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Trails Of Vietnam 12 March - 26th March

Wed, 10/27/2010 - 19:14

I've booked this with a friend for next year. Seeing as no one has started a post yet I thought I'd crack the ice. So who is joining us? Would be cool to get to know you all before the trip.

Well excited!!!!! 


Tue, 11/02/2010 - 16:36

I thought I'd pop in here and let you know it's still just the four of you booked on at this stage. I'll update you when there's more bookings as discussed. The tour is guaranteed.

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 23:37

Thanks mate, still got 4 month and a few days to go so I am sure there will be a few more by then. Not too fussed if there isn't though because it just means more time for us with the guide.

Mon, 12/27/2010 - 12:40

Looks like no one wants to walk Vietnam like us! 

Wed, 02/02/2011 - 16:54

Just an update. There's now 8 confirmed bookings on this tour, with one other person currently holding a provisional option. I thought I'd up this thread in the hope that one of the 6 confirmed people you don't already know sees it and replies now that the tour is drawing near.

Wed, 02/02/2011 - 17:28

8 is not too bad. Looks like me and my mate are the youngest ones on the tour. A month will fly by so fast so I best make the effot to get my Maleria thing sorted and travel insurance before i get lazy and forget!!!! Exciting times.

Sun, 02/13/2011 - 13:40

Hi Ray - I've booked on the trip too and really looking forward to it. Have a couple of mates who have been to Vietnam and they say its amazing. I'm flying from Manchester and look forward to meeting up with everyone in Hanoi.

Sun, 02/13/2011 - 17:36

Hey James, looking forward to meeting you in Hanoi, I'm actually in Manchester at the moment but will be traveling with my mate from heathrow. You going with anyone?? And have you got your maleria tablets and travel insurance!!? I need some recommendations for that!!


Mon, 02/14/2011 - 09:45

Travelling on my own for the first time (Billy no mates!). A bit apprehensive but thought as I'd be part of a group it would be a good laugh and nice to meet some new fellow travellers. Also I haven't ridden a bike for 20 years so thats going to be interesting!

Went to see my Doctor on Friday and its 50/50 whether to take Malaria tablets - most of the places we're going to is malaria-free. The only dodgy part might be the first couple of days when we are trecking. They have suggested larium - 8 tablets in total. Haven't had chance to find out the cost yet but they suggest that I shop around the big supermarkets Asda/Morrisons and also Boots as prices vary wildly. Haven't decided yet whether to risk not taking it at all. I'm going to price it this week & will let you know.

Can't help with travel insurance - I automatically get cover through my Lloyds bank account. Think its just a case of shopping around on the internet. Don't know how much Exodus plan is?

Mon, 02/14/2011 - 20:49

To be honest I was originally going on my own but managed to convince my best mate to come along, which will be the first time me and him travel together so should be fun!! I've checked on that website before but so far haven't had much luck finding one that covers kayaking. Most cover trekking I think. Not sure if that matters too much though. Are you doing the extended tour to Cambodia? We will be stopping in Malaysia for 2 days on our way back.

Everyone seems 50/50 on the malaria subject, kind of confusing but better safe than sorry. My appointment for that is on Monday the 28th.

Mon, 02/14/2011 - 23:17

Not going to Cambodia but staying in Saigon for a few extra days. My neighbour says its a great city and might even try to meet up with me there on the way to a business trip to China.

Sun, 02/20/2011 - 13:46

Hi Ray/James,

I'm booked on this trip too. Trying to get everything sorted. It's been a few years since I've been on a bike too James.

Sun, 02/20/2011 - 17:48

Hi Steve - look forward to meeting up with you Hanoi. Not long now! I was going to borrow a bike to try and get some training in but I've only 2 weekends left now which are pretty hectic and its dark when I get home from work. Oh well, there's always a backup car if I can't hack it!

Ray - yes the stay in Saigon is at the end of the trip. A little R&R after a hectic schedule. I saw about the boat in Halong Bay. Its tragic for those involved but hopefully it will make them check all the boats a little more carefully. I'm not going to worry about it and let it ruin my trip.

What money are you taking? Dollars, Dong or a mixture? Think I'm going to take a bit of each.

Sun, 02/20/2011 - 18:01

Hey Steve, looking forward to meeting you as well. Are you going Via Heathrow?

You guys looking forward to the 13 1/2 hours or so to Malaysia then 4 hours to Vietnam including wait? haha... I might need some nytol to help me with this one because no amount of films and books will. I have never ridden a bike so I am expecting myself to end up with bruises or a broken bone! Hopefully not.

I haven't changed any money yet, really lost on this one. I was thinking a mix of both. Dollars for the main cities and dong for the villages... I really can't see me needing that much though because food is cheap and i am not there to shop. So perhaps something like 400 dollars and some dong? take some pounds if i need to change it there. Have to decide in the next two weeks. The only thing I might be interested in getting is a tailored suite if i get the time.


Mon, 02/21/2011 - 15:15

I'm flying from Manchester to Singapore then on to Hanoi. I daren't work out how long it takes to travel - a few G&T's on the plane to knock myself out I think :) Apparently my flight gets to Hanoi an hour before yours so I'm going to wait at the airport and meet up with you there.

Glad I'm not the only inexperienced cyclist - was worried I might hold you all up - had visions of everyone else being a Chris Hoy!

Mon, 02/21/2011 - 21:59

I'm flying from Heathrow. The flight times seem a bit long but they will soon pass. I had thoughts similar to yours James and thought everyone would be time trialists!!!!

Going to sort my money this weekend. Have you made your mind up about Malaria tablets?

This might sound like a daft question but is anyone taking a cycling helmet?

Mon, 02/21/2011 - 22:23

I've decided to go for the Larium - probably don't need it but better safe than sorry.

Not going to take a cycling helmet. I'm presuming we'll be able to hire them over there - I might give Exodus a call just to make sure they can provide them. I seriously thought about taking a friends gel saddle cover to minimise the aches and pains but it just uses weight up in the luggage, think there is a 20k limit. Will have to grin & bear it!

Where are you getting money from? I've been looking online and the post office seem to be as good as anyone?


Mon, 02/21/2011 - 22:36

Definitely not taking a helmet, i'll make one there like they did in Top Gear if i had to. I'm not too sure about the post office.. they don't have the best rate. I saw a place today selling dollars for 1.60 which is the highest i have seen in a while.

 I'll find out about Malaria tablets on Monday but other than that I am all ready to go. Will be taking a small bag, wont take more than 10 t-shirts and probably 4 shorts and will go to Vietnam in my jeans. I am sure there is a washing machine in the hotels we stay in so pointless to take too much. 

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 15:35

Just a quickie - spoke to a friend who has trekked in the hills and stayed on a boat in Halong Bay. She said the sleeping bags were a bit grubby and she just used a sleeping bag liner. Admittedly, she didn't book this through Exodus so all may be fine, however I've just bought a liner from Amazon for £5 to be sure.

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 20:05

Just checkingout exodus site. My friend noelle and i are two of the original 4 . Been all booked up 5 months now. Really looking forward to the trip. Have the sheet sleeping bag bought from amazon too. The DEET spray bought, injections up to date. We are also only taking the malaria tabs for a short time we are inland. We have gone for maladrone. Hope we are not the oldest of the party . If so hope we are the fittest lol. Only joking


Thu, 02/24/2011 - 21:43

Hey Angela, I did not know we had more than one female on our tour. According to my very good internal source from Exodus, me and my friend are the youngest at 28 years of age each! lol I don't know about fittest but I have been exercising for the last month or so and in pretty good shape at the moment so I think I am physically ready.. i'll push myself a bit harder the next few days. Unless you mean fit as in looks haha.

This may sound sad but I have this 'mini' pillow i can't sleep without so I'll be taking that with me and a bed linen. I am thinking of doing a Karl and taking monster munch with me!!!! just kidding, I love east asian food.

Fri, 02/25/2011 - 12:24

Hi Angela - look forward to meeting you in Hanoi. You'll definitely be fitter than me and almost certainly younger! I might hire a mobility scooter instead of cycling :)

Fri, 02/25/2011 - 20:18

Hi Angela - Looking forward to meeting you. Not long now. You flying from Heathrow?


Fri, 02/25/2011 - 20:54

We are both from scotland. flying down to heathrow then singapore airlines to singapore then on to hanoi. The flight is soo long, We are just in vietnam for the 2 weeks then back to work lucky old yous who can stay longer. I thought on checking last night we were the only two females glad to know there is 1 more,


Sun, 02/27/2011 - 01:44

I assumed that everyone is flying on the same plane!! So are you guys going to wear something warm for Hanoi? was looking at my iphone weather app and it looks cold there. Well i suppose 20c is not cold to us but 20c there could be 5c here? And it's around 33 in the south!!

Sun, 02/27/2011 - 13:51

just back from a long cycle with my son. Cycled 20k feeling really pleased with myself. He is in the navy and keeping me fit

PS. sore botty now. Need to invest in gel shorts.

Better bring a waterproof jacket ,hat and gloves for hanoi but us Scots are made of hearty stuff!!

Sun, 02/27/2011 - 21:12

Hi Angela - I'm with Singapore airlines too but flying from Manchester - presume we'll be on the same plane from Singapore to Hanoi though? I've been told that lands an hour before the rest of the group.

Haven't had chance to do any bike training yet and only 1 weekend left!!! Definitely taking my mates gel saddle :)

Mon, 02/28/2011 - 14:16

Felt had to join in. Feet and rear end prepared for the worst. Im sure us ladies can rely on the young gentlemen in the group to keep to a nice easy pace while I get my zimmer turbo charged. Will watch out for James in Singapore. I have a bit of purple in my hair and if plans go accordingly Angela will be carrying the bags !!!!!!

Mon, 02/28/2011 - 22:13

Hey Noelle! nice to meet you.

 I have not done any cycling in a very long time but I am sure jogging is pretty much the same in the sense of my legs getting used to working hard plus I work all day for work so it should be fine hopefully. I am sure they won't push us to the limit plus we're only 8 I believe so it should be a chilled out group unlike the other one which has around 16!

Does anyone of you know if we need a voltage converter? I am taking my shaver and iphone with me but don't want them to blow up when I plug it in! lol 

Tue, 03/01/2011 - 12:56

Hi Noelle. Might see you in Singapore - I'll look out for the purple-haired lady :)

Don't know about voltage converter Ray. I'm just taking a normal universal adapter. I'm presuming that as Vietnam was a French colony they will have continental fittings?

Tue, 03/01/2011 - 16:58

Hi Noelle, how you doin?

I spoke to Exodus last week and they said that the group could be as big as 11 with 9 confirmed so far.

Ive been doing plenty of running too Ray. I'm sure that will see us through. Bought a Gel saddle though!!

Sat, 03/05/2011 - 11:45

This came by faster than I thought. Im not sure why I'm
Still not very excited. I think the travel time is making me feel negative at the moment but hopefully will pull through it. At least I'll be with my friend unless he sleeps through it than I'm screwed! Will be jumping on Walls once I'm in heathrow!!!

Wed, 03/09/2011 - 15:36

Hello everyone.

Just to let you know, there's now 12 (6 women, 6 men) of you on this tour. Looks like the majority of you have found your way into this thread too. 

 Have a great trip and try not to all fall off the bikes!

Wed, 03/09/2011 - 15:52

Oooo who is the new girl :-p

Wed, 03/09/2011 - 20:39

Just wondering if anyone have been able to check in online or book seats? I don't get how Malaysian airlines work but I am sure when I flew with Virgin I could reserve seats a couple of weeks before my flight... it wont even let me check the flight on their site.

Thu, 03/10/2011 - 16:10

Had a mad week at work but nearly cleared up now - can't wait! See you in Hanoi!!

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