Planning for a trip can be stressful but it also can be fun. What do I want to see/do? What do my friends want to see/do? What parts of the country is safe to go visit? What type of events is happening during this time? These were some of the question that needed to be answer after booking our flights to Vietnam in the beginning of 2016.
We went looking for answers by researching online and asking friends & family what their opinions were. We had an idea of all the places we would want to go visit. Ho Chi Minh, Da Nang, Hue, Hoi An, Nha Trang, & Ha Long Bay were all in our minds. Now it was time to plan our route.
Da Nang to Hoi An
For me, Da Nang was the obviously choice on where I wanted to start my trip alone. Beautiful beaches and stunning city lights as shown in this spectacular GoPro video produce by Mike Photography, I knew in heart that Da Nang had to be my first destination.
Hoi An to Da Nang
Going straight to Hoi An after Da Nang just made sense. It’s only about a 45 minute drive from Da Nang and at that time, my good friend Duy, who I am traveling around Vietnam, would be living in this town for about 4 months by now.
Da Nang To Hue (Thuan An)
We definitely couldn’t leave out Hue! This city was the hometown of my parents and it was my chance to see where my parents grew up.
As well as seeing my parents hometown, going to Hue was going to be one of my biggest memorable moment in my life. I was meeting my eldest sister for the first time in my 27 years of living on this planet!
Our plans however, was to stay there for three days max as Duy has visited Hue many times and mention that 3 days max would be enough time to explore. As well, friends and family back home mentioning that they thought 3 days was also plenty of time in Hue (Thuan An). Now, I’m talking about the village in Thuan An Hue, not the main city.
Hue to Nha Trang
After Hue, the plan was to fly to Nha Trang to see what all the hype was all about. Before leaving Canada and even being in Vietnam, friends, family, and the locals told me that I had
to visit Nha Trang. How stunning the beach was or how the seafood in Nha Trang is simply amazing.
The other reason for me personally was Vinpearl,
specifically the waterpark! Watching videos of this outdoor waterpark, I knew couldn’t miss this fun.
Nha Trang To Ha Long Bay
One of the 7 wonders of the world, so you bet it’s going on the list! We did realize that we would be going back and forth if we wanted to stop by Ha Long Bay but at the time, Ha Long Bay was something we didn’t want to miss out on.
Paul, my other good friend was supposed to meet us here at Ha Long Bay. He was only going for two weeks therefore we wanted to put this at the end of the trip so he’ll be able to see one of the 7 wonders of the world.
Ha Long Bay To Ho Chi Minh
Last stop on our itinerary, Ho Chi Minh, also known as Saigon! Since our flight back home to Canada was flying from Ho Chi Minh, it made sense to put this city last on the list.
We had plans to stay in this big beautiful busy city for about 10 days. We knew that this city had so much to offer in terms having a great night out that we decided to stay here the longest.
We wanted to stay in district 1 for eight nights and at the end of the trip, stay two nights at an incredibly fancy villa in district 7 that we found on airbnb.com. I will do a review for that villa in the near future; therefore stay tune for that post because you wouldn’t believe what happen to us!
How Did This Turn Out?
Having planned all this, there was a lot of changes that were made while we were there. Things popped up unexpectedly, family members urged us to stay longer, or that we just enjoyed a certain place more than expected and decided to stay longer.
You may be wondering, why plan at all if it’s going to change? I still believe it’s important to have a plan and try to stick to it as much as possible but also don’t let it determine how your travels will be. If an event pops up unexpectedly and you really want to go, move some stuff around and just do it!
What Did I Learn
What I’ve learned is that having a flexible plan is the best way to go. How I feel at this certain time will most likely different than how I will feel when I’m actually there. As a result, for future trips, I’ll keep planning as much as I can but make it more flexible because I know things will unexpectedly come up while there!