Most attractions including the lake and the Ho Chi Minh complex are all within walking distance. Buses, both from the airport and other Vietnamese cities, pick up and drop off passengers here. This is where most tours begin and end. Without question, this is the best and most convenient place to stay for budget travelers.
Because eating out is so expensive, self-catering facilities are rare. Expect to pay approximately 225,000 VND per person for a hotel with a double room in a budget price. This will often include free WiFi and breakfast. Think about what you want to do in Vietnam. For me, the most important things were UNESCO sites and food tours.
History This enormous cave was discovered quite recently. Ho Khanh, a hunter from a jungle settlement close to the Vietnam-Laos border, would often take shelter in the caves that honeycomb his mountain homeland. The biggest challenge faced by the expedition team was to cross a huge barrier of muddy calcium calcite, which they called the “Great Wall of Vietnam”, which divided the cave. Once they did, its true scale was revealed – a cave big enough to accommodate a battleship. Sections of it are pierced by skylights that reveal formations of ethereal stalagmites that cavers have called the Cactus Garden.
Visit their website to verify availability and make reservations well in advance. The three-night expedition is challenging and includes tough trekking, underground river crossings, and technical caving. Anyone who struggles significantly with the climbing elements will be turned back on the first day. Accommodation comes in the form of basic campsites within the cave itself. Oxalis Adventure Tours also offers shorter tours that are more affordable, both to other caves within Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park and around the park. Most train stations are in the city centre in main cities .
A bowl of pho or bun bo color bought on the streets should cost between $1 and $2. A beer shouldn’t set you back more than $2 and should generally be closer to $1. For a quick overview, see our guides to the best street food Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. You can bring your phone from home, but be wary of thieves. They are primarily looking for foreigners with expensive cellphones. They will even stalk people they consider easy prey. The other option is buying a cheap smart phone in Vietnam.
Private rooms are available at a minimum of 350, 000 VND (15-20 USD) per person for a double-room. While hostels were once scarce, they have started popping up all over the country to accommodate budget travelers. Had I stayed in dorm rooms and stuck to beer and cheap and Vietnamese coffee, I’d be able to stick to a US$30 per day travel budget. Three weeks is a terrific amount of time to spend in Vietnam and will allow you to see a great deal of the country. You could ride a motorbike from Hanoi to Saigon in that time frame and visit coastal beaches and limestone mountains covered in jungle. This route reduces travel costs because the only expense would be renting a motorcycle, which you can do in Hanoi Old Quarter and Pham Ngu Lao in Ho Chi Minh.
It will only cost 508,000VND/PS18/$22 each from Hanoi to Nha Trang, which is 1283km/797 miles. If you have the money, then by all means, get a flight! But if you’ve got time and you’re on a budget, travelling on a sleeper train is the way to go. A bottle of beer is about $1- $1.50 and a bia hoi is $0.20 per cup.
- Hotels that fill up with foreigners are usually the most expensive.
- There’s no need to pay more than 230,000 ($10) for a hostel as these will be plenty nice.
- The monsoon season in the country is from May to October. While it is the rainy season, it can still be a costly time to visit.
- If flying into the SGN airport, it’s worth spending a day or two exploring the city.