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Guide For Traveling To Vietnam During Peak Season

Vietnam is one of those tourist sites in the world, blessed with beautiful landscapes and a friendly community. Vietnam is an elongated country located in the Indo-China peninsula. It has divided into three main climate zones; north, central, and South Vietnam. Being partly affected by the oceanic climate, the weather of Vietnam gets usually influenced by the monsoon season.  Each of the climate zones has distinctive weather conditions, and hence, the ideal time to visit Vietnam during peak season varies accordingly.

The best time to visit Vietnam is at any time during the year, and the best time depends on your interest and what you want to engage and enjoy in Vietnam. In general terms, February to April (Spring Season) and August to October (Autumn Season) are the best time to visit Vietnam. During these two seasons, Vietnam will experience low rainfall.  These seasons are excellent for outdoor activities, such as cycling, trekking, and beach activities.  You can find the intensity of climate change is low in South Vietnam, but North Vietnam will have substantial climate changes.

In the following article, we shall discuss the climate and weather changes in Vietnam as a whole and how to travel to Vietnam during the peak season.

Guide For Traveling To Vietnam During Peak Season

Visa Formalities for Vietnam:
As per the rules, one must have a valid passport, and the validity should be six months beyond the planned stay in Vietnam. Your passport also should have one blank page for stamping the visa.

Travelers are requested to apply for the visa using their convenient mode of application by visiting the Vietnamese embassy or visa on arrival, which is an electronic visa. The processing time limit for an e-visa is approximately 3 days, and the fee is $20. One can apply for a 30-day tourist visa. Once you submit the document online, you will receive a confirmation by email about the same along with a confirmation number. With the visa on arrival confirmation, you can get the visa stamped at the international airport. The visa stamping at the entry counter will cost you $25.

Visa on arrival facilities are available only at the international airports in Hanoi – Noi Bai International Airport, Ho Chi Minh City – Tan Son Nhat International Airport, and Danang International Airport. You can seek the services of reputed travel agencies, which can facilitate visa on arrival service, transit, accommodation, and tour packages.
Now, let us look at the different weather highlights of Vietnam:

1.    North Vietnam: Sapa, Halong Bay, Hanoi, Mai Chau, Ninh Binh, Mu Cang Chai, and Ha Giang
The wet season shows a recess in North Vietnam during the beginning of October peak season, and as a result, the climate will change to cold and dry winter, which is expected to touch 26 degrees. The weather in some regions of Sapa and Ha Giang will remain dry and cleaner, thus opening a lot of options for trekkers to explore through the mountains. 

The best time to visit North Vietnam is between March-May and September – November, wherein you will experience the end of summer and the beginning of winter. You will also get to see partial spring in specific locations. Hanoi, Sapa, and Halong Bay are very popular during these months as you can enjoy the scenic beauty, spending a night on the laze of a junk boat surrounded by warm water and clear skies.

What to pack:
•    Cotton clothes
•    Warm stoles
•    Sturdy shoes
•    Sunblock
•    Backpack
•    Jackets & sweaters
•    Raincoat (if it drizzles)
•    Gloves & Hat

2    Central Vietnam: Central Highlands, Dalat, Quy Nhon, Nha Trang, Hue, Danang & Hoi An
The climate in Central Vietnam varies in different locations. Months between January and August are excellent for planning a trip to Central Vietnam since one can experience a moderate coastal climate. October – November are usually rainy season, while May and August are known as the hot months. A trip to Hoi An is ideal during February – July as the old town and its beaches will have full of leisure activities.

What to pack:
•    Sunblock
•    Backpack
•    Sturdy shoes
•    Beachwear
•    Cotton clothing

3    South Vietnam: Phu Quoc, Con Dao, Long Hai, Ho Tram, Mekong Delta, Mui Ne, Phan Thiet & Ho Chi Minh City
South Vietnam is an ideal location for planning your tour program, irrespective of the weather condition. The temperature will be moderate during the whole year, and you can face two types of climate here, the dry and wet.  The average temperature in the region will be between 25-35°Celsius throughout the year.

The dry season starts in November and will remain until the first part of May. During this period, February and May, the climate will be hit hot and humid. The best time to visit this region is between December and April as the weather will remain to be warm and comforting. In such a climate, you can actually take up to the rooftop bars that allow dozens of scenic views from every location. May to November first week are the wet season of the region, and during June, July, and August, you can experience heavy rains, which are short-lasting and happens afternoon.

What to pack:
•    Cotton clothes
•    Sunblock
•    Backpack
•    Sturdy shoes
•    Boots
•    Raincoat

Important events/celebrations during the peak season - (October – April)

Tet Nguyen Dan (New year -lunar) – January or February
It is one of the most important Vietnamese New Year celebrations, celebrated in grand style all across Vietnam.It is a national holiday, and one can enjoy the street parties and be a part of the festivities. Lavish fireworks are yet another attraction, and it is a reunion time for friends and relatives.

Venue: Capital city Hanoi

DIFF: Danang International Fireworks Festival – April
Locals and international participants come together during this time and light up the city with amazing colors and creative fireworks. Every year with a new theme, the competition continues to remain challenging.
Venue: Central Da Nang City, along with Da Nang's Han River.

The Hue Festival – April or May (Alternate years)
Film screenings, Kite flying, Art exhibitions, Street performance, Poetry nights, Fashion shows, etc., are some of the arrangements that you should be looking up to during this festival.

Venue: Hue

Quest Music Festival – November
It is a festival of three days of music, costume parades, and crafts. You will find different genres, styles, and variants of music at this festival.

Venue: Son Tinh Camp, 40km from Hanoi.

Hoi An Lantern Festival – 14th day of Lunar month
Thousands of lanterns and candles lit up during this festival along the streets of Hoi An as an expression of celebration, along with traditional music, lantern making sessions and poetry readings. It's a must-watch if you're in the city during this festival.

Venue: Ho An

Other important destinations:
Dalat – A city with cool weather, scenery, misty valley, lush pine, and colorful flowers, Dalat is a charming site of the country. Many Vietnamese emperors and French colonials had their footprints here, thus making it historically significant.

December to March is the best time to visit the location where you can find fully bloomed landscapes. 
Mekong Delta – It is a place known for fruit orchards, colorful floating market, rice paddies, bird sanctuaries, sugar-cane groves, and quaint villages. Nicknamed as Vietnam's Rice Basket, the place is an agricultural region,moves along the rhythm of the Mekong River.

September to November is the best time to visit, because of the floating season.

Nha Trang – Popularly known as the seaside resort city, this place offers beaches, picturesque mountains, and lush-full islands to adore and explore. The best season to visit Nha Trang is between February and May.

Hanoi – The booming capital of Vietnam has its heart in the Old Quarter of this city. Ancient pagodas, French colonial buildings, and the open-air museum that still hold the reminiscent of the Vietnam War are some of the exciting locations; a tourist can explore. 

February to April and October to November are the best season to visit Hanoi.

Ha Long Bay – It is known for aqua green water and rocky limestone islands with dense rainforests.  Ha Long Bay attracts tourists who are into adventurous expeditions, like rock climbing, hiking, etc. It is also one of the best locations for scuba diving. You can take your time and explore this place, and you will find new things about the city, each time.

October to December is the best season to visit Ha Long Bay.

Conclusion:
Vietnam is one of the best tourist destinations in the world that can meet the expectations of most of the travelers.Whether you are beach lover or into adventurous explorations or want to sync in the beauty of nature, each region of this country has a place to enjoy, rejuvenate and learn more about the culture of Vietnam. Since Vietnam has various climates; hence, plan your tour in advance by checking the seasonal changes and make your journey a happy and memorable one.

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