Travel information about Vietnam
Best travel timeDue to its strong north-south expansion, Vietnam has different climate zones; the subtropical north and the tropical south. Travelling is possible all year round, as even in the rainy season the precipitation is heavy but short. Afterwards the sun usually shines again. The ideal travel season is November to May.
Climate in the northThere are four seasons with hot summers and mild winters. Temperatures can drop to +10 in December/January, and even lower in the highlands and at night.
Climate in Central VietnamThis is strongly influenced by the sea. During the typhoon period from August to November, heavy rains can occur, which lead to flooding almost every year. The population has lived with these floods for generations and masters them with a lot of improvisation. Short-term changes of the travel route cannot be excluded.
Climate in the southThe tropical climate of the south knows only two seasons; the dry season from November to April and the rainy season from May to October with short, heavy downpours followed by sunshine.
EntryCH: Passport, which must be valid 1 month beyond the date of travel and a tourist visa (currently CHF 90.-). The visa must be applied for in advance and then stamped in HCMC. An easier way is to send the passport to the Vietnamese embassy in Bern. It costs a little bit more, but you don't have to wait for 1-2 hours when entering the country.
ReligionMost Vietnamese live according to the teachings of Confucianism, mixed with elements of Buddhism and Daoism. There are also Christian and Muslim minorities.
LanguageVietnamese. Most hotels and restaurants understand a little English, in a taxi it is recommended to have the address of the hotel or the destination in writing, preferably in Vietnamese.
CurrencyDong (VND). The US dollar is also a common means of payment, with the exception of taxis. Tip: Take small bills with you, whether dong or dollar.
Time differenceCentral European Time (CET)+6 hours (+5 in summer).
Good to knowAt the end of January or beginning of February is the Tet-Fest (Vietnamese New Year), which is the highest holiday of the year. At this time of the year all travel and accommodation is more expensive and many shops are closed.