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Experiencing Saigon from the Back of a Vintage Vespa

We aren’t big into doing touristy stuff when we reach a new destination, but when we came across a tour that combined awesome Vietnamese food, beer and vintage Vespa’s we couldn’t resist.

Vespa Adventures run a variety of tours around Saigon, Hoi An and Siem Reap, Cambodia. In Saigon, the tour options include exploring the Mekong Delta countryside or a sightseeing tour around Saigon. You can also choose to combine the Mekong tour with a cooking class or explore the wilder side of the 12th longest river in the world. There are also multiple day tours available that sound great.

The tours aren’t cheap, ranging from $69 – $273 but are definitely worth the money for a truly unforgettable experience.

Saigon After Dark Tour

We opted to soak up the Saigon craziness at night from the back of a Vespa with the Saigon After Dark Tour. This tour was a combination of food tour, cultural experience and live music all thrown into one. Plus the addition of unlimited alcohol for the night.

Cost: $89 per person (this includes all your food and drinks for the evening)

Duration: 4.5 hours (6 pm – 10:30 pm)

You start off the tour at Café Zoom (District 1) with your first drink of the night. You can either be collected at your accommodation or meet at the restaurant. This is where you will meet your tour guide and the rest of your tour group for the night. You will get allocated to your driver for the night and then it’s a 15-minute ride through the city to District 4 for the first restaurant.

It was so much fun being on the back of a Vespa, zipping through the craziness that is Saigon traffic.

First Up: Food and Beer

First stop was amazing seafood, where we got to feast on so much delicious food, including clams, crab and mussels. We also got to have frog legs (or as our tour guide Na called it, jumping chicken). “Jumping chicken” was a first for us and it really does taste like really delicious chicken. With the addition of some fried noodles, we were already starting to fill up, and we still had more delicious dishes to try.

After a longer Vespa ride we hit the next restaurant for some Banh Xeo (Vietnamese pancake), fresh and fried spring rolls and another sort of wrap thing comprising of seared beef, bean sprouts and a variety of herbs all rolled into a mustard leaf. By this stage, a few beers had been drunk, so the details tend to get a bit sketchy.

Next Up: Music and More Beer

By this stage, we were incredibly full from all the amazing Vietnamese dishes that we got to enjoy. Our first music stop was this tiny Vietnamese hole in the wall place that is basically two rooms filled with a chairs and sofas and some very talented musicians. The place was packed, and the musicians and singers were brilliant.

Next up was some more music and dancing at Acoustic, which, unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) yielding no viable photos to share as the photographer was over the limit and his photography skills started slipping.

At 10:30 pm you have the option to get dropped off at your accommodation, or you can carry on partying. Together with a couple from Singapore, we chose the latter, which we regretted when we woke up with a monster hangover in the morning but was definitely worth it.

Vespa Adventures is definitely a great way to experience Saigon. We highly recommend them if you are in Saigon or in one of the other locations where they operate. You will definitely not be disappointed.


COUNTRY


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I followed the standard, set-out route that we are conditioned to follow from a young age. I finished high school and went straight into university. My only detour was changing degrees at the end of first year; to something I thought I could enjoy a bit more. After graduating I then ticked the next box and found a job. I ended up in a job at a large corporate, unrelated to what I had just finished studying, going from Industrial Psychology to Marketing.The intention was to stay there for 2 years, get some experience and move along. Six years later and I’m at the same company that I will be leaving on 31 March.The work was good, interesting and difficult. I worked hard, learnt a huge amount, and made my way up to a brand manager position, but eventually I wanted more. I didn’t just want another corporate job, I wanted something completely different. I wanted to escape the cubicle life that I had created for myself. I wanted to get out of my comfort zone and try new things, see new places and meet amazing people.After teaching English in Chiang Mai Thailand for a year, my boyfriend and I hit the road on at the end of May 2015 and have been freelancing and slow travelling our way around Southeast Asia. Absolutely loving it!!!



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