Sunday, November 15, 2015

All along the DMZ...

On the backseat of the Easy Rider I left Hoi An and Da Nang behind me - again passing by the Marble Mountains, China Beach and the stunning Son Tra peninsula. With the wind in my face we rushed along these very memorable locations and drew closer to the mighty Annamese Cordillera, a green mountain range north of Da Nang.

The Annamese Cordillera, as seen from the northern beaches of Da Nang

Read More »

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Odyssey through Central Vietnam

With the dunes of Mui Ne behind me, my journey through 'Nam continued.

As long as you're not travelling next to Vietnam's eastern coast, the only affordable option to get around is by bus. As I later found out, there's still another much better way to travel in Vietnam, but I'll save that up for later.

A few hundred kilometers further north of Saigon the terrain begins climb and gets more rough and remote. With another travel coach full with Vietnamese I kept ascending to the Vietnamese Central Highlands, a geographic plateau famous for its coffee plantations and mountainous countryside.
A typical landscape that characterizes the Vietnamese Central Highlands

Read More »

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

VC tunnels, fried pigeons and other experiences in Southern Vietnam

It's notable that Vietnam had been under foreign influence or occupation for more than several times. First there were the Chinese who also heavily influenced the culture and religion in this area. Most historic temples and pagodas in Vietnam look like Chinese ones and many traditions such as food or religious rituals are said to be taken over by the Vietnamese people. At several times in Vietnamese history the Chinese were already driven out of the country. In 1885 though it was decided by Napoleon III to extend his colonial influence in Asia and therefore France invaded Vietnam in the same year.

The Battle of Nam Định in 1883, one of the many colonial battles the Vietnamese fought against the French

Read More »

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Discovering Saigon

It's been quite a time since I actually returned safely to Switzerland, and to me that epic South East Asia trip still seems so unrealistic in hindsight. Sometimes it's hard to believe what I've been through my 6 months odyssey, and I've been thinking about it a lot recently. That's why I finally decided to finish my travel blog about my Vietnam trip. Let's do this!

After my explorations in the Mekong Delta (check out my previous post) I head north-east to my next major destination, the former capital of South Vietnam. Saigon, nowadays called Ho Chi Minh City due to political reasons, is pretty much the most westernized, developed and pretty much most preferred Vietnamese city by westerners. Over 8 million people (!) live in the city center and the outskirts, making it de facto the biggest city in the country. With a cheap travel coach I finally arrived in the probably largest concrete jungle of South East Asia.

Welcome to Saigon. Note the city's highest building in the background, the Bitexco Financial Tower

Read More »