We travelled from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay to Hoi An, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, and Can Tho and now the time has come to say goodbye to Vietnam (for now.) But to remember our time here, we’ve reflected on the ups and downs of the last 15 days.
Ultimate Highlight: Cruising down one of the small canals in the Mekong Delta. When we were dreaming about this trip, we couldn’t help but picture floating down lush foliage canopy growing over a small, quiet river and we got just that on our floating market tour that we took on the last day in Vietnam. Plus seeing how the people who live and work on the river and at the markets is such a departure from any way of life that we know, so it was fun and fascinating all at the same time!
Overrated Attraction: Only a slight lean towards Ha Long Bay. Yes, the amount of cruise ships on the water took away from the views a little and the amount of tourists at some of the stops along the way was a touch overwhelming, but it was still amazing to see the islands and mountains surrounding you like something out of a movie. The cruise ship fed us amazing food at all our meals and the accommodation was like staying in a cottage on the water. It was magical to lie on top of the deck at night time and just relax and count the stars. Wow, maybe this wasn’t a lowlight at all.
Most Unexpected Moment: There were so many unexpected moments that it’s hard to choose just one. There was the incredible exhibit by Réhahn at the Heritage Museum in Hoi An, Da Nang looking unbelievably western, eating a frog for the first time, and being treated to sleeper bus comfort for a four hour journey…But we think it undoubtedly has to be that time we were on the Vietnamese news.
Best Meal: Pho and Hanoi Beer on plastic chairs down a little street on our very first night in Vietnam. To be honest, we did have better pho later on in our trip, but we were so happy and excited to be starting this adventure and to be rubbing elbows with the locals that this meal stands out as one of the best.
Best Accommodation: Under the Coconut Tree in Hoi An. This amazing hostel had a beautiful open-air garden lobby, the perfect place to get some blogging done, and our private room had some major tropical cottage vibes with bamboo on the walls and a mosquito net to boot. It even included breakfast! We may have seen the neighbourhood rat hanging out in the garden but we were willing to let that go for all the other pros that this place had to offer.
Which Place Would You Visit Again: There is so much to see and do in Vietnam and even though it felt like an action-packed two weeks, we didn’t even scratch the surface of places to visit. If we were to come again, we’d definitely want to branch out and see some of the new cities we didn’t get a chance to visit like Da Lat, Sapa, Mui Ne, maybe an island even… but if we did have to come back to a place we’d already been, of course it would have to be Ho Chi Minh City. There’s so much to see here, especially outside of the city centre, that any visit would be a much different experience than the last.
Vietnam stole our hearts with it’s friendly people, amazing views, and delicious food. From our energetic tour guide, Bin, to a friendly convenience store owner who laughed joyfully as he couldn’t remember his numbers in English, Vietnam always made us feel comfortable and right at home.
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