Published: March 8th 2008March 8th 2008
We are absolutely loving Vietnam. We haven't done everthing we wanted to, but have adored the sights we have seen. The Vietnamese people love to rip you off, thats for sure, but on the other hand they really do have a lovely sense of humour and conversing with them is a delight!
We have missed alot of the cities in Vietnam, mainly because we wanted to visit Sapa (near to the China border). Having looked at the calender, we realised that we haven't enough time to visit this wonderful place and go to Halong Bay aswell.
Halong Bay was magical. When we arrived at the harbour, we were told by our guide that the bay caters for 900 boats. Half of these are for sleeping on and the other half for day trips. We tought that Hanoi city was manic but the harbour was so chaotic and nobody seemed to know what was going on.
Halong Bay, made up off roughly 2000 krags and islands is a world heritage sight. We spent the first day touring the islands. That evening we slept on the boat. We had our own cabin with on-suite bathroom. Totally clean and comfortable. The
following morning at 6.30am, we peered through our cabin window to be greeted by a smiling lady in a small vietnamese rowing boat, hoping to sell us some snacks for our day ahead (see photo). It was such a bizarre experience and one we will never forget.
The second was spent on the island of Cat Ba. We couldn't help but feel like we were on the film set for jurassic park. Surrounded by mountains and beauty we took a walk into the hills and shared lunch with a vietnamese family, veged out on hammocks in their orchard and then went Kayaking through the Krags in the afernoon. Just Bex, myself and 4 other kayakers. We saw some huge jellyfish and hidden caves. We didn't want to leave this perfect place. Becca and I had planned to stay on the island of Cat Ba for an extra night, only to find that we couldn't as there were no other boats that were able to take us onto back to mainland. We were 10 mins to pack our things and jump on the coach with the rest of the party.
Yesterday we took a day trip to Minh
Binh. A place 100km north of Hanoi. The morning was pretty boring, just visiting temples. But in the afternoon, we hired a couple of bikes and spent some time admiring the countyside. Paddy filed after paddy field. Our guide took Becca and I off the beated track to this cave called Fairy Cave. It was so pecial as no other tourists were there. The lights went out half way through the tour. Not the greatest of feelings, I have to say, when you are on a cave with only two two other people.
The Philippinnes tomorrow. Here we come.
I'm not going to proof read this, so apologies for poor spelling, syntax etc.
Keep the mails coming, we love them. Cheam Park Farm Juniors, where are your e mails to me? Hope you haven't forgotten bout me!
There are more photos below