On my third and last day in Vietnam I sought out the mythical Ha Long Bay. Ha Long Bay - 'Where the dragon descends into the sea' - is a cluster of thousands of limestone islands rising from the jade waters of Vietnam, praised by poets as 'the rock wonder in the sky'. Legend has it that a young Vietnam were sent a family of dragons as protectors from the gods to defend this new country from invaders. The dragons spat out jewels and jade, which turned into the islands and islets dotting the bay, and linked to form a great wall. These rock mountains abruptly appeared on the sea, ahead of the enemy, striking and sinking their ships. After the Vietnamese emerged triumphant, their defenders remained in the bay - the place where the mother dragon descended was christened Hạ Long, the place where the dragon's children attended upon their mother was named Bai Tu Long island, and the place where the dragon's children wriggled their tails violently was called Bach Long Vy.
My first day in Hanoi was spent learning how to confidently cross the road (stride steadily and determinedly across the path of never-ending traffic; don't pause, freeze, or turn back, and let the motorcycles drive around you). On my second (and last) day in this colourful, chaotic Socialist republic capital I woke up early and tried to take in as many of Hanoi's iconic sights as possible as well as a few local favourites.
Mummy and I arrived in Hanoi on Sunday for a little reconnaissance mission of a hospitality nature and we checked into Intercontinental Hanoi Westlake - one of mummy's company's hotels in Hanoi - which would be our base for our short trip in Vietnam.