Anyone know Vietnam?

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laurent001
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Anyone know Vietnam?

Post by laurent001 » Mon, 06 Feb 2006 2:00 am

I am planning to make a short tirp to Vietnam.. tossing between Hanoi and Hoi chimin, and have absolutely no idea what to do...
Since SaiGon is closer, I am thinking of going to hoi Chi Min... what shall I do? Where is the place good to stay? and any good tips for restaurants and things to do? Park Hyatt or Sheration chain will be great...I think...
Please educate me with information on Vietnam PLEASE>>>bbbbbbb

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sapphire
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Post by sapphire » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 11:24 am

Between Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi, I would say go for Hanoi. Its a charming little quaint town. Filled with art galleries and cute handicrafts you can buy. The French villas, the cuisine, the people, the accent, lack of English speaking people all make up for its charm. Oh and one restaurant not to be missed is Cha Ca La Vong. Everyone knows it. Its been there for about four generations. They serve you only one dish!

Take a ride on the cyclo in the harrowing traffic, its fun! Shop, but bargain hard. For more info, visit the forums on lonelyplanet.com.

And, while you're there, do go to Ha Long Bay. You would not want to miss it. It is a three hour road trip from Hanoi, but well worth it. Stay overnight on one of the junkboats and be pampered by a very well trained crew. They feed you till you die of overeating!
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Post by Barczar » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 11:56 am

I agree completley with Sapphire. Hanoi and Ha Long Bay are fantastic! Recommend the Hanoi Sheraton to stay, nice little night club in there with a local band, lots of fun.

However, don't discount Saigon (HCMC). It can be a lot of fun too, and the hotels are great (Carravel, or Hyatt I can recommend) from there you can always get the ferry down to Vung Tau on the southern most tip of Vietnam (lived there for 6 months). It is a very small quaint fishing village run by the oil and gas industry. All sorts of great beautiful little boutique hotels such as the Petroleum House (Petrohouse) or you can stay at the big chains along the beach. The entire seaside has been rennovated and improved over the past few years and the place looks great and is a lot of fun. A few touristy things to do and is great for a couple of days...

As well in Saigon, there is the Cu chi tunnels, where you can see the remains of the vietnam war, check out the tunnels and fire off some AK47's and grenade launchers (all ex soviet arms left over).

The fishing both onshore and offshore sport fishing is fantastic and the people are almost too friendly and the food is by far the best food in all of Asia. Something to do with the French and Russian influences. Be sure to go to one of the French restaurants around for what can easily be considered some of the best French cousine and wine outside of France, for a fraction of the price!

Either way, Hanoi or Saigon are fantastic places and you will absolutely have a great time. Enjoy your trip!

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Post by Big Guns » Tue, 21 Feb 2006 8:34 pm

For mine, you should be visiting HCMC.
Sure, Hanoi is much cleaner and "quaint" but when the daily puppet show is sold out 2 days in advance, it gives you a fair idea that there isn't much to do there.

HCMC has character. The Cu Chi tunnells is a good day trip and the war museum has some interesting communist propaganda.

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Post by Baron Greenback » Wed, 22 Feb 2006 1:01 pm

I would seriously advise a trip up to Hoi Anh, you can get an internal flight to Denang & then get a taxi, try to stay for at least a couple of days. You can visit the temples at My Son but more importantly the actual village is beautiful. It is what I expected Vietnam to be like.

You can also get clothes made there very cheaply. If you have a favorite article you can bring it to the shop & ask for an exact copy in another colour.

Have fun - the vietnamese people are very friendly with smiles to melt the heart

But don't drink the water & even remove ice from drinks
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Post by sapphire » Thu, 23 Feb 2006 9:50 am

Big Guns wrote:For mine, you should be visiting HCMC.
Sure, Hanoi is much cleaner and "quaint" but when the daily puppet show is sold out 2 days in advance, it gives you a fair idea that there isn't much to do there.

HCMC has character. The Cu Chi tunnells is a good day trip and the war museum has some interesting communist propaganda.
I'm surprised that you think there's nothing to do in Hanoi other than watch the water puppets show.

Did you go to Ha Long Bay? Did you try and explore Hanoi at all? Its not Disneyland where you'll find entertainment parks. The fun is in the people, the food, the culture, the little streets, the shops, the lake, the madness, the sheer energy, the beautiful villas, their will to survive against all odds, their art, their tenacity and so on.
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Post by Baron Greenback » Fri, 24 Feb 2006 4:13 pm

I love the way the Vietnamese have assimilated the best of the French culture, art & fresh bread. The baguettes you find early in the morning are wonderful, but get cheaper during the day as they go stale. The art work you can buy there is beautiful.

But you also see the influence in their sense of fashion, classical Asian apparel & then a silk scarf which seems to add a sense of je ne sais quoi (sp?), let's call it a touch of french style.
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Post by beantown_boy » Tue, 07 Mar 2006 5:38 pm

If you had to spend 1 week in HCM, what would you do?
The reason I ask is because I'm going in April :)

Any recommendations for fun beach resorts nearby HCM?

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Post by brifusg » Wed, 08 Mar 2006 7:17 pm

beantown_boy wrote:If you had to spend 1 week in HCM, what would you do?
The reason I ask is because I'm going in April :)

Any recommendations for fun beach resorts nearby HCM?
You can go to Vung Tau which is about 100km away from HCM.

A much nicer beach is Mui Ne which is more than 300km away from HCM.

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Post by dot dot dot » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 11:00 am

If you're looking for an easy and nice weekend or week out, with good food, easy life and entertainment (drinks / bars / cinema / theater), DON'T go to Vietnam: It stinks, its highly polluted, it is chaotic, it is a hassle, it is underdeveloped, it has no nightlife (Hanoi it is), it has NO foodculture (ok, a few good restaurants thatserve mainly French alike food), it is a challenge for your health and flexibility.

The only thing worth going there is the artcrafts, for the rest ZERO opportunities or things worth seeing. Halong Bay? Nice, but by far not spectacular.

I'd choose a place like Angkor Wat or so instead, the Cambodians are a lovely people compared to the Vietnamese commies.

Eric

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Post by sapphire » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 1:00 pm

Perhaps you didn't do any reading on Vietnam before your trip. Only that would explain your myopic outlook towards Vitenam.
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Post by Baron Greenback » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 1:03 pm

the Cambodians are a lovely people compared to the Vietnamese commies
Eric you must have had a really bad experience in Vietnam, I loved it & thought the people were wonderful.
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Post by dot dot dot » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 1:20 pm

I just didnot like it at all, not at all....

Prove me wrong Sapphire: Vietnam is not filthy? It doesnot stink? 2 million motobikes in a 3 million people city with all of them horning constantly 24/7 is not noise? Traffic is not horrendous?

Food culture? Where? You mean the street stalls drenched in bacteria? "fresh" vegetables hanging in the open drains on the streets?

Friendly people? I would not wanna go that far by saying they are unfriendly, but decades of communism has certainly wiped out some enthusiasm and spontaneous character.

The landscape? I was probably expecting too much, but Halong bay is just nice, nothing more. And when the locals (and probably some of the tourists as well) start polluting the sea by throwing in all rubbish, it surely doesnot add to beauty.

Well trained staff aboard? One would hope so when paying 120Usd per person per night. But not exactly. It was cute at most to hear the waitress saying: "please u take wine sir, i don't know about wine"....

When having dinner aboard, promoted as a romantic happening, it is not amusing when halfway the addicted crew turns on the tv and start watching idiot vietnamese soap with us sitting about 2 meters away from the tv, having our 'romantic' dinner...

For backpackers it may all be great to experience, as you can stroll down the streets and think you are in SE Asia, where all are still so lovely underdeveloped, they wear the funny hats and other cliche's, but this country is so so far away from being an interesting destination. It has a rich history, but today it is just a filthy place, no offense meant, just facts.

Eric

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Post by brifusg » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 6:51 pm

Eric from the Netherlands wrote:If you're looking for an easy and nice weekend or week out, with good food, easy life and entertainment (drinks / bars / cinema / theater), DON'T go to Vietnam: It stinks, its highly polluted, it is chaotic, it is a hassle, it is underdeveloped, it has no nightlife (Hanoi it is), it has NO foodculture (ok, a few good restaurants thatserve mainly French alike food), it is a challenge for your health and flexibility.

The only thing worth going there is the artcrafts, for the rest ZERO opportunities or things worth seeing. Halong Bay? Nice, but by far not spectacular.

I'd choose a place like Angkor Wat or so instead, the Cambodians are a lovely people compared to the Vietnamese commies.

Eric
Eric, don't be subjective. Regardless what you said, VN has become one of the most attractive visit point in Asia.

I have no comments on your wordings except "VN has NO foodculture". Who are you to say so??

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Post by Big Guns » Mon, 27 Mar 2006 8:33 pm

I'm surprised you didn't slit your wrists in Vietnam Eric.

Polluted, smelly, chaotic & under developed !!!!
Wow, what a surprise!!!

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