The Reunification Palace in Ho Chi Minh City
The Reunification Palace in Ho Chi Minh City

Yes, it is that time of the year again, when I pay a visit to one of my favourite countries in the world, Thailand. But since I also want to see and experience something new in this trip, I will be spending most of my time exploring Hanoi and Ha Long Bay. Choice of destinations for this trip was not easy and countries like Jordan, Ethiopia, Laos, Bhutan, and Sri Lanka were considered. The main reason why I inclined towards Vietnam is because the country impressed me a lot during my 2012 trip and sadly I could not spend much time there. I loved the food especially Pho but a local in Ho Chi Minh City once pointed out, “If you like this, you should taste the Pho of Hanoi.” So tasting the “authentic” Pho will be very high on my agenda in this trip.

So, on 6th of October, one day before my birthday, I will touch down in Bangkok where I have a layover of about 12 hours.

I do not intend to do a lot of sightseeing in Bangkok this time around since I have seen all the things that I wanted to see over the past three years. This time around, I will be chilling in street side food stalls, tasting delicious Thai food, and doing some much needed bar hopping in the Siam and Sukhumvit area. I will keep you posted on how things turn out.

On my birthday, I intend to fly off to Ha Noi, a city that I could not visit the last time I was in the country. I have heard a lot about the busy streets, lovable people, amazing food and local draft beers. I also intend to visit the Hanoi Hilton and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. I read somewhere that they take the body of Ho Chi Minh abroad for maintenance once a year. Hope that day ain’t my birthday.

Next three days will be all about Ha Long Bay. I will be taking a cruise for 3 days and 2 nights across the “Bay of Descending Dragons”, which is considered to be one of the seven natural wonders of the world. This will be my second natural wonder, first being Jeju Island in South Korea which I visited earlier this year. I can write on and on about my expectations about the Ha Long Bay cruise, but that will take a long time. To put it in a nutshell, it will be epic!

After the cruise, I spend the next few days in Ha Noi, exploring the unexplored  before heading back into Thailand and chilling another few days in Bangkok and Hua Hin or Pattaya.

Just like my last trip to South Korea, I have a few “to do’s” for this trip as well, and I hope I will not fail as miserably as I did back then. Here goes:

a. Find that awesome Chinese restaurant in MBK Mall in Bangkok where I had the best shrimp dumplings of my life.

b. Visit one of the following- Ayutthaya, Safari World Bangkok, or Pattaya

c. Have another memorable night at Khao San Road. “One more Chang Beer!!!”

c. Have the real Pho of Northern Vietnam

d. Share a glass of local draft beer with the locals in the streets of Ha Noi

e. Improve my kayaking skills during the Ha Long Bay excursion.

f. Sucking it up, and finally getting a tattoo.

Signing off for now hoping that this trip will be one of my best ever !!!