Blogs from Northeast, Vietnam, Asia


Asia » Vietnam » Northeast March 25th 2015

Weekend 20 to 22 March 2015 - I bought a ticket at Hoàng Long bus company in Hanoi and traveled to Cát Bà island for 3 days. It took me 4 and a half hours to travel by bus and speed boat from Hanoi to the island. It is 20 years since my first trip to Cát Bà island. I still remember that day when my boat was approaching the island at the sunset. I saw some simple buildings along coastline and rock mountains behind them. At that time there was no electricity on the island yet and the locals had to use generators at night. Today Cát Bà island is a very popular tourist destination and it has changed a lot. The purpose of my trip this time was to visit Lan Hạ bay which ... read more
A monkey on Monkey Island - Lan Hạ bay
Center of Cát Bà island at night
Jumping down to the sea water

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 30th 2015

Hoi An was a beautiful city, or the old quarter bit was anyway. That's the only bit we really visited. Lots of history and nice places to eat. We went out one night for a few beers and some shisha. The hotel was good too, it had a massive pool with a swim up bar. The only problem was the day we were leaving there was a big wedding at our hotel. They had the after party at about 12pm and started singing very loud Vietnamese karaoke. They really love karaoke here.. I don't understand it myself! We got the bus to Hue. Hue was a bit boring really, not much to do. But we went out for dinner and celebrated Kimberley's birthday with sparklers and shots. We then went out to a bar called Brown ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 26th 2015

From Hanoi it is an easy excursion to get to the limestone islands of the world famous Ha long bay. Every shop offers a tour. We preferred the option of going independently to Cat Ba island and then picking trips from there. You get a flavour of the other side of Vietnam as you pass through the industrial port of Hai Phong to catch a small ferry to Cat Ba. This arrives in an area of mangroves where another bus takes you to the main town. The beach front of the main town has been developed and there are many many hotels of all standards. Judging by the development hoardings we saw it has only just started. If you return in a few years you will probably find a golf course, brand new water fronted apartment ... read more
Canoeing in Lan Ha Bay
Looking back to the bay through a grotto
Fish drying in the sun in Cat Ba town port

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 14th 2015

This morning we were up and at breakfast by 7.15am. A great spread of eggs, toast, fruit, crepes, Oreo biscuits, sausage, ham, juices, tea and coffee. Dani made herself a delicious crepe with condensed milk and crushed up Oreos all over it. Yum! By 8.15am we were out waiting for our tiny little boat to take us back to Cat Ba Island. It was rainy and cold. The boat ride back to the island was not very comfortable at all. We were all getting wet form the rain blowing in. We kind of huddled as much as we could. On our way back to the island we stopped at a local fishing village and picked up a still live fish. It was hit over the head, put in a plastic bag and thrown onto the ... read more
need a selfie stick me and abby being silly buggers..
Dinner time..found a great place called Highway 4, great food and amazing crickets..
frankie getting his cricket on!!!!

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 14th 2015

The tap, tap on our cabin door happened at 4am this morning and we were off the train at 4.30am. A taxi took us to the travel agent that we booked our Monkey Island Tour through. We sat on the cold steps of the restaurant in cold Hanoi from about 4.45am till 5.40 when a small hotel across the alley invited us to come and sit in their foyer area on their lounge. It was really nice to be able to sit inside out of the cold till 7.30 am when we decided to have a look around the block. The nice thing about sitting outside though from 4.45am was that we got to see all the locals setting up their Pho stalls, as well as vege stalls and fresh fish being bought in on the ... read more
Girls all sorted
lunch time....was a great first meal in halong bay
sundeck on the boat

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 14th 2015

This morning we were up and had brekkie at 8am. Breakfast was toast, eggs, fruit and sausage as well as tea and coffee. Not long after breakfast the boat took us ashore Cat Ba Island where we boarded a shuttle bus for a 40min drive to the other side of the island where we hopped on another small boat and were taken to Monkey Island. The boat ride was breezy and cold but we putted through floating fishing villages and past other small and large islands of Halong Bay. After about 30mins we arrived at our little island of paradise. Monkey Island Resort is a humble resort that isn’t flash but has everything you could need. We were shown our bungalows which have a perfect ocean view. After settling in we were treated to a ... read more
Grabing our gear and heading towards our van
Another junk..
Our Boat to take us to Monkey Island...

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast January 3rd 2015

Ho chi Minh Incroyable ville bruyante et toujours embouteillée. Un vrai challenge de traverser la rue. Un montée d'adrénaline à chaque fois car personne ne s' arrête. Il faut passer entre tout les scooters et voiture. Une nourriture excellente et des bières à 50 centimes la pinte. Que demander de plus! Nous avons quitté l'hôtel hier matin avec nos sacs sur le dos. 5 heures de marche et promenade dans un jardin botanique / zoo. Dès que je me posais quelque part je m'endormais! Nous nous sommes enfin lancé à prendre des bus pour aller à l'aéroport. Nikel même si on s' est fait avoir et qu'on a du payer le double d'un ticket normal au vu de notre tête de touriste c'est certain! Arrive à l'aéroport, 2 heures devant nous, nous eloignons pour aller boire ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast » Bac Kan January 2nd 2015

The longevity of fish I saw a tasty fish. Not one of those who live in a mud pond and taste of mud. I knew it would be more expensive but I wanted a delicious dinner. Well, his head was long gone and another cut had been sold. When she cut the piece I requested the fish started wagging his tail. this is the space for the photo which uploaded but cannot, apparently, be inserted You could say that the North Vietnamese are, at best, insensitive but the Americans did worse when introducing the electric chair. “Oh, it’s not strong enough. Bring that nigger back and let’s try a few more volts”. British scientists sawed the top off of monkeys’ heads to see if they could get a nobel prize. If I have to choose between ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast » Quang Ninh » Halong Bay November 16th 2014

One of the best days ever. We have breakfast on board (where else?). The boat is moving deeper into Halong Bay. The weather is lovely; the haze of yesterday is gone. Halong Bay is simply one of the most OMG places I've ever seen. Everyone is constantly exclaiming and pointing out incredible scenes. I take so many pictures my trigger finger starts to cramp. Along with the natural beauty, the many boats of various sizes, both tourist boats and fishing boats, add their own charm to the scene. The big adventure today is sea kayaking. Our tender ferries us to a sea kayaking facility set up for inexperienced tourists such as ourselves. Although I have canoed many times, I have never been in a kayak before. These are 2-person models designed for the sea, but for ... read more
Halong Bay
Secret beach at Halong Bay
Halong Bay

Asia » Vietnam » Northeast » Quang Ninh » Halong Bay November 15th 2014

Breakfast at our Hanoi hotel in their Japanese restaurant. This time we opt for the ramen noodles. We are soon on the bus and headed for Halong Bay, situated east of Hanoi on the ocean. It's a 3 1/2 hour trip. We make two stops along the way. The first is a enormous roadside gift shop catering to tourists. It is a football field-sized store that covers all the types of handicrafts we have seen so far and other besides. As usual, you immediately pick up a shadow, but we are not much interested in shopping. We do pick up some snacks, including cashews. Digression: Vietnam is the worlds's largest producer of cashews. They grow on large trees in red pods. The second stop is alongside a large, beautifully maintained vegetable garden, growing lettuce, onions, herbs ... read more
Sampan on Halong Bay
Floating village on Halong Bay
The group at a Halong Bay floating village

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