Vietnam
San Van Dong Vuon Tao Dan

Here you’ll find travel reports about San Van Dong Vuon Tao Dan. Discover travel destinations in Vietnam of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

8 travelers at this place:

  • Day109

    Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh #1

    August 21, 2017 in Vietnam

    Obwohl wir letztes Jahr schon einmal hier waren, konnten wir es uns nicht nehmen noch einmal die schönen Gebäude aus der französischen Kolonialzeit hier in Ho Chi Minh anzuschauen! Auf den Bildern seht ihr die Notre Dame Kirche, das Rathaus, das Postamt von innen und außen sowie die Oper 😊

  • Day95

    Tower Bar

    November 30, 2016 in Vietnam

    Auf dem Ausflug lernten wir Sophie aus Nürnberg kennen. Wir verstanden uns auf Anhieb super und nach einem gemeinsamen Essen ließen wir den Abend auf einer Towerbar ausklingen. Es gab leckere Cocktails und eine gigantische Aussicht über Ho Chi Minh.
    Der letzte Tag in Vietnam hinterlässt einiges und ich werde definitiv nochmal wiederkommen und die richtige Halong Bucht und Sapa besuchen.Read more

  • Day3

    Arrived 4am local time so not much activity in the airport so just wandered about in a sleepy daze until we had a coffee - OK but not enough caffeine. Walked the airport some more before a light breakfast and stocking up on a bit of duty free grog. A long walk down Q terminal to our gate and pretty soon we were in the "premium" queue - Justin has done some more magic and got us all Exit Row seats. On board another pretty new Air Asia A320 and another full plane and then off on the 1 1/2 hour flight to Ho Chi Minh City.
    Didn't take long to disembark but too a fair while to get thru immigration, the stony faced officials were making everyone sure about the serious nature of their business. Our luggage was available stright away, through customs, nothing to declare, and then we burst outside in the warm humid air and a cacophony of horns, cars & bikes zooming around the airport. For the 1st time ever, there is a man waiting with a sign for Peter Reynolds, Justin has got the hotel to put my nameon the hire car booking, unreal. A few minutes wait and we bundle into a mini van and within seconds Therrie is screaming about an impending car crash as the driver, and every other driver, enters the suburban road netwok, where rules are guides only. For the next 20 minutes we wove in & out of traffic,mostly motorbikes and cars, not many trucks. Seems the only rule adhered to are the traffic lights.
    After about 20 mins of this trill seeking ride we were deposited at our hotel, just a small enterance off the street but very nice inside. Luckily they let us have 2 rooms (it was only 10am) so we dropped our bags off, the ladies had a shower and then we set off into the wilds of Ho Chi Minh City, 1st stop the ATM to get some cash. After a bit of mucking about laerning their ATM, we emerged all millionaires, in Viet Dong terms anyway.
    The comes the big moment - crossing the street. This is not a job for the faint-hearted. Taking note of Louisa who seems to have it down pat, we step steadily into the stream of traffic, it feels like wading a fast flowing river, the flow just seems to find its way around you, then keep walking, not stopping unless there is a taxi or a truck,until you reach the other side, and begin breathing again.
    Wandered around the area for a while before retreating to a restaurant for brunch - Pho, Rice or pork, all delicious.
    Now sustained, Sue, Therrie & Ross decided they were up for some shopping at the market across the road. It is a huge building, with thousand of small stall holders selling their wares - looks like you can buy almost anything but it is hard to look without someone grabbing your arm to tell you about their stall have the best quality goods in the world. Too much for Justin, Louisa & Peter who retreated to a nearby coffee shop to partake in a famous Vietnamese coffee.
    Then the drama begins, sue & therrie arrive, but no Ross. We investigate the market & surrounds, no luck so back to the hotel and he is not there either. after about 20 mins the front desk ring and say that Ross has turned up at another hotel, luckily he recognised the name ofour hotel & they rang and then gave him directions.
    While Ross was recovering, the rest of us took a walk to the Independence Palace where the old regime used and the new unified leaders met back in the 70's. Pretty austere place, no fancy trimmings here but itis all open to the paying public, even the bunkers underneath where they would go in the event of an attack.
    All good until the walk back to the hotel when the heavens opened up on us, and it just teemed down for about 15 mins, we eventually found shelter, but by then too late, so we made our way back, going into the hotel foyer spreading water everywhere. The look on the faces of the locals said it all - FOOLS! but were toopolite to say anything.
    So after drying ourselves and taking our bag of wet gear to a nearby laundry (which also doubles as a lingerie shop - maybe they sell all the fancy gear left behind) we took over the breakfast room and had a couple of drinks to review the day's events.
    Suitably refreshed, we headed out at dark to find some dinner, discovering that we were too early to eat at the food market just down the road. As we headed off to a bar to wait, we see a massive procession of motorbikes with trailing wagon & carriages, all the stuff for the food markets. In the time it took us to have drink, the food stalls were already serving.
    Justin picked one he had been to before and we sat down to a scumptious meal of duck, squid, beef and veg, garlic fried rice and a few beers. And then the bill arrived - after some conversions it was $10.50 per person. Unreal.
    Fully filled up we all retired for a pretty early night.

    Highlights
    * The very friendly people who helped Ross get back to his right hotel;
    * Crossing a major street without incident;
    * Getting everyone here happy & safely;
    * Getting soaked in the rain and not even caring;
    * having my name of the airport arrivals, hire van;
    * the Vietnamese coffee;
    * The dinner in the pop up restaurant.

    Weather - Overcast, humid and then torrential rain before a warm humid evening. Max 32C
    Read more

  • Day4

    Saturday 24th June
    Another summers day in Ho Chi Minh City which means overcast, very humid with sunny patches and very warm,and, did I mention humid?
    * Sue, Louisa and Peter went for a pre-breakfast walk in the park, only a couple of blocks away. It was full of ponds, massive trees and grassed areas and about 10,000 people doing either Tai Chi, excercises, Badmington, shuttlecock or just walking or jogging. All low intensity stuff but looks like a pretty nice start to a day, rather than Bootcamp, pump or other high impact stuff done at home. So after imagining us doing some of these activities, we wndered back to a coffee shop and had an iced coffee before returning to the hotel for brekky, either western or local style...
    * Then out the door to walk a km to the War Remnants museum, a display and explantation of the Vietnam war, from the Vietnamese perspective. Quite confronting with graphic photos of war atrocities and the damge caused to the locals. Certainly puts a different outlook on the war, the cause and the eventual victory by the VC. Sue & Justin chose to retreat to the coffee shop instead and had a good old catch-up chat.
    * Continued our walk , firstly to Notre Dame cathederal which was closed but we watched a bridal couple get their photos done, in front, but on the street with traffic going around them;
    * Then onto the Post Office, a grand old style PO full of ornate fittings, old style counters, traditional phone booths along each side and a huge portrait of Ho Chi Minh overseeing the whole lot.
    * Travelled further passed the Opera House, stopping for another Iced Coffee (graduated to a No 3 strength this time) before reaching the riverfront. Not very inviting, probably the only people in there would be those who had no say in the matter.
    * Wandered some back streets until we happened upon a likely looking lunch place., upstairs seating on big benchesand the cooks working awayin the back part. The specialty was Noodles & soup but we settled for beer and a type of rice dumpling and rice pancake,, a bit bland but something different.
    * Partially refreshed we kept going, stopping in front of city hall to pay homage to the immense statue of President Ho Chi Minh, before arriving at Saigon mall, a mall you could find anywhere in the world, same layout, similar shops & goods. Louisa went off and lucked upon a dress exactly what she was lokking for. The rest of us just loitered about watching the locals.
    * Found our way back to the Hotel, passing a vast array of touts, sellers and beggars who quietly but persistenly seek our $ or patronage.
    * Before long it was time for a drink and then headed off for dinner at the markets or local restaurant, missing out on the rain that was a bit late today.

    Highlights
    * walking around the park early in the morning watching all the people doing Tai chi, Shuttlecock, Badmington, excecises, jogging.
    * The War Museum;
    * More excellent coffee;
    * Justin cupcaking himself;
    * Catching up on gossip over coffee.

    Weather, very warm & humid, about 31C, rain later in the evening.
    Read more

  • Day6

    Cu Chi Tunnels and a Rooftop Bar

    June 26, 2017 in Vietnam

    Sunday 25th June
    * Much quieter during the early morning walk to the park but still plenty of people doing their excercises. On the way back I noticed the the soccer fiels were fullof kids doing soccer training, at 6.30am.
    * A quick breakfast and out the door by 8am when we were picked up in a mini van to start our 1 1/2 hrs trip & tour of the Cu Chi Tunnels. The trip took us through the city, along a highway where the bikes & scooters have their own road on the side. Apparently there are 8million scooters / bikes & 1million cars in Ho Chi Minh with a population of 12 million. Owning is scooter (Vespa, etc) is a bit upmarket and a bit "girly" so most men ride small motorbikes (which look pretty similar to a scooter). Then the bus does a detour and goes to a small goods factory, supposed all made by the special needs workers, victims ofthe war, where we are escorted past some things being made before going through the shop. On Justin's advice we didnt buy anything and in fact we saw exactly the same mass produced goods at the markets for much less $.
    Only 12 on our bus, us rowdy 6, a Swedish family of 4 who were very quiet and a British couple. Plus Ling our tour guide and the bus driver. Ling was excellent, a dry sense of humour and very personable nature. She was pretty short and hard to spot in the crowds at the tunnels.
    Back on the bus and we carreened down a series of back roads going passed rural villages, rubber plantations and a massive greenhouse development before arriving at the tunnels, with about 50 other bus loads of tourists. Ling was very surprised, it is low tourist season but many Vietnamese were there today.
    The first thing we did at the tunnels was sit in a big thatched roof building in amongst the forest and watch a black and white video explaining about the tunnels(a littlebit) and how the North Vietnamese liberated the south fromthe foreign invaders. They highlighted a young lady who was filmed digging tunnels, shooting, killing while starving but officially she had a "wonderful life". All things considered they did kick some serious USA invasion right outof their country.
    We were escorted through the forest and it was explained to us how the guerillas built over 200 km of tunnels in this area, housing around 16,000 people over the 6 years, almost 1/2 died defending their lands. The guerillas were tiny people and the tunnel enterances and replica tunnels have been widened to let us fat western people fit through. They have recreated workstations where cooking was done, uniforms made, landmines and booby traps were made and then we got to experience a section of tunnel (had lighting and widened) with exit holes every 20m. Out of our group, Peter was the only one to do the 1st 100m, following a guide who did most of it on his haunches, while I was scrabbling along on all 4's. Eventually popped up like a rabbit from a burrow. As a final token we were given some Tapioca and green tea, to replicate the guuerilla rations I guess.
    Then back onto the bus for a non-stop trip back to our hotel.
    * Had a nice lunch nearby and then a coffee before some relax time. Sue & Peter went to the markets and tried some haggling, we wont give up our day jobs, but I dont think we were ripped off.
    * Then we were escorted by Louisa & Justin, by foot, to a hotel where they stayed in the past. Pretty ordinary from the outside but once we got to the Rooftop Bar on the 9th floor, we were left speechless. A most spectacular view over the HCM skyline, beers @ $1, delicious food and great company.
    * Then when we left the hotel, we did not know that everyone in HCM had been invited to cruise the streets around this area on their scooters. Every cafe bar was packed, the streets were clogged and it seems that Sunday night is the time for young Vietnamese men to take their girlfriends out and show them their driving /riding skills. Took every skill we had just to cross every street without injury or causing a collision.
    Finally made it back to our hotel undamaged and retired, ready for an early start the next day.

    Highlights
    * Cu Chi Tunnels;
    * Travelling to & from the tunnels, going through some farm lands;
    * Ling, our very happy & lovely tour guide;
    * Our rooftop dinner & Million $ views;
    * The chaos of scooters, cars and horns filling the streets on a Sunday night.

    Weather - Overcast, very humid, few light showers, 32C
    Read more

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San Van Dong Vuon Tao Dan

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