Jun 03 2012

Hanoi’s 36 streets: Hang Be and Gia Ngu

Published by under Hanoi's 36 streets

While I often make a case for Hanoi’s Old Quarter having retained its charms and local life despite the influx of tourists, I am willing to admit that some streets have completely given themselves over to tourism. Hang Be is one such example, and despite my best efforts I have struggled to come up with … read the full post

Jun 02 2012

How much will I spend in Hanoi?

Published by under Money & costs

While Vietnam is still a cheap place to visit, relative to costs outside of the region, inflation has recently been the highest in Asia: it peaked at more than 22 percent year on year in 2011 and clocked in at 14 percent in March 2012. The dong has also devalued. Unfortunately this means that you … read the full post

May 31 2012

A walk around Hanoi’s Truc Bach lake

Truc Bach Lake lies about three kilometres to the northwest of Hoan Kiem Lake and is easily reachable on foot or by cyclo. It has plenty going on around its banks and no shortage of places to stop for a coffee, beer or lunch, so is worth a wander if you’ve time. Starting at Quan … read the full post

May 30 2012

Shopping for shoes in Saigon

Published by under Shopping

Shoes are among the most difficult thing I have managed to find during the fair amount of shopping I have done during my time in HCMC — those of us from the Western world have big feet, much bigger than your average local’s. If you’re on the lookout for a pair of shoes in Saigon, … read the full post

May 27 2012

Mui Ne kite surfing

Published by under Mui Ne

For some, a holiday on the beach is meant to be a relaxing, low-energy affair. Wake up late, shuffle to your beach chair, and never break a sweat. For others, a trip to the beach is a time for adventure and extreme sports — like kite surfing. If you’re a kite surfer, or a wannabe … read the full post

May 23 2012

Things to do in Mui Ne

Published by under Mui Ne

Everyone needs to get away from the city from time to time and a beach weekend is a great way to escape. The only problem is that once you’ve stayed a couple days at the beach you might get a little bored; if, however, you head to Mui Ne for a beach retreat you’re in … read the full post

May 21 2012

Saigon 24-hour stores

Published by under Shopping

While Saigon is an easy place to enjoy a good walking tour, it may by no means be an easy walk; things can get hot and you may end up frantically searching for something to drink. If you happen to be in one of the tourist areas of the city you’ll find no shortage of … read the full post

May 19 2012

Coffee in Hanoi

Published by under Bars & nightlife

Coffee often seems to be the lifeblood of Vietnam — well, along with beer, tea, rice and pho. You really can’t walk far without the tempting aroma of coffee greeting your nostrils, and a hit of the particularly strong brew is enough to keep you going for hours. Yes, Vietnamese coffee is certainly known for … read the full post

May 15 2012

Cuc Phuong National Park

Published by under Hanoi excursions

Located 120 kilometres south of Hanoi, Cuc Phuong national park was established in 1962 and is the oldest national park in Vietnam. Consisting of more than 200 square kilometres of tropical forest and many grottoes, the reserve is rich in wildlife and natural beauty and also possesses historical significance, as prehistoric tools and ancient tombs … read the full post

May 09 2012

Hanoi street food: bun bo nam bo

Published by under Food

Bun Bo Nam Bo on Hang Dieu (number 67) was my first real eating-with-the-locals experience in Hanoi. It’s not just that the main dish served here of bun bo nam bo is quintessentially street food, but the environment and atmosphere of the restaurant are typical of a local lunch-time venue: it’s loud, it’s crowded, there’s … read the full post

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