Blogs from Hai Phong, Red River Delta, Vietnam, Asia

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Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong November 23rd 2018

Guess what.......an early start again today! Out of bed at 6.00 am, in time for breakfast, check out and then on to the coach for a 7.30 departure. In actual fact, it was only a 'partial check out' today, because as Arnie famously said (sort of!), 'We'll be back'! We're off to Ha Long Bay today, for an overnight cruise in the bay, then back to Hanoi tomorrow evening, for one more night, at the same Sunway hotel, in Hanoi - we only took an overnight bag on this trip and left our main cases in storage at the hotel. Ha Long Bay is yet another UNESCO World Heritage site and is considered one the highlights of the trip; one that we have all been looking forward to. The iconic image of the limestone promontories spread ... read more
The Paloma - 2
The Paloma - 3.
The Fairy Tale Land - 1

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong July 22nd 2018

I did the Halong Bay tour from the port in Haiphong, so it made sense to check out Haiphong, being the third-largest city in Vietnam, before flying from there to Danang. But the port is enormous and a taxi from there to the city wasn't cheap ($12). There isn't much here to attract tourists, but the city is clean, well organized, and middle class, and therefore perfect to just stroll around and watch. English is pretty hard to come by here. But people were happy to find someone who could at least say mango, or fish, or airport. Everyone I talked to was kind and helpful. The markets have a fair amount of seafood and there are several Japanese / sushi restaurants. The city center has a long a narrow park that goes on for several ... read more
Fish noodle bowl
Street shave
City park

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong March 19th 2017

Our last Vietnam adventure was a four day, two night trip on a teakwood boat to Bai Tu Long Bay with Indochina Junk. Tom, always the master planner, had decided long ago that we’d be happier without a crowd of tourists, so he reserved a one-stateroom boat. Bai Tu Long Bay is a less crowded area off HaLong Bay, which has become more and more crowded with tourists over the past 9 years. Thanks to Tom’s planning, we sailed in luxury on the Princess Junk, with a crew of four (captain, mechanic, chef and guide) taking care –very good care – of us. The weather was foggy and cool, so we spent a good deal of time inside the small dining room cabin, rather than on one of the two decks. Trips out into the bays ... read more
The Princess Junk
Cleopatra of the Bay
Master Planner

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong February 21st 2017

We, as travellers, often look for the scenic, the beauty spots, the ancient monuments but as we leave the port of Haiphong on a road far worse than any they could hope for I wonder if we ever 'see' the real country warts and all. Haiphong is the country's third largest city, a jumble of container terminals, refineries and factories. Having suffered drastically in the war it is now in the process of being connected by high speed motorway to Hanoi and beyond. Hence the potholes or rather the crevices in the road into which small cars disappear. The road is yet to be surfaced, concrete towers loom out of the dusk as precursors to multiple flyovers which disappear into the distance - a new spaghetti junction in the making. Through the rain showered windows of ... read more
An offering outside a shop
Burning money and papers
Tasty grubs in Mai Chau market!

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong December 19th 2016

Day 3 Halong Bay We woke early to pack and eat breakfast at the hotel prior to an early pick-up for the 4 hour drive to Halong Bay for our two day / one night cruise. I wish I could say the drive to Halong was uneventful, but it wasn’t. We had the driver from hell… he spoke very little English, which in normal circumstances would have been OK, but this wasn’t a normal drive. Early on it was easy to see this guy was suffering from a hard night of drinking and partying, the way he kept guzzling bottles of water, stretching his arms and propping his head and eyes up were comical – if it was not for the fact that I was in the van with this guy. The situation was further complicated ... read more
more scooters
tour bus tourist trap....
crafting.

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong June 20th 2016

I woke at 6 and a few minutes later there was a power cut. Our air conditioner died and there was no light in our windowless room. We planned to leave for the train at 9 am so fortunately had plenty of time to pack and have breakfast in the candle and torchlight. Breakfast was already laid out in the restaurant as a simple buffet. The umbrellas we had been carrying for weeks were made use of for the first time on the way to the train station . It was only a 20 minute walk and that short distance made carrying them worth the weight. It felt so good for us to be self reliant. If we would have had to catch a taxi who knows how long we would have waited and the stress ... read more
On our Way to Cat Ba Island
Our Cruise Boat
Floating Fishing Villages

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong March 8th 2016

The doorman hauled our bag to the end of the lane, put it in the trunk of the small taxi and jumped in the passenger seat and we squeezed in the back. We’re off. When we arrive at the bus station, he goes in to the office, checks our tickets and sits down to wait with us. All of a sudden he jumps up and heads outside, beckoning us to follow. I had heard an announcement but didn’t catch the mention of Catba. He stores our bag under the bus and disappears. We climb aboard the bus and begin to take our assigned seats behind the driver. We are brusquely stood away. Other bewilder tourists climb aboard. The driver must have bought a new horn for his bus. The previous one certainly died of overuse. I ... read more
Temple
Fishing Fleet
Fishing Chaloupe

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong January 11th 2016

Nous voilà Inda Capital du Vietnam ! La première journée nous nous baladons dans ceux que l'on appelle les 36 rue, il s'agit d'un quartier ou chaque rue vend un certain type d’artisanat ou juste un certain type de chose. Il s'agit aussi du vieux quartier de Hanoï ou l'on peu trouver des maisons traditionnelle avec un super emménagement et l'on peu voir pas mal de lieu avec des partenariat entre la ville de Toulouse et celle d'Hanoï ! Passage par des petit temple pour ensuite atterrir au grand marché situé au nord de ce quartier et ou l'on peu trouver tout plein de produit type fruit séché ainsi que de très bon restaurant de rue . Le lendemain ce sera une option vélo pour pouvoir partir plus loin et dans plus de lieu différent, pas ... read more
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Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hai Phong January 14th 2015

Aaaaaah la baie d'Ha Long! Apres 5heures de voiture en quittant Ninh Binh, nous voila arrive au port pour embarquer sur notre bateau direction la Baie d'Ha Long. Le bateau appartient a Ethnic Travel: Nous sommes 8 a embarquer sur ce beau bateau en bois. Que de jeunes etrangers. Hugo et moi sommes recu seul pour un repas en tete a tete alors que le bateau quitte le port. Assez romantique j'avoue. nous arrivons au bout de 1.30 parmis les grandes formations rocheuses spectaculaires!. Nous redoutions le mauvais temps et une mauvaise visibilite, mais l;e temps etait splendide, et la mer calme. Le bateau jette l'encre et nous prenons des kayaks pour visiter une grotte. Sauf que le notre est casse et nous recuperons un gros canoe. On avait les fesses trempees et devions redoubler d'efforts ... read more
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