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Josho

Vietnam

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Hey all,

 

I'm looking at heading to Vietnam and was wondering if anyone had been and had so tips of where to go what to look out for?

 

or if anyone wanted to tag along?

 

I'll prob be heading over at end of April, start of May by my lonesome before heading over to Mexico.

 

was looking at doing a motorbike tour but the prices were a rip off from what I've found.

 

So give me the inside info on what where and how :)

 

Cheers

 

Josho

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Yes.

 

There is one item of G.I. gear that can be the difference between a live grunt and a dead grunt... Socks. Cushioned sole, O.D. green. Try and keep your feet dry. When we're out humpin', I want you boys te remember to change your socks whenever we stop. The Mekong will eat a grunts feet right off his legs.

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my daughter and her BF just recently came back, they had a great time.

I know that they avoided any organised tours - get in with the locals, they'll tell you where to go, how to go, and what's worth checking out when you get there. you'll get a feel for the people, and the place - they were gone a month or more, and it cost them fuckall.

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I've been there but only to Ho Chi Minh City and Da Lat. I would definitely recommend seeing the Cu Chi war tunnles, it is pretty fascinating and you can go inside the tunnels. They also have a shooting range there where you can fire AK-47s etc if you're into that sort of thing. You can get a day tour there from Ho Chi Minh pretty easily.

 

Da Lat is a small town so not much in the way of night life but it's very scenic and good for bushwalking if you enjoy that.

 

In Ho Chi Minh I stayed at Luc Phuc on Ky Con Street and would recommend it. Rooms were about 30 USD per night, or might have been 25, I don't remember, and were clean with decent hot showers. The night life in Ho Chi Minh is good and there are lots of places to eat and markets and things to shop at if you want. There are also some museums and public buildings and things to look at.

 

Don't forget to get your shots and malaria tablets before you go.

Edited by -M-

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my daughter and her BF just recently came back, they had a great time.

I know that they avoided any organised tours - get in with the locals, they'll tell you where to go, how to go, and what's worth checking out when you get there. you'll get a feel for the people, and the place - they were gone a month or more, and it cost them fuckall.

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Stay away from the cyclos in HCM City. There's a good chance they'll try to rip you off.

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Stay away from the cyclos in HCM City. There's a good chance they'll try to rip you off.

 

Is it like Thailand where i should barter for everything before I accept to get in, take item etc?

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Don't mention the war.

 

Oh wait, they won...kinda.

So wearing an american flag and calling everyone Charlie is a bad idea? damn i thought i was onto a winner.

 

So what else is there to know?

 

anyone want to come along for the trip?

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Is it like Thailand where i should barter for everything before I accept to get in, take item etc?

No it's more like a situation where you should just avoid them. They'll give a cheap price and then try and change the price on you later, after they've taken you to nice quiet street, not quite where you've asked to be taken. This happened to my wife and I. We refused to pay the new price and things were about to get violent when thankfully some cops showed up. Edited by freck

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We'll be there at the end of the year for a xmas escape.

 

4-5 days in Ha Noi & 4-5 days in Ho Chi Minh.

 

Looking forward to it.

 

Will be keen to see what you post when you come back ;)

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Don't step on a bouncing betty.

 

Is it like Thailand where i should barter for everything before I accept to get in, take item etc?

Haggle, don't barter. Bartering is when you exchange something other than money for the goods you want.

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hai long bay , get a junket and go for it, here is what my best mate said, he is from vietnam, im heading over there later this year, u can live like a king on $50 a day

 

FROM MY BEST MATE

 

I've been back around 4 or 5 times already. Majority of the times was with Thai airline - which i found was quiet pleasant. And each time, i've always stop by Thailand for the shopping. If you're planning to do 2 countries, book it as one package. i.e Vietnam via Thailand. i found it to be a cheaper. but from if booking in vietnam: Vietnam to Thailand is about $300 - $400 return (depending on season). it should be the lower end as it's not during Chinese new year. I've stopped by cambodia as well but we did that via van. we had some people take us over for a day trip. No passport, no tickets. it was in a government vehicle but i personally didn't like it as much over Thailand.

 

Basic rundown.

 

Vietnam: to get the most out of the country, do a tour from north to south or south to north.

 

South to North: Ho Chi Minh City (aka Saigon). You can either choose to do a day or two further down to Vung Tau (i've only been there once to visit a relative but it's not too far off from saigon). Also, when in Saigon, you can check out the war thingy - where you can visit the place they dug holes and tunnels and you can crawl threw them. Then you can either do DaLat (where they grow tea and coffee), Nha Trang (which is a bit more tropical - can scuba dive), Hue (more historical buildings), HoiAn (i've never been but apparently it's quite nice and it's in a lot of the tours and most of my friends who's been on these tours like it the most), then Hanoi (north). Must go to Halong Bay if you go to Hanoi. It's the main attraction in the north. Hire a boat and it'll take you to the bay and caves and etc.

 

I think it costs me around $700 to do the tour north to south: Hanoi (halong bay) then flew to Hue and then Van (15 seater) to Nha Trang, Da Lat and then Saigon - accomodation and food and entries to parks included. that was about 4yrs ago.

 

Most of the times, i've been back was to visit relatives but did the tour once from north to south.

 

Tips: catch a taxi when there is 2 of you. The motorcycle is alright but could be unsafe at times - they don't use helmets and splitting up might not be good.

- Don't wear gold necklace hanging loosely.

- Keep the hotel card with it's address on it (just in case you get lost, you can alway get back to your hotel)

- I usually drink bottled water but a more popular brand. by that i mean the brand you see more commonly around. You won't get mt frankin brand. don't drink the tap water and avoid ice if possible.

- Eat whatever you like, but keep a packet of immodium pills with you at all times :)

- if shopping, bargain down. i usually drop it down by 50% and at times 75% (but that's just me, i like to make a head deal). i think 50% is a good starting point and work you way back up. if they don't like it, walk away!. and wait for them to call you back :) if they don't call you back, and you really want it, work your way up. it really depends on what you're willing to pay for it. never show signs of interest. i always find something bad to say about it. also, shop around if you have time. the tour guide should tell you roughly how much things are.

- I also brought back a packet of Dimmetapp for cold and flu. Just incase.

- My mum always brings back a packet of straws. they don't trust the ones they give you. looks like it's been reused.

- don't carry dangling bags with long straps. use a backpack or a tight bum bag.

- try all the exotic fruits.

 

All in all, it's quite safe but i tend to be over prepared then be an easy target. I've never had an issues but it's the odd stories here and there.

 

Thailand:

 

If you enjoy shopping, go to MBK. this is where I told Mike to go. it's about 7 levels and you can easily spend 3 days there. it opens fairly late. Around 10am-10pm.

 

I've been to Pattaya. Quite nice. This is where i went to see the tranny shows. it's pretty good (not that i like boys but you can't tell anyway). It's a big thing over there and it's more like a show that the Casino puts on. I watched the Alcazar in pattaya. Google it.

I've done a lot of the temples in Bangkok, the Golden Buddha, floating market, Elephant rides, puppet show, snake and crocodile shows. I've done the tours 2 times and the other 2 times, I just went shopping (at MBK).

 

HOPE THIS HELPS TUNER

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Vietnam is very cheap, you'll be able to do alot for little over there. Ive never been myself, but friends have. Ill tell you the story that happened to them just so you are aware of danger - they were walking through the markets and some man was trying to drag one of them into the shop to look at something and buy. He didnt want to look and was saying no, and his GF got upset by this and yelled at him toget his hands off them, the man then stopped and immediately went away.

 

About 5 mins later, they had moved on and walked off continuing on with their day, when suddenly the guy feels this all mighty WHACK!!! on his back. He turns around to see that man who was trying to drag him into his shop, waving a machette in his face. The man has whacked him on the back with a machette blade. Didnt stab him or cut him, thank god, but just hit him with it, maybe just to scare him. He turned around and was like WTF!!! and the man then dropped the machette and ran away, leaving them standing there in total shock at what had just happened.

 

Pretty extreme!! I doubt this is the norm, but even so, scary! Just be careful, where ever you go.

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Hmm so maybe a tour would be better then wandering around on my own.

I was thinking of trying to do the top gear route. Buy a motorbike and try and ride form south to north.

 

Slightly nuts but would be great fun

 

now though I'm thinking maybe a few tours? And bumming at a beach

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http://contiki.com.au/trip_finder/asia

 

I can recommend contiki, I've done their NZ trip late last year and had a blast. Not too expensive, but they sure pack in a lot in a short space of time. Made a bunch of friends too, it's great being able to travel with the same people over a decent amount of time, you get to know them really well.

 

I think the best part about the tour is just the shit they organise (hotel, transport, where to eat, what to see). Makes it easy :)

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http://contiki.com.au/trip_finder/asia

 

I can recommend contiki, I've done their NZ trip late last year and had a blast. Not too expensive, but they sure pack in a lot in a short space of time. Made a bunch of friends too, it's great being able to travel with the same people over a decent amount of time, you get to know them really well.

 

I think the best part about the tour is just the shit they organise (hotel, transport, where to eat, what to see). Makes it easy :)

yeah contiki's are fun. But the only thing I dont like is that if you find somewhere you really like you cant select your own pace which is somewhat annoying.

 

But for the ease of traveling and like minded individuals it's pretty handy.

 

I think i'll keep it as my fall back plan.

 

but these seem more like a tour i'd want to do if only they weren't so expensive:

 

http://saffronroad.com/vietnam-itinerary.htm

 

http://www.asianexperience.com.au/vietnamm...tnammb_itin.htm

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