North Vietnamese vs. South Vietnamese

What's the Difference?

North Vietnamese and South Vietnamese were two distinct groups with differing political ideologies during the Vietnam War. The North Vietnamese were aligned with the communist government led by Ho Chi Minh, while the South Vietnamese were supported by the United States and other anti-communist allies. The North Vietnamese were known for their guerrilla warfare tactics and strong sense of nationalism, while the South Vietnamese were often seen as more corrupt and less unified. Despite their differences, both groups suffered greatly during the war and ultimately sought to reunify the country under their respective ideologies.


AttributeNorth VietnameseSouth Vietnamese
LocationNorth VietnamSouth Vietnam
LeaderHo Chi MinhNgo Dinh Diem
SupportersViet CongARVN
International SupportSoviet Union, ChinaUnited States

Further Detail


North Vietnam and South Vietnam were divided by the 17th parallel after the Geneva Accords in 1954. North Vietnam is characterized by its mountainous terrain, with the Red River Delta being the most fertile region. In contrast, South Vietnam is known for its flat plains and extensive coastline along the South China Sea.


The climate in North Vietnam is humid subtropical in the north and tropical monsoon in the south. The region experiences distinct seasons, with hot and humid summers and cool, dry winters. South Vietnam, on the other hand, has a tropical climate with high temperatures year-round and a rainy season from May to November.


North Vietnamese culture is heavily influenced by Confucianism and Buddhism, with an emphasis on tradition and family values. The people of North Vietnam are known for their resilience and strong sense of national identity. In contrast, South Vietnamese culture has been shaped by a mix of influences, including Chinese, Khmer, and Cham cultures. The region is known for its vibrant arts scene and entrepreneurial spirit.


The official language of both North and South Vietnam is Vietnamese, which is based on the Latin alphabet. However, there are regional dialects and accents that vary between the two regions. The Northern dialect is considered more formal and conservative, while the Southern dialect is known for its relaxed and informal tone.


North Vietnamese cuisine is known for its use of fresh herbs and vegetables, with dishes like pho and bun cha being popular staples. The food in the north tends to be less spicy and more subtle in flavor. In contrast, South Vietnamese cuisine is characterized by its bold and spicy flavors, with dishes like banh mi and com tam being favorites. The region is also known for its use of coconut milk and seafood in cooking.


North Vietnam was under communist rule led by Ho Chi Minh and the Viet Minh during the Vietnam War. The region received support from the Soviet Union and China in its fight against South Vietnam and the United States. South Vietnam, on the other hand, was backed by the United States and other Western allies in its fight against communism. The region fell to North Vietnamese forces in 1975, leading to the reunification of the country.


North Vietnam's economy is largely based on agriculture, with rice being the main crop. The region also has a growing manufacturing sector, with textiles and electronics being major exports. South Vietnam, on the other hand, has a more diverse economy, with a strong focus on tourism, services, and manufacturing. The region is known for its bustling cities and modern infrastructure.


Both North and South Vietnam place a high value on education, with literacy rates being relatively high in both regions. The education system in North Vietnam is centralized and focused on academic achievement, with an emphasis on science and technology. In contrast, the education system in South Vietnam is more decentralized, with a focus on creativity and critical thinking skills.


North Vietnam is predominantly atheist, with the government discouraging religious practices. However, there is a small minority of Buddhists and Catholics in the region. South Vietnam, on the other hand, has a diverse religious landscape, with Buddhism, Catholicism, and Cao Dai being the main religions. The region is known for its religious tolerance and freedom of worship.


In conclusion, North Vietnamese and South Vietnamese have distinct attributes that reflect their unique histories, cultures, and environments. While North Vietnam is known for its resilience and traditional values, South Vietnam is characterized by its diversity and entrepreneurial spirit. Despite their differences, both regions share a common Vietnamese identity that unites them as a nation.

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