• Exterior view Independence Palace Saigon Vietnam
    Asia,  Blog,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    Independence Palace

    On the 30th of April 1975, at approximately 10:45am, Tank 390 from the North Vietnamese army crashed through the wrought-iron gates of Independence Palace. The first tank to break through the palace gates And with that, the Vietnam War came to an end, literally at its gates. Waiting for the North Vietnam soldiers in the reception chamber was General Minh and his cabinet. It was only 43 hours before that he had become head of the South Vietnam state. For those visiting Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as it is popularly known as, Independence Palace is a must-see. Especially if you are interested in history and have a fair…

  • View of the Golden Mount
    Asia,  Blog,  Thailand,  Travelogue

    The Golden Mount

    It is one of Bangkok’s oldest temples and dates to the Ayutthaya era which lasted until 1767. A shrine inside the Golden Mount Originally called Wat Sakae, King Rama I had the temple restored during his reign which lasted between 1782 and1809. He had it renamed as Wat Saket Ratcha Wora Maha Wihan, or Wat Saket as it is popularly known as. The hill itself is man-made. For many years, it used to be the highest point in Bangkok. Today, it is more famous for its 80-meter-high structure Golden Mount and the gold-plated stupa that sits on top of it. It also hosts a nine-day temple fair each November, during…

  • Billboard with Bui Vien Street name hung over the street
    Asia,  Blog,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    Party all night long

    As the sun sets over Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as it is popularly known as, there’s one street that is slowly waking up. Bui Vien Street. A street vendor in costume If there’s one word that, to me, describes this street, it’s ‘Madness’. It’s loud. It’s bright. It’s seedy. It can get aggressive. And it goes on till the wee hours of the morning. It’s got to be one of the craziest streets I’ve ventured into. It’s no wonder, as it is also Saigon’s backpack quarter. Which means cheap hotels and hostels, and even more cheap beer and street food. Massage parlours flourish and disco lights light up…

  • Front view of Ben Duoc memorial temple complex near Cu Chi tunnels
    Asia,  Blog,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    Cu Chi tunnels

    There are two different Cu Chi tunnels. Yes, Ben Duoc and Ben Dinh are part of the same tunnel network. However, they are two different sites. Mannequins of Viet Cong women soldiers Your experience will be different, depending on which of the two sites you visit. I visited Ben Duoc. It is a bit further from Ho Chi Minh City, and is also less crowded. The tunnels are also a lot more authentic and closer to how they were during the Vietnam war. Ben Dinh on the other hand, is mostly reconstructions. Keeping in mind the large number of western tourists who visit, many of the tunnels are wider to…

  • Traditional welcome dance native to Huron-Wendat Nation
    Blog,  Canada,  Travelogue

    Kwe!

    A short drive from Québec City into Wendake and you reach Onhoüa Chetek8e, a reconstruction of a Huron-Wendat Nation village. The welcome center at Onhoüa Chetek8e Onhoüa Chetek8e literally means ‘from yesterday to today’. And just in case you are wondering what a digit is doing in its name, it is pronounced as ‘oua’, like in ‘wh’ in ‘what’. This village model was built to raise awareness and show the ways of their ancestors, who moved into, and have lived on these lands since 1697. Today, there are little over 3,000 people who call Huron-Wendat Nation home. Roughly around half of them live in Wendake. They have their own school…

  • Wall painting on NAM Kitchen restaurant for a fresh look and feel in Saigon Vietnam
    Asia,  Blog,  Resources,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    NAM Vietnamese Kitchen, BBQ & Beer

    It was the last leg of our Indochina trip and with money running low, we wanted to stay in an area that wasn’t expensive. Which is why any decent place around Bui Vien Street made sense. It is, after all, the backpacker quarter district in Saigon, Vietnam. View of Bui Vien street from NAM Kitchen We also wanted it to be in District 1, which is what most reviews recommended. We chose a hotel next to Bui Vien Street. It’s where all the action is, we were assured by some well travelled friends. On hindsight, we should have asked what kind of action it is that they had in mind.…