Inspiration Trips & Travels Vietnam

Hello from Southeast Asia!


Finally, here is the long-awaited update from Southeast Asia! My flight from DC to Hanoi was just over 20 hours, with a brief layover in Singapore. Singapore airport was full of surprises – complete with a lush butterfly garden, petite koi ponds surrounded by lilies, stationary stores, and dessert shops. We even found a napping area with comfy chairs. Why can’t all airports be this exciting?

On my return flight, I have almost a full-day layover in Singapore, and I’m looking forward to exploring the city. If you have any recommendations for food/shopping/neighborhoods, please let me know!

I love my mustard yellow (15-1062) Pantone passport holder and comfy color block shoes.

Butterfly garden


And finally, Hanoi:








Hoan Kiem Lake




The best thing about summer work abroad is that I have a few weeks of free time to travel after my work contract ends. I’ve been checking Coop holiday for travel packages. Indonesia and Thailand are on top of the list for this region, but we are leaning towards traveling down the coast of Vietnam. I’ve always wanted to visit Hoi An and Hue!

I just read that Vietnam is the world’s second happiest country, based on life expectancy, happiness, and environmental sustainability. There’s so much nature and old architecture in Hanoi. Despite the urban setting, the lifestyle here is really laid back (especially in comparison to Shanghai and New York) and the food is amazing. I’m learning more food vocabulary each day, so I can order at most street noodle shops and restaurants. And of course, I’m saving up all the mealtime photos for a big post dedicated to Vietnamese food.


  • Reply
    July 16, 2012 at 2:19 am

    looks like a wonderful trip 🙂 pho was a delight to eat almost every day when I visited vietnam 4 years back!

    • Reply
      July 16, 2012 at 6:11 am

      I think I’ve been eating pho (or at least noodles) almost every day here, too! 🙂

  • Reply
    July 16, 2012 at 4:09 am

    Oh you had a stopover in Singapore? I’m really proud of my country’s airport too, heehee.

    Have a good life in Hanoi!

    • Reply
      July 16, 2012 at 6:12 am

      It was such a perfect layover that I’m already looking forward to my next one! 😛

  • Reply
    July 16, 2012 at 4:53 am

    Hanoi looks like a nice, peaceful place, I’m definitely hope to visit it when I next go to Vietnam!

    Here are some great food / shopping recommendations for Singapore if you’re looking for something that’s a little off the beaten track:

    • Reply
      July 16, 2012 at 6:13 am

      Thanks for the recommendations! Thisisnaive is such a lovely blog, I was definitely thinking of checking her lo-fi guide. 🙂

  • Reply
    Veronica Fish
    July 16, 2012 at 8:34 am

    Amazing! I’ve heard of quite a few people moving to Vietnam as US ex-pats – even Anthony Bourdain was looking at properties last year! I hope you have a great time!

  • Reply
    July 16, 2012 at 11:08 am

    So fabulous. 😀 I can’t wait to hear more about your time here. And your pictures, as always, are stunning!

  • Reply
    July 16, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    Sweet! can’t wait to see the foodie pics! These are fabulous as always. You guys seems to be have a great time, have fun on the next part of your journey 🙂

  • Reply
    indie belle
    July 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    can´t wait to see more of your pics and know more about the food of that region! (yes, another food lover here :P)

    glad everything´s going great

    have a beautiful week!

    much love,

  • Reply
    celsy sabilla
    July 16, 2012 at 9:37 pm

    Ahhh you and your traveling photos, i feel so envious! i can’t wait to gradiate and just explore first 🙂 hahah funny, i love singapore’s airport too. I used to run all over the place when i was little.

    I hear vietnam is very beautiful, a couple of my friends just visited the place and it’s so cheap. I’m form indoenesia, if you’re going there you can ask me for recommended places 😀 there’s more beautiful places than just bali!! weeh i can’t wait for food photos

  • Reply
    July 17, 2012 at 4:55 am

    ooooh the hamamelis flowers are so pretty!!! it looks like such a wonderful and meditative place to be.. have a great time there! 🙂

  • Reply
    hello bunnies
    July 17, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Check out my friends blog for singapore recommendations!

    Hope you have a nice rest of your trip. your photos look amazing as always 😀

  • Reply
    July 18, 2012 at 4:43 am

    Yes, yes, yes for more Vietnam pics, I’ve been loving seeing them every day. It really seems like you’ve been having a lovely time there (yay for it being the second happiest country!) and I can’t wait to hear/see more about your time there xx

  • Reply
    evdokia t.
    July 18, 2012 at 9:36 am

    your fotos have so beautiful colors!
    i made a small trip through them!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    wow, that looks amazing !

  • Reply
    July 18, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    I’ve never been to vietnam before and it certainly looks interesting through your lens ! and happy that you’ll have a little time to explore singapore ! here’s a few quick suggestions off hand. looking forward to reading all about your post on singapore soon !

    * hawker centres (lau pa sat/ maxwell food centre/ chinatown smith street food centre are plausible options that are centrally located) for a cheap, singaporean meal. what to eat: local favorites such as yong tau foo, satay, hainanese chicken rice, bak kut teh, rojak, mee rebus, mee siam, roti prata, murtabak, char kway teow, fried hokkien mee and ice kacang (dessert !!)

    * no. 5 emerald hill, a gorgeously decorated cocktail bar off orchard road, is perfect for a drink (or two) and the peranakan shophouses in the vicinity are worth checking out too

    * haji lane/ kampong glam area for a dose of malay culture, mosques and more shophouses of a different kind

    * ang siang hill/ club street area, as featured here:

  • Reply
    Studio Meez
    July 19, 2012 at 5:00 am

    Can’t wait to see more pictures of your trip! Your always leaving me hungry and wanting more, with or without food picture 😉

  • Reply
    July 19, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    You know, I need to do what you do and try and explore Asia more but find work at the same time. This sounds AND looks like such an awesome combination. I’m mega jealous of all the food you’ve been consuming out there and also the gorgeous scenery.

  • Reply
    July 20, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    sewon! i adoooore you’re color blocking shoes, where are they from?? looking forward to your blogpost about food! maybe even a recipe? take care!

  • Reply
    September 15, 2012 at 12:34 am

    Love your shoes! Where they from?

  • Leave a Reply