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The Socialist Republic of Vietnam, a sovereign and reunified independent country, has a high percentage of territorial waters.
Looking at the map, Vietnam is located in the center of the Southeast Asia, and is shaped like the letter "S". The country lies in the eastern part of the Indochina peninsula, bordered by China to the north, Laos and Cambodia to the west, and the East Sea and Pacific Ocean to the southeast. Vietnam's coast line is 3,260 km long and its inland border measures 3,730 km.
The country's total length, from the northernmost point to the southernmost point, is 1,650 km.
Its width, stretching from east to west, is 600 km at the widest point in the north, 400 km in the south, and 50 km at the narrowest part in the Quang Binh province on the central coast. Vietnam is also a transport junction from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.
Vietnam is located in both a tropical and a temperate zone. It is characterized by strong monsoon influences, but has a considerable amount of sun, a high rate of rainfall, and high humidity. Regions located near the tropics and in the mountainous regions are endowed with a temperate climate.
Three quarters of Vietnam's territory consists of mountains and hills. Vietnam is divided into four distinct mountainous zones.
• The Northeastern Zone (Viet Bac)
This zone stretches from the Red River Valley to the Gulf of Tonkin.
At the beginning of the Bronze Age, the Viet tribe groups had settled in the North and North-Centre Vietnam. There were about 15 groups of Lac Viet tribesmen living mainly in the northern highlands and delta, and a dozen Au Viet groups living in Viet Bac, the northern region of old Vietnam. At that time, the two ethnic tribes of the Lac Viet and Au Viet lived together in many areas with other inhabitants.