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Books on Vietnam

Vietnam

The Vietnam Multi-Media Archive
This is like discovering the crown jewels by accident. A real treasure cave of images and sound files covering all aspects of Vietnam. Arranged in the following categories:
  • Scenery
  • People
  • Arts
  • Monuments
  • History
  • Poetry
  • Midi Files
There are also additional sections on:
  • An ethnology exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts in Hanoi.
  • Buddhist Statues in North Vietnam.
  • Pictures of Daily Life in the Mekong Delta : An album of recent (summer 1996) photographs by Mark W. McLeod.
  • The photographs of Nguyên Hoài Thu Phong.
All of this can be found at The Vietnam Multi-Media Archive
 
A Day in the Life of Hang Bo Street
A wonderful account by Graham Simmons of a typical side street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi city. As Graham himself puts it 'With layer-upon-layer of life filling out its spaces and stretching out the day, it's a good place to study life-in-miniature'.
From the start of the day ("By dawn, the street is as clean as a Swiss whistle. Householders set up little electric motors to draw water from the wells beside the kerb") to the end ("Come nightfall, the people of Hang Bo Street still use the pavements as a sitting room, dining room and kitchen combined") the activities of this little street are keenly observed and charmingly described. This is travel writing at its best - local life as it is. Thoroughly recommended at A Day in the Life of Hang Bo Street
 
The Road less Travelled
Youth is wasted on the young! These two youngsters had more fun getting to Vietnam from Cambodia than I've had in years. Undaunted by the advice that "it would be a long, arduous journey involving various modes of transportation, but it could be done, in theory" they set off and rapidly find that "the dirt road had fallen off into the river and now looked longingly at its other half 100 metres away". But the young haven't yet learned the word "impossible" and they arrive in Saigon there tale about how and where they entered the country "was always met with the same reaction-utter awe and disbelief". As always, life is great if you really want it to be! See The Road less Travelled
 
Exploring Vietnam in Luxury
Of course, back-packing through the mud isn't everyone's idea of fun, and you may prefer this alternative approach. Walter Glaser sets the tone with his opening comments: "This is Suite number 407. Could you please send up some Beluga Caviar? Five minutes later a petite German Stewardess arrives with a large silver tray bearing a sizeable dish of these Caspian pearls, together with the usual accompaniments." Their visit to Vietnam is very different from the adventures of the backpackers, but gives an interesting insight into how Vietnam is developing. The blend of the American Legacy, the oriental spirit and the communist government is well portrayed and it makes fascinating reading. See: Exploring Vietnam in Luxury
 
Cycling Vietnam
As Patrick Morris says, "Cycling is undoubtedly the best way to explore and experience a place if the opportunity is there". Some excellent practical advice and a suggested route make this a vital resource if you are thinking of attempting this middle way between back packer and luxury cruise. And even if your idea of cycling is 5 minutes on a static exercise machine at you local gym, at least you get a feel for what independent travel can be like in this fascinating country. Go to Cycling Vietnam
 
Far East Air Fare deals from Travel Select
There are some excellent prices to be found on hotels and flights to Vietnam. For flights originating anywhere in the world use this Travel Select link

And if your flight originates in the UK there are some special deals on this special UK page
 
There is a wide selection of hotels and you can obtain heavily discounted prices if you know where to look. Try the following links for good discounts at a range of price levels:

Links to other Vietnam information on The Web


East Asia in Focus
This document was last updated 4 June 2004
© 2004 Graham G Hawker