One week, and still alive! ;)

Hay hay hay ๐Ÿ™‚

Only one week! And I have the feeling I am here since three already ๐Ÿ™‚ Its like I am living on another planet since I left France again.

Everything is SO different here! I wouldn’t have guessed Ho Chi Minh was such an exotic city ๐Ÿ™‚ Already too many things to talk about after one week here only… People –ย  Everyone is so nice over here! This is incredible. You are never alone, people always come to talk to you, either to help you with your map direction, or to propose you (often!!) their taxi motorbike service. In restaurants, waiters like to have a little chat with you when you are alone (pity? haha) asking you questions or telling you about the next good place to visit.


Ho Chi Minh City –ย Ho Chi Minh City centre is not that big from my point of view, which is good because I was worried about being lost in a huge city centre. There are different districts, which is easier to locate places and neighborhoods. I have spent 3 days so far in the centre and I already feel I can find myself. The difficulty is the streets’ names, which are really hard to: 1. find on the map, 2. pronounce with the Vietnamese accent (impossible for now).ย ย  There is also an important contrast within the city. On one side there is local people, living in very rustic ‘houses’, sleeping on the floor, and living without any comfort (but not complaining about that, this is how Vietnamese people are used to live). On the other side, there are the foreigners and international people, building amazing colonial-styled houses, it is really hard to believe actually…

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Money, money, money –ย Again, this is very different from France or England because prices here look amazingly expensive at a first sight, but then amazingly cheap when you do the conversion. For example, 1โ‚ฌ = 27,000 dong; 7โ‚ฌ = 200,000 dong so you always have to deal with: 1. notes, no coins, 2. lots of notes (cheaper is 500 or 200, which is nothing), 3. the conversion rate in your head, so you don’t have the impression of paying a lot. I still find it really hard, moreover because I know life is cheap in Vietnam: one meal for 50.000 – 100,000 dong (3,5-7โ‚ฌ) or even cheaper.

Food – Vietnamese food is really cheap here. Cheaper in the street (30,000 dong for a main (1,2โ‚ฌ), 10,000 dong for a drink (0,40โ‚ฌ) but still cheap even in restaurant (50,000 dong for a main (2โ‚ฌ), 35,000 dong for a drink (1,5โ‚ฌ)). After one week, I am not really used to the name of the plates and stuff, but I hope I will be soon, so I can give you some example of good food here. I have only tried soups (pho), spring rolls, fruits, some fruit juices and a delicious chicken curry so far ๐Ÿ™‚ But one thing I have noticed, service is VERY fast here. You don’t have to wait 15 or 30 mins like in France to have your food, you have it after 3 mins maximum ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Language –ย For now, I have met only few people speaking proper English. A bit of a shame but it might be due to the fact that I haven’t met a lot of young people yet, so I will see later…

Scooter –ย If you are scared of scooter/moto, don’t go to Vietnam (haha). There is an enormous amount of scooter/moto, taxi moto, and only few cars, apart from taxi. I don’t know how to drive a scooter, so at a first sight, this is very scary, there are no rules on the road, people do whatever they want and its the power of the biggest! So bus and trucks have the priority, then cars and scooters, bikes… Actually if you have ever seen a video on Vietnam’s traffic, this is exactly the same in real life, a big mess, but everyone gets on well with each other, so there is (almost) no accidents..


Photography –ย  I truly believe Vietnam is a little paradise for photographers! There are so many good pictures, scenes, places, and details to capture ๐Ÿ™‚ I am really happy about that and I don’t miss an occasion to take my camera when I am going visiting or just walking around! I am currently working on a photography project in order to have a page where I can onlyย post Vietnam pictures ๐Ÿ™‚ย So I will keep you updated with that soon … DSC_0041


8 thoughts on “One week, and still alive! ;)

  1. Nice review of Ho Chi Minh city! Yep the traffic in the city is crazy and seems out of control sometimes, but some of my European friends visited and I let them try driving scooters, they said it was one of their best experiences ever! ๐Ÿ˜€ Try next time if you visit Vietnam again ๐Ÿ˜‰

    the Hanoian

    • I am here for 6 months ๐Ÿ™‚ so I will try for sure! Not really confident about that yet but I will experience the scooter driving soon ๐Ÿ™‚ haha
      I will have a look at your blog ๐Ÿ™‚

      Marion xx

      • If you’re here for 6 months, you really should start learning to drive one ๐Ÿ˜‰ it is much easier than you think, much more fun than you’d imagine and the convenience it gives you to travel from places to places is better than any other vehicles in Vietnam. My London friend drove one for 2 days in Hanoi and now he’s getting his own scooter back in London!

      • haha ๐Ÿ™‚ Yes I know, I am getting on it soon! Can’t wait to be ‘free’ ๐Ÿ™‚ So many advantages.. but I am a bit scared about accidents and traffic…
        Your blog is really interesting ๐Ÿ™‚ good plans for August ๐Ÿ˜‰ I might try the party on Saturday night (03/08) Do you know if some of the artists announced for the Singapore festival are going to be here?

      • Unfortunately no ๐Ÿ˜ฆ it’s only a pre-party in Saigon so only some DJs from Singapore and USA are performing. So no Far east movement and Snoop Dogg yet in Chill Sky Bar!

        Are you coming to Hanoi any time in the next 6 months? We are posting daily blog posts about Hanoi travel tips, some would be interesting for you I think ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Yes I will come! I don’t know when but I want to discover the north of Vietnam ๐Ÿ™‚ Yea your tips are really good ๐Ÿ™‚ its interesting! Are you part of an agency or an individual who like traveling?

      • Both ๐Ÿ™‚ our Travel Blog is devoted for the Travel community and especially for travellers who love Indochina and Thailand region. We got some contributors who are either born and raised, or been living in Vietnam for a really long time. Gonna post some very interesting blogs ๐Ÿ™‚

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