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Archive for November, 2008

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Mui Ne, and Nha Trang

Saturday, November 29th, 2008

time out - in a poolside bungalow

Mui Ne is a long beach – not much in the way of a town.  the road follows the beach and on one side, a line of hotels and resorts – on the other side, local shops and restaurants.  before leaving Saigon i booked the `open bus` ticket to Hanoi, as well as the first two nights accommodation at Mui Ne.  very happy then, when i arrived to find the bungalow was really nice.  also the pool.  the beach was less impressive.  very content to relax here for a few days of luxury (more expensive, but worth it, though the food was disappointing).  on to – Nha Trang – a nice beachside town.  had hoped to take in some of the sights around – like trips to the islands and snorkling on the offshore coral reefs.  but the weather has changed – they have had lots of wild weather – wind and rain.  now the sea is not too inviting.  but i can see it would be beautiful in the high season.

 Nha Trang beach - late November


Boats and Buses – Siem Reap to Saigon

Saturday, November 22nd, 2008

too much bus

bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh, the driver weaving this way and that – back and forth across the strip of bitumen – for hours – to avoid so many people on every conceivable form of transport, and wandering buffalo and darting chickens.  everyone’s horn blaring – for hours.  endless rice fields like a monstrous lake – a watery world.  two rice harvests missed this year so far – the fields too flooded to sow.  ‘climate change’ – said one tour guide.  Phnom Penh was not at first on my list – but thanks to suggestions – it was added, and after the wobbly bus ride was over – i was glad i went.  enjoyed a wonderful new guesthouse – and met some great people there.  viewed the Genocide Museum and Killing Fields – for those who died there.  wandered the streets and markets and found i did not know which way to look – so many people, so much going on!  took a moto through the crazy traffic and loved it.  and lost half the dinner off my plate – thanks to a very hungry, cheeky monkey !  i had a good laugh.  in the end i felt i should have stayed longer.  then bus/boat/bus from Phnom Penh to Saigon.  down that big, brown river.  stopped along the shore to cross the border into Vietnam.  on again, downstream to Chau Doc, where we stopped for the night.  next morning, toured a fish farm on the river.  again – met a great group of travelers on this tour.  then on to Saigon.

first impression - Saigon

the Mekong Delta is packed with people.  its hard to believe what you see.  but Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) is really too much, and too many – it defies all logic.  no doubt there are many places in the world that do.  i look forward to moving on – to travel up the coast – there is so much more to this country and so many beautiful places in Vietnam, yet to see.

saigon - typical sidestreet in the ‘tourist district’

Angkor dawn, Ta Phrom, Bayon

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

angkor dawn

5 a.m. ... [Continue reading this entry]

Chang Mai to Bangkok – and the ‘festival of lights’

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

good-bye Chang Mai  

a bit sad to leave Chang Mai - it seems i just get used to a place when its time ... [Continue reading this entry]

Chang Mai – Tour

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

buddha on the mountain

trying to travel cheaply, i have resisted most of the ... [Continue reading this entry]

Chang Mai – Sunday Night Market

Sunday, November 2nd, 2008

Sunday Night Market is a real highlight on a visit to ... [Continue reading this entry]