Hoi An 2017

Shopping, eating, and a jeep ride into the central highlands to meet the King and wrestle a snake.
Hoi An... famous for its lanterns...
...and food. These being fridge magnet renditions of various Hoi An favourites.
Lunch at the Nữ Eatery soon after arrival. I loved their grilled pineapple and watermelon salad, and...
...A found the pumpkin soup quite divine.
Uyen bargaining with a fruit seller. Here it was just to warm up. When shopping later she consistently got vendors down 50-70%.
Cao Lau, one of my favorite Vietnamese dishes, originating from Hoi An. The pickled shallots were an interesting differentiator of this implementation.
Street side Cao Lau. Excellent chilli jam in the background.
Cao Lau and Mi Quang may be the native noodle dishes in the Hoi An and Danang area, but Phở is ubiquitous in Vietnam.
Evening romance on the river.
And they weren't alone!
He is loading some preserved baby crabs into that jar. I don't know how they are preserved, but they keep for a few weeks.
A couple of domestic stories going on here.
Hoi An portrait.
This Fagan-like character was playing at one of the more well known Hoi An restaurants - Mango Mango. His French sogs were great, and he did Johnny Cash proud as well.
The reality of the Hoi An Old Quarter in the evenings. This is a major tourist spot.
More Hoi An night time street life.
Off on a trip into the hills in a Jeep.

I would rather have been on a motorcycle, but this was a way better way to see the countryside than from a car or bus.

Looking up, inside a Cham temple.
Looking out from the Cham temple.
The sun was sufficiently intense that an umbrella and hat were necessary accessories.
Hill 55, where thousands of French, Americans, and Vietnamese had died defending this strategic hill to the west of Danang.
Our transport awaits.
Encountering security at the home of the past King of the K'Tu people.
We became friends.
The past King of the K'Tu people (from the highlands to the west of Danang). I met him on a motorcycle trip 5 years ago and he is still going strong in his 90's. We bought a few bottles of his homemade ginseng and rice wine.

A little of the King's past on his living room wall.

Decoration in a K'Tu household.
Crossing the swing bridge into Bho Hoong village.
Bho Hoong village - they played some interesting musical instruments.
There is no escaping the Minions.
Bho Hoong village - there was a stuffed raven on the wall.
Bho Hoong village - there is a story in there somewhere.
Where life is defined as a series of selfies. I saw these two a few times that evening, and all they seemed to be doing were selfies. I wonder whether they actually experienced their surroundings.
Lady Buddha Da Nang, or in Vietnamese, Linh Ứng Pagoda.
Refreshments at Linh Ứng Pagoda.
Looking back towards Da Nang from the Linh Ứng Pagoda.
Heaven (the Buddhist variety), at the Marble Mountain cave. There is also a Hell, which you can descend into.
In the main chamber of the Marble Mountain cave, Da Nang.
Poking his head up from Hell - Marble Mountain cave, Da Nang.
Marble Mountain cave, Da Nang. Didn't work out what the blue and pink lights where representing.
Marble Mountain cave, Da Nang.
Marble Mountain, Da Nang.
Marble Mountain cave, Da Nang - a little ghostly in here.
Looking towards the beach between Da Nang and Hoi An - from Marble Mountain.
More selfies - Marble Mountain, Da Nang.
And did we look good in that selfie? Marble Mountain, Da Nang.
The Mask Shop - Hoi An.
The Mask Maker - The Mask Shop - Hoi An.
Street market at dusk - Hoi An.
Juxtaposition. Hoi An. 2017.
Early morning walk - Hoi An.
Luckily most tourists appear to be late risers. We had this beautiful street to ourselves - Hoi An.
Morning setup - Hoi An.
Japanese Bridge - Hoi An.
Taking a break on our photo walk - Hoi An.
Apart from the occasional giveaway (cameras, credit card terminals etc) the Hoi An Old Town does feel really old.
Since the building of the Japanese Bridge in Hoi An was started in 1593 – Year of the Monkey, and finished in 1595 – Year of the Dog, a pair of these two animals’ statues has been placed at both ends. They represent for the guardians of the bridge.
Heading home.