Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Veg Travel -Vietnam

Okie... I've not been conscientious this month when it comes to blogging. Call it a seemingly busy month with assignments, cake orders and of course a week long trip to lovely Ho Chi Minh city. :) Hubby and I decided to break away from our comfort zone and do a backpacking trip to Vietnam. The initial plan was to go to Hanoi but since there are no daily flights there, we decided on Ho Chi Minh instead. I think perhaps, that was a good move because we found out later that South Vietnamese were generally nicer and genuine as compared to the North. (Based on travel research and talking to people on the trip). 

Though initally we approached HCM with trepidation,we had a blast renting a motorbike and touring the city with the millions of motorcycles on the road. HCM is a bustling city with over 5 million motorbike population. Of cos' this is a dream for hubby who is an avid motorcyclist. For once, we don't have to worry about cars on the road, and motorcycles rule the streets! This picture shows hubby trying to negotiate a turn on a super busy road!

We also visited quite a few places in HCM itself. The reunification palace, war remnants museum, ben than market, jade emperor pagoda and mariamman temple were some of the stops. Not to mention, we also took day trips to the Mekong delta, Cao Dai temple and Chu Chi Tunnels. Each trip was interesting and equally fascinating. In particular, we enjoyed our time at the famed Chu Chi Tunnels. Even though we had read scary reviews about it, its nothing compared to the actual experience. The tunnels are so small that I had to walk bowed while hubby had to do the 'duck' walk. The tunnels are also pitch black and initially there is an overwhelming sense of claustrophobia and panic. But once we calmed ourselves down, it was easier to go through the tunnel. It helped that we brought along a torchlight as well! Despite us just sampling 20m, it was a tiring experience! 

Hubby entering the tunnel

Picturesque Mekong Delta

Cai Dao Temple - A made in Vietnam religion

Vegetarian food was easy to come by in Ho Chi Minh city itself. However, when we went for day trips, we could not get veg food as easily. We do believe it could be because the tour company is not keen to make the necessary arrangements. This was the first time me and hubby had Vietnamese food and they have an interesting and healthy cuisine. All Vietnamese meal came with a serving of fresh vegetables on the side, such as beansprouts, spinach, banana flowers, basil and other herbs. It was a refreshing change from the heavy, spicy food we are used too. However, call it the Indian in me, after a couple of days, we grew a little tired of the rice noodles ;)

Some of the dishes we had :)

Lotus Rice

Baked Potato Skin with Cheese and Cauliflower

Tacos with Vietnamese Tea in the background

Fried Chilli Rice with some mock meat

Hue Noodles


Guazi said...

hi halimah,

is that a vegetarian restaurant?

btw are you muslim vegetarian? you are such talented in baking, when are you going to run your own veg restaurant? hehe

Ganga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ganga said...

Hi, the first 3 food photos are from one restaurant and the other 2 from another one. We visited several fully-veg restaurants during the trip. And yes, she is a Muslim-Vegetarian.

BTW, she's handling some heavy orders this week so I believe she'll reply after the weekend.

Halimah said...

Hi Guazi,

Yeaps, I'm a muslim and vegetarian. Actually, go_veg is another person who is a muslim veg :) I hope there will be more muslim vegetarians in the future.

Singapore is a really expensive place to start a business :) So, I suppose it will be a dream for a long long time!

Manoj Sharma said...

Its sound good that you are Muslim and vegetarian.

Here is the link of trip summary in Vietnam.

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