There is no other word to describe Sapa other than breathtaking. I know it sounds a bit over the top and very soap opera, but seriously, this place left me speechless. The scenery is unbelievably beautiful, and as usual, my photos don’t come anywhere close to doing it justice.
I went on a three-day, two-night trek, in an all inclusive tour from Hanoi. I usually wouldn’t even consider a tour like this but I wasn’t sure what to expect when I got to Sapa, had I have just jumped on a bus and figured it all out when I got there. And I don’t know a single thing about trekking, so I thought I might as well just have someone else sort it all out for me. Continue reading
Hoi An is gorgeous. The buildings are all traditional old-school colonial architecture, with picturesque river and rice field backdrops. Its a sleepy little place compared to the madness of Ho Chi Minh. It’s possible to cross the road without fearing for one’s life, and the constant beeping and revving of cars and motorbikes seems to be magically drowned out by the beautiful surroundings. By night, the river is lit up by market stalls and the magnificent glow of hundreds of colourful lanterns. The smiley locals are always saying hello, striking up a charming little chat before inviting you to their tailoring shop, their friend’s bahn mi stand, their sister’s shoe shop, their aunt’s coffee shop, their brother’s motorbike taxi, their cousin’s day spa, their grandma’s pho stand and/or their best friend’s uncle’s internet café. Continue reading
“But people die canyoning!” Dad protested over the phone.
. . .
Perched way up in the central highlands, the town of Da Lat is a lovely little escape from the madness of Vietnam’s larger cities, and a welcome break from the heat and humidity of the south. The city is surrounded by dense green woodlands, and hosts a stunning view of mountains in every direction.
Canyoning (or abseiling, whatever you want to call it) is the big thing to do in Da Lat. With a bit of haggling, for $25 you can attempt to walk down a slippery waterfall protected by nothing but a stringy piece of rope and the all too relaxed grip of a cheerful little Vietnamese man.
If I’m honest, Mui Ne is a dirty little resort town with an ugly beach and over-priced water sports. I met someone recently who spent eight days there. How on earth they managed that without driving themselves to insanity will forever be a mystery to me, because there is truly only one worthwhile thing to do – see the sand dunes.
To me, someone who’s never seen sand dunes before, I thought they were pretty cool. There’s two sites – the red dunes and the white dunes. Both of them seem to stretch on for miles and miles, and have soft pillowy sand that my feet instantly sunk into. Continue reading