Visiting Po Fook Hill, the 10,000 Buddha Monastery, and the hills around Pai Tau Village
Sha Tin is not only great for immature puns (I Sha Tin your shoe), it also has some worthwhile attractions. You can check out the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, or the the oldest walled village Tai Wai, there’s also the horse racing track, the well maintained Sha Tin Park with its gardens and grandstand, and there are plenty of villages that have a charm that you won’t get in the densely populated downtown. One of these is Pai Tau village.
I’ll admit, I’m a little confused about Korea’s market scene. Gwangjang Market (광장시장) is located in what I believe is the oldest market building in Korea. It opened in 1905, when it was called Dongdaemun Market, which was the name of an older market that was destroyed in the Korean War and rebuilt in 1959. Meanwhile, Namdaemun Market was around since like 1414, but the Japanese took control of it and it was eventually burnt to the ground… a few times. Gwangjang actually was created because of the Japanese take-over of Namdaemun Market. Several Korean investors and business men didn’t like the fact that their largest market was controlled by the Japanese, so they spent a whopping 100,000 Won (like $88) and bought some land to build what is now the 10 acre Gwangjang Market.
The first time I took Chopper Suey (my Chinese-made American cruiser bike) on a road trip, was to the sexy hills of Dalat. As we pulled into town, surrounded by pines and fresh cool air, I knew I was going to love the place.
Formerly a retreat town for the French, today Dalat is filled with a lot of very touristy attractions — some of them too touristy to stomach. However, this self-guided walking tour will show you exactly what’s worth seeing. You’ll get a bit of history, some culture, a glimpse into the fertility of the area, and some of that Dalat tackiness that’s worthy of a selfie or two.
A Guide and Itinerary for 48 hours in Can Tho
Can Tho (pronounced ‘can tuh’) is the largest city in the Mekong Delta area. The area’s uniqueness makes it one of my favorite places in the country. Thailand and the Philippines may have better beaches than Vietnam, Laos has a peacefulness that is difficult to find in Vietnam, Myanmar has the friendliest people, but none of those places have the Mekong Delta.
This guide and itinerary will give you step-by-step directions to making the most out of your 2 days in Can Tho.
A lot of people are quick to write-off Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown.
Why would I go to Chinatown in Vietnam?
Those same people are probably staying in the backpacker district. In Vietnamese, this area is called Khu Tây Balô, which basically means Westerner Backpack District. It’s the equivalent to Chinatown but for backpacking westerners.
In Vietnamese, the Chinatown area is called Cho Lon, which means great market. This is because it’s the home to the largest market in Saigon, Binh Tay. Cho Lon sort of straddles district 5 and 6. It was once its own city, settled by the Hoa people in 1778. Eventually, Saigon expanded and the two cities merged.
I seriously love Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown, so I hope you take the time to visit it, and I hope this walking tour helps you appreciate this unique area of Saigon.
Tourist Day in Saigon
This self-guided walking tour covers the main tourist attractions in Saigon. The actual walking time is only about 90 minutes, but it should take you the better part of a day with the all the stops. There are 4 meals on the tour, as well as plenty of opportunities for coffee breaks.
Saigon is hot and the sidewalks are broken, cluttered, or non-existent. Be careful and take breaks regularly, especially if you are doing this in the hotter times of the year (March-June).
Emei Mountain: Why is it so Sacred?
As far as sacred mountains go in China, Emei is one of the most important. In fact, it’s the largest of the 4 Sacred Mountains of Buddhism in China. Emei means high and lofty. At 3099 meters, it’s an appropriate name. You’ll sometimes see the name Emeishan or Emei Shan (峨眉山) – shan simply means mountain. The proper pronunciation of Emei is something like uh-may, as in uh-mazing! The mountain combines nature and culture with its many temples and monasteries that dot the mountain-side. Even if you aren’t a Buddhist, you’ll enjoy their mystical beauty.
Wenshu Monastery (文殊院 – Wen Shu Yuan) is the best preserved ancient monastery in Chengdu. It’s the home to 80 monks, and is frequently visited by both tourists and locals. The locals come to relax in the gardens, sip tea at the tea house, or worship at one of the many sacred halls. Tourist often come for the amazing stone and wood architecture, or to peruse the art and relics that can be found throughout the grounds. Wenshu monastery is a great way to spend a couple hours if you are in Chengdu.
We are seasoned travelers. We’ve been to over 30 countries. We’ve taken beat-up buses through dangerous switchbacks. We’ve shared rooms with snakes, rats, and who knows what else. We’ve spewed liquid out of both ends in both hemispheres. And to be honest, I kind of like that aspect of travel. Unpredictability makes life exciting.
And then there’s India.
After booking a flight for a week-long trip to Taiwan, we started researching things to do. Our list ended up looking like a restaurant menu. For us, food is almost always the highlight of a good trip, but in Taiwan the possibilities overwhelmed us. I was more excited about a Taipei night market, than I was Ankor Wat or Machu Picchu. We decided to stay in Taipei for the whole week, and basically live like a local – a local that’s on the highway to obesity.