Published: July 2nd 2012July 2nd 2012
Cu Chi Tunnels
Western tourist trying out the tunnel entrance.
Took the Mekong Express bus from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City,took about 5 hours but it took an hour to go through immigration to get into Vietnam.We had to take all our luggage off the bus & put it through a scanner but things moved along quickly & it was'nt stressful. Caught a taxi from the bus depot, was 100,000dong about $5US, not too bad for the convienience especially with our luggage. The hotel, Huong Sen is very well located in District 1 where most of the tourist areas are.We had a nice swim & then found Bernie's bar & grill & watched NRL live match [Cowboys & Raiders]& had a good feed & Tony had a couple of Bundy's.The traffic is scary, there's no other word for it but you just keep going & they will avoid you but don't hesitate. For the larger intersections where tourist sites are they have men in green uniforms who will escort you across, very welcome!!! We booked a trip to Cu Chi Tunnels with a pickup from our hotel at 7am & got a speedboat to the tunnels, nice trip took about i hour up the Mekong. The guide was very
Cu Chi Tunnels
captured american tank.
informative & spoke good english. It was wierd hearing the vietnamese view of the war & an eye opener. You can go into a tunnel if you want to & come up about 50 metres away. A few younger & slimmer members of the group did it & said it was so scary, one guy used his mobile phone to see what was hitting him & it was tiny bats.They said once the entrance was covered it was pitch black & you had to feel your way through. There are lots of artifacts used during the war & how to get into the entrance of the tunnel was demonstrated by a man who fought for the Viet Cong & was a war hero. It was very interesting & the kids seemed to enjoy it to. They had no trouble going through the tunnels. It must have been terrifying for the people in the tunnels during the bombing but they were determined to get their country back & would never have given up . We got back to HCM at 1pm.Saw Notre Dame Cathedral in Saigon & found out all the bricks were shipped out from France.The Post Office is an
Cu Chi Tunnels
impressive building especially inside but my camera batteries went flat just as I went in.
We flew out of Saigon on Jetstar to Danang, a good flight & our pickup arranged by the hotel in Hoi An was waiting.We could'nt believe how quiet it was in Danang, everything was closed & there was no-one about.Our driver told us they all have siestas through the heat of the day.he took us to China beach, pointed out the old US base & then took us on to Marble Mountain as we'd asked for a tourist drive on the way into Hoi An.The hotel, Vin Hung 2 is centrally located near the old quarter where the night markets are. Lovely hotel, friendly staff & excellent swimming pool.It was very hot there & even after dark was still very hot.Hoi An is known for tailors & there are heaps of them, the clothes look lovely & there are lots of shops making leather shoes. We had dinner overlooking the river but it was still very hot. The beach is 5klms away but we did'nt have time to see it.The hotel had arranged a car & driver to take us to Hue, about 2
Exiting the tunnel.
This man was a viet Cong war hero who fought in the war.
hours away where we were spending the next 2 days.Quite a nice scenic drive, good road, we went through the tunnel which is over 6klms long but you can go over the Van Hai Pass which is longer but more scenic if its not too cloudy. Checked into Gold Hotel in Hue, very friendly staff, lovely pool on 5th overlooking city.Nice rooms. We ate at the hotel, home made pizza, delicious. had a short walk in the evening but very hot like Hoi An.Next day we did a tour of the Citadel, an ancient garden House, Thien Mu Pagoda & a couplke of other tombs that we did'nt walk around, followed by a trip back to town on a dragon boat on the Perfume River. very nice tour.
There are more photos below