Vietnam at a glance

Vietnam at a glance

Vietnam at a glance Vietnam is much larger than many people realise, stretching north to south for over two thousand kilometres. A mostly mountainous northern bulge opens onto the Red River plains, then narrows for over a thousand kilometres, before broadening out into the fertile Mekong Delta. In fact, three-quarters of Vietnam consists of mountains and hills, with four distinct mountainous areas. With a land area of approximately three hundred and thirty thousand square kilometres, Vietnam is divided into 64 provinces and cities.

Travel in VietNamThe population of 87 million has a young profile, with over half the population being under 30 years of age. There are 54 ethnic groups throughout the country. The capital, Hanoi (written in Vietnamese as Ha Noi) is located in the north of the country with the vibrant Ho Chi Minh City located in the south. The currency is the Dong (about VND18,000 to US$1) although US dollars are widely accepted, foreign currency being easily exchanged in all the large cities.

The economy is agrarian, Vietnam being the second largest rice exporter in the world, with coffee and textiles being also important export earners. The economy is growing so much that secondary industry barely keeps pace with development. Foreign investment is being attracted by a large pool of educated workers and it promises an exciting future for one of the world's fastest growing nations.

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