Hoan Kiem Lake (and Ngoc Son Temple): a picturesque lake in the middle of Old Quarter surrounded by historical landmarks and popular attractions
  • One Pillar Pagoda : a famous Buddhist temple in Hanoi known for its unique architecture
  • Quan Thanh Temple : a historic Taoist temple that is one of the four Sacred Temples in Hanoi
  • Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum : the resting place of President Ho Chi Minh that offers an insight into Vietnam’s history
  • Imperial Citadel of Thang Long : a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Hanoi
  • St. Joseph Cathedral : a famous neo-Gothic cathedral; its architectural style resembles Notre Dame in Paris and it was constructed during the French colonial period
  • Hanoi Night Market : a vibrant weekend night market in the center of Old Quarter that sells food, souvenirs and clothing items
  • Ta Hien Beer Street (best visited at night): a busy street with restaurants and bars and seating outside that is lively at night

After visiting Hue, you may be less interested in some of the religious and historical sites above and that’s ok!

You can simply enjoy Hanoi by wandering through the narrow streets of Old Quarter, people watch at a Cafe and try Egg Coffee, finding street food at every corner, shopping for souvenirs or clothes, or simply grabbing a drink and dinner at Ta Hien Beer and taking in the lively vibe of the city.

Where to stay in Hanoi

Most people stay in Hanoi Old Quarter when they visit Hanoi for the first time. There are so many restaurants, cafes and shops in the Old Quarter and most tours will also only pick up from hotels in the Old Quarter.

There are plenty of accommodations for all budgets in the Old Quarter and they are within walking distance to all the attractions and restaurants.

Babylon Premium Hotel in Hanoi Vietnam

Budget Accommodation in Hanoi : Old Quarter View Hostel , Hanoi Central Backpackers Hostel

Medium ranged Accommodation in Hanoi : La Storia Ruby Hotel , L’Heritage Diamond Hotel

Luxury Accommodation in Hanoi : Babylon Premium Hotel & Spa , Meritel Hanoi

I have stayed at a number of the hotels listed above during my most recent trip and have only good things to say about the staff and location of these hotels.

Day 16 & 17: Halong Bay & Hanoi

Halong Bay is one of the most popular natural attractions in Vietnam and it is especially convenient to visit Halong Bay from Hanoi.

Most people visit Halong Bay by doing a cruise and there are different types of Halong Bay cruises:

  • One day cruise (no overnight)
  • 2 Day 1 Night cruise
  • 3 Day 2 night cruise

There are also visitors that spend a night or two on Cat Ba Island , the largest island in Halong Bay instead of doing a cruise.

If you are planning to take a Halong Bay Cruise which most visitors do, there are cruises for all budget types, from as little as $100 a person to over $1000 a night per cabin.

You can ask your hotel to help book a Halong Bay cruise or book one yourself either on the cruise’s websites or booking.com. Some of the most luxurious cruises include Orchid Premium Cruise , Emperor Cruises , Elite of the Seas , Stellar of the Seas .

Most people book a 2 day 1 night Halong Bay Cruise and the schedule generally looks something like this:

Day 1 of 2 day Halong Bay Cruise

  • 8am pick up from Hanoi
  • 12pm boarding Halong Bay Cruise
  • 2 – 4pm activities such as cave exploring, beach, kayaking, swimming – depends on your particular cruise company
  • 4-6pm: Happy hour on board
  • 6pm: dinner
  • Evening: squid fishing and relaxing

Day 2 of 2 day Halong Bay Cruise

  • 6:30am cooking class or Tai Chi
  • 8am Breakfast
  • Morning activity, brunch and checking out
  • 3pm back in Hanoi

When you are back in Hanoi around 3-4pm, you have more time to explore Hanoi and take an overnight train from Hanoi to Sapa.

See my complete guide on Halong Bay to see if it’s worth visiting.

Day 18 – 20: Sapa

Sapa is a popular city in northern Vietnam, about 380km away from Hanoi. The town is situated at an altitude of 1,600 meters and is surrounded by breathtaking mountains and rice terraces.

Sapa is home to several ethnic minority groups, including the Hmong, Dao, and Tay; you can visit their villages when you trek through Sapa.

If you took an overnight train from Hanoi, you would arrive in Lao Cai, a city near the border of China, around 6am. You will need to ask your hotel or trekking company to help arrange van transportation from Lao Cai train station to Sapa town.

If you took an overnight bus from Hanoi, you will arrive in Sapa instead of Lao Cai, but you might need transport from the bus station to Sapa Town.

Some of the most popular activities in Sapa include trekking through rice terraces and ethnic minority villages, Fansipan, Cat Cat Village and checking out Sapa Town itself.

Trekking in Sapa

Trekking is one of the best things you can do in Sapa if you want to get away from the town and see rice terraces and experience nature and how the Hmong people live.

The most popular trekking tours in Sapa include day treks (from 9am to 3pm) or 2 day 1 night treks with an overnight homestay in one of the villages.

You can either book a trekking tour with a tour guide, trekking company or some people do trek in Sapa by themselves without a guide. We used Sapa Sisters and the guide was really informative and friendly.

Fansipan is known as the “roof of Indochina” and it is the highest mountain in Vietnam.

Fansipan Cable Car

Before cable cars were built, people used to trek 2-3 days to go to the peak of Fansipan. But now there is a cable car that can take visitors up to Fansipan without doing the overnight treks. The cable car only takes about 15-20 minutes to take you up to Fansipan, and you will need to hike about 15 minute to the top of the peak.

On a clear day you can see the beautiful view of the surrounding area and mountains from Fansipan Summit at 3143m (10312 feet). It generally takes about half a day to visit Fansipan.

Cat Cat Village

Cat Cat Village is a popular tourist town about 2km (20-30 minute walk) from Sapa town.

You can either take a taxi or simply walk to Cat Cat Village from the center of Sapa. On a clear day you will see a beautiful view of rice terraces as you take a leisurely stroll to Cat Cat Village.

You need to purchase a ticket to enter Cat Cat Village. Once inside, you can explore the narrow alleys, rose gardens, photo spots, cafes, bamboo forest, the famous waterfall CatScat (this is how the name Cat Cat Village came about).

Cat Cat Village waterfall

Many visitors rent traditional ethnic minority clothing when they visit Cat Cat Village. The shop owners will help you with make up and hair as well, so it is a pretty fun experience. It usually takes at least 3-4 hours to fully explore Cat Cat Village.

Explore the town of Sapa

The town of Sapa is an attraction in itself. There is a large lake that many people check out. There are also a lot of restaurants that are popular among tourists.

There are a number of photo spots (usually at cafes and restaurants) that visitors go to take Instagram worthy photos. On a clear day you can get a nice view of the rice terrace from certain spots in Sapa town.

Some of the most popular photo spots in Sapa include Swing SaPa , Ansapa Village , and Moana Sapa .

Where to stay in Sapa

Sapa has a number of nice hotels, some offer fantastic views of the valley and rice terraces.

  • Topas Ecolodge : one of the most scenic lodges in Sapa with a gorgeous pool and view of the rice terraces
  • Sapa CatCat Hills Resort : beautiful hillside Sapa Hotel with an outdoor pool
  • Laxsik Ecolodge : thinking about getting your own lodge? This ecolodge is the perfect choice for you with an amazing mountain view and an outdoor pool
  • Pistachio Hotel Sapa : famous for its pool and view, Pistachio Hotel is located in the town of Sapa and is within walking distance to restaurants and attractions.

If you have more time in Thailand or Vietnam, you can check out the beaches of Thailand by flying to Phuket and going to Koh Phi Phi or Krabi and do some snorkeling or just lying on the white sand beach.

If you do not want to visit Northern Vietnam, you can certainly travel south from Da Nang and visit cities such as Da Lat, Ho Chi Minh City or the beautiful island of Phu Quoc.

I hope this 3 week Vietnam and Thailand itinerary will inspire you to explore the beautiful countries of Southeast Asia, a destination for every dream.

How Safe is Thailand and Vietnam?

Thailand and Vietnam are very safe countries for travelers, even for solo female travelers. This is also why there are many backpackers that love to travel to Vietnam and Thailand.

Both Thailand and Vietnam have a low crime rate and the locals are friendly and helpful. However as with any tourist destinations, there is always petty crime so be sure to watch your belongings.

If you are planning to rent motorbikes in Thailand and Vietnam, be sure to drive defensively and wear a helmet. You should also consider getting  travel insurance when traveling by motorbikes.

World Nomads provides travel insurance for travellers in over 100 countries. As an affiliate, we receive a fee when you get a quote from World Nomads using this link. We do not represent World Nomads. This is information only and not a recommendation to buy travel insurance.

Another potential risk while traveling in Vietnam and Thailand is food safety. Be sure to eat at reputable restaurants to minimize the risk of food poisoning. Some people also advise avoid getting ice but I never had any issues, in fact I have never gotten food borne illness in Thailand and Vietnam.

You should also be aware of scams targeting tourists, such as taxi and tuk tuk scams that overcharge tourists using “meters”. Always be aware of any “too-good-to-be-true” deals offered by tour operators and vendors.

Useful Resources to Plan Southeast Asia Itinerary

For transportation within Southeast Asia

  • 12go for train and bus booking
  • Grab app for getting taxis

For hotel booking within Southeast Asia

  • Booking.com or Agoda are the best resources for booking hotels
  • Hostelworld is great for booking hostels

For booking tours within Southeast Asia

  • Klook : Singapore based tour booking website with the most number of tours and budget prices
  • Getyourguide and Viator are also good websites to book tours

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Best 2-Week Thailand and Vietnam Itineraries 2024

As top 2 destinations in Southeast Asia, Thailand stands out for its bustling life and tropical islands, while Vietnam is typically famous for its rural life and diverse landscape.

2 weeks is a popular time to explore in these two countries. You can discover their iconic highlights at a fast pace by allocating 1 week to each country. Bangkok, Chiang Mai and an island top any Thailand itinerary. For a classic Vietnam trip, don't miss Hanoi, Hoi An and Ho Chi Minh City.

More comfortably, you can spend 8-9 days in your preferred country and leave 5-6 days in the other.

Read the suggested itineraries for your inspiration.

  • 1. A Classic Itinerary for First-Timers
  • 2. 14-Day Romantic Escape to Thailand and Vietnam
  • 3. A Family Trip to Thailand and Vietnam
  • Costs of a 2-Week Thailand and Vietnam Tour

Discover real reviews of Highlights Travel Family 's best-rated service across trusted platforms.

Itinerary 1: A Classic 2-Week Thailand and Vietnam Tour

This itinerary will showcase the best of Thailand and Vietnam. Starting in Vietnam, you'll cruise on the unique Karst seascape— Halong Bay , soak in the cultural ancient Hoi An , and gain an insight into the Vietnam War by exploring Cu Chi Tunnels .

In Thailand, indulge in the chaos of Bangkok, enjoy a memorable elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai and unwind on the sandy beaches of Phuket.

Check the brief itinerary as below: 1 week in Vietnam and 1 week in Thailand.

  • Days 1–3: Hanoi and an overnight cruise in the Halong Bay, Vietnam
  • Days 4–5: Hoi An with a walking tour of its ancient town
  • Days 6–7: Ho Chi Minh City with the Cu Chi Tunnels
  • Days 8–9: Bangkok city tour with iconic temples
  • Days 10–11: Chiang Mai with elephant sanctuary
  • Days 12–14: Phuket (free beach time)

7 Days in Vietnam

Embark on a thrilling 7-day journey through Vietnam, exploring Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hoi An, and Ho Chi Minh City.

For the first three days, experience the vibrant charm of Hanoi during a brief stop before continuing your journey to Halong Bay. Enjoy a leisurely 2-day cruise , a relaxing retreat beyond the ordinary day trips. For an exclusive touch, consider our carefully selected private junk or a smaller luxury cruise.

Then continue your trip to Hoi An , a historical town full of a laid-back vibe. Here, you can savor a cup of our unique egg coffee, chat with friendly local craftsmen, or take a countryside bike ride with your family or loved ones.

In the last two days, you'll fly to Ho Chi Minh City , where you can see the French-colonial heritage, Vietnam war sites, and real on-trade floating markets.

7 Days in Thailand

Your Thai adventure begins in Bangkok, the bustling capital city. A typical Bangkok tour includes the Grand Palace, ancient temples, and navigating the vibrant markets by tuk-tuk rides.

Next, head to Chiang Mai. Elephant interactions and Loy Krathong (sky lantern festival) are top reasons to visit Chiang Mai. For foodies, creating a Thai dish with a local family would create a unique experience.

Continue your journey to the tropical paradise of Phuket . You can idyllically sunbathe on the beach, go for a thrilling snorkelling on an island hopping tour and embark on a jungle adventure in Koh Sok National Park.

Itinerary 2: 14-Day Romantic Escape to Thailand and Vietnam

If you prefer some romantic experiences and exploring both countries at a slow pace, take this tour. Your romantic journey ideally takes 9 days in Vietnam and 5 days in Thailand.

  • Days 1–2: Hanoi city tour with an Old Quarter cyclo ride, Vietnam
  • Days 3–4: Overnight Halong Bay Cruise to unspoiled areas
  • Days 5–6: fisher-folk experience and evening foodie tour in Hoi An
  • Days 7–9: Ho Chi Minh City with the Cu Chi Tunnels and a canal boat ride on the Mekong Delta
  • Day 10: Explore Bangkok's highlights and have a long-tail boat ride
  • Days 11–14: Koh Samui (free beach time)

Private and exclusive activities are a must for a couple's trip. You and your beloved can enjoy quality intimate time on a Halong Bay cruise, go for a foodie adventure in the atmospheric Hoi An and take a beach candlelight dinner on the tranquil beaches of Koh Samui. For milestone celebrations, a Thai wedding will turn your big day into a lifelong memory.

You can also experience local life by a cyclo ride in Hanoi, a fishing tour in Hoi An, a canal boat ride to see the Mekong Delta and a long-tail boat ride in Bangkok .

To enhance the privacy of your stay, we've specially arranged adult-only hotels and private cruises for you.

Itinerary 3: A 2-Week Family Trip to Thailand and Vietnam

This itinerary is packed with family-interactive activities, which is perfect for families with active teenagers.

In this itinerary, you'll have more time in Thailand for outdoor adventures , such as more beach time, side trips to Ninh Binh, and the Doi Inthanon hiking tour in Chiang Mai.

Here's a customized itinerary for your reference: 5 days in Vietnam and 9 days in Thailand.

  • Day 1: Hanoi city tour with street food tour and private water puppet show and a day trip to Ninh Binh exploration, Vietnam
  • Day 2: Ninh Binh, Vietnam(Hoa Lu Ancient Capital, sampan boat trip to visit Tam Coc and the Mua Cave hiking tour for panoramic views)
  • Days 3–5: Overnight Halong Bay Cruise to unspoiled areas
  • Days 6–8: Chiang Mai, Thailand (Kanta Elephant Sanctuary, ancient town tour by a rickshaw ride, Doi Inthanon hiking tour, Karen village)
  • Days 9–11: Phuket with a private charter to Phi Phi Island, Thailand
  • Days 12–14: Bangkok, Thailand (city tour with iconic temples, a long-tail boat ride, railway Market, floating market)

Your Vietnam trip would focus on the north (Hanoi, Halong Bay and Ninh Binh). Your family vacation will start from Hanoi's street food tour. Vegetarian food is available as well. A private water puppet show allows your kids to get up close to the local culture.

Taking a leisurely rowing boat ride through an amazing tunnel cave would be a WOW moment in Ninh Binh. For iconic Halong Bay, we've carefully selected Halong Bay cruises with family rooms for your family to stay together.

Continue your family getaway to Chiang Mai, Thailand. Take a rickshaw to unveil the hidden gems of the ancient town, then prepare food, feed and bathe elephants in the family-friendly Kanta Elephant Sanctuary , and go to the wild by Doi Inthanon hiking tour.

Then enjoy Phuket's endless beaches, snorkeling and a private island hopping to Phi Phi island. Finally, conclude your trip to bustling Bangkok.

Insider's tip: early booking is suggested to be made 3 months in advance if you look for characteristic hotel experiences, like a tree house in Phuket, and floating camping in Koh Sok National Park.

Want to Explore More Hidden Gems in Thailand and Vietnam?

The itineraries mentioned above cover popular destinations in Thailand and Vietnam, ideal for first-time travelers. If you're looking for off-the-beaten-path experiences, feel free to contact us to customize your itinerary.

Specializing in personalized private tours, we can incorporate unique experiences in Thailand, such as a side trip to Kanchanaburi with a floating house stay , an exploration of the mysterious Golden Triangle in Chiang Rai , or biking in the ancient ruins of Sukhothai .

In Vietnam, you can trek through the mountainous landscapes of Sapa , ride a motorbike along the scenic Hai Van Pass , and explore the Tu Lan or Phong Nha Caves in Dong Hoi .

Costs for a 2-Week Trip to Thailand and Vietnam

A 2-week quality tour to Thailand and Vietnam usually costs US$200 to 250 per person per day. Kids under 10 would get 30–50% off.

So, a family with 2 adults and 2 kids has better prepare US$9,500–12,000, while a couple can expect to spend around US$5,600–7,000, excluding the cost of international flights to and from their home country.

Traveling with us at similar prices , we'll provide you customized itinerary, hassle-free private travel experiences, best-value hotels and exclusive activities.

If you prefer to save some costs, travelling in May and October (before or right after high season) still promises good weather and fewer crowds.

Popular Thailand and Vietnam Tours

We provide a customized service for private tours. Our travel consultants will listen to and work on your ideas and answer any questions. We will create your dream trip based on your interests, travel length, and needs.

Here are some of our sample tours:

  • 14-Day Classic Vietnam and Thailand Tour
  • 15-Day Best of Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam Tour
  • 19-Day Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam In-Depth Tour

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  • 19-Day Highlights of Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam Tour
  • 12-Day Best of Thailand and Cambodia Tour
  • How to Visit Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam 2024: 10, 14 and 21-Day Itinerary Ideas
  • How to Plan a Trip to Southeast Asia 2024 (First-Timers' Guide)
  • 2 Weeks in Southeast Asia: Top 6 Itineraries for 2024/2025
  • Southeast Asia Itinerary for 3 Weeks: Best 5 Ideas in 2024
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Thailand and Vietnam: The Ultimate 1 Month Itinerary

I love the hub of cities, the serenity of the countryside, extraordinary cuisine, beaches, and limestone karsts.

Southeast Asia has it all, and more. I wish I’d had several months to enjoy this region, but it’s hard to be a full-time traveler when your other love is  working 50 hours a week in television .

If you’re also short on time and want to take in the spectacular scenery of Thailand and Vietnam, you’ll LOVE this 1-month itinerary. It’s a diverse mix of some of Southeast Asia’s highlights at a manageable pace. It includes two major cities (Bangkok, Hanoi), beautiful beaches (Railay, Koh Tao), countryside (Mai Chau), and SPECTACULAR limestone karsts (Khao Sok, Halong Bay, La Han Bay).

Yes, there are a zillion blog posts about how to travel this area!  However, packing lists and itineraries differ from traveler to traveler, and I always love reading those details as they inspire ideas of my own.

Let’s get to it!

Bangkok: 4-5 Days

1 month itinerary thailand and vietnam

Everything you’ve heard about Bangkok is true: It’s humid, crowded, chaotic…but  completely electrifying .

Spend  Day 1  getting acclimated to the time difference and readjusting to being on land after 30+ hours in transit. I met two other people at my hostel and tagged along with them to a  charming floating village . It was completely by chance, but it’s the  perfect  first day in southeast Asia.

Spend Days 2 and 3  doing the touristy things: visiting the temples, sampling street food, drinking coconut juice out of a bag, and shopping at Pantip Plaza. Enjoy the nightlife, and be smart about it (don’t drink more than you can handle, don’t accept drinks from strangers, don’t walk back to your hostel alone, etc).

Spend Day 4 hanging with any new friends or checking out another place you’ve heard of through word of mouth. A few awesome activities near Bangkok: bicycle safari of the countryside  or a day tour of the ruins of Ayutthaya, a smaller version of Siem Reap.

Where I Stayed:   In a Box Hostel , which fit all four of my criteria: Clean, quiet, close to the metro, and NOT on Khao San Road. If you’re going to splurge, Bangkok is the city to do it: there’s plenty of plush accommodation at reasonable prices.

Travel Day: Bangkok -> Koh Tao

There’s a bus and boat combo straight to Koh Tao from Bangkok, which takes about 10 hours. The overnight train/ferry option takes 13 hours. You can also fly direct from Bangkok to Koh Samui and take the ferry to Koh Tao, but it’s pricey.

(When I did this trip, I spent two disappointing nights on Koh Samui. Some people love  Koh Samui… maybe it’s good for luxury getaways and honeymoons, but from my perspective as a flash packer, it fell flat and felt artificial. I forget I even went there because it was so unmemorable. Maybe I didn’t go to the right places, but it just didn’t resonate with me…I wish I’d gotten to Koh Tao sooner.)

Koh Tao: 4 days

IMG_9189

What is there to do on Koh Tao? Oh man. You can do as much as you’d like, or you can laze on the beach and do absolutely nothing. This is the place to recharge . If you’re feeling spry, there’s an endless supply of water activities, shops, restaurants, and nightlife.

Two of my favorite activities of my entire trip were on Koh Tao: Snorkeling (the marine life is INCREDIBLE) and stand up paddle boarding at sunset. If I’d had more time, I may have built up the courage to try diving. Learn from my mistakes — you’ll want a GoPro for this .

Where I Stayed: Splurged on a 1-bedroom suite at the delightful Sun Smile Lodge to escape the Full Moon Party crowd that overran all affordable lodging.

Note: If you’re going to Koh Tao to get your open water certification, add an extra day. Most dive courses will provide accommodation.

Travel Day: Koh Tao -> Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok isn’t quick to get to from Koh Tao, but it’s  so  worth it. Plus, it will break up the beaches of Koh Tao and the Andaman Coast. You’ll need to take a ferry-bus combo, and it takes 12 hours.

Tip: Use the restroom BEFORE getting on the bus. There are no stops and even though the bus is supposed to have a bathroom, it may be “broken”, as it was on mine.

Khao Sok National Park: 2 days

khao sok national park thailand 1 month itinerary

Of this month-long itinerary,  Khao Sok   is the most beautiful spot . It’s a man-made lake, yes, but the setting is serene and spectacular. It’s beauty on a larger-than-life scale, constantly surrounding you on all sides. Cameras don’t do it justice.

Beyond the lake, there’s a lot to see in Khao Sok – canoeing down rivers, jungle trekking, and exploring caves.

Where I Stayed:  The Banana Lodge, which was a little outside the main drag. If I had to do it again, I’d stay closer to town. Most guesthouses should be able to arrange tours for you within the National Park, including canoeing, trekking, and longtail tour of the magnificent lake.

Read more: Is Cheow Lan Lake Thailand’s Most Underrated Destination?

Travel Day: Khao Sok National Park -> Krabi (Ao Nang)

It’s about 3 hours to Krabi/Ao Nang from Khao Sok via bus. It’s a relatively easy travel day, giving you a bonus half day at Ao Nang.

Ao Nang/Railay: 3 days

beautiful railway east sunset long tail boat

If you love jaw-dropping scenery and immaculate sunsets, you HAVE to visit Railay.

Spend Day 1  exploring the area around Ao Nang. Take a 15-minute long tail boat taxi to Railay and walk the trail to Phra Nang (an equally or perhaps even more spectacular beach). Relax. Take TONS of photos. Enjoy the sunset on Railay. Prices on Railay are inflated, so pack snacks.

Spend Day  2 on a day trip to the surrounding islands (your hostel or guesthouse can book this for you). I did the 4-island catamaran tour that included Koh Hong. It was rushed and crowded, but beautiful. (If you make enough friends, you can split the cost of renting a boat for a day and see it at your own pace.)

Spend Day 3 doing whatever you want.

Where I Stayed : Slumber Party at the Beach Hostel . Yes, it is a party hostel, but the staff is fantastic and they organize fun activities for their guests, including pub crawls and a camping trip on a private island. (If you’re not the partying type but want to stay close to the beach, try the neighboring Zabava Guest House .)

If Time: Add 4 days on Koh Lanta, which is three hours away by ferry.

Travel Day: Fly Krabi, Thailand -> Hanoi, Vietnam

Flights from Krabi to Hanoi are around $100-$250. Some include a layover in Bangkok. I flew direct for about $230. (Remember, you’ll need a visa for Vietnam.)

Hanoi: 2-3 Days

hanoi

You can use Hanoi as a base to explore the Northern Vietnam region, as most of the tours depart from there.

Two highlights: My first ever  foodie crawl  (the food is delicious and our guide was fantastic), and drinking 25 cent beers at Bia Hoi Corner. The lowlights? There’s still a lot of pain and anger towards the Western world, particularly palpable at any of the museums.

Where I Stayed : Little Hanoi Diamond , which is the best value I’ve ever had traveling. I opted for the dorm room, where for $6/night, you get a clean bed and a delicious breakfast. The downside? No common area to hang out in to meet other travelers, although it was fairly easy to meet others in the dorm room.

Mai Chau: 2 Days

mai chau vietnam 1 month itinerary

I hadn’t heard of Mai Chau  until I arrive in Hanoi, but it was the highlight of my time in Northern Vietnam — it had the most amount of sunshine! There aren’t the infamous rice terraces of Sapa, but there are glorious mountains and beautiful rice fields. I immensely enjoyed my afternoon riding a bike throughout the region, waving to the smiling local kids.

Where I Stayed : I purchased a two day tour from my hostel for $45, which included meals, transportation, and one night basic dorm accommodation at Mai Chau Nature Place .

I also did a tour to Sapa, but it was a poor value in comparison: nearly 3x as expensive, twice as far from Hanoi, and hundreds more tourists. Sapa  is  beautiful — but there’s a tout culture that has evolved as a result of the tourism explosion. It’s an ethical dilemma worthy of its own post.

Read more:  A Glimpse into Vietnamese Life in Mai Chau

Ha Long Bay (or Cat Ba Island/Lan Ha Bay): 2-3 Days

1 month itinerary vietnam thailand

I recommend at least a 2-day cruise, as you actually get to go deeper into the bay, past the highly trafficked and polluted areas. It also takes about 4 hours to get to Ha Long Bay from Hanoi. A 1-day trip would mean 8 hours on a bus!

Or,  instead of Ha Long Bay, head straight to Cat Ba island for a tour of neighboring Lan Ha Bay — which is much quieter and far less polluted.

Where I Stayed : I did the 3-day, 2 night tour from Halong Party Cruises . Aside from sketchy/unsafe rock climbing and a tour guide too focused on keeping to schedule than maintaining the party, it was decent. The best part was a night on Freedom Island– a private island located within Lan Ha Bay. I booked directly through my hotel and they cut $10 off the ticket price. (It’s also cheaper/tamer alternative from the Hanoi Backpackers’ tour — which, apparently, has descended into 20-year-olds marooned on an island, drinking until they’re on the verge of alcohol poisoning.)

Remaining Days: You Pick!

This itinerary leaves a cushion of 3-5 days, depending on the exact length of your travels. This enables freedom to stay longer in some places — you could hit up Koh Phangan   on your way to Koh Tao, or add an island to the Andaman Coast portion of your itinerary. Or take the train from Hanoi to Hoi An, design custom clothes, and fly out of Danang.

For my free days, I saw Sapa, and then flew to Singapore for 36 hours. And from Singapore, home.

beautiful sunset koh tao

Closing Thoughts

You left out Siem Reap! Believe me, I KNOW. If I could have made it work without feeling insanely rushed, I would have. Cambodia deserves more than a four-day whirlwind.

Everything moves slowly in this part of the world, and limiting yourself to two or three geographical areas allows yourself time to enjoy the areas without spending all your free time in transit. In fact, the reason it took me so long to visit Southeast Asia was because I could never budget enough time to see everything!

For the biggest weather rewards, do this trip in reverse. Going from the sunny Andaman coast to drizzly, chilly Hanoi was a bummer, but there was a reason: Vietnam is considered to be the more difficult of the two countries for independent travelers. I opted to begin my Southeast Asia adventure in Thailand as a cultural warm up.

Koh Tao is the logistics hitch in this itinerary.  Koh Tao was a must for me, but it does add a lot of additional travel time since it’s the only stop on Thailand’s Gulf Coast. If you don’t care for snorkeling or diving and want to lounge on the beach, consider skipping Koh Tao. Head directly from Bangkok to Khao Sok, then on to the Andaman Coast.

Don’t be afraid of the group tour if it suits you.  My trade is a lot of logistics wizardry with a little storytelling, and solo travel sharpens those skills. Occasionally, it’s nice to give the administrative /coordinating duties to someone else. After two days solo in Bangkok, I hopped on an  8 day tour with GAdventures . It gave me a chance to breathe and focus on enjoying Thailand. Once we landed in Koh Tao, it was back to solo travel.

Always have spare toilet paper and hand sanitizer in your pocket or purse.  You will need this, daily. Trust me.

Don’t take selfies with the Buddha. This is extremely disrespectful. Never turn your back to Buddha.

How Much I Spent

My flight was free thanks to miles.  After remaining expenses, my trip cost around $1600. It would’ve been a lot less had I traveled solo the entire time — closer to $1000.

Additional Resources for One Month in Southeast Asia

  • For accommodation, HotelsCombined , Agoda or Booking.com have the best prices.
  • For navigating to/from different places independently, Travelfish  has a WEALTH of info.
  • Here’s  my packing list  — which includes all of the gear, apps, and resources I use for all of my solo trips.
  • Like every solo traveler that’s ever written a blog post, I buy travel insurance from World Nomads .
  • Vietnam requires a visa. If you’re flying into Vietnam internationally as this itinerary suggests, the easiest process is obtaining a Visa on Arrival. I used MyVietnamVisa  for a single use VOA and everything went seamlessly.

thailand vietnam 1 month itinerary

Author: Laryssa

Laryssa has spent 6+ years working on an assortment of film and television projects. She writes about her experiences to help (and amuse) others. If she's not working, she's either traveling, reading or writing about travel, or planning travel. Follow Laryssa on Google+ , Twitter , or Facebook .

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October 9, 2018

nice post Day spends on Khao Sok National Park is amazing.

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June 1, 2019

Hello Laryssa, Awesome place!!! Firstly, thanks for your sharing photos and article. Really, it’s a great place in the World. Actuality, Thailand & Vietnam are dream country in Asia. I love the post. Thank You!!!

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Thailand and Vietnam itinerary 3 weeks – Your once in a lifetime adventure

Embark on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure with our Thailand and Vietnam itinerary 3 weeks . This curated journey promises an exploration of two Southeast Asian gems, each offering a unique blend of rich history, vibrant culture, and stunning landscapes. 

From the bustling markets of Bangkok to the old quarter in Hanoi, and from the picturesque landscapes of Vietnam to the tranquil beaches of Phuket, this itinerary is crafted to showcase the best of these diverse nations. Join us on a three-week odyssey that will immerse you in the heart of these captivating destinations, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

Thailand and Vietnam itinerary 3 weeks – itinerary for every traveler’s bucket list

Delve into a tailored exploration of the unique charms and shared marvels of Vietnam and Thailand. Whether you’re traveling solo, with family, or friends, our suggested Thailand and Vietnam  itinerary 3 weeks invites you to discover a delightful fusion of culture, nature, and beach serenity. This guide is designed to inspire and unveil the myriad possibilities that await, providing you the flexibility to shape your perfect holiday in these enchanting Southeast Asian destinations.

Day 1: Hanoi

Nestled in the heart of the picturesque Red River delta, Hanoi, Vietnam’s bustling capital, seamlessly blends historic charm with contemporary vibrancy, serving as the perfect starting point for your extraordinary 3 weeks Thailand and Vietnam trip .

Upon landing at Noi Bai International Airport, smoothly navigate through immigration procedures and transition to your Hanoi hotel. Surrounded by the captivating ambiance of Hanoi, your overnight stay marks the beginning of an unforgettable adventure, promising exploration through the enchanting city and beyond.

Day 2: Hanoi

thailand to vietnam trip

Start your day with a delectable breakfast at the hotel’s restaurant, setting the tone for a day filled with exploration. Join your tour guide at 8:30 in the lobby for a comprehensive day discovering Hanoi’s ancient architecture, delightful cuisine, and scenic landscapes. Begin at Ba Dinh Square, where Uncle Ho proclaimed the birth of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Explore historical sites like the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Uncle Ho’s stilt house, and the one-pillar pagoda. After a short drive to the outskirts, delve into the fascinating Museum of Ethnology, marveling at its scientific layout showcasing the cultural richness of each ethnic group.

Lunchtime features the renowned Hanoian specialty, Chả Cá, a delightful blend of fresh noodles, grilled fish, sweet and sour sauce, and fresh vegetables. Visit the eco-friendly Hidden Gem Coffee Shop for traditional Vietnamese coffee. Explore the Temple of Literature, visit Long Bien Bridge, and enjoy a cyclo tour through 36 streets of Hanoi Old Quarter . The day concludes with a street food tour, revealing the beauty of Vietnamese culture through its diverse cuisine. This culinary adventure promises surprises in both ingredients and flavors, showcasing the essence of Vietnam’s lifestyle and culture. Dietary requirements are accommodated with prior notice to the guide.

Day 3: Hanoi – Halong Bay

thailand to vietnam trip

Embark on the discovery of the mesmerizing landscape of Halong Bay, where limestone islands emerge dramatically from the emerald waters, creating an iconic Vietnamese vista. Opt for a convenient shuttle bus to reach Halong, a gateway to this natural wonder. Upon arrival at Tuan Chau Port, a warm welcome awaits with a refreshing drink and a comprehensive cruise briefing. Board the cruise and savor a Vietnamese set menu lunch as you embark on an afternoon cruise through scenic spots like the Incense Burner, Dog Stone Islet, and Fighting Cock. Explore the remarkable Surprise Cave, among Halong Bay’s most stunning grottoes. Evening activities include a fruit and vegetable carving lesson, traditional Vietnamese cuisine, and options like massages, board games, and guided squid fishing.

Day 4: Halong Bay – Hanoi – Hue

Start your day early with the mesmerizing sunrise at Halong Bay, one of the world’s wonders. Enjoy a delightful breakfast in the cruise dining room, offering a spread of tempting options accompanied by coffee, tea, and cakes. Rejuvenate with a 30-minute Tai Chi session on the sundeck, guided by our expert instructor. The morning’s highlight includes a boat ride to Titov Island, allowing an hour for swimming and climbing. Reach the island’s summit for a breathtaking 360-degree view of the bay. After this adventure, return to the cruise for a hearty lunch before heading back to the mainland. Dock at Tuan Chau port, savoring the magnificent beauty of HaLong Bay from the sundeck.

Transfer to Noi Bai airport, where a one-hour flight takes you to Hue . Upon landing at Phú Bài airport, transfer to your comfortable hotel and explore the charms of Hue.

Inside The Citadel. Imperial Forbidden City. Hue, Vietnam / Source: Smoke666 - YayImages

After breakfast, journey 8 km eastward to Thanh Thuy’s scenic countryside. Immerse yourself in the vibrant local market, engaging with locals and exploring the 300-year-old Tile-Roofed Bridge of Thanh Toan and an agricultural and fishing tools museum. Return to the city center for a 2-hour exploration of the imperial city, Thien Mu Pagoda, and visits to royal tombs. In the afternoon, venture to King Khai Dinh’s tomb, exploring two traditional villages. Return to the hotel by approximately 5:00 pm.

Day 6: Hue – Da Nang – Hoi An

After breakfast, transfer to Hue train station for a scenic 3-hour journey to Da Nang. Enjoy picturesque views from the train, passing through diverse landscapes. Upon arrival, proceed to Hoi An, stopping at Marble Mountain. In Hoi An, embark on a city tour, engage in lantern-making, and savor Vietnamese Tea Tasting at the serene Tea House, concluding a day of cultural exploration.

Day 7: Hoi An 

Hoi An signature wall color

Begin your morning at leisure before a 2:00 PM orientation walk through the captivating town of Hoi An . This guided tour unveils the town’s history, visiting a well-preserved centuries-old private house, the Sa Huynh Museum, and the iconic Japanese Covered Bridge Pagoda.

The latter part of the morning offers a hands-on lantern-making experience. With the guidance of a skilled instructor, select vibrant silks, construct a bamboo frame, and craft your lantern—a creative keepsake for your journey home. Dinner is at your discretion, and we recommend a romantic sunset dinner with Cinnamon Cruise to relish Hoi An’s enchanting moments.

Day 8: Hoi An

Indulge in a leisurely day in Hoi An, where relaxation takes center stage. Lounge by your resort pool, enjoy a refreshing dip in the ocean, or pamper yourself with a rejuvenating massage, facial, or pedicure.

For the more adventurous, consider these optional activities:

  • Option 1: Delight in an easy cycling adventure paired with a delightful half-day cooking tour.
  • Option 2: Embark on a full-day exploration of Cham Island.
  • Option 3: Uncover the cultural richness of the My Son UNESCO World Heritage Site on a half-day tour.
  • Option 4: Experience the enchanting Ba Na Hills and the iconic Golden Bridge on a full-day excursion.

Day 9: Hoi An – Ho Chi Minh City

After breakfast, board a short flight from Da Nang to the lively commercial hub of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City (HCM City). With a population of 10 million, it’s a bustling metropolis. Upon arrival, your dedicated guide and driver will accompany you to the historic Cu Chi Tunnels, an underground network built by Vietnamese resistance fighters during the struggle for independence. Explore this labyrinth, essential to the Viet Cong’s success against the Americans. A guided tour and an insightful video provide context, and you’ll venture into the tunnels to experience the challenging life within. Return to the city center for check-in after the Cu Chi Tunnels visit.

Day 10: Mekong Delta

thailand to vietnam trip

Discover the essence of Vietnam in the Mekong Delta, the nation’s rice bowl. Commence your day with a hotel pickup in Ho Chi Minh City and head to Ben Tre. Board a boat on the Ben Tre River at Ham Luong Pier, a Mekong tributary. Observe vibrant river life, visit a brickwork, explore coconut processing workshops, and navigate narrow waterways to a local village. Walk to a family workshop crafting sleep mats, enjoy local fruits and tea, and embark on a bicycle ride along shaded paths, experiencing the countryside’s authentic spirit. Have a hearty lunch at a local restaurant. In the afternoon, row along Water Palm Creek in a rowboat and return to Hung Vuong Pier. Drive back to Ho Chi Minh City through rice fields, concluding an immersive Mekong Delta experience.

Day 11: Ho Chi Minh City – Bangkok

After breakfast, embark on a morning tour of vibrant Ho Chi Minh City, known for its architectural diversity reflecting Vietnam’s historical heritage. Visit iconic sites like the Central Post Office, Notre Dame Cathedral, Nguyen Van Binh Book Street, and the Reunification Palace. If time allows, explore the Saigon Opera House and city hall. After lunch, head to Tan Son Nhat International Airport for a brief flight to Bangkok, the next destination on your journey. Upon landing at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport, settle into a downtown hotel. Experience Bangkok’s vibrant nightlife uniquely with a rice barge dinner cruise aboard the Manohra Cruise. Glide along the Chao Phraya River, enjoying views of landmarks like Wat Arun Temple of Dawn and the Grand Palace, creating unforgettable memories in just 2 hours.

Day 12: Bangkok

Bangkok Temple of the Emerald Buddha

Commence your day in Bangkok with a delightful breakfast before embarking on a fascinating exploration. Begin at Wat Traimit, housing the world’s largest Golden Buddha statue, an impressive 3 meters high and weighing 5.5 tons, carved entirely from solid gold. Move on to Wat Pho to marvel at the immense reclining Buddha statue, symbolizing Buddha’s entry into Nirvana. A mere 800 meters away stands the iconic Grand Palace, a dazzling testament to Bangkok’s grandeur and a must-visit landmark.

As evening descends, the perfect conclusion to a day of sightseeing is a culinary adventure by Tuk Tuk. Boarding the Tuk Tuk at Sam Yan MRT with our expert guide, your first stop is a Northeastern Thai restaurant, offering delectable dishes like spicy raw papaya salad, deep-fried crispy catfish with spicy sauce, and more—an immersion into the region’s unique cuisine. The night concludes with a visit to a local rooftop bar for refreshing drinks and stunning views of the Chao Phraya River.

Day 13: Bangkok

bangkok-thai-streetfoods-viland-travel-1

Commence your day with an early breakfast at the hotel, then journey to Southern Ratchaburi Province. Along the 90km route taking approximately 1.5 hours, traverse Samut Songkhram, Thailand’s primary region for salt production. The highlight is the world-famous MaeKlong railway market, a spectacle where vendors swiftly clear stalls as a train passes. Continue to the iconic Damnoen Saduak floating market, explore the canals, and take a boat to immerse yourself in the countryside ambiance. Capture picturesque moments as merchants offer an array of food, fruit, and local products. Return to Bangkok for an evening exploration of the city.

Day 14: Bangkok – Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya Wat Mahathat

Embark on a northbound expedition to Ayutthaya, starting with Wat Phu Khao Thong, a captivating monument dating back to 1387. Explore the Ayutthaya Historical Park and the ancient palace grounds, visiting significant temples like Wat Phra Sri Sanphet and Viharn Phra Mongkolbopit. Enjoy a flavorsome Thai lunch and proceed to Wat Lokaya Sutha to marvel at the reclining Buddha of Ayutthaya. Conclude your historical exploration in the late afternoon, returning to Bangkok enriched with Ayutthaya’s cultural richness.

Day 15: Bangkok – Phuket

Start your day with a satisfying hotel breakfast, complete the check-out, and head to Bangkok airport for a short flight to the enchanting Phuket. Situated in Thailand’s southwest, embraced by the Andaman Sea, Phuket beckons with its natural beauty. The day is yours to relish in the largest island of Thailand, known as the “Pearl of the South.” With limestone karst islets encircling pristine beaches, Phuket offers a haven of natural wonders, vibrant resorts, and coastal villages. Immerse yourself in leisure, sports, and cultural riches, as Phuket unveils its diverse tapestry for an unforgettable escape.

Day 16: Phuket

Phuket beach

Embark on an immersive adventure connecting with our rescued elephants, understanding their communication methods and vital role as keystone species. The day includes roundtrip transfers, a light breakfast, vegetarian lunch and dinner buffets, and refreshing drinks. Gain insights into Asian elephants’ history and challenges, participate in feeding one for breakfast, explore the sanctuary with an expert guide, and witness their hydrotherapy session. Conclude the day by preparing elephant food, joining them for dinner, followed by your own satisfying vegetarian meal.

Day 17: Phuket – Koh Phi Phi

Koh Phi Phi snorkeling

Commence the day with an early pick-up around 5:00–5:15, starting your adventure at the Royal Phuket Marina. Enjoy a complimentary breakfast before boarding a premium speedboat for the famous Maya Bay, featured in the iconic movie, THE BEACH. The early departure ensures a crowd-free experience on the pristine beach with soft white sand, crystalline waters, verdant mountains, and a serene ambiance. Capture stunning moments at Loh Samah Bay’s viewpoint behind Maya Bay.

Explore Pileh Lagoon, an emerald gem surrounded by limestone mountains, marvel at Viking Cave and Monkey Cliff, and enjoy a late-morning snorkeling session in the vibrant coral reef. A delectable lunch awaits at the Private Beach Restaurant, offering Thai and Western cuisine. Head to Bamboo Island for more relaxation and snorkeling. The tour concludes at the Royal Phuket Marina by 15:00, followed by a comfortable return to your hotel, leaving the remainder of the day for exploration at your own pace.

Day 18: Phuket

Savor a day of pure bliss on the captivating island of Phuket. Relax on its immaculate beaches or plunge into the lively marine world through snorkeling or diving in the crystal-clear waters teeming with vibrant coral reefs and tropical fauna. Consider a boat or catamaran charter to explore the serene islands of the Andaman Sea, crafting memories that linger. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the historical allure of Phuket Town, uncovering its cultural treasures. With a myriad of options, your day unfolds with limitless possibilities and enthralling diversions, ensuring an indelible experience on this tropical paradise.

Day 19: Phuket – Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai Gold Temple

Begin your day by heading to the airport for your flight to Chiang Mai. Upon arrival at Chiang Mai Airport, a transfer will take you to your hotel in the Old Town area. After a satisfying lunch, set out on a half-day city tour.

At 13:30, ascend to the Gold Temple atop the mountain using a gondola. Inside the main temple, a stunning golden spire takes center stage amidst historical murals, shrines, and statues. Explore the complex, which features a replica of the Emerald Buddha statue. Outside, discover the Shine of the White Elephant, a viewing terrace, colossal gongs, a wall of bells, and more. Descend the Naga Serpent staircase with 309 steps to continue your adventure. Return to downtown Chiang Mai to visit the Three Kings Monuments and the Chiang Mai City Arts and Culture Center. Please note that the Chiang Mai Arts & Culture Center is closed on Mondays and during the Songkran Festival. Operating hours from Tuesday to Sunday are 8:30-17:00. Remember to dress respectfully and remove your shoes when inside the main temple. Shoe racks are available for your convenience, or you can stow them in your backpack.

Day 20: Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai elephants conservation in action

Embark on a day of care and learning with Patara’s Baby Elephant program—an ideal journey focusing on the well-being of pregnant elephants and mothers with their babies. Immerse yourself in the conservation philosophy of “The Elephant Conservation In Action,” actively participating in their daily healthcare routine. This includes health inspections, feeding, walking with the elephants for exercise, and bathing. Witness the elephants’ natural interactions within their families in a serene environment. The knowledgeable staff at Patara will share insights into their daily care. Notably, this trip emphasizes ethical treatment, omitting elephant rides and making it suitable for everyone, especially families, children, and animal enthusiasts.

Day 21: Chiang Mai

After a delightful final breakfast in Chiang Mai, enjoy a leisurely morning to unwind and explore on your own. Later, you’ll be transferred to the airport for your departure flight, marking the conclusion of your Thailand and Vietnam 3 weeks itinerary .

Final thoughts

Tick off your ultimate travel’s bucket list with a once-in-a-lifetime adventure with the Thailand and Vietnam itinerary 3 weeks , a journey that encapsulates the essence of Southeast Asia’s diverse beauty. Viland Travel’s customized multi-countries tour s adds a unique touch to your exploration, ensuring every moment is tailored to your preferences. 

From the bustling streets of Bangkok to the tranquil landscapes of Vietnam, this meticulously crafted itinerary offers an immersive experience into the rich cultures, historical wonders, and natural marvels of these enchanting destinations. 

Let Viland Travel be your guide on this extraordinary odyssey, where every day unfolds as a personalized chapter in the story of your unforgettable journey.

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Inspirational Attractions of Southeast Asia

Vibrant cities, ornate temples, lively street life, ancient towns, secluded beaches & islands beaches, breathtaking mountains, magnificent waterfalls, UNESCO World Heritage Site and diverse lcoal cuisines.

Whether you're seeking natural beauty, cultural immersion, or culinary delights, Thailand & Vietnam will provide you with an incredible array of travel experiences in which you can cruising through stunning limestone karsts, hidden caves, and kayak around the emerald-green waters of Halong Bay, wander through the beautifully preserved ancient Hoian, embark on a trekking adventure in the mountainous region of Sapa, immerse yourself in the rural charm of Mekong Delta, immerse yourself in the spiritual and cultural heart of Thailand, enjoy the pristine beaches of Phu Quoc, Nha Trang, Phuket, Phi Phi island,… Don’t miss the chance to fully explore the unforgettable beauty of Vietnam and Thailand.

thailand to vietnam trip

Take advantage of diverse options from our extraordinary Thailand Vietnam Tours - a combination of discovering Thailand’s highlights and getting inside into Vietnam adventures. These short and long tour packages show you all the best of two fascinating nations in depth, from gracefully elegant Hanoi, across the magnificent scenery of Halong Bay to beguiling Bangkok. The diversity of landscapes, characteristic cultures, colorful animated cities by night accompanied with the traditionally friendliness of local people will make your journey meaningful.

Thailand Vietnam Tours

Stunning Beaches & Islands In Thailand

Thailand is blessed with various sandy beaches (e.g., Phuket, Koh Samui, Krabi, Koh Phi Phi), offshore islands, and stunning clear blue seas that are tropical paradises for any sun-sand-sea lovers. If you’re finding an awesome beach holiday, Thailand would be your right destination.

Thailand - Outstanding Temples

Thailand temples (e.g., Wat Rong Khun, Wat Phra Chetuphon, Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep) possess gorgeous looks that can impress tourists at first sight. They are not only the places merely for worship but also outstanding architectures praising the detailed and exquisite aesthetics of Thai people.

Excellent Cuisine In Thailand

Thai cuisine (e.g., Tom Yum Goong, Pad Thai, Gaeng Keow Wan Gai) is not only famous within the country itself but also owns a notable reputation in many neighbours. With various cooking styles but still featuring a distinctive flavour, Thai culinary art can pamper your empty stomach right at the first taste.

Thailand - Most Incredible National Parks

With a diverse nature, Thailand has numerous national parks (e.g., Doi Inthanon, Khao Sok, Khao Yai) where are the home to beautiful landscapes as well as a wide range of many species, and even endangered animals. These parks offer great chances for you to witness some of Thailand’s untouched wilderness.

Stunning Rice Terraced Fields In Vietnam

Discover many breathtakingly beautiful terraced rice fields in the Northern Vietnam (e.g., Sapa, Mu Cang Chai, Hoang Su Phi, Pu Luong) and immerse yourself in the unbelievable and fantastic beauty of the golden rice paddies. 

Vietnam - Rich Culture

Not only popular for its fabulous local foods, but Vietnam is also one of the exotic destinations in Southeast Asia that famous for its long history, rich culture & customs of 54 different ethnic groups (e.g., Kinh, Tay, H'Mong), each with its own language. Amongst 54 ethnic groups, Kinh (or Viet) people make up about nearly 88% of the population. 

Impressive Limestone Mountains In Vietnam

Limestone Mountains rising up from emerald waters have an important role in creating the picturesque beauty of Halong Bay which is famous for being one of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and "Inland Halong Bay" - Ninh Binh.

Vietnam - Best Historical Sites

Vietnam is a perfect destination for history enthusiasts since it owns a wide range of outstanding historical sites (e.g., Cu Chi Tunnels, Hoa Lo Prison, Hue Imperial Citadel, My Son Cham Ruins) which were heavily affected by Chinese culture, Cham culture and French culture. 

Vietnam - Best Floating Markets

Colourful floating markets on Southern Vietnam have become a way of life and trade for Mekong Delta locals for more than 100 years. Today, these floating markets (e.g., Cai Rang, Cai Be floating markets) still have a vital part of the local life in this river region.

Vietnam - Delicious Food

Vietnam cuisine is considered as one of the most popular healthiest food (e.g., Pho Hanoi - Noodle, Vietnam Spring Rolls, Bun Cha) in the world for its great combination of fresh herbs, greens and meats with selective use of spices to create a perfect harmony of tastes.

Our Customers' Recent Experience with Thailand Vietnam Tours

thailand to vietnam trip

The best Thailand Vietnam Tours 2024 - 2025

Pleasant Vietnam & Thailand Vacation

Pleasant Vietnam & Thailand Vacation

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Lilly Kao

Vietnam and Thailand are two of the most alluring and rewarding countries in Southeast Asia. Our Pleasant Vietnam & Thailand Vacation is well tailor-made to take you through the wonders of nature and culture, the breathtaking landscapes, and the endless marvels that both countries have to offer....

Vietnam & Thailand Highlight Tour

Vietnam & Thailand Highlight Tour

If you are looking for an overview of the most interesting and outstanding destinations in Vietnam and Thailand within limited days, this 12-day tour will bring you to see the best highlights of these two countries. In Vietnam, you’ll have a chance to experience the different ambiances of each...

Dreamy Escape to Thailand, Vietnam & Malaysia Tour

Dreamy Escape to Thailand, Vietnam & Malaysia Tour

The fascinating and varied itinerary will take you past from bustling cities of Bangkok, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city to the hauntingly picturesque Halong Bay, idyllic countryside of Mekong Delta, Chiang Mai and Karen villages, where you can enjoy friendly local hospitality at a homestay, and take in...

Vietnam & Thailand Overview

Vietnam & Thailand Overview

Like its name, this tour combines the highlights of two countries Vietnam & Thailand. Through the journey, you will have an overview of the best sights of Vietnam & Thailand. Starting with the bustle and hustle Ho Chi Minh City in the south of Vietnam, you will have chance to explore the culture,...

Exclusive Discovery in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand

Exclusive Discovery in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand

This tailor-made 19-day tour will fulfill travelers' wanderlust through the most mesmerizing travel destinations in Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam - the three beautiful Southeast Asian stops - home to incredible tapestry of local charms ranging from mountain to sea, from buzzing urban sites to...

Vietnam & Thailand Scenery

Vietnam & Thailand Scenery

See the best of Vietnam and Thailand, two of the most vibrant and rewarding destinations in Southeast Asia in this comprehensive 13-day tour. From the quaint streets and the tranquil waterways in Vietnam to the glorious golden temples of Thailand, you will travel through different outstanding...

Fascinating Vietnam & Thailand Trip

Fascinating Vietnam & Thailand Trip

Encounter different authentic cultures of Indochina on this 16-day tour to Vietnam and Thailand. With this trip, you will discover the fascinating history, marvel at spectacular world heritage sites, and interact with local people from the famous Hanoi city to the charming Hoi An town, from the...

Southeast Asia Active Tour

Southeast Asia Active Tour

This action-packed adventure includes a whole range of unforgettable experiences with 28 days through the most beautiful and exotic parts of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. It is designed to feed the wanderlust of curious travelers. Explore the jungle to a remote waterfall, feed playful...

Uncover Gems of Southeast Asia Tour

Uncover Gems of Southeast Asia Tour

A land of extremes, Southeast Asia showcases the power of nature in its immense jungles, volcanic islands, country-spanning rivers, and rainbow-colored coral reefs. Whether you are snaking through the Mekong Delta in Vietnam or snorkeling with whale sharks off the coast of the Philippines,...

Best of Vietnam, Myanmar & Thailand Tour

Best of Vietnam, Myanmar & Thailand Tour

An wonderful Vietnam, Myanmar and Thailand tour in the best three areas of South East Asia was designed to give you the chance to get into the heart of each country. This fabulous trip involves grand scenery with air flights to transfer one country to another, each of these exotic country offers...

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thailand to vietnam trip

Vietnam, Thailand and Singapore Family Tour

Discover Bangkok's highlights: Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Royal Grand Palace, and enjoy a bota trip along the bustling Chao Phraya River

Experience the traditional Damnoen Saduak Floating Market by long-tail boat

Explore sacred temples and distinct indigenous traditions in Chiang Rai

Fall in love with adorable elephant in Chiang Mai’s Kanta Elephant Sanctuary

Tour around the key sites of Hanoi: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda, Temple of Literature, and Museum of Ethnology

Enjoy a day tour to explore Ninh Binh’s highlights: Hoa Lu ancient capital, Tam Coc, and Bich Dong Pagoda

Take a pleasant overnight cruise trip in the world-famous UNESCO Heritage Site of Halong Bay

Visit the unique Singapore Night Safari to encounter a lot of animal species

Relax with a wide array of fun and entertaining spots in Singapore: Art Museum, Civilian War Memorial, Esplanade Theatre, Dhoby Ghaut, Merlion statue, Marina Bay, and more.

Spend a day enjoying Universal Studios Singapore theme parks in Sentosa Island

thailand to vietnam trip

Highlights of Thailand, Vietnam & Indonesia

Explore Bangkok’s captivating landmarks and its dynamic life

Visit the local market and learn Thai cookery with a morning Silom Thai Cooking class

Embark on a Chiang Mai city tour by tuk tuk

Discover the unique White Temple and the famous Golden Triangle in Chiang Rai

Spend a day with lovely elephants in a Chiang Mai’s Elephant Camp

Join a historic and cultural tour around Hanoi

Take a breezy cyclo ride around the Hanoi Old Quarter

Board a local boat to admire the beautiful landscapes of Tam Coc – Ninh Binh

Enjoy an incredible cruise ride in Halong Bay between peculiar limestone karsts

Explore the holy spring water in Tirta Empul Temple

Visit Tanah Lot, one of Bali’s most important landmarks

Enjoy a leisurely hike through the famous rice terraces of Jatiluwih

thailand to vietnam trip

Best of Vietnam, Thailand & Singapore Tour

Watch the show of Water Puppets - the unique folk art form of Vietnam's wet-rice agriculture

Tour around the key sites of Vietnam's major cities: Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, with interesting visits to notable landmarks and historic attractions

Take a pleasant overnight cruise trip in the world-famous UNESCO Natural Heritage Sites of Halong Bay

Gain a fascinating insight into the exotic countryside life of Mekong Delta through loads of exciting stops: local workshops, rowing boat excursions,...

Enjoy the Bangkok city day tour and admire the gorgeous structures of celebrated tourist attractions in Thailand's capital city

Fall in love with charming natural landscapes, sacred temples, and distinct indigenous traditions in "the Rose of Northern Thailand" - Chiang Mai

Relax with a wide array of fun and entertaining spots in Singapore: Esplanade, Merlion park, Chinatown, SEA Aquarium, Singapore Flyer, the music water show "Wings of Time"

thailand to vietnam trip

Impressive Honeymoon Trip to Vietnam, Thailand & Indonesia

Marvel at famous stunning temples and palace in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai

Visit traditional Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Railway Market

Encounter the exotic Chiang Rai's long neck hill tribes in their local villages

Catch a glimpse of Vietnam's history through an escorted tour around the sedate capital city- Hanoi

Spend unforgettable overnight stay on a luxury cruise amid the renowned Halong Bay

Uncover the densely complicate underground world of Cu Chi Tunnels and learn about how Vietnamese lived and fought during wartime

Excitingly witness Mekong Delta's rustic landscape and its exotic ways of life through multiple captivating local experience in floating market, local workshops, village biking tour, etc

Discover the most sacred temples in Bali: Taman Ayun Temple, Ulun Danu Beratan temple, Tanah Lot Temple, Tirta Empul, etc

Admire Balinese natural highlights of prominent scenic rice terrace in Jatiluwih or Tegallalang

Enjoy your free couple time on tropical sandy beach of Bali's luxury beach resort

Immerse in full-day tour in the heaven island of Nusa Penida by fast boat with a lot of inviting activities including: photoing, swimming, snorkelling, sightseeing, etc

Join in half-day tour to see distinctive Uluwatu Sunset Kecak Dance

thailand to vietnam trip

Wondrous Vacation through Thailand, Vietnam & Cambodia

Visit the famous Buddhist temples in Bangkok: Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Wat Traimit

Take a day tour to the ancient capital of Ayutthaya

Meet locals at the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

Visit the unique White Temple and the long neck village in Chiang Rai

Explore the stunning temples in Chiang Mai

Enjoy an exciting day in Chiang Mai Elephant Jungle Sanctuary

Experience the lively vibe of Hanoi by cyclo

Cruise the emerald waters of Halong Bay

Tour Hoi An’s countryside on bike and try local cuisine

Enjoy a relaxing boat trip on the romantic Perfume River in Hue

Learn about the rich history of Vietnamese people in the legendary Cu Chi Tunnels

Discover the local life in the Mekong Delta by boat

Visit Angkor Wat, an iconic temple complex of Cambodia

Cruise on the waterways of Tonle Sap Lake to visit its floating community

thailand to vietnam trip

Gorgeous Journey through Thailand, Laos, Vietnam & Indonesia

Tour around the most well-known landmarks in Thailand's lively capital city of Bangkok

Explore numerous ancient ruins around Ayutthaya historical park - Kingdom of Siam's capital city

Pay a visit to Kanchanaburi's highlighted places including: Bridge over the River Kwai, Death Railway, Erawan National Park, etc

Stop at Chiang Mai's Elephant Jungle Sanctuary and experience friendly interactions with these giant gentle friends

Go to meet Chiang Rai's Karen long neck people and get a closer look at their ways of daily life

Splash on fresh and clear emerald water of Kuang Si Waterfall in Luang Prabang

Get an opportunity to join in the daily morning alms giving - one of the most sacred traditions in Laos

Embark on a leisure cruise upstream on the Mekong River, admire breathtaking view of Laos tranquil countryside and explore Pak Ou Caves

Catch a glimpse of Vietnam's rich and long-lasting history through a full-day tour visiting the most famous places in the capital city

Experience fantastic Halong Bay overnight cruise - one the must in any Vietnam's travel bucket list

Visit some of the celebrated holy temples around Bali island with their iconic gorgeous structures

Admire Balinese stunning rice terraces, scenic lakes, dreamy beaches, and amazing seascapes

Come and see Kecak Dance performance and enjoy a public performance of the spellbinding Kecak dance,

thailand to vietnam trip

Ultimate Family Trip to Thailand & Vietnam

Admire the gorgeous beauty of Bangkok's iconic temples and palace located in the city centre

Experience a traditional long tail boat trip along the bustling Chao Phraya River

Visit Wat Prathat Doi Suthep, the spiritual symbol of Chiang Mai

Enjoy a pleasant family full day tour at Elephant Camp in Kanta Elephant Park

Board on Phuket's island hopping tour to visit dreamy Phi Phi Island, Maya Bay & Khai Island

Travel around famous historical sites and landmarks of Hanoi, Vietnam's capital city

Marvel at Halong Bay's breathtaking landscape with very exceptional experience on Halong Bay Cruise

Along with your kids pleasantly walk on the world-famous Golden Bridge and overlook to the panoramic view of Danang City from Ba Na Hills

Discover the idyllic laid-back vibe of Hoi An Ancient Town through a lot of exciting local experiences with your family members

thailand to vietnam trip

The Souls of Indonesia, Thailand & Vietnam

Explore the most sacred temples in Bali Island: Tanah Lot, Tirta Empul, Taman Ayun, Candi Dewi, Ulun Danu, Uluwatu

Visit the still active Mt. Batur volcano and its beautiful Batur Lake

Admire the lush green rice paddies towards endless of Jatiluwih Rice Terrace

Enjoy a day out visiting stunning temples of the ancient capital Ayutthaya

Learn more about World War II in Thailand when walking along the Bridge over the River Kwai in Kanchanaburi

Take a cool dip in the impressive seven-tiered Erawan Waterfall

Travel around Chiang Mai’s most famous attractions by tuk-tuk

Visit Elephant Jungle Sanctuary and play with adorable elephants in a natural environment

Head to Chiang Rai to see the unique White Temple and Long Neck Tribe Village

Discover the historical heritages of Hanoi capital city with a cyclo tour around the Old Quarter

Cherish your leisure day on a comfortable cruise sailing above the emerald water of Halong Bay

thailand to vietnam trip

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Top 10 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia

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Best Recommended: Thailand & Vietnam Itinerary 2 weeks

Best Recommended: Thailand & Vietnam Itinerary 2 weeks

Embarking on a two-week journey through Thailand and Vietnam is a thrilling adventure that promises a rich tapestry of cultural...

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Embarking on a journey to Thailand Vietnam promises an adventure filled with diverse landscapes, rich cultural experiences, and...

Recommended Destinations For Great Thailand Vietnam Beach Tour

Recommended Destinations For Great Thailand Vietnam Beach Tour

Vietnam and Thailand are well-known to be among the most attractive travel destinations in Southeast Asia with a wide range of...

FAQS About Thailand Vietnam Tours

Are alcohol/soft drink provided on the tours.

The mineral water is included only and there will be your own account for alcoholic beverages/soft drink during the tour.

We have 2 seniors, one with reduced mobility, so keen to know how suitable the tour itineraries are

This tour is suitable for all people including seniors and children. These are walking tours but all of our tours are accessible to wheelchair or walker use. Please feel free to let us know if you will be using a wheelchair or scooter on the tour so that we can assist better.

Can I combine Vietnam and Thailand in one trip?

Definitely, it is possible to combine Vietnam and Thailand in one trip. You can either plan a multi-country itinerary with flights between the two countries or join a tour that covers both destinations. This allows you to experience the highlights of both Vietnam and Thailand in a single trip.

What are the transportation options for traveling within Vietnam and Thailand?

In Vietnam, you can travel between cities and regions by domestic flights, trains, buses, or private transfers. Thailand has a well-developed transportation system, including domestic flights, trains, buses, and a network of taxis, tuk-tuks, and motorbike taxis for local transportation.

Do I need a visa to visit Vietnam and Thailand?

Visa requirements vary depending on your nationality. For Vietnam, many nationalities require a visa in advance, while some are eligible for visa exemption or visa on arrival. Thailand offers visa exemption or visa on arrival for many nationalities, allowing you to stay for a certain period, typically 30 days.

Customize Thailand Vietnam Tours with us!

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thailand to vietnam trip

$58 Find cheap flights from Thailand to Vietnam

This is the cheapest one-way flight price found by a kayak user in the last 72 hours by searching for a flight from thailand to vietnam departing on 7/24. fares are subject to change and may not be available on all flights or dates of travel. click the price to replicate the search for this deal., search hundreds of travel sites at once for deals on flights to vietnam.

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Faqs for booking flights from thailand to vietnam, how does kayak find such low prices on flights from thailand to vietnam.

KAYAK is a travel search engine. That means we look across the web to find the best prices we can find for our users. With over 2 billion flight queries processed yearly, we are able to display a variety of prices and options on flights from Thailand to Vietnam.

How does KAYAK's flight Price Forecast tool help me choose the right time to buy my flight ticket from Thailand to Vietnam?

KAYAK’s flight Price Forecast tool uses historical data to determine whether the price for a flight to Vietnam from Thailand is likely to change within 7 days, so travelers know whether to wait or book now.

What is the Hacker Fare option on flights from Thailand to Vietnam?

Hacker Fares allow you to combine one-way tickets in order to save you money over a traditional round-trip ticket. You could then fly to Vietnam with an airline and back to Thailand with another airline.

What is KAYAK's "flexible dates" feature and why should I care when looking for a flight from Thailand to Vietnam?

Sometimes travel dates aren't set in stone. If your preferred travel dates have some wiggle room, flexible dates will show you all the options when flying to Vietnam from Thailand up to 3 days before/after your preferred dates. You can then pick the flights that suit you best.

Top 5 airlines serving from Thailand to Vietnam

Extra seat belt across the chest 10 minutes before taking off and 15 minutes before landing seemed excessively safe.

The transfer from Domestic and International was a bit confusing but I am easily confused. I did not eat any food, but the food on the other leg was decent. It was nice they turned the lights off on the night flight. The plane was in good shape, but was a little cramped in economy and I am small. They gave me a customs form to fill out and nobody looked at it as I went through customs. Not a bad flight.

My case was missing a wheel on arrival Heathrow and the staff were unhelpful when i tried to get some compensation stating it was not sufficient damage, i only wish that they at some point have to deal with the same situation it put me in, maybe they would change their attitude but overall it was a good flight

We are satisfied with the cabin crew serviceand the quality of meals served.

The aircraft was really old, the staff demotivated and the overall United airline service is horrible

Lunch Food was tasteful and had variety. Seat was comfortable. However, when I was reserving my seats during booking, the seat configuration showed was 3-3-3, but when I boarded it was a 2-4-2 configuration? Also during booking, I had also bought travel insurance together with my TG booking. However there was no confirmation of my purchase from Allianz and TG. After several emails with TG contact, sales, reservation and Allianz was i able to confirm my insurance purchase. When the policy was issued, the birth dates of me and my wife were wrongly stated and I had to go through another round of emails with Allianz to get it corrected. Otherwise any claims would be void! It was indeed not a very good booking experience!

Increase the number of available films, including variety. All other aspects were great.

I couldnt go on this flight and lost all my money over 1,000 UK Pounds as my visa to Myanmar was not accepted :(

Thai Airways is one of the best airlines in the business. Looking forward to fly again with them.

food poor i said chiken i got pack a pow breakfast lousey .job to explain wot it was ...

I had sometimes my trips with Vietnam Airlines and I like it 😊

The check-in process was great, and I cannot remember the name of the supervisor, but he was good and told us about the transit process very correctly and efficiently and kindly. We were given down access and the overall process was very efficient.

The plane had a technical problem it would delayed 10 hours but they just gave limited information and put all passengers into the Miracle lounge. Ther were not enough chairs and so on.

Ensure there is a choice of food for all customers and also enough food

An excellent airline; polite and courteous cabin crew, excellent meal and drink service. Highly recommended.

We boarded the plane at 1:20 pm It was hot. There was no air-conditioning It was stifling They kept us on the plane sitting there for 1 hour and 10 minutes

No space in between the seats as per them the average height of human is 5’3” and weight as 55, so seats are designed as per the same. Also, the aircraft was dirty and full of insects

when we arrived at Taipei no one help us to get boarding pass. we saw a few people there asked them for help but they just ignored us. There was a guy told us to call Starlux number to get help but we don’t know how to dial the number until there was a lady working there helped us to call Starlux customer then someone came down took us to another counter for boarding pass. Very confused and inconvenient. We might not choose Starlux again in the future.

There was no entertainment and food option limited But the service was first class on an economy flight

They didn't have a vegetarian food in spite of the ore order

I get so tired of the constant delays, but there are so few options. The plane is coming from Bangkok each time. Why are the flights so regularly delayed. I do appreciate the speed of the baggage delivery into the terminal.

We had a 3 hrs delay and they offer McDonalds pineapple pay. They charged us for extra grs of luggage and the experience was not good

Thai Air Asia no longer has customer support that you can call and talk to. All support is done by chat bot or self help websites. This can be a major issue if you have a problem and it bit us so we can’t recommend nor will we book with them again unless as a last resort.

No way to talk to support. Is all online self help or chat bot. Now way to speak to a person and the automated options are useless.

Airline cancelled our flight purchased through kiwi.com 2 months before travel and to date has inly refunded half of our paid ticket price.

Crew was nice, boarding efficient. VERY cramped seating. I'm a 5 ' 10'' slim woman and my knees were up against the seat in front of me and my arms were against the arm rests. There are no services, not even water, and they only take local currency and I didn't yet have Thai baht ( flying from Indonesia and no rupiah left). I won't choose to fly with this line again.

Good, no mini-tv's, no food unless you pay, good overall experience.

ได้นั่งรถไปขึ้นเครื่อง แอบเสียใจอยู่ พอขึ้นไปถึง มีคนมานั่งในที่นั่งเราอีก ไม่รู้เจ้าหน้าที่บนเครื่องไปแนะนำผู้โดยสารท่านอื่นยังไง เขาเข้าใจผิดว่าที่นั่ง C คือข้างหน้าต่าง และเที่ยวบินนี้ ดีเลย์แล้วดีเลย์อีก จากทุ่มสองทุ่ม ดีเลย์ไปถึงห้าทุ่มกันเลยทีเดียว ถ้ามีไฟลท์ต่อกันนี่คงไม่รอดแน่นอน

CNX is a filthy, poorly kept airport. I have heard that Thailand plans to build another airport in San Kampaeng area, so perhaps they are just letting this one go. But it makes every airline look badly to offer their service in such a poorly organized "dump". Sorry to say this, but that's what it's like. At least the AirAsia flight which I took was on time! I appreciate that.

Air Asia will be my choice of airline when I fly to Asia every 6 to 8 weeks. Thank you for your good service.

Excellent experience nothing could be improved with staff. Was hoping someday the airline will use tape recorded lfor languages that are not common to staff. Probably with AI it might be a good addition

Need more where chair assistant helper I request, but no one help me.

We were packed in like sardines. They did not even serve water on the flight!

Everything was good just the part on the need to transfer via bus to plane

Around Asia, Vietjet is always my favorite airline. Great service and beautiful stewardesses :)

I get tired of Viet Jet's regular delays. I tell myself every time that I need tp switch to Air Asia, which I have, but AA doesn't always have flights when I need them. Oh well...

Worst experience, hands down. With a movable departure time it's impossible to know at what time to go to the airport. On the day of my return flight I received a kayak email informing me that my flight was bent rescheduled for an hour earlier. I literally had to run to the airport to learn it wasn't true. Never again

There were four delays over a period of 3 1/2 hours with very little advance warning. There was no explanation offered as to the reason for the delays. I hope I never have to fly a Thai Viet Jet Air again.

Delayed boarding, deboarding by bus - time to choose another airline.

Left 1/2 hour late and had to deboard on a bus. I will choose another airline from now on.

Flights on time is good. Crew should take care of passengers more.

Not punctual in departure and seats are very tight and narrow. Crew should handle noisy families during flight.

Seats too small and tight. Flight attendants don't know how to deal with family with noisy kids on board.

Paid for seats near the window but given seats right at the back, near the toilets. This location was so noisy with the blasts from the aircraft engines blowing beside. Not a nice one 😞.

Flight was delayed 2 hours, which seems regular with this airline. Aircrew were avarage, friendly but robotic. At check in I asked for a spare seat. Got some stupid response about loading capacity (it was 85% full!) Then passengers behind jumped up and moved to vacant exit rows, they obviously didn't pay for. Waited over 20+ minutes to disembark, with ground staff trying to squash all passengers onto 1 bus. Causing even more delays. Unsafe and stupid! But this is a problem at Saigon airport. Overall a very average experience!

In experience we didn't even get water unless it was paid for. Even Bamboo Airlines provided free water. The flight was cold with no blanket being provided. The flight attendants were not responsive in keeping the passengers under control. I complained about fellow passengers playing loud music several times before one of the flight attendants to action. I will not recommend flying with Vietjet unless things improve.

I have few bad reviews about VietJet, but my experience was really good and it worth every penny..

Not even free water. NO legroom. Narrow seats. Not enough room to even hold a book at reading distance in front of you.

No food? No movies? No water?? On an international flight, really???

No water or snacks. Crew did not give us arrival cards. There was no need for more than 1 flight attendant as they did not do anything

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How to Get from Thailand to Vietnam

thailand to vietnam trip

A country of outstanding natural beauty, bustling metropolises, and traditional hill-tribe villages, Vietnam is one of the most popular new locations in Southeast Asia tour for tourists from around the world. Lying on the western edge of the South China Sea, this long, narrow country was once a part of the ancient Khmer Empire, and more recently, made up one of the three countries of French Indochina, a colony of the French government in Asia.

Once a war-torn and devastated country, Vietnam has fast become one of the top destinations for tourists in Southeast Asia, with its stunning white sand beaches, amazing coastlines with the limestone karst formations of Halong Bay, and its ancient and modern history, which has become one of the most interesting aspects of the former city of Saigon, now called Ho Chi Minh City. Getting to Vietnam from Thailand can be done in one of two ways, by flight between the many airports in the country or by traveling overland, through Cambodia or Laos.

Get from Thailand to Vietnam by air

One of the most popular methods of traveling from Thailand to Vietnam is by air, and with several international airports in the different parts of the country, you are really spoilt for choice. Flights run from Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok, Chiang Mai International Airport, or Phuket International Airport to five different airports in Vietnam daily. And booking tickets for the flights is simple. If you are not into booking your own flights, there are travel agents all over Thailand that can book the flights for you, for a small fee. Or you can book them yourself, either online through the airline’s own website or on one of the popular comparison websites, which often provide you with better deals.

Get Vietnam by air

Flights run to Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport from Bangkok and Chiang Mai daily . From Bangkok, the flight takes around 90-105 minutes, and costs from around US$ 84 per person. From Chiang Mai, however, the flights to Hanoi only take around 90 minutes, and can cost from as little as just US$ 58 per person.

Flights to Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat International Airport run from Bangkok and Phuket. The flights from Bangkok take around 90 minutes and can cost from around US$ 97 per person, while the flights from Phuket take almost two hours, but cost from as little as US$ 66 per person.

Flights from Bangkok also run to Da Nang International Airport, Phu Quoc International Airport, and Lien Khuong International Airport in Da Lat . Flights to Da Nang tae around 1 hour 40 minutes and cost from around US$ 96 per person, while the flights to Da Lat take 1 hour 45 minutes and are more expensive at US$ 156 per person. The flights to Phu Quoc are the most expensive, but this is not a surprise as the island is a high-end tourist destination. Flights take around 1 hour 50 minutes, and can cost from as much as US$ 300 per person.

Get from Thailand to Vietnam by bus

Thailand does not share a border with Vietnam, so getting a bus from Thailand to Vietnam means crossing the entire country of Cambodia, north to south, and will require you to get a visa on your arrival at the Cambodian border, even if you have no intention of staying anywhere in Cambodia on your way to Saigon. The same can be said of the route that takes you to Vietnam through Laos, which can cross the small narrow country of Laos at several points, which are good for getting to Hue, Hai Phong, and Da Nang.

Get Vietnam by bus

To use the borders with Cambodia to get to Saigon, you can get a bus that takes you from Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City that takes around 29 to 34 hours. Only one bus company runs this direct route from Bangkok to Saigon, Mekong Express, and their coaches are all VIP class buses. Prices, however, are not too expensive, costing around 35 to 50 US dollars for the entire trip, stopping for breaks in Siem Reap and Phnom Penh along the way, and providing their own conductor to handle the paperwork at the Cambodian and Vietnamese borders.

If you want to take the cheaper option, you can get a bus to the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh for around 32 dollars and then cross the border on a local bus or boat for as little as a few dollars. Buses take around four hours to get to Saigon, while the boat takes around six hours.

If you are thinking of traveling through Cambodia or Laos, then you will need to have your visa for Vietnam before you leave Thailand. There are two main routes to Vietnam from Thailand, via the border crossing into Laos at the Thanaleng Border Crossing in Udon Thani, which takes you into northern Laos, and then across the country to the Nam Can Border Station, from where you can get the local bus to Hanoi. Bangkok to Udon Thani is a long nine hours bus ride, and once across the border into Laos, it takes around six hours to get from Vientiane to the border crossing near Phonsavan at Nam Can. From the border into Vietnam it is then around eight hours to get to Hanoi by bus, or just four hours to the large town of Vinh.

If you are planning to head for central Vietnam the best route is from Bangkok to the town of Sakon Nakhon, in northeast Thailand, which takes around ten hours by bus. From there, you can get a local bus to the border, which takes around two hours, and crosses the border at the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge No. 2, at Savannakhet. From there, a bus to Dansavanh on the Lao Bao border takes around five hours, with the bus from Lao Bao to Hue taking around six hours.

Get from Thailand to Vietnam by train

Taking the train from Bangkok to Vietnam cannot be done in one journey, and means taking a train as far as the border town of Aranyaprathet on the Cambodian border. From there, you need to take the bus the rest of the way. Cambodia has almost no train tracks, and while there are trains in Vietnam, none of them run into or across Cambodia, making it impossible to ride a train all the way from Thailand to Vietnam. You can travel from Bangkok to Siem Reap using the train to Aranyaprathet, and then using road transport to get to Siem Reap. However, you will need to get the bus to Phnom Penh, as there is no train. You will also have to take a bus from Phnom Penh to Saigon. The train to Aranyaprathet costs around two dollars per person, and takes around five and a half hours.

Get Vietnam by train

It is no easier to get the train from Bangkok to Vientiane in Laos, and then cross Laos to Vietnam. Trains run day and night along this route, running from Bangkok to Nong Khai, and then taking an international train to the new rail terminal at Thanaleng in Laos. From there, you can take the transfer to Vientiane, though you will have to get the bus to cross Laos, as there are no train routes at all. The bus takes you across the border direct to Hanoi. The train from Bangkok to Nong Khai costs around 4-5 dollars per person, and takes around eight and a half hours. Tickets can be booked easily by just turning up at the station and purchasing the tickets.

Best time to travel from Thailand to Vietnam

The weather in Thailand is made up of three major seasons, the hot season from April to June, the rainy season from July to October, and the dry season from November to March. And while there is a big difference in the wet seasons between the east and west of the peninsula, the dry period from November to March is the best time to visit the country, overall.

Spring and autumn, from February to April and August to October, are the best times to visit Vietnam, with its varying climates from north to south. However, across the country, the winter months from November to January are the coolest months of the year, and coincide well with a trip to Thailand during the dry season. And while it can be quite cold, for a sub-tropical country, it is pleasant enough to make your trip comfortable and enjoyable.

Check for more about the best time traveling to Vietnam from Thailand.

Tips for tourists

Vietnam has an unusual Visa on Arrival system, and while it may be complicated, it is still the best way to obtain your visa. Known as a Pre-arranged Visa, this system allows you to make the applications online, and then receive the visa once you arrive. Unfortunately, there is no way to make the application on your arrival at the airports of border crossings, and you will be turned back if you do not have a visa approval or visa already. The visa can be applied for at the official website for pre-approved visas at: https://vietnamvisa.govt.vn/apply-online/. Payment can be made only through their official banks.

Vietnam visa

Vietnam also has a new E-visa policy, which covers applications from 46 countries around the world, including the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, and several European countries. The visa can be applied for at either of two official websites, which can be found at: https://www.immigration.gov.vn/and https://www.xuatnhapcanh.gov.vn. Payment for the E-visa, however, can be made only through their official banks, as there is no online payment system available as yet.

For a visa application through the Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, applications can be submitted in person or by post, and the visa is normally available after around 3-5 working days. Payment for the visa from the embassy varies in cost from country to country, and must be paid by money order, cashier’s check, certified check, or company check, made payable to the Embassy of Vietnam.

For all visas, the standard requirements are:

• Valid passport with at least six month’s validity at the time of travel

• Two passport-sized photos (although some embassies only require one)

• Completed application form (which can be downloaded from http://vietnamembassy-usa.org/sites/default/files/visaform.pdf and filled out manually for personal or postal applications to the Embassy)

• Visa application fee in the form required by the specified application process

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Travel From Thailand To Vietnam: Discover Top 4 Best Ways

Travel From Thailand To Vietnam: Discover Top 4 Best Ways

  • 16 January, 2024 8:15 am

Table of Contents

1. Overview

Currently, Southeast Asian countries are increasingly becoming prominent tourist destinations for all travel enthusiasts around the world. From the ancient beauty of Hanoi to the wonderful nature of Ha Long Bay, from the vibrant night market in Bangkok to the pristine beaches of Phuket, everything will make tourists visit Vietnam and Thailand at any time everyone must be fascinated.

Traveling between Southeast Asian countries is also very easy. And from Thailand to Vietnam, you have many transportation options to consider for your journey because the distance is quite close, only taking 1.5–2 hours by flight. In addition, there are several ways to travel from Thailand to Vietnam, such as by plane, bus, train, private car, or boat. And each method of transportation has advantages and disadvantages compared to the others. It’s just a matter of whether you rank higher when making a decision—price or time. Overall, flights save you a lot of time, buses and trains cut costs, and boats can bring you more beautiful sights.

thailand to vietnam trip

2. What does Vietnam have that attracts international tourists?

Vietnam has a rich history and an area spanning many types of terrain, from mountains and rivers to rich plains and many romantic beaches. This is an extremely attractive cultural discovery destination with more than 54 ethnic groups. This S-shaped strip of land possesses many enchanting landscapes and many natural places that are still very wild . Vietnam is often called a “cheap paradise” with its warm and friendly people.

thailand to vietnam trip

Moreover, Vietnamese cuisine is extremely diverse; dishes in Vietnam are on the world culinary map as “must try”. Surely you have heard of the famous “Vietnamese Pho”. But come here to try many other attractive regional specialties such as “Bun cha,” “Banh mi,” “Bun bo Hue,” etc, which will definitely amaze you.

The outstanding destination that you can visit on your trip from Thailand to Vietnam is the capital, Hanoi . A place of thousands of years of civilization with 36 old streets , traditional historical sites with spiritual meaning such as One Pillar Pagoda, Temple of Literature (Quoc Tu Giam), Sword Lake, West Lake , Tran Quoc Pagoda , etc. You can also visit Ho Chi Minh City , an extremely vibrant and modern economic center. Or book a tour to Da Nang, Hoi An, and Hue to explore the beautiful sea with white clouds, golden sunshine, and a sweet, seductive blue sea.

thailand to vietnam trip

3. Discover The Top 4 The Best Ways To Travel From Thailand To Vietnam

3.1. travel from thailand to vietnam by plane.

An airplane is the fastest and most convenient way to travel from Thailand to Vietnam. Currently, there are many airlines operating flights from Thailand to Vietnam with different ticket prices, such as AirAsia, Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Air, or Thai Airways. In particular, you can take a flight from provinces and cities in Thailand, such as Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Surat Thani, or Krabi, to Noi Bai airport (Hanoi), Da Nang International Airport, or Tan Son Nhat airport (Ho Chi Minh City).

Flights will cost from 60 USD – 100 USD/one way or from 140 USD – 220 USD/round tri p. It will take you from 1.5 hours to 2 hours to fly, depending on the schedule of your departure and destination locations. Flight ticket prices can be deeply reduced if you book in advance at the right time. You can book tickets online yourself or ask travel agencies to book tickets to receive more incentives.

thailand to vietnam trip

3.2. Travel from Thailand to Vietnam by road

Because the geographical distance is quite close, a more reasonable cost option for traveling from Thailand to Vietnam is by road. The Thailand-Vietnam land route will have to pass through a third country, Cambodia or Laos. You can choose suitable means of road transportation, such as a passenger car, bus, or motorbike, to experience the trip.

thailand to vietnam trip

If you go through Cambodia , you will go from Thailand t hrough the Moc Bai border gate to Ho Chi Minh City . If you go through Laos, you will go from Thailand to the Cau Treo Ha Tinh border gate to Hanoi. These two border gates are developed for tourism with spacious, quite safe asphalt roads.

If you ride a motorcycle, you must register the vehicle. Documents that need to be prepared include: 

  • Original vehicle registration certificate (available in English; no translation is required) 
  • Driver’s license: If your driver’s license is available in English, that’s great. If not, you can bring a certified English translation. 
  • Vehicle insurance or International Marketing Permit (ICP)

If you travel by bus: 

  • From Thailand to Hanoi: 

Direct bus tickets from Thailand to Vietnam: Ticket prices are very expensive and change constantly depending on the bus company and the number of passengers.

Transit bus tickets between Thailand and Laos and Laos and Vietnam: ticket prices range from 24 USD to 26 USD. Ticket prices from Laos to Thailand (Bangkok) range from 18 USD to 20 USD, depending on the bus company.

  • From Thailand to Saigon: 

Direct bus ticket Thailand-Vietnam: Price ranges over 50 USD. There are trips every day. 

Transit tickets for Thailand-Cambodia and Cambodia-Vietnam: Tickets from Cambodia to Vietnam are $10; tickets from Thailand to Cambodia are 20 USD to 22 USD.

thailand to vietnam trip

3.3. Travel from Thailand to Vietnam by boat

In addition, you can try to experience traveling from Thailand to Vietnam by boat on the Mekong River. There are two routes for you to choose from: from Phnom Penh port to Chau Doc or from Northern Thailand via Huay Xai to Luang Phabang (Laos). Then, take the bus back to the capital, Hanoi. Another option after the cruise is to take a flight from Vientiane to Hanoi. In addition, there are a number of international cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean Cruises, Celebrity Solstice, etc., that offer itineraries combining Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, or some other Southeast Asian countries.

The average cost for waterway travel is about 150 USD – 180 USD per person. This is a much higher cost than previous forms of transportation . However, visitors will be able to admire the charming river scenery and explore the beauty of the Mekong River.

thailand to vietnam trip

3.4. Travel from Thailand to Vietnam by train

Currently, there is no direct train route between Thailand and Vietnam. But if you still want to experience traveling from Thailand to Vietnam by train, then there is a method that will take many trains, bus rides, and a lot of time, but if you like adventure, then it will be worth the price. You can take a train from Bangkok to Aranayprathet, near the Cambodian border. Then another train from Poipet Station to Phnom Penh. To get from Aranyaprathet Railway Station to Poipet Railway Station, you need to take a bus or taxi. There is no train from Phnom Penh to Vietnam, so you will have to take another bus, and it takes about 5 to 6 hours. Overall, the entire journey will take a maximum of one day and cost you between 21 USD and 65 USD .

thailand to vietnam trip

4. How to apply for Vietnam visa

4.1. vietnam visa exemption.

Currently, the Vietnamese government has relaxed its Vietnam visa policy to welcome more and more tourists to this country (updated from August 15, 2023):

Unilateral visa exemption: Citizens of these countries holding ordinary passports, regardless of entry purpose, are exempt from visa entry and exit from Vietnam with a temporary stay period of no more than 45 day s: Korea, Japan, Russia, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and Belarus .

Bilateral visa exemption: Citizens of Asian countries (Southeast Asia) are exempted from Vietnam visas with a temporary stay period of no more than 30 days, regardless of the purpose of entry. Including countries: Brunei (14 days) , Myanmar (14 days) , Philippines (21 days) , Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Laos.

4.2. Vietnam visa upon entry

Vietnam visa on arrival has become a trend for tourists to apply for a Vietnam visa thanks to its convenience and simplicity .

To apply for an electronic visa , visitors must first fill out the online Vietnam visa application form here . The provider will then send an approval letter (usually within 3 business days) after receiving the service fee. Travelers bring this letter with them when checking in at Vietnam airports. After paying the stamping fee, the visa will be stuck on the passport. It’s done! You can apply for an electronic visa according to the instructions here .

thailand to vietnam trip

Apply for a Vietnam visa at the Vietnamese embassy in Thailand. If Thais do not want to enter Vietnam for visa exemption for no more than 30 days but want to apply for a long-term visa in Vietnam, they can apply for a visa at the Vietnamese diplomatic mission in Thailand. To apply for a visa, visitors must go to the Vietnamese Embassy in Thailand to submit documents and then get a passport with a visa stamp.

Consulate General of Vietnam in Khon Kaen, Thailand:

  • Address: 65/6 Chatapadung, Khonkaen. Thailand
  • Phone: (66-4) 324 2190 
  • Fax: (66-4) 324 1154

You can experience the following tours when coming to Vietnam:

  • Northern Vietnam “Golden Season” Luxury Adventure
  • Vietnam Mix Tour Train & Flight From South To North
  • Vietnam Mix Tour Train & Flight From North To South
  • Da Nang And Hue 4 Days 3 Nights
  • 3 Days 2 Nights From Da Nang to Quang Binh
  • Mixing Nature & Culture Vietnam In 30 Days
  • Hanoi – Halong Bay Classical

5. Conclusion

Traveling from Thailand to Vietnam brings many discoveries and memorable experiences. You also have many diverse options to move between these two countries. Wishing you a fun trip exploring the diversity of Vietnam and Thailand. Don’t forget to visit Metta Voyage’s blog for more interesting travel experiences.

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Maximizing 14 Days in Vietnam and Thailand: A Comprehensive Travel Guide

Wonder how to make the best of 14 days in vietnam and thailand check out this article to gain a comprehensive guide for your journey.

  • Updated: December 5, 2023 Phuong Khanh in Beautiful Thailand , Beautiful Vietnam , Thailand itineraries , Thailand Travel Tips , Vietnam Itineraries , Vietnam Travel Tips 4 comments.

thailand to vietnam trip

Why to Spend 14 Days in Vietnam and Thailand?

  • Wonders of Southeast Asia 14 Days: Thailand, Cambodia & Vietnam

Is 14 days enough to truly experience Vietnam and Thailand? It’s a valid question given the cultural richness and diverse attractions of these two countries.

Even though 2 weeks in Vietnam and Thailand might sound quite short to discover all the interesting places, you can still delve into the highlights and even some hidden treasures. While Vietnam has been famous for its bustling cities, historical sites, and tranquil landscapes all over the country, Thailand is renowned for its systems of ancient temples, pristine beaches, and vibrant cities. With 14 days in Vietnam and Thailand, you will surely gain varied experiences when stopping by numerous destinations.

When to Visit Vietnam and Thailand?

As the weather plays a significant role in shaping the experiences of travelers, understanding the distinct climate patterns in each country can help you make the most of your journey in 14 days in Vietnam and Thailand.

Vietnam’s Varied Climate

Vietnam boasts a diverse climate due to its elongated geography. The north experiences four distinct seasons, with chilly winters and hot, humid summers. Central Vietnam enjoys a tropical climate, making it an ideal year-round destination. The south, including Ho Chi Minh City, has a tropical monsoon climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. Be prepared for some rain, especially if you visit during the wet season from May to October. Pack lightweight, breathable clothing for those humid days, and don’t forget a light rain jacket or umbrella.

>>> Read more: The Best Time to Visit Vietnam .

Thailand’s Tropical Paradise

Thailand , on the other hand, predominantly offers a tropical climate throughout the year. The dry season, from November to February, is the most popular time to visit, with pleasant temperatures and minimal rainfall. March to May marks the hot season, with scorching temperatures, especially in central Thailand. The wet season, from June to October, brings heavy rains and can lead to flooding in some areas, but it’s also a time when lush green landscapes flourish.

Ideal Itineraries for the Best 14 Days in Vietnam and Thailand

Itinerary 1: explore all highlights of vietnam and thailand.

14 days in vietnam and thailand highlight tour

Day 1 – Hanoi Arrival & Leisure: Arrive in Hanoi and spend your free time relaxing at the hotel or discovering Hanoi city.

Day 2 – Hanoi Highlights Tour: Hanoi City Tour – Visit attraction highlights in Hanoi: Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, Tran Quoc Pagoda, One Pillar Pagoda, Temple of Literature, and Museum of Ethnology.

Day 3 – Ha Long Bay Cruise: Head to Ha Long Bay from Hanoi, get on a luxurious cruise, and explore the bay.

Day 4 – Return & Fly to Hue: After spending a morning on the cruise, you will get back to Hanoi to take a flight to Hue – a city in central Vietnam.

Day 5 – Hue City Discovery: Hue City Tour – Discover famous places in Hue: Thien Mu Pagoda, Imperial Citadel, and Dong Ba Market.

Day 6 – To Hoi An & Biking Tour: You will move to Hoi An Ancient Town by car to enjoy the beautiful landscapes along the road and join a biking tour around the town in the afternoon.

Day 7 – Da Nang to HCMC Flight: Head to Da Nang to take a flight to Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), you will have free time in HCMC in the evening.

Day 8 – Mekong Delta Excursion: Travel to the Mekong Delta and explore the region on a traditional board. You will get back to HCMC before dinner.

Day 9 – HCMC Tour & Bangkok Bound: Half-day City Tour in HCMC, visit Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Saigon Post Office. Fly to Bangkok in the afternoon.

Day 10 – Bangkok Temple Tour: Join the Bangkok City Tour and explore several famous temples in the city like Wat Traimit, Wat Pho, and Wat Phra Kaew.

Day 11 – Chiang Mai Arrival & Doi Suthep: Fly to Chiang Mai from Bangkok in the morning and discover Doi Suthep Temple in the afternoon.

Day 12 – Chiang Mai City Exploration: Explore Chiang Mai via a city tour, visiting Bhubing Palace, Chiang Mai Temple, Phra Singh Temple, and Chedi Luang Temple.

Day 13 – Thai Cooking Class: You will participate in a cooking class on this day, learning the recipes and tricks of Thai cuisine.

Day 14 – Departure from Chiang Mai: Depart from Chiang Mai, the end of the itinerary.

Itinerary 2: Immerse in the Nature – Best for Adventure Lovers

14 days in vietnam and thailand itinerary for adventure lover

Day 1 – Arrival & Free Time in Hanoi: After you arrive in Hanoi, you will have free time to relax and discover the city at your own pace.

Day 2 – Hanoi City Tour: Embark on the Hanoi City Tour in the morning and watch the Water Puppet Show in the afternoon. You will travel to Sa Pa by a night train.

Day 3 – Sa Pa Trekking Adventure: Discover Sa Pa by trekking to Cat Cat and Sin Chai local villages and see the Cat Cat Waterfall.

Day 4 – Sa Pa Exploration & Return to Hanoi: Enjoy the Sa Pa Tour with two options: trekking to Lao Chai and Ta Van villages or visiting Fansipang Peak – the Roof of Indochina. You will get on the night train to get back to Hanoi.

Day 5 – Ha Long Bay Cruise Experience: After arriving in Hanoi, you will travel to Ha Long Bay to get on a cruise, join some on-deck activities, and visit some stops on the bay.

Day 6 – Morning Cruise & Hanoi Night Stay: You will spend the morning on the cruise before getting back to Hanoi and spend the night here.

Day 7 – Hanoi to Bangkok Flight: Fly to Bangkok from Hanoi and have free time to relax.

Day 8 – Bangkok’s Grand Palace & Temples: You will get to discover the Grand Palace and a set of sensational temples in Bangkok, including Wat Phra Kaew and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha.

Day 9 – Ayutthaya Day Trip: Venture to Ayutthaya and explore several spiritual temples in the ancient capital of Thailand. You will get back to Bangkok City in the afternoon.

Day 10 – Kanchanaburi Visit & Return: You will travel to Kanchanaburi, a riverside town outside Bangkok, and visit the Bridge of River Kwai and the Thailand – Burma Railway Museum. Head back to Bangkok in the afternoon.

Day 11 – Fly to Phuket & Relax: Travel to Phuket from Bangkok by airplane and have leisure time to relax after the flight.

Day 12 – Phuket Free Day: Free day in Phuket , explore the island at your own pace.

Day 13 – Phi Phi Islands Excursion: Embark on a journey to Phi Phi Islands, enjoy the beauty of the tranquil beach, and visit Maya Bay.

Day 14 – Departure from Phuket: Depart from Phuket, and finish your itinerary.

Itinerary 3: Enjoy Relaxation on the Beaches in Vietnam and Thailand

14 days in vietnam and thailand beaches tour

Day 1 – Arrival & Hanoi Exploration: Arrive in Hanoi and have free time to explore Hanoi on your way.

Day 2 – Hanoi City Tour & Cycling: Embark on the Hanoi City Tour and visit Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum , One Pillar Pagoda, etc., and cycle in the Old Quarter.

Day 3 – Ha Long Bay Cruise Begins: Travel to Ha Long City by car and then get on a luxury cruise, visiting Lan Ha Bay and joining in some activities on deck.

Day 4 – Cruise Activities & Kayaking: You will spend the morning relaxing on the cruise and visiting Viet Hai jetty, then swim or kayak in the afternoon.

Day 5 – Cat Ba Island & Flight to Da Nang: Visit Cat Ba Island in the morning before heading back to Hanoi to take a flight to Da Nang and travel to Hoi An.

Day 6 – Hoi An Cultural Activities: Explore Hoi An by joining interesting activities here, for example, participating in a cooking class or visiting a vegetable village.

Day 7 – Relaxing Day in Hoi An: Leisure day in Hoi An to relax and enjoy the beach.

Day 8 – Flight to Ho Chi Minh City: Fly to Ho Chi Minh City from Da Nang and enjoy free time.

Day 9 – Cu Chi Tunnels & HCMC Tour: Visit Cu Chi Tunnels and explore some of HCMC’s historical sites: War Remnants Museum, Old Saigon Post Office , Saigon Opera House, etc.

Day 10 – Mekong Delta Adventure: You will get to embark on a Mekong Delta trip, join a boat ride, visit traditional villages, and enjoy local music and food.

Day 11 – Phuket Arrival: Fly to Phuket from HCMC and attend the Phuket Fantasea show with dinner.

Day 12 – Phi Phi & Surrounding Islands Tour: Enjoy the speedboat tour to Phi Phi, Maya, and Khai Nok Island.

Day 13 – Free Day in Phuket: Free day in Phuket so you can relax on your own.

Day 14 – Phuket Departure: Depart from Phuket, end of 16 days in Vietnam and Thailand.

>>> Looking for more wonderful beach holidays in these countries, you can refer to our list of best Vietnam beach & leisure or Thailand beach vacations .

Itinerary 4: Discover Vietnam and Thailand and Stop by Cambodia

14 days in vietnam and thailand stop by cambodia

Day 1 – Bangkok Arrival & Exploration: Arrive in Bangkok and enjoy free time exploring the city.

Day 2 – Bangkok City Highlights Tour: Bangkok City Tour – Visit Khlong Lat Mayom floating market, boat ride along canals, and discover Wat Arun, Wat Pho, and Chatuchak Market.

Day 3 – Chiang Mai Temples Discovery: Fly to Chiang Mai from Bangkok and visit Wat Phra Singh, Wat Chedi Luang, and Wat Chiang Man.

Day 4 – Chiang Mai Activities & Culture: Join interesting activities in Chiang Mai, like visiting the elephant rescue center or participating in a Thai cooking class.

Day 5 – Phuket Arrival & Beach Leisure: Fly to Phuket from Chiang Mai and have leisure time to relax by the beach or explore the Old Town.

Day 6 – Phi Phi Island Excursion: Full-day excursion to Phi Phi Island.

Day 7 – Siem Reap Arrival & Relaxation: Fly to Siem Reap (Cambodia) and enjoy free time to relax after the flight.

Day 8 – Angkor Wat Exploration: Explore the famous Angkor Wat – a UNESCO World Heritage Centre .

Day 9 – Journey to Hanoi: Depart Cambodia for Hanoi, Vietnam.

Day 10 – Ha Long Bay Cruise Adventure: Head to Ha Long Bay from Hanoi by car and get on a luxury cruise to travel around the bay.

Day 11 – Morning Cruise & Da Nang Flight: Enjoy the morning on the cruise and fly to Da Nang from Hanoi in the afternoon.

Day 12 – Discovering Da Nang: Spend a full day exploring Da Nang by visiting Golden Bridge, Ba Na Hill.

Day 13 – Ho Chi Minh City Tour: Fly to Ho Chi Minh City and join the half-day city tour, visiting Notre Dame Cathedral, War Remnants Museum, and Independence Palace.

Day 14 – Departure from Ho Chi Minh City: Depart Ho Chi Minh City.

Interesting Events to Join in Vietnam and Thailand

Tet festival in vietnam.

Often referred to as the Vietnamese New Year, the Tet Festival is the most significant event in Vietnam’s cultural calendar. Celebrated at the same time as the Chinese New Year, it marks the arrival of spring based on the lunisolar calendar. Families gather to share festive meals, decorate their homes with red and gold (colors signifying luck and prosperity), and give each other gifts. The streets are alive with parades, lion dances, and fireworks. For travelers, Tet offers an unparalleled insight into the richness of Vietnamese culture and traditions.

Hoi An Lantern Festival

Hoi An Colorful Lanterns

Hoi An Colorful Lanterns

A mesmerizing monthly event, the Hoi An Lantern Festival transforms the quaint ancient town of Hoi An into a magical world of lantern-lit wonder. Held on the full moon of every lunar month, this event is a tribute to the town’s rich history and its connection with the Silk Route. As the sun sets, electric lights go off, and thousands of colorful lanterns glow along the streets, over bridges, and on the Thu Bon River. Join locals as they release paper lanterns on the water, sending wishes for health, happiness, and prosperity.

Thailand’s Songkran Festival

thailand to vietnam trip

Songkran Festival

Welcome to the world’s biggest water fight! Songkran, Thailand’s traditional New Year celebration, occurs in mid-April and is famously recognized for its water festivities. Originally, people poured water over others as a symbol of purification and washing away sins. Today, it has evolved into an exuberant event where locals and tourists alike engage in water battles using buckets, hoses, and water guns. While Bangkok’s celebrations are notoriously wild, the festival is observed throughout the country with religious ceremonies, processions, and traditional performances.

Loy Krathong Festival in Chiang Mai, Thailand

One of Thailand’s most picturesque festivals, Loy Krathong, or the “festival of lights,” is celebrated during the full moon of the twelfth lunar month (usually in November). Participants craft “krathongs” or small floating baskets from banana leaves, decorate them with flowers, incense, and candles, and release them on waterways, paying respect to the goddess of water. In Chiang Mai, the event is even more magical with the simultaneous celebration of Yi Peng. Thousands of lanterns are released into the night sky, creating a breathtaking spectacle that symbolizes letting go of negativity and making wishes for the future.

We trust the details provided above will assist you in organizing your 14 days in Vietnam and Thailand. Don’t delay any further and start preparing for your journey ! If you require any guidance in crafting your trip, do reach out to us for a personalized itinerary tailored to your preferences. Thank you immensely for taking the time to read this!

Read more: 

  • Top 9 magnificent Thailand caves that will thrill every adventure enthusiast
  • Top 10 family-friendly destinations in Thailand
  • Vietnam with Kids: How to Plan a Perfect Family Trip

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thailand to vietnam trip

Phuong Khanh

Hello, my name is Khanh, I'm a travel blogger at IDC Travel. After my adventures and what I've learned on my trips and from my research, I will help you with planning your trip to Vietnam & Southeast Asia and make your journey remarkable.

Comments(4)

Do you have tours starting in HCMCity please? Ending in Bangkok.

Hi Pam, Thank you so much for your interest! In fact, we customize almost tour itineraries to meet every customer’s preference. Our travel expert will reach out to you with a suggested program as soon as possible. Please let us know if you have any other requirements. Best regards, IDC Travel Team.

I still wonder if I can do Thailand and Vietnam in two weeks. Both countries are beautiful with so many things to do. I’m planning a trip to Southeast Asia in early January 2024 with my family, 5 people. We all prefer Vietnam as the first destination. If possible, I want to come across Thailand (but not compulsory). We can also extend the duration into three weeks in Vietnam and Thailand, will try our best to arrange the working schedule. Can you please update me on a tour program? Please not that we are a family of 5 and my youngest child is 4.

Hi Urszula, As our suggested itineraries, you can still visit Thailand and Vietnam in two weeks. If you prefer Vietnam to Thailand, you can consider the 1st and 3rd itineraries, in which you spend 10 days in Vietnam and 4 days in Thailand. However, it will be much better if you can extend your duration to 3 weeks. This way, you can discover these two countries in a more relaxing way and reduce the fatigue of rush commuting. Also, our travel expert will get back to you soon with customized 2-week and 3-week itineraries for your family. Thank you so much for your patience! Best regards, Alice Pham.

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From 22 Jan to 30 Jan are TET holiday so the cost will up to 30% or 50% for private car services. Thank you for understanding and Happy New Year!

Thailand to Vietnam Bus: A Comprehensive Guide to Schedules and Prices

Bus routes to Thailand – Vietnam – Cross-country travel has never been easier. This is a highly notable topic recently, especially for those interested in traveling between these two Southeast Asian countries. Traveling from Thailand to Vietnam by bus is a popular option for many travelers. It is a cost-effective way to travel between the two countries, and it allows you to see the beautiful scenery along the way

Therefore, let us now thoroughly explore the information about this special bus journey! So, let’s dive into the details of this unique bus trip today!

thailand to vietnam trip

Overview of Thailand to Vietnam by Bus

As a budget means of transport, a bus will be priced at around US $50 for a direct route from Thailand to Vietnam. Transit to one destination in Cambodia or Laos is even cheaper up to your choice. Thailand – Cambodia – Ho Chi Minh City route costs only US $32 to US $35, while it goes from US $24 to US $26 for Thailand – Laos – Hanoi route.

There are two main routes that you can take to travel from Thailand to Vietnam by bus: Thailand – Cambodia – Vietnam or Thailand – Laos – Vietnam. Here is a brief overview of each route:

Thailand – Laos – Vietnam

thailand to vietnam trip

If you choose to travel the Thai-Lao-Viet route, you’ll start from Bangkok by bus, then reach Vientiane, and finally arrive in Hanoi. Specifically, the bus route begins from Thailand (Nakhon Phanom city) to Laos (Thakhek) and proceeds to Vietnam with a route length of approximately 300 km. Travelers can explore three countries without taking more than 01 day to complete . 

This route is less frequently traveled and offers a more adventurous experience as it passes through the mountainous and rural regions of Laos and northern Vietnam. Along the way, you can explore beautiful natural and cultural sites like Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Dien Bien Phu, and Sapa. The average cost per person for this route ranges from US $70 to US $80.

Thailand – Cambodia – Vietnam

thailand to vietnam trip

The most common and convenient way to travel by bus from Thailand to Vietnam is to go through Cambodia, which shares borders with both countries. You can also go through Laos, but this will take longer and cost more. Here are the main steps to follow if you choose to travel by bus from Thailand to Vietnam via Cambodia: 

  • Step 1 : Take a bus from Bangkok to Siem Reap.

To start your journey, travel from Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, to Siem Reap, the entrance to the renowned Angkor Wat temples in Cambodia. Several bus companies, including Giant Ibis1, Nattakan, and Transport Co International, provide this service. The trip generally takes 8 to 10 hours depending on traffic and border crossing. Prices range from $28 to $32 per person. You can purchase tickets online or at Bangkok’s bus stations.

  • Step 2: Explore Siem Reap and Angkor Wat.

Relaxing in a popular tourist destination in Cambodia. It is home to Angkor Wat, the world’s largest and most impressive religious monument. You can spend a day or more discovering the ancient temples, appreciating the architecture and carvings, and learning about the history and culture of the Khmer Empire. 

  • Step 3: Take a bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh.

The next step is to travel from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Several bus companies, such as Giant Ibis1, Mekong Express, and Virak Buntham Express, operate on this route. The journey usually takes 6 to 7 hours, and prices range from $10 to $15 per person. Some buses provide wifi, air conditioning, and toilets, while others are more basic. 

  • Step 4: Explore Phnom Penh and obtain your Vietnam visa.

If you plan to continue your journey to Vietnam by bus, it’s important to obtain your visa in advance, as there is no visa on arrival option at the land border. You can apply for your Vietnam visa online and receive an approval letter that you need to present at the embassy in Phnom Penh, along with your passport, photos, and payment. The process typically takes 2 to 3 working days, with fees varying according to the visa type and duration. Alternatively, you can apply for your Vietnam visa directly at the embassy in Phnom Penh, though this may take longer and cost more.

  • Step 5 : Take a bus from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City.

The final step is to travel from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest and most dynamic city. The journey, including the border crossing, takes around 6 to 7 hours, and prices range from $12 to $18 per person. 

How to Book and Prepare for Your Bus Trip

  • If you want to save time and money, and visit the major cities and tourist attractions of Cambodia and Vietnam, the Thailand – Cambodia – Vietnam route is the best option for you.
  • Make sure to reserve your bus ticket in advance either online or at the bus station, especially if it’s a busy season or during holidays
  • Prior to booking, it’s essential to review the bus schedule, route, price, and user feedback for a well-informed decision.
  • Prior to crossing borders, ensure you have all the necessary documents ready, including your passport, visa, and other required paperwork. Your passport should be valid for at least six months, have two blank pages, and you must possess the appropriate visas or visa exemptions for every country you plan to visit. 
  • Applying for visas in advance can be done online or at the respective embassies or consulates. Additionally, some countries offer visas on arrival at the border. For a hassle-free visa application process, you can take advantage of online platforms such as iVisa or eVisa. It’s crucial to have additional documents like your bus ticket, hotel reservation, and travel insurance for immigration and customs checks.
  • Pack your belongings and essentials thoughtfully for your bus journey. Ensure your luggage, be it a backpack or a suitcase, adheres to size and weight restrictions as buses often have limited space and weight allowances. 
  • Remember to pack essential items such as water, snacks, cash, phone, charger, earphones, mask, sanitizer, toilet paper, and a pillow or blanket to make your long and potentially bumpy ride more comfortable. 
  • Consider bringing entertainment options like a book, game, or movie to keep yourself occupied during the trip.

Traveling from Thailand to Vietnam by bus offers an affordable and thrilling opportunity to explore two captivating countries in Southeast Asia. Nonetheless, this journey is neither direct nor easy, demanding careful planning and preparation. The itinerary involves multiple bus transfers, two border crossings, and obtaining a Vietnam visa in advance. 

Additionally, one must possess patience, adaptability, and an open-minded attitude to navigate the challenges and unexpected encounters along the way. However, if you seek a remarkable and enriching adventure, traveling by bus from Thailand to Vietnam presents an excellent choice. You will be treated to awe-inspiring attractions, encounter amiable individuals, and gain profound insights into the region’s culture and history.

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Vietnam vs Thailand: which came out top with our travel experts?

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If you’re planning a trip to Southeast Asia, there are a handful of countries that rise to the top of the list and capture our imaginations. That’s why we’re putting Vietnam vs Thailand in a head-to-head travel clash to see which tropical destination is the favorite among our group of travel experts.

On one side of the pitch lies Thailand, a land of golden temples, exotic street food, and idyllic islands. Opposite them, draped in red and yellow, is Vietnam, the top travel contender with a rich history, tropical landscapes, and buzzing cities.

thailand to vietnam trip

When it comes to Vietnam vs Thailand, both Southeast Asian powerhouses offer something unique, yet share some of the same DNA and climate. It’s why we’ve called upon Trafalgar’s team of travel experts to weigh in on which country is the ultimate place to visit in Southeast Asia.

The whistle has blown and Vietnam is off in a flash of red and yellow. Vietnam is a favorite thanks to its fragrant cuisine, with every dish striking goals with a flavorsome punch. From the depths of a rich pho broth, to a fresh bahn mi off the street, Vietnamese food is one great reason to explore this country.

Beyond food, the beauty of Vietnam has travelers asking for more, from the yellow-washed ancient town of Hoi An, to the buzzing scooters on the streets of Hanoi, Vietnam is a feast for every sense. Venture beyond the cities and you’ll encounter the terraced rice fields of Sapa in the far north, find yourself cruising around beautiful Ha Long Bay, or exploring floating markets in the Mekong Delta.

Highlights of Vietnam

Travel experts weigh in on vietnam.

Let’s see what the judges (our well-seasoned travel experts) have to say about why Vietnam is their pick of the two contenders.

“Vietnam, purely for the food — those spring rolls, OMG! To me, Vietnamese food feels fresher, and there’s more variety. There are also some STUNNING beaches that are way less busy than those in Thailand,” says Ginny Smith , Trafalgar’s Head of Digital Engagement.

Panoramic view of Halong Bay, Vietnam featuring emerald waters, limestone karsts, and numerous cruise vacations.

“Having been to neither before, Vietnam would be my preference. My impression is that it’s less about the beaches (which isn’t my scene), and more about the food, history and the preservation of a traditional way of life. The landscapes, people and history pique my interest more,” says travel expert Alex Allen , Trafalgar’s Senior Editorial Manager.

“I visited Vietnam last year and WOW I was blown away by the beauty, the flavors, and the friendly people. It would have been easy to spend days people-watching (and scooter watching) in Hanoi with an iced Vietnamese coffee in one hand, and my camera in the other,” says Daniela Sunde-Brown , Freelance Travel Writer. 

”The whole country is a delicious feast for the senses. I can’t wait to go back.” – Daniela

A street scene in Vietnam

“I REALLY want to do Vietnam for the unique culture, history and biodiversity. To go to some of those off-the-beaten-track, soulful places and Buddhist sites. I haven’t been to either but my sister said Vietnam had a lot more hidden gems than Thailand when she was travelling. But she loved both. Miss Saigon is in my top three musicals and so I want to visit Ho Chi Minh and rural Vietnam to get into the local history too,” says Jamie Fisher, Head of Marketing & Campaigns.

Vietnamese street food: 11 dishes you have to try

“I’ve not been to either (and both are on my list!) but I’m going to pick Vietnam. I feel like Thailand is seen more as a ‘must-go’ place and it wasn’t until I researched Vietnam more that I realised its incredible beauty, culture and FOOD! I want to cruise along UNESCO World Heritage site Halong Bay in a junk boat; eat real, traditional Vietnamese food (my favourite takeway); and explore Hoi An with its colourful lanterns,” says Emma Taylor, Content & Production Manager.

“Netflix rom com ‘A Tourist’s Guide to Love’ was set in Vietnam and made me want to go.” – Emma

thailand to vietnam trip

It’s Vietnam vs….  Thailand . So coming in hot on the other side of the pitch is this Southeast Asian dynamo known for known for scoring goals with its rich cultural heritage, breathtaking landscapes, and spicy cuisine. Yes, Vietnam’s street food scene has a serious rival in Thailand, where the fiery flavors of tom yum and and rich green curry can stand on their own two legs. That’s not to mention the sweet delights of mango sticky rice and Thai iced tea!

Like its Southeast Asian rival, Thailand finds strength in its diverse landscapes, from the sun-kissed beaches of Phuket to the lush jungles of the Golden Triangle to the serene beauty of Chiang Mai’s temples. As you journey from bustling city markets to tranquil rural villages, you’ll discover a rich variation in cuisine and scenery.

Thailand and the Temples of Angkor

Travel judges weigh in on thailand.

It’s a tough contest with Thailand’s unique street food, cultural highlights, and diverse landscapes making the choice difficult. Let’s see what the judges have to say about why Thailand is their pick.

“Thailand gets my vote because the people are so friendly, the country is beautiful and has something for everyone (jungle, cities, mountains, beaches) – AND THE MASSAGES ARE SO CHEAP!” says Jen Degnan, Social Media Team Lead.

thailand to vietnam trip

“I went to Thailand a few years ago and absolutely loved the culture, the locals were so friendly and kind. I also loved the beaches as I did an island hopper trip. My sister went on a baby moon trip to Thailand and loved the culture and food (lots of cooking classes). They decided on Thailand as there are some amazing resorts to stay at for relatively cheap prices. I think Thailand is known for its boozy party vibe but the more remote islands are very pretty with amazing beaches.” says Carmen Botha, Trafalgar’s Marketing Campaigns Manager.

A bowl of khao soi with chicken, topped with crispy noodles and cilantro, served with lime and side herbs on a wooden table, is considered one of the spiciest dishes.

“Having visited Thailand for only a week, with the large majority of time spent in Phuket, I’m really keen to explore much more of the country. I’d love to island-hop and enjoy its array of beautiful beaches, taste more of the Thai cuisine at food markets, and hike some forest trails,” says Joel Thorpe, Social Media Content Creator.

“I’d also love to experience Vietnam one day, but I’d rather head back to Thailand first.”  – Joel

Treasures of Thailand

“I’ve never been to either but I’d love to go to Thailand first! On the UK TV show “Race Across the World” this year they traveled through a lot of Asia. There was a checkpoint in the Phi Phi Islands, which looked absolutely stunning. I’d love to go island-hopping and enjoy the beaches. But also visit the cities, have amazing food and see some of the incredible temples,” says Sophie Tate, Social Media & Marketing Executive.

One travel expert couldn’t decide between Vietnam vs Thailand…

“Both Vietnam and Thailand appeal to me massively, it’s hard to pick. On the one hand I’m fascinated by Thailand’s muay thai boxing subculture, beautiful temples, and gorgeous landscapes. On the other hand, I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews about Vietnam. I would love to learn more about the Vietnam war, as well as try the food,” says Jason Brasier , Copywriter.

“I think I’d do Vietnam first, as it seems a little more ‘slow’ and chilled as a destination, but then Thailand would follow soon after.” – Jason

Thailand’s Festival of Lights

The winner of vietnam vs thailand.

Two women, fueled by their love of travel, are walking through a rice field in Vietnam.

As our travel experts hold up their votes, and our destinations cool down after a feisty play-off, we see Vietnam emerge as the champion in the battle vs Thailand. It was a close call with five votes for Vietnam, and four for Thailand – with one judge sitting on the fence.

As our travel expert Jason suggested, why not visit both?

The real winner of Vietnam vs Thailand Any lucky traveler that actually gets to explore either destination! Will you visit either in 2024 or 2025? Let us know in the comments.

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Vietnam Travel Tips - What to Know Before Visiting Vietnam

I f you’re planning to travel Vietnam, there are a few things you need to be aware of. As a first time visitor it can be stressful not to know what to expect. There were a few things I wish I’d known before I went. So if you’re going to Vietnam, check out my top Vietnam travel tips to help you prepare!

1. Get Your Visa in Advance

If you’re visiting Vietnam, you’re going to need a visa to enter. Fortunately, it’s fairly simple to get and you can do it before your trip. In fact, airlines won’t even let you fly to Vietnam if you don’t have your visa ready. One person in our group had the wrong date (1 day later) on her visa and had to stay in the airport and buy a new flight. So make sure you get dates and airports right when you apply.

Also, be sure your application name matches your passport. I forgot to enter my middle name on my visa and had to redo it after it got rejected for not matching my passport.

You can apply for the Vietnam e visa here .

It looks a little sketchy, but I promised it worked. The cost of the Vietnam visa is $25 for single entry . After your application is approved, your visa will be emailed to you.

When you arrive at the airport in Vietnam, there will be a line to show your passport and visa. You can save it on your phone or print it out. I did both, just to be safe, but showed them my paper visa.

2. Go at the right time

Ok, there’s no wrong time to to Vietnam, but you might want to go at the time that’s right for you ! I went to Vietnam in January and February and our weather was fantastic. Hot in Hoi An, warm in Hanoi, and warm in Halong Bay, but chilly at night. We were also there during Tet (Lunar New Year), Vietnam’s most important celebration, so it was incredible to see all the decorations and preparation for the New Year! Here are some weather guidelines for each area of Vietnam.

North Vietnam (Hanoi, Ha Long Bay, Sapa)

  • Best Time to visit Northern Vietnam : September to November (Autumn) and March to April (Spring)
  • Why? : The weather is pleasant with moderate temperatures and less rain, making it ideal for exploring the bustling streets of Hanoi, cruising through Ha Long Bay, or trekking in Sapa.

Central Vietnam (Hue, Da Nang, Hoi An)

  • Best Time to visit Central Vietnam : January to August
  • Why? : Central Vietnam has warm weather during these months, perfect for visiting the ancient town of Hoi An, the beaches of Da Nang, or the historical sites in Hue. The rainy season starts in September and can bring heavy downpours and occasional typhoons, especially in October and November.

South Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City, Mekong Delta)

  • Best Time to Visit South Vietnam : December to April (Dry season)
  • Why? : The weather is warm and dry, ideal for exploring the vibrant life in Ho Chi Minh City or venturing into the Mekong Delta. The rainy season from May to November can see short, heavy showers, but travel is still possible during these months.

3. Visit More than One City

Vietnam is probably a lot bigger than you realize. And it’s very long, so destinations are quite spread out. Many people make the mistake of only visiting one large city in Vietnam and not doing any day trips or visiting another area of Vietnam. It is very affordable to get around Vietnam and you can get a cheap flight within the country, so it’s worth seeing more than one destination in the country.

major cities

4. Download the Grabb App

If you plan to get around by car in Vietnam, you should download the Grabb App. It’s like UBER or Lyft for Asia and it works really well. I used it all over Vietnam and Thailand without any issue. If you’re not in the mood to barter with taxi drivers or don’t have a lot of cash, this is a good way to go. It felt safer and easier to do this.

5. Pack Layers

The weather in Vietnam is really varied. When you look at a map you can see why…it’s a very LONG country at over 1,000 miles long! So the weather in Northern vietnam and Southern Vietnam can be very different. We spent a few days in Hoi An, a few days in Hanoi, and a few days in Halong Bay, and the weather on the Bay was much cooler than the rest of our trip.

I packed sun dresses, pants, and jackets and I was glad to have them all! Just be sure to check the weather of each destination in Vietnam. Trips are always better when you have the right clothes!

6. Bring an Extra Bag for Souvenirs

I’m not normally a huge shopper when I travel, but there were some great things I wanted to bring home in Vietnam. Luckily I had this great packable duffel that has been with me on many trips! It is HUGE and holds so much and is super sturdy!

Some things that I purchased in Vietnam:

  • Lanterns – So many lanterns! One that I made in this class , and a bunch more that I purchased from a local shop.
  • Silk Paintings – Probably my most favorite souvenir from Vietnam was the silk painting I purchased from a man disabled from the effects of Agent Orange, a chemical used to clear vegetation during the Vietnam War. Vietnam is famous for its silk paintings, which are embroidered on fabric and absolutely beautiful! They come in all sizes and different levels of detail made by local people. They can be anywhere from $5 USD to $500 USD depending on where you buy yours, how detailed it is, and how long it took to create. They are stunning though!
  • Custom Clothing – Hoi An in particular is famous for its custom clothing tailors. You can get just about anything sewn to your liking while you’re there. Some tailors specialize in suits and some specialize in formal ware. Check reviews on Google before picking your tailor. We chose Rosa Tailor, mostly because she was across the street from our hotel and had a 5-star review on Google! I had two custom linen sets and two custom skirts made in just a few hours. It was so much fun to experience it and I love my clothes!

7. Have Cash on Hand

When traveling Vietnam, be sure to get cash out when you get to Vietnam or bring Vietnamese Dong from your bank with you. We needed a lot of cash in Vietnam. A few places took cards, but mostly it was cash only, especially in the local markets and for street food. I think I took about $300 Vietnam Dong out at the ATM and that lasted me about a week.

8. Drink Safe Water and Eat Safe Food

Food and water safety are always a concern of mine when traveling. And while I want to try all of the delicious food at the street food stalls and experience the local culture through food, I also don’t want to be sick for the rest of my trip (been there, done that)!

Try not to eat any raw vegetables fruit with a skin that could have been washed in contaminated water. Examples are lettuce, raw carrots, apples, etc. Peeled fruit and cooked vegetables are usually safe.

A good way to experience Vietnamese food is to take a cooking class from a reputable company where you have control over how the food is prepared and the water being used. Most classes will cater to a western audience and understand water concerns. Here is a list of good cooking classes.

  • Hoi An Cooking Class https://www.getyourguide.com/hoi-an-l831/hoi-an-tra-que-herb-village-cooking-class-t518142/?partner_id=67O18VU&utm_medium=online_publisher&cmp=VietnamTips
  • Hanoi Cooking Class https://www.getyourguide.com/hanoi-l205/hanoi-traditional-cooking-class-learning-5-famous-dishes-t563666/?partner_id=67O18VU&utm_medium=online_publisher&cmp=VietnamTips
  • Ho Chi Minh Cooking Class https://www.getyourguide.com/ho-chi-minh-city-l272/4-course-hands-on-vietnamese-cooking-lesson-in-small-group-t125720/?partner_id=67O18VU&utm_medium=online_publisher&cmp=VietnamTips

Another concern is water. This is probably one of the most important Vietnam travel tips. Don’t drink the tap water! Water can be tricky in Vietnam. You should avoid drinking tap water. Either only use sealed drinking water or bring a good filter water bottle. This is the one I use.

Despite all your best efforts, you may still get sick. I recommend asking your doctor for any meds that might help with bacterial sickness in case you do get sick. I take prescribed antibiotics with me whenever I travel, but my doctor travels to India frequently and gets it! Another option is to see a travel nurse, although any time I go they seem to go overboard and end up scaring me with all the possibilities of my inevitable death!

I also highly recommend getting travel insurance for your trip, because you never know!

9. Be Prepared for Some Hard History

Americans visiting Vietnam should be aware of the country’s complex and difficult history.

When traveling to Vietnam, be prepared to face some hard history. Visiting Vietnam as an American can be a deeply moving and eye-opening experience, given the country’s complex past, particularly concerning the Vietnam War (known in Vietnam as the American War or the Vietnam American War). This period from the late 1950s to 1975 left indelible marks on both nations, shaping their histories, cultures, and peoples in profound ways.

The hardest part for me was seeing victims of Agent Orange, which was a chemical used during the war to clear the jungle vegetation. This chemical affected the genetics of people living in Vietnam, and in turn their children who wouldn’t be born for years to come. I think we will see these lasting effects for a while. It was hard to see this, knowing that my country was part of the cause, but they were all very friendly and welcoming to us as Americans.

10. Book Activities Before You Go

My last Vietnam travel tip is to book ahead. While some people can visit Vietnam and wing their activities, I like to have things planned and scheduled, I like to arrange trips to nearby places, and some tours do book up during busier times, so I think it’s a good idea to have at least a few things planned and booked ahead of time, especially for your first time visit to Vietnam. Here are some of the activities I recommend planning ahead for to avoid unnecessary stress:

  • Hoi An Jeep Tour
  • Lantern Making Class
  • Ninh Binh Day Tour
  • Ho Chi Minh Cooking Class

Frequently Asked Questions

1. can americans visit vietnam.

Of course! Americans are welcome in Vietnam with a visa. There are some hard things to see from the war, but its part of both of our histories. I found everyone to be friendly and welcoming towards us as Americans.

2. Do I need a visa to visit Vietnam?

Yes, you need to apply for an e-visa before visiting Vietnam. I suggest applying at least 2 weeks before. Be sure to put your correct name, entry date, and port of entry on your application.

3. Can I use US dollars in Vietnam?

While some hotels, restaurants, and shops in tourist areas might accept US dollars, it’s more common to use Vietnamese Dong (VND) for everyday transactions. It’s advisable to carry local currency, especially when traveling outside major cities or shopping at local markets.

4. What is the etiquette for visiting temples and religious sites?

Dress modestly (covering shoulders and knees) and remove your shoes before entering temples or pagodas. It’s also respectful to avoid loud voices and keep a serene demeanor.

I hope these Vietnam travel tips have been helpful for you. Don’t stress too much about the differences. Vietnam is a beautiful and very welcoming country and you’re going to have the best time!

The post Vietnam Travel Tips – What to Know Before Visiting Vietnam appeared first on Wanderlust Crew .

If you’re planning to travel Vietnam, there are a few things you need to be aware of. As a first time visitor it can be stressful not to know what to expect. There were a few things I wish I’d known before I went. So if you’re going to Vietnam, check out my top Vietnam [...]

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Explore the wonders of vietnam and cambodia with heritage line.

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A journey through the lower Mekong River includes captivating experiences.

In its 2023 state of the cruise industry report , the cruising trade organization Cruise Lines International Association forecasts that the industry will host over 36 million guests who set sail in 2024. The majority of these seafaring travelers will choose one of the legacy cruise lines: Carnival, Royal Caribbean or Norwegian. Fewer still will make it onto the medium-size lines: Viking, Disney or Virgin. And proportionally very few will take a boutique river cruise distinctly off the beaten path. According to the report, 85% of travelers who have cruised would opt for the experience again, and the cruising industry as a whole continues to be one of the fasting-growing sectors of tourism with a forecast to grow by 19% within the next four years.

The lasting component of any mode of travel is often the cultural immersion it facilitates. Numerous surveys conclude that more than half of travelers find experiencing a destination as a local to be a high priority, and travelers considered a trip “wasted” if they don’t experience local culture. Smaller cruise ships are especially adept at providing these intimate experiences.

Guests can fully immerse themselves in the local culture.

For visitors to Vietnam and Cambodia, the Mekong River can feel worlds apart from the hustle and bustle of the city. The Mekong's floating markets, quaint boat-accessible villages, tranquil river inlets and historic temples all contribute to this unique experience. Through bespoke expeditions and programming offered by Heritage Line , guests can fully immerse themselves in the culture of the mighty Mekong. Riding ox-pulled carts through rice paddies, learning silk weaving alongside local artisans and meditating alongside monks in a Cambodian monastery are just a taste of Heritage Line’s authentic and tailored itineraries meant to bring its visitors closer than ever to the culture they are exploring.

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The dominant features of the Cambodian landscape are the large, almost generally located, Tonle Sap (Great Lake) and the Bassac River Systems and the Mekong River, the third longest in Asia, which crosses the country from North to South. The river then flows through Vietnam (the lower basin), fanning out across the tropical lowlands of the Mekong Delta then draining into the South China Sea.

The ship offers the luxurious facilities of a five-star resort.

Cruise on Heritage Line’s five-star vessels Jayavarman and The Jahan . Evoking the glory of former British-India, The Jahan cruises the lower Mekong River with 26 exquisitely designed staterooms and suites, all with large balconies. The ship offers all the luxurious facilities of a fine five-star resort throughout its three lavish passenger decks, of which the terrace deck offers guests a pool, two shaded sun lounger areas, open-air bar & lounge, spa, observatory lounge and elegant dining hall. Heritage Line’s Jayavarman merges wonderful French-Colonial ambiance with Khmer art throughout its interiors. 27 elegant staterooms and suites, all with private balconies, are spread over two decks. Luxury public facilities include the Club 1930 Funnel Bar and the ship’s elevated sun deck with pool, both prime open-air venues to kick back with wonderful river views.

A journey through the lower Mekong River includes unique, captivating experiences centered in both education and support of the local community. Guests can choose from three, four or seven nights. This classic Seven-Night Mekong River cruise – named The Lost Civilisation – combines places rarely visited with fantastic historical heritage sites. If offers a complete fluvial discovery of Vietnam and Cambodia along the Mekong with a combination of experiences one never will forget.

Travelers are treated to dance with classic Apsara performers.

Accompanied by local English-speaking guides, visitors will have the opportunity to visit the town of Cai Be to explore rice paper, rice cookies, rice wine and coconut candy production, taste fruit from a local family’s fruit garden on Tan Phong Island, weave water hyacinth plants into artistic crafts with a small village that supports itself fully on the art form, mingle with residents at local markets, meet with priests at a Cao Dai temple to learn more about the religion along the Mekong, dance with classic Apsara performers and more. In Tan Chau your personal rickshaw driver leisurely navigates through a network of streets, allowing you to observe workshops, street vendors, shops and the intriguing day-to-day activities of the locals.

Head to Phnom Penh, a city once renowned as the "Paris of the East." Despite its rapid development, it has retained much of its rustic charm and elegance. Phnom Penh is a remarkable city with a history and culture that spans centuries, still palpable at every street corner. Start with a cyclo ride, meandering through the town and then visit historic places such as the palace and the silver pagoda. Pause for a delightful lunch in town before continuing to visit one of the country's most famous history museums, "Sosoro," and concluding the tour with a leisurely stroll through the city's French quarter.

Spearheaded by Heritage Line founder John Tue Nguyen, who grew up on the Perfume River in the imperial city of Hue, Vietnam, the team behind Heritage Line is driven by the desire to share undiscovered parts and untold stories of the Southeast Asian River. Nguyen’s gentle dedication to the region affords passengers passengers the unique opportunity to visit these small villages that are often untouched by visitors and learn about their art forms.

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My slovenian friend refuses return visit to vietnam.

What's worth mentioning is that they visit Thailand every year, and they even got married there. I often want to ask why they haven’t return to Vietnam, but honestly, I haven’t asked them for fear that they would find it embarrassing to answer my question.

The above comment was left by reader Pham about tourists refusing to return to Vietnam for a second visit.

Many other readers have also expressed their views about this problem.

Reader Trang Nguyen said she had invited a foreign friend to Vietnam and arranged a seven-day itinerary to explore culture and cuisine. However, her friend "had a problem while visiting Vietnam" and shortened his trip to three days. Since then, she hasn’t ever invited him to visit the country again.

A reader identified as Nana wrote: "I really like going to Bali. First, there are direct flights. Second, there are many beach activities that are much cheaper than in Vietnam, for example paragliding, surfing, paragliding, scuba diving, fish watching and swimming with dolphins. Meanwhile, hotels in Bali are quite cheap."

Reader CrazyHand2947 wrote: "Travel consulting groups for tourists must honestly advise them on when and how to visit Vietnam for the greatest experience. For example, someone once asked me if they should travel to Vietnam right now? What I should say is: 'At this time the weather is very hot and not suitable for sightseeing. If you come to Ho Chi Minh City, you should rest in your room with air conditioner and only go out after 7 p.m. When traveling to Hanoi, you should come in the fall and winter.' If we want tourists to have the best experience, we should give them the best advice and treat them the way we would want to be treated."

Have you visited Vietnam and would you like to come back?

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