Kyoko and I went to Vietnam for two weeks at the end of 2011. Although she visited two times before, I have never been there. We chose to visit some places in the north of the country that are very famous.

Besides visiting the main city of Hanoi, we went to the Sapa region. In these cold mountains near the border with China, the French built a resort community in the 1920s. We walked to the surrounding small villages where different ethnic groups, such as Hmong, live.

Our favorite part of the trip was to Halong Bay. This beautiful collection of rocks, small mountains, caves, and calm water is a World Heritage Site. We slept on an old wooden boat and even went kayaking among the strangely shaped rocks.