I am a Hanoi_girl who loves to travel. When working for a Japanese construction company in Hanoi, I had the chance to travel to 19 countries and to all the 63 provinces in Vietnam, including 24 trips to Huế city. Egypt, Mongolia and Nepal are my love, and other favorite countries are Australia (2 trips), Japan, India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, China (6 trips, 15 cities), Cambodia (3 trips), Brunei Darussalam, the United Arab Emirates, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Laos (3 trips), Malaysia (3 trips), Singapore and Thailand (9 trips). I have visited all the countries in South East Asia except Timor-Leste.
I am happy as I've been to some wonders of the world: the Pyramids and the Pharos in Egypt, the Taj Mahal in India, the Great Wall in China, the Borobudur temple in Indonesia, the Angkor temples in Cambodia, the 3,000 temples in Bagan - Myanmar, the Plain of Jars in Laos, the Stone Forest in south west China etc. Some modern cities like Sydney, Dubai, Tokyo, Yokohama, Hongkong, Shanghai and Singapore also attracted me. I like this saying: "Go as far as you can see, and when you get there, you'll see farther."
196 blogs below are my travel stories in Vietnam and other countries, most of the time as a solo traveler. I hope I can share my feelings and experiences by writing about the trips and also about Vietnam. If you wish to contact me to ask about travel information, you can send me a private message on the right column of this page or through my email account firstname.lastname@example.org (Now I'm traveling in Australia and I will go back to Vietnam in mid April 2014)
Cuộc đời là những chuyến đi. Mỗi đất nước tôi đã từng đến thăm, mỗi nơi tôi từng đặt chân tới, ở đó không chỉ có phong cảnh thiên nhiên kỳ vĩ hay những công trình tuyệt tác của nghệ thuật và văn hoá, mà chính những con người tôi đã gặp trong mỗi chặng hành trình và sự thân thiện của họ đã để lại trong tôi những ấn tượng sâu đậm không bao giờ quên được.
"In every Country I have visited and in all the places I have been to, there have been not only beautiful natural landscapes and magical works of history and culture, but above all, it has been the people I have met and their friendliness that have made unforgettable impressions on me."
December 9th 2013
I returned to Vietnam from Australia in mid September and spent two months in Sài Gòn (aka Hồ Chí Minh city). I also traveled to Cambodia (11 to 14 Nov 2013) and Laos (19 to 22 Nov 2013) and flew back to Hanoi from Huế city. I was very sad when I had to leave Sài Gòn and my nephew Kevin. It has been 9 months (from Feb to Nov 2013) since I was away from home in Hanoi. During that time, I spent 6 months in southern Vietnam and 3 months in Australia. 2013 was an interesting year as I had the chance to get different experiences in my life, see many new places as well as going back to Cambodia and Laos which I visited 10 years ago. This was my 3rd trip to ... read more
October 30th 2013
John Ramsden first came to Hanoi in 1980 as Vice Ambassador of the UK Embassy. He was really attracted by the landscape and people of this city. At that time, Hanoi had just got out of a long war and still hadn't had enough time to make many changes, however it was the simplicity of the lifestyle of Vietnamese people which had impressed him. During his 3 year assignment in Hanoi, John Ramsden often walked or cycled to the surrounding towns and villages to watch and take photos of the landscape and the life of the local people. A motleycoloured wall, a street with restaurants hanging boards announcing “specialties”, but no brandnames as people were afraid of being considered as big business, or children playing see-saw outside Hoa Lo prison, all were taken by him through ... read more
September 11th 2013
11 September 2013 - My time in Australia is coming to an end. Tonight I will take a flight and go back to Vietnam. During my 3 month stay here, I have been to the 3 biggest cities in Australia (Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane). I have also been to 3 of the 6 states of Australia which are Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. They are all located on the eastern coast of Australia. Much of my time was spent on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. The town where I stayed has a population of 20,000 people, so it’s very quiet. At 5pm shops are closed and people go home or do sports like cycling, boat rowing, playing rugby etc. Even though my visit was in the winter time, the weather on the Sunshine Coast was ... read more
September 4th 2013
26 to 29 August 2013 – This was my last trip in Australia before going back home next week. We traveled to Victoria state for 4 days last week and visited Melbourne city (the second largest city in Australia) as well as two other sites near the city. Due to a terrible traffic jam caused by an accident on the motorway, we were stuck in traffic and missed our flight from Brisbane to Melbourne. It was my first experience ever to miss a flight as a result of a traffic jam. The road trip from home to Brisbane domestic airport usually takes about 40 minutes, but on that day it took us 4 hours! There was no way to get off the motorway. In Vietnam, I can easily hire a motorbike taxi driver to take me ... read more
August 21st 2013
7 & 8 August 2013 – We spent a couple of days going to the two famous sites in the Sunshine Coast. There are many zoos in different cities of Australia, but the zoo on the Sunshine Coast is the largest one in the country. It was founded by Steve Irwin (1962 – 1986) who was famous as a crocodile hunter. He died at age 44 as the result of an accident with a stingray. You can see many photos of Steve’s family (wife and two children) at the zoo. All of them loved nature and wild animals and wanted to protect them. A ticket to visit the zoo costs AUD 59. It is so large that it would take a day to see different parts and all kinds of animals. There were some animals I ... read more
August 15th 2013
Three trips to Brisbane city on 31 July, 12 & 18 August 2013 – Brisbane is the third largest city in Australia after Melbourne and Sydney. On 31 July 2013 we went to South Bank on Brisbane river. There are many nice restaurants, shops, gardens and a sandy beach in the South Bank area. We took a ferry from there and cruised Brisbane river. The ferry is called “CityCat” and it picks up guests from all the ferry stations on both sides of the river bank, so you don’t have to wait a long time. A ferry would come every few minutes. The ferry was going faster than we thought. When it was going close to the CBD (Central Business District) of Brisbane, the view was so impressive that it made me feel like I was ... read more
July 21st 2013
12 to 18 July 2013 - My blog No. 190 is about one of the most beautiful cities in the world that I have been to. We were just back to the Sunshine Coast after traveling 2,500km two ways to Sydney by car. During our 7 day trip, we were in Sydney most of the time and only stayed in Katoomba town in the Blue Mountains for a night, then visited the Three Sisters which are three rock formations next morning. We went to see the Opera House every day and viewed it from different directions at different times of the day (morning, sunset and night time). Sydney is truly an amazing city and I enjoyed every moment there. We traveled by car, ferry and bus in the city and went to all the major tourist ... read more
July 9th 2013
Late June & early July 2013 - I celebrated my last two birthdays in Mongolia and Phuket. This year I planned to go to Mt. Bromo in Indonesia for this special event, but ended up visiting Australia. One of the birthday presents for me was a boat cruise on Noosa river which is 50 minute drive away from the town where I stay. It cost AUD 150 to rent a small boat for an hour and it can carry 4 people. The sunset and reflection of houses on the water were so beautiful as you can see in my photos. So far, the river cruise as well as local markets and beaches have been my favorite things to do and see in the Sunshine Coast. Barbecue is a typical cuisine culture of the Australians. You can ... read more
July 6th 2013
Saturday, 29 June 2013 – Two weeks had passed since I arrived in Australia. I had not met any Vietnamese during that time, so I was happy to go to Inala market in Brisbane at the weekend. The market is over one hour drive from the town where I stay. Most of the shops at Inala market are owned by the Vietnamese. You also can find an India watch shop, a Japanese sushi stall, or a Korean hairdressers at Inala shopping center. Many Vietnamese shops and restaurants are located inside and outside Inala shopping center. I prefer the outdoor area. There are various Vietnamese shops selling vegetables, foods, jewelery, fishes, medicine etc. Lots of the foods and products were imported from Vietnam. I bought Vietnamese coffee, foods and other necessary things at some shops. It was ... read more
June 30th 2013
The Vietnamese traditional dress, "Áo Dài", is one of the most elegant and beautiful dresses for women. It’s very simple, consisting of a close-fitting blouse, with long panels in the front and back, that is worn over loose white trousers. As a Vietnamese girl who loves to travel abroad, sometimes I bring an Áo Dài to travel with me. Whenever I wear it, my Áo Dài always attracts friendly looks from both locals and travelers. I once got a message from an Irish poster in the Thorn Tree travel forum. He wrote to me "You must get a wonderful reaction from the local people when you wear your Áo Dài. I think you would stop the traffic, if you were to wear it walking down a street in Ireland." An Áo Dài can be worn with ... read more