​Discover Vietnam through travelers’ footage

Stunning travel-based films on Vietnam by foreign travelers have attracted millions of views

A still from Oliver Astrologo's video - Photo: oliverastrologo.com

In recent years, Vietnam has become the inspiration for a number of beautifully shot videos created by foreign travelers.

While falling in love with Vietnam, many visitors have also captured its beauty in videos which have attracted millions of views from netizens around the world.

The videos have become a source of pride for Vietnamese viewers.

Vietnam - Land of the Dragon 

One of the latest videos is South African time-lapse artist Rory Allen’s clip entitled “Vietnam - Land of the Dragon.”

The two-minute video posted on Allen’s Facebook page earlier this year was the product of Allen and his girlfriend’s three-week visit to Vietnam in September 2015.

“I really enjoy travelling and creating travel-based films from the places I travel to, and once the flights were booked to Vietnam, I knew already that I wanted to create something there,” Allen shared with Tuoi Tre News via email.

The couple started out in Ho Chi Minh City before moving to Phu Quoc Island in the south, then flying up to Hanoi and Cat Ba Island in the north, before catching a bus to Hue and through Da Nang to Hoi An on the way back to Ho Chi Minh City.

“Vietnam is visually and culturally mind-blowing,” concluded Allen.

Rory Allen's “Vietnam - Land of Dragon” 

“Vietnam - Land of Dragon” has quickly drawn the attention of the internet after being posted on Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo, attracting more than 251,000 views and over 2,400 shares on Facebook.

Hoi An footage

In April, Australian Benn Tkalcevic wondered why he had received so many Facebook friend requests from Vietnam, the country he and his sisters and brothers visited earlier.

It turns out that a video he made about the central tourist town of Hoi An had been shared by a Hoi An fan page and reached more than 6,700 views.

The video has quite a long name of “Hoi An, Vietnam, The most BEAUTIFUL City in the world (City of lanterns)” and is about its creator’s feelings about a place he called “a must visit destination when travelling to Vietnam.”

Benn Tkalcevic's film of Hoi An

Though Tkalcevic also made a number of videos about Hanoi, Ninh Binh and Cat Ba, the Hoi An video remains his favorite, as “it brings back lots of memories of an amazing adventure in such a beautiful town.”

The 24-year-old filmmaker later entered and won a travel video contest with his 1:30 sec video of Vietnam featuring multiple destinations.

'Reverie of Vietnam'

In December last year, Italian director and photographer Oliver Astrologo posted his “Reverie of Vietnam” on Facebook and has since achieved more than 3.3 million views and over 42,000 social shares.

The video was the story of his 1,650km journey from north to south between March and April 2015 with two friends.

“Reverie of Vietnam” by Oliver Astrologo

Astrologo said during his trip, he tried to capture the best of Vietnam such as Hanoi’s old quarter, the breathtaking Ha Long Bay, the claustrophobic caves inside Trang An, the glamorous fabric merchants in Hoi An, the secret temples inside the marble mountain in Da Nang, the historical old capital of Hue, the wet and tropical Mekong Delta and the white sandy beaches in Phu Quoc.

“Reverie means a state of being pleasantly lost in one's own thoughts, a daydream,” Astrologo explained in an email to Tuoi Tre News. “It’s the emotion I feel every time I remember my experience of Vietnam.”

Russian shots

At the beginning of 2015, Russian Georgy Tarasov ‘mesmerized’ viewers by releasing his video; “The Road Story Vietnam” after his trip to the country in September 2014.

During the 3-minute-37-second video, the man in the clip, Daniil Tarasov, Georgy’s brother, takes viewers on an exciting adventure through many parts of Vietnam, from cities to the countryside, by train, bike or motorbike, rowing a boat and jumping under a waterfall.

The video has been praised by netizens for its beautiful cinematography and enchanting background music, as well as its inspirational traveling spirit.

“The Road Story Vietnam” by Georgy Tarasov 

Love the land, love the people

Although the videos are produced in different ways, they have one thing in common: they all reflect a love for the country their creators visited.

“I have always been inspired to capture the world in amazing ways through my lens, to make it look more amazing than it may be, this is a passion I’ve had for many years and Vietnam was one of the places I wanted to show to the world,” Benn Tkalcevic shared.

Despite the fact that he has been in Vietnam only once, the man from Melbourne said he “absolutely loved the country and the local people within it [because] the landscapes are amazing and ancient locations are so full of history.”

“The incredible old French architecture can be seen all over Hoi An in its buildings, and the vibrant blues and yellows of this town's walls imprint a memory that cannot be forgotten,” Tkalcevic wrote in the description of his Hoi An video on YouTube.

“Home is not necessarily the place you live, but where the heart is,” he affirmed at the beginning of his video.

Meanwhile, for Rory Allen, a highlight of Vietnam were the scooters.

“The time-lapses in the video will give you some idea, but it’s hard to explain how many scooters there are constantly driving around. It’s an experience, especially if you rent your own. Our highlight was actually being caught in a heavy rain and lightning storm on a rental scooter, as it was getting dark, (and we were) very far from the place we were staying,” he recalled.

Also, Allen said he was impressed by the friendly nature and at how accommodating the people of Vietnam are, along with the beauty of the landscapes and the contrast of the cities.

Một trong những ấn tượng lớn nhất của Rory Allen về Việt Nam là xe máy - Ảnh: Rory Allen
One of Rory Allen's greatest impressons of Vietnam is its motorbikes. Photo: Rory Allen

“The best experience was when I took a bus with some local Vietnamese people, most of them were going back to their homes after work,” Oliver Astrologo said about one of his memorable moments in Vietnam. “They were very friendly and we spent some time enjoying and talking together!”

“My lasting impression is the Vietnamese people are very friendly and available to being filmed,” Astrologo said, revealing that he will return to the country this year for another project.

Meanwhile, Russian Georgy Tarasov confirmed, “Vietnam is beautiful."

What I really appreciated when I published the video was that I received dozens of messages from Vietnamese people congratulating me. I felt very honored and this is a clear sign that the population cares for their country.

Oliver Astrologo

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