Breathtaking Ha Long Bay and Countering Scams in Hanoi (12th Day of...

Breathtaking Ha Long Bay and Countering Scams in Hanoi (12th Day of Indochina Backpack Trip)


“Dude, wake up! we are going to be late!” – unable to wake up from bed, still a bit drunk from yesterday’s beer (and funny gay encounters)


Rushed to a nearby food stall and do our usual peace sign. Ordered 2 bowls of pho and gulp down as fast as we can.

Breakfast – done, in an elegant way… sort of.

Depart to Ha Long Bay

After hustling and rushing, we are finally on the tour bus. After picking up few more tourists from different hotels, we departed for to Ha Long bay.

The bus ride takes 4 hours per way. Still feeling drunk from yesterday, I put on my iPod and doze to sleep.


Half way, we stopped at stopover for toilet break and for stretches.

“I needed some sugar, and lotsa water” I said. So I bought fruits.


The mini-sized pineapple is standard size here in Vietnam. Smaller than my palm size, it’s a perfect snack for times like these.

If any Vietnamese who came Malaysia, they will be surprised to see the standard size of our pineapple, lol.


Hello from Ha Long Bay, Hanoi!

Ha Long Bay (下龙弯)

Breathtaking scenery.

We took a boat and head to the fishing village. The whole trip takes 5 hours.. including lunch break in between. The rests are photos… the beauty of these islands are indescribable, and laziness to write about this plays a big part too.. hehe.

Enjoy the photos. (for more photos, go Google yourself hahahah)





Trip back Hanoi

…… another freaking 4 hours bus ride. If you look at my ass now, it’s flat… and looks like flower… it’s also known as 屁股开花 (扁扁的花)


Dropping us at middle of busy street

What the fuck, the bus driver simply drop us in the middle of busy street. Luckily we are used to getting lost – if not we will cry like 5 years old girl who lost her daddy.

As usual, drivers rushed to the door and ask “where you go? where you go?” and offer a ride for a price.

A cyclo driver approached us, asked where we going. “Hang Manh” we said, and he says “ok”.

“How much?” we asked.

“Go there first” he says.

This is another scam tactic where they send you to your hotel first, then ask for ridiculous price. You’ve already used his service so there’s no way you can negotiate with him anymore.

Neh neh you cannot catch me.

How to counter scam

The best way to counter this scam is to ask for price first.. before even riding on his bicycle.

“How much?” we insisted the price.

“100k” he says.

“No!” we walked away. Act like we’re not interested because of the sky high price.

FYI, taxi ride from that spot to our place is 30k (learned from clubbing night – but we still payed 53k because the meter jumped, that’s another story)

“How much you want to pay?” he asked us.

According to Lonely Planet guide, cyclo is 50% cheaper than taxi. So I offered him 15k dong. That’s the max I will pay for a ride back to hotel.

He keep acting stupid, “50k? 50k? 50k?”

Fuck that. We decided to walk. My parents gave me a pair of legs to walk, not to sit on your over priced cyclo!


Lucky encounters

By walking back to our hotel, we found many of interesting market – and LOTS OF LENG LUI AHHHHHHH. We are coming back tomorrow night.

This is the first time we feel happy getting lost.. and we wish to get lost longer so we keep stumbling new places (with many leng lui to wash eye)

Ah, heaven. Our eyes are sticky wet wet. We both were quiet… very quiet.. quietly observing pretty girls… looking at short shirt pretty girls who is sitting in a short chair…

We remained quiet, until we found our hotel.


Look at my happy face! I have a whole pizza by my own!

We so hungry we can eat a cow

Returning to Gecko restaurant… we immediately ordered beer before even sitting down.

“Give us menu, we want pizza!”

We ordered 2 king sized pizza for each of us, paying 197,000 dong (RM30 each)… but hor, since we are frequent customer we ended up getting 40% discount for our pizzas. Lovely.


Feeling unsatisfied, and a bit of daring between Shannon and me, we ordered another beer and another bowl of pastas… to complete our dinner.

Where am I today?

Map picture