16. N: Ba Na Hills.
Driving 25 kilometers to the south west of Da Nang and getting on the world’s longest and highest non-stop cable cars and you can reach the peak of Ba Na Hills.
I visited Ba Na Hills in September, 2015 and the weather at that time was very nice. Picturesque flower gardens “Le Jardin D’Amour”, Debay Ancient Wine Celar, French Village, Linh Ung Pagoda, Fantasy Park, and Alpine Coaster were our must-visited destinations.
17. O: Thang long – Dragon fruit
Thang long has either white or red pulp and dark tiny seeds. When my cousin showed her Australian mother-in-law dragon fruit, the first question she asked my cousin is “How to extract the seeds, darling?” That also could be the first reaction of every foreigner when they see dragon fruit. The seeds cannot be removed and it does not matter if you swallow them. The seeds will never grow to trees in your stomach, either, so please do not try to remove them otherwise you would look like an idiot for sure.
18. Ô: Hot vit lon – Half-hatch duck egg
Although half-hatch duck egg or fetal duck egg is ranked one of the weirdest foods of the world (Rice, 2016), it is very popular not only in Vietnam but also in Philippine, Cambodia, Lao, and China. I love it, too. This dish goes very well with Vietnamese coriander and the mix of slat, pepper, and lemon juice.
Here is the video of two Western tourist tried hot vit lon I found on Youtube: “Trung vit lon – Vietnamese Fetal Duck Eggs.”
19. Ơ: Ho Guom or Ho Hoan Kiem – Hoan Kiem Lake
“Hoan Kiem” means “restoring the sword” according to the legend in 15th century. The Emperor Ly That To was given a magical sword helping him to protect the country from the invaders from China and after that the sword was returned to a turtle in this lake (Hoan Kiem Lake, n.d.)
Thap Rua on the small islet in the lake is the symbol of Ha Noi.
20. P: Phan xi pang – Mt Fansipan
Fansipan, the highest peak in Indochina at 3,143 metres, belongs to Hoang Lien Son mountain range (Taylor, 2016). Tourists can reach the peak by cable car complex or on foot. However, if you choose to get there by cable car, it sounds you stay in a hotel and do sightseeing of the beach from a window but will not come to the beach and experience and enjoy the sand and the waves.
My sister and her her husband went for a hike, and they took many photos of picturesque rice terraces, forest, mountains and most importantly, the milestone at the peak of Fansipan there.
Longest and highest non-stop cable car – Ba Na Hills set world record. (2009). Retrieved from http://www.worldrecordacademy.com/technology/longest_and_highest_non-stop_cable_car-Ba_Na_Hills_sets_world_record_90180.htm
Le Jardin D’Amour. (2015). Retrieved from http://banahills.sunworld.vn/en/discovery/le-jardin-damour/
Dragon fruit from Vietnam. (2017). Retrieved from http://www.agriculture.gov.au/biosecurity/risk-analysis/plant/dragon-fruit-from-vietnam#australias-dragon-fruit-production
Fetal duck egg. (2015). Retrieved from http://vietnamcoracle.com/fetal-duck-egg/
Nguyen, A. (2008). Viet World Kitchen. Retrieved from http://www.vietworldkitchen.com/blog/2008/01/half-hatched-du.html
Hoan Kiem Lake. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.lonelyplanet.com/vietnam/hanoi/attractions/hoan-kiem-lake/a/poi-sig/1387763/357880
Rice, J. (2016, November 29). Rough guides. Retrieved from https://www.roughguides.com/gallery/weird-food/
Taylor, C. (2016, May 28). South China Morning Post. Retrieved from http://www.scmp.com/magazines/post-magazine/travel-leisure/article/1955017/conquering-vietnams-mount-fansipan-indochinas