Apr 25 2011

Taxi tips for Saigon

Published by under Transport

Taxis in Saigon are easy to find and cheap to ride, but they can be a trap for the unknowing tourist. Here are a few tricks of the trade for you to know about the Saigon taxi business. Choosing the right taxi company is very important and will save you money. I stick to Vinasun … read the full post

Apr 21 2011

How to get an Indian visa in Hanoi

Published by under Visas

If you’re travelling extends beyond SE Asia and into India, you can sort out a 6 month visa for India in Hanoi. Yes, 6 months – single or multiple entry. I was surprised. As an aside, if you want to stay longer than 6 months it looks like you have to leave the country for 2 … read the full post

Apr 19 2011

How to get a Laos visa in Hanoi

Published by under Visas

For most nationalities, 30-day tourist visas for Laos are available on arrival at airports and most land crossings. At the airports, at least, it’s a straightforward and relatively quick process — fill in a form, provide one passport photo, pay your fee and it’s done — but if you’re travelling through a lesser used border or just like to be … read the full post

Apr 14 2011

The re-opened Vietnamese Women’s Museum

The Vietnamese Women’s Museum was closed for some time for extensive renovations but opened again recently. It’s well worth a visit for anyone interested in women’s studies or the culture of Vietnam: it gives a broad insight into Vietnam’s population, including its 54 ethnic groups, addressed through a lens of women’s issues. The positive impression … read the full post

Apr 11 2011

Roadside drinking in Hanoi

Published by under Bars & nightlife

In many countries it’s illegal, but when you’re just talking iced tea and sugar cane juice, drinking on the pavement or in the park is the thing to do. Throughout Hanoi the streets — and parks — are alive with food and drink stalls, waiting for those seeking quick refreshment or those wanting to chew … read the full post

Apr 06 2011

Getting a haircut in Hanoi

Published by under Health & safety

Neatly groomed hair might not be a priority when backpacking, but most of us need a haircut once in a while. So where’s a good place to get a haircut in Hanoi? Plenty of options for men The most interesting option is to stop at one of the roadside barbers scattered throughout town. I’ve not … read the full post

Apr 06 2011

Saigon street food: banh cuon

Strolling past Saigon’s numerous street food vendors will make most travellers hungry, but the problem is most of us wonder: what the heck are they making? Today I’ll tell you about one of my personal favourites, a food eaten in Vietnam for breakfast, lunch and dinner: banh cuon (pronounced: bon-koo-on). Looking at a prepared plate … read the full post

Apr 02 2011

Saigon motorbike taxi tips

Published by under Transport

When I am in need of a ride, the quickest, and my favourite, way to get around Saigon is by using one of the many motorbike taxis, or xe oms. Drivers can be found on nearly every Saigon street corner sitting, or laying, on their bike. Catching a xe om, especially during rush hour, will save … read the full post

Mar 31 2011

Tenpin bowling in Hanoi

It’s not top of most people’s lists of things to do when coming to Vietnam, but for those seeking a taste of home or just something different to do one evening, the Star Bowl tenpin bowling centre in Hanoi can provide an hour or so of laughs. The set up is exactly as I remember from … read the full post

Mar 24 2011

Fine arts and dining: Hanoi’s Matchbox restaurant

Published by under Food

Matchbox Restaurant used to be a cosy restaurant hidden away on Nui Truc; it was one of those places I always planned to visit but never quite made it to. Then it moved to the grounds of the Fine Arts Museum, upgrading its environment and planting it more firmly in tourist land. The restaurant is now housed in a … read the full post

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