AnneMarie and Andrew

Annemarie and Andrew – Trekking Asia

Hue: Day One

We took yet another overnight train from Hanoi to Hue in central Vietnam. This was our 10th train since Europe and pushing our total time on trains on this trip to over 250 hours. We left Hanoi at exactly 19:35 and arrived only 30 minutes late at 09:45 the following morning.

Our arrival was never going to be a pleasant experience; All train station exits are crowded with taxi drivers and motorbike riders offering their services. You say no to one and the person immediately behind them will ask the same question. It makes me angry, even worse if I didn’t sleep properly and I’m already in a bad mood. So the second we left the station we were pounced on. We said no about 30 times and got away from the exit, but our pickup for the hotel wasn’t around, which meant having to stand still, with our backpacks, near the station exit. Roughly every 20 seconds someone would come over asking if we needed a taxi or a motorbike. This was pushing my restraint to the limit, asking me the same question over and over really gets to me. Finally someone from the hotel arrived, hailed a taxi and put our bags in for us. An interesting pickup service but effective.

The hotel we booked was the Jade Hotel, which has amazing reviews on Trip Advisor and it lived up to those reviews. As soon as we were through the doors we were sat at a table, given ice cold damp flannels (so refreshing), poured fresh juice and been asked what we wanted to eat (free breakfast and free juice/tea/coffee all day).

Annemarie had already planned our itinerary for Hue. A full day tour around the city was planned for one day and a trip to the old DMZ for another day. We booked the city tour (almost all hotels and hostels arrange tours) for the next day and the DMZ for the day after, filling all three days we have planned in Hue.

By this time it was about 11am, but with no room ready we decided we should wander around the city a little. We headed for the Citadel, the heart of the old town. It was getting hot as we walked around the outside of the walls of the old city. Around 25 degrees and almost 80% humidity gave it a real feel of about 29 degrees according to AccuWeather. Lucky we spotted a coffee shop when we did. A coffee and ice cream later we were ready to hit the road again; straight back to the hotel to rest.

In the evening we found a decent restaurant to eat in followed by ‘buy one get one free’ drinks at a bar. The drinks were less than a quid each and loaded with alcohol. Plenty of free shots too. And free pool, although we were thrashed by the home boys every time.

An annoying start to what became a decent day.

Posted from tp. Huế, Thua Thien-Hue, Vietnam.


  1. Avatar

    Coffee and ice cream sounds good, but the concept of eating ice cream in December doesn’t work in my head… The concept of you two drinking shots doesn’t work in my head either, but I don’t really know why!

    Maybe you’re making all of this up and actually you’re sat in some scabby apartment in Bradford.

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    • Andrew

      Normally you’d be right about the ice cream but it’s in the high 20’s every day and very humid. I only believe it’s December because my phone doesn’t lie about the date.

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      • Avatar

        Sounds like our living room!

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