Vietnam, a land of great traditions and millenary culture, but also a place of quirks and questionable habits. These are some of the strangest curiosities related to Vietnam, its beauties, its cities and its inhabitants.
1. The Turtle
In the Hoan Kien lake of Hanoi, the homonymous turtle, part of the species Rafetus leloii, lived until 2016. It was 1 of only 4 known specimens, still alive.
2. Typical Dishes
Tiet Canh is a traditional Vietnamese dish prepared with fresh animal blood. While the Hot Vit Long is a fertilized quail egg (inside there is a chick in an embryonic state). If you want you can also taste some delicious Coconut Worms (giant worms that grow on Coconut plants)
3. The Spa
The spa Bin Chau are so hot as to be able to boil eggs.
4. The Fragrant River
In Vietnam there is a river called Perfume River (the river of perfumes), its name is due to the scent it emanates from the flowers that fall on its bed in autumn, releasing a pleasant scented trail
5. The Caves
In Vietnam there is the largest cave in the world, it is called Son Doong. One of the Must-visit places in Vietnam
6. Love “For Sale”
In Sa Pa, in the north of the country, the Love Market is held every Saturday. Dedicated to singles from mountain villages.
7. The Superstition
The Vietnamese are superstitious and have unwritten rules regarding gifts that you absolutely must not give. For example, it is thought that it is bad luck to give something that contains the number 4 (eg 4 fruits, 4 bowls) as 4 in the Chinese tradition represents death. It is also bad taste to give bananas that indicate failure and to offer glasses and cups to the newlyweds.
8. The Traditions
In Vietnam, every family has an NGO Tao, also called Kitchen God. Usually it is placed on the altar at the entrance of the house and offers are made to it for a peaceful and healthy life for the whole family. It is usually also accompanied by a bowl with goldfish.
9. The Gestacci
In Vietnam to show contempt for someone, you don’t show your middle finger, but join the index and middle fingers to form a D.
The most common surname in the country is Nguyen, it was also the birth name of Ho Chi Minh and it is estimated that it is the family name of almost 40% of the entire population.
11. The Traffic Light
The yellow / orange traffic light in Vietnam indicates that you need to accelerate to pass faster.
12. Eating Habits
Lots of Vietnamese eat dog and cat meat.
13. City of a Certain Age
Hanoi is a thousand-year-old city. In fact, on 10/10/2010, the celebrations for the 1000th year of life of the city were announced.
14. A Bridge to the West
In Hanoi there is the Long Bieng Bridge, when it was built it was considered the longest bridge in the world. Its author was Gustave Eiffel, the same architect who made the Tour of Paris and the Statue of Liberty
15. The Etiquette
Making noise while eating, burping and spitting on the ground at a restaurant is common in Vietnam
16. Two-wheeled Vehicles
In Ho Chi Minh, 1.5 million mopeds circulate every day. It is estimated that in the city the car / moped ratio is 1/25
17. The Sacred Animals
In Vietnamese culture there are 4 animals considered sacred: the dragon, the unicorn, the turtle and the phoenix. We leave it to you to understand which is therefore the only truly venerable animal.
18. Drink that Passes You
Vietnam is famous for weird drinks. The most common of all: snake venom wine and egg coffee
19. The Work
Vietnam is one of the countries with the lowest unemployment rate in the world (2.2%). This result was achieved thanks / to the fault of the large international companies that have decided to invest in Vietnam, where average wages are among the lowest in the world.
20. Let it Snow
It may seem strange but even in Vietnam, in the middle of South East Asia, it snows! In fact, in the northernmost areas of Vietnam, particularly in the Sa Pa area, on the border with China, the high altitude and harsh climate lead to frequent snowfalls
21. Tube House
Visiting the big cities of Vietnam you will happen to encounter streets flanked by tall and very narrow buildings, this type of houses are called the Tube House and are used by great Vietnamese families to live all within the same house. Originally the Vietnamese house generally only had 2 floors. With the advance of urban and architectural development, higher and higher houses began to be built, while maintaining the same initial perimeter. This led to the construction of very narrow, high and very long buildings, with a single entrance, usually the same in which the family business is located.
22. The Bell
In Vietnam, the classic bell is not used in schools, but gong strokes are sounded in its place. That’s the sign that the lesson is over.
In Vietnam, one of the most common domestic animals is the Belly-bellied Pig. A very common pig species in Vietnam and Thailand, easily recognizable by its very pronounced belly which in some cases touches the ground.