December 29, 2013

Notre-Dame Cathedral . Ho Chi Minh

After the Saigon Central Post Office, we just need to walk straight and cross a road, until we reach another attraction in Ho Chi Minh - Notre-Dame Cathedral or Notre-Dame Basilica to be exact (you can actually started to capture the church from the post office). We reached there on a wrong timing as they were closing the gate during lunch hour; heard that the interior design will make you jaw drop with all the beautiful elements in it. People always say there are nothing much to be explored in Ho Chi Minh, well I think it isn't true as I find all the buildings in the city tell you different stories and I'm kind of explorer than a shopper. Bla bla bla. Over here, we spotted another couple did their wedding photo shooting in front of the red bricks and metal gates. 

Ben Nghe, tp. Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam.

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Have you started your shopping spree?

December 28, 2013

Saigon Central Post Office . Ho Chi Minh

I wonder when can I complete my Ho Chi Minh post, it seems like I still have few posts to update; I'll just skip all the food post in Ho Chi Minh and only focus on le attractions. Before the trip, I did some simple research, and jotted down few must-go-attraction.
Here is it - Saigon Central Post Office in the downtown of HCM city. Love the first photo to the max as if there is no tree block the view in the middle. Argh, why no one chop the tree down? Laugh. The building is not so Vietnam-feel because of its neoclassical architectural style and it was constructed when Vietnam is part of the French Indochina in the early 20th century. It was actually designed and constructed by Gustave Eiffel (he is best-known for the world-famous Eiffel Tower and Statue of Liberty); when I knew about this, I told the gang that even how rush is our trip, I must also go there to pay a visit. I made it at last!
If I didn't tell you this is just a post office, you will thought it was a London-style train station from the exterior. This is the first time in my life to visit such a huge post office; even the interior looks delicacy enough with all the tiny details. They hang Ho Chi Minh's portrait in the middle of the post office. If you did not have enough shopping on the souvenirs, here you have another spot to grab it but the price is slightly higher. You will see some partitions on your left and right once you step inside the post office; on your left you can actually make international call by using their phone, whereas on your right they turn it into the ATM machines. Brilliant idea.
To send some postcards from here was my objective, spent half hour sitting at the bench to finish them. I sent out 8 postcards, all my friends got it but sadly mine one lost its way back to my home. My collection isn't complete without this. How sad! If you happen to be here someday, please send me one postcard, laugh. Luckily I bought one set of postcards for collection, this little bit console my lost.
The 2 statues being ignored by most of the visitors which located on the left and right of the post office. The message that wanted to bring out from these statue is the peace after the war. I really didn't saw much people walk over here to snap one or two. 
The beauteous of the post office make it a hot spot for wedding photo shooting. Look at the lovely couple, how sweet. 
Quote of the day: When God closes a door, He opens a window.

2 Cong xa Paris, Ben Nghe, tp. Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam.

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Three days more to start my new life completely.

December 15, 2013

Cu Chi Tunnel . Ho Chi Minh

Today, I'm gonna bring you guys to have a short tour to Cu Chi Tunnel, a place that you wouldn't miss when you are in Ho Chi Minh. It will be better if you follow a tour to Cu Chi Tunnel, so that you can understand their history more; we picked the Cu Chi Tunnel half day tour from our hotel, the receptionist help us to arrange tour guide. If the hotel you stay did not provide any tour, you can look for The Sinh Tourist, heard that their service is quite good. Off you go, just sharing a little bit photos here:
So our tour guide - Philip came to our hotel around 8.30am, this is the smallest group he ever brought to Cu Chi Tunnel, only 12 people in a van; it was quite good tho, sometimes it's quite troublesome to travel in big group. Before off to our destination, he brought us to Handicapped Handicraft in case we need to grab some souvenirs. They are talented enough to use only egg shells to come out with those gorgeous items, that's why the price is a little bit higher compare to those you can get in night market. 
Once we reached Cu Chi Tunnel, we were first went to have a short lecture on Vietnam history, actually it isn't short tho, took us 45 minutes seating in a 'lecture hall' and watch the newsreel. Off to the huge jungle and Philip explained to us how the army used to make the trap, how to build their houses and etc. The most exciting moment was we get to fire few bullets on real gun, and we chose AK47! It was good one! The tour ended with tapioca as our nosh, this is the only food they had during the war period. 

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Only Running Man have the cure.

Vincom Center . Ho Chi Minh

When girls go for a trip, shopping is always a yay no matter how tired is their trip. Over here in Ho Chi Minh City, they don't really have much malls, some of the malls are more to wholesale store, the price isn't cheap tho. 
Went to Vincom Center on our first day, some of the branded store such as Longchamp, Calvin Klein and etc offer cheaper price than in Malaysia; still we were not here for shopping. Realized that there are so many cafe and bakery shop in their mall, and we went there for second time for their Fanny Ice Cream, stay tuned for the post. Bought a bottle of Royal Pudding in Paris Baguette, was attracted by the bottle at first and brought the bottle back here as a souvenir of mine. Yup, the only thing I got myself there.

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How are you?

December 7, 2013

Trung Nguyen Coffee . Ho Chi Minh

When you travel to Ho Chi Minh city, one thing that you couldn't afford to miss is their local Vietnamese coffee. It's not hard to find a coffee shop in Ho Chi Minh, but you will have hard time on which one you should go. There are some famous coffee shops featured by bloggers and forum-ers; we just went to the nearest coffee shop that located 2 mins walking distance from our Mayflower Hotel.
Trung Nguyen Coffee is quite famous in Ho Chi Minh (I guess, since we saw lot of branches for Trung Nguyen Coffee), my cousin did asked me to buy some coffee packets from here as well. Went there on our first day and last day, didn't pick other coffee shop on our last day as we really like their service, it's superb. Even though we might have communication problem (only few of them can understand English), they trying hard to serve us and give us the best coffee experience over here. 
Trung Nguyen Coffee implements order-and-pay-upfront before you grab you seat, a number will be assigned to you and they will serve you your order once it is done. Here, they have more comfortable seats at 1st floor and a cup of bottomless water (I guess this is some kind of tea, doesn't taste like water at all) will be served to you.
Mother Land Coffee . VND 50,000
I tried their signature coffee on the first day, this is what I ordered on the last day. It share the same portion like espresso coffee, from this portion, I can imagine how bitter it will be before I started my first sip on it. I'm right on the bitterness of this coffee, end up I poured the whole pack of sugar in it so that I can finished it off. I prefer espresso more btw.
Break Through . VND 81,000
Here comes the signature iced coffee in the shop, when they first served this up, we totally had no idea how to make an iced coffee, never seen this is Malaysia pun. Normally, in other restaurant that we went during the trip, they straight away served the ready iced coffee to us, but here they let us try to make our iced coffee by own-self. They just served a glass of ice and a 2 layer cup (my first thought), then the friendly waitress came and helped us on how to make our own iced coffee. It was so fun to 'play' with the filter but it required 10-15 mins until the coffee is ready. Anyway, good coffee worth the wait. We looked like a pro on making this coffee during the second visit. I even bought a filter and coffee powder but didn't try it out yet at home. 
When they served you the cup, they already placed sufficient coffee powder in filter chamber, a filter press is to flatten the coffee powder before the hot water being poured inside. The coffee will slowly drip through the holding tray and mixed with the condensed milk that already poured in the cup. You may need to grit the bottom of holding tray by using a spoon in order to accelerate the dripping process. Once the dripping process is done, take the filter chamber off the cup and stir the coffee so that coffee mixed well with the condensed milk. Pour the coffee into the glass of ice that was prepared earlier; if you like thicker coffee, you need to drink off the water inside the glass. Ta-dah! Our iced coffee is done. 
Was not really a coffee lover while I'm in Malaysia, but became a decent coffee lover in Ho Chi Minh; really like the thick coffee (because they mixed with condensed milk mah) and we had it almost every meals. Stay tuned for more posts. 

82-84, Bui Thi Xuan, P. Ben Tanh, District 1, Ho Chi Minh.


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A revolution is needed for up coming year.

December 3, 2013

from my eyes . Vietnam

December, please be good to me. I never have this kind of quote until today, and I really mean it and need it. Please! I'm gonna start posting about my Vietnam trip and this is like a prologue before I really go into it in details. Didn't really capture a lot of photos during the trip, maybe I was just too tired or the weather kind of hot; so my mode was like: snap-and-go. Let's get started with things I saw in Vietnam, I just pick some to share here, enjoy...
Just a short one. We might have communication constrain during the trip as most of the Vietnamese couldn't talk fluently/understand English, yet they trying hard to help us in ordering food, pointing us the right way to go and etc. I might go back again, still didn't have enough time to unveil every pretty little thing over there. Oh yeah, in case you don't know, Vietnam is in the list for Top 10 Safest Asian Countries for Female Traveler [link], if you girls plan to have a solo travel, you can refer to this list. Till then for next update.

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I'm finished with fins.