10 Fun Facts about Vietnam You Might Have Missed

Home to an extensive array of cultural, historical and natural attractions, Vietnam is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating countries in Southeast Asia. Nature enthusiasts have always found this place as a premium budget destination which caters to a diverse range of sightseeing opportunities. Be it a family vacay or business tour, Vietnam will never fail to amaze you with its pristine beaches and untouched islets. From the towering mountains to the tropical forests, from spotting the rare wildlife species to the swirling field of the paddies, the nation has something to offer for everyone.

Thrilling activities, such as quad biking and sandboarding can also be in your list, and Vietnam will not fail you! An entirely different experience would be mingling with the local lifestyle, which mainly comprises of the hill-tribes and rice farmers along with the northern mountain ranges. The fisherman villages scattered throughout the middle and southern regions of the country along the Mekong Delta is yet another fascinating experience for those interested to delve into the life of the subalterns. One of the best places for the shutterbugs and for the adventure lovers, here are some of the fun facts about Vietnam:

1. Vietnamese cuisine is one of the healthiest cuisines in the world

The food recipes contained a lot of green herbs, vegetables, and sea food. The cuisines were combined with the many other ingredients along with side dishes to enhance the flavours of the dishes. This is the reason why Vietnamese food is considered as the healthiest food in town. Most of the recipes are rich in antioxidants, Vitamins E and A that fight free radicals in your body. Authentic Vietnamese stocks can take as much as ten hours to prepare and contains vitamins C, B3, B6, folate, iron and magnesium. Vietnamese food is almost always naturally gluten-free as they use rice papers, rice noodles, and rice flour in place of wheat. Overall, it helps to maintain your blood sugar and thus lose weight.

Rice Noodles in Vietnam
Rice Noodles with Green Herbs

Read More: Food Tour of Vietnam

2. Ready to have half-hatched eggs for breakfast?

There are many fun facts about Vietnam when it comes to their choice of cuisine. A very popular street food in Asian countries, especially Vietnam is having fertilized duck embryo.

When you break the shell of a balut, one has to be careful to not let the liquid ooze out. This liquid inside the balut tastes has a similar taste like the chicken soup but with a much stronger flavour. The egg yolk texture is very soft, and you can find custard like constituency. The white egg is firmer than a hard-boiled egg, and has a bit rubbery taste for those who are having it for the first time.

You can find different tastes in different regions of Vietnam when it comes to tasting balut. In Hanoi, the eggs are removed from the shell and placed into a small bowl instead of cups and are eaten with a small spoon. In Southern Vietnam, baluts are placed in a small cup, with the large egghead upward only after boiling. The top is peeled off gently with fingers, and savoured with little black pepper and salt.

3. Vietnam is the world’s leading exporter of cashew nuts and black pepper

Another fun facts about Vietnam is that Vietnam exported 339,700 tons of cashew nuts making upto $3.09 billion in 2018, which is about 5.3 per cent in volume compared to 2017 as reported by the General Department of Vietnam Customs. The average export price in 2018 was $9,012 per ton. Black Pepper Production in 2016 - 2017 was found to be around 185,000 Metric Tons, not counting the15, 000 Metric Tons carrying forward the stocks from that of 2015 - 2016.

4. Dog eating has deep roots in Vietnam

This country is considered the second largest when it comes to consuming dogs meat. They use over five millions for consuming in their daily diet. With varying degrees of acceptability, dog meat is predominantly found in the North. It's a winter food which is eaten in a variety of ways - such as grilled, stir fried, stuffed in spring rolls, or in soups. Now it is up to you to decide whether it is one of the fun facts about Vietnam or you support the law of banning dog meat.

5. It has the world’s largest caves

Hang Son Doong (Mountian River Cave), is the largest cave in the world. It is located in the heart of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park in the Quang Binh province of Vietnam. The second big cave is the Son Doong caves which are also situated in Vietnam. It is so big that a Boeing 747 could fly through its cavern.

Hang Son Doong Cave, Quang Binh
Hang Son Doong Cave in Quang Binh

Read More: Explore the Vietnam Cave

6. ‘Ghost money’ for ancestors

Ghost money is basically the imitation bills that are representative offerings to the departed ancestors. Ghost money is printed on bamboo paper and is generally made to resemble Thai baht, Chinese yen, Vietnamese dong, or even U.S. dollars which are then burnt and devoted to the family’s ancestors. Some believe the ancestors can save this money in an eternity bank, while others view ghost money as debt for the ancestors granting the living family’s wishes.

7. No haircuts before exams

Another fun fact about Vietnam, which almost translates to superstition, is the notion that a poorly timed haircut can effect memory loss. This is especially troublesome for students – if a student gets a haircut immediately before any exam, they could forget everything!

8. They drink snake wine for vitality

In Vietnam, snake wine (Rượu rắn) is a pickled snake in rice wine. It is widely believed by some individuals to improve health and virility and is even drank for therapeutic purposes. Given its high alcohol percentage, snake wine, is traditionally sipped in shot glasses. It is prohibited to import snake wine to many countries because most of the time the snakes used for its production are of endangered species.
Vietnam Snake Wine
Pickled Snake Wine

9. Vietnam has a literacy level of 97.3%

Vietnam has a literacy rate of 97.3% as stated by the 2016 adult’s survey. The survey was conducted on the people aged between 15-50 years of age.

10. Helmets prevent in the growth of children's brain

In 2007, the government mandated helmets for motorbike drivers and passengers on all Vietnamese roads. But there is a pervasive belief about helmet hindering the child’s brain development by stopping the growth of brain!

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