Vietnam is easily my favourite of the three Asian countries I traveled to this past month. I loved it for its incredible value for money (now if I say this as a South African I cannot imagine the value someone with US dollars or British pounds would find), the perfect mix between urban and rural spaces and the pure beauty of its landscapes and people.
I only visited two towns in Vietnam, Da Nang and Hoi An, and even this was enough to produce a list of incredible wedding destination spots.
A few of my top spaces to have an intimate wedding or elopement ceremony are:
In Da Nang.
The Marble Mountains.
The marble mountain is a maze of steep walking trails leading up to detailed tile mosaic statues and pagodas, Buddhist and Hindu grottoes, a working temple and breath taking marble caves. Along these walking paths are countless gateways, viewing points and leafy cave entrances that would be perfect spaces to share your vows.
I would suggest this as a perfect ceremony space for 2 people with a max party of 10. This space is a mix of cultures, textures and historic beauty and would suite the more active and open minded couple.
The a la carte hotel – The roof top lounge.
The sea views from this deck go on forever. To have your ceremony here at sunset would be like saying your ‘I do’s’ in the clouds.
This roof top venue would comfortably allow for a ceremony and reception of 50 people. This is a modern urban space with the traditional venue advantages of rooms, catering and professional staff with the advantage of knowing you are one of the few people, if not only, to be married there. This would suite the comfort adventurers.
Under the 800 year old tree.
This giant Banyan tree stands just off the road, 15 minutes outside the main town of Da Nang. It wouldn’t allow for sweeping backdrops and its canopy gives a dappled moody light but there was something so incredibly magical about standing under a tree that held 800 years (or more) worth of stories and history.The sentiment of your wedding day becoming one of those many stories was why I loved this space.
Up to 20 people could easily attend a ceremony in this space with seating and standing space around the trunk available. The Intercontinental Da Nang is 5 min away if you want to splash out on a stunning luxury stay.
The mountain river day trip out of the city.
This trip will make you feel like you are traveling back in time. You would need to hire motorbike taxis (someone to drive you around on the back of their bike) or at least a guide to take you into these rural parts. Past electric green rice paddies and little villages to an old bridge where two mountain rivers meet.
Here on this beach of pebbles would be the perfect place for a secret wedding and picnic reception. This is ideal for 2 nature lovers who want to share their vows in total seclusion and peace.
In Hoi An.
Hoi An is the first place I have ever visited where you could arrive in slip slops and a t-shirt and a few days later walk away in a tailored silk suite, a once off lace wedding dress and have your bridal party in any type of outfit you wished for only a couple of thousand rands. This is a town world renowned for its tailors and you can literally find one on every corner, middle and side of the road. We had a fitted winter jacket made to measure in less than 12 hours for a just under R500! There is a small flower market, divine food to fit any taste and so many special spaces to have your intimate ceremony and reception all within walking distance of each other. This truly is an adventure wedding DREAM town.
I only scratched the surface of Hoi An but found a very useful website if you are planning on heading over there.
The Gemstone Art Musem
In the old town district of Hoi An I fell in love with GAM. It’s old French architecture, cool dark rooms and incredible café in the courtyard would make for one of the classiest intimate wedding space I could imagine.
* Special note: Because these spaces are not traditional wedding venues and are largely off the beaten track, ablutions, transport and easily available ‘supplies’ are not always a given. Extra planning does have to go into an adventure or destination wedding, but that’s why you have me.