Vietnam to Cambodia by Boat
An express boat service from Châu Đốc, in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, across the international border to Phnom Penh, the Cambodian capital…
Con Dao: Boat Trips to Outlying Islands
The smaller islands in the archipelago can be reached by speedboat, offering remote beaches, hiking, snorkeling & swimming…
Into the Wild Hike & Camp | Phu Quoc Island
A short, rewarding hike through thick jungle & down steep wooden ladders to a remote beach…
Can Tho→Con Dao Express Ferry
A fast ferry route connecting the largest city in the Mekong Delta with Con Son Island in the Con Dao Archipelago…
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…
Vung Tau→Con Dao Express Ferry
Using modern fast ferries, this sea crossing to the magical Côn Đảo Islands is a great alternative to flying for travellers who value an experience over convenience…
Dam Tre Bay | Con Son Island
Turquoise water & abundant coral rimmed by forested hills & dramatic cliffs, Đầm Tre is one of Vietnam’s most pristine, remote & utterly magical bays…
The Can Gio→Can Giuoc Car Ferry
This ferry enables travellers with their own wheels to bypass Saigon completely when travelling between the southeast coast & the Mekong Delta…
Núi Đá Bạc Mountain Trek | Phu Quoc Island
Offering stupendous views, this is a fun & rewarding hike to the top of one of the jungle-clad escarpments lining Phu Quoc’s eastern flank…
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…
Trekking to Đỉnh Tiên Sơn Peak | Phu Quoc Island
Ascending steeply through thick rainforest, a pathway leads to a nest of giant boulders atop Đỉnh Tiên Sơn, from where there are stunning 180-degree views…
Spring Hopping Loop | Phu Quoc Island
Several refreshing streams run cool & clear off the spine of jungled mountains along Phu Quoc Island’s eastern flank, all linked by quiet back-roads…
Vung Tau | City by the Sea
An illustrated travelogue-cum-guide to Vung Tau intended to inspire a trip to this rejuvenated city by the sea…
Film: Saigon, My Saigon [Redux]
Revisiting my short film of a day in the life of my local neighbourhood in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), where I’ve tried to capture the rhythm of life over 24 hours in the rainy season
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….
The Can Gio→Vung Tau Car Ferry
A great boon to travellers, this new ferry connects two of the most popular destinations near Ho Chi Minh City: Can Gio mangrove forest and Vung Tau beach…
Saigon Waterbus: Guide & Itinerary
The Saigon Waterbus should be near the top of every visitor’s itinerary for Ho Chi Minh City. As a way of seeing the city’s skyline, of experiencing its many different neighbourhoods & for sheer value for money, the Saigon Waterbus is practically unbeatable…
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….
Beach Bus: Saigon↔Rach Gia Limousine | Passengers & Motorbikes
Thien Thanh Limousine runs luxury buses between Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) & Rach Gia in the Mekong Delta, gateway to Vietnam’s islands in the Gulf of Thailand. This is a great service for passengers & motorbikes…
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…
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….
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…
Sketches of Saigon: 5 Scenes
Over the course of a week, I sat & wrote for half an hour on five separate occasions at five random locations in Saigon, and described the scenes as they appeared to me, in the hope of capturing something of the spirit of the city….
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…
The Southern Dry Season: Travel Guide
A period of glorious, warm, sunny weather in the lower regions of Vietnam, the southern dry season lasts from November to May. Here are some of the best places to travel & stay during this time of year.
Exploring Saigon’s Railway Tracks: A Guide
Lined with intriguing architecture, temples, shrines, pagodas, fruit trees, flowers, cafes, casual dining & other such urban miscellanea, exploring the lanes alongside Saigon’s railway tracks, on foot or on two wheels, is a fascinating experience….
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…
Núi Dinh Mountain & Springs
Some 90 minutes from Saigon, Núi Dinh Mountain is an unexpected swell of high ground rising above flat floodplains. The mountain offers a peaceful retreat into trees & streams on its rocky slopes, upon which perch dozens of temples & pagodas….
The Floating Forest of Long An
Only 100km west of Ho Chi Minh City, Tan Lap Floating Forest is an enchanted patch of wetland where cajeput trees rise from the black, swampy waters, creating beguiling corridors through which canoes glide and raised walkways wind….
Minera Binh Chau Hot Springs Resort & Spa
Just a couple hours’ drive from Saigon, Binh Chau Hot Springs Resort & Spa has improved it’s facilities and aesthetics in recent years: it’s now a lush, relaxing and satisfying retreat from the city….
Ha Tien: Jewel of the Mekong Delta
The most attractive place to be in Vietnam’s Mekong region, Ha Tien’s irresistible combination of bustling markets, languid backstreets, crumbling shophouses, forested hills, delicious food & local temples, makes it the ‘Jewel of the Delta’….
La Nga River & Thac Ba Waterfall
The La Nga River and Thac Ba Waterfall offer freshwater bathing, lush jungle, mountain scenery and opportunities for wild camping, all within a few hours’ drive of Saigon. It’s a great inland escape for city-dwellers with their own wheels….
Saigon to Vung Tau by Ferry Boat
Taking the boat between Saigon & Vung Tau is one of Vietnam’s most underrated journeys. It’s a fascinating voyage from downtown Saigon, along several rivers, and across open sea to Vung Tau. New, comfortable & more reliable boats now ply this route…
Vung Bau Beach: Go Now
Vung Bau beach is one of the last vestiges of ‘old’ Phu Quoc. Located in the northwest of the island, the largely undeveloped sands are lapped by a sapphire-coloured sea, a reminder of what Phu Quoc’s western shore was once like…
Cam Ranh Bay: Cam Lap Promontory
Cam Lap Promontory is one of those rare places that’s easily accessible yet largely undeveloped and utterly beautiful. It’s the kind of place you fall in love with, and one that really does deserve the overused epithet of ‘hidden gem’….
Ho Tram & Ho Coc Beaches
Just 120km from the city, Ho Tram & Ho Coc are by far the best beaches within easy reach of Saigon. Forget Vung Tau, Long Hai & Can Gio, this is where you should head for sun, sea & sand when you don’t have time to go to Mui Ne or Phu Quoc.
VIDEO: Saigon, My Saigon
My Saigon is not the high-rises or attractions of downtown. My Saigon is the local neighbourhood where I live – the alleyways, the market, and the people who inhabit it. In this film I’ve tried to capture the rhythm of daily life over 24 hours on a rainy season day in the area I live in…
VIDEO: The Saigon River
Exploring the waterway that flows through my adopted home: this is my film of the Saigon River…
The Saigon River: A Guide
Many cities are closely associated with a major waterway that runs through them: Saigon has the Saigon River. Currently, the city is in the process rediscovering and redeveloping its river. This is my personal reflection & guide to the Saigon River…
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….
Southern Islands: Con Dao or Phu Quoc?
Con Dao and Phu Quoc islands are the two most alluring beach destinations in Vietnam. But these two southern islands are very different in character, and therefore appeal to different types of travellers. As most visitors or expats only have time to go to one, which island should you choose?
Saigon’s Parks & Open Spaces
Saigon might be known as a burgeoning city full of motorbikes and exhaust fumes, but it still has a great many green spaces in which to escape the heat, noise and pollution. From lush gardens dating from French colonial times to sleek, modern, waterfront promenades, here are Saigon’s best parks and open spaces…
Phu Quoc Island: Beach Guide
This guide covers all 21 beaches on Phu Quoc Island, including tips for accommodation, food, drink & things to see & do on each one of them…
Dalat’s Waterfalls: A Guide
Dalat is located in Lâm Đồng Province, a mountainous region that boasts lots of waterfalls. I visited them all, in order to compile this list & guide to the waterfalls of Dalat & the surrounding area. Many of the falls are truly spectacular, while some are ruined by tourist development…
Phu Quoc Island by Boat
Taking the boat between the Mekong Delta & Phu Quoc Island is fun, cheap, convenient & relatively hassle-free. A huge increase in fast boats & car ferries operating on several routes, means it’s now easier than ever to reach Phu Quoc Island by sea….
Con Dao Islands on a Budget
Despite several high-profile luxury developments, travel to the Con Dao Islands needn’t be too expensive. Budget travellers & backpackers can still enjoy this beautiful archipelago by taking certain steps. This is my guide to how to keep the cost of visiting one of Vietnam’s most enchanting destinations to a minimum.
TOP 5: Things To Do in Saigon
Saigon is a fantastic city, but it’s not one that’s filled with typical tourist attractions. To get the most out of this city, leave the so-called ‘must-see’ sights behind, and follow my Top 5 Things to Do in Saigon.
11 Fresh Markets in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City)
Local markets exist in another dimension to the rest of the city. Vibrant, bustling, fresh & organized, there’s magic in these markets…
Walking Saigon’s Alleyways
Between all the busy main roads, Saigon is riddled with narrow alleyways, which are quiet, cool, charming and great for walking. Here are some of my favourite areas in the city for alley walks….
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….
13 Public Swimming Pools in Saigon
If you’re not lucky enough to be staying at one of the smarter hotels with a pool, or if you’re an expat looking to escape the heat & clamour of the city, Saigon has plenty of good & inexpensive public swimming pools to choose from…
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.
Con Dao Islands: Travel Guide
With wild & beautiful beaches, jungle-covered peaks & a fascinating but tragic history, the Côn Đảo Islands is a remarkable destination…