Cycling Vietnam is just crazy!

Yesterday 10th August, Hue to we think it was called Phuoc An but not sure = 60km

We finally got ourselves out of Hue after a great relaxing time there. The relaxation was well and truly a distant memory from the first pedal as we fought the traffic for 10km out of Hue and then started barreling down the highway making our way towards Danang. As this distance to Danang is approx 120km including going over the Hai Vanh pass we wanted to break this up over 2 days. So thanks to maps.me we found a fishing village to spend the night 60km down the track (8km off highway). Was nice to be off the highway and some peace and quiet. Felt like being back in Laos a real step back in time, very remote and finding something tasty to eat a struggle. Once again the heat was a killer so a very quiet afternoon mentally preparing ourselves for the big pass tomorrow. Nice to see the ocean again, first time since Southern Thailand. We checked the temps yesterday and they were 40deg saying pfelt like 56 no wonder we were in bed at 8.30pm!

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Mountains to the right
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Coast to the left
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Seriously how hot can it really get and how much sweat can one lose.
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The bike the only thing holding Andy up
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This lovely lady came out of the shop while we were having a drinks stop and started fanning me. Didn’t want to leave.
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The village last night.  Phuoc An maybe….
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4pm rush hour on main street
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The beach with a few seafood restaurants
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Some form of rice soup for lunch
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Lunch in the cage
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Lovely at sunset
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The small round boats dotted along the beach for them to paddle out to their fishing boats.
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They are also called a coracle and it was very comical to watch them launch
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Making their way to their fishing boats
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Dinner last night. Very tasty marinated beef and cold noodles. Was OK but had better.

 

Today Thursday 11th August

Phuoc An – Hoi An via Hai Vanh Pass and Danang = 82km

Up at 5.45 as we want to get this show on the road early before it gets too hot. We have both also been battling a bit of a virus the past day or two so not sure how the energy levels will hold out today in the heat.

Back blazing down the highway for the first 16km before we start the Hai Vanh pass. We had read so much about this pass known as one of the best passes in the world. So we were both anxious and excited. It is 21km over the top and has gradients of 8-10% the entire way. Now for those of you that don’t know what that means…….it’s bloody steep!

So off we go and right from the get go it’s tough going with absolutely no respite, flat or downhill for the 10km up. The mercury once again rising rapidly and without a doubt hitting the 40deg this was a grovel. No its a challenge we kept telling ourselves! Now I know we have gone on about how hot it was but to give you and indication we could both wring our shorts and shirts out. My wrists were like a tap and we have never been so exhausted but with only 3 stops we made it to the top. There we see all the other tourists sitting in their lovely air conditioned vans looking so fresh checking out the view and a few clambering over an old US army bunker which we just waved to!

So a huge buzz getting to the top and with it being so steep and the drivers here so unpredictable we took it easy going down the other side taking in the lovely view of Danang. The body is a funny old thing once down the other side of the pass we had forgotten about the energy exerted and how shagged we were. Approaching Dannag and seeing how crazy the traffic was on the outskirts of this city of 1 million people we changed plans to push through another 35km to Hoi An. One wrong turn on the overpass and looking down at where we should have been, a few F bombs were let out and we sat down for a drink to contemplate how to attack the overpass and back track.

All good though and despite both of us not feeling 100% we have had an awesome day and here we are in Hoi An which was our goal for this cycle tour. Found ourselves some digs and chilling out. Will spend at least a week chillaxing here while we contemplate our options for the next part of the adventure. With the traffic here being absolutely nuts (saw another crash today) we are finding we are riding for the destination not the journey. Having said that we are loving our time in Vietnam.

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Had to get our timing right to cycle through this tunnel to avoid trucks, buses, cas and scooters. Yes that’s a no cycle sign on the left but we didn’t see any other options.
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Quiet back road departing Phuoc An
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Start of the pass ready for action
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Yahoo at the top! Looking back over Lan Co.
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“Wow did we really just do that”
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Yep we did and we have the photo looking knackered to prove it.
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Drinks at the top
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At the top the tourists doing their thing. We just took the photo.
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View over the other side towards Danang
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Danang out there somewhere
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Nearly at the bottom and Danang in distance

 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Cycling Vietnam is just crazy!”

  1. I do not envy you guys battling the traffic!! Wowee stay safe….but love the peak hour traffic shot later….and what a lovely woman to provide you with moving air 😉 ha ha…she obviously knew you were worth it!! Just a by the by, I have bailed off fb for a looooong break… Meanwhile back home we all watching our fellow Kiwis ‘battle’ in Rio! Keep on trackin’ …
    ps: trivial query….how many flats have you had to date?

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  2. Great pics. Now time for a rest and recovery. Five bombs went off in different towns in Thailand last 1/2 days.No explanation so good have moved on. Maihai Drysdale gold in photo finish and both recorded same time.
    Have to keep you both in prayer.XXMum/Dad

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  3. Looking hot but always fabulous – I mean the weather!!! Really missing the heat of Malaysia and Singapore after 3 weeks back in the cold. Went skiing on Saturday in 20cm of fresh snow – just beautiful. Back in the office and head down trying to catch up after our holiday and 2 weeks of my sister and family here from the UK. First flower on our Magnolia tree this morning – spring is on its way:). Keep pedalling and keep your fluids up. K xx

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  4. God Lynnie there will be nothing much left of you by the time you have finished your trip, you look like you have lost a bit of weight, but still looking super fit the both of you , the roads look super good like in Canada & the views of the ocean superb, you will have so much to talk about when you arrive home, I hope you are both feeling much better. Luv Di & Reg xx

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