Up at an unearthly hour for a holiday for a 7am departure to miss the worst of the Saigon rush hour. Our destination the Cu Chi tunnels to see first hand how the guerilla war was fought underground by the VC. Some of us dozed and some watched the hundreds of mopeds which clog the roads . Cars are too expensive for the majority of the population. An hour and a half later we arrived and entered the jungle, passing several bomb craters, to reach the visitor centre. After a short presentation we were invited to enter the tunnels. Not everyone in the group did, but we all managed to plunge into a small unlit hole and scramble through in crouching position. Many heads were banged and some had to resort to all fours! This was despite the tunnels having been significantly widened to accommodate the tourists! A local guide demonstrated how the soldiers had originally accessed the tunnels,leaving no sign of the entrance. He reappeared 20 yards away from another entrance and gave us quite a surprise!
At the end of the tour we were given refreshments. Boiled tapioca root which was pretty much all they had to eat. It was very bland,but starchy and sustaining. All in all a salutary experience.
A further hour on the coach saw us arrive at the temple of Cao Dai at Tay Ninh which embraces a unique approach to religion as all faiths worship together. We watched part of the ceremony and it seemed to lean toward budism with lots of chanting and incense. Very beautiful though. The heat today is stifling so didn't stay long and was happy to retreat to the air-conditioned bus.
After a simple lunch of local food we hit the road for the 2 hour drive back to the city for the last night.
We were all quite tired after the long day so opted for a more westernised local restaurant near the hotel for our supper.
A coffee on the roof terrace of our hotel ended another very full day.
Sorry no photos as uploading is impossible here