No matter where you are in Vietnam, the same flag hangs from rusted metal poles, and Ho Chi Minh ‘s face is never too far away, but in many respects, the North and South are very different. Here are 15 reasons why, after travelling through this diverse country, you would think you deserve another stamp on your passport.
The official language in Vietnam is Tiếng Việt (‘Vietnamese’), but regional dialects modify it in important ways. Everyone uses different words , phrases, and phonetic elements in the North and South, so often they can’t even understand each other. You’d also be puzzled if anyone were to order you to “cheap right” when they needed you to make a left. When they talk to someone from another part of the world, this is how the Vietnamese feel.If you live in the South, it also makes the language hard to understand, as many apps and courses only teach the Northern dialect.
The Wet Ones
Vietnam’s rainy season lasts from May to November, and you’re pretty well assured of a regular soak during these months. Storms move in rapidly in the South, with nothing more than a cold raft of wind to warn you. Downpours seldom last longer than a few hours, however. However, in the North, it continues to drizzle during the day. These months, either way, aren’t the best for traveling in Vietnam.
Temperatures for the Dry Season
There’s a reliably hot South. In Ho Chi Minh City, it almost never falls below 20 ° C (68F), even at night. From January to March, average temperatures drop to as low as 17 ° C (63F) in the North. You can see people in the North wearing heavy winter coats during these months, and the mornings are extremely cold, sometimes falling into single-digit temperatures. Farther north, snow can be seen in the mountains.
Without iced coffee, life in the South will come to a halt. The thick blend of condensed milk and robusta beans brings sweet relief from the relentless sun, or black, with heaps of sugar. Coffee is less popular in the North, and it is harder to find cafes. Many northerners would prefer a cup of tea, provided the variety. They share with their neighbors, the Chinese, this affinity.
The Daily Meals
Northerners, generally speaking, prefer noodles to rice. Many of the common noodle dishes in Vietnam, like bún riêu, bún ch, and ph, originated in the North. Thanks to its warmer climate and large agricultural area, the South produces more livestock, rice, and fruit. Vietnamese eat pho for breakfast nationally, but later in the day, Southerners would usually eat rice at restaurants with some mixture of pork, seafood and/or egg.
With overt displays of ostentatious wealth seen as a derogatory characteristic of their southern kin, fashion in the north is more subdued. However, you can expect fine silks and quality tailored outfits to be seen.
Ho Chi Minh City is Vietnam ‘s fashion hub, with its numerous boutique shops and international brands. And local fashion designers are flourishing due to the booming economy as well. With their jeans and t-shirts, young people in the south could easily pass for teenagers in America. It spreads quickly when a fresh style or brand emerges in Ho Chi Minh City. Young people will be waiting in line to be at the forefront of fashion for hours.
Young people in the South enjoy fast food in the American style, too. You can find some combination of KFC, Popeye’s, Lotteria, or Burger King in the heart of any area. Now, in Ho Chi Minh City, there are even McDonalds. In the North, these same fast food chains exist, but they’re not as widespread. For example, for every 1.5 million people in Hanoi, there is approximately one Burger King. For every 500,000 individuals in Ho Chi Minh City, the number drops to one Burger King.You can see it in Vietnamese waistlines, and there is also an increase in childhood obesity.
In Hanoi, the bureaucratic strength of Vietnam resides. It’s where the government works from, with officials in the rest of the country overseeing operations. Although the bureaucratic strength lies in the North, the economic powerhouse is Ho Chi Minh City. You will move to Ho Chi Minh City if you are a young Vietnamese individual and have a keen sense of business, or if you have aspirations for money.In Ho Chi Minh City, when you speak to young people, you find out how many left their small towns in search of training and prosperity in the big city.
Life at night
The South is where you want to be, if you are the sort to hang out until the sun comes up. Many bars and clubs stay open all night in Ho Chi Minh City. In the backpackers’ town, the notorious Bui Vien Street never closes. In Hanoi, though, thanks to curfews and their more conventional methods, if you want to stay up all night and get wild, you’ll have to be more imaginative. Right after work, it’s more common for people in Hanoi to get together, calling it a responsible night hour.
Although exceptions to this rule may undoubtedly be found, Southerners prefer to smile quickly, while Northerners are seen as more aloof. Staff in hotels and restaurants in the North are friendly, but also businesslike, from my experience. They may not smile as much, but in order to help you, you can always count on them. And after a while, you’re going to break through their shells and build warm relations. In the South, within seconds, you will find yourself exchanging laughs with strangers.
Destinations for Travel
Tourists come to the North for both its natural beauty and its history. The area is rich with incredible sights and remnants from days long gone, from Ha Long Bay, to the endless winding roads through the mountains. The beaches and resorts dominate tourism in the South, with the most prominent exceptions being Da Lat, Hoi An, and the Mekong Delta. On the many pristine beaches in the South, most of which are a quick drive or a cheap one, foreigners come from far and wide to lounge.
“Việt Kiều” (Vietnamese from Overseas)
Around two million people left the country after the American war. Today, more than 40 years later, many of those refugees’ descendants are returning to Vietnam to encounter their ancestral homeland. Since most of the people who fled came from the South, that’s where most of the Việt Kiều are located today.A person who looks Vietnamese, but speaks with a perfect American or Australian accent, born and raised in places like Houston, San Diego, or Sydney, is popular in Ho Chi Minh City. They offer unique viewpoints, and many seek to deepen relations between Vietnam and the rest of the world.
In Vietnam, control was mostly in the North, mainly in Hanoi, but also during the French colonial years in Hue. Although Saigon may have more glitz, modern art, and objects from the American War, in terms of culture, it simply does not compete with the North.
The South is home to the majority of foreigners living in Vietnam, mainly in and around Ho Chi Minh City. Koreans top the list, as well as Japanese. Many of the factories producing products for overseas markets are supervised by them. Foreigners almost outnumber Vietnamese in some areas of Ho Chi Minh City, most notably in Districts 2 and 7. Companies catering to their foreign tastes and styles are packed with these regions.And the number of foreign teachers in Vietnam continues to grow with the recent drive for English language training in every classroom.
Vendors for Street Food
Street food, inexpensive meals and snacks served to millions every day, is a daily part of life in Vietnam. Vendors prefer aluminum carts in the South, which may be because many of them work illegally. Waves of fleeing food carts, with a police vehicle not far behind, are a frequent sight in the South. In the North, street vendors are more traditional, still using bamboo sticks slung off each side with wicker baskets, or modern variants made of welded steel.
Link Source: https:/theculturetrip.com/asia/vietnam/vietnam
SVFF is a group of Vietnamese Language Teachers, all of which have at least 2 years of teaching, a BA in Language Teaching. We are motivated and ambitious. We are passionate about helping Vietnamese learners to be able to communicate well in Vietnamese and understand people culture.