Blogs from Ho Chi Minh City, Southeast, Vietnam, Asia - page 222

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Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City January 5th 2007

Heute war ich mal Touri ersten Grades: mit einer Tour fahre ich nach Tay Ninh zum "Heiligen Stuhl" der Cao Dai und nach Ben Dinh zu den Tunneln von Cu Chi. Da beides weit ausserhalb Saigons ist, auch kaum anders an einem Tag zu machen. Cao Dai ist eine etwas merkwuerdige Religion hier in der Gegend, die erst vor etwa 70 Jahren ersonnen wurde (auf eine Vision hin versteht sich) und von Buddhismus, Taoismus, Christentum, Konfuzianismus und Islam so einiges zusammen bastelt bzw. das Dach ueber alle sein will. Interessanterweise mit Heiligen wie z.B. Victor Hugo, Jeanne d'Arc oder auch einigen alten vietnamesichen Feldherrn. Der Haupttempel ist ziemlich wild bunt gestaltet und die Leute wissen sich zu vermarkten: zur Zeremonie um 12 sind Busladungen von Touristen da, die von der Galerie aus zusehen duerfen und es ... read more
Zeremonie
Der Cao Dai Papst
Die Haustuer

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City January 4th 2007

Crossing the border was a lot less stressful than last time and the journey wasn't bad either. We arrived in the City in the afternoon and the bus dropped us off practically outside the hotel we had booked. Our first day (Friday) was rather boring, we had something to eat with Adam who we met on the way here before going our separate ways and we had another early night. On Saturday we had a walk around and visited Dan Sinh (a military market) where they sell all kinds of things, from army style clothing and accessories to local dresses. We visited Phung Son Tu Pagoda before heading to see the Notre Dame Cathedral (due to the French history here there is allot of French contributes, including great baguettes). We visited yet another market on the ... read more
On a day trip

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City January 4th 2007

Backpacker's Zone Um den richtigen Einstieg zu kriegen, lasse ich mich heute relativ planlos durch die Stadt treiben. Auf dem Weg ins Zentrum liegt erst mal die "Backpackermeile" De Tham, sozusagen die Kao San Road von Saigon. Sie ist zwar auch voller Guest Houses, Kneipen und Restaurants, aber nicht ganz so hart und ghettomaessig wie das Original. Und eine Chance auf ein nicht-vietnamesiches Fruehstueck find ich auch nicht schlecht, ganz so weit bin ich naemlich in meiner Anpassung noch nicht... Beim Fruehstueck spricht mich ein "Easy Rider" aus Da Lat an - so nennt sich dort eine lose Gruppe von Motorrad-Guides, mit denen man Motorradtouren in der Gegend, aber auch bis Hanoi oder eben hier nach Saigon machen kann. Er macht einen sehr netten Eindruck, ist recht unaufdringlich und laesst lieber seine bisherigen Kunden per Gaestebucheintrag ... read more
Fleischstand
Verschnuerte Krebse
Hindu-Mopeds?

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City January 3rd 2007

Eine lange Herreise ist geschafft: viel Warterei schon in Frankfurt, weitere Unterbrechungen in Bahrain, Muscat und schliesslich einige Stunden Aufenthalt am Flughafen in Bangkok. Dennoch richtig geplant, denn den direktesten Flug weiter nach Ho Chi Minh Stadt haette ich nicht mehr gekriegt. Hier ist gleich die Taxifahrt ins Zentrum die erste Offenbarung - naemlich hinsichtlich des Verkehrs: eine unglaubliche Menge vor allem von Mopeds, dazwischen noch einige Autos und Busse, schiebt sich Stosstange an Stosstange und Blinker an Auspuff durch die Stadt. Wichtigstes Hilfsmittel dabei: die Hupe. Dennoch macht das Chaos einen sehr unaufgeregten Eindruck, die italienische Rush Hour kann einem mehr Angst machen! Nach Einchecken in einem mittelpraechtigen Hotel (das eigentlich ausgesuchte war voll) teste ich das Ganze auch aus Sicht des Fussgaengers: cool bleiben, mit gleichmaessiger Gesc... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City January 3rd 2007

The Journey & border crossing from Cambodia to Vietnam was so much smoother than Thailand to Cambodia, I had heard lots of horror stories about the Vietnamese border & even witnessed one; luckily we had no problems. We did however have to pay to get a certificate to go through customs & as we didn't have any Vietnamese Dong, a foreign man offered to pay for us, Claire & I couldn't thank him enough. When we worked out how much he had paid it was about 12p each but I still thought it was really good of him. We met an Ozzie called Adam from Melbourne who was on our bus & got some food with him when we got to HCMC at about 3pm. We found the Hotel we had booked & didn't really do ... read more
Me with the massive Python
Taking the boat down the Mekong Delta

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City December 29th 2006

Hello all So my friends and family sorry for such the delay but I have been very busy as you'll see on my travels. This entry is going to be alot of pictures and a little text. so here we go:) I'll start this entry in Hanoi where I changed my trip quite a bit. This is the city that Michelle and I decided to head our seperate ways and enjoy asia on our own timeframes. Also this was a great bustling city with awsome shops and markets that the most hardcore shopper couldn't fully explore. They are so full of industry they even name roads after the products they sell ie shoe rd., grocery ln. similar things like this. I also had a chance to head to Halong bay on a 2 night boat cruise ... read more
fun on the dunes
cattle crossin
Found the beach!

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City December 29th 2006

HCM is definitely the craziest city I've ever been to. It's roads are more chaotic than Hanoi's and it's street vendors are more persistant than Bangkok's ping pong salesmen! In one breath they real off this " you want travel book?" (to which you politely say no) "you want sunglasses?" (again no) " you want cannabis, opium, heroin?" (yes, another no). What always made me laugh was who told the salesman 'if the customer says no to cannabis, offer them stronger drugs because that's what they're after!' I left HCM after 1 day and did a 2 days tour of the Mekong Delta, which was a pretty cool trip. I saw genuine floating markets where the vendors advertise their produce by tying it to a giant pole and sticking that up in the air for all ... read more
A bit of culture
6 floors up
Souvenir anyone

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City December 28th 2006

So no sooner was I getting to know Cambodia than it was time to leave and head to Vietnam. When I was leaving England, I was very looking forward to visiting Vietnam from everything I had heard and read about. Unfortunately along my travels I had met many people who had very mixed reports about the country and so after being very relaxed and trustworthy of the people of Cambodia and Nepal, I felt that it might be time again to put my guard up a little much like India. My trip to Vietnam from Cambodia on christmas day was a very cheap and good bus journey which lasted just 7 hours courtesy of Capital Tours and hey presto I was slap bang in the middle of Saigon AKA Ho Chi Minh City.No problems. My plan ... read more
Chi Chui Tunnels
B52 Bomber
Destroyed Tank

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City December 28th 2006

Landed in HCMC on Boxing Day, with free upgrade from Cathay Pacific (yahoo!). Had a belated Xmas and family reunion wiith my parents, cousin Chaudie and her folks. Traffic is pretty chaotic, but it's really easy to cross the road once you get used to it. Just keep walking; everyone swerves around you. And the food is bloody magnificent. Have been pigging out on fabbo seafood, pork chops, pho (beef noodles), fruit shakes, fresh fruit and salads, beef cooked 7 ways, and roll-your-own rice paper rolls. Visited the Ben Thanh Markets (great food) and War Remnants Museum (horrific to witness the effects of agent orange on the local populace). Also did a day trip to the Mekong Delta, which was very relaxing. ... read more
Bia Hoa
BBQ pork chops
Rice paper rolls & sugar cane prawns

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City December 25th 2006

We decided to take it easy on this Christmas day, you know, nice relaxing stroll around the botanical gardens, or something. Turns out the gardens are where the zoo is, and despite warnings from guidebooks to avoid the zoo we thought we’d check it out. Much better than expected, most of the animals had reasonable enclosures, and overall it was better than most of the zoos I’ve been to in Japan for example. Little did we suspect the horrors that were to come… We were more interested in Vietnamese animals, but its always interesting to check out the big cats, you know, lions, tigers, jaguars and so on. Passing the tiger cage we noticed that feeding was at 2pm. Jolly good, we’ll check it out after the next cage which happens to be the lions. There ... read more
Strange shapes at the zoo
Bears in the woods
Swinging




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