French Fragrance in Vietnam
Hue is my favorite place to soak up late afternoon colors and enjoy an evening wandering the local streets, in all of Vietnam. Hue is located in central Vietnam on the banks of the Perfume River, just a few miles inland from the South China Sea. The French colonial influence is ever present and makes for beautiful contrasts in architecture in the area around the south bank of the river. After a day of exploring the canals, the nearby tombs (Minh Mang's) and the citadel (the Imperial City), I'd encourage you to head toward the old historical district in the late afternoon. The Mandarin Cafe on the south bank is a great spot for a cocktail and dinner, before heading back out for a few laps with your camera when the sun goes down. Once night falls, Hue's lantern shops set up shop, illuminating the alleys in striking colors from these paper stars.
By Bronwen Gregory, AFAR Local Expert
Cruising the Perfume River
One of the things that impressed me most about Vietnam was the industriousness of its people. Their economy basically came from less than zero until trade with the US opened up during the Clinton Administration. Since that time they've been booming. Everywhere you look in Vietnam you see people working, in small shops, factories, farms and markets. A cruise down the Perfume River in Hue, is a great way to witness a microcosm of industries that depend upon the water. For me, this image of an older man – pulling in fishing nets while balanced precariously on the end of his boat – personifies the unwavering productivity of the Vietnamese people