Biking down Vietnam. GREAT!
9th July, 2010
I have just done a trip from Hanoi to Hoi Chi Minh city by bike. I started in Hanoi and bought my bike from 2 reputable guys by the name of Anthony and Felix. They took me to there warehouse full of bikes. Minsks, dirt bikes, scooters, low riders etc. After messing around and re-adjusting to riding bikes, I decided to go with the 2 stroke Russian 125 cc Minsk. Something about the Minsk caught my eye and what a success it was.
I left Hanoi and travelled down to Mai Chau . ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL! Rice patties covered the vallies and the people were spot on. This was my first encounter with ethnic minorities in Vietnam. From Mai Chau I rode south to a place that Anthony suggested( Dong Hoi ). Completely off the beaten track hidden away from all tourists and bikers. Anthonys friend Ben who owns the guest house in Dong Hoi took me up into the mountains by bike. We spent the day swimming in the rivers and drinking beer at some locals house in the hills. On my way back down to the guest house, I lost control of my bike and ended up plowing it into a tree on the side of the road. Luckily enough nothing happened to me besides a few scrapes and bruises. Ben called a few Vietnamese guys over and within the hour the bike was at his local mechanic getting a front suspension installed, foot peg, gear lever and the mechanic changed the oil and cleaned the carburator as well. To my astonishment the whole bikes service cost $ 30.
I then rode the Minsk to Hoi an where i chilled for about a week getting stuff made and drinking beer hoi with the locals!Realising that I was VERY short on time, the only way to get to HCMC on time was by train as I only had 4 days left! I thought that the bike would not be aloud on the train but that was no problem. Suggestion, do not full your petrol tank up before getting on the train as they empty EVERY SINGLE LAST DROP of petrol before putting it on the train!
I arrived in HCMC the following day and got the details of Kevin, Anthony and Felix's partner in Vietnam. He was going to buy the bike back from me after my 4 days of riding around the area. I then rode to Vung Tao for a couple of days. GREAT NIGHT LIFE and decent beaches.
On my return to HCMC, Kev put me up in his rooms that he rents and bought my Minsk back.
If anyone is interested in doing the trip, I would suggest getting bikes from Kev in HCMC or Anthony and Felix(firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com) in Hanoi. Any questions or information needed, contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org or check out the motorbiking around vietnam forum space.
#1 Posted: 11/7/2010 - 18:33
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