We are now in Vietnam

This past Monday Ryan and I arrived in Hanoi. Our time in Hanoi was pretty short. We arrived in town around 5pm, just in time to find our hotel and have a quick walk around the old quarter. It was raining  so we took shelter and watched Hanoi’s famous water puppetry at Thang Long Theatre. It certainly was an experience I’m glad we had but it left me scared and confused.  Watching puppets dance on water for over an hour can get a bit tiring. In fact, I looked around and noticed a number of people asleep in the audience.

The next morning Ryan and I woke up early to meet the bus for Halong City. It was a long 4 hour drive to the city, but beautiful scenery kept me wide awake. We arrived in Halong City, met up with our group traveling on the Prince II junk and went aboard. When aboard we got to meet the crew and had a wonderful lunch as we sailed on Halong Bay towards our first kayaking spot.

The next two days on the Prince Junk were amazing. Our boat was small with a maximum capacity of eight. There were six of us total… one couple from England, a gentleman from Germany and another gentleman from the US. Over the course of two days and three nights we got to know one another well. We spent our time kayaking, swimming and eating. By far my favorite day on the junk was when we went kayaking for two hours and then had a BBQ on the beach. However, this wasn’t your typical BBQ on the beach. The Prince II Junk crew went all out and set up a very elaborate dinning table with a silk table cloth, full plate settings and large umbrellas. Each meal came out in courses and each time they brought us a plate we were floored. We couldn’t believe such exquisite food was coming from a tiny makeshift charcoal grill. After our last bite the only thanks we could give them was a standing ovation, which was certainly well deserved. The last part of that day was icing on the cake.  After our BBQ we took a small boat into a fishing village to meet their leader and townsfolk. It was a foreign culture to us, and we were able to get near many of the people and see how they live day to day floating on the sea.

Throughout the cruise the crew went above and beyond in accommodating all of our requests and anticipating our needs. If we fanned our face and mentioned the temperature to one of the guests a fan magically appeared within seconds. It was amazing! We had such a great time on the cruise that Ryan and I were both sad to leave. I highly recommend this tour – it’s been my favorite part of our travels so far!

Below are some images from Halong Bay… enjoy!!!

Matt - Seriously, guys. This is such an amazing thing that you’re getting to do. You’ll remember this trip for the rest of your lives. The pics are beautiful, almost seems like that is not an adequate enough adjective. Keep posting.

K. Crafton - How amazing! I’m swooning over all of your images!!!

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