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We arrived in Vietnam in April 2011 and we'll be here a bit longer. Work sends me some places, our interests draw us to others. This area catalogs the where, what, how, how much, and did you like it about places we've visited Vietnam. If you're looking for random things about life in Hanoi, this isn't the place to look. If you looking for that mountain retreat or beach bungalow, come to this section.
For Christmas 2011, a group of us went to the mountain of Hà Giang. Beautiful is about all we need to say to sum it up. Time it so you can hit the Sunday market in Hoang Xu Phi, and expect travel to take 8 or so hours in each direction.
For the Hùng King Death Anniversary Weekend in March 2012, a group of us went to the mountains of Cao Bằng Proving. Beautiful is about all we need to say to sum it up. Also, it's really far away, like Hà Giang, so plan to spend a minimum of 8hrs getting to the town, more for anywhere interesting.
Hội An is a great city in Central Vietnam where you can walk around the scenic old town without fear of being run over by a motorbike (most of the time), grab some good food, shop for pretty much everything, and feel pretty relaxed.
Sapa was a bit of a mess. Clouds, rain, damp, and chill will dispirit anyone, and that's kinda what happened. You go to Sapa to see the mountains. If that's not there, then there's really no reason to be in Sapa. Overall, I'm happy I went, but would rather go somewhere else less focused on fleecing tourists.