Vietnam (Hanoi, Halong Bay, Mekong River & Saigon)

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April 26th 2010
Published: April 26th 2010
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I call Saigon my second home in Asia, its where my heart found peace and a safe refuge. Probably the reason why I kept coming back on my own a few times .

You ask me why I like Vietnam?, its probably because I feel for their loss and what they've been through in the past.

Maybe if we show compassion, appreciation and interest in any place we go to, it in turns gives us not only the hospitality we can rely on, but certain assurances that makes us want to go back for more.

The first time I stepped in to Saigon, I was with a group of 6-7 people, checked in at the newly renovated hotel continental. It was one of the oldest hotel in Saigon, just opposite the opera house.
This hotel was featured in a travel book because of its location. Dating back 19th century, there was an English man, name Graham Greene who is a long-term guest oh this hotel, conceived the work "The Quite American". This book was also made in to Michael Caine film, 'The Quite American" using the same hotel.

Hotel Continental was frequently referred to by the phrase “Radio Catinat”, since this was the rendezvous point where correspondents, journalists, politicians and businessmen talked about politics, the business news, and current events. It’s not by coincidence that it was said that “If the walls of the Hotel Continental could speak, they could tell you many stories.”

I fell in love with Saigon, on my first visit. The smell, the noise, the people and everything it offers. I've never been so convinced in my life, that this would be the place, I would come back to over time.

This place looks so beautiful with lots of French colonial buildings around the Opera House area, lots of street shops, cafeteria and restaurants in every corner.

to be continued

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