Hue - Dragonboat ride on the Perfumed River
Hue Travel Blog› entry 180 of 206 › view all entries
Another breakfast of banana pancakes with chocolate - love this country - before heading to the travel office and hitching a motorcycle ride down to the boat jetty. We hopped on one of the legendary dragonboats and settled down to a convenient day's floating sight-seeing. I wasn't feeling my best today so staring wistfully out at the green jungle, terraced farm fields, banana palms and eucalypt was about all I was up to.
After half an hour we jumped off at the Thien Mu Pagoda, before heading off to the Tu Duc tomb, final resting place to Emperor Tu Duc and still a home for practicing Buddhists. See the mini Buddhists at Buddhist school! To reach this we drove through the conical hat and incense making village, but since there were no demonstrations about how they are made we didn't stop.
When we returned, tables were set up on the boat for lunch but we had just enough time to squeeze in the Hon Chen temple before we ate. They had warned us lunch (included in the $5 price of the trip) would be small but in fact it was perfectly adequate. We had steamed rice with gingered tofu, and cabbage and onion vermicelli noodles. Cans of drinks were left on the table seemingly as part of the meal but later we were asked to pay - cheeky!
After lunch I jumped off to see the Tomb of Minh Mang, who ruled from 1820 to 1840.
I read Catfish and Mandala at the beginning of the 10 days and Andrew Pham says it so poignantly when he writes "Here, look at this, sir. Here is our National Monument. Very big. Very important to Vietnamese. You impressed? No, not so big?"...."I know they've got bigger monuments in their countries. Older, more important. What do our little things mean to them?" It's important to remember when sight-seeing in
Quick bite to eat at Cafe on Thu Wheels (conveniently right opposite our hotel) before we caught the sleeper bus to