Guidebook It’s where Vietnamese culture started, and it’s stunning

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It’s where Vietnamese culture started, and it’s stunning

It’s the country’s oldest region and “the very first place where Vietnamese culture started to bloom,” says Maze Vietnam. Northern Vietnam offers “challenging routes up to the limestone mountains, eye-catching paradises of green and yellow terraced fields, hundreds of must-visit sight-seeings throughout the region, thousands of delis and much more!” You’ll find the “most spectacular sights in the northern part of the country, and Hanoi makes a great base to explore this region’s many wonders,” writes Wendy Justice at International Living.

Ha Long Bay, is “one of the most vaunted spots in all of Southeast Asia,” proclaims Rough Guides -- “the mystical scenery of where jagged emerald islands jut out of the sea in their thousands.” Heading in by boat, “you approach wave after wave of hidden bays, needle-sharp ridges and cliffs of ribbed limestone.” Scientists believe the breathtaking scenery to be a result of “500 million years of geology and extreme changes between forming mountains and sea erosion,” writes Nick Boulos at the UK Express.  

Northern Vietnam’s natural wonders “aren’t just restricted to those at sea level,” says Nick Boulos at the UK Express. In the north-west of the country, close to the border with China, is the mountaintop settlement of Sapa. “Surrounded by and home to a number of indigenous tribes,” Sapa offers some of the “best trekking and cultural experiences in south-east Asia.” In the valleys beyond Sapa, he writes,are  “clusters of isolated communities home to under-threat hill tribes that live in a landscape of terraced rice fields that tumble down the steep mountainsides.” Surrounding them “the tallest of the cloud-tickling peaks -- and the highest in all of Vietnam -- is Fansipan, which stands at 3,143m.”

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