Why did I pick Vietnam as a destination ?
To be honest, I always wanted to go to Vietnam because all the people who went there really enjoyed it. As far as I remember, from years ago to just a few months people seem to have the same great experience. The second reason, is that I wanted to travel but I only had a small budget. I found out that Hanoi was one of the cheapest cities in south east Asia, I let you imagine what happened next…
Why I haven’t been there earlier ?
There are just many other countries in SEA where it’s just too easy to get in! In Vietnam you need a visa that cost about 60€ and that is pretty expensive when you think that in Thailand you get a free 30 days at the customs or a 12$ visa in Cambodia straight at the border.
But what is just too sad, is that Vietnam opened the country to tourism in the early 90’s. I arrived way to late, so I wonder what it was like even fifteen years ago. Nevertheless I’m used to touristy places around Asia, and sometimes tourist are also part of my pictures as they are part of the place.
Due to Vietnam’s shape, a lot of travellers have the same route, either from south to north or the other way around, witch makes it great for solo traveling.
I started north, in Hanoi, and I have to say that it was my favorite! I remember it made me feel a little bit like I was back in china. Everything is just so authentic. Funny fact; each street use to be a specific market street, for example shoe street, or toy street, making it easy for everyone to find what they need.
Hạ Long Bay and Cát Bà
Quite three days and two nights boat trip.
Tam Coc & Ninh Bình
This place is touristy, but it’s also laid back, it gives you the time to relax either on a boat trip or just by biking along the river and through the villages.
From Huế to Hội An
I finally arrived in Huế after a long bus ride and that’s where I met « Thanh » who offered me to travel to Hội An by motorbike. I was pretty dubious at first but he eventually convinced me to go with him. It was probably not the best idea, or at lest not the best day, as we drove for a complete day under the rain! We had a few stops along the way, we hate a « Pho » in a very local place, and we stop next to the Lao border in a so called restaurant. that restaurant was filled with drunk people, drinking either beer or that local vodka that my friend « Thanh » like so much. Some of those people where part of the Vietnamese military, and some from the Laotian. Thanh and I sat down at a table, and started to drink some shots of vodka to keep us warm. Yes it’s quite cold up in the mountains. We received a plate filled with delicious but really fat pieces of pork that you wrap in to some sort of lettuce before you putting it in your mouth. After the meal, we hit back the road with our small motorbike. Three hours later, we arrived in « Prao, Đông Giang, Province de Quảng Nam, Vietnam » were I’m just happy to find a place to dry my shoes. That night, Vietnam was playing football against Indonesia, so we had a few beers with my friend’s friend who own the place.
Hội An is beautiful, the village has been classified as a unesco heritage.