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Archive for July, 2016

 

Table statistics the cheapest cities to visit

Table statistics the cheapest cities to visit

The famed Trip Adivor site has recently named Hanoi as top of the world cheapest city to travelers after a survey made from 4 criteria. From expertise and experiences over the years, the 2 last criteria are nominated by our team, Indochina Voyages.

* Accomodation/hotels: This most critical concern is well mentioned when Hanoi offers a wide ranges of hotel from 2-5 star ratings while alomost all of the locations are city central or walking distance to the city focal points. Its also help as a right base for many day or several package tours out of Hanoi as Halong Bay, Hai Phong, Ninh Binh, Mai Chau, Perfume Pagoda and a lot other traditional handicraft villages dotted along the Red River Delta.

The hotel from 2-5 star ratings in Hanoi

The hotel from 2-5 star ratings in Hanoi

* Meals: As from the survey for 3.5 days with lunches and dinners, the cost is so competitive in compared with the rest of the list, if it is not said the cheapest. This statistic is counted for having meals in quite good scale restaurants BUT keep in mind that Hanoi is a world famous street-eats city which provide so many eating expriences, diversified foods and of course, with yummy tastes. Expenses for these places are much cost saved than the number appeared on the table.

Locals are enjoying their favourist street foods

Locals are enjoying their favorite street foods

* Sightseeing fee: Beside some of the public monuments, historical sites which are open free to travelers, most of the museums, sightseeing places in this city offer a charge of 0.5 cent up to $2. You can see the cost is so thrilled to make a busy city tour at wishes.

A corner of Hanoi

A corner of Hanoi – source internet

* Taxi fare to get a round in a day: Considerably cheapest in compare with those countries in the Asean block, taxi is also part of the fun of your travel in this crazy driven traffic when you can have the peace of mind and watch the amazing traffic show in the streets. To minimize any scam might happen, my tips for the good taxi and to be well self-protected as below:

– Get the reputable ones as Hanoi taxi (04.38.53.53.53), Mai Linh taxi (04.38.222.666), Thanh Nga taxi (04.38.215.215) and Thanh Cong taxi (04.32.57.57.57). The two last is the best with cost, while the car is a bit smaller.

– Provide the taxi driver with a fix address and if possible, have taxi-ordered from your hotels, restaurant or the establishment you are about to leave.

– Take a photo once you are in. Photo should be with the Taxi brand and its number, mostly appeared to the top right of the car. This help to warn the taxi driver to serve you right.

Taxis are always available in Hanoi

Taxis are always available in Hanoi

* Hair Cut and Hairdresser: From my research and experiences, this is quite a good chance to save your $ while you can experience a different ambiance for your new hair-cut…in the open street side. Your travel  partner can also have a good photo of you to boast with friends at home of a new experience that Hanoi had offered. Price for these haircut ( male client ) is ranging from $1.5- $2. For the indoor hairdresser (serve female client ) a hair cut is ranging from $6- $9  plus a hair wash and blow of $2- $3.

Price for these haircut ( male client ) is ranging 1.5$- 2$

Price for these haircut ( male client ) is ranging 1.5$- 2$

* Bia Hoi: This last but not least, a real culture of Hanoi in the last several decades but started to be well-known by travelers around the world. A bia hoi cost around 0.3 cents and you can order some local snacks to go with your beer. You will be amazed at the crowd but fun of these places while immerse yourself with the local ambiance of the Bia Hoi corner has to offer.

A bia hoi cost around 0.3 cents in Hanoi

A bia hoi cost around 0.3 cents in Hanoi

If you find more reasons, feel free to contribute with us and we are very happy to talk and share our Hanoi to you, maybe we can sit down in a street-side coffee shop and enjoy Hanoi the way we want…

IV blogging team

 

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History of Ao Dai

The meaning of “Ao Dai” in English is “ long shirt”, simply describes how it looks like. But not only a kind of clothes it is, Ao Dai carries timeless stories along with the Vietnamese history.

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Vietnamese women in Ao Dai with lotus flowers

Back to  18th century, when Vietnam was under the domination of Chinese,  the Lord Nguyen Phuc Khoat (1714-1765), who was aware of the importance of reserving the national cultural identity, decreed that men and women had to wear same style of clothes: “Men and women wear hard collar, short sleeves shirt . Sleeves can be wide or narrow.  The seam should be well made from armpit down, not opened. Men are allowed to not wear round collar, narrow sleeves shirts for convenience at work…”. Then started the history of Ao Dai. When appearing, it has the shape of Ao Dai nowadays but it is much statelier and does not show off the curves of the female body. It is made from thick and heavy fabric. Travel Indochina Vietnam

The first Ao Dai

 

Until 19th century, Ao Dai had become popular all over Vietnam and become traditional costume of Nguyen Imperial. Although color options were limited to muted blacks or browns with peasants, in high  higher class version, the 5-paneled long shirt was available in various colors.

The Nam Phuong Hoang Hau ( Southern Queen) in Royal Costume

The Nam Phuong Hoang Hau ( Southern Queen) in Royal Costume

In 1858, French began colonizing Vietnam, marking a new page in history. Ao Dai gradually affected by the Western Style. 1930, for the first time a female painter named Cat Tuong in Hanoi launched new designs  combine traditional Ao Dai with the Western dress of the French. The new gown was formed with 2 elegant panels reaching to the ground and fit the wearer’s body using pins and a nipped-in waist. Its collar, flaps and sleeves were influenced by the Western style as well. This type of Ao Dai was known as Ao Dai Le Mur, named after the the designer in French. But the design was only a hot trend among artists, and became old-fashioned after a short period.

Ao Dai Le Mur

Ao Dai Le Mur

In 1950s,  there was a tailor in Saigon sought to create a new structure for the Ao Dai. The result was the “raglan,” a sleeve based on Western fashion techniques which eliminated the clumping of material under the arms of the Ao Dai, bringing it a step closer to its current form-fitting style.

Raglan Ao Dai in 1958

Raglan Ao Dai in 1958

The Ao Dai stepped onto the political stage when Tran Le Xuan, wife of Ngo Dinh Nhu, Chief Political Adviser of Ngo Dinh Diem, President of South Vietnam’s First Republic, donned its first décolleté version to promote her New Woman Movement. The picture of the Dragond Lady in her Ao Dai with a bateau neckline and snug upper body on the TIME magazine cover became a new fashion icon for Southern women.

The Dragon Lady in her Ao Dai

The Dragon Lady in her Ao Dai

Over decades, it was not until the late 1980’s when the Renovation reforms pulled the country out of economic hardship, the Ao Dai was resurrected and is now one of Vietnam’s defining national symbols.

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Ao Dai nowadays

If you want to know more about Ao Dai in details, you’re welcomed to the Ao Dai Museum at 206/19/30 Long Thuan, Long Phuoc Ward, 9 District, HCMC every day except Monday from 8.30am to 5.30pm.
Tel: 0914 726 948 – 0914 912 982

Website: baotangaodaivietnam.com

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