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Viet Nam has a long coastline that extends along the eastern boundary of the country and wraps around the southern tip for 3,260 km, a distance geographically longer than the length of the country. Traveling from north to south or from south to north, tourists will find many beautiful beaches where, all year round, they can stay and enjoy the excitement of the seaside. There are more than 20 beautiful beaches along the coastline, such as Tra Co, Halong, Do Son, and Sam Son in the north and China Beach (Danang), Nha Trang, Vung Tau, and Ha Tien in the south. In particular, tourists can visit Halong Bay, which is a world natural heritage site, a creation of Mother Nature, with thousands of islands and rocks of different sizes and shapes, such as a dragon, a frog, a turtle, and a fighting chicken. Inside the big islands, there are huge and wonderful caves and grottoes.

Vietnamese flag

Vietnamese people is consisted of 56 ethnic groups with the majority of Viet race 85-90%, Chinese 3% and other minorities - Muong, Thai, Mee, Khmer, Cham, H'mong, and Dao.
The origin of the Vietnamese people is Mongoloid as its brethren in North and East Asia.
Due to its long history, they receive great influence from the ancient Chinese and India cultures.

You can find the peoples’ gestures are quite different in North, Center, and South Vietnamese people. Their tones of speaking are quite different too. Some words may not understandable by other regions’ Vietnamese.

Kinh ethnic

Muong ethnic

Thai ethnic

Hanoi has shaken off its hostile attitude to travellers to become one of the most beguiling cities in Southeast Asia. It's slow-paced and pleasant, with a lovely landscape of lakes, shaded boulevards, verdant public parks and French-colonial architecture.

Hanoi personifies the spirit of historic Vietnam in the temples, monuments and pockets of ancient culture along the narrow streets of the Old Quarter, yet perfectly reflects the rapid changes sweeping the country as Hanoian yuppies sip cappucinos in roadside cafés and compare cell phones.


Hoan Kiem lake( Ho Hoan Kiem ) or Lake of the Returned Sword was once a part of the Red river (song Hong). Through thousands of years of changes in the geography, the lake moved eastward to its present position many kilometers from the river. The lake was once called Luc Thuy or Green Water because the water was green year round. In the fifteen century, the lake was named Hoan Kiem lake, based of a legend that is quite similar to King Arthur and the Lady of the Lake's legend.

While fighting against the Chinese, King Le Thai To has in his possession a very valuable sword. After 10 years of continuous struggle, the King finally defeated the Chinese and reclaimed Vietnam's independence. One day, while sailing on lake Luc Thuy, a large turtle appeared. The king drew his sword and pointed at the creature. The turtle immediately grab hold of the sword with its mouth and submerged. The king mourned the lost of such valuable sword, demanded that the lake be emptied and dredged. Both the turtle and the sword were not found. The king realizing that the gods must have lent him the sword to drive back the enemy, but now that Vietnam is free, the sword must be returned. King Le Thai To named the lake Hoan Kiem lake or Lake of the Returned Sword.


Chua Mot Cot or the One Pillar Pagoda has become the symbol of Vietnamese rich culture and history. The pagoda was built in the reign of king Ly Thai Tong (1028-1054). According to legend, in his dream, in 1049, the king saw a vision of Phat Ba Quan Am - Kwan Yin. She led him to a shrine in the middle of a lotus pond. When he woke up, he consulted with his court and decided to replicate the shrine in his dream to dedicate it to Kwan Yin. The One Pillar Pagoda resembles a giant lotus blossom.


Originally built in 1070 in the Ly dynasty, the temple is a shrine to Confucius and his disciples responsible for spreading his teachings. Six years later, Quoc Tu Giam or School for the sons of the Nation was established for the princes. The school later admitted sons of mandarins and finally commoners were allowed to attend but, only after they passed a rigorous examination at the regional level. In 1484, Van Mieu became a place to memorialize the most brilliant scholars of the nation.

Ho Chi Minh City is the heart and soul of Vietnam. It's a bustling, dynamic and industrious centre, the largest city in the country, the economic capital and the cultural trendsetter. Yet within the teeming metropolis are the timeless traditions and beauty of an ancient culture.

This is a city that churns, ferments, bubbles and fumes. The streets, where much of the city's life takes place, are a jumble of street markets, shops, pavement cafes, stands-on-wheels and vendors selling wares spread out on sidewalks. It's impossible not to be infected by its exhilarating vibe.

Independence Palace( DINH DOC LAP )

Dinh Doc Lap or Independence Palace was completed in 1966 after three years of construction. The plans were drawn by Mr. Ngo Viet Thu, winner of the architectural excellence prize in Rome. The palace was built on the original site of the French governor's headquarters in the 19th century.


Located on Cong Ly boulevard (or Nam Ky Khoi Nghia), Vinh nghiem is south Vietnam's most majestic temple. Construction of the temple was completed in 1971 after the design was drawn by Mr. Nguyen Ba Lang and associates. The ground floor consists of the library, the auditorium, and offices. The temple is located in a large parcel of land. On the left of the upper court yard stands a tower or the seven-level Avalokitesvara Stupa. Next to the tower hangs a large bell given to the temple by the Japanese Buddhists Sangha

Hue is located in Thua Thien prefecture and is in the central part of Vietnam. Located 660 km from Ha Noi and 1080 km from Saigon, Hue has always been considered the fulcrum of Vietnam's two rice baskets, the Red river delta and the Mekong delta. Hue became the name of Vietnam's most well known ancient capital because of the local mispronunciation of the word Hoa in Thuan Hoa.

Since the 16th century, Thuan Hoa, due to its strategic location, has been a very prosperous area. The Nguyen Lord chose this area to be their headquarters. Nguyen Anh made it Vietnam's capital city in 1802 after he defeated the Tay Son and ascended to the throne with the name Gia Long. King Gia Long (1762-1819) was credited for building and fortifying Hue from the very beginning. Since then, successive king of the Nguyen Dynasty has added to the foundation set by his predecessors.


Ngo Mon was constructed in 1833 during the reign of Emperor Minh Mang. The gate leads to the Imperial Palace and was the observation point for the Emperor to review his troops and for ceremonial use.

Midday Gate is divided into two levels. At ground level, the gate actually has five entrances. The one in the center is used only by the king. On each side are two entrances used by mandarins, soldiers and horses. On the second level is Lau Ngu Phung - the Five-Phoenix Pavilion. The king reviewed his troops and subjects under the center hall of the pavilion. The roof of this hall is covered with gold enameled tiles. The two halls flanking the center hall were reserved for other members of the court.


According to legend, the people around this area used to see a vision of an old lady appearing on the hill where the pagoda now sits. Upon seeing people, she always said that someday a great leader would build a pagoda at this site to bring peace to the country. One day, when Lord Nguyen Hoang passed by this area, upon hearing the story, he ordered the construction of the pagoda in 1601. He named it Chua Thien Mu - Heavenly Lady Pagoda.


The end of the Vietnam war, and the advent of "Doi moi", Vietnam's policy of opening its economy to foreign trade, means that Westerners and South Vietnamese now have a chance to visit Ha long. Vinh Ha Long or Bay of the Descending Dragon is often touted by proud Vietnamese as the world's Eighth wonder. One of the main attractions of Ha long is the bay's calm water and the thousands of limestone mountains dotting the seascape. The Bay's water is clear during the spring and early summer. Some of the islands are quite large and there are small alcoves with sandy beaches where swimming is possible. Ha Long bay lies in the northeastern part of Vietnam and is 165 Km from Hanoi.


Hoi An, also known as Faifo about 3 centuries ago, is the best ancient town of Vietnam to visit. Time seems to stand still on the peaceful streets as you walk along. On the two sides of the streets are those old houses of some 200 years old with special architectural features. The calm and peaceful ancient town of Hoi An, now a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.


Vietnam has a diverse mix of religions, including Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Catholocism, Hinduism and even a home grown religion, Cao Daism. The dominant religion is Buddhism and you will see numerous temples throughout Vietnam as well as the traditional alters in many homes and hotels. Catholicism is also strong in Vietnam, undoubtedly a result of 100 years of French rule. There are a number of beautiful Catholic churches throughout the country.

After reunification in 1975, the government sought to supress religion and it's influence on the people. The result is that today, many young people consider themselves atheists. But as in other Communist countries, religion never really left Vietnam and today, with a new climate of tolerance, religions of all types are practiced openly in Vietnam.


Roi Nuoc is a traditional Vietnamese performance art using colorfully painted and costumed wooden puppets. They most closely resemble marionettes, with jointed arms, legs and heads.

Roi Nuoc are controlled by a puppeteer by way of long poles that are hidden under water. The stage is a small pool, with a scenic backdrop, hiding the puppeteers. Performances are based on traditional folklore or historical events. Music and audio, either recorded or live, accompany the performances.


Ao Dai is the traditional "dress" worn by Vietnamese women. This two-piece garment made of silk consists of a long flowing smock worn over baggy trousers reaching all the way to the ground.

Teenage school girls trade in their blue and white uniforms for all white Ao Dai, and you'll often see them pedalling their bikes, with the smock of their Ao Dai draped over their handlebars. Older women wear Ao Dai of Various colors, often with intricate patterns and designs, in formal or work settings.

Vietnamese women look more cute and beautiful when they wear AO DAI
Vietnamese people.

Vietnamese are friendly, kind and hospitable


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Vietnam love (Countries of the World)    -    Author : Phuong - Viet Nam

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last update : 2006-05-07

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