We flew in to Hanoi on Monday afternoon. After being told Laos Airlines was a bit dodgy we were a little nervous but the flight was absolutely fine, we got food and a beer even though the flight was really short! Arrived in Hanoi nice and fresh and someone from the hotel picked us up. The ride into town is where we had a bit of a shock! The roads are mainly full of motorbikes/mopeds and there seem to be no road rules! They constantly beep at each other and never give way, by the end of the journey I was too nervous to look out of the window!! Another thing we've noticed is that is seems possible to carry anything on the back of a bike...even if its bigger than the bike itself!!.. Don't ask me how they do it but they do and its quite a sight. Anyway we arrived at the Kangaroo hotel, I know I moaned about all the steps at the last hotel but this time our room was on the 7th floor! Worked out quite well though as we couldn't hear the noise of the street from that high up!
The next challenge was trying to cross the road... in the end we had to copy the locals, slowly wander out into the road letting the bikes swerve around you, its the only way to get across but its scary!! Drew some money out and yet again I'm confused, the currency is Dong and its about 30,000 to the pound. I don't even have to ask the question anymore I just look at Tom and he tells me how much things are in pounds!!!
Had a full day sight seeing in Hanoi on Tuesday, visited the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum, the one pillar pagoda, the temple of literature and the Hoa Lo prison. Walked past the presidential palace and stopped to take a photo but got told off by a security guard before we had chance, there was a big sign saying no photography! Also during the day we got totally lost!..Walking through a maze of side streets for ages, in the end we had to sit down in a little place with plastic tables and chairs and have a beer! The strangest sight we saw was a stall on the side of the road selling cooked DOGS! Quite small ones about jack russell size. Couldn't believe our eyes even though we've heard about it, it wasn't a nice thing to see. Tom was disappointed they didn't have a bit of springer spaniel......
Yesterday we got a bus to Halong city and then got on a boat which took us around Halong Bay. Very beautiful and we stayed on the boat overnight in a little cabin! Got up at 6am to see the sunrise as we were told it was amazing (we were the only ones on the boat to get up) but it was so cloudly and hazy we couldn't see it anyway!.. Very quickly I sneaked off back to bed!
Today we are on Cat ba island, did another trek up to the top of a mountain this morning (definitely my last trek!!!). This afternoon we visited Cat co beach which was really nice and we are heading back to Hanoi tomorrow after kyaking in the morning.
Just realised this is a monster blog oops! Speak to you all soon, miss everyone loads xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx