Vinh's role as an industrial port city led to heavy destruction by aerial bombing during the war, as a result it has remained a drab, rather uninteresting place. However, the beaches are still worth a visit for those looking to break up the journey between Hanoi and Hue.
The recently expanded Vinh International Airport is served daily by three carriers: Vietnam Airlines, VietJet Air, and Jetstar Pacific. There is daily service to and from Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, Buon Ma Thuot, and Da Lat.
Bus from Hanoi is about 6 hours (200,000 dong). Bus to Da Nang is about 10 hours.
Local minibus from Thanh Hoa takes roughly 3.5 hours costing 100,000 dong.
There is a sign at the Ninh Binh bus station stating 90,000 dong.
From Laos, buses depart Phonsavan around 6:30am most days taking 12 hours to reach Vinh. Shop around with travel agents or book directly with the bus station to get the cheapest price. Upon arrival in Vinh, there are buses that depart towards both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Watch out for touts / people offering to help as you disembark as they are likely to overcharge, knowing that you may not be familiar with bus prices in Vietnam. At the time of writing (April 2017) a bus with Hoang Long (a reputable Vietnamese bus company) costs 150,000 VND which includes a meal. Check prices online before you travel to give you an idea of what you should be paying.
There are several trains daily on the main line from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi. Train to Hanoi is about 6 hours, with the train to Hue taking 8 hours. The train line between Vinh and Dong Hoi to the south takes an inland route different from Highway 1, and there is some excellent scenery along the way. If you're travelling along the coast by bus, consider taking a break here and going by train.
Bus There are various buses leading through Vinh and to surrounding villages and districts.
Mechanic Nhật Thái Motor - 333 Lê Duẩn, tp. Vinh (map coordinates: 18.665057 105.689567) If you have travelled here on a motorcycle and need some work doing, you are in luck. There is a very good mechanic, near the large roundabout. No bodging, everything was done properly, and all the appropriate parts were greased upon reassembly. They carefully checked over our bike to find out why it was broken, rather than just replacing the broken parts. Nearly no English, but very friendly and helpful. Also they didn't try to overcharge as we have experienced in backpacker areas.
The city features several fascinating sites including Song Lam (Light Blue River), Ho Chi Minh Square, Phuong Hoang Trung Do (Phoenix Capital with Quang Trung King Temple), Dung Quyet Mountain with picturesque and breathtaking scenery of the Lam River, Hong Linh Mountain Rank, East Sea and all of Vinh City. President Ho Chi Minh’s hometown, Kim Lien, is 10 km west of Vinh in Nam Dan district. Pù Mát National Park, one of the largest and most well-preserved national parks in Vietnam, is located 120 km west of Vinh. A local tour company offers guided tours of Pu Mat in English or Vietnamese, with the chance to explore Khe Kem Waterfall, Giang River boat trip, Pha Lai Dam, and “Sang Le” Forest.
Vinh Market, in the center of the city, offers a wide variety of handmade goods.
There are some unique dishes originating in Vinh and the surrounding areas in Nghe An and Ha Tinh, including cháo lươn (spicy eel soup), bánh mướt (steamed rice rolls), kẹo Cu Đơ (peanut rice paper candy).
Vinh has over 100 decorative and comfortable coffee shops. The coffee and smoothies are very well-prepared and tasty.
There are numerous "bia hoi" shops dotting the city, where you can drink your heart's content of beer all day and night.
We Pub on Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street is a European-style pub with a good beer and liquor selection. Loud music downstairs and quiet lounge upstairs.
Heaven nightclub on Le Mao street features a nightly DJ mix and bottle service.
Muong Thanh Song Lam Hotel. Vinh's first 5-star hotel with a restaurant, swimming pool, massage. About $40 per night.
Saigon Kim Lien Hotel. Another great choice for high-quality accomodation. About $30 per night.
Gold Vinh Hotel. (Số 1A Đ. Lê Huân, TP. Vinh- Nghệ An. Tel: 0388 696 696). Very clean rooms, TV channel, safe place and the feeling of an hotel, not a guesthouse. Wifi is not that great, the staff doesn't speak great English but they are very friendly and polite. We paid 200.000 Vietnamese Dong for a twin room (in one bed can sleep two people), with aircon, fan and hot shower.
See air, train, bus information above.
Bus at Bus Station to PhongSavanh (Phonsavan) in Laos, visa for Laos available at border, bus leaves every second day in the morning 6AM
Sleeping bus to Dong Hoi 220,000. Roughly 4 hours.