We visited Hanoi and Sapa about 4 years ago in December for about 2 weeks.
The city was still quite full of old town feel, very cozy and comfortable. Of course, as tourist with limited time there, we couldn't see everything. We went to less touristy locations, had local cuisines (street foods, which I still long for) as well as a fancy French restaurant.
We took a trip to Halong Bay boat ride, very pleasant and enjoyable. The scenery was, of course, both fascinating and serene.
Then an overnight train ride to Sapa and hiked up to visit the local tribes. Stayed at "home stay," and of course tried the local food. Wonderful.
Of the people in those places, though there was no way to know all the people, those that we met, hosted (hotels and Halong) and guided us (Sapa) were REALLY VERY friendly. They went out of their way to cater to us, I didn't think they expected gratuity from us because all were given us without us asking!!! Love them.
The locals ladies from Sapa tried to sell us their embroideries and local products, but they never tried to do in the face selling. Patiently, they walked with us, even guided/assisted us with steep inclines. Never really asked us to buy, until we were fed and rested did they started showing their wares. No where else are "merchants" so patient.
visit again, I'm thinking of the central coastal area of Vietnam, and soon, before too many tourists show up. May be within 3 years.
Do show photos of your area.
I am from Saigon, Vietnam, which is a tropical country. There are two distinguishable seasons in the southern areas like Saigon. The dry season occurs from November to April and the wet season from May to October. We have a considerable amount of sun, a high rate of rainfall, and high humidity that makes me often feel bloody hot and quite uncomfortable unless there is an air-con around.