Linda's Vietnam Blog - Part One
Sydney - Hong Kong - Hanoi
I’m always a fan of a daytime flight, for me it is a non-stop movie-fest. So, the 7:35am Cathay Pacific flight to Hong Kong and then onto Hanoi was a chance to catch up on some movies.
I met Bob & Margaret, first time travellers with us, at the Hong Kong terminal before getting on the short 1.5 hour flight to Hanoi.
The very clean and modern airport was quiet on our arrival at around 7pm, so it was a quick trip through immigration, and we were greeted by the smiling face of Yen who was waiting for us outside.
After a little bit of paperwork to help start the processing of our drivers’ licenses we were on our way into Hanoi.
The streets near the airport were quiet, very clean and organised. The closer we got to the city the heavier the traffic was. All the trucks, cars and motorbikes weaving around each other, beeping their horns. Families of five people on one motorbike was a common sight, quite often with Dad at the front also texting or making a phone call. All manner of shopping can be strapped to the small motorbikes, too, I saw air conditioners, whole bunches of bananas and ducks, you name it. It was very busy on the first night out as everyone was celebrating the Tết Trung Thu Mid-Autumn festival.
Our hotel, The Rex Hanoi Hotel, is right in the heart of the chaotic Old Quarter. It’s a 4-star hotel with large rooms, very friendly and helpful staff, good Wifi, pool deck and rooftop bar overlooking Hoàn Kiếm Lake, and most importantly a minibar with cold beers and a hot shower with excellent water pressure. I was ready for a Bia Hà Nội (local brew) after a long day of travelling, getting up at 4:30am Sydney time and getting to the hotel at around 11pm Sydney time. Hopefully I will sleep well tonight.