Gay Vietnam Travel
Vietnam Has it all: history, shopping, great beaches, exotic food, exciting experiences, low prices, and even gay nightlife. You can easily spend a vacation of two or three weeks in Vietnam. If you have a week or less, however, and have never visited Vietnam, combining Saigon, Hanoi and Halong Bay is the best way to see and do the most. If you have more time, add Hue & Hoi An, or a few days of easy trekking in Sapa, or combine Dalat and Phan Thiet as a side trip from Ho Chi Minh City. If you have special interests we are always happy to customize our programs so you have a bespoke Vietnam holiday experience that is as unique as you are.
For most who visit Vietnam for the first time, the big surprise is that it is an exciting, spirited and remarkably beautiful place full of happy, healthy, optimistic people. While it was the world's third poorest country two decades ago, it now has one of the world's fastest growing economies. It is also a wonderful place for a gay- or lesbian-friendly vacation. We have been offering gay Vietnam tours and sightseeing for two decades, so it is one of our favorite places.
Vietnam can be divided into three different regions, each with a different history, culture and climate. Many believe Northern Vietnam to be among the most beautiful places in the world. Hanoi is ancient, with architecture going back to a time when it was a part of China. You will find incomparable shopping and dining in this cosmopolitan city. The World Heritage site of Halong Bay just a few hours from Hanoi is one of the most spectacular places to see in Asia.
Further south, the ancient capital of Hue is full of history, while equally ancient Hoi An is charming, mostly unspoiled, and has one of the best beaches in Asia.
Southern Vietnam offers a lot of diversity. Stylish, fun-loving Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) is the country's economic capital. From there you can visit the sleepy French hill station town of Dalat and enjoy a year 'round tropical Mui Ne beach resort near Phan Thiet.
Purple Dragon offers all-inclusive vacation programs and unique side trips designed to help first-time visitors get acquainted with incredible Vietnam and help return guests peel back the layers of places they want to see again. Creating the perfect adventure could not be easier! Choose your destinations and arrive any day. Add any extra sightseeing you like and your trip is tailor-made to suit your own schedule, tastes and budget. Your private tour includes personal guides, private transportation and gay-friendly hotels.
It is easy to spend two weeks or more exploring Vietnam. If you have a week or less, however, and have never visited Vietnam, combining Saigon, Hanoi and Halong Bay is the best way to see and do the most.
Why Purple Dragon Outshines the Competition
There are one or two gay tour companies in Vietnam and we are often asked to compare our services to theirs. We live and work every day in Vietnam, just as they do and we all specialize in LGBTQ visitors. Similarities end there. Our guides are highly experienced and licensed. The others often use amateurs who have little or no experience as well as guides we parted company with for very good reasons. They cut corners to make their prices cheaper, while we constantly fine tune what we do to make it better. Unlike Purple Dragon, some dabble in prostitution. Perhaps the most important difference is that Purple Dragon is owned and managed by Westerners who have a far higher standard for quality and efficiency. We have more than 19 years experience with gay visitors to Vietnam and we think Purple Dragon is your best possible option.
Convenient Modular Packages
Purple Dragon's Vietnam packages offer great value and save you time and effort by arranging your choice of hotel, round trip airport transportation, and sightseeing with a personal English-speaking guide. You can always add extra nights and optional sightseeing if you wish. In most cases we are happy to customize our packages any way you like.
Hanoi Highlights ▸ If you can only afford two nights in Hanoi, this program is perfect for you. It includes a full day city tour by "cyclo" (pedicab), lunch in a traditional restaurant, and an unforgettable performance of water puppetry.
Hanoi & Halong Bay ▸ This is our most comprehensive Hanoi adventure. In addition to the features included in "Hanoi Highlights" you get an overnight trip (with two half days cruising) to spectacular Halong Bay, plus your choice of full day trips. Six days, five nights.
Grand Hanoi ▸ You will be pampered on this program with a Benz waiting for you at Noi Bai airport, a room at the historic Metropole Hotel, a city tour, and an overnight trip to Halong Bay, where you will live aboard a teak sailing boat.
Sapa ▸ Journey to the edge of Vietnam's border with China to visit rustic Ethnic Minority tribal villages, experience colorful country markets, and do some easy trekking through the lush, green rural landscape.
Hue and Hoi An ▸ Explore Central Vietnam on this five-day program with two nights each in Hue and Hoi An. Hue, Vietnam's ancient capital, is full of history and magnificent architecture left by long-dead emperors. Hoi An is an idyllic village with narrow lanes, canals, four hundred year old buildings and one of the loveliest beaches in Vietnam.
Saigon Sizzle ▸ Four days and three night in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam's bustling economic capital. In addition to a full-day city tour, you also make a full day trip to the Mekong Delta with your private guide.
Simply Saigon ▸ Guests with less time may choose this two-night program that includes a full day city tour. Both of our Saigon programs also include a taste of the local nightlife.
Dalat Delights ▸ A former French Hill Station a few hours drive from Ho Chi Minh City, Dalat is known as the "Honeymoon Capital of Vietnam." The town is full of gardens, small farms, colorful markets and some odd things to see. Dalat is a terrific get-away because it is incredibly peaceful and surrounded by natural beauty. From there you can return to Saigon, or continue to Phan Thiet (below).
Banana Belt Beach Bash ▸ While most of Vietnam's great beach are closed for business between October and April, Phan Thiet welcomes visitors 362 days of the year. It rains so seldom that there are vast sand dunes. Beyond the beaches lies a colorful fishing town with fresh prawns and even a bit of nightlife.
Passports & Visas
Except for citizens of ASEAN countries, a visa is required for citizens of most countries. We'll tell you where to apply easily for a visa online so that you can avoid a trip to an embassy or consulate.
Before You Go
Before your trip we will give you extensive "Before You Go" information that includes tips about packing, weather, money, shopping, food, travel practicalities and local culture that will help you enjoy a worry-free holiday.
Vietnam's Gay Scene
Vietnamese people are friendly, gegarious and easy to meet, especially if you are willing help them practice their English. While technically a socialist country, Vietnam's attitudes toward LGBT people is remarkably relaxed and enlightened. There are no sodomy laws. There are venues specifically for gay men in both Saigon and Hanoi (including bars, restaurants, discos, and saunas/massage). There are probably also similar venues in other parts of the country that have not caught the eye of visitors. In resorts like Hoi An and Phan Thiet there are gay-owned restaurants and other businesses that attract mixed clientele.
Purple Dragon pioneered gay travel to Vietnam, but everyone is welcome on our tours!
Photos: Douglas Thompson