Archive for July, 2013

Jul 27 2013

Review: Garden Hills Ecological Lodge, Cham Island

Published by under Accommodation

There’s something undeniably bohemian about Garden Hills Ecological Lodge. Carved entirely out of jackfruit wood, with a wrap-around balcony perfectly positioned for soaking up sunsets and a hammock-strewn garden devoted to contemplation, it’s pure Cham Island escapism. To say we scaled cliffs to find this place is not an exaggeration. We took a the $2, 08:00 supply … read the full post

Jul 23 2013

Hanoi’s train station

Published by under Transport

As high tech as it gets.

Most visitors to Hanoi will have some occasion to use the train station, whether travelling north to Sapa or down the coast on the Reunification Express. So here’s a quick guide to where it is, how to buy tickets and what to expect when you get there. The train station is split into station A … read the full post

Jul 17 2013

Review: The Beach House, An Bang, Hoi An

Published by under Accommodation

And chilled, airy indoor spaces.

A terracotta-tiled roof and a bunch of banana trees sitting behind a cheerful blue stripy gate are pretty much the only clues you’ll need to track down family-friendly An Bang Beach House, sitting on a corner plot between a mishmash of newly built Vietnamese tube houses and village houses. It’s just 50 metres from the … read the full post

Jul 13 2013

Museum of Ho Chi Minh City

Published by under Sightseeing & activities

Not jam packed with exhibits.

While some of Saigon’s more popular museums can draw big crowds, a few museums around town that are worth at least a quick stop seem to fall to the wayside. The Museum of Ho Chi Minh City, housed in a fine example of French colonial building prowess, is one such oft-overlooked museum. The displays inside, … read the full post

Jul 11 2013

Hoi An tailor shop scams: Part 1

Published by under Shopping

For the best tailor shop experience; leave the rose tinted glasses at home.

If we were to tell you that upon almost every purchase made in a Hoi An tailor shop, 40 percent of the price you pay goes straight out the door into a third party’s pocket, would you be a little bit shocked? Or that the average price on cutting and sewing a man’s suit is … read the full post

Jul 08 2013

When’s the best time to visit Hanoi?

Published by under Practicalities

Now that's when you want to be in Hanoi.

Don’t be fooled by the fact Hanoi is in Southeast Asia and think shorts and T-shirts are good to go all year round. Hanoi has four seasons, and as the city’s in the northern hemisphere, that means the chilly winter starts in December and steaming summer hovers around July and August. It’s impossible to give firm … read the full post

Jul 05 2013

Review: Sans Souci IV, Hanoi

Published by under Accommodation

Bedroom2LR

While Sans Souci IV may stretch its claims somewhat on its website — “unbeatable service combined with unparalleled accommodations” and “our rooms are the best-looking and best-equipped in the Old Quarter” made us smile — this is a solid Hanoi hotel choice in its price range, with smart, well-equipped rooms, good staff and a lively and convenient … read the full post

Jul 04 2013

Co Tu hilltribe harvest festival

Published by under Festivals

Dancing, chanting, gongs and a few fashion helmets in the crowd.

Live music, dancing, a bucket load of moonshine… This is the basic formula for a good festival the world over, even when that festival happens to be that of an ancient hilltribe village in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. Quang Nam’s Co Tu tribe are no strangers to a good festival; apparently there are 92 … read the full post