A&P Sharing pictures from my Vietnam and Thailand trip **Lots of photos, 56k friendly**

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by mucky, Jun 20, 2006.

  1. mucky

    mucky .

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    Came back last week from my 3 week venture to Vietnam to meet my extended family for the ever and toured around the country and region. It was an unbelievable experience. We all had a fantastico time there. Thought I share with you guys my trip experience. Just click on the thumbprints for larger photo. :wavey:

    Day 1: Enroute
    My parents, my wife, and I travelled together. A friend of mine from Vancouver met up with us in Saigon.

    30 hours total flight for us. 14 hours on this plane alone!
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    Crazy japanese loves their plastic displays of food.
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    Mom and dad a few seats behind us.
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    Got in at 11PM Vietnam time and went out to eat at 2AM in the morning. We were surprised that there were a lot of people still around.
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    Day 2-3: checked around the place we're staying at. It's a "mini-hotel" as they refer them here. Equivelent to a B&B in the western culture. Clean rooms, private bathroom, hot water, breakfast, free laundry service, excellent view on the shared roof balcony, and best of all, its only $9/night.
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    Went exploring out with our private driver and learned very quick that there's very little traffic law around the city. Amazing as it seems, I haven't seen one single accident on my trip yet and somehow things work even with very little traffic signs around. Lonely planet book calls it best..."Orderly Chaos".
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    Did some family stuff on my mom side, then went to the old market area and bargained some shirts for cheap. One of us was tired of asian food, so we found the backpackers area and ordered pizza at this Mexican restaurant in Vietnam. Yeah, pizza wasn't anything special, but what can you expect? Photo below is my buddy enjoying his MexiViet Pizza.
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    Rest of day 2-3 consisted of meeting my extended family for the first time.

    Day 4: Time for Nha Trang. Seriously, this is one of the most beautiful place I have ever been to. Nice beach, not busy at all, blue warm water, everything is super cheap, and our hotel is right across the street from the beach. The hotel room was only $20 a night. Spent most of the first day swimming and just being lazy under the umbrella. Went walking around later and decided to check out this spa up the town to get a massage. 60 minute massage cost 60,000 vnd. 16,000 vnd to $1 usd, that's fucking unbelievable. It's a legit place with no "extra service". Last picture below is of the spa place.
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    Day 5: Boat tour time. At first we weren't looking forward to this at all. We thought it wouldn't been too "tourisy". Fuck we were wrong. This was one of the most fun things I have ever done on one single day. Basically they take you out to 4 islands of the 70 or so at Nha Trang. First island you go snorking. Then they feed you some local stuff that was very good. near a second island. The boat guys throws a little concert for you and invites people to dance. Then they move out to the middle somewhere and have "happy hour" on a floating bar. Afterwards, you go to this third island that has a resort you can do some activities for cheap, like $15 parasailing. Coming back onto the boat, you're fed fresh fruit. Fourth and final island was had a neat little aquarium. All in all, fantastic day. Finished off the day by going back to the beach and being lazy.
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    Day 6: Started the day with a yummy bowl of pho, then visited a couple of Buhdda temples. Got lucky to see a little ceremony on one of them. That big white Buhdda statue you can see all around town. It's high above a big hill. Then we went to the market a bit to get some fresh fruits. Later in the day, we went lazy and just hang out on the warm water beach. Evening we took a cyclo ride around town.

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    Day 7-8: Back to Saigon we go. First time on a plane with propellers. It was a pretty rough flight compared to jet airplanes..Next day we booked a trip to Hanoi, Ha Long, and Thailand. My buddy detoured to Cambodia while my wife and I went to Thailand. After we booked the trip, we went to eat at dad's side of the family way out in the farm.
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    Day 9-10: Out to Hanoi in the morning. City is different from Saigon. Very pretty and calm, relative to Saigon. They like to keep things old school here a lot more. Spent all day around Hoan Kiem Lake and market in the old quarters.

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    Next day, saw the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. Kinda wierd. After that, went to the presidential site, school of literature, Vietnam museum of ethnology. Evening we went to this fantastic tappas place owned by some Australian guy. Best tappas restaurant I have ever ate at. Typically tappas place back at home are expensive, especially when you order many small plates, but this place was super cheap. I think with the three of us, over stuffing ourselves with 8-9 different plates, total came out to about $17 USD before the liter of sangria.

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    Day 11-12: 4 hour drive to Ha Long Bay. Took a boat tour and spent the night on a boat. I know they say a picture is 1000 words, but pictures can't even come close to showing how spectacular this is. Beautiful evening and we even went swimming off the boat. Most of the night, wife and I slept on top of the boat. Everyone had private rooms on the boat with private bathrooms with running water. Cost of tour and bus ride $40/person, includes all meals (4 meals altogether).
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    Day 13: Back at Hanoi. Not much to report. Wifey and I got our haircut. She got the whole treatment, so here's took a while. I went for another massage at what I looked like a respectable place. Typical massages (at reputable places) are like $5 USD for an hour. If they know you're a tourist, they always send in the hotties for you. But this time, I think she gave me the hints that she offers "extra services" by nearly touching my balls. :eek3: Good massage, but that's all I came in for. SOrry, no pics of the place. Evening we went to a nice restaurant and had a plate of very delicous Bun Cha Thit Noung
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    Last edited: Jun 20, 2006
  2. mucky

    mucky .

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    Day 14-15: "One night in Bangkok" Left Vietnam temporarily and headed to Bangkok to spend a night here before Ko Samui. First day we got kinda sick, so we just ordered room service at our hotel room I bought off priceline for $50. Its the Best Western Inn, and a fairly nice one too. Day 15 we went to check out the Grand Palace. What a marvelous, beautiful palace. Took a tuk tuck. Didn't like it and driver kept on telling "deals" on where I can get jewelry for cheap. Read in the Lonely Planet book this is how people down here scam you. Off to Ko Samui on day 15 night.

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    Day 16-19: we here at the island of Ko Samui, which the novel "The Beach" made famous. We decided to pamper ourselves a bit on our final days of out trip. First set of photos are our villa at the resort and the resort itself. First day I rented a Toyota Hilux (aka Tacoma) diesel and explored around the island. It was pretty challenging driving around the island with the small crowded streets, no street signs, and this country drives on the opposite side of the road and the truck was right hand drive. :noes: It really wasn't that bad. That is until I had to turn, where not only would I go on the wrong side of traffic when the turn is complete, but I always hit the windshield wipers on trying to signal. Second day consisted of boat tour, but this time on a speed boat. Third day is just relaxing and being lazy. Oh, and random picture of cat that hung out by our villa.

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    Day 20-21: Headed back to Saigon and wrapped it up. Bought some last minute gifts for cheap and went out to eat with everyone. took some last pictures of Saigon. my buddy had some glow in the dark bracelets and the hostesses at this restaurant dragged him over to talk to him and so he can give them some of his glow in the dark bracelets. Last picture is of the airport. Saigon is an amazingly dense city. For a city with this large number population, it has a tiny single terminal airport. Thankfully, they're building a new airport right next door that should be finish in a few short years.

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    So there you go. Hope you enjoy the pictures. :wavey:


    EDIT: Here's a gallery of all the photos for you lazy bums.
    http://www.mypipedream.com/pictures/index.php?album=VietnamTrip&sortby=name&order=asc
    :o
     
  3. MoP

    MoP New Member

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    holy prices :eek3:
     
  4. guru

    guru Active Member

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    fucking :cool:
     
  5. above & beyond

    above & beyond No One on Earth

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    this aint DSL or cable friendly.
     
  6. mucky

    mucky .

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    FUck yeah. $65 USD = vietnamese millionaire, technically.

    Coming back home though, everything seems SO expensive. :hs:
     
  7. LeftRightLeft

    LeftRightLeft OT Supporter

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    looks awesome.. great pics!
     
  8. Justin

    Justin Guest

    my dad went in '99. he gave a cyclo driver $50 and received service for the entire day
     
  9. mucky

    mucky .

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    No offense or anything, but he probably could've hired him for $20 a day or even lower. :o
     
  10. ethannv

    ethannv :fawk: OT Supporter

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    im going to vietnam in december :big grin:
     
  11. ethannv

    ethannv :fawk: OT Supporter

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    that's what i was thinking. :o
     
  12. Justin

    Justin Guest

    he knew that. he was just being generous :hs:
     
  13. boibleu22

    boibleu22 Active Member

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    holy crap, i just got back from a 2 week trip to vietnam myself (june 28th - july 11th) started in saigon, to nha trang, to hanoi with a few stops in between.

    aint it fucking crazy how the private drivers keep their van windows so clean?

    and having pho for breakfast at every hotel?

    we went to ha long bay when it was fucking cloudy. boo. but the caves were still cool.
     
  14. ethannv

    ethannv :fawk: OT Supporter

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    50 bucks is almost a whole month wage for textile workers :o
     
  15. mucky

    mucky .

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    Understood. Its so hard not to give more when $1 USD is so much money over there.
     
  16. kazimer

    kazimer New Member

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    did you have a problem with the veitnamese people trying to rip you off?
    did you have to give bribes to clear customs

    i was planning to go with one of my viet buddies but he told me of the horror stories when he visits family
     
  17. ethannv

    ethannv :fawk: OT Supporter

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    fuck the customs. you don't have to bribe them anymore. if they try just make a big scence. :big grin:
     
  18. mucky

    mucky .

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    Naw, what's fucking crazy is the traffic and the lack of traffic order but yet things just work out fine. I never saw 1 accident and only heard the sirens once in the 2.5 weeks I was in Vietnam.
     
  19. mucky

    mucky .

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    No problems with customs, but I did have problems with immigration over there. I put down on my visa and my entry immigration papers I was going to Vietnam to visit family. They interrograted me pretty bad, asking me if I was born here, where I was born, which family I'm visiting, where they're at, where I'm staying at...blah blah blah. Pissed me off, but not much I can do in this commie country. Wife on the other hand, because she's a non-viet and put down "tourist" on her visa, they didn't give her one harrassment. :squint:
     
  20. Justin

    Justin Guest

    i thought you were white :o

    do they speak english there?
     
  21. mucky

    mucky .

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    Nope, I'm vietnamese. Notice the usertext? :o



    Not many people down there speak english though. So you may want to hire a tourist or find a viet friend to go down with like my canadian friend did. I can speak viet, but I can't carry a conversation in viet.
     
  22. kazimer

    kazimer New Member

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    :rofl:
    guess you will know for next time :o

    i wonder if my buddy will come across the same problems if he puts down "visit family"
     
  23. Justin

    Justin Guest

    same here
     
  24. kazimer

    kazimer New Member

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    im sure they would love to lock my black ass up :o
     
  25. mucky

    mucky .

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    You'll be fine then.
     

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