Time for another day tour! We were up early and started the day with a noodle soup breakfast before we hopped onto a motorbike for a tour to Tam Coc. The hotel staff were our drivers for the day taking us from place to place.
Tam Coc is a network of rivers which meander around rice fields and limestone mountains. You can hire one of the little boats to take you on a tour – the highlight being the ladies that row the boat…. who use their feet!
There were loads of school children who were also on the tour that day from the local school. There were more local children than tourists, and each boat couldn’t wait to test their English on us.
Hello…. how are you… my name is…. what is your name…
The lady rowing our boat was great, taking pictures of us, helping us get a drink and navigating through the hundreds of school kids. Overall it was very relaxing to get away from the hustle and bustle of the streets. It was like Halong Bay but with rice paddies and a little less tourist-centric.
After the boat tour we had a quick lunch meal of goat. Again, no chance to eat any dog. Then we were back on the motorbikes to climb up one of the huge limestone mountains for a good view of the area.
After the climb, we headed to Hoa Lu, the old ancient capital. There was a festival on so we didn’t have to pay to get in but it was really really busy. We walked around some temples and drank sugar cane drink, at which point the camera died.
We returned to the hotel in the evening for a meal and then onto our first sleeper bus to Hue. We picked up a ticket that would allow us to ride all the way from Hanoi to HCMC in the south.
We could separate the journey up with day buses and night buses. The first nightbus had three columns of beds with two levels, the only beds left when the bus arrived from Hanoi were ones at the back, next to the stinky toilet and engine. It was a long ride.