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Rich’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 07 Aug 2005

Location: The North, Vietnam

MapThe first stop in Vietnam was Sapa, a town in the mountains of the North. Amid stunning scenery, with a couple of friends we met in China, we did an arduous 3 day trek to visit some hilltribes in the area. This involved walking up and down the mountain sides, through paddy terraces and over rivers in the scorching heat. Luckily there were lots of places in the river to cool down in, including waterfalls and a hugh pool for swimming. The evenings were spent haggling with the hilltribe girls before sitting down to a homecooked Vietnemese meal, washed down with homemade rice wine.
After Sapa, we stayed in Hanoi for a few nights. Apart from trying to cross the roads, we also passed many an hour drinking 'Fresh beer' out on the streets of the Old Quarter. This beer is like a pilsner and is the cheapest we had ever drunk at a mere 5 pence per half pint. Get them in!
From Hanoi, we went on a 3 day tour around Halong bay. This is a really beautiful area where we went Kayaking, swimming and cycling in the National Park on one of the islands. Although the tour was great, the evening on the boat was not so peaceful as we were forced to partake in Karaoke on a machine that had only one English speaking CD of songs, that well known band 'Michael learns to Rock!'. After a few rice wines, we all got in to it, although the Vietnemese crew didn't seem to appreciate our efforts.