Leaving Phong Nha and my friends from two years ago behind got easier after a cup of coffee. The best one I had on this trip was at the Mountain River Café. Don’t miss it when you are want to explore the Ho Chi Minh trail.
The sun was still shining when we started on the trail. The road starts out beautiful with sweeping scenery and a view over an endless landscape.
Pretty soon though the sun left us and grey clouds covered the sky the rest of the way. Which was unfortunate because the trail lives from its landscapes and of course you enjoy it less when you feel a bit cold. We still had fun though and made quite a few stops.
The combat base in Khe Sanh the next day was exactly as I remembered. Only this time it was teeming with children. One spunky girl approached to test her English with me and soon after her whole class was tagging along. So funny. I also loved how these children had no respect for war. The combat base was just one big playground despite its history.
Right after the air base we stopped at a Vietnamese cemetery. So depressing to look at all these wasted lives. And many were also nameless.
On the trail of the Vietnam War (or rather the American War as the Vietnamese call it) our next destination were the Vinh Moc tunnels. Here, shortly after the DMZ (demilitarized zone) a couple of thousand people lived and survived. In an area where the average bomb ratio was seven tons per person during the war, this underground tunnel system was a lifesaver.
After another coffee somewhere along the road we arrived in Hué which was choke-full with motorbikes. The entrance into the center gets blocked easily as you can see. Regular evening traffic then gets divided into two and four-wheeled vehicles. Check out my video here to get an impression. Yours, Pollybert
PS: I have uploaded a couple of videos on my Youtube channel from the trail.