Top 10 List: Vietnam

2 Sep

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The Top 10 Things to Know About Vietnam (in no particular order):

10. Halong Bai. While it is an amazing place in terms of landscape the photos will have you believe it’s far less crowded with tourists than it actually is. The water is also laden with garbage which up close doesn’t have the same appeal as what you might see in a brochure.

9. Bus washrooms. They’re always ‘locked for your convenience’ so they won’t smell up the bus. I guess it depends on your definition of ‘convenience’…

8. The propaganda. Visiting the Cu Chi tunnels was a very one-sided representation of the Vietnam War (or American War as it is called in Vietnam).

7. The currency. It’s called Dong. Pardon my juvenile sense of humour but it makes me giggle.

6. Vinpearl. From taking the world’s longest cable car ride over the ocean to having unlimited access to rides, the water park, the aquarium and the arcade for the fixed price of $20 made for a very fun day. (And while it doesn’t appear to be culturally rich on the surface, it is how local families spend a fun day together.)

4. The scuba diving. While our 2 dives in Nha Trang were good it was disappointing to learn that we wouldn’t be seeing any sharks, turtles or rays as we were told that ‘anything big’ is killed. (The language barrier prevented us from understanding why.)

3. Pho. Actually pronounced like the French word for fire, feux, was incredible from the south through to the north. The most flavourful was definitely pho bo (beef pho).

2. The sand dunes in Mui Ne. Crazy carpeting down the dunes combined with a wicked storm rolling in made for a pretty amazing experience (though I still prefer crazy carpeting down snow hills, but that’s just the Canadian in me).

1. The people. I had heard that of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam that Vietnamese people would be the least friendly, however, aside from the one cab driver in Hanoi, I had a wonderful experience with Vietnamese people throughout the country.

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