19 November, 2012

Vietnam - Hanoi Day 2 & 3

Today was to be the catch-up 'Hanoi City Tour' that we moved due to a sickness earlier in the trip. We had breakfast, and got ready for the guide to meet us nice and early - 8am!

Our first point of call was the tomb of the late Mr Ho Chi Minh ('Uncle Ho' as he is known). We were told that we could NOT take in cameras or mobile phones, and happily packed everything up and left with our guide. There was also a 'tourist' entrance and a 'Vietnamese' entrance (which also had a priority, but still, NO phones/cameras! Anyway, we made our way through security, yes, bags x-rayed and walk through a metal detector - much the same as in any airport! Anyway, we joined the very long, snaking its way around corners, regular guards along the way. The asian (chinese I think) girl in front of us, pulls out her phone and started to take photos of the long line! Even the Japanese guys behind us saw this as an invitation and got theirs out!!! The girl in-front, even used it in front of a guard!!!We eventually made our way to the door of the tomb, where Uncle Ho was laid in state, and the guards were telling people to 'shhh'. M even got told to remove her hands from her pockets! There were four guards around Uncle Ho, each looking at the passing crowd, ensuring silence, and NO photos etc. The tomb is closed for a month every year, to allow him to be restored, our guard later told us that he never wanted to be on public view like this, yet the public wanted to view him! It was alomst sureal to see him, and I left with very mixed emotions to what I had just seen...

We then walked through the grounds, past his house and 'Stilt House' before coming out to the front of the Mausoleum.

Uncle Ho's MausoleumUncle Ho's Mausoleum - WideUncle Ho's House

As we were walking back to the bus, we passed by the bike parking area... All I could think of was, "now WHERE did I park my bike...?"

Where's my bike?

Next up, we stopped at the 'West Lake' Pagoda, quite a nice (large) lake... And not too bad of a Pagoda either!

West Lake PagodaM photgraphing the PagodaOfferings

Next stop, was the Museum of Literature, which was more of a University of sorts... We were somewhat lucky, as in a couple of days time it was the graduation day for students! And today, a lot of them were here giving thanks to the teachers (National Teacher Day) and were also praying for success in the Higher Examination coming...

Museum of LiteratureStudents Formal DressGod of LecturesStudents in GownsPosing

Our final (we dropped the 'shopping' tour of the 'Old Quarter' in Hanoi as we do that of an evening) destination for the day was the Museum of Ethnology. This was looking back at the history of the Vietnamese people, and the housing used by the minority people; primarily to the north. There was a lot of fascinating things to look at here, especially the differing styles of housing!

Water PuppetThere IS a bike underneath all of this!HousingBedLong BoatHousingStepsHousingHousingHousingHousing

We then headed back to the hotel to rest up, have dinner, and get some sleep...

The following day, was a mad-dash shop around the streets to grab a few last minnute bargains, before the flights back to Saigon and home. It will be good to get back home...

Hoo roo for now...


1 comment:

  1. Once again the pictures are great! So interesting to see such vastly different cultures!


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