phu quoc beaches

The sense of Vietnam

hidden beach ong lang
Secret beaches Phu Quoc

We took our senses to Vietnam and let them loose in this fragrant, cacophanous, deliciously inviting country. Here are some highlights….

Vietnam smells like:-


Fish guts in the sun

Watermelon smoothies

Smoke from a hundred improvised BBQ’s outside six seat restaurants, rallied by vigorous flapping of palm fans

Red mud drying in the dope heavy air

Condensed milk

Sea salt and peppercorns

And around and above it all the mindful wreathing of incense from the temples and everyday shrines.



Vietnam tastes like:-


The yum yuck of good fish sauce, gnarly and funky

Banh Mi, an airy baguette, warm and yeasty

The crisp wet crunch into the hollow geometry of lotus root

The growing as it lingers burn of chilli on the lips

Pepper tea with honey, a fragrant prickle to the nose, surprisingly Christmassy

The complex flavour layers of the dry rub on a chicken thigh, cooked to a tender wither



Vietnam looks like:-


The intrepid dashing of tiny ghost crabs on the fringes of a gin clear tide

Clusters of Brownian motion motorbikes at intersections where traffic lights don’t apply

Roads that end without warning at a wall of jungle, Rousseau like and languidly threatening

Hive like lanes surrounding fishing harbours with houses stacked in layers and businesses in every home

Iridescent temples joyously garlanded with gilded dragons carrying LED pearls in their jaws

Pale pink plumptious Buddhas, happy, fat and yet to come



Vietnam sounds like:-


Really bad karaoke

Cement mixers in the distance

The incessant language of the motorbike horns

The screaming of the jungles at noon

The chirp of the pepper plantations at night

Far off thunder rumbling in the dark punctuated by the closer deep down low grousing of the bullfrogs



Vietnam feels like:-


A song in a language you will never understand, alien music

Sweet bursting sweat in a climate as comforting as a quilt

The surprising sink of sand under curious feet on remote beaches

The quick humiliation of your motorbike being briskly overtaken on a rutted road by an elder on a decrepit scooter with piled high panniers swinging like hips.

A world in macro amongst the slowly spreading corals in its shallow seas




The nurseries in the shallows

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