The Complete Guide To Planning Your 30 Day Vietnam Trip

A group of backpackers exploring the vibrant streets of Hanoi at night, capturing the bustling atmosphere with a DSLR camera.

Are you excited about a trip to Vietnam but feeling overwhelmed planning your itinerary? With its diverse landscapes and rich cultural experiencesspending 30 days in Vietnam is an adventure waiting to happen.

This guide will arm you with the essential information – where to go, how long to stay in each place, modes of transport and budgeting options – that you need for an unforgettable journey.

Ready for the time of your life?.

Key Takeaways

  • Spending 30 days in Vietnam is ideal for exploring the country’s diverse landscapes and rich cultural experiences.
  • The best time to visit Vietnam is during March and April, when the weather is pleasant and dry in most cities.
  • Buses are a cheap and convenient way to get around Vietnam, allowing you to explore both popular tourist attractions and off-the-beaten-path destinations.
  • Flying within Vietnam offers convenience and saves time, with many domestic airports available throughout the country.
  • Renting a car is an option for those who prefer more control over their itinerary, but it comes with additional costs such as fuel and parking fees.
  • Budget wisely by considering accommodation costs, tips for getting the best deals on flights and accommodations, and estimating a daily budget of $60 to $100 per person (excluding flights).
  • Popular destinations for a 30 – day trip include Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hoi An, Hue, Phong Nha, Dalat, and Ninh Binh.
  • Choose between traveling from North to South or South to North depending on personal preferences. Both routes offer amazing experiences!
  • Explore Northern Vietnam (Hanoi – Halong Bay – Sapa), Central Vietnam (Hue – Hoi An – Phong Nha), Southern Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City – Nha Trang), or go off-the-beaten-path with Tam Coc or Phu Quoc Island.

How Long to Spend in Vietnam

A diverse group of travelers explore the vibrant streets of Hanoi, capturing the bustling atmosphere with high-quality photography equipment.

Is 1 month enough time to fully explore all that Vietnam has to offer? Find out the best time to visit and how long you should plan for your trip.

How to travel Vietnam | 1, 2, 3 & 4 Week Itinerary BREAKDOWNS

Is 1 month enough time?

A diverse group of travelers explore the vibrant streets of Hanoi.

Spending one month in Vietnam is the best idea for a deep dive into the country’s rich culture and beautiful sights. This is just right to see both its calm green fields and busy cities.

So yes, 30 days will give you enough time to backpack from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. It lets you take in all the wonders of Vietnam from north to south without feeling rushed or missing out on anything crucial.

You can spend at least three days exploring Ho Chi Minh City alone! A month-long trip gives ample time for must-see highlights and hidden gems alike.

Best time to visit Vietnam

A woman wearing a traditional Vietnamese ao dai walks through a vibrant cherry blossom garden.

Vietnam is a great place to visit in March and April. The rain is less during this time, and it’s not too hotDecember through March are the cooler months. These months are ideal for visiting cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City as they tend to stay dry.

The weather all over Vietnam can change a lot because of its shape and size. Some areas get a lot of snow, while others remain warm all year round. So, before planning your trip, know the climate of the places you want to visit! This way you will enjoy your journey at any time of the year.

How to Get Around Vietnam

A busy city street in Vietnam captured in a vibrant and dynamic photograph.

There are several transportation options available for getting around Vietnam such as buses, limousines, motorbikes, flying, and renting a car.

HOW TO TRAVEL VIETNAM - The ONLY guide you'll need in 2023!


A vibrant city street with a colorful bus and diverse tourists bustling about.

Traveling by bus in Vietnam is a great idea. Many tourists love to use buses to see the sights. Buses are easy to find in many places. Yet, not all bus stops are seen by tourists. So keep your eyes open! You can reach different tourist attractions using local routes.

The best part? Buses are cheap! They are the most budget-friendly way for getting around the country. It’s perfect if you want low-cost travel options while seeing Vietnam up close.


A luxury black limousine parked in front of a modern hotel in a bustling city.

If you’re planning to travel around Vietnam, there are various modes of transportation available, but limousines are not commonly mentioned. Instead, popular options include buses, motorbikes, flying, and renting a car.

Buses are often used by travelers due to their affordability and extensive route network. Motorbikes can provide more flexibility and freedom for exploring the country’s landscapes.

If you prefer speed and convenience, flying is an option for traveling longer distances within Vietnam. Renting a car allows you to have control over your itinerary but may come with additional costs such as fuel and parking fees.


A woman explores the vibrant Vietnamese countryside on a motorbike, capturing breathtaking scenery along the way.

The article includes a complete guide to traveling Vietnam by motorbike. It provides information on the best route to taketips for buying a bikeexact costs involved, and favorite places to visit along the way.

The guide is considered essential for anyone planning to tour Vietnam on a motorcycle, whether they want to travel from south to north or vice versa. It covers important topics like visas, paperwork, routes, weather conditions, and top tips for riding in the country.

One of the standout suggestions in the article is making sure to purchase a good quality bike when embarking on this adventure. Surprisingly enough, motorcycles in Vietnam are quite affordable compared to other countries.


An airplane takes off against a stunning sunset sky, capturing the bustling atmosphere of the moment.

Flying is a convenient and efficient mode of transportation for getting around Vietnam during your 30-day trip. With several domestic airports located throughout the country, you have plenty of options for flying to different destinations within Vietnam.

Whether you’re looking to cover long distances quickly or simply want to save time traveling between regions, flying allows you to do so with ease. Major cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City also have international airports, making it easy for you to fly in and out of the country.

With numerous airlines operating in Vietnam, you’ll have a range of flight options to choose from when planning your travel itinerary. So consider including some flights in your trip to make the most of your time exploring this beautiful country.

Renting a car

A diverse group of friends poses beside a rental car in the bustling streets of Ho Chi Minh City.

Renting a car in Vietnam is a convenient way to get around and explore the country at your own pace. Foreigners are allowed to drive in Vietnam, so you can easily rent a car and hit the road.

Keep in mind that fuel charges are not included in the rental contract, so you will need to pay for fuel separately. If you prefer not to drive, you can also hire a driver along with the car.

This option costs around VND 2,300,000 per day and includes fuel costs and toll fees. There are various rental companies in Vietnam where you can book a car, including options for self-driving rentals specifically in Ho Chi Minh City.

Budgeting for Your Trip

A diverse group of travelers plan their budget for a trip while sitting around a map.

When planning your 30-day Vietnam trip, it’s essential to budget wisely to ensure you make the most of your time and money.


Accommodation costs

A woman working on her laptop in a budget hostel with a bustling cityscape as the backdrop.

During your 30-day trip to Vietnam, it’s important to budget for accommodation costs. On average, you can expect to spend around $42 per day or $1,178 for the entire trip. However, there are affordable options available that can help you save money.

Budget travelers can find basic hostels starting at as low as $5 per night. If you prefer more comfortable lodging, guesthouses and homestays range from $5 to $15 per night. In Ho Chi Minh City, accommodation budgets vary between $20 and $80 per night.

Keep in mind that specific costs for Sapa and Bai Tu Long Bay are not mentioned in the guide, so be sure to factor those into your overall expenses accordingly.

Tips for getting the best deals

  • Look for discounts and deals on accommodations, dining, and activities.
  • Compare prices from different sources to find the best value.
  • Consider traveling during the off – peak season when prices are usually lower.
  • Book your flights and accommodation in advance to take advantage of early bird discounts.
  • Use travel websites or apps to find special promotions or coupon codes.
  • Consider staying in guesthouses or hostels instead of hotels for a more budget-friendly option.
  • Eat at local street food stalls or small restaurants to save money on meals.
  • Take advantage of happy hour specials or meal deals offered by restaurants.
  • Negotiate prices at markets or street vendors for souvenirs or goods.
  • Research and plan ahead for free attractions, such as parks, museums, or cultural events.

Recommended budget for 30 days

For a 30-day trip to Vietnam, it is recommended to have a budget of $60 to $100 per day. This includes all your travel expenses, accommodation costs, sightseeing activities, dining options, and entertainment.

For budget travelers, the estimated cost per day can be around $30 to $60 per person. It’s important to note that these prices do not include flights or any miscellaneous expenses you may have during your trip.

Keeping this suggested budget in mind will help ensure that you have enough funds for an enjoyable and comfortable 30-day stay in Vietnam.

Where to Go in Vietnam for 30 Days

A breathtaking photo of rice terraces at sunrise in Sapa, showcasing the diversity of people and their surroundings.

For a 30-day trip in Vietnam, you have two options: traveling from North to South or from South to North. Both routes offer amazing destinations and experiences that you won’t want to miss.

North to South or South to North?

There are two options when it comes to planning your 30-day trip in Vietnam: traveling from North to South or from South to North. If you choose to start in Hanoi and end in Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll be following the popular route that many travelers take.

Hanoi has excellent international flight routes, making it a convenient starting point for your adventure. On the other hand, if you prefer starting in Ho Chi Minh City and ending in Hanoi, that is also an option.

Both itineraries provide information on transportation optionsrecommended places to stay, and things to do along the way. It really depends on your personal preferences and whether you want to explore the northern or southern regions first.

Popular destinations

Vietnam offers a variety of popular destinations to explore during your 30-day trip. Here are some must-visit places:

  1. Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon): Experience the vibrant energy of Vietnam’s largest city, with its bustling markets and historical sites like the War Remnants Museum.
  2. Hanoi: Immerse yourself in the charm of Vietnam’s capital city, with its ancient temples, picturesque lakes, and delicious street food.
  3. Halong Bay: Cruise through the stunning limestone karsts and emerald waters of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Don’t miss a visit to the captivating caves that dot the bay.
  4. Hoi An: Wander through the lantern-lit streets of this charming ancient town, known for its well-preserved architecture, traditional crafts, and mouthwatering cuisine.
  5. Hue: Dive into Vietnam’s imperial history by exploring the historic citadel and royal tombs in this former capital city.
  6. Phong Nha: Discover an underground wonderland in one of the world’s largest cave systems. Take a boat ride through Phong Nha Cave or go on an adventurous trek in Paradise Cave.
  7. Dalat: Escape to Vietnam’s “City of Eternal Spring,” famous for its temperate climate, beautiful lakes, and stunning flower gardens.
  8. Ninh Binh: Get lost in the natural beauty of this region as you cruise along its scenic rivers and admire towering limestone cliffs reminiscent of Halong Bay.

Recommended travel itineraries

Looking for the best travel itineraries for your 30-day trip to Vietnam? Here are some recommended options based on personal experiences and recommendations:

  1. Explore Northern Vietnam:
  • Start in Hanoi, the vibrant capital city.
  • Take a cruise through the stunning Halong Bay.
  • Head to Sapa for trekking and experiencing local hill tribes.
  1. Discover Central Vietnam:
  • Begin in Hue, home to ancient temples and imperial palaces.
  • Visit the charming town of Hoi An with its historic architecture.
  • Explore the beautiful caves in Phong Nha National Park.
  1. Experience Southern Vietnam:
  • Begin in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) and explore its bustling markets and historical sites.
  • Relax on the pristine beaches of Nha Trang.
  • Immerse yourself in the rich history of Cu Chi Tunnels.
  1. Off-the-Beaten-Path Itinerary:
  • Discover lesser – known gems like Tam Coc’s limestone caves and rice paddies.
  • Escape to the island paradise of Phu Quoc for sun, sand, and sea.

Useful Tips for Traveling in Vietnam

A photo of a vibrant market stall in Vietnam showcasing a spread of delicious street food.

Obtain your visa in advance to avoid any last-minute hassles. Familiarize yourself with the Vietnamese currency and keep an eye on the weather forecast for your trip. Read on for more essential tips to make your Vietnam adventure smooth and enjoyable!

Obtaining a visa

To visit Vietnam for your 30-day trip, you will need to obtain a visa. If you’re planning to work in Vietnam, remember that you must first get a work permit before applying for a visa.

The E-visa option is available and can be used for stays up to 30 days. It’s also possible to apply online for a tourist visa that is valid for 90 days. When entering Vietnam, it is recommended to get your visa upon arrival at one of the international airports in the country.

The application process involves completing an application form and paying the necessary fee. Make sure to check the validity period of your visa and plan accordingly.


The currency used in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (VND). You can also use US dollars in some hotels, restaurants, tours, and other services. When you arrive in Vietnam, you can exchange currency at hotels, tourist hotspots, or local banks.

It’s a good idea to withdraw some local currency for convenience. Just remember that there are no currency restrictions for entering Vietnam, but if you have more than VND 150,000,000 or $5,000 USD in foreign currency with you, it should be declared.


The weather in Vietnam varies depending on the region you visit. The best time to visit Vietnam is between November and April when the weather is mostly dry and pleasant. In central Vietnam, from February to August, you can expect sunny days with temperatures around 86°F (30°C).

However, in Hanoi and northern regions like Halong Bay and Sapa, it gets hot and humid from May to October. Stormy weather with temperatures over 30°C is common during this time. The southern part of Vietnam also experiences hot weather throughout the year.

So be sure to pack appropriate clothing for the different climates you may encounter during your trip.

Day 1-3: Ho Chi Minh City

A photo of the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral at sunset, showcasing its beauty and the lively atmosphere of the city.

When visiting Ho Chi Minh City for 1-3 days, you can explore the following:

  • Tourist attractions: Visit famous landmarks like the Reunification Palace, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the War Remnants Museum.
  • Sightseeing: Take a stroll in bustling neighborhoods like District 1 and enjoy the city’s vibrant atmosphere.
  • Cultural sites: Immerse yourself in Vietnamese culture by exploring pagodas and temples such as Jade Emperor Pagoda and Giac Lam Pagoda.
  • Vietnamese cuisine: Indulge in local delicacies like pho, banh mi, and fresh spring rolls at street food stalls or trendy restaurants.
  • Nightlife options: Experience the vibrant nightlife scene in District 1 with its rooftop bars, nightclubs, and live music venues.
  • Historical landmarks: Learn about Vietnam’s history by visiting historical sites like Cu Chi Tunnels and Independence Palace.
  • Travel tips: Use public transportation like buses or taxis to get around the city. Be cautious of your belongings in crowded areas.

Day 4-10: Central Vietnam

A beautiful sunset over the ancient city of Hoi An with a bustling atmosphere and diverse people.

Explore the stunning cities and natural wonders of Central Vietnam during days 4-10 of your trip.


Dalat is a popular tourist destination in Central Vietnam, located in the central highlands of Southern Vietnam. It is often included in a 4-day itinerary for tourists exploring this region.

In Dalat, you can visit attractions like the Valley of Love, historical sites, waterfalls, and lakes. There are tour packages and itineraries available specifically for 4 days in Dalat.

The cost for a 3-day tour typically starts at around $30 per person. One of the highlights of visiting Dalat is its pleasant weather conditions with cool temperatures throughout the year due to its high altitude location.

Nha Trang

Nha Trang is a popular coastal town in Central Vietnam known for its gothic architecture churchesChampa Kingdom, and Buddhist temples. This charming town boasts a 4km beach lined with mini hotels and beach attractions.

Nha Trang is the most popular beach destination in Vietnam, offering visitors a coastline of six kilometers to relax and enjoy. If you’re looking for adventure, you can also go island hopping or diving in the crystal-clear waters surrounding Nha Trang.

Hoi An

Hoi An is a charming and historic town in Central Vietnam that should not be missed on your 30-day trip. This ancient city is renowned for its well-preserved architecture, with buildings dating back to the 15th century.

As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hoi An offers a glimpse into Vietnamese history and culture. The town’s picturesque streets are lined with traditional buildings adorned with lanterns, creating a magical atmosphere.

Take a stroll through the quaint streets, visit colonial-era structures, and immerse yourself in the unique charm of this tourist destination.


Hue is an important stop on your 30-day Vietnam trip. Located in central Vietnam, it was once the capital of the country under the rule of the Nguyen Emperors. This historical city is known for its impressive architecture and cultural heritage.

The Imperial City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a must-visit attraction with its grand palaces, temples, and stunning gardens. Take a boat ride along the Perfume River to enjoy scenic views and visit traditional pagodas.

Hue offers a glimpse into Vietnam’s rich history and should not be missed during your trip.

Phong Nha

Phong Nha, located in central Vietnam, is a must-visit destination for its stunning natural beauty. This area is home to some of the most remarkable caves and limestone formations in the world.

The most popular attractions are Phong Nha Cave and Paradise Cave, both offering breathtaking views and experiences. One cave that shouldn’t be missed is Son Doong Cave, known as one of the largest caves on Earth.

In fact, Phong Nha is listed as a UNESCO heritage site due to its outstanding geological value. If you’re looking for an unforgettable adventure surrounded by nature’s wonders, Phong Nha should definitely be on your itinerary when exploring Central Vietnam.

Ninh Binh

Ninh Binh, located in central Vietnam, is a must-see destination known for its stunning natural beauty. The region is famous for its towering limestone cliffs and picturesque rice fields.

Exploring Ninh Binh allows you to witness the breathtaking karst formations and visit impressive caves. You can also immerse yourself in the peaceful atmosphere of temples and pagodas scattered throughout the area.

Don’t miss out on visiting Bai Dinh Pagoda, the largest pagoda in Southeast Asia. Ninh Binh offers a unique glimpse into the beauty of Vietnam’s countryside with its scenic landscapes and cultural treasures.

Day 11-20: Northern Vietnam

A picturesque landscape of vibrant rice paddies under a breathtaking sunset sky.

Explore the bustling city of Hanoi, cruise through the breathtaking Halong Bay, and trek through the scenic landscapes of Sapa. Don’t miss out on these unforgettable experiences in Northern Vietnam!


Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam, is a must-visit destination during your 30-day trip. The Hanoi Old Quarter, with its historic streets and French-colonial architecture, is a fascinating area to explore.

You can immerse yourself in Vietnamese culture by trying out the delicious local cuisine at street food stalls or visiting traditional markets like Dong Xuan Market. Don’t miss out on iconic sights such as Hoan Kiem Lake and the Temple of Literature.

If you’re interested in religious sites, consider taking a day trip to Bai Dinh temple, located just outside of Hanoi. With plenty of accommodation options available in different price ranges, you’ll have no trouble finding a place to stay that suits your budget and preferences.

When it comes to transportation in Hanoi, renting a motorbike is an efficient way to get around the city and visit nearby attractions like West Lake or Bat Trang Pottery Village. For longer distances within Northern Vietnam, consider taking scenic roads that lead to stunning destinations like Halong Bay or Sapa.

Halong Bay

Halong Bay is a must-visit destination in Northern Vietnam. This UNESCO World Heritage site is famous for its stunning limestone karsts and islands. With approximately 2000 karst and limestone islands and islets, Halong Bay offers breathtaking views that will leave you in awe.

It’s no wonder why it’s considered one of the New Seven Wonders of the World! Tourists from all over the globe flock to Halong Bay to experience its beauty firsthand. Whether you take a cruise or kayak through the bay, exploring Halong Bay will be an unforgettable adventure.


Sapa is a small hill station town in Northern Vietnam that is located near the border of China. It’s famous for its terraced rice fields, which offer breathtaking landscapes to explore.

The town itself embodies rich cultural diversity and is situated in the Lao Cai province of Vietnam. One of the highlights of Sapa is Fan Si Pan mountain, which stands as Vietnam’s highest peak.

Climbing to the top provides stunning views of the surrounding valleys and rice paddies, making it a must-visit destination during your 30-day trip to Vietnam.

Day 21-30: Optional Itinerary Suggestions

A diverse group of tourists exploring a vibrant local market in a bustling cityscape.

Explore the possibility of day trips and unique experiences to make the most out of your remaining days in Vietnam. Consider alternative itineraries for different lengths of stay, allowing you to customize your trip according to your preferences.

Day trips

During the last 10 days of your 30-day Vietnam trip, you’ll have the opportunity to go on some exciting day trips and explore even more of this beautiful country. There are plenty of options available depending on your interests and preferences.

You could visit the stunning Mekong Delta region, known for its vibrant floating markets and lush green rice paddies. Another option is a day trip to the Cu Chi Tunnels, where you can learn about Vietnam’s history during the war.

For nature lovers, a trip to Cat Ba Island in Halong Bay is highly recommended, with its breathtaking landscapes and opportunities for kayaking and hiking. If you’re looking for cultural experiences, consider visiting Hoi An Ancient Town or taking a boat tour in Ninh Binh to see its famous limestone karsts.

Unique experiences

During the last part of your 30-day trip in Vietnam, you’ll have the opportunity to engage in some unique experiences. One suggestion is to visit the picturesque green fields of Sapa, famous for its breathtaking scenery.

You can immerse yourself in the chaotic nature of Vietnam and then escape to the serene landscapes of Sapa. For adventurous backpackers, there are alternative itineraries that include popular highlights as well as off-the-beaten-path destinations.

Consider staying at a riverside lodge where you can enjoy exclusive cultural exchanges, guided cycling tours, and boat rides along the beautiful Vietnamese rivers.

Alternative itineraries for different lengths of stay

If you have a different amount of time for your Vietnam trip, here are some alternative itineraries to consider:

  • For a two-week trip:
  • Days 1-4: Explore Ho Chi Minh City
  • Days 5-7: Visit the beautiful beaches of Nha Trang
  • Days 8-10: Experience the charming town of Hoi An
  • Days 11-12: Discover the historic city of Hue
  • Days 13-14: Relax and enjoy the natural beauty of Phong Nha
  • For a 10-day trip:
  • Days 1-2: Start off in Ho Chi Minh City
  • Days 3-4: Spend time relaxing on the beaches of Nha Trang
  • Days 5-6: Immerse yourself in the culture of Hoi An
  • Days 7-8: Explore the ancient city of Hue
  • Days 9-10: Take in the stunning landscapes of Halong Bay
  • For a three-week trip:
  • Days 1-3: Begin your journey in Ho Chi Minh City
  • Days 4-6: Visit the central coastal cities of Da Nang and Hoi An
  • Day 7-9: Take a detour to explore the mountainous region of Dalat
  • Day 10-12: Continue north to experience the natural wonders of Ninh Binh
  • Day 13-15: Explore Hanoi’s rich history and vibrant culture.
  • Day16+: Embark on an overnight cruise in Halong Bay and venture into


For the last leg of your 30-day trip to Vietnam, you have some optional itinerary suggestions. These are customizable options that allow you to tailor your experience according to your preferences and interests.

You can explore hidden gems and lesser-known attractions in Vietnam’s lesser-explored areas. The focus is on relaxation and leisure, ensuring you make the most of your remaining days in this beautiful country.

Whether you want to discover unique experiences or take day trips to nearby destinations, there are plenty of off-the-beaten-path options for you to consider. So go ahead and create a flexible itinerary that suits your needs during the final days of your Vietnam adventure!


1. How long should my Vietnam trip be?

For a comprehensive experience, it is recommended to plan a 30-day trip to Vietnam.

2. What are the must-visit destinations in Vietnam for a 30-day trip?

Some must-visit destinations in Vietnam for a 30-day trip include Hanoi, Ha Long Bay, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh City, and the Mekong Delta.

3. Do I need a visa to visit Vietnam?

Yes, most visitors need a visa to enter Vietnam. It’s best to check with your local Vietnamese embassy or consulate for specific requirements and procedures.

4. Is it safe to travel alone in Vietnam?

While traveling solo in Vietnam can be safe, it’s always important to exercise caution and take necessary precautions such as staying aware of your surroundings and avoiding isolated areas at night.

5. How much does it cost on average for a 30-day trip to Vietnam?

The cost of a 30-day trip to Vietnam can vary depending on factors such as accommodation choices, transportation options, activities undertaken, and personal spending habits. Generally, budgeting around $50-$100 per day (excluding flights) is reasonable for mid-range travelers.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *