Hanoi vs. Saigon

Get beneath the surface - The InsideVietnam Blog

If you’re planning on visiting Vietnam, the chances are that the northern capital Hanoi and southern hub of Ho Chi Minh City (AKA Saigon) will both be right at the top of your list of places to visit.

Separated by a swathe of land over a thousand miles long, these two cities differ on almost every point – from food and culture to size, history, geography and climate. (A point that’s widely acknowledged and discussed – for example in this interesting and slightly nonsensical book by graphic designer Nhat Le)

But if you could only visit one, which should it be?

We’ve debated the similarities and differences of these two cities amongst ourselves and you’ll find our observations below – but we can’t promise that by the end of it you’ll be able to choose!

Geography & climate

Hanoi, located in northern Vietnam, lies on the Red River delta about…

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