• Day6

    Tam Coc Ninh Binh

    September 29 in Vietnam ⋅ ☀️ 90 °F

    We have left Hanoi and begun our trek south. We are traveling in a Ford Transit passenger van driven by Phuc, a native Hanoian who speaks only Vietnamese. We use a combination of Google Translate and texting our tour operator Manh to communicate directions and plans.

    First stop is Tam Coc Ninh Binh. Tam Coc is an area of limestone karsts similar to Ha Long bay. These formations are surrounded by rice fields rather than ocean. We stay at Sunshine Homestay with Phan and her family. Augie and I so enjoyed this place last year that we extended our stay for several days. The family is pleasant, the area is fascinating, and Phan's cooking is really wonderful.

    We spent our first evening hiking up the karst at Mua Cave for a view from above. The next morning we woke early and drove to nearby Trang An where we followed a waterway through nine caves and three temples. Unfortunately someone let a small Smokey like creature into one of the temple areas. Still, it is a pretty cool place. Our last stop for the day was the ancient citadel of the northern kingdom. Mary took a photogenic ride on a traditionally attired water buffalo.
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