BootsnAll Travel Network

Feb 19-24: Ha Long Bay & Sapa


Ha Long Bay, Vietnam  (Unesco World Heritage Site)We signed up for a tour this time to go to this famous site in Vietnam. Northern Vietnam doesn’t really seem set up for independent travelers; sometimes it’s just easier to do a package tour. So we took a minivan up to the jumping off point for Ha Long Bay, which is a bay full of limestone pillars and islands – similar to what you’d see in China at the Three Gorges, where they’re building that big dam.  We took a pseudo Chinese “junk,” which you can see the pictures. Spent one night on this junk, being wined and dined. (Actually, just “dined;” wine was extravagantly extra!) It was a relaxing time, just looking at beautiful scenery and being with other foreigners (almost all Australians), but maybe a little slow for our tastes. The kids enjoyed jumping off the boat and kayaking, although, believe it or not, it was actually COLD!tour-11.jpgtour-21.jpgtour-31.jpgboat.jpgsights-1.jpgSnake Wine – they believe it has all kinds of medicinal and strong powers – sorry – but I couldn’t get myself to try it – the whole idea is a little revoltingsnake-wine.jpgfisherman.jpg

Outside of the tour and visitation of the islands – the French found this incredible cave and now it has become the focul point for all the tours – it was very impressive – very deep, long, high


in the bay – capitalism at its best again – these ladies would row their boats out to the different “junks” to see goodies – they must have strong arms


Josh enjoyed the climbing up and down of the ropes


Girls – trying their hand at squid fishing at night – you set up a light off the bow of the boat and then with your fishing rod its like  bobbing for apples – the squids attack the bate as you pull it up – just watch out for them blowing their ink at you.


as you can see below – their are a lot of tours taking place



BELOW:   Sapa, Vietnam February 23, 2009

I’m sitting here at the Cat Cat View Hotel on the top floor of our hotel on our balcony looking out over the “Tonkinese Alps,” aptly named because these mountains are high and jagged, like the Alps. (The sea near here is the Gulf of Tonkin.) Could almost feel like we’re in the Alps, except there’s no snow and it’s warm! We took a night train from Hanoi, to this area in northern Vietnam, leaving on a gloomy, rainy night around 9:00 pm. This was another new experience for the kids – sleeper cars, 4 berths to a room. Very small, but cozy in the rain. We arrived in Lao Cai, which is right on the border with China. I don’t know why, but it really freaks me out that we’re this close to China. China must still exude that sense of the exotic and inaccessible, for some reason, even though we could easily catch a train or bus from here into China if we wanted to! We arrived in Lao Cai at 5:30 am and then caught a mini bus up to Sapa, which is about 6000 feet higher. Took about an hour. It really is stunning and surprising to look out and see these craggy peaks, with terraced rice fields below. Today, we took an extensive “trek” through some of the local villages. There are several tribal groups living up here. They are indigenous people who live across several borders: Laos, China, Thailand and Vietnam. The predominant group here whose name people at home would recognize,  are the Hmong, but there are several others. They still farm in the terraced rice paddies and wear their traditional colorful clothing, but it’s not like we’re out in the middle of nowhere on our own – there are a lot of foreigners who come up here, including a LOT of Vietnamese people! (Tourists in their own country!) It’s a lot like our Native American reservations, except these people live here of their own accord! We walked most of the day through different villages and terraces. The kids were real troopers – no complaining even though we walked miles! It felt a bit overrun with tourists to me, but for the kids, it was a completely different lifestyle than they’ve seen so far: subsistence farming, bamboo homes, no roads, open sewers and animals living freely with people. However, there are still cell phones and satellite dishes! This trip seems completely worth it when I think what Josh said to me last night as we got on the train: “This trip makes me have a lot more respect for different people.” And I think it’s just because we keep seeing so many different kinds of people, living their lives and obviously having full and complete lives so different from our own! We stay here one more day, when I hope to do some bargaining in the market for the beautiful weaving that’s done here. We then head down on the night train again to Hanoi, arriving at 4:00 am this time! Not sure where we’re going from here. Figuring it out as we go…!New Experience:  Sleeper Train – Tim had to go bunk in other cabin 🙁train-1.jpgarrived on train to Lao Cai (5:00am) – 4 miles from China Border.  Took bus up a winding road to Sapa – memories of traveling up the road to Murree, Pakistan where I grew up – quite surreal, listening to Enya as we wind up the fog clouded road and hills to the town – to arrive and get this sunrise picture as it just peaks over the mountains – the town of Sapa – the first time in roughly 2 months were we felt cold and had to put on jackets – yea!  (Tahoe family)sapa-1.jpgsapa-2.jpgsapa-3.jpgsapa-4.jpgsapa-5.jpgsapa-6.jpgTrekking into a village – hiked 3 hours – our guide below in traditional outfit of Black Hang Tribe – 16 years old – already been proposed to twice – great English – on the cell phone like any – brought a stuffed animal – dog “tank” in memory of her real dog.  She decided to take her day bag and place “Tanks” head out of the top so he would not miss the in:  We had  convoy with as as we hiked. This is true persistance capitalism – yes after they hiked with us for 2 hours we did buy some of their crafts – they then gave the girls little handmaid wrist bands – we thought that was so nice – we now believe it to be a sign – “they are taken” – because when we arrived at the village we were not hassled from all the ladies trying to sell us their terraces – not in season – too bad otherwise the whole hillside would be awash in greenvillage-8.jpgWe decided to go off the beaten track and approach the village from a different path – we climbed up the side of this hill and then down – yes – that is the tip and the next picture is looking straight down off the ride side – vertigo?village-9.jpgvillage-7.jpgThis is the valley our guides village isSteep getting down – Josh enjoyed it sliding down the dirt like he was skiing village-9b.jpgvillage-9d.jpgVillage shots – Josh eating sugar cane – I have given them stories of the times we ate sugar cane in Pakistan and it is the greatest desert – well – they got to experience it. family-2.jpgfamily-1.jpgfamily-7.jpgMemories:  like off-roading in Kaghan, Pakistan – 25 years ago.  My kind of road


Village – cultural dance and the girls with the dancers 


how would you like that kind of job? – hiking up a down mountain to get firewood


corn grinding mill – by hand


the old artesian water well to get water up from river and dropped into bamboo to run down to the crops


Kids are the same everywhere – went to a classroom – the desks are all marked up like you may see in the US


Pigs – notice the hill behind.  That was the last part of the trek where we came from. 



29,984 responses to “Feb 19-24: Ha Long Bay & Sapa”

  1. MichaelPak says:

    gabapentin: cheap gabapentin – buy cheap neurontin online

  2. JosephLed says:

    paxlovid india: buy paxlovid – buy paxlovid online wellbutrin 150 xl

  3. BVZ_Moskva_p says:

    Быстро возводимые здания: экономический доход в каждой детали!
    В современной сфере, где минуты – капитал, сооружения с быстрым монтажем стали настоящим спасением для коммерческой деятельности. Эти современные сооружения объединяют в себе высокую прочность, экономичное использование ресурсов и быстрый монтаж, что сделало их превосходным выбором для бизнес-проектов разных масштабов.
    Быстровозводимые здания из металлоконструкций стоимость
    1. Быстрота монтажа: Секунды – самое ценное в предпринимательстве, и объекты быстрого монтажа позволяют существенно сократить сроки строительства. Это чрезвычайно полезно в постановках, когда срочно нужно начать бизнес и получать доход.
    2. Финансовая эффективность: За счет усовершенствования производственных процессов элементов и сборки на месте, финансовые издержки на быстровозводимые объекты часто остается меньше, по отношению к традиционным строительным проектам. Это позволяет сократить затраты и обеспечить более высокий доход с инвестиций.
    Подробнее на
    В заключение, моментальные сооружения – это отличное решение для коммерческих инициатив. Они комбинируют в себе эффективное строительство, эффективное использование ресурсов и долговечность, что сделало их превосходным выбором для предпринимательских начинаний, готовых к мгновенному началу бизнеса и получать деньги. Не упустите возможность сэкономить время и средства, лучшие скоростроительные строения для вашей будущей задачи!

  4. Tsphch says:

    oral duloxetine buy duloxetine cheap buy provigil 100mg for sale

  5. MichaelPak says:

    neurontin 300 mg coupon: gabapentin best price – canada neurontin 100mg discount

  6. Uhjedw says:

    antifungal cream for pediatric herpes simplex virus treatment guidelines how to reduce bp immediately

  7. Ycdvge says:

    buy cymbalta 20mg online cheap buy cymbalta sale order provigil 200mg

  8. JosephLed says:

    can i buy generic clomid now: cost of generic clomid no prescription – where can i buy cheap clomid ventolin hfa 90 mcg inhaler

  9. MathewGeown says:

    buy paxlovid online paxlovid generic

  10. MichaelVes says: neurontin 600 mg

  11. MichaelPak says:

    paxlovid price: Paxlovid over the counter – Paxlovid buy online

  12. MichaelVes says: can i get clomid pill

  13. MichaelPak says:

    where to buy cheap clomid: clomid best price – cost clomid without insurance

  14. Shanecer says:

    db checker app

  15. Liqseb says:

    promethazine 25mg oral order generic stromectol 12mg ivermectin cream 1

  16. MichaelVes says: wellbutrin 540mg

  17. JosephLed says:

    ventolin nebulizer: Ventolin HFA Inhaler – ventolin tabs where can i get clomid without rx

  18. Wxzrru says:

    self help for stomach ulcer urine infection antibiotics list boots online doctor uti

  19. MichaelPak says:

    Paxlovid buy online: cheap paxlovid online – paxlovid buy

  20. Toglcw says:

    promethazine uk promethazine 25mg tablet ivermectin 3mg otc

  21. Udxpfj says:

    best medicine for duodenal ulcer uti treatment no health insurance virtual doctor visit for uti

  22. MichaelVes says: ventolin purchase

  23. JosephLed says:

    how to buy wellbutrin over the counter: wellbutrin 300mg – buy wellbutrin online usa paxlovid for sale

  24. MichaelPak says:

    can you buy generic clomid online: Buy Clomid Online Without Prescription – can i get generic clomid

  25. TracyExpok says:

    comprare farmaci online con ricetta: farmacia online più conveniente – farmacia online senza ricetta

  26. Sidneymerve says: farmacia online piГ№ conveniente

  27. Sonnyner says:

    acquistare farmaci senza ricetta: Farmacie a milano che vendono cialis senza ricetta – farmaci senza ricetta elenco

  28. TracyExpok says:

    acquistare farmaci senza ricetta: farmacia online miglior prezzo – farmacia online migliore

  29. Terrynus says:

    farmacie online affidabili Farmacie che vendono Cialis senza ricetta comprare farmaci online con ricetta

  30. TracyExpok says:

    viagra acquisto in contrassegno in italia: viagra 50 mg prezzo in farmacia – viagra 100 mg prezzo in farmacia

  31. DarinVon says:

    mostbet casino

    Upload apk file online casino mostbet – play today!

  32. NormanWap says:

    mostbet casino

    Download application BC mostbet – win right now!
    mostbet apk

  33. Sidneymerve says: farmacia online migliore

  34. TracyExpok says:

    farmacie online sicure: farmacia online più conveniente – farmacia online miglior prezzo

  35. Nyascj says:

    superdrug order contraceptive pill does viagra delay orgasm how men can last longer

  36. TracyExpok says:

    viagra generico prezzo più basso: viagra senza ricetta – viagra generico in farmacia costo

  37. Sonnyner says:

    viagra subito: viagra online spedizione gratuita – gel per erezione in farmacia

  38. Rpwfry says:

    birth control that takes medicaid birth control where to buy best ejaculation pills

  39. Lcjszy says:

    order deltasone 5mg purchase amoxil generic order amoxicillin 250mg pill

  40. TracyExpok says:

    top farmacia online: kamagra gold – comprare farmaci online con ricetta

  41. TracyExpok says:

    farmacie on line spedizione gratuita: farmacia online più conveniente – farmacia online

  42. TracyExpok says:

    acquistare farmaci senza ricetta: kamagra – acquistare farmaci senza ricetta

  43. Sidneymerve says: farmacie online sicure

  44. TracyExpok says:

    farmacia online migliore: kamagra oral jelly – farmacia online più conveniente

  45. TracyExpok says:

    migliori farmacie online 2023: cialis generico – farmacie online sicure

  46. Earnestclito says:

    ]официальный сайт гама казино
    gama casino

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *