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Vietnam is a country of contrasts, from the beautiful sandy beaches of the south to the esoteric beauty of Halong Bay and from the fertile farmland around the Mekong Delta to the hill-tribe forests in the north, the country has something to offer every traveller. The timeless temples and pagodas stand beside vibrant skylines in Saigon and Hanoi, whilst in cities such as Hue and Hoi An, time seems to have stood still.

The capital Hanoi is the centre of the arts in Vietnam and has world-class museums, theatres and cultural shows while Ho Chi Minh in the south (which most people still refer to as Saigon) is the business hub of the country, though no less interesting. The imperial city of Hue along with nearby Hoi An offer an insight into Vietnam's long and interesting past with lots of traditional architecture and much more relaxed feel.

Our carefully put together Vietnam group tours guarantee to leave you with a longing to return to Vietnam and whilst our tours do visit the most popular tourist sites, there is lots more to see and do on a return trip!


Tour Name Tour Type Days Start Date Price


When is the best time of the year to visit Vietnam?

The best time to visit Vietnam is spring (February to April) and autumn (August to October). During these seasons the temperatures are milder, and rainfall is much lighter.

Is it safe to visit Vietnam?

Overall, Vietnam is a safe country to visit and there are hardly reports of muggings or robberies.

What is the official currency of Vietnam?

The official currency of Vietnam is the Vietnam dong and because the dong is tied to the US dollar, you can use dollars at most hotels.

What should you wear in Vietnam?

If you are visiting temples or religious sites, you should wear conservative clothing, otherwise there are no cultural concerns when it comes to inappropriate clothing.

Can you drink the tap water in Vietnam?

The tap water is not safe to drink in Vietnam and you should only drink bottled, filtered or boiled water.


The trip was excellent and very well run, we have no complaints it was exactly as we expected.The guide was knowledgable and courteous, it ran on time and accommodation was fine.We have no complaints and have now booked again to go to India.
The trip was as above and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, all destinations were as expected and lived up to our expectations.We went with the idea of visiting Turkey and especially Gallipoli which achieved our goals.The historical part of thetrip was very well done and memmorable.

My experience with Encounters was excellent from start to finish. The Tour Guide, Sheriff, was the most passionate, enthusiastic and professional guide I have ever had on a tour and his love for Egypt really made me enjoy my time so much more.
I was cautious about arriving in Egypt given the current circumstances about the country, but felt safer that I did living in London as soon as I arrived. All of the Encounters staff are very professional.

Ant provided excellent service. He always responded as quickly as he could, attending to the questions I had for him. He was also very patient and pleasant. I depended on his knowledge and service to make the trip.
I liked the service and the tour guide & driver on the tour. They were professional and provided very good service. I thought 1-2 hotels on the trip were not quite 4-star. It also happened that this group of people was always late for schedule and our walk pace was too slow. It really needs the guide to make people on schedule and be punctual for the activity. Overall I think the time management of this tour needs improvement.

Encounters Travel did such a superb job in organizing this tour. I had never heard of them before going on the Maldives Magic tour, however now I will recommend them to friends/family and use them for my future planned trips.
Our tour is what made the trip that much more memorable. Rather than being plopped at a westernized resort, we were able to get a taste of how the locals live, eat and entertain themselves. We stayed in quaint guesthouses on the islands amongst the locals, ate authentic Maldivian cuisine (one day even with a Maldivian family who made us breakfast), and viewed a traditional dance/singing performance which was absolutely delightful. This was a trip of a lifetime that I will never forget.

This is our first travel through Encounters Travel and so far the arrangement is working very well. Our travel is not until April 2017 so I am more than hopeful all will continue to run as smoothly as it has so far.


Vietnam Country Guide

Vietnam Country Guide Flag


Time: GMT+7
Dial Code: +84
Area: 331,210 km²
Elevation: The lowest point in Vietnam is the South China Sea 0m | The highest point in Vietnam is Fansipan 3,144m (10315 ft.)
Population: 96,491,146 (2018)
Capital: Hanoi
Governemnt: Unitary state, Communist state, One-party state, Socialist state
Language: Vietnamese

Vietnam, officially known as the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, is the easternmost country on the Indochina Peninsula. It is the 15th-most populous country in the world and the ninth-most populous Asian country. Vietnam is bordered by China to the north, Laos to the northwest, Cambodia to the southwest, Thailand across the Gulf of Thailand to the southwest and Malaysia, Indonesia and Philippines across the South China Sea to the east and southeast.

The capital city of Vietnam is Hanoi, and Ho Chi Minh is the most populous city. From 111 BC to 939, AD the northern part of Vietnam was part of Imperial China. It was only in 939 AD that Vietnam became an independent state. Vietnam's landscape is mostly mountainous and woodland. In the northern part of the country, the land is mainly highlands and the highest mountain in Vietnam, Phan Xi P?ng, is found in the Lào Cai Province.

Two World Natural Heritage Sites are in Vietnam including Ha Long Bay and Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. The high level of biodiversity in Vietnam is seen as unique and it is ranked 16th worldwide in biological diversity, being home to approximately 16% of the world's species.

The official language spoken in Vietnam is Vietnamese, which is a tonal Mon-Khmer language spoken by most of the population. It has been noted that in its early history, Vietnamese was written using Chinese characters and only in the 13th century did the Vietnamese develop their own set of characters.


  • Ninh Binh – a city in the Red River Delta of Northern Vietnam, known for its limestone peaks.
  • Hanoi’s Old Quarter – a part of Hanoi that has existed since Imperial times with narrow, winding streets.
  • Sa Pa – a town in the Hoàng Liên Son Mountains and a trekking base overlooking rice fields.
  • Viet Cong Cu Chi tunnels – a vast labyrinth of connected underground tunnels built during the Vietnam War.
  • Mekong Delta – located in the south of Vietnam, this assortment of rivers features floating markets.
  • Nam Cat Tien National Park – an expansive lowland tropical forest and biosphere reserve in Southern Vietnam.
  • War Remnants Museum – a war museum in Ho Chi Minh that features displays relating to the Vietnam War.
  • The Temple of Literature – home to the Imperial Academy, which is Vietnam’s first university dating back to 1070.


  • Be prepared to haggle, as there are no fixed prices in markets and some shops.
  • The roads in Vietnam are dangerous and chaotic, so it is best to explore with an experienced driver.
  • Master some useful Vietnamese greetings and phrases to interact with the locals.
  • Petty theft and purse snatching are common so keep an eye on your belongings.
  • Bring earplugs for sleeping in the bigger cities, as the noise can be overwhelming.
  • Always eat from stalls where the food is prepared on the spot and cooked hot.
  • Watch out for taxi scams where the taxis have rigged meters and charge you more.
  • Always ask permission before taking a photograph of a person or a place of worship.

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Our tailor-made tours seek to create a personalised experience – one that is completely exclusive to you. By taking all your interests and requests into consideration, we design an itinerary that ticks off your specific boxes. If you are after adventurous exploration, cultural immersion, a relaxing escape or a balanced blend of everything, we can make it happen.

A highlight of our tailor-made tours is that the itinerary is flexible and incorporates plenty of free time – so you can do some exploring on your own. Our local, friendly guides, experts in their country’s history and culture, will be happy to adjust the activities or your schedule as you travel.

If you are a group of friends, a large family or a company, our tailor-made tours are an ideal, stress-free option. You can even select your own hotels or make use of our recommended accommodation. We have a varied selection of sample holiday itineraries to choose from, either as they stand or as a base for inspiration.


Our video features aim to bring our adventure tours to life in a way that no photo can, giving you a great taste of the destination.


Need some travel inspiration or looking for some handy travel tips? Our blog provides excellent insight into our travel destinations - from tour updates to country guides, packing lists to little known things to do, you'll find it all in our travel blog. By: Kirsty Blakeley 2016-08-17 18:00:00

Halong Bay Junk Boats

In Vietnam

We have carefully selected a range of different junk boats to use on Halong Bay. Details of our favourites are given below.

Read More 0 Comments By: Martin Hosie 2016-01-10 20:00:00

Vietnam travel guide

In Vietnam

Tours in Vietnam may take in the beautiful sandy beaches of the south or the breathtaking beauty of Halong Bay, the fertile lands of the Mekong Delta or the hill-tribe forests in the north.

Read More 0 Comments