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#1 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
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Posted 03 January 2012 - 07:27 PM

I've got a 3 week holiday booked with the misses from 24th March. I've only booked the flight over so far, still looking at accommodation options and deciding whether to book now or wing it as we go because won't be peak season.

If you've been, what were your favorite cities or tours? Our rough plans will be Ho Chi Minh & Mekong Delta > Hoi An & Hue > Hanoi, Halong Bay & Sapa.

#2 Donshe

  • Joined:20-December 06

Posted 03 January 2012 - 10:12 PM

I dont remember much now

- Saigon was awesome, got there the night Vietnam beat Singapore in soccer, streets were wild, free booze for all
- Hanoi sucks, locals are rude
- Ha Long is beautiful

#3 philmak

  • Joined:23-December 04
  • Location:Australia VIC

Posted 03 January 2012 - 10:55 PM

^^amen with the above, 3 weeks is a good amount of time to spend in vietnam; we did north to south in 10 days and didnt feel like it was enough.

Try do na trang too!

#4 Donshe

  • Joined:20-December 06

Posted 04 January 2012 - 11:54 AM

Yeah, Ive heard good things about Nha Trang. That was my first time properly backpacking so I rushed it a bit. I was also in Hue briefly for a day or two. Walked around the ancient City thing, was alright. Mate had a knife pulled on him by a motorbike taxi driver, broke into a hotel kitchen to hide. That took a while to get out of

Oh and don't get sucked into the illusion of "VIP" night buses too much, they show you very fancy pics, theyre all the same dodgy shit though

#5 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 04 January 2012 - 05:19 PM

I've heard mixed reports about Nha Trang, some loved it and others found it to be too pushy and rough. I think we're going to give it a miss in favour of spending more time elsewhere, as it'll also save us time to fly Saigon>Danang rather than bus up the coast. There's not much history and the beaches aren't as good as other Asian/Pacific countries, and we'll be doing a beach holiday/cruise later this year.

#6 rk2k9

  • Joined:16-June 09
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Posted 04 January 2012 - 05:24 PM

spend more time in the south than the north. general golden rule.

#7 beamboy

  • Joined:28-June 08
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:S13 Silvia

Posted 04 January 2012 - 06:08 PM

I spent 9 days in Nha Trang / Vin Pearl holiday island and had a great time.
Vin Pearl is an awesome resort with a Theme park and Water park.
I didn't find Nha Trang to pushy or to rough.
Siagon was much worse for that. You have to be careful with taxi drivers trying to rip you off

#8 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 04 January 2012 - 06:29 PM

I think I'd sooner go to Phuket, Fiji or Cairns for a beach holiday though, I'm sure it's nice (I've also heard good things Mui Ne and Phan Thiet for a quieter beach town) but it's not really what Vietnam is known for.

Plus the misses is a fair skin blonde so beach time is always limited.

In saying that, has anyone been to Cua Dai Beach near Hoi An? It's meant to be nice and it's on our way.

#9 Lude

  • Joined:12-March 10
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:prelude vti-r

Posted 04 January 2012 - 06:47 PM

Go to the cu chi tunnels if your in saigon they're f**king cool :), Plus you get the added bonus of shooting old weapons in the firing range towards the end of the tour.

I also really liked hoi an, it was nice to escape from saigon for a while and the food there was the absolute best food i had whilst in vietnam.

#10 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 04 January 2012 - 07:51 PM

Yeah for sure, we're also interested in the War Reminants Museum and Reunification Palace in Saigon, probably 2 days in the city then 2-3 days in the Mekong Delta.

Other planned sights:
Hoi- 4 days - My Son ruins, walk around the old town, cooking class, Cua Dai beach.
Hue - 2 days - Citadel, temples and tombs, maybe DMZ/Vihn Moc tunnels
Hanoi - 3 days - HCM mausoleum, museum, temples, older areas of the city
Sapa - 2 days - villages, mountains
Halong Bay - 2 night/3 day cruise

#11 Lude

  • Joined:12-March 10
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:prelude vti-r

Posted 04 January 2012 - 08:04 PM

My son ruins were pretty good, the cooking class we did was great in hoi an. The war reminants museum was shocking at the least.

#12 Bennybear

  • Joined:23-August 05
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:BMW

Posted 04 January 2012 - 09:09 PM

Dont bother with anything war; it's so propaganda filled I walked away from most of it.

DaLat was probably the only part of he entire country I enjoyed, rest was either on fire, dirty or trying to rip me off.

I should mention that I got horrific food poisoning for about a week on our trip so I have tainted memories!

#13 Lude

  • Joined:12-March 10
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:prelude vti-r

Posted 04 January 2012 - 10:18 PM

someones a little angry... :thumb:

#14 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 05 January 2012 - 05:37 AM

The misses is a bit of a war and journalism nut so the wars (going back much further than the Americans) are half the reason we're going.

#15 sr180

  • Joined:05-January 03
  • Location:Australia ACT
  • Car:Nissan 1996 180sx.

Posted 05 January 2012 - 09:28 AM

Loved Vietnam... So cheap.

The locals appear rude, but its generally just the cultural difference. They are normally quite friendly.

If in Hanoi, dig up the little bar called "Le Pub". dirt cheap beers and cocktails.
If doing a halong bay cruise, do a three day tour, not a two day one. The two day one is barely worth it, as you'll spend 4 hours of each day in the most horrific bus ride.

#16 Rocky88

  • Joined:09-May 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:JK Rubicon

Posted 05 January 2012 - 11:55 AM

My fav place was Hoi An, just beware of locals trying to sell you all sorts of shit. So many great cheap restaurants, you can seriously get a 3-course dinner for like $5 + 50c beer and $1 cocktails :thumb: Do a drive from Hoi An to Hue via Hai Van pass (not the tunnel), it's one of the most scenic roads i've ever been to. You can't drive a car in vietnam with aus licence tho so you'll have to rent a car with driver which from my memory cost me about $50 for a whole day. HCM was great, I was surprised how westernized it is. Do the usual museums and stuff and do the tour to cu chi tunnels, just beware they were not made for big white fellas. I actually got stuck in one of them and i'm fairly skinny lol.

I wish I had gone to ha long bay and nha trang... I'd def go back to vietnam again

Edited by Rocky88, 05 January 2012 - 11:58 AM.

#17 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 05 January 2012 - 05:34 PM

I was just reading about the Hai Van pass last night so I'll definitely train Danang>Hue both ways.

#18 LOLspec

  • Joined:25-January 10
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2001 s15 ADM

Posted 05 January 2012 - 06:57 PM

+ 10000000000 to nha trang, best beaches and cheap food

#19 Rocky88

  • Joined:09-May 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:JK Rubicon

Posted 05 January 2012 - 09:04 PM

When you're in HCM you must to Quan An Ngon, awesome restaurant but book in advance or get there early cause queue to get in is ridiculous

#20 TN

  • Joined:31-October 02
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:S15, S14A

Posted 07 February 2012 - 10:42 PM

I go to saigon every year.

-check out chill skybar, its next to new world hotel. one of the best bar i've been too. drink selection is a shit house and expensive, but the view and atmosphere is awesome.
here's a 360 view of it i took.
Attached File  Iphone pic 2012 641.JPG   861.24K   14 downloads

-after clubbing or banging whores (if you meet some) take them eat afterwards and drink on the road at Din Ky on Nguyen Trai Rd, or A Buu which is around the corner.

- Ditch the missus at some nail/beauty salon and go to Le Duyen 4. Pick out a hottie and spend half the day getting pampared. If you want a happy ending, go to Dai Nam next to Gossip...if you want a blow job with the massage then you have to travel abit further out.

-Lastly grow some balls and get on a f**king scooter. your missing out of you dont. But if you get caught, bribe the f**king cop with 200,000 bill ($10 bux). Nothing more.

that place is always f**king changing every year i ago.

also if you have time spend couple of days on Phu Qouc Island. Vietnam's best kept secret. Its what phuket like 20 years ago without the influx of tourist.

#21 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 12 February 2012 - 07:29 PM

Haha, thanks for the pointers.

#22 sleeper_s15

  • Joined:10-March 10
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:S15 Spec R

Posted 12 February 2012 - 07:53 PM

Saigon and Nha Trang are the places to be. If you've got 3weeks, consider going to some other countries. I went through Viettravel who are a pretty big tour company. Cambodia 4days/3nights with accommodation including food (proper restaurant/buffet food) and tours by proper tour bus was $250au. Thailand same deal 6days/5nights including flights was $350 and Singapore 4days/3nights including flights was $600. Highly recommend going on those tours, if you're in Saigon you can book it whenever as it's pretty popular so it runs every few days. As for accomodation, it's cheap so i'd wing it.

#23 alexxx

  • Joined:25-February 07
  • Car:horse

Posted 20 February 2012 - 09:36 AM

I'm going in 2 weeks! Can't wait! Only thing I'm concerned about is getting diarhea... anyone experience this complication and any tips to not get into being stuck by the toilet for a few days?

#24 Lude

  • Joined:12-March 10
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:prelude vti-r

Posted 20 February 2012 - 10:58 AM

I got it pretty bad in hoi an, Maybe just get some multi vitamins. I wouldn't let the thought of getting it stop me from eating good food though.

#25 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 20 February 2012 - 06:42 PM

I've got a pretty iron stomach but my misses' has been pretty sensitive lately which has me worried.

#26 Bennybear

  • Joined:23-August 05
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:BMW

Posted 15 March 2012 - 10:51 AM

Two things that should be in any Asia travel kit:
  • Imodium (or stronger anti-diarrheals)
  • Gastrolyte tablets
At the first sign of food poisoning, get on the anti-diarrheals. This can seriously be the difference between manageable and bedridden. Major complication of diarrhea and the catalyst to further debilitating symptoms is dehydration; Gastrolye look like Berocca but are essentially a huge dose of electrolytes in tablet form. Break one up into a 600ml bottle of water and it is the hydrating equivalent of a couple of liters. I sipped this all day every day until I was better, it's fantastic.

When I was doubled over in pain and shit in Vietnam it was these two products that got me through, can get them over the counter at any chemist (in Australia)

*A lot of chemists in Vietnam will offer Imodium via injection; DO NOT under any circumstance OK this, it is a leading cause of Golden Staff infection* ~ Was told this by a gastroenterologist at Singapore General on the way home.

Edited by Bennybear, 15 March 2012 - 10:52 AM.

#27 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 15 March 2012 - 06:05 PM

Cheers, will add them to the list. It turns out the problem of my misses stomach problems was blockage of her liver due to gallstones. She spent over a week in hospital and had surgery so she's on the mend now, it looked like we weren't going to go for a while there.

We cooked our first Pho tonight too for a taste of Vietnam!

#28 Rocky88

  • Joined:09-May 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:JK Rubicon

Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:30 PM

Can't believe i survived vietnam lol, i drank tap water in some small remote village and didnt even get sick. Never drink tap water there!

#29 neil_se

  • Joined:24-April 03
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:S14A

Posted 28 March 2012 - 02:53 PM

We're in Can Tho at the moment waiting for our bus back to Saigon. Impressions so far are good, its easy to get around, buy food etc, as plenty of locals speak a little english or they have pictures/english translation of the food. A good meal and can or drink costs under $5 for 2 people and maybe double that at a mid class restaurant. Street food is under $1 for a bread roll with filling, steamed bun, bowl of Pho, etc. Beer is under 70c a can at the supermarket and some restaurants, western backpacker bars are a rip off.

The guided tours are pretty cheesy, and some places expect tips. theres a fair bit of waiting around and stops for refreshments too. You get hassled in the markets and on the streets a bit but once you shake your head they usually leave, my GF said its no where near as bad as Indonesia.

We're staying in Saigon tonight then flying to Danang tomorrow to stay in Hoi An for 4 nights and Hue for 2.

#30 Flying180

  • Joined:29-March 05
  • Location:Australia SA

Posted 28 April 2013 - 08:00 PM

Currently planning a trip to Vietnam with my partner for 2 weeks. We want a mostly relaxing trip so we'll have to be picky about what we'll do.
Thinking a few nights in Saigon, then 6 or so to chill the f-out in Hoi An, finishing off in Hanoi.

Any suggestions about day tours and the like?
Also, do you need a visa for short stay or can you just fill out a form when you get there?

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