A wonderful day! After a good sleep and a wonderful breakfast of Chicken pho we hired a guide for the day and set out to explore Hanoi. our first stop was the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum , presidential palace and museum park. We visited the mausoleum where he is buried, as well as the Ho Chi Minh museum which is a fascinating record of his life and the evolution of Vietnam from the 1800’s to present. The gardens around museum and mausoleum are lovely. Our next stop was an incredible textile group which employs women damaged by agent orange to do exquisite embroidery. I got into serious trouble in the textile outlet – not a good omen for the rest of
of the trip. After a stop at Hoam Kiem Lake and a visit to the resident temple – we headed to an incredible roof top garden cafe for egg coffee
– way better than it sounds 🙂 then on to the old quarter and street food. we had the best lunch i have ever had, squatting in the road in the market on little plastic stools while mopeds roared around us. we started with bowls of salad, shredded vegetables, broth, spices, fresh cilantro, mint, lettuce, barbecued beef. Then moved on to Cornish pasty type dough stuffed with grains, been sprouts, mushrooms, spices, eggs. green tea on ice washed it all down. The street food vendors set up in the road as there is no rent owed to the Govt. Any permanent shops pay a healthy rental fee. can’t forget to mention – lunch for three was $5 total.
Our day finished with a stop at a local beer shop – the local beer is really good – three beers (again enjoyed sitting on little plastic stools in the street) totalled $1.50. Lovely weather – mid 70’s nice breeze 🙂
Have a trip meeting tonight and off to Halong Bay tomorrow.