Vietnam has much to enjoy for first-time travellers of all ages, from young to old. Whether it is the cyclo rides, friendly local communities, relaxing islands and resorts or enchanting performances, such as the water puppet theatre, there is much to enjoy in this country for the entire family.
Additionally, there is plenty to entertain the energetic older child with plenty of options to get involved with snorkelling, hiking, kayaking and cycling. Any Vietnam family tours can easily be personalised to take in the perfect balance of tranquillity, chaos, nature and culture.
Let's take a look at the top tips for family travel with kids in Vietnam:
Plan the itinerary
In order to plan a successful Vietnam holiday with kids it is essential to plan the activity based itinerary that can appeal to both the old and young traveller. Vietnam has many different places across the country that is perfect for the family travel.
Hanoi – a stay in Vietnam's capital city is a wonderful experience for the family with plenty of landmarks and museums to visit. For the kids that aren't keen on visiting museums or similar places, there are pottery villages that give visitors the option to paint their own piece. Additionally, there are several nearby parks close to Hoan Kiem Lake that have the open space to run and play.
Halong Bay – any travellers based in Hanoi will find that Halong Bay makes a perfect day or multi-day trip that is rich in family-friendly activities. Beyond the cruise that passes through the towering limestone cliffs, there are plenty of opportunities to take cooking classes, go fishing, relax on the beach, or swim in the calm waters. However, it is important to select a family-friendly cruise liner or go with a private cruise that can be tailored to match the specific needs.
Nha Trang – for the family that loves the beach and water sports, a visit to Nha Trang is certain to appeal. This coastal resort city is well known for its scuba diving opportunities. Additionally, the Vinpearl amusement park is a great fun based activity centre for the whole family.
Hoi An – this is a very tourist friendly city that is historically rich and a great destination to get a break from the noise and crowds of the major cities. The nearby countryside is a great place to visit on a cycling tour or take a boat trip along the local canal system.
Ho Chi Minh City – families visiting Ho Chi Minh City can easily avoid a lot of the hustle and bustle of the central city area by enjoying the rides and activities at the Suoi Tien Amusement Park or Dam Sen Water Park. They are both geared towards entertaining the little ones while on the Vietnam kids travel.
Mekong Delta – a wonderful family-friendly spot in Vietnam is certain to include the Mekong Delta with its fun trips on a traditional sampan boat along the backwaters, as well as visits to fruit candy shops and rice paper factories. The private tours are typically recommended when travelling with kids because they are less rigid in regards to the itinerary.
Get organised early
Being organised is certain to help when it comes to travelling and arranging the Vietnam family holiday resorts. However, it is relatively easy to travel in Vietnam with a certain degree of flexibility and at a non-scheduled pace.
Accommodation – booking the hotel or resort before leaving home is very important. Many of the hotels will get booked up quickly, especially if the holiday takes place during the busy season. Early booking will mean the preferred amenities are received. Many parents will want their young kids in the same room which may not be possible if booking last-minute.
Transport – pre-arranging the transport to get around the city or day-trip destination will ensure there is enough space and the journey is safe. Organising the van taxi for several family members to sit in the same vehicle isn't always a straightforward experience. A typical car taxi is limited to 3-4 passengers, but may not give the most comfortable ride.
Also, there is the risk of taxi scams in the major Vietnam cities, so getting prepared and organising through the hotel is certain to avoid a lot of unnecessary hassle.
Weather forecast – the Vietnam weather is quite varied and easily changes with the season. Even though Vietnam is a country that can be explored year-round, there are times or parts of the country that can be consistently hot or experience heavy rainfall.
Travel and food safety
A Vietnam holiday with toddlers is easily ruined in the event of the little ones feeling sick on the travels.
Travel safety – Travel in a country like Vietnam has the potential to be very hectic, especially when travelling with kids. The pollution and heat can soon tire and wear down the little ones. Also, it is easy to over commit and plan too many things in a single day. For this reason it will benefit to include enough down time in the travel itinerary to make sure the family doesn't start to feel ill.
Food safety – kids are often quite picky with their food so it is important to make wise food choices and stick to things they like. Additionally, a small child is more likely to pick up a food borne illness than adults.
If trying the local street food scene, there are plenty of safe food options for the kids such as the Vietnamese sandwich (banh mi). This is typically a baguette filled with a range of healthy ingredients, and it is quite hearty to keep the little ones full longer. There is the option to travel with a variety of non-perishable food items for those that aren't keen on tasting the local dishes. Also, a major city will typically have western dishes, as well as familiar chains like Burger King and McDonalds.
A further point to remember is to avoid the local tap water. This applies to both adults and children. It is best to rely on bottled water for everything, including cooking and brushing teeth.
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