Saigon and South Vietnam
Saigon, or Ho Chi Minh City as it’s been officially called since the end of the American War, may look like just another Asian mega-city, but under the surface (and in its tiny, labyrinthine alleyways), there’s an incredible place to be discovered with your camera. Further afield, the Mekong Delta offers tropical jungle, idyllic waterways and leisurely riverside life – apart from when its brilliant, chaotic floating markets are going great guns.
Saigon (like most Saigonese, we prefer the old name) is all about streetlife, much like Hanoi. But Saigon’s pace, style and soul is very different to the northern capital. In Saigon, the presence of the modern can be more keenly felt, and its towering, ramshackle apartment blocks offer Hong Kong-like urban scenes.
The locals also set up impromptu markets and food streets in some of these apartment quadrants, which make a fascinating visit and even more unique opportunities for portraiture and street photography. Pop down an alleyway in one of the ‘hem’ (local neighborhoods) and you’ll find a Saigon of the past – pagodas, cycling vendors, street hairdressers – rubbing shoulders with the people of a 21st century city.
For many photographers, the Mekong Delta is southern Vietnam. Boasting a rich mix of cultures and religions, tropical flora and fauna, and its own unique riverside lifestyle, this is a place that deserves exploration with your camera.
Most tourist trips pass through quickly, hitting only famous destinations like Can Tho and Vinh Long, we’ll take you off the beaten track to discover water lily harvesting in Long An, salt farming in Can Gio, ancient mangroves and floating markets throughout the region, and a jaw-dropping complex of traditional brick-making factories at Mang Tit. We’ll travel by boat, SUV and even bicycle to capture authentic images of this stunning area of Vietnam.
The southern coastline of Vietnam, spanning from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) to Nha Trang, is a diverse and captivating region renowned for its picturesque beaches and vibrant cities. Ho Chi Minh City, the largest city in Vietnam, serves as the entry point to this coastal journey. A short trip from the city leads to Vung Tau, with its beautiful beaches, while further down the coast, Long Hai offers a serene escape. Phan Thiet and Mui Ne are known for their distinctive sand dunes and water sports, and Nha Trang stands out as a bustling coastal city with a range of water activities, cultural attractions, and stunning beaches like Nha Trang Beach and Bai Dai Beach. This region is celebrated for its seafood and year-round tropical climate