Wednesday 1st March, my brothers birthday (Happy Birthday Tom Tom) was a long day. Taking the only bus to Hue, which left at 4am (why), needless to say Vinny and I had an early start.
Hue a big city in the centre of Vietnam, used to be the capital of Vietnam between 1802 to 1945. During this time it was also the home of the Nguyen Dynasty emperors. Because of this, it has plenty to explore in its vast Citadel.
Stepping into our hostel around 9.30am, we bumped into our friend Jaisohn, who we had previously met in Phong Nha. Fate had drawn us together 😜, so we decided to spend the day exploring.
Feeling a bit tired, we filled ourselves up with food and coffee and headed towards the Imperial City. Fun fact – the walled palace took over 203 years to complete.
There was a lot to see and we spent a good couple of hours navigating the Citadel. It was on leaving that we picked up a new member for our squad, Li from Hong Kong. We were already having an hilarious day, but Li added another dimension to our consistent fits of giggles.
We had noticed on our tickets that the entrance fee also included a museum visit, so we headed there after. Unfortunately you weren’t allowed to take any photos, but the ancient ornaments, clothing and documents were beautifully crafted – so colourful.
As I love walking, I suggested we take the hour stroll to the Pagoda of the Celestrial Lady. With the temperature quickly rising, I realised I had made a mistake wearing black jeans.
The walk was worth it as the Pergola was stunning and we were even lucky enough to witness the Monks praying within one of the shrines. We sat watching/listening for 15 minutes, their chants were so therapeutic and calming. We wanted to wait for the sunset, however the sky started to cloud over so we hopped on a boat along the river instead.
Thursday 2nd March
Feeling like we had seen the majority of the Citadel yesterday, we decided to visit the famous abandoned water park, Ho Thuy Tien. The park closed in 2008 due to making a loss, but since then it’s become a go to place for backpackers.
Meeting up with Georgia and Harrison (who we had met in Phong Nha), we jumped on motorbikes (I was on the back of Georgia’s) and drove 40 minutes to Huong Thuy.
We spent a good few hours exploring the park, which was actually pretty cool. Obviously we didn’t dare go swimming – especially as we had heard the place had crocodiles. We left the park and headed to the food market – my favourite place. I love all the different fruit and veg. I ended picking up five mangoes for 70p 😮. Winning!
The rest of the afternoon was spent going for lunch and visiting a local supermarket (picking up more food).
The evening was full of beer, shisha, jenga and beer 👌.
The next day we were leaving for Da Nang to meet my friend Amber for her 30th birthday 💃.
Jessica Storm ✌️