16.03.2009 - 17.03.2009 30 °C
Today, we are in Hue. It is a small city, very touristy with lots of good restaurants and LOTS of cyclos (like rickshaws but the guy pedals you with a bicycle). We got going around 10 am and crossed the Perfume River and walked to the Citadel. This is an old area of town that has a thick wall all the way around, the city used to be the souther capital of Vietnam (a LONG time ago, hundreds of years) and the Citadel holds lots of the ancient palace and temples. There was quite a bit of heavy fighting here during the war, so much of it has been destroyed, they are slowly working on repairing what they can, but most of it remains in ruins.
We walked around the main palace area for a couple hours, honestly, the buildings were not all that interesting, especially compared to what we have seen in China. What was really beautiful was the tropical landscape, the first we have seen since arriving in Vietnam. After awhile, we were getting pretty hungry and wandered around the Citadel area until we found a local restaurant (food in this area was scarce compared to the abundace of restaurants on the other side of the river). The shop owner didn't speak English and all we were able to comunicate was "soup noodle" so that's what I got. Nate looked in the book and was able to point to a dish he had been wanting to try, so he got the bun bo hue, or spicy beef noodles. It was a decent lunch and pretty cheap, although we think we still got over charged a bit for being foreigners, no biggy, we were pleased with the meal.
We wandered around a bit more and discovered that there wasn't really anything else to do, we went back to the tourist part of town and found a cafe with a balcony that overlooked a busting street. We sat and had a couple drinks, my first apple shake (many to follow, they are delicious!), I also got some chili and Nate got a buffalo chicken sandwich. The food was pretty good and it made for a pretty relaxing evening. We hit the hay ontime and decided that we would move on the next day, already feeling like we had spent too much time in this city!
The next day we were lazy feeling we had nothing to do until the bus picked us up at 2pm. We went back to the same cafe as the night before, they had free internet and we wasted a few hours there eating and surfing the net. The bus picked us up at our hotel and we had an uneventful 4 hour ride to Hoi An.