A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K

Tripoto
20th Apr 2018
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K 1/2 by BISWAJIT SAHA
The famous Ha-long Bay

Vietnam - A country with a rough & struggling past,but slowly emerging as a country with rich & unparalled beauty.Its been easily chosen as the Most Beautiful country of SE Asia by numerous travellers,due to its richness & diversity in its culture and nature both.Its also one of the cheapest destinations in SE Asia.These are enough reasons to select Vietnam in their travel bucketlist.

I planned my trip to Vietnam in April 2018,in continuation with north Thailand.I only had a week to spend (P.S. I know its a complete injustice to Vietnam),but there was no other option to extend my leaves from work.

So I focused my time mostly into north & central regions.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K 2/2 by BISWAJIT SAHA
My lunch - boiled rice,with veggies,a cold soup,a curry of fried tofu,pork & quail eggs
Day 1

Reached Hanoi airport from Chiang Rai in morning.Took a bus to Giap Bat bus station,in order to catch another bus to Ninh Binh.The journey was for about 2 hours,and I reached the central bu staion within noon.Checked into my hostel,had a shower & a small lunch,ventured out to explore the place.I got a bike ride to Tam Coc,to enjoy the boat-ride through the grettoes.It was an amazing experience.This was the shooting location of the movie Kong-Skull Island,and the experience cannot be described in words.

Photo of Ninh Bình, Ninh Bình Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Ninh Bình, Ninh Bình Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

The oarsmen who provide ride through the grettoes have mastered rowing by their feet.Its a pretty amusing view to look at as well-given the backdrop of the grettoes.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

The boat ride is along a fixed course,going through 3 caves,few of them being pretty low clearance.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

The view upon emerging the caves is surreal,straight out of the movie.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 2

As usual I wokeup early,& left to explore the remaining areas of the place.Came across a local artist,who specialised in lifelike sculptures.Spent quite some time observing his work,& tried to praise his works in broken vietnamese phrases.

Photo of Hanoi, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hanoi, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

After having my breakfast,I got on the bus to Hanoi.Met a wonderful & friendly person at the bus station,who offered me their traditional Hookah (I don't smoke,so had to refuse.Though it looked enticing).

Photo of Hanoi, Hoàn Kiếm, Hanoi, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

My hostel was at walking distance from Hoan Kiem Lake,so it was a short walk from the bus stop.

This guy was quite interesting.He was letting the balloons loose one by one on his own;but on approaching him to get a balloon,he kept asking for money.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Nice rides,for youngsters!

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

St. Joseph's Cathedral, Hanoi

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

After sunset,the Hoàn Kiếm lakeside comes alive,bustling with locals & tourist alike.Its also the place where the local sunday market is held.Its so crazy,that even roads are closed for the shoppers & you can easily spend hours going through the knick-knacks & trying out local delicacies.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Chè - Traditional Vietnamese sweet beverage, dessert soup or pudding. Varieties of Chè are made with mung beans, black-eyed peas, kidney beans, tapioca, jelly (clear or grass), fruit (longan, mango, durian, lychee or jackfruit), and coconut cream

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Bánh tráng trộn - Rice-paper salad with veggies,vietnamese herbs,sauce & quail eggs

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 3

I booked a day-trip option for the Halong Bay tour,through my hostel itself (CentralBackpackers).It included pickup & drop at hostel,lunch buffet spread on the boat & evening drinks.

Photo of Hạ Long Bay, Thành phố Hạ Long, Quảng Ninh, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hạ Long Bay, Thành phố Hạ Long, Quảng Ninh, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hạ Long Bay, Thành phố Hạ Long, Quảng Ninh, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

On the way,the boat stops at a fishing village where there are options for short trips or kayaking (if you feel adventurous).My opinion,must do it.Its an amazing experience,& costs only 2 $ (so you have no excuse to ignore).

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

We were also greeted by a wonderful spread of local produce for our lunch buffet,at the boat itself.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Included in the Halong Bay tour,there are also 2 cave systems where the boat halts giving ample time to explore them fully.Its really amazing to experience the intricacy behind natures creation.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 4

Next morning I took a flight to Hue.Due to delay,I missed the Hue city tour buses.

Also due to some time mismanagement on my part,I had to give up on Hue sightseeing.Instead,I went out for a Food-walk on the streets of Hue.

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Bánh khoai- A Local Hue dish.Crispy Pancakes with bean sprouts,lettuce,shrimp & pork,served with salad & peanut sauce

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Vietnamese rickshaw

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Themed cafe for Bike-lovers

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

A touch of France in Hue,Vietnam

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Snacks platter of Hue cuisine

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Bánh bèo- Rice cake topped with dried shrimps & crispy pork skin

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Bánh Ram, Ít - Sticky rice dumpling with shrimp filling,served over crispy fried pork & topped with dried shrimp bits

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 5

From Hue,I took the morning bus to Hoi An,through Hải Vân Pass.There is another bus route through a tunnel bypassing the Pass.So before getting bus tickets,make sure which route it will take,because you shouldn't miss the Pass.

After checking in to a local guest house,I ventured out to explore the Marble mountain.

It is well connected by local buses,& situated roughly in between Danang & Hoi An.

The whole mountain is full with caves with different temples,shrines & statues.The whole place takes about 3-4 hours to explore.Views from the top overlying the Danang beach is just wonderful.

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

The map showing all the caves

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Lord Buddha with his students

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

The Danang beach

Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Hội An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Also found a wonderful family run roadside stall,where I had my lunch.

Fried rice with shredded green papaya,vietnamese herbs & shredded pork.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Served along with the rice,soup of pork skin & blood cubes (tastes quite nice though)

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

In the evening,luckily,I came across a very local delicacy of Boiled Fertilised eggs (also quite common in Philippine,known as Balut).Trust me,you should try it.Its the perfect example of how 'looks can be deceiving',as it was quite delicious.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Vịt lộn - served with papaya salad,vietnamese herbs,crushed pepper,lime juice & dipping sauce

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 6

Next morning I was greeted by a traditional style Vietnamese coffee from the host family.Vietnamese coffee is quite strong in taste,so occasionally its over-balanced by condensed milk.Interesting idea,as well as delish!

Photo of Ho Chi Minh, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of Ho Chi Minh, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

Then went on to catch my flight to Saigon.

Saigon is a hustling bustling city,with full of cars & traffic;yet its not chaotic as one may imagine.

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

The only Hindu temple in Ho chi minh city

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

It was quite hot during the day.Also the city-vibe was not much appealing to compared to my past few days experience.So just went out on foot to explore around the Backpackers' area only.

The Streets of Saigon !

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Amazing art work

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Street art on walls

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Assorted sea-foods

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Doner Kabab for snack

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

The famous Bùi Viện Walking street,beside the Backpackers' area of Saigon

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Forgot the name,but couldn't pass this street vendor without trying this out

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA

Sticky rice with pickled veg,pâté,fried onion flakes,pork salami,quail egg topped with a home-made sauce

Photo of A Vietnamese Sojourn - 1 week,under 15 K by BISWAJIT SAHA
Day 7

Day 7,my last day in this amazingly beautiful & diverse country.I completely to agree with my fellow travelers everyone of whom has agreed to Vietnam being their most favorite country.The diversity in its nature & food quite overwhelming.

My lunch - boiled rice,with veggies,a cold soup,a curry of fried tofu,pork & quail eggs

Photo of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by BISWAJIT SAHA

EXPENSES -

Accommodation : 5 $ per night (dorms in hostels)

Visa Approval letter : 10 $

Visa Stamp at airport : 25 $

Flights : Rs 22,074 (2 International & 2 domestic flights)

Ha long Bay Day-trip : 25 $

Rest are for meals,local transport & fees at specific spots.

1 Comment(s)
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Great... love to read your blog.it's really very much informative n gives a clear idea about Vietnam.
Thu 02 07 19, 07:11 · Reply (1) · Report
Thanks
Thu 02 07 19, 19:26 · Report