Countless foreign travelers and expats alike are deciding to live in Vietnam every year. 

With its hospitable locals, beautiful landscapes, delicious food, and relatively low cost of living, it’s no wonder so many people are deciding to make Vietnam their new home. 

Here we look at some of the best places to live in Vietnam for foreigners.

Living in Vietnam - Hanoi
The architecture of Hanoi is strikingly beautiful

Hanoi

Hanoi is Vietnam’s capital and one of the country’s most popular cities. It has all the modern conveniences you’d expect from a big city, including plenty of cafes, shops, restaurants, bars and clubs. 

It retains an old-world charm with its ancient monuments and well-preserved relics from French colonial times. Plus there are endless opportunities for exploring Vietnamese culture—take part in traditional festivals or explore Hanoi’s vibrant street food scene.

Live in Da Nang, Vietnam
Da Nang has great access to beaches and mountains

Da Nang

If you want to experience life in a Vietnamese city without the cost or craziness of Hanoi or Saigon, Da Nang is ideal. 

This coastal city has plenty of parks and green spaces where you can relax and enjoy nature during your downtime. Da Nang is the digital nomad capital of Vietnam.

There are plenty of things to do here; visit the iconic Ba Na Hills resort or take part in water sports like jet skiing or kayaking on My Khe Beach—one of Asia’s most stunning beaches.

Living in Hoi An is like something from a movie
The stunning streets of Hoi An

Hoi An

This ancient town in central Vietnam is perfect for those seeking an idyllic place to settle down for a few months, or longer. 

Hoi An is renowned for its charming atmosphere—its Old Town area is packed with colorful buildings that have hardly changed for hundreds of years. 

There are a few coworking spaces in the area and great nightlife, making Hoi An the perfect place for young people.

There are plenty of activities available here too; learn how to cook traditional Vietnamese dishes or check out Cham Island for a great day trip.

If you like big cities, Saigon is the place to be
If you like big cities, Saigon is the place to be

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Living in Ho Chi Minh City (also known as Saigon) can be an incredibly exciting experience for foreigners. 

With the city’s booming economy, the cost of living is relatively low compared to many other cities in Southeast Asia and there is a wide range of activities to keep you entertained. 

There is a lively expat community that offers generous help and advice, especially for those looking to stay longer. 

Many enjoy exploring the city’s numerous cafes and street food stands, where local dishes are served up with traditional flavors in a modern context. 

With its buzzing energy and accessible markets, nightlife, restaurants, and creative spaces all within close proximity, it’s easy to see why people are attracted to this vibrant metropolis. 

If you love mountains and cooler weather, live in Sapa
If you love mountains and cooler weather, live in Sapa

Sapa

Living in Sapa, Vietnam is a unique experience that puts you in the foothills of something truly special. 

With its breathtaking views and laid-back atmosphere, it makes a great home for expats who want to take a break from the hustle and bustle of city life. 

The cost of living in Sapa is low, offering great value for money. The climate is also much cooler than the rest of Vietnam and can be a welcome change. 

There are plenty of activities to keep busy with – be it exploring Hoang Lien National Park or experiencing the colorful weekly markets – as well as local culinary delights such as crispy fried corn cakes or native wild mushrooms that contribute towards Sapa’s unique culture. 

For those looking for cooler weather and a calmer atmosphere, Sapa is a great option.

Living in Quy Nhon, Vietnam
Quy Nhon is a small beach town without too many tourists

Quy Nhon

Living in Quy Nhon, Vietnam as a foreigner can be a truly unique and unforgettable experience. 

Often described as the jewel of south-central Vietnam, Quy Nhon is an understated beach city filled with stunning coastlines and vibrant culture. 

Living costs are reasonable, with access to fresh seafood, fruits, and rentals at agreeable prices. 

The region also offers a great quality of life for expats; visitors can discover various traditional attractions such as the Champa Ruins and indulge in delicious local foods from small street vendors or in some of the popular restaurant spots around town.

All things considered, it’s no wonder so many have chosen to stay in Quy Nhon longer than planned; it’s easy to live large and live happy in this beachy paradise.

Live in Nha Trang for a mix of city and beach vibes
Nha Trang has a mix of city and beach vibes

Nha Trang

With its pristine beaches, beautiful mountains and lush forests, Nha Trang offers many opportunities to explore Vietnamese culture and get in touch with nature. 

Living costs are also relatively low compared to other cities in the country, making it a great option for those living long-term on a budget. 

There’s plenty for expats to do here too; from local flavors at local eateries to stunning beaches and mountains. 

Da Lat is a great place to live for cooler weather - Live in Vietnam
Da Lat is a great place to live for cooler weather

Da Lat

Living in Da Lat, Vietnam as a foreigner can be a great experience. With the cost of living significantly lower than in the big cities, it’s possible to enjoy a high quality of life while on a budget. 

The lush green scenery and mild climate ensure that there is always something beautiful to explore or appreciate outdoors. 

No matter what you’re interested in, there will always be something to do. From mountain trekking, visiting local markets, exploring historical sites or relaxing by the lakeside, you won’t be bored in Da Lat. 

Local cuisine is fresh and delicious and many stores offer foreign food options. Coffee is grown in the area and there is a great paddock-to-plate cafe culture.

Living in Da Lat offers an amazing opportunity for anyone looking to settle down in Vietnam whos looking for a cooler climate and less hustle and bustle than elsewhere.

The Perfume River in Hue is one of the msot tranquil places in Vietnam
The Perfume River in Hue is one of the msot tranquil places in Vietnam

Hue

Living in Hue, Vietnam might be the best decision you’ll ever make. As a foreigner living long-term in this vibrant and diverse city, there’s something for everyone. 

From the magnificent traditional architecture to modern shopping malls and night markets, you definitely won’t be bored. 

Living expenses and cost of living are quite affordable compared to other cities in Vietnam and the food is delicious with flavorsome, hearty local ingredients. Hue cuisine is famous throughout Vietnam.

There are plenty of activities and places to visit like the Huong (Perfume) River, Truong Tien Bridge, Thien Mu Pagoda, Buddhist temples and the Imperial City. 

There’s also an active expat community which makes for great networking opportunities as well as gives you a real taste of Hue culture. 

Living in Hue gives you an opportunity to experience both old-world charm and modern city life at its most balanced.

Mui Ne has many beautiful sand dunes
Mui Ne has many beautiful sand dunes

Mui Ne

Mui Ne’s cost of living is quite reasonable, with lots of delicious local food options that will not break the bank. 

There are many fun activities to explore and appreciate, such as visiting Mui Ne’s stunning windy sand dunes or getting to know the beautiful beachfront. 

A wonderful expat community has grown from the influx of foreigners over the years, so those who already live there show great hospitality in welcoming newcomers. 

Only a few hours drive from Saigon, Mui Ne gives you access to Vietnam’s business capital and a well-connected international airport.

Some FAQs for Vietnam

What’s the best way to get around Vietnam?

Planes, trains, buses, and shuttles are all great options for getting around Vietnam. For longer journeys, planes or trains will be more convenient. But if you’re just making a short trip, bus or shuttle services are also good choices.

What’s the food like in Vietnam?

Great. Vietnamese food is fresh, fragrant and delicious. Of all the world’s cuisines, Vietnamese food ranks highly as one of the most healthy and tasty.

What are some must-try dishes in Vietnam?

When you live in Vietnam, be sure to try some of their classic dishes like Pho, Bun Bo Hue, and Bun Cha Ha Noi. And don’t forget the Banh Mi.

What are some of the best things to see and do in Vietnam?

Some of our favorites: The Ha Giang Loop, cycling around Tam Coc, walking around Hoi An and enjoying Bia Hoi in Hanoi.

What are the people like in Vietnam?

Vietnamese people are funny, friendly, and genuine. In our experience, making friends with locals is a bit harder in Vietnam than elsewhere in Southeast Asia.

What’s the climate like in Vietnam?

Vietnam is hot, wet, and humid, particularly in the south and center of the country. North Vietnam gets cool in the winter months.

The North and Central Highlands can get quite cold and higher elevations have very little variation in weather year-round.

What should I know about Vietnamese culture?

Vietnamese society is quite conservative. Dress modestly, no public displays of affection, and be considerate of the people around you.

Avoid politics. For those who may need to be told: Vietnam is a country, not a war.

What are some things to keep in mind when I live in Vietnam?

Motorbike snatch-and-grab theft is quite common. We recommend being careful crossing busy roads, particularly in Saigon.

Petty scams like receiving incorrect change are unfortunately common. Chances are, you’re going to be a target. Just don’t be the low-hanging fruit.

Live in Vietnam
Vietnam is a diverse and beautiful country waiting to be explored

Do You Want to Live in Vietnam?

From bustling cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to more laidback destinations such as Da Lat or Quy Nhon, there’s something for everyone when it comes to finding the perfect place to live in Vietnam. 

Whether you’re looking for a vibrant urban lifestyle or a more relaxed rural existence, with just ten picks from our list above you’re sure to find something that suits your needs perfectly.

If you are looking for a new place to call home or are looking to invest here, reach out and we can help you get started. 

With our local knowledge and expertise, we can make the transition easy for you. So what are you waiting for? Come explore Vietnam with us!