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8 best experiences only will you get in Vietnam 1

Landing on this peaceful country, you have no idea whether there is anything exploding that you could try? Here comes the list of 8 best experiences in Vietnam that you may not find somewhere esle. I say they are the best but no 2 best experiences are alike as we all know. 

Picking nipa palm in Mekong Delta

8 best experiences only will you get in Vietnam 2

Photo by Phát Hàng Mã

Mekong Delta has more things to talk about rather than pagodas and floating markets though. This region is home to unique aquatic ecosystem and unique exprience of picking nipa palm on a boat would be your best experiences you could ever try.

Nipa palm is a strange fruit to you, travelers, only to be found in the southern Vietnam and Malaysia. We would say that in the first meet it doesn’t seem like an edible one. However, nipa palm is one familiar snack of children in rural area of Mekong Delta, whose taste has a kind of sweetness and pleasant fatty. The shell of nipa palm fruit is very hard and thick, it’s usually splitted, take out and eat raw. Sometimes the Vietnamese mix with sugar, condensed milk and use together with ice as a drink.

We went on a boat of a local family in Long An province, as I remmembered. The small boat lead us to a nipa palm forest which half of the tree is under water, the fruit & leaf are another half above the water. With a hanful cutting by a knife, my local friend got a bunch full of the fruits. At his back yard, we were really excitied to see what inside the fruit. When it was cut into 2 halves, there come a fatty, slightly transparent coconut-like meat. It was a little bit warm (maybe because of the sun of summer time). One of our best experiences so far. 

Try best experiences of culture travel with a shot of “Cần” wine in Tay Nguyen

8 best experiences only will you get in Vietnam 3Walk long enough through the night market or tourists shop in Central Highlands of Vietnam, you will eventually spot “Cần” wine in big earthenware jug,  fermented for at least one month with strong volume. We’re not sure if you are a fan of liquor, but “Cần” wine is so sacred to the local people and eventually becomes a culture of “Cần” wine around the Central Highlands.

Visit Da Lat, the most famous spot in Central Highlands here

A jug of “Cần” wine contain simply available ingredients and herbs, mixed together and let fermented for a month before it can be served. In tradition of minorities in the Central Highlands, “Cần” wine is not daily served but only used in special ceremonies and drunk in the villages communal house. The drinking order prescribes and you can join the crowd dancing while trying a shot of this cultural stuff.


Join a Traditional Vietnamese wedding

Of course we do not mention the modern and Christian-like style of wedding, but the traditional Vietnamese wedding. It will become your best experiences if you have a chance to be invited to a friend’s traditional wedding in Vietnam. Basically a Vietnamese wedding requires lots of formal celebrations and the newly wedded also very covered up with their important day.

After the formal part, the groom and bride will walk around the wedding hall while receiving wishes from relatives and guests. The bride also wears wedding dress and Ao Dai – the traditional costume on her special day, while the groom tries on his best suit. Vietnamese people like live performances and it is an unmissable part of the wedding. 


Visit one traditional handicraft village

Famous for its long-term history, Vietnam prides itself of thousands of handicraft villages around the country with wonderful workmanship and honorable culture. These villages have been preserved for generations and a large number of high quality products from these craftspersons are exported abroad. We can mention Bat Trang ceramics village (Hanoi), Ben Tre coconut candy village (Ben Tre), Van Phuc silk village (Hanoi), Dong Ho painting village (Bac Ninh), Phu Vang conical hat village (Hue),… are among the most famous handicraft village for your best experiences. All the skillful products show their origin’s enthusiasm and traditional pride, making handicraft villages the unmissable spot for you to pay a visit.

Let yourself on a basket boat in Hoi An

Paddling basket boat and go through coconut forest is scored as one of the best experiences you can try in a trip to Vietnam. Nothing is more engaging than joining with local fishermen and enjoy hand-on acquaintance. 

The tour guide also guide you how to control a basket boat and you can enjoy it for yourself after some first tries. The surrounding wetland ecosystem of Hoi An attracts your eyes at the first glance and this unique activity would turns to become your wonderful memory at all. 


 Wearing Ao dai

Ao Dai is the Vietnamese most famous costume. It symbolizes beauty, elegance, and eventually national identity. Usually Ao dai is worn by women, but surprisingly, in fact it also has male version too. Men’s Ao dai is not usually used and nowadays dedicated to special occasions as New Year holidays, wedding day. Putting on the traditional Ao dai and walk down the street, enjoy being a local may be your pick on a cozy day in Vietnam. 

Hue Citadel – dine on imperial cuisine

A very unique imperial experience you can not miss when in Hue:  try on royal clothes, seat on a table of imperial palace and eat as the Nguyen Dynasty royals. It is rather rare to find the imperial cuisine of Hue (Huế) outside this ancient city, so you had better take advantage of it whilst being there. The remnants of imperial cuisine have taken its step into the food of commoners. Those so-called banh beo (Bánh Bèo), banh nam (Bánh nậm), or banh khoai (Bánh Khoai), banh gion (Bánh Giòn) are listed in the menu of modest restaurants. Besides royal cuisine, you should not ignore Hue ancient architecture with imperial buildings and tombs.

Drop flower lights on river in Hoi An

Looking for the best experiences in central Vietnam? Needless to say, this magical sence must be the thing you don’t want to miss. Night falls down then comes the time of flower lights twinkling on the Hoai River. Especially when you visit Hoi An in the time of Vu Lan festival (the day for expressing love towards mom in Asian’s culture), which occured in the middle of the seventh month of Lunar calendar, the river will bright up in thousands of lights drifting along the river. You can have more fun by joining the festival by writing down your wishes into the light’s petal, it is believed that your wish would come true.

More about Hoi An’s interesting experiences here: Explore Hoi An Ancient town at night

– An author of Backpackers Vietnam


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