Bus or Train Trip in Vietnam

Old Jun 30th, 2019, 04:26 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 159
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Bus or Train Trip in Vietnam

I am planning to travel Vietnam from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City in this October (2019) with only one stopover at Hoi An due to time constraint. Without being able to speak the local language, would it be advisable/possible? I would like to see and experience the scenes from the bus/train. I know flying would be faster, but the cost is just about the same. It is my first trip to Vietnam.
tominrm is offline  
Old Jun 30th, 2019, 06:32 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,286
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Let me suggest that you may want to reconsider that stop in Hoi An. October is monsoon season in central VN, and you can expect 20 inches of rain or more in October. We ran into the same issue when we visited VN in November. We chose to skip central VN, as the flooding is often severe, with loss of life.

Given that, I'd suggest that you fly between Hanoi and HCMC. Lack of local language will not be an issue. English is widely spoken.
Kathie is offline  
Old Jun 30th, 2019, 08:12 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 26,844
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Normally I would recommend the train, with a stop in Hue instead of Hoi An, but not in the rainy season, as Kathie says.
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Jun 30th, 2019, 08:45 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 8,313
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I agree with the above. The train our the preferred method of travel in Vietnam and we have done the trip from Hanoi to Saigon and vv, several times. During October there is a possibility you will be paddling through the streets of Hoi An. You don’t say how much time to actually have in the country but if >7days, I would just stick with the two cities. 10 days and you could take a couple of nights side trip, maybe the Mekong delta in the south or Ninh Binh from Hanoi. Some photos and detail of our travels in the county which may help you choose on our blog @ https://accidentalnomads.com/category/vietnam/
crellston is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2019, 02:26 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 159
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you all for very valuable weather information. 20 inches of rain in a month is a LOT! I will bypass (fly over) Hoi An this time and hope I will get another opportunity to visit the city in the future.
tominrm is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2019, 03:02 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,286
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sounds like a good plan. Enjoy your time in VN.
Kathie is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2019, 06:38 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 89
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Agree with aboves - Oct/ Nov is not a good time to visit Central VN (Do it for another trip).
Train is safer than bus (Remember to avoid night bus)!
DinHo is offline  
Old Jul 2nd, 2019, 05:47 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 2
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You can consider to skip central region of VN in Oct - Dec, since the heavy rainy season, and even it cause extreme flooding. About the means of transport, trains could be the best choice, but it takes about 31- 35 hours depends on different train label. Moreover, English is widely spoken in Vietnam so local language not a big deal.
iamthuyduong is offline  
Old Jul 7th, 2019, 12:47 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,003
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Was in Da Nang a few September ago. Perfect weather during the day, with a long deluge every night during the early hours.

Then moved on by train to Hue for 5 nights. Got caught in a Tropical Depression for much of that time, and spent far too much time in a bar watching the great spectacle of how the locals just take these inclement weather patterns in their stride.

Spent the following week in Hoi An....perfect weather throughout.

Pay your money and take your chance.
LancasterLad is offline  
Old Jul 8th, 2019, 07:15 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 159
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you for your suggestion, LancasterLad, but my time in Vietnam is very limited. I think I will spend the time I originally allocated for Hoi An in Mecong Delta.
tominrm is offline  
Old Jul 8th, 2019, 06:25 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 2
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you travel from the North to the South, I would recommend the train is preferrable. Because it's safe and more experienced to sightsee. Of course, bus is suitable for short distance in the city. Don't worry about the language. The touristy attractions all have English speakers.
Noted, October is rainy month in Vietnam but the weather is cool and easing.
Hope you enjoy your trip in Vietnam!
nhungdang9494 is offline  
Old Jul 19th, 2019, 10:00 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 117
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Trains are always preferable (except the one Hanoi-Sapa, where the day express bus on a new superhighway i better). For long distnaces, take night trains.
October bad month for the Center and Saigon-Hanoi is a grueling 34-hour affair, so take the plane and enjoy the fantastic Halong bay and northern mountains
Larsay is offline  
Old Jul 20th, 2019, 06:53 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 26,844
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
The Hanoi-Sapa train was the second worst night train of my life, and I've taken a lot. (The worst was an unplanned Malaysia to Bangkok in third class... )

The Reunification line is fine, although the berths can be hard.
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Jul 20th, 2019, 07:51 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 117
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
To do Hanoi-Sapa, the very best is the DIRECT very comfy express bus SapaExpress , 5 hours (including 30 mn refreshments stop) on new superhighway instead of grueling 10 hours train + bus Lao cai-Sapa
Larsay is offline  
Old Jul 20th, 2019, 08:39 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 26,844
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Not an option when I did it. Sounds like a significant improvement.
thursdaysd is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
nolarussell
Asia
12
Aug 24th, 2018 04:49 PM
J1821
Asia
6
Oct 7th, 2017 07:05 PM
justshootme
Asia
12
Jun 28th, 2010 04:46 PM
sbrasny
Asia
4
Feb 15th, 2010 06:43 PM
Subway_Scoundrel
Asia
10
Sep 20th, 2005 09:38 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information