Vietnam is a beautiful country with a lot to offer to campers. Most of us imagine Vietnam as a purely tropical country. But, it does have parts that fall into the temperate zone. Apart from a handful of places, it doesn’t get terribly cold, but several locations have cool weather.
Visiting the country and seeing its natural side through living in a tent is really something to look forward to. Here are some ideas on where to visit and how to prepare for your camping trip in Vietnam.
Tips For Camping In Vietnam
Deciding When To Visit
Climate conditions vary through parts of Vietnam. The north is temperate and even has mountain ranges that receive snowfall. Southern Vietnam is fairly tropical. Campers, especially beginners should avoid visiting in the rainy season. It’s also useful to avoid some of the temperature highs and lows.
The best time to visit North Vietnam is from April to August. You’ll get nice, clear weather. Though the temperature will be warm, it won’t get uncomfortably hot. When visiting South Vietnam, pick December to April. This is the dry season and campers aren’t likely to be bogged down by rain. Plus, the temperature is quite bearable and doesn’t veer towards going hot.
Putting Together Your Camping Gear
Get your camping gear in order and don’t forget the essentials. You should have a tent, sleeping bag, mat, pillow, etc. all figured out. Even if you’re visiting in the dry season, I’ll recommend a quality waterproof and easiest tent to put up. Even the dry season gets some rain and it can get pretty intense. Pick your tent carefully!
Another option is to get your tent and camping essentials once you land in Vietnam. The country has a fairly extensive commercial and industrial network, There’s no dearth of quality equipment. However, that may be troublesome for those on a schedule or with specific requirements. So, whatever option you pick, make sure you plan ahead.
Here’s a quick list of things you should have when you go camping:
- Sleeping bag
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Sleeping mat
- Bug spray and/or mosquito repellant
- Food and utensils
- Water purifier or filter
- Mobile phone
Get Your Shots
Several vaccines and/or booster shots are recommended before you take a vacation to Vietnam. This is more important for campers. You will be spending considerable time in the countryside and less developed areas. These can carry a greater chance of disease and other health risks. You can see the list of recommended vaccines on the CDC website.
7 Best Place To go Camping In Vietnam
1. Ta Xua Nature Reserve (Son La Province)
Ta Xua isn’t the most impressive mountain in the world. At the 10th highest in the country, it isn’t the most impressive mountain in Vietnam either! But for a camper, this location is pure gold. With a floating sea of clouds under the summit, this mountain has practically legendary views.
It’s off the beaten path, though it continues to gain recognition for its trek and the scenery around it. The “dinosaur backbone” trail has views and a location you’d only imagine in some fantasy wonderland. A fantasy wonderland that floats above the clouds!
Visit the Ta Xua Nature Reserve in the right season, and you’ll be witness to the blooming of wildflowers and the fields of rice paddy turning bright yellow.
2. Coco Beach Camp
Coco Beach Camp is easily accessible. It’s just about 160 kilometers from Ho Chi Minh City. The beach paradise lets you camp close to the ocean. Watch and hear the ocean while you enjoy the beautiful setting and all the wonders it brings. The camp is pretty well developed and you’ll find a ton of amenities here. Activities available include boating, diving, parasailing.
3. Mù Cang Chải
This remote area with stunning landscapes is home to wondrous views. Located in northeast Vietnam, it is pretty far from major cities but is pretty close to the Ta Xua mountain. The area is famous for its rice paddy fields, sprawling landscapes dotted by rice paddy fields, and cultural diversity.
Traveling to Mù Cang Chải, you’ll also get to witness the wonderful Khau Phạ Pass. Now that’s a beautiful view by itself. There isn’t much by way of designated campsites here, but camping is generally allowed through the region. You may be required to give the local authorities a heads-up before you set up camp.
4. Trung Luong Camping Site (Binh Dinh)
Binh Dinh region is quite rich in camping sites, and by extension, lovely views. Trung Luong Camping Site is located next to a beach in an area with impressive geographic features that include limestone ridges. This is a fairly developed camping site and a fun place to spend some time. Enjoy the water, or trek the land. There’s plenty to do here.
5. Suối Vàng Lake
Suối Vàng Lake is located in the highlands of central Vietnam. The altitude lets the region be cool for most of the year, with the lake possibly providing a touch of tampering for the local weather. The lake and the surrounding highlands have spectacular views. Plus, if you really want to stand above the clouds, this place is as good as Ta Xua.
Mist from the lake and the geographic features of the highlands make the looking down on the cloud experience possible. It’s a great experience and a fun place to enjoy.
6. Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park
Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park houses the famous Sơn Đoòng cave. The world’s largest cave attracts a lot of visitors and tourists and is certainly worth a peek. It helps that the national park itself is rich in views and vistas to enthrall travelers and campers.
The large cave hides its own ecosystem complete with jungles, rivers, and various organisms. Visiting the cave isn’t easy. A $5000 license is needed to visit the cave. Additionally, the government only issues 500 licenses a year, so it’s pretty much an exclusive destination.
7. Cù Lao Xanh
This small island in the Quy Nhơn region is surrounded by wonderful turquoise waters. The warm waters and the wonderful beaches make a heady combination. Plus, you get to enjoy all sorts of water activities here. These include snorkeling, swimming, and boating. Or just fire up a BBQ near your campsite and enjoy your day!