Blogs from Vietnam, Asia - page 10

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Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Da Nang March 12th 2017

So I’m sitting in the Quy Nhon train station, which is actually in Dieu Tri, when I spot a familiar logo on a new or freshly pressed T-shirt. I don’t think the older man sitting across the way from me really understood my interest, but he politely allowed me to take these photos. Bunker, would you please notify the Ford dealer?... read more
Birmingham?

Asia » Vietnam » Central Highlands March 12th 2017

Nice breakfast on the 5th floor of the hotel. It came on a "hot plate" and included 2 fried eggs, some deli ham, tomatoes accompanied by a nice fresh VN baguette. On going to the hotel's garage I spotted a nice trike. A Can-Am Spyder. Belongs to the son of the "night watchman" at the hotel. It's a "beast"!! From Khe San had to back-track about 6 kms to get on the road south to our next destination. There was very little traffic and it seemd like we went for km after km before even coming across a local. All the little communites had wooden houses built on stilts for coolness dring the hot summers. We could see inside as they all lacked doors - and the only furnishings appeared to be straw matting. The "kitchen" ... read more
child of hotel owner
Typical highland housing
scenery along theway

Asia » Vietnam » North Central Coast » Thua Thien - Huế March 11th 2017

Had a good night sleep in the Jade Hotel. Quite a nice little property with excellent staff who make up for the lack of elevator and a few other fancy features. Simple breakfast - fresh fruit, toast, omelette, tea, coffee. Our first stop this morning was at the Elephant and Tiger arena (Ho Quyen) just a short distance from the centre. During the mid 19th and early 20th century there were annual "till death" battles between Elephants (noble) and Tigers (evil) for the entertainment of the Emperor and Lords. As the tigers (and sometimes leopards) were often tethered and de-clawed and their teeth filed down - it was inevitable that the elephant would win - often by trampling the tiger to death. Nearby is a shrine where the elephants are buried. From here we continued north-west ... read more
Elephant Shrine and Grave Yard
Elephant Shrine getting some renovation
Steps to the Elephant Shrine and Grave Yard

Asia » Vietnam March 10th 2017

I only spent one day (two nights) in Saigon and then made my way to my next primate-spot, Ta Cu Nature Reserve. Also spelled Ta Khou or Ta Kou, this is a mountain just south of Phan Thiet and is best known for having a Reclining Buddha at the top. The Buddha is the longest in Vietnam, and the longest on any mountain in Asia. It was only built in 1962 and is made of concrete painted white to look like marble. It is a popular tourist attraction, for both foreigners and Vietnamese, and so there's a cable-car going up to the monastery above which the Buddha lies. In an earlier post I mentioned Andie Ang's Primate Watching website where I had found out about where to go for Indochinese silvered langurs at Chua Hang. Her ... read more
the Reclining Buddha
Common iora (Aegithina tiphia)
Buddha statue

Asia » Vietnam » Central Highlands March 10th 2017

Kathie had to make a family-trip back to Arizona - so I had the chance to do a motorbike ride with my friends who had to do a "visa-run" to the Laos border. We started from Cam Thanh (the district of Hoi An that we are living in) and headed north toward Danang. Danang was not a stop (as it's close to us) but the start of the road that goes over the Hai Van Pass (made famous by the 3 guys on Top Gear). Great views from here looking back toward Danang. After a coffee/potty stop - we continued north to the area of Lang Co - where we visited Elephant Falls. The road to the falls had been washed away in the "wet" and was being rebuilt - and presented us with some rough ... read more
Lang Co
Christian Church
Elephant Falls


Nous habitons la citadelle, une petite chambre à côté du siège du parti communiste du quartier. Super sécuritaire, mais réveil à 5.30h le matin quand il y a un groupe de femmes qui font de l'exercice devant notre maison, dans le parc.! Il faut s' habituer. Le marché du quartier est à côté, on peut donc acheter tous les matins nos fruits, crèmes brûlées et baguettes aux oeufs. Toute ville traversée par une rivière a un gros atout. Hué est traversée par la Rivière des parfums et en plus elle est sillonnée par de nombreux canaux. Très romantique. L'ancienne ville est formée par plusieurs carrés imbriqués l'un dans l'autre, formant les différentes classes de la citadelle. Chaque carré est délimité de l'autre par un canal, jusqu'au coeur de la citadelle, la "Cité rouge interdite", exactement comme ... read more
bateau dragon
la pagode octogonale Thien Mu
pavillon dans le parc mausolée de Ming Mang

Asia » Vietnam March 7th 2017

The bus from Rach Gia to Saigon was a sleeper bus. I've only seen these in Vietnam, although no doubt they occur everywhere. Instead of seats the bus is fitted with a double level of reclining "beds", like a bus filled with bunk-beds. I had taken one of these last time I was in Vietnam, and I disliked them just as much now as I did then. Especially because this ride was during the day and not the night. The beds aren't the best fit for any Westerner over five and a half feet tall. I couldn't lie down full-length because then my head was hanging off the back of the bed (which would not be comfortable for the six hours to Saigon!), but I couldn't sit up properly either because there was no back-rest and ... read more
trash penguin
arboreal giraffe
island for Buff-cheeked Gibbons

Asia » Vietnam » Mekong River Delta March 5th 2017

After Chua Hang the next place I wanted to visit in the Rach Gia area was the U Minh Thuong National Park. I had been really looking forward to this - it was possibly one of the national parks I was most wanting to visit in Vietnam. Unfortunately it was a major disappointment. There were several specific reasons I wanted to visit, and all of those reasons were mammalian. Although the park is probably a paradise for wetland birds there wouldn't be anything there I hadn't seen elsewhere. On the mammal front, though, there was a mixed colony of Lyle's and large fruit bats; small-clawed and hairy-nosed otters; fishing cats; and pangolins. The last three are nocturnal which meant I had to stay inside the park to have any chance of seeing them. There is little ... read more
tourist boats
boat ride
rickety watch-tower

Asia » Vietnam » North Central Coast March 4th 2017

Quickest day in Hong Kong ever arrived at my hostel around 4pm with a broken elevator i had to climb 9 floors with all of my luggage not a happy happy. After swapping around all my bags i shot off to the post office to see if it would bankrupt me to send a box home. Later i met up a friend who is kindly taking care of my luggage and he invited me to dinner with his family home cooked food! Was very nice to sit and chat for a few hours before heading back to the hostel for sleep. Early next day shipped my box off and headed to the airport again god im becoming a regular. I arrived in Hanoi only a few hours later and just as i arrived at my hostel ... read more
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Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City March 3rd 2017

I've taken a few days to recover before writing about Vietnam, hoping I would reflect a bit and be able to write a glamorous report about how nice the people were and how much fun I had. Well I can't, three days spent in Ho Chi Minh City and I have a greater appreciation for Western civilisation more than ever. Please remember that what I write in these blogs are my own opinion based on experiences I have had - everyone has different opinions which they are entitled to, none of which are wrong. To put it bluntly, the place is a complete cesspool. Upon arrival at the airport we got our luggage and went to the airport taxi rank to get to our hotel. We were bundled into a taxi after I double checked it ... read more




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