Souvenirs are not just something to give to your friends and relatives in the homeland but I think they are the items that remind yourself of the time available in the land you ever set foot. There are many ideas about souvenirs to buy in Vietnam that I will mention below.
The souvenirs in Vietnam can be handmade items from the traditional handicraft villages such as pottery Bat Trang Hanoi, Van Phuc silk village, etc. Or it can simply be a postcard that is purchased quickly on your way with a few messages and send to your home through the post office. On the behalf of a tourist, I would like to raise my point of view and to give a little thought to these meaningful gifts. Hope that my opinions will give you a new perspective when choosing souvenirs in Vietnam.
Enjoy Vietnamese specialties!
Vietnamese food is famous for its variety, rich in form and extremely amazing. In addition to traditional items made in Vietnam that you can find everywhere, Vietnamese fusion food is so-called “gifts” by local people are bold in culture and shows many skills and sophistication of Vietnamese. “Gifts” that I want to mention here is not the food you see on the streets or in restaurants in Vietnam. These gifts are considered as “the specialties” of each region that have been handed down through generations to this day. As the writer, Thach Lam in “Hanoi – thirty-six streets” have written “the specialized things”.
The first thing needs to mention is cốm. This is a rustic and frugal dish of Hanoians. Following are many other famous names such as moong bean cake (bánh đậu xanh) in Hai Duong. This cake is especially delicious when served with tea or coffee as well as peanut candy Siu Chau of Nam Dinh. Pulling down to the Central and the South of Vietnam, we have sesame rice-cracker in Nghe An, dried lotus seeds which harvested at Tinh Tam Lake – Hue, coffee from the Central Highland or Pia cakes in Soc Trang – South West Vietnam.
Another special souvenir that I think through it you can clearly see the portrait of the Vietnamese people, our lives with simple pleasures. In addition, you can feel the beauty in our customs and habits in the most perfect way. These are books of Vietnamese literature.
Vietnam owns a lot of good and excellent literature. It is a great disadvantage when very few Vietnamese books are translated into English or other foreign languages. However, some typical literary works have been fortunately translated and published. You can find the book named “Open the Window, Eyes Closed” by Nguyen Ngoc Thuan. Especially, the book “Give me a ticket to go to childhood” of Nguyen Nhat Anh has been translated into many countries including the United States, South Korea, Thailand, Japan and most readers are warmly welcome.
Our literary arts would be failed if it is not mentioned Vietnamese music. Parallel to developmental young music in the market, it is undeniable that Vietnamese lyrical music is very well loved, even respected. The most famous one is the music of late musician Trinh Cong Son known as Trinh’s music.
“Trinh Cong Son was best known in the 60’s and 70’s when his songs helped the career of some well-known singers in the South. He was internationally known as Bob Dylan of Vietnam. His songs are about the sadness of war and the desire for peace” claimed by The New York Times.
Besides, there are also many other artists and contemporary artists who have a great influence on the country’s music as well as the consciousness of developing and preserving this beauty… You can easily find high qualified performances of many Vietnamese singers like My Tam, Hong Nhung, Ha Anh Tuan, singer-songwriter Vu Cat Tuong in the bookstore or CD stores.
And your captured moments…
Finally, take pictures and record moments you have in Vietnam as much as possible. The photos of you enjoying the food on the pavements; your albums of the whole journey and some lines in the back of each photo; videos when you are in the cooking class or lying on the beach,… Because, above all mentioned gifts, this will be your most precious souvenirs from our country.