03/08/17 – 28/10/17
For the first three months of my time here I worked in Ho Chi Minh City, the largest city in Vietnam. It was a sweaty, noisy and busy time that all blurred into one so I’m going to sum it up with a few highlights. Be prepared for a very Instagram heavy post (because I just discovered I can do that and it’s helping my memory).
On Independence Day we took a day trip to the Mekong Delta. I loved escaping the city and the highlight of the day was definitely floating down the river (and eating far too much coconut candy), however the tour we went on wasn’t the best and they tried to sell us things at every corner.
Cu Chi Tunnels
Our second day trip out of the city was much better than the first, it was probably one of my favourite days. We went to the Cu Chi Tunnels and ended up on a small group tour so it was just us and the tour guide and it really made a difference, sometimes it’s worth paying a little bit extra! The history of this place is fascinating and it was hard to imagine how people felt crawling through those narrow tunnels. I crawled 100 metres through one and that was enough for me!
The cafe apartments are basically some old apartments that have been renovated into various cafes, restaurants and shops. Everything in there is so cute and had some great food. Personal favourites include snow ice at Pacman Snow Ice, coconut coffee (can’t remember where this was at) and afternoon tea at Partea.
3D Arts Museum
Firstly, taking a trip to District 7 was weird, the traffic is so quiet! The 3D art museum is basically a place with loads of paintings on the wall and photo points for you to have your photo taken, a concept I didn’t know existed. I didn’t know what to expect at the museum and I’ve never been to anywhere like it before but it turned out to be really fun and the artwork is amazing.
War Remnants Museum
I think the War Remnants Museum is a must-see for anyone in Ho Chi Minh City to learn about the important history of the war in Vietnam and the after effects of it. It’s got an extensive collection and it was really interesting but pretty heavy.
A highlight of my time in Ho Chi Minh City was definitely having a big group of teachers to hang out with and explore the city.
Other things I got up to
And a couple of not so great things for good measure…
Motorbikes rule the road in HCMC and traffic is insane day or night, there’s no escaping it. Even worse when you are inept at riding one!
…and floods. Although Ho Chi Minh City is hot all year round it has a wet and dry season, and of course I was there during wet season. Raining is especially annoying in Ho Chi Minh City when you’re travelling everywhere by bike; definitely taught quite a few classes barefoot and wet through!
Bonus Video: Guy on the street eating a snake because Vietnam.
There was always something to do however it was 100% all the time so I did start to feel a bit burnt out. But although it was overwhelming at times, I had some really great days there and there was always something to do. After just under three months in Ho Chi Minh City I went on a quick visa run to Malaysia then headed to Thai Nguyen for a new chapter.
Have you ever experienced the craziness of Ho Chi Minh City?
If you want to see more photos of my travels you can go look at my Flickr where I upload them all