By Lương Thu Hương
With its mild and refreshing weather, autumn is undoubtedly the perfect time to embark on a remarkable travel journey in Việt Nam. It’s a season when we don’t have to lament about the scorching heat of summer or the chilling cold of winter. Instead, we are greeted with gentle breezes that sway the golden-hued leaves. So, as autumn sets in, it’s time to pack your bags, embrace the beauty of this season, and embark on a memorable travel adventure.
Here are some of the suggested destinations in Việt Nam for your autumn trip:
Tràng An: the ancient capital
An idyllic view of Tràng An landscape complex. — VNA/VNS Photo
Tràng An landscape complex, the UNESCO-recognised World Heritage Site, captivates with its pristine beauty and majestic limestone formations, creating a “Hạ Long Bay on Land” in northern Việt Nam.
Located in the province of Ninh Bình, the site stands as a remarkable destination for those seeking to delve into the history of the ancient capital of Hoa Lư. Its breathtaking landscape, defined by towering limestone karsts and winding rivers, offers a unique and enchanting experience.
Contrasting the festive atmosphere in spring, Tràng An in autumn immerses itself in a tranquil sea of green, with a serene sky, stretching forests along the mountain ranges, and crystal-clear water revealing hidden aquatic plants below.
Visiting the ancient capital, travelers not only have the opportunity to immerse themselves in ancient legends and historical sites in cultural centers but also to indulge in the enchanting beauty created by nature within the renowned limestone cave system. They can embark on the mesmerising journey along Sao Khuê River through mountain caves and witness the historical landmarks on both sides, like the ancient village of Yên Thượng, the Dền Bridge, the Đông Bridge, the Trường Yên Market, and the Ghềnh Tháp – Vườn Thiên Palace.
Hà Giang: Buckwheat Flower Fields
The rocky plateau of Đồng Văn in Hà Giang is blanketed with vast buckwheat flower fields. — VNA/VNS Photo
Travelling to the remote region of the homeland, you will have the opportunity to witness the autumn season immersed in vast buckwheat flower fields across the rocky plateau of Đồng Văn.
The buckwheat flower season typically begins in late autumn, from around mid-October to December. What surprises visitors is the ever-changing colours of the blooms. When the flowers first bloom, they are white, gradually transitioning to light pink or purple, and finally deep red as they approach the end of the season and develop seeds.
Similar to Sa Pa, the weather in Đồng Văn undergoes constant changes throughout the day. In the morning, Đồng Văn greets you with chilly winds and a misty veil of clouds. By noon, the temperature gradually warms up, revealing the vivid blue sky of autumn and the characteristic emerald waters of the Nho Quế River. As the evening approaches, rays of golden sunlight cascade over the buckwheat flower fields, creating a dazzling and enchanting scenery that is truly rare and poetic.
Sapa: cloud hunting
Autumn is the golden season in Sa Pa. — VNA/VNS Photo
Traveling to Sa Pa in the northern province of Lào Cai in the autumn season is undoubtedly an excellent choice. The weather in Sa Pa during this time of the year is incredibly mild and cool, offering a pleasant atmosphere. In fact, you can even experience all four seasons in a single day, a phenomenon that seems straight out of a legend.
During autumn, the ripe golden rice terraces gracefully winding around the majestic hills will leave visitors in awe with their dreamlike beauty. The landscape, adorned with vibrant hues, exudes a sense of grandeur, while the air is filled with the intoxicating fragrance of freshly harvested rice and the surrounding mountains and forests.
Due to the favourable weather during this time, it is indeed a great opportunity to embark on mountain hikes in Sa Pa to “hunt” for clouds and enjoy panoramic views of the lush landscapes below. It is not too challenging for avid hikers or those with a passion for exploration to undertake these adventures.
If you’re tired of taking the cable car to reach the summit of Fansipan, you can opt for a train ride to admire the vast beauty of the Mường Hoa Valley, which promises to offer you a fresh and surprising perspective of Sa Pa.
Hà Nội: best time of the year
Autumn in Hà Nội offers a unique blend of old-world charm and natural beauty. — VNA/VNS Photo
Autumn is undoubtedly the best time in Hà Nội, when the bustling 1,000-year-old capital city is covered with the poetic and tranquil atmosphere. As you wander through the various corners of the capital city, it is not difficult to encounter the lovely scenes of blooming white milk flowers or streets adorned with golden and red leaves.
As the leaves gently fall, creating a colourful carpet beneath your feet, Hà Nội seems to reveal its hidden corners and historic landmarks. Whether it’s walking along the tranquil banks of Hoàn Kiếm (Returned Sword) Lake, exploring the Old Quarter, or savouring a cup of egg coffee amidst the autumn breeze, every moment in the city in romantic autumn feels like a scene from a slow-motion nostalgic movie.
Don’t forget to bring along your fully-charged camera whenever you take a stroll around Hà Nội at its most beautiful time of the year, as you could seize the enchanting moment of a romantic sunset at the idyllic West Lake, the picturesque sight of street vendors burdened with alluring bouquets of daisies and nightingale flowers, or simply to capture the renowned culinary delights of the city.
Arriving in Hà Nội during autumn, you might have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the Hà Nội Fall Festival. The event is set to take place from September 29 to October 1 and promises a diverse array of captivating cultural activities. VNS