Without a doubt, the best way to experience a destination is with the help of a local. It doesn’t matter where in the world you visit, the fact remains that you will experience more, understand more, and be able to immerse yourself in the culture, language, and traditions much more easily and fully when you have the help of someone who is native to that place.
Vietnam is one of those places that certainly needs total immersion in terms of culture and history, in order to truly experience the hustle and bustle of the capital, Hanoi, without being totally freaked out by the noise! Vietnam tours offer many different tours and experiences which totally centre around the fact that locals know how to show tourists the best of their hometown, and Vietnam is perhaps one of the best places in the world to truly experience this viewpoint.
Look at it this way, you can experience Hanoi’s street food yourself, not really understanding what it is you’re eating without the help of Google, or you can take part in a street food tour with a local guide, and find out exactly what you’re tasting, why it is an important part of Vietnamese cuisine, and you can simply get so much more out of the experience.
You could also head off on a bicycle tour of the capital, with a local guide showing you the important sights, explaining to you why they are important, and what the history of the place is, whilst also perhaps picking up a few words of the language yourself!
Seeing a destination through the eyes of a local also gives you the possibility of meeting a new lifelong friend.
Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, is another huge and bustling city in Vietnam, and one which visitors could certainly gain more out of visiting with a local. Here especially you will find much history, including many nods to the Vietnam War, as well as the Cu Chi Tunnels, the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, and the War Remnants Museum. Learning about this terrible time through the eyes of someone who was directly affected by it, either personally or through family, will open your eyes so much more.
Of course, modern day Vietnam is a busy and packed place, and the nightlife on offer in the capital city is fantastically vibrant. You can find tours which take you around the main sights, allowing you enjoy the city’s neon lit fun without feeling out of sorts, or at all lost!
Put simply, there is no better way to truly experience a place than through the eyes of someone who totally knows about it. In terms of Vietnam, the culture and history is something you really need to throw yourself into head first.