My husband & I will be having a (very belated) honeymoon in Vietnam, March April 2007.
We are "railfans" and want to take the 2-night train trip from HCMC/Saigon to Hanoi- any suggestions or tips? He is a Chef, & so learning about cooking and REALLY good dining is a big deal for us on this trip... Other interests are art and fine craft, coal mining, and "off the beaten path adventures"- we're a couple of old "adrenaline junkies"! My Vietnamese Dr. told us of a place where you could ride horses around a beautiful lake... where???! Does anything remain of Camp Holloway? Any contacts for a (safe!) car and driver? Any info would be appreciated!
For foodies, Hoi An is a popular spot -- there's lots of potential for cooking classes as well and fine eating. You'll need to alight at Da Nang and transfer south for Hoi An.
The lake, horseride thing I think you'll fins is at Da Lat.
In planning on doing the trip by train, you're restricting yourself to a beaten path, but it's easy to divert off the train, loop elsewhere and then jump back on board further down the coast.
We've recently added coverage for Dong Hoi and the nearby cave at Phong Nha -- could be interesting, of you could always strike up into the Central Highlands as far fewer people travel that way.
Camp Holloway -- you're going to have to help me on that!
Thank you for all you info!
We will be in Hoi An for several days, and it sounds wonderful! And we do plan to travel into the Central Highlands... any info on that would be appreciated, too. "Connections" (one of the sposors) also has some cooking-dining tours that sound like fun- are you familiar with them?
Is the horseback riding-around-the-lake at DaLat something we can arrange once we get there, or something we'd have to book in advance? My Doctor made it sound Wonderful and incredibly romantic!)
We thought about renting motorcycles up in the Hanoi area, but friends (inc. my Vietnamese Doctor) have pretty much talked us out of that! Any idea on how to find a good (safe!) car/driver in differnt parts of Vietnam at a rasonable cost?
Camp Holloway was a major US Army airfield about 20 miles south-east of Pleiku... The large aircraft hangar, built in 1965-66, had a big bull's-eye painted on the roof...
In 1968-70, there was an Amazing restaurant run by the Catholic Nuns in an abbey about 20 minutes drives south of Natrang... Does anyone know if it's still there?
And Natrang had Great diving and seafood- lobster, etc. Can yo still go diving/snorkling there, and eat wonderful food?! Tips, please!
I'm familiar with Connections, though I've not done one of their courses -- one of the people behind it used to be a Travelfish researcher, so he certainly knows his stuff!
You can arrange horseriding in Da Lat once you are there.
Any travel agent will be able to organise car and driver.
Nha Trang is still very well regarded for its seafood and the snorkelling trips out of there remain very popular -- even if the coral is pretty banged up.