Top 10 most adventurous things to do in Vietnam
If you are an adventurous head, make sure you don't miss out on top 10 off-the-beaten-path experiences to explore Vietnam, your way.
If you are an adventure traveler, looking for things that are out of the convention while enjoying picturesque landscapes, then Vietnam is your next destination to visit. I will walk you through the top 10 most adventurous things to do moving from the South to the North region of Vietnam, which will surely blow your mind. From interesting outdoor activities to adrenaline-rush sports, this beautiful country has everything to offer.
Scuba diving in Phu Quoc
Most of the Phu Quoc visitors rated scuba diving as their must-try once-in-a-lifetime experience. Phu Quoc coral reefs are known as one of the most beautiful coral carpets in Vietnam with an area of up to 480ha and more than 360 diversified species of hard and soft corals.
This Pearl Island is also home to nearly 152 fish species, 98 species of seaweed, and other aquatic animals. Scuba diving tours allow tourists to explore the underwater wonder in 30 minutes, and at no more than 5-meter dive. The most famous coral spots in Phu Quoc are Ganh Dau, Bai Thom, Hon Thom island, An Thoi island.
- How to get there: You can book a 1-hour flight from Ho Chi Minh city that costs around 1,200,000 VND – 2,000,000 VND for a roundtrip ticket.
- Best season to visit: Dry season from November to April with a calmer and clearer sea will make the diving experiences more complete.
Explore Cai Rang floating market in Can Tho
Floating market is the unique gem of Wetlands that can only be found in a few countries. Cai Rang floating market is among the biggest and most famous ones in the Mekong Delta. With the diversity of cultures from different ethnic groups – Kinh, Cham, Khmer,..etc.
This attraction embraces the beauty of cross-cultural values with colorful lifestyles, and various Western Vietnam-unique food specialties that will excite all of your senses.
- How to get there: Take a 4-hour bus from Ho Chi Minh city to Can Tho city. FromNinh Kieu station, you can book another boat to explore the Cai Rang floating market. The ticket price for a boat ranges from 300,000 VND to 700,000 VND.
- Operating hours: 5:00 AM – 12:00 PM. The best time to visit here is from 5:00 AM – 8:30 AM when the weather isn’t too hot and the market is at its busiest hours.
- Best season to visit: Any season is good but if you want to explore the unique flooding season of Western Vietnam, August - November is the perfect timing.
Check out Local Insider's Complete Guide to explore Cai Rang Float Market.
Discover Can Gio mangroves forest.
If you are a wildlife and nature lover, don’t miss out onCần Giờ Biosphere Reserve. Located around 60 km from Ho Chi Minh city, the mangroves forest was listed as a global reserve biosphere by UNESCO in 2000. The site is home to over 150 botanical species and approximately 18 mollusks, 27 crustaceans, 45 fish, and 3 amphibian species.
With such a diversified natural ecosystem, you will find yourself immersed in a peaceful atmosphere full of fresh air and the wild beauty of one of the most signature mangroves forests in SouthEast Asia.
- How to get there: You can either get to Can Gio by motorbike, car or bus. It only takes around 1.5hours ride.
- Best season to visit: Dry season from November to April
Kitesurfing in Mui Ne
Mũi Né is known as the beach resort capital of Vietnam, owning a long, palm-lined stretch of sand with steady win conditions in the dry season. Mui Ne has the perfect combination of golden sand, shiny sunlight, and deep blue sea, making it the top destination for windsurfing, kitesurfing, sailing, and many other water sports.
Many kitesurfing schools can help with beginner instruction, like C2Sky Kitesurfing Vietnam, Vietnam Kiteboarding School, and Jibe's Beach Club. A beginner course usually takes around 2 hours at 1,000,000 VND, including a surfing board, leash, and trainer.
- How to get there: It will take a 4-hour bus from Ho Chi Minh city with ticket fees ranging from 90,000 VND – 130,000. You can choose from the two most popular bus companies, Phuong Trang and Sinh Cafe to get to Mui Ne.
- Best time for kitesurfing: From November to April with a reliable northeast wind blowing.
Canyoning in Da Lat
Da Lat has been famous for its unique harmony of the dreamy highland beauty and the majestic natural landscapes. Besides the beautiful scenery with pine trees and hills, lovely coffee shops, and delicious foods, Da Lat's spectacular waterfalls are the top go-to destinations for adventurers. Canyoning involves rappelling down the dry and wet cliffs, jumping off the cliff, water sliding,…etc. If you want to put your courage to the test then the canyoning tour is perfect for you.
To take part in this adventure, you will be fully equipped with some necessary protective items including wetsuits, helmets, harnesses, life jackets, gloves, and so on. The tour guide will instruct you on how to use this equipment safely as well as teach you some manipulative skills. One important note is that only people with good physical health and without injury are allowed to join the tour.
Tour agencies to contact:
- Lat Adventure Tour: https://adventuredalat.com/ - 50 USD/pax
- Viet Challenge: https://thuthachviet.com/ - 75 USD/pax
- Viator: https://www.viator.com/ - 82 USD/pax
Visit Bach Ma National Park
Bach Ma, a paradise for nature lovers, is among the top must-visit national parks of Vietnam. This is the only strip of primeval forest lying across the East Sea to the Vietnam – Laos border. This beautiful park is 1,200 meters above sea level and approximately 22,000 square kilometers large. Bach Ma is endowed with varied landscapes, waterfalls, cool forests, and flowering rhododendrons.
With the highest peak at 1,448 meters, the temperatures here are fantastic and pleasant all year round. Vong Hai Dai (Sea Observation Post), Ngu Ho (Five Lakes), Do Quyen waterfall (Rhododendron Waterfall), ancient French villa, “Hobbit” village are the most popular attractions of the park. Vong Hai Dai is the highest spot in Bach Ma national park. You can admire the splendid panoramic view of Lang Co bay, Truoi lake, and cloudy Bach Ma mountains from this place.
- How to get there: From Hue city, you can travel to Bach Ma national park by bike or taxi in a 1-hour drive.
- Entrance ticket: 60,000 VND/adult and 20,000 VND/kid
- Best time to visit: From December to April is the dry season with low rainfall.
Caving in Son Doong
Since its discovery in 2009, Son Doong has been the world’s largest, most majestic, and magnificent natural cave. Son Doong owns one of the world’s most unique natural ecosystems with two enormous cave roof collapses and underground forests. There are various unusual cave formations including giant cave pearls, towering stalagmites, and phytokarst.
With such an extraordinary ecosystem formed around 3 million years ago, this phenomenal nature’s gem will surely be a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you don’t want to miss out on. To preserve the beauty of this world’s wonder, Son Doong is only open for 1000 tourists a year, so you better book your trip early in advance. Currently, Oxalis Adventure is the only agency allowed to operate adventure tours in Son Doong. A 4-day expedition will cost around 3,000 USD.
- How to get there: You can book a 1.5-hour flight from Ho Chi Minh City to Dong Hoi, Quang Binh then take a 1-hour ride to Son Doong Bungalow in Phong Nha.
- Best time to visit: The tour is only available from January – August due to annual flooding.
Join Vietnam trail marathon in Moc Chau
Located in the Northern mountainous area of Vietnam, Moc Chau plateau is known for stunning blossoms, peach orchards, and tea plantations. In the spring season. Moc Chau is at its fullest beauty in the spring season with blooming white plum blossoms that can be seen everywhere, from villages to hills This is also the operating time of the exciting trail marathon in Moc Chau – VietNam Trail Marathon (VTM).
The race has been attracting thousands of runners and travelers to join in wonderful nature immersion marathon experiences. VTM is a part of the Vietnam Trail Series organized by Topas Travel, a Denmark travel company founded in 1973. The running course covers a variety of trails and landscapes, running through famous orchards filled with stunning ripe fruits and peach blossoms.
You can totally tailor your race,ranging from 5km to 42km, no matter if you are a beginner or an experienced runner.
- How to join the race: Visit https://vietnamtrailseries.com/trail-marathon/ to see more details on the fee, race date, and book your ticket.
Trekking & hunting cloud in Sapa
Sapa,the town of clouds, is a beautiful small mountain town located in Northwest Viet Nam. It is home to different tribal ethnic groups including Hmong, Dao, Tay, Giay, and Xa Pho. Being blessed with awe-inspiring natural beauty, Sapa has been one of the most alluring destinations of VietNam.
One of the top activities to do in Sapa is trekking for its gorgeous landscapes with iconic rice paddle fields, lush valleys, and majestic mountain ranges. There are many different trekking routes you can choose to explore in Sapa. Lao Than, Ta Chi Nhu will be more suitable for first-time trekkers while Ta Xua, Bach Moc Luong Tu will be a more challenging route for experienced ones.
- How to get there: From Hanoi, you can take an 8-hour train to Lao Cai station then get to Sapa from there. Another option is traveling by bus which will take around 6 hours to get to Sapa.
- Best time to trek: September – November is the perfect time for trekking in Sapa. The weather is cool with little rain. It’s also the perfect season for cloud hunting.
Ride through Ha Giang on a motorbike
Ha Giang lies in Vietnam's remote far northern region, famous for its majestic mountains, terraced fields, and blooming valleys of flowers. The Ha Giang Loop is referred to as one of the most breathtaking motorbike loops in North Vietnam.
With its jaw-dropping canyons and awe-inspiring mountain passes, exploring this province through a road trip on a two-wheeled bike would be a dream come true for daring travelers. The recommended time to complete the full loop is approximately 3-4 days to be able to soak yourself in the incredible sightseeings and the colorful vibes of ethnic minority villages.
- How to get there: From Hanoi, the best way to get to Ha Giang is to book a sleeper night bus at 400,000 VND.
- Best time to visit: January – April is the best time to visit Ha Giang with the spring’s flowers blooming. If you want to admire the iconic buckwheat flowers season then from late September to early November is the perfect period to visit.