Day 8: Hue to Hanoi

Today was a difficult day to get out of bed. All of us struggled. 

We had breakfast in the panoramic room- outside room with a pool. I mainly stuck with the fresh fruit as there was such an abundance available. Passionfruit, dragon fruit, watermelon, pineapple and lychees. 

Outside waiting for us were a whole bunch of cyclos that James had prepurchased to take us to into the city. Thankfully, it wasn't a sunny day so it was very mild whilst being cycled around through the insane traffic of Hue! 

Made our way to the imperial forbidden city where the king and his 500 wives used to live. 

After the temple, we got our charter bus to the pagoda where the burning monk lived before he drove his Austin to Saigon and set himself on fire. His entire body perished except for his heart, which has been preserved in a Saigon pagoda. 

Finally, one of our group shots before we boarded our bus out to Hue airport!

Our last flight as a group took merely an hour, which most of us slept through.

Ha Noi (translates to ‘city inside river’ due to the huge river that flows through the city), has a population of 8.5 million people; similar to Saigon. It was 34 degrees on arrival at 5pm and the smog is more prominent than prior towns we have visited.

On arrival, we were informed that it will be insanely busy in the city. Firstly, because of the autumn festival and secondly, it's a Sunday!. The tour guide was bloody right!! It was insane. Words cannot describe how busy it was throughout the majority of the city. The night markets were that busy, it was impossible to take a photo!

Prior to the night markets, we got as close to Ho Chi Minh's morsaleum as we could. Every ‘so many’ years his body is re-preserved in a secret preservative. Unfortunately, they started the preserving process yesterday so it is now closed until 5/12/2014.

Tomorrow night in Ha Long bay, we have a pirate themed party so tonight, Emma and I meandered through numerous streets in search of a couple of pirate hats. Well, you could get everything except pirate hats. Eventually, after asking a few locals, we found a stall selling them!! It was such a relief. We then had to walk back through the city to the hotel… We were completely exhausted so we just ordered room service food - pasta. We sat eating our dinner wearing nothing but, our hats.