From Đồng Hới to Phong Nha

After opening the doors at the dorm of the Ocean View Homestay in Đồng Hới it was clear – another hazy day in Vietnam. Had breakfast with the little ones for the last time. Got everything on the bike and drove back up the mountain to the Ho Chi Minh Road and on towards Phong Nha.
The clock: 61263 km.

Another day with blue sky at the beach
Another day with blue sky at the beach – here comes the morning flight.

Cutting down more trees
Cutting down more trees – not sure if they make way for agriculture or just sell the wood. Today I did pass a lot of big old cut down trees.

This way please
This way please

More and more agriculture cuts into the forest
More and more agriculture cuts into the forest

Another clear stream somewhere down the mountain
Another clear stream somewhere down the mountain

Green as far as you can see
Green as far as you can see

Not too much traffic - in fact - no traffic at all
Not too much traffic – in fact – no traffic at all

From here on it is downhill
Driving this road was like a dream again. Left – right – left – right again. You do look for obstacles on the road. Go slow most of the times and look over the forest. Uphill and downhill. Apart from a few locals on their bikes and 2 wood trucks with a few workers the road was empty the whole day. And great views even with the haze – can you imagine how it would be with blue sky? Jungle as far as one can see. That can only mean one thing – I have to do the whole road again – with blue sky!
From this point of the road on it is all downhill to Phong Nha

Haze over the river
Haze over the river. Took this picture from the last bridge before you turn right down the last few kilometres to Phong Nha

And haze over the rice fields down in the valley
And haze over the rice fields down in the valley

And it was hot and sticky
And it was hot and stick

Interesting way of reuse the cans
Interesting way of reuse the cans

Heavy rain for a few hours just minutes after I got to the hostel
Heavy rain for a few hours just minutes after I got to the hostel

My bunk bed at Thien Phu Hostel
My bunk bed at Thien Phu Hostel. Another night for 5 US $ and for a night it is quite OK. 6 bunk beds do share one bathroom and it comes with a simple breakfast. Took this picture in the morning. The sky was the usual gray but at last – no rain!
The clock: 61390: 127 kilometres yesterday.

 
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A lazy day in Đồng Hới

According to the forecast it will be a sunny day with blue sky. I am so happy to stay at the beach. Until I open the doors to the terrace – it is Gray and misty – AGAIN.
There is more blue sky and sun back home in winter than the last few weeks here in Vietnam!

Good Morning Vietnam
Good Morning Vietnam and thank you for the coffee

Breakfast with friends
Breakfast with friends at the Ocean View Homestay – better than breakfast with Facebook that is.

Today I have a free day to explore the city – and the gas is almost empty so I have to fill up.

Nice day on the beach
Nice day on the beach – did not bring a towel – to bad! Looks like another day than.

That is all there is left
That is all there is left – and it looks like they did not want to restore it. So they left it as a monument.

Not sure who decided to use that font but he is an idiot!
Not sure who decided to use that font but he is an idiot!

Different kind of fisherman
Different kind of fisherman – and a lot of work for a few shells

A very small home
A very small home – but the commute to work is extremely short

And another one
And another one

A lot of work today!
Waiting for customers

American bomber
American bomber that looks small on the picture. It is a single-seater but really big.

American bomber

Air sucker
Air sucker

Russian jet from the North Vietnamese AF
Russian jet from the North Vietnamese AF. Compared to the bomber it looks like a toy.

Dog show room
Dog show room

Sandwiched between 2 Karaoke buildings
Sandwiched between 2 Karaoke buildings

How can one do another blog post like that?
How can one do another blog post like that?

At last the dog stays away from the keyboard
At last the dog stays away from the keyboard

2 times a day there is some action in the airspace
2 times a day there is some action in the airspace

 
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From Khe Sanh to Đồng Hới

After a not so good night in Khe Sanh but a better breakfast: the good old pack the bag game. If you do it every day you get used to it and it goes quite fast. All the stuff you do not need is at the bottom and it stays there. Everything you need will be in the bag in a few minutes.
Today’s mission is to cover 240 kilometres on the Ho Chi Minh Road and there will be no gas station on the way. So I did fill a 1,5 litre plastic water bottle for a few extra kilometres.
Quick look at the forecast an it was promising down at the beach. Another break on the way – why not. So Đồng Hới it was. The clock: 61065 km, the sky: the usual Gray and the road: dry and dusty. Lets drive!

Take a left at the monument
Take a left at the monument. There is actually one more gas station about 10 kilometres after the monument. But it does not make sense to stop and fill up again.

MacArthur Foundation
Would have been interesting to know what the MacArthur Foundation sponsored over here. Since they are from the US one would think they would write something in English as well. No no no – not here in Vietnam they do not!

View over the valley
View over the valley as the road turns into the mountains

Imagine that place in the rainy season
Imagine that place in the rainy season

A lot of green again
A lot of green again

The next village is far from here - you can see it if you look at the forest
The next village is far from here – you can see it if you look at the forest

Driving towards the clouds
Driving towards the clouds. They just put power poles here. Still no line but that will be the next step.

Guess that is why they call it Rain Forest?
Guess that is why they call it Rain Forest? It did not rain but it was super humid.

More forest
More forest

Driving was quite relaxing. No traffic, no sign of civilisation  - not even power poles! Very rare in Vietnam where usually you find them at last at one site of the road.
Driving was quite relaxing. No traffic, no sign of civilisation – not even power poles! Very rare in Vietnam where usually you find them at last at one site of the road. Now you know you are far out!

A stream with water
A stream with clear water – should be a nice stop on a sunny day for a refreshing dip

After hours the first settlement again. Still no power and very simple.
After hours the first settlement again. Still no power and very simple.

At the end of the village you can see the first power pole. Soon they will have power - satellite dishes will come next!
At the end of the village you can see the first power pole. Soon they will have power – satellite dishes will come next!

Back home people would leave these remote villages - here they even build new houses
Back home people would leave these remote villages – here they even build new houses

A star with a heart - how nice
A star with a heart – how nice

No fear of a sun burn today
No fear of a sun burn today

Soon I will turn away from the mountains and head to the coast again
Soon I will turn away from the mountains and head to the coast again

The mountains in the back after I took a right - the road takes me down to the coast
The mountains in the back after I took a right – the road takes me down to the coast

My bunk bed at the Ocean View Homestay in Dong Hoi
My bunk bed at the Ocean View Homestay in Dong Hoi. Since last night was way to expensive I have to make the money back. The next two nights I pay 5 US $ each with WiFi, fan, AC and shared bathroom with hot shower.
Upstairs they have the private rooms but this one will do for me for the next two days.

You like cat - you like dog? We have both!
You like cat – you like dog? We have both!

Cat lift
Cat lift

They will manage to take a lot of time out of your day
They will manage to take a lot of time out of your day

Again the forecast – where is the sun – and the blue sky?
The clock: 61243 = 178 kilometres.

 
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