Meat-free diets aren’t a new concept in Vietnam. The local Buddhist population have been championing plant-based food for yonks!
It is one of the many reasons that I spend so much time in Vietnam. Not only is Vietnamese food delicious, but the vegan versions found in local chay (vegetarian) eateries are exceptional. Plus fully vegan spots are popping up all over the place.
But where can you get the largest variety of vegan food? Well, I have drawn upon my own experience and the data from Happy Cow to provide you with the most vegan-friendly cities in Vietnam.
The most vegan-friendly cities in Vietnam (in order):
Ho Chi Minh City
- Number of vegan restaurants: 130
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 151
With the largest number of vegan and vegetarian restaurants, Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) is by far the most vegan-friendly city in Vietnam. To put things into perspective, London has around 175 fully vegan restaurants. Only 45 more than HCMC. Which is why I think HCMC is actually one of the best vegan travel destinations.
The variety of vegan food in HCMC is also staggering. You can start the morning off with a delicious bowl of vegan phở and end it with a delicious cashew cheese baguette. Plus you can get vegan junk food and a variety of plant-based desserts.
I may be biased, but having lived there for a few years, I also think it is one of most vibrant Asian cities in live in. There’s always something new and delicious to eat and there are so many amazing coffee shops and bars to hang out in. Find out how you can eat in HCMC for under £5 in one day.
- Number of vegan restaurants: 67
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 69
The capital city, Hanoi (Hà Nội), comes in second with about half of the vegan restaurants of HCMC. It still has a sizeable amount though, with over 60 for you to choose from.
Hanoi is home to some of the best vegan phở you’ll ever try. It just hits different up north. Plus there are plenty of amazing fully vegan banh mi stalls to visit. If you love sourdough, then definitely pay Lá Studio a visit.
It is a beautiful city with many incredible coffee shops, plenty of which offer oat milk. Plus you are surrounded by many beautiful destinations, like Hạ Long Bay and Ninh Bình.
- Number of vegan restaurants: 46
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 47
For a small seaside city, Da Nang has a decent number of fully vegan food establishments. If you stay in the My An area then most of these restaurants will be on your doorstep.
In my opinion, the vegan restaurants in Da Nang make the best smoothie bowls. It may be because of the beachy vibes, but you’ll also find plenty of healthy plant-based dishes around here. But don’t worry, there are still plenty of local vegan spots to check out.
If you are looking for a great beach location then Da Nang is definitely the one. It has a lovely relaxed vibe and plenty of great vegan food spots! Check out my favourite vegan food in Da Nang.
- Number of vegan restaurants: 24
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 21
Hội An is a small city but it is really popular with tourists. This is down to the beautiful architecture and the incredible food. There aren’t a huge amount of vegan establishments here, but then it isn’t the largest city either.
You’ll get to try the local dish, cao lầu, of which there are plenty of great vegan versions for you to try. My favourite is from Chickpea Eatery. Plus the banh mi in Hội An is second to none!
Hội An is a great city to visit for just a few days. You’ll probably get to try most the vegan food in this time too. The old town gets packed out during the day but if you get the chance to wander around in the morning it has a really lovely chilled out vibe.
- Number of vegan restaurants: 20
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 22
Huế is a beautiful historic city in central Vietnam. It is a very popular tourist destination and for a very good reason. The palaces of the imperial city are striking.
It is here that you’ll get to experience the best vegan version of the local dish, bún bò Huế, a beef noodle soup. Vegan versions will use slices of soy meat. There isn’t a huge variety of vegan establishments here though, so expect cheap local chay food.
If you are in central Vietnam you should definitely add Huế to your ‘to visit’ list. Not only is it a beautiful place, but the local noodle dish is delicious and the vegan versions really do it justice!
- Number of vegan restaurants: 11
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 23
Đà Lạt is a popular city in the highlands of Vietnam. Its cooler climate makes it the prime spot for growing produce. In fact, this is where most of Vietnamese wine and cider comes from.
It isn’t the most vegan-friendly of destinations, but that doesn’t mean you’ll go hungry. All of the vegan establishments are small local spots which are affordable yet tasty. Expect buffets, banh mi, noodle soups and salads.
Đà Lạt’s cooler climate is appealing to many and its beautiful scenery definitely pulls in a crowd. If you get the chance, you should pay the city a visit. Just make sure to pack a jumper or coat!
- Number of vegan restaurants: 11
- Number of vegetarian restaurants: 19
Nha Trang is a small seaside city in the South of Vietnam. It is well known for being a bit of a party destination, but there is plenty more to do than just drink. There is a long stretch of beach and plenty of scuba diving spots nearby.
Nha Trang is well known for its seafood dishes, so do expect vegan versions of these. For example, you’ll find noodle soups with soy-based fish alternatives. They may use seaweed for flavouring.
Nha Trang is a lot less popular than Da Nang, but it is a lot cheaper. Meaning you can get an apartment with a stunning sea view for half the price. Plus it is isn’t too far from HCMC, making it a great weekend getaway. Just don’t expect a huge variety of vegan food!