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July 29th 2015
Published: August 5th 2015
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On Thursday it was time to say goodbye to Cambodia and Lou, for now. After our bus across the border experience we decided an alternative route might be better. We had really hoped to cruise along the Mekong river, but couldn't find anything within our end of holiday budget, so settled for a speed boat trip across the border and a bus back to hcmc (not so glamorous but still gave us some glimpses of river life).

The boat trip was quite good fun, showing the vastness of the Mekong river and varied uses. We had to stop to repair a fuel line, but otherwise had an event free journey.

The border crossing was much less stressful, in Cambodia we and the other dozen passengers hopped off to get our passports stamped while the remaining border staff played ping pong, there was almost no queue, all fairly informal and relaxed. Then on to Vietnam where we stood around on a floating balcony while one of the speedboat crew collected our stamps!

We spent the night in Chau doc, which the planet aptly describes as draped along the banks of the river. It seemed a nice town, but we didn't see much of it as our boat was several hours late and our bus was at lunchtime. At least breakfast on the 8th floor gave us a lovely birds eye view.

The bus, unsurprisingly, ran late too. However, it was a lovely and interesting drive crossing the endless streams of the Mekong delta and tributaries and giving a little insight into southern Vietnamese lifestyle.

We arrived into Saigon late and tired so had a pretty slow day Saturday shopping at the central market and winding down.

Sunday we managed a trip to the fine arts museum which featured a range of modern paintings and a beautiful exhibition of old black and white photos. It was great to bring together all the contrasting styles of the different places we've visited.

Monday was up at 5 am to grab breakfast, a last goodbye with the sweet staff from our hotel and off to the airport. Kuala Lumpur here we come.

A seven hour stopover in KL sounded a bit daunting but we wanted a night flight for our last leg. It turned out a transit visa is free so we were able to catch the fast train into town for lunch. We had an amazingly multicultural experience visiting the central market in Chinatown, which seemed to be dominated by Indians, with many western, Asian, African and Arab holiday makers, it was a wonderful people watch and felt like we could be anywhere in the world!

Last stop was a barefoot coffee and walk on palm beach to keep the last of our holiday alive. How nice it is to have a hot shower, a big bowl of salad from our garden, tap water, familiar toys and a high chair. What a magical journey and a great place to come home to!

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