Budget Wise :: South Vietnam

9 02 2009

Our Vietnam adventure took us from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in the south to about half way up the very long country, finishing in the city of Hue. When I compare our budget to traveling in Thailand and Cambodia, Vietnam seemed surprisingly predictable. There weren’t many thing that were shockingly cheap, and at the same time there wasn’t much that was frighteningly expensive either. In the end, if you manage to avoid the major tourist traps and scams, Vietnam can be traveled on a rather tight budget – and the best part is that you’ll typically feel like you got your money’s worth.

Our 29 day daily average :: $35.58 USD (for two people: one couple) :: 1 USD = 17,000 VND (Dong) Read the rest of this entry »


Culture Shock :: Vietnam

29 01 2009

After traveling in the ultra-culture-shock land of Cambodia, Vietnam has been relatively normal by comparison. Or at least a bit more normal for a western traveler. The Vietnamese culture, food, and architecture seem to have been pretty heavily influenced by the French colonization and even their “Communism” is close to invisible to the tourist. Generally, visiting Vietnam feels like being in a strange post-Communist, European-Asian fusion country with a massive population and millions of motos zooming around the streets.

As normal as it may seem though, there are at least a few cultural shockers that are worth noting… Read the rest of this entry »

Beached in Nha Trang

19 01 2009

Nha Trang, Vietnam

Leaving Dalat wasn’t easy. Not that we wanted to stay in the cold mountains any longer. Actually, we were quite excited about hitting the beach in Nha Trang. No, leaving Dalat just wasn’t easy because of the bus ride down the mountain. A rather high speed bus ride down a very narrow, winding, mountainside street that had both Gage and I in a white-knuckled panic and induced three people to vomit. That kind of not easy. I found myself wondering if the dense green jungle and charming tiered mountain farms were just some sort of landscape-Valium designed to make us more comfortable with the advent of our eventual demise on the highways of Vietnam. Read the rest of this entry »

Dalat, The Vietnamese Alps

15 01 2009

Dalat, Vietnam

As the bus pulled into the center of Dalat, Gage turned to me and said, “Let’s stay here for two weeks.” For a guy who had spent 23 years of his life in the Colorado mountains, this little city in the Truong Son Mountain Range instantly felt like home. We stepped onto a bus in warm Ho Chi Minh City and seven hours later we stepped out of that bus into the fifty degree air of Dalat. After three months of heat we were thrilled at the opportunity to throw on our neglected fleeces and thermals. Read the rest of this entry »