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Later, when Vietnam was split into North Vietnam and South Vietnam, the building served as the presidential home for South Vietnam's President....
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Ho Chi Minh City
Feb 10: Day 1: Saigon/Ho Chi Minh CityComplete your visa and immigration formalities at the airport. Dont forget to exchange your currency to Vietnamese Dong before you step out in their land. Around 50 - 100 USD is good to start. You will also find many exchange centers all over Vietnam. Also make sure you have the Visa stamped correctly and keep your passport safe.Outside of the airport you will see City Bus. Ask anyone (who might speak English) for bus# 152. Mostly it would be there right in front of you waiting for you. This bus takes 5000 VND and will drop you at the hostel zone / Ben Thanh market. From here its your choice how you travel to your hostel / hotel. PS: This is District 1Also, from the airport you can hire the taxi. It would be no where close to 5000 VND.I stayed the night at Himalaya Phoenix Hostel. Good place, will give you a quiet sleep. Helpful reception.Take a city tour on a Xe Om or rent a motorbike. This city! trust me is very beautiful. I didnt expect it to have such good cathedrals, pagodas, palaces and glowing skyscrapers.. If you plan to do it on Xe Om, make sure you decide the hourly price first and also remember the places he mentioned. This is just to avoid any cheating/confusion. Next on your target: Ben Thanh market. Its huge!!! I think you will find everything here and with good bargaining skills you will get what you want. I stayed just 1 night in Saigon. I had no plans of cu chi tunnels or mekong delta. Leave those to the people who plan to stay long and who like touristy places.Read More
Feb 10: Day 1: Saigon/Ho Chi Minh CityComplete your visa and immigration formalities at the airport. Dont forget to exchange your currency to Vietnamese Dong before you step out in their land. Around 50 - 100 USD is good to start. You will also find many exchange centers all over Vietnam. Also make sure you have the Visa stamped correctly and keep your passport safe.Outside of the airport you will see City Bus. Ask anyone (who might speak English) for bus# 152. Mostly it would be there right in front of you waiting for you. This bus takes 5000 VND and will drop you at the hostel zone / Ben Thanh market. From here its your choice how you travel to your hostel / hotel. PS: This is District 1Also, from the airport you can hire the taxi. It would be no where close to 5000 VND.I stayed the night at Himalaya Phoenix Hostel. Good place, will give you a quiet sleep. Helpful reception.Take a city tour on a Xe Om or rent a motorbike. This city! trust me is very beautiful. I didnt expect it to have such good cathedrals, pagodas, palaces and glowing skyscrapers.. If you plan to do it on Xe Om, make sure you decide the hourly price first and also remember the places he mentioned. This is just to avoid any cheating/confusion. Next on your target: Ben Thanh market. Its huge!!! I think you will find everything here and with good bargaining skills you will get what you want. I stayed just 1 night in Saigon. I had no plans of cu chi tunnels or mekong delta. Leave those to the people who plan to stay long and who like touristy places.
After landing to ho chi minh city, We felt the drastic change in the panorama of the city. It is a metropolitan city, commonly referred as Saigon. Under the name Saigon, it was the capital of the French colony of Cochinchina and later of the independent republic of South Vietnam.On July 1976, It was officially renamed Ho Chi Minh City after revolutionary leader Hồ Chí Minh. It is a hub of various companies. It took us an hr to reach the hotel from airport. After check-in, we went out in search of food. To my surprise, our hotel was in one of the famous streets of Ho Chi Minh city, "bui vien street", full of restaurants, nightlife, roadside pubs, discos. After having brunch, we headed towards the War Remnants Museum. It was a takeaway experience. After going to every floor, our minds were so lost, thinking of the sufferings, sacrifices and compromises of the vietnam. The history of vietnam is very deep, full of war and the support from the world. Then we visited various attractions like Jade Emprorer Pagoda, Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office, Saigon Opera House, Nguyen Hue Street, Ho Chi Minh squares and the famous Ben Thanh Market. Next day, we planned to visit Cu chi tunnels but unfortunately, it rained heavily. So, we missed it. But anyways we enjoyed the city very much. Vietnam is indeed a beautiful country.... Hence proved..
Cruelly made infamous by the American intervention in the late '60s, Vietnam is a mystical land that deserves to be navigated by every serious backpacker. Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) is the capital and largest city in Vietnam, making it the melange of everything the now stable country stands for. With its high-octane energy on the streets, the finest hotels alongside, and the most expensive of boutiques at the photogenic squares, HCMC spoils tourists and changes their perspective about the country forever.Famous for: Food and art.Things to do: Visit the Ho Chi Minh City Museum of Fine Arts. Nibble on street food.Weather in January: Average temperature is 30 degrees celsius, but remains pleasant all though the day.Average budget per head for 5 days (excluding flights): Rs. 46,000For more details, read this.
Designed and constructed by the famous architect Gustave Eiffel, it is situated close to the Notre Dame Cathedral. Saigon Central Post Office was under renovation when we visited it. Dazzled in yellow hues with generous windows, the gorgeous structure also has 2 quaint telephone booths. I was taken in by beautiful pieces of street art on pavements outside.
Ho Chi Minh City may not be the first choice for many travellers but the “Paris of the Orient” is something which needs to be experienced once. Started as a small fishing village inhabited primarily by the Khmer people, Ho Chi Minh city formerly known as Saigon, has grown into the largest city in Vietnam.
It was an hour past midnight when we arrived in Ho Chi Minh. Good thing we made pick-up arrangements with our chosen hostel, Nguyen Khang Hotel. The check-in wasn’t so smooth, and we were asked to transfer to its sister hostel just across the street. Not a very good way to start, but we were so tired and sleepy to care. We were transferred to Phan Lan, which I think was a better option because of the more spacious rooms. Never did I imagine that we’ll meet the most accommodating hostel staff in Vietnam – right in Phan Lan and Nguyen Khang hostels. They were very helpful and flexible with our requests. They even took care of our bus trip going to Phnom Penh and gave us packed breakfast before leaving one early morning. Talk about taking care of your guests, right? My experience with them alone took away all my doubts of having an awesome trip. Wandering the streets of Ho Chi Minh can be a challenge with the countless motorbikes, scooters and some bicycles coming from all directions. The roads, even sidewalks, are invaded by these two-wheel rides making it a bit hard to cross the street. One technique we learned from our hostel's staff is to just keep walking and don't panic when going to the other side of the street. And this is what we tried to do. Works pretty good, I must say. Another thing we also noticed is the abundance of small plastic tables and chairs lined in the city streets, sitting locals and foreigners as they enjoy a bowl of pho or a bottle of beer – their version of a laid-back afternoon.
The area either side of the Opera House is the best place to stay. This is where you’ll find the Caravalle and Park Hyatt hotels. The executive club lounge at the Caravelle has lots to offer, but the bedrooms aren’t as luxurious as at the Park Hyatt. However, they’re still really comfortable and combined with a great pool, gym and all the added extras of the club lounge, the Caravelle is a very good hotel choice. Don’t forget to have a drink in the famous Saigon Saigon bar on the 9th floor.You are of course spoilt for choice for dining out in Saigon. Two of my favorites were Nam Phan (34 Vo Van Tan St, District +84839333636), serving the most exquisite Vietnamese dishes, and Xu Restaurant, very conveniently located just round the corner from the Caravalle.After the traveling frenzy between and in these bustling cities, it’s a great idea to end your trip with three to four days of utter peace and relaxation. The island of Phu Quoc is a one-hour flight south of Saigon. It’s gorgeous! The Chen Sea Centara Resort, (20 minutes north of the airport, but away from the busy Long Beach) has only 36 villas and is really tranquil. Opt for a Jacuzzi villa, but, as tempting as it is to just soak up your wonderful surroundings, do venture out one more time to see the vibrant night market.So, ambitious but ‘doable’! An excellent 10-day Vietnam experience that I know you’ll really enjoy.I would recommend the following split: Hanoi - 1night / Halong Bay - 2 nights / Da Nang & Hoi An - 3 nights/ Saigon – 1 night / Phu Quoc - 3nights.
Selling bikes in Saigon isn’t difficult. One can either sell the bikes to other backpackers by putting up handouts sheets on the notice boards at one of the many Backpackers hostels OR one of the local dealers. We were able to sell our bikes in 48 hours of arriving to Saigon. In total we lost mere $30 in total both both bikes.Molly’s bike was sold to one of the local dealers. While riding on Đỗ Quang Đẩu street I was pulled by one local dealer who went for a quick test ride and after negotiation offered £155. We The deal was struck.I did not have any problem either in selling my motorbike. A French dude was bought the bike from me after few meetings and chit chat.As I wrote this we were planning to shoot off to Cambodia to visit Angkor Wat which I have been wanting to see for a long time.Cities Travelled (no of nights stayed): 1. Hanoi ( 1 )2. Mai Châu ( 1 )3. Ngọc Lặc ( 1 )4. Vinh ( 1 )5. Khách Sạn Hoàng Ngọc ( 1 )6. Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng ( 4 )7. Khe Sanh ( 1 )8. A Lưới ( 1 )9. Huế ( 2 )10. Hội An ( 5 )11. Khâm Đức (1 )12. Chợ Plei Cần ( 1 )13. Pleiku ( 1 )14. Ban Me Thuot ( 1 )15. Da Lat ( 3 )16. Sai GonThis trip was originally published on Planet MnM.
As soon as you land in Ho chi min city (named after their great leader Mr. Ho chi min who was the face of their independence) you are greeted with a humidity similar to Mumbai and a peculiar smell of fish. The main life line of the city seems to be the Siagon river which was also the historical name of the city. It is one of the most modern cities of Vietnam where you will find all the facilities that money can buy. The main tourist attraction of the city are the Cu chi tunnels.
5. Shopping can be a task in Saigon if you have not mastered the art of bargaining, chances are you will be a pro at it by the end of the shopping trip! There are a number of markets to choose- Ben Than being the most visited by the tourists, probably because of the close proximity from the backpackers area is a nice place to shop for souvenirs, eat Vietnamese street food and hone your haggling skills. If you want to escape the heat, you can visit the nigh market. Word of caution: Be careful with your belongings, the streets are filled with pickpockets. 6. Get carried away in the crazy Nightlife of Ho Chi Minh City, I would simply compare it to the Baga Beach area in Goa or the Khao San road of Bangkok. A number of Karaoke bars, uptown clubs or just bar the streets are filled with options.7. Sip an Iced Coffee and watch the chaotic life of the city go by. This sure was one my favourite things to do during early evenings, the Vietnamese coffee took my heart away and was a sure way to battle the heat and humidity. More on the coffee culture of Vietnam will come in the next post. Those are just some of the things that I did during my 5 day stay in Saigon. There is so much one can see and explore in this high octane city and if not then just take book and sip some addictive Vietnamese Coffee.
I made my way back to Vietnam in Mid Jan and decided I wanted to stay in one place for a while, so I made my way to the capital Hanoi and rented an apartment for a month. It was my first apartment ever and living in Hanoi was an absolute pleasure.After I leaving at the end of February Hanoi, I made my way to an island off the coast of Vietnam and stayed there for a while and camped out on the beach for the beach! Sleeping to the sound of the waves is such an incredible experience.Read More
I made my way back to Vietnam in Mid Jan and decided I wanted to stay in one place for a while, so I made my way to the capital Hanoi and rented an apartment for a month. It was my first apartment ever and living in Hanoi was an absolute pleasure.After I leaving at the end of February Hanoi, I made my way to an island off the coast of Vietnam and stayed there for a while and camped out on the beach for the beach! Sleeping to the sound of the waves is such an incredible experience.
Feb 19: Day 10: HanoiI had plans to go see the Halong bay. But the cave had taken the most of me. I slept more. I stayed at hotel Hanoi Graceful. 27 USD, last day so spend a little. Then went out for lunch at Namaste Hanoi. Very good Indian food. Next stop: The Train street. Yeah, this is quite famous amongst people travelling to Hanoi. Google about it. The train comes at 3.30pm. I have it in my video.
Hanoi is famous as the Food capital of vietnam. We tried endless veg varieties in vietnamese cuisine and it was too perfect. You can see countless roadside restaurants with great dim light ambience and vast varieties for seafood lovers. We stayed hanoi for 4 days and on 3rd day we had a tour to "Halong Bay".
My friend and I started the trip with Hanoi, Vietnam's Capital. It's a busy city that wakes up early. Life begins at 7 am here. You'll find the city buzzing with horns of cars and motorbikes (common mode of transport). Every shop/business establishment has a Vietnamese flag. The driving (left-side) and traffic are similar to that in India, where no traffic rules are followed and you can cross the road whenever you wish to. However, the population density per sq.km is very low. One of the most noticeable things about Vietnam is the number of women driving bikes.
Ha Noi, the capital of Vietnam! The oldest city in the country, where every nook and corner oozes with culture!Either you'll love the city or hate it - there'll be no middle ground.Hanoi was my last stop during a breezy trip to Vietnam, a country which has been on my to do list for the longest time.I first visited Ho Chi Minh, followed by Nha Trang and then finally stopping in Hanoi. Initially, I thought I would pen down my experience in Ho Chi Minh and Nha Trang. However, by the time I got onto the flight back to India, I was in love with Hanoi. I wish I had lost my passport and would never have to leave the city. Unfortunately, for me, my friends dragged me onto that flight back home (damn!)Hanoi, as a city, is influenced by South East Asian and French architecture. And it is exactly this mixture of architecture which makes it so beautiful. A city which, bustling with activity has a quaint old charm attached to it, providing the warmth for a travellers heart. Where the modern culture seamlessly blends with the old school charm. Where you have cafes on (literally) every street, and look at the world passing by (while sipping on the best coconut coffee you would have ever tasted).As a tourist, you will be restricted to the Old Quarter of Hanoi, which is a beautiful chaotic mess of narrow streets and numerous cafes, within walking distance from the Hoan Kiem Lake. Besides the Lotte Towers, which offers a breathtaking view of the city, all the touristy attractions are within walking distance (if a kilometre or two isn't much of a walk).Having said that, we only visited the One Pillar Pagoda and the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum, since we already had our overdose of the Vietnam war whilst in Ho Chi Minh.But anyhow, coming back to The Old Quarter. Every street is demarcated by the merchandise it sells. From fresh vegetables and fruits to artefacts, you have a street for each.Hanoi is also a city known for its art. If you have the slightest interest in a pretty looking canvas, the various art galleries in the narrow lanes around Haon Kirk Lake are a must visit. While some are original oil paintings by upcoming local artist, most of them are imitations of famous painters. And trust me, even a novice like me, managed to pick up some "art" from Hanoi.The food in Hanoi is worth mentioning too. The French and Vietnamese cuisine here are taken very seriously and flavours are much more distinct than the rest of Vietnam. (I am a strict vegetarian, so follow my advice and optimise your use of google translate. Just type out, "I'm vegetarian, no meat, no sea food. Please help" and show it to your server. Trust me, the hanoian server will go out of his way to serve you an excellent dish). DO NOT miss out the bakery products and road side baguettes and noodles! You would have never tasted simpler but better tasting food in you life (even if your vegetarian!).The place to be at night is the Ta Hien and Luong Ngoc Quyen streets of the Old Quarter, where you can see a pool of people sitting out on plastic stools sipping away on their bia hoi (draught beer) and slurping away on their noodles. While the streets shut down by midnight and the city is literally dead by midnight, the pub owners on the streets will hustle you inside for the underground party scene, which is so energy driven, while shutting down the outside area. The insides turn out to be even more vibrant, cause you end up sharing your table with other travellers and enjoy sharing experiences while enjoying the local bands playing away some amazing music. Also, be mindful of the fact that the Vietnamese like their cocktails to be pretty stiff. So if you think you have the capacity to drink 5 cocktails in a night, my friend, you will be wobbling away with the second drink.If you have two days in Hanoi, like I did (and I regret not having more time) do not bother going to the museums, since you will do enough of that in Ho Chi Minh. Just kick off your shoes, get a book, get inside a cafe, get some Vietnamese coffee or a drink and look at the world pass. The images of the beautiful Architecture with the beautiful hanoians walking by will last you a lifetime of pleasant memories and leave you with a feeling of wanting to never leave.
I skipped through a lot of country from Hanoi to be here, by way of two weeks spent helping a thankless invalid. I might have been on my way to Cambodia, as originally planned. But who sticks to an original plan these days? I hopped over going to mountains in Sapa, or running through caves in Ninh Binh, and stopped for a walk through Hue’s old war- ravaged citadel, on the way to historic Hoi An. The Viet 'Cong' (the American label for the guerrilla troops of South Vietnam and Mekong who fought alongside the the North Vietnamese), had given the yanks too much credit in assuming that they wouldn’t desecrate these momentous temples of Vietnamese religion and culture, in their bid to chase down Communism.Holy places have a habit of making me wistful. I began to mull over whether I could ever leave Asia. Imagining myself another life where I am ‘settled’ requires decoding of the word itself. ‘To settle’. The verb defined in the Oxford dictionary with more than three meanings. Here are the top three: to reach a conclusion or agreement to a problem; to reach a decision; to come to a dissatisfactory acceptance.To ‘settle down’ is to accept an unrealistic and bogus idea of existence. Even those who think their life is mapped out will find surprises, whether good or bad. And those whose definition of adulthood is based on ownership of some form (cars, careers, mortgages and kids for instance) are only defining their experience of the world through MONEY and possessions.I don’t think that the Cham emperors of the past, when building their red mortar worshipping grounds, would have ‘settled’
The day I arrived at Hanoi I had 7 days to go with absolutely no plan, a number of backpackers (going from north to south) suggested going to Sapa and Ha Long bay one can easily spend 2 nights at both these places. After 2 days of exploring the city me and two other backpackers (who I had met in Phong Nha) decided to go to Cat Ba Island by ourselves.Reaching the island:
The strange thing about the oldest part of Hanoi where we were staying is that each street is dedicated to the specific trades/businesses that are based there…e.g. China bowls street (Bat Su), roasted fish street (Cha Ca), silver or jewelries (Hang Bac), women accessories (Cau Go), shoes and sandals (Hang Dau), silk (Hang Gai), mixed fruits (To Tich), combs (Hang Luoc), jars (Hang Chinh), tour services (Ma May), candies and dry apricot (Hang Duong), fried/roasted sour pork hash (Tam Thuong lane on Hang Bong Street), bamboo products (Hang Buom), etc.After the madness of the old town, we decided to wander the other direction which was actually still mental, but much easier to walk around without fearing for your life every two secs. On the way, we passed two stalls… Whole dogs baked in the oven and piled up on top of one another a table, ready to be sold as meat….
It’s totally insane walking around Hanoi; It’s like the Saturday before Christmas every day. Pavements are filled with mini plastic chairs (think first day of school), parked and moving motorbikes, open fires for cooking, barbers using cut throat razors, beauticians attending to peoples toenails with paint scrapers, welders throwing sparks on your flip-flops and bamboo ladders… The roads are for lorries, jeeps, cyclos, motobikes, ‘pope-mobiles’ filled with Chinese and women carrying and selling fruit, donuts or sticky rice and they’re all moving in whichever direction and speed they like! That just leaves the gutter above the sewers for the pedestrians.. And even there you’re definitely not safe! They’re all obsessed with face masks to stop smog and germs which feels a little weird when they’re cooking and eating on the pavements in what can only be described as…You can’t walk two steps without hearing ‘madame Madame!’ from the women trying to sell us food or clothes and the guys just hoot, ring the bell or just whistle or yell hey hey to try to get us on the back of their motorbike/taxi! Really missing the tuk tuks round Hanoi, all they have is cyclos -bicycles with a scooper on the front or getting on the back of a motorbike. We had to go for the cyclo option one night, which was absolutely terrifying! Some old guy cycling really slowly while we sat in the front like a couple of babies in a push chair, being pushed out into traffic. Words cannot convey how terrifying it is to attempt to cross the road in this town! They don’t stop even at pedestrian crossings. Traffic lights are ignored and driving on the footpath, across a park or the wrong way down a one way street is totally acceptable!
When we finally landed in Hanoi late that night, we still had to face a 45 minute drive to the centre. Let the mayhem begin! No rules, drive wherever you like in any direction, just beep your horn or flash your light and hope that you make it through! The first hair raising moment came when a motorbike came over the grass verge and sped past us going in the opposite direction on the motorway. Of course we we’re shocked at the time…but that was really just the beginning!
Right now my "plan" (I say "plan" because I have no idea what I'm doing tomorrow haha, nothing is ever set in stone) is to live in Vietnam until the mid of April, then travel Laos for a month, then maybe head off Indonesia for a couple of months.Other than my blog, I also started a marketing agency as that's what I love doing! Being completely honest I’m already making more money than I would have had I graduated engineering and got the best job possible! But it’s never been about the money for me, it’s about the freedom. The freedom to live life on my own terms. I care little for material goods, that's why everything I own fits into a single 30 liter backpack now after I gave away my winter gear.Read More
Right now my "plan" (I say "plan" because I have no idea what I'm doing tomorrow haha, nothing is ever set in stone) is to live in Vietnam until the mid of April, then travel Laos for a month, then maybe head off Indonesia for a couple of months.Other than my blog, I also started a marketing agency as that's what I love doing! Being completely honest I’m already making more money than I would have had I graduated engineering and got the best job possible! But it’s never been about the money for me, it’s about the freedom. The freedom to live life on my own terms. I care little for material goods, that's why everything I own fits into a single 30 liter backpack now after I gave away my winter gear.
Feb 11: Day 2: Nha TrangEarly morning I got up to catch my train to Nha Trang. I found a Xe Om (motorbike taxi) outside on the main road and bargained with him to go to the railway station for 50,000 VND.This SE6 train starts at 9.00am and reaches Nha Trang at around 4.30pm. You can see some real good landscapes (as seen in the video) if you book a soft seat. Its also cheaper than soft bed.Saigon was hot. Nha Trang was cold with drizzles and cloud cover for almost the entire day.The Nha Trang beach is one of the best I have ever been to. (I've used the word 'been' and not 'seen'). I was in Nha Trang for some 2 days. I went to the beach "6 times". Even once at 5.30am to catch the sunrise. Si Si.. Vietnam has an east coast. No sunsets.Read More
Feb 11: Day 2: Nha TrangEarly morning I got up to catch my train to Nha Trang. I found a Xe Om (motorbike taxi) outside on the main road and bargained with him to go to the railway station for 50,000 VND.This SE6 train starts at 9.00am and reaches Nha Trang at around 4.30pm. You can see some real good landscapes (as seen in the video) if you book a soft seat. Its also cheaper than soft bed.Saigon was hot. Nha Trang was cold with drizzles and cloud cover for almost the entire day.The Nha Trang beach is one of the best I have ever been to. (I've used the word 'been' and not 'seen'). I was in Nha Trang for some 2 days. I went to the beach "6 times". Even once at 5.30am to catch the sunrise. Si Si.. Vietnam has an east coast. No sunsets.
So, Next destination was Nha TRang, A coastal city and capital of Khánh Hòa Province, on the South Central Coast of Vietnam. It rains a lot in south asia in winters. So, we encountered a good amount of rain in nha trang, so strong that i have never experienced. The building of our hotel was shaking ( we were on 14th floor) and when we reported at the front desk, the receptionist calmed us down that it's quite normal here. We immediately made up our mind to either change the hotel or change the room to the lowest possible floor as we wanna end the trip on the sweeter note not with any bad experience. So, we shifted to 2nd floor and felt too much relaxed. It was sunny also sometimes. The storm comes in intervals, full of heavy rains and very strong winds that it was sometimes difficult to walk also. So, there was no point of exploring the city till too far off, we decided to cover the nearby places only like Long son pagoda, Sailing club, Po nagar cham towers. We didn't take any risk of carrying cameras along due to rains. The beaches were clean and peaceful. The food was too awesome. Till now, I had started loving Vietnamese cuisine. We stayed here for 2 days and headed towards our last destination Ho chi minh city.
Nha Trang is probably the cheapest place in the world to pick up your PADI, but admittedly the underwater scenery is a bit depleted and underwhelming. Regardless, the prices are amazing and you can save a lot to get your Open Water PADI here for less than Rs. 16000, including accommodation.
We took a public bus to the scenic location of Nha Trang. Resembling Waikiki in the 70's, it is a Mecca for local tourists and foreigners alike. We had a quiet New Year's Eve as it started raining about 10 pm and we skipped the outdoor stage and entertainment along the beach. The next day, we decided to hike along the beautiful beach, over the bridge, through narrow alleyways and ended up at the Po Nagar Cham Towers. The Po Nagar Cham Towers are located on a small hill overlooking the Cai River. We were impressed at the restoration effort. The place is still used by Buddhist worshipers praying and lighting incense, each inner temple was cloudy with smoke, as it has been for centuries. Later, we visited the Long Son Pagoda, presided over by a 44 ft high sitting Buddha. We then set out to explore out favorite haunts. Buying fruit in the market, stopping for a refreshing coconut, having a plate of Com Chay or strict vegetarian Buddha food as it is referred to here, followed by a dish of our favorite street food, bananas in leaves roasted over coals, topped with a rich, hot coconut tapioca cream.
Day 14 Nha Trang boat trip & mud bathing (BL) Am: Have breakfast at hotel. This morning you will make a boat trip to visit Nha Trang Bay. This is a chance for you to discover the beautiful islands of Tri Nguyen, Mun island for snorkelling. Pm: In the afternoon you spend your time at Thap BA Hot Spring to take a mud bath. Overnight at hotel. Day 15 Nha Trang – Da Lat (BL) Am: Have breakfast at hotel. This morning you leave Nha Trang for Da Lat. En route you have more chance to admire the spectacular sights and visit Dantala Waterfall. Arrive in Dalat, check in hotel. Have lunch at restaurant Pm: You will make a half-day city tour to visit Dalat city to the Flower Garden, Crazy House, Tuyen Lam Lake and Truc Lam pagoda by cable car and enjoy more of Dalat city. Free to have your own dinner. Overnight at hotel
We took an overnight train to Danang then the bus to Hoi An. Heading out onto the water for a day to cruise around the islands, we spent stacks of time swimming and snorkelling and indulging in a lunchtime feast of freshly caught seafood and other delights for non-fish eaters.Th next day we boarded the overnight sleeper train bound for Danang.
Danang City is developing into a venue for Meetings, Incentive Travel, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE). Large hotels, casinos and wedding halls line the coastal roads and excursion to UNESCO Sites like Hue, Mỹ Sơn and Hoi An are close by. The cool months of December is a wonderful time to visit and we certainly wouldn’t mind returning for more exploration.Read More
Danang City is developing into a venue for Meetings, Incentive Travel, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE). Large hotels, casinos and wedding halls line the coastal roads and excursion to UNESCO Sites like Hue, Mỹ Sơn and Hoi An are close by. The cool months of December is a wonderful time to visit and we certainly wouldn’t mind returning for more exploration.
Next place on the itinerary can be Hue which is the ancient capital of Vietnam and also the seat of their last Monarch. Through the city one of the cleanest and most beautiful river flows named the perfume river. Along the bank of this Perfume rivers is an ancient Pagoda (Buddhist temple) that is worth the visit.
After breakfast at your hotel and you are free till airport transfer. Today, you will have a flight to Hue city and stay overnight at the most touristic area of Hue.Day 5 Discover Hue by boat and Car (Meal: B,L )07.45 Am, We will pick up you at your hotel & transfer to Visit 04 famous sites: Minh Mang Tomb Khai Dinh Tomb Tu Duc Tomb Conical Hat Making Incense Making Village. After having lunch, visit Imperial capital during Nguyen Dynasty: the Royal Citadel, Forbidden City, Hue Royal Museum and the seven – storey Thien Mu Pagoda on the riverbankAfter you visit Thien Mu Pagoda, you get on the boat for a sight-seeing along the Perfume River. After the tour, the boat will drops off you at the Hue River Bank in the city center.Here, you walk to your hotel.The tour ends at 16.30
Hue is a historical place located towards the Center of Vietnam. It was the Center of the country during the rule of the Minh Dynasty. It is also not very far away from the DMZ, which was the line dividing North and South Vietnam during the war. I took the night bus from Phong Nha and stayed at two different places in Hue. First was a beautiful resort called the beach bar. This was located half an hour away from Hue on Thuan An beach. This is a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of Hue. Be sure to find people from the bus to share a cab with (it can get expensive doing so alone). Second was the Hue backpackers hostel located on Pham Ngu Lao ( This is the main backpacking district in Hue). Hue has a lot of historical places. Unfortunately a lot of these have been destroyed during the war and are under restoration. The most important out of these is the Imperial City and the tombs of former emperors. The tombs are a little far away from the city so you probably need to rent a motorbike to see them. All in all I would say, if you are short on time, this is one place you could skip.
Huế is the capital city of Thua Thien – Hue province, located in central Vietnam. Huế is well known for its historic monuments, which have earned it a place in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. Today, little of the forbidden city remains, though reconstruction efforts are in progress to maintain it as a historic tourist attraction.
Huế is the capital city of Thua Thien – Hue province, located in central Vietnam. Huế is well known for its historic monuments, which have earned it a place in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. Today, little of the forbidden city remains, though reconstruction efforts are in progress to maintain it as a historic tourist attraction.
Day 9 Hue cycling day trip (BL) Am: Have breakfast at hotel. This morning you cycle around Hue city. First, you cycle around the village road to reach Thanh Toan Old Bridge to visit the most ancient one in the South Hue city. Next, you continue to cycle on beautiful roads up and down hill to visit Tu Duc Mausoleum Pm: This afternoon you continue your cycling along the river to visit The Citadel, which was the Royal Palace of Nguyen Reign. After that, continue your ride along shadow trees, roads to visit Thien Mu pagoda. Your route to back hotel will ride along Perfume River to enjoy more of the beautiful landscapes. Free to have your own dinner. Overnight at hotel. Day 10 Hue – Bach Ma National Park (BLD) Am: Have breakfast at hotel. This morning you have free time to walk around the city or make a cyclo tour to Dong Ba Market for more enjoyment of the busy purchasing center in Hue city. Then our guide and driver pick up you at the hotel and transfer you to Bach Ma National Park, 60km from Hue City on 1A National Highway. En route, you will see the wonderful scenes of villages and rice fields. Upon arrival Bach Ma National Centre, you will be transferred to the mountain summit. From the summit you will have the panorama of Lang Co beach, Cau Hai Lagoon with the spectacular views. Have lunch. Pm: In the afternoon you start your trekking route at kilometer 15 to reach Five Lakes where you swim in the small romantic pools and fairy streams as well as the pure water in this forest. Continue your trekking about 1 hour more to visit Do Quyen Waterfall - is astounding and huge in the wooded mountain. In order to view the whole waterfall with the imposing view you step down 700 footsteps and take wonderful pictures of the fall with the silver water. Here you also have a chance to admire the famous and very beautiful flower with the same name of the fall grows two sides of this waterfall. After that you will trek to
The cold winds of the first snow in China had blown us down south - quick - and sauntering along the Perfume River en route to the Citadel, in laid-back Hue on a warm sunny afternoon, confirmed we had made the right choice. A pleasant day on the river found us exploring the seven storied, octagonal Thien Mu Pagoda (1601AD), Hon Chen Temple and the stunning, serene Minh Mang Tomb, with its forests and lakes. On a superlative day we saw the largest bell in Vietnam, cast in 1710AD, which can be heard 10 km. away and the massive 20 ton stele lauding the accomplishments of ruler Tu Duc, the author non other than Tu Duc.
If Hanoi's charm is a little slow on the uptake, Hue's hits you right in the face. It is everything you would imagine an historic town to be: regal, sweeping, otherworldly. The Citadel, that houses a well-preserved complex of temples, pavilions, moats, walls, gates, shops, museums and galleries, is large enough to drown even the constant flood of tourists, offering rare moments of peace and solitude. My favourite was when I found myself on a particularly graceful stone bridge perched over a small creek lined with melancholy weeping willows -- my inner-most oriental princess dreams all came to life in that moment. The Perfume river, on the banks of which the city lies, is a massive body of water, and adds to the general evocative nature of the landscape, that always seems to be accentuated by clouds looming on the horizon nearly throughout the year.
Once an imperial capital of a feudal dynasty, Hue once dominated South Vietnam in the 15th century. Later, when an emperor captures the whole of Vietnam, Hue became the national capital. The charm of Hue as a past capital of Vietnam still survives in its scenic beauty and its historic sites. We start our journey here by taking a boat trip on the Perfume River and visit Thien Mu pagoda, followed by Tu Duc Tomb. We continue with the journey with a visit to Khai Dinh Tomb and the incense making village.
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