In common with the rest of South East Asia the Vietnamese appear to have a permanent smile on their faces. It is a remarkable trait given the hardships they have faced over the years. The Vietnam War saw large areas subjected to constant bombing from the Americans who finally decided they were making little progress. The result 40 years ago was a unified country which has seen an increasing number of tourists travelling to meet its people and the wealth of religious, cultural and historical attractions, not to mention the great cuisine. Vietnam tour packages ensure that everyone that opts for Vietnam custom travel will have a good chance to meet the ordinary people, hill tribes, fishermen and their families and rural farmers. City dwellers vary from street food vendors to workers in the industries and services that help towns and cities function.
Vietnam travel packages generally begin in the cities of either Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh, formerly Saigon. Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam and a local Vietnam tour operator is certain to include a visit to the hill tribes further north in their Vietnam holidays.
Overall the Vietnamese are a mixture of origins, both culturally and linguistically. The majority are descendants of the Mongols from further north in Asia while the proximity of India and China has also made an impact. Almost 90% of the people are from a single strand, the Viet though there is a minority that belong to a variety of different groups, often based in the mountainous regions of Vietnam. These are primarily Thai or Hmong while a very small percentage are Chinese.
Vietnam is a densely populated with the minority tribes total in excess of 12 million people in more than 50 ethnic groups. Living mostly in the Northern or Central Highlands these groups are amongst the poorest in the country. The national poverty rate has fallen below 10% across the country yet the average approaches 30% amongst the hill tribes of the north-west. Indeed the figure across all the ethnic minorities is far higher.
• Vietnam private tours are likely to include more than one place where tourists can observe people whose lives depend upon fishing. In the UNESCO World Heritage site of Halong Bay for example fishing villages are dotted throughout the Bay. Similarly the houses on stilts on Ba, Vietnam’s largest natural lake have changed little over generations.
• There are some notable farming areas that will be included in Vietnam holiday packages with the Sa Pa Terraces in the Northern Highlands the most popular attraction in that part of the Country. The farmers grow rice and vegetables on narrow hillside terraces.
• The Mekong Delta is the most fertile region of Vietnam yet it is also a region where fishing is a major activity. Vietnam holidays would certainly be lacking without at least a few hours cruising on this iconic river.
The people of Vietnam welcome tourists and certainly hold no grudges against anyone that has caused them hardship in the past. You will find out for yourself if you book with a Vietnam travel agency.