We arrived back in Hanoi to conclude our route. We were all shattered as although the compartments were better on the train, the air conditioning meant it was icy cold all night and the grate of the air con unit rattled continuously. It was nice to return to the hotel we had started at though- there’s nothing like familiarity when you’re constantly travelling around to bring you comfort.
We headed off the women’s museum which was the only attraction we hadn’t made it to in our first visit to Hanoi, and many people had said it was really good. It was a very interesting museum and had lots of awesome artifacts and information. However I think we were too tired to enjoy it properly and spent much of our time huddled up in a darkened cinema room in the museum enjoying the darkness and quiet that we hadn’t had on the sleeper train!
We walked back to the hotel to meet the rest of the group and went for some of Hanoi’s delicacies. I started with some street spring rolls which were awesome and Matt had some Bahn Mi. We then went for the main event- egg coffee! Essentially egg coffee is coffee topped with a whipped egg yolk which has been mixed with sugar. It’s incredibly difficult to describe but completely delicious! After sampling the coffee I went for the same approach with hot chocolate which was equally as awesome.
After this I went for a massage with some of the other girls as I had really hurt my back on the sleeper train. Fortunately the massage lady was fabulous and made the pain almost instantly go away- what a blessing!
I went for a drink with Inge and Miriam and Matt came to join us. We took them both to Bahn Mi 25, which had been our incredible sandwich discovery on our first visit and they totally loved it. I had forgotten how awesome it was, and at less than £1 per sandwich it has to be one of my favorite places ever.
Matthew and I also wanted to try street Bun Cha, which is basically barbecued pork with noodles and sauce and herbs. We had a recommendation from the hotel so we shared some Bun Cha and loved it! It cost £2 for a massive plate for us to share and we really enjoyed the authenticity of sitting on the little plastic street furniture like the locals!
We spent the evening at a roof top restaurant but I was too stuffed from street food to eat, so I just had a drink and had sad farewell chats with some of the lovely friends we had made. We went for a final drink and dance at Lokal in beer corner, the place we had gone with our first group on the very first night of the tour. We sad our goodbyes, equipped with lots of tears, to some more wonderful friends, many of whom we know we will see again. How fortunate we have been to have met so many lovely people!