December Tour

Cyclists Witness Floods Aftermath

Orientation

Somehow gray, rainy skies are appropriate in Hanoi many places you can turnaround and feel like you are in Russia, or perhaps North Korea. The Soviet-inspired tomb of Ho Chi Minh is one such place. However, this hazy drizzle was remnant of something acutely catastrophic the ninth in continual series of storms that had lashed and drenched Central Vietnam in the last month with more water and flooding than had been seen in over a century. Was our tour already doomed?

Itinerary (click below or at right)

This 16-day bicycling tour by twelve Americans and Canadians involved traveling the length of Vietnam, from Hanoi to Saigon, with plenty of time to stop and see the uniqueness of the cities and people along the way. Although cyclists ranged in ability from beginner to champion racer, all found a way to explore Vietnam at their own pace and in the best way possible -- as most locals do -- on two wheels.

This diary was written and updated each day during the trip as it happened during the tour according to the perspective of the author who makes no claims of accuracy to the events happening as described herein.

Halong Bay

Hundreds of limestone peaks soar from the emerald waters of this World Heritage site. We explored the calm waters, caves,and deserted beach coves over three days by kayak.

Hanoi

The academic, cultural, political and former Capitol of French Colonial Indochine. Usually a grey, misty climate keeps everyone bundled up.

Hue

The Imperial Capital of Vietnam where Emperors built majestic tombs and a citadel on the banks of the Perfume River. It was wet and our bikes late so we rented some local one-speeds.

Hoi An & to Nha Trang

An ancient Japanese trading port, Hoi An retains unique wooden architecture, Chinese temples and excellent cuisine that makes it everyones favorite stop.

Nha Trang

The "Waikiki of Vietnam." What to do in a beach town with no sun? We headed off on bike to explore the wide boulevards, ice cream shops and back alleys.

Dalat & Saigon

A former French Hillstation, Dalat lies high up in the central highlands. The high altitude and clear skies made for great cycling around the lakes, villas and countryside of this unique city.

Photographs by VeloAsia 1999 [More Photos]


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