I had a friend who used to live in Vietnam and she wrote about what it was like. I did not really believe her until we went and the city really is totally packed full of motorcycles. Especially as you try to cross the roads and the lights change. This kind of wave goes and everything goes absolutely crazy. If you want to cross the road then you just kind a have to take your life into your hand and kind of weave your way across. I mean you need to pay attention to what is going on and everyone just flows around you.
The trick is to find a local who is also crossing the road and use him as a kind of human shield. Just walk on the downward stream of them and keep up with them. No one is going to hit them. We have never seen an accident. They get you the pacer that you need.
And electrical wires are just out of this world. Anyone who is been to Vietnam would have probably laughed at all these electrical wires. They run along poles attached to buildings and drop on big huge piles on to the pavement. Sometimes you are skipping over a pile of about 40 high voltage electrical wires just running down the pavement. It really is a mystery how people tap into them all the time. Like they illegally tap into the high voltage power lights. It is just insane.
It is a very amusing city but it is not somewhere I think I can spend a lot of time because I am not a big fan of that big city with big bustle and lots of speed thing.
But there are all of these little quiet areas that are tucked in around the place which is cool fun. Plus they have really good noodle soup known as Pho. Amazing noodle soup paired with good some of the best bread as well. Vietnam has some of the best bread in Asia. It is the French colonial kind of gift.
Let us now move on to Thailand. I think that we can safely say that our favourite city in Thailand was Chiang Rai. Which is known as paradise anyway. So many people we know visit the place and spend a lot of time in there. There is quite a large expat community. A lot of these expats actually originally came to Thailand with Charming Asia Tours.
We really enjoyed that. I think we really enjoyed it because of the people that we met there. Lots of expats who are bloggers or creative people like photographers and writers. And lots of people that we have known online forever. I just really connected with the people there and that made the whole place seem extra awesome.
And the food obviously was really good. Lots of good street food and restaurants and fresh food markets.
There we went to a day trip up to an elephant sanctuary where we jumped on the elephant and take off one of our wish list items. I wanted to ride an elephant and a camel and I did both. It was quite nice.
The capital used to be in Ayutthaya and then it was moved down to Thonburi which is also worth a visit. And then on to Bangkok where it is today. Again a city worth a visit. If you are going to Thailand you are probably kind of going to Bangkok.
There is quite a well beaten path to go from Bangkok up to Ayutthaya on a day trip so go and stay there for a while. Then up to Sukhothai where you can cycle around the ruins and then back on the train and head on up to Chiang Rai.
We arrived from Cambodia when we arrived in Thailand and I think that was a really good way to go. Because apparently there is quite a lot of dodgeyness going on the route from Bangkok too. And so we went the other way around and found absolutely no problems at all.