Archive for November 16th, 2018

We finished our cruise in Ha Long Bay and made our way to the Airport in Hanoi to continue our journey. We spent a couple of hours in the Lotus Lounge (Vietnam Airlines) before flying to Hue, the imperial city. Hue is the traditional location of the Vietnamese Royal family — there were 13 generations of the Royal House … the final king abdicated in 1945. For us, this meant there were royal palaces and mausoleums to visit!

We arrived later in the evening, so we simply transferred to our hotel and were checked in at the Scarlett, a quaint boutique hotel near the old town.

We decided to go out for dinner, which meant crossing the road again. As described before, this is like taking your life into your hands. As we headed across the street the power went out in that section of town. Let’s just say it was doubly difficult to cross the road. However, most of the streets we were on were closed for a weekend festival, so easy walking from there. We went to Madam Thus for dinner — an excellent choice and a nice way to close out the evening.

The next day, we were up early for a bike ride! Yes, you heard right. Riding right from our hotel we embarked on an ambitious 25 mile journey — visiting a royal mausoleum, a Buddhist pagoda, and having a great boat ride in the middle of it. Our guide seemed to always be in a hurry so we found ourselves hustling to keep up and still avoid the cars, scooters, trucks, cattle, and people!

However, the sights were amazing … here are a few pictures for examples.

We finished out the evening with a relaxing meal and a (I think) well-earned massage. Haha. The next morning we were up early for a visit to the Imperial City which included the moated Citadel. Inside the Citadel was the Forbidden Purple City, formerly the most honored place in Vietnam.

We finished up the tour around 1100 and made our way from Hue to Hoi An … that’s for another blog post!


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As my children will attest, I’ve been a huge fan of Bonzai trees my whole life. I’ve owned maybe 4 or 5 (so has Deb) and we’ve killed every one of them. However, after this trip, I am inspired again to grow one properly. Here are a few pictures of some of our favorites (so far) on this trip. These trees are simply amazing …

Finally, here’s kind of what mine looked like in the past! Haha. But not anymore — I will have a great Bonzai!


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