This morning we decided to check out the major sites which included the Reunification Palace, which has remained unchanged since the American tanks stormed the gates and thus ending the war between North and South Vietnam. We took a guided tour around the palace which was both insightful and interesting and even included a visit to the 'entertainment centre' which had a cinema and dance hall which offered amazing panoramic views of the whole city. After a hot and stressful morning trying to navigate the ridiculously busy streets, we became quite adept at crossing them the Vietnamese way and decided to stop for lunch in one of the only cafes we came across. On enetering it became quite clear that we were the main attraction as not only being the only non Vietnamese people in there but also being the only females haha! After sticking to vegetarian options due to the panic that we may be ordering dog meat without realising, we then headed off to the War Remnants Museum, which unfortunately was a very sobering experience.
We were horrifed to see the effects of Agent Orange, a chemical pesticide used by the Americans during the war which resulted in mass disability and deformity as many as three generations later. They even showed us the effects first hand by a number of deformed foetuses being displayed in bell jars. After visiting the Tiger Cages, a series of tiny concrete cells with no water, drainage or natural light, we decided to set off in search of some respite from the hectic streets and opted for a health spa on the rooftop of a 5* star hotel, complete with gym, which we relished after overindulging on food in Thailand and swimming pool and sauna , which served to ease away our aching backs from our very sizeable rucksacks! All this for only $10 it was well worth every penny!
As we were heading to the Cu-Chi tunnels the next day, we settled for an early night and headed off home.