You cannot leave (or infact 'see') Vietnam without doing the Easy Rider tour, it was capital A awesome.
The journey: Da Lat > Lak Lake > Buon Ma Thout > Plei Ku > Dak To > Kham Duc > P'rao > Hoi An.
I have seen waterfalls like Niagra.
I have seen breathtaking valleys and fields.
I have seen green.
I have travelled on winding roads through lush mountains.
I have visited tiny minority villages where white people dont venture.
I have seen proper rural life with communities living off the land.
I have seen the scarred landscape of the war.
I have seen remnants of ex-American military bases and weapons.
I have visited silk, wine, coffee, pepper, latex and tea plantations.
I have visited and seen places not even listed in my guidebook.
I have enjoyed sunshine, mist and epic thunderstorms.
I have been propositioned with offers of daughters and sisters.
I have become addicted to coffee.
I have broken down in the middle of nowhere.
I have seen a thousand smiles and waving hands.
I have welcomed Vietnam's hot showers after 5 months of cold ones.
I have enjoyed breakfast, lunch & dinner with the locals.
I have seen the real Vietnam.
I will however say this: The trip is good because it's 7 days with a guide but the trip is also bad because it's 7 days with a guide. Stefan was a little difficult and was a bit of a headache sometimes (especially because I couldnt communicate with anyone else) but as the days went on we gained more of an understanding and by day 5 we had become pretty good friends - the riding inbetween stops was always king though despite any annoyances, my driver could have been Kerry Katona (ha) and it still wouldn't have mattered. Stefan is a war veteran who has had a very difficult life so I always respected him but I guess it's just natural to get annoyed by people you spend 15 hours a day with. Like I said, now we are good friends and even now in Hoi An I still meet him for a drink. He's on the lookout for a client to travel back down to Da Lat with so is also staying here a few days.
Cant believe it's June 3rd! Got so much to see in Vietnam before my visa runs out on the 14th, in hindsight I regret spending so much time in the Mekong. Nevertheless, onewards and upwards. X