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Janaline's World Journey “To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.”

Road tripping on my mototbike!!

VIETNAM | Monday, 25 August 2008 | Views [974]

The landscape of Vietnam just before Can Tien National park

The landscape of Vietnam just before Can Tien National park

Road tripping with my motorbike to destinations outside of Saigon was one of my hobbies while living there.

 One long weekend I drove up to Cat Tien national park north of Saigon.  It was supposed to be a 4-hour drive on my motorbike, but after about 1 hour it started raining. Yes monsoon season started and it brought down buckets of rain. At times it rained so hard that I had to pull of to the side of the road because I could not see anything in front of me. Luckily along the whole road they have these small café’s with hammocks where you can sit and relax and wait for the rain to ease a bit. 

There were times that the water came up to my calves while I was driving. Its times like these where you just pray that your motorbike will not die right now because there will be no way of starting it up again it that rain. The whole drive took me about 7hours and I was soaked through to the bone by the time I got to the National park.

I had a lovely relaxing time walking around in the jungles of Cat Tien. I must admit I saw mostly butterflies, insects and deer on our night rides. The staff at the park is very friendly and make you feel welcome. We did a hiking trail up to Crocodile Swamp where we rowed out on the lake. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see any crocodiles, only a couple of leaches that made their way into our socks while walking in the jungle. 



The next trip we packed our swimming costumes and hit the road out to Mui Ne. It’s a peaceful long stretch of white beach with swaying palm trees and a relaxed atmosphere. It’s a welcome change to the chaotic pace of Saigon. You can relax on the beach with a cocktail and at night watch the sunset from a hammock at the pub.

Mui Ne is famous for its enormous sand dunes. While walking around on the dunes you can’t believe there is an ocean just on the other side. It feels as if you are in a desert separated from civilisation.  A must do is sand-sledding!! Two little boys followed us around on our walk carrying with them big plastic sheets. You then pay them something small and get to slide down these huge sand dunes. It’s a whole lot of fun and you end up doing it a couple of times!!

There is also what the locals call the fairy spring. It’s a patch of dunes hidden between the trees with very interesting sand formations formed by the rain or stream that flows through it.

Its an ideal place for a weekend get away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Tags: cat tien, janaline smalman, motorbike, national park, saigon, travel, vietnam


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