Going to Vietnam? 10 brutally honest tips you NEED to know

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How apt are you at dealing with culture shock?

Being thrust into dizzyingly unfamiliar surroundings is one surefire way to find out! Enter Vietnam…by far the craziest, noisiest and most difficult country I travelled through in my four years of global gallivanting.

But how long does the disorientation stemming from culture shock generally last? One or two days? Up to a week? What happens when it consumes the entire trip?

I spent my first day in Vietnam utterly bewildered, picking my way through the chaos of a Communist country that ironically appeared to run entirely ungoverned by any road, social or safety regulations.

A seasoned traveller, I presumed my feelings of discomfort would fade in the face of my easy ability to adapt to most environments.

However, four weeks went by and I was still struggling to overcome the challenges of travelling through a country where nothing seemed to make any sense.

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Eight (or should that be ate?) reasons I gained weight while travelling

When I jacked in my career and kick-started a life of long-term travel some four years ago, I was so excited for the changes my new lifestyle would bring.

I couldn’t wait to see the world, have new experiences, explore new cultures, meet new people…and maybe even lose some weight doing it!

Um, no.

I can’t tell you exactly how much weight I put on over the course of my travels (I refused to step on the scales), but I’m willing to hazard a guess at around eight kilos in four years.

Picture credit: topnaturalremedies.net

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Ping Pong Shows and Ladyboy Cabaret: Bangkok’s Biggest Must Do’s?

Within ten minutes of arriving at my hostel in Bangkok, I’d been accosted by a group of Canadians and asked whether I wanted to join them at a ping pong show that evening. Keen to make friends (I’d booked to stay for five nights) and eager to tick this renowned ‘must-do’ off my bucket list, I agreed. An hour later, we found ourselves in a seedy bar with low lighting, a few scattered audience members and six girls on stage in lingerie looking like they’d rather be anywhere else.

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