Hoang lien Hotel: Staying Away From The Crowd
Sometimes it is worth more to stay away from backpackers alley after some of the things I heard from the expats there a few weeks ago. I stayed in district 1 that was three blocks away from PHAM NGU LAO area and had a great stay for 15 usd a night. The place next door was a three star place with breakfast included, FREE WIFI, but my room was small and bed was small, bathroom was small @ 30usd a night booked on Agoda web site. So after a few days I looked outside and there were banners of room promotion, 300,000 dongs a night (15usd) two star hotel, so I checked out the room and found the bed larger, more comfy, larger bathroom, less the LCD TV and breakfast.(THEY HAD OLD TUBE tv) I was happy and both places were clean and had maid service and clean sheets. Hoang Lien Hotel had the smaller room while the one next door call Sweet Home had larger rooms at half the price, both clean on (15 Bui Thi Xuan St.) Ben Thanh Ward, District 1. Anyway, talking to the backpackers, they got dorm rooms with share baths at 8-10 usd per person, sheets and towels were rough. If they got a room, it was small and rough (20usd), no maid service, just a come and go place, security lacks too. so for a few blocks away from the wild area, I was quite happy. in the mornings, there is a city park caddy cornor from the hotel to spend nice mornings and afternoons. There are refreshment stands out there that do not overcharge for your drinks cause it is a state run park, and you will see many locals bring out their bird cages and hang them out while they have coffee and tea, read the newspaper. Busiest day is Sundays 8am, 100's of bird cages, most gone by 10:30. A real site to see. Other locals use the park to have meetings and club get togethers, and take pictures in the park. People were very friendly and got me going into the right directions after tea time. At the corner also, but late in the evening (after 5) sandwich shops and street vendors set up and the sandwiches are great, there is a bakery and coffee stands there too. Makes you feel like a local hanging out.Also around the park is a cinema, at night the area is packed. If I want action, I walk three blocks to the back packers alley and sit out on the stools and drink fifty cent Saigon beers. many places to eat out there too, but you have to know like the locals do on where to go. Of course you can get good meals in the tourist area, but check out my blogs that I will put up soon of the great places I was entertained with great food.
hope this help and thanks for the tips.
cheers tommy x