19th May 2019; another hot day!
And finally, today was the long-awaited day! We’re going for a cruiiiiise!!! 🛳
This was actually our main goal for this holiday. It took us quite long time to search and finally I found this UniCharm Cruise from the internet just few days before our flight to Hà Nội. And apparently this was the cruise recommended by Ann’s friend too! What a coincidence! I found their website and chat to their staff. And because we were recommended by Ann’s friend we got 20% discount. Because I chatted to the staff we got additional 10% discount. In total we paid USD310 for two, for an unforgettable 2D1N cruise day. ٩(｡•́‿•̀｡)۶
I could say this was the best cruise in Hạ Long Bay! According to them, Unicharm Cruise somehow has its own special route where there were no other cruise knows, not over-crowded by tourist, passed by gorgeous limestone mountains, interesting activities, 4-stars-hotel class, super clean and superb food – you definitely want to try their fresh prawns!! (っ˘ω˘ς )
18th May 2019; it’s Hot! HOT! HOTTT!!!!!
It was 39°C outside!!! ＼＼٩(๑`^´๑)۶／／
After we applied SPF50 uv lotion and uv spray, off we ordered a grab to the Hồ Chí Minh Mausoleum in Ba Dinh Square. The taxi dropped us at the east side of the square at street, near the government office. It was a super green square, but all was closed we couldn’t enter from there and we had to make a long way u-turn. (」＞＜)」
Everywhere was closed and even with tall-ugly-green wall where we couldn’t even peek what’s inside. We couldn’t see One Pillar Pagoda! But after walked about 1km made our u-turn we finally could see the way in to the Mausoleum where tourists were gathered and queuing to get in. We were told the queue was start even before 9AM. And since we both didn’t like queuing to get ourselves roasted in the sun, we gave it a pass and we countinued make our ways to the West Lake.
17th May 2019 ~ hot day!
Landed in Nội Bài International Airport, my buddy trip, Ann, exchanged her money. I remember it was USD 1 = VND 23,300. From there she got enough money and we booked Grab to our hotel in Old Quarter Hà Nội for VND 254k, about 40 minutes.
Our itinerary for today was not too many for today – as it was almost sunset when we finally arrived in our hotel. Our official first stop was the famous Hoàn Kiếm Lake. But on our way to the lake we had our early dinner at the Highway4 Restaurant. The fine restaurant was located around the Old Quarter as well. We went up to the second floor and sat at the lower table – just like the locals do. <(￣︶￣)>
This restaurant was famous for their Nem Ca Xa Lo4 (Catfish Spring Rolls) so that was the first thing we ordered. As much as I wanted to try their Sun-dried Venison with Salt & Ant Dip, but I finally decided to order something else; Bu Niong La Chuoi (Strips of Beef grilled in Banana Leaves).
Sunday, 23rd September 2018,
Our flight back to Singapore has been disrupted by a heavy rain in the morning. It was ridiculous how China Air brought all the passengers by bus to the open space, and let us run through the heavy rain and flooding area (it was as high as adult’s ankle) from the bus to the plan staircase about 15 – 20m without any umbrella or such. For a four stars airline, this was a very big setback and I was very disappointed. None of crew run extra miles to give your best service to passengers, it was a POOR SERVICE! ╮(￣～￣)╭
But moving on, here are some random pictures left from my phone.
Saturday, 22nd September 2018,
The sun was shining bright this morning, a good sign that the pandas will go out to have the sun-bathing. Woke up early for our last free and easy day, most of us went straight to see the panda. ٩(◕‿◕｡)۶
I was hesitating to go with them or not. But since I was in charged, and most of the sisters wanted to see the panda, so it will be wise to follow them to the Panda Base.
Friday, 21st September 2018,
Arrived back in Chengdu around 2PM, we dropped our luggage in hotel, took free shuttle from hotel to T1 Airport Metro Station, and off we go. I was in charged for this 2 free-&-easy days, and I haven’t got the note that: leading 10+ people for free and easy was not an easy task! (」＞＜)」
My initial plan was to visit WuHou Memorial Temple at first, but apparently all of us was quite full with temples and none of us want to pay 60RMB to get in to the temple, so we decided skip this shrine and went straight for our late lunch at Jinli Street.
Thursday, 20th September 2018,
By the time our train arrived at Xining, our next bus already waiting for us outside the train station. We were immediately heading for Qinghai Lake. ∑d(°∀°d)
Qinghai Lake (Chinese: 青海湖), Koko Nor (Mongolian: Хөх нуур) or Tso Ngonpo (Tibetan: མཚོ་སྔོན་པོ།) is the largest lake in China. Qinghai Lake is classified as a saline and alkaline lake, the lake is classified as a saline and alkaline lake, at 3,205 m above sea level in a hollow of the Tibetan plateau. Qinghai Lake became isolated from the Yellow River about 150,000 years ago. [source: wikipedia]
From ancient times to the present, whenever people mention Qinghai Lake they think of ‘green lake’, ‘blue sea’ or ‘fairyland’, because of the marvelous natural beauty reflected on it. As to the area, it is the largest inland and salt water lake in China. It is no exaggeration to say that Qinghai Lake is a miracle that is endowed by a deity.
Wednesday, 19th September 2018,
Our 1PM train has been cancelled due to military reason. So all of us ended up at 6PM train. This was inconvenience because we couldn’t enjoy the scenery while we were on the 5000+ km above sea levels. (￣□￣」)
And since they delayed our train schedule, this morning the local tour brought us to Yak Museum.
Tuesday, 18th September 2018,
Today I had worse motion sickness. I was quite sure it wasn’t the high altitude sickness, since I was still okay when I was up to 5k meters above sea level… But today, the road to Namtso Lake was very bumpy, with many twists and turns. It made me feels like my head spinning and almost vomit. Most likely my lack-of-sleep last night contributed to this motion sickness. ☆ｏ(＞＜；)○
Our local tour leader was actually offered us for second option (not Namtso), due to the winding road to go there. But so far I never like their second option, and some of our group rejected the second option.
We left hotel at 6:30AM, tortured ourselves just to see the famous-and-over-crowded lake. By the time we arrived back hotel, it was almost midnight. (｡T ω T｡)
So what’s about Namtso Lake?
Monday, 17th September 2018,
In Short, we were driving back from Shigatse to Lhasa today. Some of us who paid extra money for optional tour were granted to visit the breeding site of Tibetan Mastiff. While the thrifties (including me!) waited outside the breeding site and walked around to tease the angry-caged puppies from outside. ( ‾́ ◡ ‾́ )
After the short visit to the breeding site, we continued our journey and our next stop was TashiLunpo Monastery.