We sat on a bus from 8am and drove from Hoi An to Hue For 4 hours. I had no expectations for Hue as it’s not so well known, and thought it would be a stop off to Hanoi.
On the journey there we stopped off at a view point which was stunning.we were really high up and you could see the sea below and the railway climbing up the mountain. The road was really windey and also featured on a topggear Vietnam special. I would love to hire a motor bike and do this drive again.
Once at Hue we grabbed a quick lunch near to the hotel, I had a papaya salad. Again it was tourist price, triple what it would cost if we went to a local cafe.
I had signed up to a motorbike tour with Mr Von and at 2pm the tour arrived and we were each assigned a driver. Unfortunately we were not allowed to drive our own due to insurance. I didn’t mind once we had set off as I could take pictures from the back and could enjoy the view more.
I thought at first we would drive slow but they set off at full speed and I made sure to hold onto the back. We drove straight to the countryside passing through rice fields and into the local villages. There were many buildings that looked like temples but they were actually family tombs, they were really beautiful and a lovely way to respect the dead. I saw many women washing clothes in the river and quite a bit of construction.
One large archway signaled the entrance to a village, and here we looked inside a rice museum. It was boiling inside so we were given a really brief tour and were shown how rice for was made. There was a small old woman who showed us and was pretty crazy making a load of noises. Outside the museum there was an old bridge where the locals slept during the day as it was cooler there in the shade and with the breeze that inside their houses.
We continued our journey through more countryside and stopped again at the 7th Queen’s tomb. It was really large and in the distance you could see the kings tomb.
Down a little beaten track there was a bamboo bridge, which had one large piece of bamboo to walk across and one piece to hold on to.
Across the bridge is where an old lady lives and she grows fresh green tea. We had a quick look around at the fruit she grows and the old style kitchen, then sat down inside to drink some fresh tea. This lady and her family live in only a couple rooms, which have a couple of hammocks and then mats for the floor.
Continuing our drive we next went down some roads which were just dirt tracks and came across the most incredible view of the perfume river. The sun was setting and I really wish we could have sat there for longer and watch the sun go down.
The next destination was an old tiger colloseum, here they used to have tigers fight the elephants for entertainment. However, as elephants are a royal symbol they would cut the claws off the tigers and stab them a few times before the fight so the elephant would always win. I didn’t think there was much point to these fights… and they only stopped in 1902. In some of the holds you could see the claw marks on the walls, I was sceptical as we had just been told that the claws were cut off…
We had a quick pit stop at a incense and connical hat making shop, but it was just set up for tourists.
The final destination was a pagoda and temple where the monks live. It was nice to see the monks relaxing and the pagoda was really pretty.
As the sun was setting we drove by the perfume river back to the hotel.
That evening we ate with the other group to celebrate a birthday, again with bad tourist food and prices…