Out of Saigon - Cu Chi Tunnels, Ho Chi Minh City
At the Museum at Cu Chi, there were some pretty horrific means of defence like the spikes put in the pits and covered. The spike ends were covered in poison. Fairly primitive but effective means against the more sophisticated defences of the Americans. Nearly 3 million Vietnamese were killed, 4 million others injured and over 58,000 American army men died in the war.
The tour involve a description of the tunnels, then tourists are taken down into a section of the tunnels. There are three layers, one where you are bending over to walk, the next you are crouched and it gets even less on the 3rd level. I had to come out - for the first time in my life I found I was slightly claustrophobic. Truly amazing though.
At just over 5'2", I was crouching at the first level.
Location: About 75 km northwest of Saigon.
Ann's Tourist Co., 58 Ton That Tung St., District 1 (tel. 08/833-2564 or 833-4356; fax 08/832-3866; www.anntours.com; e-mail: email@example.com) offers great excursions. Ask for director Tony Nong.
FULL DAY EXCURSIONS: Cu Chi Tunnels and Tay Ninh Visit the underground tunnel in Cu Chi learning special tactics of revolution force used during the Vietnam war and Cao Dai temple in Tay Ninh with the ceremony at 12:00 noon. The Cao Dai religion is combination of Christian and Eastern religions. Cu Chi was an important base during the war because of its strategic location. The incredible 200km long network of hidden tunnels was used for storage, shelter, command posts, and hospitals. Continue on to the town of Tay Ninh, headquarters of one of Vietnam's most interesting religions, Caodism, an eclectic fusion Eastern and Western religious philosophies. Visit the Caodai Great Temple, a striking rococo structure built between 1933 and 1955.
Cu Chi Tunnels About 40 kilometres out of HCMC lie the historic and impressive Cu Chi Tunnels. Stretching over some 200 kilometres, the system of tunnels was began to be established as early as pre-WWII to hide the Communist guerillas that have historically resided in the area. The advent of theVietnam War meant the tunnels took on even greater importance, expanding to act as the logistical headquarters of the Tet offensive and allowing the North Vietnamese army to penetrate far into the south. The tunnels are so narrow that the government has widened some to allow foreign visitors to enter. Cu Chi and the Tunnels On the way back from Tay Ninh we stopped at Cu Chi to see the tunnels. There is an opportunity to fire an AK47. The cost is $1.00 per bullet. Dormitories, ammunition depots, conference rooms and even hospitals and schools were housed in the adjoining rooms, all safely underground, during the War.
Booked a Cu Chi tunnel half day tour through Sinh Cafe. Before arriving at the tunnel, we were detoured to the lacquer ware factory about 45 mins out of HCMC. Lots of nice arts pieces.
There are displays of the various bobby traps used during the Vietnam war against the American soldiers at the Cu Chi Tunnels.
The Cu Chi Tunnels - shows the 3 layers of tunnels. This display as well as a video recording of the tunnels was in the building before you tour through the grounds. Very interesting.