Vienglish is a term used by many of my friends to show the mix between languages, and perhaps cultures. This new meld between English and Vietnamese represents my life in Ho Chi Minh City where my culture and beliefs effect how I see and understand the new world around me. Vienglish, my travel blog is an outlet for me to share with others my experiences here in Vietnam and my passion for great food!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Mui Ne Beach, Phan Thiet

Hiep Hoa Bungalow

Mui Ne Beach located in Phan Thiet is about 4 hour bus ride away from Ho Chi Minh City. Recently a new train route has been added for tourists from Ho Chi Minh City out on National Highway One. The tickets are about 75,000 compared to bus tickets of 50,000 to 100,000 dong. The train is supposedly faster taking only about 3 hours. However, the train stops about 20 km from Mui Ne and from the train station there are brand new tourists buses to take the passengers to their destinations.

Mui Ne Beach is a clean, beautiful beach with depending on the season can be deserted or crowded with wind and kite surfers. The hotels can range anywhere from 10 dollars a night to well over 100 but there is ample selection for even the pickiest traveler. There are a number of good restaurants all located along the main road. Rung Forest is a vietnamese restaurant with lovely decor and Vietnamese music after dark. No matter where you stop there is always seafood on display, so you can pick your own fish, crab, shrimps, etc.

There are many 'touristy' type attractions as well, namingly the red and white sand dunes where you can rent foam butt pads and slide down them, the 'pink' stream, red canyon, and the local town near Mui Ne beach which has a local market. If these activities don't interest you then you can take wind and kite surfing lessons for about 300 dollars per week.

The Hiep Hoa hotel in Mui Ne is a great hotel at the reasonable price of $20-$30 per night. You can either have a room or a bungalow right on the water. There are no loud neighbors and it has a nice garden. Though breakfast might be a problem you can always go to a fancier hotel and just pay for a buffet breakfast there which is usually from 50,000 to 130,000 dong per person or $3-$8. Hiep Hoa does make excellent banana shakes!!!!

Hiep Hoa Hotel
Phone: +84 (0) 62 847262

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Cholon - District 5

Cholon, otherwise known as the chinese area is a major area that I have yet to explore. So far I have ventured to the Anh Dong Market which sells purses, cloth, food, religious articles (incense, paper money), household goods on the first floor and the second floor is mainly toiletries. The center of the market has a fountain and bonsais.

District 5 is also a big area for spices and chinese medicine. There are numerous 'doctors' you can visit to get an analysis of your health. Among the things they sell are large horns, claws, cinnamon bark, giant mushrooms, seahorses, and the list goes on and on.

Hoi An River and Ocean

The Indochine hotel in Hoi An is located right along the river as it flows into the ocean. Though most of the time it was rainy these pictures give a sense of some of the beauty of the river. Only 200 meters away was a beautiful empty beach.


Vietnam's Country Side

These photos were taken while on the bus coming home for Mui Ne Beach.

Broken Down Buddha

Shown in this photo is a group of Buddist monks waiting on the side of the road because of van troubles.

It's the Michelin Man!!!

Ho Chi Minh City Post Office

Funny glue for your stamps!

Ho Chi Minh City Post Office

Located near the Notre Dame Cathedral the Ho Chi Minh Post Office is a beautiful landmark that makes sending letters and packages fun!

Quan An Ngon, Ho Chi Minh City

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Quan An Ngon, Ho Chi Minh City

The Quan An Ngon Restaurant in District One near the Notre Dame cathedral.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Quan An Ngon, Ho Chi Minh City

Quan An Ngon is one of the best, relatively cheap restaurants were tourists and locals come to get good Vietnamese food. Its decor and atmosphere are great with large fans that spray a cooling mist over everyone, making the day less harsh. The restaurant itself has both indoor and outdoor seating with green tropical greenery. The outside walls of the restaurant hold little stalls that show off each type of Vietnamese dish. You can see fresh seafood on banana leafs ready to be cooked, porridge steaming in pots, woks ablazing with banh xeo, etc. Each stall has something new to offer and allows those of us who are not familiar with Vietnamese cooking to get a feel for it. My personal favorite is the grilled pork balls with rice paper and greens. Using the rice paper and layering lettuce, cucumber, perhaps some sweet pineapple, and some pork balls, you are able to make your own spring rolls. They also give you small cones of rolled up fried rice paper that adds a nice crunch to your meal. Top the spring roll off with a sweet spicy dipping sauce and your set. Everything I have tried here is great. They offer a nice selection of Vietnamese desserts which are refreshing after the sugary sweet taste of the influence of french colonialism. The coconut milk and mung beans is a cool drink for a hot day and a new favorite is hot soya curd with a sweet gingery sauce. Yum...I'm getting hungry just thinking about it. Be sure to stop here on your tour around Ho Chi Minh City.

Quan An Ngon
138 Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa
Ho Chi Minh City