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Thread: Vietnam

  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobwysiwyg View Post
    The last time I saw Vietnam was in 1968. My experience at that time is hardly a good measure of what you might expect today. However, even then, if you looked past the bullet hole pocked buildings and statues, you could see that it was, at one time, a beautiful country and why the French vacationed there. However, this might be worth a read. Best of luck and I hope you have an great visit/trip/experience.

    http://www.nomadicmatt.com/travel-bl...rn-to-vietnam/

    Oddly, while everyone knows about vietnam because of the war but I'm more attracted to the culture instead.

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac View Post
    Was in Vietnam 2 summers ago. Halong Bay is gorgeous.

    http://justthetravel.com/ha-long-bay-vietnam/

    Thanks! Will keep that in my plans

  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edwardv View Post
    I believe no matter what foreign country one goes to the "tourist" will always get ripped off. Go to the Czech Republic, Egypt, China, etc
    Been to Czech for a week only (business trip), would have loved to stay longer but alas, it was not meant to be.

  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac View Post
    I would have to disagree with Mustafa. Vietnam is a beautiful country and the people are so friendly and curious about Americans. Yosemite is beautiful too. The food is amazing. Saigon is very modern like most big cities else where. If you're in the area, Cambodia is awesome too. Ankor Wat and the other temples are beautiful. Laos right now seems to be untouched by development and worth visiting too. Travel with your camera and follow your curiosity.
    Hmm, I guess Americans do standout in Vietnam but I'm a chinese Malaysian. So i wonder how will they react to be instead. I've been oddly mistaken for either a Japanese, mainland chinese and Thai before when I was in those countries. I actually hope Vietnam would be a first step in a nice long vacation or eye opener.

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by rich815 View Post
    I lived in Kunming, China for a couple years in the late 90s and twice I took the narrow gauge French railroad from Kunming to Sapa at the border of Vietnam. The mountains around Sapa are absolutely amazing, you can find daily guides that will take you on hikes up into the small villages and, yes even some of the poppy fields that are up there. From there I took the rail down to Hanoi. You definitely need to go to Ha Long bay with it islands, karsks, and caves. Locals will ride up alongside the main boat and you can buy fresh seafood that the crew will steam or boil for you, they usually seem to have beer on board as well, amazing scenery in Ha Long bay. Hanoi itself is a beautiful city with amazing French architecture, alleys, small streets, coffee shops, and markets, if you get to Hanoi make sure you checkout sword-restored Lake in the middle of the city too. Heading south from there there's not much to see until you get to Hue, amazing temples around there with river tours that will take you from temple to temple, and the DMZ is not far from here either, pretty incredible tours around there to take with a interesting history to study of the war, I was actually able to find bullet shells and even 3 inch shells in the dirt around some of the areas. Da Nang is nothing special, I liked it because the girlfriend I traveled with one time had family that was from there and we hung out in the city during Tet (the new year) which was really cool, but south of there is Hoi An which is a great place to check out, small little town with some nice architecture and neat markets in it. South from here is the beach resort city of Nha Trang, nice place, the second time I went to Vietnam the girlfriend I was with that time her family is from there so we hung out in the city for a little while and I enjoyed myself, really good food as well, excellent beaches. Nha Trang is a good jumping off point to get up to Da Lat a resort area up in the mountains and another really cool place, little bit out-of-the-way but if you got plenty of time it's not to be missed. Then from there you go to Ho Chi Minh City. Ho Chi Minh City is nothing but a giant city but it's kind of neat, watch out for all the scooters. If you can get out of Ho Chi Minh City get yourself out to the Mekong delta. In some of the delta port towns find the open air markets where you can buy huge prawns I mean literally the size of lobsters, buy them cheaply in the market and pretty much any restaurant, as long as you buy beer or drink, from them, will steam them up for you, just terrific amazing experience.

    So there you go, I was there twice traveled up and down the whole country, both times with a native speaker, one a French-Vietnamese girl, the second time an American Vietnamese girl, my experience was pretty incredible both times visiting their families and having a native speaker with me but the country is just beautiful, the people are amazingly friendly, I really enjoyed myself. The food in Vietnam, in my opinion from somebody who's traveled all over Asia a number of times, is the absolute best

    I kind of describe things opposite from what you'll do since I started to the north, so for you south to north it's: Ho Chi Minh city, then the Mekong delta, Dalat, Nha Trang, Hoi An, Da Nang, Hue, Ha Long Bay, Hanoi and then if you can get up to Sapa and explore the mountains up there, definitely worth it.


    Hmong children playing Sapa - BW by rich8155 (Richard Sintchak), on Flickr
    Oh wow!!! Sounds like you had an awesome time! Thanks for the info! It will definitely come in useful!!

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb View Post
    Let's try to keep this to travel and photographic advice, please, ideally from people who have some experience in visiting Vietnam.

    Thanks, I was wondering why there were so many "removed because of off topic" replies on this thread and I was wondering who was removing them.

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Poisson Du Jour View Post
    Tourists definitely are not ripped off in Vietnam. The people are beautiful, the land too. It's the place to be with a camera or two (of three!).
    My family is considering a return visit to Vietnam now; we last visited in 2003. Ha Noi was the memorable highlight, but the stifling heat bothered my sister and triggered her asthma. Speaking of conditions like that, take all medications with you into the country (with a note from Doctor what they are and why you take them); don't rely on street chemists to have any specialist medication that you may need.

    I haven't seen much photography here in this thread of Vietnam, though I am inspired by the atmospheric sample posted by Richard S above. More recently my oldest niece went on a two week holiday to Vietnam, visiting Ha Long Bay but coming back with nothing more than awful iPhone pics taken amidst breaks in a typhoon! She spoke of the exotic French-flavoured eveningwear (she bought two vamp-red evening gowns for only a few Dong) that is popular in the classier establishments (eateries) of the city. My own record would have been of Nui Dat and the Mekong Delta — two places I would like to see again. Also Som Doomg underground caverns.

    I suggest the OP get hold of a Lonely Planet guidebook on Vietnam: this will surely fire the imagination and start the itinerary planning!
    Another main reason why I'm planning a trip there, not many photos so I figure why not give a try then.

  8. #28

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    Thanks to everyone who replied, it really helps in building my plans and confidance on this idea of mine. Since my 3rd trip to Japan last year, I've been really bummed out on where to go next since all of my trips are 80% solo and unless I really have a passion to go to a place, I don't go unless its with a friend.

    Hopefully, things will come together nicely

  9. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by dreamingartemis View Post
    Thanks, I was wondering why there were so many "removed because of off topic" replies on this thread and I was wondering who was removing them.
    See Message 15 in this thread from Moderator David Goldfarb.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by dreamingartemis View Post
    Another main reason why I'm planning a trip there, not many photos so I figure why not give a try then.

    There are two very enticing photos in part of the downloadable Lonely Planet Vietnam guide (.pdf format); you can download individual chapters or the whole book (well, at least here in Australia!). The country is pretty accessible and quite different to the ultra-modern world that most of us live and work in; in some respects it's like stepping back a few centuries! I would expect a few surprises. Might be best to go on an organised tour rather than solo; it seems to me that many solo travels pose the most perplexing questions in forums (e.g. lonelyplanet.com/thorntree).

    What is your genre, landscape, people, architecture, mountains, festivals, night scenes? At the time mine was people and architecture (now, for a long time, the landscape). I can recall having been overwhelmed for a few days until I got my marbles back!! I was initially even fearful of the place (many beggars and touts that I can recall). Keep your wits about you and be wary of flashing expensive camera gear around in big-note cities like Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh.
    .::Gary Rowan Higgins

    One beautiful image is worth
    a thousand hours of therapy.


    "It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government
    to save the environment."
    .::Ansel Adams






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