viernes, 8 de octubre de 2010

From Laos to Vietnam, 10 hours in a tiny small bus, full of people and only 1 stop... but seen scenes like these children along the way made the journey much enjoyable!.

First encounter with Vietnamese food.. yes it is food! This awful looking black paste is actually a banana dessert wrapped in palm leaves. Not as bad as it looks, promise!.

 1st stop, Hanoi. First impressions, well get a life insurance if you are willing to cross the roads there because traffic is even more chaotic than in India, actually Indian traffic is HEAVEN compared to Hanoi!!.
Lovely colours from the street markets. The only problem is that as backpackers you don't easily get a kitchen in which to experiment the new flavours!.
 Up for trying new Vietnamese cuisine? If you thought the french were 'weird' because they eat frog legs, think again! they eat every single part / kind of frogs in Vietnam!
Yes, not only frog, you can also try turtle, duck embryos, warms, nymphs... so many delicacies ..mmmm
 But don't worry! you can also find those sweet and deliciously fatty doughnuts!

Ali is in HEAVEN.... is this a dream??

Le Mat Village, 7 km north of Hanoi. This little town is famous for snake restaurants and farms. How did it all start? well, once upon a time a princess was enjoying a boat ride in Le Mat when a big snake tried to kill her. A brave boy who saw the horrible event, manages to kill the snake!! The king, in order to thank the boy, gave him the lands of Le Mat. Since then, this little town has been dedicated entirely to produce many different snake products such as liquors, shoes, belts... etc 

 Cobra in action (well in alcohol even!) And yes! we did have a shot ... it's good for you!
 Trying to communicate!. This is a kind of usual scene in our daily travels, when we are not able to communicate with the locals, Lonely planet in hand, we try our best to point at words and pronounce them in different ways until someone understands!.

 Eddie eating snake spring roll.

Hanoi, a temple in the lake, city center.  

 Delicious street food!. This is a more than usual scene in the streets of Vietnam where anyone with small plastic chairs and something to drink or eat, is the owner of a 'street restaurant'. Here we were enjoying a delicious 'bbq'.
 One more time someone staring at Eduardo's hair... not very common to see a Rastafarian with long beard around here....
 Small altar. This curious altar is very commonly found everywhere in Vietnam. From a street corner, to a shop, house temple... They are meant to avoid evil spirits,and every morning you have to give some offerings, like food, incense (yes! real food, drinks and even money).
Vietnamese coffee, very similar taste to Laos one but here they use this metallic pot on top of the glass full of water and coffee. The water drops slowly into the glass and voila! ready to drink!.Very strong taste though!
 Halong Bay, north east coast of Vietnam. (Hard feelings part) if you ever go there, please inform yourself well about the activities offered on the cruises, and pray for a nice boat crew! Having said that this is a photo of our boat where we slept for a night and got to visit some beautiful spots between the Hanoi islands.
The amazing caves in the Bay. Breathtaking cave :)

Floating village. Yes! people actually live here!, there is even a new school built for the children of the fisherman!.
 The fighting cocks as the Vietnamese call them (but it can also be seen as the kissing cocks, a bit more romantic!)

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