After a great cruise on Halong Bay it was time for the next part of my Indochina Junk tour, the home stay in Yen Duc village, a unique experience in which you stay in a working village to experience the real life rural Vietnam. This has to have been the highlight of my trip so far. I was recommended this trip extension by the lovely team at Indochina-Junk and I am so pleased they suggested it.
So we stayed in a cute little town house with similar decor to that of the boat, with the added bonus or gorgeous high ceiling and a free standing bath to swoon over. There were two more guests with the same itinerary staying in the other room belonging to the house, a young couple from Tazmania who were so lovely, bonus! We enjoyed the days together with our amazing guide Nah, she was so fantastic from the moment she greeted us all.
The first day we travelled to the centre of the village to spend the afternoon like a farmer – we saw how they used to produce rice before machines were available. We had a go ourselves as well which was really fun!
We made just 200g between the 4 of us. It was so interesting to see the process, it must have taken them forever in past years to produce and to think, we could grab a bag of rice for 50p in the UK nowadays – it really made me think. A very humbling experience.
We then tried our hands at fishing! Now this…….was one of the funniest experiences ever
Rather than a hook and bait technique you have to sludge through the muddy waters and drop a basket over the swimming fish, then reach in and grab the fish with your hand through the top of the basket. This was a tough experience for me as I didn’t want to hurt the fish when I was picking it up, it was so slippery we all kept dropping it! After a few attempts though I managed to scoop it out. I was quite impressed that I caught the largest one (brushes shoulder off ;))
That was it for day one! We had a yummy meal in the evening that was created from fresh village products, so many courses I couldn’t keep up. We then had the chance to make our own doughnuts for desert, Vietnam style.
The next day we went to the local village market, the place where all the villagers go to buy and sell fresh fruits, meat and fish. They had just about everything here considering it’s only a tiny village. It is really crazy to think about your own lifestyle when you see how self sufficient these people can be.
On the way back from the market we saw some amazing scenery, we were traveling by pushbike so hads lots of opportunities to jump off and explore. We also visited a home where they make household brooms from left over palm tree leaves, naturally, we all had a go at that too.
We were villagers for a weekend, and we loved every minute of it!
It wouldn’t have been as fun if it weren’t for the people. A huge thanks to our amazing guide Nah, Indochina Junk have a real gem there, she was so sweet and accommodating, she became a dear friend by the end of the trip.
I also want to say thanks to James and Sarah, and of course my dearest mummy for making the few days a non-stop giggle!
For all details of my trip and booking information click here. Next stop for me……..Danang