Monday, July 29, 2013

The Land Of Pho

For everyone with the travel bug fever i thought id give you a blog post on your next destination trip (start saving now)! ;)

The land of Pho better known as VIETNAM! Now I've always been a thailand traveller (4 times now) and when my family suggested Vietnam as somewhere different i googled the weather, the beaches and the shopping and i knew it was the next perfect destination!

We landed this amazing deal on for accommodation in both Hoi An and Ho Chi Minh so from then on it was 8 months of torture counting the days until id be sitting by the pool drinking my cocktails!

First stop was Hoi An (Danang)! For anyone deciding where to go in Vietnam...Hoi An is an absolute must! Perfect for your relaxing destination with a bit of hustle and bustle at night! Our hotel was Sunrise Resort Hoi An and it was just breathtaking. Rooms were spacious (even sharing with my doona hog little sister), Pools were sparkling and the private beach was beautiful!

Hoi An is definitely more of a relaxing destination so my day time consisted of tanning, swimming, eating, drinking on repeat from 10am to 5pm. Its a good life. 

With our hotel deal we were very lucky and had every single meal included in our package so trust me we took advantage coming home with 5 kg extra on our body each. One night however we decided we wanted to try some traditional vietnamese food on the streets of Hoi An city. We asked our friendly tailors where we should go and they recommended this place (i can't remember the vietnamese name) Cafe 43. Tucked away in a secluded lane way we were thinking what is this? The sign stated it was recommended by Lonely Planet so we felt this was a sure win and were we correct, the food was just mind-blowing. Traditional vietnamese food exploding in my mouth for less then $25 including drinks, i was in heaven! 

In my recent post about my Vietnam buys i speak about the tailoring services in Vietnam so please have a look because i highly recommend getting those pieces you've had your eyes on tailored in Hoi An at my favourite tailor Toan Cau!

Hoi An was beautiful and we were very sad to leave however this wasn't the end of the trip as we headed to the famous Ho Chi Minh City!

Now with this city, you really have to see it to believe it! With a population of 9 million people in one city you can imagine the crazy lifestyle these people live. I think the traffic and travel side of things was probably the most shocking for me. With 6 million bikes on their roads its was crazy! I have never seen anything like it, with absolutely no traffic signals (and even if there was one noone would follow it) and no lanes it was organised chaos! Imagine trying to cross over the freeway as a just have to do it in Ho Chi Minh...absolutely crazy!

Ho Chi Minh was a very busy 3 days and we tried to get in much of the touristy stuff as we could. The first day we arrived we knocked out a few, the first being The Reunification Palace which was the palace of which during the Vietnam War the presidents stayed and held meetings. Definitely an interesting building to see especially upstairs where you see the 2 spots bomb hit during the war. I highly recommend getting a free tour during your time there as otherwise you really wouldn't have any idea what your looking at because there are no signs. Our next stop was the Notre Dame, now to be honest that was one i think we would have skipped as it was probably not even as pretty as most of our churches at home in Australia however it was interesting to see the influence of the French during the war. We then headed to the War Remnants museum which i was very excited about as the Vietnam War has always really interested me. The tanks and planes outside were amazing to see however when venturing inside we were hit with some serious propaganda. It really wasn't a museum we see at home with objects from the war it was pretty much a 2 level building of horrible photos of the impact of the war on the Vietnamese people. It was interested yet shocking at the same time and wasn't very fond of it in the end.

I unfortunately had some asthma issues so i was unable to go with my sister and dad to the Chu Chi Tunnels however they said it was one of the most amazing experiences they have ever had so i highly recommend taking the hour trip down there.

Instead i spent my day shopping with my mum at the diamond plaza and we picked up some amazing buys so once again definitely have a look at my recent post!

That night we headed to watch a traditional water puppetry show, yes i know a WATER puppet show! It was actually really interesting and entertaining with creative little puppets and singing dancing in the water so for something different i recommend seeing it!

Now don't think we didn't head to vietnam without trying their FAMOUS PHO! And now i know why its their famous dish! We went to PHO 2000 (pho for the president) which is located near the ben thanh market and it is where President Clinton had a bowl of Pho when in Vietnam. It was delicious! 

Unfortunately its back to reality for me but i will definitely love to venture off to vietnam again!

Enjoy Travel Bugs,