Cheap Flight Alert: Newark to Ho Chi Minh City

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United is having a huge sale for flights going from most East coast cities to Ho Chi Minh, Viet Nam.  For about $600 including taxes and fees, you’ll get a round trip ticket to Asia, that’s a pretty unbeatable deal!  The dates are mostly for late summer to early fall, which is when you’d want to be in Southeast Asia anyways – to skip out on the sweltering heat.

Ho Chi Minh is my hometown and I grew up there, so I always welcome an opportunity to go back.  Plus the food is amazing, so that’s a bonus.  When I saw these prices, I was very excited, so if you’re looking to visit Asia this fall, reserve your tickets now before they are all gone. Just a reminder – United does allow you to cancel within 24 hours without any penalties. When you put in the date of your flight, make sure you select the ‘flexible date’ option to give you a better chance of finding the cheaper tickets.  Book your ticket and look forward to a steaming bowl of pho on the other side of the world.

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Photo of the Week: Pagoda

IMG_2136Hanoi, Viet Nam

This picture was taken of Tran Quoc pagoda, located on a small island near the southeastern shore of Hanoi’s West Lake. This temple dates back to the sixth century, making it one of the oldest in the city.  The main tower consists of eleven octagonal floors representing the various stages of of Buddha’s life. On the grounds of Tran Quoc, you’ll find a bodhi tree, supposedly grown from the  cutting taken from the original tree where Buddha sat and achieved enlightenment.

Standing on the shore, you can see the pagoda clearly reflected on the surface of West Lake. Even though it’s in the middle of a noisy bustling city, there is a sense of calm and tranquility when you step onto the island.  People speak in hushed tones in deference to the religious silence observed throughout the temple.   Like many people over the years, we had gone there to pray and pay homage to Buddha when we visited Vietnam a few years ago.

Every Monday of each week, I’ll share a photo with you from my adventures around the world and at home.  Most of my photos have little or no post processing.  If you would like to see more, please click the ‘Follow’ button.

Photo of the Week: Sand

IMG_5642Mui Ne, Viet Nam

It’s hard to believe that this dessert is located next to the ocean in the tropical city of Mui Ne, Viet Nam. Mui Ne used to be a small fishing village but has blossomed into a full blown resort town full of upscale hotels.  Just down the street from all the new fancy resorts are the photogenic Red Sand Dunes. The contrasting warm sand against the cold blue sky makes for very pretty photos.

During our stay in this quaint beach town,  we decided to visit this natural attraction and go sand dune sledding. The minute you get out of the car, you are swarmed by the local children that compete to get your attention.  They want to guide you up the dune to the best spot to go sand sledding.  They also want to rent you the sled, which is nothing more than a thin sheet of plastic that you can sit on and hold for dear life as you slide down the hill. We spent an hour or two happily frolicking in the sand, taking turns rolling around and launching ourselves off of the hot dunes. This spot is frequented by many locals and foreign visitors.  As dusk approaches, people gather here to watch the last sun rays fall over the rippling sands.

Every Monday of each week, I’ll share a photo with you from my adventures around the world and at home.  Most of my photos have little or no post processing.  If you would like to see more, please click the ‘Follow’ button.