Exploring Vietnam: 3 Rational Destinations to Escape the Summer Heat in Asia

Channel NewsAsia International, an English language Asia-Pacific news network based in Singapore, recently listed three of Vietnam's destinations among the top 10 cooling getaways in Asia.

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Channel NewsAsia has selected 10 cooling getaways in Asia to escape the intense heat, with three destinations in Vietnam – Sa Pa in Lao Cai province, Da Lat in Lam Dong province, and Ba Na Hills in Da Nang – featured on the list, according to VOV.

Sa Pa can be reached via an eight-hour sleeper train ride from Hanoi, providing a refreshing escape from the heat. With cool temperatures all year round, Sa Pa offers respite even during the “hottest” months between June and August, as reported by Channel NewsAsia.

3 Vietnam's Most Ideal Places to Avoid Summer Heat in Asia
Sa Pa in Lao Cai province is one of 10 cooling getaways in Asia. Photo: VOV

The appeal of Sa Pa goes beyond its climate, with its villages and homestays immersed in culture, as well as rice terraces and waterfalls that can be explored through guided treks and motorbike tours.

The website suggests that visitors should consider hiking Southeast Asia’s highest peak, Fansipan, or enjoying a funicular ride to relish the panoramic views without breaking a sweat. Watching the sunrise from the Glass Bottom Bridge, situated 2,200m above sea level, is also an unforgettable experience.

Ba Na Hills in Da Nang is the next destination on the list to escape the intense heat. It is located just 35 kilometers from Da Nang’s city center in the central region and can be easily accessed by bus, private hire, or GrabCar.

The resort area owes much of its fame to the iconic Golden Hand Bridge, suspended in the clouds by two colossal stone hands, which has gained significant attention on social media since its launch in 2018.

The third spot goes to Da Lat, known as the “Paris of Vietnam”. Nestled in the lush Central Highlands region, Da Lat can be reached via an eight-hour bus ride or a quick domestic flight from Ho Chi Minh City.

Here, visitors can enjoy the European charm found in the local picturesque railway stations, churches, and accommodations that are attractions in themselves.

Thrill-seekers will not be disappointed in Da Lat, as it offers waterfall canyoning, high rope courses, and mountain bike trails in its backyard.

3 Vietnam's Most Ideal Places to Avoid Summer Heat in Asia
Da Lat is seeking to become a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network. Photo: Lam Dong Newspaper

Other destinations featured in the list include nearby locations in Malaysia, Thailand, and Taiwan (China), where temperatures remain below 30 degrees Celsius even during their warmest months.

These include Cameron Highlands, Genting Highlands, and Kundasang town in Malaysia; Khao Kho, Khao Yai, and Chiang Rai in Thailand; and Alishan in Taiwan (China).

Vietnam’s destinations have been consistently recognized by the international media, contributing to the country’s reputation as a beautiful, welcoming, and attractive destination for international travelers, according to the Vietnam National Authority of Tourism (VNAT) cited by VNA.

The Golden Bridge in Da Nang has been named as one of the world’s 100 greatest places by the renowned Time magazine of the US. The Guardian Daily of the UK also listed this bridge among the world’s most striking pedestrian bridges.

Hoi An and Ho Chi Minh City were listed as the favorite cities in Asia in the World’s Best Awards 2023 by US travel magazine Travel + Leisure, with Hoi An ranking 13th and Ho Chi Minh City following closely.

Additionally, Ha Long Bay, Hoi An, and Phong Nha-Ke Bang in Vietnam were selected as some of the best UNESCO world heritage sites in Southeast Asia by British travel magazine Wanderlust.

Recently, Vietnam’s National Assembly approved an extension of e-visas’ validity from 30 days to 90 days with multiple entries. It also increased the temporary residence at border gates for those entitled to unilateral visa exemption from 15 days to 45 days, and this policy will take effect on August 15.

Hannah Nguyen