Browsing the archives for the vietnam category.


Saigon’s Busy Streets

vietnam, vietnam travel, vietnam war


Saigon 131

Originally uploaded by JoeDuck

Vietnam Trip, Feb 2011: We returned to Saigon / Ho Chi Minh CIty after three quiet days in Sa Dec. It’s impossible in photos to capture the frenzy of Saigon’s busy streets, teaming with scooters, taxis, carts and people and about as noisy as you can imagine from very early until very late at night. Yet by the end of the trip we’d learned to tune out the hustle and bustle and focus on the charming sites and sounds as millions of residents go about their daily routines.

Some of the frenzy is simply what you find in most big cities, but I’d have to say that Saigon “felt” much busier to me than Los Angeles, Paris, Rome, or even Beijing or Shanghai. Unlike European and American cities I think Saigon / HCMC is growing very fast and changing reapidly, and unlike China’s megalopolises there’s not a lot of funding or guidance or enforcement of traffic and planning rules to channel the rapid development.

Sa Dec Market – part two

vietnam, vietnam travel

Here’s a great video of the Sa Dec Market featured in my previous post:

Hoi An – Old Kitchen in Historic Home

hoi an, vietnam, vietnam travel

In Hoi An’s Historic District, a UNESCO World Heritage Site,we toured some historic homes and had a chance to see how in many ways little seems to have changed over centuries of life in this cozy seaside town.

The rainy season in Hoi An brings the river up – way up – and most of the homes will need to move into the second floor as the first will be flooded to a depth of 3+ feet. A resident of this house – one of the oldest in the city – casually explained to us how she’d tie down the heavy furniture so it would not float away and then bring things up to their second floor. My understanding is that people get around by boat during the flood times.

The heavy rains of the wet season help explain why

construction in Vietnam is concrete and tile more than the wood and sheetrock built homes you would see in much of the USA.

Here’s the modern version of that kitchen in the same house, which is other kitchens we’ve seen in homes throughout Vietnam – small but very efficiently organized.

Vietnam Visa

vietnam

As I plan the trip to Vietnam in January I’ll be posting helpful tips here.  This just in from the Vietnam Embassy regarding Visa requirements for Vietnam Travel:

——— From Vietnam Embassy Regarding Visa Requirements ———–

THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST IN VISITING VIETNAM AND FOR WRITING TO THE EMBASSY.

PLEASE REVIEW THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ORGANIZED IN THE FORM OF Q&A’S.
1) DO I NEED A VISA?
– YES, YOU DO.
– TECHNICALLY, ANY HOLDER OF A VALID (6 MONTHS PRIOR TO EXPIRATION) PASSPORT OTHER THAN VIETNAMESE, NO MATTER WHAT CITIZENSHIP, NEEDS A VISA.
– THIS GENERAL RULE IS APPLICABLE TO US CITIZENS, CANADIAN CITIZENS, LATIN AMERICAN COUNTRIES, EU CITIZENS, AND JAPANESE CITIZENS.
– PLEASE CONTACT THE NEAREST VIETNAM EMBASSY FOR FURTHER INFORMATION IF YOU THINK YOUR COUNTRY AND VIETNAM HAVE A VISA-WAIVER AGREEMENT.
2) HOW EARLY AND HOW LATE CAN I APPLY FOR A VISA?
– YOU CAN APPLY FOR YOUR VISA AS EARLY AS SIX MONTHS PRIOR TO THE PROPOSED DATE OF ENTRY.
– YOU CAN APPLY FOR A VISA AS LATE AS A FEW DAYS PRIOR TO YOUR DEPARTURE.  PLEASE CALL OR EMAIL THE EMBASSY TO CHECK YOUR OPTIONS FOR RUSH/EXPEDITED SERVICE.
3) HOW LONG WILL THE VISA BE GOOD FOR?
– THE VISA WILL BE ISSUED ON THE BASIS OF YOUR SPECIFIC PROPOSED DATES ON THE APPLICATION.
– THE APPLICANT CANNOT ENTER THE COUNTRY BEFORE THE DATE.
– IF YOU STAY IN VIETNAM LESS THAN ONE MONTH, CHECK THE “ONE MONTH” BOX.
– IF YOU STAY IN VIETNAM LESS THAN THREE MONTHS, CHECK THE “THREE MONTHS” BOX.
4) WHAT TO SUBMIT?
– PASSPORT (YOU CAN SEND A COPY OF YOUR PASSPORT AND ASK FOR A LOOSE-LEAF VISA with 02 photos. For loose leaf visa, please be adviced that
you will not keep it any more when going out from Vietnam; the immigration department will collect it back AND IF YOU LOOSE THE VISA, YOU NEED TO REAPPLY FOR A NEW VISA AND HAVE TO PAY AGAIN FOR FULL FEE)
– APPLICATION FORM (<http://www.vietnamembassy.us/consular_services/visa_info/>).
– 1 PASSPORT-SIZE PICTURE (2X2).
– FEE (1 MONEY ORDERS PER APPLICATION PACKAGE), PAYABLE TO “EMBASSY OF VIETNAM.”  APPLICANTS APPLYING TOGETHER MAY SUBMIT THE FEE IN ONE MONEY ORDER.
– A SELF-ADDRESSED POSTAGE-PAID RETURN ENVELOPE. FOR THE SAFETY OF YOUR PASSPORT(S), PLEASE USE ONLY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING MAILING SERVICES WHICH PROVIDE TRACKING NUMBERS: OR US EXPRESS MAIL OR  CERTIFIED MAIL WITH FULL LABEL. PLEASE DO NOT USE OTHER MAILING SERVICES. APPLICANTS APPLYING TOGETHER MAY PROVIDE ONE ENVELOPE FOR VISAS TO BE RETURNED TO THE SAME ADDRESS.
5) HOW TO FILL OUT THE APPLICATION?
– ALL ITEMS MUST BE FILLED-OUT COMPLETELY IN UPPER CASE LETTERS.
– DO NOT USE PO BOX ADDRESSES.
– ITEM 10 (NAME, ADDRESS OF YOUR CONTACT IN VIETNAM) IS REQUIRED. MAKE SURE THAT YOU YOU PUT THE ADDRESS AS WELL THE PHONE NUMBER WHERE YOU WILL STAY IN VIETNAM (THE HOTEL …). IF YOU DO NOT HAVE THIS INFORMATION RIGHT NOW, YOU MAY LEAVE THAT BLANK.
– IF YOU DO NOT HAVE VISA APPROVAL NUMBER, JUST LEAVE IT BLANK. THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM WILL TAKE CARE OF IT FOR YOU.
6) WHAT IS THE FEE?
IF YOU DON’T HAVE APPROVAL NUMBER, YOU MAY SEND THE REQUEST TO THE EMBASSY TO APPLY FOR VISA AND APPROVAL NUMBER AT THE SAME TIME. VISA FEE
WITHOUT AN APPROVAL. THE FOLLOWING FEE IS TOTAL FEE, COVERING FOR VISA STAMPING FEE, VISA APPROVAL ARRANGEMENT FEE AND PROCESSING FEE.
A. SINGLE ENTRY, ONE-MONTH:
+ $70.00/ EACH PERSON (WITH 3-4  BUSINESS DAY PROCESS).
+ $80.00/ EACH PERSON ( WITH EXPEDITE SERVICE – 01-2 BUSINESS DAYS).
B. SINGLE ENTRY, THREE-MONTH: $90.00/ EACH PERSON (2 BUSINESS DAYS).
C. MULTIPLE ENTRY ONE-MONTH: $120.00/ EACH PERSON (WITH SERVICE 2 BUSINESS DAYS).
D. MULTIPLE ENTRY THREE-MONTH: $150.00/ EACH PERSON (WITH SERVICE 2 BUSINESS DAYS).
* SINGLE ENTRY: IF YOU ENTER VIETNAM ONE TIME.
MULTIPLE ENTRIES:  YOU ENTER VIETNAM MORE THAN ONE TIME (YOU ENTER VIETNAM, GO TO ANOTHER NEIGHBOURING COUNTRY AND GO BACK TO VIETNAM).
* AT PRESENT, THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM CAN ARRANGE AN APPROVAL FOR A VISA GOOD FOR 3 MONTHS, MULTIPLE ENTRIES AS MAXIMUM.
A VISA GOOD FOR MORE THAN 3 MONTHS CAN ONLY BE ISSUED TO ANY APPLICANT WHO HAS OBTAINED A WORK PERMIT AND A VISA APPROVAL ALREADY.
7) HOW TO PAY THE FEE?
PLEASE PREPARE ONE MONEY ORDER PAYABLE TO “THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM”.
NOTE:  ONE GROUP APPLYING TOGETHER CAN USE ONE MONEY ORDER FOR THE ENTIRE GROUP.
IF YOU GO IN PERSON, YOU CAN PAY IN CASH.
8 ) HOW TO SUBMIT?
– HOURS FOR DROP-OFF AND WALK-IN AT THE EMBASSY: 9:30-12:00 (MONDAY-FRIDAY)
– BY MAIL:
FOR THE SAFETY OF YOUR PAPER(S), PLEASE ONLY USE ONE OF THE FOLLOWING MAILING SERVICES WHICH PROVIDE TRACKING NUMBERS:
– EXPRESS MAIL (WWW.USPS.COM <HTTP://WWW.USPS.COM>)
– FEDEX (WITH FULL  LABEL) AT WWW.FEDEX.COM
PLEASE DO NOT USE OTHER MAILING SERVICES. APPLICANTS APPLYING TOGETHER MAY PROVIDE ONE ENVELOPE FOR VISAS TO BE RETURNED TO THE SAME ADDRESS.
PLEASE DO NOT ASK FOR MAIL DELIVERY AT THE EMBASSY AFTER HOURS, DURING WEEKENDS AND HOLIDAYS.
BEFORE SENDING YOUR REQUEST TO THE EMBASSY, PLEASE CHECK OUR HOLIDAY CALENDAR AT OUR WEBSITE:
http://www.vietnamembassy.us/docs/Holiday2010.pdf
9) WHERE TO SUBMIT?
CONSULAR SECTION
EMBASSY OF VIETNAM
1233 20TH STREET, NW
SUITE 400
WASHINGTON, DC 20036
10) IMMUNIZATION?
– NO INFORMATION AVAILABLE NOW, AND IT IS NOT REQUIRED.
11) CAN I GET A VISA AT THE AIRPORT?
– WITHOUT A PROPER ENTRY VISA, AIRLINERS WILL NOT ALLOW THE PASSENGER TO BOARD.
– PLEASE USE THE 2-DAY PROCEDURE DESIGNED TO ASSIST APPLICANTS UNDER TIME PRESSURE.
WE HOPE ALL YOU WANTED TO KNOW HAVE BEEN ANSWERED.
IF YOU STILL HAVE FURTHER QUESTIONS, PLEASE EMAIL TO THE EMBASSY AT CONSULAR@VIETNAMEMBASSY.US.

Vietnam: Make Miss Universe Pageant, Not War

miss universe, nha trang, vietnam, vietnam travel, vietnam war

Some 40 years after the bitter conflicts in Vietnam between North Vietnamese, South Vietnamese, and the USA, it is encouraging to see that country hosting the Miss Universe pageant.

After decades of near economic ruin, Vietnam is enjoying a fast paced renaissance, attracting new foreign investment as well as a renewed interest in entrepreneurial activity throughout the country.

The Miss Universe Pageant is held at the Diamond Bay Resort in Nha Trang, Vietnam.

Vietnam War

Culinary tourism, vietnam, vietnam travel, vietnam war

Few events in US History influenced the nation as much as the Vietnam war. France had created a colonial empire in Indochina but extreme nationalist tensions led the French to abandon their war against the communist nationalists and leave the country. Enter the USA which escalated the war against Ho Chi Minh and the Vietnamese nationalists and insurgents in the South. Ironically Ho Chi Minh had been a US ally in the war with Japan, fighting alongside the American CIA.

Despite dramatic military superiority, a massive bombing effort, and complex political tactics to enlist the support of the Vietnamese, the USA failed to quell the insurgency in the South

By 1975 unrest in the USA combined with instability in Vietnam led the US to pull out of the county abruptly. The North Vietnamese Army quickly overran the South and created a unified Vietnam under the communist form of Government.

Today, Vietnam and the USA are enjoying renewed relations and a tentative national friendship. Travel to Vietnam is increasing in popularity and offer the tourist very rich natural, cultural, and culinary experiences.

History of Vietnam War

Vietnam Travel from Lonely Planet Guide



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