A Travellerspoint blog

October 2009

First days in Saigon

in one word, steamy!

sunny 90 °F

Arrived in Vietnam about 11:30am via Taipei on EVA Air. Very good flights, but near 100% full, and painful on the bum. The heat was a shock, but people move slower here in this climate, and I went straight to bed at my old homestead, the Bich Duyen Hotel.

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Meat Dept. at Ben Thanh Market, Saigon

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Fast food at Ben Thanh Market, Saigon

The second day was a bit easier, with the help of Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt and my new internet friends at dinner and drinks. We were a group of 5 (USA, Scotland, Australia and Vietnam). I picked the BI Saigon Restaurant with it's book of a menu (everything from Vietnamese to Mexican + Thai and Italian).

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That's Brett, an Aussie internet friend and me, at the Reunification Palace (Saigon Hotpot tour)

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This is Long, our Hotpot Guide, and me on the Saigon Hotpot Tour at the very elaborate VNPT (main post office)

I'm off on my Saigon Hotpot Tour today, and I'm preying for cooler temps. It's only about 90F out, but the humidity must be near 95%. One thing about this time of year, everything is still lush and green here. This town is a bit too big and frantic for me, and I'm looking forward to flying up to Hanoi tomorrow.

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Click for these blogs: March 2008 trip
and March 2009 trip

Posted by Daawgon 18:13 Archived in Vietnam Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

Hanoi, the third time around

rain 80 °F

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Hoan Kiem Lake

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Typical scene at Hoan Kiem Lake

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Fruit platter at the Tamarind Cafe

I flew into Hanoi this afternoon, but without one important item - my bank card! I took the Vietnam Airlines' shuttle, checked into the Especen, and was walking down to the Old Quarter when I remembered the mistake. I immediately returned to the hotel, and with the help of the desk clerk, called Chanh on the desk of the Bich Duyen in Saigon. Thank God that Chanh is such a helpful soul, because he knew all about my mistake, and promised to Fed Ex my card PDQ.

This time I'm on the fourth floor of the Especen, and this room not only has wrap-around windows, but also a very long, wrap-around balcony. It was raining lightly when we landed, and the rest of the day was much much cooler than Saigon had been (even in the dark). I just had a couple of beers at the City View Cafe (my Hanoi hangout), and walked up Dinh Liet for sour fish soup, sweet & sour pork and a pineapple shake (quite nice).

I drank those beers a little fast, so I'm heading back to the hotel (now at the Hanoi Visitor's Center), and a little TV and relaxation before bed. Susan reports that Spud is getting on well with a female, Daphne, at his Oregon City doggie resort (Day & Night Dogs).

Posted by Daawgon 05:58 Archived in Vietnam Tagged tourist_sites Comments (1)

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