So we finally did it, we rode our motorbikes all the way from Saigon to Hanoi in 29 days (15 of which were actually riding days). I’m so proud of us, it’s an achievement & a story that I’m sure I will be able to re-tell time and time again throughout my life. It definately wasn’t easy with filthy filthy roads that had sand, gravel, stones to negotiate making you feel like you were on a space hopper half the time! One road in particular to a waterfall was like off roading over full on boulders… There were tears that day!! But the scenery was immense…Dalat to Nha Trang in particular was spectacular as well as the Hai Van Pass.
So the last week or so since we landed in Hanoi has seen me meeting up with my friend from home Shivani for whom was a sight for sore eyes and we went over to Halong Bay for a few days. The huge & numerous limestone rocks/Islands were spectacular and we were so lucky with the weather.
We spent a night on the boat anchored in halong bay and it was the best nights sleep I’ve had in Asia!!! We then spent some time on one of the largest islands; Cat Ba. I experienced my first trek which wasn’t too bad and the view at the top was well worth the effort.
Back in Hanoi I said goodbye to Shiv then we decided to take one last trip on the bikes (before we sold them) to Sapa. Usually quite an expensive tour (and an overnight bus) we opted to save some cash and go it alone! It meant a stop off on route in the middle of nowhere (really started to loathe Com Ga – chicken & rice – but discovered Bahn Mi donor kebabs!!) as we couldn’t do the whole 317km in one day but Sapa was well worth the effort!!!. The place was breathtaking… Seriously! Unbelievable views, traditional hill tribe folk all over the place, sunshine and an epic thunderstorm! We trekked over to the Cat Cat hill tribe village & back which I think was roughly 10km, the last 3 of which were uphill 🙁
The ride back down the mountain was without a doubt the best scenic ride we’ve done and I found it hard to keep my eyes on the road! Sapa was a great way to finish our time in Vietnam and a good additional destination on the bikes… Oh and after being so cocky about having not fallen off (when Jules had- 2 mins from our hostel in Hanoi!!!) I came off on a wet, gravelly road on route to sapa after trying to overtake a car- bad move!! Luckily it was cold enough I was wearing most of my clothes (!!) so didn’t get too badly hurt, just a bruised arm bone and a few cuts!
Back in Hanoi we sold the bikes for $200 each (we bought for $650 for the two) and Jules & I had to say goodbye after 40 days together (24/7!!) .., it was emotional (on my part anyway 😉 lets just say that! It was such a great experience, I couldn’t think of anyone else id rather have done it with xx
So now I’m sitting waiting to leave yet another country… I’m off back to Thailand where my first stop will be Chiang Mai (north Thailand) for the Thai New Year water festival ‘Songkran’ which is basically a massive 3 day water fight!! Then Pai before hitting the Islands again 🙂 I need to get my tan back after so long in the north 😉 also looking forwards to seeing some more familiar faces.