Thursday, June 13, 2013

Vietnam holiday by bicycle

What better way to truly get to know a country, than to mix with its people and its landscape? It is one thing to observe a country through the windows of a tour coach or train, but for the real experience you have to use all your senses and cycle tours allow you to do this.

By getting out there on two wheels, seeing and hearing the countryside and villages and by meeting the people, stopping at a roadside snack shop for a bowl of noodles or a cold fruit drink, by smelling the scents of the countryside (good and not so good), and by sleeping in simple but comfortable accommodation you can get a real impression of the country.

Vietnam is an ideal cycle touring country. You can get away from the cities and explore the rich countryside with its green jungles, rich rice paddies and mountain areas. Or you can explore Vietnam's long coast with its beautiful white beaches. And at the same time you will pass reminders of Vietnam's long history: ancient trading ports, French architecture from the colonial times, evidence of Vietnam's troubled past in the many war museums and signs of its emergence into the peace of modern times.

The more energetic can tour the mountain areas and meet and speak to the local minority people in these areas - perhaps share a simple meal with them. For the less energetic, there are shore areas and the lowlands.

Favourite tours include the mountain area close to the Chinese border, home to most of Vietnam's minority people, the H'mong, Dzao, Giay, Tay, Thai etc. Interesting villages, fascinating markets and friendly people await your arrival.
This area includes Ba Be National Park, home of Vietnam's largest lake and an important biodiversity preservation centre.

In the far south of Vietnam lies the Mekong delta , another ideal area for cycling tours. This area is less hilly than some and so makes for a more leisurely tour. You can wind your way through the rice fields, along canal banks and visit the floating markets.

In the central coastal area, you can explore the many beaches and you must visit the ancient World Heritage Site port of Hoi An. In the 1st century AD, it was the largest port in SE Asia and in the 16th and 17th century, the most important. Today, it is a small city of great interest and still a centre of the Vietnam silk trade.

Or you can even combine all these, and more, into a long cycling trip extending the length of Vietnam from The Mekong Delta in the south, through Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon), then north along the coastal route stopping to explore Hue, the Imperial capital until 1945 which has its own version of a forbidden city. From here make a side trip to Pu Luong Nature Reserve, then head north again towards Hanoi to explore this captivating city. If your legs can still take it, continue north to the minority areas in the far north. Or, of course, you can start in the north and head south!

These are just a few suggestions of the many options to the traveller on two wheels. You can visit Indochina Odyssey Tours to get more information about this.

Below is a tour package maybe useful for your trip to Vietnam.vietnam holiday by bicycle

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