The mysterious Champa Kingdom

Trip Start Feb 16, 2010
Trip End Mar 09, 2010

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Flag of Vietnam  , Quang Nam-Da Nang,
Monday, March 1, 2010

Left at 8am for day trip to My Son. The guide at the tour agency recommended the most famous Cau Lau stall in town and gave me directions. That will be my quest when I return from My Son. 2 hours later at My Son and trekked through the impossible heat 37 C and humidity, viewing the ruins of the Champa Kingdom. Sadly most of it were badly damaged by American bombs. The Champa Kingdom ruled South Vietnam from 6th century AD before the Chinese domination.

The trek was pretty quick and over with by 1130am. I didnt want to stay any longer in that heat anyway. Bus took us to a river and hopped on to a small boat back to Hoi An, in the middle stopping to view some local potteries and woodcrafts. Met YaoYao again - a chinese girl I met at Hue and 2 Thai nationals -Charlie and John at My Son. Upon arriving Hoi An, we set out on my quest to seek the famous Cau Lau stall. With the help of the locals at the pharmacy, we finally found the place but alas it was closed. So we settled for another recommended street stall selling Cau Lau. It was definitely better than last night's.

Had to help Yao Yao cancel her friend's Nha Trang bus ticket at her hotel reception but the reception made a blunder (due to language differences) and angrily cancelled both Yao Yao and her friend's ticket. Helplessly we set out to find another bus ticket for Yao Yao to Nha Trang. Ninh Minh Hotel where Yao Yao stayed was apparently notorious for lousy service, so we learnt later. We finally found a bus ticket and I headed back to my hotel for a much needed shower before embarking on my 17 hours bus ride to Dalat via Nha Trang.

Boarded my sleeping bus at 6pm and was really excited to experience travelling on a sleeping bus. I had a reclined double decker bed with small compartment for shoes and a small table tray that formed the rest of the foot rest. It was not that comfortable with metal seat parts jarring under my elbows. The bed cannot be fully reclined nor fully upright. But according to my fellow travellers from UK and South Africa, this was considered a 5 star sleeping bus compared to the ones they had to endure from Laos to Vietnam - it was sure a hell of a night for them that trip. The trip was 12 hours to Nha Trang and switched bus to Dalat.

Woke up at 1130pm probably at Tam Ky, for dinner and had the worst food ever. The local auntie even ripped me off by changing the price of my dinner from vnd 30 000 to 40 000 after I handed over a vnd 100 000 note. Not that it costed much when i think about later. But I can literally count the number of food pieces just on my one hand. I was really cranky, tired and still hungry. Returned to bus and slept through. Although for most parts it felt like I was standing because my feet were constantly slipping forward to the wall of the foot rest, with the bus driving. And god! The bus driver was blaring his honks throughout the night!
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