Vietnamese public holidays - Holidays in Vietnam for foreign tourists

1. New Year: 1 day off on 1 of January

2. Traditional New Year or Tết Nguyên Đán: 4 days off, 1 last day and 3 first days of last and first months on lunar calendar.

3. HUNG KINGS Festival: 1 day off, day 10 of the third month of lunar calendar. In 2018, the festival falls on 25th of April. In 2019, the festival falls on 14th of April. In 2020, the festival falls on 2nd of April.

4. Reunification Day: 30 April – 1 day off

5. International Labor Day: 01 May – 1 day off

6. National Day: 02 September – 1 day off

 

Vietnam holidays in 2018

DateWeekdayHoliday NameHoliday Type
Jan 1MondayInternational New Year’s DayNational holiday
Feb 14WednesdayValentine’s DayObservance
Feb 15ThursdayVietnamese New Year’s EveNational holiday
Feb 16FridayVietnamese New YearNational holiday
Feb 17SaturdayTet holidayNational holiday
Feb 18SundayTet holidayNational holiday
Feb 19MondayTet holidayNational holiday
Feb 20TuesdayTet holidayNational holiday
Mar 20TuesdayMarch equinoxSeason
Apr 25WednesdayHung Kings’ Commemoration DayNational holiday
Apr 30MondayLiberation Day/Reunification DayNational holiday
May 1TuesdayInternational Labor DayNational holiday
Jun 21ThursdayJune SolsticeSeason
Jun 28ThursdayVietnamese Family DayObservance
Sep 2SundayIndependence DayNational holiday
Sep 3MondayIndependence Day observedNational holiday
Sep 23SundaySeptember equinoxSeason
Oct 20SaturdayVietnamese Women’s DayObservance
Oct 31WednesdayHalloweenObservance
Dec 21FridayDecember SolsticeSeason
Dec 24MondayChristmas EveObservance
Dec 25TuesdayChristmas DayObservance
Dec 31MondayInternational New Year’s EveObservance

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General Vietnam Guides and Information

Basic information about Vietnam travelers may need before making a Vietnam holiday

General information

Country name: Socialist Republic of Vietnam – CỘNG HÒA XÃ HỘI CHỦ NGHĨA VIỆT NAM

Capital: Hanoi 

Flag: The flag is red with a five-pointed gold star in the center

Currency: Vietnam ĐỒNG (VND) is paper currency of 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, 100,000, 200,000, and 500,000

Population as of 2018: > 95 million

Exchange rate as of May 2018: 1 US$ ~ 22,730 VND

Time zone: GMT + 7

Vietnam is on the eastern coast of mainland of Southeast Asia, it shares the border with China to the North, Laos to the West and Cambodia to the Southwest

 

Climate

Vietnam is located in the sub-tropical area lying between the equator and the Tropic of Cancer. Vietnam has 2 climate sections: The North and The Central + the South

In the north, winter/ dry season is from November to March, it is cool and sometimes the temperature can fall to 5°c or even below zero in mountainous areas. This is the best time to visit Northern Vietnam

The summer/ rainy season extends from mid-April to mid-October; the city of Hanoi has a mean annual rainfall of 170 cm, and in the mountains, annual rainfall sometimes exceeds 400 cm. During summer, the average temperature in Hanoi is about 28°c – 34°c

The south is more tropical; temperatures in the Central (Da Nang) and the South (Ho Chi Minh City) vary only from 20 – 35°c throughout the year.

 

Ethnic groups

There are 54 groups in Vietnam in which Viet group (or Kinh) is nearly 90% of the population

 

Languages

The official language of Vietnam is Vietnamese (Chữ Quốc Ngữ).

 

Transportations

Main daily means of transportations of Vietnamese people are motorbikes. Cars are also popular in recent years.

Vietnam has a long railways system across the country which was first built in the early 1900s by the French. Vietnam has about 20 airports and there are many flights traveling between North – Central – South

Checklist before your holiday

Passport/ visa (if required), Travel insurance, Vaccination, Credit/debit card and some cash, Flight tickets, etc.

 

Immigration

You must have a valid passport and must be valid for at least six months since the time you enter Vietnam. Be sure your passport has at least one blank visa page

Vietnam visa exemption: Passport holders from these European countries can visit Vietnam under 15 days without visa: Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom

If you are required a visa to Vietnam or above mentioned country travelers visit Vietnam from 15 days up, please read our visa and visa on arrival to Vietnam page

 

Holiday plan

Vietnam is an elongated country with plenty of attractions from North to South. It depends on your plan to decide how many days for your trip. If you intend to visit only one region (the North, the Central or the South), 4 or 7 days are enough while to discover all three regions in Vietnam, we recommend you spend at least 8 days for your trip. If you travel for 13 days or more, you will have a chance to visit Laos and Cambodia as well.

Check out our Vietnam tour itinerary samples for your information

 

Money

Vietnamese currency is Vietnam Đồng (đ). In Vietnam, only Vietnam Dong (VND) is accepted in any purchasing transactions. At some places like hotels, restaurants, souvenir stores, etc., travelers can use $USD, $AU, Euro or British pound sterling to pay for the goods and services.

Tourists can exchange money at some banks in Vietnam which are easily found at airports and main cities.

Check with your departure immigration gate for the amount one person can bring first then you need to report to the arrival immigration in Vietnam if you bring over US $5000 (per person).

You should not prepare VND before your Vietnam trip since the exchange rate in your country may not be favorable. It is advisable to have your money exchanged at arrival airport or bank in Vietnam for a better rate.

Tourists can check daily exchange rates here. Normally, buying rates shall be applied by banks

 

Electricity, Phone & Internet

– We used 220V, 50Hz and 2 & 3 – pin electricity sockets in Vietnam. Most hotels provide electric outlets which accept many plug shapes. Universal travel adaptors are needed if you travel with many devices.

– Wifi connection is relatively good in hotels, coffee shops and restaurants in Vietnam. Take advantage of free wifi to contact your family and friends through Skype, Viber or Whatsapp.

– Before traveling to mountainous areas, we highly recommend you prepare a SIM Card 3G or 4G service. Our guests can check with us then we will prepare a free SIM Card

 

With over 3000 KMs coastal line and over 4000 years of history, Vietnam is well-known for its history, culture, beaches, rivers, well-preserved nature landscapes, Buddhist pagodas as well as bustling cities. These are top 5 Vietnam travel destinations travelers should not miss in their tours to Vietnam:

 

Halong Bay

Cruise Ha Long

The UNESCO world heritage site is famous for its beauty and mysterious allure. Halong Bay is a place that invites travelers and adventures with thousands of islets, islands raising from calm water. Located in northern Vietnam, 180 KMs from Hanoi, Halong Bay is a destination you should not miss. You will be able to visit Halong Bay during your trip to Vietnam and see this beauty for yourself. Remember to selfie with the Fighting Cocks Island when you are on a Halong Bay Cruise.

 

 

 


Hanoi

cyclo in Hanoi

Capital of the country, Hanoi is an old, antique and unique city. With more than 1000 years of history, Hanoi is famous for friendly people, amazing street foods, French colonial buildings, Old Quarter Area, many museums, walking streets, etc. Taking a Hanoi city tour, a selfie with Restored Sword Lake is recommended.

 

 

 


Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An

30 KMs from Da Nang beach city, Hoi An is a lovely little town. The Ancient Town of Hoi An is a living museum and is recognized as one of the UNESCO Heritage Sites, attracting a lot of tourists every year.

Visiting Hoi An, you can take a walking or cycling tour to discover the ancient town with Covered Bridge, Ancient Houses, nearby vegetable or fishing villages.

 

 

 


Nha Trang Beach City

Six Senses Ninh Van Bay in Nha Trang

Nha Trang is nearly 500KM from Ho Chi Minh City, travelers can get there by daily trains or 1-hour flights from Ho Chi Minh City. There are 2-hours daily flights from Hanoi to the city, too.

Nha Trang is famous for many long, sandy and fresh beaches. Travelers can choose a budget hotel in town or luxury beach resort to enjoy their vacation in Nha Trang. There are many interesting activities for travel to choose: surfing, snorkeling, bicycle tours, spa treatments, meditation, yoga, etc.

 

 

 


Mekong Delta

Mekong Delta

Considered as rice basket of Vietnam, Mekong delta covers a large agriculture land area in the South of the country with a complex river system.

Travelers can visit Mekong Delta in a 1-day trip or up to over 5 days to discover the delta

Visit to the Mekong Delta to see amazing local people activities: children riding on the backs of water buffalo or cycling to school through country lanes clad in white ao dai (long dresses); farmers stopping in a sea of emerald; market vendors grinning behind stacks of fruit; bright yellow incense sticks drying at the roadside…

Join a cooking class

Vietnam is considered “kitchen of the world” for its delicious dishes. Joining a cooking class – which are available in many cities – and enjoy your products would be an unforgettable experience

 

Visit night walking streets in Hanoi or Saigon

Hanoi and Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) are the realms of exotic local cuisine. Be sure not to miss Pho, Bun Cha and Nem, the most famous Vietnamese traditional dishes. Taking a walking tour around Saigon and Hanoi walking streets is amazing to enjoy the atmosphere as well.

 

Enjoy Tết, Vietnamese Traditional New Year with local people

If you are going to spend your holidays in Vietnam during late January and February, do not miss the chance to welcome Vietnamese New Year with a local family. Tết is the most important time of Vietnamese and you will be houseowners’ very important guest at that time.

 

Leisure on Beaches

Spend your holiday time on sunny beaches in Vietnam is also a smart choice. Vietnam has top world rank beaches namely Nha Trang, Mui Ne, Phu Quoc… which are fresh and sunny all year round

 

Camping

With many well-preserved parks, Vietnam is also a choice for camping trips. Cuc Phuong, Cat Ba National Parks in the North, Tra Su, Nam Cat Tien in the South or Da Lat city in Central Highland are options

Summer holidays in Vietnam will last from June to the beginning of August. Vietnamese families usually choose beaches such as Ha Long, Da Nang and Nha Trang for their vacations, so these places are more crowded than usual.

It is noted that airfares and train fares are more expensive during public holidays. Moreover, keep in mind that tickets will be sold out very quickly one month before 30 April/ 01 May and Tet holidays. Therefore, let Paradise Travel help you buy Vietnam domestic air and train tickets at reasonable prices.

During Tet holiday, most services such as tourist sites, restaurants, stores and tour operators will be closed in first three days in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. However, beaches in Vietnam are normally empty this time, which is ideal for you to enjoy tranquil atmosphere. We recommend some destinations you can travel during Tet:

  • Sapa
  • Ha Long
  • Ninh Binh
  • Da Nang – Hoi An
  • Nha Trang
  • Da Lat
  • Phu Quoc
  • Mekong Delta

During other national holidays, avoid famous beach destinations – Ha Long, Sam Son, Nha Trang, Da Nang, Phu Quoc, and Vung Tau. These places will be crowded with domestic tourists.

  • There are many festivals in Spring in Vietnam after Tet holiday. However, we do not recommend you to go there since it will be very chaotic and there will be a risk of pick pocketing.
  • Carefully consult a travel agency about destinations, visa, transportation, and accommodations if you would like to travel to Vietnam during our public holidays, especially in the first three days of Tet holiday.
  • Be careful of your belongings when visiting a crowded site. Don’t flash your jewelry, cash or expensive camera around.

Tet is the most important holiday in Vietnam. No matter how busy modern life is, we still spend time preparing and decorating for this festive season. People often spend time indoor with families and most stores, shopping malls, museums, and restaurants will be closed.

North of Vietnam and Hanoi are getting warmer during Tet holiday with sunlight appears sometimes. The average temperature in Hanoi and Halong Bay is around 15 to 20 °C with low humidity, while it is still cool in highland travel areas of Sapa and Ha Giang. There is not much rain this season and is among the best time of the year to visit this area. It is still a bit cold sometimes in some parts of Northern Vietnam so travelers should prepare warm clothes.

Hue, Da Nang, Hoi An and Central area, and to the South with Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, Mekong Delta are much warmer with the average temperature around 26 – 30 °C, a good time to visit or relax on the beach.

  • Enjoy cool weather in the northern areas: Sa Pa, Ha Giang and Mai Chau will be very quiet and tranquil during Tet holiday.
  • Spend time on a tour to Ha Long Bay, or relax on beaches in Da Nang, Nha Trang, Mui Ne, and Phu Quoc
  • Try some delicious traditional dishes such as Banh Chung (steamed square cake), Nem (Spring Rolls) and xoi (sticky rice).
  • Take pictures of beautiful Peach blossoms, kumquats and colorful flowers.

Generally speaking, the prices for a Vietnam tour during the first three days of Tet holiday can be 20-30% more expensive than usual.

During the first three days of Tet, we advise that you stay in one place and avoid travelling within the country.

Don’t wait until the last minute to work on your visa since immigration offices are very busy before Tet holiday. Contact us and we will help you to prepare letter of visa on arrival to Vietnam free of charge.

Tet is not a peak season for domestic travelling, so you don’t need to worry about shortages of hotel rooms during Tet. We can help you to book a 3, 4 or 5-star hotel. Some hotels will organize New Year celebration, so book in advance to join the fun.

Vietnam’s climate is varied, which means that the best time to travel to the country in terms of the weather will depend on where precisely you want to go and what you want to do. Broadly speaking, though, Vietnam’s weather patterns can be split into north and south, with two monsoons affecting the climate. The winter monsoon that runs from October to March typically makes the north of the country cool and damp, while the south is dry and warm. From April or May to October, the summer monsoon generally leads to the whole nation becoming quite humid and hot – except for around the mountains.

Western’s holidays are not official holidays in Vietnam but they are getting more well-known by Vietnamese people. On Christmas and New Year Eve, many hotels will decorate their exterior and interior as well as serving holiday buffet dinner to customers. On New Year Eve, there will be count down parties and celebrations in major cities such as Hanoi, HCMC, Nha Trang,… On Easter and Thanksgiving, decorations might applied to some hotels but there will not be any holiday dinner served at the hotel.

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