Vietnam, United Kingdom · 10 Days · 51 Moments · April 2016

Hari's trip to Vietnam

11 April 2016

And back in the UK. Trip over

10 April 2016

Hoi Chi Minh City airport Apricot lounge isn't huge....
Waiting for the first of three flights home in a very small airport. Only 3 gates!
Last day lunch out - on the way to the airport and some of the best food so far, thanks to Peter our guide who recommended lots of new dishes
A view over Hué from the third floor of the hotel. Vietnam is incredibly green
Breakfast in the hotel courtyard. All packed and ready for the flight home

9 April 2016

Completely randomly a parade led by two dragons has just gone past our hotel
Whereas this is the tomb of Khai Dinh - built into the side of a hill in the 1920s and made of far too many steps for everyday living. The interior walls are gorgeously mosaic-ed
Visiting the tomb of Tu Duc - a tomb so peaceful and beautiful that the king actually chose to live here for several years before his death...
Stopping off for lunch at Les Jardins De La Carambole restaurant
Exploring a Buddhist temple built in 1603
The temples outlying buildings including a gorgeous 300 year old bell and a turtle carved from a single piece of marble. All hail great A'tuin :-)
Looking out over the perfume river
A man fishing in the moat of the citadel
Inside the restored Opera house of the forbidden city of Hué
All of the coloured mosaics on the walls of the forbidden city are made from recycled pottery - which we're told is the traditional way of decorating buildings like that. It's pretty amazing
The amazing restored reading room of the Hué forbidden city. This restoration was only completed a few months ago
Entering the forbidden city of Hué
Starting out last day in Vietnam with a tuktuk ride to the ancient citadel and forbidden city

8 April 2016

View from the hotel bar in Hue
Goats on the cloudy pass
This bay used to be a leper colony...
China beach looks more like Florida than Normandy...
The old hangers on the American base at Da Nang are still there...
View from the hotel reception as we wait for the trip to Hué

7 April 2016

Hoi An by night

6 April 2016

Our cooking class invoked a boat trip along the river. Very pleasant.
Tour of the market as part of our cooking class
View from bed. The sea is out there too

5 April 2016

The Hoi An market - aka Aaron in his natural environment.
Getting clothes tailor made in Hoi An. Two dresses and a jacket for me as well as a pair of spats. Aaron's getting three shirts made too

4 April 2016

Temple dogs and dragons in an old Chinese meeting hall
Stopping for a Banh Mi lunch in Hoi An
Last day in Hoi Chi Minh and this head cold is getting me down - three days of sniffing and coughing have left me knackered and sore. And I'm almost out of painkillers :-( Still we're going to the beach today, maybe that will help

3 April 2016

Housing in Vietnam is valued by the width of the property facing the road, so you end up with lots of tall skinny buildings
Stopped off for a late lunch at the Mango Grove restaurant - 5 courses of delicious food I entirely failed to take picture of as I was too busy eating
A local factory that turns coconuts into candy in just one morning. And the sweets were delicious too
Idling along a natural canal between bamboo and coconut trees in a row boat
Relaxing on a luxury riverboat cruise. With fresh coconuts to drink.
Our cyclo trip to the boat - lots of tiny (though mostly paved) roads - the large people carrier we've been driving in the rest of the time could not have made it down these tracks
Floating fishing villages in the Mekong River - seemed in a lot better condition than the ones we saw in Cambodia last week
Feeling crappy after another night with a head cold - coughing and sniffing all night. :-( but I felt the same yesterday morning and was able to perk up once the day's tours started so hopefully the same will happen today

2 April 2016

Buffet dinner at the hotel. We've eaten crab, lobster, oysters, clams, scallops, mussels, prawns, squid, and much more...
Ho Chi Minh City post office is pretty stunning as both a building and the fact that it is *still* a working post office. Amazing colonial era maps on the wall and old wooden phone booths that now house ATMs
Stopping off for Pho
The fast moving yet incredibly flat Saigon river, filled to the brim with water hyacinths, all floating down towards the city. It looked like a grassy meadow so it was weird to see the entire "meadow" moving quite so fast...
Aaron and I crawled through this genuine (though expanded in width and height) Viet Cong tunnel today at Cu Chi. Barely 15 metres long it was still a tight fit and very scary
The Vietnamese are experts at fitting lots of stuff on the back of a motorcycle...
Saigon has ALL the motorcycles...

1 April 2016

Drinks in the Saigon Saigon roof top bar as the sun went down over Ho Chi Minh City.
Landed in Ho Chi Minh City. Our hotel, the "rooftop bar" of which these were taken (it's on floor 10 of 24) apparently was a major hangout for war correspondents during the Vietnam War - they claimed they could see the front line from here. Today there's too many tall buildings in the way.