Taking a train in Vietnam is an experience in itself, looking out at the beautiful views from the train, and mixing with locals as well as other travellers will be something you can never experience at home.
The trains give you the opportunity to explore Vietnam as well as different countries. You won’t have to deal with any flying fears, and will be able to enjoy luscious green valleys. You can travel from North to South of the county, or across through to Cambodia, Laos and China. Be careful when buying tickets, as they can sell out a few days before, and people who sell them might try to overcharge you, make sure you have a rough idea of how much a ticket should cost.
When travelling far through Vietnam, or to another country, you’ll have a few different options for your travels. Hard and soft sleepers, and hard or soft sitters, the names are pretty self explanatory. Sleeper trains are air conditioned, which when on a long train ride could be very beneficial. Keep in mind that the better quality carriage you stay in, the more the price will go up. The trains are very cheap though, a soft sleeper usually being about £15, it all depends on how long your journey will be though. If you choose a soft sleeper, you’ll be sharing with 4 other people, you’ll have a wash basin in your cabin but will have a communal toilet. It’s recommended you bring your own food when travelling on this train, although food is sometimes provided. If you pick a sitter, you’ll have more than 4 people in your carriage, and won’t be able to sleep (although you could try!)
The Livitrans train which goes from Hanoi to Hue is the only 1st class train line in Vietnam. You get the luxury of a TV in the carriage and have the option to have a 2 bed room. You’ll get more attention on your journey, if there’s a problem it’ll be a lot easier to sort out than if you were on a standard train.The prices go up a lot on this train line, but are still not massively expensive, the cheapest one way ticket going from Hanoi-Hue is about £24, which when considering you’re travelling for 13-14 hours, isn’t bad value for money.
Some of the wonderful locations you’ll be able to experience with the help of the Vietnam trains are places like the beautiful Hoan Kiem Lake, and Ho Chi Minh City where you can see some important history from the Vietnam war. You’ll also get breathtaking views of Vietnam’s beautiful beaches and mountains and rice fields just from looking out the train window.
The trains in Vietnam are a fantastic, cheap and safe to travel on. The main things to think about are cleanliness, privacy and time. If you don’t really mind about these issues, you are staying for a while in Vietnam, and you have a good book to read, this is a fantastic option for you to take. It can really enhance your travels and help you to see the best of Vietnam.
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Author Bio: Emma Buttery who loves travelling around, as well as photographing and writing about the places she visits too.