Vietnam is a country most people have heard of but until recently few have had the opportunity to visit. It was not until the early 1990s that the first intrepid travelers started arriving. Things have come a long way in the past decade and visitors from all over the world are now discovering what a hidden gem of a country Vietnam is. Brilliant green rice fields, exotic temples and pagodas, grand colonial buildings, bustling city streets, thatched bamboo huts, grand colonial buildings, exotic temples and pagodas, deserted sandy beaches, breathtaking mountain scenery, conical straw hats, colorful ethnic minorities, graceful women in ao dai tunics, delicious cuisine, great out door activities luxurious hotels, stunning resorts and more, much more, it's all here in Vietnam.
The two great metropolises of the country are the elegant capital city Hanoi and the dynamic, economic powerhouse Ho Chi Minh City. Since 1993 UNESCO has declared five World Heritage Sites in Vietnam, four in central Vietnam and one in the north. The four sites in central Vietnam are the former imperial capital Hue, the historic trading port of Hoi An, the centre of the former Cham Kingdom, My Son, and Phong Nha Caves. The fifth World Heritage Site is the spectacular natural wonder that is Halong Bay in northern Vietnam, breathtakingly featured in James Bond and other films.