Last New Year when we were in Saigon we had to skip going up to Hanoi as it was too cold and we don’t have the clothing (living in Dubai does that to you). So we wanted to come this summer but now I wish we could have come a couple of months ago. It is HOT here. High 90s plus 80% plus humidity. It’s cloudy though so you don’t realize it is so hot until you’ve walked for about 10 minutes and suddenly realize your entire body/hair and clothing are soaked. We are perpetually sweaty – isn’t that a fun picture of our family!


We are staying in the Old Quarter. It’s certainly old with small, tree lined streets, packed little stores and restaurants, “millions” of motorbikes, and people. The sidewalks are filled with motorcycles or the little tiny chairs used for restaurants and many families can be seen sitting there eating meals together. People are also cooking on grills or selling fruits etc. Walking is very difficult and you have to jump on and off the sidewalk. Trash is thrown into the gutter so that needs to be sidestepped. It’s amazing architecture but hard to look at given all the street level hazards to be watched for.


The first day we have just spent walking around and taking a one hour electric tourist taxi to get acquainted with this area.


Strange basket art:


Over many of the shops there are cages with singing birds.


We also visited an old house that has been preserved. Many are disappearing or were torn down during the war time. How is this for a comfy looking bed? Makes our hard mattresses at the hotels look better!


The Opera House. Sadly can’t go in except for shows and we couldn’t see anything playing.