Hanoi – arrival

12 01 2009

Our trip coincided with the return of many Vietnamese workers to their home country to celebrate Tet, the Chinese New Year, which they also celebrate.  

It was chaotic at the LCCT, Sepang because the place was not big enough and there were huge crowds of tourists and migrant workers trying to check in at 2 counters.  The workers did not pay for their luggage in advance and almost all of them had overweight bags which didn’t help the situation.  They were also really eager to go back and a lot of queue cutting was going on……Is it because they are not used to queueing, or because they have been “trained” to be aggressive to survive because of their economic circumstances? Anyway, we saw the same “I-will-not-give-way” on the streets of Hanoi with the motorcyclists forcing their way through.

Back to the airport at Hanoi…..


You would think a celebrity was arriving with the crowd waiting outside the arrival hall armed with bouquets of flowers…….. actually there were celebrities arriving – they were either somebody’s wive, or daughter, or son, or sister or brother ……… coming back home after being away as a migrant worker in another land and not only that, they were coming back a richer person, well, financially, that is……




We thank God for a friend of a friend, who works here in Hanoi.  Although he didn’t know us, he took the trouble to look at the hotel we wanted to book, then advise us against it as it was too far from the centre of the Old Quarters – he then looked around for a hotel that suited our needs and budget and paid a deposit to book the room for us. Upon our arrival, he took us (ahem, in his chauffeur driven Mercedes Benz) for dinner – we had a wonderful meal mainly because we managed to try many different varieties of Vietnamese food. We told him the dinner was on us and tried to pay, but …. we lost. Ah, well, we’ll have to think of another way to thank him.

So, we are staying at the Duc Huy Hotel near to the Hoan Kiem Lake.  Not too bad, I’d say a 2 star hotel – cost is about USD28-USD30.  Don’t take the back rooms though – no windows. And I think older people may not like this place as there is no lift.  Its right in the heart of the Old Quarter, a “happening” place where food, shopping and sight seeing is easily obtainable.  And since I’m blogging, you know there is wifi.  They don’t have a PC for you though. I heard the Elegance 3 hotel has a PC in each room, but that one is at the edge of the Old Quarter and at the end of a small alley where cars can’t enter. 



Will blog more tomorrow….or perhaps later 🙂

Can’t post more pics cos I didn’t bring the card reader for my camera SD card – these pics are from my handphone.

Oh, and the weather now is great for walking around – 15 C




2 responses

12 01 2009
Paul Long

Glad you are enjoying your holiday. Looking forward to reading more

13 01 2009

Don’t know about Hanoi but One of the things I really liked about Ho Chi Minh City was that motorists always gave way to pedestrians (actually you just keep walking and they will avoid/move around you)…

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