For those who have never visited Vietnam, what comes to your mind when you think of Vietnam? Many would say war, jungles, traffic jammed motorbikes, and movies like Apocalypse Now. It’s unfortunate but it is indeed what first comes to mind for many people. Honestly, I didn’t know much either until I had visited. I was surprised that most of what I had experienced isn’t what Vietnam is popular for (outside of the country) although it’s such a large part of the country.
Month: February 2011
I’m not much of a cook and neither do I know much about food ingredients. Not to say that I don’t like cooking; I just don’t know many recipes. After I had my first few meals in Vietnam, I knew this had to be the place to take a cooking lesson. I’m in love with Vietnamese food and I found the perfect restaurant in Hoi An to do it in; White Lotus – part of a registered Non Government Organization called Project Indochina.
The party doesn’t stop on Haadrin Beach, Koh Phangan, Thailand. Everyday music is blasting throughout the beach and buckets of alcohol are sold in every corner. Once a month though, the Full Moon Party takes the beach on full force. Many backpackers flock to Koh Phangan making it difficult to find accommodation in such a small town. Most places require a minimum of three to four nights stay for the party as well. Booking ahead is essential and finding the proper place to stay is just as important to take full advantage of the party.
Vietnam; Anthony Bourdain calls it the place where everything is used – and nothing wasted in terms of food. That said, I thought it’d be fun to ask Twitter “what’s the craziest thing I could eat in Vietnam? Someone please dare me and I’ll film it.” I hadn’t done much research and didn’t know what to expect. @DohaMike replies and said I should eat Balut and included a Wikipedia link. A fertilized duck egg.
Held every year during the same time as the Chinese Lunar New Year, is the Vietnamese Lunar New Year called Tết. It is the time of the year to be grateful of everything around us, exchanging gifts, and to be with family. Houses are often decorated with yellow blossoms of the Hoa Mai. I was lucky enough to celebrate it in Vietnam this year.
Part of Istanbul’s magic lies in its ability to keep on surprising, and it takes a true traveller’s spirit to be open to discovery. With everything from centuries-old passages hosting retro wonderlands to lush inner-city tea gardens and Eden-like roof terraces boasting jaw-dropping views of the city, some of the city’s best kept secrets lie within astonishingly easy reach of its most worn paths, and these needn’t put a big dent in your wallet.