me and a friend want to travel next year in August to Vietnam.
We heard a lot about the monsoon rains during summertime, especially august. Is it really that bad?
We talk since years of this trip but now things getting serious. The main problem is, we both work and have only 3 weeks vacation, the last 2 august weeks and first september week. Every other date will be difficult.
Is there anything we should pay attention?
Expect it to be unbearably hot. You can't even begin to imagine. Even in winter it's awful there and this is coming from an Australian.
They call it monsoonal for a reason so yes, expect heavy rain which may very well flood or impede on your travelling, especially in rural areas. It'll probably be worse in the south.
3 weeks is probably enough time to enjoy yourself anyway, and it's not like it's impossible to travel there in August, just not the /best/ time is all. I recomend Hanoi, Nha Trang and Hue.
Obviously if it's rainy season you'll probably have to get all your vaccinations and consider antimalarial prophylaxis. When I went I didn't bother but I stayed mostly to the cities and it didn't rain too much. The rain also increases the risk of cholera and travellers diarrhoea.
Unless there's some stuff you really want to see I'd personally avoid HCM/Saigon, it's a shithole that has taken the worst aspects of vietnamese culture and combined them with the worst aspects of western culture. What you get is a dirty city with lots of traffic, everything is considerably more expensive than elsewhere and everyone is trying to rip you off.
Like all SEA countries generally it's pretty safe but be wary of scammers/pickpockets and so on, especially taxi drivers and those tuk-tuk drivers. Be careful crossing roads at first as well.
thanks, the last few days we readed a lot about the best travelling time in Vietnam, mostly every information was the same, August not the best time but still ok. The monsoon rains are heavy but not very long. The air moisture shall be quite high and for an european a challenge.
We wanted to start in Hanoi and Ha-Long bay. Which time do you recommend? Maybe we could get there in Decembre/January 2013/2014... is it a better time?
How long were you been in Vietnam?
Is the temparature/weather similar to Thailand?
Yeah, I loved Hanoi, definitely recomend it. Ha long bay is also pretty nice. The water was brown and dirty however, which was unfortunate, it could be so much more beautiful. Regardless it is still amazing.
I think if you can get a time that you're both available you might as well go for it, but I went in December. It was still pretty hot, and it rained every now and then (nothing heavy, mostly in Nha trang) but it was pretty nice around that time.
I was there for about 3 weeks? not long enough, Id love to go back and spend some more time in the north. Still, for a short trip its not too bad, we still got to see what we wanted to
I think so yes, although it seems more humid in most of vietnam, probably because of vietnams massive coastline.