Farewell to my neighbourhood: Ward 25, Binh Thanh District, Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Year of the Cat Q&A with the Coracle Team
Soc Trang→Con Dao Express Ferry, Vietnam
Vietnam Coracle 2022 End of Year Review
Timothe Beach Apartments, Vịnh Hòa, Phú Yên, Review
The Last Emperors: Nguyễn Dynasty Sites in Hue
Travel Fitness
  1. Huế Food Guide

    Hue Food Guide

    Explore the famous ‘royal cuisine’ of Vietnam’s former imperial capital with this extensive Huế food guide, featuring 16 Huế dishes & dozens of specific location recommendations…

  2. Edible flowers in Vietnamese Cuisine

    Edible Flowers in Vietnamese Cuisine

    Vietnamese cuisine utilizes edible flowers in myriad ways. Flowers are healthy and aromatic, adding colour, flavour and texture to many dishes…

  3. Noodle Street: Nguyễn Qúy Đức, An Phú, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

    Noodle Street: Nguyễn Qúy Đức, District 2

    A wide variety of noodle dishes from across Vietnam all within a few steps of each other on a tree-lined street in District 2, Ho Chi Minh City…

  4. A Guide to Drinking & Nightlife in Hue, Vietnam

    Drinking & Nightlife in Hue

    Artisanal breweries, local beer restaurants, dive bars for resident artists, chic cocktail lounges for posers & budget hangouts for backpackers…

  5. Where to Eat Seafood on Phu Quoc Island

    Where to Eat Seafood on Phu Quoc Island

    Away from the tourists & towns are several clusters of local, informal, atmospheric, reasonably priced, fresh, fun, friendly & scenically located seafood restaurants…

  6. 19 Coffee Shops in Đà Lạt With a View

    19 Coffee Shops in Dalat With a View

    Dozens of cool, cosy, photogenic, independent coffee shops with countryside views form one of the most exciting coffee scenes in Asia…

  7. Eating in Văn Thánh Market, Bình Thạnh District, Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City

    Văn Thánh Market Food Guide | Sài Gòn

    Every Saigon neighbourhood has a local fresh produce market. Mine is Văn Thánh, where there are dozens of good, inexpensive street food vendors, cafes & juice stalls…

  8. Quy Nhon Food Guide

    Quy Nhon Food Guide

    An up-and-coming beach city on the south-central coast, Quy Nhon has a vibrant dining scene, featuring fresh seafood & a host of local specialities…

  9. 21 Great Places for Cocktails on Phu Quoc Island

    21 Great Places for Cocktails on Phu Quoc Island

    Stylish sky bars with sunset views, windowless speakeasies with professional mixologists, rustic-chic wine bars above the waves, cheap beach shacks & much more…

  10. Fresh herbs & spices in Vietnamese Food

    Fresh Herbs & Spices in Vietnamese Food

    A gardener & home cook walks you through the most commonly used fresh herbs & spices that are fundamental to Vietnamese cuisine & culture…

  11. The Best Street Food Streets in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam

    7 Great Streets for Street Food in Saigon

    Saigon is arguably the best place to explore Vietnam’s extraordinary street food scene. The city boasts so many street food outlets that it feels like a gigantic open-air restaurant. This is my guide to 7 of the best streets for street food in Saigon…

  12. Snails, Saigon

    Snails & Shellfish: A Guide

    Snail eating is incredibly popular in Vietnam. A night of shells & beer is a very local experience. Young & old feast late into the night. The snails come in all shapes and sizes and they’re delicious. ‘Shell tapas’ is a fun night out that everyone should try

  13. Saigon's other Lunch Lady

    Saigon’s other Lunch Lady

    Everyone knows who Saigon’s Lunch Lady is, right? Well, probably not this one. Ms Nga is 43 years old. She serves a different soup each day of the week, from her cramped, ramshackle soup stall. Originally from Thai Binh (a northern province famous for producing excellent cooks), she moved to Saigon in the mid-90s…

  14. Eating bánh khọt in Vung Tau, Vietnam

    Eating Bánh Khọt in Vũng Tàu | 7 Places

    Bánh Khọt are delicious gems: crispy discs of rice flour batter & coconut milk, fried until they’re crunchy on the outside but moist on the inside, then wrapped in herbs & dipped in a sweet-spicy sauce. Here are 7 places to eat bánh khọt in Vũng Tàu…

  15. Saigon's Street Food Ghettos, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

    Saigon’s Street Food ‘Ghettos’

    Throughout Saigon, there are clusters of crumbling old apartment complexes, all of which are on the verge of either collapse or demolition. Living conditions appear cramped and grim but, outside on the sidewalks, the street life and street food is among the best and most vibrant in the city…

  16. Saigon to Hanoi: A Food Diary

    Saigon to Hanoi: A Food Diary

    On a recent road trip between Saigon & Hanoi I made a record of some of the meals I ate along the way, to try and illustrate the variety of food available, and what a delight it is to eat your way from one end of the country to the other…

  17. Food in the Time of Corona, Last Meals before Lock-Down, Vietnam

    Food in the Time of Corona: Last Meals before Lock-Down

    Before the lock-down, street food was still thriving: indeed, sitting down to a bowl of noodles was one of the only times you could take off your mask. I documented my last meals before the spread of COVID-19 forced a nationwide lock-down.

  18. Where to Eat Chè in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam

    Sweet Saigon: Where to Eat Chè

    A kaleidoscopic world of luminous colours, shifting shapes, unfamiliar textures, esoteric ingredients & rich flavours, chè is a fascinating sub-category of Vietnamese cuisine. Commonly translated as ‘dessert’, in reality chè is so filling & nutritious that it’s a meal in itself….

  19. The Lunch Lady's Menu

    The Lunch Lady’s Menu: An Illustrated Guide

    The Lunch Lady in Saigon is famous for serving a different soup every day of the week. Here’s her weekly menu, illustrated with tantalizing images of each of the dishes…

  1. Ly Son Island, travel guide, Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam

    Ly Son Island: Travel Guide

    A volcanic island surrounded by a ring of reefs, Ly Son is a striking, stark & geologically fascinating destination. Easily reached by regular fast ferries, Ly Son Island is located off the coast of central Vietnam….

  2. Phu Quoc's Beaches, Vietnam

    Phu Quoc’s Beaches: A Guide

    A halo of sand encompasses this green & forested island in the Gulf of Thailand. But Phu Quoc is currently undergoing major development, so now is the time to visit its beaches, before it’s too late (in some cases, it already is)…

  3. Hiking the Con Dao Islands

    Hiking the Con Dao Islands

    One of the most pristine natural environments in Vietnam, several hiking trails traverse the Con Dao Islands offering sensational views…

  4. Island-hopping in Vietnam: A Guide for Independent Travellers

    Island-Hopping in Vietnam: A Guide

    From north to south, the Vietnamese coast is flecked with thousands of islands; hundreds of which are inhabited & dozens of which can be visited by island-hopping. A handful of these islands are already well-established tourist destinations, but many are only just emerging as potential attractions….

  5. Cat Ba Island, Halong Bay, Travel Guide, Vietnam

    Cat Ba Island, Halong Bay: Travel Guide

    An island of dramatic coastlines & jungle-clad limestone pillars, Cat Ba is one of Vietnam’s star natural attractions & part of world-famous Halong Bay….

  6. Hon Son Island, travel guide, Vietnam

    Hon Son Island: Travel Guide

    Hon Son Island is a gem. It’s a rugged yet green & exceptionally beautiful isle. With jungle-covered mountains rising from the ocean, peaceful fishing hamlets in picturesque bays, and palm-fringed beaches, Hon Son has got it all…

  7. Nam Du Islands, Kien Giang Province, Vietnam

    Nam Du Islands: Travel Guide

    A glistening archipelago of small tropical islands off the southwestern coast of Vietnam, Nam Du is beautiful & undeveloped. With mesmerizing beaches & bays, a jungle-clad interior, and over 20 outlying islands, Nam Du is a treat…

  8. Phu Quy Island, travel guide, Vietnam

    Phu Quy Island: Travel Guide

    A new & exciting destination, Phu Quy Island is but a drop of green land in the vast blue ocean, and has only very recently opened its doors to domestic & foreign travellers. A fascinating place with a real sense of isolation, this is my comprehensive guide to Phu Quy Island….

  9. Tam Hai Island, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam

    Tam Hai Island: Travel Guide

    A small & tranquil island at the mouth of a river, Tam Hai is within easy reach of Hoi An & Danang. This little island is a self-contained, peaceful world, with its own beauty, its own festivals, and its own resort….

  10. Pirate Islands (Dao Hai Tac), Travel Guide, Vietnam

    Pirate Islands (Đảo Hải Tặc) | Travel Guide

    Lying in the Gulf of Thailand, just off Vietnam’s southwest coast, Pirate Islands is a rugged archipelago, only recently opened to foreign visitors…

  11. Phu Quoc Island, North & East Coasts

    Phu Quoc Island: North & East Coasts

    Newly completed roads have opened access to the beaches, bays, forests & hamlets of the north & east coasts of Phu Quoc Island. Previously difficult to get to, these parts of Phu Quoc are the least developed, most characterful & charming on the island….

  12. Con Dao Islands, Vietnam

    Video: Con Dao Islands

    From the moment you step off the plane on the Con Dao Islands, you know you’re somewhere special. The main island of Con Son has a tragic past as a penal colony, set up by the French colonial administration. But today, it is the gorgeous natural beauty of this archipelago that’s attracting attention.

  13. Diep Son Island & Sandbar, Van Phong Bay

    Lying in the calm, warm waters of Van Phong Bay, just an hour north of Nha Trang, Diep Son is a mini-archipelago of small green islands. At low tide, a curving sandbar is exposed, linking three of the islets via a ‘sand bridge’….

  1. Bamboo Cottages, solar-powered resort, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

    Bamboo Cottages Off-Grid Resort, Phu Quoc Island

    Situated on one of Phu Quoc Island’s most attractive & least developed bays, Bamboo Cottages is a small, tasteful, mid-range beach resort powered by solar energy….

  2. The Pier Phu Quoc Resort, Vietnam, Independent Review

    The Pier Phu Quoc Resort | Independent Review

    A small, modern, mid-range resort on Phu Quoc’s lesser-known east coast, The Pier occupies a fabulous position beneath jungled hills with sweeping coastal views.

  3. The Secret Con Dao Resort, Independent Review

    The Secret Con Dao | Independent Review

    Featuring minimalist décor & contemporary design, The Secret is a luxury resort on the beautiful & elegant seafront road on Côn Sơn Island…

  4. Mia Resort Nha Trang, Vietnam, Independent Review

    Mia Resort Nha Trang | Independent Review

    A crisp, clean & contemporary beach resort straddling the cliffs on the spectacular coast road south of Nha Trang, Mia is the embodiment of minimalist-chic….

  5. Camia Resort, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

    Camia Resort, Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    A lush, tasteful & understated property with a narrow but beautiful beachfront & two elegant infinity pools, Camia Resort is a good value mid-range place to stay on Phu Quoc Island…

  6. Fusion Suites, Vung Tau | Review

    With an immaculate rooftop infinity pool & sky bar with 360-degree views of the city & sea, Fusion Suites is set to become one of the most photographed places in Vung Tau…

  7. Mövenpick Resort Waverly Phu Quoc, Independent Review, Vietnam

    Mövenpick Resort Waverly Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    An enormous, five-star accommodation on a long beachfront with great facilities, the Movenpick is ideal for large families with children or travelling groups…

  8. Gold Coast Resort, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

    Gold Coast Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    In the northwest of the island, Gold Coast is a mid-range resort with excellent food, a good beach, easy access to local life & superb views of Phu Quoc’s rugged northern bays & jungles

  9. Mango Bay, Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    A long-time favourite beach retreat for travellers & expats, Mango Bay is still the best place to stay on Phu Quoc Island in its class & price bracket. Mango Bay offers guests both comfort & a connection to nature, but not one at the expense of the other…

  10. InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort, Independent Review

    InterContinental Phu Quoc Long Beach Resort | Independent Review

    Immaculately clean, well-designed, well-maintained, well-run & luxurious, the InterContinental features outstanding facilities, spacious & well-equipped rooms & a great beach…

  11. Amiana Resort & Spa, Nha Trang, Vietnam

    Amiana Resort Nha Trang | Independent Review

    Ten kilometres north of Nha Trang, Amiana Resort features a long seafront, lush gardens & several enormous, highly photogenic infinity pools…

  12. The Shells Resort, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam, Independent Review

    The Shells Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    Quirky but classy, The Shells is a modern resort on the west coast of Phu Quoc Island, offering generously proportioned rooms with sea-views & lots of light & space…

  13. Ho Tram Boutique Beach Resort, Vietnam

    Ho Tram Beach Boutique Resort

    Just a couple of hours southeast of Saigon, Ho Tram Beach Resort is one of Vietnam’s most tasteful & charming coastal retreats. It’s romantic, elegant, refined yet understated, and blends in with the natural surrounds….

  14. Victoria Resort, Phan Thiet

    Victoria Beach Resort, Mui Ne

    One of the first luxury resorts to grace the sands of Mui Ne, Victoria Resort & Spa is still one of the best places to stay on this popular beach on Vietnam’s southeast coast. With lush tropical gardens & a long stretch of beach, Victoria is far more spacious than its competitors…

  15. Four Points Danang by Sheraton Hotels

    Four Points by Sheraton Danang | Independent Review

    On the seafront road along Danang’s long, sweeping beach, the Four Points by Sheraton is a high-rise hotel with a rooftop pool, bar and excellent views…

  16. The Grand Ho Tram Casino & Resort

    The Grand Ho Tram Resort & Casino

    Big, indulgent & exceptionally good quality, The Grand Resort & Casino marks the beginning of the transformation of the quiet & unassuming coastline of Ho Tram, into what is hoped will become Vietnam’s answer to Macau & Las Vegas….

  17. Escalade Resort, Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam

    Escalade Resort, Cam Ranh Bay

    A small-scale, affordable mid-range resort with dazzling sea views over one of the prettiest bays in Vietnam, Escalade Resort, Cam Ranh is tasteful, good value for money & great place to unwind….

  18. Premier Village Resort, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

    Premier Village Resort Phu Quoc | Independent Review

    A luxurious resort in a spectacular location comprised of large villas with private pools, two beaches & a plethora of high-end facilities. Premier Village would usually be out of my budget. But, due to unique pandemic-related circumstances, my friends & I were able to stay for a reduced rate…

  19. Thanh Kieu Resort, Phu Quoc Island

    Thanh Kieu Beach Resort, Phu Quoc Island

    The unsung hero of seafront, mid-range accommodation on Long Beach, Thanh Kieu Resort is an exceptionally lush, peaceful, and unassuming place to stay on Phu Quoc Island. It’s been my go-to resort for years…

  1. Dragons' Graveyard Coast Road, Cà Ná to Phan Rang, Vietnam

    Dragons’ Graveyard Coast Road | Cà Ná to Phan Rang

    Chiseled into the cliffside high above the sea, this stunning coast road negotiates a boulder-strewn promontory where people say dragons come to die…

  2. The Coast Road: Saigon to Hoi An & Dong Hoi

    The Coast Road: Saigon to Hoi An & Beyond

    Thanks to new coastal roads, it’s now possible to ride from Saigon to Hoi An, and beyond to Dong Hoi, following the coast all the way & avoiding the busy main artery of Highway 1 for the vast majority of the route. This is a salty, sunny, sandy & scenic road trip….

  3. Nui Chua Coast Road

    Nui Chua Coast Road | Phan Rang to Cam Ranh

    Probably the most scenic coastal route in Vietnam, this is a meandering ocean road skirting the edges of a green & rugged peninsula…

  4. The Sand Dune Highway: Mui Ne to Ca Na Coast Road

    Sand Dune Highway: Mui Ne to Ca Na Coast Road

    A short, scenic, easily navigable & rewarding road trip through desert-like landscape on excellent coast roads between Mũi Né & Cà Ná…

  5. The Hai Van Pass: Motorbike Guide

    One of the most famous roads in Vietnam, the Hai Van Pass weaves around a mountainous stretch of coastline in Central Vietnam, linking Danang & Hue

  6. Son Tra Peninsular, Danang, Vietnam

    Son Tra Peninsula, Danang | Motorbike Guide

    A rugged headland at the northern tip of Danang’s municipal beach, Son Tra offers mountains & forests, cliffs & coves, wildlife & centuries-old banyan trees, lofty mountain passes with majestic views & sandy beaches untainted by concrete high-rises….

  7. The Ocean Road: Saigon to Mui Ne, Vietnam

    The Ocean Road: Saigon to Mui Ne

    The scenic route between Saigon and Mui Ne, the Ocean Road is an easy, feel-good road trip, with a great balance of off-the-beaten-track experiences & creature comforts. Ride it in a day or linger for a week soaking up all it has to offer…

  8. Hoi An-Danang-Hue by Motorbike

    Hoi An→Danang→Hue by Motorbike: 3 Routes & Loops

    There are now four different routes between these three cities in Central Vietnam. Each route has something different to offer: choose between The Coast, The River, The Mountains, or The Tunnel…..

  9. The Twin Passes: Cổ Mã & Cả

    Historically, four great passes have divided what is now Vietnam. These occur at the four points along the coast where spurs from the Truong Son Mountain Range spread eastwards to the sea. Of these, my favourites are the ‘twin passes’….

  10. Tomb Rider: Hue to Dong Hoi on Back-Roads by motorbike, Vietnam

    Tomb Rider: Hue to Dong Hoi on Back-Roads

    Covering nearly 200km of completely empty beach, coastal back-roads lead from the old imperial capital of Hue to the beach city of Dong Hoi. Scattered with thousands of traditional-style tombs, this coastal region is rarely explored by foreign visitors…

  1. Vijaya Cham towers & citadel, Binh Dinh Province, Vietnam

    The Cham Towers & Ancient Citadel of Vijaya

    Scattered across the plains of Binh Dinh Province, the ruins of the ancient kingdom of Champa are a powerful reminder of the rich history of what is now Vietnam. Visiting the remains of the Cham towers & Vijaya citadel is a rewarding day trip from Quy Nhon….

  2. 23 Differences Travelling South to North Vietnam

    23 Differences from South to North Vietnam

    One of the most interesting aspects of travelling through Vietnam is observing & experiencing the changes that occur from one region to the next. Whether serious or superficial, significant or frivolous, I’ve jotted down some of the differences I notice when travelling south to north…

  3. The Last Emperors: Nguyễn Dynasty Sites in Hue

    Last Emperors: Nguyen Dynasty Sites in Hue

    Vietnam’s last imperial line left behind a rich legacy of cultural attractions in and around the former royal capital of Huế…

  4. Ode to a Banyan Tree

    Ode to a Banyan Tree

    Temples of the forest, banyan trees are great, natural edifices rich in cultural, spiritual & folkloric symbolism. A bridge between the human, natural & spirit worlds, banyan trees are found all over Vietnam…

  5. Slurping your noodles is good in Vietnam

    6 Reasons to Slurp Your Noodles

    Slurp and suck: this should be every traveller’s primary objective when sitting down to enjoy a bowl of one of Vietnam’s famous noodle soups. Here is my guide to why you should embrace local etiquette and leave your preconceived table manners at home….

  6. Ho Ancient Citadel, Thành Nhà Hồ, Thanh Hóa Province, Vietnam

    Ho Citadel

    Rising from the rice paddies of north-central Vietnam, the impressive ruins of this 14th century former royal capital were designated a World Heritage site in 2011, yet few foreign travellers pay a visit to Ho Citadel.

  7. First Rains: An Ode to the Monsoon in Vietnam

    First Rains: An Ode to the Monsoon

    Monsoon downpours & tropical storms are the quintessential expression of the tropics, representing the exotic & the mysterious. For me, the monsoon embodies the excitement & romance of living far from home….

  8. Pac Bo: Ho Chi Minh's Cave

    Ho Chi Minh’s Cave: Hang Pác Bó

    In the winter of 1941, Ho Chi Minh returned to Vietnam for the first time in 30 years. For several weeks he lived in Pac Bo Cave. Right on Vietnam’s northeastern frontier with China, Pac Bo is an important historical site in an enchanting location…

  9. Bell tower at the General Võ Nguyên Giáp's tomb

    The General’s Tomb | A Memory

    Sometimes referred to simply as ‘The General’, Võ Nguyên Giáp is a giant of Vietnamese history. Following his death, in 2013, millions have made the pilgrimage to his tomb in Central Vietnam, myself included…

  10. Sustainable Travel: Single-Use Plastic in Vietnam

    Sustainable Travel: Single-Use Plastic in Vietnam

    By making some simple changes to way I travel & live in Vietnam, I’m trying to reduce the amount of single-use plastic I consume. Here’s my experience….

  11. Trash in Vietnam's beauty spots

    Trash Talk: Litter in Vietnam’s Beauty Spots

    Vietnam is an extraordinarily beautiful country, but thousands of scenic areas across the nation are increasingly ruined by trash. A major catalyst for litter in beauty spots are picnickers, who neglect to clean up after themselves….

  12. Ode to the Ocean, A personal meditation on the sea

    Ode to the Ocean

    Throughout human history, the sea has been both dangerous and generous: a cause of destruction and death, but also a source of food, fun, wealth and beauty…

  13. Phuong Boi hill & forest, the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh's retreat, Vietnam

    Phương Bối Hill: The Buddhist Monk Thích Nhất Hạnh’s Retreat

    In the misty forests on the slopes of the B’lao mountains, the young Buddhist monk, Thích Nhất Hạnh, came to build a retreat in the late 1950s. Now a world-famous spiritual leader, Thich Nhat Hanh was forced to abandon the retreat in the 1960s, but the site still exists….

  14. Plants, Flowers & Trees of Vietnam

    Plants, Flowers & Trees of Vietnam

    The colours, shapes, sizes, smells & variety of flora in Vietnam is mesmerizing. In this guide I’ve compiled an illustrated index of some of the flowers, plants & trees I regularly see in Vietnam’s countryside & cities….

  15. Don't Miss the Dawn in Vietnam

    Don’t Miss the Dawn

    Dawn is the best time of day in Vietnam. Yet most travellers and expats never experience it. Wake up before sunrise and you’ll witness exquisite skies and the ‘roots’ of Vietnamese daily life. Rising early should be on everyone’s list of things to do in Vietnam….

  16. Weather Guide to Vietnam: When & Where to Go

    Vietnam Weather Guide: When & Where to Go

    Weather is an important consideration when planning a trip to Vietnam. Here’s a month-by-month guide to weather conditions across the nation, including recommendations of where to go (and where to avoid) at different times of year…

  17. Vietnam Reading List & Book Reviews

    Vietnam Reading List & Book Reviews

    A categorized reading list including personal reviews of over 50 books about Vietnam, ranging from Vietnamese authors in translation to travel writing, journalism, history, poetry, politics & more…

  1. Wild camping on the La Nga River, Vietnam

    Wild Camping on the La Nga River: A Guide

    Midway between the coast & the mountains, the La Nga River runs clean & clear with dozens of potential campsites on its banks & opportunities for wild swimming

  2. Camping Season in Southern Vietnam

    Camping Season in Southern Vietnam

    A period of ideal weather conditions for sleeping outside in the varied landscapes of the south, Camping Season lasts from December to March…

  3. Wild camping in Dalat, Vietnam

    Camping in Dalat: A Guide

    One of the best travel experiences in Vietnam’s Central Highlands is wild camping under a canopy pine trees in the misty mountains north of Dalat….

  4. Camping on Dragon Beach & the Northern Bays, Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

    Camping on Dragon Beach & the Northern Bays | Phu Quoc Island

    Sleeping on the sands of the beautiful & deserted northern beaches is a real adventure & an experience that will stay with you for a long time…

  5. Motocamping in south-central Vietnam in the dry season

    Motocamping South-Central Vietnam in the Dry Season

    One of the most rewarding & deeply satisfying travel experiences I’ve had in over a decade of travelling in Vietnam, motocamping (‘motorbike-camping’) is thrilling, challenging, fulfilling & still a fairly niche activity…

  6. New Year's Camping in the Pine Forests, Dalat, Vietnam

    New Year’s Camping in the Pine Forests

    To mark the end of 2020 (the ‘Lost Year’), my friends & I went on a wild camping trip in the pine forests of the Central Highlands: an activity that’s possible in Vietnam, even as many countries continue to endure lock-downs & social-distancing

  7. Camping the Ocean Road: Saigon to Nha Trang

    Camping the Ocean Road: Saigon to Nha Trang

    Pitch your tent under a coconut palm just metres from the surf & enjoy Vietnam’s south coast sleeping in the open air: This is my guide to camping on the beaches along the Ocean Road from Saigon to Nha Trang….

  8. Lak Tented Camp, Lak Lake, Dak Lak, Vietnam

    Lak Tented Camp | Independent Review

    With luxury safari-tents & lakeside bungalows spread over a lush hillside on the shores of Lake Lak in the Dak Lak highlands, Lak Tented Camp is an atmospheric accommodation with a deep attachment to the natural environment…

  9. Tet Lunar New Year, 2018, Vietnam

    On the Road & Under the Sky: Lunar New Year, 2018

    Lunar New Year (Tết) is a time of gathering: of family & friends; of people & parties. But this year, I undertook to spend my Tết holiday in peace & solitude: I took my motorbike, my tent & my guitar & set off for 11 days on the road & under the sky…

Popular Guides

  1. Saigon to Hanoi by motorbike: 5 Suggested Routes

    Saigon to Hanoi by Motorbike: 5 Suggested Routes

    Thinking about riding the length of Vietnam by motorbike? Here are 5 great routes between Saigon and Hanoi, each one specifically designed to suit the needs of different travellers, based on scenery and time frame among other things….

  2. Anthony Bourdain in Vietnam: All 8 Episodes Reviewed

    Anthony Bourdain in Vietnam: All 8 Episodes Reviewed

    Anthony Bourdain felt a special attachment to Vietnam. Over the course of his TV career, he filmed multiple episodes in the country. I’ve pulled together & reviewed all 8 of his Vietnam shows…

  3. Ha Giang Extreme North Motorbike Loop, northern Vietnam

    Ha Giang Extreme North Motorbike Loop

    Ha Giang, Vietnam’s northern-most province, is home to a mythical landscape of conical limestone peaks & craterous valleys. Over the years, it has gained an almost legendary status among travellers. This motorbike loop is perhaps the most thrilling road trip in the country…

  4. The Best Street Food Streets in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam

    7 Great Streets for Street Food in Saigon

    Saigon is arguably the best place to explore Vietnam’s extraordinary street food scene. The city boasts so many street food outlets that it feels like a gigantic open-air restaurant. This is my guide to 7 of the best streets for street food in Saigon…

  5. 25 of the Greatest Riding Roads in Vietnam

    25 of the Greatest Riding Roads in Vietnam

    Vietnam has some incredible riding roads: possibly some of the most scenic in the world. Based on my experience of riding around Vietnam for the last decade, I have compiled a list of what I consider some of the greatest riding roads in Vietnam…

  6. 23 of the Best Beaches in Vietnam

    23 of the Best Beaches in Southern & Central Vietnam

    With a coastline of over 3,200km & thousands of islands lying offshore, Vietnam is a great beach destination. Blue bays, hidden coves, white sands, swaying palms & dramatic cliffs, Vietnam has it all….

  7. Climbing Fansipan mountain independently, without a guide, Vietnam

    A Guide to Climbing Mount Fansipan Independently

    Known as the ‘Roof of Indochina’, Mount Fansipan is the highest mountain in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. At 3,143m (10,312ft) it’s a ‘real’ mountain. But Fansipan can be climbed independently, without a guide or porters or any specialist climbing equipment, in one day…..

  8. The Hai Van Pass: Motorbike Guide

    One of the most famous roads in Vietnam, the Hai Van Pass weaves around a mountainous stretch of coastline in Central Vietnam, linking Danang & Hue

  9. Plants, Flowers & Trees of Vietnam

    Plants, Flowers & Trees of Vietnam

    The colours, shapes, sizes, smells & variety of flora in Vietnam is mesmerizing. In this guide I’ve compiled an illustrated index of some of the flowers, plants & trees I regularly see in Vietnam’s countryside & cities….

  10. Phu Quoc's Beaches, Vietnam

    Phu Quoc’s Beaches: A Guide

    A halo of sand encompasses this green & forested island in the Gulf of Thailand. But Phu Quoc is currently undergoing major development, so now is the time to visit its beaches, before it’s too late (in some cases, it already is)…

  11. The Ho Chi Minh Road, Vietnam

    Ho Chi Minh Road: Motorbike Guide

    Stretching almost 2,000km along the mountainous spine of Vietnam, the Ho Chi Minh Road is fast becoming famous as one of the finest motorbike rides in Asia. Now fully paved from Saigon all the way to Hanoi, this is my updated and extended guide to the entire Ho Chi Minh Road….

Recently Published & Updated

  1. Farewell to my neighbourhood: Ward 25, Binh Thanh District, Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

    Farewell My Neighbourhood

    After nearly 9 years, I’m leaving my neighbourhood in Saigon’s Binh Thanh District, where I have many memories of many people, places & experiences…

  2. Year of the Cat Q&A with the Vietnam Coracle Team

    Year of the Cat: Q&A with the Coracle Team

    To celebrate the Lunar New Year, I put several questions to all members of the Vietnam Coracle team to find out their thoughts about Vietnam in the Year of the Cat…

  3. Soc Trang to Con Dao Express Ferry, Vietnam

    Soc Trang→Con Dao Express Ferry

    The fastest, cheapest & most reliable boat connection from the mainland to the islands, the Sóc Trăng→Côn Đảo ferry takes just 2 hours…

  4. Vietnam Coracle 2022 End of Year Review

    2022: Year-End Review

    I reflect on a significant year, focusing on post-pandemic travel and life in Vietnam…

  5. Timothe Beach Apartments, Vịnh Hòa, Phú Yên, Review

    Timothe Beach Apartments | Independent Review

    On a secluded, sweeping bay on the south-central coast, Timothe Beach Apartments is a tropical paradise at affordable, mid-range prices…

  6. Travel Fitness

    Travel Fitness

    Travellers often neglect their fitness. I practice exercise routines, methods & activities that are suitable for travel & help to maintain my fitness while on the road…

  7. The Golden Loop, Motorbike Guide, Central Vietnam

    The Golden Loop | Motorbike Guide

    Nowhere in Vietnam is there such variety of landscape & richness of culture as in the central provinces, a region best explored by motorbike…

  8. The Last Emperors: Nguyễn Dynasty Sites in Hue

    Last Emperors: Nguyen Dynasty Sites in Hue

    Vietnam’s last imperial line left behind a rich legacy of cultural attractions in and around the former royal capital of Huế…

  9. The Odes: A Collection

    The Odes | A Collection

    Over the years, I’ve written ‘odes’ in praise of aspects of Vietnam: from natural phenomena to types of food to specific places & personalities…

  10. Noodle Street: Nguyễn Qúy Đức, An Phú, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

    Noodle Street: Nguyễn Qúy Đức, District 2

    A wide variety of noodle dishes from across Vietnam all within a few steps of each other on a tree-lined street in District 2, Ho Chi Minh City…

  11. Edible flowers in Vietnamese Cuisine

    Edible Flowers in Vietnamese Cuisine

    Vietnamese cuisine utilizes edible flowers in myriad ways. Flowers are healthy and aromatic, adding colour, flavour and texture to many dishes…

  12. Quy Nhon Food Guide

    Quy Nhon Food Guide

    An up-and-coming beach city on the south-central coast, Quy Nhon has a vibrant dining scene, featuring fresh seafood & a host of local specialities…

  13. Camping Season in Southern Vietnam

    Camping Season in Southern Vietnam

    A period of ideal weather conditions for sleeping outside in the varied landscapes of the south, Camping Season lasts from December to March…

  14. Guide to expenses for a motorbike road trip in Vietnam

    Expenses for a Motorbike Road Trip in Vietnam

    A guide to essential daily costs & how much to budget for your road trip in Vietnam…

  15. Hiking the Con Dao Islands

    Hiking the Con Dao Islands

    One of the most pristine natural environments in Vietnam, several hiking trails traverse the Con Dao Islands offering sensational views…

The Vietnam Coracle Map

All my content on one map! Zoom in, select a pin & click the link in the description to go directly to that page.