Browsing Tag

Southeast Asia

Vietnam just in two weeks

So my travel through Vietnam was quite intense. I spend over 50 hours in different buses, ate street food at least 3 times a day and the traffic tried to kill me several times everyday. Before I went to this country I knew that I will come back someday and Yes I still think that way. There is something special in Vietnam or maybe I’m just too passionate about their food. You are able to see the history in the nature, places and people. But you can also see the future in this country and how it’s developing all the time.

Ho Chi Minh City

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Cat Tien National Park

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Nha Trang

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Hoi An

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I have totally lost my small cooking skills in Asia because I haven’t cooked here at all. The crazy thing about Asia that with 5€ in Finland I can buy an afternoon coffee and a bun but here it’s my daily budget for food. But I have to say that Vietnamese food really inspired me. One of the most interesting things I did in Vietnam was a vegetarian cooking class which I took in Hoi An. It felt just perfect to me and even though I’m not that into cooking, for sure I will try those recipes when I’m back in Finland. Vietnamese is my all time favourite!

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My favourite place was a small village next to Sapa. I met Do, a Vietnamese girl who has lived her whole life there. She showed me to her home, cooked me food on top of a bonfire and made me wear her family’s traditional costume. Her home was more like a shed not a house and they had a small garden behind the house. Her home was almost on top of the mountain and the view was just amazing. Her life was small but even though it was small she was one of the happiest people I’ve ever met.

She is definitely one of the reasons why I want to go back to this country. And I promised her that next time I will come with a friend (she’s expecting a boyfriend but I told her that I’m trying to avoid that happening as well as I can).

I also had the best tofu ever in my homestay! It was so fresh and the sauce with it was just perfect. The girl who made it was called Mari as well. I remember places because of people and food because they both just make the best memories.

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I wrote this one in a hammock in 4000 islands at 10pm. At the moment I’m spending my last days in Laos and soon starting my last month of traveling. And thoughts are more than messy. I already want see my friends and have good time with them but at the same time I’m also terrified. Going back to Finland will be a shock to myself and also to my wallet. I will probably freeze to death at the airport and everyone will be scared of me when I’m wearing my elephant pants in public. But no worries I’m still positive. Finland will be some kind of adventure if I want it to be so.

I don’t know did someone notice it but I stopped writing my posts in Finnish because it takes me double time and in Asia I just simply don’t have it. It is also easier for me to write in English because I use it more daily and I think more in English than in Finnish here.. And this is one of my ways to improve my English as well. I’ll probably go back on both languages when I’m back in Finland and I’m having my Finnish mode on again.

But other than that I go now and order a watermelon shake and enjoy the sunset from this hammock.

Philippines (Banaue and Palawan)

Our next destination was Philippines which we both were just super excited about but also nervous because we actually didn’t have any clue what kind of country it is. Only thing we knew was just that it would be a heck of an adventure. And our start for the trip was also one of a kind event…

Before we arrived to Philippines we had small troubles with our flights. Our flight from Denpasar to Jakarta was an hour late. So when we arrived to Jakarta our flight to Manila had already started boarding and the check-in was closed. We missed our flight and the internet at the airport was just shitty. But luckily our friend saw Jannas snapchat about our small issue and called us instantly. He booked us new flights and we did a little trip at Singapore airport. Our friend is genuinely the best. Kiitos Jasu viel kerran.

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“Yeah we have 2 hours to go. No need to rush”

Well Manila was a little bit more than we expected. It was a crazy city. There were street children, guy selling water in the middle of a motorway and the traffic wasn’t moving. Our taxi was stuck in the traffic for almost two hours but we made it to the bus station.

What can I even say about those rice terraces. It was just beautiful, something unreal and also brutal. Clouds touching the mountains, jungles and an endless amount of terraces.  We saw people climbing higher and higher to their working places or their homes. We noticed the very presence of poverty instantly as well. These people who worked on those terraces earned small money time to time but not every day and you could never ask anyone in Finland to work such a physical work.

Philippines is a poor country. But the strange thing about poor people is that usually they are happier than people in my home town where people just have more than they need.

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We came back to Manila from the terraces and caught a flight to Puerto Princesa. At first we were thinking about traveling from Northern Palawan to down South of the Island but when we went to El Nido the first thing we were thinking was “I don’t actually mind staying here the whole week”. Palawan was beach, beer (of course) and parties. We also met some hilarious Finnish guys there and had great time with them (pietetään sit reunionit ja verestetää Fili-muistoi, ku kaikki ollaa taas Suomes!)

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Even though we enjoyed our time in El Nido we wanted to see something else and we took a boat to Coron island. We did some diving there which was one of the highlights on our trip. We were able to dive only once because our boat broke down but it didn’t matter. It was Jannas very first time and we saw bunch of cool fishes and luckily a turtle as well.  So actually our dive was excellent and we had the best instructor ever. We stayed on this island only for a couple of days and after that we took a flight back to Manila. At the airport I said Goodbye to this lovely girl when she took a flight to Finland and I flew to Vietnam.

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So my month with Janna was a success in many ways. We had the best time in Bali, we saw a turtle, we got tanned, we drank beer but still I have to say that the best thing about the whole trip was that now when I go back to Finland a new friend is waiting for me there. Before our trip we were good friends but traveling introduced me to this crazy girl in a completely new way. I can now say that she is one of my best friends and I truly love her. Until next time you silly girl!



Bus from Manila to Banaue rice terraces

A nice hostel where we stayed in El Nido. Cheap and nice staff.

Austria’s Place

I really recommend these guys. Our diving experience was just amazing.

Fun & Sun Coron